Title: So Help Me God
Summary: Sam and Dean visit Cas in the psych hospital after he convinces them that something supernatural is happening there. Cas seems convinced he’s found someone who can provide the answer to all their problems.
Setting: Late s7, but I am taking the liberty of imagining that Cas came out of his catatonic state before Reading is Fundamental – meaning, no ‘word of God’ and no Kevin at this point.
Characters/Pairings: Sam, Dean, Cas, Meg (no pairings)
Genre: Gen, Angst
A/N: Wrote this fic for ficwriter1966’s birthday. I don’t know exactly how to classify it. It was supposed to be sort of a cracky, silly little thing, but it kind of went in another direction. *shrugs* The muse is a strange thing. I do hope you get some enjoyment out of it anyway.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! J
Against his better judgment, Dean turned down the volume on the TV so he could listen to Sam’s end of what was sure to be a fascinating telephone conversation with Cas.
The guy may have kicked his catatonic state, but in Dean’s opinion, he still very much belonged in the nuthouse where they’d left him with Meg. He needed a fulltime caretaker and the Winchesters were in no position to fill that bill. They could barely take care of themselves these days. The fact that they were in a motel room and had an actual TV to turn down was a novelty in itself.
Over the past two weeks, the ex-wannabe-God had burned up the phone lines telling Dean everything there was to know about various and often bizarre subjects. Like, for instance, the plight of the extinct brachiosaurus or the medieval process of tanning leather, which was fascinating in a freaky, what the hell sort of way. Piss and all sorts of other disgusting crap were supposedly involved. How people managed to come up with that process had to be an interesting story in itself.
Normally, Cas called Dean’s cell whenever he felt the need to share his revelations, but this time he’d called Sam instead. That was probably because the battery in Dean’s newest piece-of-crap phone wouldn’t hold a charge for more than a few hours at a time, leaving Sammy with the honor of being the chosen one. Good for him, it was definitely his turn to get a taste of the wacky.
“I what?” Sam said into the phone. He sounded completely confused. “Cas, I haven’t been anywhere near that hospital since I left. I’m sorry man, I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
Dean shook his head as he watched Sam attempt to listen and actually get whatever it was Cas was trying to tell him. He definitely had more patience with the guy than he did. The giant mess Cas made prevented him from coming anywhere near patience; especially since he still had his hands full trying to clean up that mess.
Maybe he’d be more forgiving if Bobby was alive and he didn’t have to worry about the little things - like where he’d take his next crap, for instance. Current circumstances led him to wonder if a lot of the hate and violence in the world didn’t stem from a lack of decent plumbing. The world was, quite literally, all-to-shit.
“Maybe she started taking some meds that worked for her,” he heard Sam say after a long period of silence. He was using his ‘reasonable voice’. It was so pointless and hilarious.
“No….it…. I…. Cas… Dude, just give me a second, will you?”
Dean snorted. This conversation sounded familiar. His brother was wasting his time.
“We’ll see, okay,” Sam continued with a tired sigh. “I’ll talk to Dean. Yeah… you too. Later, Cas.”
He looked like he was ready for a drink by the time he set the phone aside.
“Do I even want to know?”
Sam responded with a short laugh that was obviously more a release of frustration than an actual expression of humor.
“He says we need to come to Indiana. Says there’s somebody there that can fix it all for us… Or maybe he thinks I can fix it. It was sorta weird.”
As usual, Sam ignored his sarcasm and continued on talking. “He kept referring to me in the third person. Then again, maybe he thought I was you. Look, I don’t claim to get it. It was all pretty crazy, but it kinda sounded like people are getting possessed. Maybe we should check it out? Could be a hunt,” he added with a shrug. “We both know that the so-called delusions in psych wards aren’t always just delusions.”
How was it that his giant, Cro-Magnon brother could still pull the lost puppy look?
“He’s nuts, that’s why. Whatever wackado crap he’s going on about is not real. No offense, but you should know that better than anyone - he is carrying your crazy around in his head. We’ve got other problems, man.”
“That’s the thing, Dean! You’re absolutely right, it is my crazy. I feel responsible.”
Dean shook his head. “Can we not go there? Look, I hate it that he’s batshit. I really do. But he was just fixing what he broke in the first place. Stop making it your problem.”
Oh no. He was not getting caught up in a debate about forgiveness, understanding, or any of those feel-good things right now. He needed to shut Dr. Phil down.
“Not going there, Sam. Drop it.”
Sam’s voice was laced with disappointment and frustration. With that one word, he was clearly asking: Why are you such a coldhearted dick sometimes? Why don’t you want to help Cas? Why don’t you care? What’s wrong with you?
Needless to say, Dean didn’t have the desire to open that can of worms. He sure as hell didn’t have the six months it would take to do it.
“Fine,” he said, throwing Sam’s loaded word back at him. “I’ll call Hell Bitch and see if our presence is actually required. If she says something’s up, we’ll go, okay?”
An awkward hug from a loony angel was pretty much the last thing Dean wanted after ten hours on the road, but he was getting one anyway.
“I am so glad you came, Dean,” Cas said, still keeping a hand on his shoulder when Dean pulled away. “Sam will fix it,” he continued seriously. “All we have to do is wait for him. I’m sure he’ll be back any time now. He’ll take control of one of you and he’ll know what needs to be done.”
“See what I mean about the third person thing,” Sam whispered from beside him. “It’s like I’m not even standing here.”
“Sam’s right here, Cas. Dude’s friggin huge, he’s hard to miss. What the hell are you talking about?”
Meg stifled a laugh and Dean’s bullshit meter immediately started going off. She looked more smug than usual. That was never a good sign for them.
“No, Dean. The other Sam,” Cas emphasized desperately. “If you’ll come to the TV room with me, we may be able to find out where he’ll be going next. Ziggy’s calculations can predict what’s coming. I am fairly certain he’s a prophet.”
Now Meg wasn’t even trying to hide her laughter. Of course she thought this was funny. It was funny. How the hell could they be so damn stupid? What made it worse was that the Sam who actually existed was just standing there looking like a giant, confused dumbass. This was plain embarrassing.
“There’s no helpful demon possessing people around here, is there Meg?”
“Not unless you count me,” she replied with a huge fake smile. God, how Dean hated her stupid round face.
“Sam is not a demon, Dean. He’s a scientist,” Cas interjected. The poor bastard looked ridiculously hopeful as he spoke. “The possession is temporary. He only does it to help people,” he insisted. “He’s healed two patients over the last few weeks. They went home to their families. I’m certain he can fix things for you too. We just have to wait for him.”
Dean didn’t even bother responding to Cas. “You bitch,” he said as he turned toward Meg. “I asked you to tell me if any of this was real. We just drove ten friggin hours in a Dodge Dart with rusted-out floorboards and a busted radiator.”
Meg just smirked and crossed her arms in front of her. She was enjoying herself far too much, and his dumbass brother still looked completely clueless.
“Dammit!” he cursed, looking up to the ceiling for inspiration from who the hell knows? “Why am I even surprised?”
“Hey! Don’t get pissy with me,” Meg replied with a shrug. “It’s not my fault you morons are such easy targets. I just had to see if you two would actually try to hunt down and kill Scott Bakula.”
“The actor?” Sam asked.
Dean realized his right hand was now in a tight fist at his side. A part of him wanted to break Sam’s nose so badly. It really did.
“Sam, did you maybe leave out the part where Cas talked about Ziggy or Sam’s good buddy Al? Or perhaps time travel?”
His brother knitted his brows together in thought. “Maybe? I don’t know… He rambled about a lot of different stuff. Does it matter?”
Dean buried his face in his hands. Seriously?
“Yes, it matters. It matters because I’d have known in two seconds flat that Cas has been watching old Quantum Leap episodes in between shock treatments. If anybody’s getting better around here it’s due to the miracle of modern medicine. Nobody’s getting possessed by anything, good or evil. Congratulations Sam, we just wasted a buttload of time, money, and gas that we don’t have coming here.”
Sam’s eyes were wide with realization and probably quite a bit of embarrassment too. He’d finally caught on.
“Oh,” he mumbled.
Yeah, oh. But at least this cloud of crap had a silver lining. Dean finally had proof that his vast knowledge of pop culture had real world value. He wouldn’t be letting his brother forget that any time soon.
Dean followed Cas to the TV room just in time for the theme music to Quantum Leap to begin. The art of the opening song and montage was pretty much lost in today’s TV landscape. These days, most shows cut straight to the action. He realized he kind of missed the old intros.
Now that he had explained and re-explained the reality of the situation to Cas in excruciating detail, the angel looked completely broken, and Dean was beginning to feel a bit of unwelcome sympathy for the guy.
“I thought my father cared,” Cas said sadly. “I thought he was finally sending someone to fix everything I had broken.” He looked up at him and there was actually some sanity in his gaze. “Dean, I’m sorry. It’s all my fault. Crowley, the Leviathans, Sam’s wall, what happened to Lisa and-”
“I get it Cas.”
Dean interrupted before the roster got any longer. As happened so often recently, his voice was a lot harsher than he intended it to be. He couldn’t do this. There wasn’t enough liquor in the world. And truth was, he wasn’t sure who he blamed more for the never ending list of crap - Cas or himself. He definitely blamed himself for Lisa and Ben, and there were times when he blamed himself for all of it. If Cas had never decided to tie his fate to theirs, maybe things would have turned out a whole lot differently.
“Look, it was a good idea,” Dean lied. “But, there’s no way that guy could fix our mess in a single one-hour episode. Dude would never leap again if he was unlucky enough to get stuck inside me or Sam. He’d just end up being trapped in this nightmare forever. There’s already a crappy show about our lives in one dimension. That’s enough, believe me. Sam Beckett should really stick to what he’s doing. You know, helping those that can be helped. We’re all pretty much hosed here. Always have been.”
“So, what do we do?”
There was such a pleading, childlike look on Cas’ face that Dean had to turn away. An angel was asking him for advice? The world really had gone to shit. How was he supposed to know? He was lucky he could tell his ass from a hole in the ground anymore.
“Let’s watch this episode,” Dean said as he sat down in one of the uncomfortable looking vinyl-covered chairs facing the television set. It wasn’t an answer, but maybe it would distract Cas.
The episode title ‘So Help Me God’ flashed across the screen and he had to laugh at the irony. He remembered this one. It was the one where Sam leapt into a lawyer somewhere down South and ended up helping a black lady accused of murder.
It was a good episode, and when it first aired he was probably all of ten. Back then he thought hunters were like real-life Sam Becketts. Obviously, they didn’t possess anyone, but they did sort of leap from from town to town helping people and changing their lives for the better. At least that’s what the brochure said. Most importantly, it was what Dad had said.
Too bad nothing was ever that simple.