While he was already growing impatient with the process of checking-in their baggage, he knew somewhere far in the back of his mind that the actual boarding process would be much more tedious. However, Sherlock would put up with it but just for the case. He had no intent of loosing the little scrap of entertainment that seemed to have quite a bit of potential. That and of course, the mere fact that it was a case but one he definitely intended to solve. Not only was the case intriguing, the client’s persona also was. Despite that he initially thought to only look into the case, he was now contemplating a sort of multitasking idea. He would look into the case but would see what he could from Morgan as well. Perhaps one would lead to the other and investigating the two at the same could definitely be helpful.
Sherlock sighed ever so slightly at the mention of food. He had no intent of eating and oddly enough neither did Morgan but John had not had a chance to eat anything at the flat as they were a bit rushed. He knew very well that they were not going to go anywhere anytime soon so he did not put too much protest in sitting down for a bit for what seemed to be a late breakfast. In other words, he would sit and observe everything for however long it took, perhaps do a bit of interrogation but he doubted he could get much at this point. It seemed that Morgan was well aware of his eating habits as he was not addressed in the slightest and was thankful he wouldn’t need to explain himself. After a bit of walking, they had finally chosen a place to sit and he followed behind wordlessly, not feeling the need to take charge of anything for the moment being.
John stepped up to shake Morgans hand, as Sherlock had done, and almost recoiled- it was freezing. “Pleasure, Morgan,” he had to almost work for the return smile as their hands parted and he closed his own into a fist, driving away the cold. His first impression of Morgan was slightly different than what he first thought- the man obviously had money, and had no problem flaunting it, a little higher on the earth than everyone else seemed to be his stance of things. That didn’t bother John so much- Sherlock, after all, had the same attitude a lot of times. Checking in their bags took a little longer than expected, what with Sherlock hardly flying before, and the baggage girl being somewhat of a ditz, he was relieved when it was over.
“If we’re not in a rush, we could sit down somewhere and eat,” John suggested, looking pointedly at Sherlock and quickly to Morgan, who sauntered along just in front of them as a leisurely pace. Sherlock just rolled his eyes. Morgan on the other hand was kind enough to offer to stop and let them all eat. John stood for a moment and looked around. There was a chinese restaurant, no, italian, that didn’t sound too good either…He finally decided on a little bistro- John ordered a cup of tea, and a ham sandwich. Never too early for lunch, especially when it involved ham.He sat in relative silence, munching away on his sandwich as everyone else talked- just observing everything. He didn’t much like the way that Morgans ‘suits’ were looking at him though, a perpetual grimace set on the mans face whenever John peered over at him. He would just let Sherlock do what sherlock did best for now, deduce Morgan, and then of course he’d listen all about it later on the flight. John had his own assumptions of course by this point.
Lucifer and Sherlock sat as they waited for John to go attain whatever cheap, over-produced food he desired at this early hour of the morning. Whatever time it was. Time was relative. Time was an invention of Humanity to show their control and taming of the world. The Demons that were travelling with him obediently took a seat at the table next to theirs. Morgan’s eyes drifted over Sherlock Holmes, pale blue, half-lidded, showing only mild interest at best. Fingers entwined with his clasped hands, mirroring the other man’s pose.
"So, Mister Holmes, you ever been out to the States before?" he asked, hating that accent with every word he spoke, but understanding it was a necessity. Though he would always be amused with any disguise he was pulling off, any trick he played, any deception. There had been a long stretch of silence prior to the question, but John had made it back to the table before Sherlock had the chance to answer. And that provided some distraction from the mutual observation period.
Lucifer managed not to turn his nose up at John’s choice in food. It hardly seemed appealing, and yet the man feasted on it happily. Perhaps he really was as hungry as he told them he was. Though would he really have any reason to lie? He seemed a simplistic being in comparison to Sherlock: more susceptible to those irritating human needs and desires, unlike the detective - as far as he had noticed. Even this body, Nick, he could feel him tugging those rare times he was conscious, begging for food or sleep or some other ridiculous request. How much more Humanity could have achieved if they weren’t cursed with these requirements for survival. He had to maintain a steady diet of Demon Blood to keep his temporary vessel intact and even he found it got in the way.
He tried a pleasant smile as he regarded John, and looked back at Sherlock to hear the answer to his question.
As Lucifer seemed to take interest in his news, Jim couldn’t help but feel a bit accomplished since he’d done so much in such a sort span of time. Well, it wasn’t as if he were working alone on this, many people who didn’t even know his face were busy reading and searching at his command. Once he’d concluded, he watched Lucifer’s face for any sign that the Devil was pleased with what he’d heard. A feeling of pride washed over him as the “man” across from him lifted an eyebrow once in a sign of surprise and a way of saying “well done” without actually speaking the words aloud. Of course, this feeling of accomplishment was kept to himself mostly, the only sign of his pleasure a small smile that turned up the corners of his lips. His slight smile widened into a crooked grin as Lucifer spoke words of praise shortly after the movement of his brow.
At the offer to come with the Devil to raise War, Jim’s smile faded, returning to the slight one he’s had only moment before. Jim couldn’t help but feel as if this “present” came with strings attached mainly due to the fact that it was Lucifer presenting such an offer. After a moment’s thought, taking only about half a minute to come to a decision. “I’m glad to be of some service. Wouldn’t be fair if I left you to do all the work I asked of you while I sat and did nothing, now would it?” It was a rhetorical question that needed no answer. “As for this present you’re presenting, I would love to accompany you and observe the raising and binding of this Horseman.” His own voice was a purr, matching Lucifer’s almost seductive tone, if not being completely so.
Once the conversation proceeded to Jim questioning about Lucifer’s said delay, his more pleasant mood receded and was replaced by the flicker of anger and annoyance at being told Lucifer would be taking longer than expected, a sort of delay popping up at the same time the Devil had made contact with the consulting detective and the army doctor. Jim had expected that both would be finished with their side of the deal at relatively the same time, which should have been only a couple weeks. At least, that’s how long it would take Moriarty to finished finding everything needed for the last two Horsemen. For all he knew, those he had working for him might have made some sort of breakthrough in the time he’d been sitting here, waiting for Satan to show.
His gaze remained on the angel before him, dark eyes slightly narrowed, waiting to see how the Devil would respond to his questions and his tone of voice by the end of his questioning. As of right now, he feared nothing, not even the wrath of Lucifer, for he had an ace up his sleeve, a trump card, that could very easily ruin the fallen Angel in a matter of seconds. Of course, said action wouldn’t be required just yet. It wouldn’t be needed until Lucifer decided to piss Jim off enough that such a weapon should be used. So, he simply waited for the response of the angel, who seemed quite concerned for a moment about his pyramid of sugar.
Upon hearing Lucifer explain in extremely vague terms what he’d be using Sherlock for, Jim leaned his chin upon one of his hands, the other drumming slightly on the other arm of his chair. Nothing of his concern? The consulting criminal mentally scoffed at that statement. Surely it was of his concern if it would be effecting a plan of his, causing it to be more time and effort and money than need be. Despite his evident irritation, he remained silent, wanting to hear what the Devil would say concerning his second question.
The second question was answered with more clear terms, explaining a bit more what Sherlock was actually going to be used for. His annoyance at not being told what was actually happening and the true reason for the delay ebbed ever so slightly. Still, the true reason was still unknown to him and Lucifer didn’t seem all that inclined to respond. For a moment, the thought of allowing this to pass without any sort of retaliation passed through Jim’s mind, even thinking about saying it to the Devil, somewhat apologizing for acting as rudely as he’d done. Of course, that crumbled a simply as the cubes of sugar making up Lucifer’s pyramid and all because the fallen angel had to mock him, telling him there was nothing the man could do to alter Lucifer’s plans.
Lifting his head from his hand, he once more folded them before him, resting them on his lap. He pursed his lips as if he were thinking about something, as if attempting to find the right words to say. His eyes had drifted to the table before him after Lucifer ad finished speaking, so before he began to speak himself, his gaze returned to Lucifer’s face, meeting the Devil’s own gaze. “I have to thank you for at least explaining part of what it is you’re intending to do; I don’t feel as left in the dark as I did moments before.” He paused, dark eyes cold, gaze stony and unblinking, as he looked at the fallen angel. Sure, the difference in power was immense between both parties and for a week, it had worked quite well. Now, though, the two were butting heads, attempting to win out over the other in hopes of becoming the dominant player. And it would continue as such until one gave up or was so much higher than the other, such quarrels were useless. Jim wasn’t one to lay belly-side up, though, for someone else, so he would keep fighting for the advantage until he had nothing else to do.
“And I will admit, I’m not very pleased with the fact there will be delays, but I do understand that it happens. Of course, I would understand it completely of you would explain exactly what it is you’re searching for. Not that I would go after it myself, you have Sherlock for that now, but I would like to be completely removed from the shadows in this instance. You must understand that, don’t you?” His brow furrowed and a frown came to his lips as he finished, but the expressions were fake and hopefully Lucifer would be able to pick up on that. “But, since I’m not all that happy and it seems as if you believe there is nothing I can do, let me change your mind on the subject.” His voice had turned deadly, as if poison dripped from every word, challenging the Devil, attempting to prove that a human could very well end an Arch angel as simply as an Arc angel could end a human
With a snake-like grin, he leaned over the side of his chair and, with one of his hands, careful removed the angel blade from it’s hiding place on the bottom of his chair. Rising slowly to return to his original position in the chair, Jim admired the blade as it came into view above the table, easy for both to see the celestial weapon. It gleamed and shined with what seemed to be some sort of inner radiance, a silvery glow cast on the table and the consulting criminal’s arm. Twisting his wrist, he inspected each edge of the blade, smile still plastered on his lips. “Amazing interments, this. Can’t break them, can’t scratch them, can’t even get them dirty. Well, except with blood, but it doesn’t cause the metal to rust. I must say, your race’s craftsman ship is amazing.” Jim paused, eyes moving from blade to Lucifer, a deadly look in his eyes. “Oh, and the part I find most interesting about this blade: it can kill angels. But I’m sure you already knew that.”
Lucifer inclined his head a fraction, so minute an action that it was barely noticeable to anyone who wasn’t paying very careful attention. He would have to consider his options carefully when it came to escorting Moriarty with him to raise War. It all rested on when exactly he planned to do it. If he did so while on the aeroplane it would make sense to leave him in England during the departure and simply come back and take him along personally. However, if he thought he might bring the horseman about after arriving with Sherlock and John in Kansas, he could by all means bring Moriarty on the flight too, and have him seated away from the others. He wasn’t completely sure if Jim had made contact with Sherlock and John, but he had to assume that they had and therefore that would be a risky factor with Sherlock being such an observant man. Alternatively he could arrange a different flight for Moriarty, or (with him being such a well-connected man) he could do so himself.
These would be options he would ponder over for a little longer before confirming things with Moriarty, but then again his time was limited considering John could contact him in even a few hours to confirm that they would leave tomorrow. Though he didn’t know how comfortable he was with literally flying Moriarty there with him. He wasn’t sure how the man would take to such unconventional means of transport in Human terms, though it would be considerably faster and much more hassle-free. “I’ll let you know, then.”
Lucifer watched Moriarty react to his taunt with some amusement, watched his features change so dramatically and keep changing like he belonged in some child’s cartoon. He was pleased to have this man on his side - so to speak, considering how things were going between them at that moment - but Humans were so little and insignificant he could just as easily not exist at all and Lucifer wouldn’t be any lesser. “You don’t need to know what I’m searching for, even Sherlock doesn’t know the whole truth of that; the only effect it will have on our deal is that it may be delayed slightly, but everything will still go to plan. So whether you like it or not, you’ll remain ‘in the dark’.” He wiggled his fingers in quotation marks as he quoted Jim, something he had seen being done here before. All of his fake expressions and insincere words, threatening tones and malicious eyes… he didn’t appreciate them. Much as he didn’t quite see where Moriarty was going with this. Surely he didn’t think he could intimidate ‘The Devil’?
There was a twitch in Lucifer’s mind, ah; a reaction any Angel of any rank would have automatically when shown this blade in a threatening manner. But it didn’t last more than a second. Still leaned back in his seat, he pressed his hands together, regarding the object with the hint of a smile, “well now, James. If you thought this would be the catalyst to swinging the power back in your favour… I’ll admit I’m a little disappointed.” His gaze trickled lazily away from the blade to watch his thumbs as they spun together like a little motor, “I am curious though, since we don’t exactly have extras just lying around,” he looked back up, meeting Moriarty’s gaze intensely, “which of my brothers or sisters did you procure this from?”
He sighed, “you must realise that wagging an Angel blade in my face means nothing in the bigger scheme of things. It doesn’t threaten me, it doesn’t give you any power. I thought you were intelligent enough to understand that; don’t tell me I overestimated you there.” He paused, watching Jim’s features to make sure he was keeping up. “As righteous as you might think my siblings are, they have no intent in letting me die before my time, the big day. You have to understand, it’s been marked in the celestial calender for quite some time. And of course you’re aware that every Demon in creation considers me their God, however disgustingly blasphemous that is. I really don’t think you want all of Heaven and Hell on your tail just because you’re impatient.”
He leaned back towards the table, examining his little sculpture again as he spoke, adjusting the architecture slightly to strengthen the form, “because if you act on your frustrations rather than what your mind is telling you now, you could ruin everything. You’ll burn before Sherlock even gets the chance to. And you may just find the great Mount Moriarty,” he paused a fraction of a second to pull away a cube from the bottom of the structure, a weak link that made it all fall apart, “tumbling down around you.”
He looked up again, tilting his head rather than adjusting his pose, “so why don’t you put your little toy away?”
Castiel remained still, even as Lucifer came closer and stared at him like he were some insect he longed to crush underfoot. He didn’t show his fear, only returning his gaze with resolution. He would not give in to his threats, no matter how real they were.
He had said everything that he had meant to, and didn’t further require repeating himself. Lucifer had understood, he would die protecting Sam and Dean. He would not back down in this. If his brother chose to kill him, he didn’t fight it. There wasn’t exactly a point to fighting off the inevitable, and he wouldn’t degrade himself doing so.
“I will not stand idly by while you lure him into these dreams.” Castiel said back, his tone low and quiet. He didn’t blink, he just simply stared up at his brother. “I will not stay away from you at the risk of losing Sam Winchester. So no, I will not obey. I’ve said my words. I will do what I can for the Winchesters, and no threats against my life will change it. I will not move in this.”
Lucifer could feel the harsh fire of rage burning up inside of him, and right at that moment, he wanted nothing more than to wipe this Angel off the face of the planet. But it occurred to him that there may be worse tortures than death for this little one, this Angel that was so loyal to his Human companions. Lucifer’s shoulder’s flexed briefly as he stood, watching. How dare this creature stand up to him, defy him, openly dismiss his orders as a higher ranking being.
"Say, Castiel," he said, suddenly relaxing back from his hostile pose as he took the time to look around at the little chunk of world he had created, "how long do you think a Human mind could contain two celestial beings?" He turned back with the ghost of a smirk, hidden by feigned curiosity. His lips pressed forward in a pout as his hands found their way to his hips, and he slowly rocked back and forward on the balls of his feet his gaze drifting around the room. Of course there was a reason he didn’t inhabit the dreamspace of a Human for very long, and Castiel well knew this. If they stayed too long, his brain would seize up, there could be little fragments of him scattered all through his mind as it tried to sort out what was real and what was fake. Like white blood cells fighting off an infection, except they were the infection. The same reason you don’t notice something strange about a dream until you wake up. Your mind’s able to separate it once you’re back in the real world, but the damage caused by their simultaneous continuous presence could make Sam think the dream never ended.
He turned back to Castiel, an arm slinking off his hip, two fingers of one hand being brought to press firmly against Castiel’s temple. He was so close to him that he could probably just think the words and the Angel would hear them, “either you leave, or I will forcefully remove you. Or we could use Sam here as a science experiment, your choice.”
“I don’t want anything from you.” Sam snarled, anger and resentment curling around his heart. His blunt nails cut into his palm as he clenched his fists and jaw, biting back the added could you just die? that threatened to spill.
Because he got the feeling the Devil wouldn’t be too happy with that.
“I am so sorry, Sam, I-I really am,” Lucifer’s mouth worked its way into a frown, eyes still wide and sad, so incredibly sad - and Sam just wanted to claw at them. “but Nick here is just an improvisation. Plan B.”
“He can barely contain me without spontaneously combusting.” Good, Sam wanted to scream, burn, die, I don’t care. The Devil spoke of Nick - whoever the poor guy had been - like he was a defective toy; not quite what he wanted for Christmas.
“What are you talking about?” Sam demanded, even as smaller spiders ran along the length of his spine, legs pulling the corners of his lips into a frown.
Lucifer pushed himself off the bed, taking slow measured steps towards Sam. “Why do you think you were in that chapel?”
(as he breaks, so too, shall it break)
His palms pressed together in a mockery of a prayer, accusing Sam with the tilt of his fingers. “You’re the one, Sam. You’re my vessel. My true vessel.”
(so too, shall it break)
“No.” Sam snapped, instinctively.
“Yes.” Lucifer replied, a smirk haunting his face.
“No, that’ll never happen.” Sam snarled, his fingers twitching as he barely refrained himself from becoming violent.
“I’m sorry,” He’s not, not really, “but it will. I will find you. And when I do, you will let me in. I’m sure of it.”
Lucifer blinked, as though he’d unwittingly revealed something to Sam. And Sam picked up on it, straight away, edges curling with hope.
“You need my consent.”
It’s half-mocking, that the Devil needed consent, needed his permission — needed something from him. He needed Sam - and Sam would never say yes. Because that’s what Dean would’ve wanted, and he would find a way to kill the Devil. Atone for what he’d done.
Lucifer folded his arms, just shy of being defensive.
Lucifer nodded against every no Sam tried to throw at him. It broke his heart that the boy thought he could wish the whole thing away just by denying it so completely. But he could see the tear forming in his eye as he realised the truth. He could practically see the cogs turning in his head, connecting all of the dots.
"I’m sorry," he said, and in a sense he was. He understood the burden Sam was being faced with, but equally he could see how necessary it was that he take it on. And in time, he would make Sam see that too. It didn’t really matter though, this form before him, this moulding of flesh and bone, it was his. Sam was made for him, and he could almost feel the prickle of anticipation for when he would finally be allowed entry. "I will find you," he said, calmly, because this was one thing of which he was certain. He started moving towards Sam, who instantly moved in the opposite direction to stand where Lucifer stood. Gone was the string that tied them together in their movements while he had taken Jessica’s form, now they were like polar opposites on a magnet. "And when I do, you will let me in. I’m sure of it."
There was a flicker of hope in Sam’s eyes, his mouth twitching slightly into what could have been a triumphant smile. There was never any point in lying about the terms, he was really almost disappointed that Sam hadn’t realised that sooner. “Of course, I’m an Angel,” he said, folding his arms with a smile. His expression a mixture of pride of his race and bemusement in Sam’s interest in him. It was like they were starting to bond already. It was the first thing Sam had really asked him without any hint of aggression or distress.
"I will kill myself before letting you in."
Well, there goes that. “And I’ll just bring you back,” he said, rolling his eyes and nodding quickly. He sighed, as if he was talking to a child who couldn’t quite keep up. But he could see that Sam was losing hope quickly as every defence he threw up was shot down. He didn’t like doing it, but it was necessary. “Sam…” he said, looking down again with a sadness in his expression. It hurt him that this boy, who was going through things so parallel to his pain was only being caused more by the one who understood it best. “My heart breaks for you,” he said, with melancholy dripping from his tone, he finally looked back up. To make some connection with Sam, right through their locked eyes to his heart. “The weight on your shoulders, what you’ve done, what you still have to do.” He paused briefly, just watching the torture in the poor boy’s face. “It is more than anyone can bear. If there was some other way…” He looked away, throwing his hands into a shrug almost seeming like he was trying to catch some answer he hoped would fall from above, but then he stared back into Sam’s eyes, “but there isn’t.”
He took a step forward, his arms crossed again, but his voice contained some renewed spirit and almost a sense of urgency, he wanted Sam to listen to these words, to understand and trust them “I will never lie to you, I will never trick you,” he hesitated for the briefest of moments, “but you will say yes to me.”
Castiel’s doubt was erased the moment Lucifer pressed it further. No one would try that hard to convince him of something if it were not true, he felt. “I’d make a poor ally.” He stated, his certainty obvious in his voice. “Considering I’m rebelling against your common cause with Heaven, and not Heaven itself. This is your game I’m stopping.” He reminded the archangel, as if it could have escaped him. “I will never join your cause.”
He bravely met Lucifer’s eyes when he made a threat against his life. “And so I might. But at least I’ll die for something I believe in.” He replied, his voice firmer than it had been since they’d met here. He wasn’t the type to quiver in the face of death. No. He was a good soldier and he would face it head on, because it was the right thing to do.
“You will stay away from Sam Winchester, or I will find another way to keep you away from him. You can’t have him.” He warned him, not caring how brazen he was being or how much he was offending his older brother.
Lucifer sensed Castiel’s doubt of the validity of his claim and a slight smile brushed his features for a moment. Good. He nodded with a slight incline of his head, leaving a pause in which he simply stared at the Angel where he was almost as still as a statue until he broke into a fluidity of motion again, gesticulating mildly as he spoke, “no, of course. And I wish you the best of luck in that. Though I’m sure you’re aware that if you stick to that, you won’t survive my… cause.”
His eyebrows flicked up slightly, now that was a statement he could respect. Perhaps they were finally finding some common ground. He decided to ignore the fact that what Castiel said was supposed to be some promise that he would do what he could to prevent Lucifer from succeeding in his plans and instead said, “well, I suppose that makes two of us.”
He nodded again, looking down at his hands which he had clasped together after he had finished speaking. And he stood suddenly, taking slow and deliberate steps towards Castiel, face dead of any expression, arms limp by his sides, but the menace was clear in his eyes. When he spoke his tone was low and serious, “do not threaten me, little Angel. The rules of Heaven may be a distant thought for both of us, but I will not hesitate in punishing you if you try. I am still your superior, I am more powerful than you in every sense, and I have nothing left to lose.”
He took another step forward, closing what little gap there was between them and his voice dropped to little more than a gravelly whisper, “I will not stay away from Sam Winchester. But you will stay away from me.”
“No, Sam, there isn’t.” Jess’ voice was almost as soft and regretful as her hands, but there was an unmistakable undercurrent of other in her tone.
Defeated, desperate, and desolate, Sam asked, hoarsely, “How can you be so sure?”
“Because you freed me.”
The spider’s fangs sank into Sam’s skin, and he bolted from the bed, the deep, masculine voice jarring. Oh God. Please. Please. Sam’s legs nearly tripped over himself in his haste to get away, his mind grappling for a way out.
But he wouldn’t. And the man was still sitting on his bed, where Jess had been less than twenty seconds ago. Revulsion crawled up Sam’s throat — but, slowly, recognition did, too.
And the man knew that.
“That’s right. You know who I am.” Amusement curls the corners of his mouth, eyes earnest just as Jess’s had been, and he spoke plainly and bluntly to Sam.
The name slid out of his throat with a kind of ease that terrified Sam.
The Devil looked oddly proud of Sam in that moment. “You’re a hard one to find, Sam. Harder than most humans.”
There’s something untold in the sharpness of the Devil’s gaze. Sam doesn’t want to know the trail of blood Satan made to find him. Or maybe, he just followed the one Sam had left behind.
“I don’t suppose you’d tell me where you are.” No. Of course not.
“What do you want with me?” Sam snapped, furious and disgusted as the Devil tipped his head, revealing his neck. (sam, sam. i love you jess so much. but you’re wrong.) His heart pounded in his ears, the drumming noise drowning everything out but him and Lucifer.
"Thanks to you," he said, bowing his head slightly with an almost proud smile "I walk the Earth." His head nodded with appreciate, "I wanna give you a gift, I wanna give you everything," he said with a shrug, jerking his head slightly to show how serious he was.
"I don’t want anything from you," Sam’s words cut harshly through his, showing how much regret Lucifer was stirring up by looking at the situation with such thanks and admiration. Like it had been Sam’s choice to bring him here, his intention all along, like he hadn’t been tricked into it.
Lucifer stared into him, body rigid for a moment until what Sam said lost it’s meaning, until the words seemed unnecessarily blunt, and he sighed, suddenly looking down, realising how much this hurt Sam. And he knew that, because he’d been there before. Maybe the situations weren’t exactly the same, but he had lived through such similar pain. “I am so sorry, Sam, I… I really am. But,” he paused, pulling his mouth into a tight line that said ‘well, what can I do?’ as he looked down at his vessel, gesturing down it with both hands, “Nick here is just an improvisation.” He shook his head, looking back up at Sam, brows drawn together hoping he would understand. “Plan B - he can barely contain me without spontaneously combusting.” His words were essentially monotone, like he was talking about some flower he’d bought at the market that just refused to grow.
"What are you talking about?"
He could see the confusion, feel it vibrating from his words, and he stood. How could he not see? How could he not understand? “Why do you think you were in that chapel?” He asked, advancing on him slowly, one step, two steps. His hands pressed together in front of him, as if he was about to pray, but really it was an imploration. “You’re the one, Sam,” he said, pausing to let it sink in. Trying to choose his words carefully. “You’re my vessel,” he paused again, before speaking with conviction, each word emphasized, “my true vessel.” His sheepish smile showed how he almost naively hoped that was all Sam needed to hear to convince him. Like he would understand the importance, and the pain he was already feeling would convince him to just say ‘yes’ when the time came.
Her words hit him like a whip, like salted water (tears, tears, so many tears) on old, open wounds. He couldn’t even stand to look at her, couldn’t stand to see the earnestness of her face. Sam swung his legs over the edge of the bed, back a mess of tension and regret.
The wrongwrongwrong was still climbing up and down his spine, a poisonous spider, but Sam ignored it.
“I love you, Jess,” He breathed, he lived with this truth, “God knows how much I miss you, too. But you’re wrong.”
His back is a shield, his back is his strength. Sam is not a coward, and Sam is more than the wanting, terrified lawyer Jess once loved. “People can change. There is reason for hope.”
Jess’ fingers carded through his hair, affectionate and warm and real, heavy with her own regret. Sam leaned into her touch, eyes slipping shut, feeling finally at ease.
(The wrongwrongwrong was still climbing up and down his spine, a poisonous spider, but Sam ignored it.)
She sat up in the bed as Sam did, turning his back to her as he spoke, like he just couldn’t stand to look at her and accept what she was telling him. Her hand reached out, delicate fingers combing through his hair, “no Sam, there isn’t.” Her words were weighted with sorrow and pity for him. And behind him, Lucifer let the veil melt away, revealing Nick, his vessel while his hand still rested on the boys shoulder. His face free of burns and scaring where Nick’s weakness showed through.
"How can you be so sure?"
He paused for a second before answering, knowing this is where it would all change, because once he heard his voice, and the words he had chosen to speak, Sam’s whole world would turn on him.
"Because you freed me," he said, his voice quiet, but such a sudden change from Jessica’s - what Sam expected to hear. He could sense the shock in him, as his head turned slowly to see Lucifer’s face, eyes rounded and almost visibly lined with unspilled tears. He’d never seen him, not really and yet he could feel the recognition pulsing from Sam, "that’s right, you know who I am," he said, turning around to perch on the edge of the bed, like he had been earlier during his conversation with Cas. His eyes stared up at the man expectantly.
"You are a hard one to find, Sam," he said, liking the feeling of the man’s name on his tongue, "harder than most Humans." He paused for a moment, before hopefully adding, "I don’t suppose you’d tell me where you are?"
Castiel said nothing when Lucifer accused him of blasphemy. Who could be the judge of such things in these times? Certainly not himself, and not Lucifer. He would leave all of the judgement to God. He was the only one who could deem what was true and what was false in His eyes. That was all Castiel needed to think.
However, that smirk unsettled him. A small flame of anger burned in the pit of his stomach when Lucifer claimed their Father was dead and gone. He would never believe that. He just couldn’t. But, he stifled his anger, knowing his brother might be playing a game with him to try and make him act out of irrational emotion. He knew that Lucifer was as much an artist with words as he was with the dream he’d created.
And the insinuation that he himself had brought Castiel back, that bothered him deeply. It showed in the way he looked at him, doubtful of his own theory for a moment. “No.” He said finally. “What use would I be to you? I will never join your cause.” He stated firmly, assuring himself as he said the words.
He saw the distaste his brother had for him, plain on his face. It shook him enough to frighten him, but he would not back down. He was simply trained not to. “I will not stand aside.” He said, daring to return the look he was given. “You might be my brother, and far outmatch me, but I will not fail my friends.” He said.
Lucifer tilted his head, shrugging slightly, “I don’t know brother, you did rebel against Heaven - if anyone was a good match for my cause, it would be you.” His lips tugged into a one-sided smile, “and if you were to consider myself bringing you back as a possibility, I could assure you that you wouldn’t be the only Angel to have connected those dots.
"So maybe it’s a good thing that you’ve disassociated yourself from the Host."
He was gaining enough amusement by planting the idea in Castiel’s amusement, but he couldn’t help pressing the matter. He wanted to see how much he could make the little Angel doubt himself, his whole existence. He could see clearly how much telling him God was dead disturbed him alone. He could overlook his proclamation of assurance that he would never join Lucifer’s side. Statements like that meant nothing to him, because everyone’s opinion could be changed, if he so wished. Just as Sam Winchester may say ‘no’ firmly now, but in time… he would come around.
His face darkened further at Castiel’s response, “then you’ll die trying.”
Lucifer sat in silence for quite some time after Castiel left. He needed to get his mind back in place, calm himself, get complete control. He couldn’t let any residual frustration slip through the guise and startle Sam. He could feel the man slipping away, coming close, and he would be able to pull him in soon.
His eyes fluttered closed for a moment while he let Jessica’s form fog around his, taking her appearance on as his own once again. Pulling himself into position, under the covers, on the right side of the bed where she always slept, because he always slept on the left. Turning her back away, closing her eyes, she shifted him into this plain of his subconscious; where he would lie thinking he was still in his room, making this whole scenario more confusion for him.
And then… "Sam, Sam."
She heard him awaken in the dream, and then felt the warm press of his lips against the curve of her neck, meant to awaken her too. She rolled over, moving with him as he pulled back to look at her; moving in unison as if they were tied together. Lying back on the crisp material of the pillow she smiled fondly at him for a moment, looking at him just to watch him look back. He was becoming slightly more accustomed to this, to the fact that she was here, talking to him.
"So, this is your life now?" she asked, reaching a hand to caress his cheek, "think you can just live forever with your head buried in the sand?"