There's one way that angelic possession ends. Jimmy Novak? Bam, done for. Satan? Ha. One time almost a decade ago Sam took the wheel for about a second and a half, and it took him everything that he and Dean had ever lived for to buy him that. Then, of course, there was Gadreel, which Dean supposes had been his Introduction to Dance. Gadreel had been patient, and amenable, and then absolute. Four years down the line, Dean supposes that means it's probably about time for him to graduate, just like all the stadiums of eighteen-year olds across the country, but what would he know about that? He got his GED.
So there he is, and there's Michael, and he knows how this is going to end. He does. But come on; it's not like he was gonna do anything else. Cas is the only one who looks surprised.
Dean misses Crowley in that moment, with his long scrolls of deals and his legal loopholes miles longer. Make a deal with that dude and hell yeah it's more than a yes/no. And Dean's reneged on more deals with Crowley than he thinks he's ever made. If Dean gets his ass handed to him by Michael--and he knows he will--from the standpoint of the universe that's probably just deserts.
From the standpoint of Dean, it's buying time. Time to watch his hand liquefy Sam's brain in his skull, maybe. Time to put his hands to the earth and liquefy that, too.
Right before Dean plunges that blade into Lucifer's side, Michael whispers to his brother, Thanks for the space.
It's hard to describe how a whisper hurts, but it bangs through your white matter different than other sound. It'd be like nails on chalkboards, if Dean gave a shit about that. It's so distracting Dean almost drops the knife, and that would have been fucking stupid, wouldn't it? Going all Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon and then getting butterfingers with the goddamn Archangel-killing toothpick.
When they float back down to earth, Michael whispers to him, Thanks for the time. And at that point, the only thing Dean's really got going for him is the hope that Michael learned as much as he thought he did back home, 'cause now he's at the University of World Destroying, and it won't tolerate the same shit he managed on his last planet. Or at least, Dean's pretty sure that's how this goes. He's still only got that GED, and he definitely failed Introduction to Dance.
You're the engine, but it's my hands on the wheel.
Jesus fuck, Winchester.
I'm not power-hungry, Michael assures him, as he buys a three-piece suit and a weird hat on his way to destroying the world. Because nothing says "not power-hungry" like a $5000 dollar wardrobe.
I was going to kill you first, remember? Save your soul, Michael continues. Even though you were my sword. I was content without--remember that.
But you offered.
The second thing Michael does is go to a barber shop, all straight razors and that twirly pole thing. Dean's never been to a barber shop before, and if his body had control of its own autonomous nervous system, he'd probably have hives. Dean generally reserves the pleasure of holding a knife to his neck for demons and angels and brothers and--well, anything else, so Dean supposes he doesn't reserve a lot of anything for anyone. He did just give himself to an Archangel.
I'm not going to hurt you, says Michael, because somehow that barber's knife against his throat feels like it's pressing up against his brain and it makes the same sound as that whisper and Dean handles lack of control very fucking poorly and being held in a straitjacket in his mind is tantamount to losing his mind and it's all a reminder that some of his sanities are held precariously and right now Dean and Michael aren't even fighting and he's still losing.
I'm not trying to hurt you, Michael revises.
Dean tries to pull his shit together. Two days ago this dude was squeezing Dean's soul from his body like toast from a toaster and now he's basically holding his psychic hand. That skeeves Dean out.
I want you to see what we make, Michael says, to account for his gentleness. From here on out, we did it.
I hope you'll be proud of us.