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Simple Man

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Dean’s in the spacious kitchen of the bunker, making bacon and eggs for the third morning in a row at the asscrack of dawn and trying to pretend that everything is normal. Sam’s still sleeping, and probably will be for awhile yet. He heard him last night, pacing down the halls of the bunker aimlessly, and he can’t really blame the poor kid. Having God and Lucifer bunking up in your home can do that to you. So he’s surprised when he hears an unfamiliar gait on the loud flooring of the bunker, echoing against the high walls.

Lucifer rounds the corner and casts a smile in Dean’s direction, casually dropping into one of the chairs. Like he owns the place. Like he belongs there. Dean ignores him entirely, opting to instead watch his bacon cook. Takes deep breaths, willing himself to play it cool. The muscles of his hand clench and release the spatula as though it’s personally wronged him.

“Good morning, sweetheart,” Lucifer coos in a comically feminine voice, setting his socked feet upon the table. “Oooh, that smells good . Did you make that all for little ol’ me?”

“Weirdly enough, no, I didn’t make breakfast just for the fucking devil,” Dean throws back easily, not even bothering to glance in his direction. His casual tone is betrayed by the tension in his shoulders, he knows. But he can do this. He can pretend he’s okay.

“Dean, I’m hurt. Why not? I am a guest here, after all. It’d be rude to starve me out.”

“Fuck you,” Dean growls. He’s not in the mood for this bullshit, this game the Devil likes to play with everyone he interacts with. So quick to quip, so nonchalant. Like the fact that he’s invading their home doesn’t even matter.

“Pass.” Lucifer’s grin widens. “Sammy, though…” he seems thoughtful from the glance Dean sneaks out of the corner of his eye. It’s not a look he’s entirely comfortable with.

“Little bro never told you, did he, Dean?”

Dean startles at that. In the small amount of time that Lucifer and Chuck (or God, who until a few days ago he was certain did not, could not, exist) have been in the bunker, they’ve established a half-assed, unofficial truce. After all, they were Enemies fighting the Biggest Bad together. For the Greater Good. And so as much as he wants the wring Lucifer’s neck, he knows to reel it in, to put a cap on his anger and screw it tight. It’ll do him no good here.

He contemplates ignoring him entirely. If the Devil has something to say, something to taunt him with, he’ll get it out, no matter his response. He flips the bacon in its pan, the grease sizzling in the almost deafening silence as he bides time.

As he predicted, Lucifer continues, standing up now. Performing to an audience of one. The slide of the chair out from under him is almost violent in the otherwise silent bunker. “See, I figured he wouldn’t. Poor Sammy, he’s got a lock on all those memories tighter than a nun’s-”

“What the hell are you going on about?” Dean finally snaps as he turns the burner off and whirls around to face the Devil, having no patience for the way that Satan toys with him, tries to get at him. Wearing Cas’ vessel, it’s all too easy to get under his skin. He can’t stand to see one of his closest friends wear Lucifer’s infuriating smirk, the arch of his eyebrow and the sharpness of his jaw contorted into something so fundamentally Not-Cass.

“Oh, nothing important,” Lucifer replies, satisfaction clear on his face. He takes another step, encroaching on Dean’s territory. “It’s just that I always thought you two were so close, being the only living pair of soulmates and all. Sam’s idol worship of you is so sweet it’s almost sickening.”

“I don’t-”

“See, when he was my bunkmate, he would sometimes scream your name. For help, that is. It was so cute, the way he called for you. Like he was a tiny little tot and not a full-grown man. The codependency you two share-” he shakes his head like a disappointed papa, “I’ve never really got it, y’know?”

“Of course you wouldn’t. All of your brothers hate you,” Dean growls before he can think about it. His fists clench and unclench sporadically, itching for something to punch.

Lucifer’s eyes narrow for a moment. Dean’s certain he’s about to strike, almost wills him to. But he relaxes, his posture once more casual.

“Maybe so, Dean-o. Maybe so. What you don’t see,” he’s inching ever closer to Dean, “is that I’ve known little bro longer than you’ve been alive. Hell-time is a funny thing. What Sam won’t tell you,” another step, “is that my face is more familiar to him than yours. I know him better than you ever will, sweetheart.” His grin is almost stretching Cas’ usually stoic face. From this close, mere inches away from each other, Dean can see every detail of Lucifer’s vessel’s face.

“You better back the hell up,” Dean breathes, “before I make you.” He’s shaking, veins thrumming with barely restrained anger. The walls seem to be closing in on him, anger giving him tunnel vision.

The Devil positively chortles at that, like it’s the funniest joke he’s ever heard. He even claps his hands together once, twice, stepping back a bit to bend at the knees and rest his hands on his thighs, catching his breath. Dean watches him, almost transfixed.

“Whew! Sorry there, buddy,” he apologizes falsely, still laughing under his breath. “It’s just that for a moment there, you sounded so much like Sammy. Y’know, he never stopped fighting for the first forty, fifty years? It’s okay, though. I was patient. Just made it that much more satisfying when I finally broke him.”

The smell of the bacon he’d nearly forgotten about on the counter turns Dean’s stomach now. “You shut your mouth,” he warns, stepping closer to shove a palm against Lucifer’s ( Cas’) chest. He brushes it away easily, as if his shove was a bothersome fly, and steps in further.

“Wanna know what broke him, Dean?” Lucifer breathes as he leans in, lips almost brushing his ear.

“Wanna know what finally did little brother in?” Dean’s paralyzed, mind conjuring up a million different methods of torture that could have broken his little brother. He squeezes his eyes shut, turning away from Lucifer’s breath.

But Lucifer doesn’t wait for an answer.

“It was simple, really. Can’t believe it took me so long to think of it. I fucked him, you see,” he states, matter of fact, like it’s nothing, like it doesn’t even matter -

“And he begged so prettily too, it was in tox icating, it was-”

Dean doesn’t even think- he lands a punch right to Lucifer’s jaw. His head swings sideways from the impact. The Devil wipes his face and looks to Dean, a manic gleam in his eyes that makes him sick. This isn’t Cas, he reminds himself, fighting off nausea and anxiety. Not Cas Not Cas Not-

“Hit me all you want, Dean! It won’t change a thing.” He falls into a Fight Club-esque stance, bouncing on his feet and holding out his fists like a cartoon. “You wanna throw some punches, get all that righteous anger out, Righteous Man? Go right ahead.”

Before Dean can get another swing in, a more familiar pair of footsteps echoes in the kitchen, edging closer. Dean’s head whirls around to see Sam, sleep-easy and dishevelled, all messy hair and bleary eyes. Dean watches him take in the situation, hunter instincts immediately taking over. He’s wide awake in seconds, rushing over to Dean.

“Dean! You alright? What’s going on here?” he demands, looking him over, both palms placed on either side of his face, turning it this way and that. Dean gently knocks his hands away, shaking his head.

“Yeah, Sammy, I’m fine. Don’t worry.”

Lucifer laughs. It’s not a pleasant sound. “Yeah, Sammy. Big brother and I were just having a little chat, is all.” He steps closer to Sam, who visibly shudders. “Catching him up on all the fun he missed out on all those years ago.”

Sam carefully takes a step back, his mind going from fighter and hunter to victim and prey fast enough to make Dean’s head spin.

“You didn’t,” he whispers.

“Oh, but I did. Dean-o over there knows all about our time together, don’t you Dean?” Lucifer looks over to the older brother, Cheshire grin stuck in place.

“You son of a bitch,” Dean breathes. There’s so much anger in him it’s incapacitating. Flashes of exactly what Lucifer’s previous words actually entail play themselves out in his mind’s eye. He can taste bile in his throat. Having played as Alastair’s right hand man for a decade, he can imagine just what kind of fun Lucifer got up to with his kid brother, always a kid, his kid, always that eight year old with unlit fireworks in his hands and a grin on his face, dancing against the night sky-

Sam’s grey-faced and pale, staring wide-eyed at nothing in particular, so reminiscent of when his wall broke that Dean’s blood runs ice-cold.

“Hey!” Lucifer waves his hands in front of Sam’s face, who steps back and flinches visibly. “No checkin’ out here, bunk buddy.”

Sam doesn’t even get a chance to begin to respond before they hear more footsteps- softly muffled, this time, as if the person in question were wearing socks.

Chuck appears, clad in slippers, a mildly annoyed look on his face. “Son,” he begins, the word a sigh.

The Son of God scowls, eyeing his father with the disdain of an unruly teenager. And just like that, he’s doing a 180 and stalking out of the kitchen. Like he never said a word.

Dean clutches the cotton of his brother’s sleep-shirt and closes his eyes.