The abandoned church filled with holy light, and a man appeared in front of the huge mosaic. His eyes glowed bright blue, Grace spilling from under his skin. Six giant feathery shadows unfurled from behind his back, spreading wide. Michael made a content noise in the back of Dean's mind, drawing his power back inside. The Devil, his injured Nephilim son, and Sam Winchester stared at him in shock.
"Dean?" Sam asked. Dean looked at his brother.
"Heya, Sammy," he said, a small smile on his lips.
"You let my brother in," Lucifer said, his blue eyes narrowed.
Dean's whole body shivered for a short moment, and his green eyes brightened slightly. Michael shook out his hands, taking a step forward. He smiled at his little brother.
"Of course he let me in. We have similar goals," he replied. Lucifer's eyes widened as he took a tiny step back.
"Michael?" Lucifer asked.
"Long time no see, little brother," Michael said, stepping closer to him. "Looks like you've been up to no good again. I leave you alone for a few years, and this is what you do?" He tsked, shaking his head in disappointment. Lucifer held up his hands. Michael saw a flicker of unease in his features.
"Stay away from me, Michael," he said.
Michael flicked his wrist, eyes flashing blue, and his little brother landed in one of the church pews. Lucifer tried to get up, but Michael kept him pinned with a tendril of Grace. His brother snarled, eyes turning gold with stolen power. Michael stared him down.
"Behave, little brother, or I shall not hesitate to take you over my knee in front of all these fine people and spank you," Michael growled back to him. Lucifer's ears tinted pink.
"You wouldn't," he protested. Michael knew that he knew that he would definitely do that. He had before, after all.
"Wouldn't I?" Michael said.
"I'm not a fledgling," Lucifer hissed.
"Oh? Because you certainly act like one." He smirked at his little brother's expression. "Now, do not speak, Lucifer. We will have words, but it seems I have things to tend to."
The Archangel turned away from him, and his eyes landed on Sam and Jack. Sam shifted in front of Jack subconsciously. Michael gave them a gentle smile.
"Hello, Sam. Is that my nephew?" he asked. Jack slowly nodded. "It's nice to finally meet you, Jack."
"You're not what I expected," Jack admitted. Michael chuckled.
"I have changed, I suppose," he agreed.
"You're not like him. The other Michael," Jack said.
"I should hope not," Michael replied. Sam looked worried the closer he came to them.
"Don't come any closer. You're not going to hurt Jack," Sam said. Michael tilted his head.
"Hurt him? Oh, no. I am not going to do that." Michael let out a soft noise. "I simply wish to heal him. And you, of course."
Michael tapped his fingers to Sam's forehead before he could flinch away, and a muted white light emitted from his skin. Sam gasped. Michael pressed his palm to his nephew's bleeding stomach. The skin slowly knit back together, the Archangel's brows furrowed in concentration. He stepped back as soon as he was finished. Michael smiled fondly, waving a hand, and the drying blood vanished from Jack's skin and shirt.
"How did you do that?" Jack asked, sounding a bit in awe.
"Practice. Also, I'm one of the oldest of my Father's creations. He made me naturally quite powerful," Michael replied.
"Is Dean still there?" Sam asked.
"Yes. You were speaking to him earlier. I just had to resume control to deal with certain things," Michael said.
"I don't want to be rude, but you're not going to kill Lucifer?" Jack asked.
"I would rather not, yes. I have another solution," Michael answered.
"Oh..." Jack said. He snuck a nervous look over at Lucifer. Michael laid his hand on Jack's shoulder despite Sam's protest.
"It will be alright. He won't hurt you again," Michael promised. Jack blinked at him.
The Archangel suddenly smiled.
"Now, I do believe that you have another angel waiting for you," Michael said. He teleported them back to the Bunker. Then, he turned to his little brother.
"Oh, little one, whatever shall I do with you?" Michael asked, striding toward his squirming little brother.
Lucifer looked an interesting combination of angry, embarrassed, and terrified. Michael stopped in front of him, and the blonde Archangel made a low growl. Still struggling for control. Michael raised an eyebrow.
"Let me go!" Lucifer hissed.
"Watch your tone, Lucifer," Michael said sternly.
"Michael!" he snarled, thrashing against his hold. Michael reached out and grabbed his brother's ear, twisting hard. Lucifer gasped in pain. Michael jerked him up, pulling him close to his body. Lucifer's heartbeat fluttered under his skin.
"Don't be a brat," Michael said. "You don't have the upper hand here, so stop this nonsense now, Samael."
Lucifer's jaw went slack for a moment at his use of his old name. His eyes, so full of anger, faded slightly, hurt and anxiety present. Michael released his grip on his brother's ear and instead grabbed his hand. He focused Dean's green eyes on Lucifer's pale blue, his gaze intent, the air crackling with his Grace.
"I hate you," Lucifer whispered. Michael's lips quirked up just barely.
"No, you don't," he said. His brother's jaw tightened.
"I do," Lucifer muttered.
"No," Michael repeated patiently.
"I do!" he said.
"You don't," Michael replied. Lucifer glared at him.
"...I don't..." he admitted dejectedly. Michael squeezed his hand.
"And no matter what you think, little brother, I do not hate you either. Do you understand?" Michael said. Lucifer nodded. "Good. That doesn't mean that I am not disappointed by your actions, though."
"But, Michael, I can explain!" Lucifer protested.
"I'm sure you do have a reason for all of this. You often have one for whatever you do. However, this is going way too far," Michael said.
"You don't understand!" Lucifer cried. "No one does!"
"You almost killed your own son, Lucifer. Which, by the way, you aren't even supposed to have. You were reckless and selfish. You want the humans, who you loathe wholeheartedly, to worship you like they do Father. You would destroy the world to make it as you want." Michael shook his head. "This is not the path you should take."
"He called me a monster," Lucifer said, anger and hurt lacing his voice. There was no question as to who he was.
"You were acting like one. I'm not sure what you expected your son to do when he found out," Michael replied.
"I did it for him! I did it all for him!" Lucifer hissed.
"No. That's just what you say to justify your actions. You did it for yourself. You wanted your son. You wanted him to love you like you once loved our Father. But he rejected you because you lied. So this-" He waved his hand to gesture vaguely around them. "-is all just one big temper tantrum. Your feelings are hurt." Michael sighed. "You never did respond well to rejection."
Lucifer growled at him and tried to lunge at him in his anger. Michael latched his hand onto the back of his neck, and he shoved his brother down as he sank into the pew, holding him in his lap, rear end facing up, legs dangling off. Lucifer let out a squeak of surprise when he roughly swatted his bottom.
"-Michael!" he yelped indignantly.
"I told you that if you want to act like a naughty fledgling, then you will be treated like one," Michael said. He brought his hand down again.
Sam and Jack appeared in the Bunker directly in front of Castiel. He was sitting on the floor, eyes downcast, beside a corpse burnt beyond recognition.
"Cas?" Sam asked. Castiel jumped in surprise, eyes widening.
"Sam? Jack? You're okay?" Cas said uncertainly, peering at them, assessing.
"Yeah. Michael fixed us up and poofed us here, so he could have some private time with Lucifer," Sam answered with a slight frown.
"Our Michael, my uncle, seems different from the other one," Jack said. Castiel looked at him.
"He is... in a way," he said. "Michael was always very passionate about his family."
"Cas... are you okay?" Sam asked. "Who is that?" Castiel didn't even spare the body a glance.
"The Michael we were fighting. Dean said yes, and our Michael, well, burned him alive."
"Really? Wow," Sam exhaled. He remembered Dean had said that is what Michael had done to kill Anna. It seemed like a truly awful way to die.
"Dean is gone, then," Castiel said quietly.
"But Michael said that Dean was okay," Jack said.
"He is," a familiar voice murmured. The trio spun around to see Dean - no, Michael - standing by the doorway. He smiled gently.
"Michael," Sam said. Michael inclined his head to him.
"Sam," he replied.
"Where is..." Sam swallowed. "Lucifer?"
"Somewhere where he won't bother you," Michael responded. He looked at Jack, his eyes softening further. "Hello, Jack."
"Hello," Jack said. Michael smiled slightly.
"I know. You want to speak with Dean," Michael said. Castiel's eyes narrowed at him.
His stance changed, becoming less rigid and more human. He blinked his eyes and gasped, stumbling a little.
"Dean?!" Castiel said. Dean looked up at the angel.