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Whole New Man

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Sam huffed as he leaned against the wall of the bunker hallway, running a hand through his hair as he took a deep breath and let himself calm down after his heated argument with Dean. With everything that had happened lately, why couldn’t he just wait? They were in this together, they always had been. From the moment Dean had picked him up at Stanford, it had always been together or not at all. Everything in-between has always ended in disaster.

“Hey kid.” Gabriel’s familiar voice greeted from a couple feet away, the archangel still sporting the blue leather jacket that he’d worn during their encounter with Loki.

“Hey, how are you doing?” He asked, instantly standing up straighter and smiling at the shorter man. “You settling in alright? I know it’s no Monte Carlo, but the bunker’s home and we make it work.”

“Besides the distinct lack of sugar,” Sam chuckled, mentally reminding himself to add candy to the grocery list next time he went into town. “It’s not half bad.” Gabriel’s smile faltered slightly, just enough for Sam to notice. Just enough for Sam to remember Loki’s poisonous words.

“And how are you doing with the whole…revenge thing. You know, Fenrir, Sleipnir, Narfi… Loki.”

“You worried about me, Sam?” His tone was half-joking, but the other half…the other half was almost thankful.

“I just…” Sam sighed, glancing down the hall briefly. “I heard what Loki said, man. About—”

“About me being a failure?” The flash of pain behind the archangel’s golden eyes told Sam all he needed to know about how well Gabriel had taken the verbal blows. “I mean, he’s not wrong. Pretty sure the most useful thing I’ve done for mankind was help dear old Dad out with making the platypus.”

“What?”

“I’ve always been a crap angel, Sam. I’ve ditched you, what, twice now? And where did that get me? Kidnapped and stabbed.” Gabriel sighed, and shoved his hands in his pockets. “Maybe I should just finish what Asmodeus started, give you boys my Grace, become human like the rest of you and get out of your—” He glanced up at Sam. “Unreasonably perfect hair.”

“Asmodeus was a dick. And so was Loki,” Sam told him. “Don’t listen to them. You’re not a failure. You’re…you’re clever and sarcastic and we need you here for a hell of a lot more than just your Grace,” He smiled down at Gabriel, whose bristly demeanor had softened. “You’re family.”

“As in you and Dean family or Dean and Cas family?” The Trickster narrowed his eyes at the statement, having clearly been caught up to the way their brothers acted around each other.

“Whichever one you’re most comfortable with. You just went through hell, literally. You need time to adjust and with everything that’s going to be happening, I…” Sam sighed, “I want you to be happy here.”

“Sam, just knowing that I have people who actually care about me here makes me a hell of a lot happier than I ever was in Heaven.”