Dean finally returned to the motel much, much later. And, much like the rest of the day, the night at the bar hadn't gone as expected.
He had gone there to get drunk and drown his sorrows. He had also planned on getting lucky with the lovely Mandy, as that would definitely provide a little happiness. Instead the alcohol seemed to amplify his woes, if that's possible, and he ended up spilling them out to the poor bartender, who was looking more and more exasperated as the night went on.
"So the guy, after everything, after being a backstabbing son of a bitch, opens this big door and lets out these huge, flesh eating monsters!"
"And then he... he vanished! He just ran away and left us cleaning up after that stupid angels mess! Which, for the record, we're still doing."
"And then today he shows up and asks for our help! And we had to help him."
"Yeah, we did! It's what we do. We help." Dean downed his beer, and Mandy reluctantly handed him another. "We've helped him tons of times. And he still keeps coming."
"Sounds to me he helped you a lot too." She sighed, and looked alarmed when Dean shot her a glare.
"You said he turned his back on his family and all their 'plans'? Sounds like a big deal."
"It was. But he needed to. His family were dicks."
"Still had to have been hard."
"Doesn't make up for what he did." Dean said stubbornly, taking a big sip. "That was, like, a year and a half ago."
"Maybe you should talk to him? You might still find he's your friend, deep down."
Dean looked at her like she was crazy. "No!" He yelled. "What sort of an idea is that?"
After that he smashed a bottle against a wall. He was politely asked to leave.
It was only half 9 at that point, and Dean, feigning soberness, managed to buy two six packs of beer from an off-license down the street. He drove to a nearby park (he had gained a lot of experience over the years of driving drunk, and, even completely out of it, managed to be careful – he never wanted to harm his baby) and spent the remainder of the night there, drinking and being a general public nuisance.
At half 4 he decided he'd had enough and made his way home, carefully driving back, going at about five miles an hour. Being careful, and procrastinating. But soon enough he found himself back at the motel, and taking a steeling breath, entered.
Sam had fallen asleep on his bed, a foot hanging off the end of the bed. Cas was sitting on the recliner reading what appeared to be a magazine on arts and crafts, but stood when Dean entered.
"Dean." Castiel greeted, happy to see him despite not knowing the feeling was less than reciprocated. "You're back."
"Yeah, I am." Dean replied, words slurring but anger still there. He took off his shoes and went to the sink, slurping some water.
"I was concerned." Cas admitted hesitantly.
"Well, you see, Cas?" Dean turned round. "Out of the two of us, I'm the one who's reliable. I'm the one who came back!"
Castiel tilted his head slightly, confused at his words. "I have come back."
"I came back, on time." Dean pointed out. "I was reliable, and I came back on time!"
"You are drunk." Cas sighed.
"So?" Dean asked loudly. "You've seen me drunk before! I get drunk, a lot."
"It is difficult to converse with you whilst you are like this."
"You want to converse?" Dean repeated. "You've been gone for months and now you want to chat? Well, it's too late."
"I did not want to go, Dean; you must know that."
"I must know nothing!" Dean stubbornly contradicted. "You didn't just leave when you left! You left way before that; you left when you went to Crowley. You left when you lied to us and when you spied on us! Elvis has left the building!"
"I'm sorry, Dean." The angel told him sadly. "I..." The words weren't coming easily. "I wish I hadn't done what I did."
"Then why the hell did you leave?" Dean yelled, his hands gripping hard onto the surface. "Why did you leave me?" Hot tears entered Dean's eyes, and he brushed them away angrily.
If ever there had been a time for Castiel to hug Dean, it would've been then. He might've broken through to the things buried beneath the anger, he might have managed to reach across the big, gaping hole in their friendship and put a tightrope where there once had been a bridge. But he didn't. Instead, they both got distracted by Sam, who had sat up, awakened by Dean's yell.
"Dean..." Cas said, but the hunter shook his head.
"I'm going to bed." He stated, and pushed past the angel, ignoring his brother and climbing into his bed, pulling the duvet up to hide his face. He didn't sleep for a while, even after the angel left the room and sat outside for the rest of the night, or after Sam had gone to sleep. It was light before Dean managed to drift off, and the dreams that he had didn't soothe him at all.