Written For: nightrider101 in the spn_j2_xmas2011 on livejournal.
Summary: Sacrifice: It is the act of giving something up for the sake of something or someone considered more important or worthy. To sacrifice yourself for someone else in any capacity is never easy. Dean had been sacrificing pieces of himself for as long as he could remember and each time it chipped away at him. Most people would have given up a long time ago but not Dean Winchester. This time though, his sacrifice might just be the highest one yet. Can he live with what he is giving up?
Genre: Non AU | Slash
Warnings: Spoilers, language, temporary character death
Word Count:3, 073
Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.
Author's Note: I really hope that nightrider101 likes this. This is the first time that I have writen something for a fic exchange and I'm incredibly nervous. I hope that it is everything you wanted nightrider101 and Merry Christmas!
There will be a companion piece/sequel - Save Me which is from Sam and Gabriel's point of view
I would suggest Feel by Robbie Williams as the song that would go with this fic.
It is the act of giving something up for the sake of something or someone considered more important or worthy. To sacrifice yourself for someone else in any capacity is never easy.
Dean had been sacrificing pieces of himself for as long as he could remember and each time it chipped away at him. Most people would have given up a long time ago but not Dean Winchester.
Dean just kept on sacrificing himself when others would have had nothing left to give. He even managed to surprise himself upon occasion. It really shouldn't have come as a surprise to anyone that Dean didn't change his ways this late in the game. Let's take a look at the facts.
From the moment Sam was placed in his arms, Dean's wants and needs shifted into second place on the scale of what was important.
He sacrificed his childhood and his innocence in order to preserve Sam's as much as he possibly could.
When Dad left them in a motel room while he went hunting and they ran out of money, Dean was the one that always went without food, never Sam. He made sure that Sam ate his fill first.
Sam got the clothes that he needed before Dean - every time - and Sam always got the books that he needed for school even if Dean had to use his own money that he had been saving to do it.
When Sam turned eighteen, Dean made another sacrifice, a big sacrifice. Sammy, his little brother that he had raised and given up so much for, wanted to leave and go to Stanford, wanted to leave him.
Despite the fact that it hurt, felt like someone was using him to sharpen and test their blunt knives, Dean let Sam go.
He wanted to stop his brother, ask him to stay or even go with him but it wasn't what Sam wanted. So Dean bit his lip, swallowed his pleas and drove Sam to Stanford, sacrificing yet another part of himself along the way.
Four years later, Sam was back with Dean. But it hurt Dean to know that he wasn't his brother's first choice, that if Sam had had his way, he'd never have gone with Dean.
Once again, Dean kept quiet. He pushed away his wants, his need to express his anger and hurt at Sam. Instead, he provided support and comfort for his younger brother, not once taking any comfort for himself.
Shortly afterwards, Dean made the ultimate sacrifice. He sold his soul for Sam, so that the youngest Winchester could live. Dean's unconscious decision to constantly sacrifice parts of himself had finally landed him in a situation from which there was no way out.
No matter how much he didn't want to go to hell, Dean loved Sam more. In the end, the hellhounds came, tore his body to shreds and dragged him downstairs.
Four months later, forty years for Dean, he was brought back to life by an angel named Castiel. Anangel! As though he needed more motivation to give his all.
Somewhere along the way between trying to stop an Apocalypse, save Sam from himself and the numerous hunts they went on, Castiel became one of the select few that Dean would give up anything for. As if that wasn't enough, to add to that, somehow between the time that Castiel had dragged him out of hell to them facing down Lucifer, Dean fell in love with the angel.
Which brought him back to his most recent sacrifice. Just when Dean had thought that he had had nothing left, that there was nothing of himself left to give, he found himself making another sacrifice, one that ranked right up there along with allowing Sam to jump into the pit.
He let Cas go.
There was chaos upstairs and when Castiel had been brought back from his latest "explosion by archangel", this time it had been with a massive power boost, making him the first new archangel in millennia.
Dean had already considered that Cas might leave and go back, so it wasn't that much of a shock, in the end it appeared that everyone left him at one point or another. It hurt though. Fuck, but it hurt.
He was already emotionally flayed open at that point, Cas leaving merely added to the pain.
Maybe if he wasn't so insecure, if he didn't doubt his self worth and felt the need to sacrifice himself for others, things would be different. He'd have told the new archangel that he, Dean Winchester, loved him, that he wanted Cas to stay with him, to not leave him.
But he was and he did.
He sat there in silence, listened to Castiel talk about the situation and what he thought he should do with a blank poker face, nodding in all the appropriate places. After Castiel was done, Dean put an utterly fake smile on his face and told Castiel that he was happy for him. He lied and said that he was glad that Cas had gotten the promotion. The whole time he gave Castiel his "Go, I support and am happy for you" speech, the pieces of himself that he had managed to scrape back together, shattered into a million tiny shards.
The Apocalypse cost him nearly everything. It cost him Sam, the younger brother that he had raised. Adam, the little brother he never even had a chance to get to know and indirectly it had also cost him Cas, the one being that he might have been able to love above all else.
Dean had thought that after everything that he had been through, he was immune to being hurt at this point. He was wrong.
He went to Lisa, just like he had promised Sam and he had tried, he really and truly had tried, but he couldn't pretend that everything was alright. That he was happy living the apple pie life his brother had wanted him to have. A month after turning up on her doorstep, Dean said goodbye to Lisa and Ben and headed to South Dakota, to Bobby, his last remaining family member.
The next couple of months, Dean was still in a state of shock from the Apocalypse That Almost Was. He was numb. The personal loss that he had sustained was massive, would have crippled him if he hadn't shut all his emotions away and buried them in the deepest dark, place within himself.
Dean also spent those months drinking more than was good for him and taking on as many violent and dangerous hunts that he could find or that Bobby would allow him to go out on. The rest of the time he spent working on the Impala. His baby hadn't been in such good shape in years, if ever.
Bobby walked into his living room after putting the first aid kit away and sighed tiredly at the picture that greeted him.
Dean was in rough shape. He'd really been torn up by a werewolf earlier. Now the remaining Winchester was sporting several new bruises and cuts, some of which had needed to be stitched.
An empty brandy glass was sitting nearby, indicating that Dean had probably either passed out due to exhaustion or from drinking too much. These days, it was usually a combination of both. He was lying unconscious and sprawled out on Bobby's old, worn sofa.
Bobby sighed again while grabbing a blanket from his left and walked over to Dean's prone form. Quietly, so as to not wake him, the older hunter covered Dean after he had removed the much worn boots from his feet in an effort to make the younger hunter more comfortable.
Silently shaking his head, Bobby muttered an "Idjit" under his breath as he made his way up to his own room.
Unbeknownst to the two hunters, another figure had been silently watching since Dean had arrived. Invisible to their eyes and keeping to the shadows, the figure grew increasingly concerned the longer he watched the two hunters.
When Dean finally passed out and Bobby went up to his room, the figure snapped its fingers, unheard by the house's occupants, and promptly disappeared.
Dean woke lying face down to the sensation of somebody watching him. It wasn't an alarming sensation though. He would recognise that stare anywhere especially when it was focused solely on him.
With groan, the hunter rolled over to squint up at his visitor. He rubbed at his tired eyes, then looked up again to make sure that he wasn't hallucinating.
Dean struggled to sit upright as Castiel moved closer and sat on the other side of the old sofa where Dean's feet had been moments ago.
"Cas, what are you doing here?" the tired hunter asked, full of trepidation. He couldn't take anymore disasters or things that needed to be done to "save the world".
Cas looked at him, cocked his head in an oh so familiar gesture, one that Dean hadn't realised that he had missed so much until he saw it, and spoke slowly as if choosing his words carefully.
"It has been brought to my attention that you do not do what you want for yourself. You will help everyone else with their wants and needs but you have no regard for your own."
"Huh?" Dean could only mutter, his brain was not yet awake and fully functioning yet.
Castiel sighed, a very human action that he had picked up while spending so much time around the Winchesters.
"I have missed you, Dean. Did you not miss me?" the newest archangel enquired in his usual blunt manner.
Dean couldn't prevent the blush that coloured his face as he spluttered, "Dude!"
Castiel gazed at him with a calculating look before inching closer to Dean on the sofa. When his face was inches away from Dean's he stopped moving.
"Cas, man, personal space. I know we've had this conversation before," Dean began and then stopped when Cas lifted a hand and cupped his face, "Cas, what are you doing?" Dean's voice was now only a whisper.
"Testing a friend's theory," Castiel murmured a second before he closed the gap between his and Dean's lips.
Dean sat frozen for all of three seconds until his body caught up with what was happening. Realising that this might be his only chance to ever kiss Castiel, he seized it. It didn't really matter at that moment why he was doing it, only that he was.
The hunter raised both of his hands, settling one on Castiel's waist to slowly pull the angel into closer contact while the other hand grasped the blue eyed man by the nape of his neck. Dean nibbled on Castiel's lips, first the top and then the bottom one. He cherished every second, desperately trying to commit every feeling and sensation to memory so that he would have something to hold onto when the angel left him once again.
He couldn't contain the whimper that escaped him when Castiel pulled back slightly. Bright green eyes widened though when the archangel grasped Dean's hand that was cupping his neck and turned his head to the side. The sensation of soft lips kissing each one of his fingertips, as gently as a butterfly all the while Castiel's striking blue eyes were staring straight at him was nearly Dean's undoing.
Without thinking, Dean licked his lips and Castiel's eyes narrowed in on his mouth. In the next second, Dean found his lap full of angel as Castiel crawled up and over Dean's body to straddle him and force him to lean back against the sofa. Not even a heartbeat later, before Dean had a chance to inhale a shocked breath at the surprise move, Castiel's mouth closed warmly over his own.
Dean had to remind his body to breathe, he was so entirely overwhelmed by the sensations running rampant throughout his body.
He had absolutely no idea how he knew what to do but Castiel's tongue was licking its way into his mouth and teasingly coaxing Dean's tongue into his own. Dean titled his head back marginally to give Cas a better angle.
Castiel had both of his hands on Dean's broad shoulders to support himself while he straddled Dean's body beneath him. Dean's hands were now gripping his waist, hands clenching rhythmically in his shirt. Somehow the angel had lost his trademark trench coat, not that either of them was complaining about the loss.
Dean moaned. Or maybe Castiel did. Dean didn't care, things were getting fuzzier by the second and all his focus was narrowing until all he could see, breathe or think of, was Cas. Another moan escaped Dean when he felt Castiel's hand delve under his layers of shirts, skimming along his back muscles.
This time it was Castiel who groaned when Dean wound his arms tightly around the angel's waist, bringing their bodies into even closer contact.
Gently, Cas pulled away from Dean, gazing fondly down into the green eyes that he loved so much.
Dean felt like he was drowning in Castiel's bright blue eyes. It reminded him of why blue had become his favourite colour the last couple of years.
Castiel tenderly rubbed his index finger over Dean's lips and the younger man couldn't resist kissing it softly before Cas pulled away. The angel smiled at the action, leaned down and kissed Dean again, his tongue tracing Dean's lower lip before pulling back slightly. Dean was smiling softly up at him and Castiel gently nuzzled his nose with Dean's.
Dean sighed. This was the best that he had felt in a long time.
In the blink of an eye, Dean found himself and Castiel lying on his bed upstairs in what had become his and Sam's room.
"Cas?" Dean whispered questioningly.
Castiel moved to lie on his side in the centre of the bed, pulling Dean down in front of him. The archangel wrapped his arms around his human, rubbing fingers in a comforting gesture on Dean's arm.
"Sleep, Dean. I'll be here when you wake," Castiel whispered in answer.
Dean frowned sleepily as he registered their position even as his eyes were drooping in exhaustion.
"'m da li'le spo'n?"
Castiel's breath huffed into his neck in what sounded suspiciously like a chuckle.
"Just sleep, Dean," he told the hunter, kissing him butterfly soft on his neck in reassurance.
As Dean's breathing evened out, Castiel conjured a blanket and settled it over them.
The angel allowed his thoughts to drift. Dean was in a terrible state. He couldn't ever remember seeing him this bad even during some of their worst points of the Apocalypse. He should have checked on Dean before now. He should never have believed the hunter's lies about being fine and happy that he was leaving. An uneasy feeling of guilt crept up on him as he remembered what had finally prompted him to find Dean.
"CASTIEL," his name was shouted, echoing through the recently vacated heavenly hall.
Castiel's eyes widened as he frantically thought of what he could have done to get such a reaction from his brother.
"Castiel," this time it was said as the shouting figure neared him, striding quickly to close the distance between them.
The older archangel had been restored around a month after Castiel had been brought back and given a power boost.
"You are an idiot!" Gabriel told him in no uncertain terms.
"Have I done something to offend you?" Castiel asked hesitantly, of all of his brothers and sisters he was the closest to Gabriel.
"You love Dean Winchester, don't you?" Gabriel demanded, getting straight to the point even though he already knew the answer to his question.
"Gabriel…" Castiel began.
"No. Answer the question Castiel."
Castiel sighed dejectedly, "Yes."
Gabriel nodded more to himself than anything else.
"Then why in the name of Dad are you still here and not with him?"
"He has a new life now. One that I am not sure he would want me to intrude upon," Castiel told his brother softly, pain in every word.
"Oh, Cas. One would think that you out of every one would know that what Dean Winchester says and what he truly wants are two very different things."
"What do you mean?"
Gabriel threw his hands up in exasperation.
"That boy loves you more than his own life.He thinks that returning home is the one thing you wanted above all else. Of course the self-sacrificing moron is not going to do something to stop you. He loves you, Cas. It's hurting him and if you don't do something about it soon, Dean is going to get himself killed."
Castiel's face tightened in worry. He had left him with Lisa and returned home because he had thought that it was what Dean had wanted and the eldest Winchester deserved to be happy for once. If what Gabriel was saying was true though, it changed everything.
"Do you really think so?" he asked softly, shyly.
Gabriel couldn't help grinning.
"Of course he does. Now go. Off with you. Go and get your Winchester. He's at that hunter, Bobby's, home."
Castiel turned to leave and at the last second looked back at Gabriel.
"I am doing the best I can,Cas," Gabriel replied sadly, his eyes suddenly filled with infinite sorrow and pain.
"Gabriel…" Cas trailed off.
"We'll be alright. Go."
With a flap of his wings, Castiel left and reappeared at Bobby's house.
The sight that Dean made caused Castiel's heart to clench painfully in his chest. A few minutes later the hunter began to stir.
He would find a way to help Dean heal. He would also have a few choice words with the human about his apparent lack of self-worth and importance. After everything that he occurred over the last few years, it would seem that Dean still didn't get that Castiel would do anything for him. It would take a while but he wasn't going to be going anywhere in the near future. Between him, Gabriel and Azrael, heaven was under control and would stay that way.
Castiel hugged Dean closer to him. Dean had been making sacrifices for far too long now. It was time that he got something in return.
The End… For Now