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Title: White and Drifted Snow
Summary: “Okay – so we've both been thrown out,” Dean said after a moment, “we might as well make the best of it.”
Rating: G
Pairing: Dean/Castiel
Spoiler Warnings: Brief one for 4x10. (Big one, though)
Disclaimer: Supernatural is not mine.
Notes: Had part of this in my head for a few days. It got a whole lot longer than I expected it to. Title from Flowers for Children by Lydia M Child. (There's no pay-off in this one, kids, don't want to get your hopes up)


Nothing prepared Castiel for the crisp crunch of snow under his feet. He moved backwards and forwards over it marvelling at the small sounds, at the footprints sinking into it, fascinated. Each day he spent on Earth revealed something new to him, a new facet of his Father's majesty, and it took his breath away.

“Let me guess: you've never seen snow before?” Dean's voice came from the door of his motel room. It was unusual for Dean to see Castiel before Castiel saw Dean.

“There is no weather in Heaven,” Castiel replied with a stiff shrug of his shoulders. Dean was leaning against the doorframe, one leg providing support and the other propped on its toes. His arms were folded against his chest but his face was open, the anger Castiel associated with Dean was not to be found for once.

“You don't know what you're missing,” Dean said, a smile curving his lips for a moment.

“I'm becoming aware of that,” Castiel said, pressing his foot down to make yet another print in the snow. Dean laughed, a curiously aborted sound, and shook his head.

“Dean – either go out or stay in, will you?” Sam said from within the hotel room. “It's too cold to leave the door open.”

“Castiel's out here,” Dean said, turning his head to look over his shoulder.

“Good – maybe you can go play with him for a while,” Sam appeared behind Dean, “and let me research in peace.”

Before Dean had a chance to reply Sam gave him a hard push and he stumbled out onto the snow. The door slammed shut behind him and Castiel heard the sound of Sam locking it. Dean stared open-mouthed at the door for a long moment, hands flexing into fists at his sides, before kicking a lump of snow at it.

“No good, useless brothers,” Dean grumbled to himself. Castiel watched him open his car, listening to the different sounds Dean's feet made on the snow, and rummage inside it. Castiel noted the word 'rummage', provided by his vessel's memory, and added it to his own vocabulary. It sounded wonderfully tactile.

“Here,” Dean stood up and threw something at Castiel, something he caught by instinct, before dragging a coat onto himself. Castiel looked down at the something, 'gloves' his host provided, and wondered precisely what Dean wanted him to do with them.

“Dude,” Dean stomped across the snow, leaving prints beside Castiel's own, and grabbed the gloves from him. “Have you even noticed how cold your guy is?”

So 'cold' was the word for this strange shivering, tingling sensation creeping up and down his vessel. Castiel had been working hard at taking care of his human body – but there were times when his rudimentary knowledge of how it worked just wasn't enough. Dean took Castiel's hands between his own and pulled the gloves on. The touch of Dean's skin brought with it a memory – of a younger Dean performing the same service for a much younger Sam – and Castiel added it to his own.

“Thank you,” Castiel said when Dean had finished. Dean offered a small smile, the one that didn't reach his eyes, and stepped back.

“So – why're you here?” Dean asked, tucking his hands into his coat pockets. Castiel looked up from examining his gloved hands, surprised at the sensation of warmth working into his fingers.

“Uriel and I have had a disagreement,” Castiel said, remembering Uriel's rumbling threats and near-blasphemies.

“About Anna?” Dean asked, his tone guarded. Castiel gave a simple nod of his head as a reply. “You don't want to go after her, do you?”

“I would prefer not to, yes,” Castiel said. “We have a history.”

“Yeah, you said,” Dean nodded to himself. Dean had been furious on that night, his anger burning so brightly that Castiel found it hard to look at him, but now there was nothing but resignation in his voice.

“Okay – so we've both been thrown out,” Dean said after a moment, “we might as well make the best of it.”

“Thrown out?” Castiel asked, brow furrowing as he tried to parse the meaning of Dean's expression.

“Sam doesn't want me around right now,” Dean said, taking a moment to glare at the closed motel room, “and Uriel obviously doesn't want you hanging around, or whatever you guys do.”

“That was the impression he gave me,” Castiel nodded, recalling the Archangel's demand for Castiel to get out of his sight. In Heaven that would have been impossible but on earth it was as simple as turning a corner.

“We could go for a walk, or something,” Dean said, shifting from one foot to the other on the crunching snow.

“I think I'd like that,” Castiel said, finding to his astonishment that he did like the idea. Walking was something he had never expected to enjoy but the simple act of putting one foot in front of the other was proving as marvellous as anything else the human body could do.

“C'mon then,” Dean said, jerking a head to one side. “Think I saw a park back along the way.”

Castiel fell into step beside Dean, easily matching his stride, and followed his example of tucking his hands into his pockets. Dean was silent with ever watchful eyes and Castiel found himself watching him, fascinated.

“You know it's creepy when you watch people like that?” Dean said, turning his head slightly to look at Castiel. “It makes you look inhuman – like a Terminator or something.”

“Terminator?” Castiel asked, finding no reference for this term in his vessel's memory. Dean laughed, his breath ghosting through the air before him.

“Man, I'm gonna have to introduce you to movies one day,” Dean said, still smiling. “You're missing too much.”

They turned off the sidewalk onto a path discernible only because of the footprints of other humans tracking over it. The park was broken up by small gatherings of trees with children's play equipment interspersed amongst them. Children were chasing each other over the snow, their little feet making rapid sounds, watched by smiling parents. Tension seemed to flow out of Dean, his shoulders dropping, his head lifting.

“Sometimes I need to remember why I do what I do,” Dean said, so quietly it was almost like he hadn't meant Castiel to hear it. But Castiel would always hear Dean – whether Dean wanted him to or not.

“It's beautiful,” Castiel said, meaning it. “All my Father's creations as they are meant to be.”

Dean chuckled. “Dude – you know sometimes it sounds like you were taught to speak by a bad Poetry major?”

“It's true,” Castiel said, offering a shrug. He still felt stiff when he did it, as if he wasn't quite doing it right.

“Yeah,” Dean said, pausing to watch two children building something out of snow. “And sometimes I think you might actually be right.”

Dean stamped his feet on ground and drew his hands from his pockets. He blew across his fingers and rubbed his hands together. Castiel pulled his own hands from his pockets and looked down at them, wondering if Dean had given him his own gloves. On impulse he reached out and took Dean's hands between his own, cupping them gently and trying to press some of his warmth into them. Dean looked at him with wide eyes but didn't withdraw his hands and Castiel could feel him debating with himself.

After a long moment had passed, Dean looking everywhere but at Castiel's face, Dean pulled his hands away and tucked them back into his pockets. Castiel hoped that meant that Dean's hands were warm again.

“Thanks,” Dean mumbled. He turned away and took another few steps before pausing, staring a drift of snow piled up under a tree.

“You should lie down on that,” Dean said, half-turning his head to look at Castiel, pointing at the snow.

“Why?” Castiel asked, moving to stand beside Dean. “Would there be some benefit?”

“Just – trust me,” Dean said with an impatient jerk of his head. “Lie down in the snow – on your back.”

“I don't understand,” Castiel said, stepping forward despite himself and turning to face Dean.

“If I made it an order would you have to do it?” Dean asked, eyes boring into Castiel's. Castiel found himself completely unable to answer.

With a suddenness that Castiel had never expected Dean pushed him back into the drift of snow. In the crystal clear clarity that followed Castiel wondered, just for a moment, if this was what Falling was like.

Dean landed beside him with a thump and a loud crunch of protest from the snow. He spread his arms and legs wide and tilted his head so that he could see Castiel.

“Now: move your arms and legs like this,” Dean demonstrated, a smile, one of the big ones that took up his whole face, on his lips. Castiel followed suit as best as he could, looking up at the branches of the tree above him and trying not to lose his breath over his Father's majesty.

Dean stopped after several great sweeps of his arms and legs and stood up, reaching a hand down to pull Castiel up. The smile was still on his face, though smaller, and this time it was definitely to be found in his eyes as well.

“Snow angels,” Dean said and pointed at the snow where they had lain. He started to beat the snow off his arms and legs as Castiel turned to look.

Castiel could not help catching his breath, looking down at a representation of who he truly was, of who he hoped Dean to be one day. Dean brushed the snow from his back as Castiel stared, the beauty of such a simple, human action stunning him into silence.

“Good, am I right?” Dean said when he was satisfied they'd both been cleansed of unnecessary snow. “Sammy and I used to make 'em whenever we were somewhere with snow. Guess they probably seem a little silly to you, though.”

“No, Dean,” Castiel said, looking into Dean's eyes. “They're not silly at all.”

Dean looked back at Castiel, his lips partially open, and Castiel felt for a moment as if he was falling into Dean's eyes. One of Dean's hands lifted into the air and hovered between them as if it did not know what it wanted to do. Castiel felt the same, torn between action and inaction, and was about to speak when something wet and hard hit him on the arm.

Dean blinked and jerked his head, his eyes flicking to Castiel's arm and then to the source of the wetness. Castiel felt as if he had missed something important but he had no opportunity to ask Dean if he was right – Dean was also hit by something hard and wet, though he was hit in the side of the head. Dean swore, though there was not as much strength in it as Castiel would have expected.

“Kids,” Dean said, reaching out and brushing more snow from Castiel's arm. “Snowballs,” he explained when Castiel looked at him with a question in his eyes.

The children in question were laughing and running away. Dean looked after them, eyes narrowed, his fingers flexing into fists.

“Hey – you wanna learn how to make a snowball?” Dean asked, looking away from the children to meet Castiel's eyes. Castiel nodded and Dean grinned – the smile that took Castiel's breath away – and Castiel felt himself smiling back.

Dean tugged on one of his hands for a moment, pulling him after him as he ran after the children, and Castiel felt something inside himself ease and drift away. Castiel laughed, startling himself, then did it again for the fun of it. Dean looked over his shoulder and shook his head at Castiel but kept his smile on.

Comments

( 57 comments — Leave a comment )
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enablelove
Dec. 6th, 2008 03:11 am (UTC)
This was absolutely WONDERFUL!
taurenova
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:21 am (UTC)
Thank you! Wonderful was what I was aiming for - glad to know I succeeded.
shadowcat15
Dec. 6th, 2008 04:49 am (UTC)
Very nice. Definitely shows Castiel's innocence.
taurenova
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:22 am (UTC)
Excellent. I was worried that I wasn't quite getting it. Thank you for commenting.
shetiger
Dec. 6th, 2008 04:59 am (UTC)
Love it. :)
taurenova
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:23 am (UTC)
Thank you!
darksilvercat
Dec. 6th, 2008 05:21 am (UTC)
Snow fic!!! I love the Christmas-y snow fics!
taurenova
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:23 am (UTC)
Helpfully inspired by the snow I had in my area on Thursday. :)

Thank you for reading!
catoasapun
Dec. 6th, 2008 05:55 am (UTC)
AWWWW! This was adorable.

I think you really captured Castiel's innocence, here. His wonderment at the sound of his footsteps, the beauty of the trees and then the snow angels... *happy sigh*

The little moments you had between Dean and Castiel were absolutely precious. While subtle, the subtext still came through; making them very intimate and meaningful.

I'm all melty-hearted now.
taurenova
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:26 am (UTC)
Wow. Thank you. I'm glad I could melt your heart. :)

I was hoping for simple and subtle so I'm totally glad that I pulled that off - same for the innocence. I just - I really like the idea of Castiel as innocent to many of the ways of humans, y'know?

Thank you for reading!
invisiblelove
Dec. 6th, 2008 05:57 am (UTC)
I LOVE fics where Dean is able to teach Castiel. This was just so sweet and simple. I loved it!
taurenova
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:24 am (UTC)
I have to admit that I clearly have thing for Dean teaching stuff to Castiel.

I'm glad you liked it. :)
ran_cl
Dec. 6th, 2008 07:43 am (UTC)
Wah I loved this!! Snow fic....so heart-warming :) ...*I bet I would do the same Castiel did if I see snow fall , playing with footprints and stuff lol*

...Just love when Dean introduces Castiel simple but wonderful things on Earth : ) Castiel's innocence made me smile ; )
taurenova
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:28 am (UTC)
Sort of ironic that snow-fic is so warming, am I right? :)

Snow does have a big habit of turning ordinary people into wondering kids - seems only right that Castiel would behave the same.

Thank you for reading!
exuberantself
Dec. 6th, 2008 09:16 am (UTC)
That was...beautiful. After I got over how cute Castiel is when he's processing simple, beautiful things I started thinking about how cool it would be for an angel to make a snow angel. Then he did!
taurenova
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:30 am (UTC)
It's like a totally read your mind. :D

I'm thrilled that you liked it. Thank you for saying such nice things.
frogd
Dec. 6th, 2008 09:28 am (UTC)
Dean teaching Castiel to make a snow angel? Love it!
taurenova
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:30 am (UTC)
Thank you! Glad you liked it!
nejem
Dec. 6th, 2008 11:29 am (UTC)
ohmygod, snow angels and kids and snowballs and Castiel and Dean *_*
I loved this so much, too cute for words *_*
taurenova
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:31 am (UTC)
Thank you and thanks for commenting. I'm glad you enjoyed it.
big_heart_june
Dec. 6th, 2008 01:28 pm (UTC)
Gorgeous! I adore Castiel experiencing new things and Dean showing him ♥

I giggled @ Sam shoving Dean out!

Loved this!
taurenova
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:32 am (UTC)
Clearly Dean had been irritating Sam for a while before Castiel showed up.

Also: yeah, Dean teaches Castiel is totally my kink right now. *facepalms*

Thank you for reading!
(Deleted comment)
taurenova
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:33 am (UTC)
Why thank you very much! I'm glad you enjoyed it enough to keep it. :D
damerel
Dec. 6th, 2008 09:29 pm (UTC)
This was just gorgeous! It was a mesmerisingly revealing look into Castiel, but I love how much of Dean we also saw through Castiel's eyes. I laughed out loud when I realised he was going to make a snow angel. :)
taurenova
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:34 am (UTC)
Thank you! I think I'm still pinning down exactly who Castiel is in my mind - this might just be one facet of him for me, time will tell.

I enjoyed writing the snow angel scene - and having the image of it in my head.

Thank you for reading!
eternal_dolor
Dec. 7th, 2008 12:40 am (UTC)
"It sounded wonderfully tactile."
I adored that. Awesome story. I loved how pleased Castiel was at something so simple as footsteps in the snow. Dean was so sweet to Cas and love him for it
taurenova
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:36 am (UTC)
Thank you! TPTB said that Castiel hasn't been on earth for a long time - so I figure he'd be pretty full of wonder, you know?

Thanks for commenting!
cordeliadelayne
Dec. 7th, 2008 12:59 am (UTC)
Aw! This was lovely :D
taurenova
Dec. 7th, 2008 01:36 am (UTC)
Thank you! I'm trying my best. :D
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( 57 comments — Leave a comment )

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