Subject: Join me
I still have several bags full of MnMs, and I’m disinclined to lavish them on our cousin, given how difficult it’s been to refresh my dogmatic energy with a light nap when my designated sleeping area is opposite his couch. I had to get out, Cas, to commune with the sky. I’m on the roof. Care to join me? I can just see the neighbours’ cat and, in the absence of my newfound spiritual home, I don’t see why something’s life shouldn’t prove as joyless as my own, whilst simultaneously providing a much-needed alternative form of entertainment to the ridiculous chores foisted upon me, rifle practise and/or daytime television.
P.S. I’m afraid that the showdown of the ages is still regrettably audible, even up here. Aren’t there laws against noise pollution in backwater rural communities? To keep the place scenic, or to prevent disturbing the public peace, or cattle, or some such?
P.P.S. What’s your favourite quote so far? Mine is ‘your face is changing the subject using theomatic puns!’ I think I may start a line of t-shirts.
Subject: the quality of mercy is not strained
You won’t understand – how could you? – but we mustn’t leave. Please, if only for Gabriel. You have to realise, I’ve found more here than I ever could have dreamed, from a talent for playing the ukulele to the joys of drinking juice straight from the carton to the ability to fold clothes, and Castiel, how would you feel if I asked you to leave Winchesters now? If I told you to forsake your book, the only meaningful work you’ve ever experienced creating – or indeed, will create again? To abandon Sam and Dean, the first friends you’ve ever really had who share less than 25% of your genetic material? Not, of course, that they’re doing anything but manipulating you in your fragile state – I still stand by that judgement – but nonetheless, you take my point.
I’ve thought this through, and spoken to Bobby, and he would like me to stay at Winchesters for at least the rest of the week. He was less certain about the rest of our family, but it isn’t like we’re pushed for space – the only ones staying here just now are you, me, Gabriel, Raphael, Uriel, Balthazar, Anna and Jo – so I “talked him round”, as he always says. And besides, I’ve been running my campaign remotely, via professional body double, for some time now, and the press don’t seem to have cottoned on just yet.
Thus, I’m asking, truly asking: would you restock the bathroom? We’re out of hair care products, and Balthazar’s becoming insufferable. He’s twitching, muttering – it all looks rather unhealthy, though he did snarl something decidedly more lucid than usual when Uriel offered to teach him to bring his core chakras into equilibrium. Personally, I plan on “soldiering on”, if only to prove to one Bobby Singer that I am capable!
P.S. We should really consider inviting my current doppelganger out to dinner some time. She’s coping admirably in my absence, and I know it’s hard on her. Moreover, she and I share a certain fondness for a charming little Italian place in New York, so I just know that we’ll get along, and I can always tell anyone who sees the two of us together that we’re identical twins. Did you know, she’s even friends with Raphael’s own double? The two of them are very sweet together – oh, Castiel! We should invite them both out at once and try our collective hands at amateur matchmaking. Just think of how sweet they’d look if I dressed them up in matching outfits in time for my next charity ball!
P.P.S. It’s something of a non sequiter, but- could it be that-… Cas, can you hear yelling? Me either. I think they’ve stopped!
P.P.P.S. My mistake. They’ve reached a sort of mutual, temporary ceasefire. Anna’s just come into the kitchen looking for throat lozenges, and she says Gabriel’s catching up with Raphael. Also to tell you that we’re out of toilet paper.
P.P.P.P.S. That woman is fierce. She just downed two-thirds of a pint of free range cranberry juice and five cherry Soothers in one gulp, before continuing to mutter angrily (and none too quietly) about abandonment complexes and ‘idiotic sticky up-y hair that looks just as pointedly smug and eminently punchable as his face’.
P.P.P.P.P.S. Oh, dear. That cranberry juice was meant to be diluted.
Subject: the sun’ll come out!
Anna’s a doll, isn’t she? Beautiful, quick-witted, always willing to tie dye for the team – dang, if the girl wasn’t my cousin... Truly, I have no idea how I could possibly have ignored her like the plague, back in the day, or done that thing with the lard and her toothpaste and the hydrochloric acid, or told the friends she made on the first day attending the same school as me that she was given to our family as part of a social experiment regarding the ability of genetically engineered bonobos to replicate human behaviour (bonobos are the ones that continuously have sex, BTW).
You know, on reflection, it strikes me that anyone who fell for that was probably not worthy of our little Annabel’s attentions.
That aside, I’m telling ya, I’ve got no idea how I missed it. Evidently, I’ve been wrong all along. Anna’s not a sturgeon-faced, mouth breathing assclown any more than you are! Okay, poor example – than Cas is! Obviously, her views aren’t the steaming pile of bullcrap that they appear; her Platonic ideal of this family is totally legit; Dad’s a swell guy and would’ve given us all the love and attention we’d always whinged for, wrapped up in a shiny satin bow, if only we’d thought to ask! Gosh, I wonder why we never did? What an oversight on our parts!
Balthie, I’m the one who’s got things wrong. As ever, joke’s on me. Guess it’s time to clean up my act, hit the road, get my ass back to Vancouver and live life exactly the way I’m meant to want to. After all, I have a loving family at my back, always ready to look out for me, never liable to kick me out the one safe space I’ve been able to locate without the use of a world atlas.
Want some evidence? Mikey! I mean, his continued absence totally isn’t down to his complete inability to care about anything but himself and his immaculately tailored suits, just as Raphael’s little display of brotherly love was utterly genuine, and nothing at all to do with the nine other people in the house just waiting to rail at him about the dangers of apathy. Self-serving bastards with no concept of decency? You must be joking!
Getting back to, you know, reality, let’s have a little recap of the situation. I mean, of my motives. See, no one really gets this at all. First time I left home? I couldn’t stand the constant and interminable arguments between the two dickheads I call my older brothers. And, the family solution to a rerun of this situation is to initiate more constant and interminable arguments? That you people genuinely wonder why I never bothered to maintain contact with you shows frightening levels of obliviousness. You know, I actually considered ditching the Milton name for a very long time – well, a couple nights – but it just gelled so neatly with a lot of the themes my act had going. Seems such loyalty was pretty thoroughly misplaced.
But, I’d almost forgotten, you have problems, too. Isn’t that just sweet: you’re in on the family business, Balthazar! Being royally screwed up; fearing for your life every other Tuesday! What, you want us to hold a coming of age ceremony? Present you with a ritual edition of Busty Asian Beauties and do the ceremonial polka round an open campfire? I could give a crap – deal!
For now? I got approximately two seconds before a pissed off redhead is on my back again – not in the good way – and frankasdgfhjbkjh;gbgvfc kokytg,
Subject: your family’s incompetency
Brother, you are needed here. You read my earliest texts, correct? The coherent ones? They only tell half the story, Michael: the half involving awkward embraces and sibling affection, typed over Gabriel’s slumped shoulders, complete with undignified, unsolicited bouts of hand to hand combat when he realised that I was talking to you (he won, barely, and the results are what darkened your inbox between 10:15 and 10:22). The other half is ten separate sets of sheets to be washed, and not a single operational drycleaners at which to do so. See, these places won’t accept cheques, and you always told me never to use a card anywhere the carpets don’t match the curtains.
I don’t understand your excuses for continuing with your work. Frankly, they astound me. Haven’t you always put family first?
Well, you’re missing the most involved parts of family life. That is to say, those concerning our screaming brother, whose face is currently a shade of red that I’ve never witnessed outside chloropleth maps of my state's more recent elections. He’s gesticulating wildly with half a poptart, scattering crumbs in all directions, and it simply isn’t attractive. Apparently, our favourite cousin just threw his favourite iPhone out a window into what I assume to be the Winchesters favourite rhododendron.
P.S. A large, jam-drenched crumb just hit Anna on the nose. She’s one shade lighter than Gabriel in terms of incandescent fury, and just- well, Jo grabbed her wrist before she could slap him, but I suppose I should go help restrain the both of them.
Subject: Join me?
Do hurry up. I’m almost out of MnMs, and the cat proved disappointingly elusive. I’m onto squirrels, but the damned things seem amazingly adept at dodging even the most precisely aimed candy shells, most likely due to experience avoiding rifle fire.
There was a truly amazing noise from the living room, just now. I don’t suppose you know the cause? To me, it sounded something like ‘Get the everloving fuck off my baby, you sanctimonious little-‘ followed by a small explosion and a high-pitched ‘ding’ of success.
I’ve no idea, either. But, now the shouting’s commenced once more, and the insults are growing increasingly convoluted. Isn’t it a joy to listen to? Does wonders for one’s chi. Perhaps I should record this soothing and melodious interaction and play it every night to ease myself to sleep? Honestly, Cas, I hope they stop soon. Even the Winchesters now bear distinctly pained expressions – I can see them from where they’re huddled in Rachel’s tent. She’s grinning at them to a rather alarming degree whilst offering them plates of what appear to be small brown bricks. The Dean boy has taken three; Sam looks a little green and has made the universal gesture for ‘but I just ate lunch; maybe later!’; Bobby appears to be concentrating on staring at his shoes too hard to refuse the offer and, despite Sam’s subtle suggestions that he ought to do otherwise, has taken a similar number to Dean.
Oh, and now he’s coughing. Just another layer of noise to add to the increasing din!
You’ll forgive me, Cas: I love our extended clan as well as you do; my patience simply wears a little thin from time to time. But I’ll do anything and everything that I can in order to help with the present predicament. I’m sure it’s just a matter of publishing your book, reconciling Gabriel and Anna, running Gabriel across the country within two days, yanking Michael’s head out of his ass long distance, and all staying coordinated long enough to find Uncle. Nothing is unattainable – if Vegas taught me anything, it’s that.
P.S. Ah- Castiel? Not to bother you, but I think one of my MnMs just hit something shiny and plastic and half-hidden by a bush, so I’m just going to go down and investigate. I shouldn’t be long – I’ll meet you back up here.
We don’t have long. I just wrestled this phone from one of their agents. Suffice it to say, I read the contents of Gabriel’s inbox out of curiosity, and I’m willing to help a man in need if it means derailing the best-laid plans of that odious little worm, Zachariah. Uriel is scowling at me from across the driveway, but I’m sure that he understands that I only want what is best for my brother’s health, which so happens to coincide with what is best for your health. And also, your kneecaps.
I believe that it is ‘time to pick a side’.
P.S. If you must know, I’m bored. My body double has proved all too efficient at running my own campaign. I may have to have him arrested for impersonation if he gets too attached to his role.