theunsmiling: (1 love is a word)
theunsmiling ([personal profile] theunsmiling) wrote2010-08-07 04:30 pm

What the angel saw

Time in Milliways is malleable, conformable -- stretchable as plastic, or clay, or spider silk. Someone in this room is taking full advantage of that fact.

Now if only the elastic properties of the human mind end up bearing out.

* * *

The first day, such as it is, Dean Winchester keeps his eyes closed. The shift between sleeping and waking is told only in the slight catch to his breathing, and the sudden stillness of his eyes behind their closed lids. He remains still in the center of the bed for hour on hour, curled into a ball, knees pressed tight to his eye sockets.

Occasionally he hums.

Michael recognizes the tune. She says nothing.

That is the point.

* * *

The second day is much the same as the first, though on very rare occasions a few muttered words will precede the humming. Michael catches a few names, here and there. Alistair. Lilith. Azazel.



The other words are not nearly so pleasant.

* * *

The third day he sits up, swings his legs off the bed, and stands.

A few hours later he moves, too, lifting up the chair and smashing it against the wall. Twice.

He spends another few hours staring at the pieces, then goes back to lying down.

Michael makes sure he remains asleep when the Loompas come to clean up the mess.

* * *

The fourth day is much like the third.

* * *

The fifth day Dean finds the mirror, puzzled at first by the way his own face moves. He leans toward it so very slowly, reaching out to touch, then frowns, startled (she would guess) by the cold of the glass.

He sits in the chair after that, still watching the mirror. He's waiting for something.

Michael is, too.

Only one of them has their expectations met.

* * *

On the sixth day Dean takes a shower.

Three times.

He neither tries to strangle himself with the shower curtain, nor drown himself in the tub.

Michael considers this a good sign.

* * *

On the seventh day Dean speaks. Believing himself alone, face buried in his hands, he gives voice to a fraction of the weariness and horror he brought back with him.

He laughs.

It is not an unfamiliar coping mechanism. Michael leaves him to it.

* * *

On the eighth day Dean tries to leave.

That's when Michael goes to find Castiel.

Her work here is, for the most part, done.