One Last Time…

The earth was soaked underneath a river of red- blood of the humans mixed with the ichor of the angels and – and the whole world seemed to stand still, as if in awe of everything that had transpired in the small clearing.

Amongst hundreds of bodies, lay a blonde man, soaked in a pool of his blood. His handsome face was blotched with purplish bruises covering his eyes and nose. He could barely move, the wound on his side bleeding rivulets into the pool underneath him. His breath came in laboured by Advertise” href=”#80979″> pants – slowing every minute and catching at his throat. Dean Winchester was dying and he knew it.

He tilted his head slightly to the side and saw lying next to him, the huge form of his brother, an angel blade protruding from his torso. There was still little life left in him, he could tell. But it was only a matter of time. It would all be over soon.

Very, very soon.

Sam Winchester felt the world under him sway and his eyes opened to the image of the bunker’s kitchen. Mary and Dean at the by Advertise” href=”#46065186″> table, talking. Smiling. Living. He felt the movement again and all was gone. Sam Winchester was dying and he knew it.

Death. How would you describe something like that?

Dean, he always thought death was emptiness. A blackness with no end to it. An abyss. That was what it was. Simply nothing. He’d died enough times to know it was true. It always felt the same. Like an abrupt end to a sentence.

Sam, on the other hand, thought of death differently. To him, death was closure. It wasn’t a sudden end but a complete one. And he’d died enough times too, to know it to be true.

Little did they know that death was odd and complex, not simple as they seemed to feel it was. It was accommodating and it tried to not fall by Advertise” href=”#49180154″> short of what was expected of it.

Different as they were, the brothers had come to expect this as the true end to it all. They had always expected it to come this way. There was only one way out of the labyrinth – guns blazing, blades drawn and through a river of blood. They had not been wrong.

Sam and Dean were almost numb. Like they’d been dosed with morphine. They were used to dying quickly. And painfully. This was odd. But not completely unpleasant.

Dean rolled his head back with a groan. His body would’ve preferred the stillness. He gazed up at the stars, all blinking down at him, moving around in spirals like in a Van Gogh painting. Some seemed to fall off their shelves in the skies, and it reminded him of a time, years ago, when what seemed like an end was upon them. The night the stars fell. The night it rained angels. And that reminded him of something. Rather…someone. Someone he loved.

“C…Cas?” he gasped.

He blinked again. And in the seconds his eyes closed, he could see the angel’s face plastered to the back of his lids, his brown hair tousled , his blue eyes wide and his face cocked to a side, looking both amused and confused at the same time. Dean couldn’t help his smile  (which looked more like a grimace with half his face bashed in).

Sam thought he heard a whisper. A name floating in the air around him. The sound was familiar in his by Advertise” href=”#51915159″> ears. His brain was too slow. He was still seeing his mom and brother, their laughter was the only sound that he wanted to remember. But the whisper slowly made its journey from his by Advertise” href=”#89470163″> ears to his brain.

Cas

The image in his mind dissolved to be replaced by another. One of a man in a long trench coat too big for him, with his inverted tie and his unkempt hair. His friend. His brother. Castiel.

****

Crowley sat on his throne, leaning his face on his hand. He tapped his temple with a finger, his mind wandering. He would have to rebuild his kingdom. He would have to devise new ways to get more soul-power. Not to mention the distrust in the earthlings these days….It wasn’t going to be easy to get back on track.

The war had been terrible. Everything seemed to be lost. Heaven, hell and purgatory. Earth, it seemed, however, was still intact.
He chuckled humourlessly. Those bastards had done it again. And he’d be lying if he said he wasn’t just a teeny but proud of them.

He opened his eyes and absently twirled his fingers in the air. A circle of black smoke appeared in front of him and swirled and thickened and glossed over and opened, like a little by Advertise” href=”#89949688″> TV screen, looking over the clearing.

The battlefield. The land which bore the terrors of The Last War.

A rather dramatic name, he thought. It would hardly be the last. They would rebuild, renovate and give it a couple of centuries and they’d be at each other’s throats again. But perhaps, you could call it last. In a way. The last in a long time.

He twirled his fingers again and there appeared in the portal, the dying Winchesters. Crowley smiled sadly (and a little proudly) at the brothers. They’d done it. One last time. They’d saved the world.

“Goodbye, boys,” he said, and with a snap of his fingers dissolved the portal into wisps of smoke.

****

“C…Cas..”

That was the last prayer he heard. That was the last voice to by Advertise” href=”#81410735″> ring inside him, the last pull he felt towards the caller…

He wasn’t strong enough to teleport if he wanted to. So he simply closed his eyes, letting the sound reverberate in him.

The humans never understood how hard it was for them. Every prayer demanded an answer. Every prayer had to be attended to. They were warriors, them angels, but there was a part of them – a very strong one at that – that was meant to serve God’s favourite and most by Advertise” href=”#74720334″> important creation. And for every prayer they ignored, they went through an agony so profound, it was indescribable.

Perhaps, if I had much life left, I would’ve felt it, thought Castiel, as he felt his vessel wither and die. It wasn’t as slow as he thought it would be.

The voice seemed to call again, this time coupled with another. And Castiel smiled.

How had he not recognized that before?
Of course it was them.

When the world was going up on flames, when they themselves were on the edge of everything, when he was dying…if he had ever expected anyone to call for him, it would be them.

His brothers in arms. His family. The people he loved, perhaps, more than he loved God himself. Sam and Dean Winchester.

He felt his smile widen as the last of Jimmy Novak’s body dissolved into nothingness. The tether holding him to the world was gone and his dissolving spirit….His ending grace floated into the cosmos, following its last prayer.

****

People say you can see you life flash before your eyes when you die. Dean had thought it was a load of bullshit. Mainly because he had never felt that happen when he died. But now, he realized, they had been right after all.

His life did, indeed, flash before his eyes like it was on 7x speed. Seven seconds were, after all, quite less to fit 40 years of hunting in.

But he felt the saying needed a bit of tweaking. You never see your whole life. You possibly couldn’t. But you would see, he thought, the moments that taught you what it meant to be alive.

****

Sam’s eyelids finally peeled open and he stared at a lightening purple sky.
It was almost daybreak. The horizon was cracking open with splashes of pink colouring the sky where it met the land. The sun was yet to peek out but the sky had lightened to a pale purple. Sam was glad for the absence of by Advertise” href=”#44363211″> light.

He was barely hanging on. His consciousness was wavering, moving between dreams and reality. But he glad for this moment. One last moment, he thought.

“D…Dean?” he gasped, managing to bring his hands to his torso, holding the angel blade down with what energy he had left.

Next to him, his brother coughed, spluttering blood. He didn’t open his eyes, though, and Sam thought he probably wouldn’t again.

“End….of…t..the line, bro….ther,” he heard, another weak whisper. He couldn’t help the chuckle which brought more blood into his mouth.

“We…We did good, j..jerk,” he said, half laughing, half coughing.

“That we did,…b..bitch,” said Dean. And he joined his brother with his own sputtering laughter.

*****

And that’s how they left the world. With a smile on their face. With laughter in their eyes. And with pride in their hearts.

They’d done it. One last time.

They’d beat the odds. One last time.

They’d done the right thing. One last time.

And maybe, just maybe – they hoped – they’d left the world a better place.

*****

Castiel never found his brothers. He was gone long before he got to them. But even as he went, he heard their laughter. It was as if the universe has decided to celebrate them.

It was the laughter of two simple men who valued love and family over everything else. Who would fight with God himself for their family. It was the laughter of two brothers who had laid down their lives because it was the right thing to do. And that day, after so many years of carrying it with strength and dignity that surprised everyone,  finally, their burden had been lifted.

And that is how Castiel dissolved into all that he was made from. With the sound of his brothers laughing echoing through his conscious.

****

People say names disappear as time passes. Stories gather dust. All that remains is a lost whisper, a note of a song, a forgotten name.

And that is what would become of the story of these two brothers is what everyone says.

But I disagree.

The Winchesters were not just names and stories. They were so much more than that.

And as long as the world they died for exists, their mark would still remain.

In that brother who would protect his family with his life.

In that kind friend who would stand next to you no matter what.

In that soldier who lays his life down for you.

And in every single one of us, they remain, because the Winchesters were, to be plain, everything that it means to simply be human.

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