Disclaimer: I do not own Supernatural or any of the characters associated with it.
Redemption and Advice
Stunned by Metatron's revelation about how far he went to get all the angels on his side, Gadreel leaves, contemplating what he's learned. Despite what is said about him and what he's done for Metatron, Gadreel has always believed there should be honor, even in war which is why he hesitated to become Castiel's spy. The ambush on Castiel during their meeting and Metatron's brainwashed suicide bombers make Gadreel uneasy about following Metatron, but the truth is he's always had his doubts about Metatron's methods. While Gadreel wants redemption and to be seen as more than just the angel that let evil into the Garden, he's never wanted to do it through murder and coercion like Metatron has been using. The murders of his fellow angels and especially the Prophet Kevin Tran that Gadreel has committed has always weighed heavily on him, but he always soothed himself with the belief that he's done the right thing and what he had to do to rebuild Heaven. However, while Gadreel feels Metatron has gone too far with his latest activities, he's not sure about betraying Metatron and what he's worked so hard for. The problem is that while Gadreel feels he needs to talk to someone about his doubts before he makes a decision, there is no one he feels he can trust. Most of the angels are too loyal to Metatron or angry with Castiel to talk about his feelings to without risk of them running to Metatron and while he believes Castiel would be someone who could help him sort things out given his history of rebelling, Castiel's stance against Metatron could bias his discussions with Gadreel so that he pushes Gadreel towards helping him. Gadreel knows that while the Winchesters could be helpful, after he murdered their friend Kevin and possessed Sam, they would be more likely to kill him than listen. Suddenly, Gadreel realizes the person he could speak to, someone who he feels he needs to speak to either way, no matter what their feelings towards him.
Gadreel enters the Bunker's main room where Kevin is working. Kevin looks up at him with a concerned look on his face, thinking that Gadreel is Sam.
"Hey, do you notice anything a little bit off about Dean lately? Between you and me, I'm a little bit worried about him."
"Don't worry about Dean. Dean will be fine." Gadreel hesitates, knowing that this is the moment that he has to make his decision. Despite assaulting Dean and lying to him about who he really is, Gadreel hasn't done anything that would make him an enemy of the Winchesters, but he knows that if he goes through with murdering Kevin and kidnapping Sam, he will have. However, Gadreel has been offered a chance at getting the redemption he so desperately seeks and decides to take it. Reluctantly, as Dean rushes into the room, Gadreel puts his palm to Kevin's forehead and uses his restored powers to smite him, both to prevent any chance of resurrection and to give him a quick death. As Dean tries to attack Gadreel, the angel effortlessly pins him to the wall with telekinesis and explains how he knew what Dean and Kevin were planning and how he stopped Dean's plan. Gadreel justifies to both himself and Dean that "it's for the best" and he did what he had to do, but even to him, the words sound hollow. Despite knowing he should kill Dean as he will a threat to Metatron's plans, Gadreel can't bring himself to commit another murder, especially not of someone he had considered a friend and he leaves.
One of Gadreel's greatest regrets has always been killing Kevin Tran. While he can justify the deaths of the other angels he has killed as for the greater good of rebuilding Heaven, Gadreel always knew that Kevin's death was murder and pointless. Metatron's spell was irreversible and even with the angel tablet and Kevin never would've been able to find a way to reverse it. Metatron just wanted to get rid of someone he saw as a possible threat and have Gadreel prove his loyalty in a way that would keep him from ever being able to go to the Winchesters for help if he ever doubted his loyalty to Metatron's plans. After seeing Metatron's increased power, he realizes that this was also just a way to get his hands on the angel tablet so he could further his goal of becoming all-powerful.
While he never told Metatron, Gadreel has kept an eye out for Kevin Tran, knowing that since Heaven is locked, Kevin would never be able to get to his rightful place in the afterlife, another regret of his because as a holy Prophet along with all the good he'd done while alive, Kevin belonged in Heaven. When Kevin left the Bunker with his mother, Gadreel sensed it as they were not warded against angels. However, while Gadreel was able to track the Trans to Missouri, he soon lost them as they entered a location warded against angels before he could get close. However, Gadreel had the advantage of Sam Winchester's memories from Sam's time as his vessel. Looking through them for a place that the Winchesters might've hidden the Trans, Gadreel came across the memory of a houseboat belonging to a friend of both the Winchesters and Kevin Tran that Kevin had hidden in for the better part of a year. While in Sam's memories Gadreel learns that Crowley located the boat, he also finds that the Winchesters kept it warded in case Garth ever came back or in case they ever wanted to use it as a safe house again, having added warding to keep angels from looking in and entering. This houseboat was in the area where the Trans disappeared from his radar and as Crowley had already found it, the Winchesters might've reused it expecting him to believe it compromised and thus to never think to double-check it.
Due to his guilt, Gadreel wanted to know where Kevin was in case he ever got the chance or the courage to speak to him about his actions. Gadreel realizes that as both a Prophet of the Lord and a friend of the Winchesters who was aiding them in their fight against Metatron and other enemy forces, Kevin would be the perfect one to talk to about his doubts and to get advice from. Gadreel fears Kevin's reaction to him, but knows he deserves it for murdering the boy. Gadreel knows that whatever he decides to do, keep helping Metatron or aid the Winchesters and Castiel, he needs to talk to Kevin and at least apologize for his murder of him. Gadreel knows it is extremely unlikely he will be forgiven, but he at least needs to try.
Gadreel drives to Warsaw, Missouri where Sam's memories tell him that Garth's houseboat is. Finding the boat, he is unable to sense anything inside due to the warding, but decides that to try anyway as the boat is his best chance of locating Kevin Tran. Having proven his loyalty to Metatron, Metatron had shared things with him that he hadn't shared with other angels including how to erase warding in case he was ever captured again. Wanting to get in but not to let any enemies such as Crowley or his demons or Metatron or other angels know where to find the Trans, Gadreel carefully erases only the warding keeping him from being able to enter the houseboat and not the warding hiding the occupants.
Mustering his courage, Gadreel walks up to the door of the houseboat and knocks. After a moment, Linda Tran answers the door, hoping it's the Winchesters come to let her know that Heaven is reopened and Kevin can go where he belongs. She is confused when she sees a stranger, especially as only the Winchesters and Garth know where the houseboat is.
"Mrs. Tran, can I come in?" asks Gadreel.
"Who are you?" asks Linda, confused by his appearance and that he knows who she is.
"I'm a friend of the Winchesters and I would like to talk to Kevin Tran about something important."
"Alright," says Linda reluctantly, "come in." Linda lets in Gadreel knowing that neither angels nor demons can locate them and that only Metatron himself can erase the warding that keeps them safe. By letting Gadreel in, she believes that she can see for sure that he is not an enemy as an angel or demon wouldn't be able to cross the wards, not knowing that Gadreel has erased the ones keeping him from being able to enter. When Gadreel is able to enter with no issue, Linda relaxes somewhat, believing that he's another friend of Sam and Dean's that they sent to ask Kevin for advice on something she knows she likely won't understand and just didn't call them for some reason.
"Kevin!" calls Linda and the ghost of Kevin appears.
"Yeah," he asks then notices Gadreel and his guilty expression. "Who's this and what's he want? And why do you look like you're feeling guilty about something?"
Knowing this will not go over well, Gadreel takes a deep breath and begins. "My name is Gadreel and I have come to talk to you Kevin Tran."
Kevin starts to panic, knowing exactly who Gadreel is from overhearing the Winchesters talk about his death while Linda is confused. "Wha… what do you want?! How did you get in here?!"
"Kevin what's wrong?" asked Linda, confused.
"Gadreel is the angel that killed me mom!" yells Kevin, continuing to panic, knowing that while as a ghost, Gadreel can't hurt him, but he can kill his mother.
"You're the angel that murdered my son?!" demanded Linda, more furious than scared. Before Kevin can think to stop her, she hauls off and hits Gadreel across the face. "Get the hell out of here before I do more than just that!" yells Linda, furious enough to frighten even Gadreel. Linda grabs an angel sword Sam and Dean lent her just in case off of the table and brandishes it at the angel.
"Please, hold on a moment…" begins Gadreel calmly, trying to calm the situation down, but Linda is too furious.
"I said get the hell out and given that you murdered my son, consider yourself lucky that I'm even giving you that option!" yells Linda, drawing close to Gadreel with the sword, ready to stab him if he doesn't comply, but not wanting to get into a fight as she knows she's no match for an angel and doesn't want to risk Kevin losing her again. Despite this, she is willing to fight Gadreel if he gives her no choice.
"I swear, I'm just here to talk, not to hurt you," tries Gadreel desperately, still wanting to at least try to talk to Kevin. "Here," he says holding out his sword, blade first. "Here's my weapon, I'm unarmed and if the Winchesters gave you Holy Oil, feel free to imprison me in that, but all I'm here is to talk. No one else knows that I'm here, including Metatron."
Seeing Gadreel turning over his weapon calms Linda slightly, just enough to consider his request while Kevin refuses to trust Gadreel as he knows from personal experience that Gadreel doesn't need a weapon to kill someone.
"You can't seriously be considering this after what he's done, can you?!" exclaims Kevin. "We should just kill him while we've got the chance or turn him over to the Winchesters."
"Quiet Kevin!" yells Linda. Linda has always considered herself a good judge of character and she is tempted to believe that Gadreel is telling the truth, but is cautious given all that he has done.
"Fine," she says, taking the sword. "Kevin, pour a circle of holy oil around Gadreel and we'll hear him out. That way if he tries anything while we're preparing the oil he can't hurt you and I can still react."
Kevin goes to protest, but one look from Linda quells his complaints and having practiced in the weeks since he has been living with his mother, takes the holy oil Sam and Dean left them and pours a circle around Gadreel. It's a tight fit so he moves the table, but he is able to get a complete circle around Gadreel and once it is complete, Linda lights it and relaxes slightly, knowing from Sam and Dean's instructions on the holy oil that Gadreel can't cross it to harm them without dying.
"So. Talk," orders Linda, arms crossed, watching Gadreel suspiciously and with hatred for him despite her decision to hear him out. "We'll hear you out, but first how did you get in?"
"Metatron taught me how to erase warding in case I ever got captured again. I'm the only one he taught and that was because he trusted me. Before I begin, I would like to state how sorry I am for what I did to you Kevin. I don't expect your forgiveness but I need to apologize."
"Damn right you should be sorry! And there's no way in Hell I'll ever forgive you, even if I believe that apology!" exclaimed Kevin heatedly.
"I understand. However, I've been having my doubts about Metatron and his plans and that is what has led me here." Gadreel took a deep breath and began his story. "I was once God's most trusted angel, assigned to guard the Garden of Eden. I faithfully guarded it for a very long time, but I fell for a trick and Lucifer entered the Garden to corrupt Adam and Eve. I was blamed for the corruption of humanity and locked away in Heaven's dungeon for my crime. No one cared that it wasn't entirely my fault, they just wanted someone to blame for our Father's leaving."
"What's the point to this sob story? How does your failure thousands of years ago lead to you coming here, especially after what you did?" demanded Kevin.
Ignoring the interruption, Gadreel continued. "I was locked in that dungeon for millennia, ignored at best and tortured at worst. The one thought I had on my mind was redeeming myself for my mistake, becoming a need which consumed me. When all the angels fell to Earth, I Fell as well and was badly injured in the process. While trying to find a place to hide, I received a prayer from Dean Winchester asking for an angel to come and save his brother. I saw doing all I could to help the Righteous Man and his brother as the start of my redemption and traveled to the hospital to help them. As if my identity as Gadreel was exposed I would not be warmly welcomed and angels would be after me, I took up the identity of the angel Ezekiel who died in the Fall. Ezekiel was a good and loyal soldier and the opposite of what I was purported to be and the sort of angel I desired to be. However, in my weakened state I lacked the power to heal Sam Winchester and he was ready to give up and die. The only way for Sam Winchester to survive was for me to possess him and heal him from the inside while I healed my own injuries. As both Sam and myself were so badly injured, this would take time. I convinced Dean that this was the best of a bad situation and he aided me in tricking Sam into agreeing to possession. As an angel can be expelled by an unwilling vessel, I erased his memory of the experience and kept in the background, only emerging when I was needed. This allowed me time to heal both myself and Sam without detection while aiding the Winchesters where I could."
"I already know some of this: before I was able to become visible to them, I heard the Dean telling Castiel what you had done as Ezekiel and later the arguments the Winchesters had about it," Kevin says not impressed with Gadreel's story as he doesn't see what this has to do with Gadreel visiting Kevin. "You pretended to be their friend while really plotting behind their back to aid Metatron in rebuilding Heaven under his rule. You forced Dean to kick Cas out of the Bunker so he couldn't figure you out and then took the first chance you had once you were strong enough to keep Sam from possibly overpowering you like he did Lucifer to reveal yourself and join your master Metatron."
"No, that's not it at all," says Gadreel, desperately trying to get Kevin to understand what had happened to lead to this moment. "I truly was trying to help the Winchesters. Yes, I did force Dean to kick Castiel out out of fear that he would expose me, but I also risked exposure at times to help such as when I brought Castiel back after a Reaper killed him and Charlie Bradbury after an evil witch killed her."
"If that's true, then why would you murder Kevin? Why help Metatron if you really were benevolent like you claim?" asks Linda.
"A civil war started among the angel factions. The last thing I wanted to see was my brothers and sisters fighting amongst each other, but there was little I could do to stop it except continue to aid the Winchesters in secret. As I grew stronger and Sam's healing neared completion, I planned to leave Sam as I agreed with Dean and find another vessel but do my best to continue to aid the Winchesters in their struggle against the angels and forces of Hell. However, Metatron approached me with an offer to help him rebuild Heaven. He enticed me with promises that I would have my redemption as his second-in-command in the new Heaven under his rule. A Heaven without all the warring factions and efforts to bring on their ideas of Paradise. I had hungered for a chance like this for so long that I decided to take it. But there was a catch: to prove myself capable of following Metatron's orders without question, I had to do a task for him: kill Kevin Tran and retrieve the angel and demon tablets."
"And so you just did as you were told without caring about anything but your precious 'redemption,'" says Kevin bitterly. Linda, while enraptured by Gadreel's story and more open to it than Kevin, grows angry at this reminder of what the angel did to her son, but remains quiet, silently lending Kevin her support as she can't physically comfort him.
"No. When I returned to the Bunker I intended to think it over and try to decide if the redemption Metatron offered me was worth the price. I am not an evil being and murder is against everything I believe in. However, when I returned, I was forced to make a decision quickly as I overheard you and Dean discussing how to knock an angel out so that a vessel could take control. I realized Dean had found me out and was going to get Sam to expel me. While he was well enough to survive at that point, I had grown fond of his body and it assured me protection if I chose to go to Metatron as Dean Winchester would hesitate to harm his brother, even to kill me. With little time, I manipulated the sigil you and Dean set up to suppress me so that it would fail and pretended to be Sam to figure out what Dean knew and planned before I made up my mind. After I knocked Dean out, I had three choices: I could flee and have Dean Winchester after me for the rest of my life as I had his brother's body, I could leave Sam Winchester for a new vessel and flee as well or I could take my only chance to take up Metatron's offer. I chose to follow Metatron and killed you and took the tablets. However, it is an action that has haunted me to this day. I chose not to kill Dean Winchester even though I knew he would likely come after me and despite knowing Metatron would likely want it. Despite being very disturbed by my actions, I continued to follow Metatron's orders, slaughtering my fellow angels, including a dear friend just because he asked me to and I had no way back at that point."
"If following Metatron was so bad and he had you do so much against what you supposedly believed in, why do you continue to follow him?" asked Kevin skeptically.
"I believe in honor, even in times of war. I had given Metatron my word and felt honor-bound to follow it. However, while some of Metatron's orders I had no trouble following, such as killing that anarchist Malachi, much of what he did bothered me greatly. I ignored my doubts, but Castiel asked me to join his cause as a spy. During that meeting, we were ambushed and Metatron started brainwashing innocent angels to act as suicide bombers. In any war, angelic or human, this is wrong. Metatron did this just to make himself look like the good guy and Castiel the bad guy just because he was losing the war. Seeing this, I realized Metatron is going too far in his quest for power. He's forcing angels to kill themselves, he's locked human souls out of Heaven, he ordered the death of a Prophet, something that is against everything even the most rebellious angels believe in and all so he could become the new ruler of Heaven and Earth, the new God."
"Wow, it just took angels blowing themselves up for you to see that?" asks Kevin bitterly.
"Kevin!" snaps Linda.
"No, he is right, I've been blind all this time. Or maybe I've purposefully closed my eyes to Metatron's methods in my desire to redeem myself and have my name spoken once again as a good and honest angel, not one that is considered Fallen and a joke." Gadreel hangs his head in shame and even the enraged Kevin finally starts to see that he is being earnest and honest.
"So why did you come to talk to me?" asked Kevin, calmer now.
"I need advice on what to do next and there is no one among Metatron's ranks that I can trust not to betray me. The Winchesters likely wouldn't take very well to me coming to them for advice after what I have done to them and Castiel's advice may be biased as he wants me on his side. However, you are a Prophet of the Lord, someone who interprets my Father's will. From what I saw while possessing Sam, you are also very compassionate and intelligent. I believed that if anyone could be trusted to give me advice, it was you despite the anger you no doubt felt for my actions."
"What advice are you looking for exactly," asks Kevin, somewhat wary still.
"Like I have stated, I've come to believe Metatron's methods are wrong, but he is trying to rebuild Heaven and has successfully united the other angels under his cause. I gave him my word to help him and it would be dishonorable to break it, however, I also feel it would be dishonorable to continue to aid him in his efforts. I am considering joining Castiel and the Winchesters in their efforts to take Metatron down, but I am unsure of whether or not to betray what I've committed myself to."
"Well it sounds to me like what you've committed yourself to is not helping Metatron, but redeeming your past actions. You started out by helping Sam and Dean and now you're trying by helping Metatron. What you need to do is pick the path that best leads to that. While I think you should help stop Metatron after all he's done, you need to make that choice for yourself. You need to decide if you're going to continue helping the angel who ruined Heaven in the first place and is using any means necessary to get the power he wants, or if you'll help the people who are truly trying to fix Heaven."
Gadreel sighs and considers for a moment. "Thank you, I think you have put into perspective what I have always known deep down. When Metatron gave me this offer and Dean Winchester learned the truth I should've explained to him my side of the story instead of making a rash judgment. Once I saw just how far Metatron was willing to go, I should've left and done what I could to help stop him then, not after he's cost so many people, both angel and human their lives. I also see that my single-minded determination to gain redemption has caused me, like most angels to forget our true mission: protect humanity at any cost, not war among them, try to bring on the Apocalypse and use them to our own ends. I know now what I must do and if you will release me, I will go offer Castiel and the Winchesters whatever aid I can grant them, even if it costs me my life. I know that the Winchesters at least will not greet me kindly and I deserve that after what I put them through. I just hope that they will at least hear me out. If they choose not to, I will not stop them. After what I've done, I deserve whatever they do to me."
While Linda had a feeling he was telling the truth, she was still distrustful and reluctant to release him, knowing what he'd done to Kevin and what he'd admitted to doing himself. "And why should we trust you? Hmm? For all we know, if we release you, you'll go straight to the Winchesters and kill them like you did Kevin and all those angels! This could be a trick to gain our trust and sympathy because Kevin used to be a Prophet! You probably are…"
"Mom let him go," said Kevin suddenly.
"What?" asked both Gadreel and Linda, stunned.
"I believe him. I did hear Dean telling Castiel all that Gadreel had done to help during his time in Sam and when he tried to kill me, he did hesitate a moment. I always thought I imagined it because if he hesitated then why did he go through with it? I know Dean doesn't trust angels besides Castiel for good reason, but for months he trusted Gadreel and before accepting Metatron's offer, Gadreel never let him down. I find it hard to believe that an angel that was truly evil could spend so much time with Dean Winchester without him figuring it out. Besides, he seemed completely truthful to me and I'm usually a pretty good judge of character."
"Fine," said Linda reluctantly, knowing Kevin was right and used a tarp to smother the holy fire.
"Thank you for listening to me. Prophets are supposed to speak the will of God himself and I believe that you have. Our Father may be gone from Heaven, but I believe at times He chooses to act in ways that push people, both human and angel to make the right decisions. I will not let you down."
"You're welcome." Kevin sighs. "I know I said I'd never forgive you and I can't right now, but help the Winchesters and Castiel put things right, help them finish this and it'll be the first step towards earning my forgiveness because you will have proven yourself through your actions to be truly sorry and wanting to make things right."
"I swear to you Kevin Tran, I will do whatever is necessary to stop Metatron and make things right, even if it costs me my life."
With that, Gadreel left the houseboat with a new purpose in mind: to try to set things right by aiding the Winchesters and Castiel.
At the time of his leaving, he was unaware that his final words to Kevin would be prophetic, that he would give his life in righting his wrongs, but he didn't care as long as he helped set things right. His talk with Kevin Tran, which helped solidify his purpose, led Gadreel to do what he knew all along was the right thing to do which was help his people at all costs. In death, Gadreel found some measure of the redemption he so desperately sought. When Kevin heard about the fall of Metatron and the sacrifice of Gadreel from a heartbroken Sam, Kevin began to forgive the misguided angel that killed him because, as Kevin told him, his actions proved he meant every word he said. While Sam was aware of Gadreel's part of the end of Metatron's rule of Heaven, including that he sacrificed himself to do it, he remained unaware of the part Kevin Tran, Prophet of the Lord played as Kevin and his mother decided to not burden him with further worry about them over Gadreel's visit after hearing of Dean's death. Thus Kevin's part in the restoration of Heaven went unknown and unacknowledged by both the angels and the Winchesters after Dean was restored. However, Kevin was content with this as all he felt he did was listen and give advice, not play the major roles the others did.
Author's Note: My Internet has been down for a few days so I decided to try my hand at writing. I always liked Gadreel and never thought he was evil, just misguided. I thought a scene should exist where he and Kevin talked about what happened and maybe had Kevin give him that extra push towards doing the right thing because he clearly had some regret and guilt about Kevin's death given the look on his face when he learned what Metatron wanted him to do and after he killed him. I also kinda wanted Linda Tran to meet the guy who killed her son. Given her reaction to Crowley I thought that would be interesting and she's fierce enough that I think Gadreel would be intimidated as he's not pure evil and masochistic like Crowley. Del was frightened of her when she prepared to kill him and Sam and Dean told him that she was worse than Crowley when they left killing him to her. If the story isn't that good tell me. I've never been much of a writer which is why I've focused on being a Beta rather than working on the stories I started eight years ago. This takes place in Stairway To Heaven between Gadreel learning of what Metatron did with the suicide bombing angels and him going to help Castiel, Sam and Dean. I figure there's at least a slight time gap there and if that's not enough for you, just ignore the time problem thing. By the way, the reason there's a lot of spots where Gadreel is speaking and there's no contractions and full names is because I'm trying to imitate him and he's pretty formal in the show.