badluck: (misha!goggles do nothing)
[personal profile] badluck
Work in progress. I have no idea what I'm doing. Feel free to tell me so.

Title: Who Do You Carry the Torch For?
Fandom: Supernatural
Pairing: Dean/Cas pre-slash
Rating: PG-13, mainly for Dean's potty mouth. And Sam's. But mostly Dean's.
Summary: Sam knows Dean likes Cas. Sam knows Cas likes Dean. So why can't they figure it out without him having to tell them this? Oh yeah, and there's a ghost in a library too. Fun times.



Note: Title comes from Brand New's "The Archers Bows Have Broken" or simply "Archers." Depends on where you look. Also, this is kind of my first fic that survived to completion. Screw gentle, make me cry people.

***

Dean knew this was a bad idea. Not just bad, but a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad, move-to-Australia level of bad idea. He also knew it was a not-fair-at-all bad idea. Just because he wasn't there when the goddamn written word was invented (Cas) or owned more books than guns (Sam) doesn't mean he can't read. It just means he's picky goddamn it. He knows what he likes. That's all. He is completely, totally capable of helping people looking for Technology for Dummies or show them how the Internet works while saving them from a pretty bloody minded ghost. He could.

So why is he the one doing the grunt work, flirting asking around town about the weather and say, heard any stories about brutally murdered librarians seeking revenge from the other side lately? While Sam and Cas get to scan in books and... talk. By themselves. Without him. Bad. Idea.

Yeah Sam and Cas had been without him before. Plenty of times. But Sammy had been not saying things while saying things lately. He had that, "I know something you don't know but I'm so not telling you because it's way more fun this way" gleam in his eyes. Especially when Cas was around. Dean really didn't like it. And with Cas being Cas, any question put forth to him would be answered truthfully and literally and Sam would interpret it the worst way possible just to get more ammunition against Dean. Which brought him right back to the situation at hand; sitting in front of the Whatever Community Library in ButtfuckNoWhere, PA fighting the urge to storm right on through the double doors and separate the two before any damage could be done. Which... would make shit even worse. Never let it be said that Dean Winchester didn't have at least the slightest smidge of self-preservation. He just had no clue how to turn this situation back around to his favor...

***

If Sam could cackle with glee without being looked upon suspiciously by the patrons wandering about, he would have. The situation was just too perfect. Dean was out wandering around, picking up information from the local townspeople, and he was here with Castiel, second place in the "Most Oblivious" contest (first went to Dean obviously.) Seriously, the staring? The personal space issues? That only seem to become an issue when a certain hand-printed Winchester was around? Duh. Motherfucking duh. And Sam was sick of it. Sick of dealing with two idjits (to borrow a term) bickering and moaning and moping. Oh holy god the moping! Even now, Cas was fretting because Dean wasn't in his sight while he sorted through the holds and the reshelves behind the counter. It had taken every ounce of his willpower to fight the two of them just to get Cas in on this undercover scheme and Dean out and it was going to work dammit. He was putting the kibosh on neverending eye-fucking sessions once and for all.

Since attempting to talk to Dean about anything that vaguely hinted at him having emotions beyond disappointment and rage, Sam figured he had chosen wisely and during the down moments when people weren't looking up porn on the free computers or insisting they had returned that book weeks ago, he attempted to get Cas to open up about his feelings...

***

Castiel, Angel of the Lord, Warrior of Heaven... was confused. And not just because humans in a library were even more baffling than he suspected (there were signs that said what you were not allowed to look at on the Internet, what was the point of having the signs when no one bothered to follow them?) He didn't understand why Sam insisted he be here, in this library, on this case and without Dean. He liked Sam well enough, demon blood addiction aside, but he didn't understand Sam most of the time. Granted, he didn't understand Dean most of the time either, but Dean was different. Castiel had rebuilt him, body and soul and there was a connection there. Dean needed him to keep him safe, needed him to save him from demons and angels and witches and other cruel things who would try to hurt him. Again. He shouldn't be here. He should be out there, helping Dean. But Sam had insisted, and Dean had given in and let Sam have his way and now Castiel, Soldier of God, was sorting through a stack of romance novels that Sam had passed along to him to reshelve. And it was always romance novels, or romantic advice books, or even sexual help books, that Sam seemed to pass over during work hours. It made Castiel wonder if Sam was having romantic problems that he was avoiding. He would have to ask Dean later what he thought about the situation...

***

Thank fucking everything the job was simple. A few more attacks (which most were prevented by Team Fucking Awesome and their assortment of iron weaponry) led to a pattern: people who argued the most with the library clerks tended to end up having the insides of their heads decorate the wallpapers of their homes. Since Sam and Cas were the clerks getting screamed at, it did give them the opportunity to keep track of the complete douchenozzles potential victims, though the shit they screamed at Cas made Dean very unwilling to be as helpful as he could have been when the ghost came banshee-ing around. Sam's smiling face as he grumbled about fucking dickbags taking their shit out on undeserving Angels was not helpful at all, and just made his mood even worse than it was before. Not to mention more suspicious of Sam's motives.

They managed to trace the ghost to the body of a library clerk who had been murdered by a book rage customer who accused Marjorie (and really now, people still name their kids that?) of secretly hiding the book he swore he returned a year ago and now had late fees in the, sarcastic gasp, hundreds of dollars. Rather than doing what every other asshole does and just buys the library a brand new fucking book, this guy decides to go batshit and skulk around the library until closing, when he grabbed her by the hair and brutally bashed her head in down in the basement where the book donations went. Left her there too, fucking dickhole. She wasn't found for weeks. At least the dipshit was her first victim. Dean can't really be too upset about that, having seen the crime scene photos via one of his numerous fake FBI badges. But in typical Grudge form, Marjorie's specter just had to haunt the library and "protect" the clerks. It was almost a shame to smoke her bones really. The library attracted some serious fucking assholes.

Case closed, they should be moving on now to the next case. Except Sam insisted on staying on. Just in case burning the remains wasn't enough. He may have had a point that it wouldn't have been the first time they thought everything was golden when it wasn't, but Dean was pretty sure they got her this time around. But the fucking puppy eyes came out. Godfuckingdamn those puppy eyes. So here they stayed. Cas and Sam checking the library for any remains; hair, fingernails, etc. While also giving the worst service this side of a bored teenager to see if any white ghost knights on horses showed up to defend their asses from the evils of frustrated customers. Which was fine. But it left Dean with nothing to do but watch bad TV in the motel room and wonder what the fuck Sam was up to this time...

***

Sam was running out of time. What had seemed like the perfect opportunity to get rid of the ever present UST (thank you Supernatural fangirls for teaching him that particular term) between his brother and the angel was now turning into a tedious adventure in awkward conversation. The ghost case didn't last as long as he had been hoping, and between the ghost attacks and summer vacation full of bored teenagers, he hadn't had the opportunity to do more than drop subtle hints, and by hints he meant books. But Cas kept giving him these curiously sympathetic looks, like he's the one with the problem. Which... is probably true but hey. At least he has the ability to recognize love when he feels it. Unlike the two dysfunctional morons he calls family. He just needs a down moment, blessedly customer free, because painfully awkward conversation with the guy who may be doing his brother in the near future (ew) just had to be better than dealing with the two of them not doing each other. It just had to be...

***

"Hey Cas... Can I talk to you for a second?"

Castiel looked up from where he had been sorting the holds section. "Yes Sam?" He looked very uncomfortable, which only made Castiel more curious. Sam had been acting increasingly odd around him during this case, especially during moments when it was just the two of them behind the circulation desk. Exactly like now, Sam kept rubbing the back of his neck and avoiding eye-contact. It was increasingly strange behavior coming from him.

"Cas... Have you ever thought about... love?"

"Yes." Castiel turned back to the books he had been sorting through. He was forced to turn back at the pained noise Sam made, tilting his head curiously at his tall friend who seemed to be pinching his noise for some reason. "Are you alright Sam?"

"What? Oh yeah. I'm fine. Just thinking too hard about things I really don't want to be thinking about." Sam sighed and ran his hands through his overly long hair.

Cas' brow furrowed as he considered Sam's words. "Does it have to do with the romantic issues that you have been avoiding?" Even now, Sam had created a pile of romantically inclined novels that he was pointedly ignoring in favor of books of other genres.

"Yeah, I... Wait... Issues I'm avoiding?!" Sam exclaimed, looking and sounding quite shocked by Castiel's conclusion. Which was confusing. As usual. Clarification was clearly needed.

"Yes. Lately you have seemed uninterested in dealing with books of a romantic or sexual nature. I had assumed you were avoiding those topics for a reason. Was this incorrect?" Cas had just straightened out his head, only for it to cock right back again to the side as he observed Sam's reaction to his words. Had he been a human, his [neck muscles] would most likely be extremely sore by now Humans were that frustrating sometimes. For example, his explanation for why Sam was avoiding romance seemed to upset Sam, rather than encourage him to discuss his feelings of a romantic nature. Not that Cas would have had any idea how to assist Sam in dealing with romantic nature feelings, but Sam is his friend and he was willing to try for his sake. Except now, because Sam was adamantly denying having feelings of a romantic nature to avoid.

"I see. I apologize for making an assumption about you and your romantic issues." Apology made, Cas turned back to the stack of books he still had left to sort through. Once this was finished, he and Sam could leave and regroup with Dean who had been left behind in the motel room.

"I'm not the one with the issues. You are."

***

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Life is a test and I get bad marks

November 2012

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