So, tonight was a little different, because I went out to dinner and drank, but then I watched the show at home on my laptop... but don't worry! I still took very poor notes! So, as usual, all quotes are paraphrased and I'm not going to remember things exactly.
-Yup, that basically sums it up - thanks notes!
Why is she in the first five minutes! I want her to live! She's gorgeous and awesome! Barcade owner is annoyed that she's not leaving... also, is this an actual barcade in Vancouver? And if it is, where is it? I really like pinball and I think I saw some pinball machines... now, mind you, there are pinball machines in my own neighbourhood, but STILL.
- patch girl
Bartender goes to take the trash out, and that's when patch girl strikes! And we find out that the gorgeous video-game woman is Benjamin! An angel! She's disarmed and starts to chant in enochian - which patch girl obviously wants her to do, because she tells us as much. Cas and two other angels hear her.
We find out that part of what Cas was doing when Sam and Dean were away was trying to track down Kelly Kline, who is preggos with Lucifer's baby. Meanwhile, Mum's off hunting shapeshifters, a fact that Dean's all huffy about, but Sam accepts as "of COURSE any mother of theirs would prefer to be hunting shapeshifters then making them soup." And he's got a point. Dean just knew her in her equivalent of Sam's "Stanford Years"...so, his perception of her personality was a little off, or... not off so much as not the full picture of how multifacited she is.
Cas waltzes through the room then, commenting on how he'd kill Billie again if he had the choice, and "cosmic consequences" can go fuck themselves, or some such. Which gets Dean huffy again. Then Cas announces that he has to leave on personal business - and Sam is all like "what personal business?" which is really just code for "please get me away from my huffy brother!" Cas admits that a friend has called for help, so Sam's all like "I'll come too!" and Dean's all like "me too, so I can stop you from doing anything else stupid." and Sam is like "ugh. yay."
So, then they get the awkward 2/3rds of the team are mad at each other car ride. The awkward angry silence is bugging Sam, but Dean won't even let him put on music. So, he tries to get more info from Cas, but that just devolves into Cas not talking to Sam and then Dean and Cas sniping at each other... during which, Cas criticizes Dean by claiming that Benjamin was "sarcastic, but always thoughtful and appreciative too." Ooo, that's quite the burn by Cas standards.
Sam obviously sees Cas criticizing Dean as the genuine sign of the apocalypse that it is and manages to interrupt and get Cas to actually focus on the case, by telling Sam about Benjamin. We find out that Benjamin got his vessel in Madrid, she was super devote and he REALLY cared for her... in the sense that Cas doesn't really want to put words to it, and Sam diplimatically calls her Benjamins "friend", which, is basicallly as on-the-downlow a cover as you can get. But it all boils down to the fact that Bejamin would never let harm come to her and is never careless with her safety.
(Also, despite my preferred headcanon that angels are genderless, Cas definitely uses language here that indicates that Bejamin is male, its just his vessel that is female... and fair enough, I can't always get what I want, and that's sort of cool in a different way... the fact that angels don't really care whether their vessel's sex matches the angel's gender. Still, for the purposes of the fic that I'm halfway through writing, I'm going to keep my headcanon on this one too.)
Meanwhile, eye-patch girl is whispering to herself.... tracking down Castiel, I believe.
Sam, Dean and Cas check out the site of Benjamin's murder. The broken wings on the wall are quite impressive, but they give Cas a huge case of the sads. Dean finds the angel blade that eye-patch girl dropped under the table and Cas confirms it's not one of Benjamin's.
So, then it's off to meet Castiel's former commander! Cas has to go in alone, because Isim doesn't like humans... that always bodes well. You know who else didn't like humans? Uriel.
Sure enough, Isim and his buddy Mirabel... I just realized that Isim is probably spelled Ishim. I was being...Irish? I don't know why I thought a single s made a "sh" sound. My brain is weird.
Anyway, Ishim is a real piece of work, and he and Mirabel both are super condescending to Cas and insulting him - right off the bat they imply that Cas is careless, given that he DOESN'T have his original vessel like they do. Ishim also says that he liked Cas' old vessel better. Of course, we find out the main source of their beef is the whole broken-wings thing, and how Cas was involved in that somehow. Then they go on to mention that Castiel's own flight he commanded had Balthazar and Uriel in it, and now they're both dead....which doesn't imply good things about Cas, either.
Then Ishim is really cool, because when Mirabel mentions that some people think Cas is a hero - he's like "is he a hero, or a spanner in the works? Who knows?" and I'm like HE'S A SPANNER!!! AND THAT MAKES HIM A HERO!! Because OH MAN, my favourite headcanon of ALL when it comes to Castiel is that he was MADE to be a spanner in the works - that God was like "nope, this one is going to be different - he's going to gum up the works whenever the angels are getting out of hand." Even though I know other people don't like that idea, because they prefer that Castiel's rebellion/spanner-ness is a product of Winchester influence... which I admit is more romantic... I just prefer the option that's more theologically/philosophically interesting, so sue me.
Also, is this the first instance of the angel's referring to their "garrisons" or units as "flights"??! Because I know I've seen that in fic before and loved it, but I don't think it's ever been canon until now. Someone correct me if I'm wrong.
My point is, I was super jazzed about this whole conversation.
Ishim then REALLY rubs salt in Castiel's wounds by telling him that two other angels in their flight have died in the last two years and they didn't bother telling Castiel because they didn't think he'd care. Ouch. Cas like ONLY CARES. Basically, if Cas is conscious, he's caring about someone or everyone, so to suggest otherwise is ridiculous.
Meanwhile, outside, Sam accurately predicts when Dean can't wait any longer and storms into the diner to join Cas. I love how Sam obviously thinks that's a REALLY bad idea, but then just follows him in and also tries to cram himself into the tiny diner two seater bench with Dean and Cas, and they all look ridiculous and Sam is just like "I'm just going to play this like it's not the stupidest thing ever. We look super cool and I don't know what you're talking about."
Then Mirabel makes the fatal mistake of leaving the main party to check outside, where she inevitably gets killed.
Back inside, Ishim is going on about how far Cas has fallen, given that he used to be a soldier and a warrior and now he has no wings, no home (thus confiming Cas has been well and truly exiled from heaven), a ratty coat, and poorly trained monkeys.
Now that someone ELSE is picking on Cas, Dean will not tolerate such slurs against his friend! Awww, friends/brothers - "you can't insult him, that's MY JOB! ONLY I'M ALLOWED TO MAKE MY BROTHER CRY!" :P
Ishim also really likes sugar in his coffee, my goodness.
Then it's off to see where Mirabel got to, and she got dead, guys. Eye-patch girl is still there, and makes a super blinding light that flash-blinds Dean, but Sam looks away in time to save his eyes and gets her plate number.
Also, Cas and Ishim totally know her.
In the basically ONE time that angels came to earth (though we find out it wasn't the ONLY time) between, I guess, the whole Jesus thing and the apocalypse - Castiel and the garrison went to Orono, Maine in 1901. Cas had a female vessel, who was still super cute! Oh my goodness, her little proud smile when she announces that everyone is there. Also, he's in a similar colour pallette, and that's cool.
Anyway, they came to Maine because of a Nephilim. Apparently, Nephilim are so powerful that "entire worlds die" when they're created... makes me really admire that girl that was just a waitress, back in S8.
We find out that Achabel, an angel, has taken a human wife and they have a kid. Achebel comes out and gives a speech about how great humans are, and he's basically a proto-Castiel, my goodness... like, he really loves those humans. The penalty for creating a nephilim is apparently death, and they kill him straight away. Then Ishim goes in to kill the Nephilim.
Back outside the flashback, Castiel waits for the Winchester's judgey faces. Ishim is also all defensive about how it was a proper mission and everything that they completed.
He also tells us that Lily, the mother that he spared out of kindness, was a professor of apocalyptic literature and knew fluent enochian. That she's now made a demonic pact for power and has vowed revenge and such... and she has enough power that she's immune to being smitted, which is pretty dang impressive... though I'm sure angel's smiting abilities are a little lessened from what they were.
Sam decides the only thing to do is for him and Dean to go reason with her and explain how Castiel is different now, and doesn't deserve to die. Castiel doubts this plan, because he knows that they killed her family and she's not just going to quit just because Castiel wouldn't necessarily do it again. Castiel rightly points out that if Sam were her, he wouldn't quit either... and Sam knows he's right, because he basically says "yeah, I get like SUPER REVENGEY" but he only says that with his face.
Anyway, it's the only plan they have, so off Sam and Dean go...
Lily, meanwhile, heals herself.
Cas also heals Ishim... and btw, if we didn't think her powers looked a little angelic rather than demonic before, we definitely see the similarities now - show doesn't have to be QUITE so heavy-handed with the parallel scenes.
Ishim accuses Cas of going gooey for the "simions" and tells him that the reason angels are forbidden from fraternizing with humans isn't because angels are a danger to humans, but because humans are a danger to angels. Castiel disagrees and claims that Dean and Sam have only made him stronger.
Sam and Dean, meanwhile, arrive at Lily's motel. There's a little standoff in the hallway, but Lily doesn't want to harm humans, so they eventually do get to talking, while staying at least five feet from each other at all times.
Lily starts telling the story from HER point of view, and this is the journey I went through via my notes:
Which basically means that the long and the short of it is that Ishim lied. It was Ishim that Lily summoned during her research, and it was Ishim that grew obsessed with her (and now I laugh that her name is Lily, because it's kind of like a really weird AU version of the Snape story in Harry Potter or something)... Lily then called Achebel to protect her, which he did, but the Ishim showed up with a garrison, because apparently he REALLY doesn't take rejection well. So, he kills Achebel and then kills her HUMAN daughter, May, just so that she too will feel pain about how she rejected Ishim. Super gross.
Sam and Dean believe her and have an awkward conversation about how they're pretty sure she's telling the truth and they need to call Cas. Which Dean does, but Cas doesn't pick up.
Back with Ishim and Cas, we find out that healing Ishim has taken a lot out of Cas, and it's all sad times.
Oh man, somewhere in there... and I totally missed where... Cas and Dean have a great conversation about how Dean doesn't understand why Cas lets Ishim give him so much shit (oh, it was back at the diner!) and Cas basically says that he'll take as much shit as they want as long as it means they let him help them. And that... basically sums up Cas right there.
Back at the motel, Sam and Lily chat, now sitting around in her hotel room. I'm super distracted during this scene, because I was pretty sure the eyepatch was on the otherside, but then that's a pretty huge mistake, so I realize that I must be wrong...but it's still pretty trippy to not remember correctly and think it's on the wrong side. Maybe because she was looking in a mirror in that one scene? That must have been it.
Anyway, we find out that the reason Lily is so young, yet so old, is because she's been biding her time. She couldn't figure out how to hunt angels down when they had wings, but she got her opportunity when they were cast out of the heaven and could no longer flit off. Lily basically boasts that her super power is really patience. Well, that and angel magic... Sam is like "you can do that?" and I'm like... "uh, Sam, your grandfather timetraveled using enochian, you tried to close the gates of HELL using enochian!! DID YOU NOT THINK THAT WAS MAGIC CONNECTED TO ANGELS?!!?!"
Anywho, my skepticism aside, we find out that the way Lily uses it has a heavy price, in that it burns through her soul... and will, eventually, leave her soulless. She already no longer dreams.
She then drops the ulitmate, and brilliant, manipulative remark, when she says that once Ishim kills Sam's brother for uncovering the truth, Sam will join her in her revenge, and she's fine with waiting for that. Sam, of course, isn't.
Dean runs into the place where he left Cas and Ishim to discover just Cas (seemingly) hanging out, and looking worn out after healing Ishim. Dean immediately tells Cas what Lily said, and Ishim, of course, is skulking not too far away behind Dean.
Ishim responds to the accusations by basically not lying very well, trying to make Cas choose between Ishim and Dean (when will these angels learn?) and then just beating the shit out of Castiel, then telling him that he's going to kill Dean and "save" Cas that way.
Dean draws a banishing sigil, but Ishim points out that Cas is WAY too injured to be blasted to whoknows and it might kill him. So Dean doesn't use the sigil. However, all hope is not lost, as Lily and Sam run in to the room.
Cas comes to the backstabbing rescue again, when Lily gets disarmed and then can only hold Ishim still for so long. Cas tells her that she "held him long enough"...so it was a joint effort.
Lily is having confusing "what do I do with my life now?" feelings. And when Dean asks her if she's done, she's like "revenge is what I am" and Dean says "wrong answer, you're done!' and gets all mad, because of course there's only one angel left from the flight that killed Achabel and her daughter, and that's his BFF Cas.
Cas tells Dean to shut-it though, because he's got this. Instead of begging for his life or letting her kill him or whatever, he instead gives her a heartfelt and genuine apology, explains that he didn't know the truth, but also doesn't excuse himself from responsibility, since "ignorance is no excuse"... so, yeah, a genuine apology and genuine remorse go a long way. Cas also offers that if she's unsatisfied with that, he'll be waiting for her to kill him... but she thanks him and leaves, so I think we're okay on that front.
Dean and Sam then reassure Cas that he's not weak, and that he HAS changed, but he's changed for the better. Then Dean tries the geniune emotional communication thing and tells him that he's just worried about the cosmic consequences, but he understands why Cas saved them and he appreciates it. Cas tells him that he'd do it "even if it cost me my life" to which Sam mutters a stressed "don't say that, man" awww...sassy.
Then they talk about the fact that they ARE technically hunting a nephilim... and not just any nephilim but apparently while regular nephilim are the most dangerous being in all of creation (which, wow), the one they're after is the offspring of an archangel (who happens to be Lucifer) so there's no telling how powerful they're going to be!
Dean and Sam wonder what Cas is going to do when they find Kelly and the kid though, because yes, the nephilim is dangerous when it grows into it's power - but it's still just a mother and a child. Cas admits that "there was a time I wouldn't have hesitated, but now I don't know" and then basically leaves it to "let's drink and hope we find a better way."
Which, isn't really a solution... and the part of me that has extremely dubious morals is just like "you know, there are OTHER angels still... couldn't you just let Heaven deal with it?" But then I guess even KNOWING that there are angels out there killing a baby nephilim would make you complicit in the death. Ah, ethics.... I did not study you in university.
Let me know what you thought in comments!!!