They had been travelling along this road for so long. They had seen the barren moon dance the same choreography. It was a dance with death, white keys spilling across the skies as stars.
The two companions stopped as night arrived once more.
The road curved before them.
Shadows reached out in all directions.
There was no end in sight.
Skeletal trees lined the sides, fallen leaves long taken by the wind.
They sat down. Just behind the abyss, tendrils of smoke reached out to catch the fireflies.
In the distance a storm groaned and crackled. There was an empty telephone box at the side of the road, its glass case shattered. The phone receiver hung lifelessly at its side.
It didn’t matter anyway.
There was no electricity here.
“You think this will be over soon?” Cas murmured, eyes sliding away from the flashes of red lightning in the distance to look towards the star-filled sky.
Kai leaned back, hands on the dusty floor, blue eyes reflecting the storm.
He hummed. “Will it?” The colours made his black hair dance with shards of light.
They fell into silence. One craning his neck to look at the stars, the other with his eyes facing forward.
Cas turned towards his companion and reached forward, fingers barely grazing the other’s hair. Kai studied him at the corner of his eye. He remained still. Cas pulled back and, in between delicate fingers, he held something white.
“Feather,” Cas murmured in awe, before releasing his hold.
“Hm,” Kai’s eyes followed the white wisp before it drowned in the tempest of shadows. “They’ve all gone by now,” Kai said. Cas looked at him in question. “The feathers. All gone.”
Cas sighed. He glanced at the storm in the distance before hastily looking up. He didn’t want to see what was coming. “You think we’ll be able to go back?”
There was no response.
“I don’t know,” Kai murmured, almost to himself. He propped a hand beneath his chin, voice muffled by tattered sleeves. There was something… resigned in his voice. Like he had given up. Cas didn’t like it. “I don’t know. The gates closed for so long now I don’t –”
“Don’t say that,” Cas didn’t mean to raise his voice.
The storm was getting louder.
Cracks of thunder broke through the empty silence.
Lightning raced through the clouds.
It was still far away.
“Don’t say that – they’re still looking for us. We – we need to keep going.”
Cas shook his head, “No. We’ve come too far.”
Kai sighed, he looked down at his hands. Cas saw his shoulders tremble, and for a moment he feared he had angered his companion, feared that the trembling signalled barely contained rage. That was until he heard the soft chuckles against the static crackling.
He missed that sound.
It had been too long.
“Ah, Cas,” Kai let out a breathless little laugh, “Cas,” he murmured again. Kai turned to look, a soft smile on his face.
Cas grinned back. He opened his mouth to let out a teasing remark, but his eyes caught something behind Kai’s head. The lightning had stopped, and where the flashes once struck, rays of light broke through the clouds.
Cas released out a soft gasp.
Kai followed his eyes.
“They’ve done it,” Kai whispered, disbelief lacing his voice.
Behind them the shadows reached forward, only to recoil – afraid.
Cas stood up. Kai pushed himself off the ground slowly, eyes wide and unconvinced. He held up a hand, shielding sensitive eyes from the light that rained down on the darkened realm.
“They’ve found us,” Cas whispered. Kai could hear the unrestrained joy in his voice. He could not help but smile. “They’re here.”