Gabriel knew the end was nigh. His brothers succeeded in making the vessels be born. It was several hundred years too soon. These boys were not supposed to be born this soon.
The unfairness niggled at Gabriel until he had to check on them. See if they were really like his brothers.
Gabriel flew to where he could sense the souls of the two vessels. The older one, Michael’s vessel, his soul was so bright Gabriel had to squint to see it. The younger one, Luci’s vessel, his soul was surprising. It glowed brightly, but the taint on it from the demon blood he was fed as a baby dimmed it.
Gabriel would bet that if the demon blood was not there, the younger’s vessel would outshine his brother’s.
Gabriel made himself invisible as he watched the kids. They were kids. The older one was no more than seven years old. The younger was three.
“Dee.” Luci’s vessel called. “Where going?”
“Sammy, I have to go to school. Dad should be back soon.” The seven year old ran his hand through the younger’s hair.
“Okay.” The three year old frowned.
“Bye Sam.” The older one left the dingy room they were in.
Only then did Gabriel realize where he was standing. The room had mold growing on the ceiling. Faded and stained floral curtains hung from a tiny unwashed window. The beds looked broken and extremely uncomfortable and the bathroom was no bigger than a linen closet. In all it would not be a place to leave his dog, let alone children.
Sam toddled around the room. He pulled out a ratty old picture book. He laid on the filthy carpet and opened the book. Sam talked out loud, making up a story for the pictures in the book.
Gabriel melted. He always had a soft spot for kids. It seemed Sam was no exception.
He’s Lucifer’s vessel. Gabriel tried reminding himself. Don’t get attached. He will destroy the world someday.
All of that flew out the window as Sam looked up. He frowned. Sam closed his eyes and the sweetest prayer Gabriel ever heard went through the prayer link.
“Dear angels. Please keep Dee and Dad safe. They are always getting boo boos and Dad sometimes is mean but I love them very much. Dee says you are not real, but I believe. Amen.”
Gabriel knew that none of his brothers would care. Sam was, to them, an abomination at best. At worst, he was nothing. If they could kill him they would. They probably had a good laugh about Sam’s prayer.
Gabriel grew determined. He would watch over Sam. Keep him safe. No one would touch the kid until he reached adulthood. Gabriel would make sure of that. It starts now.
Gabriel kept watch over Sam. The toddler had read his book for one hour. Going back to the beginning three times and making up a different story each time.
At ten in the morning he yawned and tried to get up on a bed. He was too little to reach the lip. Sam grabbed a blanket off the bed. He pulled with all his might and finally got the threadbare blanket free. Sam laid it out on the floor and curled up on it to take a nap.
Once Sam was out, Gabriel made himself visible. He brought a blanket from his home to him. He draped it over Sam.
Gabriel snapped and the floor was cleaner than it has ever been. Gabriel sat down next to the toddler and watched him. It was not creepy. He just wanted to study the human that would become his brother’s vessel.
Gabriel snorted. He was lying to himself. Gabriel wanted to make sure the little kid was safe.
Gabriel was lost in thought about the future and didn’t notice when his hand began stroking the little boy’s back to help him sleep better. He also didn’t notice when Sam’s eyes opened.
He definitely noticed when Sam moved quickly away from Gabriel.
“Who are you?” He demanded. “My dad and Dee will hurt you if you hurt me.”
Gabriel held his hands up in peace. “I’m Gabriel. I’m just here to keep an eye on you.”
Sam’s tiny face lit up. “Like the angel? Gabriel’s my favorite. He helps kids and fights for what’s right. Like a superhero but better because he’s an angel.”
Gabriel hid his touched look. It has been awhile since he acknowledged his true self. “Yeah, kiddo. Like the angel.”
“Cool.” Sam grinned. He face fell. “I’m hungry.” Sam stood up and walked over to the small… it couldn’t even be called a kitchen.
Gabriel stood up and looked through the cupboards. “There is…” Nothing. There was nothing in the cupboards. “What would you like to eat?”
“I really want some chicken nuggets but we don’t have any. I only get them at this place were we drive and get our food in the car.” Sam explained.
Gabriel snapped and a steaming plate of good chicken nuggets appeared on the table. “Anything else?”
Sam studied his with his hazel eyes. “You really are an angel. Do you have wings? Can I see them?”
Gabriel gave a short laugh. “Maybe someday, kiddo. Just not today. Do you want anything else to eat?” Gabriel helped Sam up to the table.
Sam looked at the plate with happiness. “No.” He turned his bright eyes on Gabriel. “These are fine.”
Gabriel swore that he would do anything to keep that happy look in Sam’s eyes. “No fries? No cooked broccoli? No carrots?” He joked.
Sam paused. “Broclie and carrots sound good.”
Gabriel snapped and a bowl of cooked veggies appeared on the table. Sam ate until he was full. Gabriel helped him down to the floor.
Sam held up his book. “Read to me?”
Gabriel sat down on the floor with Sam in his lap. He opened the picture book and read the words.
After the book was read two times through, Sam got up and paced around the room. He looked at a few things or poked at something else.
At about two pm, Sam approached him. “Help me?” He held up his arms for Gabriel to pick him up.
Gabriel was unsure but he picked up Sam and placed him on his hip. Sam laid his head on Gabriel’s shoulder.
“Do you know any songs?” Sam murmured sleepily. “Dee sings Hey Jude but I want a different song.”
Gabriel thought for a moment. If he sang a normal song, Sam would be happy but his grace pulsed at the thought. Gabriel settled on a tune he used to sing his little brother and sisters to sleep. Back before Luci got kicked out of Heaven.
Gabriel began singing in his first language. He swayed across the floor and rubbed Sam’s back.
Sam hummed and his eyes drooped. “Night, G’briel.” Sam slurred sleepily.
“Sleep well, Kiddo.” Gabriel murmured in English.
How could this sweet kid be the devil’s vessel? It was impossible.
Gabriel held Sam until he could sense the older’s soul getting closer. Gabriel laid Sam down on the floor with the threadbare blanket.
Gabriel brushed some hair from the boy’s face. Gabriel made himself fly away as Dean entered the room.
Gabriel felt more than heard the prayer. He flew to Sam and made himself invisible when he sensed the souls of an adult male and the older boy.
Gabriel’s grace raged when he saw what was happening.
The adult male was shouting at the little boy. “Angels are not real! It must have been something else! You will stop talking about this right now Sam, or you won’t like the consequences.”
Gabriel heard the threat in the adult’s voice. Alcohol seeped from this man’s pores. Gabriel felt this man’s heartbreak.
It seemed the cupids did too well of a job. Three years later and this man was still grieving.
The man’s heartache was the only reason he didn’t go all angel on Sam’s dad.
“But I saw him. He gave me chicken nuggets. The good kind. He sang me to sleep. He read my book to me, twice.” Sam set his jaw.
Gabriel sighed. He snapped his fingers and froze time. He hated to do this. It went against his very grace. Gabriel needed to erase Sam’s memory of him. It wouldn’t do for Sam to know about the existence of angels before it was time.
Gabriel reached for Sam’s forehead but his grace roiled in protest. Gabriel growled with frustration. He can’t do that to Sam. Someone needed to make sure he was alright.
Gabriel lit up with an idea. “Someone, or something?” He muttered.
Gabriel snapped and made an illusion that was only visible to Sam. Gabriel made the construction as kid friendly as he could. Jeans, a striped yellow shirt and rainbow suspenders was his outfit. Gabriel made him rotund and upbeat. Gabriel made it so the construction could make food appear and take care of Sam.
The last thing Gabriel did was put in alarm system. If Sam was ever in danger, Gabriel would be alerted.
“Name, name, name.” Gabriel wracked his brain for a good name to call the construction. A faint memory tickled Gabriel’s mind. “Sully. After a good friend of mine.”
Now that Gabriel’s grace was satisfied, Gabriel reached out and touched Sam’s forehead. He tucked the memories of the day spent with Gabriel away. Not gone, just buried so deep he won’t remember. Gabriel suggested the argument they were having was of Sam being curious about his mom.
“Goodbye Sam.” Gabriel snapped. Time resumed. Sully appeared to Sam. Gabriel flew off.
They would meet again someday way in the future. At a college in Ohio, Gabriel and Sam will be reunited and so their story begins.