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I Will Sing Your Name On High

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Prologue:

 

“What the hell?”

He knew this now, being on the same dock as before when Cas had found him, half-frantic and paranoid of things listening inside his dreams. Back before heaven had gotten their hooks back in to reprogram him into his default bastard mode. When he had come to ask for help and been taken by who he called family; the scene of his fight against heaven leaving a warehouse a broken wreck, blood against the walls in strange patterns.

The dock he was on still the same as he always dreamt it, floating on a lake that mirrored the clouds lazily shifting against each other. The sun was low in the sky on a peaceful summer day, it’s light filtering through the puffs of white in the sky and through the trees, long shafts along the shore and wood.

That heaven could be listening now, well, it wasn’t a thought he wanted to entertain. That maybe this was just a show of power, of obedience. And he was the last person to try this trick on since he would never be their servant or anything else for that matter.

The angel was staring at him, radiating something like menace just a few feet away and he was so over all of this. Wanted to scream at Cas to get the hell out because what good had he been up to now?

“Turn it down, would you, Vader. What is this?”

“You keep praying,” the angel said, words hissed out. As if praying was some sort of crime now and he shrugged, pushing his hands into his pockets.

“So? Never bothered you before. Hell, you barely answer half the time, if at all. Gotta say, don’t feel all that needed by heaven if you all are willing to let me lie bloody and dying somewhere with my only backup being my binge blood drinking brother and a demon. ”

Cas was just there in his face and he refused to flinch, to step back, to show some kind of weakness because that was the only move he had left. Eyes were burning in front of him with something that wasn’t of earth. Nothing left to offer, so he made himself grin, something wide and sneering because attitude was the only card in his deck.

“It is not just about your brother.”

“Oh, are you actually concerned about that now?” He shook his head, laughing something that wasn’t bright. “Give me a break. You don’t give a rat’s ass about my brother. You don’t give a rat’s ass about me, about any of us or this. Just your own hid and whatever order sends you here.”

“Stupid, boy,” came the growl, a hand on his shirt dragging him closer and he refused to let his feet move. “I told you that I –“

“Yeah, yeah, you serve heaven not humans. And definitely not me. Got that loud and clear, man.” The fist all caught in the fabric of his shirt relaxed slightly as Dean upped the wattage on his smirk and leaned forward. “Except you wanted to tell me something real bad before they carted you off.”

“I could break you a thousand times before you became aware of the first.”

“Competing with demons?” he spat, watching those eyes narrow. “Coward. That’s all you are. Help when it’s easy, run when the going gets hard and someone might bleed.”

A gust of wind through his little dream paradise fishing spot and he’d never get this back. One more thing ruined. There was pressure all around them, something that was pure angel and he made himself not slouch, made himself feel like a steel frame was rammed in him instead of bones. The water began to wave, breaking up the flawless surface as if the sky was shattering.

“Whatever the hell it was you wanted to say wasn’t all that unimportant, was it? Something they don’t want us to know, what you aren’t supposed to spill. Yet here you are, probably screwing me over like the rest of world, and making like I give a crap about heaven’s little plan.”

“You do care about Sam, though.”

The truth was a bitch, no matter what his brother had done to himself, to him. “You threatening Sam?”

That hand released him, Cas taking a step back, still tense but not making another move towards him.

“Not at this time.”

“Well, good to know, then.” He smoothed out his shirt, the angel had gripped so hard that there was now a small cluster of impossible to remove wrinkles. Stupid angels and their shirt mucking ways and he had to remember this wasn’t real. “I don’t expect you to get it. That there’s a right and a wrong and I’m pretty damn sure that whatever they had to drag you back up there for was wrong. Really, really wrong.”

Cas took another step back, slight hesitation that if he had blinked he would have missed. That face didn’t waver, still filled with righteous fury and whatever the hell else they pumped into them when they stopped by home for a tune up.

“I cannot help you. Do not pray to me about it again.”

And that was that. Alone on the dock, things falling back into their pre-pissed off angel state and he swore. Like he was just going to drop something this big, so damn important that it still resonated on the goddamn air here. He needed to know because Sam was probably dying and Bobby was cracking and he was no good. There had to be an out somewhere so at least the world wouldn’t split open like a rotten egg.

“This isn’t over,” he yelled at the sky that wasn’t real, still overcast with the glow of a hidden sun. “You hear me, Castiel? I aint your salvation and the stopper of apocalypses and whatever you know, I’ll find out. I swear it.”

There was no answer, just the water in its calm movements as he sank down to his knees not ready to wake up. The wood felt so real here, rough and splintery and he rubbed his hands on it, wanting it to be reality. He needed to get those fragments under his skin so that there wasn’t a promise of what was waiting for him when he did open his eyes back at Bobby’s.

“Damn you,” he whispered as the dream wavered, waking a looming threat. “You had the chance, why didn’t you take it, Cas?”