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The Wedding

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“It’s hot here,” Bobby muttered grumpily.

Dean chuckled as he drove Sam, Mary, and Bobby to his house. “Welcome to Los Angeles.”

Dean Winchester and Castiel Novak’s wedding was in less than a week, and last-minute preparations were in full swing. On top of that, the couple had to get their families and friends settled in hotels, as well as hide from the paparazzi as much as possible. It was their goal to have the wedding with only essential guests, and have it with little outside interference. In an ideal world, Dean and Cas didn’t want to public to discover their marriage until they were on their honeymoon.

“The weather difference is astounding,” Mary said from the passenger’s seat. “I should have brought more sunscreen.”

“I’ll get you more if you need it,” Dean said.

There was a short silence, then Sam piped up from the back seat, “don’t you have people to drive for you?”

“If I want,” Dean replied, “but you know how much I love driving.”

Another short silence.

“Are you ready for this?” Sam asked.

“Of course,” Dean said without hesitation.

“Where is Cas, by the way?” Bobby asked.

“At work,” Dean said. “His last day will be tomorrow until we get back from our honeymoon.”

“He’s a workaholic,” Bobby observed.

“Sometimes,” Dean said. He didn’t know why he kept his answers so basic around his family. It wasn’t like he was uncomfortable with his sexuality around them…anymore. Maybe his second family, Cas’s family, had more of a profound effect on him than he thought.

As if on Dean’s train of thought, Mary said, “you can tell us things.”

Dean winced. “I know that. I guess I’m just...still operating under the he’s-a-secret mindset, around you guys, for some reason. I’m not sure why.”

“Maybe you’re hesit-”

“I’m not hesitant,” Dean said to his brother. “Far from it, in fact.”

That gave everyone pause.

Thankfully, before anything else was said, Dean pulled up to their hotel.

————

“Why is there a stick-on basketball hoop in our building?” Cas looked at the offending item with narrowed eyes.

Charlie said, “well...I wanted it. So there.” She took a tiny foam basketball and threw it towards the hoop. It sunk into the net effortlessly, getting a round of applause from some of their employees. “See? It’s fun. Try it. It alleviates stress.”

“Isn’t that what stress balls are for?”

“Yes,” Charlie replied, “but you need to calm down and live a little. A stress ball isn’t cutting it for you. You’re supposed to be a blushing groom,” Cas narrowed his eyes dangerously upon mentioning the low key wedding ceremony to take place in a few days, “but you’re freaking out unnecessarily about working ahead. I’ll take care of everything you can’t get done.” Charlie tossed the foam basketball to Cas, which he caught. “Now try it.”

Cas eyed the hoop and threw the foam basketball at a good angle. The basketball landed in the net, getting claps from Charlie and some observant employees.

————

Castiel returned home as Dean made dinner for his waiting family.

Since the kitchen was close to the front door, Cas slipped through as sneakily as he was able.

Dean’s smile was radiant once he saw Cas in one of his signature blue suits. “Hey, babe.” Cas approached with a smile and tilted his head up, melting into the kiss Dean dropped on his lips. “How was work?”

“Good. It turns out I can dunk hoops almost every time I throw a foam basketball.”

Dean raised an eyebrow. “I need context.”

“Charlie got a stick-on basketball hoop to alleviate stress in the office,” Cas summarized.

“Ah, okay.” Dean’s eyes lit up. “I didn’t know you were good at basketball.”

“Office basketball,” Cas amended.

Dean chuckled. “My family’s waiting. Go on, then.” Cas pouted. Dean kissed Cas encouragingly. “C’mon, babe.”

That gave Cas the courage to step through the kitchen door and appear in the living room. Dean heard the sound of warm greetings as the kitchen door swung closed.

————

Cas reappeared in soft jeans and a gray tee as Dean served dinner.

A gray tee that looked suspiciously like one of Dean’s.

Before Dean’s eyes could widen in alarm, he realized his family wouldn’t know that was one of his shirts. A gray tee was a gray tee.

Cas was making a bold statement, and Dean’s family couldn’t even tell.

As Dean’s family ate and poked fun at his house interior, Dean and Cas shared a little smile at the shared clothing.

————

“Did you do that on purpose?”

Dean’s family had left for the night, promising they could get to the hotel on their own. Dean and Cas were washing dishes, and Dean had to pose the question regarding Cas’s shirt borrowing.

Cas finished washing a plate and winked. “Figured I could get away with it.”

Dean bit his lip. “You’re playing a very dangerous game.”

Cas grinned mischievously. “I know.”

“It’s hard enough to keep my hands off you.” Dean pouted. “Don’t do this to me.”

Cas washed and dried his hands, then stood across from Dean. Castiel palmed the back of Dean’s head, running his fingers along Dean’s hair. Dean dried his hands and dropped the rag somewhere, gripping Cas’s hips.

“I don’t want you to keep your hands off me,” Cas murmured. “Just because everyone’s coming to LA doesn’t mean we can’t spend our alone time making love.”

Dean Eskimo kissed Cas. “You’re too good to be true, sometimes. You know that?”

“If they smell sex on you,” Cas pushed down the mixed emotions that came with that sentence, “can I count on you to own up to it?”

Dean grinned. “Oh, hell yeah.”

“In that case,” Cas smirked, “let’s go to our bedroom.”

————

When Cas went to work early that morning, Dean took his family on a tour throughout Los Angeles, making sure to wear a hat and sunglasses as a vague attempt to disguise himself.

Thankfully, the weather was so balmy and the crowds so thick that Dean wasn’t spotted.

He guided his family around with relative ease, looking happier than usual.

It took his family until lunch to comment on it.

“You’re very smiley today,” Mary said.

“Yeah,” Dean said bashfully. “I’m getting married in a few days. Why wouldn’t I be happy?”

Bobby eyed Dean carefully. He declared, “you had sex.”

Sam and Mary stared at the table awkwardly.

Dean did what he promised Cas he would do. He owned up to it. “Yeah. And?”

“Correct answer,” Bobby said gruffly.

Dean schooled his expression, a rush of emotions swelling up in his insides. Bobby was actually proud of him for sticking to his guns. Why was he so scared to do that all this time?

Dean ate his overpriced lunch and dutifully changed the subject.

————

“Throw it from across the room,” Balthazar suggested.

“No.”

“Do it,” Charlie ordered.

“Come on,” Balthazar egged on, “do it.”

Cas stared at the foam basketball in his hands and went to the other side of the room.

“Yes!” Charlie exclaimed.

Cas threw the basketball at an insane height, the foam ball traveling across the room and landing in the net.

The entire room erupted in cheers, Castiel surprised that the entire office had watched with bated breath. Cas got high fives from Charlie and Balthazar, his employees congratulating him for such a feat. Cas grinned and realized this was the happiest he’s ever been at work. He was usually reclusive with his designing or all business. The thought of getting married this coming weekend had Cas out in the open more.

And his happiness, it seemed, was contagious.

————

Just as Cas was getting ready to leave for his last day at work before the wedding, his phone rang.

“Hello?” Cas answered.

Balthazar’s voice came through loud and clear. “Man candy’s here.”

Cas furrowed his eyebrows. “That’s a surprise.”

“You’re telling me,” Balthazar said haughtily. “I didn’t even have time to make myself look pretty for his arrival.”

Cas snorted. “Very funny, Bal.”

“Now make yourself look hot and get over here,” Balthazar ordered.

“Got it,” Cas said, hanging up the phone. He went over to his wall mirror and rubbed the tiredness out of his eyes. He fixed his messy hair as best as he could, the gel product already fading from when he put it in this morning. Lastly, Cas smoothed out his dark gray slacks, pale blue dress shirt, and charcoal suit jacket. He straightened his navy blue tie, feeling exceptionally confident.

Making love the night before may have something to attribute to that, too.

Dean hadn’t seen Cas in his outfit today. He couldn’t wait to see the look Dean would give him.

After one final glance at himself, Cas gathered his belongings and left his office. He walked on autopilot, saying goodbye to Charlie on his way down the hallway.

Before he knew it, he saw Balthazar sitting at the secretary’s desk. Balthazar winked in approval at Cas’s outfit.

Castiel made himself known, starting an easy rapport with Sam, Bobby, and Mary. While he asked how touring Los Angeles was going, Dean gaped like a fish.

Cas went over to Dean a moment later, who was plopped on the leather waiting couch. Cas reached out and rested his hand underneath Dean’s jaw, closing Dean’s mouth. Cas withdrew his touch, much to Dean’s obvious chagrin, and said, “you’ll catch flies.” Cas spun around with an easy smile and said, “let’s go out to dinner.”

————

After a quick dinner, it was time to pick up Cas’s family from their exhausting flight. Dean said he would see his family the next day and dropped them off at the hotel. The couple went home and changed into more comfortable clothes before going to the airport.

When they settled by the gates, there was word that the plane had just landed.

“Good timing,” Cas said.

Dean intertwined their fingers together without a second thought. Dean turned to the side a little. “While we have a minute,” Dean’s voice turned low, “were you trying to kill me in that outfit, gorgeous?”

Cas smirked. “What if I was?”

Dean groaned. “If I weren’t so tired, I would drag you home and have my way with you.”

Cas chuckled. “I’m tired too. But on the bright side, I threw a foam basketball in the net from across a room.”

Dean raised an eyebrow, visibly impressed. “That’s hot. And it’s not helping.”

Castiel’s attention was diverted by the sound of a little girl screeching.

That was his niece, alright.

Charlotte ran towards the couple, Cas catching her as she leapt into his arms. “Uncle Cas!”

“Hi, Char,” Cas said, holding Charlotte tightly.

Gabriel appeared next. “Char! What’d I say about running?” He took a few beats to catch his breath. Then he said, “hey, Cassie.” The brothers hugged awkwardly due to Charlotte wrapped around Cas. Gabriel said, “how’s it going, Dean?”

Upon hearing his name, Charlotte extricated herself from Cas’s grip and looked at Dean. “Hi, Dean!”

Dean knelt to her level, Charlotte throwing her little arms around him. Dean hugged back carefully. “Hi, Charlotte.” He glanced up at Gabriel and replied, “I’m doing better now.”

Charlotte giggled and broke off their hug.

The rest of Cas’s friends arrived. Hannah, Samandriel, Meg, and Duma showed up with carry-on bags slung over their shoulders. There were hugs and greetings all around, and Dean offered to drive them to the hotel. They accepted, all of them surprised at Dean’s driving skills. Dean had a hilarious time listening to Cas’s family bicker on the short drive.

Cas helped his family settle into their rooms, then bid them good night.

When Dean and Cas finally returned home, they crashed in bed together, falling asleep instantly.

————

While Cas gave his family a tour of Los Angeles, Dean and his family — Jo and Ellen included — began preparing the wedding venue.

They had chosen a smaller venue, since only close friends and family were invited to attend the ceremony. All other guests were told to attend the reception at one of the venues Cas used regularly for fashion shows. Take out the runway, and they had a fancy reception hall.

Dean made sure all the boxes were ticked off in regards to wedding essentials. Cas and his family deserved this day to catch up and have fun. Besides, Dean willingly wanted to take on the brunt of the responsibility. Cas was busy enough with running a fashion company. Dean didn’t want to be the reason Cas had his first panic attack in almost a year.

He was better. They were better. They were stronger than ever. Dean would do anything to alleviate Cas’s future pain and stress. He would start that unspoken vow by setting up the venues.

Speaking of his vows, Dean couldn’t write anything concrete down. When he got married tomorrow, he would have to speak from the heart. He hoped it went well.

————

Dean and Cas’s rehearsal dinner was attended only by family and friends that would go to the ceremony tomorrow.

They minimized speeches, partly to keep things less embarrassing and partly to keep things moving forward.

The couple wore standard black suits, knowing that tomorrow would be extravagant enough.

Both sides of the family met each other and mingled naturally. Dean and Cas didn’t want to go through the various polite introductions, anyway. The couple merely observed as they ate.

————

Dean hated this tradition.

He stood at Cas’s separate bedroom door, not wanting to sleep alone the night before his wedding.

But Cas had insisted on keeping this tradition. Cas wanted to short circuit Dean’s brain and reduce him to a stuttering mess upon walking down the aisle. At least that was Dean’s working theory.

“Well,” Cas murmured, “I’ll see you up there.”

Dean sighed. He didn’t want to leave Cas. He liked sleeping next to Cas. This was going to suck. But once Cas’s mind was made up, it was extremely difficult to change it. Dean said, “I have a request.”

Cas smiled. “I expect I know what it is.”

Castiel palmed the sides of Dean’s head, his thumbs resting next to Dean’s ears. Dean placed his hands on Cas’s hips. Cas arched into Dean’s body, kissing him like their lives depended on it. It was the kind of kiss that people dreamed of, but rarely felt. It was the kind of kiss that had teenage girls screeching and squealing after experiencing it for the first time. It was the kind of kiss that signified the end of the beginning, the start of a new chapter, a new stage of life.

This was the last kiss they would share as an engaged couple, their last kiss before marriage. This was their last kiss before they were in front of the people they cared about, sealing their vows and becoming married, completely committed in every way to each other.

Dean and Castiel withdrew from each other slowly, savoring the seconds until their lips fell away and they were parted, no longer one.

Cas held onto Dean, and Dean held onto Cas. They looked into each other’s eyes, everything they couldn’t express with words contained in their irises.

The silence between them stretched. Cas said softly, “I’ll see you tomorrow.”

Dean tasted Cas’s sugary lips on his tongue. Cas always tasted sweet, like honeysuckle. “Good night,” Dean murmured.

“Good night.” With a parting smile, Cas slipped out of Dean’s embrace and shut the bedroom door behind him.

Cas laid his back against the door and touched his lips, closing his eyes and exhaling like a teenage girl.

That kiss. Fuck.

That was enough fuel to fantasize about until the wedding tomorrow.

On the other side of the door, Dean exhaled deeply, still feeling Cas’s lips on his. He walked over to his room. He waited until he was in his room to sigh like a teenager and touch his lips in awe.

————

Sleep was fitful for both Dean and Cas.

Neither of them realized how much they relied on each other’s presence in bed until now.

They both still travelled. They couldn’t be with each other all the time. Usually, though, they would both pass out in their separate beds in separate places from sheer exhaustion.

But this night in particular was difficult for both of them.

————

Cas finally awoke to the sound of his smartphone chiming from a text message.

Feeling decently rested for today’s packed schedule, Cas stretched and eased himself into full awareness. He reached for his smartphone and opened the text messaging app.

Dean: Good morning, baby.

Castiel smiled widely. Even when Dean wasn’t beside him, he was there.

Cas: Good morning, sweetheart.

Dean: Five hours and counting <3

Cas snorted at Dean’s use of old text language. They had perfectly good emojis. Oh well. It was endearing, anyway.

Cas: How did you sleep?

Dean: Not as well as when I’m with you :(

Cas: Me neither :(

Castiel laughed at himself before pressing send. Stupid silly sad faces.

Dean: Ready for this?

Cas: If you mean I’m ready to be all lovey dovey today, then yes. Are you?

Cas imagined Dean snickering in his room, still curled up under the covers in his own bed, just like Cas was.

Dean: Of course. I’ve been waiting for this since I was a little girl.

Castiel laughed uproariously, smothering the loudness in his pillow. He cradled his smartphone in his hands, taking a few beats for his laughs to taper off.

Cas: Me too, babe.

Cas imagined Dean’s bright grin, his real one, not the one he plastered on his face for the paparazzi.

Dean: What are you wearing?

Cas almost threw his smartphone across the room in disgust. He rolled his eyes instead.

Cas: Nothing. I sleep naked when you’re not around.

Dean easily detected his sarcasm.

Dean: Ha ha. Thanks for the lovely image, though.

Cas: You’re welcome, baby.

Dean: Sam’s knocking on my door. Gotta go.

Cas: Look beautiful for me today, babe.

Dean: As you wish. Make yourself look pretty too. <3

Cas: <3

Castiel closed his messaging app after sending a cheesy heart. He heard a knock on his door and crawled out of bed.

————

Cas’s dressing room was packed.

Gabriel, Charlotte, Charlie, Balthazar, Meg, Hannah, Samandriel, and Duma were there, as well as his favorite models, Alex, Patience, and Kaia, and, finally, Dorothy.

A normal person would feel stressed and overwhelmed by having so many people stuffed into one room while preparing. But it only brought Cas comfort. It reminded him of when he lived in government housing for two years with Gabriel. It reminded him of the house that Gabriel now shared with his family, everyone living in close quarters due to a New York City lifestyle. It wasn’t for everyone, but being close to the people Castiel cared about was helpful. Calming, even.

Even if it looked like chaos to the untrained eye, Cas was happy everyone was in the room to support him.

Now, he was getting clear polish painted on his nails. Alex and Kaia insisted, the women giggling along with Patience as they worked.

“You didn’t have to do this,” Cas said.

“We wanted to,” Kaia said quietly.

“You’ve done so much for us,” Patience said. “The least we could do is a mani.”

“You deserve a little pampering today,” Alex added. “You’re a wonderful boss.”

Charlie heard this and gasped. “Am I a wonderful boss too?”

“Of course,” Patience replied. “Our best bosses ever.”

Charlie aww’ed and said, “I’m gonna cry before the wedding.”

Cas huffed as the women laughed. “Try to keep crying to a minimum, please.”

Dorothy appeared by Charlie’s side. “I’ll keep an eye on her. Make sure she doesn’t cause a scene.”

Cas chuckled. “You know our dear Charlie well. Thank you.”

“No problem,” Dorothy said. “Want me to help with your hair?”

Castiel and Dorothy hadn’t spent much time together outside of a professional setting. Charlie was dating her, yet the redhead kept Dorothy all to herself.

Cas replied, “if everyone’s pampering me, then sure.”

Dorothy grinned, Charlie pouting playfully at her girlfriend’s new goal.

As Dorothy got hair products ready, the rest of Cas’s family stopped their hushed conversations.

Charlotte skipped over to his side and grinned at Cas. “Do I look poofy enough, Uncle Cas?”

Castiel looked at Charlotte’s poofy pink flower girl dress. He and Charlie had made it in their free time. It looked wonderful on her, going well with her porcelain skin and chocolate hair and coffee brown eyes.

“You look wonderfully poofy, Char,” Cas said with a beaming grin.

“You look like a little gumdrop,” Hannah cooed.

“An adorable pink gumdrop,” Duma added.

Charlotte jumped up and down excitedly.

“You’re gonna be the prettiest girl there,” Cas promised.

“Everyone’s gonna wanna dance with you, Char,” Gabriel said.

“I’ll make sure of that,” Samandriel said, pretending to look threatening. But since Samandriel was the least threatening person ever, they all laughed.

“That was hilarious, Saman,” Balthazar said, downing a glass of champagne that he probably procured from the venue bar before it opened. Typical.

“I’ll take care of it,” Meg said, making a far more intimidating scary face.

“On that note, let’s get your suit,” Gabriel said to Cas.

Alex, Kaia, and Patience finished Cas’s manicure. Dorothy started on his hair with Charlie lending a helping hand. As Cas’s family and friends did their individual tasks, Castiel hid a content expression.

A short time later, Gabriel arrived with Cas’s pressed suit.

“Whoa,” Charlie said as she ran a comb through Cas’s hair, “no wonder you hid this beauty from even me.”

“Save your compliments until I’m wearing it,” Cas said.

“I’m almost done with your hair,” Dorothy said. “Then, we’re all gonna wait outside the bathroom creepily while you put the suit on.”

Castiel chuckled. He liked Dorothy’s sense of humor. “That’s a fantastic plan.”

————

Castiel stared at himself in the bathroom mirror, utterly in awe of his appearance.

He knew how conceited and self-centered that sounded, but he looked and felt ready to get married today.

His suit was incredible. He knew himself too well. He had done too good of a job creating this with painstaking care and attention to detail.

He had created a navy blue and black floral suit jacket, the blue fabric naturally shiny in contrast to the black velvet roses. Since the suit jacket was a statement in itself, Cas wore a white dress shirt, fitted black slacks, and a simple black bowtie. As Cas examined himself further, he realized that he was luminous. His hair was a stylish form of messy, his eyes glowed a vibrant blue to match his suit jacket, and his clean-shaven tan skin was more lustrous than usual.

Dare he say it, but Castiel Novak thought this was the best he had ever looked in his life.

Cas brought his A game. He hoped Dean would too.

His smartphone pinged with a text message.

Speaking of Dean…

Cas opened his phone to the messaging app.

Dean: You look beautiful.

Castiel narrowed his eyes.

Cas: Are you spying on me?

Dean: No. I just know you look beautiful.

Cas felt a blush rise on his cheeks. He stared at himself in the mirror. The pink coloring made him look even better.

Cas: You look good too, you creep.

Cas could imagine Dean blanching.

Dean: Only good?!

Castiel chuckled.

Cas: Handsome. Sexy. Gorgeous. Hotter than a tamale.

Dean: Thanks, babe <3

Cas absentmindedly wondered what Dean’s suit would look like. Would it be simple or make a statement? He would have to wait only a little longer to find out.

Cas: My family is waiting for me to show off my suit. Gotta go.

Dean: Love you <3

Cas: Love you too <3

Castiel sent off yet another cheesy message and pocketed his phone. He looked himself over one final time and took a breath.

He opened the bathroom door, and the entire room erupted in shrieks.

————

Dean opened his door to see his actor troupe waiting for him.

He said hellos to Kevin, Garth, Eileen, and Billie, then allowed them entry.

“Isn’t your family supposed to be in here with you?” Garth asked.

Dean, only half-dressed, padded around in his olive pants and pale blue dress shirt. “They stepped out. So, what’s up?”

“Lemme see the rest of your suit,” Billie said critically.

Dean eyed her and forked over his matching olive suit jacket and navy blue tie. He watched worriedly as Billie studied the ensemble.

Billie finally declared, “I thought Cas was the only one who was fashionable, but it seems I was wrong.”

“I wasn’t, before,” Dean admitted. “But thank you.”

“So,” Kevin asked, “do you feel nervous?”

“Nope,” Dean said unceremoniously. “Is it weird that I don’t?”

“I think that’s romantic,” Eileen mused. “It means that he’s the one.”

“Translation: you won’t have multiple marriages like it usually goes in California,” Kevin said.

“Thank goodness,” Dean said. “That ain’t me, anyway.”

There was a knock on the door. Bobby, Mary, Jo, Ellen, and Sam entered. Dean introduced them formally to his friends. He told his friends to help set up, leaving him with his family.

“Okay, sorry. Got distracted. I’ll be ready in five,” Dean said, taking his suit jacket and tie and going into the bathroom.

Dean dressed methodically, slipping on his suit jacket and and tying his tie. He put some gel in his hair, careful not to overwork it too much. He ran a comb through it, knowing that his hair had the uncanny ability of looking good no matter what. He scrubbed a hand over his cheeks, glad that he had the foresight to shave off his stubble earlier that day. Dean’s rarely-seen freckles were prominent in the bathroom lights, flecks of gold appearing in his green eyes, his skin more youthful than usual.

He looked hot, he had to admit.

Dean opened the bathroom door before he could stare at himself too critically and find ridiculous flaws in his appearance.

Mary and Jo gasped upon seeing Dean, telling him that he looked handsome. Ellen muttered something about being a pretty boy. Dean smiled at Ellen’s usual comment, a sudden bout of unforeseen emotion filling his insides.

This was his family, and he was getting married to the man of his dreams today. He looked amazing, and couldn’t be happier.

“Gonna cry or something?” Bobby muttered.

Dean kind of wanted to, but he cleared his throat and said firmly, “no.”

“Feel nervous?” Sam inquired.

“Not at all,” Dean said, echoing an earlier sentiment.

Mary sniffled. “I can’t believe my baby is getting married.”

Inwardly pleased, Dean said, “I thought Sammy was your baby.”

Sam harrumphed, pretending to be offended at Mary’s shift in interest.

Mary amended, “you’re both my babies. Only Dean is the baby getting married today.”

Sam rolled his eyes. “Fine. Whatever.”

Mary brushed off Dean’s shoulders, standing in front of him and observing his expression. “You look more ready than I did,” she remarked.

“I am ready, Mom,” Dean said, without a single doubt or fleeting negative thought in his mind.

————

“Ready, Char?”

Charlotte bounced in her ballet shoes, her pink dress as poofy as ever, her arms balancing a wicker basket of flowers effortlessly.

Charlotte smiled at Gabriel and Castiel, her father and her beloved uncle. She focused solely on Cas as she said, “I’m ready.”

————

Dean went up the aisle purposefully, hardly gathering the courage to look at the small crowd of people watching him. He stood by Sam and the priest, hoping that Cas would arrive before he felt awkward.

Less than a moment later, Dean registered Charlotte tossing flower petals as she walked down the aisle.

————

Castiel suddenly heard Gabriel sniffle as they locked arms.

Cas looked over at his older brother, who was trying to reign in his emotions. “Focus on Char. She looks cute, doesn’t she?”

Gabriel nodded, sniffling again and blinking rapidly to hold the tears in. “Alright. You look incredible. Let’s fucking do this.”

Cas grinned. “Hell yeah.”

————

Cas wasn’t meant to play the bridal role in this wedding. But that’s how it turned out, and Dean was instantly glad of it.

As his future walked down the aisle with an unwavering determination, Dean’s heartbeat slowed, his senses startled by the otherworldly creature approaching him.

Dean didn’t know where to begin with his image analysis. It was too much for him to compute all at once.

The simplest way to describe Cas in this moment was to say he was an angel. The most powerful and beautiful and celestial creature that ever graced Dean’s eyesight.

Cas had descended from Heaven and landed on the aisle before Dean, with invisible wings and ethereal skin.

Castiel Novak looked angelic.

And Dean Winchester was wholly unprepared for the sight laid out before him.

He probably looked like a dumbstruck idiot, but he didn’t care. Anyone with eyes could see why Dean was acting this way.

Cas glided to the altar, Gabriel taking his position as Cas stood across from Dean. The couple shared little smiles, their eyes sparkling with unsaid words and love declarations.

It took Dean a moment to resurface from his haze, a moment for the priest’s words to pierce through his mind and absorb them. Dean saved every moment of this in his memory, every time their eyes met and every time they smiled and every time they had a nonverbal conversation.

When it was time for vows, Cas went first.

“I didn’t prepare anything. I know you didn’t either,” Cas began, Dean smiling in affirmation. “Okay. When I met you, I was completely unprepared for you. I mostly kept to myself, and focused on my work. You came out of nowhere and changed my life. I was afraid to open up to you at first, but you were really patient with me, and I’m grateful for that. We wouldn’t be here if you hadn’t done that. You took a chance on me, and now I can’t imagine my life without you. So, the vow part.” Dean took Cas’s hand on impulse. Cas didn’t pull away, both of them already going off-book for a formal marriage ceremony. “I vow to love you with everything I have. I vow to be everything you deserve. And I vow to be there for you, no matter what.”

Dean swallowed a lump in his throat, pushing down his emotions to say his vows.

“Hi, Cas,” Dean said shyly, a slight blush rising on his cheeks. “I’m gonna start by saying you’re my hero.” Cas rolled his eyes. “No, Cas. I’m serious.” Dean smiled genuinely. “I know everything about you, I think.” Cas nodded in affirmation. “Yeah. And I’ve concluded that you’re the strongest person I know, and that makes you a hero in my eyes. I’m so grateful for you. I think I’ll take your vows.” Cas smiled. “I vow to always love you with my whole heart. I vow to take care of you, and be good to you. And I vow to be there for you, whenever you need me.”

Sam handed them the rings. The priest told the couple what to recite as they exchanged rings. Dean received a gold ring, while Cas received a ring of the finest silver money could buy.

The priest told them to kiss. Dean and Castiel leaned in at the same second, their lips melting into each other. They could barely hear the applause and cheers as they embraced.

They had both waited a long time for this kiss. This kiss deserved to be savored. This kiss made everything else fade into the background. This kiss sealed the ultimate promise a couple could make into reality.

Dean and Cas put their everything into it, without making it too intense or indecent.

Dean Winchester and Castiel Novak pulled back from their kiss and smiled sweetly, finally married.

————

Dean drove Cas to their reception just a block away, and decided to do something spontaneous.

Sam advised they should circle around while the families made sure the reception was set up. Dean suddenly recalled something he passed by on a lone drive the other day. He wanted Cas to see it.

Dean’s car reached a stoplight, and he pressed one side of his face against the headrest, staring directly at Cas, his gaze skating across the beautiful man’s angelic face and form-fitting suit.

Cas noticed this, then mirrored Dean’s position from the passenger’s seat. Dean took a hand off the wheel and placed it on Cas’s unoccupied cheek, caressing Cas’s jawline with his thumb.

“Hello, husband,” Dean murmured, the new term of endearment falling from his lips easily, like it had belonged there all this time, waiting to be spoken aloud.

“Hello, husband,” Cas said dreamily. “Where are you taking me?”

Dean smiled. Of course Cas noticed he was in the wrong lane. “Someplace I found. Don’t worry. It’ll only take a few minutes.”

Cas nodded, then the light turned green, the moment broken.

Another few minutes passed before Dean stopped near a park.

Cas furrowed his eyebrows. “What are you up to, Dean Winchester?”

“Dean Winchester-Novak,” Dean corrected with a warm smile. “And I just wanna show you something. Come on.”

Dean got out of the car, glad that there weren’t many people around and there were no cameras anywhere. He went to Cas’s side and opened the car door like a gentleman, Cas blushing profusely at the action. Cas slid his hand into Dean’s as he closed the door and lead him across the grass field.

A blue gazebo came into view. Dean lead Cas inside the gazebo, both of them standing in the middle of it.

Cas surveyed his surroundings. The gazebo provided a nice view of the area, the fields looking greener and the buildings looking shinier. It was an interesting gem of a spot.

“This is romantic,” Cas mused.

“That’s what I was going for.” Dean held Cas’s hands in his own. “I saw this the other day and thought of you.” Dean blushed. “I don’t know why, exactly. I just know that I wanted to kiss you here. Our first kiss as a married couple.”

“We had our first kiss at the altar.”

“That kiss was a promise. This will be our first kiss as a married couple, just because. At least that’s how I see it.”

“I suppose I understand your logic. But I think you just wanna find an excuse to kiss me.”

Dean chuckled. “Maybe a little bit. I wanted us to have something to ourselves today. Things can get so hectic with everyone around.”

“You wanted to do something special between us,” Cas said. “I get it.” Cas rested his forehead against Dean’s, his eyes fluttered shut. He breathed, “can we get to the kissing part now?”

Dean hummed. “Of course.” Dean closed the short distance between their lips, both of them sinking, falling, getting lost and found in each other.

Their kiss went from a single press of lips into multiple pecks, each subsequent kiss getting longer and longer. They held onto each other tightly, keeping every kiss gentle.

Cas finally pulled away, his eyes half-lidded as he looked up at Dean’s flushed face. Watching Dean through his eyelashes, Cas murmured, “is this what being love drunk and lovesick at the same time feels like?”

Dean whispered, “I think so. We also really love each other, so there’s that.”

Cas placed his palms on the lapels of Dean’s suit jacket, clearing his throat and gathering himself. He stared into Dean’s eyes and said softly, “I really fucking love you.”

“I really fucking love you too,” Dean said lowly.

“Can I have one more kiss before tonight?” Cas asked.

“Of course, husband,” Dean said, giving Cas a final long kiss.

————

“We didn’t get to talk much at the rehearsal dinner,” Sam said, “and I think we should.”

Gabriel watched Charlotte dance on Cas’s feet during a slow song. He looked at Dean’s brother, and hated himself for having to fight back a blush.

He didn’t get out often. Sam was attractive. There wasn’t much he could do about this predicament.

Gabriel cleared his throat, keeping his tone even. “Sure. What about?”

“Our brothers are married. Got any likes and dislikes?”

Gabriel took a sip of wine. He needed it if he was going to get through this without embarrassing himself. “Well, I like my daughter. I dislike crime fiction.”

Sam’s mouth curved upwards. “That was a bit random.”

“You’ve probably already heard everything you need to know about me. I’m not as interesting as my brother.”

That was true. Sam knew that Gabriel’s wife died of cancer when Charlotte was two. He knew that Gabriel was an accountant in a nondescript New York City skyscraper, his job expendable. He knew that he lived with his friends and they helped support Charlotte. He knew that Gabriel raised Cas by himself after their parents died.

Sam offered, “I’m not interesting either. I’m just a lawyer.”

Gabriel raised an eyebrow. “You look like...I don’t know, a bodybuilder or something.”

“Thanks?”

Gabriel’s cheeks heated up. “Sorry. That was stupid to say.” He pushed his wineglass away. “I shouldn’t drink this.”

Sam chuckled. “It’s alright. I’m flattered.”

Gabriel chose not to read too much into that. Before Gabriel could fumble for an excuse, the song ended and Charlotte rustled over in her pink gumdrop dress.

His precious little girl.

“Come on, Daddy!” Charlotte held out a hand.

Gabriel smiled awkwardly at Sam and lead his daughter to the dance floor. Gabriel danced instinctively, putting the conversation out of his mind.

————

Dean sat at the bar — not drinking — and observed Cas dancing with Charlotte.

He was transported back to his first trip to New York City. He was in the house that Cas’s family shared, watching in the living room as Cas taught Charlotte to ballroom dance. Music played from Gabriel’s phone, and they both watched Cas murmur instructions to an inquisitive Charlotte.

God, Dean was so in love.

————

At some point in the evening, Dean and Cas’s family and friends started to mingle, gravitating towards one another.

Dean and Cas watched the change as they danced to a faster song. They felt like spies as they observed.

The combinations were interesting. Dean’s actor friends spoke with Cas’s model friends, Balthazar included. Gabriel, holding Charlotte’s hand, spoke with Mary and Bobby. Cas’s family spoke with Sam.

Dean and Castiel were glad that everyone was getting along.

————

Dean’s eyes widened upon seeing a blonde figure in a light pink dress.

Dean grinned. “Claire!”

Claire saw him and beamed. She glided over in her dress, saying hello and hugging Dean tightly.

“I thought you couldn’t come,” Dean said.

“I got out of the dinner party early,” Claire said joyfully, letting go of Dean. “I wouldn’t wanna miss this, even though I’m horribly late.”

“I’m glad you could come,” Dean said genuinely.

Claire looked at his suit and gasped. “You look fantastic!”

“I try,” Dean said bashfully.

“Claire!” Castiel was by them in an instant, a giant grin on his face. “Hey!”

“Hey, Cas!” Claire pulled Cas into a big hug.

“I’m so glad you’re here,” Cas said. “I need more fashionable people to talk to.”

Claire laughed and let go of Cas. “You look absolutely amazing!”

“I know,” Cas said, doing a twirl. “Come on. You gotta meet Dean’s actor friends.”

————

As the night wore on, Dean and Cas finally found each other again after over an hour of being pulled into various conversations.

Who knew that making rounds could be so exhausting?

As if on Dean’s train of thought, Cas greeted Dean with, “Jane Austen was wrong. Turns about the room aren’t flirtatious or simple at all.”

“At last, my Darcy has returned to me,” Dean said airily. “Your Elizabeth wants to leave.”

Cas looked at Dean like he was a treasure chest filled with shining gold and pearls and jewelry. “I can’t believe you got my reference, and you compared us to an iconic couple. You really are the man of my dreams.”

Dean checked his surroundings. Everyone else was preoccupied with something else. He checked his phone. It was fifteen minutes after ten. “Now’s the time to sneak out. Whaddaya say?”

Cas looked around one last time and nodded in agreement.

Like a man stealing away his bride, — or when Dean saved someone from danger in his movies — Dean lead Cas out of the reception hall. Once they got in the car, Cas asked, “can we go home?”

The original plan was to get a hotel room.

Dean smiled. Cas was so romantic. “Yes.”

Dean turned the keys in the ignition.

————

Dean woke to sunlight streaming through his bedroom window. He had forgotten to pull the curtains over the glass completely. Dang it.

Dean’s body ached. He felt naked.

He was naked.

He felt the covers thrown across his legs, a section of his ass exposed to the cold air. He reached his hand out and pulled the sheets up to his hips.

When he tried to moved his other hand, he realized it was trapped. His hand touched warm skin.

Cas.

Memories seeped back into his mind, his eyes fluttering open. Dean’s lip quirked upwards on one side.

Castiel Novak-Winchester. His love. His heart.

His husband.

Last night was…

Dean’s insides set on fire just thinking about it.

Fire. Their love was fire.

Not the kind that burned out easily. Not the kind that disappeared into the coals quickly. Not the kind that lit up the darkness too brightly.

The kind that burned slow. The kind that took forever to extinguish. The kind that was perfectly contained, the perfect amount of heat within it, the perfect amount of brightness. Their fire was eternal.

Dean watched Cas sleep beside him, and felt the weight of the world leave his shoulders.

He felt light. Weightless. But his heart felt so full. It could burst at any moment. The love Dean felt for the man in his bed was too much to contain.

Dean used his pinned arm to caress Cas’s hair, carding the longer strands. Cas would need to cut those, soon.

Cas exhaled unevenly, his head lolling to the side.

Towards Dean.

He had a smile ready as Cas opened his eyes, blinking the cloudiness away and letting Dean’s face come into focus.

Cas smiled instantly. He said gruffly, “staring at me isn’t a good start to our marriage, husband.”

Dean exhaled through his nose, smiling wider. “I couldn’t help myself. You look beautiful this morning, husband.”

“I look beautiful every morning,” Cas corrected matter-of-factly.

“You sure do, baby,” Dean agreed.

————

Dean and Castiel chose to vacation around Europe for their honeymoon.

They travelled from country to country. They viewed tourist traps in disguise and ate like kings.

When they got to Paris, the media found out.

The headline: “Winchester and Novak Wed in Secret Ceremony.”

After that, paparazzi found them across Europe in various happenstances.

Dean and Cas didn’t let it bother them.

————

Castiel and Charlie’s Halloween parties had become legendary.

They had become more and more crowded each year, the guest list expanding and the venue being moved annually to accommodate everyone.

Invitations were hard to come by, and it had become a prestigious event.

It made Cas and Charlie feel like royalty.

After mentioning this to Dean, he came up with a wonderful plan.

Before the party began, Dean snuck in the back of the venue with Balthazar and Meg. While Cas and Charlie were occupied, they hauled two gaudy thrones on one of the side stages.

Well, he and Meg hauled the thrones. Balthazar drank and watched them suffer.

Once the party was in full swing, Dean revealed his present to Cas and Charlie.

A throne for a king, and a throne for a queen.

Charlie gasped and said that she loved it, immediately sitting down and placing a ruby-studded party crown on her head with a megawatt grin.

Cas turned to Dean and said, “you must think you’re so hilarious, huh?”

Dean smiled proudly. “Isn’t it, though?”

Castiel fell into Dean’s arms and kissed him tenderly. They drowned out Charlie’s cheering and pulled away.

Cas admitted, “it’s kinda funny. And romantic.”

Dean declared, “I’ve made you a king officially. Now sit on your throne, put on your crown, and look pretty.”

Cas broke their embrace and sat on the throne. He perched a sapphire-studded crown on his head and asked Dean, “good?”

“Good,” Dean replied. “Want a cocktail?”

Cas batted his eyelashes. “Yes, please.”

Dean leaned down and pecked Cas’s lips before leaving.

“You’re both gross,” Balthazar said, coming out of nowhere.

“I know,” Cas and Charlie said in unison.

They looked at each other and laughed.

————

After five years of wedded bliss, Dean Winchester and Castiel Novak had something to show for it.

Twin baby girls.

The adoption process had taken longer than expected, but they finally had the children they so desperately wanted.

Their names caught both of their attention.

Rose and Violet.

The flower symbolizing passionate love, and Cas’s favorite flower, symbolizing faith.

Love and faith.

Castiel laid on his marriage bed, his little Violet sleeping soundly on his chest. He splayed his palm across her back, cradling her head with the other hand.

She was so beautiful.

Her pale skin and blonde tufts of hair and fat cheeks were the cutest combination ever. Not to mention her impossibly blue eyes whenever she opened them.

Dean snuck inside their bedroom, holding a dazed Rose. Her blonde head was propped on his chest, Dean holding her up with one hand and rubbing her back with the other. Dean shot Cas a heart-stopping smile and carefully placed Rose in her crib. Dean hummed a soft lullaby, Rose closing her eyes fully a moment later. Dean smiled at her for another moment, then went to Cas’s side of the bed.

Knowing that they had to be silent, Dean trailed his thumb down Cas’s cheek as a hello. Then, Dean reached for the peacefully-sleeping Violet, tucking her into his arms slowly but surely. Thankfully, Violet did not stir as Dean walked soundlessly to her crib. He placed her down gently, then glanced back at Cas. The couple shared a smile. Dean looked at their twins one last time.

Another moment, and Dean went to his side of the bed at last. Cas lifted the sheets quietly, and Dean slid under them with a quick rustle. Dean laid on his side, Cas mirroring his position.

They stared at each other wordlessly, wearing matching smiles.

Dean leaned forward and brushed his lips lightly against Cas’s. Since silence was key with sleeping babies so close by, their lip press was quick yet intimate.

They encased their arms around each other as they pulled away. After years of marriage, they still couldn’t keep their hands off each other.

Dean mouthed, “I love you.”

Cas mouthed back, “I love you too.”