"We need to talk Dean."
Dean was leaning against the impala. His hand covered The Mark of Cain which sent a stinging pain in his arm. He walked over to the angel, pretending he was fine.
"It's nothing," he tried to avoid Cas' worried gaze.
"It's nothing?" Castiel grabbed Dean's arm and held it up. The Mark of Cain glowed a bright red. "The Mark of Cain Dean? You do know what you got yourself into?"
"Hell I do," Dean angrily replied. "I know what I'm doing. How do you think we're going to defeat Abaddon? And maybe it will work on Metaron too."
"It's not safe Dean!" Castiel tried to keep his voice calm the best he could. "Sam told me how you've been acting!"
"I know sometimes that I lose it in a fight but I have it under control."
"I don't think 'losing it' is enough to describe the violent outbursts. And the drinking?"
"I know that I've been taking it too far, but I'll have it under control."
"You don't get it do you?" Castiel exclaimed. He grabbed Dean's shoulder. "This mark; it makes you lose your senses. If the behavior keeps up who knows what will happen next?"
"How many times do I have to tell you Cas? I--"
"You can lie all you want but the truth is staring at us right in the face! This mark is hurting you!"
"I can handle it," Dean told Cas.
Cas looked straight into Dean's eyes.
"Goddammit Dean," he whispered.
Dean stopped. He could almost feel goosebumps on his skin. He had heard Castiel curse before, but never had the angel said "goddamn." For humans,it was a heavy swearword, for more religious ones, an offensive blasphemy. For angel to say "goddamn;" a word that was connected to and insulted their own father, it carried far more weight than any human vulgarities.
Castiel closed his eyes. A tear fell.
Dean made a move to touch Cas' shoulder. The angel leaned in and wrapped his' arms around him. Dean patted him on the back and tightly held him. Castiel did not make a sound. He looked out at the cars that passed by on the road, at the buildings across from the motel, at the crown of Cas' brown hair.
Castiel pulled back and cupped Dean's face.
"I can't lose you Dean," his voice was choked up. "I care deeply for you."
"I know," Dean said in a low voice. "I can't lose you either."
"Dean I--you know that I would do anything for you."
"I know Cas," Dean nodded.
"No Dean--what I mean is--I love you."
Castiel breathed, trying to stop more tears from following.
Dean stared into Cas' blue eyes. Castiel held the gaze. He did not blink.
Then Castiel leaned in and kissed Dean on the cheek. He took Dean's hand and squeezed it.
"Be safe," Castiel walked away.
Dean watched the angel leave. He felt his heart sink. He didn't need Castiel's words to know that the mark was slowly taking over his mind. He had tried to keep it at bay, but each day became harder to fight the impulses. It hurt to know that those closest to him were suffering.
And Cas. He had never seen Cas cry before. Out of all of them, Cas had been the strong one, the optimistic one. To see Cas break because of him made Dean feel at blame. He wanted to tell Cas that he would be ok, but knew it wasn't true. He wanted to look out for him as much as Cas did for him but he knew he couldn't. And Dean wanted to tell Castiel that he loved him too, but knew as long as the monsters, demons, and the angels were around, that those three words would never pass his lips.