If Dean didn’t love this goddamn ship so much, he might just hate it. It was a small, cheap cargo ship that would probably be a deathtrap if he wasn’t the ship’s mechanic. Every day he was splitting wires and pulling together make-shift fixes in the engine room that would do better just having the parts replaced. But replacement parts were one, expensive, and two, hard to come by, especially when you’re on a ship running jobs that aren’t entirely legal, by the standards of the universal authority.
So it was, Dean was always getting hurt by something or other in the engine room. Either some frayed wires shocked and burned him or he pinched a finger or some gears while the engine was turning. Usually he just shrugged these injuries off, but once in a while they were too bad to ignore – either because he was bleeding everywhere or something was broken or badly burnt. That’s when he skulked off to the medical bay, cursing under his breath.
Castiel was the ship’s doctor. He was a nice enough guy with a dry sense of humor. When Dean first met him, he thought Cas was some stuck up kinda guy, all work and no play. After the first day, though, Cas went from being well put together to being a mess. His hair was always sticking up in random directions, his lab coat mussed and wrinkled, and for some reason he attempted to wear a tie every day, but it was barely on and always backwards.
It amused Dean to no end, because why even bother with a tie on a ship like this? Perhaps he was clinging to some old life when he was a proper doctor on some planet in the verse. Cas was one of them now, though, living a life adrift and patching up bullet holes and knife wounds when deals went south or when they picked up cargo that wasn’t exactly theirs to take. Or, as was the case today, patching up Dean’s engine-related wounds.
“Heya Cas, how’s it going?” Dean asked, walking into the med bay.
“Hello Dean. What happened this time?” He turned and placed a clipboard on a counter, out of the way.
“Burned my damn hand.” He held up his left hand, now sporting a decent burn across the back of it and down his wrist.
“Again?” Cas neared, taking Dean’s hand gingerly in his own, inspecting the injury. “Looks like second degree, we’ll get something on it. Take a seat.”
Dean hopped up on the exam table and kept his hand out for Cas. Truth be told, Dean didn’t actually mind the good doctor’s touch whenever he did his exams. Cas came back over to his side after rummaging around in some drawers for supplies. A box was set on the table beside Dean, then he held his hand out to take Dean’s.
“How did you burn it this time?” Cas asked, head tilting and eyes focused on the burned hand. He applied a cool, wet cloth to the burn, which Dean had learned was for disinfecting the burned area. Seeing as how Dean was constantly covered in oil and grease, disinfecting was pretty important.
“I was trying to reroute some power into the pulsars to give ‘em an extra boost next time we get into a fight. These ships aren’t really designed for fighting, but I figured I could fix that for us. One of the steam pipes hadn’t been cut off properly before I opened it, before I knew it, scalding steam came spewing out."
Castiel’s blue eyes glanced up at Dean for a moment, searching his face for something, then he nodded at the explanation. He switched from cleaning the wound to applying the burn treatment, but didn’t comment on Dean’s explanation. Dean fell quiet and watched Cas work. A salve of sorts was spread out over the burned area; Cas was careful and delicate with it, not pressing any harder than was necessary to spare Dean any further pain. Not that Dean would have complained, because he was pretty tough and certainly been through worse, but Cas was always so careful with him anyway.
After the salve was applied, he took out a roll of gauze bandaging and lightly wrapped it around Dean’s hand, protecting it from further injury and infection. Dean kind of liked this part, weird as that probably was. He didn’t have a fetish for getting hurt or anything, but he liked the excuse for extended physical contact with Cas. The more often he found himself in the doctor’s presence, in fact, Dean found he liked that contact even more.
"There you go, all set.” Cas looked up at Dean, one hand still gently holding Dean’s burned hand.
“Thanks, Cas.” Dean didn’t move just yet. He chewed his lip.
“I would tell you to be more careful in the future, but I imagine that would be a futile request.”
Dean chuckled, “Yeah, probably. Always gonna do something to end up back in here.”
Then Cas’s lips quirked up in a little grin, “I hope you’re not getting hurt on purpose just for an excuse to visit.”
“Well, ya’ know, ain’t a bad idea.” Dean grinned right back, broad and open.
“You don’t need an excuse, Dean. My door is always open to you.”
In what way, though, Dean wondered. Cas was still holding his hand. “Yeah?”
Cas nodded. “Yes.”
Dean slid off the exam table but Cas didn’t move away to make space for him. There he was, practically trapped between Cas’s hips and the table. There was no room between them, but somehow there was just enough that it made a difference when Cas leaned in further. Not a word was spoken as they both closed their eyes and tilted their heads, lips finding each other in a sweet, tentative kiss.
They stood there, lips pressed to lips, for a long moment before Cas finally broke it and pulled back just an inch. They opened their eyes simultaneously, Dean’s lips parted slightly. As he looked over Cas’s face for any kind of expression, he spotted blue eyes focused on Dean’s lips. Lips which now turned up in another grin.
“Wanna try that aga–” Dean couldn’t even get the words out before Cas kissed him again, this time with more certainty. He wrapped an arm around Dean’s shoulders and pulled him in closer. Dean laughed into the kiss, then happily returned it, snaking an arm around Cas’s waist to keep him close.
It was about damn time one of them made a move.