Love; it will not betray you
Dismay or enslave you, it will set you free
Be more like the man you were made to be
There is a design, an alignment to cry
Of my heart to see,
The beauty of love as it was made to be
-Sigh No More-Mumford and Sons
When five hours passed and Dean still hadn't come back or contacted them, Cas started getting really worried. The baby was silently watching him and Sam as they talked and tried to figure out what they would need for her and what to do about Dean. She would smile and squirm when one of them looked at her.
"She isn't going to need a lot, Sam." Cas stole a quick glance at the happy nephilim still in her basket. "She won't sleep much or eat much at all."
"Well," Sam checked his phone absently again, thinking maybe he had just missed Dean for the 20th time, "we should probably get some kind of crib or something at least."
Cas nodded. His worry for Dean was beginning to get as strong as his anger. Although it was like him to just disappear when he couldn't deal with something, this wasn't an argument or something petty and stupid, this was his daughter. "You should probably go do that. I wouldn't know where to start."
"Dean took the car."
Cas sighed and sat at the table by his baby. She squealed and lifted her hands up. Cas held his finger out for her to latch onto and smiled as she shook his finger happily. "We'll wait then." Sam sighed. Cas knew how irritated Sam was by Dean's actions but he also knew that Dean would come back.
It wasn't an hour later when the door opened slowly and Dean walked in. Sam immediately jumped up, "Where the hell have you been?" He kept his voice down so the baby couldn't hear.
Dean lifted a hand to calm his brother before looking apologetically to Cas. "I'm sorry for being gone so long." He shut the door behind him. "I just…" he looked at the small hand still holding Cas's finger and his face softened, "I didn't know how to react and…" he shrugged.
"What have you been doing?" Sam crossed his arms to stop himself from shoving the other man.
"Just driving," he tossed his keys to the counter a couple feet to his left. "I was a little thrown and I needed a minute."
"It's been six hours, Dean." Cas looked up to meet his eye. His voice was calm, eyes steady. He wasn't angry. He was just relieved that Dean seemed okay now.
"I know." Dean took a breath and looked down. "I didn't realize it had been so long, or that it took me so long."
"What took you so long?" Sam had relaxed a little. Dean seemed okay and this wasn't going to be a fight or shouting match, which he had expected.
Instead of answering, Dean left the room and walked out to the Impala. After a minute, he came back with his arms full of bags, which were filled with baby supplies. Dean shrugged at the shocked looks he got from the two men. "What?"
Sam smiled and shook his head. Just like when they picked up the shifter baby, Dean was the only one that knew some of what a baby needed to survive. Cas pulled his finger loose and walked over to Dean. They looked at each other for a brief moment, Dean's arms falling slightly in doubt. Cas then cupped Dean's face and pressed a soft kiss on his lips.
Cas pulled back, slipping a few of the bags off Dean's arms as he moved, and smiled warmly. He saw Sam scratch the back of his head before turning to help empty the rest of the stuff out of the car. Cas turned from Dean and placed the bags on the table beside the baby.
"That's it?" Dean sounded doubtful. He put his bags next to Cas's. "That's all you're gonna do?"
Cas smirked. "For now."
The promise made Dean smile. He reached a hand out for Cas's shoulder. "Thanks." They shared a short look before Dean dropped his hand and looked down at his daughter. "So, anything happen while I was gone?"
Cas shook his head. "No."
Dean watched silently as Cas removed the items from the plastic bags. He was still waiting for the explosion, the righteous speech about abandoning him or running away from his problems, but Cas just contently unpacked like nothing had happened.
A small noise shifted his attention to the little girl in the basket. The wide blue eyes, Cas's eyes, made him smile. He laid a hand on the baby's head, which was covered in light brown hair, and ran his thumb over her scalp gently. She smiled up at him and reached up to grab his wrist.
Cas laughed when he saw Dean wince and try to pull his arm free of the iron grip. "Be careful, Dean. She's stronger than any of us already." He reached over and helped Dean get loose. "She nearly broke Sam's finger and ripped out some of his hair."
"Yeah?" Dean rubbed his sore finger. "Wow. She'll only get stronger too, won't she?" Cas nodded. "That's not scary at all."
The front door opened as Sam carried in the box for the crib and a couple bags on his wrists. "This is everything, then?"
"Yeah." Dean took the box from Sam and set it down. He looked around at the bags that covered the table and were hanging from Sam. "I may have gone a little overboard."
Sam laughed, dropping the bags on the floor by the table. "Maybe a little, considering she won't eat or sleep."
Dean's eyes widened. "What, really?"
"Not much." Cas looked over a baby bottle curiously. "She is part angel, but the note said that she was more human than angel. Nephilim of the past ate maybe three times a month, and slept about the same amount." He put the bottle down. "If she's mostly human, her needs will be higher, but other things, like sickness and injuries won't affect her."
"So, she'll basically be you before the apocalypse when you were cut off from Heaven?"
"Basically, in her human needs. Of course, her powers will be greater than what most angels possess."
"Awesome, that'll be fun to deal with."
They unpacked the rest of the supplies that Dean had bought, which included a few outfits. Cas smiled at the thought of Dean searching through racks of baby clothing in a store with, probably confused, mothers staring at him.
Sam looked through the legal documents that were in the basket, placing their small folded letters on the table as he sat to check the papers.
Cas's note seemed to stare at him as he helped Dean set up the crib. He wanted to read it, but he felt like he needed to do this, and he was nervous at what he would find. What could Chuck tell him that would really change anything? Nothing could make up for the pain and suffering and the betrayal that Cas felt Chuck committed against his family. Still the note beckoned him.
Dean had the frame of the crib up when Cas couldn't take it anymore. He walked to the table and picked up his note. The stained paper crinkled as he unfolded it, his fingers shaking.
Where can I even start? There is so much I want to tell you, so much I could explain, a lot you may not believe. I told you why I made you human already and this was your decision. You've always been a faithful soldier and son, Castiel. Even when you seemed to rebel, you were actually doing exactly what I wanted, being who I wanted you to be. I am proud of you, I always was.
Now, this baby is very special. One of a kind, never to be done again. You remember the nephilim of the past? She will be very similar, but she is also a Winchester which comes with its own problems. We both know what it means to be a Winchester and a celestial being, she is both and she will be the strongest nephilim ever made because of that unique Winchester blood.
Her powers already exist, she'll always have them. You have to help her learn to control them and use them. You can imagine how much everything in Heaven, Hell, and Earth will want her. Some to kill, some to use, some to twist and torture. I'm very confident that the three of you can protect her and teach her the safest way to live. She doesn't have to be a hunter if you choose, but a normal life will hardly be possible or easy either.
The only weapon that can hurt her is the angel blade. But her humanity will be her biggest weakness. It could be used against her if she lets it.
Oh, Castiel, I could fill a book with everything that I wanted to tell you. All you really need to know for the moment is here. You have never disappointed me to a degree that couldn't be forgiven and I doubt you ever will. This family is something I know you have wanted for a while. Please be happy and teach her everything that has made you great.
Cas folded the note back up and slid it into his front pocket. Sam was watching him from the table with a question in his eyes. Cas gave him a small smile and nodded.
"HA!" Dean stood and smiled in triumph. The crib was together after Dean nearly broke a couple parts while constructing it. "Got it."
"Only took you a couple hours." Sam smiled and stood to inspect his work.
"Shut up. I didn't see you helping." Dean kicked the empty box the crib came in towards the door. He smiled at Cas as he walked over to the table. "Hey, baby." Dean held a finger out for her as she smiled and reached for him. She hadn't cried or fussed once since she arrived, Dean was impressed.
"So, what are you guys gonna name her?" Sam looked expectantly at Dean and Cas. "All her documents have her name left blank and the note said it was up to you."
Dean couldn't believe that he hadn't thought about that yet. He looked to Cas with wide eyes. "Uh…wow, I don't really have any idea."
Cas moved closer to look down at the baby. "I was tying to think of some names earlier but I was thinking more about where you were." He looked at Dean.
Names ran through Dean's mind. What should he name his daughter? Mary surfaced, but Dean didn't see that fitting her. What name does fit a powerful, one of a kind, nephilim? He could see Sam thinking too. It was silent while the men tried to decide on a name for their newest family member.
"What about," Sam shifted in his chair, "Grace?"
They turned the name around in their heads. It almost worked, but Dean didn't think it was quite right. "I don't know. Maybe something that doesn't sound like a description of what she is?"
They fell into silent thought again, the baby cooed in her basket. Cas tried to think of something meaningful, yet simple. He knew so many languages and knew the names of powerful beings from all over the world, but nothing seemed right. "Maybe, her name should be a representation of what she symbolizes, what her presence means."
Dean made a face. "What, do you know the secret to man's existence?"
"That's not what I mean, Dean." Cas set serious eyes on his husband. "What does she show, why is she here?"
Dean shrugged. "I don't know. God was feeling generous?"
Cas shook his head. "Faith." He looked at Sam. "His faith in us," he looked back to Dean, "our faith in each other. She wouldn't be here if I had chosen to take back my grace and he wouldn't have given her to us if he didn't believe we should have her."
"Faith?" Dean gave it a thought. He smiled at the thought of a Winchester being named after something most of them didn't have. That was one of the first things Cas had said to Dean, 'You have no faith.' But Cas was right, it was why she was here. "I like it."
Sam smiled and nodded in agreement as he stood to peak at his niece. "Faith Winchester." He held a finger out for her to grab. "Welcome to the family."