It was Friday, and Dean hated Fridays. They were full of fear and confusion, and just as he did every week, he was lying on his bed, blasting Metallica. Just as she did every week, Jody was baking Dean a pie, like his mom used to after a rough day. It had been difficult taking over as the boy's parental figure, but she loved every single minute of it.
Sam and Dean had lost their parents in a house fire when they were young, Dean was four and Sam was only a few months old. Their Uncle Bobby and Auntie Ellen were across the country and unable to care for the boys, so Jody took them in and raised them as her own. Though the Winchesters used to be hunters and damned good ones at that, Jody refused to let the boys have that kind of life. If Bobby and Ellen could get by without hunting, then so could the boys. They were enrolled at Sioux Falls High School, and they were doing brilliantly. Sam had straight As and adored history and linguistics, while Dean shone at engineering and art. Jody was so proud of the boys, and she knew that would never change. Jody sighed, why Dean always played his moodiest songs so loud on a Friday she'd never understand. She continued baking, unaware of the turmoil brewing in the older Winchester.
Dean really hated Fridays. Fridays were days of fear and confusion. He had double art in the afternoon, and he loved art, and he shared the class with his best friend, Castiel. That should be a good thing, right? Wrong. The issue was, his best friend confused him. Sure Castiel was a sweet boy, he was shy and empathetic, talented and caring, cute and... Anyway. He liked Castiel a lot. He was there when Dean broke up with Lisa, he cared for him and brought Dean his favourite cookies. Even now, Castiel still brought cookies, knowing Dean wasn't over Lisa. Their relationship had changed too much, he only saw Lisa as a friend, and she no longer made him feel special or gave him butterflies. It was a shame, he had really liked Lisa, especially in the beginning. Jody had raised a gentleman though, and he had ended the relationship to avoid leading her on.
Back to Castiel. He confused Dean, and confusion filled him with fear. Dean hated uncertainty, and not understanding things, and he sure as hell didn't understand the feelings that Castiel gave him. Those feelings were a big part of breaking up with Lisa, they made him realise he didn't love her like he should. Castiel made him feel good about himself, brightening his day with his well-placed smile (damn it was a beautiful smile) and soft words of praise. He shouldn't feel this way, whatever this way was. Castiel was his best friend, and he couldn't ruin that.
Dean groaned and rolled out of bed. He moped his way to the kitchen, hoping a glass of water would clear his head. Sam was sat at the kitchen table, already tucking into some pie. Jody was clearing away the dishes from her pie-making and pointed to Dean's plate on the table.
"I tried calling you, but your music was too loud. It's still warm." She smiled at him, despite becoming increasingly concerned by his recent behaviour. Seizing the opportunity, she sat down with him.
"What's been up with you, Dean? You seem fine during the week, but on Fridays, you become the stroppiest seventeen-year-old I've ever laid eyes on."
"It's nothing, Jodes. Just hate my Friday timetable." Dean took a bite of his pie. He loved Jody, but how could he explain what was going on if he didn't understand it himself? Jody let out a little chuckle.
"It's that bad, huh? You're only a couple weeks into this semester, I'm sure you'll get used to it, hon." Across the table, Sam was grinning. He might be thirteen, but he knew what was up with Dean.
"Ugh, it's obvious Mom. Dean's in love with his best friend, duh." Sam continued eating his pie, while a deafening silence fell upon the Winchester-Mills household. Dean's heart skipped a beat. He wasn't having this conversation. There was no way he was in love with Castiel. He felt sick. Dean shot up and left the room, leaving a stunned Jody in his wake.
"This pie is great Mom."
Jody made her way up to Dean's room, preparing herself for the worst. Dean had always been an emotional kid, and he often struggled to cope with those emotions. If what Sam had said was true, Dean would be beating himself up right about now.
"Dean? Can we talk sweetie?" The only reply was a soft sniffle. "I'm about to come in okay?" Jody stepped into Dean's room and was faced with Dean sat on the floor, hugging his knees to his chest. His eyes were glistening with tears, and it was clear he was troubled.
"I'm scared, Jody." His voice was small. This wasn't the strong Dean she knew.
"What are you afraid of, Dean?" Jody sat down beside him and wrapped her arms around him, pulling him into a tight hug.
"I have these feelings, and I don't understand them at all. I used to have them with Lisa, but then I had them with someone who wasn't Lisa so I couldn't be with her, but they don't make sense because Lisa is a girl and I like girls, but Cas is a boy." Dean rushed through the sentence without a pause, before bursting into fresh tears. No wonder the poor boy was so upset, he was having a sexuality crisis.
"You can like boys too, Dean. You aren't limited to one or the other." Dean looked up as his adoptive mom.
"How is that even possible?"
"It just is. You know your Auntie Donna? She likes guys and girls, and we cal that bisexual." Dean perked up at this information, and let a small smile tug at his lips.
"Really?! That's awesome! But... why? Why do I like boys and girls?"
"Because you have so much love to give." Dean threw his arms around Jody, and the pair sat like that for a while, not needing words. Jody's heart was full of pride, Dean was such a strong, sensitive boy, and she was proud of him for facing his feelings. She'd always had her suspicions, he practically glowed when he talked about Castiel, but this was his journey, and one he had to make alone.
"Jody..? I think I like Castiel, what do I do?" Jody chuckled softly.
"You definitely like him, Dean. What do you say we invite him to dinner tonight?" Jody checked her watch. "It's only five, do you reckon he could be here by seven?"
"I can text him and ask! Thank you, Jody, I love you."
"I love you too, kiddo. Guess I better start cooking, huh?"
Dean: Do you want to come to dinner tonight? Jody would love to meet you.
Castiel: That sounds wonderful! Thank you(:
Castiel: What time should I be there?
Dean: Can you be here for seven?
Castiel: It's a date! See you soon!(:
A... date? Dean's heart fluttered, and unbeknownst to him, so did Cas'.
Castiel: Dean helP
Castiel: What do I wear??? I'm meeting your family, I want them to like me.
Dean: You look great in everything Cas, don't sweat it. My family already loves you, and they haven't even met you. Just wear something comfortable.
Dean hesitated before clicking 'send' on his next message.
Castiel: Thank you, Dean<3
Castiel arrived just on time and was immediately embraced by Jody. Dean blushed just watching his best friend (and crush?) interact with his mom, they were both smiling genuine smiles and exchanging pleasantries.
"Thank you for inviting me to dinner, Ms. Mills, it's so kind of you."
"You're more than welcome! I told Dean it was about time I met this best friend of him. and please - call me Jody, everybody does." Jody said, before returning to the kitchen. Castiel was grinning ear to ear, if this is what a family really was, he wanted in.
"Dean! Go get your brother - dinner is ready. Castiel, honey, the table is already set so why don't you go and take a seat?" Castiel blushed.
"Is it okay if I plate up? You've already down the cooking, you should be the one to take a seat." Man Dean had good taste, this boy was the sweetest.
"Thank you, sweets, that's too good of you. I can do it, but I definitely wouldn't say no to an extra pair of hands." Sam and Dean returned, filling glasses of water and placing them on the table. Dean watched as Jody and Castiel worked, moving seamlessly together. It was a beautiful sight, and Dean was falling deeper. Jody was laughing more than she had in a long time, and Castiel had a soft blush painting his cheeks. They both looked so happy, and that's the moment Dean realised he was truly in love. He was brought back by Sam kicking him and whispering.
"Dude, you're practically making heart eyes at him. It's so gross." Dean lightly kicked him back before taking his seat at the table. God he hoped Sam would behave. He loved his brother, but he could be so blunt at times that Dean was convinced he was soulless.
Eventually, everyone was seated and ready to eat. Jody had truly outdone herself, creating a huge roast dinner that even envied her thanksgiving feast.
"Before we eat, I just wanted to say that Castiel is religious, and he usually says Grace before a meal." Dean smiled, he wanted Castiel to feel as comfortable as possible, and so welcome in his little family.
"Castiel, would you please do us the honour of saying Grace?" Jody asked, sending a reassuring glance his way. Jody held Castiel's hand with her left, and Sam's with her right and close her eyes, while the others followed.
"Thank you, Lord, for the food we are about to receive. And may you bless this wonderful family and continue to watch over them. Amen." Amen was echoed around the table, and Jody was in awe. This kid was practically an angel.
As Jody and Castiel cleared up, she took a minute to pull Dean aside.
"Now you listen to me, Dean Winchester. Don't you ever hurt that boy or let anyone hurt him okay? He's a freakin' saint, and I swear to God, you better marry him." She had never been so excited, and so happy. Her family was perfect, and Castiel would just make it even better.
When at last it was the time Castiel was supposed to leave, Jody phoned his older sister, Hannah, and begged for him to stay the night, refusing to let him go. The kitchen that night bore memories that would never be forgotten. It was a night of pure laughter and joy. Jokes were shared, stories told, and profound bonds forged. It even told the story of Dean's first kiss.