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Dean's trying desperately to sleep. Or sleep as much as he can at the moment. Half the time it feels less like sleeping and more like some fuzzy half-conscious space where he just keeps tiredness at bay for a while. He's trying to tune out the clatter of Sam next door, the sleepless wandering across and back he's doing in the room he's in. Dean's too tired to think about what Sam spends every night doing, what he spends every night thinking about. Most of all, he's tired of the frustrating helplessness that comes with feeling like there's fuck all he can do about it either way.

So he tries to sleep instead, shifting restlessly in a cold bed and feeling wrong. There's an itch in the back of his head that he can't quite scratch. It's been there since he got snatched out of a cornfield by Tinkerbell and her groupies. Something that feels raw and unfinished, just on the edge of his memory. It reminds him of how he'd felt about hell and he doesn’t like it.

He folds an arm under his pillow and tries to bury his head in it, tries to blot everything out.


Fairies are supposed to be small. They're supposed to be tiny, little freakin' winged things, big enough to catch in the palm of your hand. Floaty and sparkly, and pretty much harmless.

The first thing Dean learns, is that that's all bullshit. They're vicious, grabby, glowing bastards. They're not all big but most of them aren't tiny. Some are big enough to look him in the eye, if they'd stop blinding him long enough to actually do that. They're definitely big enough and strong enough to drag him where he knows he's damn sure he doesn't want to be dragged. Though they're not so different that when he slams his boot into the arch of one's knee that it doesn’t go down shrieking and hissing like a cat. Its companions leave it behind, don't react to the loss at all.

Their king, Oberon, is fucking huge. He towers over him, taller than Sam, taller than people. All painful shine and shifting edges of form. The two fairies holding him have forcibly pulled Dean's head all the way back to look up at him, glowing fingers dug in his hair hard enough to make his scalp sting and his eyes water.

The king makes a noise, something quiet like a sigh and the hands withdraw. The fairies holding him padding back on the shiny floor out of his way. The glow around him fades to something more bearable. Something that leaves him lit from within, but not overwhelmed by it. At first glance Oberon's beautiful. He's the most fucking beautiful thing Dean's ever seen, beautiful enough that he'd admit it and not even care. Every line and curve is in exactly the right proportion. Every angle new and striking. He thinks this is how he'd always expected an angel to look. Like they'd swallow a goddamn star, and Dean knows it should be wrong, that nothing is ever perfect. He's seen enough beautiful things split open to reveal rotten, festering insides.

Dean's looking for it. And maybe because he is, it's suddenly there.

It starts in flashes, glimpses underneath the mask. Long angles of bone that don't fit, rows of sharp teeth and clinging vines, and the smell of freshly dug earth. The eyes are wrong, they're green and alien and remote as the stars. And when Oberon smiles it's strange and grotesque, like his jaw isn't hinged quite right, like he isn't made like anything Dean's ever seen.

Just like that, pretty becomes vicious, and Dean's suddenly afraid, tensed up completely with it. It's familiar somehow, a nightmare passed down generation by generation, like the fear of the dark. Dean knows this pretty thing that looks like an angel and smells like the forest, could crunch down on his bones and swallow him whole without even blinking.

Oberon's focus shifts to the fairies that brought him in and Dean's surprised to see them dim, sharply, until he can see their dark skin and the narrow joints and sharp points of them. Folded wings and folded arms, Dean can actually see them shrinking under his gaze.

He figures out pretty quickly that Oberon's not a benevolent king. Because they're all fucking terrified of him.

Dean's pretty sure Oberon's not beautiful to them. Or maybe he is, maybe that just makes it worse. The fairy king could probably be beautiful all the time, if he wanted to. But Dean's seen the gaps, seen glimpses of what's underneath. Something born in a forest, in the dark, something that survived by eating everything else. He can't shake that image free, those flashes of truth under the flawless white mask. Until both images are laid on top of each other, like a double exposure.

He chances a look back the way they'd dragged him in. But there's no entrance there any more, just the flat, shining black of a wall, green leaves are already growing over it.

Dean doesn't think much of his chances of getting out of here without a little help.

He turns back to the king, closer now, folding his height in, moving like some unnatural mix of bird and insect.

"What now?" Dean bites out.

"Now you service me, however I wish." Oberon's mouth never moves and the words are like claws inside Dean's head, invasive and intimate for all their soft, flatness.

"Yeah, I don't know what you've heard about me, but that's not fucking happening." Oberon presses his fingers against Dean's chin, and he stiffens, keeps his mouth shut. There's a smile, too wide and too full of teeth. It hits him the same way every predator's smile does. Adrenaline and fear and fury. He's spent so long turning the fear into something useful, fighting the things that want to kill him. But this is all wrong, the quiet tension, the observation. He feels like an animal in a zoo

"You are beautiful. I would keep you if I could, but there are rules. There are rules and you are special." There's a hand on his throat, spreading cold all the way through him. It creeps in lines down his neck. Oberon's skin is cold, like a dead thing, it smells like moss and hidden streams, the torn open carcasses of animals and fresh cream. It's like he's drawing all the heat out of him, and the closer he leans the more it feels as if Dean's breathing sharp, suffocating winter air.

Oberon examines him like he's something new and interesting, ignoring Dean's fiercely spat protests and the angry way he wrenches at every touch and curl of fingers. Oberon even ignores the way Dean tries to break the unreal delicacy of his face on his knuckles. It turns out fairies aren't as weak as they look and the impact goes up Dean's arm and leaves his wrist numb and his knuckles ringing with pain. Skin like an angel. But this isn't someone else's body, this is real.

Oberon strokes fingers over his knuckles, then over the angry tension in his forehead, as if he finds Dean's objections curious and interesting.

"Get your fucking hands off me, Tinkerbell."

"Creation has marked you." Oberon's fingers slide curiously under his sleeve, trail over and over the handprint Castiel left on him, nails pressing in briefly like pinpricks of bone. "Perhaps Chaos should mark you as well." Dean has a sudden strange memory of ragged bite marks on bodies, rings of jagged wounds carved in wood cuttings, rows of pinprick teeth in dusty pages. The memories aren't his own and he flinches at the fucking invasion of it.

He jerks out of the king's hold. "I said get off me."

There's still no anger, and Dean doesn't know if Oberon's alien enough to be beyond it or whether his anger is a fine, low-simmering, thing that's hard to provoke.

"Everything here is mine." Oberon says simply. He makes it sound like he's reminding Dean of something everyone knows, something immutable. Something he can't change, no matter how much he may want to.

The world moves and Dean's stumbling back, hitting air and then something harder, he falls into a sit and then further back, until he's elbow deep in fur and the crackle of old leaves. He's stretched out on his back with his hands fisted uselessly beside him, suddenly surrounded by the over-powering smell of oranges. Dean's dizzy, shaking his head to try and clear it while the ceiling tilts and spins and his jeans are tugged free in one slide. He hears one of his boots fall and hit the floor with a solid thud. Breathing takes more energy than it should, and fills his lungs with something that leaves his body loose and faraway.

"You are mine for a time." There are sharp fingers on the bare skin of his thighs, sliding up to brush over his hipbones and the low curve of his abdomen. In a way that leaves Dean with no doubt at all about what Oberon wants, what he expects of him.

"Don't touch me or I will break you, I swear to god." The words come out barely more than breath. It's hard to tense, to gather enough muscle movement to push up with his elbows, dig his fingers into pale forearms and try to claw them off of him.

Oberon ignores him like his attempts at resistance are nothing.

"This is what you are for."

There's a trail of liquid on the skin of his stomach, warm and sickly sweet and Oberon draws patterns there, collects it on his fingers and hums words that are too fast and too jagged for Dean to understand.

No matter how hard he tries, he cannot stop Oberon from pushing his legs apart.

There are fingers inside him, pushed in deep and when Dean tries to pull back, twist away - lash out, there's a hand, too strong and too big - hands that go on forever - pressing him down, holding him there.

He's spitting venom, breathless and furious. Oberon stretches out over him, body impossibly long and heavy, joints in not quite the right places. Pale fingers push at his legs, curl them round the chilled skin of his waist. Dean knows that if he fights this is really going to fucking hurt. But he can't not - he can't just not fight. He might as well be fucking dead.

He tries to break his hand open on the narrow planes of a fairy face. Shoves at a chest with too many ribs and not enough muscle. Until Oberon takes away any choice he has in the matter. Because Dean finds himself relaxing without meaning to, suddenly light-headed and faraway. He slips back, arms too heavy to hold up. The world comes and goes like he's underwater. But he feels the steady burn of pressure that tells him he's been penetrated. There's no way to magic that away, the sharp, immediate, painful depth of it.

He can feel the angry rush of air through his nose, the stiff tautness of his jaw. Furious and fucking useless, fingers clenching awkwardly in the sheets for want of anything real to dig his fingers in and rip apart.

"I'm going to kill you," he says.

"Angels and devils have tried," Oberon says against his mouth and this time his lips move and his voice vibrates freely. It's low and heavy and it rings all the way through Dean in a way that hurts. In a way that feels like ice flung against his skin. "I have left them shredded, empty things adorning my walls."

Oberon kisses him, mouth cold and patient. Dean tries to turn his face away but there's nowhere for it to go, nowhere that isn't the cradle of Oberon's hand. Dean's still half-sluggish from whatever surrounds the soft, hollowed out space he's pressed into, everything slower than he wants to be, or maybe the fairies are just faster. He shuts his mouth and refuses to give him a fucking inch.

His legs are spread and pinned and Oberon's next thrust goes in deep. There's enough of him to hurt, low and intimate in a way Dean doesn't want to remember, in a way that he remembers too well. But in hell there had always been a brutality to it, an awareness of exactly what it was, and it was still a choice how much he wanted to fight. How much pain he could take. This is slower, muffled, the world snapping between confused dizziness and cold, visceral reality. There's no chance to gather his thoughts, no chance to brace himself, or fight, or just to ignore everything. There's just a dizzy swing of confusion and discomfort and it's all far too real and too close, too strange. Oberon's fingers like curves of bone when he tries to lift a hand, or struggle out from under him.

If he had his gun, or his knife.

If he had something.

Dean's left hand is free, halfway towards some sort of sense, the strange bed covering soft and real enough. He lets it stray outwards, searching for something to swing, or stab, or even thrust into the shifting ribs above him.

The ceiling is a crazy swirl of light and creeping foliage, but it moves like it's alive, curling and crawling in a way that's alien and sinister as hell.

Dean shakes Oberon's fingers away from his mouth, when they stray up to touch it. He ignores the soft, quiet sounds of pleasure that vibrate through him, to stretch his arm out completely. He finds some sort of metal, the edge of the bed frame maybe. It doesn't give under his testing tug. Dean exhales and pulls harder, doesn't care any more if Oberon notices. His fingers slip without success and he's aware - distantly and unpleasantly - of the abuse of his body becoming more focused.

The hand he'd been searching with is caught and dragged over his head, pinned there, and the last few deep thrusts are uncomfortable and aggressive. Oberon's release leaves a strangely flat, cold numbness in him, which doesn't go away but crawls under his skin.

Oberon slides off of him, and away. Dean grits his teeth against that creeping numbness. His whole body feels scraped raw, like Oberon tore a layer of him clean off. His processing is shot to shit. He can't even tell if whatever he's laying on is soft or hard, can't tell if it's cold or not after Oberon's hands, Oberon's body.

Dean's reminded, calmly, rationally, of how succubae operate. The way they leech life out of their victims, leaving them numb and disoriented. He wonders if that's what's happening here. If fairy magic is just a new sort of fucking date-rape drug.

He's aware vaguely, humiliatingly, of the king carefully redressing him. Some strange and quiet ritual. He pauses, curiously at the zip and button of Dean's jeans, like he finds them fascinating. His fingers are careful, as if he thinks the metallic fastenings might be breakable. As if he cares more about them then the flesh and bone of Dean himself.

Dean wants to make him stop. He wants to punch him in the face again, punch him until he breaks. But his body isn't obeying him at all any more.

"I'm going to remember you," Dean manages, and it's a warning.

"No," Oberon promises. "You won't"

Dean has an answer to that.

But his eyes won't stay open.

He can't keep them open....