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The Times They Are a-Changin'

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When Dean’s shift at the garage is over, he drives the Impala across town to the animal shelter Cas works in to pick the former angel up. While he waits, fingers drumming on the steering wheel along to AC/DC, he watches big, fat snowflakes land on the windshield. It’s been snowing for hours now; the first snow this winter.

“Well, look at that,” Dean mutters and takes out his phone, snapping a picture and sending it to Sam and Jess with the caption Greetings from Kansas. They reply with a selfie on a sunny beach, their stupid newlyweds’ smiles warming Dean’s heart more than the tropical sun could. Just to maintain his reputation, he sends back Gross! with a puking emoji Cas showed him a while back. Sam retaliates with a middle finger.

“What’s so funny?” Cas asks, startling Dean because he somehow managed to get to the car without Dean noticing it. Civilian life is seriously messing with his instincts.

“Sam and Jess are being disgustingly in love,” Dean explains, showing Cas the picture.

They pull out of the parking lot and drive into the heavy snowfall, Cas leaning against the window and looking outside curiously. It occurs to Dean that while this isn’t Cas’ first time being human, it probably is his first human encounter with snow.

“Where are we going? This isn’t the way to the bunker,” Cas speaks up when Dean turns the Impala left, driving out into the snowy fields.

“Change of plans. We’re making a detour.”

It’s quiet here, not another soul in sight, and after about ten minutes, Dean pulls over, gets out of the car. Looks at Cas, who’s still sitting inside, doing that confused head tilt thingy. “Well? You gonna get out?”

“Why?”

“You haven’t been properly introduced to snow yet. It’s time we fixed that.”

“Neither you or I are properly dressed for being outside in this weather,” Cas points out. “This isn’t a very smart idea.”

“No,” Dean agrees with a grin. “It’s impulsive and probably stupid.” But the truth is, he misses stupid. His new life is all about being normal and reasonable, and while that has it perks, like Mom making him pie or Dad drinking beer with him and watching the sunset, it’s also kinda… boring. “Let’s do it anyway. It’s a thing we humans do sometimes; you should try it. It’s gonna be awesome.”

“You said the same thing about eating a whole bowl of cake batter too.” Cas objects even as he’s climbing out of the car. He forgets about any further objections soon though, and starts to study his footsteps in the snow. Before long, he’s beating paths in the fallen snow on the empty road, wearing a look of concentration that practically invites mischief.

So Dean picks up a handful of snow to make a ball and chucks it at Cas’ back. Then, he’s too busy laughing his ass off to notice the snowball flying back at him before it hits him right in the face. Cas has surprisingly good aim, and the smug fucker knows it.

“Alright,” Dean growls, and it’s on.

*

They’re soaked all the way through their clothes by the time the snowball fight is ended with a truce, but they’re having too much fun to pay any attention to it. Besides, since they’re already wet, there’s no reason why Dean shouldn’t show Cas how to make snow angels. It's worth it, even if it leads to an unexpected lecture on how many pairs of wings angels actually have.

It’s only when the cold finally seeps into their bones and their teeth start chattering that Dean realizes they should head back, because there’s stupid for kicks, and then there’s stupid enough to catch pneumonia.

“Come on,” he stands up, then grabs Cas by the hand and pulls him to his feet. “Time to head home.”

The second they pull over outside the bunker, Dean’s parents rush out the door, grabbing both him and Cas and forcefully dragging them inside.

“Mom, what’s going on?” Dean demands, while she rubs him down with a towel and his father forces a steaming cup of tea into Cas’ hands.

Mary’s toweling Dean’s hair now, messing it up no doubt, but Dean knows there’s nothing he can do to stop a mother who takes it into her head to fuss over her child. Especially if she has some thirty odd years to make up for.

A glance to the side tells Dean that Dad has somehow managed to wrap Cas into a ridiculously big blanket, making Cas look like a big, wet, squinty sushi roll.

Dean turns back to his mom again. “What’s going on?”

Her expression softens and she cups his cheek gently. “Honey, you don’t have to hide and freeze outside. We know about you and Cas, and we’re okay with it.”

“Me and… What?”

She points at a PFLAG button pinned to her shirt. John has one, too. Their smiles are as bright as the colors of the LGBT flag.

Dean and Cas exchange confused glances.

“But we’re not gay,” Dean says, Cas nodding vehemently in agreement. “We just like to hang out together.”

“Oh sweetie, you don’t have to pretend anymore. We accept you just the way you are!” His mom pulls them both in for a hug, while John pats them on the shoulders in what is probably meant to be manly encouragement. And Dean's died several times, been to Heaven and Hell and everything in between, he even met God for fuck's sake, but his life has never been weirder than right now.

Then it gets even weirder when John says cheerfully, “Besides, it’s not exactly a secret. There are tons of stories written about you two!”

Dean blanches, quickly extricating himself from Mary’s arms to look into his John's eyes. “You read stories about me and Cas?”

“It’s called fanfiction,” Mary chimes in helpfully. “See? I’m all hip with these internet things.”

“Oh God,” Dean groans, while Cas valiantly tries to point out that it’s called fan fiction for a reason. But Dean’s parents just won’t budge. Dad even takes out his phone to play them something called The Destiel Song, explaining proudly that it's his ringtone now.

After ten minutes of futile efforts, Dean and Cas exchange glances again, resigned. Apparently the decision has been made for them. And maybe this will be easier than constantly trying to explain that they’re just friends.

Reluctantly, Dean and Cas take each other’s hands.