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Love You in the Dark

Chapter Text

The plane touched down in Kansas around noon on a chilly Tuesday morning. The frost on the ground promised a cold and brutal winter. Fucking lovely. The minute the doors were opened, the wind cut through the tan coat hugging Castiel’s frame. He sighed deeply as he exited, his steps slow and calculating to keep from slipping. A large black SUV waited for him, hopefully with the heater on full blast. Thankfully, it was.

Castiel sat in the back seat, a large folder sitting on his lap. He refused to open it. He had spent the last month staring at the pictures and reading the information. If he had to look one more time, he'd throw it out the damn window.

He'd been assigned this case almost a month ago, and he was no closer to an answer. So far, seven people were missing. All from different states, all men, all between the ages of 25 and 35. That was all that connected them. The first disappeared almost a year ago, and yet no clues had been found. Not even a body. It was frustrating.

That was how Castiel found himself in Kansas. The latest kidnapping took place in a town called Lawrence. The missing male was a mechanic on the outskirts of the town. He'd been abducted almost a week ago. At first, there was no connection to Castiel’s case but on the third day of his disappearance, his brother received a package in the mail. Inside the package sat a small stuffed animal. That in itself would be creepy, but the assholes behind this always added a little jewelry. Around the neck of every animal hung a heavy pendant. And of course, the pendants were covered in one single bloody thumbprint. And while the thumbprint always matched, there wasn't a single record of it in the FBI database. Whoever these people were, they were smart.

That was four days ago.

Castiel looked out the window as the police station came into view. He really hated working with them. It wasn't because he thought he shouldn't have to, but more along the lines of his people skills being rusty. He always worked better alone, which was probably why he no longer had a partner. After his fifth year in the agency, it was well known that you stayed away from him when looking for a partner. That was four years ago. He'd been alone since.

He heaved a deep sigh as he stepped inside the building. He could already feel a headache forming.

Sitting behind a desk off to the right of the room was a young man. His name tag read Alfie. Castiel set forward, determined to make this as fast as possible.

“Hello, my name is Castiel,” he pulled his badge out, not even noticing it was held upside down. “I'm looking for Fergus Crowley.” The young man smiled up at him and held up a finger as he reached for the phone. After a brief conversation, the boy stood.

“Please follow me Agent.” Alfie led him to a room with one wall made entirely of glass. The entire time Alfie made some mindless chatter that Castiel barely paid attention to. He seemed sweet, but God, he was a talker. Finally, after what felt like eternity the door to Chief Crowley’s office opened.

The man standing there caught Castiel off guard. He stood there in a three-piece suit, all black. His scruff made him look older than he probably was. He was a couple inches shorter than the agent himself. All in all, the man was very attractive. When he spoke, the accent only added to his handsomeness. At least, it would if the words weren't spit out in a scathing manner.

“Agent.” A slight nod was throw in his direction. “Thank you, Alfie.” The boy walked away leaving Castiel under the watchful eye of Crowley. The Chief motioned for Castiel to take a seat so he did exactly that. The folder sat on his lap, a weight he could barely lift.

Chief Crowley poured himself a scotch before speaking.

“Agent Novak, I presume?” He continued when given a nod of confirmation. “I see your latest case has brought you to Lawrence. Know that this entire force will help you with whatever you need. We wish to work with you, not against you.” To most, that would seem like a kind gesture. Yet, there was a gleam in the man's eyes that made it seem more like a warning. There was a reason he rose to such a ranking in the town, after all.

“Thank you, sir. The FBI needs all the help it can get at this point. I understand that the brother of the newest victim was here yesterday. Did he have any new information?” It was true. He was informed on his flight that the man had stopped at the police station, though he was not told the nature of the visit.

“Ah yes, Moose as I like to call him. Sam is a lawyer. He actually doesn't live around here anymore. He was visiting the family after announcing his engagement. Unfortunately, the celebrating was cut short as I'm sure you're aware. He stopped by yesterday to see if we had any new information. I told him of your arrival. He said that he will be home all week and would like to talk to you.” Castiel nodded as Crowley spoke. He needed to talk to Sam. He was the last to see his brother. He was also the one who opened the package. If there was information to be had, it would be from him.

“This isn't a huge place as I'm sure you've noticed. We cannot offer you your own office, but we did clear off a desk for you to work at. The officers have been told not to bother you unless needed. We here at Lawrence PD understand that you are a very busy man. Unless you have other questions Alfie will show you to your space. I'm afraid I have a meeting I must get to. Good day Agent.” Crowley stood and shook Castiel’s hand.

When the door was opened, Alfie stood on the other side as if he had been waiting. Castiel followed him to a desk in the left corner of the room. It had been cleared as he was promised. There was a cup of pens and a file folder on the surface as well as a stapler. That was all. Luckily, it was placed right beside the coffee machine. Score.

Castiel decided to set up his computer and organize his files before visiting Sam. He also needed at least four very large cups of coffee -black- before he'd be able to socialize. He'd been told on many occasions that he was unbearable without coffee in his system. He believed it.

Once everything was set up to his liking he asked Alfie to make a list of officers that he could use to make a bit of a force. It was always good to be prepared. When the officer was done he handed the agent a list with five names on it. He thanked him and tucked the list into his folder. It wasn't needed now, but one could never be sure.

After he consumed his dangerous amounts of caffeine, he felt prepared to brave a grieving family. This was always his least favorite part of the job. He never was good with the families. It wasn't that he didn't sympathize. It was more that he didn't know how to show it. That's why he preferred to stay away from people. In this case, it couldn't be avoided.

He grabbed his folder and headed to his SUV. Luckily, it had been left for him. Thank God for the reaches of the FBI. Once he climbed in he cranked the heat and tossed everything in the passenger seat. Another perk of not having a partner: extra space. He didn't need to consult the file for the family address. He'd long memorized it. In fact, every damn word in that file was imprinted in his mind.

It was a twenty minute ride from the station, made slightly dangerous because of the weather conditions. Castiel had always hated winter. It made his job exceptionally harder. Traveling in snow and -15° weather was not enjoyable. And Kansas was definitely in the full swing of winter. Castiel grumbled under his breath, something along the lines of ‘cold enough to freeze Lucifer himself’.

The drive to the home was over before he knew it. Castiel pulled up behind a sleek black car and cut the engine. There was also a practical Ford Focus sitting beside it. Must be the lawyers, he thought to himself. No matter. He grabbed his file and glanced at it one more time to make sure he wasn't missing anything. He wasn't, but it made him feel better. Like he wasn't walking in blind.

The words had begun to blur together. He wasn't reading it so much as remembering what was printed in size 12 font.

Missing: November 29th

That was what always struck Castiel. Right after the holidays. At least he knew the man was able to enjoy his family one last time, in case he was never found again.

The name of the missing male was something he'd never forget either. Or the picture. He was the young age of 32 -two years younger than the agent himself- with sandy brown hair and a dusting of freckles across his cheekbones. His eyes, a green unlike any Castiel had ever seen, stared right out of the page. A soul-deep kind of stare. One he found himself getting lost in. All in all, he was easily the most gorgeous man Castiel had ever set eyes on. And the name? It was one that Castiel would never forget, not even when he retired thirty years from now. How could he? It rolled right off the tongue.

Castiel ran his index finger over the black lettering, whispering the name as he went.

Dean Winchester.

Chapter Text

Castiel made his way up the five steps leading to the front door. He took a deep calming breath before raising his fist to knock. His knuckles had barely grazed the worn wood when the door was yanked open. Castiel’s eyes widened in surprise.

The man standing in front of him was tall. Very tall. His brown hair was long and shaggy. He was dressed in jeans and a flannel but somehow made it look almost professional -probably his posture- which should have been impossible. Castiel knew this must have been the younger Winchester.

He cleared his throat.

“Sam Winchester?,” a nod. “I'm Agent Novak with the FBI. I'm investigating the disappearance of your brother as well as six others. May I please come in?” Standing on the porch was beginning to show just how far the temperature had dropped.

Sam stepped aside, allowing Castiel to enter. The man had yet to say a word. He walked quietly to a room, one which Castiel assumed was the sitting room. Once they were seated, Sam finally spoke.

“Agent Novak, thank you for this. Getting my brother back is all I can think about.” The man's voice was deep, gruff as though he hadn't used it in a while.

“There is no need to thank me Mr. Winchester, it is my job. And yes, that is all I can think about as well. We are doing everything we can. If it's alright with you, I'd like to ask a few questions.” Sam made no argument so Castiel pushed on.

“On the day of your brother's disappearance, can you tell me what he had been doing? We are still unsure.”

“It was like any other day. It may have been right after the holidays, but Dean owns his own shop. He is usually there from dawn to dusk. He's very dedicated. I always told him he'd never find someone if he didn't look past the underside of a car.” The brother let out a small chuckle as he thought back fondly on those times. “Anyway, he was there most of the day except for lunch. He met with me and my fiancé Jess. There's a bar that is owned by a family friend so we always go there. The Roadhouse is like another home. After that we talked for a bit before he headed back to work. He said he had a car to finish for a customer. He texted a couple hours later saying he was off and headed to the grocery store. He wanted to make homemade burgers to celebrate. He never made it home. Hell, he didn't even make it to the store. The only reason his car is here is because everyone knows it's his and someone called me.”

Sam finally finished and Castiel copied down what he said in his notebook. He hummed thoughtfully as he pondered what to ask next.

“It was the third day that you received the package, yes?” Nod. “Was there anything else delivered or out of place?” Head shake. “Okay, thank you.”

“Agent Novak, do you know why this is happening?” Castiel wished he could answer that. The agony in the man's voice was enough to pull at his heartstrings. He could tell how close the two were, and that was without reading it in the file. Apparently Dean had basically raised his younger brother.

“We are doing everything in our power to find that out Mr. Winchester. I promise we will find your brother. I have one last question if you don't mind. Do you know anyone that might have motive?” He knew this wasn't targeted at just Dean but a list of names was still better than nothing.

“Gordon Walker would be the most likely. He's the town dick. He and Dean went to school together. They never got along. A few months back there was a fight at The Roadhouse involving Gordon. Dean had been there and put a stop to it, and a crack in Gordon’s nose. Gordon has been gunning for Dean since.” Castiel made note of the man and the incident for further investigation. It would likely turn up nothing, but hey, weirder things had happened.

Castiel dug out a business card and handed it to Sam.

“If you can think of anything else, or if something else happens, please call me. Anytime.” Castiel rose and headed for the front door. Sam followed him.

Just as Castiel reached the door, Sam spoke up.

“Agent Novak, our family is worried sick. Please, bring our Dean back.” Castiel simply nodded and headed out to his car.

Thinking of what had just transpired, Castiel knew Sam had nothing to do with the disappearance. He was grief stricken.

That was one less person to worry about.

Dean had other family members but Castiel wanted to wait to speak to them. Once on the open road he looked up the address to The Roadhouse and typed it into the GPS.

If this was where Gordon and Dean fought, then maybe people would know something.

Castiel wasn't surprised when he pulled in. It looked exactly like he'd expected. Not rundown but definitely in need of some maintenance. It was obviously family owned and based on the amount of cars, very popular around lunch time.

That was confirmed when he stepped through the door. There wasn't an empty booth. There were a few tables spread around that were empty and two stools at the bar. Castiel made his way over to the bar. It was usually the bartenders that held the juicy gossip after all.

Behind the counter stood a petite blonde. Her size was the only thing that classified her as such though. Everything from her posture to the gleam in her eye screamed mischief. Her blonde hair was throw into a high pony and a towel hung off of her shoulder. Castiel had barely sat down before she was on him.

“Name's Jo. What can I do you for?” She slid him a small menu and he glanced at it. It was lunch time and he had skipped breakfast. Food couldn't hurt.

He ordered a bacon cheeseburger with tots and a glass of water. While he waited and Jo served other customers, he took out his notebook and went over what Sam had said earlier.

Gordon Walker.

He would have to do a background check of course but he was certain the man had nothing to do with the disappearances. He may have motive to hurt Winchester but what about the other six? Unless he'd used Castiel’s case as a cover but even then, how did he know about the bloody thumbprint? That was never released to the press. No, Walker didn't kidnap Winchester but it was better to cover all your bases.

Thinking back on his file he noted the other family members he'd have to visit. Bobby Singer was listed as his Guardian and had been since he was fifteen. His mother was killed in a house fire at the age of four and his father had drank himself to an early grave when Dean was fourteen. Both brothers spent about three months in a home until Bobby was legally allowed to take the boys in. They'd been with him since.

The only other listed contact was Bobby’s second wife Ellen Harvelle. Ellen had married Bobby a few years after her first husband had passed. According to the files it had been a hunting accident. Ellen had a daughter by the name Joanna Beth. Come to think of it, it was most likely his waitress. Looks like he'd be talking to her today after all.

A plate of food was placed in front of him along with his water. He hadn't realized just how hungry he was until the smell hit his nose. His stomach growled and he smiled sheepishly at the girl. Jo smiled back and walked off without a word. Oh well. He'd talk to her after he ate.

He moaned around the first bite. It was easily the best burger he'd ever had. As he chewed he couldn't help but wonder if Dean had done the same thing. If he had sat here at nights listening to the jukebox or playing darts, living his life to the fullest. It saddened Castiel. Based off the file and the way his brother talked about him, Dean was a good man. Castiel had promised to bring Dean back and he didn't want to let the youngest Winchester down.

After he finished eating Jo came by with his bill and cleared his plate. When she stepped up to the bar again he cleared his throat. She raised a brow and made her way over.

“Can I get ya anything else?” Castiel reached inside his coat and pulled out his badge. After showing it and introducing himself, he watched as her face fell.

“Are you here about Dean?” There was a deep sadness in her voice. It was obvious that she knew the man very well. Castiel wondered just how well and he ignored the knot in his stomach when that occurred to him.

“Yes, ma'am I am. Are you Joanna Harvelle?” After a slight nod she held her finger up, motioning for him to wait a moment. She disappeared behind a door behind the bar for a few minutes. When she returned it was with a woman that was obviously her mother.

Ellen Harvelle was a woman in her fifties. She had a kind face laced with laugh lines but it wasn't hard to imagine her knocking heads either. She just had an air about her that screamed control.

The woman walked up and introduced herself before suggesting that they take this to her office. Someone from the back came to take Jo’s place and they all crowded inside Ellen’s tiny space.

“Agent Novak, you're here about Dean?” There was something resembling hope in her voice. Castiel hoped he could deliver on that.

“Yes, Mrs. Harvelle, I am. I was wondering if I could ask a couple of questions?” Ellen agreed and Castiel rushed ahead.

“I understand that Dean was a regular here. His brother Sam informed me of a fight he had here with one named Gordon Walker. Can you please explain what happened?”

“Gordon is an asshole, plain and simple. He had stopped here after work, he works at a construction company in town, and had himself one too many drinks. Pamela Barnes was here, she owns the tattoo parlor in town, and he wouldn't leave her alone. She can definitely hold her own but Gordon was persistent. When he grabbed her arm Dean jumped in. He asked to take this outside and tried to call a cab for the man. Gordon was having none of it. He took a swing and Dean swung back. After that, Dean called a cab and sent the man home. Since then? I haven't let Gordon back in but he's always gunning after Dean. He can't just let it go. Do you think he had something to do with this?”

The entire time Castiel had been copying the story down. At her question he raised his head. Did he? No, he was almost positive that Walker was innocent, or well innocent in the kidnapping. Based on what others said, the man was horrible, it was unlikely that he was innocent of everything. A background check would clear that up.

“I'm not allowed to release details of my case, but I can tell you that I am fairly certain that Gordon Walker had nothing to do with Dean’s disappearance.” The answer seemed to satisfy Ellen and she nodded.

“I understand that you are married to Bobby Singer, the boys’ guardian. What is their relationship like?”

“Bobby may as well be a father to those boys. After Mary’s death, John wasn't the man he used to be. Dean practically raised his brother. Bobby was always there for them, but when John was still alive there wasn't much he could do. The man had a tendency to pack up Sam and Dean and disappear for a month or two. According to the boys, they always drove around and crashed a motels or in the car. John would pick a town and stay there until whatever job he had picked up dropped him. Then he'd come back here and start all over again. When Dean was fourteen John went on a binder that he didn't make it out of. Both Sam and Dean were placed in state care for a couple of months until Bobby was able to take them in permanently. They've been with us since. Bobby is more of a father to them then John could ever have been. He loves those boys like they're his own, and so do I.” There was a hard edge to her voice like she was daring the agent to question what she had said. He had no reason to. It all matched what was in the file.

“It seems like you've both been very good for Sam and Dean.” He turned his attention to Jo. She had been silent since she sat down. When he took a closer look he noticed how sunken in her face was. It was obvious that she was taking this harder than some. Again, Castiel wondered the nature of their relationship.

“Ms. Harvelle, you are very close to Dean, correct?”

“Yes, of course I am.”

“Do you know what kind of schedule the man may have followed?” Knowing his schedule narrows down where he may have been abducted.

“With Dean?” She scoffed. “That man barely went anywhere. He was always at that shop of his. He took it over from Bobby. It was his pride and joy -other than Sam of course- and he refused to take days off. If he wasn't there he could be found here at the Roadhouse or at Bobby’s. Those two are as close as father and son. I guess that makes sense though. Once a month he would take a drive to the cemetery on the other side of town to visit his mom. Other than that, Dean was almost always at home. He isn't much of a people person, he works to much to have a social life.” That helped Castiel immensely. That means there were few places that the man would have been taken from. Castiel would put his money on Winchester Autos.

“Was there anyone in Dean’s life?” Castiel waited for them to answer. Oddly enough, he found himself hoping the answer was no.

“Not that I know of. The last person Dean was in a relationship with was Lisa Braeden.”

“Do you know where I can find her?” Both women looked pained.

“In the same cemetery as Dean’s mother. She died during childbirth. Her and poor Ben both. It almost killed Dean too. That was four years ago. As far as I know, he hasn't been with anyone else.”

Castiel was shocked. That wasn't in the file. Knowing that Dean had suffered such a terrible loss filled the agent with a feeling he didn't wish to put a name to.

“I apologize. I didn't know.” It was true. He wasn't sure why it hadn't been placed in the file, but that was irrelevant at the moment. Based on the mood in the room, he knew he needed to wrap up. Both women had been through so much, and he wasn't helping.

Castiel stood and shook hands with both women. He gave them a card and asked them to contact him if they could think of anything else. He was at the office door when Ellen spoke up.

“This family has suffered enough loss Agent Novak. Bring our boy back to us.” Castiel promised to do his best and walked out. He had a lot of things to process. He now needed to update his file and put it all into his computer. He also had to contact his boss and let him know what he had found.

By time he had finished all of that it was eight o’clock. It wasn't late by any means but he had a six hour flight that morning and more conversing with the human population than he preferred. He found the town's only motel and got a room for the entire week. He had barely walked through the door when his phone started ringing. Pulling it out of his pocket he noticed the name. He sighed in irritation and answered it.

“Yes, Gabriel?” There was a loud sound on the other end that had Castiel jerking the phone from his ear.

“Heya baby bro. What's crackalacking?” Castiel was always annoyed at his brothers use of language.

“I was getting ready to take a shower Gabriel. What are you calling for?” He could hear a high pitched giggle on the other end of the line, one that sounded suspiciously feminine.

“Come in Cassie! Am I not allowed to call and talk to my bro?” He could practically see the smirk on his brother's face. Gabriel may be the oldest but he was a child.

“Tell me Gabriel, is that a woman I hear? What's her name?”

“Uhm, Trixie. Or was it Tracy? Either way man, she's hot. She even agreed to the cool whip idea!” Castiel groaned. He was not in the mood to listen to his brothers latest sexual tirade.

“Gabriel, must you speak like that?” Gabe simply laughed.

“Look, I had a long day and I have an even longer one ahead of me. I must go Gabriel.”

There was a pout in Gabe’s voice when he spoke.

“Fiiiiine. You're no fun. Go and be a big FBI agent bro.” After a quick goodbye Castiel hurried to the shower. Talking with his brother always wiped his energy. Gabriel had always been eccentric.

He had barely climbed under the covers before he found himself asleep. Emerald green eyes and a spattering of freckles played through his dreams.

Chapter Text

Dean looked down at his phone. He had three unopened texts waiting for him.

>> Roadhouse 1 pm
>> Get out from whatever car you're under and clean up
>> Dammit Dean, you better not be late

All three were from Sam. Dean had completely forgotten about his lunch date with his brother and Jess. He always put his phone on silent when at work so nobody bothered him. He glanced at the clock and cursed.

Fuck.

It was already 12:45. It was a twenty minute drive and he still needed to clean up. He sent a quick text to Sam saying he would be a few minutes late and began stripping off his work clothes. Luckily the overalls came off easily and Dean always wore something underneath them.

He rushed to the Impala and took off down the street. If he was speeding, then no one would be the wiser.

Sam had called Dean two days ago and set this lunch up. Apparently he had something they needed to talk about. That left a sour feeling in the pit of Dean’ stomach. Dean didn't do talk. Not any of importance at least. Sam was the one that always wanted to talk about their past and talk about feelings. Dean did not do chick flick moments.

After twenty minutes on the phone and several reassurances that this wasn't a bad thing, Dean had agreed. He hadn't seen his brother in almost three months. The last time had been when he drove to California to see his brother graduate Law School. He had been so proud. Even thinking about it brought a smile to his face.

Just as he was pulling into an empty parking space his phone beeped.

>> Just hurry, Jerk

Dean laughed. It'd been awhile since he'd been called that.

<< Yeah, yeah Bitch

Dean hadn't been to the Roadhouse in a week. It wasn't that he was avoiding Ellen and Jo, he was just so busy with the shop. People are traveling because of the holidays and there are always cars that needed fixing. At least, that's what he told himself.

It was coming up on four years since he'd lost Lisa and Ben. December 14th would mark the exact date. He always avoided everyone around that time. It wasn't that he didn't appreciate them, it was that they always wanted him to talk about his loss. Make sure he was doing okay.

He was. No, really.

Dean reached down and ran his fingers over his left ring finger. He hadn't worn his wedding ring since the day after the funerals. He wasn't hiding his marriage, everyone in town knew after all, he just couldn't stand to look at it. The silver band reminded him of everything he'd had. Of everything he'd lost.

Sometimes, when he was home alone he could swear that he'd hear Lisa calling his name. Or he'd hear her laugh. If he really focused, he could almost imagine the life they would have had. Watching Ben take his first steps, having family game night with Bobby and Ellen. Growing old together.

His life with Lisa was like a movie. It was beautifully made, but cut too short. He'd never get to see the ending.

Dean was pulled out of his dark thoughts when he heard his name being called. He glanced up and saw Sam towering over everyone with a small blonde under his arm.

Jessica Moore. He'd met her a few times over the years. She was sweet as could be, with a spitfire attitude. Not to mention the fact that she could drink Dean under the table and had done so many times. To say he liked her was an understatement. She was the sister he never really wanted.

“Heya Sammy. Hi Jess.” He pulled Jess in for a tight hug. He'd never say it out loud, but he needed it.

Next was Sam. He didn't hug Dean so much as crush his entire body. Sometimes, it was like he forgot that he was a real life Big Foot.

“Can't… breath,” Sam laughed and let go. They all slid into the booth that the couple had saved. They had barely started to catch up when Jo appeared.

She smiled at Sam and Jess then turned to Dean and hit him in the back of the head with a menu.

“What the fuck, Jo?” He rubbed the back of his head as Sam and Jess just laughed.

“Where the hell have you been? You haven't stopped by in over a week!” She stood with her hands on her hips, the menus lay forgotten on the table. No one was going to order when there was a show going on.

“There are other places to eat Jo. This isn't the only place I go, you know. I also like the diner in town. So shove it.” Jo just rolled her eyes and scoffed.

“Yeah, well you haven't been by the house either. Asshole.” She then turned to Sam and smiled. “It's so good to see you! It's been forever. You too, Jess. We missed you guys this Thanksgiving.” That was true. Sam and Jess had missed the holiday. They always alternated, it just so happened that this was Jess’ year so they went to her mother's. They would spend Christmas at Bobby’s.

“I know. We missed you all, so we decided to take an extra week off and come down here too.” Dean knew there was something more. He could hear it in Sam’s voice. The Talk. He was so not looking forward to that.

The three finally ordered and were left to talk.

“So, Dean,” here it was. God, talking always gave him indigestion.

“Sam, can it wait until we are done eating? Let's just catch up a bit.” Sam agreed, albeit begrudgingly. It wasn't like it was bad news, but oh well.

Sam talked to Dean about a case he was working on. Apparently some hot shot named Dick Roman was being charged with embezzlement. If Sam won this case, it would certainly secure his place at just about any law firm he wanted.

Dean didn't have much to contribute. His life was pretty boring. Work, eat, sleep. That was about it. He got together with his friends Charlie and Benny every Friday at the Roadhouse but other than that, he stayed at home.

“I've got a new customer though. A little old lady; Mrs. Whitehead. She swears that when she drives her car she hears a rattling noise. I'm pretty sure it's just her dentures. The lady is senile. Not to mention the fact that she always touches me. That one day she grabbed my butt! It's ridiculous.” Dean humphed when he noticed Sam and Jess laughing. It wasn't funny. He was starting to feel violated.

“Aw, does someone have a crush on you? Maybe you should ask her out,” this threw Jess into another round of giggles and Dean punched Sam in the arm.

“You're just jealous that I still get all the attention.” Sam threw him a bitch face but didn't say anything else.

It was this moment that Jo brought them their food.

“I still can't believe you come to Ellen’s and order a salad Sammy.” He emphasized his disgust with a huge bite of the meatloaf he had ordered. Sam just glared at him and continued to eat his rabbit food.

“You know Dean, you keep eating like you do and you'll die of a blocked artery before 35.”

“I ain't here for a long time Sammy. I'm here for a good time.”

After Jess told them to stop bickering the rest of the meal was spent in relative quietness. Dean had barely set his fork down when Sam started up again.

“Now that we're all done, I need to tell you something.” Dean motioned for Sam to get along with it. He always drug this shit out.

“Well, uhm… as you know, I've finally graduated from school and I'm working on my first case. I'm moving on in my life. And I want Jess to be a part of it. That's why, her and I have decided to buy a home together.” Sam paused as if waiting for Dean’s reaction. As if it would be anything other than excitement.

“That's amazing Sammy! I'm happy for you guys.” Sam smiled at him and kissed Jess’ forehead.

“There's something else. It's here.” At Dean’s confused look, Sam pushed on. “In Lawrence. All of my family is here Dean. We talked it over and we decided this was the best thing for us. There is a law firm looking for people a couple towns over and there's a preschool that Jess can teach at. It's perfect Dean.” Dean sat there, still in shock. Sammy was coming home. He'd been in California for so long now. But now, Dean would finally have his brother home.

“That's… wow.” Dean didn't know what to say.
“One more thing Dean.” More? Dean wasn't sure he could take anything else.

“Well… uh…” Jess jumped in when Sam seemed unable to form the correct words.

“We're engaged! See how easy that was, Sam? Goodness.” She softened her words with a kiss and Sam melted. You could feel the love that passed between them. It was bittersweet for Dean watch.

“I'm so happy for you guys. Are you sure you wanna tie yourself to Samantha over there, Jess?” His tone was light and playful and Jess playfully smacked his chest.

“Okay, rude.” Dean just laughed at Sam’s comment. His little brother was getting married. He really wasn't a kid anymore.

Dean was happy for the couple. He really was. Watching the way they acted around each other was like watching two high schoolers. They'd been dating since Sam’s first year at Stanford and yet they were still in the “honeymoon” stage of the relationship. Hell, they'd probably always be there. They were perfect for each other.

It choked Dean up a bit. He remembered what that was like. The soft touches and the tender kisses. The days spent in the others loving embrace. When he was with Lisa, it was like he could brave the world. Losing her was like losing himself. He'd given his whole heart to her, and he never really got it back. At least, not whole. It lay shattered, barely a shadow of what it had once been. He had vowed the day of the funerals that he would never do this again. Not just to honor Lisa and Ben, but because he could never feel this kind of heartache again. It would surely kill him.

Dean was glad Sammy didn't have to deal with that. Sam had found his forever and Dean would do whatever it took to make sure it stayed that way.

The three stayed and talked for a little while, but Dean still had a car he had to finish before he could go home. He left the Roadhouse promising to make a special dinner in celebration.

He had a smile on his face the entire drive back to his shop.

******

<< I just finished, headed to the store now. C u soon.

Without waiting for a reply from Sam, Dean shoved his phone in his pocket and started his Baby.

The car was his pride and joy.

A sleek, black ‘67 Chevy Impala that he'd been given after his father died. Since he was only 14, Bobby had kept it in the garage and made sure it stayed in pristine condition. Thank god for that old man.

He listened as the engine roared when he stomped the gas. With the windows down, and ‘Simple Man’ blaring, Dean made his way to the grocery store in town.

With his brothers -and soon to be sisters- announcement, he had decided to make his special burgers. If there was one thing Dean could do, it was cook. He'd had to learn, raising a growing kid by himself. Boxed macaroni and pizza wouldn't cut it.

The crisp air that came through the window was refreshing. Dean needed something to unclog his mind. Ever since lunch he'd been feeling a little down. His mind kept traveling through time, reaching years back to when he was happiest.

It was always great to remember the happy times, he'd just been remembering too much lately.

Dean was on the last stretch of highway before hitting in town when he noticed a car pulled over on the shoulder. A woman, dressed in all black with bright red hair and burgundy lips, stood at the front of the vehicle with the hood up.

Dean wasn't usually one to stop -the world wasn't exactly safe- but it was getting cold out and the woman appeared to be alone.

Dean pulled off to the side of the road and hopped out. He made his way over to the woman and introduces himself. She took his hand and he noted the blood red nails that came to a point.

“I'm Dean, can I take a look?” He made his way to the front of the car without waiting for an answer.

“The name's Abby. And please do.” Her voice was rich and deep for a woman. It put Dean on edge.

After a quick glance he knew what was wrong.

“Well Abby, you seem to have overheated. You're low on water, luckily though, I always keep a jug of it in my trunk.” Dean fished his keys out of his pocket and made his way to the Impala.

With his head buried in his trunk, he heard a car door open and close. Abby must have gotten something from the car. He heard footsteps headed his way and decided to make conversation.

“Sorry, my trunk is a bit of a mess so it always take me a few minutes to find what I need.” He let out a small chuckle that disappeared when he heard the voice that responded.

“Take your time, Dean Winchester.” The voice that delivered the sentence was slimy. That was the only word to describe it. It also belonged to a male, which Abby was definitely not.

Dean shut his trunk and looked to his left.

There stood two men. The one that had spoken was standing much closer than Dean liked. His face held a look of… hunger? Yeah, that's what Dean would say it looked like.

Dean tried to make his way to the driver side door but the man stepped in his way. All of Dean's attention was on the man in front of him, which probably wasn't a smart move. The other man, the silent one, walked up behind him. A crunch on gravel alerted Dean to his presence and he whipped around.

It wasn't fast enough.

The man, which had the weirdest eyes, tackled Dean to the ground. Dean tried to struggle and break free but two on one wasn't exactly ideal.

It wasn't long before the men had him pinned. Yellow Eyes -that's what Dean would call him- wrapped his hands around Deans throat and squeezed. He was quickly losing consciousness.

The last thing he remembered were yellow eyes and an oleaginous snicker.

Chapter Text

Pain.

That was all Dean knew. There was a throbbing in his head, and his throat felt as though he'd lived a diet of glass shards and whiskey.

God, what happened?

Did he get drunk with Sam last night? He knew this would happen. Dammit.

There was a rustling sound that came to his attention. He gingerly sat up, rubbing the back of his head. He had no clue what happened last night. He remembered having lunch and finishing the last car at the shop, but that was it. He was trying to remember but that sound kept snagging his attention.

That's when he looked around.

He wasn't home.

He was in a room -if that's what you wanted to call it- with three solid brick walls and one barred, like a jail cell. What the fuck happened last night? Did he really get arrested? No, that didn't make sense.

He got up and walked to the metal door. Looking around, he could feel his blood chill. He wasn't in jail. With what little light there was, he could just make out nine other cells just like his, five on each side. The walkway between them was packed with dirt, and the place smelled like vomit and mold.

There. That sound again. It was to his left. There was a small whimpering that accompanied the rustling, like someone was moving while in pain. Dean called out and waited for a response. There wasn't one. Dean decided to turn his attention elsewhere.

Across from his cell sat another one.

Sitting in the corner was a large mound. With the minimal lighting it was hard to tell, but it looked human. Dean thought about calling out but immediately rejected the idea. He somehow knew it'd be bad to draw attention to himself.

There was a loud banging sound that had him whipping his head around. The corridor filled with a blinding light as a large door was thrown open. After becoming accustomed to the dim lighting, Dean found himself momentarily blinded. After rapidly blinking, his vision finally came into focus. Though, he kind of wish it hadn't.

Standing just inside the door was a woman. She was dressed in all black leather from the pants to the biker jacket on her shoulders. He bright red hair was loose and wild, reaching to the middle of her back, and her eyes rested behind black sunglasses. Her lips were blood red, as were her nails which were sharpened to a point. Everything about this woman screamed danger. It was in the way she stared and the way she walked.

She was evil personified.

She stalked forward, her eyes searching each cage. She looked at the men as one might find a cat looking at a mouse. Like they were her prey. And in a way, they were. She held all the cards.

She stopped in front of Dean’s cell and her face split into a smirk. She walked forward until her body was all but pressed against the cool metal. She reeked of perfume that smelled strongly of vanilla. It was enough to make Dean gag.

“Well well well, it appears our newest member has woken. Such a pretty thing, aren't you?” She reached her hand through the bar and gripped Dean’s chin. He tried to pull away, disgusted by the contact, but she dug her nails -claws- into his skin. He gasped at the pain and felt a warm trickle down his neck.

The woman let out a delighted chuckle and caught the red droplet on the tip of her index finger. She brought it to her mouth and hummed in pleasure.

“You're delicious. Absolutely magnificent, pet.” Dean let out a growl. The woman simply laughed and tossed her hair over her shoulder. Her laugh sent shivers down Dean’s spine. Everything about this woman was… off.

“You know, when I suggested you, Alastair jumped on board. I think he has a thing for you, deary. Now, Azazel on the other hand wasn't too pleased. You match the age criteria but that's about it. He thought you'd be too hard of a catch. I of course got my way, but it took a bit of convincing. I feel it may pay off though. Your background? It's rich with pain and sadness. I find that's always the best motivator.” She sighed happily, completely unaware of the thoughts running through Dean’s mind.

How did she know about his past? Had she been following him? What did she want him for? And based off of what she said, he obviously wasn't her first victim, just how many others were there? Were all ten cells full? Did she intend on capturing more?

All of these thoughts raced through Dean’s mind and he felt his panic spike. He wouldn't let it show though. Weakness would not be tolerated, how he knew this, he wasn't sure. He refused to play into her little game though. He would fight back until he escaped or was found dead. There was no other way.

He could feel the woman's eyes trace his face and body behind her sunglasses and he let his lips curl into a cocky smile.

He let out a rough chuckle.

“Sorry hun, you're not really my type. I tend to stay away from the psychotic bitches. Not my thing, but I'm sure your henchmen would love to play so why don't you run along now.” He had barely finished when he felt more than heard the growl that came from her throat.

“You listen here pet, I own you. You are mine.” She spit the words out. She wrapped her hands around the metal bars and leaned in close. Her breathe was sickly sweet and the stench lodged its way into Dean’s sinuses. That was a smell he'd never forget.

“Don't test me, child. I have plans for you Dean. You'll be my greatest creation yet. You may think you won't break, but you will. And that, hun, will be the best part. I will push you until your very spirit is broken, I will dig my claws into your soul and watch as you become a twisted version of yourself. Be careful Dean. What I can do to you will have you begging for death. And that would be quite fitting.” She threw her head back and laughed. Dean ground his molars together to keep from reaching through the bars to wrap his fingers around that pretty little neck of hers.

As if she heard his thoughts, she stepped back and blew a kiss. The redhead walked towards the open door and looked back one last time.

“Welcome to Hell Dean.”

*****

Dean sat on the cot in his cell and tried to think. Over the hours a migraine had formed and seemed to be staying for a while. Fucking great. At least he had managed to remember everything. Seeing that woman's face was enough to open the flood gate. The memories had poured through and he barely had time to process them.

He remembered pulling over to help her and hearing the car door open. He remembered the two men, Yellow Eyes and the guy with the voice coated in sludge, and how they attacked him. Then blackness.

He should be upset that he'd been bested but he chalked it up to being outnumbered and caught off guard. He may be in a kidnapping scenario right now, but his ego really couldn't take any more hits, give a man a break.

He didn't have a way of keeping time but he'd say it had been close to six hours since he had woken. As much as he hated to admit it, he needed food. Who knows exactly how long he'd been out and he needed to build all of his strength if he wanted to find a way out of this hell hole.

Speaking of hell…

What the fuck had that woman -Abby, if that was her real name- meant when she said ‘Welcome to Hell’. He knew she didn't mean the real hell. Obviously. That would mean he was dead. And he wasn't. Plus, he didn't really believe in heaven and hell. No proof, so no reason to.

She had to have meant it figuratively. Hopefully.

Dean was lost in thought when the door opened again. Right away he knew it wasn't the woman. It was a man his height maybe a little shorter. As he got closer, he knew who it was. Yellow Eyes. He wasn't sure if it was Alastair or Azazel, so he'd continue to call him by his nickname.

Seriously though? Yellow eyes? Those had to be contacts. That just wasn't possible, and it was creepy as fuck.

Dean noticed the man was carrying a large tray. He stopped at every cell on the right side of the walkway. He was at the cell right next to Dean when Dean realized what was on the tray.

Plastic containers.

There was only one left. That meant there were six others in this place with him.

Dean made a silent vow right then. He was going to get them all out. He wasn't sure how, but he would.

Yellow Eyes stopped in front of his cell and stared. There was no emotion on his face. It was odd. His eyes, while a strange color, were flat. It was like the man was immune to feeling anything at all. Looking back, when Dean had been attacked, the man's face was oddly blank.

A sliver of fear worked its way down Dean’s spine.

There was a rattling of keys as Yellow Eyes opened his cell. Dean paid close attention. These were obviously hand made cell doors. As odd as it looked, they had regular door handles. When the cell door swung open, he was able to get a look at the lock. It was the same as any other door. Maybe he could work with that.

The man stalked forward but Dean refused to move away.

He looked Dean up and down and scoffed.

“Abaddon wants you. I don't know why, but she thinks you'll be a great new addition. Just know right now boy, that I think you're a waste. You'll break, that I'm sure of, but she won't remake you. I don't want you here, we don't need you. Until I can convince Abaddon of that though, I'm stuck taking care of you. I suggest you don't try anything.” Ah, well the obvious hatred would make this Azazel. Dean smiled.

“You don't like me? Well, I think I'm pretty great.” There was a flash of something in the man's eyes, the first sign of emotion Dean had seen. Unfortunately, it didn't bode well.

Azazel calmly placed the tray on the edge of Dean’s cot and stopped for a second. Faster than should have been humanly possible, he grabbed Dean by the collar and slammer him against one of the brick walls.

“Listen here you little cocksucker, I call the fucking shots. What I say, you do. Don't you ever talk back to me. I'll send your ass straight to The Chambers. That's where Alastair does his dirty work. He may be a slimy dirtbag but he can work a knife. I suggest you stop acting like a snarky jackass before you find out just what kind of artist that man is.” He let go of Dean’s collar and Dean dragged in a breath.

Azazel walked over and grabbed the tray, leaving the container on the cot. He turned and walked out of the cell, locking the door as he went. He didn't glance back as he strode towards the exit.

Dean watched him until the last sliver of light disappeared with the closing door. Only then did he make his way to the plastic container.

Inside sat the most beautiful thing he'd seen in forever.

There was a plain burger wrapped in tin foil, an apple cut into slices as well as a bottle of water.

Dean thought about leaving the food. How did he know it wasn't poisoned or something? But he eventually decided it was in his best interest to eat it. He needed all the strength he could get. And if it was poisoned? Well…

Dean took a bite and practically moaned. He felt better the moment the food hit his empty stomach. He had eaten half of the burger before he managed to stop long enough to drink the water.

When he was finally done, he went to throw everything into the small trashcan beside his cot and then thought better of it. He took out the tin foil and ripped off a large chunk. He had an idea, he just wasn't sure it would work.

But it was the only one he had.

*****

The next few days played out the same way. Abaddon came to his cell every day to taunt him. That was usually in the mornings. Azazel came by every evening with food. Thankfully, after that first day, he and Dean hadn't had an incident. Dean played nice. He had to.

It was the fifth day when Dean was let out of his cell. Azazel came by with dinner for the night but he only had six plastic containers on his tray. When he reached Dean, he undid the locks and opened the door.

He walked inside and grabbed Dean by his upper arm before speaking.

“Abaddon wants you to see something. I suggest you behave or it's The Chambers for you.” Dean decided to go along quietly. He need to know the layout of this place. To say he was surprised would be an understatement.

Dean had imagined a large industrial building remodeled to fit their “accommodations”. That was not the case.

He was led to the door, Azazel still holding on to his upper arm. As soon as Dean stepped through the door, he knew he had been wrong.

He was outside.

Wide open field to be more correct. Turning around he saw the building that had been his home for the better part of a week.

It was a medium sized brick building. That was it. There were no windows, and only one door.

It had been specifically built for this.

Looking around Dean noted the empty field around him. It seemed to be located on a farm, one that was slightly overgrown. The weeds easily reached his knees.

It'd be hard to run through.

Across the field were a couple of buildings. One was a house. It looked aged but it was obvious someone had done some work on it. After a five minute walk, Dean was finally close enough to make out the details.

The house was older, the white paint peeling in some areas. It was two stories not counting the attic, and had a balcony wrapping around the top floor. The roof was held up with large pillars and the front had a smattering of windows. The door which was painted bright red, looked to be made of solid wood -oak, most likely- with a large stained glass window. It looked like something you'd find in a church.

All in all, the house was gorgeous. Unfortunately, it wasn't the only building. This many buildings most likely meant more people.

There was a large maids house located directly behind the huge home. Dean had a feeling it didn't house maids. To the left of that was a shed. Painted on the door was a symbol, one Dean wasn't familiar with. It was done in black paint. Dean might not have known what it was, but he knew it wasn't good.

The Chambers.

That must be where Alastair does his work.

Thankfully that wasn't where Azazel was leading Dean. No, Dean was led up the steps of the large home. The closer he got to the door, the larger he realized it actually was. It was slightly intimidating.

Dean was led inside before the door was shut and locked behind him. Azazel grabbed his arm again and walked him through what seemed to be a parlor. There was a staircase directly in front of him that curved into a spiral before leading upstairs. Azazel dragged Dean up them. Once at the top Dean looked around. There was three doors to the left and two to the right. Dean was led to the farthest door on the right. Azazel opened the door and shoved him in. He didn't follow. There was a click signaling the lock being activated.

At first, Dean thought he was alone but then he heard someone clear their throat.

Sitting in a large chair behind a desk was Abaddon. He was really beginning to hate this woman.

“Isn't once a day bad enough, Abaddon?” Her eyes widened. She was not happy when she learned that Dean knew her real name.

“Ah, Dean. Always a pleasure with you, isn't it? Please, sit.” She pointed to a one of the two identical chairs placed in front of the desk. Dean sat down gingerly. He still wasn't sure what was happening.

“I have a proposition for you Dean. One I think is in your best interest to consider.” She let that hang in the air before continuing. “As you know, you are not the only man I have Dean. You were not my first, nor will you be my last.”

The fuck if I'm not, Dean thought to himself. He wasn't letting this happen anymore. Not to anyone else.

“What I do isn't meant to harm you Dean. I'm simply recruiting. You see, it's business. Plain and simple. You fit the criteria, so I took you. Well, you fit my personal criteria anyway.” She stood then, a lewd smile etched onto her terribly beautiful face, and walked towards Dean. She wrapped her arms around Dean’s neck and he held perfectly still. He needed to be calm. He couldn't show any emotion.

“You see Dean, I'm what you would call a Knight of Hell. And before you ask a stupid question, no I do not mean actual hell. Hell, which is what we call ourselves, is a group or more accurately, a cult. And I recruit people. All men of course. I don't want a bunch of women running around my place. Women tend to play with what's mine.” She chose then to sit on Dean’s lap.

He froze.

Dean could see her lean forward and jerked back when her tongue ran up the length of his neck, before she bit his earlobe. Dean gasped. Not in pleasure, but in pain. He had never noticed but it appeared that Abaddon sharpened her canines.

Abaddon chuckled and ground down on Dean, let out a breathy moan. It apparently didn't matter that Dean was clearly not interested.

Abaddon always took what she wanted.

“So, you see Dean, I want you to join. Just imagine it. With you at my side, we could rule Hell. Me, a Knight and you, my slave. We'd paint a pretty picture, wouldn't we?” She cackled and before Dean could stop her, she slammed their mouths together, shoving her tongue down Dean’s mouth.

He didn't think. He acted.

Dean bit down. Almost immediately he tasted blood and Abaddon screamed. He saw her rear back and watched as her palm connected with his cheek. There was a blossom of fresh blood and he gagged.

Just then the door swung open and Azazel stormed through. He took one look at the situation and charged. He slammed into Dean and they both crashed to the floor. After a few good punches to his face, Dean stopped fighting. He knew he needed to preserve his energy. He had a funny feeling he'd be seeing Alastair tonight.

He could hear Abaddon spewing hateful commentary but get tuned her out. He didn't really care.

It wasn't until he was hauled off the floor that he finally turned his attention to her.

Blood coated her chin and dripped down to her chest. Despite the obvious pain she was in, she turned her head and looked him directly in the eyes. Her face split wide in a grin. Her teeth were stained red. Dean felt his eyes widen and she laughed.

Abaddon looked over at Azazel and muttered a single word. A name. One that sent chills down Dean’s back.

“Alastair.”

*****

“Well well well, look what the cat dragged in.” Alastair sat behind a desk in the large shed. If it wasn't so horrible, Dean would laugh. If this were any other moment, it would look like Alastair simply worked a desk job. But Dean knew differently. This place was sinister. Pure evil happened here.

There was a surgical table placed in the middle of the room with leather straps dangling off the sides. Next to that table was a tray full of equipment. Upon closer inspection, Dean could see everything from a drill to an ice pick. There were also several, very sharp and very lethal, looking knives gleaming under the light.

Dean gulped.

One wall of the shed was covered in what looked like an odd tapestry. It wasn't until he got closer that he realized what it actually was.

The wall was covered in human flesh. It looked like it had all been cut off the bone and sewn together. Some of the skin had taken on a leathery look, most likely from age. Others though, appeared fresher. As though they'd been taken recently. In fact, the farthest ones still had blood caked onto the torn edges.

Dean was going to be sick.

Alastair caught the man looking and sighed happily.

“I see you've noticed my wall. Beautiful, isn't it? Each piece of flesh holds its own story. What will yours say, Dean?”

Before Dean could respond -or throw up- Azazel and Alastair wrestled him onto the table and strapped him down.

Azazel leaned down and whispered in his ear.

“Have fun, Dean.” That was it. Then he turned and left, leaving Dean with a leering Alastair.

“What shall we do first, hmm? I think it's only fair you decide. After all, you are my canvas, my beautifully made canvas.” His words left an empty feeling in Dean’s stomach and he almost screamed when he felt Alastair run his hands over his body. There was a look in Alastair’s eyes, one that looked like… want.

Dean thought back on Abaddon’s words from her first visit. According to her, Alastair had a thing for Dean. Oh God, this wasn't good.

Alastair looked at his tray of tools, a small smile on his face. He picked up a small, but very sharp knife. He inched towards Dean and Dean couldn't hold still anymore. He bucked, trying to escape his restraints. It was pointless. He wasn't going anywhere.

Without really knowing what was happening, he watched as Alastair brought the knife to his body. He squeezed his eyes shut and prepared for blinding pain.

It didn't come. All he felt was a breeze.

Looking down he realized the man above him and cut his shirt and exposed his chest. As if watching in slow motion, he saw Alastair lean down and place his lips on his chest.

Dean shuddered. He slammed his eyes closed when Alastair ran his tongue down his chest stopping at the hem of his jeans.

There was a moan of pleasure to the left of him and Dean gagged.

“I know the perfect thing to add to the wall, Dean! Why didn't you mention this earlier?” Dean looked over. Alastair was teaching Dean’s tattoos with the tip of the knife. It was the one he got the day Sam turned 18. His brother had wanted to get matching tattoos and who was he to say no to those puppy dog eyes. So he sat for two hours as the tattooist repeatedly stabbed him in the chest with his needle -he was still a little salty, sue him- but it made Sam happy so he didn't complain.

Dean made a sound of protest, his voice laced with fear. Fuck! Alastair just laughed and pushed down on the knife.

Dean felt a blinding pain and screamed. This just seemed to fuel Alastair.

It seemed like an eternity before Alastair put the knife down. Unable to stop himself, Dean looked down.

His chest was covered in blood and his tattoo was gone. He looked over and saw the man sewing Dean’s flesh to match the others. He tried to think through the pain but found himself floating. He couldn't concentrate on anything except for the rushing in his ears. Was that his blood? He wasn't sure how he was still alive. How can a human body endure that kind of pain and not shut down? Why didn't he black out?

He begged whatever God’s he could to just let him black out but it was no use. His brain refused to shut down.

He heard Alastair put down his sewing kit and make his way back to Dean. He leaned down and snaked his tongue over Dean’s left nipple, lapping at the blood that had pooled. Alastair cocked his head, his lips adorned with a wicked smile. He leaped forward and plunged his tongue down Dean’s throat. Unlike last time, Dean wasn't able to bite down in time. He was left with the taste of bile and blood.

This time, he did puke.

He lay helpless as Alastair picked up a carving knife.

Blinding pain. That's all he knew. Finally, it all grew to be too much.

The last thing he saw before blackness was Alastair grinning wickedly, his knife moving in graceful arcs.

*****

Dean came too and tried to move. It wasn't possible. Not only was he still strapped to the table, but the slightest movement caused a pain great enough to almost cause him to lose consciousness again.

Dean laid on his back and took a few shallow breaths. That's when he heard talking. He turned his head to the left and saw Yellow Eyes arguing with Alastair. Whatever the argument was about, Dean would never know. They were too quiet for him to make out any words.

His head hitting the table again is what alerted the men to his awoken state. They both stopped talking and made their way to the table. Without a word, Azazel started undoing the straps that held Dean's limbs down.

Dean was aware of Alastair talking but couldn't find it in him to listen. As he was dragged off the table into a standing position, Alastair leaned forward, his breath hot on the shell of Dean's ear.

“You're mine now, Dean.” His hot tongue snaked out to lick at the sweat beading on Dean’s neck and Dean jerked away. Thankfully, Azazel chose that moment to drag him out of the shed.

The men were absolutely silent as they made their way back to the brick building. Azazel was gripping Dean’s upper arm just as before and led him towards his waiting cell.

Dean was weak. He was having a hard time walking straight and the chill of the night air was weighing down on his bones. A walk that should have only taken five minutes felt like an eternity. Finally, they reached the building and Dean had never been happier to see the inside of that brick building. He was safe here. Here, he could stay warm. He could sleep.

No!

Dean stopped those thoughts. He was not giving up. He would not be the perfect little pet.

Thankfully, Dean had come up with a plan earlier that day and he was hoping to put it into action tonight. Slowly, so the other man wouldn't see, Dean felt around in his pocket for the ball of tinfoil he had placed there earlier in the day.

They had just reached his cell when he found it and retracted it from his pocket. Azazel shoved him in his cell, just as there was a noise from one of the other cells. This drew his attention away for a few split seconds. It was enough. Dean hurried and shoved the chunk of tinfoil into the jam where the lock would click. He jumped back before Azazel turned his attention back towards him.

The man slammed his cell door closed and walked out of the building, plunging them all into almost complete darkness. Dean watched as the naked light shook from where it hung.

Since Azazel had slammed the door, Dean wasn't sure if it had clicked or not. He was praying to the angels that it didn't. It was the only plan he had.

Dean refrained from running to see. He needed to wait, he had to time this perfectly. If he waited long enough, Azazel would be back at the main house and far enough away that Dean could make an escape.

As much as it pained him, Dean knew he would be leaving alone tonight. As much as he wished he could take all of the other men, he knew he couldn't. He had no way to open their cells, and that many people would be noticed running across a field. No, he would leave. But he'd be back with help. He wasn't going to abandon these men.

After waiting a good twenty minutes, Dean got off his bed and made his way to the door. Every step was laced with pain but he ignored it. He had to do this. He had family he had to get home to. The others had families they needed to see. Nothing was going to stop him.

Holding his breath, he reached for the handle. Sending up a silent prayer, he turned the knob.

Click.

It worked!

A breathy chuckle escaped Dean and a tear slipped down his cheek. He really didn't think it would. Yet, here he is. Practically a free man. He opened his door all the way and waited for sirens and flashing lights.

He had checked the place out and hadn't seen any cameras, but he was still cautious. He didn't need anyone in the house finding out he had escaped anytime soon.

He made his way to the only door but paused before opening it.

He turned around. He cleared his throat and spoke loud enough for everyone to hear.

“My name is Dean Winchester. I will be back for all of you. I promise, just hold on a little longer.”

Dean wrenched the door open and shuddered as the cold air hit his skin. He was still shirtless but had gauze wrapped around his chest and stomach. He was morbidly curious but he refused to look. He couldn't afford to be sidetracked.

He looked out to make sure it was all clear and took off when he saw no obstacles. He was moving slower than he liked but it was the best he could do in his shape.

After all of this running, when he got home he was going to take Sammy up on his rabbit food offer.

Dean was almost in the clear when he heard a ruckus. Almost too scared to look back, Dean could hear shouting. Glancing back, Dean could feel the blood in his veins freeze.

He'd been figured out. It wasn't even Azazel that found him. It was some man that Dean had never seen. Oddly enough, the man was dressed in black robes. Oh well, Dean didn't have enough time to ponder. The man was yelling and people were responding.

Men -all dressed in the same black robes- poured out of what Dean called the maids home. There were at least ten of them heading his way. To make matters worse, all of the screaming had brought his three captors outside. One look, and Azazel took off. Abaddon stayed on the porch and Alastair ran to his shed.

Dean picked up his pace. He just needed to make it to the woods. Then he'd be home free. The voices behind him were getting louder, which meant they were getting closer.

Fuck!

Dean sprinted across the field, his feet trying to tangle in the weeds. He tried to keep it from happening but there was no avoiding it. Dean's right foot tangled and he crashed to the ground. He let out a grunt of pain as his chest absorbed most of the contact. The pain was immense but a rush of adrenaline helped dull it for now. He tried to jump to his feet but someone landed on top of him. He looked behind him and saw Alastair leaning over him.
Dean tried to headbutt the man, but Alastair grabbed his shoulder and jerked, rolling Dean onto his back. Alastair leaned over him with a knife. There was a wild glint in his eye, one that sent a feeling of dread through Dean.

It was over. He was going to die.

Alastair let go of his arm and raised the knife, ready to plunge. Dean cocked his arm around and punch the man above him as hard as he could. There was a crunch of bone as blood gushed from his broken nose. It was enough to catch the man off guard and Dean reached for the knife. He wrestled it out of the man's grip and plunged it into the meat of his left shoulder. Alastair let out a howl of pain and Dean shoved him off.

Dean leapt up and took off running without turning around again. It was a good twenty minutes before he finally slowed down.

He'd done it. He actually escaped. Dean leaned against the tree closest to him for a breather. When he glanced down at himself, it was in shock.

He was covered in crimson and the stench of blood hung heavy in the air. He gagged. Luckily, most of the blood wasn't his. It appeared to be Alastair’s. Dean wasn't sure if that was better or not. It made him feel filthy.

Contaminated.

Dean threw his head back and stared at the sky. The moon was hanging proud and thankfully lit his path. The woods he was in were unfamiliar to him, and he could only hope he didn't get lost. He would surely die if he did.

The temperature was steadily dropping and he could feel it to his core. When he noticed his teeth chattering he started walking again. Anything to keep his blood flowing.

It felt like forever before he finally stumbled on what appeared to be a road. He almost wept with joy.

A road meant civilization, which meant freedom. It meant help.

Dean picked a random direction and started off. Based on the stars, he was headed north. He only hoped he reached a town before hypothermia set in. He already couldn't feel his toes. It wouldn't be much longer, especially in his weakened state.

And still, he moved forward. He had thoughts of home on his mind. He pictured the happiness on Sam’s face when it was announced that he was engaged. He imagined himself behind the wheel of Baby, cruising down the back roads with his favorite song blaring through the speakers. He brought up a picture of Lisa’s face and imagined himself walking through his front door and into her loving arms. He could feel the kisses she would place on his lips. He could smell the perfume she always wore -lilac- and see the small smile that would play on her lips as he picked her up and carried her up the stairs.

He could feel the love. He could hear her moan his name. He could feel himself letting go.

She was the only person he could do that around. He could be exactly who he was and she didn't care. She didn't care that he came from a broken home, or that he found comfort at the bottom of a bottle when his days darkened.

She had loved him for who he was, not who society wanted him to be.

And God, he had loved her. He had loved her since the first pep rally at the high school. He had loved her when they stole kisses behind the track building. He had loved her when he brought her home to meet Sam and Bobby. He had loved her when she asked him to move in with her. He had loved her when he'd proposed that starry September night. But he had never loved her more than the morning he'd found out she was pregnant.

She'd been worried that he wouldn't want it. But God was she wrong. He had cried that day. Tears of joy poured from him and he wasn't embarrassed in the slightest. He had simply picked her up and carried her to their room.

It was eight and a half months later when she went into labor. They had rushed to the hospital at four in the morning. By nine that morning he had lost his wife and his son. Not only that, he'd lost himself. And he had yet to find that. He wasn't sure he ever would. Hell, he didn't even know if he wanted to.

Dean was dragged from his thoughts when a strong gust of wind ripped through his body. His half clothed body wouldn't last much longer. He didn't have any strength left and he was tired. He was so tired. He wanted nothing more than to lay down and close his eyes.

He stumbled over a crack in the pavement and hit the ground, knees first. He tried to push himself back up, but his arms crumbled beneath him. His eyes fluttered shut, and he slipped into blackness for the second time that day.

Chapter Text

“I'm looking for your John Doe.” Castiel pulled out his badge and showed the nurse. She barely looked up from her computer before muttering a string of numbers. Castiel thanked her and went off to find room 653-B.

The agent had received a phone call around eleven that morning stating a hospital in Missouri had brought in a John Doe matching the description of Dean Winchester. Castiel hadn't told Dean’s family. He really didn't want to get their hopes up in case it wasn't him.

They didn't deserve that kind of heartbreak.

After a few wrong turns and help from a doctor, Castiel finally found John Doe’s room. He stood outside and braced himself. This could be it. After staring at a picture for a week, he could be seeing the green eyed beauty face to face. That face hadn't left his dreams.

He imagined what it would be like to kiss the man's soft, plump lips. He imagined what it'd be like to have the man's arms around him.

Castiel knew it was wrong. The man was a widow for fucks sake. A straight one at that. But, the heart wanted what the heart wanted. And his? It wanted the small town mechanic.

After a deep breath, Castiel slipped inside the doorway.
Machines. That's what caught his attention first. They were huddled around the bed, forming what could be seen as a protective circle. There were so many tubes. They ran from every machine and were placed on every part of the body on the bed.

The body. The broken and beaten body.

Castiel inched forward, determined to find out if this was his Dean.

The closer he got, the more he panicked. He wanted this to be Dean. He wanted Dean to be alive and well, away from the hands of his captors. But seeing what this body had been put through almost made him wish it wasn't Dean.

There was gauze wrapped around his chest and his stomach, but there was the faintest tint of red on the wrappings covering his abdomen. His face was covered in different shades of blue and black, and there were stitches over his right eye.

That was all Castiel could see without lifting the blanket, which he had no intention of doing. It was hard to make out any revealing features. The face was bruised and swollen, and his identifying tattoo was covered by the gauze.

He needed to call Sam.

After a brief phone call and hysterics from Sam’s end, he promised that he and his fiancé would be there as soon as possible.

Glancing at his watch, Castiel knew it would be at least two hours. With nothing better to do, he took a seat by the man’s bedside. He may not have known it was Dean, but something in him was calling to the man. It had to be him, it just had to.

It was like every fiber of Cas’ being was calling out to the man lying in the bed. It wasn't about physical need, it was deeper than that; an emotional connection. Which made no sense. The two men had never met, never spoken, never even heard of each other. Yet, there Castiel sat, begging for the man to wake up. He needed him to wake up.

Castiel was right. About two hours later an out of breath Sam rushed through the door dragging Jess behind him.

The giant of a man had barely made it two steps into the room when he burst into tears. Sobs racked his huge frame and he seemed to crumble before Castiel’s eyes.

That was all the information Castiel needed. This was the missing mechanic. This was Dean. His Dean.

Shortly after, the doctor came to offer an update on Dean. Apparently, whoever had kidnapped him did quite the number. They had had to do emergency surgery for some internal bleeding and he had deep lacerations surrounding his abdomen and chest. The doctor told them it had been touch and go for a while but Dean had miraculously pulled through.

It wasn't a miracle, Castiel thought to himself. Dean was just that strong. Nothing would stop him from getting back to his loved ones. That was just the kind of man he was.

After alerting his boss that they had in fact found Dean, Castiel decided it'd be better if he left. Dean needed his family, not an FBI agent who was supposed to interrogate him.

After a quick farewell, Castiel made his way back to his vehicle. He knew leaving was the right decision, but his mind and heart were at war. His mind told him to go back to his hotel room and work on the case.

Unfortunately, his heart told him to turn around and stay by Dean’s side until the man was better.
He stood at his car door, the keys abandoned in the process of unlocking the thing. Castiel craned his neck until he was able to make out the window that was located in Dean’s room. He could see Sam standing there, Jess curled in his arms. Both simply stared out the window, blank expressions etching sorrow into Castiel’s very being.

He couldn't go back. It wouldn't be right.

Castiel looked down at the keys still in the door and let out a deep breath. A second later and the agent was peeling out of the parking lot, leaving his heart in room 653-B.

*****

Abbadon paced the worn down wooden flooring for the hundredth time. This was not good. Dean Winchester had escaped. This could easily ruin everything. They were too far now to just quit, but now, every move they made would be a risk that it wasn't before. Who knew exactly what Dean would remember, what exactly he would tell the police. This could easily lead to the downfall of Hell.

Fuck.

Abbadon reached for the closest thing - a metal paper weight- and hurled it across the room. She stared in satisfaction as it connected with the glass case in the corner and the shards clattered to the floor.

Destruction always was a favorite of hers.

Abbadon walked over and picked up one of the shards. She slid it across her wrist and watched the blood as it ran down her forearm in rivulets.

A smile split her blood red lips and she licked her wrist.

She had an idea. Dean would be hers, one way or another.

She walked to the desk and picked up her phone. One quick phone call later and there was a knock on her door. She couldn't help but smirk when she opened the door.

“Hello Alastair.”

*****

Dean was painfully aware of the bright lights. His eyes were closed yet he could still see the stars dancing across his eyelids. He hated that bright lights did that.

It always gave him a headache.

Dean figured he fell asleep with his bedroom light on again. He did that quite often. Sometimes, he was so exhausted that he didn't even manage to change before passing out on his bed, light on and clothes intact. It was a bad habit.

He tried to open his eyes and sit up, if only to reach the light switch. The minute he lifted his torso, a blinding pain lit the nerves in his body. Every inch of his screamed in agony and he was on the verge of passing out. He took a few deep breaths and leaned back.

Okay, so getting up was out of the picture. Maybe he should just open his eyes. Start small.

Very quickly, Dean realized he wasn't in his room. The walls around him were a stark white compared to his soft blue. There was also an annoying beeping noise that was grating on his nerves. He could feel a headache forming.

He tilted his head and got a nose full of brown hair. He jerked his head back and moaned in pain. At the sound Sam sat up and looked around. He seemed to be confused as to what the sound was.

“Sammy?” Dean's voice was soft and scratchy like it hadn't been used for some time. Hell, it was barely above a whisper. But it did the trick. Sam whipped his head around and locked eyes with Dean. The smile that split his face was blinding.

“Dean! You're awake. I can't believe it. It's been two days. I figured it'd be at least a week. How are you feeling?”

In Dean’s opinion, Sam's voice was way too loud and packed with too much enthusiasm for such an early hour. At least, he assumed it was early because of the exhaustion that clung to his bones.

“Sammy, pipe it down will ya? I feel like death warmed over. What the hell happened?” Sam looked at his brother. Did he not remember? Was it even possible to forget such a traumatic event?

“Dean, what's the last thing you remember?”

Dean wracked his mind for a minute as it shifted through memories. Work at Bobby’s. Lunch at The Roadhouse. The engagement. That was it. The rest was black. Though he felt like he was missing something big.

“I remember having lunch with you and Jess. That's the last thing.” Sam let out a deep sigh. This must be bad, Dean thought to himself.

Sam braced himself and looked at his brother.

“Dean, you were kidnapped.” Dean let out a laugh.

“Yeah, sure Sammy. What's really going on?” But even as the words left his mouth, he knew Sam was telling the truth. The look in his eyes said so.

Dean couldn't breathe. It started flooding back. The cell. Abbadon. The sharp pain of a blade. Alastair’s slick smile.

Dean was going to be sick.

“Oh God. The others! Sammy, there were others there. They need help. I need to help them. I promised! I promised I would. I need… I have to…” It was then that a nurse rushed in, needle in hand. The minute the liquid his his IV, Dean calmed down. His mind fogged and he slipped under the thick smoke. The last thing he remembered Alastair’s sweaty palms brushing down his stomach, a knife in his grasp.

*****

Castiel received a call two days after leaving the hospital. There had yet to be a break in the case and there wouldn't be unless Dean woke up. It was frustrating to say the least.

Castiel was hunched over his laptop when his phone let out a shrill ring. He answered without looking at the number.

“What?,” he barked. He wasn't in the mood for some bullshit.

“Uhm, Agent Novak? This is Sam Winchester. I just thought you'd like to know that Dean is awake.” Castiel bolted for the door. He barely remembered to grab his keys and trench coat before he found himself racing down the highway.

What should have been a two hour ride was barely an hour and fifteen minutes. He was in a hurry after all. No one could blame him.

Castiel didn't even take the time to stop at the nurses station. He simply rushed to the room he knew Dean was in and swung the door open.

Sam sat up in a rush and Dean slowly looked over. Castiel suspected the slow movement was because of his injuries not lack of surprise.

Castiel stopped short. Some of the swelling had gone down and the bruising was already beginning to fade. Dean still looked worse for wear, but to Castiel, he was gorgeous.

Castiel was unaware of how long he stared but he knew it was enough to make everything awkward. He cleared his throat and made his way to the edge of the bed.

“Mr. Winchester, my name is Castiel Novak. I'm an agent for the FBI and I've been assigned to your case.” He stuck his hand out but Dean didn't reciprocate. There was a look of distrust in the man's eyes. That was going to be a problem for Castiel, he just knew it.

He slowly retracted his hand and sat down.

“Now Mr. Winchester, I'm aware you just woke up and are in quite a bit of pain, but I was hoping you could answer some questions.”

Dean remained stoic throughout the entire conversation. His entire demeanor screamed “distrust” but there was little for Castiel to do. He simply trudged through and hoped Dean would come around.
It wasn't until the end of the meeting that Castiel seemed to get under that tough armor Dean concealed himself with.

“Mr. Winchester, can you please explain to me what exactly Alastair did?” No sooner than the words left his mouth did he regret them. He watched as all color drained from Dean’s face. Even the bruises seemed to dull.

It took Dean a minute to compose himself before he was able to answer.

“He was the embodiment of evil. The minute I stepped foot in his ‘office’, there was this sinister veil all around. It was like the evil was palpable, it seemed to move through the air and force its way into my soul” Dean took a minute to call himself before he began again.

“There was this wall of tapestry, or at least that's what I thought it was at first. It quickly became evident that it was made of human flesh. It took everything for me not to throw up when I saw it. You could see the difference in the skin and the smell was horrendous. I remember thinking it was like something from hell.” Castiel shuddered as Dean continued. How could someone be so sick?

It was about ten minutes later when Castiel called it quits. He knew he was pushing the limits. No one wanted to relive their tragedy so soon afterwards.

“Thank you Mr. Winchester. I'll let you rest now and will be in touch within the next few days.” Castiel gave Dean his card and walked towards the exit.

“Novak! We're gonna catch these bastards, right? We have to save those people.” There was a fire in those green eyes that Castiel was drawn to. “Promise me, Novak.” At that moment, Castiel would have promised him anything. Luckily, this was something he planned to deliver on.

“I promise we will catch them Dean. And we will do it together.” There was a small smile on Dean's lips as Castiel walked out the door.

Chapter Text

Dean Winchester had always prided himself on being a good older brother. Sure, he wasn't perfect and he fucked up a lot, but he was always there for Sam when he needed it.

After losing their mom, Dean basically raised Sam. John, their father, found a new home at the bottom of a bottle and never climbed back out. Dean had only been seventeen when he had died. Despite the odds, the two Winchesters had grown into amazing men. Sam had built a life for himself and was working on a family. Dean had the garage and had done the whole family thing for a bit. It just didn't work out.

All in all, the two had come out of life on top. But Dean couldn't shake the feeling that his life was ending. It had been four days since he'd woken and found himself in a hospital. Four days of lying around doing nothing while the other captives had to try and fight for survival. It was driving him mad. What kind of person was he, getting help when others so clearly needed it more? He repeated this to Sam many times.

“Dean, I know you're worried, but you're no help to them dead.” Dean grumbled and angrily stewed in his own feelings for a while. He knew he had to get better, that was obvious, but how could he just accept treatment when the others could be dying? It felt wrong. He had to find some way to help.

That's where Agent Novak came in. While Dean was down for the count, he figured the best help he could offer was to give the agent everything he could. Which is what led to the numerous visits from the older male.

Dean liked him enough, he was a bit stuck up and had a problem with staring but he was good enough company. Especially now that Sam was back at work. It took Dean hours to convince him, but the giant finally saw reason.

A cough brought Dean back to the living world. Standing in the doorway was the Agent. He was an hour early but Dean didn't mind, especially when he noticed the greasy paper bag in one hand and a cup of coffee in the other.

Dean waved him in, never taking his eyes off the bag.

“I hope you don't mind, I brought you a couple donuts. I figured the hospital food was less than appetizing.” Dean smiled as the man's deep voice washed over him. He liked Novak’s voice. It soothed him, like a balm over a fresh burn.

“Dude, you rock.” Dean took the food and the hot coffee. The dark liquid had barely hit his tongue before he moaned. It was delicious.

Dean glanced over and noticed a slight flush had found the agents face. He smiled apologetically.

“So, Mr. Winches-”

“Dude, call me Dean. Mr. Winchester was my father.” Castiel let out a small chuckle before continuing.

“So, Dean, do you remember what Abbadon looked like? What her voice sounded like?”

Dean thought for a minute. There was so much he could remember but not everything was important, like the fact that she smelt like pineapples and tasted like whiskey. Dean didn’t even want to explain how he knew what she tasted like. The memory still haunted him in his dreams.

“She had red hair that hit her shoulders. It was kinda wavy, I guess. Not exactly curly but not straight either. She had bright red lipstick on every time I saw her, and she was always wearing leather too, which I thought was weird.” Dean glanced over and noticed that Castiel was bent over his notebook, scribbling down every little word he said.

Over the days, Dean had come to think of the man as strange but not in a bad way. He was quirky and rarely smiled, but he always had a small glimmer in his eye that made Dean think that maybe he hadn’t seen every part of the closed off agent. He had made Dean laugh more than a few times, and the best part was that Dean didn’t think the man knew why. He had such a dry sense of humor, one that Dean couldn’t help but be drawn to.

Dean was lost in thought until he heard Castiel say his name.

“Dean, are you alright?” Castiel looked worried, like he may have upset Dean with his questions. “We can stop if we need to, I can just come back?” Castiel was already standing up and turning towards the door. Dean tried to think of a reason for him to stay. He chose not to think about the exact reason that he wanted the man there.

He was just bored and didn’t want to be alone all day, that was it. Of course it was. No biggie.

“No!” Dean yelled the word a bit louder than he meant to and he could see the surprise on Castiel’s face. Well, no going back now, Dean thought to himself.

“Sam won’t be here for a few more hours and I’m tired of being cooped up in this room by myself. Just… stay?” Dean had trailed off at the end and refused to look up from the very interesting stain he had found on the corner of his blanket. Castiel didn’t say a word. He just sat back down, but when Dean glanced back up he could see a small smile gracing his perfectly pink lips. Dean couldn’t help but notice how blue his eyes were either. They were a piercing cerulean, searching the depths of Dean’s soul when they made eye contact.

Dean couldn’t breathe. Nothing else existed except the two men. The noise of the hospital died down, the lights took on a softer hue. The world softened around the edges.

Dean felt warm inside, he felt safe.

And with that word, everything came crashing down. He jerked his gaze away and let out a cough like he was clearing his throat. Safe? He hadn’t felt safe from the minute he woke up in that damn cage. Honestly, he wasn’t sure if he would ever feel safe again. So why was it that the man across from him made him feel like nothing in the world could harm him? It just wasn’t realistic. Castiel couldn’t save him, no one could. It was a depressing thought but that didn’t make it any less true.

Dean couldn’t allow himself to feel safe. He couldn’t allow himself to enjoy life and everything it could offer, not when it could easily be ripped away. He had had his world, his happiness ripped from him years ago. He didn’t want to feel that again. He couldn’t.

Castiel wasn’t his friend, he wasn’t someone that would always be there. Dean needed to realize that now, before it hurt him later.

*****

Castiel could see the sudden shift in Dean’s demeanor. Moments ago Dean was staring at him, a small smile playing on his lips. Now the man looked dejected, almost lost. Almost like he didn’t know what he was doing or why he was there with Castiel.

Castiel could feel the absence of the warmth the man had been projecting. Now there was only a hollow feeling in his gut, like he may have just lost something before he even knew he had it.

Awkwardness had settled over the two men in a thick stifling blanket and Castiel didn’t know how to fix it. Did he ask Dean what was wrong? And if he did, would Dean even answer? In the short amount of time that he had known the man, Castiel had come to realize that Dean was a very closed off man. He didn’t do emotions. He preferred light subjects or comfortable silence. That didn’t settle well with Castiel. He knew Dean was bottling everything that had happened to him. He pretended not to be bothered, that what had happened was nothing to lose sleep over but Castiel could tell it was a facade. He could see the pain, the fear concealed behind the man's eyes. It worried him. It was dangerous to keep everything inside.

“Dean…” Castiel winced. Even he could hear the concern in his voice. If anything could make Dean close off for good it would be that. And sure enough…

“Look Cas, I’m actually kind of tired. Do you mind if I just rest until Sammy gets here? You can come back tomorrow.” Dean didn’t look up once while speaking and his words were laced with something resembling desperation, like he was afraid Castiel would refuse to leave and make him talk. And boy did he want to. He wanted to tell Dean no, that he was staying and they were going to talk no matter what the man wanted but he couldn't do that. He would lose Dean’s trust and that was the last thing he wanted.

“Of course, Dean. Sleep well. I will see you tomorrow.” Cas gathered his things and headed to the door. He resisted the urge to turn around for a final glance at the man in the bed. He held his head up high as he exited the hospital room and headed for the elevator.

*****
Dean watched the agent as he walked out of the room and had to shake the feeling that the man was walking out of his life.

Chapter Text

Alistair loved his job. The people, the work environment, hell even the pay wasn’t bad. Plus, one of his co-workers was a dentist so the dental plan was amazing. Yes, his life was finally on the track he wanted it to be on. So when Abbadon called him and said she had a task for him, he jumped on it and agreed with enthusiasm. He was pretty sure Abbadon was warming up to him, which was a good thing because you wanted to be on her good side. He had seen someone on her bad side, and the person had seen Alistair's workstation. It felt good, it felt right.

“You know, when I was first approached about this job I thought to myself, “Now Ali, is this really the job you want?”. You see, I was a simple accountant for a small firm in Alabama, I hadn’t even been outside the state so it would have been a huge change. Now look at me! Accepting was the best thing I ever did. I was made for this job, don’t ya think?” Alistair looked down to see the man’s reaction.

The man was sprawled out on the table, his arms and legs secured with bands. The man was whimpering, begging to be let go. Most people in his line of work liked to use tape to keep the people quiet but not Alistair. He loved the sounds his patients made. From the begging and screaming to the small whimpers and prayers. They fed his creativity. Every work of art was different, and that was the same for Alistair. Every body was made differently, each a new canvas he had never seen. It made his creative juices flow.

Unfortunately, he couldn’t do that this time. He was given specific orders on what was to be done. Luckily, it was something he didn’t mind. He wanted to please Abbadon and if this was the way to do it, then so be it.

Alistair let out a slimey laugh and watched as a tear escaped and ran down the young man’s cheek. He bent down and ran his tongue across the soft skin, the saltiness of the tear a pleasant taste. His hands slowly made there way down the man’s chest, which lay bare in front of him.

This was his favorite part. Abbadon didn’t care what was done to the men as long as the outcome was what she wanted, which meant he could take his time and really enjoy the beauty of the moment.

The man on the table was rather pretty. He had soft brown eyes and the hair to match. His jaw was sharp but softened but the smattering of freckles that adorned his face. He was the youngest of the bunch, barely twenty-five. He was Alistair's favorite. Every time he was the man, he could feel his blood boil as his heart rate quickened. This man was his. That was why he chose him to start with. This was the most important work he would ever do, so he wanted to start the masterpiece with his favorite piece of art.

The man tried to buck off the table but the restraints held him down. The fighting only made Alistair hotter. Nothing like a challenge to get the blood pumping in all the right places.
His hand slowly continued its path downward. He could feel the soft patch of hair around the man’s belly button and leaned down to circle his tongue on the soft flesh. He bit the shard hip bone protruding from the man’s body. Still his hand moved lower. It finally found what he wanted. Thank God he was insisted his patients be naked.

The man struggled but it was no use. Alistair took what he wanted, and he wasn’t gentle about it either. He never was, especially when it was his favorite play toy. He wanted the man to remember him, well for as long as he had anyway.

When Alistair was done with his own fantasies, he started on the task he had been given. The blades on the table glistened in the lighting and he reached over to pick out his favorite. The scalpel was a sharp silver against the tan skin of his canvas.

He watched in awe as the blade pressed down and the first rivlet of blood ran down the body. Alistair felt bliss.

Yes, he truly loved his job.

*****

Castiel hated his job. He hated having to deal with the public, or having to work with the local police. It wasn’t that they were beneath him or the FBI, it was that he worked better alone. He always had. But his freaking boss wouldn’t let him do it without checking in with the local police every day.

These were the thoughts that ran through his mind as Castiel made his way into the Lawrence police department. Alfie greeted him again, his voice annoyingly chipper. Castiel lifted his hand in a small wave but that was all he could manage at such an early hour. He had barely made it to his desk before Crowley called for him. Castiel let out a deep groan and made his way to the office of the shorter man. He didn’t have the patience for this. He had driven the forty minute distance from Kansas City, Missouri where Dean was currently located, to Lawrence at around three in the morning. He was running on four hours of sleep. This had better be important.

“Castiel, please have a seat.” Fergus Crowley was a special man. He held a high ranking job but was a very off putting fellow. He just oozed mischief and it didn’t settle well with Castiel. Crowley was a wild card, someone Castiel wasn’t comfortable trusting.

“Have you put any more thought into that “task force” you asked for?” Castiel frowned. He had almost completely forgotten about that. It wasn’t necessarily needed at the moment, but perhaps the more hands the better.

“I will have the list of names for you by the end of the day Crowley.” The man seemed pleased with his answer and carried on.

“What have you managed to pull from Squirrel? Anything useful?” It took Castiel a moment to realize he was speaking of Dean. Crowley insisted on ridiculous nicknames for the Winchester family it would seem.

“We have a description of the leader, Abbadon and a few details about the cult she is in charge of. Apparently she referred to it as “Hell”, which seems appropriate in every manner. I did get a description of the land he was running through, but it doesn’t really narrow things down. Especially since he was suffering from trauma as well as pain. His memory of the exact layout is pretty weak. All he knows for sure is that they were kept in a building a ways from the main house. There was also a lot of land but we can’t be sure where to look since we don’t know which way he was coming from when he was found.” Crowley nodded along as Castiel updated him. He didn’t have any input, not that there was anything helpful he could have said. There was only one man that could lead them to the location they needed, and he was currently in the hospital.

“Alright Castiel, thank you. That will be all.” Castiel wasn’t exactly pleased with his dismissal but he wasn’t too angry since it meant he could escape to his desk which was right next to the merciful coffee machine.

He definitely hated his job.

*****

Abbadon looked up from her computer when there was a knock at the door. She called for them to enter and leaned back, an air of dominance slipping in place.

Alistair slipped through the door, the white apron around his body was splattered with blood. There was a sickening grin on his face and it looked like he had good news.

“It’s done, boss. Just like you asked. He’s absolutely perfect. You should have heard his screams…” He trailed off, a dopey smile slipping into place and Abbadon felt disdain. She truly hated Alistair, but he was the best at what he did so she had to keep him around. Besides, having a kiss-ass wasn’t too bad. At least she knew what she wanted would be done.

“Thank you Alistair. I’m sure you did amazing work as always.” Abbadon could practically see the joy radiating off the man. God, she needed new men. Maybe some with a backbone. That would be nice.

“I want you to find Azazel and have him come here. We have a lot to discuss.” She then went back to her laptop, effectively dismissing the man. Alistair stood there a moment before quickly retreating, hopefully to find the man she actually needed.

Abbadon was hoping her new plan would be set into motion by tomorrow night. She needed to act fast. Every day that passed was another that Hell spent fearful. Plus, every day that passed was another day closer to the day Dean would forget her. And that simply wouldn’t do, no. Dean was hers. She would have him. She would make him her personal plaything and no one would stop her. She always got what she wanted.

It was only minutes later when Azazel walked through the door, his yellow eyes hollow and his face a stony mask.

“Azazel darling, we have some work to do.” Abbadon chuckled and began to explain her plan to the man in front of her. If there was anyone that could pull it off, it was Azazel.

Forty-five minutes later and the two had a solid plan that she was sure would work.

*****

It was four in the morning when Dean awakened. Something was off. It just didn’t feel right. It was too quiet and there was a foul smell coming from somewhere close. It took a few minutes for Dean’s eyes to adjust to the dimness of his room and when they did he almost wished they hadn’t. He knew what the foul smell was. He remembered it from his nightmares.

He could feel his heart rate pick up as he began to panic. His eyes darted around the room but there was no one around. Sam had went home hours ago and the nurses weren’t scheduled to check in for another hour. He was alone. His eyes travelled across the span of the room slowly. He had to know where the smell was coming from.

There.

There was a brown paper bag setting in the chair beside his bed. It took quite a bit of effort and a few muttered “fucks” but Dean was able to lean forward enough to reach the bag. He took a deep breath before opening the bag.

As soon as he saw the inside, Dean was throwing up. He had just enough time to reach for the bedpan on his table. He yelled for a nurse and dropped the bag to the floor with shaking hands.

It couldn’t be true. They couldn’t have found him again. Not this soon. Not while he was asleep and unprotected.

He reached for his phone with shaking hands and dialed the first number he could think of just as a nurse ran into the room.

Dean saw the horror on her face when she looked in the bag but focused on his phone. The ringing seemed to go on forever. Finally, they picked up.

“Hello, Dean.”

*****

Castiel didn’t even wait for Dean to finish explaining before he was pulling on clothes and rushing out of the hotel room. He didn’t like hearing the panic in Dean’s voice. He sounded absolutely terrified. A strong wave of protectiveness washed over Castiel. He wanted to protect Dean. He needed to.

The usual twenty minute drive from the hotel to the hospital took him roughly nine minutes. There wasn’t a red light that he didn’t run. He was just thankful for the siren that was in his car.

Castiel rushed to the elevator and waited the excruciating thirty seconds to get to the sixth floor. He was running down the hall, the voices of the nurses asking him to slow down were a dull buzzing in the background. He only had one thing on his mind: Dean.

He reached Dean’s room and shoved past the nurse standing in the doorway. He had just made it past the curtain when Dean looked up, a look of terror in his eyes.

“Cas!”

Castiel knew in that moment that he would do whatever it took to keep that look off of Dean’s face.

Whatever it took.