Characters: Sam, Dean, Castiel
Pairing: Sam/Dean (shortly)
Summary: Castiel wants to get some things off his chest, Sam wants to eat lunch in peace.
It wasn’t exactly something they’d planned. Castiel had shown up on their doorstep, seemingly human and confused, and Dean was too busy worrying about Sam to say anything but “yeah, whatever” when the angel asked if he could stay.
Sam’s not thrilled to have him around—too much history, too many memories—but Sam knows Dean still feels an obligation to Castiel, and Sam isn’t really in a position to throw stones. He works at being polite, friendly when he can manage it, which isn’t often in the first few weeks.
Once Dean realizes exactly how useless the angel has become—can’t heal Sam, can’t relieve his pain, can’t even bamf into town for groceries—he mostly ignores him, snapping impatiently whenever he approaches them together. After a few harshly whispered arguments in the hallway outside Sam’s room, Castiel wisely retreats to the room he’s chosen and begins spending most of his time in the library translating some of the older volumes.
So Sam’s a little surprised when Castiel approaches him as he’s struggling with the cranky old stove in the kitchen. Dean’s on a supply run, and Sam’s taking the chance to try doing something on his own—he knows Dean means well, but his motherhenning is making Sam just a teensy bit crazy, especially now that he’s starting to feel a little better.
“I have some experience with this device,” Castiel says politely after a moment. “I would be happy to assist you.” Sam forces a smile and moves aside so that the angel can light the stubborn pilot.
“Thank you,” Sam says. His smile feels a little more genuine as he puts cheese and bread in the pan to fry—grilled cheese is about as much as he can handle yet. “Don’t tell Dean, okay? He’ll never let me live it down.”
Castiel shakes his head. “I have something to discuss with you, Samuel, “ he says gravely, and Sam’s smile freezes. There’s nothing Sam particularly wants to talk about with Castiel—all they share is pain and fear, nothing that Sam wants to relive. He sighs. “I just want to have lunch, Cas,” he says quietly. “We have nothing to talk about.”
“Then perhaps you will do me the favor of listening,” Castiel says insistently. He sits at the table and waits. Sam turns off the stove and sits—he’s not hungry now, just wants to get this over with, preferably before Dean gets home.
Castiel takes a deep breath. “I wish to apologize for my previous actions, Samuel,” he says. Sam’s head comes up sharply, because that’s the last thing he was expecting. “I have done and said many things that have harmed you, and I have come to regret them. I would like your forgiveness.”
Sam pushes back from the table abruptly. “Don’t worry about it, Cas,” he says tightly. “Water under the bridge.” A dull throb has started in his right temple, and all he wants to do right now is lie down in the dark.
“Samuel, please.” There’s a note of desperation in Castiel’s voice, but Sam can’t do this right now, he just can’t. He’s almost to the door when Castiel says “I released you from Bobby’s safe room. I altered a telephone message Dean left for you before you killed Lilith to make you think he hated you and encourage you to start the apocalypse. I left your soul in the Cage to force Dean to cooperate with Crowley. The Apocalypse, your addiction, your estrangement from your brother, your torment…it was all my fault. I’m sorry.”
“You did what?”
Sam and Castiel both jerk towards the sound of Dean’s voice. The grocery bags Dean’s carrying—at least a dozen, Dean hates making more than one trip—hit the floor and the anger on his face is truly frightening.
1“Dean—“ Sam and Castiel both try to speak but Dean interrupts.
“Out. Now.” Dean’s voice is trembling slightly, but the gun he’s pointing at the fallen angel never wavers. “Get out and don’t come back.” Castiel turns a beseeching look on Sam, and Dean’s face darkens further. “NO. You don’t look at him, you don’t talk to him. You get up and you walk out that door. Now.”
Castiel doesn’t hesitate again—wisely, Sam thinks. He can’t remember the last time he saw Dean so furious—years, at least. He rubs absently at his temple and Dean is at his side in an instant.
“You okay, Sammy?” he asks gently. Sam doesn't dare nod, can't speak around the increasing pain, but Dean has always (mostly always) been able to understand, even without words.
"I don't know what all that was about," Dean says as he leads Sam down the hall to his room. "But I'm going to find out, if I have to beat it out of him."
He's mostly holding Sam up by the time they get to his room, and Sam collapses gratefully onto the soft bed. It's a double, the only one in the bunker, and Sam commandeered it when they first arrived despite Dean's attempts to lay claim as the oldest. Dean hands him a couple of migraine tabs with a stern look, and Sam swallows them obediently even tho they both know they won't work. But Dean's encouraging smile and Dean's hand in his hair for a brief moment afterward are reason enough to do it anyway, even if they make Sam feel even more bereft when they are gone.
Sam lets Dean putter a bit after he swallows the pills, pulling off Sam's shoes, tucking in the comforter around him. He draws the line at actual pillow fluffing, but takes the opportunity to catch Dean's hand when he turns away.
"Stay with me?" Sam asks, and hopes it doesn’t sound too much like begging. "Just til I fall asleep?" Dean’s face twists a little but he nods.
"Yeah, okay, just for a little while," Dean says, and shucks his own shoes and jacket quickly before sliding in next to Sam. They fit together perfectly, like they always have, Dean's hand pressed against Sam's heart, Dean's breath warm on the back of Sam's neck.
"Good night, Sammy," Dean whispers, and Sam does his best to ignore the tiny break in his voice as he drifts off.