Author: Kat Lee
Character/Pairing: Castiel, Dean, Sam
Challenge/Prompt: 1_million_words Say What Friday: "A bad manager can take a good staff and destroy it, causing the best employees to flee and the remainder to lose all motivation." and my own challenge to write at least one Christian story every month
Warning(s): Spoilers, Religious Themes
Word Count: 1,212
Date Written: 12 September 2017
Disclaimer: All characters within belong to Kripke, not the author, and are used without permission.
Dean’s eyes zero in on Castiel as the Angel tilts his head to one side, intently studying something on the library bulletin board. He walks up to him, but Cas doesn’t even seem to know he’s there as he comments, “Well, that was a bust.” He simply continues to stare at the board. Dean sweeps his gaze over it, but he sees nothing to help them with their current case -- or anything else that should interest the Angel, although his Heavenly friend is often fascinated by the most mundane things. “Cas?” he asks.
Castiel finally blinks. “Oh. Dean,” he acknowledges him, his voice sounding as though it’s coming from far away. “I did not realize you were finished with that librarian.”
Dean glances back in the youngest librarian’s direction. “Maybe not,” he admits, “but as for as the case goes, she’s not gonna be any help. She doesn’t know anything, even how to file yet.”
Castiel finally looks at him. “And that would be a problem?”
“No,” Dean grins, “but it did get her fussed at by the head librarian while she was busy ‘helping’ me.”
“I see.” Castiel’s eyes trail back to the board.
“There’s nothing much in the newspapers,” Sam admits, joining them.
Dean shakes his head. “Let’s go. Time’s wasting.” Sam follows him to the door, but they both stop and look back at Castiel, who seems frozen again.
“Cas?” Dean calls, but Castiel barely hears him. He’s still staring at the weekly quote placed on the board. A chill runs through him as he reads it yet again. A bad manager can take a good staff and destroy it, causing the best employees to flee and the remainder to lose all motivation.
Is that what happened, he wonders, to Heaven? Is it what happened to God? Is that why He can not be found? Did He lose such control in His staff of Angels and humans, especially in His latter creation, that He lost all hope that they can be fixed? He promised He would never destroy the Earth again as He did before. The next time is to be fire, brimstone, and permanent. There will be no going back after it, no rebuilding, no recovering; it will truly be the end of the world.
But what if He wasn’t ready for the end of the world? What if He was just weary of what humans and Angels had become? What if He had lost not just all hope in them but all motivation to make them improve, to make them want to do better? The icy chill returns; only, this time, it seems to center in Castiel’s chest. What if the Almighty Father truly is gone? What if He has abandoned them not through anything bad happening that He could not stop -- as though there could be such a thing -- but because He chose to leave?
Castiel reaches trembling fingers up to the paper. His fingertips etch the letters. It’s Sam voice now that seems, to Castiel, to come from far away. “Cas?” The Angel nearly jumps -- and his wings do flutter, though unheard by the mortals -- when Sam gently touches his shoulder. “Are you okay?”
He blinks again. Slowly, he looks at Sam, then across at Dean, the words of his own, scared thoughts still echoing within his mind. What if God has abandoned them? What if He has given up on them? What if they truly are alone in this world?
But he’s not alone, Cas realizes, looking at the brothers. He’s got Sam and Dean; they’ve adopted him as close to being one of their own as anybody could possibly be, closer than anyone else in their makeshift family, including Bobby. He blinks again and slowly nods this time. “I . . . Yes, I am fine.”
He strides out of the library, leading the way back to their case and a situation he can actually do something to help. Behind him, Dean shoots a look at Sam, but Sam just shrugs. He knows something is wrong, but he doesn’t know what.
Once settled in the Impala, Castiel looks at the brothers again and slowly begins to smile. God can’t be entirely gone. He can’t have given up on them completely, because Cas now has Dean and Sam in his life and he’s never known a truer blessing. He’s not lacking for motivation; his new brothers give him everything he could want, and more. No. God may be hiding, but He’s not gone. He wouldn’t have the blessing of this new family if He was.
Dean watches him in his rearview mirror as he pulls away from the curb. Again, he glances at Sam who casts a questioning look back at Castiel, who is now sitting quietly and smiling happily. He shakes his head. “I don’t know,” he mouths again to his older brother.
“Cas?” Dean asks. “You sure you’re okay?”
“Oh, yes,” Castiel enthuses, smiling brightly. “I just had a revelation.”
“Really?” Dean asks dryly.
“Of what?” Sam asks, genuinely interested.
“We’re going to find Him,” Castiel answers.
“Oh, I know we’re going to find him,” growls Dean, his fingers tightening on Baby’s wheel. “We’re going to find him, and we’re going to make him pay -- “
“Not the . . . perp, as you call him, Dean. God. We’re going to find our Heavenly Father.”
“Oh.” Dean falls silent; Cas entirely misses his smirk.
“What makes you so certain?” Sam asks quietly.
“Because He can not have given up on us -- “
Dean snorts. “Yeah, right.”
Castiel shakes his head. “No. I am certain of it, Dean.”
“What makes you so damn certain He ain’t jumped ship?”
“It’s simple, really,” Castiel replies, “when you think about it. He’s still blessing people every day.”
“Come on, Cas -- “
“No, He is! He blessed me!”
“Really? You’re kicked out of Heaven and -- “
“And I have you two,” Castiel interjects firmly. “I may have lost everything I knew, but He gave me something better, better for me at least. He gave me you -- and Sam.”
“Oh.” Dean’s face falls but then brightens. “Well, when you put it that way -- “ It’s almost enough to persuade him to believe, but God’s taken far too much from him for him to be able to believe that He cares about him. He’s taken his mother, his father . . .
“You’ll see one day,” Castiel speaks quietly.
Next to Dean, Sam’s already nodding. “Yeah,” he agrees. “We’ll find Him, Dean. He’s still out here somewhere.”
“Everywhere,” Cas murmurs, almost unheard by the brothers. He looks around. He can not see any physical signs of God, but yet the proof that He continues to care about them is right here in this car. He’s finally blessed him with the family Castiel has always wanted.
“Yeah. Sure,” Dean says, thrumming his fingers against the steering wheel. He reaches over and turns the radio up high, silencing any further conversation. He’s glad Castiel and even Sammy can believe, but he doesn’t believe -- at least not yet. It’s going to take a lot more to convince him God exists, let alone cares, but Castiel knows that, too, will come. God’s alive, and before everything's said and done, Dean will know that, too, and that He still loves them just as Castiel already knows.