After the Fall

Chapter 20

"I don't get why you're so surprised he's dead." Meg said as she stood in the sitting room of the expensive suite Belarus had reserved for the hunters. "Who in your inner circle hasn't died eventually? Then there's me, Clarence, Gabriel. You Winchesters should have a surgeon General's warning tattooed on your foreheads; 'Involving yourself in Winchester business may result in injury or a horrible death'."

"Meg that is enough." Belarus said as Sam stood up and stormed into his bedroom. "Allow them to mourn in peace."

"I think I have the right to speak up. After all I'm one of those who experienced the horrible death part." Meg said.

"Don't even try to act like you helping us was some noble effort Meg." Dean spoke up. "You were covering your own ass because of Crowley."

"I see why Raphael calls you a mud monkey. Do you honestly think I couldn't have saved my ass by giving Crowley what he wanted?" Meg asked. "I've put my ass on the line for you more than once Dean."

"Seriously Meg," Sam shouted from the other room. "Shut up!"

"Do as you have been ordered Meg." Belarus hissed. "Or do you wish for our young sovereign to demonstrate his power again?"

Meg huffed and dropped onto the couch. "So what is so important that Sam needs two bodyguards?"

"We will perform our duty, Meg." Belarus said. "It is not our place to question; Lucifer will inform us if he feels that we should know."

"I think it's less about Sam needing bodyguards and more about what Sam pulled out of that professor's desk." John said. "It looks like the good professor found proof of what that nephilim told us about the tablets Hadrian is looking for."

"That could be problematic." Belarus agreed. "I believe that we should return to the bunker so that this information can be safely stored behind wards."

"So Mikey, want to share with the class?" Gabriel asked. "You accepted what Castiel said without reacting. Why is that?"

"Because I'm acquainted with the particular tablet Castiel spoke of. When Ezra approached me, Zachariah was also under consideration. I chose to have both of them work on the translation." Michael shrugged. "Zachariah finished it first. The tablet had nothing to do with creation. I believe it was simply some of Metatron's own scribblings."

"What made you so sure of that?" Lucifer asked.

"Because it was some Father awful inappropriate verse about a 'nun from Nantucket'." Michael said disgusted.

Gabriel burst out laughing. "Ezra tried to pass off a dirty limerick as the word of our father?" The very thought sent the archangel into continued gales of laughter.

"I realize that the thought is amusing Gabriel, but Hadrian does not know this. He will continue to search for this tablet." Michael scolded.

"Oh lighten up Mike, it is funny." Lucifer chuckled. "But it's also to our favor since our favorite hunters found Professor Morrison's notes. We've got the perfect bait to put on our hook and catch Hadrian. It's why I sent Meg to Sam."

"Having two hell knights with him is going to attract attention." Gabriel said.

"True, that is exactly what was going through my mind at the time." Lucifer admitted.

"And of course you made sure that they are aware that they are being used as bait?" Michael asked then after a few silent seconds prompted, "Right Luce?"

"I may have forgotten to mention that to Meg." Lucifer shrugged.

"What!?" Gabriel exclaimed. "Dammit Luci, do you even think before you act?" He shook his head. "So we can call even more attention to them now since they'll be able to add an archangel to their list of bodyguards. For all that Sam has some powers due to his position as Hell's boy king, he's not ascended yet and neither is Dean. And John is just a fledgling!"

"I think that you should be giving them more credit than you do. They can take care of themselves." Lucifer said. "Have you forgotten that Sam tossed us in the pit? And who was it that bagged a couple of Archangels named Raphael and Gabriel in holy fire. And they didn't even know what you were at that point; they figured it out all on their own."

"You do realize that the only reason I stayed in that ring of fire was because I wanted to, just like Raph stayed because he wanted to." Gabriel said. "We all agreed that we wouldn't ever let any other angel know that it wouldn't kill us, it just hurts like a bitch. And Castiel was present both times."

"Gabriel go to them. You can explain what Lucifer neglected to." Michael ordered. "Lucifer come, let's see if your nephilim guests have any other secrets they wish to share."

"Mary, there is no need for worry, your sons are quite adept at what they do and they are in the company of their father." Uriel said. "Although they did not have a conventional upbringing, John Winchester prepared them well for a life as hunters."

"Uriel, do you have children?" Mary asked.

"I am an angelic warrior, we do not have children. Angels are created at our father's command." Uriel answered.

"Then you don't know what it means to have children." Mary said.

"Although we do not procreate, we do join in raising the flocks of fledglings that come after us." Uriel explained. "Like any human guardian we fret and worry over them, but we acknowledge their competency upon them reaching maturity. We do not baby them because they have a duty. We trust that we have raised them well. Trust that your husband has raised your sons well Mary, acknowledge their competence as warriors."

"It's not that easy." Mary said.

"What's not that easy?" John asked as the hunters and their demonic escorts appeared in the library of the bunker.

"John Winchester, knowing of your wife's past and how she was trained, do you trust her skills as a hunter?" Uriel asked.

"What?" John asked confused and a bit wary that he was being dragged in the middle of something.

"I do." Dean answered. When Sam gave Dean a questioning look Dean responded. "Dude, our mom is a badass."

"Even better." Uriel said. "Your son accepts that your skills are exceptional and if there is one thing that I have noticed in dealing with the vessels it is that they place you on a pedestal and would move heaven and earth for you. That he acknowledges your ability is proper. Just allow them the same."

The flutter of wings announced the arrival of a frowning Gabriel. "Uriel, aren't you and Mama Winchester supposed to be teaching right now? Well then get to it." He ordered when the seraph nodded.

"So what bug flew up your butt?" Dean asked.

"That crap you found at Morrison's? It's crap." Gabriel said. "Hadrian is looking for something that doesn't exist but he doesn't know that. So big bro sent you another hell knight to broadcast the fact that you found something."

"Morrison found evidence of written language older than cuneiform." Sam argued. "That's not crap."

"As far as Hadrian is concerned it is. But he doesn't know that. He is still going to be looking." Gabriel said.

"So you're saying Lucifer set out the mousetrap, and we're the cheese." John commented.

"Got it in one Winchester. And even I have to admit, it's a good plan; or rather it's a good plan now that you know about it." Gabriel corrected himself. "Instead of us dragging ass all over creation looking for him, we can get Hadrian to come right to us."

"This plan is risky." Belarus said. "But also quite simple in its brilliance. However I do not believe that such a small 'security detail' gives the impression of worth that such information deserves."

"That's why you're getting an archangel and a couple of seraphs on guard duty too." Gabriel explained. "Castiel, Balthazar and I are going to superglue ourselves to your asses also. And Michael is sending two more squads of angels to hang around town."

Jody walked into the sheriff's office and did a double take. She shook her head and made her way to her office. As usual Verchiel was there waiting with a fresh cup of coffee.

"Verchiel, why is the lobby full of angels?" She asked.

"Michael has ordered them here. He also gave instructions that they were to check in with you." The angel explained. "They will be under the command of Gabriel while they are here. It has also been suggested that you speak to Gabriel and the Winchesters regarding this situation."

"Situation? What situation?" Jody asked concerned.

"The archangels wish for us to be prepared when Hadrian arrives." Verchiel said.

"Hadrian? As in the murdering winged dick that is half angel and half human nephilim Hadrian?" Jody asked.

"Is there another that we should be concerned with?" The angel asked seriously.

Jody shook her head and picked her keys back up from where she had dropped them on her desk. With a sigh she said, "Well come on. Let's see what sort of mess the boys have gotten themselves into now."

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