Favorite Color

"For the first seventeen years of his life, Dean didn't have a favorite color. Words like "inky purple" and "moss green" mean little to someone who's entire world is shrouded in darkness, devoid of late night sunsets and twinkling city lights. Being blind meant that Dean could feel the warmth of sunlight on his skin, but never see the golden rays. He spoke to faceless friends and drank his coffee black, smelled the rain without ever watching it hit the tarmac. But things are different now. They're different because for the first time in his whole life, Dean can see." | Destiel | fluffy | co-written by Abigal | 2749 words |

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2. Favorite Color

Favorite Color

 

 

For the first seventeen years of his life, Dean didn't have a favorite color.

Words like "inky purple" and "moss green" mean little to someone who's entire world is shrouded in darkness, devoid of late night sunsets and twinkling city lights.

Being blind meant that Dean could feel the warmth of sunlight on his skin, but never see the golden rays. He spoke to faceless friends and drank his coffee black, smelled the rain without ever watching it hit the tarmac.

But things are different now.

They're different because for the first time in his whole life, Dean can see. He can see every god damned color in existence, and he knows what people mean when they use words like "deep crimson" and "pastel pink."

Dean can wish on shooting stars and run through long grass. He can see oceans and shells, mountains and wild flowers. Hell, Dean can even have a favorite color.

And he does.

Blue is Dean's favorite color.

It's the color of both the sky and sea, the be all and end all. Nobody has ever found the lost city of Atlantis, or let clouds fall through their fingertips. Blue is endless and ethereal, the paradox to end all paradoxes.

Perhaps that's why he can't stop staring at the blue eyed boy from across the cafeteria.

Granted, Dean has only been in possession of all five senses for about a month, but he'll be damned if those aren't the bluest eyes in existence.

It's more than that, though. The stranger is beautiful too, all messy hair and tanned skin. He's a freaking work of art, the kind of painting that Dean would trace with reverent hands, marvel at the soft brush strokes and vibrant colors.

Maybe I should go talk to him, Dean thinks, before dismissing the idea entirely.

What would he even say? "I'm sorry to bother you but your eyes are really god damned blue and I'm in danger of drowning in their crystal depths?"

Yeah, sure. That ought to work.

Dean throws his cold fries into the trash and heads towards his next class, mind swimming in hues of blue.

He can't help but wonder if it's possible to fly beside the sun without being burnt, or live amongst mermaids with empty lungs and a clear head.

Blue is faith, Dean remembers, blue is faith...

The rest of Dean's week passes in a blur of old textbooks and new teachers, pale orange skies and milky coffee.

Though Dean visits the cafeteria every day, there's no sign of the mysterious stranger.

Not that he's looking or anything, that would be weird. Wouldn't it?

He tries to push all thoughts of ocean blue to the back of his mind, and focus instead on the hazy yellow sun, the deep green of the school's grassy field.

It's working, too. Dean barely even spares a thought for clear skies, until Friday period five, when he's assigned a seat beside none other than blue eyes himself.

It shouldn't be a big deal, really, it shouldn't, but Dean can't help the way his heart skips a beat when the stranger slides into the chair beside him.

They're sitting so close that their thighs brush ever so slightly under the rickety table, and Dean swears there's electric in his veins, a live wire in his brain.

The professor rambles and rambles, but truth be told, Dean can't even remember what class this is supposed to be. He spends the entire hour just trying to work up the courage to say "hi."

In the end Dean passes a note, his lips too numb and teeth too jagged to speak actual words.

Hey, I'm Dean.

Dean watches as blue eyes scan the paper, heartbeat pounding in his ears. He prays to every god there ever was or may ever be that he managed to come across as charming and friendly, rather than creepy and overbearing.

Hello, Dean. My name is Castiel.

Castiel. The name strikes a cord, leading Dean to remember the days when "sapphire blue" held little weight, and "heaven on Earth" was nothing more than a silly phrase.

Castiel was a character in his mother's stories, an angel who had galaxies in his brain and oceans at his feet, but gave it all up for a mere mortal at the twist of a blade.

It's just a coincidence, Dean tells himself. Sometimes fable meets fact, and there's nothing more to it than that.

But then Cas is smiling, the kind of smile that could make dead flowers bloom like daffodils in spring, and Dean isn't so sure if coincidences really exist.

 

Over the course of the next week, Dean and Cas continue to pass notes in class.

They don't write an awful lot, just make comments about the weather or doodle emoticons, but Dean finds himself feeling happier than usual, like he's got sunlight in his veins, bleeding cherry blossoms and endless summer days.

He can't help but crave more.

Hell, he hasn't even exchanged actual words with Cas, just shy smiles and a slow decrease in personal space.

Dean wants to be Cas's friend, if he can, wants to know what lurks behind his bluer than blue eyes and penchant for oversized sweaters.

Probably strawberry wine and starry skies, and beautiful words that should be whispered in coffee shops and written on walls.

"Hey, uh, Cas? Which pages were we supposed to study for the homework assignment?" Dean asks one day, after the rest of their class have filed out into the dreary courtyard.

He doesn't give a damn about the homework, not really, Dean just wants an excuse to talk to Cas.

The other boy squints, his eyes following the movement of Dean's lips. He fumbles in his oversized trench coat for a pen, and begins to scribble on a piece of paper.

"Cas?" Dean frowns in confusion when Cas hands him the finished note, hurriedly scanning the scrawly blue letters so he can make sense of this whole damned thing.

My lip reading isn't very accurate. Sorry, what did you say?

Lip reading? Wait a second, that would mean that...

That would mean that Cas is deaf and Dean is an idiot, an idiot of epic proportions.

"I... uh, I..." Dean stutters, blush coloring his cheeks. Nice one, Winchester.

Dean tries to recall the basic signs he learnt when he was younger, until he realizes that Cas may not even communicate via sign language. Perhaps he prefers the simple pen and paper method, or maybe he just-

"Dean?" Cas tugs on the material of his leather jacket, pulling Dean out of his colorless panic.

His voice is gravelly and yet soft, sandpaper and turquoise waves. Dean realizes that he's still waiting on some sort of answer, so he begins to write, trying not to over analyze the weight behind every word.

I'm sorry, Cas. I had no idea that you were deaf. Do you usually use sign language?

Cas smiles as he reads the note, and Dean swears that flowers begin to bloom under his skin, vines twisting around his ribcage, pulling at the strings of his thumping heart.

He's so god damned glad that he can see, and not because of sweet peas and mountain tops, sunrises and butterflies, but because of this, because of the way Cas is looking at him, and Dean is looking right back.

Yes, I use ASL. Do you know any signs?

That's a good question. Dean has spent most of his academic life around both blind and deaf students, so naturally he was encouraged to communicate using sign language.

The problem is, it's a little difficult to sign when all you have to rely on is touch and sound. His teachers pretty much gave up on him after the fifth grade.

But Dean isn't blind any more.

I don't. But maybe you could teach me?

Dean bites his gums as Cas scribbles a reply, crinkling his nose at the coppery taste.

But this time, Cas doesn't slide the finished note across the table. Instead, he folds it into a thimble sized square, tucking it into Dean's jacket pocket.

His hands lingers on Dean's chest for just a fraction too long, and Dean can practically feel the scorch marks on his skin, the grace seeping into his bones.

Cas exits the room in a flurry of color, leaving Dean with frozen lungs and sweaty palms. He fumbles for the note, almost tearing the flimsy paper in his haste.

Okay. Meet me in the library after school tomorrow?

He's even sketched a bumblebee alongside his words, complete with tiny wings and a purple flower. It's hands down one of the most adorable things that Dean has ever received.

Blue is tranquillity, he recalls, as he tries to still his shaking hands, and swallow the lump lodged in his throat.

Blue is tranquillity, serenity too. Blue is wisdom and depth, the only color deserving of you.

 

By the time Dean arrives at the library the next day, Cas is already there, engrossed in a tattered copy of "Bees in the City."

Dean can't help but crack a smile at the sight of his messy hair and cat print sweater, the way his eyes seem to focus beyond the words on the page.

"So god damned adorable," Dean mutters under his breath, sliding into the seat opposite him.

He reaches out to tug at the sleeve of Cas's trench coat, alerting his presence. The material is soft and worn beneath Dean's fingers, like an old blanket or stuffed toy.

Brown is soil and leaves, dust and trees. It's the earth under your nails and below your feet, warm shades and lazy fall days. Brown is roots and anchors, the faded pages of your favorite book. Brown is safety, and brown is home.

"Hey Cas," Dean greets, annunciating his words carefully.

But instead of brandishing a notebook or attempting to speak his own reply, Cas begin to sign, his hands smooth and slow as they spell what Dean can only assume to be "hello."

Dean attempts to copy the movement, but his own hands are clumsy and unpracticed, oafish and uncoordinated. He winces, silently praying that Cas won't think him a total moron.

Instead Cas reaches across the table, deft fingers gliding over calloused hands, signing the word with ease.

Dean gulps. They're holding hands.

It's a simple gesture- really, it is, but god all he can think about is the constellations engraved into Cas's palms, and how they're pressed against Dean's once starless skies.

Sure there's no romantic context, but he can't help the blush that colors his cheeks, the storm that rages behind his eyelids.

The spell is broken when Cas pulls away, and Dean tries the sign out for himself. He mimics Cas's graceful motions, phantom hands still hot on his skin.

That was great, Dean! You're a fast learner, Cas scribbles in his notebook, flipping the angle so Dean can read his small print letters.

Dean can't help but smile at the praise, trying to quell the butterflies in his stomach.

It's just a crush, he promises himself. Nothing more than a fondness for the color blue.

But if that's really true, why is he drowning in shades of pastel pink that seem to scream nothing but "I think I might be falling for you?"

Dean pulls out his own notepad, flipping to the first blank page.

Thanks, Cas. Can you teach me something else?

Cas frowns for a moment, worrying his bottom lips between his teeth. Not that Dean is staring or anything, he's not.

After a beat, he begins to sign, eyes never leaving Dean's.

What does that mean?

But Cas doesn't answer, only motions for Dean to mimic the sign, which he does.

He repeats it until the foreign words are buzzing on his fingertips, and Cas is grinning like he contains the light of six thousand fireflies.

In all honesty, Dean is probably not that far off.

But what does it mean? he asks again, curiosity piqued.

I'll tell you someday, Cas writes, his smile turned coy.

Someday.

Usually, the frustation of not knowing would tear Dean apart from the inside out, irritate him like a lingering cold or stubborn parasite.

But not this time.

This time Dean has a "someday" with the color blue, and he'll be damned if he's going to screw up the chance to breathe seafoam and kiss the clouds, too.

 

Throughout the next two weeks, come hell or high water, Dean and Cas meet in the librart after school.

Cas teaches Dean basic vocabulary, like colors and numbers, places and names.

Dean also insist that he teach him useful gems such as "where's the pie?"

They sit a little too close and stare a little too long, and when Cas laughs the sound curls around Dean's chest and makes a home.

But they don't talk about it.

They don't talk about the thing between them, the spark that makes Dean happy, happier than he's ever been in his entire life.

But Dean wants to. God, he wants to.

He wants to kiss Cas, let him taste every word on Dean's lips. He wants to hold his freaking hand, merge their universes like it's the simplest thing in the world.

He can't though, not yet at least.

Not until he can communicate using Cas's language, tell him how he feels in his native tongue.

Dean trolls the internet for a basic sign translation, but even in English he'd struggle to describe the itch in his veins, the rubies in his bloodstream.

Cas is Icarus, flying too close to both the sun and the sea. He commands the tide and borrows the stars, sees everything and yet hears nothing.

Cas deserves beautiful words woven between reverent fingers, and Dean intends to give him nothing less- no matter how long it takes.

"Can I tell you something?" Dean asks one day, a combination of sign language and scribbles. He's not fluent in ASL, not yet at least.

"Of course Dean... you can tell me anything," Cas replies in much the same way, only using signs that Dean is familiar with.

Dean's heart flips at Cas's words, paper wings beating against it's cage.

They may have only known each other for little over a month, but Dean feels as though blue has always been his favorite color, even when his world screamed in charcoal shades.

If you cut him open, turned him inside out, Dean is certain that the name "Castiel" would be etched into his ribs, the unbreakable bond.

"I was blind." If Cas is surprised, his face gives nothing away. His sculpted expression is perfectly still, like he's watching, waiting.

Dean isn't sure what for.

"I was blind... and everything was dark, you know? But now it's not and, uh,..." Dean trails off, unsure of what to say next.

Blue is understanding, piety too. Blue is truth and softness, neither demanding nor cold. Blue never asks for more than you can give, never steals the spotlight from the sun or the earth. If you are lost, blue will help you find your way back home.

"Thank you," he signs at last, willing his hands to stop shaking, just for one god damned minute.

Dean drops his gaze to the library carpet, intent on boring a hole into the faded florals.

But then Cas's fingers are fluttering around his jaw, forcing him to look up, to watch him sign the words, "what is your favorite color?"

He knows, of course he does. Maybe he always has.

"Blue."

The single word carries more weight that Dean could convey in a thousand. It's the whole damned ocean, the sky too.

"What's yours?" he asks, though the hope has already taken root in his bones, birthed stars in his skull.

"Green."

Cas whispers his reply against Dean's lips, signs it with his tongue. He kisses Dean in hues of harmony and healing nature too.

Dean kisses back, summer leaves and forget-me-nots, skin on skin.

"I love you," he says, without paper or pens, letters or signs.

Dean doesn't need them any more.

Cas can understand every freaking word he says. They already have a language and it isn't English or ASL, beautiful words whispered in coffee shops or written on walls. It's touch and taste, heartstrings and hands.

And god, if it's at all possible, Dean thinks that their turquoise meld may be his new favorite color.

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