Sam's brain hurts.
The rest of his body is fairly sure it's time to be awake but his brain is protesting that it needs to be unconscious for a little while longer. Because it's still made of fluff and glue...and pain. His left arm is completely numb, probably because he's been laying on it.
Also, someone's laying on him.
What the hell? He vaguely remembers there being a 'hurrah we didn't die in a fiery apocalypse and the world is still here' party. Which, considering they invited angels, probably shouldn't have involved quite so much alcohol. Or maybe more alcohol than usual, he's not quite sure. Either way it probably shouldn't involve getting very drunk, doing something stupid and passing out at four am with someone you can have horrendously awkward conversations with in the morning.
Though he probably ran out of excuses for accidentally sleeping with Gabriel about three months ago.
Sam's fairly sure this is a thing, he's fairly sure they have a thing now, and that's worrying in a way he's not quite sure how to deal with.
Oh dear God, someone please make his brain stop hurting.
There's a sigh against his back and a hand curves over his forehead.
His head immediately stops thumping and lurching, and the headache is gone like it was never there.
Sam exhales shaky delicious relief and relaxes. The hand drifts away, drops somewhere on skin, telling him helpfully that nudity is involved in this particular morning after. But he can't for the life of him be bothered to shove Gabriel off. Completely ignoring the fact that he's certain that would be immensely ungrateful. Since he can move without his brains threatening to fall out now.
He breathes indecision into the pillow for a minute until something creaks sharply, distant and faraway. It happens again a second later, sharper and louder and that's something which Sam has become horribly familiar with. That would be the sound of his brother having sex with an angel three rooms away.
Sam pulls a pillow over his head.
"Oh god it's much too early for that," he says pitifully.
Clearly Dean hasn't woken up with a hangover.
Because God likes him best.
There's a soft, vibrating curl of laughter against his back.
"Oh shut up, it's not funny," Sam complains, but he still hasn't quite managed to roll away yet. He tells himself it's because Gabriel is warmer than the cold flatness of the sheet.
Though he gives it less than a minute before Gabriel opens his mouth and Sam will be forced, yet again, to remember why this is a bad idea and why he's clearly insane.
But there's nothing and Sam has the weirdest feeling that maybe this morning Gabriel isn't going to irritate him.
That maybe he isn't going to leave at all.
Sam thinks he falls asleep again, because the next time he opens his eyes he's alone. He grumbles something that isn't sure whether to be irritated or not and pushes himself up to a sit.
The bedroom's empty.
So much for that theory.
He tosses the sheets back and goes looking for his clothes.
He meets Dean on the stairs, still only half in his shirt, and they spend a moment making sure they don't knock each other flying. Because surviving the apocalypse only to fall downstairs and break their necks would probably make them a laughing stock in any afterlife.
When they get to the kitchen Gabriel is sprawled in one of the chairs, boots balanced precariously on the edge of the table.
Sam stops so suddenly that Dean thumps into the back of him.
"Jesus, Sam, a little warning."
Gabriel raises an eyebrow at him like he knows exactly what he's thinking. Then he moves a foot far enough to push a chair out for him.
Castiel is in the kitchen too, dressed in his pants and his untucked and mostly unbuttoned shirts. He's in front of the stove and surrounded by a variety of boxes and spilt pools of milk.
"What are you doing, Cas?" Dean asks curiously.
"I'm making pancakes," Castiel intones seriously. "Utilising the mixture I discovered in the cupboards."
Mostly Castiel is making a mess, Bobby probably didn't even know he had half of this stuff. Also, there are footprints across the kitchen floor, in milk.
Dean eyeballs them curiously.
"That's pretty awesome," he decides, and then hovers, like he kind of wants to put his hands somewhere but he's resisting because he knows everyone's watching.
Eventually he leans in and presses his mouth just briefly, against Castiel's ear. The angel pauses in his very serious cooking ritual, the edge of his mouth turning up just slightly.
Sam's fairly sure if he tried anything like that with Gabriel he'd be forced to regret it.
Dean turns back to them, as if to check if he's been caught and Sam can't resist raising an eyebrow at him. Because he was the one treated to the damn angelic chorus this morning.
Dean stares straight back.
"Dude, don't even pretend to look at me like that, don't think we didn't hear what you were doing at three in the morning."
Sam grunts something offended.
"I was so drunk, even I don't know what I was doing at three this morning," he complains. He looks up just in time to catch the wince Dean gives in reaction to whatever shows on Gabriel's face. But by the time he turns to look for himself Gabriel's expression is back to looking thoroughly bored.
Dean throws himself into the other chair.
"Guess what we're doing today, nothing, we're doing nothing today, because there is nothing to do today." He grins and looks far too pleased with himself. Sam suspects he's going to have to put up with this for a while.
"Dean, there are still people to help," he points out.
"Sure, clean up, nothing we haven't dealt with before." He shrugs and puts his boots up on the other chair. "Seen one apocalypse seen 'em all."
"It's your own fault you've lived through more almost-apocalypses than you'd find in a season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer," Gabriel says, all lazy mockery and boredom. He manages to sound thoroughly unimpressed with the pair of them.
Castiel appears at the side of the table with a pan and a stack of plates.
The pan contains an interesting selection of beige and black, with the occasional splash of milk or dot of flour. It's like some sort of experiment.
Castiel looks sort of accomplished and worried at the same time.
Dean cautiously drags out pancakes which aren't black on at least one side.
Then he throws Sam a look. Like he is, in some way, a horrible traitor if he doesn't have some of Castiel's clearly delicious pancakes. Sam should point out some time that the angel is millions, maybe even billions of years old and his feelings will probably be hurt less if he refuses, than if he eats one and dies a horrible death.
He sighs and decides on the same tactic as Dean.
"Thanks Cas," he says politely, and makes sure the angel doesn't see him experimentally scraping one.
Castiel frowns and then cautiously offers the pan in Gabriel's direction.
Gabriel rolls his eyes, sighs expansively and with a great show of reluctance drags himself a couple of mutilated pancakes onto a plate.
"They probably won't kill me," he mutters under his breath.
Which, for some bizarre reason seems to make Castiel happy. Dean smiles up at him when Gabriel isn't looking, in a way that says maybe there's a conversation there that Sam knows nothing about.
Castiel doesn't even seem phased to be left with the dubious and crispy remains.
He acquires them four different types of topping and Gabriel goes straight for the maple syrup, leaving Dean briefly irritated with his hand in midair.
He pours on so much that Sam suspects his tragic pancakes will have to learn to swim.
Sam stares at his own pancakes musing on how he wants his burnt edges to taste, when he has one of those moments. Those strange moments where you remember something you've forgotten, or something you did while you were drunk and for a second you're not entirely sure whether it actually happened or not.
There's a slim possibility that he may have, in the middle of some sort of sex-related, post-apocalyptic high, told Gabriel that he loved him.
He stares at his pancakes.
The taste of burnt pancakes follows Sam for most of the morning. Dean stays in the kitchen to help Castiel clean up his great pancake experiment before Bobby appears and demands to know who let off a breakfast flavoured bomb in his kitchen.
Sam's collecting beer bottles strewn about the house in strange places, sliding his fingers into them and carrying them back to the kitchen when he's full. Exactly how much did they drink last night anyway?
Gabriel does briefly help. He finds two bottles shoved down the back of the couch with the labels peeled off and passes them in Sam's direction, Then he throws his arms over the back of the couch and seems content to just watch.
This is maybe the first time Gabriel hasn't disappeared straight away after they've woken up together.
Sam's still trying to work out of that's because of what he said - when he's not entirely sure whether he said it or just thought it really hard.
"So," Sam says, in a casual way he probably doesn't get away with. "What exactly happened last night." He knows some of it, maybe most of it, but it gets a little shaky towards the end and Sam's not entirely sure what really happened and what's alcohol induced hallucination.
Sam thinks for a fraction of a second there's something tight under Gabriel's expression of amusement. But then it's gone and there's just a dubiously raised eyebrow instead.
Gabriel sighs, as if Sam makes a habit of worrying about things which aren't particularly important.
"Nothing terrible if that's what you're worried about. No murders committed across state lines, no stolen pets, no teenage girls crying to their parents about how you deflowered them in the night."
Gabriel puts his boots up and it occurs to Sam that that's another distraction.
Sam stops looking for bottles and balances his hip on the back of the couch, making Gabriel look up at him, though it doesn't seem to matter. Gabriel is Gabriel no matter where he looks at you from.
He watches Sam's mouth like he remembers what it taste like, then slowly, reluctantly, Gabriel flicks his eyes up to meet his.
Sam frowns, because this should be so much easier than it is.
It's not like they haven't ever kissed before. Granted it's usually more of a necessary prelude to sex and Sam's made a habit of being drunk, angry or medicated for most of it. Not all of it but most of it.
Which he's fairly sure makes him the worst - other half of a relationship ever. And messed up or not he's fairly sure that's what they're having. Which shouldn't really come as so much of a surprise.
He's kind of amazed Gabriel hasn't turned him into something yet.
"A lot of it's kind of a blur," Sam says slowly.
Gabriel rolls his eyes and turns his head away and Sam surprises the hell out of himself by grabbing his chin and turning it back to face him.
Which seems like a good moment to -
Sam leans over the couch and kisses him, one rough untidy press of mouth. But it's the first time he's done that just because he can. The first time he's done it when they've been somewhere someone could see.
Gabriel says absolutely nothing when Sam lets him go. He looks uncharacteristically surprised.
"Did I..." Sam's not sure how to finish that without it sounding stupid, without putting it all out there. But he thinks if he doesn't know he'll go mad, and he thinks if he doesn't ask now then he never will.
He lets it hang there, not sure how to finish it.
"Yeah," Gabriel says quietly. "You did."
There's almost no indication in Gabriel's voice exactly what he thinks about that, but he's gone still in the way Castiel goes still sometimes when he's waiting for Dean to answer an important question.
"I'm a shitty boyfriend," Sam manages, which sounds really, really wrong. But it's kind of true.
Gabriel looks surprised and then amused and then quietly unfathomable.
He tilts his head to one side.
"I did once turn you into an ostrich so we're probably even."
"When did you turn me into an ostrich?"
Gabriel laughs and fists a hand in his shirt and there's a really unfair amount of strength at work there when he hauls him back down.