Purgatory is a place of impossible shadows, where the light that pierces you – well, what’s left of you at least – feels like fire and water and all the conversations you never had. It hurts and it hurts, and it never stops hurting.
But worse than the light is the landscape: Purgatory isn’t made of matter, precisely, but rather the impression of matter – its left-behinds, like eroded canyon walls, or footprints in the mud.
It makes Cas nervous how comfortable he feels here; as if he were just another Purgatory beast all along, shaped by his Father to mimic the face of an angel. It doesn’t help that whenever Dean looks at him now, his eyes simply slide away, unable or unwilling to hold their gaze.
“Do I appear different to you?” he snaps.
Dean shades his eyes. “What?”
“You cannot bear to look at me.” Cas can hear the bitterness in his voice, but he does not care. “My vessel displeases you now.”
“Jesus, Cas.” Dean flushes an ugly shade of red. “Next you’ll ask if your ass looks big in those wings.”
They fall quiet. The sounds of Purgatory surround them like summer crickets.
“It hurts,”” Dean mumbles eventually. “You’re all shadows and light now. It’s—“
“—not natural,” Cas offers.
“No,” he says sharply. “No. It’s more like—looking at a bird flying in front of the sun.”
To Cas’s astonishment, Dean’s face softens.
“I get now why Pamela lost her eyes,” he says quietly. The corner of his mouth creeps upward. “She didn’t want to look away either.”
Some wounds are like interrupted dreams,
The blood stain half-remembered,
Grief like the crusted sleep you rub from the corners of your eyes.
Your fingertips slip-sliding across a soaking back;
Throat clenching against the honeyed smell of clean hair and entrails;
A yowl, primal and hoarse, toward the bad moon rising.
And we’d turn to each other and say, “Haven’t you had this one before?”
Your eyelashes would flutter against your silver-kissed cheek,
And I’d command, “Go back to sleep”.
You’d say “You first”,
As if it were that easy,
As if this time would be different,
Simply because we wanted it to be.
But we both know weakness, and doubt,
And we both dealt with demons once.
We have faith in nothing but our own scars.
For you I would make no bargains.
The host of hell would come to me instead,
Their phalanxes casting long shadows on the moon.
Howling, they would offer me anything, anything,
To prevent the apocalypse I’d unleash.
And I’d close my eyes and whisper,
“I’ve had this one before.”
And before, and before, and before.
Time to wake up.
A prophet once wrote, “We are all made of star stuff”
But the truth is far less noble—
For we are made of the stuff in between stars too:
Vast, empty spaces, lonely and unfathomable
From the quark’s point of view.
When I press my lips to your flesh,
I match my empty spaces to yours;
Rubbing void against void,
I am met with fire.
You who taught me to believe in the cosmos,
In energy from nothing, in the divinity of flesh—
Fall with me now.
Stretch your empty spaces toward mine.
For us the conservation of matter has no power.
Laws were made to be broken.
When Castiel first laid a hand on you in Hell, he was lost.
Part of you still remembers
How we lit up the darkness:
Two lost souls charting our course to earth
Against a pole star of our own device.
In orbit around each other, you flew as I fell,
The sway between our bodies leaving messy tracks against the empty night.
You are still the guiding star
I set my course by;
The magnetism that pulls my wings homeward.
Even God cannot decipher my way.
The star chart makes sense only to us.
Also this happened.
I finally felt good enough to draw fan work for the show, then I tried drawing Castiel’s face.
In hindsight, I should have done a few practice sketches first instead of just diving in.
Not as smooth as I would like it to be, but I’m kind of tired.
“You,” said Dean tightly, lips quirking. “You have something. In. On. Your head. Region. There.”
“What is it? Owl? Hornet?” Cas swatted his hand wildly around his ears, which only made Dean turn away, hiding his face from sight. “Purgatory bee?”
“No.” Dean covered his mouth with the back of his hand. “It’s not a Purgatory bee.”
“Good. I don’t like them. They swear too much.” Using both his hands and wings in concert, Cas wiped his hair and cheeks as thoroughly as he could. Black feathers floated off and away; Dean froze when one drifted into his line of sight. “Is it gone now?”
Dean snuck a peak. “Nope. Still there.”
Cas dropped his hands to his sides. His wings drooped.
“Well,” he snapped, unable or unwiling to hide his annoyance any longer. “What is it?”
“It’s –“ Dean’s mouth opened and closed like a fish’s. “It’s a halo.”
Cas rolled his eyes. Just what they needed: A neon sign advertising their location to all of Purgatory. Lucky him. Lucky Dean.
“And it’s cock-eyed,” Dean murmured. Before Cas could stop him, Dean reached out, brushing his fingers against the circlet and nudging one side upward.
The touch felt intimate, holy. Cas tried not to recoil.
Dean suddenly jerked his hand down and away. He flexed it once, twice, as if shaking out pins and needles.
“It looks ridiculous,” Cas offered. For some reason, his throat now felt dry, tight. He wished Dean would look somewhere else, at his wings, at the ground, anywhere but at the halo.
Dean shook his head but did not look away. “Not the word I would’ve used.”
Dean’s smirk softened then, his eyes turning up at the corners. He let out a brief, small exhale. If Cas hadn’t been so close, or hadn’t been watching him so carefully, he might have missed it.
“Fitting,” he murmured. “Sometimes I forget, you know. But you really are—an angel.”
Dean looked like he was about to say something else, but he swallowed his words instead, throat bobbing deep down into his collar. Only then did he look away.
I accidentally another Destiel in Purgatory drabble.