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Always, Forever, No Matter What

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“Morning, sunshine,” Cas said, sliding his arms around his husband’s waist and nuzzling his nose against Dean’s neck.

Dean just groaned as he poured himself some coffee.

“Still not awake yet?” Cas asked, smiling slightly. His husband was not a morning person. He pressed his lips to Dean’s neck softly and retrieved his own mug from the cupboard before pouring some coffee for himself.

He smiled as he gripped his mug in both hands, the one Dean had gotten him for their anniversary last year. It was white and had two chibbi figures on it that looked like them, dressed as bumble bees, and holding hands, their names underneath, and on the other side it said “I’m sweet on you.”

He and Dean had been married for ten years now, and it wasn’t always easy, they had their share of fights for sure, but it was worth it. There was lots of laughter and fun too. And they knew that whatever came their way they were going to face it together.

“Dean?” he said, when his husband rubbed his hand across his forehead, squinting his eyes. “Are you okay?”

“I’ve got a really bad headache,” Dean admitted. “I didn’t sleep well last night. I thought coffee would help, but . . .”

Castiel rested a hand on his husband’s back. “Why don’t you go back to bed?” he said.

Dean eyed him. “You gonna handle the kids by yourself?” he asked.

Castiel smirked. “I can manage,” he said. “You look exhausted.”

Just then, their children’s bedroom doors opened and they heard them racing down the hall, squealing and chasing each other.

“Hey, guys, quite down,” Castiel said as they bounded into the kitchen. He caught them by the arms and pulled them to him, crouching down, and they looked at him, catching their breath, their eyes wide.

“Daddy has a headache, okay,” Castiel said softly. “We need you guys to play quietly or you’ll have to go back to your rooms.”

“Papa, what’s a headache?” Four year old Jack asked, tilting his head to the side, his deep blue eyes full of curiosity.

“It means his head hurts,” Nine year old Mary explained, looking at her younger brother.
She turned back to Castiel. “We’ll be quite, Papa.”

Castiel nodded. And Jack walked away, and came back a moment later with a step stool. He went into the kitchen and set it down right in front of Dean, and climbed up on top of it, standing on his tiptoes.

“Hey, buddy,” Dean said, ruffling his son’s dark hair. He was the spitting image of Castiel. “What are you doing?”

“Your head hurts,” Jack said, looking up at his father. “I want to kiss it and make it better.”

And Dean melted. He smiled and leaned over so Jack could reach his head, and his son pressed his tiny lips to his forehead and beamed.

And Dean smiled too. “I’m feeling a little bit better already,” he said. He ruffled his son’s hair again and Jack climbed down, smiling brightly.

“Put your stairs back,” Castiel said, and he looked at Dean, and they gave each other knowing smiles.

“Daddy, will you play princesses with me?” Mary asked Dean.

Dean gave her a sorrowful look. He so desperately wanted to say yes, but his head really was throbbing, and he was exhausted. And Castiel’s offer to go back to bed was sounding better and better. Still, he hated missing out on time with his kids since he only ever got to see them on weekends and for a couple of hours in the evenings between the time he got home from work and when they went to bed.

“Daddy is going back to bed for a couple of hours, Mary,” Castiel said, looking at his husband and deciding for him that that was really what he needed. Dean would be a better father if he got a little bit more sleep. “I can play princesses with you.”

Mary beamed. “Okay,” she said. “Can we paint our nails?”

Castiel smiled. “Sure,” he said.

“Can I play, too?” Jack asked, coming back out of the bathroom.

“Of course,” Castiel said, picking up his son and holding him on his hip. “Hug and kiss Daddy so he can go back to bed, okay?”

Dean walked over to them and kissed his son on the cheek, and then his daughter, and Mary hugged him, and then he placed a kiss on Castiel’s forehead.

“Thank you, Angel,” he said. “Don’t have too much fun without me.” He winked and went back into the bedroom, shutting the door behind him.

“Okay, you guys should use the bathroom first, and eat some breakfast, and then we can play princesses,” Castiel said, setting Jack back down on the floor.

“Can we have a princess tea party?” Mary asked, her eyes growing wide with excitement.

Castiel chuckled. “Sure,” he said.

“With cupcakes?” Jack asked, licking his lips.

Castiel crossed his arms over his chest, eyeing his children. “Let’s compromise and we can do muffins for breakfast and make that part of our princess tea party. How does that sound?”

“Yes,” Mary said, and Jack nodded in agreement.

“Okay. Blueberry muffins coming up,” Castiel said.

He heard the kids in the bathroom, the toilet flushing and the faucet running, and then they were back in the kitchen, eagerly waiting to help him with the muffins.

He let them crack the eggs, and pour the milk, and the oil, and mix the batter, and scoop it into the pan, and he picked Jack up so that he could set the timer on the microwave, and they turned the light on on the stove so that they could watch the magic of the muffins baking inside.

“Okay, it’ll be about 15 minutes before they are done, so that gives us time to get our princess on,” Castiel said, grinning. “Lead the way, Mary.”

They gathered in her room and she opened her trunk of dress up regalia and handed Castiel a pink tiara and some silver clip on earrings shaped like hearts. It took a moment longer to find a bracelet that would fit her father but she managed and gave a very satisfied smile when she did.

“Well, what do you think?” Castiel asked, showing off his attire.

His children chuckled.

“You look very pretty, Papa,” Mary said with a smile.

“My turn,” Jack whined.

“Be patient, Jack,” Castiel said, chuckling slightly, and taking his son into his lap.

Mary picked out a silver tiara for herself, a purple necklace and matching bracelet and ring, and star shaped clip on earrings.

“Okay, Jack, your turn,” she said, stepping aside so that her brother could pick for himself.

And she wasn’t at all surprised at what he chose. Jack was obsessed with Ariel so as soon as he spotted his sister’s green tiara with the mermaid’s picture on it it went straight onto his little head, along with the purple feathered scarf he found and the Ariel ring.

He turned to his father and sister and beamed. “I’m pretty, too,” he said.

“Yes, you are,” Castiel said, smiling, and kissing his son’s head. And they heard the timer going off in the kitchen, signaling that their muffins were done.

“Yay!!” Both children squealed in delight, and raced out of the room.

Mary returned only seconds later to grab her tea set and joined her father and brother at the table.

When breakfast was over and the table had been cleaned off, along with the children's hands and faces, they painted their nails. Mary chose blue, Jack chose pink. That was his current favorite color. And Castiel let Mary paint his nails in rainbow.

And of course they made sure to take pictures to document their morning and to show Daddy later.

Dean yawned and rubbed his eyes when he came out of the bedroom a couple of hours later and saw Castiel on the floor with their children playing Hungry Hungry Hippos.

Jack huffed and crossed his arms over his chest, pouting.

“It’s not fair,” he said. “Mary always get more than me.”

“You are younger, buddy,” Castiel said. “It’s easier for her right now. Why don’t you play on my team.”

Jack looked up at him and nodded, and then sat in his father’s lap.

Mary glanced towards the archway where Dean was standing and beamed. “Daddy!” she said, jumping up to give him a hug, and then winced when she realized that her father might still have a headache.

“It’s okay, baby, I’m feeling better,” Dean said, smiling down at her.

“Can Daddy be on my team?” she asked, looking at Castiel.

Dean grinned at his husband as if to say OH, it’s on, and let his daughter drag him over to the game. He sat down and she sat in his lap.

“Nice outfit, by the way, babe,” Dean said, and winked at his husband.

“Thank you,” Castiel said, puffing out his chest and smiling proudly, still adorned in his princess gear.

“We could find you some, too, Daddy,” Mary said, excitedly.

Dean chuckled. “Maybe later,” he said.

“Should we make this interesting?” he asked, looking at his husband, his green eyes glistening mischievously.

“Like how?” Castiel said, raising an eyebrow. “It’s Hungry Hungry Hippos, Dean. How do you make it interesting? Keep in mind there are children in the house.”

Dean laughed. “I’ll keep it G rated, Princess,” he said. “Losers have to kiss the winners.”

Castiel grinned and the kids groaned.

“You guys are just doing that on purpose because you want to kiss,” Jack said, making a face.

Dean and Cas both laughed.

Dean and Mary won.

And Castiel kissed his daughter, and then his husband.

And Jack groaned as he pressed his lips to his sister’s cheek, but he was smiling when he pulled away, and so was she.

And Dean grabbed his son and kissed him on the cheek, and tickled him until he was crying from laughing so hard.

They went to the park later, and they had to break up a few fights between the kids as the day went on, because reality, but when Castiel and Dean crawled into bed that night and lay next to each other holding hands, Dean thanked his husband for letting him rest, and for being the amazing father that he was, and for loving him.

And Castiel kissed his husband. And Dean kissed him back. And that kiss held a promise of minutes, and hours, and days, and years to come, knowing that they would always be together, that they would always take care of each other, that no matter what life threw at them, whether it was a headache, or a temper tantrum, or a bad day at work, or something much worse, they were in it for the long haul. Always. Forever. No matter what.

“I love you, Dean,” Cas said softly, holding his husband close.

“I love you, too, Cas,” Dean said.

And they fell asleep in each other’s arms.