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Title: A Pit Stop In Our Apocalypse
Author: Etharei
Pairings/Characters: Dean/Cas, Sam
Genre: Humour, First Time, Getting Together, Outsider POV
Warnings: None
Rating: PG for language
Prompts Used:
1. Castiel is fully human. He needs to bath. Dean shows him how
3. I don't love you. Castiel or Dean needs to convince the other that it's just not true
Summary: In which bathrooms play various roles in human-angel interactions. (Sam POV)

Note:Written for cydsa at the dc_summerlovin fic exchange. Many heartfelt thanks to my lovely beta xsilverdreamsx for reading this at 3AM; all remaining mistakes are mine.

cydsa, I'm sorry if this wasn't quite what you expected. My brain kind of hit the prompts sideways. I'm hoping to write a companion piece from Dean's POV once my week of craziness has passed ♥

A Pit Stop In Our Apocalypse

Sam's left leg, from the knee down, looks like a multicolored ocean of bruises with small islands of regular skin, and his head is throbbing from its recent encounter with a wooden support beam. At least their motel room contains one relatively comfortable armchair; the bed is a bad idea with a possible concussion, and he can keep the leg elevated with a Ziploc bag of ice balanced on his shin.

The bathroom door is partially open; Dean and Cas' voices drift out amidst wisps of steam. The witch they'd been hunting had gotten the jump on Dean, knocked him out, gave him something to keep him asleep, and left him in a swamp just before the water level rose. By the time Sam and Cas found him, only his face remained above the water.

Thus, Dean is getting a hot bath, attended to by his very own angel nurse. Sam shifts the ice up over his knee, wincing. He doesn't regret going after the witch, because otherwise they might not have learnt Dean's location and gotten to him in time, but that never made the healing process suck any less.

Sam looks around for the television remote control; he needs a distraction, and something to listen to that isn't the low murmur of voices coming from the bathroom.

Which. Awkward doesn’t quite cover what Sam feels whenever his brother and real-life guardian angel get their heavy-duty mutual gazing action going. Dean has, on numerous occasions, jerked off while Sam was in the room, while Sam was sleeping in the very next bed, because Sam isn’t allowed to have nice normal things.

This whatever-it-is between Dean and Cas? Somewhat normal, if occasionally hilarious conversations, shouldn’t make Sam more uncomfortable than knowing what his brother's sex-noises sound like, but somehow theirs do.

The remote control turns out to be on Dean's bed, naturally. Sam sighs, grabs hold of the back of the armchair, and hoists himself up to his feet. His knee makes a suspicious clicking noise, and his head is momentarily flash mobbed by sparkling lights and fizziness. He lurches towards the bed, glances towards the bathroom as he passes the door,

and nearly falls flat on his face. Through the gap, he has a clear view of Dean and Cas: Dean sitting in the bathtub, leaning forward, one hand gripping the side, and Cas leaning over the tub, so far over that one good nudge in the right spot would send him falling in completely.

They're kissing.

Dean and Castiel are kissing.

Not particularly hard - it's almost chaste, eyes closed over a soft meeting of lips and slow movements and the slightest hint of tongue.

Cas clearly has no idea what to do with his hands. He eventually places one on the side of Dean's face, sliding down until he's cradling the line of Dean's jaw. Dean brings his own hand up and places it on top of Cas', like he doesn't know what to do with his hands either. It’s all unexpectedly, painfully sweet, and this is what snaps Sam out of his unintentionally voyeuristic stupor.

He limps over to the bathroom, closes the door with a quiet but pointed thud, then limps back to the bed to get the Goddamn remote.

To his surprise, Sam doesn't start getting sexiled on the nights Cas shows up and stays over. In fact, Dean and Cas don't act any different, even though they must know that Sam knows. Sam assumes that they're taking advantage of Cas' angel teleportation ability to go fuck like bunnies in places where Sam is not, which Sam totally appreciates. Dean's capacity for embarrassment decreases in inverse proportion to his desire for sex, but maybe Cas is being a good influence.

Sam still has to exercise brotherly prerogative and gives Cas the big, "please don't break his heart, because if you do I will be obligated to at least punch you for it and will likely break my hand, and I'm pretty sure you’d feel bad about breaking my hand, and basically it'll just suck for everyone," speech. Cas gives him painfully mournful eyes at the very suggestion, which reminds Sam that this is the angel who pulled Dean out of Hell and then rebelled against Heaven for him, and the whole sad affair ends with Sam feeling like a dick and Dean yelling, what the hell happened, I left you guys alone for ten freaking minutes.

A few weeks pass before Sam notices that Dean is taking longer and longer showers. It doesn't require much imagination to guess what he's doing, but that doesn't make sense when he's sort-of-seeing-someone. Maybe Cas is secretly teleporting into the bathroom during those times, but Dean really can’t keep himself that quiet. (Read: awkward childhood experiences.)

He never sees Dean and Cas sleeping in the same bed, either.

It takes far, far too long for Sam to realize, "oh my God, you're going slow."

Dean sends him an irritated look, but there's an incriminating hint of pinkness to his face.
"Have you actually done anything other than kiss yet?" presses Sam. If his voice gets a little squeaky with the amount of incredulity it's trying to convey, Sam figures the situation calls for it; he's pretty sure Dean's never taken longer than a couple of days to get from 'hello' to 'I had a good time, see you around' before. "Are you guys staying above the waist?"

“Asshole,” grumbles Dean, kicking Sam hard.

Sam can’t stop laughing for five whole minutes. “Oh man. I am so getting you back for every single crack you’ve made about me being a gentleman.”

“Don’t make me bring out the big guns, Sammy, I’ve got angel mojo on my side.”

“I bet you want it on more than just your side.”

“I hate you so much.”

A sudden, wall-cracking slam accompanies the motel door crashing open, and Sam is on his feet with a gun in one hand and an unopened Coke can in the other, before he realizes that it's Dean coming back from the siren job. Alone, it looks like, though he'd left earlier with Cas. Sam, out of habit, checks for any details that might suggest this is not Dean, and when he finds nothing obvious, mentally runs through all the points in favor: a glimpse of the Impala outside right before the door swings close, everything Dean's wearing matches what he'd left with... and then Sam registers the look on his face.

Dean's expression is the classic Winchester special: Do Not Ask Me What's Wrong For I Have Done Something Stupid.

"Did you get it?" Sam asks first, because he is, in fact, a professional.

"Yeah," answers Dean, short and curt.

Where's Cas? is on the tip of his tongue, but then the reason Sam had had to stay behind on this job sends a reminder, in the form of his sprained knee giving out on him. Luckily, he hadn't actually moved away from the chair he'd spent most of the afternoon in, so his fall is more of an abrupt return to his seat rather than being dumped on his ass on the floor.

"What the hell, Sam, I told you to stay off your leg!" Dean shouts. Sam turns in time to see Dean grabbing one of their flasks of holy water and flinging a good measure over his face. "See? Not a demon." And one of Sam's silver knives from the table, drawing a thin line down his arm. "Not a supernatural critter. You happy now?"

"Dude, what happened?" Sam asks, meaning What have you done now? and also Why are you taking it out on me?

A muscle in Dean's neck twitches, but he doesn’t answer.

Cas doesn't show up that night. In fact, Cas doesn't show up for nearly a week, which is the longest he's been absent ever since he and Dean started their... thing. Dean's mood very firmly squats on Unhappy And Possibly Forlorn But By God Everything Is Fine Because I Say It Is, with a brief break in the gloom for exactly two minutes right after Cas calls and materializes in their motel room, at the end of which it clouds over again because Cas is very deliberately not meeting his eyes.

Sam takes all this, and combines it with the case where everything went weird being the one involving a siren, and flashes back to all the stuff he and Dean said to each other the last time they tangled with one... and wonders when his life turned into a soap.

"Dean, whatever happened with you and Cas -"

Dean snatches the shotgun out of his hands. "I know you mean well, Sammy, but this is none of your damn business."

"Castiel, sirens twist the truth to mess with your head, you must know that-"

The angel quickly looks around. Upon seeing that Dean is nowhere nearby, his shoulders visibly slump. "It is complicated, Sam. Dean knows as well as I that... certain things that were said... were only used by the siren to set us against each other. However, sirens can only manipulate what is already there, and tend to target that which rouses the strongest emotions in their would-be victims." Cas pauses, his body twitching in a way that, if he weren't an angel of the Lord, Sam would have described as 'shifty'. "I suspect that Dean is, in a way, just as conflicted about what was revealed to be his desire as what he actually said. True or untrue, it must have been foremost in his mind for the creature to target it."

Sam takes a moment to parse this. Dean is, when it comes right down to it, fairly shameless and apologetic about most things. There is a very small set of subjects that make Dean uncomfortable; and if it's about Castiel, and not about the sex that they are not having - not that Dean would have been embarrassed by that, or just that -




The Apocalypse provides a handy, if messy, ad break.

They stop at a motel right after taking Pestilence's ring. If Dean finds anything odd about how hard Sam insists on it, he doesn't comment. They're all feeling pretty gross after Pestilence played taffy with their insides. Sam pretends he doesn't see Dean discreetly adjusting the rearview mirror; there are no other cars on the interstate, anyway, and Sam, too, is worried about the way Cas had basically faceplanted into the backseat of the Impala and has been snoring softly since.

Once inside their rented room, Sam announces that Cas gets to be the first to wash up, by dint of being the latest person to sacrifice himself to the cause. He immediately regrets his attempt at gallows humor when he sees the pained look on Dean's face. Dean is conspicuously quiet as he helps a still-sleepy Cas into the bathroom. Sam watches them for a moment, chest tight; he already knows, deep down, how things are going to end for him. He can see the same kind of knowledge in Cas. They, the two of them, are foregone conclusions; they won't be walking out of the Apocalypse, one way or another.

But, maybe, between them, they can make sure that Dean does.

Sam closes the bathroom door, and shoves the dresser partially in front of it, locking the angel and his brother in. He suspects he doesn't need to, Dean looks more than ready to sort things out with Cas, but it would be easier on Dean for Sam to act the annoying younger brother forcing his older brother's hand.

Sam is more than willing to play his part, if it means Dean will be all right in the end.


note: I'd intended to include a section from Dean's POV at the end, but it would have exceeded the word limit. If I get some free time in a week or two, I'll write and post a companion piece :-)


( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 1st, 2012 01:49 am (UTC)
This is gorgeous. So beautifully in character and while hopeful, also tinged with sad. Nothing can ever be easy for Dean.
Jul. 1st, 2012 03:43 am (UTC)
This is lovely. Sweet and sad and the Sam voice is utterly perfect.

Thank you for sharing. :D
Jul. 1st, 2012 10:54 am (UTC)
Beautiful and bittersweet! I love how you've managed to capture their characters and their relationships so perfectly.

Edited at 2012-07-01 10:54 am (UTC)
Jul. 1st, 2012 12:44 pm (UTC)

omg rei ♥♥♥♥♥♥

Dean is such a moron and Cas just tries too hard and Sam sees it all.

Still cannot believe I lucked out & got you

loved it

love you

Jul. 1st, 2012 01:08 pm (UTC)
Nothing I ever easy for Dean.

This is stunning. You left me not only wanting more, but needing it!!! Amazing!
Jul. 8th, 2012 06:40 am (UTC)
Spot-on perfect Sam voice!

But did you have to make me whimper by ending with this:
"they won't be walking out of the Apocalypse, one way or another."
Jul. 8th, 2012 07:52 am (UTC)
Aw, yay for Sam the supportive little brother! His POV here is great, exasperated and considerate and snarky and compassionate. And his amusement at Dean and Cas "taking it slow" had me laughing right along with him. :)

I enjoyed this!
Jul. 8th, 2012 10:56 am (UTC)
This is lovely and heartbreaking and just superb.
Jul. 8th, 2012 09:27 pm (UTC)
I adored this. It's bittersweet and emotional. Sam is rocking my world here. I can see him and Cas doing everything they can to see that Dean makes it out alive.
Jul. 9th, 2012 05:26 pm (UTC)
That was positively fantastic. I adore Sam POV in these types of fics, and you nailed his voice perfectly. Looking forward to reading the companion fic!
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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