Title: All These Words I Don’t Just Say
Pairing: Castiel/Dean Winchester
Warning: Post-“Abandon All Hope.”
Word Count: 10,200
Summary: This was not just about two friends making each other feel good. This was more.
Notes: Written for . A sequel to Beneath the Sheets of Paper. Title is from “Nothing Else Matters” by Metallica.
Notes2: The version that was originally posted is not what I intended to be the final version. There are some small changes throughout.
The plan, as Dean outlined it, was pretty simple: check into one of the small motels off the Strip, pose as health inspectors to get inside the Florenzia itself, and find out the ghost’s story by midnight New Year’s Eve. “Working vacation,” he said. “We’ll bring down the spook and ring in the New Year in Vegas.”
Sam rolled his eyes and readjusted his legs against the dash board. “You can’t convince me to try out the Bunny Ranch.”
“I wasn’t even thinking about the Bunny Ranch,” Dean said. He supposed he could, if he wanted to—Castiel hadn’t been around since the night Lucifer raised Death, and even though Dean called him every few days Castiel never answered the phone or returned the messages Dean left.
Dean supposed they were on a break. Or Castiel was too busy to make any time for him. And yeah, he shouldn’t sulk because his angelic boyfriend was too busy trying to find God to stop by for some nookie, but it was hard not to feel neglected.
“So is Cas meeting us there?” said Sam, spookily close to what Dean was thinking, and Dean scowled at him.
“He hasn’t been around for a while.”
“Did you two have a fight?”
“I wish I knew,” Dean said and then put on his sunglasses as the setting sun glared off the highway.
What Dean had not taken into account was how many people spent New Year’s Eve in Las Vegas, so they finally checked into a small motor court in Henderson, far from the heart of the city. The weather was cooler than either than they had expected, but still far warmer than Sioux Falls and Dean found himself looking longingly at the swimming pools he glimpsed through people’s back fences as they drove from the residential area to the Strip.
The Florenzia was a mega-hotel, in business since the Fifties. Its smaller original building, styled after a Tuscan villa, housed the casino and some of the restaurants and shops, while the larger towers could be reached by crossing a garden and complex of pools. They were also Tuscan villa-esque, if a Tuscan villa had had a series of steroid shots and a huge growth spurt.
Dean paused in front of an advertisement for the slot machines. It offered a jackpot of ten thousand dollars as well as a stay over New Year’s Eve in one of their suites, and Dean grinned at Sam. “Change of plan.”
“Dean, the odds are huge against winning that.” He gestured to the flashing sign. “It’s just to get people in to play the slots.”
“So we’ll play the slots. If it doesn’t work,” he slapped Sam’s back, “then we’ll play health inspectors.”
“Have you got any cash?” said Sam in a reasonable tone.
“Enough to get started. Just trust me, Sam, okay?”
Sam sighed and shook his head a little, then said, “I’m going to try out the craps table instead. That at least takes some skill.” He stuck his hands in his pockets and strode through the rows of slot machines to the tables.
Dean shrugged, told himself Sam didn’t know what he was missing, and fed the first bill into a slot machine.
The problem with slot machines became apparent within the hour. Slots were boring. Slots required no skill or play, just feeding money into the machine and pulling the lever. Dean leaned his head on his hand and struggled to keep his eyes open, despite the flashing neon lights and bells, as he pulled the lever yet again and it came up bar, bar, lemon.
Dean sighed and rubbed his eyes, and then smiled when his cell phone rang. He didn’t check the caller ID—it had to be Sam, telling him he was bored stupid and they should go to a strip club. “Sammy,” he said, holding the phone to his ear.
“It is Castiel,” said Castiel.
Dean plugged his ear and wished he were anywhere but this casino. “Cas. Hey. Where have you been? Where are you?”
“I have been traveling. Where are you?”
“Las Vegas, in a hotel called the Florenzia,” Dean said, “and what do you mean you’ve been traveling?” but Castiel had already hung up. Dean growled, put his phone away, and after a few minutes saw Castiel striding towards him through the casino, his raincoat billowing.
Dean swallowed hard, suddenly wanting him so much and missing him so much it actually, physically hurt. He put on the carefree smile he could summon. “Are you sure you should be here, Cas? This whole city is a den of iniquity.”
Castiel furrowed his eyebrows a moment. “Would you prefer that I leave?”
“No,” Dean said. “No. Of course not.” He pushed the chair at his side to Castiel. “Join me. Watch me lose money for a while.”
“Why?” Castiel said and perched on the chair.
“Because this is purely a game of chance and chance hasn’t gone my way yet. See, what you do is put some money in here,” he slid in another bill, “pull this lever,” he pulled it, “and hope you get three of a kind.” The display showed grape, banana, bar, and Dean threw up his hands. “Like that.”
“Why are you trying to win this game?”
“Because if we win the jackpot, we’ll get to stay in a suite here at the hotel, and that will make hunting down the ghost a lot easier.” He pulled the lever again. Grape, grape, cherries. Dean sighed. “Poker and blackjack and roulette, even, that’s about skill and bluffing, but these are just pulling the handle and hoping.”
“You want three of a kind,” Castiel said.
“Yeah. But you can’t just make that happen. You have to play a lot to win anything significant, which is why you get people who play for hours and hours on end–” He nodded to one woman a few chairs away, who looked like she’d been there since the day after Christmas, mechanically feeding quarters into the machine and pulling the lever. “You have to keep playing and hope.” He pulled the lever again, and then blinked when it came up cherry, cherry, cherry. He turned to Castiel and raised his eyebrows as his machine lit up, bells ringing and lights flashing, and quarters spilled out into the tray.
Castiel shrugged. “It seemed simplest.” His hands twitched and Dean put his hand over both of Castiel’s until the twitching stopped.
“Thanks,” Dean said quietly. “That speeds things up a lot.”
“You’re welcome, Dean.” He started to say something more, but by now the casino officials were on their way to join them, presumably to verify the jackpot. Castiel gently withdrew his hands from beneath Dean’s. “I’ll be in the lobby. This place gives me a headache.”
He slid off the stool and walked away. Dean watched him go, and then turned on the charm for the casino officials.
“Oh my God,” Dean said when he saw the suite, and the hotel manager, a balding round-faced fellow named Hotchkins, smiled tolerantly. The suite was round everywhere and soft gold, and smelled like lavender. There was a bar and a little sunken sitting area in front of the gas fireplace, and the bellboy opened another compartment over the fireplace to reveal the enormous TV. There were two bedrooms, as well, and Sam dropped his backpack in one and hung up his jacket, and then flopped onto the sofa in the sitting area and stretched out his limbs. Dean put his duffel bag in the other, tipped the bell boy—he could afford it, why not—and nodded to the bed while grinning at Castiel. He did not say “I am going to fuck you so hard in this bed,” but Castiel blushed nonetheless.
“Well, if you gentlemen are settled,” Mr. Hotchkins said, “I’ll leave you to your evening.”
“Thanks!” Dean said cheerfully, and then glanced up when the overhead lights flickered.
Mr. Hotchkins’s eyes widened a moment. “I’ll talk to our electrician,” he said hastily, backing out of the room. “Don’t worry about a thing.” He shut the door.
Sam twisted on the sofa so he could look at Castiel and Dean. “I think they gave us the haunted room.”
“I think you’re right.” Castiel looked around the room, frowning, and Dean asked, “Do you see anything, Cas?”
“Not yet,” Castiel said softly. “But it feels…sad.”
“Should we get another room?”
“No. I don’t think it’s dangerous.”
“A ghost would run away from you, wouldn’t it?” Sam said.
“An evil one, maybe.” Castiel took off his raincoat slowly and hung it in the closet. “I would not say this spirit is evil.”
“Just sad,” said Dean.
“Yes. Very sad.” He stood there awkwardly, tie askew and suit rumpled, and Dean crossed the room and put his arms around him simply, pulling him close and leaning into him. Castiel sighed and tucked himself against Dean, and as Dean rubbed his back he could feel tension drain from Castiel’s body.
“Room service, Sammy?”
“Yeah. Toss me the menu?”
Dean hunted on the bar top with his free hand and gave it to Sam. “I just want a cheeseburger.”
“They have a bleu cheese burger,” Sam said, scanning the pages.
“Cheese is cheese. Cas?”
“Hm?” Castiel stirred as if Dean had woken him. “Oh. Soup of some kind.”
“They have French onion, potato and chicken noodle.”
“Potato.” He leaned his head on Dean’s shoulder again.
Dean rested his cheek on Castiel’s hair a moment, then said, “Hey. We’ve got a balcony. Come out with me.”
Castiel nodded, so Dean led him by the hand through the glass door to the balcony. The city was spread out before them, flashing with multicolored neon lights, the cars and tourists too far away to hear. Dean could see the fountains of the Bellagio, and he leaned against the wrought iron balustrade to watch the display for a few minutes.
Finally he turned back to Castiel. “Where were you?”
“I was traveling, as I told you.”
“And you couldn’t call? Couldn’t text me once to let me know you’re okay?” Dean winced at himself, hating the nagging tone in his voice. But he’d been scared, dammit. He’d worried.
Castiel lowered his head, leaning on the balustrade beside Dean. “I didn’t know what to say. Your friends died. If I hadn’t been trapped, I might have been able to save them.”
“Dude, it wasn’t your fault,” Dean said.
“Wasn’t it?” Castiel looked at him. “If I had stayed with them I might have been able to destroy the hell hounds, and Jo never would have been wounded, and she and Ellen—” His voice quivered and he looked away again, out at the city. “They were good women, Dean.”
“You don’t need to tell me that. I know. They were good women and good hunters and they fell like soldiers, and I never forget, not for one second, that this is a war.” He took hold of Castiel’s arm and said, unable to keep the urgency out of his voice, “And I need to know that you are okay. If you don’t want to talk to me we don’t have to talk, but I need to know you’re okay.”
Castiel looked down at Dean’s hand and then out at the city again.
Dean dropped his hand and exhaled. “I wanted to see you at Christmas. That’s why I kept calling you.”
“I was in Montana.” He crossed his arms over his chest. “I spent Christmas in a homeless shelter. I thought my Father might be there. He was not, but the volunteers were very kind.”
“Yeah,” Dean murmured and blinked a few times. Someone must be smoking nearby and getting ash into his eyes, they were stinging so much. “So why’d you call me today?”
“I missed you.” He looked at Dean, eyes very wide in the dark. “I wanted you. I do want you.”
“Well, hell, Cas, I want you too,” Dean said softly, and they both leaned closer to each other until their foreheads met. He whispered, “It’s New Year’s Eve tomorrow. I want to kiss you at midnight.”
“I would love for you to kiss me at midnight.”
Dean moved a little closer. “Don’t run off like that again, please.”
“All right, Dean.”
“So, are we okay?” He opened his eyes so he could see Castiel’s face. “Can I kiss you yet?”
Castiel’s gaze grew tender. “Yes, you may,” he said, so Dean took hold of his face and kissed him.
They parted when the balcony door opened and Sam said, “Food’s here.” Dean was pretty okay with being interrupted, though: he knew Castiel was going to stick around. They’d get back to it soon enough.
Castiel ate in silence while Dean and Sam talked the job, and when he was done he put his spoon in his bowl and said, “I have another idea.”
“It’s a poltergeist, right?” said Sam.
“I am not certain you are dealing with one entity.” Castiel frowned, his forefingers steepled against his lips. Dean tried not to stare. “The spirit in this room is grieving and angry. I am not certain she is the one who has been hurting people.”
Dean tore his gaze from Castiel’s mouth. Damn, he could not wait until they could be alone. “There’s two spirits in this hotel?”
“At least two. This hotel is very old. Many people have died, and not all of them have moved on.”
Dean tapped his fingers against his forehead in exasperation. “How are we going to exorcise all of them? We can’t stay here for all the time it’s going to research the deaths and find their bodies—”
“I know a ritual,” said Castiel. “I need salt and a white candle.”
“We have those,” Sam said. “And that’s all it takes?”
“I will have to say the correct incantation, but yes, that’s all it takes.”
“Damn,” said Dean, “we need you on every job.” He beamed at Castiel and Castiel smiled faintly back.
Dean fetched the supplies from the Impala and when he got back to the suite, Sam and Castiel had cleared a space in the middle of the sitting room. Castiel drew a symbol on the carpet with the salt and then stood in the middle of it. Dean turned out the lights. “Should we be in the circle too?”
“They won’t harm you while I’m present,” Castiel said. “Just stay still.”
“That’s not entirely reassuring, Cas.”
Castiel glanced at him. “It’s not meant to be.” He lit the candle and started reciting the incantation in Enochian. Dean felt Sam shudder, and wrapped his hand around Sam’s elbow.
As Castiel recited, Dean felt the room grow colder and colder, and when he breathed out his breath froze in the air. “Cas,” he said softly and Castiel looked at him and didn’t stop the incantation. He held the candle in a steady hand.
There was a rush of cold wind and there they were, flickering gray shapes, some more human than others. None of them spoke, not out loud, though from Castiel’s face it seemed he could hear whatever they had to say. He nodded slowly, gaze traveling from spirit to spirit, his compassionate expression never changing, until each of them had their say.
Finally he said softly, “Go. Go home now. It is time to rest.”
One of the spirits lifted its fists as if it were beating against a wall, its face flickering like a broken piece of film. Castiel didn’t flinch. “Go,” he said again. “Your place is not here.” The wind blew colder through the suite. Dean held tight to Sam’s arm but he was poised to run to Castiel if he needed help. He had no idea what he would do if Castiel did need him, but he’d do something.
Castiel said, his voice low and filled with authority, “You will disperse. You will harm no one. You will go.” He lifted the candle to his lips and blew out the flame.
The shapes disappeared like ash borne away by the wind, and the cold fled the room with them. For a moment Castiel stayed straight-backed and military-stern, and then his shoulders slumped and he sighed and wavered a moment. He grabbed at the nearest bar stool to steady himself. Dean let go of Sam’s arm and went to Castiel.
“Hey,” he said, and Castiel smiled at him faintly and let Dean pull him close.
“Guys,” Sam said, “I don’t feel so good,” and pitched forward onto the carpet.
“Sam!” Dean cried out and knelt at his side. He rolled Sam onto his back with some difficulty and touched his neck. “I can’t find a pulse,” he said and bent over Sam to breathe into his mouth.
“Wait.” Castiel knelt at Sam’s side too and laid his hand on Sam’s forehead. At his touch Sam’s chest heaved as he inhaled, and after a moment more he opened his eyes and groped for Dean’s hand. Dean gave it and held his hand tight, and Castiel continued stroking his face.
“What happened?” Sam gasped.
“I think you had a seizure,” Dean said. He said to Castiel, “What did you do? Did you heal him?”
“No,” Castiel said and removed his hand. “Only calmed him. Sam, there’s something—someone—tied to you, and she refuses to leave.”
“Lucifer,” Sam said and slowly sat up.
“No, someone else.” He frowned. “I can’t find a name.”
“Fuck, just what I need,” Sam muttered and leaned his elbows on his knees. Dean patted his back and looked at Castiel, but Castiel was watching Sam and stroking his hair to soothe him.
“Maybe you should sleep,” Dean said. “You’ll feel better in the morning.”
“You’re safe,” Castiel added and Sam squinted at him, confused, before he sighed and pushed himself to his feet.
“Okay,” he said. Dean helped him shamble to the bedroom and get into bed, and then went back to Castiel. The angel knelt on the carpet, picking salt out of the nap, and he looked up at Dean.
“You look tired.”
“Thanks,” Dean said and let himself collapse onto the sofa. He rubbed his eyes and tilted his head from side to side, and then smiled when Castiel joined him and pulled him back so that he rested against Castiel’s chest, between his legs.
“What’re you doing?” he muttered when Castiel began stroking his hair.
“Hoping to make you feel better,” Castiel said softly and kissed the back of his neck. “I’ve missed you, Dean.”
“I’ve missed you too, babe.” He put his hand on Castiel’s knee. “What was that about Sam? Who’s watching over him?”
“I can’t tell if it’s benevolent or otherwise,” Castiel said. He rested his chin on Dean’s shoulder. “It is fierce, though.”
“Ruby,” Dean muttered.
Castiel shook his head. “She was destroyed. Something stronger than mere possession. But I can’t say for certain. She wouldn’t tell me her story. For now I believe she is guarding him.”
“Great,” Dean said and sighed, and relaxed against Castiel’s body. “Nothing we can do about it now, is there?”
“Not without hurting him, I think.”
“Okay,” Dean said. “And the others? They told you their stories?’
“Yes.” He sighed. “So much betrayal. The girl who died in this room loved a married man and got with child by him. He told her he would leave his wife for her.”
“Instead he killed her,” Dean said. These kinds of stories always ended that way.
“Yes. I know the darkness in men’s hearts shouldn’t surprise me anymore but it still does.”
Dean twisted back to look at his face. “We’re not all bastards.”
Castiel smiled a little and stroked his forehead. “No, not all of you. Some of you shine so brightly.”
Dean took Castiel’s hand and kissed his palm. “I thought this job was going to take longer. We’d have to research and find mortal remains and ask questions…and then you took care of it all by yourself.”
“I saw no reason to wait, since I had a solution.”
“One more reason to keep you around.” He held Castiel’s hand to his chest. “Tomorrow night’s New Year’s.”
“You mentioned that.”
“You know what that means?”
“It means a new year begins at midnight.”
Dean chuckled. “It means it’s a party all night long, up and down the Strip.”
“It’s a party right now, out there,” Castiel observed.
“It’ll be an even bigger party tomorrow. Would you like to go out? Have that date I promised you?” They’d been too busy for dates in the past few months, and then Castiel had been avoiding him—something Dean still didn’t quite understand, since he’d hardly known the Harvelles—but it was time to make up for that. One night would be okay. “Concluding with that midnight kiss.”
“I would like to kiss you at midnight,” Castiel said thoughtfully. He stroked Dean’s chest. “I would like to kiss you tonight.”
“I intend to kiss you tonight,” Dean said. “I intend to kiss you a lot.” He turned and knelt between Castiel’s legs, and pushed him back against the sofa arm. Castiel looked up at him with wide and darkened eyes, and put his hands on Dean’s chest as Dean kissed him. His legs came up to wrap around Dean’s hips and he arched up, making Dean groan. “Cas,” he whispered and moved off the couch. Castiel followed and pulled Dean to him again, kissing him fiercely, before he moved away and started dropping clothes as he walked to the bedroom.
Dean watched him until Castiel started to take off his trousers, and then he ran into the bedroom and scooped him up, making the angel yelp. He threw Castiel onto the bed and himself on top of him, and they wrangled for position and to get off each other’s clothes. Castiel pulled Dean’s t—shirt over his head and kissed his chest, and Dean threw his arms over his head and moaned happily.
“You wanna do all the work tonight, baby?” he said and raked his hand through Castiel’s hair.
“Yes,” Castiel said softly as he pushed off Dean’s jeans. He undressed Dean quickly, kissing his legs, and licked inside his thighs as Dean gasped and shook. Castiel glanced up at him, heat in his eyes, and licked up Dean’s thighs before he propped Dean’s legs over his shoulders.
“God,” Dean whispered and held Castiel’s shoulder, his other arm still over his head. “Is this makeup sex? Are we having makeup sex? I think I could like makeup sex.”
“Shush,” Castiel murmured and took Dean’s dick into his mouth. Dean nearly shot off the bed and his fingers dug deeper into Castiel’s shoulder.
“Fuck, Cas,” he muttered and pressed his thumb to Castiel’s lips. “I could watch you do that all night long.”
Castiel pulled off his mouth and licked Dean’s thumb, then lowered his mouth around Dean’s prick again. He sucked Dean slowly, holding Dean’s legs over his shoulders, and Dean closed his eyes and came.
Castiel kissed his hip and moved away to sit on the edge of the bed. He wiped his mouth with the back of his hand. He looked pale in the single light of the bedside lamp, and his shoulders slumped and his head tilted forward as if he couldn’t hold it up a moment longer.
“Hey,” Dean said and knelt behind him. He held Castiel around his chest and kissed the back of his neck. “You okay?”
“Yes. I am more weary than I thought.” He turned in Dean’s arms and tucked himself against him, but when Dean brushed his hand down Castiel’s belly and wrapped it around his cock he was hot and hard, wet at the head. Dean stroked him and Castile moaned, lips against Dean’s throat.
“I’ll put you to bed,” Dean whispered and moved Castiel onto his back. “And you can have a lovely night’s sleep.” His hand moved faster and Castiel whimpered as his chest began to heave. Dean kissed him, tasting himself on Castiel’s lips, and then kissed down his chest and licked and sucked his nipples.
Castiel squirmed under him, still gasping, and then grabbed Dean’s ear. “Dean,” he groaned urgently. Dean ducked down his head and licked the head of Castiel’s cock, keeping his lips open so Castiel could watch.
He closed his eyes when Castiel’s legs jerked and he came, hot and salty on dean’s lips. Castiel’s fingers scraped over Dean’s scalp and every tense muscle in him relaxed. “Dean,” he whispered and stroked Dean’s head. “Dean, I love you so much.”
Dean wiped his mouth and smiled. “Love you too,” he said as he kissed Castiel’s stomach, and then pulled a blanket over the both of them as he crawled back up so he could kiss Castile’s mouth. “So, was that makeup sex?”
Castiel frowned. “Were we fighting?”
“I’m not sure.” He ran his hand over Castiel’s knee. “You just disappeared on me and I kind of hated it.”
Castiel was quiet a while, so Dean kept on stroking his knee and up to his stomach. He wished he had a pen—he wanted to write something on Castiel, something to mark him.
Finally Castiel said, “I didn’t know how to face you,” and Dean stopped doodling with his fingertips.
“What do you mean?”
Castiel shrugged. “Just that. I didn’t think you would want to see me. I didn’t think I could bear to be near you.”
“That’s just stupid,” said Dean. “I always want to see you.”
Castiel looked up at the ceiling. “Neither of us knows what we’re doing.”
“Nope.” Dean looked up at the ceiling too. “We may be amateurs but at least we’re enthusiastic amateurs.” He looked at Castiel again. “You don’t disappear again and we’ll figure it out.”
“Very well, Dean.”
Dean grinned. “C’mere.” Castiel moved closer to him and reached over him to turn out the light. They wrapped around each other, warm under the soft sheets, and soon Castiel was breathing evenly against Dean’s chest.
But Dean couldn’t sleep. He lay awake, more and more annoyed that he was awake, and the more he tried to relax the more awake he felt.
Finally Castiel said, “Go check on Sam. You’ll feel better.”
Dean grumbled but threw back the blankets anyway. He got one of the thick white robes from the closet and shrugged it on, crossed the suite and carefully opened the door to Sam’s room. He could hear Sam breathing, slow and even, nothing unusual or strained about it.
Dean sighed and carefully closed the door, and then sat on the step that led down to the little sitting area and held his head in his hands. He looked up when the door to his and Castiel’s room open and Castiel silently joined him on the step.
Dean said, “When he was a baby, right after Mom died, Dad used to sit up all night and just listen to him breathe. It was like he was afraid that thing that killed Mom would come back and snatch Sam away.”
“You remember that?”
“I remember a lot. Some of it I wish I didn’t.” He leaned his head on Castiel’s shoulder. Castiel kissed his hair and leaned his cheek against Dean’s hair.
“Come back to bed,” Castiel murmured. He stood and held out his hand to Dean. Dean put his hand in Castiel’s and let him pull him to his feet. He followed Castiel back to bed and stripped off the robe before crawling beneath the sheets. Castiel wrapped his arms around Dean and fit their bodies together, warm and solid against Dean’s back.
He lay in silence for a while, just feeling Castiel breathe, and then said, “I wanted you at Christmas.”
“I’m sorry I wasn’t there.” He held Dean a little tighter.
Dean sighed and nodded against his shoulder. It was more than just wanting him, of course. He’d…needed Castiel. Things were just better when Castiel was around. Dean slept more soundly. He thought more clearly. He felt more like himself. Castiel made him feel like he was going to come through this and be okay when it was over.
And there was the sex, of course, which was awesome and hot and amazing, but sex wasn’t all of what they had. Dean thought sometimes if he just had Castiel around, even if he couldn’t ever fuck him again, they’d still be okay. He’d miss touching him, but they’d be okay.
He turned over and leaned on his elbow, and Castiel gazed back at him, mild and contented. He cupped Dean’s cheek and swept the pad of his thumb over Dean’s lower lip. “I love it when you look at me like that.”
“Like what?” Dean kissed Castiel’s thumb.
“Like you’re glad I’m here.”
Dean smiled and kissed Castiel’s gently caressing thumb again. “I’m always glad you’re here.” Castiel’s thumb circled and stroked his lips, and Dean said, “If I didn’t know better I’d think you’re trying to put me to sleep.”
“I am trying to put you to sleep.” He pushed his thumb between Dean’s lips and Dean held his wrist and sucked his thumb a moment. “I wouldn’t mind if you stayed awake a little longer.”
“I could do that,” Dean said and kissed him. He held their joined hand over Castiel’s head and kissed him deeply, and Castiel’s fingers gripped his hand tight as his legs went around Dean’s waist. “Cas,” Dean whispered and kissed along his jaw.
“Dean,” Castiel answered as his head tilted back and his eyes closed. His eyelashes were so tempting Dean kissed them as well.
“Are you still mad at me?” he whispered and kissed Castiel’s forehead. He felt it furrow under his mouth.
“I am not upset with you.”
“Then how come you stayed away for so long?” He pulled back so he could see Castiel’s face. Castiel was still frowning at him.
“This is more than you needing to know I’m okay.”
“Yeah. I need to know you’re okay, and I need to know we’re okay. I need to know if I’m doing something wrong.”
Castiel sat up and Dean leaned back to give him room, and didn’t resist when Castiel pulled him close so that their knees touched. “You have done nothing wrong,” he said and kissed Dean’s shoulder. “I had to be alone for a while. I came back when I couldn’t bear to be away from you anymore.”
“Did it help, being alone?” Castiel shook his head, and Dean said, “So what happened?” Castiel dropped his gaze and Dean took hold of his face and tipped it up. “Don’t do that. Tell me what happened.”
Castiel exhaled. “I don’t want to. It grieves me. It frightens me. And if it’s true, everything that I hope for will be impossible.”
“So something happened that upset you so much you had to go hide in the mountains for two months.”
“I didn’t hide. I was still searching for my Father.”
“But you couldn’t even talk to me.” Castiel’s eyes focused off to the side and Dean let go of him and ran his hands over his hair. “I’m not angry, okay? I was worried. I still am worried. I know that neither of us really know what we’re doing but I do know this: lovers talk to each other. And if something grieves and frightens you I need to know so I can kick its ass.”
Castiel smiled faintly and took Dean’s hands in both of his. He drew his fingers slowly over Dean’s palm. “You can’t solve this through violence.” He slid his hands up Dean’s arms to his shoulders, and then slowly lay back, bringing Dean with him. Dean settled against him and looked down into his eyes. “I will say this,” Castiel said. “That I will forgive you for anything you may do to me in the future.”
“All I’m going to do is take care of you,” Dean whispered.
“I love that you want to.” Castiel coaxed Dean’s head to his chest. “Go to sleep.”
Dean scoffed, but Castiel knew just where to touch him to make him relax and he was asleep in moments.
After breakfast they were crossing the lobby to go back up to their room, when the manager called, “Mr. Plant. Could I have a moment, Mr. Plant?”
Dean stopped and smiled, dropping his hand from Castiel’s back. “Mr. Hotchkins?”
The man puffed over to them. “How did you sleep, Mr. Plant? You and your—” His eyes traveled over Castiel and Sam. “Family.”
“We slept fine. We slept great.”
“Good, good,” Hotchkins said. “No electrical problems? No noises?”
“I didn’t notice anything,” Dean said. “Sammy, how about you?”
“I didn’t notice anything,” Sam said.
“Not until after the ritual,” said Castiel and Dean put his hand on Castiel’s back.
Hotchkins said weakly, “Ritual?”
“Oh,” said Castiel when Dean pressed his hand a little harder against his back. “Our nightly ritual. Of…meditation.”
“We’re very spiritual,” Dean said.
“I’m glad to hear it,” Hotchkins said, still looking at Castiel oddly. “Your room has a tendency to be not so restful. Enjoy the rest of your stay.”
He started to go, and Dean said, “Mr. Hotchkins,” and took out his wallet. He gave Hotchkins a matchbook from some diner or another, and showed him the phone number he’d written on the inside. “If you ever have trouble with flickering lights and noises again? Call this number. We’ll come back and take care of it.”
Hotchkins looked at the matchbook, and slowly nodded as he put it away in his suit jacket. “Thank you, Mr. Plant.”
Dean nodded, and the three of them resumed their journey to the bank of elevators.
Continued in part 2.