Title: The Unforgiven
Author: shadowofcastiel
Pairing: Dean/Castiel
Rating: PG-13
Disclaimer: characters are not mine - they belong to Eric Kripke - I'm merely having fun with them.
Summary: The Angel Castiel watches Dean from afar. Title taken from a Metallica song of the same name.


Castiel always seemed to be wherever Dean was. Every time that the hunter turned around, the angel would be there, somewhere, at a distance most usually, sometimes quite close by. At first, Dean found this attention a little disturbing as the angel's behaviour was borderline stalker behaviour, but, over time, Dean began to welcome it, to expect it, even to take comfort from it. It was nice for once to feel as though someone was finally there for him, to watch out for him, to have his back. All too often it seemed as though Dean walked alone in the empty streets of his life, with no one but his brother at his side. Dean was doubtful of even Sam's support at times.

But Castiel ... Castiel was so unequivocally there for him, with perfect trust and perfect grace, that Dean took comfort from Castiel's mere peaceful presence. Even though Castiel rarely spoke, and certainly didn't answer directly to Dean's myriad questions when he did speak, Dean was comforted more by his silence than by any words he could utter.

He almost felt like he had his own personal guardian angel watching over him, despite Castiel's earlier protestations of not being there to perch on anyone's shoulder. It felt like Castiel truly cared what happened to the hunter, wanted to keep an eye on him, to swoop in to help him, should the situation beg it. Dean even started hoping that the situation would arise that required Castiel to step in and help him, to fight for him.

Dean started wondering if he was perhaps falling in love a bit.

The thought didn't alarm him as much as it might have done a few years ago. It just felt nice to have someone's undivided attention and loyalty, without feeling like there was a hidden catch, like he owed Castiel something. Dean didn't think Castiel had it in him to be duplicitous, not to him, at least.

Dean watched Castiel from afar, while murmuring - "I don't deserve you, Cas."

**************************************** ********************

Castiel watched Dean from afar, because he felt compelled to do so, he felt it his duty to do so. Never before had he felt so attached to a human before in the way that he felt attached to Dean, and the sudden emotions confused him, but was not at all unpleasant to the angel. Just the act of watching over the hunter gave the angel great comfort, to know that Dean was still alive in the world was enough.

He wanted to protect Dean from all harm, all evil, but at what cost would such protection come? Castiel didn't know, couldn't know, didn't even care. Dean was his duty, his charge and it was the way it was meant to be.

So he continued to watch, to wait, to know that Dean was safe, knowing in time that Dean would grow to love him. It was always the way with humans - given enough exposure to his true self, and they grew to love him. It was the way of the world, or his world at least.

So he watched, he waited, he loved Dean from afar, kept him safe from all harm, because Cas thought, he knew, that Dean was worthy of his attention.

**************************************** *******************

Dean had dedicated his life to helping others, to saving others, and had felt like he was battling constantly. He was tired of this life, tired of remembering his time in Hell, was weary of it all. He wanted the struggles to end, the war to end, but would that mean then that Castiel would leave him? All that he'd felt, all that he'd known, was nothing compared to what he felt for Cas. He could not bear to lose Castiel, to not have him by his side, to draw comfort from him when most he needed it. After all he'd faced, all the hard times he'd been through, that would be the hardest thing he would suffer - the loss of an angel at his side. The thought alone was enough to hurt him, to make him feel like he was dying inside, and he wanted to make sure that would never happen to him.

He was ready to lay himself bare at Cas' feet, to pledge allegiance to Castiel, to declare himself in front of him, for he wanted Castiel to look down on him, and notice what he'd done, and do what Dean didn't exactly know. He didn't know where such feelings could go at all.

He was lost.

**************************************** *******************

The rain was pouring from the skies when Castiel came to Dean, to stand by his side, before he extended one wing to shelter Dean from the rain. Dean looked to the angel from the corner of his eye, trying to hide a smile at the angel's suddenly protective behaviour. It looked as though Castiel was trying to hide a smile of his own, by the way his eyes crinkled at the corners, and a happy light shone from their blue depths. Although the angel rarely smiled, Dean thought that he was smiling now.

The silence stretched on between them, but it was a companionable silence, one that would have been shattered by words, the mood broken, lost forever. Castiel exuded peace and calmness, and Dean felt comforted. He felt warmth from the vessel's body from where he stood so close, and the feathers from Castiel's wings tickled slightly every time they brushed against Dean. The hunter got the urge to lean forward and kiss the angel, then, just to see what it was like, what Castiel's reaction would be, but held back nonetheless.

He closed his eyes and bowed his head and was surprised into a startled cry when Castiel pressed soft lips against his own, wing still shielding them both from the rain - but still he was kissing him. Dean slid hands about Castiel's waist, responding to the angel's touch, the angel's kiss, the angel's wing caress, giving himself completely to the experience. Castiel made noises of approval, and that's when Dean knew he had him.

When the kiss ended, Dean found himself staring into the angel's blue eyes, lit up from within by a celestial presence that could only be hinted at. Dean had never seen Castiel's true form, but imagined he would be truly beautiful to behold. Hell, his vessel was beautiful to behold.

Dean leant his forehead against the smaller man's shoulder, sighing peacefully, before breathing in all the scents that made up Castiel and his vessel both. He could even detect a hint of Old Spice coming from the vessel.

His heart soared and he wrapped arms around the angel, his angel, holding him close. He felt Castiel's arms return the hug, the vessels cheek resting slightly upon the hunter's shoulder. The angel's chest rose and fell in a contented sigh, but still they did not speak.

They really didn't need to - all the talking had been done when the kiss had started ... it was a mutual agreement on both sides to proceed safely, with no guilt, no fear - just peace and love and mutual trust ....