AN: Little one-shot for my favorite crack ship. Inspired by a prompt made by nikaalexandra on tumblr, and is also the pairing she made me ship. I don't anything having to do with Supernatural and I remain a broke college student.
If you didn't know that Michael Edlund had more money than he could ever hope to know what to do with then you would see his theme park and wonder how he could afford to keep it open all year round.
It wasn't a bad park, by any means, but it held more resemblance to a county fair than it did to Disney World or Six Flags or any of the other places that stayed open every day that wasn't a big holiday. The park was unimaginatively named, 'Edlund Amusement Park' but it was the only place with decent roller coasters for several hours in any direction and it had impressive prize booths and arcade games and the weather never dropped below seventy-five degrees, even in December, so people trickled in regularly enough to keep Michael's bills paid.
"Not," Castiel Novak said, finishing his explanation of the park to the newest employee, "that any of the customers have ever met Michael to know any of that. Only a handful of his employees know anything about him."
Samandriel, the new part-time arcade employee, looked unimpressed. "It sounds like the backdrop of a spy film. Like we're going to come to work tomorrow and find out we're all part of some elaborate CIA scheme."
"That wouldn't surprise me all that much, to be perfectly honest. Michael is… unique enough."
Samandriel raised an eyebrow. "If I get shot during a top secret government mission at a theme park I don't think I'll be able to live it down."
"Then avoid the gun," Castiel told him, getting out of his chair and gesturing for Samandriel to follow him. "Let me show you around the arcade."
Samandriel followed him out of the little office and into the tented arcade area of the park. There were more games than he would have expected from the size of the park. "Is the arcade a big part of the attraction?"
"Not exactly. It's a business strategy. Undercharge a little for admission, make people think it's a cheap park to bring their kids too…"
Samandriel caught on. "… And then run all the parents broke giving their kids quarters for the arcade."
"In a nutshell, yeah. The prize booth where they can cash in their tickets is around the corner to the left and down a little ways, just past the shooting games. We only have one guy to run it, so try not to send all the kids to him in one go."
"Why only one?"
"Because Michael Edlund's a cheapskate? I don't know. When we're both working I may have one of us go to help him out on busy days, so you might want to introduce yourself to him before you leave today."
Samandriel nodded. "I will. What exactly am I doing here?" The advertisement of the park needing a part-time arcade employee hadn't been terrifically informative.
"Mostly just keeping the children from getting into fistfights and making sure nobody is hogging one of the games."
"Doesn't sound like two person job."
"Well, you're partially here to help me get more time off. Also, your application said you know something about repairing electronics?"
"I took some classes in high school and I fix our family computer sometimes," Samandriel said, unsure of himself.
"Should work well enough. I break anything I touch and the only person in the park with any idea of how to fix stuff like this is a ride operator and can't come across the park every time we have an issue."
Samandriel thought Cas looked a little disappointed about that, but didn't know him well enough to say for certain. "Well, I'll do my best."
Castiel nodded agreement. "We have manuals that will - hopefully - tell you what you need to know. They're gibberish to me, but, like I said, I'm not good with technology."
The dark-haired man guided Samandriel through the rest of what he needed to know for his job, then suggested, as Samandriel didn't officially start until noon and the park was about to open, that he get acquainted with the park and some of the employees.
So Samandriel shoved his hands in his pockets and started to explore, dodging away from screeching children with sticky fingers as they began to trickle in, racing to their favorite rides. He wasn't exactly hopping with excitement over this job, but he supposed it paid well enough and he did need the money. He looked down and wrinkled his nose. He did wish the uniform was a little less… ostentatious. He didn't understand why people at fairs and amusement parks always had to wear such ridiculous shirts. Granted, it could have been worse than red and white pinstripes.
"You the new kid?" a voice with a thick New Orleans accent called out.
Samandriel looked up and around, locating the source as a large man with a decent beard in his early twenties who was standing behind the counter of the impressively sized prize booth. "Yeah, that's me," he said walking over.
The man grinned in greeting. "I'm Benny. And you're… Alfie?"
Samandriel looked down at his nickname and scowled. "They don't have my nametag made yet. Apparently it's against regulations to go without one."
Benny chuckled. "So they stuck you with a fake name? What's your real one?"
Benny shook his head. "What's with people around here having weird names? Balthazar, Castiel, Samandriel… It's ridiculous."
Samandriel straightened a bit, just a little offended. "Well, I don't know about them, but I was named after an angel."
Benny leaned across the counter, smile edging on being a leer now. "Oh yeah? What angel?"
Samandriel shifted uncomfortably and looked down at his feet. "Angel of fertility," he mumbled.
Benny chuckled. "That's cute. It suit you?"
"Don't worry about it, angel. You started work yet?"
He shook his head. "I start at noon. Castiel wanted to show me around before it opened though."
"Makes sense. Steer clear of the food stands, if you can. Gabriel's a weirdo."
Benny considered him for a moment and Samandriel could feel his face heating up. He didn't do well under observation. "What are you looking at?"
"You," Benny answered simply. "You're adorable, you know that? How old are you?"
It struck Samandriel that that may very well be Benny wondering if it was legal to try to get in Samandriel's pants and he was torn between feeling flattered and feeling terrified. "Eighteen," he replied, and was embarrassed to hear his voice squeaking.
Benny looked pleased and Samandriel was certain he'd been right about the getting in his pants thing. "Summer job before college, angel?"
Samandriel's nervousness went right out the window in favor of his shoulders slumping unhappily. Benny straightened up, concern etched into his face. "You all right?"
Samandriel shrugged one shoulder. "Don't know if I'm going to college. Not this year, at least."
"Why not?" Benny sounded more cautious than he had before and Samandriel appreciated the man seeming to not want to upset him more than he had. "Didn't get in? You seem plenty smart to me."
A weak smile formed on his face and he resisted the urge to point out that Benny hadn't even known him five minutes and had no idea whether or not Samandriel was intelligent enough to get into college. "Smart enough to get in. Not smart enough to get enough scholarships. And my parents threatened to disown me if I so much as think about taking out loans, so…" He sighed. "I'm working, saving up money, and hoping I can retake the SAT and maybe get some more money. Not this year though."
"I think you can do it."
Samandriel could feel his ears turning red and turned away. "Thank you, Benny." It was a little strange to get a vote of confidence like that from a guy he'd only just met, but it was the first vote of confidence Samandriel could remember getting in… well, ever.
The man smiled. "No problem, angel. Hey, want to come find me after closing tonight? I can give you a tour. Ask Dean to keep a few of the rides running for us."
"Who's Dean?" Samandriel asked, purposefully dodging the question.
"One of the ride operators. Old friend of mine. What do you say?"
Samandriel hesitated, but something about today seemed to be prime for rash decision making. "Sure. Why not?"
Benny grinned triumphantly, and then three small boys came barreling past Samandriel, clamoring over who got to pick their prize, and Samandriel ducked away.
The day was fairly boring, altogether, even with the thrum of nerves that came from a first day on a job. The most exciting thing to happen was when a ten year old boy bullied a little girl away from the pac-man game and she responded by leveling him with a kick to the kneecaps. Samandriel had never seen someone so completely devoid of remorse after a fight before. He was impressed. Castiel kept looking at the girl warily, like he might be her next target.
The sun went down over the park, the air cooled off almost enough to make Samandriel wish he had a sweater, and his nerves began jangling, stomach jumping like it was filled with grasshoppers. Over the course of seventeen minutes he changed his mind about meeting Benny thirteen times, and only decided to go because he thought it would be awkward to see him for the rest of however long he worked here if he ditched out.
That didn't stop him from feeling like something was sitting on his chest when he met up with Benny in front of the prize booth. "Hey there, angel," Benny greeted easily, and his smile sent some butterflies to keep the grasshoppers company.
Benny started walking and Samandriel fell into step alongside, realizing for the first time just how much taller than him the man was. "Not scared of heights, are you, angel?"
Samandriel shook his head.
"Good. Come on, we're starting with the Ferris wheel."
Samandriel couldn't remember the last time he'd been on a Ferris wheel and felt like he was maybe a little more excited than would be typical for someone his age.
Benny noticed the smile he couldn't quite hold back. "Fan of Ferris wheels, angel?"
Samandriel smiled wider and a burst of courage had him saying "Maybe. Or maybe I'm a fan of my company."
Benny looked surprised at the comment, but definitely not displeased by it. "In that case, I'll have to see about seeing that smile a little more often."
"It's harder than you think. I'm in a good mood today."
"I love a good challenge."
And then they'd reached the Ferris wheel, an extremely attractive man who was not achieving his potential by working at a theme park waiting for them. Samandriel assumed he was Dean.
"I'm only sticking around here for another hour, Benny," the man warned. "I've got to get up in the morning."
"So do I, Dean. I ain't gonna keep you here all night."
Dean gestured for the two of them to get on the ride and Samandriel felt like he was being sized up.
Once the ride began moving Samandriel stopped looking at Benny in favor of looking out over the park and the surrounding town, the little lights flickering on and off in the distance.
"Yeah." Samandriel turned to look at Benny. "Do you not like it?"
"It's nice enough. There's another one I like better."
Samandriel felt himself blush and was grateful for the dark. "Are you this much of a flirt with everyone?"
"Just the ones named after angels of fertility."
Samandriel laughed then, lightly, and Benny looked proud of himself. He moved closer, not quite touching Samandriel, but near enough for Samandriel to feel his body heat. He felt a little tension ebb out of his shoulders, tension he'd been carrying for so long that he hadn't realized he had it.
"This is nice, Benny. Thank you." Carefully, wary of misinterpreting the signs, Samandriel leaned over slowly, until his head rested on Benny's shoulder. An arm came around his own shoulders and Samandriel sighed contentedly.
"Anytime, angel," the man said softly. "Next time I'll even take you out on a real date, huh?"
Samandriel thought that sounded just about perfect.