Adam Milligan imagine requested by lunarpotion! “Hi! I read your guidelines and I am hoping that this is within your rules. Could I have an Adam imagine where the reader was travelling with Sam and Dean when they pulled him from the pit and reader is really considerate and caring that Adam falls in love because she listens to him and doesn’t try to understand because she knows she can’t?? Fluff? OH gosh I hope this is okay. If this isn’t then berate me and such…" Hope you like it!
It was an impossibility you couldn’t have fathomed when you first laid eyes upon the dirt-covered shell of a man that very first day… but Adam Milligan was well on his way to being whole. He had been broken by the world’s most lethal creations, the light behind his eyes had been extinguished with every passing day, the flame burning lower and lower until there was no substance to the fire at all. The man that now sat before you, his head bent over a paperback book of lore from the local library, was slowly but surely casting sparks over the wick within himself. His sleepless nights had decreased greatly over the three months he spent in your company, though every few nights, you could hear the distinct sound of the breath leaving his lungs, his bed sheets crinkling as he threw himself out of bed, taking care to tread carefully on the motel’s untrustworthy floorboards in fear of waking you. Little did he know that your ear was constantly attuned to his movement. You cared for the man. How could you sleep through a night when he was reliving every action of torture? He had spent thousands of years trapped in a cage with two of the Bible’s most ferocious beings, acting as their personal punching bag. His sanity was your main concern. Thus, you rarely slept unless he did as well.
You had met Adam Milligan back at Bobby Singer’s house before everything went haywire with the universe. You were working a hunt with the Winchester brothers outside of the apocalyptic spectrum. Time and chance had brought you to become his warden and caretaker. The brothers were off to save the world, as was their usual routine. Bobby Singer was hardly capable of watching a man with the ability to run when he was confined to a wheelchair, and you had Latin notation up to your eyeballs to decipher. You were unceremoniously assigned to Milligan’s side… you never would have expected a friendship to blossom with the broken man. He was less of a burden than you had originally assumed; he only ever tried to run off once, he rarely spoke, he spent most of his time reading quietly… it was high school all over again, and you had landed the easiest babysitting gig of your life. You smiled fondly, watching his eyes glaze over his book, his brow furrowing every few lines, the hazy mist of his irises tugging his pupils as he struggled to comprehend the content of the lore. The studious hunter in question raised his eyes to meet yours, his lips upturning in the corners to find you watching him so intently, the apples of his cheeks burning dimly with the shadow of embarrassment. He was fortunate enough to be graced with a delicate blush, a trait you both admired and envied. You extended your hand, your movement cautious and slow, easing your fingers in his direction to alert him of your intent. He tended to jump when approached, an obvious link back to the tens of millions of unkind hands laid upon his flesh. His eyes dropped to your fingers, his face contorting in muted terror before relaxing. He inched the book into your palm, shifting his chair along the scratched floorboards surrounding the motel’s breakfast table, situating himself closer to you. His shoulder hovered just beside your own, his breath warming your neck as his index finger located the point of his confusion.
"I can’t read this part,” he admitted, his fingernail ghosting over a string of Latin, his hand trembling just slightly. His composure had cracks, that much was a given, but he was doing incredibly well. His very presence by your side must have taken an immense amount of courage. You squinted at the phrase, conscious of his eyes drilling into your temple.
“Ex igne fit in salutem,” you whispered, trailing the pad of your pointer finger underneath the words, the paper thin and brittle from age. You turned to face the youngest Winchester, finding his face closer than you had anticipated, his eyes harvesting the afternoon’s dying light, oceans trapped within his irises roiling with waves of curiosity and trust. His lips parted in question, awaiting your translation. You wrenched yourself from the distraction of his features, clearing your throat. “It means "from the fire comes salvation,” his brow pinched, his eyes flickering back and forth between each of yours. He was still tentative about using words to relay his thoughts. You didn’t have a concrete foundation of what exactly went down Down Under (how could you bring back the memories of such vivid horror to the man who couldn’t sleep through the night? It seemed a bit like torture in itself), but whatever Michael and Lucifer had done to him threatened to silence him forever, if only partially. “Like.. rebirth. From the past comes a new beginning. From the fire comes salvation,” you continued, turning back to the tome, flipping through pages absentmindedly. “What does this have to do with the hunt?” You wondered aloud, your subconscious voicing your thoughts without asking your permission. If Sam and Dean were off hunting a Greek monster, what had motivated Adam to read-up on Latin? There was no correlation between the two, yet he had been bent over this book since the moment Castiel had brought it back from the town’s library. He’d spent hours struggling through dead languages and metaphors… for what purpose? Adam’s hand reached out to close the book, a gentle motion for so sudden a shift, sliding the lore towards his chest atop the table’s plastic surface. He held the volume like body armour, a makeshift breastplate of information he clutched to his body as if it coould save his life.
“Light reading,” he mumbled, his eyes dropping from yours to examine the closed book, focusing intently on the generous flecks of dust coating the perimeter of the pages. Your gaze settled on the binding, or what little of the binding was exposed by Adam’s position beside you, locking on the words “Inventing Hell: Dante, The Bible, and Eternal Torment." Jesus, he was researching his imprisonment. You had sat by, invested in your own research, while Adam had put himself through Hell, literally, all over again? Adam’s eyes followed yours downward when he caught you staring, trailing down to the title of the book in his arms. He flinched the exposed title into the crook of his arm, holding onto his personal research project like a drowning man would clutch a life preserver, his knuckles white with the strength and determination of his hold.
"Adam,” you began, extending your fingers with intent to lay them upon his shoulder, a gesture ill–thought through and solely instinctual. He didn’t flinch away from your advance, but you stopped nonetheless when his eyes screwed shut, his forehead wrinkling as his face seized, blocking the world from view as if to banish all oncoming disasters. He inhaled quickly through his nose, his hands shaking against the book’s cover.
“I just wanted to understand,” he began, his words stiff, forced from between his rigid lips, his chest rising shallowly with his every hollow breath. “I wanted to be able to understand so that I could talk to you about it. You’re the only person I know that doesn’t write me off as…” he trailed off, swallowing with great difficulty before continuing his alarming statement, “As some kind of brain-dead chihuahua. You listen, and you care, and I can’t… I can’t talk about… about what happened… down there. I wanted to understand so that you could too. You try so hard to help me, and I love you for that. I do. I wanted to learn so that I could-” he opened his eyes, his voice dropping off with a crackle, his posture becoming even more rigid, if that was possible, as he realized what he had just spoken to you. His eyes went wide, his mouth hanging open in mortification. He stammered wordlessly for a few seconds, his mumblings going silent as you processed the newfound information. Your hand inched towards his knee, his eyes flashing to your movement with an unfortunate precision, watching as your fingertips laid against his leg, your palm moving to his lower thigh. A comforting gesture, something innocent, something you both needed in this moment. Your touch acted as a sedative, surprisingly, Adam’s shoulders deflating, his grip on the book softening considerably, as his eyes drifted back to yours.
“You can tell me,” you whispered, his timid smile returning as he scootched to your side once again, inhaling deeply in preparation of thousands of years of storytelling. His fingers brushed against yours like the exhale of a ghost, a brief moment of sparkling hope. Adam Milligan was nearly whole… and you maybe just loved him too.