Chapter 1: The Creation of Cas
Castiel was about to enter hell. Well, a figurative hell. Of all the places on the map his father could have moved, Lawrence Kansas was not the place Castiel had expected to end up. And he was about to face the worst thing a gay, teenaged angel ever would.
The big glass double doors were tall and Castiel was fairly certain they were built strictly to intimidate. The glass had a faintly blue hue in the early morning sunlight that filtered in faintly from behind the high, stretching blanket of rolling grey clouds.
Castiel was earlier than the majority of the students, thankfully, so the pristine white and red hallways were empty. The school smelled like cleaning supplies and Castiel assumed that wouldn’t last long once the general student body tramped in with their perfumes and hairsprays and the trace of illegally smoked cigarettes, packed lunches and laundry detergents.
There were signs pointing to the office and he followed them dutifully around a corner where he saw a room paneled off with five panes of yet more glass. Castiel sincerely hoped this school was never hit by a crazed gunman – there was nowhere to hide.
The office itself was thick with the smell of freshly brewed coffee and printer ink as the large beasts in the corner printed off lesson plans and worksheets for the milling teachers. The secretary looked up with a smile from behind the high counter as Castiel entered through the tall red door.
“Hello, can I help you?” Her eyes travelled up and down Castiel’s safely tucked wings that stuck up oddly from under his backpack. Castiel knew it was odd for an angel to have a backpack – they tended to have the fancy, expensive messenger bags that allowed them easy access to their items and freed their wings.
Castiel leaned nervously against the counter. “Um, I need to register?”
The secretary barely batted a perfectly mascara’d eyelash as she looked at her computer. “Name?”
The little brass nameplate on her desk read Diane Venable. Her long, fake nails clacked loudly on her keys as she typed Castiel’s name into the computer. She frowned slightly and looked back at Castiel who was shifting awkwardly from foot to foot.
“It says here that your siblings registered last week – why are you registering so late?” she asked with almost an accusatory tone. Castiel took a deep breath and swallowed hard. He opened his mouth to speak and had to rasp out his answer.
“I – I, uh… I had the flu…” The answer seemed to appease Mrs. Venable, so Castiel didn’t worry too much. She reached up silently and Castiel passed over his papers that his brother had compiled since his father was passed out on the couch.
The personalized printer at the secretaries desk whirred loudly and Castiel jumped slightly. It printed out a bright yellow sheet with a string of black letters and numbers. Mrs. Venable handed Castiel back his important documents with the yellow sheet on top. “This is your schedule. Here’s a map,” she said reaching for a map that was tucked away under the countertop, “Have your teachers sign this and bring it back at the end of the day.”
Castiel nodded and took his papers quickly before scurrying out of the office. The school had now begun to fill with milling students who were all chattering loudly. Some taller boys in red and white letter jackets tossed a football back and forth in the large commons area.
Castiel wasn’t really paying attention as he maneuvered his way through the crowd. The crowd, he noticed, was at least 99% human, with only a few sets of wings sticking up over the heads of other students. He caught sight of his older brother Raphael, his thin, dark charcoal wings twitching restlessly behind him as he talked to a teacher.
He turned a corner, on the way to the lockers, when Castiel slammed full body against a moving force and toppled backwards. His whole body jerked in surprise and his wings snapped out to desperately cling to Castiel’s balance. Before he could hit the cheap, glossy linoleum a hand grabbed his and yanked him forwards into an embrace.
“Whoa, easy there dude,” a surprisingly deep voice said from above Castiel’s head. The embrace let go and Castiel stumbled back to see a taller blonde with bright green eyes and a smattering of freckles staring at him with concern. “You okay?”
Castiel’s heart hammered dully in his ears as he shakily reached for his now broken backpack. The hand-me-down bags straps had snapped with little fight when his wings had protested his fall. He gathered the few items that had spilled from the ancient zippers when they had busted upon hitting the tiled floor.
“Y-yeah,” he said quietly. “Fine.” He gathered the scattered papers, his birth certificate and papers from his last school, and reached for his new schedule. Before his hand could grab the frighteningly yellow paper, the blonde had picked it up.
“So you’re new?” He glanced over the name at the top. Castiel felt his heart sink. Here it came – the jokes and taunts about his name.
“…Castiel?” the boy asked slowly, as if afraid he would say it wrong.
Castiel gave a thin lipped nod, afraid to reach for the paper but desperately wanting to rip it from the boys fingers. The boy pulled a face and shrugged, passing the paper back.
“That’s kind of a mouthful, isn’t it? Don’t you have a nickname?”
Castiel was floored, to say the least. His mouth opened and closed several times. This had never occurred to him in fifteen years of living. No one in his family called him by a nickname, not even Gabriel who had an aptitude for nicknames. It was always just Castiel.
It was more shocking that this boy hadn’t ripped into him for his ‘girly’ name, his wings, his hand-me-down clothes and backpack, or anything that had been a point of contention in his last school.
The boy jerked his head as if to say, “Alright, that would be a no” and nodded down the hall. “Your first period is Brandenburg, last door on the left. I’ll see you there.” He turned to go, paused and turned back around. “I’m Dean, by the way. Nice to meet you, Cas.”
Castiel watched his back for several long moments, the stressed leather of his jacket creasing with his movement because it was just slightly too large for his shoulders. He disappeared into the classroom he had pointed out as Brandenburg’s Geometry and Castiel finally shook himself from his gaping.
The bell rang in the halls, high and shrill and earsplitting. Castiel flinched. He assumed the school hadn’t had much experience with angels – the bell left his ears ringing for several minutes after he had found his way into the classroom and handed the teacher the bright yellow schedule.
The students filed in behind him, taking their respective seats. Mr. Brandenburg was a tall, thin man. He had the build of a jogger – albeit a geeky one. He had thin wire rimmed glasses perched on the bridge of his nose as he peered down at Castiel’s class schedule.
“Okay, Castiel, you can take the seat in the back next to Dean Winchester. I’m sorry it was the only available seat. Do you have any sight problems I should worry about?”
Castiel shook his head – he could see just as fine from the back as he could from the front. A perk of his genetics. The only seat left was the one next to Dean Winchester, the farthest corner. Obviously, Mr. Brandenburg was of the mind to seat his students alphabetically.
Castiel walked through the aisles as precariously as he could, as if he were walking through a mine field. When he tripped over someone’s backpack that had spilled into the aisle, his wings twitched and there was a general outcry from the students around him.
“Sorry,” he mumbled quickly as his face flushed and he hurried to his seat. He slammed into his seat and his backpack slipped from his fingers and he buried his face in his hand. Brandenburg had begun his lecture and was moving into solving problems on the board before Castiel looked up.
When he did, he was surprised to find a ripped piece of cheap lined paper folded on his desk. Fingers shaking, Castiel opened the note carefully.
The short message in scratchy handwriting screamed up at him.
Castiel stifled his breathing as tears stung at the back of his eyes. He avoided the gaze of Dean, whose green eyes were searching Castiel from the side. He crumpled the note in his fist and dropped it to the ground, overwhelming despair threatening to consume him.
His wings trembled as he felt the entire class sneaking glances at him from behind the teacher’s back. There were a few quiet snickers and whispers passed across the classroom, and Castiel felt more out of place than he ever had.
He sighed morosely to himself. And so it begins.
Chapter 2: Third Period
Dean explores his interest in the new kid.
Disclaimer: I do not own anything that remotely resembles the CW's television series, Supernatural. My apologies to anyone who is actually from Lawrence, Kansas and knows that I have never been there and have no idea what I'm talking about. For all intents and purposes - it's a different universe, let's just go with that.
Dean Winchester had seen the angels. Hell, everyone had seen them. Three of them, showing up on the same day, looking as out of place at Lawrence High as a penguin at a duck farm. With their obviously second hand clothing and backpacks that squished their wings up against their backs, they had been the talk of the school.
The oldest two were seniors, Raphael and Balthazar. (Hell, their names even stood out.) Raphael was tall with deep brown, nearly black curls, dark charcoal wings, and an expressed attitude of disgust at his surroundings. Balthazar was rather cheery, with golden curls over an angular face, and light honey blonde wings. The other was Anna, the junior, with fiery red hair, full lips, and glossy auburn wings.
Dean was fascinated, to say the least, but he kept to himself. As a sophomore with three years left in the hell hole of a school, he didn’t need to overstep his boundaries and make his life miserable. Instead he just watched.
Then a week later, Dean saw him. He was definitely Dean’s age, probably no more than fifteen, with wide, trusting blue eyes, a shock of black hair so dark it seemed nearly blue, and wings as dark to match. The kid looked scared out of his wits. His whole being practically screamed “Look at me I’m an easy target”.
So Dean wasn’t surprised when Allie Jordan, the girl sitting in front of Castiel, dropped the note that had been passed from the other side of the room on his desk.
When the bell rang for second period, Castiel gathered his things quietly and waited for everyone to file out. Dean was sure it was because he didn’t want to draw any more attention to the now trembling black wings on his back that were sure to create a scene should he accidentally touch someone with them.
Dean slung his bag over his shoulder and waited until Castiel was out the front door before reaching down and grabbing the crumpled note. The paper felt strangely soft in his hand, like it hadn’t been crumpled only once – the kind of soft he felt after a paper had been jammed in his bag for a week and hammered on by his books like gems in a rock polisher.
He unfolded the trashy scrap and felt a rock plummet to the bottom of his stomach. No wonder the look of horror had passed the new kids face. Dean had to admit that he wasn’t the most open or accepting when it came to things that weren’t normal for him, but this was definitely over the edge.
(And maybe he felt a need to stand up for the kid who looked like he could be walked over, who was he to judge? If anything, the new streak of acceptance for Dean Winchester could only be good news.)
Dean’s next class was Sexton’s English II, down the side hall off of the math corridor he was currently in. If he jumped into the room as the bell rang, Mrs. Sexton didn’t seem to notice, and Dean slid into his seat gratefully. She didn’t notice, however, because she was busy signing a god-awful yellow slip of paper and handing it back to the shy boy with the big black wings, who was now resolved to carrying his backpack in front of him, clutched white-knuckled in his hands.
Tall, incredibly skinny, blonde Mrs. Sexton pointed Castiel to his seat, two desks up and to one row to the right of Dean’s seat. Without any sort of delay, Mrs. Sexton began her lecture. Dean was never one for paying attention in class, but today it seemed even worse.
Since their run-in in the hallway, Dean suddenly found himself watching the large black feathers from a distance, the way the wings twitched, settled themselves, and bristled when too many eyes turned on their owner. It was morbidly fascinating.
The bell finally rang for third and again, Castiel was the last out of his seat. He waited patiently while the other students awkwardly shuffled forward, past him, as his eyes gazed at the yellow paper as if his life depended on it. Dean slung his bag over his shoulder and jumped over the row of desks to stop next to Castiel.
“Hey Cas,” he said glancing at the yellow paper. From the looks of it – and this wasn’t uncommon in a small school, but – Castiel had every single class with Dean except for eighth period when Dean went to athletics and Castiel had band.
Castiel nearly jumped out of his skin and turned to eye Dean, wide blue eyes fearful. He slid from his desk carefully avoiding further eye contact with Dean, clutching his worn bag to his chest as if his life depended on it.
“Can I help you?” he asked, voice trembling slightly. It was faint, but Dean heard it all the same.
Dean gave a falsely strong laugh. “Actually, I was thinking I could help you.” He shrugged a shoulder vaguely. “I can help you find your next class if you want.”
Castiel’s eyes scanned him warily. The unnatural blue gaze sent shivers up and down Dean’s spine. He wasn’t sure why, but Dean was positive that if Castiel stared at him with any more distrust and coldness, Dean would turn into an icicle. (But who was he kidding, this wasn’t one of his geek brother’s comic books.)
“Um…i-if it’s not…any trouble.”
Trouble. Dean heard the heavy meaning behind the simple routine statement of manners. Trouble. Castiel knew what it meant to help the new target – social alienation, full reject status, and definitely far more “trouble” than it was worth in the long run for any sane student.
It seemed Castiel had been in this position before.
Dean rolled his eyes and pressed a hand firmly on Castiel’s back, just between his wing joints, and began pushing the flustered student out the door and down the crowded, raucous hallways. Castiel stiffened with a jerk like he’d been electrocuted and his feet stiffly shuffled forward as he leaned into Dean’s firm hand.
Dean didn’t notice the looks he got from the other students, and only nodded briefly at Raphael and Anna who had frozen in the middle of the hallway upon seeing their younger sibling being ushered by the taller, sandy haired boy.
“H-how do you know where my class is?” Castiel stuttered when they reached their final destination, World History, headed up by a bright and cheery cherub of a teacher named Mrs. Andrews.
“I’m psychic,” Dean retorted. When Castiel looked unimpressed, he sighed. “Come on, dude, I looked at your schedule, duh.”
Castiel blinked. “O-oh.”
The person furtively hissing Dean’s name from across the room was a tall, shapely brunette. She looked positively mortified at the moment as her eyes drank in the scene of Dean, hand on Castiel’s back, and Castiel looking flushed and slightly windswept from the small breeze his wings had kicked up. (It was actually pretty hilarious in Dean’s opinion – the trembling feathered appendages had stirred up his unruly black locks until it looked as if Castiel had just come in from a very long self-propelled flight.)
But Lisa Braden did not seem so amused.
Dean waved his hand vaguely at Lisa and got Mrs. Andrew’s attention and, beaming, she took Castiel’s schedule, assigned him a seat on the other side of the room from Dean, and moved to take roll.
The way Mrs. Andrews had split her desks was unique – fourteen desks on either side of the room so that both groups of students had a very good view of each other. Dean took his seat in front of Lisa with a knot in his stomach as she pointedly glared at the back of his head, his eyes still locked on Castiel across the room.
Right, so helping the new kid wasn’t hard to deal with when it was his classmates and the dumb jocks he played football with, definitely.
But his girlfriend was another story.