Short ficlet based on this gorgeous fanart (x)
Angels do not go down on earth.
Through war, through famine, through disease—
Angels do not go down on earth.
That, at least, is what Castiel was told.
But then he was called, to leave Heaven, to take a vessel; and for a trifle of a thing. To ensure the safety of one Luke Ramirez.
It was explained to Castiel, and he listened dutifully, that occasionally these sort of acts were required. Not miracles, per se, but little pushes, little nudges, all to ensure the correct path. The grand plan.
(He does not know this speech has been given to him many times.)
Accidents barely avoided, a heavy thing falling just a little short, a bullet that grazes your cheek.
Such is the work of angels.
Castiel goes immediately. There is no need to wait, the orders came, and it is happening now. Jimmy Novak is young, perhaps too young, but Castiel takes him anyway. He has no other options.
He follows Ramirez to the city center, his angel eyes sharp, his senses attuned to any possible danger. He receives some strange looks, perhaps because he has no coat, only a thin jacket to fight against the winter chill, or perhaps because such a young boy should not be travelling alone. Castiel does not notice, or care. No one approaches him.
The city is brightly lit, decorated to celebrate the upcoming holiday, the celebration of the birth of Christ. Obviously, things got a little lost over the years. The infant known as Joshua, and later Jesus, was not born in December as the stories said, but July. And there had been only two men in attendance, both of whom were certainly not wise.
The matter is simple. A couple dropped books, a redirection of a bicycle—and Ramirez’s path is blocked, for 30 crucial seconds, and the taxi that would have hit him drives safely by.
Castiel watches from a nearby storefront, a quiet pride in completing his orders.
He stays for a while, just watching, even though his charge has long since disappeared from view. Humanity is endlessly fascinating, and Castiel has never had the chance to see it this close.
He takes a deep breath into his borrowed lungs, turning his face up to meet the snow, falling from the sky. He should return to Heaven. He should return home.
“Dean Winchester, stop trying to grab the nice boy!”
Behind him stands a group of three people, taking brief shelter under the same awning. They are laden with their Christmas shopping, bundled up warmly for the Kansas weather, and Castiel knows them.
John and Mary Winchester. He recognizes their faces immediately. They are very important in his Father’s plan; and their names are etched into every angel’s brain. The man is holding what Castiel knows to be his son, the firstborn. And he also knows the great tragedy that will soon tear this family apart.
He peers at the infant struggling in his father’s arms. A small boy, eyes bright and green, hands grasping in Castiel’s direction. His mother brushes a hand through her son’s hair, smiling warmly at Castiel.
“I’m sorry,” she says. “He’s not usually like this.”
Castiel shakes his head.
“Quite alright,” he murmurs.
The boy continues to reach for him. His cheeks are pink with the cold, and he’s babbling happily, carefree and joyous. Castiel does not know his exact age; it is so hard to tell with human children. He could look into his soul and know—but that would be rude, Castiel thinks.
“Hello,” he says instead. “And who might you be?”
His father smiles, bouncing him slightly.
“This here’s Dean.”
He nods to the Winchesters, thinking now he definitely should be going. Coming down to Earth was one thing, but talking to humans? It was not mentioned in his orders. He should not disobey.
He inclines his head, and turns to take his leave.
Then Dean touches him.
His tiny hand catches his ear, sliding down his cheek—and Castiel is suddenly overwhelmed, with a flood of images that nearly leaves him staggering.
A barn, lights sparking before his eyes. A rain-filled room and an archangel with murder in his eyes. A ring of holy fire, a painful glance, hands pulling a sodden trenchcoat from the water. And longing, longing, longing, a bone-deep clamoring ache, only getting stronger as the images strengthen. Blood on his hands, not his own—and a hand on his face, begged words, his name said, over and over. Then not in pain, or hurt, or fear—but in heat. Passion.
He touches him, and Castiel knows instantly.
Dean Winchester is 22 months, 19 days, and 5 hours old. And in roughly 28 years, Castiel will meet him again. In the fiery pits of Hell.
He does not move. Castiel watches this small child, innocent, unknowing, still grasping at Castiel’s hair. He has no idea.
Castiel decides it makes him…sad.
He quickly backs away, ignoring the odd look Dean’s parents give him. They will not remember this. They will not remember an encounter with a strange boy, one cold December day, too long ago.
He ducks into an alley and disappears.
He safely returns Jimmy Novak to his bed, and for his benefit as much as his own, wipes the encounter from the boy’s mind. He is not so sure Jimmy would be so easily convinced a second time.
He returns quietly to Heaven, and his superiors radiate pride and happiness at his success. Castiel goes back to what he had always done before, working beside his brothers and sisters, and tries not to think of the human, with green eyes and the sun in his smile.
Yes, angels do not go down on earth.
But Castiel does. And he will go again.