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“That’s one deep, dark nothing you’ve got there, Dean. Can’t fill it, can you? Not with food or drink. Not even with sex. Oh, you can smirk and joke and lie to your brother, lie to yourself, but not to me! I can see inside you, Dean. I can see how broken you are. How defeated. You can’t win and you know it. But you just keep fighting. Just....keep going through the motions. You’re not hungry, Dean, because inside... You’re already dead.”

With Bobby away on a hunting trip and Sam locked in the bunker, Dean decides it best to stay in Bobby’s cabin overnight. He can’t shake the words from Famine, and no amount of alcohol seems to push them down. Proof that Famine’s words ring true. Dean drops his empty flask of Jack onto the floor next to the couch. He feels sick, but the liquor isn’t at fault.

Outside, the storm ramps up, thunder shaking the foundation of the cabin followed shortly by streaks of blinding lightning. Can Sam feel it in the bunker? Does he think he’s hallucinating? How long is recovery going to take this time?

A loud clap of thunder follows a crack of lightning, leaving Dean sitting in the dark. Just great. Is there even a point of getting candles?

Dean hides his face in the crook of his elbow, trying to drown out the outside world. It doesn’t help, his thoughts and the thunder competing for priority in his ears. His body drags, but his senses remain wide awake.

He shifts so that he can watch shadows dance on the ceiling. Fuck Famine. Dean feels as though he needs to prove him wrong somehow, that he’s truly alive, but he can’t find it in him to move off the couch.

The next flash brings with it the shape of a person standing by the window. Dean closes his eyes.

“Dean.” Castiel’s voice breaks through Dean’s self-loathing.

Dean rolls over, his back now to the angel. “Go away, Cas.”

A flash of light reveals Castiel still rooted in his spot by the window. “You asked for help. I’m here.”

Dean shoots up to glare at him. “The fuck, Cas. Were you spying on me?”

“I hear every time you pray.” Castiel hesitates before adding, “I heard what Famine said to you. You’re not dead inside, Dean. I brought back-”

“Shut up, Cas.” Dean grips the edge of the couch.”I know you brought back my soul, but that’s not…” Dean trains his eyes on Castiel’s scuffed shoes. “It’s not enough.”

“How can I help?”

“You can’t.” Dean forces a chuckle as he rises from his seat. If Castiel pushes this issue, Dean’s going to need more alcohol. He feels his way into the kitchen and to the liquor cabinet, finding an unopened bottle of honey Jack Daniels. Not his usual brand of Jack, but he’ll take it. He cracks it open and throws it back.

After Dean swallows, he holds it out to Castiel, who followed him in. The angel shakes his head, and Dean screws the lid back on. “Not everything can be fixed.”

Castiel takes a step closer. “There has to be something-”

“There’s not.” Dean’s tone comes off harsher than he wanted it to, but he presses on. “You heard him. Nothing fills the void. Believe me, Cas. I’ve tried.

“How?” The angel’s face lacks expression as his eyes pierce through Dean.

Dean chuckles, though it sounds wrong. “Everything Famine said. Sex, drugs, rock n’ roll. Nothing’s worked.”

Castiel’s eyes widen, followed by a slow shake of his head. “Those are not healthy methods of dealing with complicated emotions.”

“Fuck, Cas, do you think I don’t know that?” he snaps, and part of him hates that he does.

The corners of Castiel’s mouth turn down. “You could try another method.”

Dean scoffs and unscrews the cap to the Jack, taking another long swig from the bottle. When his throat burns, he stops and wipes his mouth on the back of his hand. “What other method? I’m not going to some damn therapist.”

“That is not what I was suggesting.”

“Then fucking what ? This is all I know.”

“Perhaps you should abstain from drinking such vast quantities. Maybe even pursue connections with longer viability than single coital encounters to ensure lasting satisfaction.”

Dean nearly drops the bottle from his hands. His face grows hot and he coughs into a fist to hide his shock and embarrassment. What does Castiel know about all that? Had he been listening to him then too? Calling out Oh god while some girl gyrates her ass against his dick shouldn’t count as praying by any means.

“Excuse me?” he finally manages.

Castiel continues to assess him from behind his pensive expression. “I said-”

“I heard what you said.” Dean grips the neck of the bottle. “What do you know about that?”

Castiel tilts his head to the side. “I am aware of human proclivities, Dean. Angels have been known to have sexual intercourse at times.”

Dean couldn’t resist a quick jab. “And? Have you?”

Castiel’s usual calm, apathetic demeanor cracks and red blossoms under his cheeks, apparent with the next flash of light. Castiel looks away, the first time since he’s appeared that night. “I have not.”

Now Dean’s curiosity peaks, and he’s grateful to control the conversation onto a different topic than what he needs. He leans toward Castiel, a devil’s grin on his face. “Why not?”

Castiel’s face turns red all over again. “I haven’t-” He stops and starts again. “It’s...complex, in a way I am not accustomed to feeling.”

“How so?” Dean shifts his body slightly, angling toward the angel. He feels heat everywhere, all over his body, and he can’t tell if it’s the alcohol or…something else.

“I never felt sexual attraction until I entered this vessel. And even when I felt it-” Castiel stops again and avoids his eyes as the blush creeps down his neck, forcing Dean’s gaze to trail after it. “It’s not a common occurrence.”

“What about other stuff? A little above the pants action?” Dean smirks and wiggles his eyebrows.

Castiel frowns. “I’m being serious, Dean.”

“So am I.” A skipped beat, filled with the rumble of thunder, and then, “Kissing? You ever kiss anyone?”

The flush on Castiel’s face is obvious, even in the darkness. Dean leans back against the counter and whistles. “So not even that.”

“It’s not a priority.”

Dean holds out his bottle. “Drink. It’ll help with the blushing.” He watches Castiel move in closer, the scrape of their fingers as the angel whisks away the Jack and hesitates before throwing it back. Lightning streaks across the sky, allowing Dean to see Castiel’s Adam’s apple move with each swallow. Dean licks his lips. The alcohol definitely makes his head fuzzy, thoughts blurry, his body with its own mind.

Dean sidles up beside him and tips back the bottle. “That’s enough. You’re going to get sick.”

“Angels don’t-”

Dean huffs. “Fine, your vessel . Jimmy . He’ll get sick.” Dean tries not to notice how his fingers fill in the space beside Castiel’s on the Jack. “Don’t overdue it.”

A thought comes to him with the next flash of lightning, of the trench coat on the ground, of Castiel biting into his shoulder as his hips roll against Dean as Dean holds him down on the kitchen table. A shaky breath escapes Dean’s lips as he snatches back the alcohol and attempts to drown the thoughts in it. He’d pray that Castiel isn’t reading his mind, but he knows how prayers work.

“But you’ve felt it, right? Attraction?”

Castiel hesitates again, and Dean doesn’t need to be a mind reader to see the thoughts in the angel’s brain. To you . It comes through loud and clear, even in the dark of the kitchen. He knows body language, and he’s slept with enough people to know when they’re interested. Castiel being an angel, he still has the same tells as humans.

“What’s stopping you from acting on your attraction to them?” Dean’s voice sounds husky, and he clears his throat, stepping back toward the counter.

Castiel looks to them hem of his sleeve, picking at it as he refuses to look up. It doesn’t appear as though he’s going to answer the question.

Dean prayed for help, and this is who he got. Well, a distraction is welcomed, no matter from who. Dean drags his lips back to the bottle and closes his eyes as he gulps it down. The Jack churns in his stomach, and he sets the bottle behind him before stepping up to Castiel.

He cups the side of Castiel’s face and tilts his head up until their eyes clash into each other’s. Castiel’s eyes shine with the reflection of Dean, surprise and unease mixed into the storm blue of them. Dean leans forward, the soft press of his lips to Castiel’s.

The angel’s whole body goes rigid. Dean’s mind goes into hyperdrive. Did he read the signals wrong? Did he overstep a boundary? But then Castiel’s hands knot themselves in the collar of Dean’s shirt, lips parting under Dean’s mouth. He pushes Dean back into the counter. Dean spins them around and bends down, grabbing Castiel’s legs and wrapping them around his waist.

The trench coat hangs awkward, overflowing from where Castiel sits onto the counter and caught between Dean’s knees. He drags the overcoat off of Castiel’s shoulders and moves him so that is falls at Dean’s feet. The lightning illuminates the two men, Dean’s mouth scorching kisses along the curve of Castiel’s throat. Dean doesn’t want to admit it, but Castiel being there helps, Castiel with his legs around Dean’s waist and soft, breathy noises falling from his lips, it’s helping Dean drown out everything else inside of him.