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Juno (But not really at all)

Chapter Text

Dean stared down at the little stick sitting on the counter. All but identical with the two sitting on either side in a neat little row. All saying the same thing.

He was fucked.

Dean raised his hands and rubbed at his eyes, wondering what he was supposed to be doing. What are you supposed to do when everything and nothing had changed all in one minute? He wasn’t any more or less pregnant than he had been five minutes ago, but having the proof sitting in front of him had just shifted the entire world sharply to the left. He felt tears prickling in the back of his eyes but refused to let them fall, hormones be damned. He’d endured broken bones, aching muscles, and sheer heartbreak without shedding a tear and he certainly wasn’t going to start now. Not standing in a cheap motel bathroom with a positive pregnancy test like this was some damned Lifetime movie.

He took a deep breath in and decided that he’d allowed himself to panic enough for one day. He looked down at his stomach, happy to see that he wasn’t even showing yet and started to formulate a plan. He could hide it a little bit longer. He knew he was only about one month along, as he could pinpoint the exact night that the conception occurred. He quickly shoved that thought from his mind for the time being. No need to reflect on that night more than necessary.

How long could he realistically hide this for? He would start showing in about a month, two tops. He could probably play that off with some baggy tops for a while, not like they could ever afford anything that fits anyway. Sooner or later though he wouldn’t be able to play it off as just a little extra pudge. Even if he did, how would he explain a baby randomly appearing? That’s if he managed to go into labor and deliver far away from Dad and Sam.

He supposed he could sneak away for the last month or two, when it would be too obvious to hide. He was seventeen now, almost eighteen, surely it wouldn’t be seen as too outlandish to want to take a bit of a solo road trip. Sneak away before anybody is the wiser, have the baby in some nowhere town, then put it up for adoption or leave it at a hospital somewhere. Come back to Dad and Sam and nobody’s the wiser. Except for Dean. Could he really live with himself knowing he has a baby somewhere in the world? But what were the other options? Somehow tell Dad, hope he doesn’t get kicked out, and then what? Bringing the baby hunting with them? Saddling Sam with babysitting duty while Dad and Dean went after shapeshifters and werewolves? He couldn’t do that to Sam. And that was under the grand assumption that his dad even thought about letting him keep the baby.

He could always get rid of it. But that thought stings more than leaving his baby in some random town, hoping that it ends up with a nice family. Dean leans his hip against the cracked bathroom counter, his head spinning with all of his thoughts. He wants the baby, but knows he can’t have it. He can’t give the baby up because it would just haunt him. But how could he tell his father?

Not like his father wouldn’t know where the baby came from. He was there that night. At least he had that going for him. Who knew he would ever be semi-thankful for anything to do with that night?

Dean shook his head to clear away those thoughts again. He hadn’t thought about that night in several weeks. If he did keep the baby and continued with the pregnancy he could guarantee that he would think about it every single night for the next eight months at the least. He couldn’t run away from it and pretend it never happened as they had all been doing. He carried the proof of it in his belly. That thought spurned another that pierced a sharp bolt of dread through him. What about the other father? What if he found out and wanted to take the baby or wanted Dean to kill it? He knew these thoughts were fairly irrational, as they were several states away at this point and the odds of any information getting back to him were slim to none. Especially since the only person who knew so far was Dean and he was alone in a bathroom.

Not for long though, it would seem.

The door swung open and Dean scrambled for the tests on the counter. He managed to grab two but one was knocked to the floor. Standing in the door was Sam with his eyebrows raised at Dean’s reaction.

“Dude, how about knocking?” Dean shouted, trying to play off his reaction like he wasn’t hiding two pregnancy tests behind his back. He was trying to keep Sam from looking down to the floor where he would clearly be able to see the final one. It was face down so he couldn’t see that it was positive but there was no mistaking what it is.

Sam rolled his eyes and, seemingly oblivious, pushed past Dean to get to the sink.

“I wanted to brush my teeth. I didn’t know you were in here.” Sam stated, turning the faucet on. Dean turned quickly, starting to back out of the room, trying to kick the test on the floor out the door. He succeeded and as soon as he was across the threshold he shut the door and turned around.

And came face to face with John Winchester, who looked down at the little stick on the floor between him and Dean before crouching down and picking it up.

Dean’s heart stopped. Or was it just beating so loudly that all the reverberations melded into one loud buzzing noise? All he knew was that he couldn’t breathe, couldn’t hear, and he goddamn wished that he couldn’t see the look on John’s face as he stared down at the pregnancy test in his hands.

He was shocked out of his stupor by the sound of the faucet turning off in the bathroom. He couldn’t have Sam find out yet. At least not like this.

“Dad?” Dean said, “Dad, can we-can we go do this in the other room? It’s just, Sammy’s gonna be out in just a second…”

John’s eyes snapped up and met Dean’s. He gulped nervously but John just clenched his fist and turned and walked towards the main room. Dean heard the bathroom door open behind him and Sam came out. He looked curiously at Dean.

“Dean?” Sam whispered, concerned by the paleness of Dean’s face.

“Go to bed, Sam” Dean said before heading out towards the main room. He paused before he entered, waiting until he heard the bedroom door close.

Dean slowly walked into the living room. John was sitting on the couch and had placed the test that he had picked up off of the floor onto the coffee table in front of him. His expression was unreadable. Dean wasn’t sure if his dad was formulating the appropriate words to yell or if Dean was supposed to start speaking first. He wasn’t sure what to say. How is he supposed to start this conversation?

“Dean, you want to explain to me what the hell this is?”

John’s voice broke the silence in the room and shocked Dean out of his stupor. He looked up to see John staring at him now.

“It’s uh-It’s a pregnancy test.” Dean muttered, before quickly adding “Sir.”

“Yeah, I can see that. You want to explain what the hell one is doing in our hotel room, on our floor?” John asked, seemingly exasperated with Dean’s lack of response.

“It’s mine” Dean stated. He took a hesitant step forward and placed the other two on the table. “I wanted to be sure so I took a couple.”

“What do you mean they’re yours?” John asked, “Are you telling me you’re a carrier?”

Dean nodded.

“And you didn’t find this relevant information to share?”

“Well it’s not like I found out until about ten minutes ago.” Dean said, sharply. “Seeing how me and Sam were never tested.”

And it was true. The carrier gene was something that was found in men occasionally. It wasn’t too terribly common, but it was common enough that not many looked twice at a pregnant man walking down the street. Typically most males were tested around the age of thirteen in order to better inform them of the adolescent changes that would be occurring. Male carriers didn’t function like women. It’s not like they had a uterus that shed its lining every month. They may be more prone to fevers and abdominal cramps than non-carrying males, however it was never anything that occurred often enough for Dean to question it. Sometimes you caught a bug from eating crappy diner food or staying in a flea bitten motel.

Dean never really cared that he hadn’t been tested for the carrier gene (Well, from where he was standing now he kind of wished that he had known). He never thought it would be relevant.
Male carriers could only become pregnant from another guy and Dean never imagined himself as anything but heterosexual. Not until a few months ago at least. And the results of that experiment were enough to scare him away from men forever.

He always intended to get Sam tested, though. He was about the right age for it and Dean wanted to be sure that Sam knew how to take care of himself. He never quite knew how to bring it up to his dad though. He figured that his dad would brush it off. No sense in getting tested for being a carrier unless you were planning on taking it up the ass anytime soon and no son of his would ever be so disgraceful. He would have just taken Sam himself but you needed parental consent. He could forge John’s signature well enough but someone would have to go with Sam and there was no way he looked old enough to pass for Sam’s parent.

“Don’t you take that tone with me, boy” John’s rough voice cut into Dean’s thoughts and brought him back to the present.

“Sorry sir” Dean responded. John sighed and ran a hand down his face.

“So it’s what? A few weeks along?” John asked, weakly gesturing to Dean’s stomach.

Dean resisted the urge to wrap his arms around his stomach, as if to protect from John’s hateful glare.

“One month.” Dean said. “One month almost exactly.”

John gave Dean a meaningful look. Dean tried to school his expression so as not to give away any hint that he understood what his dad was trying to convey. John looked torn between a pitying look and the standard look of disappointment that he usually wore. John then stood, grabbing the tests from the table and walked towards their little kitchenette. He wrapped the tests in a paper towel before throwing them in the trash.

“Don’t worry about it Dean. We’ll take you to the clinic tomorrow to get it taken care of” John said. He wasn’t even looking at Dean any more. He was just puttering around the kitchen, trying to look like he was too busy to continue the conversation.

“What is that supposed to mean?” Dean asked, challengingly. He didn’t like the idea of having it ‘taken care of.’ John looked up at Dean and fixed him with a patronizing gaze.

“Come on Dean. Don’t act stupid. We’re going to take you to the clinic and we’ll get rid of the problem.” John sighed again and walked over to Dean, putting a hand on his shoulder. “Sammy will never even have to know.”

John seemed to know that playing the Sam card would have some effect. Dean felt his shoulders slump as he considered Sam. How would Sam factor into this problem? Sammy didn’t even fully understand what had happened to Dean that night several weeks ago. Well, he knew some of it but John and Dean had never let him know the full extent of what had transpired.

But would Sam really care? Dean was constantly teasing his little brother for his tree hugging and saving small animals. He didn’t really think Sam had a mean bone in his body and he certainly wouldn’t be the type of person to cut someone out of their life for poor decision making. Dean actually did look down at his still flat tummy this time and brought a hand up.

“No, I don’t wanna do that.” Dean said, nervous to look at his father. He felt John’s hand tighten on his shoulder.

“What was that?”

“I said, I don’t want to do that.” Dean replied, a little stronger this time. “I don’t want to kill it.”

“Dean, I don’t think that you’re really thinking this through.” John said. “You really think that you are capable of raising a child right now? In this environment?”

“I raised Sam, didn’t I?” The words escaped Dean’s mouth before he could even process the thought. He immediately regretted it once John’s hand left his shoulder.

“What did you just say to me?” John spat out.

“You heard me” Dean said, begging himself to shut up. To just stop talking. But his mouth didn’t seem to want to listen. “I’m the one who learned how to change his diapers. I’m the one who picked him up from school everyday. I packed his lunches, I forged your signature so that he could go on field trips because you were never around to do it, I help him with his homework, I feed him dinner every night, when was the last time that you were around for anything important in his life?”

John looked like he was seething under his skin. His face grew red and he appeared like he was about to begin yelling. Instead though, he took a deep breath and stepped closer to Dean.

“This isn’t a discussion. You are only 17 years old. I am still legally able to make this decision for you. I am taking you to the clinic tomorrow if I have to chain you in that car and that is final. Am I making myself clear?”

Dean gritted his teeth together.

“Yes sir.”

There was no way that Dean was getting any sleep tonight.

He had retired to bed immediately following his conversation with John and found Sam awake and reading. He seemed like he wanted to ask what had happened but wisely saw that Dean was not in the mood for conversation. He had changed into his pajamas and climbed underneath his covers and feigned sleep until Sam eventually called it a night a turned his light out. His gentle snores soon filled the room but Dean found himself far away from slumber as he contemplated his situation.

His choices had been whittled down to two. He could either go with his father in the morning and terminate the pregnancy or he could leave. Neither choice seemed appealing to him but he knew it was one or the other. And he had to act fast if he was going to leave. He rolled over in bed and looked at his sleeping brother. Could he really leave Sam? As much as it pained John to hear it, Dean had been speaking the truth. Dean was brother, father, and mother to Sam on most days and he couldn’t imagine how hard it would be to abandon him. But could he really abandon the child growing inside him? That hardly seemed fair.

Dean flopped on his back and stared at the ceiling. This was no longer about him anymore. There was no turning back the clock or undoing decisions. Either he left and didn’t come back, or he gave up on the life inside him. Suddenly, the choice was simple.

Dean sat up slowly and eased himself out of bed. He quickly dressed and threw his meager belongings into his duffel back. He walked carefully towards the door and opened it slightly. He was met by the sounds of his father snoring loudly in the hallway. Before he could bring himself to step out of his room, he forced himself to look back at his brother, still sound asleep in his bed. The least he could do was say goodbye.

As he took a step towards Sam he paused. Maybe it would be better to just go. That way at least Sam wouldn’t have to lie to John about where Dean was. He wanted to spare Sam as much trouble as possible. Dean sighed and nodded, his decision made.

“Bye little brother.” Dean said quietly under his breath, before turning and closing the door silently behind him.

Chapter Text

Dean meant to tell Bobby. He really intended to sit down and tell the older man exactly why he had knocked on his door without his dad a few weeks prior. But for some reason, he couldn’t quite find the right moment and the words never formulated in his head as to how he would do it.

Dean had left that night and walked to the nearest bus station. He had enough cash in his pocket for a ticket so he picked the one leaving soonest and hopped on. But he was no idiot. He knew his dad would try to follow. So as soon as he arrived at the first town he went to the nearest bar (with his fake ID) and conned a few men at pool. With his new money he bought 3 tickets going in opposite directions and then picked one at random to actually get on. After he pulled a similar trick a few more times, he finally bought one for Sioux Falls and found himself walking into Singer Salvage. It was about two weeks after he had fled from his father.

He walked up the creaky porch steps and knocked on the door. He was met with the wrong end of a shotgun.

“Whoa, hey! Bobby, it’s me!” Dean said, putting his hands up and backing up a step.

“Yeah, I ain’t so sure of that. You know your dad came by looking for you.” Bobby said, not lowering the gun. “Seemed concerned that something got you but he wouldn’t say what he was hunting when you disappeared.”

Dean snorted.

“That’s because I didn’t ‘disappear,’ I left”  Dean said. He steeled himself for Bobby to ask why but Bobby didn’t seem to indicate that Dean had said anything. He did lower the gun slightly to allow Dean to step inside. Bobby performed standard hunter tests; silver, holy water, salt. And when Dean passed well enough to satisfy Bobby that he wasn’t a monster he found himself sitting at the table in the kitchen with a glass of water and something heating up on the stove.

Bobby stirred the meal before dishing it out and sitting to eat. It appeared to be a stew. Dean tried a bite and found it palatable so he ate until he was full – a feeling that he had missed the past few weeks.

“So, you need a place to stay or what?” Bobby asked.

Dean set his spoon down and wiped at his mouth with a paper napkin.

“If you don’t mind yeah…just for a little while though. I promise I won’t be in your hair too long.” Dean replied. Bobby rolled his eyes before taking Dean’s dish over to the sink with his.

“You know you’re welcome here as long as you need, boy.”

“Thanks Bobby.” Dean stood from the table. He offered to help clean but Bobby just told him to head upstairs.

“You look dead tired. Besides, you’ll need to clean up the spare room anyway. Nobody’s stayed here in a bit so the sheets are probably a little dusty. Just strip the bed for now, spare linens are in the closet.” Bobby said.

“Sure thing.” Dean said. He picked up his duffel and turned to leave before pausing. “Hey Bobby?”

Bobby inclined his head and hummed to indicate he was listening.

“If my dad calls….can you not tell him I’m here?” Dean asked. Bobby stopped doing the dishes for a moment.

“No problem, kid.” He replied.

The next few weeks were spent in what passed as domestic bliss for Dean. He would get up and putter around the house for a bit before Bobby found something for him to work on for the day. Whether it was working on a car in the lot or looking up lore for some hunter that had called asking for help. He would offer to man the phones but he was worried that John might call and recognize his voice. But Bobby didn’t seem to mind if Dean had one thing he didn’t want to do. He never seemed to find the right moment to tell Bobby the truth about why he was there and Bobby made it easy by never asking. So Dean made it to his third month without uttering a word.

Eventually though there was a bit of a dry spell in the hunts and only a few of the cars in the lot were worth more than scrapping. So Dean found himself kicking around the house, flopping around in the living room, and idly flipping through lore books before Bobby had enough.

Dean was dusting off an old tome and stretching out on the couch for a good research session (nap) when Bobby came in and tossed him a set of keys. Dean picked the keys up and looked up at Bobby.

“Those are for the Chevelle in the back. She works well enough. I need you to run to town.” Bobby said.

“Ok, what do we need?” Dean asked, lifting himself off the couch. He was looking forward to that nap. He’d been feeling fatigued lately. Plus it was exhausting trying to throw up every morning without Bobby hearing.

“I don’t need anything.” Bobby said “But you need to get out of the house. I’m sending you to the Roadhouse. It’s a bar a few miles out, run by a friend of mine, Ellen Harvelle. They cater to our type.”

Dean squinted at him. “Our type meaning…?”

“Hunters.” Bobby said. He sat down behind his desk, “Ellen’s husband used to be in the game but since he passed she decided to stick in one place with her daughter. Couple-a old hunter friends started passing through and it became sort of a hub. It’s a good meeting spot or a good place to stop if you’re looking for a case.”

Dean’s stomach sank a little. He wasn’t sure if he could bring himself to enter what was going to be a bar full of hunters without worry that it might get back to his dad somehow. The hunter network was big but it wasn’t that big.

“So what am I going there for?” Dean asked.

“I asked Ellen to give you a job. You can put some money aside, maybe you’ll wanna go back to school someday.” Dean made a face and Bobby was quick to keep talking “Or maybe you can just pay me back for that car I’m giving you.”

Dean smiled a little at that “What, that hunk of junk? I could have that paid for in one weekend.”

Bobby rolled his eyes. “Will you just get out of here? I told Ellen you’d stop by today. It’s basically a done deal but she wanted to meet you first.”

“Ok…and…thanks, Bobby” Dean said. Bobby just nodded his head and waved Dean towards the door.

Dean pulled up at the Roadhouse after traveling down a slightly dusty back road. It was a nice little place, tucked behind a few trees. The average civilian probably wouldn’t think it was being hidden but it definitely was not meant to be easily stumbled upon by just anyone. There was definite age in the building but it looked more well loved than ramshackle. There seemed to be a few other cars in the lot and the lights were on so it appeared to be open.

He found himself sitting at the bar and checking out the patrons. There was one other man sitting at the bar although he was sitting a few seats away and seemed to be reading with a barely touched water in front of him. There were a few other people in the building but they appeared to be hunched over at booths deep in discussion or blowing off some steam with pool or darts.

He jumped as a glass was put down on the table in front of him. He looked up to see an older, brunette woman throwing a towel over her shoulder.

“Hey there, can I help you?” the woman asked.

“Uh yeah, I’m looking for Ellen?” Dean asked. The woman stuck her hand out.

“That’d be me. I’m guessing you’re Dean?” She asked. Dean nodded and took her hand.

“So Dean, what’s your drink?” Ellen asked, nodding to the glass she had sat in front of him. Dean debated his answer. He had turned 18 a few weeks prior with little to no celebration but he was still a few years off the legal drinking age, not that it would be his first drink. Normally he would just ask for a beer and hope not to get called on it. He had his fake but he doubted that Bobby would back him up. And anyway, he supposed any kind of alcohol probably wasn’t good for the baby.

“Just a water, thanks.” Dean responded. Ellen smiled and took the glass, filling it with some ice and water. She placed it back in front of him.

“Good choice, kid.” Ellen nodded in approval. Dean just gave a tight smile and sipped at his water. For some reason, being congratulated on a “good’ choice that he wouldn’t normally have made, made something in his stomach sink a little.

Ellen seemed really nice but definitely no-nonsense. She and Dean chatted, mostly about whether he had any experience doing anything besides hunting. She didn’t seem too impressed with his pool hustling resume and made sure to tell him that she didn’t want him pulling any of that while on the job.

“We’re not the most reputable joint but the last thing you wanna do is pull a fast one in a room full of hunters.” She warned.

After she’d warmed up to him a bit (And Dean promised no hustling pool and no hitting on Ellen’s daughter) she deemed him good enough to take on as an employee. She said that she’d give him a brief tour and then he could head out as long as he came back around 7 for his first shift. She brought him behind the bar and showed him where to find everything. When Dean expressed some concern about not really knowing anything about bartending, Ellen laughed.

“I wouldn’t worry too much about it. Most everyone will just be wanting beer or liquor straight up. You won’t be getting many orders for cosmos around here. So as long as you can read a bottle label you should be ok.”

She showed him the back, where they put the dirty dishes and glasses. They didn’t cook much apparently but they had a few menu items that were occasionally ordered. She showed him the kitchen area but advised him that he wouldn’t really have to be in there too much. Ellen had a guy, Ash, who cooked when needed and Jo was usually on table service. So he would mostly just be hanging around behind the bar. She pushed him out the door at around 2 and told him to come back at 7 in a dark t-shirt and jeans.

Dean mostly putzed around the town for an hour or so. He hadn’t checked out much of it and it seemed pretty nice. Very Pleasantville. Makes him wonder what would make a bar like the Roadhouse a hunter hotspot. He cruised the car slowly down the main street. He may have gone a little slower than the speed limit so he could look around but there was little to no traffic so nobody seemed to notice or care. He took in the little boutiques and coffee shops. There was a diner that looked like it hadn’t changed since the 50’s. He decided he would have to come back another day to walk around and check out whether the diner had good burgers.

He headed back to Bobby’s and decided to have a nap. He was feeling more and more tired as the days went by. He wondered if he should try and find a doctor. It probably wasn’t the safest thing to be wandering around as a pregnant carrier when he hadn’t been examined by a doctor in months. That on top of the fact that nobody currently knew he was pregnant other than his father who was, hopefully, not able to find him. Again, he wondered how to tell Bobby. It’s not like he thought Bobby would kick him out or anything. Well, maybe in some deep, self-loathing part of his mind he thought there was a chance it could happen but realistically he knew that Bobby would let him stay.

He just hated the idea of the burden he would put on the man. Bobby would let him stay because he was a good man but what about after Dean had the baby? It’s one thing to let a pregnant teenager crash in your spare room but having a single, teenage father with a screaming baby living under your roof was a completely different story.

Dean knew that he would have to tell him eventually. But for now he just wanted to have some time to enjoy everything as it was.

Chapter Text

Dean fit in pretty well at the Roadhouse. Like Ellen said, it was mostly just pouring beers and then the occasional shot. The hunters who came in weren’t fancy. The only time he had to make actual drinks was occasionally when civilians came in and wanted something a little fancier, but he still hadn’t had to make anything more complicated than a Jack and coke.

A few weeks had passed and he found himself enjoying the days that he was at the Roadhouse. He was mostly there on the weekends, including the occasional Thursday. There were no real ‘regulars' as most people were just passing through but he saw the same face once or twice. Except for the guy who Dean had seen on his first day. The man at the end of the bar with his book. He was there almost every day. Dean had asked Ellen about him and she told him that his name was Castiel and that he actually rented a room above the Roadhouse, which surprised Dean. He didn’t even know that they rented rooms.

It wasn’t until later, when he was helping Jo close up one night, that she told him that they normally didn’t.

“So what makes that guy so special?” Dean asked, as he cleaned a glass. Jo paused from where she was bussing one of the tables.

“I’m not sure, honestly” she said, tucking a piece of her hair behind her ears. “He just showed up a couple weeks ago, a few before you did, and asked mom if she knew of a place to stay. But he didn’t have any money.”

“And Ellen let him stay?” Dean asked, disbelieving. Jo shrugged.

“I didn’t hear the whole conversation. But mom seems cool with it.” She brought the bin of dirty dishes over to the bar and leaned on it. “He mostly keeps to himself. He doesn’t ever come knocking on our door and he’s either gone for the whole day or he spends it all in his room. He only ever comes down to sit at the bar while he reads.”
Dean hmm’d at that and went back to his work. Jo seemed to want to stay around and chat but having nothing else to talk about she eventually went back to work. Dean wasn’t blind. He could tell that Jo seemed to have a little crush on him. But she was only 16 and Dean just wasn’t interested. Not that she wasn’t a nice girl – she just wasn’t Dean’s type.
Dean wasn’t sure he had a type anymore.

By the time Dean hit four months he was feeling comfortable at the Roadhouse. He knew his way around the bar, had a good relationship going with Ellen and Jo, and Bobby didn’t seem like he was planning on kicking Dean out anytime soon. In fact, Bobby had started coming down to the Roadhouse every few days if he didn’t have to man the phones and Ellen would have Ash whip them up a few burgers. His 18th birthday had been a few weeks prior and they even grabbed a few cupcakes from a local bakery and, to Dean’s relief, they let him eat them without subjecting him to any singing before hand. He remembered that night feeling a small amount of relief in knowing that even if John showed up at some point, he couldn’t technically make Dean do anything. It was only a small comfort though. He still hoped he wouldn’t see his old man until his child was on the outside.

Dean’s biggest problem lately was that he had begun to show a little more. His formerly taut stomach had softened a bit at the beginning but it wasn’t something that was noticeable at first. But now he was really starting to get a bit of a bump. Sometimes he would lay on his back and lift his shirt up in the dead of night to rest his hands on his now rounded tummy. It was becoming all too real that there was still a baby coming, even if he had done his best to forget and hide it. His morning sickness had passed for the most part which was a blessing. There are only so many times that Dean could run to the bathroom without Bobby becoming suspicious. At this point he was mostly experiencing random bouts of tiredness that would smack him in the face out of nowhere. Kind of inconvenient, but better than puking every day.

It was becoming harder and harder to imagine telling Bobby. Especially now that he would have to add Ellen and Jo to the list of people who had to know. And the longer he kept it secret, the worse it was going to be when it finally came out. But when he found himself standing in front of one of them with the secret sitting on his lips he just couldn’t make the words come out. This led to several awkward conversations and speedy getaways from Dean.

Dean found himself wiping down the counter one slow afternoon and glancing curiously at the man at the end of the bar. Castiel, Jo had said that he was called. He came down, requested a glass of water and then buried his nose in his book which appeared to be some Russian novel. Dean was trying to think of some conversation starter but he couldn’t seem to think of anything. The man never asked for any beverage aside from water, Dean couldn’t exactly strike up a conversation about Russian literature, and he had no idea where the guy was even from. But he did know that he was tired of wiping down the counter so he decided to find something else to do.

One day, someone had come into the bar asking for some kind of mixed drink that Dean had never even heard the name of. It was some young girl who had wandered in and said that she was meeting a date. Dean went into the back to ask Ellen how in the hell to make a Cosmopolitan. She had written down the amounts to mix on a small note card and assured Dean that they had all the fixings. He had mixed the drink and the girl hadn’t complained so Dean felt pretty ok. He put the card into a little box next to the register in case he ever needed it again. The next day, he had asked Ellen to give him another drink mixture to practice. She rolled her eyes but he assured her that it was for training purposes only. So she wrote out the instructions for a Tom Collins and he mixed one up.

He now had a small collection of cards on standby next to the register in case someone came in who wanted one. He hadn’t had a single person after that girl ask for one but he was still prepared, nonetheless. He was thinking about asking Ellen about how to make those fancy shots but he didn’t really think he would ever have to use them.
But now, as he stared at Castiel at the end of the bar he decided to make him a drink. From looking at him you would think that he might drink either bourbon or whiskey straight up. The sound of his voice certainly gave credence to that line of thought. The man was either downing whiskey every morning or gargling gravel. But no, he decided to make Castiel a Tom Collins. So he mixed the ingredients in the shaker, poured it over some ice in a small cup, walked to the end of the bar, and dropped it in front of Castiel who glanced at the cup before raising his eyes to Dean.

“I did not order a drink.” Castiel said, in confusion.

“I know,” Dean responded. “It’s on the house. I’m practicing my mixing.”

Castiel placed his book down and looked at the beverage on the counter.

“How can the beverage be ‘on the house’ if it is sitting on this counter?” He asked. Dean let out a burst of laughter but Castiel raised curious eyes and Dean’s laughter petered out as he realized that Castiel was serious.

“Oh…um. No, that’s just an expression.” Dean clarified. “It means that the drink is free.”

Castiel nodded seriously before picking up the drink and taking a cautious sip. He grimaced a little as he swallowed it down. However, probably out of politeness he went to take another sip.

“Dude, you don’t have to finish that if you don’t want.” Dean said with a smile. Castiel seemed slightly relieved and set it on the counter before taking another sip of his water.

“I’m sure it was made well, I just do not find the taste of alcohol to be appetizing, I suppose.” Castiel replied. Dean took the drink back and dumped it down the sink before putting the dirty class in the rack beneath the counter.

“For someone who doesn’t drink much you sure picked an interesting place to live.” Dean said. He pulled out his bar rag and began wiping down the counter next to Castiel. Not because it was dirty but because he needed an excuse to stand there and make conversation.

“You mean Sioux Falls? I was not aware that alcohol impacted residency.” Castiel said, seemingly curious.

Dean quirked his eyebrow at the man in the trenchcoat. Castiel was definitely different than anyone Dean had met.

“No I meant that you live above a bar. You know…a joint that almost exclusively sells alcohol.”

“Oh.” Castiel replied. He seemed to grimace to himself, perhaps aware that he was not exactly responding normally. “I did not seek a bar for living purposes. I simply managed to find one and Ellen was kind enough shelter me in my need.”

Dean nodded. He wanted to ask Castiel more about how he came to be at the Roadhouse and what made him so special that Ellen housed him. But he realized that that might be a lot to ask in a first conversation and he didn’t want to scare him away. He was by far the most interesting person that he had met while staying at Bobby’s and it would be nice to have someone a little close to his age to talk to aside from Jo. Castiel looked like he was in his late 20’s, maybe early 30’s tops but Dean didn’t really want to ask. Instead he promised Castiel that he was going to find him a drink that he would like. Castiel gave Dean a small smile for that which is more than he had seen on the mans face previously. Dean considered that conversation a win.

The rest of the week found Castiel sitting in his usual seat every afternoon although he had taken to leaving his book upstairs. Dean would make him drinks and tell him stories about some of the things he had hunted or stories about Sam.

On Tuesday Castiel discovered that he did not enjoy Whiskey sours. But he did enjoy Dean’s stories about Sam’s weird pet rock phase. Sam, bitter that he couldn’t have a dog, started collecting rocks at around the age of 5 and it wasn’t until Dean went to grab his duffel for him one day and found he was barely able to lift it that he discovered the dozens of rocks that Sam had been collecting in secret for days. He cried when Dean made him dump all of the rocks out but seemed to recover when Dean presented him with the small stuffed animal he had nicked from the grocery store.

Wednesday found Castiel grimacing through a few sips of a Vodka Cranberry. Although Dean had made some joke about that being ok since it was a pretty ‘girly’ drink. Castiel, true to form, did not appear to understand the joke and merely crinkled his brow and asked how exactly to distinguish the gender of a beverage. Dean simply shook his head.

On Thursday they actually had a decent amount of hunters coming in so Dean didn’t have a lot of time to chat with Castiel. He looked a little glum sitting at the bar alone but cheered up when Dean set a margarita in front of him and was able to chat for a few minutes. Castiel appeared to enjoy the margarita more than the previous drinks but still remarked that the taste of tequila was too strong for his tastes.

Finally, on Friday Dean set a bay breeze in front of Castiel. That day marked the first day that Castiel actually finished one of the drinks that Dean made.

Chapter Text

Dean was cruising through an intersection in the middle of town on his way to work when he found himself, unconsciously, pulling into the parking lot of the grocery store. He parked and exited his car before stopping in his tracks. What the hell was he doing here? Dean rolled his eyes at himself and his ‘pregnancy brain.’ Among the more rounded tummy, month four had brought on pregnancy cravings. Luckily Bobby seemed to think that Dean was simply acting like a normal teenage boy who would shove anything down his gullet. But Dean knew that if he was going to make it through his entire shift at work then he had to have whatever it was that his brain decided that it wanted (even if it had done so without consulting Dean first). He headed into the store and figured he would walk up and down the aisles until he found what he needed.

He walked through the produce and veggie aisle just to get it out of the way...no way in hell any child of his was going to make him eat rabbit food more than necessary, he had already noticed Bobby on a weird health kick. Twice this week he had scoured the fridge for something to eat and had had no choice but to grab an apple as it was the only thing in the fridge. He continued on through the chips, soda, crackers, microwave meals, and the international aisle but didn't see anything that screamed 'eat me now.' He saw the next aisle was a nutrition aisle and was going to skip it but decided to take a stroll down anyway.

As it would turn out, the second half of the aisle was baby necessities. He felt a pit drop to the bottom of his stomach.

‘You’re really cutting it close here, Dean’ he thought to himself.

He hadn't managed to spill his secret to anyone but that also meant that he couldn't buy clothes, furniture, bottles, or even diapers. Another quick glance at one of the shelves showed him something else that he was neglecting. There were shelves upon shelves of prenatal vitamins as well as books. All different kinds of books along the 'what to expect' lines detailing everything from conception to early childhood development. He suddenly looked down at his hidden bump and thought about what else he was already neglecting for his child. Picking up a bottle of vitamins he briefly considered just shoving them in his pocket. But he had no idea how long he would be staying in Sioux Falls and wasn’t really fond of the idea of being caught shoplifting at the only grocery store in town. Although, he didn’t want the rumor mill to start circulating about what he was buying at the store either.

He resolved to take some time early the next week to take a drive to the next town and start shopping. He couldn't buy anything major but he could definitely stock up on a book or two and figure out what he should be doing right now.

‘You’ll still have to tell someone eventually.’ He thought. He was a damn good liar….but he wasn’t sure what kind of story he could spin that would have Bobby believing that he needed a crib.

He put the bottle of pills back on the shelf and continued on his way.

Dean was behind the bar of the Roadhouse no less than an hour later and was in the process of drying glasses when Castiel appeared from the back and took his usual seat at the bar.

“Hey there Cas,” Dean said. “Want a chocolate covered pretzel?”

During one of their conversations earlier in the month, Dean had decided that ‘Castiel’ was too formal. He had taken to shortening it to ‘Cas.’ Cas, for his part, hadn’t mentioned the change, however he did smile fondly when Dean first started using it. Dean guessed that he was happy to have a friend and the familiarity of a nickname was a novelty to him.
Cas looked at the bag that Dean offered. He took the small bag in his hands and examined the label before reaching in and removing a small piece and popping it in his mouth.
Cas’s eyes lit up, much like they had when they had finally determined that tropical beverages were very much to his liking. Cas took a few more before handing the bag back to Dean.

“These are quite delicious.” Cas said. He took a sip of the water that Dean had placed in front of him.

“So, anything new?” Dean asked. Typically Cas would respond by discussing the book that he was currently reading. Dean would smile and nod, although he hadn’t read the books, but Cas seemed fine with piloting the conversation when it came to literature. Dean had only really read a few books for pleasure, the rest when required for school (Although those he tended to skim). But today Cas had a new topic of conversation.

“I have found employment.” Cas said, looking mildly proud.

Dean raised an eyebrow in response as a large grin broke out on his face.

“Hey, that’s some good news.” Dean stated. “Where at?”

Cas beamed at the praise and replied, “At the public library.”

Dean had a momentary ‘sexy librarian’ image of Cas in his head. There was a sweater vest and glasses involved.

“That’s fancy, you gonna be a librarian?” Dean asked, continuing to putter around the bar. There weren’t many people in the bar right now so all Dean was doing was keeping an eye on a few people who may need refills soon.

“No, you apparently need many years of schooling to be a librarian.” Cas replied. “However, I will now be working part time as a library aide.”

Dean’s sexy librarian fantasy fizzled away like a deflated balloon. He gave a mental shrug at the loss.

“You need to go to school to be a librarian?” Dean asked. “Don’t you just need to know where all the books are all stored? Well, that and how to shush people.” Dean cracked a smile at his own joke.

Cas’s eyebrows knitted together in confusion. Dean was quick to jump in before Cas could ask his question.

“It’s just a joke Cas,” Dean laughed. “You know, because you have to be quiet in libraries so the librarian has to shush people to keep them from being too loud.”

“Oh, I understand.” Cas said. He let out a brief chuckle which Dean felt was mostly to appease him.

“Being a librarian is actually a rather strenuous endeavor. You have to be well learned on many topics so that you can be of assistance to those who need it. As a library aide I will mostly be assisting patrons in checking out books, supervising the computer lab, returning books to the shelves, among other things. It is a very rewarding career path, I believe”

Dean thought that sounded terrible. But he could tell Cas was excited about it so he smiled right back.

“Sounds cool, man! Finally going to be contributing to society.” Dean joked, “Why’d you decide to get a job though? Ellen decide she was going to start charging you rent?”

“No, Ellen has been very generous to me. However, I do not enjoy being a burden. It will be nice to be able to take care of some monetary needs on my own and perhaps give some money to Ellen for her kindness” Cas responded. “Besides, it will be nice to have a change of scenery a few times a week.”

Dean paused in his puttering.

“I’m sure no one thinks you’re a burden, Cas.” Dean said. Cas sighed and nodded as if he had already been told this.

“Ellen has expressed the same sentiment. However, not many would be as generous as her.” Cas said, playing with the condensation dripping down his water glass. “She took me in when many others probably would not have done the same.”

"Yeah, Ellen's like that." Dean smiled, returning to dawdling around behind the bar. "Once she decides that she trusts you, you're in.”

Dean was momentarily distracted as a gruff looking gentleman came up with his empty glass. Cas watched with a fond smiled as Dean shot a few friendly barbs back and forth as he refilled the man’s whiskey. Once the man had gone again, Dean turned back to Cas.

“So I guess we won’t get to hang out as much, with you being a working man and all.” Dean said.

“Perhaps.” Cas replied.

Dean would be lying if he said he wasn’t a little disappointed at that. He had enjoyed the past few weeks conversing with Cas. He was one of the few real friends that Dean had made in his time in Sioux Falls. Sure, Jo was great but she was still a few years younger than Dean and hadn’t quite shaken her crush on him. Bobby and Ellen were more like parental figures and the only other people he chatted with daily were the patrons who were mostly hunters around the same age as his father.

Although Cas seemed to have a few years on him he never treated Dean like a child. Dean was struck with the thought that he didn’t actually know how old Cas was.

He would find himself sometimes staring at Cas and wanting to know more about him. Where did he come from? Where was he headed that he ended up at the Roadhouse? How is it that he seems to have been around for a few decades (Maybe?) and had never heard of any television show ever? He read Russian literature and could speak knowledgeably on almost any topic, but mention anything that didn’t come out of a textbook and he was lost, looking to Dean for a translation. Dean was lost in his thoughts for a moment before Cas spoke up again.

“I was wondering….well hoping perhaps…once I’ve gotten my first paycheck.” Cas fumbled over his words, “Would you be interested in having a meal with me?”

Oh shit.

Dean’s head shot up. Cas was looking at him with a hopeful yet nervous expression. Dean faltered for a moment, unsure of how to respond.

“You mean like, grab a burger?” Dean asked. “We do that here all the time, you don’t have to wait for your paycheck.”

‘Nice save, Winchester’ Dean berated himself.

“No, I understand.” Cas said. “I just thought- Well it is my understanding that when two people enjoy one another’s company and there is potential for a romantic relationship that it is recommended that one ask the other to share a meal together.”

Dean almost laughed at the clinical way Cas was describing going on a date. Dean really hated to break Cas’s heart. He was looking at Dean with such an unsure expression. And it wasn’t that Dean wouldn’t enjoy going on a date with Cas. He loved nothing more than shooting the breeze with the other man during his shifts at the Roadhouse, and he certainly wasn’t hard on the eyes. But Dean was pregnant and nobody knew. And if they knew he was pregnant then they would have to know exactly how he got himself into that situation and Dean wasn’t sure he was ready to deal with that. Not to mention the fact that he was pregnant. Why would he want to drag Cas into that mess? He was going to have a baby in a few months…why would Cas wanna date someone knocked with someone else’s kid?

“Cas, I-“ Dean started. How was he going to give the ‘it’s not you, it’s me’ speech to someone who barely understood the concept of a date? Dean was momentarily saved when the phone rang. He gave Cas a ‘one second’ gesture and walked across the bar to the phone.

“Roadhouse.” Dean answered, lifting the phone from it’s cradle.

“Dean!” Bobby’s voice came through hurriedly.

“Bobby? What’s going on?” Dean asked casually. He was too hyped up figuring out how to answer Cas that he didn’t notice the urgency in Bobby’s voice.

“Dean, it’s your dad.” Bobby said. Dean felt his stomach sink. “He showed up here about an hour ago with your brother. He just left a few minutes ago and I think he’s coming your way.”

Dean felt his vision swim as Bobby’s words sunk in. The Roadhouse was only a few minutes away from Bobby’s. John Winchester was on his way. Dean felt the phone slip from his hands and clatter to the floor. He vaguely heard Cas call his name.

John was…here? Here. John was in town. John was potentially spitting distance from the Roadhouse. Holy shit – John could be IN the Roadhouse. Dean spun around in a jerky circle, quickly taking in the faces in the bar and somehow convinced that John had snuck past him and was stalking him like a lion on the Serengeti. He took a few calming breaths as he realized that John wasn’t here. He had to get his shit together. John wasn’t here, but that didn’t mean that he couldn’t show up any second. He let out one last rush of breath and nodded to himself. He turned back to Cas to find him off his stool. He was standing and had taken a few steps to the entrance of the back of the bar. He looked at Dean like a spooked animal.

“Dean, is everything alright?” Cas asked, once he realized that he had Dean’s attention.

“Cas, I need you to grab Ellen from the back for me.” Dean said, “She should be in the office.”

Cas nodded and disappeared through the door to the back room.

He couldn’t stay behind the bar. Not if John was around. But he was going to be fine. Cas was getting Ellen and Dean would explain….well he would think of something. But he would just ask Ellen to take over behind the bar and maybe Bobby could talk to her later? Dean’s thoughts were cut short at the sound of the main entrance door opening.
His head whipped over to the door and he saw John for a brief second before he dropped to the floor.

He was fucked. Again.

He paused for a moment but heard nothing. Surely, if John had seen him he would be over at the bar right now, hollering his name. He could only assume that John hadn’t seen him.

Dean glanced down and saw the phone on the floor. He picked it up and could hear Bobby calling his name through the receiver.

“Bobby, he’s here.” Was all Dean got out before he put the phone back down again. He had to think. Keep it together. John would surely be walking over to the bar and he would look down and see Dean hiding in a second. Unfortunately, the door to the back room was on the other side of the bar and would require crossing across the way so that was out.

Dean scanned his surroundings and saw the little alcove under the counter where they usually stored the rack with the clean glasses. It was currently empty. Dean scurried underneath and curled his knees up to his chest to be sure he was completely hidden. Luckily, the Roadhouse wasn’t the type of place to have a mirror behind the bar or his hiding place would be given away immediately.

Dean sat there for a few moments, still unsure if John had actually seen him and was just trying to sneak up on him.

He could still see the phone on the floor a few feet away. The little red light was on so he knew Bobby hadn’t hung up yet. His heart skipped a beat when he saw feet appear, however he realized it was Ellen when she crouched down to pick up the phone. She stood and held the phone up to her ear.

“Bobby?” Ellen asked, hearing the voice coming through the phone. He couldn’t hear what Bobby was saying on the other end of the phone but Ellen just responded after a few moments with a curt “You got it.” She told Bobby she would call him back in a little bit and hung up the phone. Ellen headed over towards Dean’s hiding spot and he had a moment of panic that she would crouch down and reveal him hiding there but she just leaned against the counter and he heard her ask someone what she could get them. He stopped breathing when he heard his father answer.

“Whatever you have on tap is just fine.”

Ellen stepped away to fill his order and Dean tried to get his breathing under control. His father was sitting at the bar right above him. There was nothing but a few pieces of wood obscuring him from view. Dean mentally kicked himself for his panic. He had a hiding spot, from what he could tell John had no idea he was here, and Ellen didn’t seem like she was about to give it away. He was safe for now and just needed to wait it out.

Ellen dropped off John’s beer and continued on working behind the counter as if her bartender wasn’t currently hiding underneath it.

“So how’s everything been going for you lately, Ellen?” John asked from above Dean.

“Well, you know how it is” Ellen answered, “Serving up a bunch of rowdy hunters with glorified war stories that they think are gonna impress me. I’m living the dream.”

John laughed and took a swig of his beer.

“Any good ones?” John asked. Ellen started into a story that some hunter had come in with the previous week about a wendigo and Dean started to tune it out. Ellen and John kept up the conversation for a few minutes before it petered into a silence.

“So listen Ellen.” John started. “I didn’t come in just to shoot the shit. I’m looking for someone and I thought you might have seen ‘em.”

Dean’s heart started racing again as Ellen paused in her work to stand in front of John.

“Oh, another hunter? Or a monster?” Ellen asked.

“Neither.” John replied. “I’m looking for my son.”

This was it, Dean thought. He was done. Ellen didn’t owe him anything. Why should she lie for him? It was one thing to casually not mention that a guy’s son was in fact hiding underneath the bar he was sitting at but it was another to blatantly lie to his face about it.

“I didn’t realize he was missing. Which one?” Ellen asked.

“My oldest, Dean.” John answered. “It was a few weeks ago. I’m not sure if it’s just teen angst or whether something got him to leave but I was tracking him for a bit until the trail went cold. I guess I was hoping that he either showed up here or at Bobby’s at some point or at least maybe someone came through who may have seen him. He’s almost six feet, blonde hair, green eyes? He’s only 18.”

“Sorry John, I haven’t seen anyone that young in here.” Ellen replied. “You can ask around but I think he would have stuck out like a sore thumb in a place like this.”

‘Please don’t ask around’ Dean thought. John could describe him to anyone in the bar and they would all be able to identify him. They all saw him behind the bar 5 friggin’ minutes ago.

Dean heard John sigh from above him.

“Yeah, I guess you’re right.” John said. Dean couldn’t see his father’s face but it sounded like he wasn’t 100% convinced that Ellen was telling the truth.

“Well you let Bobby know if he shows up here. He knows how to reach me.” John said. Dean heard the thunk of John’s glass hit the bar and the screech of the bar stool legs on the ground as John stood up from the bar.

“I will. You take care of yourself, Winchester.” Ellen said. John didn’t answer verbally but Dean heard him walking away and then the door opening and closing. Dean sat under the bar just breathing for a few moments before Ellen came into view, crouching next to his hiding spot.

“You’ve got some explaining to do, Dean.”

Chapter Text

“I’m pregnant.”

Dean felt an immediate weight lift off of his chest at the uttering of the words. It occurred to him the moment after they left his lips that it was the first time he had actually said them out loud. He had thought it on many an occasion. But even the sole time that he had spoken aloud about his condition he hadn’t said those two words in that particular order.

“You’re what?!”

Lost in his thoughts, he had almost forgotten where he was.

After John had left, Ellen had helped Dean up off the floor and ushered him into the office. She had asked Cas if he wouldn’t mind watching the bar for a bit. He blanched a little at the request but Ellen quickly reassured him that if anyone asked for anything more complicated than a beer or straight liquor to come get her. He had nodded solemnly and taken up his post behind the bar.

Ellen had sat him down in her office chair and closed the door. She turned to him and crossed her arms.

“You know, I don’t much like lying to people.” Ellen said, giving Dean a stern look.

“Yeah, I know Ellen.” Dean sighed, sinking further into the chair and running his hand over his face. Ellen’s face softened a little as she looked at the teenager. She crossed over and half perched on her desk in front of Dean.

“Look Dean.” Ellen started. “I don’t like lying to people-But when you’re in the business that we are you do it when you have to. As long it’s for the benefit of someone else. Now, all Bobby told me was that your dad had shown up and that under no circumstances was I to let him know that you were there. I’ve known Bobby a long time and he’s never steered me wrong before. So I decided to trust him.”

She leaned in closer to Dean and he lifted his eyes, hesitant to meet hers.

“I don’t need to know the whole story here…but you have to give me something to work with.” Ellen said. “I don’t mind lying for you if you think that you need protection from something or…someone. But I gotta know what I’m getting myself into.”

“That’s fair.” Dean conceded. He sat up in the chair and opened his mouth to speak. But like so many times before, the words just died in his mouth. He wasn’t even sure where to begin. He felt his insides freeze up until they were as locked up as his tongue seemed to be. This was the end of the road. Everyone would know. Cas wouldn’t need to hear a clever excuse about why they couldn’t go on a date. And Bobby could have his spare room back. Ellen would need to find a new bartender. But, hey, if Cas did alright covering for him today then maybe Ellen would let him do it. But then Cas would have to turn down his job at the library….and he was so excited about it.

“Dean” Ellen asked. Dean jerked out of his thoughts and looked up at Ellen staring down at him with a concerned expression.

“Yeah sorry.” Dean said. “It’s just…it’s a long story.”

“I’ve got time.”

That’s what Dean was afraid of. He blew out a breath and readied himself to tell the whole story. About that night all those months ago, telling John, all of the buses, coming to Bobby’s, and all of the secrets and hiding in between. Unfortunately, most of the story got lost in transit from his brain to his mouth and all that managed to make it out was “I’m pregnant.”

After Ellen’s shocked response (“You’re what?!”) there was a moment of silence. Dean steeled himself to continue. It was mostly over already. He’d already given up the big secret so the minor details of who, how, why, and when were all that was needed before Dean left the building.

“I’m pregnant.” Dean repeated. “And my dad found out and was obviously not too happy. But he wanted to have it…you know…” Ellen shook her head so Dean pushed forward.
“You know…taken care of….and I didn’t want that. I mean, I’m obviously not father material, but I couldn’t just kill it. But I was still seventeen at the time and he legally could have made me so I ran and ended up here. And now I’m eighteen so technically he can’t make me get rid of it but we don’t always do everything above board so I need to stay away from him until the baby is born.”

Dean barely paused for breath between sentences. His hands were clenching the cuffs of his oversized sweatshirt, stretching out the already baggy material.

“And I’m sorry I lied but I didn’t know what else to do. And I don’t know anything about being pregnant or having a baby and I didn’t want to be alone when I could be around people who might be able to help me. Do you know how many different kinds of freaking vitamins there are? And Bobby didn’t ask why I ran from John and then after that…well it’s not like pregnancy comes up often in conversation where I could casually slip it in and –“

“Whoa, just hold on there Dean.” Ellen interrupted, cutting off Dean’s long-winded speech that had quickly been devolving into mindless rambling. She was looking at him with caring eyes. The eyes of Ellen ‘Jo’s mother’ and not so much of Ellen ‘Hunter’s widow/badass hunter.’

“Let me just see if I’ve got this figured out.” Ellen said. “You’re pregnant. And the only people who know are you and your father, correct?” Dean nodded. “Dean, you showed up here a few months ago, exactly how far along are you?”

“Four, almost five months” Dean replied. Ellen’s eyebrows shot up.

“How are you five months pregnant and nobody noticed?” Ellen asked. Dean let out a soft exhalation of breath as a sort of chuckle.

“Well, I’ve been sticking to baggy clothes so nobody would notice.” Dean replied. He stood up and lifted his sweatshirt just over his tummy where his growing bump was more noticeable through his t-shirt.

“Oh, Dean” Ellen said. She looked like she was going to reach out and put her hands on his bump but thought better of it. Instead she reached forward and took his hands to lower his sweatshirt back down. And then she enveloped him in a hug. Dean paused for a moment before lifting his arms to return the hug. They stood there for almost a minute before Dean fully relaxed and let his head fall to Ellen’s shoulder. Her hand came up and he could feel her fingers begin to card through his hair.

“How have you been able to hide this for so long? Bobby didn’t notice anything at all? And what were you going to do when the baby came?” Ellen asked, not letting Dean out of her embrace just yet. Dean shrugged from within her arms.

“I hadn’t quite figured that out yet. I don’t think Bobby knows anything, or if he did then he hasn’t said anything.” Dean said, not trying to escape the hug just yet. “I have no idea what I’m doing here, Ellen.”

Dean voice cracked a little and he sank further into the hug. He was vaguely aware of the tears that had finally started falling but he didn’t have the energy to try and stop them.

“Well, the first thing we need to do is get you set up in a room upstairs.” Ellen answered. “Your dad is probably going to stay with Bobby for a few days so you can stay here so you don’t cross paths. And then you, me, and Bobby need to have a long talk.”

Dean nodded his head into Ellen’s shoulder, smearing more tears onto her shirt.

“It’s going to be ok Dean. We’ll figure it out.” Ellen said, soothingly. “It’s not the end of the world.”

Dean probably would have let Ellen hold him for the next hour or so if it hadn’t been for the knock at the door.

“Um, Ellen.” Cas’s muffled voice came through the door, “There is a man here asking for Johnny Walker Blue and I cannot find any. He is not pleased.”

Ellen sighed and then released Dean. She squeezed his shoulders for a moment and gave him a small smile before turning and opening the door. Dean quickly turned away and rubbed at his cheeks with the scruffy sleeves of his sweatshirt, tugging the hem down further over his belly.

“I keep that in the back with some of the specialty liquors. Damn bottles are too expensive to risk getting smashed in every bar fight. I’ll show you where it is.” Ellen’s voice came from behind Dean.

“Dean, what’s wrong?” came Jo’s voice. “Cas was saying that-“

“Dean is fine.” Ellen interrupted. “Jo I need you to open up room 3 upstairs and put some fresh linens on the bed. Maybe open the window too.”

“But Mom, I was just-“

“Now, Joanna Beth.” Ellen said firmly. Dean heard a sigh and then some fading footsteps.

“I’ll be right back, Dean. You just sit tight.” Ellen said. Dean nodded and the door closed, leaving Dean alone in the office.

He looked around the space, not wanting to sit back down again (although his ankles had begun hurting him a bit lately but he wasn’t about to whine about it). It was what you’d expect for the office of a dive bar. A small but sturdy desk was crammed into the corner with a computer older than time taking up almost half of the table top. The rest was covered in receipts and invoices, some with rings from the bottom of beer bottles. There was a rusty filing cabinet in the corner by the door, presumably filled with even older files of shipment paperwork, tax documents, maybe even some old rental agreements from back in the day when they actually let out the rooms above the bar, instead of using them for strange, secretive men and pregnant teenagers.

Dean turned to look at the pictures on the wall. There was the standard, framed first dollar from when Ellen and Bill (Ellen’s late husband) had opened the bar. A picture of a much younger Ellen and a Bill that Dean had never met standing outside of a much less worn down Roadhouse. And of course, there was no short supply of pictures of Jo. Jo as an infant being held by her father. Jo as an infant being held by her mother. Jo sitting in her high chair with an empty beer bottle, no doubt given to her by an adult who thought it would be funny. Not too many pictures of Jo as she got older. In fact they all seem to taper off just before Jo became a teenager. Someone who didn’t know the family might just think that a teenager going through puberty was against having their picture taken. But Dean was well aware that Jo’s father had died not too long after she had turned 11. There must not have been much worth taking pictures of for a while after that. Nonetheless, there was a single framed photo, sitting on the desk rather than the wall, of Jo and Ellen from probably only about a year ago. And tucked into the corner of the frame was a wallet sized photo of Bill. Dean knew his dad had a similar picture in his wallet of Mary. It seems like hunters always end up holding the ones they love in their wallets rather than in their arms.

Whoa, getting a little dark there Dean. He decided that he’d had his fill of emotions for the day. Dean was rethinking his previous attitude towards the chair. His ankles were starting to throb and he was beginning to feel an ache in his lower back. He had just started towards the chair and was caught mid yawn by the door re-opening. It was Cas’s dark head of hair that poked through the crack in the door.

“Hello, Dean.” Cas said. He had left the door partially open and remained standing awkwardly in the doorway. “I just wanted to make sure you were okay.”

Dean rubbed the back of his neck and kept his eyes trained on the floor.

“Yeah, uh-I’m fine. Just you know….” Dean trailed off. Cas did not ‘just know.’ The silence probably would have continued to descend into scientifically unexplored levels of awkward if the door hadn’t swung open the rest of the way.

“Cas, could you head back behind the bar please?” Came Ellen’s voice. There was a momentary pause as if Cas were hesitating. “Just for a little bit longer. I’ll come and relieve you in a few minutes.”

Cas sighed and shuffled away. Only then did Dean chance looking back up. Luckily, only Ellen was there.

“Jo’s got your room set up upstairs. It’s room number 3, you just head up the stairs and it’s the first on the right. The other way down the hall are mine and Jo’s rooms and Cas is in number 4 across the hall from you.” Dean nodded. “Boy, you look dead on your feet. Get on up there and lie down for a bit. I can handle the bar for now.”

Dean made to leave the office but was stopped by Ellen at the door. She pulled him in for a brief hug.

“I didn’t say anything to Jo or Cas. You can tell them whenever you’re ready.” She said softly, to keep their conversation from being overheard by potential eavesdroppers. “We’re all here to help you though. You’re not doing this on your own anymore.” She pulled away and rubbed her thumb on Dean’s cheek the way only mother’s know how. Dean gave her a smile before leaving to lie down.

Chapter Text

Dean woke up in stages. He was first surprised that he was not hearing the shrill sound of his alarm clock and determined that it must be too early for his alarm to be going off. So Dean snuggled further into his pillow to allow himself to drift back to sleep. It was at that moment that he thought Bobby must have changed his sheets, as his cheek was pressed against smooth linen and not the warm flannel pillowcase that he loved. He opened his eyes to investigate further as he sat up in bed. Everything slowly resurfaced and he found himself laying back down and pulling the covers over his head.

Bobby didn’t change his sheets. Dean was just in a different bed. And Dean did not hear his alarm because it was not morning. Actually, wait a minute. Dean poked his head out from underneath his blanket and took in the room. It was looking a faded orange from the light of the setting sun streaming in through the window.

He had no idea exactly what time it was, but he knew that there was no limit on how long he could hide in bed before he felt ready to go back out and face everyone. How could he have let this happen?

He was a hunter for Christ’s sake. He could have thought of a million different reasons why he was hiding from John, none of which would have required him to reveal his condition. He could claim John beat him up, or that he messed up a hunt and John was after his hide. He could claim that John was possessed by a demon and he was on the run. Of course, Dean logically knew that any of those lies would have just opened a bigger can of worms to cover up that the one he had already opened. But that didn’t mean that he wasn’t pissed. This changed everything. Everyone would treat him differently. Would Bobby let him help around the junkyard or would he suddenly be too ‘delicate?’ What if Ellen didn’t want him behind the bar anymore? Nothing better than the unwed, pregnant, teenage father serving drinks to give your bar that little something extra. And Cas…..

Dean figured that the little bed in the room above the Roadhouse would be a pretty good place to stay forever.

But Dean’s bladder had a different idea.

One of Dean’s least favorite things about pregnancy so far was having to pee. All. The. Time.

So he sighed and sat up, resigning himself to leaving the room. Although he promised himself that he could come back straight after to enjoy the wonders of a few more hours of sleep. He climbed out of the bed and stepped back into his pants. He had his sweatshirt pulled over his head and was in the process of stuffing his arms into the sleeves before he paused. He probably didn’t even need the sweatshirt anymore. Hell, everyone would be finding out eventually so may as well get it over with and just ditch the baggy clothes. It was just as well. It was starting to get closer to spring and the weather was starting to warm up. Only a little though, they did live in South Dakota after all.

He stuffed his feet into his shoes and went out in search of the bathroom. Ellen hadn’t said where they were but his room didn’t have it’s own, just a sink with a mirror above it in the corner, so he assumed that there had to be one somewhere. He located one down the hall and went about his business. He left the bathroom after washing his hands and came face to face with Cas. They both froze. There was a moment of quiet before Dean surprised himself by breaking the silence himself.

“Hey Cas. I guess we’re going to be neighbors for a little bit.” He said, motioning to the door with the little metal number 3 nailed onto it. Cas spared a glance over his shoulder at the door before turning back to Dean.

“Yes I heard. Ellen mentioned that you would be staying here for a few days.” Cas smiled. “It makes me glad. With me not being able to spend as much time with you at the bar, it will be pleasant to maybe spend some time together here? I have heard that some acquaintances spend time by enjoying movies or television shows together. Perhaps we could do that one evening? My room is equipped with a television.” Cas looked on hopefully at Dean. Although, Dean did notice that he was making eye contact and had not, at any point, glanced down at Dean’s protruding belly.

“Excuse me?” Dean asked, thrown by the suggestion. Cas shuffled a little awkwardly.

“Well, it seemed that my earlier suggestion of going out to dinner together was not amenable to you. I may not know much about social interactions but I believe that you were going to deny my request. I thought perhaps that dining out may be too formal for a first date. I supposed that if dining out did not appeal to you then maybe you would prefer a more casual setting?” Cas rambled on before letting out a sigh and meeting Dean’s eyes, “I enjoy your company Dean and would very much like to court you.”

“Ok first of all, don’t say court.” Dean corrected, cursing the warmth he felt in his cheeks as they reddened “It’s dating. We’re not in the 12th century, dude. And secondly…it wasn’t…I mean-I’m not against going out to dinner it’s just….well” Dean looked down at his bump and looked back up at Cas. Cas’s eyes followed down and then back up but he still stared confusedly at Dean. Dean let out a frustrated sigh, “Can’t you see that I’m pregnant?”

That came out a lot harsher than Dean had intended. Cas’s eyes widened a little at the tone as he glanced back at Dean’s bump once more. His face reddened.

“Of course, I apologize. I suppose it did not occur to me that since you were with child, of course you must already be in a relationship?” Cas asked, nervously.

“What? No!” Dean replied, exasperated. “I’m not dating anybody. Just pregnant.”

Cas scrunched up his eyebrows.

“I am confused. If you are not in a relationship then why can we not go on a date?” Cas asked.

“I mean…there’s not any kind of rule against it or anything.” Dean floundered, “It’s just-why would you want to date a pregnant dude?”

“I don’t want to date a ‘pregnant dude’” Cas said using air quotes (which Dean has expressly advised him against several times previously). “I just…want to date you.”

Dean’s heart did that stupid thing where it skipped a beat. He would have to go outside and chop some wood or….bench press a bison or something to get his manliness back with all of the rom-com moments he was having today. But he was in for a penny, in for a pound at this point so he made a split second decision.

“Ok” Dean said finally. Cas’s eyes widened and a smile broke out on his face.

“Really?” Cas said hopefully.

“Yeah” Dean responded, trying to seem much more casual than he was actually feeling. “We can hang out and check out some tv, take it slow”

Cas nodded eagerly and took a step towards Dean. He made a few movements that were quickly aborted. His arms went up slightly as if for a hug, then he stuck one hand out as if he were going to close the deal on their business transaction. He laughed and rubbed the back of one of his hands across his brow, obviously nervous as well as excited.

Eventually he just took another step and slowly leaned towards Dean. Dean stood stock still as Cas came closer. He almost wished that Cas had just gone for the handshake. But no. Cas’s face was getting closer. Dean stopped breathing for the few seconds when he could feel Cas’s breath against his cheek followed by the soft press of his lips in a polite kiss on the cheek.

As Cas pulled back from the kiss Dean was happy to see that the world hadn’t ended. He smiled at Cas who was smiling back at him with his face bright red. They both stood there like idiots for a few moments before Dean spoke again.

“Well, I should get going. I need to talk to Ellen about a few things.”

“Yes, of course.” Cas replied, stepping to the side so that Dean could pass by him to the stairs, “I will be in my room if you should need me. Or if you wish to watch television tonight, I am amenable to that. Or we can schedule something within the near future…?”

Dean chuckled a little.

“Let’s just play it by ear ok?” Dean said.

“Ok Dean.” Cas said.

Dean found himself a few minutes later chugging along in getting down the stairs. He rubbed a hand along his belly as he made his way. His stomach felt firmer than he would have thought, and actually let out a rumble making him realize that he had really only eaten that small bag of chocolate covered pretzels earlier in the day. He decided to head to the kitchen to grab himself a quick something to eat. He headed in that direction and had just entered the employee break room when he stopped in his tracks. Bobby was sitting at the little table. He looked up as Dean entered the room and they both just kind of looked at each other.

Dean tugged a little at his shirt, wishing that he had decided to wear his sweatshirt after all. Not that Bobby didn’t know, he had to know by now. He just felt weirdly exposed with his belly just jutting out there where anyone could see and judge.

Dean shuffled his feet for a few seconds before Bobby rolled his eyes.

“You gonna sit down?” Bobby asked. He kicked the chair across from him out. Dean pulled the chair out a little further to accommodate his stomach and sat down. He twiddled his fingers in his lap and couldn’t seem to tear his eyes away from his hands. Or was it that he couldn’t bring himself to look up at Bobby? Either way, there was quite the awkward silence.

Finally Bobby cursed under his breath.

“Will you stop fidgeting, boy?” He asked, not harshly. Dean stopped. “I don’t know what you think is going to happen right now, but I ain’t your daddy, got that?” Dean nodded.

Bobby’s voice softened, “Will you look at me?” Dean breathed in and out. And then once more. And finally looked up at Bobby, his chewed up fingernails digging into his thighs.

To Dean’s surprise, Bobby didn’t look angry. He barely looked upset. If Dean had to place his expression, he would have to say that Bobby mostly looked concerned. But one thing Bobby didn’t look was chatty. This was going to be a long conversation. Bobby didn’t want to have it, nor did Dean, but it was an unfortunate necessity. But that didn’t mean either of them was going to make it easier for the other. Dean finally decided to get the ball rolling.

“I’m sorry I lied to you.” He offered. Bobby nodded.

“Did you know the whole time you’ve been here?” He asked. Dean paused before nodding.

“I had just found out maybe two days before. My dad wanted me to get rid of it so I panicked and ran. The only place I could think of was here.” Dean answered, “I was going to tell you. But I just kept taking too long and after a while, I had already been lying for a while so I wanted to keep putting it off because I knew you’d be angry.”

“Why on earth would I be angry?” Bobby asked.

“You already let me live with you. You lied to my dad for me. You got me this job.” Dean looked down at the table. “You didn’t sign up to have a crying, screaming baby at your house too.”

Across the table, Bobby sighed.

“Listen, Dean. Yeah, I’m not pleased as punch to be having a baby move in. Lord knows baby proofing my house is going to be a god damned pain in the ass. But you’re family to me. And family looks out for each other.” Bobby said, “So if that means that we gotta clean up my place and buy some shit for a nursery, then that’s what we do.”

Dean looked up in disbelief. Bobby wasn’t kicking him out? He can’t have thought this through.

“But what about hunting?” Dean asked. “I can’t ask you to be kept up all night by my crying baby when you have the salvage yard to run all day, plus the phones to man. And I know Rufus stops by once in a while, what about when someone needs you to actually go and help them? And I can’t afford daycare with what I make at the bar so either I have to quit or make you play babysitter all day.”

“What about Jo?” Bobby asked, “Or even Ellen? Hell, she spends most of her days in the office anymore anyway. And so what if I have to leave for a weekend here or there? No one’s gonna die if you’re alone for a few days.”

Dean rubbed his forehead, feeling a headache coming on. It’s not that he wanted Bobby to kick him out, or at least demand he find somewhere else to go when the baby came. But Dean couldn’t dump his life and his problems anymore on Bobby, Ellen, Jo, or anyone else for that matter.

“Dean” Bobby’s voice cut through Dean’s inner monologue “Listen, we can figure out all of the details later. But all I’m trying to say is that you have plenty of people who are willing to help you. Is that getting into your head?”

Dean took a deep breath. Maybe Bobby was right. Dean was putting the cart before the horse with all of these hypothetical situations. The baby still had a few more months before he or she would be making an appearance so there was plenty of time to make arrangements and make important decisions.

“Yeah Bobby, I hear you.”

“Good.” Bobby leaned forward on the table and before Dean could realize it, Bobby had lightly whapped him on the side of his head. He let out a cry and lifted his hand to probe the part of his skull that Bobby had hit.

“Just a reminder that we can’t help you if you don’t tell us what’s going on, idjit.” Bobby said. “I just kept thinking you were sick with something. You know how hard it is to get you to eat a god damn piece of fruit? I had to get rid of almost everything else in the fridge just so you would grab one out of lack of options.”

What was he talking about? Now that Dean thought about it, during his morning sickness phase, he couldn’t really keep much down. He hadn’t thought he was being obvious but Bobby had clearly noticed something.

“You think I can’t hear what goes on in my own house?” Bobby said with a grimace. “I’m just glad you stopped losing your breakfast every morning.”

Dean felt his cheeks coloring.

“Yeah, that was not the best few weeks.” He said. “Luckily, it seems like that parts done. Now, I just want to eat the most random shit.”

“Yeah, I kind of figured that when you put ketchup on your pancakes last week.” Bobby raised his eyebrow. Dean hadn’t realized that Bobby had noticed, he was trying to be as inconspicuous as possible. Dean let out a chuckle.

“Yeah, it seemed like a good idea at the time.” Dean’s stomach rumbled. He hadn’t actually gotten around to getting the food he came down for…and actually pancakes with ketchup might just hit the spot. “It actually seems like a good idea right now.”

Bobby rolled his eyes and chuckled.

“Well, let’s track down Ellen for some grub. The three of us still need to figure some stuff out.”

“Like what? And wait a minute, if you’re here, then where are Dad and Sammy?” Dean asked.

“Your dad picked up a case a few hours out. It seems like a simple salt and burn so he’ll most likely be back tomorrow or the day after. He wanted to get into town tonight to get started early in the morning. I left Sam at the house – he’s 13, he can take care of himself for a few hours.” Bobby paused, unsure if he wanted to continue. “Ellen called me back after John left to let me know how it all went down. Don’t get mad at her for telling me, she was trying to be cagey about it to let you have a chance to tell me yourself, but I didn’t give her much choice.”

Dean nodded, understanding and almost thanking Ellen for saving him having to come out and confess everything to Bobby. The thing he had been avoiding for weeks and turns out he had managed to avoid it completely.

“And anyway, I’m deferring to her on how to take care of your kid. I never had kids of my own….well, not the conventional way anyway” Bobby gave a slight smile before the moment passed again, “and I don’t know the first thing about having them. She’ll need to be the one to help you out in that department. I’m just gonna do what I’m told.”

“I’ve found that approach works best with Ellen” Dean laughed. The two stood from their seats and paused for a moment.

“So, Bobby...we’re…we’re good right?” Dean asked. Bobby paused for a moment before stepping around the table and bringing Dean in for a quick hug.

“Yeah kid, we’re good.”

For the first time in months, Dean breathed a sigh of relief.

Chapter Text

The conversation with Ellen and Bobby over dinner was only slightly less awkward than the previous two he had that day. He wasn’t crying in Ellen’s office or trying not to look Bobby in the eye. Instead, he was enjoying his burger while Ellen looked up obstetricians in the next town over and Bobby told him more about the ghost Dean’s dad was going after a few hours away.

“Do I really need to see a doctor?” Dean said around a mouth of food. Ellen shot him a dirty look, although he wasn’t sure if it was because he was talking with his mouth full or because of what had come out of his mouth.

“Yes, you need to see a doctor. This isn’t something that we can just pour alcohol on and sew up.” Ellen said, before turning back to her computer. She cursed and hit the large monitor that sat on her desk.

“Piece of junk froze up on me again. I hate computers.” Ellen sighed and turned away from the computer, taking in Dean and Bobby with their plates of food on her desk and their chairs pulled close.

“What I mean is, if I go to a doctor then it may be easier for dad to find me. I’m sure he has feelers out at baby doctors for my name or maybe what I look like. Probably all across the state of South Dakota since he obviously guessed I may be here.” Dean said, making sure to have all of his food swallowed before starting again. “Besides, I don’t have insurance or anything and I doubt I can change doctors every visit with fake credit cards.”

“Kid’s got a point there, Ellen” Bobby said. Ellen looked over at Bobby and gave her what Dean was starting to call her ‘Mom Look.’ It wasn’t necessarily a glare but you could tell that she wasn’t happy with you. Bobby just shrugged in response and Ellen relented with a shake of her head.

“I guess you’re right, he does have a point.” Ellen gave in. “But he still needs to see someone. I can’t help him as much as an actual doctor. It’s been some time since I had Jo and medicine has changed plenty since then. Not to mention that my experience can only help so far since I’m obviously not a carrier.”

Dean hated that word. And he hated the slight warmth he felt in his cheeks at the mention of it. This was like talking about sex with his parents. Never one to be shy or embarrassed about his physical appearance or his sex life with his brother and his dad, it felt almost odd to feel this way with Bobby and Ellen. Maybe this was what normal kids felt when talking about this stuff with their folks.

John wasn’t really much of a parent.

Wow. Dean really just had that thought. If you had asked him a few weeks ago about his father he would have defended him to the death. But now with his impending parenthood….maybe he was feeling a little differently. Dean couldn’t imagine treating his kid the way that his father treated him and Sam. And maybe he’s finally realizing that maybe he deserved a little better.

But Dean eventually decided that that was a problem for Future Dean to deal with. Present Day Dean still had a massive burger to finish. He turned his attention back to his burger and tried to pick up on the conversation that Bobby and Ellen had been having during his little space-out session.

“I’ll have to see if Castiel can work the bar again.” Ellen was saying. “Would you mind stopping by at least once, make sure he hasn’t burned the place down? He means well I know, but he’s not the most….acclimated.”

“I can stop by, don’t worry about it.” Bobby replied. “I don’t have much coming down the pipeline right now, except for yet another teenager trying to eat me out of house and home.”

With that Bobby and Ellen glanced at Dean who was focusing hard on his burger. He was contemplating hot sauce when he felt the eyes.

“What?” He asked, a piece of lettuce falling from his mouth. Ellen rolled her eyes.

“Bobby has a friend. Well, more like an acquaintance who may be able to help us out.” Ellen said. Dean raised his eyebrows and looked at Bobby.

“Fella I helped out a few years back, he lives a couple of hours west of here. He had a wraith in his hospital and unfortunately he caught a big glimpse of the thing so there was no hiding it from him. He was pretty grateful when it was all over so I’m thinking I can call him up and call in a favor.” Bobby explained. “He’s a doctor and maybe I can get him to help you out off the books.”

“That would be awesome.” Dean said.

“He’s no OB, but he knows plenty. It’ll be better than nothing at least.” Bobby said.

“Bobby’s going to call him up tonight and, if he goes for it, we’ll head out sometime this week to get you checked out.” Ellen said. Dean put down his burger.

“Thank you.” Dean said. He took in a deep breath and started playing with his napkin. “Thanks for everything. You both have been awesome with all of this and I know that I lied and I dumped this all in your laps and you didn’t have to help me out but it’s…really cool that you are. So...thanks. Again.” Dean fumbled through the sentence and the napkin was now confetti on his ketchup smeared plate next to his half eaten burger.

If this were a lifetime movie then Ellen would put her hand over Dean’s and look him in the eye while she told him that the thanks wasn’t necessary. And Bobby would clap his hand on Dean’s shoulder and tell him, for the second time that day that everything was going to be ok.

This was not a lifetime movie. And Dean was very happy about that.

What did happen was Ellen simply ruffled his hair as she took Bobby’s plate away to be washed and Bobby just rolled his eyes and asked Dean if he wanted to get a manicure later. But the warmth in both of their eyes told him that the message was received and appreciated. And Dean just rolled his eyes and went to finish his burger before Ellen came and took his plate away.

Dean spent most of the next day lying around in bed. Normally, he would be puttering around Bobby’s or working downstairs. But Ellen wasn’t sure about having him work while his dad was in the area, although Bobby assured them both that John was still out of town. Dean was glad that Ellen was being so careful, as he knew that John tended to show up unexpectedly and never adhered to any sort of schedule. The last thing they wanted was another close shave.

The day passed achingly slowly with nothing to do. But later that night found Dean sitting on the edge of his bed contemplating the phone sitting on his nightstand. It was an older model, still had a rotary dial and an extra-long cord so you could walk around the room. Dean picked again at the loose thread on his jeans. He jumped slightly at the knock on his door.

“Come in.” Dean definitely didn’t squeak. The door creaked open and Cas’s head poked into the room.

“Hello, Dean” Cas greeted warmly. “I was wondering if you were ready? I asked Ellen and she said that we might enjoy some popcorn so she showed me how to use the microwave.”

Castiel had come up to visit Dean while taking a brief break from manning the bar. He had stumbled over another invitation to hang out in his apartment and Dean readily agreed.

“Uh yeah, definitely.” Dean smiled “Can’t have a movie night without the popcorn. Is there going to be licorice?”

Cas’s eyes widened.

“Ellen did not mention anything about licorice…But do not worry, I am sure I can procure some in no time.” Cas turned to head out the door when Dean’s laugh stopped his movement.

“Cas, don’t worry about it.” Dean laughed. “I was just kidding. It’s classic movie food.”

Cas stared blankly.

“You know….back in the day you hit up the drive in, grab some popcorn, licorice, a couple of sodas as big as your head. Then you ditch all the snacks and hop in the backseat and uh...” Dean raised his eyebrows suggestively and waved his hand in a ‘you get my gist’ gesture. Cas nodded his head and Dean decided not to call him out on obviously not getting the gist. He was such a weird little dude.

“Listen, I need a few minutes for something real quick.” Dean said. “How about you make the popcorn and I’ll be over in a few?”

Castiel nodded and the soft click of the door announced his departure. Dean sighed and turned back to the phone. His hand was meandering back to the loose thread on his jeans before he mentally smacked himself on the back of the head for being such a baby and picked up the phone. He dialed the number as quickly as the rotary phone would allow him, just in case he did in fact change his mind. Before he could contemplate hanging up again, Bobby’s gruff voice welcomed him on the other end.

“Bobby, it’s Dean. Listen, is my dad there?” Dean asked. There was a pause, and Dean could tell that Bobby was floundering for something to say.

“No, don’t worry about it. I sent Winchester to take care of that ghost since I couldn’t reach you. He should be burning the sucker right now.” Bobby answered. “I left you a message the other day that it was taken care of so why are you calling here?”

“Bobby, I need to talk to Sam.” Dean spat out before Bobby decided to hang up on him for being an idiot. Bobby didn’t answer for a second again. Dean cut him off before he could think of something to say. “Come on, Bobby. This way he still doesn’t know where I am and he doesn’t know that you know where I am. I called you, remember? I owe him some sort of explanation.”

Dean heard Bobby breathing on the other end before he swore quietly under his breath. There was a click on the line, but Dean could tell it was just Bobby putting the phone on the table. He heard some muffled speaking before he could hear the scraping of the phone being picked up.

“Dean?!”

Dean almost melted at the sound of his brother’s voice through the little speaker of his phone. He hadn’t realized how much he missed him until just then. Maybe it was the adrenaline of initially running away and then going to work at the yard and then the roadhouse that distracted him of thinking about what he left behind.

“Hey Sammy.” Dean said, once he realized that he hadn’t yet responded.

“Dean, where are you? What happened?! Dad has been looking for you like crazy.” Sam exclaimed.

“I’m fine Sam. I’m safe and everything, so don’t worry.” Dean tried to placate his brother.

“But what happened? I just woke up and you were gone! Dad said…..Dad said something took you but wouldn’t say what.”

Dean rubbed his eyes with his free hand. It looks like the story John peddled to Bobby about something taking him was the same he told Sam. He reasoned that John probably wouldn’t tell Sam the truth. Which meant that Sam didn’t know he was pregnant either. Dean decided that maybe this conversation had enough going on without ‘You’re going to be an uncle, Sammy’ being thrown in.

“Nothing took me, Sam” Dean replied.

“Well then what happened?” Sam asked.

What happened? How was he supposed to answer this one? Dean decided to leave because……why? He doubted Sam would believe that he left due to a simple fight. Dean never fought with Dad, that was Sam’s territory. And something that was big enough for Dean to leave and not come back? It had to be colossal. Dean’s brain was usually filled to the brim with off the cuff answers for random questions from passers-by, police officers, you name it. He was prepared to come up with a fake name, fake alibi, fake excuse to be let into a building, charming but tragic backstory for the girl at the bar who would buy him a drink and tell him all about the haunting upstairs. But to his brother? Dean fumbled for a response.

“Dad and I….had a fight” Dean found himself saying.

“A fight?” Sam asked. His tone told Dean that he wasn’t buying it.

“Yeah, a fight.” Dean defended. “We fight. You don’t own that.”

Sam chuckled a little and Dean smiled at the sound.

“But yeah, we had a fight and I needed to cool off so I left. I got on a bus and fell asleep and it took me a few days to figure out where I was and by the time I got back you guys were gone and I didn’t know where Dad was headed next.”

“Well why didn’t you just call?” Sam challenged.

Shit.

“Because…my cell phone died. And you guys had all my stuff so I couldn’t charge it.”

“What about a pay phone?”

“No change.”

 

“You could have called collect.”

“…Dad never answered. I couldn’t leave a message because I had no number for him to call me back.”

Boom.

“Ok.” Dean fist pumped the air at Sam’s defeated tone. “Well we’re at Bobby’s now. Just come meet us here. I’ll tell Dad you’re coming so we don’t leave without you.” Dean’s fist slowly lowered back to the bed.

“I, uh, I can’t do that Sam” Dean answered.

“Why not?” Sam retorted.

“It’s complicated.” Dean replied.

“Well then explain it. I have all night.”

“Well I don’t. I have a…thing.” Dean said. “But listen, you take care of yourself, ok? Don’t be afraid to call Bobby if you need something.”

“But Dean-“

“I gotta go. I miss you.” Dean said, before hanging up the phone. He stared at the phone and half expected it to ring again. But a few more seconds passed and Dean realized with a shaking breath that Cas was waiting for him. He could call Sam again tomorrow.

Chapter Text

Cas leaned over towards Dean on the couch.

“Dean….what is the purpose of this scene? I am not finding that it adds anything to the plot of the film.”

“I don’t know….they’re just playing volleyball. It’s a fun game.”

“It just seems unnecessary to the overall story line.”

“….Some people think Tom Cruise is hot and want to see him with his shirt off. More power to ‘em.”

Top Gun was on tv that night. Cas was unsure what would be proper first date material but Dean insisted it was a classic. They sat on Cas’s couch with the popcorn in Dean’s lap. Cas had taken a few pieces but it was mostly Dean making a dent in the snack.

It felt a little awkward at first, as the conversation was stilted in a way it hadn’t been in the weeks since they’d first met. This was more formal than any other time they had hung out, given that every other time had taken place in the bar downstairs. Plus, this was the first time they purposely hung out with romantic intentions in the air. It was clear that Cas wasn’t sure what to do on a date and it’s not like Dean was an expert.

Well….with women. Dean had only had one date with a guy and it was decidedly different from the one he was on with Cas. The ice seemed to break a little over an hour into the movie.

Dean and Cas had been sitting fairly stiffly next to one another on the couch that sat at the end of Cas’s bed. They had discussed what movie to watch and once settled no other words were spoken save for a few comments and questions from Cas about the movie. Then, at one more quiet part of the film, Cas began to yawn a little. Dean was worried for a moment that Cas was too tired to finish the movie until Cas raised his arms over his head in a yawn. Dean felt one of Cas’s arms rest on the couch behind his shoulders and couldn’t help but chuckle a little.

Cas looked at him in confusion.

“What is funny, Dean?” Cas asked. And he looked so genuinely confused that Dean almost didn’t want to call him on it.

“I’m sorry but…dude, did you just do the yawn and reach?”

“I do not understand.”

“You know…you pretend to yawn and stretch your arm so you can reach over and put your arm around your date?”

“I….did not realize that was a well known…phenomenon. I was simply tired and-“

“Cas….”

“Ok….I may have done some research on dating.”

Dean turned a little on the couch.

“Research?!” He asked, with a smile on his face. Cas’s cheeks were beginning to redden.

“Yes I….I have never been on a date before and I wasn’t sure what the protocol was for such an occasion. Many of the websites referred to a good date as ‘dinner and a movie’ however since we live above an eating establishment I thought that dinner would be a moot point. I also read about some ways in which you can indicate to your date that you desire them in a romantic fashion. It suggested ‘cuddling’ with your date but also recommended several ways in which to initiate this without being overt. However that has obviously failed so...”

Cas went to pull his arm back. Dean grabbed Cas’s hand before it could fully recede. He pulled it fully around his shoulders and ever scooted over a little so he was more pressed
to Cas’s side. He leaned in a little and relaxed against the older man.

“Cas, don’t worry about it. Just watch the movie, ok?”

Cas was a little frozen at first, not fully understanding what exactly happened. But once he realized the awkward moment was over and Dean was fully invested in the tv screen, he relaxed back into the couch. Dean adjusted with him and the two of them sat comfortably for the rest of the movie, with Dean snuggled into Cas’s side.

Dean would deny that any ‘snuggling’ happened at all but that was beside the point.

“You can be my wingman anytime.”

“Bullshit! You can be mine.”

Cas hmm’d as the movie ended. Dean quirked an eyebrow and glanced over at Cas.

“You have something to share with the class?” Dean asked.

“Well…I simply thought that the film would end with Iceman and Maverick expressing more romantic intentions to one another, however it appears that it is implied that they will remain platonic acquaintances.”

“…How can you watch the most…manly…macho movie and immediately think the two main characters are gay?” Dean asked, shaking his head in confusion.

“Well, Maverick could have had sexual intercourse with Charlie, however he instead chose to leave. He appears to be more comfortable with the other men in the film, not to mention much closer emotionally.” Cas answered.

“But…but they’re fighter pilots! How much more badass could you be?” Dean sputtered.

Cas shifted on the couch and hiked one leg up so he was fully facing Dean.

“You are operating on the assumption that men with what you deem to be ‘masculine’ and ‘badass’ occupations cannot also be homosexual.” Cas answered. “I believe that hunting is typically a masculine occupation, is it not?”

“Don’t let Ellen hear you say that” Dean laughed. Cas smiled.

“You understand my point though.” Cas rebutted. “You consider hunting, for example, to be a ‘badass’ occupation perhaps on par with being a fighter pilot?”

“Hell yeah. Nothing more badass than fighting bad sons of bitches and protecting innocent people.” Dean answered.

“Ok, so it seems that being a homosexual and the occupation you choose do not have to be mutually exclusive.” Cas stated. Dean lolled his head back on the couch and groaned.

“Ok, enough with the human sexuality class.” Dean deflected. He was not about to have his date with Cas veer off into a discussion of sexual politics. Somewhere in the back of his mind he knew he would probably need to think about his sexuality and deal with his issues with his father. But the time and place was not right now and this line of discussion could only veer off into dangerous territory. He leaned forward and put the now empty popcorn bowl on the coffee table before leaning back and stretching out his legs. He turned back to Cas who was looking at him curiously. “What?”

“This discussion makes you uncomfortable?” Cas asked. “I apologize, it was not my intention.”

“No, it’s not that it’s just…” Dean rubbed at his eyes before shrugging, “Ok yeah, it makes me a little uncomfortable. I’m not used to talking about….you know…”

“Homosexuality?”

Dean cringed.

“Yeah, that.”

“Sexuality is nothing to be ashamed of, Dean.” Cas said earnestly. “It is simply a part of the human experience.”

“Can we talk about something else?” Dean asked, desperately. Cas was quiet for a moment before nodding.

“Of course, Dean. How has your pregnancy been progressing?”

Dean felt like the question should annoy him. He was already actively trying not to think about his father and his own issues with his sexuality and bringing up the constant reminder he carried on his person would probably not normally be the best route to take. But Dean actually found himself smiling fondly.

“Good. It’s been going pretty good.” Dean answered, “Well, I mean I’m assuming. Now that everyone knows about the baby, Ellen said yesterday that she is making me go to a doctor to get everything checked out.”

“You haven’t seen a doctor yet?” Cas asked, brow furrowing.

“No…I’ve kind of been trying to stay off the radar so I figured it probably wouldn’t be a good idea.” Dean answered.

“And why were you trying to stay hidden?” Cas asked. “I was curious about why you had chosen to conceal your pregnancy but I was not sure if it was appropriate to ask.”

“That’s a story for another time I think, Cas” Dean said. Cas smiled shyly.

“Ok Dean. I apologize if I’ve overstepped my boundaries.”

“It’s fine, really.” There was a bit of an awkward pause. “Look, Cas….I’ve got a lot going on right now and I don’t even know where to start with explaining all of it to you.”

“Dean please don’t feel that you have to-“

“No, but you’re going to want to know someday. I’m just....I mean, you really have no idea of what you’re getting into here, man. I am a mess and I leave messes behind me everywhere I go.” Dean said, shifting a little away from Cas.

“Dean, I can tell you are a good man. Everyone has made mistakes in their past but I have known you for several months and I can tell you that I see nothing but goodness in you.” Cas said, moving his arm from the back of the couch to instead cover Dean’s hand with his own where it sat on Dean’s knee.

It felt nice. To have someone else’s hand in his. If he’s being honest, when was the last time someone held his hand? If he was leaving the bar with someone he typically had an arm wrapped around them. There was Robin when he was sixteen…he was pretty sure they held hands at some point. But before that it was only….Sammy. Helping Sam cross the street or walking from the diner to the car, to make sure his kid brother didn’t wander away. That had ended years ago though. Dean decided to let himself have this one moment and he squeezed Cas’s hand back.

“Thanks, Cas” Dean said. He smirked and raised an eyebrow, “You can’t say I didn’t warn you though.”

Cas just smiled.

They spent the remainder of the evening talking about much less sensitive topics. Dean talked about how he wanted to get back behind the bar and Cas suggested that maybe until he is allowed out front, he could perhaps ask Ellen about helping with some of the food orders. It wasn’t much, there weren’t many of them, but it would keep Dean from being cooped up in his room all day until John decided to skip town for good.

Dean found himself smiling and gazing fondly as Cas went on and on about his upcoming first day at the library. It would be the next day, from 12-4. He would mostly be learning the lay of the land and maybe doing a little filing but he was over the moon about it. It was adorable. Eventually though, Dean found himself yawning and Cas agreed that they should probably call it a night. As they stood from the couch, Cas insisted on ‘walking Dean home.’

Together they made the long trek across the hall to Dean’s door.

“I had a lovely evening, Dean” Cas said, shuffling somewhat awkwardly. “I certainly hope that we can go out again, if you feel the same.”

“I think that’d be just fine, Cas.” Dean smiled.

“Um, in my research it indicated that often a successful first date would be closed with a goodnight kiss.”

“Oh, is that what the research said?” Dean said, teasing. Cas didn’t seem to catch on to Dean’s teasing tone and continued with his speech.

“Yes, and if you feel that the date was successful enough to warrant it…I would…that is-“

Dean would be cruel to let Cas flounder for much longer. He huffed a small laugh to himself and stepped into Cas’s space. He didn’t know where this confidence was coming from, when just yesterday he was terrified of Cas kissing him on the cheek. Maybe he felt that he deserved this for surviving the date. Maybe he knew now that going on a simple date with Cas wasn’t as scary as he thought it was going to be. Either way, he lifted his hand to the side of Cas’s face as he babbled.

“Cas, I would call this a very successful date.” Dean said, smiling. Cas visible relaxed in relief leaned into Dean’s hand on his cheek. Dean leaned forward and gave Cas a kiss, letting himself linger in the moment for a bit before leaning back and removing his hand.

“Night, Cas.”

“Goodnight, Dean.”

It was the next morning when Dean was awoken by loud, insistent knocking on his door. He jolted out of sleep and stole a glance at the clock next to his bed which showed the time to be much closer to seven am than Dean usually preferred. He cursed and threw his blankets aside and crossed the room barefoot, scratching at his protruding belly under his t-shirt (which Dean would deny was seeming to grow smaller each day). He swung open the door with a very attractive and squinty eyed, “What?”

And suddenly it was like Dean was doused in ice water. His hand fell from where he had been rubbing his tired eyes that no longer felt quite so tired. An open mouth and wide, disbelieving eyes met his gaze after they had lifted from Dean’s stomach which was currently stretching out the waistband of his boxers. It had been a few months but Dean could never forget that face.

“Sammy?”

Chapter Text

The silence was like wet blanket over the room. Dean wished he could at least hear the ticking of a clock but all his digital one did was stare at him from its spot on the nightstand. Sam sat in the armchair in the corner, his backpack slumped at his feet.

“So….”

“….yeah…”

“You’re uh….you’re pregnant”

“Yup.”

“Is that why you left?”

“Kind of.”

Well this was going swimmingly. Sam was getting more exasperated and Dean was stubborn as always.

“Does dad know?”

“Yes.”

“Are you going to say anything that’s not monosyllabic?”

“….You’re…monosyllabic.”

Sam huffed out a laugh and Dean cracked a small smile. He had thrown a sweatshirt on after inviting Sam in and he had to admit that he felt a little better back in his layers.

“Seriously Dean…what happened? I’m guessing you didn’t just need to cool off after a fight with Dad.”

“It’s complicated, Sam”

“Yeah, so you said.” Sam mumbled and looked at his feet. He really needed a haircut. And maybe some new pants. Geez, had their dad even looked at Sam for a few months? The kid was obviously going through a growth spurt. Dean was willing to bet that Sam’s shoes were too tight as well. A wave of guilt rolled in Dean’s stomach at the thought of Sam alone in hotel rooms the past few months while John was hunting. And Dean was here, being cared about by Bobby and Ellen and getting to know Cas. How could he have been so selfish? Didn’t he at least owe Sam some sort of explanation? A real one? He cursed himself and cleared his throat.

“The day before I left was the day I found out I was pregnant. Hell, I didn’t even know I was a carrier so it was a shock to both of us.” Dean glanced up to see Sam watching him patiently. “Dad…he wasn’t really fond of the idea of having a baby to cart around and we both know he wasn’t done hunting. So he wanted to take me to get it taken care of. We fought about it and then….I left.”

“But we came to Bobby’s before and you weren’t here.” Sam questioned.

“Yeah I wasn’t yet. I was trying to throw dad off my trail so I took a few buses around for a couple of weeks and then came here. Been here ever since.” Dean shrugged. “Speaking of which, how did you know I was here? Did Bobby tell you?”

Sam rolled his eyes.

“For being such great hunters you guys can be kind of terrible at hiding things.” Sam said. “First of all, Bobby was all weird when Dad said he was coming to the Roadhouse, like he didn’t want him to go. Then he disappeared for a few hours and wouldn’t tell Dad where he was when he got back.”

“Yeah, he was here. Bobby didn’t know about everything until the other day but after Dad showed up the cat was out of the bag.”

“Did he see you?”

“Who, dad? No, I hid and Ellen said I could stay here while you guys are in town.”

“Oh yeah, that’s the other thing. Our room looked too nice.”

Dean quirked an eyebrow.

“Too nice?”

“Yeah like….usually when we come to Uncle Bobby’s we have to clean the sheets and air out the room a little. But this time it was already pretty clean. Like someone had been staying there already.”

“Huh….so you put all that together and figured out that I was here?” Dean challenged.

“Well….I may have also found your duffel bag with your clothes in it in the hallway closet. Plus you happened to call Bobby when I was at his house. That seemed a little too perfect. So I took a guess that of all the places in town, you would be here.” Sam finished.

“Well, I’ll just have to call you Sherlock from now on, nerd.” Dean teased.

“Does that make you Watson?”

“Shut up.”

The two brothers laughed. They knew they still had a lot to talk about. But this was off to a pretty good start.

“I missed you, Dean.” Sam said, once their laughter died down. Again, Dean felt that wave of guilt curl in his stomach. His brother, though he’d already noted his growth spurt, seemed small sitting in the borrowed armchair. Dean hated himself for leaving his younger brother, not taking a minute to call or send a message. Traveling alone with their father with no one to turn to and no one to help. Dean felt the guilt quickly turned to panic as he saw Sam subtly try wipe at his eyes, though no tears had fallen. Dean shifted over on his bed to clear a space next to him.

“Hey, come here, Sammy.” Dean said. Sam jumped from his seat across the room and joined Dean on the bed. He rested his head on Dean’s shoulder and Dean’s arm wrapped around his brother and held him in a way that he hadn’t in years, and yet it felt like coming home.

“I’m sorry it’s just….I thought you were dead after a while, I really did. I didn’t know what happened and you were gone and dad wouldn’t talk about it. I thought….I thought this must have been what it felt like after…after mom-“ Sam stopped talking suddenly.

“Shit Sammy, I’m sorry. I should have said something before I left. I just thought it would be better if you didn’t know. At least then you wouldn’t have to lie to dad about it.”

“That’s stupid.”

“Yeah, I know. Sometimes I’m stupid.”

The two brothers lay there a while longer before Dean felt himself drifting to sleep. He decided that Sam had gotten him up far too early and his punishment would be a nap with his brother.

It felt like no time at all before there was another knock at the door. Dean cursed his luck, but looking at the clock revealed that it had been a couple of hours and was actually close to noon. Sam had shifted out of Dean’s arm and had curled up on his side. Rather than wake him right away, Dean hefted himself out of bed stepped over to the door, cracking it for the interrupting knocker on the other side.

A warm smile made its way across his face, seeing Cas on the other side of the door.

“Hey Cas, what’s up?”

“Hello Dean. I will be leaving shortly to go to the library for my first shift. I just wished to stop by and say good morning before I left.” Cas said. Dean noticed that he had ditched the trench coat he wore often and was instead only wearing dress pants and a button up, sans tie.

“Well you look great.” Dean smiled. Cas exhaled a rushed breath.

“Thank you. I was unsure of the proper attire and Ellen made some suggestions.” Can said, gesturing to his outfit. “Will I be able to see you tonight? After my shift?”

“Yeah, sure.” Dean said, before suddenly remembering the slumbering teen in his bed. “Actually, I’m not sure. My brother is actually here right now and I’m not sure how long he’ll be here.”

Cas’s eyes lit up.

“Your brother? I did not realize that Sam knew of your whereabouts.”

“Yeah, he figured it out and just showed up.” Dean said, chuckling slightly.

“He must be very smart.”

“Either that or Bobby and I are pretty stupid.”

Cas gave Dean a knowing look.

“Well, we both know that that isn’t true.”

Dean blushed a little.

“Stop by after your shift and if Sam’s not here we’ll do something, ok?”

“Ok Dean. Enjoy your afternoon.”

“Good luck at the library.” Dean wished him.

“Thank you, Dean” Cas answered. He paused for a moment before quickly leaning in and planting a swift goodbye kiss on Dean’s lips. He turned around immediately and was down the stairs before Dean could comprehend what just happened.

“Huh….dude’s got more balls than I thought.” Dean muttered to himself. He turned around and stopped in his tracks at the sight of Sam sitting up in bed. He was smirking. Dean hated when he smirked.

“Was that your boyfriend?” Sam asked. Dean almost wished he had asked it in an annoying tone so he could smack him in the head.

“Yes….no-I don’t know yet. It’s new.” Dean said.

“Are you gay?” Sam asked bluntly.

“What? No!” Dean answered swiftly. “You ever hear of tact?”

“So are you like…bi? Or pan or something?” Sam continued to probe.

“What? I don’t know. Where are you even hearing that stuff?” Dean asked, really wishing this conversation would end immediately. Sam just shrugged.

“Jason Daluca at my last school was bi. He was a grade above me and was the leader of the GSA”

“The what now?”

“GSA. Gay Straight Alliance.” Sam answered. Dean groaned.

“Oh God, you’re not going to start wearing rainbows or anything, are you?”

Sam laughed at the torturous expression on his brother’s face.

“Oh absolutely. I may even dye my hair.”

“Yeah? It’ll just give me another reason to shave it all off.”

Sam grabbed the pillow from behind his head and chucked it at Dean who batted it to the ground. He picked it up and threw it back at Sam’s head.

“Hey, be careful! Baby on board.” Dean said. Sam scoffed but didn’t throw the pillow back. Dean settled back on his side of the bed and a comfortable silence fell over the two of them before Dean decided he should actually get back up, get dressed, and find something productive to do. He was about to climb back out of the bed when Sam’s voice stopped him.

“Dean? Was that….I mean….is that the baby’s father?” Sam said. “The other father?”

Dean stood up and walked across the room to peruse the few clothes he had that were stuffed in the small dresser.

“No.”

“Oh ok.” Sam said. There was a moment’s pause. “Who is?”

“No one you know.”

“Well duh, the only people I know are dad’s hunter buddies and I would hope it wasn’t one of them. But Dean really-“

“Sam” Dean said in a warning tone, turning back briefly to lock eyes with his brother. “Drop it.”

“But Dean-“

“I said drop it Sam.” Dean said in a cold tone.

Suddenly the jovial atmosphere in the room vanished. Dean rubbed his palms into his eyes and turned around.

“Look, I’m not trying to be a dick. It’s just…it’s com-“

“Complicated.” Sam said, resigned. He stood from the bed, “Yeah I get it.”

“Sam, really. I haven’t told anyone and I don’t want to talk about it, ok?” When Sam nodded Dean let out a relieved breath. “How about you go down stairs and see if Ash will make us a couple of burgers? I’m gonna change real quick.”

“Sure, Dean.”

“Hey” Sam stopped in his trek to the door. “I’m glad you know now. It’s actually kind of nice to not have to hide it around everyone.”

Sam smiled at Dean, forgiveness in his eyes. He took two quick steps and wrapped his arms around his brother. Dean sunk into the hug for a moment.

“Alright Samantha. Go get us some burgers.” Dean said, pushing Sam towards the door.

“Like you need them, gigantor.”

“Hey, I’m eating for two over here.”

“When have you not eaten for two?”

“Just get out of here, would ya?”

Once the door had clicked shut and Sam’s footsteps faded away, Dean sunk into the armchair and breathed out a sigh of relief.

That could have gone much worse.

A few days later found Dean and Ellen chugging along in Ellen’s pickup on their way out of state to meet Bobby’s “doctor friend.” Sam had wanted to come, and Dean had actually fought for it, but unfortunately Bobby had pointed out that John was back from his hunt and would probably want to take off any day now. He didn’t know how he would be able to explain Sam taking a random day trip with Ellen to nowhere in particular.

Ellen had later also confided in Dean that the meeting with this doctor would probably include some sort of physical examination and suddenly Dean was all about Sam staying back. Sam pouted about it for a while but there was nothing to be done.

“Quit biting your nails.” Ellen admonished from the driver’s seat. “When did you start that, anyway?”

Dean petulantly pulled his finger from his mouth where he had been gnawing on a hang nail.

“I don’t know, maybe when I couldn’t drink anymore?” Dean snarked. Ellen rolled her eyes.

“You’re eighteen, you shouldn’t be drinking anyway.”

“Yeah well, I shouldn’t be pregnant either but here we are.”

Ellen glanced briefly at Dean in the passenger seat. He had been moody all morning. Ellen was willing to forgive to a certain extent, she knew what mood swings felt like and boy were they a bitch. But there was usually some kind of cause behind them. Even if it was something as minute as realizing you forgot to pick up paper towels at the store (That had been one cry-fest that Bill hadn’t let her forget for months after Jo was born).

“What’s going on with you today, kid?” Ellen asked, warmly.

“Nothing just….mood swings I guess.” Dean replied.

“Yeah, that doesn’t work as an excuse every time.” Ellen said, refusing to back down. “Spit it out. What’s got you all in a huff?”

Dean considered blowing her off again for a brief moment before reconsidering. They did have at least two more hours in the car and if he really pissed Ellen off then it would be a very long two hours.

“Is everything ok with Castiel?” Ellen asked, before Dean could speak up.

“No, it’s not Cas. Everything’s fine. Really good, actually.” Dean admitted.

The night after Cas’s first shift they hadn’t had a chance to hang out. John hadn’t yet returned from his hunt so Dean wanted to take advantage of that and spend some more time with Sam. Cas was very understanding and Dean promised visit him at the library the following day to make up for it.

That night Dean and Sam and gone to some B Horror movie playing at the movie theatre. Sam stuck to a sensible diet coke and some Red Vines while Dean had managed to finish off his popcorn and half a tray of nachos before the previews were over. Luckily, he had thought ahead and still had a soft pretzel and 2 boxes of sno-caps to get through.

The next day Sam had tagged along with Dean to visit Cas at the library. He was manning the check-out desk while the Assistant Librarian was taking her break. Dean mostly hung out and flirted with Cas while Sam disappeared in the stacks and reappeared with a few books on carrier pregnancies. He would occasionally point something out to Dean when Cas had to assist a guest. Cas found Sam’s discovery very interesting and the two of them enjoyed a lively discussion about the merits of hospital birth versus home birth. Dean had shut them both down by claiming that he was barely halfway through his pregnancy and wasn’t quite ready to think about the birth portion. Sam had then jokingly looked up the chapter on mood swings which earned him a smack on the back of the head as the three of them chuckled quietly (They were in the library after all). They hung out until Cas’s shift was over and then they all headed back to the Roadhouse to meet Bobby and Ellen who had made burgers for everyone.

It had been a really nice day.

“Well then what is it, Dean?”

Dean was pulled from his memory by Ellen’s question. He resisted the urge to start biting his fingernail again and thought how best to word his question.

“Do you think Bobby could convince Dad to let Sam stay with him when Dad gets back?”

To her credit, Ellen didn’t even flinch at the question.

“I don’t know Dean….he never let Bobby keep you two before.”

“Yeah, but I was thinking if he’s still looking for me then maybe he’d want to leave Sam behind, you know? Because he has to lie to Sam about why I’m gone so maybe he’d be happy to be done with the hassle.”

Dean knew he was reaching. His dad had lied to Sam for years about the supernatural even existing, he probably barely broke a sweat lying about why Dean disappeared. Ellen sighed and seemed to be mulling over the idea in her head.

“Well, we can try. You never know.” Ellen smiled over at him. Dean settled back in his seat for the remainder of the drive.

The hospital looked like every other hospital Dean had seen in his life. Except this one time they weren’t rushing in with hard to explain injuries and already halfway planning how they were going to sneak out the window once the nurse was done with the stitches.

Ellen and Dean parked and headed up through a side entrance. They ignored the signs pointing to the front desk and made their way up to the fourth floor where they met Bobby’s MD friend.

“Hello! You must be Ellen and Dean, right?” The man asked. He had a kind face, with a few crow’s feet crowding the corners of his eyes. His brown hair was starting to gray a little at the temples but other than that, he looked fit enough. Ellen reached out and shook his hand.

“Dr. Carmichael, nice to meet you.” Ellen greeted. Dean and the doctor exchanged pleasantries as well.

“Please, David is fine.” The doctor answered. He ushered them into an unused exam room and gestured to the vinyl covered seats.

“Ok so, Bobby let me know the basics of your situation. Now, I’m sure he told you that I’m not an obstetrician or anything but given your circumstances I will do what I can. I did do a rotation in obstetrics so I know a little of what I’m talking about.” David chuckled a little before flipping open a chart and plucking a pen out of his pocket. “Now Dean, I would like to get some basics on you and your health and then go into some more detailed questions about your pregnancy so far, just so we can get an idea of how you are progressing.”

So the doctor rattled through his questions (“Age?” “Do you know about how far along you are?” “Any history of heart disease?”) and Dean was tired of talking when finally twenty minutes later he was finally done.

“Okay!” David said, standing and placing his clipboard on the counter. He picked up a hospital gown and handed it to Dean, instructing him to step into the little bathroom and change.

“You want me to leave, sweetie?” Ellen asked. Dean was conflicted.

“Kind of? I have no idea.” Dean answered, deferring to David.

“I’m just going to do a brief physical examination for starters that shouldn’t be too invasive if you’d like to stay for that.” David said. “When we get to the more intimate part of the examination, she can leave if you’d like some privacy.”

Dean agreed and within a few minutes was back in the exam room and sitting on the lab table. David did some basic tests; checking Dean’s blood pressure, checking his ear canals, making Dean say ‘Ahhh.’

“Okay Dean, can you raise your arms?”

Dean complied and the doctor placed one hand on his back and with the other he gently probed Dean’s chest, working his way towards Dean’s nipple.

“How is this feeling? Do you have any tenderness?”

“Uhh...yeah a little I guess.” Dean answered.

“That’s good, it means your milk production is on schedule.”

“Excuse me, my what production?”

“Milk.”

“Oh my god, I’m not gonna get boobs am I? Ow Ellen! Be nice to me, I’m with child!” Dean rubbed the back of his head where Ellen had smacked him. Luckily the doctor just chuckled.

“No you will not grow breasts. But you will produce milk to feed your child. The sacs in carrier males develop behind your pec muscles. They may appear to enlarge slightly but it will really look more like you’ve been going to the gym a little. They will get a little more tender and sensitive as you get closer to the end of your pregnancy.”

“Awesome.” Dean said, flatly.

“You can put your arms down, Dean.” David said. “Now, I don’t have access to an ultrasound today but if you come back for a visit on another day, I can try and make one available so you can take a look at your baby. For now though, I do want to take a look at your groin area so if you’d like Ellen to leave, now would be the time.”

Dean definitely agreed. So out the door went Ellen and into some stirrups went Dean’s legs. About ten minutes later Ellen was invited back in and Dean was back in his street clothes and was definitely NOT as red as a tomato. Dean and Ellen sat back down on the chairs.

“As far as I can tell, everything seems to be progressing very nicely. I’ve written down a few prenatal vitamins that you should be taking daily and I have a few pamphlets for you to look at about some lifestyle changes that will help. Things like diet, regular exercise, and enough sleep are key. You will also probably start to feel little movements in the coming weeks and that is perfectly normal. They will feel like little fluttering movements, like butterflies in your stomach. You can try talking or singing to the baby as well, so they learn your voice.”

“Wait, the baby can hear me?”

“Well, probably not right now, but the bones of their middle ear and nerve endings from the brain are developing and they will be able to start hearing things like your heartbeat. Eventually, they will be able to hear and sometimes even react to sounds outside of the womb.”

“Holy crap….that’s awesome.” Dean said, looking down at his little belly.

“Thank you, Doctor. This has been a great help.” Ellen said.

“Yeah well, anything for Bobby.” Said the doctor, smiling. “If you can I’d like to see you again in a few weeks. Maybe 3 or so? If not, try to see another doctor at least. I can send your paperwork to Bobby if you need to go to someone else.”

Dean and Ellen grabbed some dinner at a diner a block away from the hospital before heading back to the Roadhouse. They didn’t talk much on the ride home and Ellen pretended not to notice when Dean started humming in the car while rubbing his belly.