Summary: Dean has one mission: Destroy Sam's sideburns. The task isn't as easy as he believes, though, and he ends up needing professional help to try and get the job done.
Two caterpillars were attached to Sam's face.
They didn't move - couldn't move - and this kind of disappointed Dean. If the two hairy atrocities were capable of movement, then he'd have an extremely good excuse that would convince Sam to remove them. Although, knowing his brother, Sam would probably feed the stupid beasts and encourage the douchebags to grow. He practically did that now, considering the grooming habits he seemed to have developed in the passing months.
At first, the furry insects had been tame, almost normal. They'd sat upon his brother's cheeks without drawing any attention to themselves. But time had passed, and their presence had become an unavoidable irritation. One day - he wasn't sure on the particular date - he'd glanced Sam's way and been met with two smug, ugly monsters staring at him mockingly.
Something had to be done.
Licking his lips, Dean couldn't help but frown. His brother's face was under attack. The silent force was tiny but effective, sticking to Sam's flesh and consuming all the gazes of everyone who happened to look in his direction. Dean knew enough to understand that simply telling Sam to shave the caterpillars off would not get any action done. No, that would not solve a thing. He needed to force them away, remove them without any help on Sam's part. It was the only way to save Sam.
The problem was, Dean didn't know how to get the job done. Of course, he could just shave the things off, but that wouldn't be easy. Sam had all the reflexes he did, and was a light sleeper to boot, so there wasn't a Hell's chance Dean would manage to get near him with a razor blade.
That meant that he'd need to be clever. All of his skills as a hunter would have to come into play. He'd have to be sharp, sneaky, and find a way of removing the monsters without making Sam turn against him. The fate of his brother's flesh - and his own sanity - depended on killing those bugs.
"Dude, what are you doing?"
Sam snorted. "Yeah, right."
Attempting a nonchalant smirk, Dean waved his hand dismissively. The knife hovered awkwardly in his grasp as he tried to make it look like he hadn't been tiptoeing in Sam's direction.
"I was just... going to cook. You know, make you some of that rabbit crap you like so much."
This time, Sam didn't even bother to speak. He shook his head and proceeded to leave the room. Sagging in defeat, Dean sighed. He really needed to work on his impulse control.
Dean was pleased. He'd actually opted to using his brain for this plan. Watching as Sam stepped into the bathroom, Dean couldn't quite contain his grin of triumph. There was no way on Earth this could fail.
Having snuck into the bathroom earlier, he'd quickly replaced Sam's shaving foam with some hair removal cream. The stuff had been cheap and wasn't guaranteed to work, but the spell he'd put on it not too long ago would ensure it did its intended job. Sure, there was the possibility that it could remove all the hair on Sam's body through a mere drop touching his skin, but that wasn't an issue. Hell, it'd be pretty freakin' hilarious if Sam's Rapunzel locks dropped off. At least he'd have some material to work with for a few months, whilst Sam's hair grew back.
Biting his lip as he listened to Sam's morning ritual of shaving everything on his face but those insects, Dean shook his head. Sammy was predictable, and he'd use the foam without a second glance, despite it being a slightly different colour to what it should be. Moments from now, Sam would be screaming murder as he noticed the dead, scattered remains of his precious babies lying all over the sink and floor.
Waiting for a minute or so, Dean felt his anticipation start to ebb out somewhat as no yell came. What the hell was going on? Surely Sam had started shaving by now? What, was he doing model poses in the freakin' mirror or something? What was taking so long?
Dean jerked in surprise when the bathroom door opened to reveal his clean shaven brother. All the stubble had gone, and he appeared to be fresh as a daisy. All except for the two turds still stuck by his ears.
Dean stared, open mouthed.
"You okay, Dean?" Sam asked, noticing the fact that he was gawping.
Dean's eyes narrowed suspiciously. Had the book lied about the spell's effects? Were books even capable of lying, when they'd been written centuries ago by some witch hell bent on perfection in their castings?
"What happened to using the shaving cream?" The words were out his mouth before he could think the question through.
Sam shrugged. "Threw it out. Looked like someone had puked in it," he commented, cringing in mild disgust.
Then, not a moment later, his expression turned into a frown. "Wait, how'd you know I hadn't used it?"
Dean's eyes widened.
"You did something to- Dean!"
Dean licked his lips. There wasn't really much else he could do, considering he knew how utterly ridiculous the statement he'd just made was. Feeling his cheeks begin to burn as his discomfort slowly transformed into anger, his eyebrows lowered into a frown.
"Are you in or not?"
Crowley just continued staring at him incredulously.
This had been a bad idea. In fact, this was probably the worst idea he'd ever thought of putting into action. Why in God's name was he asking a freakin' demon to help him? Sure, it wasn't as though he was going to sell his soul or cause anyone any harm, but the truth of the matter was, he was going to one of Hell's spawn children for advice.
What the hell was wrong with him?
"You realise what you're saying, right?" Crowley asked, one of his eyebrows rising. "You are speaking of your own free will, and no one is forcing you to say it?"
His tone was entirely too patronising for Dean's liking. This was a serious situation. Of course, he could kind of understand why Crowley wouldn't put it high on his priority list to worry over, but it still warranted some attention.
He'd gone insane at some point after having viewed the grubs crawling on Sam's face. He was freaking out over a pair of sideburns - two clumps of hair that Sam had always had, though not quite so excessively - and he was trying to rope in other people into his obsession.
Shaking his head, Dean had to resist the urge to curse. He was being stupid. The sideburns were a problem, they were horrifying, and Crowley was the one being a douchebag by not acknowledging their importance.
"Just... I need those things gone. And you're the one who needs out of the trap." Dean was not a person who pleaded easily, especially to people he hated. He was not the type to beg. Resisting the desire to punch himself, Dean kept his expression neutral in the attempt to keep an ounce of dignity. There appeared to be something wrong with him, considering he'd resorted to this, but that could be dealt with later. Right now, Sam's insect infestation took precedence.
"The trap you bloody well put me in!"
Remaining still was a very hard task. Crowley was getting angry; that was understandable. This basement was kind of a shit hole - dark, dank, and full of trash - and Dean knew that the idea of being stuck down here for an extended time would grate on anyone's nerves. Hell, being trapped in any location by force would probably piss off the most calm person.
Rubbing his hands together, Dean pursed his lips. "Do you want out or not?"
He was far less confident than he was letting on, yet he found it ridiculously easy to keep an unconcerned demeanor. Maybe it was because he despised who he was talking to, or perhaps it was just his ability to hide most of his emotions that made it so simple. In all honesty, he didn't care, because he was going to get Crowley on his side no matter what.
Sam was... worried. Well, that was what he thought he was feeling. He wasn't quite sure, because he was also really bemused, and just slightly annoyed. Dean had been acting weird around him for a couple of weeks now, and he couldn't figure out why.
Giving a small sigh, he pushed his laptop away and looked towards the door that Dean had exited through over an hour ago. The dark wood was unmoving and silent, as it was wont to be, yet he couldn't help but feel that it was mocking him somehow, like it knew why Dean was acting so oddly. Sam scowled. That was stupid; he was being pathetic. An inanimate object wasn't capable of feeling anything.
Grunting in irritation, Sam stood up from his soft bed and stepped over to the window. The grot sticking to its surface was a tiny but insignificant hindrance to his viewing of the outside world. Sniffing, Sam's mouth curled in mild repulsion at the musty smell that filled his nostrils. Yes, this was one of the better motels they'd been in for a while, but there was a vile aroma about the building that neither brother had been able to place.
Turning his attention to the street below, Sam was hit with a sudden wave of bewilderment as he spotted Dean standing on the sidewalk. He seemed to be talking to someone, rather animatedly, and his posture was stiff. Although Sam could only see his head and shoulders, it was obvious that Dean wasn't happy.
Sam's concern rose considerably. He couldn't tell who Dean was talking to - they were too obscured by the sign dangling just under the motel window, but he had a hunch that it was a guy. Sam frowned.
What on Earth was his brother up to?
Dean didn't know whether to laugh or cry. Standing completely still in the motel's front room, he honestly couldn't decide what emotion he should be feeling right now. He coughed. The tiny, pink mass of air that escaped his mouth wasn't preventable at all. Blinking rapidly to clear his vision, he licked his lips absent mindedly, and instantly regretted it. The powder tasted like ass.
Sneering in displeasure, Dean finally turned his focus on the demon standing beside him. Crowley was spotless. His suit and flesh were free of the vile pink stuff, and his hair was still neat and tidy, without an ounce of dirt sticking to any of the strands.
Crowley shrugged, though Dean could see the minuscule smirk that he couldn't quite hide. "Perhaps we should call in someone with more experience with this sort of thing?"
Dean just continued to seethe.
"Are you sure this will work?"
Crowley rolled his eyes for what felt like the hundreth time. Seriously, if he had to spend another minute with this idiot, he was sure his eyes would get stuck in a loop. His intelligence had already decreased by a few dozen points, simply by standing next to the moron.
Pursing his lips, Crowley sent a glare Dean's way. What in Hell's name had made him agree to do this? Whatever it was, it was not worth dealing with Tweedle Dumb's company.
"It will work, because if it doesn't I will personally go in there and kill him again!" he barked. His control really was slipping. Though, he couldn't be blamed for losing it. Going to a friggin' Goddess for help in a matter such as this had not been very wise - Dean had almost got his head burnt off. Admittedly, Crowley would have loved to have seen that, if not for the fact that Kali scared the living daylights out of him. Woman had a temper, and the power to back it up.
So, in the end, they'd opted to asking her for a vile of blood. Crowley had no idea how the hell she'd got a sample from an archangel, but that didn't matter. His only concern was making sure the toad got resurrected, so he could pawn off his hapless companion onto the next unsuspecting shmuck who happened to owe the Winchester's a favour.
Giving Dean an expression that must have indicated his impatience, Crowley watched as the idiot opened the vile of blood and poured it over the other ingredients. Now, all they had to do was recite an incantation that neither had even heard of before now.
Mouth drawing into a thin line, Crowley picked up the heavy book that he'd managed to swipe from a very pissed off witch. Its cover was worn, old and dusty, and the pages didn't fare much better. Regardless, as he turned to the correct page, he noticed that the words written on the paper were crystal clear, almost as if they'd been inscribed just this morning.
Crowley sighed. Then, opening his mouth, he began reading the spell that should - that better bring Gabriel back from the dead.
"... You brought me back to life so I could help you destroy Sam's sideburns?"
Gabriel's expression did not change. Turning his attention to Crowley, it was obvious that he could not believe what he was hearing. Crowley smirked.
"Not exactly a grand reason to come back now, is it, pet?" Crowley said, placing his hands in his pockets. "I wish you the best of luck. You're going to need it."
And with that, Crowley made his exit.
Dean turned back to Gabriel with a sheepish grin, which quickly disappeared. Gabriel was sneering at him, and he had his hand up and ready to snap.
Dean panicked. "No! Wa-"
But he was too late. The sound was quiet but final, and Dean looked on in disbelief at the empty spot that had only moments ago contained the newly revived archangel. Eyes widening, Dean felt a wave of pure fury rise within him.
"You ungrateful dick!" he screamed, at no one in particular.
Sam did not know what to expect when Dean returned from wherever the hell he'd been for the past hour. He'd had an inclining that he might get the silent treatment from Dean. Either that, or he'd strike lucky and get Dean to open up about what had been bothering him so much.
What he had not expected, upon Dean entering their motel room, was the utterly ridiculous image that met him when he glanced up. Sam managed about half a second before he burst into a fit of laughter. Dean's puzzled 'What?' only added to his mirth. Doubling over as chuckles poured from his body, Sam shook his head as he tried and failed to look at his brother.
It was obvious that he was making Dean angry, but he didn't care. Body shaking uncontrollably, Sam licked his lips and gasped out another laugh. It took him a moment or two, but he did eventually manage to contain his glee. Calming down, he could feel his heart racing in his chest as he cautiously glanced back up at his brother's face. He didn't want to fall into another hysterical bout of laughter, despite how good it felt. He had too much curiosity, and a question he desperately wanted answering.
"Dean," he started, mouth lifting in a large smile. "Dean, what's with the sideburns, man?"
Dean just stared at him blankly. Then, slowly, his features twisted into some sort of horrified realisation. Rushing to the bathroom without a single word, Dean banged the door behind him. Sam stared after him, amused.
"Son of a bitch!"
That made Sam snort. So, those two hairy creatures hadn't been put there with Dean's knowledge? How on Earth had he passed by any reflective surface without noticing them?
Waiting for a minute, his lips drew into a thin line when no other sound came from his brother. Sam began heading to the bathroom with a slight concern starting to fill him. The door opening stopped him midstep, though, and Sam was unable to contain the startled laugh that escaped him when Dean came back out, his face utterly miserable.
"I can't shave them off. They just grow back," he muttered, sulking.
Sam didn't even bother to hide his reaction. This was brilliant. Tonight was going to be magnificent.