I don't have a good excuse for not updating. A few kind reviews and likes/follows/favorites got me back on the inspiration bus to keep it going. It's not going to be a very long fic, but I think I have it mapped out in my head and it's going to be good. Thank you to all of those who have followed/favorited it recently and a special thanks to: smp06185, Larkafree, "Guest", KahoriSaeko, RIP Kevin Trann, and zoehenn9!
"Hey man, stop picking that those. They're gonna get infected," Dean said as he looked over at Cas during lunch.
Of course, the deaf boy hadn't heard him because he was too busy staring at his hand to even notice Dean was looking at him.
Dean let out a small sigh and rubbed his eyes. It had been an exhausting night for both of them. After his shirt was soaked with Castiel's tears, Dean decided that the cut on his hand had been bad enough for stitches. So, with Jimmy's permission Dean took Cas to the emergency room.
Of course, the wait there had been horrible. Four freakin' hours just for Cas to get seven stitches. By the time Dean had gotten back to the Novak house, it was three in the morning and he was whooped. So, he stayed the night and had passed out right after his head had hit the extremely comfortable pillows on Castiel's bed.
Dean had been all for staying in bed all day and sleeping and cuddling, but Cas wasn't having any of that. He wouldn't have tolerated it on a normal day, let alone a day that his dad was home and expected nothing but academic perfection from his son.
Dean finally nudged Cas with his shoulder, startling him. Wordlessly, Dean picked up his wrapped hand and pressed his own palm to it and shook his head slowly. "You're going to make it worse."
"I know," Castiel said. "I just keep thinking that I might have overreacted jus' a lil' bit."
"I don't think so."
Dean shook his head, "I couldn't even imagine going through something like losing your hearing. Then, you had a stressful night with your dad, and to put a cherry on your slice of pie you ended up cutting your hand. That's a lot of pressure to be under. Anybody would crack."
He nodded a little in reply, then picked up his pencil to do whatever homework he hadn't gotten done because of their little trip to the hospital the previous night.
Dean was A-okay with that because that meant he could get back to his virtually tasteless and fairly disgusting school lunch. He picked up the remains of his burger and wrinkled his nose at it, but took a bite anyway. Hell, his slogan was enough ketchup could even make a severed arm taste like chicken.
"Are you working later?" Castiel asked him.
Dean shook his head, "Nah. I got my work done yesterday so Bobby's giving me the day off. Why?"
"Can we do something?"
"Like what?" Dean glanced outside to see snow falling lightly on the frozen ground.
Kansas didn't get much snowfall, but it was supposed to come down thicker as the night wore on. The problem was that there wasn't much to do in the snow because they didn't get enough snow to sled—not that they had the hills for it anyway—but enough to be an annoyance when they wanted to walk somewhere.
Castiel shrugged in response. "I'll let you know by the end of the day, okay?"
Dean nodded an affirmative after the bell rang and dismissed them to class.
"You're sure about this?" Dean asked as he zipped up his jacket a little further. The snow crunched under his boots as he walked, his breath puffed in front of his face, and snow dusted down across his cheeks.
"It's just a walk, Dean." Castiel said moving up beside him.
He chuckled, "If I remember correctly, you don't exactly pick ideal weather conditions for your walks." He smiled at the first time he'd really hung out with Cas outside of school. It had been pouring down rain and the deaf boy had been walking without an umbrella or rain jacket.
Castiel blushed at the statement, "Perhaps not. It doesn't snow very much down here and I jus' thought we'd take a little walk then go for cocoa or something."
The park was empty, save for the two of them. There were no tracks on the path that cut through it for pedestrians of bikers either. It was strange to think that they were all alone, just the two of them. As eerie as it was, Dean had to admit that there was something surreal and serene about it too. Like, it had been planned this way just for the two of them.
Now, he wasn't a sentimental guy in the least, but he had to admit that having this time with Cas was pretty damn special.
"Look, swings!" Castiel exclaimed, veering of the path and darting for the swing set.
"Aw come on, man!" Dean called after him in a failed attempt to sway him back to the path. Dean spat out a curse under his breath as he chased after him through the snow as he remembered that Cas couldn't hear him. "Look, they're covered in snow! I'm not gonna sit on that, my ass will get wet!"
Castiel rolled his eyes and brushed off his own swing before plopping down on it, "Well if you're not gonna swin' you can push me."
It was too chick-flicky for him, but Dean got behind him and gave him a small push. "I can't believe I'm doing this," he muttered, glad for once that he couldn't be heard. For a while, he grumbled and groaned about it, but it wasn't until he heard Cas laugh that he found himself actually enjoying himself.
Too chick-flicky? Make that a Hell yes.
Did Dean love every minute of it? You bet your sweet ass he did.
Once Cas was really gaining airtime Dean decided that he was going to give him an under-duck like he used to do to Sammy when he was a kid. He pulled back on the chains of Castiel's swing, then shoved him forward as hard as he could. Dean ducked and took off running under the swing and soaring Cas. He grinned and spun around to face him.
Suddenly, his boots were slipping on ice and Dean found himself lying on his back in the snow.
"Dean!" Castiel exclaimed rushing off his swing and kneeling in front of him. His brow was creased with concern, his blue eyes filled with worry as the streetlights lit up the dark park from the path. "Are you okay? Are you hurt?"
Dean sat up, brushing snow from his collar. He shivered as some went down his back. "Yeah, I'm fine."
"Promise." His hand reached out to brush against Cas's cheek comfortingly. When they touched his ear, Dean noticed that his ears were ice cold. "Hold that thought." He rose, dusted himself off and helped Cas stand. "You're ears are freezing."
Castiel tilted his head at Dean curiously as Dean produced a red beanie from his jacket. Then he smiled, "I'll be fine I don't need that. You probably need it more than I do."
Dean shook his head, despite the wet pants he felt nice and toasty. "I'm good. You definitely need it." He gently placed it on Castiel's snowflake encrusted hair and over his ears that were starting to redden from the cold. "Better?"
He smiled and nodded. "Yes, thank you."
They made their way back to the path, their glove-covered hands linked as they walked.
At the other end of the park was a small little coffee shop and they were headed there. Neither of them spoke as they walked. They didn't need to. A lot of what their relationship consisted of was just spending time in each other's company and enjoying it.
They made it there, stepping inside and brushing the snow off of their shoulders and taking off their gloves. Dean stepped up to the counter, "What do you want to drink, Cas?"
"Don't be ridiculous, Dean. I'm paying for it." He rebutted as he shoved his way past Dean to get to the counter.
Cas didn't see him speak because he was too busy talking to the barista, so the question remained unanswered.
Dean ordered his caramel mocha (girly, yes. But if he was going to have a chick flick moment or two he wasn't going to do it half-assed. He was going to go full-blown girly) over Castiel's shoulder.
The barista smiled at the pair of them and made their drinks. When she handed Castiel's to him she said, "Be careful it's hot."
Castiel nodded as he read her lips.
"Are you deaf too?" She asked curiously.
That caught Dean's attention and he stopped staring out the window to look at her and Cas, who looked a little confused at the question.
"Um…yes," Castiel replied. "How did you know?"
The young woman pushed her hair aside to reveal hearing aids. "I was deaf too, but I got cochlear implants and I can almost hear perfectly now."
"Um…I've been considering dem."
This news surprised Dean, he looked at Cas with wide green eyes. Why hadn't he told him?
"I recommend it if they'll work on your type of deafness."
Castiel nodded, his face red and flustered. "Um, thanks." He said quickly before bolting out of the café and into the snow.
Dean sighed and scrubbed a stressful hand through his hair. Now he had to figure out what the hell was bothering Cas and reading that guy was like trying to read the bible in Enochian.
"I'm sorry," the woman said seemingly upset. "I-I hadn't meant to upset him. Please tell him I'm sorry."
"I will," Dean said heading for the door. "It's not you either. He's just…sensitive about that kind of thing."
"Okay. By the way, you two are really cute together."
Dean paused with the door half open to blink at her. His mind totally blank. How did he respond to that? It wasn't like he and Cas were anything official yet but they were much more than friends. After all, friends don't just give friends mind-boggling blowjobs. "Um, thanks." He said before pushing his way out the door.
He found Castiel about halfway down the path, standing under a streetlight and sipping his hot chocolate. "Cas," he breathed slowing to a stop in front of him. "What happened back there?"
"Sorry," he mumbled into his hot chocolate. "It's just that getting cochlear implants is something I've been thinking about for a long time."
"Are you gonna get them?"
"I don't know."
Dean remembered what Gabriel had said that night about Cas being scared of it failing, about getting his hopes up only to have them crushed when the surgery didn't work. "Okay, well you've got time to think about it."
Dean studied the way his cheeks and nose were tinged red, how his blue eyes shone under that red cap, and how goddamned amazing he looked under the streetlight surrounded by sparkling snow and he didn't hesitate to lean down and kiss him.
Cas didn't hesitate to kiss him back.
It tasted like hot chocolate and caramel coffee and it felt damn good.
After they kissed he asked, "Dean…what exactly are we?"
He wondered if Cas had some sort of freaky mind reading ability. "What do you want to be?"
"I like this," he replied, gesturing between them. "But, I don't wanna feel like I'm your temporary fling."
"You're more than just a fling to me, Cas. I swear it."
Castiel didn't respond right away and Dean worried that the deaf boy hadn't seen his lips move. He stared at his hot chocolate as if it were trying to give him the courage he needed to say what he was going to say next. Finally, those blue eyes snapped up to Dean. "Will you be my boyfriend?"
He couldn't help it that the biggest shit-eating grin crossed his features. "Of course, Cas. Of course." He said before he leaned down and kissed him.
The twinkling snow, the streetlight, the coffee, everything about it was sappy.
For once, Dean didn't care.
It was perfect.