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In regards to certain kinds of magic, every angel has a shield. Well, it's not literally a shield, any more than any given angel 'literally' has wings, but it's best to think of it as one. Or as a forcefield, maybe. Now, while it's not a literal shield (or forcefield) it is a physical one, in that it exists in enough of a real, physical way that, when something is propelled at it, occasionally a ricochet effect occurs.

Which is why, when an extremely distressed prostitute (who also happens to be an amateur witch) fires a little curse at the bemused and uncomfortable angel who caused her this upset, it ricochets off Castiel's shield-slash-forcefield-magic-repellent-aura-of-impenetrable-holy-light and hits Dean square in the stomach.

Dean doesn't know what hit him.

He doesn't even know something does hit him. He just dismisses the rantings of a whore as the rantings of a whore (as does Castiel, who is still trying to work out what was impolite about his actions) and finds the whole situation thoroughly amusing once he's out the back door.

A small side note: Every time a prostitute has called Dean Winchester a jerk, he's deserved it in some small measure.


The first sign that something weird might be happening comes when Dean claps Castiel on the shoulder and says, “It's been a long time since I laughed that hard.” The contact, just that one hand on the rough, slightly water resistant material of the trench-coat sends sparks of warmth up Dean's arm, plugging in with the endorphins already massing in his head to make him feel just a bit dizzy, and happier than he's felt in a long time. Perhaps ever.

Then Dean's finger brushes, just for the briefest second, over the skin of Castiel's neck, and he thinks, fuckit: Definitely ever.

He doesn't think about that too much. He doesn't want to. It's not the first time he's had inappropriate and unwarranted homoerotic feelings in his life, it won't be the last. But then, the contact is gone, and a feeling of loss settles in Dean's stomach and doesn't leave, not even as he sets himself behind the wheel of his baby and drives her (and Castiel) back to that tiny dilapidated house they've set up for their little angel-trap. He still doesn't think about it too much. Maybe he just had a beer too many.

Maybe he shouldn't be driving.

Maybe, he thinks, all angels smell as nice as the one sitting next to him, staring absently out the passenger-side window.


So, that thing with Raphael happens. If you ask Dean what exactly occurred, he won't be able to tell you word for word, mainly because he was a little distracted by the way that the trickles of rainwater were running down Castiel's cheeks and – fuck – down his neck.


They're in a booth in a diner the next morning, because Dean says that Castiel doesn't have to go straight away. Castiel says he doesn't want to impose, and Dean says he should at least join him for breakfast. Castiel says he doesn't eat, and Dean replies that he – he – Just, goddamn it Cas, come and have some fucking breakfast with me; you could've died last night. Castiel says okay, and seems a little bit pleased that his presence is not unwanted.

Dean is completely and unhealthily elated at Castiel's presence, which he finds really quite discomforting. Also, he's sitting on the same side of the booth as Castiel so that the angel is pressed right up against the wall, even though there's a perfectly adequate seat on the other side of the table. Dean doesn't even realise where he's sitting until he's halfway through giving his order to the waiter, who is shooting them amused looks as he jots things down in his notepad.

The waiter walks away, and Castiel says matter-of-factly, “Dean, I believe you are violating your own guidelines on appropriate personal space.”

“I know,” Dean replies, sounding thoroughly dejected and hopeless.

But his thigh is pressed up against Castiel's, and that point of contact is sending warm sparks all through his body, making whatever parts of his brain aren't confused and frustrated, giddy and elated.


“Alright, I need to piss,” Dean says after he has eaten a breakfast of sausages, bacon, eggs, bacon, toast, beans and bacon, a glass of orange juice and two coffees. And cherry pie after.

Castiel has not yet begun to attempt sarcasm, so he simply says, “I find eating breakfast with you a slightly repulsive affair.”

Dean laughs at this, which he counts as a good thing: If he'd actually been developing “feelings” for Castiel or some crap like that, wouldn't a statement like that have hurt his feelings? Ha! He is free from whatever it is his body has decid--

Dean is halfway to the toilets before he begins to feel the urge to turn back around and sit in his chair again, as close to Castiel as he possibly can sit. It's tugging at the very base of his stomach, the need to be close to Castiel, like there's a little hook snagged there. Tugging, tugging, tugging.

He ignores it, and half runs to the restroom, shutting and locking the stall door behind him. He unzips his jeans in front of the suspiciously pristine toilet, but finds that he can't go. The tugging is just there. Insistent. More insistent than his bladder. Dean zips up, and turns around with a frustrated groan to walk back into the main diner. He wonders if he can convince Castiel to come and stand outside the toilet door so that he can just fucking go. But, um, that would be weird.


He just won't pee then.


Nothing to it.


“Dean, you appear uncomfortable,” Castiel says, once more in the passenger seat of the impala, this time watching Dean very intently. Dean is shifting in his seat, relentlessly.

“I'm fine,” he says. “Let's find a motel.” And quickly.

“I don't understand,” Castiel says, shaking his head. “Why do you wish for me to join you tonight? I have other things to attend to. You have no requirements of me.”

“Oh, believe me, Cas,” Dean replies, “I have a shit tonne of requirements of you.”

This seems to satisfy the angel, and Dean has to suspect that Castiel's other commitments aren't that pressing. Which he is eternally, soulfully grateful for, especially once they've booked into a veritable dive, small enough that Dean is finally able to run into the restroom to piss, safe in the knowledge that Castiel is sitting uncomfortably on the edge of a bed he won't be sleeping in, right on the other side of the thin door. Small comforts.


It is an extremely intricate and complex balancing act that Dean has got going here. Firstly, he has to keep a comfortable distance between himself and Castiel and not, I repeat not, just press himself bodily against the angel's side. Then, he's got to make sure Castiel isn't more than oh, he thinks about five meters away, because that's when the tugging starts. More than five meters, and Dean starts to feel physically ill, which is just pathetic, really. Thirdly (and this is the hard one), Dean has to avoid arousing Castiel's suspicions that anything is going on.

His solution to all this is to turn on the TV, tell Castiel to join him, then casually drop a book between them as a self imposed barrier that Dean can't cross.

This works for a short while, before Dean blows it all to shit when he finds that he has sprawled his arms over the back of the couch and is currently running his fingers through the short strands of Castiel's hair.

Castiel's suspicion is, beyond a doubt, aroused. He turns his head to look at Dean, and Dean turns his head to look at Castiel. Then, he moves his hand very deliberately back to his own lap, coughing.

“Dean...” Castiel says. Tugging, tugging.

Dean locks himself in the bathroom.


Dean doesn't know why he thought locking himself in the bathroom would be a good idea, because then Castiel is sitting on the edge of the pastel green bathtub, looking at him curiously.

“There is something wrong,” he says.

“Damn right there's something wrong,” Dean growls, and hides his face behind his hands. Castiel places a hand on his shoulder.

“Dean, it's okay,” Castiel says. “I don't mind that I am still a virgin.”


“You are trying to seduce me, aren't you?”


“... Dean, forgive me, but your actions today have been very--”

“Cas, I'm really not trying to un-hymen-ize you. Not right now, anyway. And not with me.”

Castiel looks annoyed, in that way he has where he doesn't change his expression in the slightest but still looks pissed to high heaven. “Then explain your actions,” he demands.

Dean mutters sullenly that he doesn't know how to, and Castiel stands up and disappears.

Dean sits, humiliated and fuming, for a moment, before his insides start to churn insistently, sickeningly, and he leaps to his feet, pulling open the bathroom door. He can feel his heart pounding in his chest, and he thinks he's going to throw up. He thinks he might be seeing double, but counting is a little beyond his capacities, which are currently focussed on one thing: BE NEAR CAS.

Castiel is sitting back on the couch, watching a re-run of Lost in Space as tensely as anyone ever has. Dean dashes over, stumbling slightly in his hurry and nausea, and drops to the floor in front of the angel, gripping tight at Castiel's thighs and resting his forehead against Castiel's knees.

The world stops spinning, and the nausea subsides, and Dean's brain regains it's capacity to count, read, and recite the lyrics to every Zeppelin song. He flinches back from Castiel as if the man was made from a constant terawatt energy flow (which, as a side note, is not an inaccurate measure of the energy output of Castiel's true form), and gets to his feet.

He runs his hand over his own hair, and apologises to Castiel. Says he's going for a walk.

Dean wonders if this is what being in love feels like. (It's not, though. Well, not quite.)


Dean makes it all the way to the general store at the end of the street, but that's not saying much about his state. He knows he must look a wreck to the poor man behind the counter; a drunk, sick, lonely loser, stumbling through the last of his brain cells at the titty-mag stand.

Inside Dean's head, he's triumphant that he's made it this far, even if he's only barely staying vertical.

The titty-mag stand? Well, that's just habit. It's taking most of his concentration to fight the hook tug-tug-tugging at his abdomen. It's taking nearly all of the rest not to pass out on the recently mopped floor. Dean doesn't want to throw up either, and make the poor guy clean up all over again.

He staggers up to the counter with a copy of Bare Teen Hotties (not even his preferred publication), and gives the shop keeper far too much cash for it. Then he staggers out and stumbles back down the street a couple of doors, back into his motel room, and ignores Castiel's blandly perturbed yet watchful gaze. Relief is flooding through him just from being in the same room as the angel, and his head is clearing. Hell, just having Castiel's eyes on him, there's confetti and unicorns and rainbows and bacon cheeseburgers and strippers.

“Just got some reading material,” Dean says, flopping down on his bed.

“You look pallid,” Castiel remarks.


Dean gives up on trying to pretend he's unaffected by whatever is affecting him.

“You are a little feverish,” Castiel observes, his hand pressed to Dean's forehead, but Dean is only half listening, mostly just keening happily into the touch. Castiel's fingers move to his neck, sliding down Dean's cheek and over his jaw. Castiel counts for a minute. “And your pulse is quickening.”

“Alright then, Doctor Sexy,” Dean drawls, “What's the diagnosis?”

“I am unsure. May I ask you a couple of questions?” Castiel ignores the 'Doctor Sexy' comment.


“Describe how you were feeling on your walk before,” Castiel demands, head tilted at the ten-past position.

“I dunno, kinda,” Dean searches for words, distracted by the feeling of Castiel's fingers still pressed to his pulse point. He imagines his blood is rushing to meet them. “Dizzy. Wasn't thinking clearly. And also, goddamn, it sounds pathetic, but also really...” Castiel nods him on. “... Sad. Like, everything was pretty bleak. I dunno man, not that different from normal,” he tries to joke, and fails.

“And now?”

“No complaints.” Understatement.

“Are you aroused?” Castiel asks, and if Dean had been drinking anything it would have ended up all over the angel's rumpled white shirt.

Still, he figures honestly is the best policy.

“Um.” He searches Castiel's clinical gaze, then pointlessly glances at his own lap. “I guess, kinda.”


“You don't just ask a dude why he's horny, Cas!” Dean half-snaps-half-laughs, and is met with calm, enquiring silence. “Because you – you're still touching me, and you're right there looking all … and you smell really good, I don't know, your voice, it's just like,” Dean stops talking, doing something he hasn't done in years: He can feel his neck and ears burning.

“I see,” says Castiel, then states that Dean is suffering the effects of an enchantment, and moves to step away.

Dean grabs Castiel's wrist, but has, unsurprisingly, no success in pulling down an angel who does not want to be pulled down. Instead, Dean is pulled to his feet, and he does have moderate success in pulling himself closer to Castiel, gripping the angel's face with hot hands and kissing desperately at his unresponsive lips.

He gives up on trying to get Castiel to kiss him back after a long, awkward moment, and steps away. He doesn't take his hands from Castiel's face though, because still, even embarrassed and irritated at his friend, that touch is still making his head swim in delight and his heart throw itself recklessly at his ribcage.

Castiel is looking at him with marked interest, like he's displaying new symptoms that need to be investigated.

“Why did you do that?” he asks, entirely clinically.


Spells suck, Dean decides, and he wonders why on earth everything bad and supernatural that could possibly happen always happens to him.

He's trying to sleep. It's only nine thirty, and sleep is a long, long way off, but lying in the dark with his eyes closed is still better than trying to muddle through this mess with Castiel, who's been chanting at him for the past several hours, interrupted only by Dean's insistence that they go and get take-out. Castiel had acquiesced, if only through concern that the rumbling of Dean's stomach was interfering with his rituals.

The chanting, point of fact, did nothing. In fact, if anything, the spell is getting worse. It's all Dean can do to keep his hands off Castiel, and even right now there's panic bubbling in his chest simply caused by the fact that he can't actually see him. He can hear him, sure; the sound of his breathing, the rustling of his coat and the pages of whatever tome he's reading (and that had been a painful moment, Castiel going out to get that book. He'd been gone literally less than half a second, and still Dean had thought he was going to die from the sudden sickness the angel's departure had caused), but keeping his eyes closed is still next to impossible.

But he's got to keep them closed, because if Castiel realises he's awake, then he's going to start talking and asking questions again and that had been torture, plain and simple.


Closing in on midnight, and Dean is still lying in his bed, with his eyes closed. Additionally, he has progressed to pretending to snore in order to maintain the charade of sleep. And flickering his eyes really quickly behind his eyelids, in case Castiel is watching that closely. He's heard your eyes do that, when you're dreaming.

And god, is he dreaming – even if he's not actually asleep.

Spells are the worst, Dean thinks, trying not to slide his hand down inside his briefs.


Eventually (forty-five, maybe fifty minutes later) Dean can't help it. He's curled up, facing away from Castiel on the opposite bed, towards the wall, and he can feel his cock, trapped between the band of his underwear and his stomach, leaking precum onto his skin. He carefully, quietly, moves his palm down to press against his cock, and then quietly, quietly, rubs his fingers over the head. He bites his lip and squeezes his eyes even tighter shut. He was already so close before even touching himself, that even the slightest contact has him coming in seconds and he has to bite into the palm of his free hand to keep himself from groaning.

All he's picturing as he comes is Castiel, not even naked, not even fucking him or being fucked. Just shed of his coat and jacket, shirt a couple of buttons undone, straddling Dean's lap, long fingers clutching at Dean's hair and neck, kissing him. Just kissing. That's all. Goddamn spells.

The moment Dean comes, making a mess of his t-shirt and and sheets, he hears Castiel shut his book. Forcefully.

The thump of the book being dropped to the floor thoroughly nips in the bud any afterglow Dean may have felt. Instead, it's just more panic.


He lies still, still as stone, and hears Castiel get to his feet and cross the room. The tap starts running, and Dean can hear a glass being filled. Dean's heart is pounding for several reasons, not least among them the fact that Castiel never just casually gets a glass of water, but mostly the fact that oh god, he's so far away.

Castiel stays over the other side of the room, in their tiny little motel kitchen, maybe looking out the window, probably just standing there, for what feels like hours. After a while, Dean just can't take it.


“Oh,” says Castiel, sounding somewhat amused, “you're admitting you're not asleep, now.”

“Just-- can you get back over here, please?” Dean pushes himself up onto his elbows. The semen on his stomach cools in the gust of air his movement causes.

Castiel is watching him, from over by the kitchen counter. “This is too far?” he asks, curious again, and Dean's frustration rises. Not again with the questions and the diagnoses.

“Yes,” he insists, voice impatient.

“Sorry,” Castiel says, and starts to walk back over, but Dean holds up a hand.

“Wait,” he says, “grab me some of those hand-towels on the way?”

Castiel almost makes a face, but does as Dean asks, handing over the paper towels as he lies down on his own bed, staring up at the ceiling. Dean cleans himself off, and rolls over, giving into the desire to watch Castiel. He stares at the angel, who just lies there on top of the blankets, apparently lost in thought, until he falls asleep.

After that, Dean sleeps quite well.


Not that there had been any expectation that a good nights sleep would cure the curse, but Dean is still kinda bummed when he is woken the next morning by the insistent urge bubbling in his chest to crawl over to the other bed and either curl up around Castiel or tear off his clothes and suck his virgin dick into his mouth.

“Dean,” Cas greets, his voice even rougher than usual. Dean wonders if he slept.

“Morning sunshine,” Dean mumbles, sitting up, then realising that he fell asleep with his cock still out. He adjusts his briefs, then slides his legs out of bed. “Tell you what, I am not spending another whole day locked up in this room. We need to get out of here.”

Castiel shakes his head. “That would not be a practical use of our time, we need too work on undoing your curse.”

Dean buries his face into his hands, hitching a couple of dramatic sobs. “No, dude, please, not more chants.”

“I understand your frustration,” Castiel says, which is angel talk for 'Suck it up and deal, we're going Enochian on this shit, and you're going to lie there and take it'.


Parmgi norqrasahi prge cnila, page,” Castiel intones, and smears some of his own blood from the tip of his finger in patterns over Dean's thoroughly surly cheeks. They wait for a moment, and Dean looks up at Castiel with a look that just says, 'giving up yet?'

It's already long after breakfast time, and Dean wont sit through another cleansing ritual.

“How do you feel?” Castiel asks, with minimal hope in his voice.

“I want to take your finger into my mouth and suck the blood off, and then run my tongue--”

“It didn't work .”

“Nope,” Dean sighs, then looks with interest at Castiel's blood smeared hand, hanging limply by his side. “Can I...?”

Castiel wipes his hand on his trench-coat (which will be magically clean the next time Dean looks, he knows it) and shoots Dean a glare. “That was the last relevant ritual I know of,” he says, sounding defeated. “We can go and get your breakfast now.”

Dean grins, and stands up, pulling on a clean t-shirt and heading for the door in seconds, but Castiel stops him with a hand on his arm. Dean suppresses the urge to pin him against the door-frame and ram his tongue down his throat.

“You should wash your face,” Castiel says.


Dean leans across the creaky table as he waits impatiently for his breakfast to arrive. “So, apart from chanting and blood rituals,” he says conversationally, “what other ideas do you have to fix me?”

Castiel looks uncomfortable.

“You have other plans, right, Cas?”

“Not as such,” Castiel replies, and takes a small sip from the decaf coffee he ordered. “If the spell is resisting my cleansing rituals, that likely means it has a specific trigger that will cause it to end, and nothing else can eradicate it. Although, what that trigger is...”

Dean rests his forehead on the table. “Great. So, dead end?”

“You could call your brother.”

“Oh, so you haven't noticed me studiously not mentioning Sam, then?”

“Of course I have,” Castiel says, then shrugs. “I doubt he would know anything I do not, but you could contact Bobby Singer.”

“I don't really want to tell anyone about this, to be honest, Cas. I'd rather keep it between you and me.”

“I understand that you might find this awkward to discuss,” Castiel replies, taking another drink of coffee, then shoots Dean a very stern look. “Would you please stop rubbing your foot against my leg?”

Dean looks down in mild surprise. “Oh, sorry man.” He deliberately sets his feet down on the floor. “But I gotta say, dude, thanks. For, you know, sticking this out. Dealing with me.”

Castiel looks at Dean steadily with crystal clear eyes. He says nothing, but Dean understands what he means anyway, that this is not a chore for him, that he genuinely wants to help. Dean smiles warmly back into his gaze.

“You're a good friend,” he mutters, then, because his mouth isn't really in the mood for platonic touching moments right now, “I really, really want to fuck you.”

Then the food arrives.


“Perhaps,” Castiel starts, as they walk back into their motel room, then pauses, thinking. His voice is hesitant when he continues. “Perhaps that's it.”

“What's what?” Dean asks, biting into the bagel he bought on their way back, much to Castiel's confusion.

“Perhaps if we copulate, it will break your curse.”

Dean feels his face light up the moment the words register. “What, seriously?”

Castiel looks uncertain, but he still nods. “It would appear to be what the spell is suggesting we do.”

Dean has to concentrate all his willpower into not immediately tearing off all his and Castiel's clothes. The angel looks pretty lost at his own suggestion, and Dean feels a bubble of guilt burst in his stomach.

“I couldn't do that, man,” he forces out of his mouth, past very different words that are trying to vie their way out. “I mean, your first time? It wouldn't be fair.” (His hand has found it's way to Castiel's hip, though, and his body has moved so close that they're almost touching all the way down their torsos. But that's pretty much par for the curse at this point, and Castiel's mostly given up on rejecting Dean's more harmless touches.)

“I... do not put that much value in my chastity,” Castiel remarks, but his tone doesn't exactly fill Dean with confidence.

“Really? I mean, I'm guessing purity club is a pretty popular pastime in Heaven. You all sitting around, waving little abstinence only flags and trading promise rings.”

At Dean's words, Castiel looks even more uncomfortable, one hand coming up to rub his neck.

“What's up, Cas? Let me guess, you've already promised yourself to some lady-angel upstairs?” Castiel shakes his head, expression almost defensive. “Then what?”

Castiel coughs, looking very intently at the wall. “Er,” he says, “The other angels aren't so...”

Dean feels bad for laughing.

“Oh god, dude, are you telling me that all the other angels up there are doing it like bunnies and you're the only one who's never?”

Castiel makes a sour face. “Probably not the only one,” he says, and changes the subject very briskly indeed. “You had no problem telling me to lose my virginity to Chastity, why are you intent on being respectful now that it is you I would be sleeping with?”

Dean looks down at Castiel's coat. “Aw, you know. You don't really wanna do it with me,” he says to the strand of thread worming it's way out of one of the button holes.

“I want you more than I wanted that prostitute.”

Despite comparative statements not being the most romantic or convincing proclamations of desire, Dean's heart skips two or three beats. “That so?” he asks, his fingers worming their way of their own volition under Castiel's jacket to be a layer or two closer to skin.

As Dean's fingers trace their way over the thin material of Castiel's shirt, at the dip of his lower back, the angel intakes breath in a manner that could just about be a gasp. “I want you more than any other creature, Dean,” Castiel says, and even though he's standing hardly an inch away from him, Dean almost doesn't hear him. “Comparatively speaking.”

“That so,” Dean says again, “and how long you felt like that?”

“Since the warm Thursday afternoon you were brought into being,” Castiel answers, “and I knew the man you were to become.”

“That's a bit creepy,” Dean says, but this time when he kisses Castiel, Castiel isn't quite so unresponsive.


Still, they don't copulate, not immediately, and they don't break the curse. In fact, nothing whatsoever happens for a fairly long stretch of time except for the gentle (and sometimes not so gentle) slide of lips on lips. Dean's euphoria reaches new bounds, seeming to crackle against his skin. They do move to the bed, where Dean divests Castiel of his coat, and then his jacket, and then his tie, and then spends a great deal of time mouthing at the soft skin of Castiel's neck, while the angel lies back, head tilted to look at the ceiling and lets himself feel nice feelings.

Then Dean starts undoing the buttons on Castiel's shirt, and when they're open, Castiel tugs Dean back up to his level, and kisses him. Dean brushes his fingers over Castiel's nipple, and Castiel groans and bites Dean's bottom lip.

Then Dean comes in his pants.

Fortuitously, Castiel doesn't really recognise this as much of a faux pas. He says, “We will continue this endeavour later,” with a gruff finality to the statement that makes Dean want to be ready to go right now, but he's not, so he just drags Castiel into the bathroom, tells him to sit on the closed toilet seat, and then has a shower, because the distance between the motel room and the adjoining bathroom now seems so much further than ever before.


Dean is lathering up his hair with fluorescent green shampoo/body wash when Castiel speaks. “I find it difficult,” he says, voice carrying easily over the rush of the water, “to remember that you have no genuine feelings for me. I feel as if I am taking advantage of you.”

Dean doesn't have much to say to that. He washes the gel from his hair, and tries to think through the needy haze and lust that this spell has fogged his brain with, and eventually just replies, “I don't feel like you're taking advantage of me.”

He looks through the steamy glass of the shower to wear Castiel is sitting on the toilet, elbows on his knees and chin in his hands, respectfully looking away from Dean's naked and soapy self.

“That is not a comfort, Dean,” Castiel says, “You are ensured to feel that way.”

“Well, is it comforting to know that I feel like I'm coercing you into sex as well, by leaving you with no other way to help me?”

“No,” Castiel replies.

The cursed part of Dean's brain wants to ask Castiel if he'd mind being coerced in the shower.

The bit of his brain that's still functioning relatively normally, however (soothed by Castiel's proximity, but not overwhelmed by his touch) just says, “Can you pass me that towel, Cas?” and steps out of the shower. Castiel is standing, holding out the fluffy white towel, and Dean takes it, wrapping it around his hips without bothering to dry himself off. He pulls Castiel towards him by the tie (when did he get his whole ensemble back on?), and kisses him, just a brief brush of lips, then pulls back.

That,” he says gently, “is all me, curse free. I'm pretty sure. Eighty-five percent.”

“Okay,” says Castiel.

“I don't want to make you do anything you don't want to do. Well. No. I really, really want to, but I won't, not if you don't want to.”

“Okay,” Castiel says again, and stares into Dean's enquiring gaze for a long while. “I want to. I wish to pre-emptively apologise for any regrets you may experience once the spell is removed, however.”

“Regret sex?” Dean grins. “You offend me.”


Dean wonders how he could have missed this before, this look that Castiel is giving him. Then he rationalises that, well, 'reverently hesitant with a touch of steeled determination' isn't really a look he's seen on many people's faces over time.

Dean sweeps a hand down Castiel's hairline, then down to his jaw, scratching over rough stubble. “Hey,” he says, catching the angel's eyes, which glitter back at him in a combination of lust and uncertainty –

“Dean,” Castiel says seriously, “do not query my commitment to this act again. I tire of your concern.”

Castiel could have said anything in that moment, and it would have gone straight to Dean's cock.

And it does.

“You sure know how to talk purty,” Dean chuckles, and kisses Castiel, his hand moving from the angel's cheek to his collar, pulling him backward towards one of their beds. Castiel steps forward, following him compliantly, and presses his hands to Dean's chest – not pushing, just touching, as if unsure where his hands should go, but figuring that this is as good a place as any. Dean feels like they're burning hand prints into his skin, ones to match the one on his arm. He wonders if by the time he's finished with Castiel, his whole body will be covered in them. Maybe one bright red hand mark wrapped around his cock.

That would be nice, Dean thinks, because right now he just wants his entire body to belong to Castiel.

But, Dean realises, as Castiel skims his hands down Dean's bare chest skittishly and leaves no red welts in his trail, that there is no burning sensation, not really. No angel brands. He realises too, after a moment, that he's not so much hot everywhere Castiel touches him, as he is freezing cold anywhere Castiel does not.

“Everywhere,” Dean mutters frantically into their kiss. “Touch me everywhere.”

To his own ears he sounds manic, and Castiel breaks the kiss to look at him with concerned eyes. Maybe he looks manic, too. He can feel a hot flush spreading out over his cheeks and chest, he can feel his eyes blinking rapidly and sweat break out at his hairline. So soon. He should not be this far gone, so soon.

Castiel obeys, extremely literally. Literal is good right now. He moves his hands to wipe away the sweat on Dean's forehead, then traces them over the lines of his face, then down his neck, his arms, his fingers, his chest, his stomach, then butterfly light around the line of the towel at Dean's waist, and up his back to his shoulder blades – the touch warms Dean everywhere it goes, and he lets out a long, contented sigh, leaning forward to kiss and nip at Castiel's barely exposed neck. He smells like musty overcoat and woody aftershave – he smells like his vessel.

Dean's hands are shaking with adrenaline as he pulls Castiel's coat off, and then he's struggling with the buttons on the shirt until Castiel moves to help him, taking his hands away from Dean's body for the time it takes to get his shirt undone, and Dean starts shivering from the absence of his touch.

Castiel pulls his shirt off, and drops it to the floor behind him along with the trench-coat. One hand comes out immediately to caress Dean's jaw, his fingers brushing his neck and thumb brushing Dean's lip. Still trembling, Dean nuzzles into the touch, unable to think clearly through the heat flooding through his body and mind. He sits back on the bed, and grabs Castiel by the hips, pulling him down to straddle his lap. He wasn't even really aware of how turned on he his until he and Castiel are pressed flush together, and then he can't think of anything but.

Dean assaults Castiel's lips again, sucking his lower lip between his, and biting. Castiel moans, and Dean kisses his way down the angel's neck again. Above him, the angel is breathing heavily, but his voice still comes out perfectly clear as he says, “You are deteriorating.”

“Yeah,” Dean says, sounding stranded and lost and hot. He feels like his words must be coming out as steam with the heat bubbling inside him. “I know.”

Right now Dean knows two things, in fact. He knows he can't stop, can't stop touching and having Castiel, perhaps ever. He also knows that he's slipping further and further into his curse with every touch.

Castiel knows they should stop. Dean doesn't know this, not least because he doesn't want to know that if they don't stop now, Dean is going to burn himself to death.

“We can't,” Castiel says urgently, as Dean unzips his trousers, working his hand into the angel's plain grey boxer shorts.

“You said this would fix me,” Dean says, stroking Castiel in the confined space of his underwear, and the angel groans and writhes above him, his hand coming down to Dean's wrist, seemingly unsure whether to pull it away or not.

“I was wrong,” he gasps. “This is making it worse.”

“Maybe I've got to get worse to get better.” Dean grabs Castiel's hip with his free hand, and rolls him over, tugging his trousers down further. Castiel is decisive this time, pushing Dean away, hard.

“I'm sorry,” Castiel says to Dean, who's now sitting sprawled on the floor, a foot away from the bed. His towel has fallen off, and the shivering has started up again, wracking his body. He's already on his knees, blindly – blind, his eyes are glazed over, fogged up with the furnace inside him – pushing himself towards Castiel, his instinct seeking the angel out. “I'm really, very sorry.”

Then Castiel disappears, and Dean screams.


The scream is torn from him, from a place deep inside him that is being stretched apart. That feeling, that tug, tug, tug of Castiel's presence. It's being pulled out, further than it can possibly stretch, and Dean can feel it. He can feel himself being stretched apart. His consciousness is slipping away with it, and he's still screaming. He blacks out, hearing his own screams in his ears. And they don't stop.


In his dreams he can hear the knocking at the door, becoming rapid, frantic, then becoming a heavy banging, as if the world is falling down around Dean. He thinks it might be. But he's stopped shouting now, at least.

“You okay in there?” a voice carries through the motel room door, but Dean doesn't really hear it. He just curls himself into an even tighter ball and rides the waves of pain wracking through his body.

“Hang on,” another voice calls – Dean has no idea if either voice is male, female, young, old. He has no idea what the words mean, beyond the fact that the sounds are too loud. “I've got the master key. Sir, we're coming in now.”

The sound – no, the feel – of footsteps on the floor next to Dean is too much, and one arm shoots up to cover his ears. He thinks for a moment he might be screaming again. The hand shaking his shoulder is cold, so cold, and he flinches away from the touch.

“Sir, are you alright?” the toucher asks, and this time Dean manages to parse the words somewhat, and make a choked, garbled noise in his own throat. “Hey, mister! Are you in pain?”

“Cas...” Dean manages, and coughs up bile along with the word, swallowing it again, the taste bitter in his mouth.

“What did he say?” the other voice says, further away.

“I'm not sure. We should call an ambulance...”

“Don't--” Dean chokes out, grabbing at the sleeve of the arm next to him. “-- Need... Cas.”

“He needs his car?”

“Sir, you're in no position to drive, we'll call an ambulance.”

“No!” Dean takes in a deep breath this time, eyes still squeezed tightly shut, his head pounding. “Phone. On bench. I'm fine. Go away.”

“Helen, grab him his phone,” the closer voice says. “You tripping balls, that it?”

Dean feels a particularly strong tremor rip through his body, and he trembles helplessly for a moment before comprehending the words being spoken to him. “Yes,” he forces out. “Now please, go.”

“Alright, alright,” the voice says, and through the haze, Dean is glad that he always checks into the scummiest of hotels. “Here's your fuckin' phone, we'll leave you be. Clean up any puke before you check out.”

Dean manages a thumbs up, and waits for the door to close again and silence to fall before passing out again.


”Hello, Dean.” A gentle hand stroking his forehead. Dean rolls over, hand scrabbling out to cling to Castiel's trouser legs. He buries his face in whatever of his angel he can find, pushing himself to his knees. Hot breath against skin, as Castiel buries his face in Dean's neck in turn. Dean's hands scamper over Castiel's body, trying to find purchase. The pain doesn't ease any.

“Why does it still hurt?” Dean mutters into Castiel's shirt.

“Because I'm not really here,” Castiel replies, and Dean opens his eyes, looking up into Castiel's face. “You're dreaming.”

“But you're really you, right?”

Castiel's lips twitch into a half smile. He looks even sadder. “Yes.”

“But you'd say that even if you were just part of the dream.”

“I suppose. You're going to wake up soon. You have to hold on.”

Dean shakes his head, and clasps his hands behind Castiel's neck. “No, you have to come back.”

“I can't, not yet. You have to ride it out. Sorry.”

Castiel starts to fade even as Dean tries to hold him back, he can feel him slipping out of the dream, and Dean can feel another wave of pain taking over, this one strong enough to startle him awake.


The pain has lessened slightly when Dean's eyes blink open. He's lying on his back now, staring at the ceiling. He still can't move, can't get up, but he manages to fumble around next to him and pick up his cell, pressing the third number on his speed dial to call Castiel, but, of course, the call rings out. Dean growls in frustration, then groans in pain.

Fine, plan B.

This time the phone is answered in less than two rings.

“Alright,” Bobby's gruff voice crackles into Dean's ear, “what's gone wrong this week?”

Dean takes a moment to answer, not just because of the effort it takes to talk. He honestly has no clue what to say. “Ah,” he begins, then pauses again, scrambling for words.

“C'mon lad, out with it. I can't help until you tell me what's up,” Bobby says. Despite the blithe words, he sounds genuinely concerned. Dean steels himself.

“A curse,” he grits out, and takes a rattling breath. “Cas and me, we were figuring it--” another pause to catch his breath, “-- figuring it out, but, now he's gone and I can't...”

“God, you sound a wreck, son. Alright, what sort of curse? When did this happen?”

“Couple of days ago,” Dean says. “And ah, the curse, it's a... you know.”

“Dammit Dean, use your words. I don't know. You're gonna have to spell it out, dumbass.”

Dean throws his head back and grimaces. “Jesus fucking, okay. Someone got me with a dose of love potion number Cas, or something. Whenever I was around him, I got really happy, deliriously happy, and whenever he's gone it – it really hurts, and makes me sick. It wasn't too bad, we were just working on it, and it just pretty much meant we had to stay in the same room, but then... some other stuff happened – because of the spell! – and he disappeared because I was getting... more cursed. And everything has been a haze for a while after that. I don't know how long it's been, I've kinda just been lying on the ground naked sliding in and out of consciousness.”

Dean can practically see Bobby scrubbing his hand down his face in an effort not to think about why Dean should be naked in all this.

“Okay,” he says, “Okay. Have you found the witch who put the curse on you?”

Dean blinks. “Oh. No. We didn't really think of that.”

“You're both idjits.”

Dean lets out an annoyed huff, then chokes briefly on the pain the movement sends through his body. “I'm cursed. I haven't really been thinking straight.”

“Cas is an idjit, then,” Bobby amends, and Dean can hear the eye-roll.

“Cas has mostly been chanting,” Dean says through gritted teeth as the pain flares up again. “Don't think fingering the perp is really his bag.”

“Alright then, you find the witch for ten quest points, got it? How you holding up right now, anyway?”

Dean shakes his head. “Not. Need help.”

“An' what do you expect me to do? Roll across the country to whatever motel your banged up in and take after the witch myself only to be bested by some goddamn stairs? Call your brother.”


Dean really doesn't want to call Sam, but the longer he lies in the dark motel room – it's dark now, but won't be much longer, he can see the beginnings of sunrise peeking in through the blinds – the more he realises he doesn't have much choice. He's managed to pull down a blanket from one of the beds, but that's the closest he's got to moving anywhere, and although he hasn't blacked out from pain in a while, it's been a close thing here and there.

Reluctantly, he reaches for his phone again.

And tries Castiel first, letting it ring out when the asshole doesn't answer.

Fine, plan C.

“Sam, shut up and listen,” Dean says the moment the phone is answered with a 'Dean, I...', “I need you to kill a witch for me. I would do it, but she got me good, man, and getting off the floor ain't quite an option right now. Cas would do it, but, um. Some stuff happened there – anyway, Bobby would do it, but, you know, legs. This isn't a mushy reunion, man. This is me telling you to get down here quick, or I'm probably going to die.”

“Alright, where are you?” Sam says without hesitation, and Dean tells him.


“Dear god,” Sam says, pushing the door open – it's still unlocked: Great, Dean thinks, really stellar hotel management there. “What the hell happened?”

Dean lifts his head up off his arm, which he's been using as a pillow. His other arm is wrapped around his stomach, his knees curled up to his chest under the blanket he pulled from the bed. He's been drifting in and out, but of sleep this time, not unconsciousness, which makes a nice change. The pain has subsided, but the nausea has returned – he tried to get to his feet at one point, only to drop straight back to his hands and knees and fight back bile for several minutes.

“You got out here real fast,” he croaks, then realises he doesn't actually know how long it's been at all. Sam is at his side in seconds, his hands on Dean's shoulders, like he's helping. Dean shivers at the contact, and wonders when that started – the repulsion at any touch but Castiel's.

“Caught a plane,” Sam says, his hand moving to Dean's clammy forehead. “You're really burning up, Dean. What the hell did you get hit with?”

Dean swats at Sam's hands, futilely pushing him away. “You're going to laugh,” he says, trying to struggle away as Sam grips him under the arms and helps him to his feet.

“Stop wriggling, I'm just going to get you over to one of the beds,” Sam chides. “And course I won't laugh, why would I laugh?”

“You'll laugh,” Dean insists, but sighs as his head hits the pillow on the closest bed. Despite how cold, clammy, cold and wrong Sam's hands feel against his skin, he lets his legs be manhandled onto the mattress, and then Sam is covering him in the blanket again, probably partly in order to sweat out the fever, and partly so he doesn't have to keep looking at his brother naked.

“I won't laugh,” Sam insists, eyes scanning the room. “I'll get you some clothes,” he adds as an afterthought, spotting the pile of Castiel's discarded clothes on the floor. He pauses, half way to picking them up. “Wait, are these...?”

“Yeah,” Dean says, grimacing.

“What happened?!”

Dean tells him. Sam, the bastard, laughs.


Sam eventually helps Dean into a t-shirt and boxer shorts, after forcing several glasses of water down his gullet – “Dean, just take little sips, slower. No, I know you're not a kid, just drink it slowly, that's all,” – and then sits on the edge of the bed, watching as Dean shivers intermittently under the blankets.

“Can you think of anyone with any reason to be angry at you?” Sam asks, running a hand through his hair, tugging it back the way he's always done when concerned about Dean.

Dean thinks back over the past few days, before this thing started – it feels like forever ago. It feels absurd to imagine a time before this chord in his was stretched to his angel, collaring him, choking him with this need. “No. I mean, yeah. That douchey angel, I guess.”

Which douchey angel?” Sam asks and Dean chuckles, his mouth curving against the soft pillow.

“Er, Raphael,” he says, and Sam smirks.

“What, not Michelangelo?” he asks. Dean feels the nausea subside for just a second, the warmth of remembering just why he loves his brother fluttering through his stomach instead. Then it's back with a vengeance and he squeezes his eyes tightly shut, taking deep breaths in through his nose.

“Nah, um, Cas caught him in a magic fire circle or something. He was pretty pissed. But,” Dean pauses, trying to think back. “But I was already under the spell when that all happened, I'm pretty sure.”

“How can you know?”

“All I was thinking about while we were having a showdown with an archangel was how pretty Cas looked in the moonlight.”

Sam laughs again. “Sorry,” he says after a moment, trying to regain a straight face. “Anyone else? Maybe someone who'd be angry at Cas?”

Dean shakes his head. “No, no-one,” he says, then chuckles. “Well, except...”

“Except what?”

“Well, it looked like it was going to be his last night on earth, alright? So I, you know, took him to a brothel – oh, don't look at me like that –” Dean tells Sam the story, right up to being chased out into the back alley by the security, and when he's finished, Sam is already getting up off the bed, and grabbing his jacket from the back of one of the chairs.

“Where was this brothel?” he asks, picking up the keys to the Impala.


Castiel's hand touches Dean's cheek, and Dean grins into his pillow.

“Just couldn't stay away, could ya?” he says, feeling Castiel's warm weight settle on the bed next to him, lying pressed to his back. Castiel's lips brush against his neck, and he can feel the angel smile a smile he would never let him see straight-on.

“How are you feeling?” Castiel asks quietly, his kisses travelling up Dean's neck, as soft as the brush of feathers on skin.

“Much better, with you here,” Dean says, and rolls over, catching the angel's lips with his own, his hand sliding over to settle on Castiel's hip, pull him closer.

“I'm not here,” Castiel says into the kiss, his fingers cradling the nap of Dean's neck, stroking the short hairs there. “You're still dreaming.”

Dean pulls Castiel tighter against him, shaking his head insistently and fastening his lips onto Castiel's jaw, licking, sucking, biting. “You are here, I can feel you,” he insists, and pushes his hips forward, pressing his hardening cock against Castiel's hip. “You can feel me. I know how this works now, Cas. That's--” thrusts against Castiel, brushing their erections together “-- all you.”

“No,” Castiel says, but he's smiling again, letting Dean rut against him, letting Dean's hands pull him closer, letting Dean set a slow, but persistent rhythm. “But that's a good thing. You should probably wake up soon.”

“Why?” Dean asks, rolling them over and pinning Castiel to the bed. He sits up, thighs spread over Castiel's hips, and moves his fingers to work open the buttons on Castiel's trousers.

“Because Sam is currently walking through the car-park back to your motel room.”

Dean thinks for a minute, then says, “I don't care,” and takes Castiel's cock into his mouth.


Turns out, things you don't care about when you're asleep, you might end up caring about very much when your brother walks in on you having a wet dream.


“So you ganked the bitch then?” Dean says, coming out of the bathroom, wearing a fresh pair of underpants. Sam looks at him disapprovingly, for the second time in the last ten minutes.

“Didn't need to,” he replies. “She removed the curse pretty much as soon as I asked. I mean, she was seriously pretty annoyed at you guys, but she felt pretty bad for losing her temper, I think. Also, it was Cas she meant to put the spell on, not you. Not that she didn't think you were a jerk as well.”

“You telling me that we're just going to let this witch walk around free as a bird because she said sorry?”

“It's not that, man. I mean, I'm not saying she was right to curse you, but she's been hurting pretty bad – her boyfriend just left her, and I dunno, Cas talking to her about her dad, I guess it was just the last straw, you know? Apparently it was her dad that taught her witch-craft, too. Pretty much all he ever did with her, by the sounds of it.”

Dean is watching his brother disbelievingly. “And you... found this all out by talking to her?”

“Well, yeah,” Sam says, shrugging.

“You had a heart to heart with a whore? How much did that cost?”

“I liked you better when you couldn't move,” Sam says, “and a 'thank you' wouldn't be out of place.”

Dean flashes Sam a sincere smile. “Thanks,” he says, then grabs the keys to the Impala. “Well, I've been in this motel room way too long, think I'm going to find a town with some indisputably evil, non daddy-issues witches to kill. You coming?”

“You obviously can't last ten minutes on your own,” Sam says, pitching his sentence up at the end as if to continue, and Dean glares at him, daring him to go on. He doesn't finish, just picks up his stuff, and follows Dean out to the car.


“Oh baby,” Dean murmurs, “it feels so good to get back in you.” He strokes his hands sensuously over the steering wheel, then pushes his keys into the ignition.

“Seriously, it's been, what, three days?” Sam says incredulously, watching Dean with an expression of mild repulsion.

“But it feels like so much longer,” he replies dreamily, and then Castiel appears in the back seat.


Dean thinks he must be insane, because, before he can tell his feelings to sit the fuck down and shut the fuck up, he feels a pang of loss at the lack of mind altering euphoria rushing through his brain at Castiel's presence. The angel, as if you drive the point home, leans forward and brushes one knuckle across the back of Dean's neck, causing Sam to look away awkwardly.

“Dude, what the hell?” Dean snaps, curling his shoulders up, tortoise-style. Castiel sits back in his seat, looking neither pleased, nor offended.

“Nothing?” he asks, and Dean tries to convince himself that he imagined the slight tone of disappointment in the word.

“Nope, spells over, Cas. So no touchy-touching the driver in ticklish places.”

Castiel is silent for a very long moment, and Dean thinks he's not going to reply at first. “Good,” he says eventually, and looks out of the window mildly. “I'm glad you are well again.”

“Well this is awkward,” Sam mutters out of the window, and those are the last words spoken in the car – that don't come from the radio – for many, many uncomfortable miles.


By silent, mutual consent, they stop for lunch a few towns over. Dean and Sam practically jump out of the car with no small measure of relief, both stretching their arms over their head; as if the only thing making them uncomfortable was the non-ergonomic design of the chairs.

Castiel climbs out of the car slower, straightening his coat before closing the door with a soft thump.

“Um, joining us for lunch, Cas?” Sam asks as the angel trails behind the two brothers.

“Yes,” Castiel replies simply, his eyes trained on the back of Dean's head – Dean who is walking very deliberately forward.

“Just, no offence, but... why?”

Castiel shrugs one shoulder. “I have nothing else which currently requires my attention,” he says plainly.

“So you're most pressing concern is watching us eat,” Dean says, chuckling dryly. “Dude, you need a hobby.”

“I have a hobby, Dean,” Castiel replies. Neither Dean nor Sam ask for elaboration, both recognising the implicit “you” and choosing to imagine it doesn't exist.


Dean is growing concerned by the way Castiel's gaze is sniper-locked on him that the angel is going to pull out some sort of extremely uncomfortable, “Sam, would you mind standing in a corner for a while, I wish to speak to your brother alone, about our feelings.” He thinks he'll choke the bastard if he pulls something like that: Choking him might do shit-all, but he he swears to God he'll give it a go.

Turns out, Castiel doesn't have quite that level of social inappropriateness. He's so much worse.

“Dean,” he says, the moment they've seated themselves at one of the many empty four-person booths in the diner, “May I say something?”

Dean grits his teeth. “Fire away,” he says, smiling tightly. Sam has the look of a trapped deer with a hunting rifle pointed at it on his face, his eyes darting back and forth as if for an escape. Shouldn't have taken the window seat, Dean thinks to himself triumphantly. At least if he has to sit through this conversation, so does his brother.

“I just wish to remind you,” Castiel says, as if they're not in a public place, as if Sam isn't sitting right next to him, as if it's just him and Dean alone in an empty, private, room, “that whether or not your feelings were being manipulated by that enchantment, mine were not. I do not begrudge you wishing to put this behind you, and I will not bring it up in the future, but I want you to understand that I too was emotionally compromised and... invested in your – our – situation, and I would appreciate you taking my feelings into account as you move on from this experience.”

Dean just keeps smiling tightly. “Sure man,” he says, and, at Castiel's expectant expression adds, “I'm sorry.”

“Apology accepted,” Castiel replies, and starts reading the menu he's not going to order anything from.

Dean glances over at Sam, expecting a commiserating expression, but instead his brother has moved on from looking like a startled deer to looking like a bemused goldfish, his mouth opening and closing again and again, caught somewhere between wanting to say something and thinking better of it.

“Out with it,” Dean snaps at his brother, and Sam just waves his hands for a moment as if trying to catch the words he needs out of the air around him.

“Well, it's just,” Sam says, stammering slightly, “I'm not sure if you want to know this, Dean, but Elaine – sorry Chastity – didn't so much... put a love spell, or you know, a sex spell on you, or anything like that. She just, well, remember it was aimed at Cas, she just wanted him to feel as abandoned as she did. That's – that's all the spell did. Good feelings when close to the person you were bound to, but with really bad reactions whenever you were left alone. That's. Um. That's all.”

Dean's tight smile stays firmly lodged in place.

“Goddammit,” Dean says, then points at Castiel without looking at him. “This doesn't change a thing,” he adds.


Naturally, of course, it does change at least a thing, possibly several.


Castiel watches Dean intensely though-out his whole meal, observing every bite and swallow with his eyes narrowed and head tilted, ignoring the untouched coffee in front of him.

“You mind?” Dean snaps, halfway through his burger, wiping chilli con carne from the corner of his mouth.

“No,” Castiel answers. Sam buries himself in his laptop.

“Oh, hey, guys,” he says, “I think we got signs of a haunting only a few towns--”

Dean pushes himself up from the table. “I need to piss,” he says, still matching Castiel's constant glare. He steps out of the booth and turns around, heading towards the back end of the restaurant.

Sam glances up at Castiel, who's eyes are trained on Dean's retreating back.

“... So we've got several deaths, all occurring—”

“Excuse me, Sam,” Castiel says abruptly, getting to his feet. “I too need to, ah, relieve myself.”

Sam watches him abruptly disappear, before muttering, “Like hell,” and opening up a game of minesweeper.


Dean, at least semi-well-versed in Castiel's movements now, starts at the sound of wings fluttering behind him. He turns on his heel, quickly zipping up his jeans.

It's a small restroom, thank god, just one room and a lock on the door. Stalls could be awkward if anyone decided to walk in now.

“Okay, Cas, we are definitely going to go over the concept of privacy. There might be a lecture.”

Castiel just stares at him, hands hanging loosely at his sides.

“Alright, what?” Dean snaps. “I was kinda in the middle of something.”

Castiel lets out a sigh. “You have amorous feelings for me. You are sexually attracted to me.”

Dean grimaces, but makes no reply. He's not sure whether Castiel steps or zaps forward, but all at once he finds himself backed up against the urinal, the backs of his thighs bumping cold porcelain, and Castiel pressed so close into his personal space that Dean can count the frowning furrows in his brow.

Why,” the angel asks, annoyance lacing the single syllable, “Are we not currently fornicating against this door?”

Several reasons spring immediately to Dean's mind; (a) Dean Winchester is not gay, (b) Standing sex in diner bathrooms is a learnt skill and, (c) It's been a long, intense couple of days, and maybe now would be a good time to take a step back and use his brain to think things over for once.

Unfortunately, the rebuttals that also spring immediately to mind, are simply, (a) No, but he is pretty solidly bisexual, (b) Yes, but it's a skill Dean learnt long ago and, (c) … Fuck it. Never done things that way before, why start now?

Dean locks eyes with Castiel.

“Very good question,” he says, and pushes Castiel backwards to the opposite wall, loosening his tie as he goes.


Sam can't decide whether the drive from the diner to the next town over – during which he is relegated to the back seat while Dean and Castiel sit in the front making eyes at each other and smelling of sex and that bitter disinfectant that permeates public restrooms – is more or less awkward than the drive earlier that day.

In the end though, when they pull up outside a tacky hotel called the Something Oasis and Dean stops the dishevelled angel from getting out of the car with a quick tug at his wrist and a short, self conscious kiss, Sam decides that it's much, much better this way.

“What?” Dean snaps, twisting his head to glare at Sam, who quickly wipes his grin off his face and levels it to a simple smirk. “Go check us in.”

“Two rooms?” Sam asks, reaching for the door handle.

“Two rooms,” Castiel agrees, looking very, very serious about the demand.