Dean left Crowley and Cas to figure out the Spell of Ages while he drank a beer. Working with those two was starting to seriously get on his nerves. At least they quit bickering about every damn thing, he thought as he took a long pull off the beer. It was bad enough that they needed Crowley for this, it didn't help that Cas was learning how to be snippy. Like goddamn children, he thought, constantly arguing to show who's boss. Dean shook his head in annoyance, glad to be away from them even for a few minutes. He tipped the beer to his lips again and froze when he heard giggling coming from the war room. Giggling? Seriously? He waited, thinking maybe he misheard. Nope. More giggling. What the hell, he thought as he went back to the angel and demon.
What he saw made him stop in his tracks. There, on the floor, were two puddles of clothes with one child in each puddle. Castiel looked to be about 18 months old with giant blue eyes and a messy mop of brown hair. He had little tiny wings on his back that Crowley was trying to grab. Crowley seemed younger, maybe a little under a year old, with huge brown eyes, straight brown hair sticking up everywhere, a tail with an arrowhead point, and horns on his forehead. “What the hell,” Dean started but really didn't know how to finish.
Castiel heard him. “Dean!!” tiny Castiel thrust his arms up while his little baby wings flapped madly behind him.
“Uhhh,” Dean managed as he put his beer down and bent to pick Cas up. “What....uh...” Cas immediately squeezed Dean with his chubby arms when Dean got him onto his hip. Dean saw Crowley dip his head down and search for his tail. It tugged at Dean's heart to see Crowley find his tail and put the tip into his mouth, sucking on it for comfort. He shifted Cas a bit so he could bend down in front of Crowley. “Hey, Crowley, everything ok there?”
Crowley tipped his head up to Dean, eyes big and sad. “Gings,” he said around a mouthful of tail, pointing to Cas' back.
“Hey Cas, wanna let Crowley play with your wings for a second?” Dean put Cas back down next to Crowley who perked up at having the wings nearby.
“Dean?” Cas reached for Dean again as Dean stood up.
“I have to call Sam, ok, just play nice for a minute.” Dean fumbled for his phone, trying to figure out what to say to Sam.
Cas slowly lowered his arms, still watching Dean. Crowley lunged forward, tail still in his mouth, and managed to grab two little fistfuls of feathers. Crowley giggled with delight as Cas tried to flap his wings. “Ow! Cowey!” Cas cried, trying to turn around to free himself.
Dean reached down and gently pried Crowley's hands away from the wings when Sam finally answered. “Sam! Where are you?”
“Garage, parking the car. Why? What's up?”
“War room. Now,” Dean commanded just as Castiel shoved Crowley away from his wings. Crowley sat stunned for a split second, then burst into tears.
“Dean? Is there a baby crying?” Sam asked with disbelief.
“Just...war room.” Dean hung up on his brother and tossed the phone on the table. “C'mere Crowley.” He lifted Crowley up away from Castiel, holding Crowley close to his chest while shushing him quietly, shifting foot to foot. Castiel stood up and grabbed Dean's pant leg.
“Dean?” Castiel tugged until Dean looked down into Cas' confused eyes. Castiel raised his arms again when he had Dean's attention, asking to be lifted.
Rather than pick Castiel up, Dean crouched down, still cuddling Crowley to his chest. Crowley had stopped crying and was sucking his tail again. Castiel immediately moved to Crowley and tried to pry him out of Dean's arms. “Dean.” Castiel stared intently at Dean while he tried to get his little body between them.
Dean laughed. That look was much scarier when Castiel was full size. “Cas. C'mon. You hurt Crowley. He deserves a cuddle now.”
Castiel stuck his bottom lip out slightly. He stopped trying to separate them, instead he pressed as much of himself against Dean as he could. Every time Crowley would reach up to grab Dean's shirt, Castiel blocked him.
“Ok you two, that's enough.” Dean set Crowley back down, gave Castiel a quick hug, and stood up fully. “We need to find clothes for you. Can't go around naked.” Dean ran a quick inventory of his shirts in his mind to see if anything would fit reasonably well.
“Nakit,” Castiel giggled looking at Crowley. “Cowey nakit.” Now Crowley giggled around the tail in his mouth. Castiel took off, running in circles around the table yelling “nakit!” over and over, wings fluttering behind him happily. Crowley got his feet under him, butt high in the air, straightened up, and took off after Castiel, dropping the tail from his mouth as he ran as fast as his chubby little legs would carry him. Dean watched them complete a circuit and run headlong into Sam's legs. Castiel stopped all right, but Crowley was knocked to the floor. There was a pause, then Crowley started howling again.
“Dean? What happened here?” Sam moved to pick up Crowley. He held Crowley tight against his chest, rubbing small circles on his back while he waited for Dean to answer.
“No idea. I left them alone for a minute and came back to a fun size angel and demon. I'm guessing they read the spell wrong and de-aged themselves, but I really don't know.” Dean crouched down and opened his arms to Castiel who flung into them happily. He stood up with Castiel bundled in his arms. Castiel rested his head on Dean's shoulder contentedly, flapping his wings lightly.
“Well, any idea how long they'll be like this?” Sam used his thumb to wipe away Crowley's tears. Crowley let out a shaky sigh as he pressed his ruddy cheek into Sam's chest.
Dean shook his head. “Absolutely no idea.”
“Why does Crowley have horns and a tail? I mean, he doesn't have them in his adult form.” Sam poked one of the horns gently. Crowley burst into tears again, putting a little hand on the horn, wincing when he made contact.
“Nice going, make the kid cry Sammy,” Dean teased.
“Shut up, jerk.” Sam rocked back and forth as he rubbed Crowley's back again. Crowley calmed down slowly.
“Bitch. Maybe he does have them, kind of like Cas' wings, we just can't see them all the time. Too bad Cas can't heal him with his grace.” Dean felt himself soften a tiny bit at the idea that Crowley was in constant pain.
“Gace!” Castiel shouted with joy. He thrust his hand in the air and leaned toward Crowley. Dean stepped closer to Sam, Castiel slapped his fat little hand on Crowley's forehead. “Gace!” Castiel smiled widely as a tiny flash of light appeared under his palm. Crowley looked startled, then smiled as wide as Castiel. He reached up to touch his horn and didn't wince. His eyes lit up as he giggled at Cas, dropping the tail out of his mouth again.
“All right, we have to figure this out. Sam, watch these two while I get them some shirts, this isn't a nudist camp.” Dean moved to put Castiel down. As soon as his feet touched the floor he gripped Dean harder. “Cas, I'll be right back. Stay with Sammy.” Dean started to walk away. He heard tiny footsteps behind him. “Cas. Just- never mind. Come on then.” Dean waited for him to catch up, dangling his hand down for Cas to grab. “You might as well come too, Sammy.”
Sam followed with Crowley. “Do we even have anything that will fit?”
“Maybe, if I trash a shirt or two,” Dean mused.
Once in Dean's room, Cas let go of his hand and raced for the bed. He tried to get up onto the bed and failed, lacking leverage. Frustrated, Castiel stood on his tiptoes with his arms high in the air, flapping his wings ineffectually. “Up!”
Sam set Crowley down in the middle of the bed and then helped Castiel up as well. Castiel began jumping on it as soon as Sam let go. Crowley laughed as Castiel jumped close to him, making him bounce around. Sam fished out his phone and took some pictures.
Dean let out a low laugh. “They are really adorable,” he said to no one in particular. “Ok, shirts. I think I have some old muscle shirts in here.” Dean turned to his dresser and opened a drawer.
Castiel saw Dean and leaped to the nightstand. “I help Dean!” He flung the drawer open too far and too fast, causing the contents to scatter to the floor. He stood on the bed holding the drawer by the knob, looking proud of himself for being so helpful.
Dean and Sam stood frozen for a heartbeat. Sam took note of Dean's deer in headlights expression about what was on the floor. Sam put his phone away. “I see we like the same brands,” Sam said lightly as he took the drawer from Cas and fit it back in the nightstand. Castiel went back to bouncing as Sam collected the lube and condoms, tossing them back in the drawer without further comment. “So, muscle shirts?” Sam turned back to Dean who started rifling through his dresser drawer, the blush on his cheeks fading slightly.
“Yeah, I have some old ones, if we cut off the bottom to shorten it and tie the straps up, it may fit like a dress,” Dean explained, grateful for the distraction. “I have already seen enough demon junk for the rest of my life.” He found two shirts at the bottom of the drawer and pulled them out, handing one to Sam. Dean turned back to the bed, belly turning to ice at the sight.
Castiel had found one of the knives Dean kept on the shelf above his bed. He was holding it by the hilt and Crowley was reaching for the shiny blade.
“Castiel, NO!” Dean bellowed.
Castiel froze. Crowley startled at the shout and fell forward into Cas, making Cas stumble forwards. Sam and Dean's reflexes kicked in. Sam caught Cas before he could fall completely and Dean ripped the knife out of Cas' hands. Sam gently let go of Castiel, easing him into sitting position. Castiel ducked his head down slightly as his eyes grew huge and wet. He stared at Dean while his bottom lip started trembling and his wings sagged. With one blink he had fat tears streaking down his cheeks.
Crowley clumsily leaned in to hug Castiel while offering his tail to him. The gesture opened a dam in Castiel. He grabbed the tail and started wailing like his whole world was crumbling around him.
“Nice going Dean, you're his favourite and you made him cry.” Sam said, studiously ignoring the look Dean gave him in return.
Dean dropped the knife and shirt, glowering at Sam. He went over to the bed and sat on the edge, holding his arms out to Castiel. Still crying, Castiel let go of the tail and crawled over to Dean who gathered him up in his lap. Dean held him close, rocking him and stroking his hair until the tears stopped and his breath was hitching in his lungs.
Meanwhile Sam fitted a shirt over Crowley's head to gauge how much alteration it would take. It turned out to be not too much. He cut the shoulder straps with the knife Dean dropped, trimming away the excess fabric to make short, stubby straps which made much smaller arm holes. Then he tied the cut ends together and cut off the bottom of the shirt. When he plopped it over Crowley's head it fit ok. Roomy and breezy, but ok. He did the same with the second shirt, making it a tad longer as Castiel was taller. He also sliced the back open so the wings wouldn't be trapped under the fabric.
While Sam was busily fashioning clothes, Dean tried to explain to Cas why knives were dangerous. He ended up simply apologizing to Castiel for yelling as he cleaned the tears off his face. Taking the shirt from Sam he helped Cas get dressed, taking care to move the fabric around the wings. “Huh, nice job Sam,” he admired. Cas wiggled his wings while looking up at Dean through his eyelashes.
“I have a beer somewhere,” Dean lamented suddenly. “And we need to figure out how long they'll be like this. And there's two piles of clothes on the floor that we should probably move. And we still need to figure out what these two did wrong so we don't repeat it. And-”
“Stop,” Sam commanded. “One thing at a time. Let's do the easy stuff first.” Sam picked up Crowley and swung him in the air before depositing him on the floor. “Beer is in the war room, so are the clothes. C'mon, let's go.”
Dean tried to slide Castiel off his lap and put him down but Castiel wouldn't let go. “Spin,” Cas said decisively. Dean let out a little laugh. He picked up Castiel and swung him around like Sam had done with Crowley. “Better?” Cas nodded. “Ok, to the war room.”
The brothers watched as Castiel grabbed Crowley's hand and started to run out of the room. Crowley's little legs couldn't keep up. He stumbled, breaking Cas' hold. Castiel waited while Crowley picked himself up and got his balance again. Then Castiel was off like a shot, running down the hall, Crowley bolting after him. Dean and Sam followed, watching the cut shirts billow around wings and a tail.
“Hey, let's distract them a bit,” Dean suggested. “There has to be something on TV that they will watch.”
“Yeah, actually. Castiel! Crowley! Come here!” Sam called out. They heard the pitter-patter of running feet approach them in the common room. Dean turned the TV on while Sam found two small pillows. Sam put the pillows side by side, right in front of the couch. “Here, sit here,” Sam plunked Crowley down on one pillow and Castiel on the other. Dean found a kid's program that was showing bees and flowers.
“Bees!” Castiel pointed to the screen. “Cowey bees!” Castiel turned his attention back to the show, quickly becoming engrossed. Dean watched Crowley sneak a hand up to clutch the nearest tip of Castiel's wing. Castiel flicked his wing a little but otherwise didn't seem to mind.
“Beer,” Dean reminded Sam. They went over to the war room where Dean finished off his now warm beer. “You read the spell and see if you can figure out what went wrong. I'll get the clothes in neater piles.”
Sam nodded, knowing better than to read the spell out loud. Dean collected Cas' clothes first, folding everything neatly including the socks and plain white boxers. When he was done there was a small pile on the table. Next he folded Crowley's clothes. “Um, Sam?” When Sam turned around Dean held up a pair of red silk boxers. “Silk. Actual silk. Wouldn't that be...distracting...to wear?” Dean wiggled his eyebrows at his brother.
Sam just laughed. “They match his tie and pocket square,” he noticed. “I can't figure this spell out, the page looks like it has water damage. I wonder if that's where the mistake was made.”
Dean finished creating a neat pile of Crowley's clothes on the table. “Maybe. They were arguing all day. I stopped listening to them after a while. It's possible they were fighting over the pronunciation too.” He went over to Sam and read the spell himself. “Yeah, this is almost illegible. I wonder if we have another copy of it somewhere, and where the hell it would be,” Dean mused.
“Maybe there's something online?” Sam moved to open his laptop that he'd left on the table. “If we can find information about the spell maybe we can see if we can reverse what they did to themselves. Or at least see how long it will last.”
“Good idea,” Dean allowed. He watched Sam page through a bunch of different sites he'd bookmarked, making suggestions here and there. Dean felt something start to nag at him, something he couldn't quite put his finger on.
Sam nudged Dean. “You go into a trance or something?”
“Shut up. No. I was just listening,” Dean retorted.
“To what? It's quiet.” They stared at each other for a second. “Its quiet,” Sam repeated. Both brothers clued in at the same time and bolted to the TV where they found two empty pillows. “We live in a bunker full of weapons and torture devices, and we lost two small children,” Sam reprimanded himself.
“We are terrible parents,” Dean stated with wonder, staring at the empty pillows. Just then he heard a faint giggle. He whipped his head in the direction of the sound, unnecessarily holding up a finger to silence Sam. “Kitchen,” Dean grunted when he heard giggling again.
The brothers jogged to the kitchen, stopping dead at the scene in front of them. There, on the floor, Castiel and Crowley sat facing each other. Castiel was holding a dripping plastic bottle of liquid honey in his little fists, apparently waiting for Crowley to finish licking his hands. Crowley thrust his hands out at Castiel, who then squished the bottle as hard as he could, creating a thick puddle of honey in Crowley's palms. Crowley giggled at the sensation before clapping his hands together messily. He presented one hand to Castiel, who happily tried to eat the honey off of Crowley. The other hand went right back into Crowley's mouth.
After noting they were safe, Dean took a better look around. The boys had dragged furniture up to the counter, creating a kind of step ladder. Castiel, probably, found the honey in the cupboard and brought it down. There was now honey everywhere. It was smeared on the counter, the cupboards, the floor, the furniture/step ladder, the two boys...and it was in their hair, their clothes, their faces, Crowley's horns and tail, Castiel's wings, their limbs. It was as if a honey bomb exploded in the kitchen, the boys being the blast point. In the background, Dean heard the unmistakable sound of the camera on Sam's phone.
The shutter sound drew the boys' attention to the brothers. Castiel looked at Dean adoringly, his whole body smiling. “Honey,” Castiel exclaimed with a sticky smile. As if to punctuate, he held the bottle up for Dean to see. “Bees! Honey!” Crowley waved his gooey hand in front of Castiel, who took the hint and squirted more honey into the waiting palm. Crowley didn't share this time.
“I didn't think there was that much honey in the bottle,” Sam marveled. Castiel squirted the last of it out onto Crowley. He kept trying to shake the bottle as if more could appear, but had no luck. It was empty.
“Honey?” Castiel said sadly as he held the bottle out to Dean.
“Uh,” Dean didn't even know where to start. “How are we gonna do this Sammy?” Dean kept his eyes on Castiel as he shook the bottle some more, looking confused.
Sam assessed the room. “You are going to give them a bath, I will clean up the kitchen.”
“I am not touching them. They are sticky. I don't think there's a not sticky part on either of them.” Dean saw Castiel put the top of the bottle in his mouth.
“Let them walk to the bathroom themselves. I'll clean up the kitchen and then any footprints. Take a bowl or something so you can pour water over their heads.” Sam edged around the mess to the cupboard. He touched as little as possible as he retrieved a 4 cup measuring cup. “Here, this will work.” Sam handed it to Dean.
Dean took it. “Ok you two, bath time,” he announced. “Come on, up you get, let's go,” Dean stayed away from as much as the honey on the floor as he could. The two got up slowly, Castiel sucking on the honey bottle, Crowley examining his fingers. He tried to take the empty bottle away from Castiel but he wouldn't let go of it. Dean gave up. The two boys wandered in different directions. “No, this way Crowley, bath time.” Dean tried to guide him without touching him. Castiel stopped to tip the bottle some more, frowning intently at it. “Cas, come on, let's go,” Dean called while herding Crowley. Castiel took a step and then stopped to look behind him. His wings were gluey with honey. “Castiel,” Dean injected some authority into his voice. Castiel slowly started walking forward again. “This is like herding kittens,” Dean called to Sam on his way out of the kitchen. Sam just laughed.
Eventually they made it to the bathroom. Dean knew enough about children to know not to leave them unattended in the tub so he assembled everything he would need and set it all next to the tub before filling it. Luckily, both Castiel and Crowley were not as rambunctious as earlier, so they mostly stayed next to the tub while Dean got things ready. Dean started filling the tub, using liquid body wash as bubble bath by spreading it in his hands first then holding his hands under the faucet. He glanced over to the two boys and saw Crowley sitting on the floor with his tail in his mouth again, Castiel still examining the honey bottle.
“Here, give me that, you get out of your clothes. Help Crowley too,” he said to Castiel, who gave up the bottle mostly easily. Dean took it to the sink and rinsed it as best he could. He turned back to see Castiel naked and struggling with Crowley who didn't seem to want to take his tail out of his mouth.
Dean turned off the water, tossed the honey bottle in the tub, and bent down in front of Crowley. “You need a bath. We have to get this off,” Dean carefully pulled the tail out of his mouth so he could slip the sticky shirt over his head. Crowley let out a mighty yawn in the process. “Getting tired?” Crowley nodded lazily.
Now that they were both buck bare again, he plunked them in the tub one at a time. Castiel perked up at the sight of the honey bottle. Dean showed him how to hold it under water to fill it up, much to Castiel's delight. Crowley also found a second wind, splashing at the bubbles around him. He let them play around for a minute with the water before attempting to wash them. I'd like a picture but I think my phone is on the war table, he thought watching them fondly.
“Ok, washing time,” Dean announced, filling up the measuring cup. “Who's first?”
“Cowey,” Castiel decided, squeezing all the water out of the bottle and filling it again.
Dean chuckled to himself. “Close your eyes Crowley,” he warned before pouring water over him. Crowley mistimed breathing and sputtered as the water fell on his face. “I'll be more careful next pour,” he said when Crowley gave a shout. It took a while, but he managed to shampoo all the honey out of both boys' hair without getting too much water in their eyes and mouths. Washing was trickier. Dean really did not want to wash their private bits, but they were sticky so he took a breath and dove in, being as quick and businesslike as possible.
Crowley managed to get his hands on the honey bottle while Dean washed Castiel, much to Castiel's dismay. “Let him play with it for a bit, Cas. You play with the bubbles,” he suggested as he added more soap to the cloth.
“Bubbles!” Castiel started splashing hard to make more bubbles. When he found he could gather them up, he did so and scootched over to plop them on Crowley's head. “King Cowey,” he giggled.
Dean smiled. They are cute, he thought. “We have to clean your wings, Cas. They're sticky.” Dean tried to scrub them but Castiel kept flapping them. “Cas,” he warned and was ignored. Sighing, he did the best he could, figuring Cas would clean them when he reverts to his normal self.
“How's it going?” Sam asked from behind.
Dean turned slightly. “Well, they are mostly clean. Cas' wings are tricky and he's not being helpful.” Castiel wrenched himself away from Dean and the cloth again. Dean gave up for a moment and just watched them. “Do you have your phone, I want a picture,” Dean asked absently.
“Already ahead of you,” Sam muttered as he clicked the shutter button a few times. “Crowley looks ready to pass out.”
Dean looked at the little demon in the tub. His eyes were sinking closed as he held his tail in his mouth, sucking gently. As Dean watched, Crowley let out a huge yawn. Castiel had calmed down as well, yawning in response to Crowley's. “All right, drain and final rinse boys.” Dean pulled the plug, everybody watched the water swirl down the drain. “Kitchen clean,” Dean wondered tiredly.
“Yeah. And the footprints to here. Long day.”
“Yeah.” When the water was mostly gone Dean turned the faucet on again, making sure it was a comfortable temperature before filling the cup and dumping it over the two in the tub to get all the bubbles off.
Castiel sighed contentedly as the warm water washed over him, for once sitting almost still. Crowley rubbed his eyes and almost fell over. “Gimme a hand, Sam?” Dean held a towel out, indicating that he could dry Crowley off. Sam took the towel and did just that while Dean tended to Castiel. Lifting Castiel out of the tub he decided to carry him out of the bathroom, wrapped snugly in the towel. The way Castiel leaned into him with his whole body weight made it so that Dean just wanted to cuddle the little angel. When he looked over at Sam he saw Crowley had passed out in his arms, also wrapped in a towel. He still had his tail in his mouth, sucking a few times then lying still, then sucking again. Dean thought he looked like a cute little demon burrito in the towel. “Ok, now where?”
“Couch. Too many weapons everywhere else.” Sam walked away.
Dean followed, lightly kissing the top of Castiel's head without thinking. Castiel sighed softly and melted into Dean. By the time they get to the couch, Dean noticed Castiel was heavier in his arms. “He asleep Sammy?” Sam turned to Dean, nodding.
The TV was still on the kid's program, neither one made any move to change the channel. Instead they each took opposite corners of the couch, splayed their legs out on the coffee table, adjusted their bundles to be comfortable, and stared mindlessly at the TV until they fell asleep.
Dean woke to a sudden, heavy, crushing weight on his chest. Gasping his eyes flew open to see Castiel staring intently at him. “Dean, why am I naked,” he asked in his usual deep, gravelly voice.
Dean struggled with words as he heard Crowley grunt through a morning stretch on Sam. “There are worse ways to wake up, right Moose? I trust it was fun for all.” Dean watched as Crowley rolled off Sam, completely unconcerned with his nudity.
“The spell. You guys did something wrong,” Dean finally managed, noting that Cas had not moved off of him yet. He was also acutely aware that he was hugging naked Cas to him. At first he wanted to slide his hands up and down Cas' back but then remembered where they were, who was with them, and that he and Cas didn't do that kind of thing with each other. “Um, you two regressed or something. Sam has pictures.” Dean felt a thrill at the questioning rise of Cas' eyebrow.
“I might like to see those pictures. But first I would like my clothes. Dean?” Cas waited for an answer.
“The, uh, war room. On the table.” With that Cas vanished, presumably to get dressed. He returned in a flash, fully dressed, before Dean could fully sit up. Sam was also getting himself to sitting upright and trying not to stare at Crowley's morning problem. Crowley, however, made no move to cover up. He simply shifted so Sam was no longer pinned.
“Ah, my clothes. Thank you Castiel.” Crowley stood up and accepted the bundle in Castiel's hands.
“While he dresses, please tell me everything. Start at the beginning.” Castiel waited expectantly.
Sam and Dean glanced at each other, Sam waving for Dean to start. “Well, I went into the kitchen for a beer,” he began, and spared no details.