Title: Yesterday Was the Day That I Was Born
Pairing: Jared/Jensen, Jared/Sandy
Words: ~36,000 overall (5,478 this chapter)
Summary: Being informed by your friends and loved ones that you're congenial to the point of boredom and occasionally nausea is sort of a drag. Which is why Jared Padalecki resolves to have an irresponsibly awesome time on his twenty-first birthday. But when his foray into excitement proves to be the iceberg of his Titanic of a life, he's left wondering who and what exactly he'll wake up to once he gets his head back above the suddenly murky waves of his own existence......or something.
Warnings/Disclaimer: AU. Hooker fic. A scene of non-con. A scene of Het. Schmoop. Humor. Everybody owns themselves.
A/N: Beta'ed by the most awesome antarshakes.
Back to Part Three
Jared steps out of the line of students waiting to get their exams back once a T.A. hands him his. On the first exam in Morgan’s class, he pulled a very respectable ninety-two. No matter how he sliced the last one—his average was going to plummet and his only hope was that it would still be in B range when all was said and done.
He moves his hand, ready to find out. In glaring red pen, circled, is a sixty-five.
His eyes close unconsciously. A high C. That’s what he’s left with. Far from his aim when he began the class. Dejectedly he folds the paper and shoves it into his backpack, following the procession heading for the exit.
“Jason,” Morgan’s gruff voice calls out. Jared pays it no attention until his professor is right there, stopping him with a hand on his shoulder. The touch makes both the bile and outrage inside him rise to the surface. Memory of him—using Jensen as vivid as it had been a week ago. Would be for a long time to come.
“Jason, do you have a minute?”
“My name is Jared,” he corrects, Morgan already steering him toward an exit.
“Have you decided what you want? An A, I presume?”
“Don’t play dumb, kid, I’ve got appointments. Tell me what you want to forget what you saw,” he enunciates impatiently. It had never entered into Jared’s mind for a moment to take advantage of what he walked in on. Blackmail isn’t the same level of wrong as prostitution for him but it is essentially gaining from the misfortune or poor decisions of others.
“I just wanted to ask about re-taking the exam because I was having—“ he starts in all honesty.
“Done,” Morgan interrupts. “What else?”
Jared gapes, “I really don’t want it like this.”
Morgan rolls his eyes. “The Boy Scout routine is adorable but I’d like to ensure to the best of my ability that this doesn’t come back to bite me in the ass. There has to be something you want.”
“Well—“ he thinks, “I think you should let other people that need to re-take the test do it too. And—maybe give some extra credit so our grades aren’t just the three exams and there’s less pressure—“
“Fine. You got it. Anything else?”
He searches, gaining confidence. “Be a little nicer to us. Try to care more than you do. I mean, you became a teacher for a reason, right? Couldn’t be because of the money. And—I don’t think many of your students would want to become the kind of teacher you are,” he finishes resolutely.
Morgan chuckles. “Kid, you are something else. I’ll see what I can do.”
Jared nods and extends his hand for Morgan to shake. He feels a little dirty but if something good can come of this, he’ll support it whole-heartedly and a handshake has always meant a lot to him.
“Tell your friend I’m still interested in doing business, if he is,” Morgan informs him, joining their hands.
Jared’s eyes narrow.
“No. Stay away from him. Don’t go to him, don’t touch him or I’ll make you very sorry.” Morgan is taken aback by the shift in his tone and demeanor. He’s somewhat surprised himself.
“Very well. We’re done here,” Morgan says, clipped. Walks off down the sidewalk and blends into the crowd of students.
He takes stock of what just happened. Really, he should be appalled at himself but as he heads for the parking lot, a satisfied smirk just won’t be suppressed.
The café is closed and the two of them, plus Sophia—several tables over—are sitting around decompressing for a few minutes before they head out. Jared sips on his black coffee—he’s a simple guy—as Jensen pecks away at his phone.
“Don’t know how you drink that with nothing in it. You have to have like a mouth of steel,” he marvels at Jared’s drink of choice.
“’S not really coffee if you put a bunch of stuff in it,” he shrugs.
“Wow, not even coffee can escape your judgment?”
Jared opens his mouth to defend his and coffee’s honor when he catches the twinkle in Jensen’s eye and allows himself to laugh which, Jensen was right, he didn’t do all that much.
“Who are you talking to? A client?” He’s pleased that he keeps his voice neutral . It was far from an unspoken agreement but Jensen had been putting in a lot of work and mentioning their night less to him so it seemed only fair that he could reciprocate and lay off his criticism of his other profession. At least for now.
“Chris and I text the details to each other before we go off on a job. Just a precaution.”
“It’s good that you have someone to watch your back.” The idea makes him genuinely happy. That Jensen’s not out there alone, prey to the vultures in the night that could steal him away so suddenly and totally that no one would ever know what had happened.
“Yeah, he taught me everything I know. I was so green in the beginning, probably would have ended up doing something stupid and getting my ass shot or worse. Hustling to survive makes you do desperate shit in general.”
Jared takes another sip in thought. Jensen hadn’t ever mentioned doing what he did for anything other than spare cash and funding his music. He feels like an insensitive, unobservant dolt for not considering he may have fallen into it for very different and not nearly as voluntary reasons.
“One of my early Johns insisted I go to this STP concert with him before we fucked and I sure as hell wasn’t going to turn it down. That’s where I met Chris. Spilled beer on him and he threatened to kick my ass,” he recalls absently.
“So it’s not just me he’s not a fan of?”
“Mmm, probably. He hates your type.” He puts bluntly.
“College boys. Heroes,” he says the last one pointedly. “Little does he know about the lying, nepotism showing blackmailer that I’ve come to know so well.”
“It’s not so bad,” Jared argues quietly. “I could get used to putting some people in their place every once in a while.”
Jensen is surprised but pleased. Holds up his water bottle in a toast. “To Jared getting a pair of balls other than the lovely set he keeps locked up in his jeans.”
“I’m not toasting to my balls,” he informs him.
“See? Before, you totally would have toasted to your balls if someone asked you.”
“Shut up.” They laugh themselves into a companionable silence as Jensen goes back to his phone, grinning. The sound of jangling keys draws Jared’s attention a moment later.
Chad is standing there, silently telling Sophia to hurry up so they can go and avoid this conversation. But Jared’s having none of it.
“Hey,” he goes to stand by Chad, more personal than conversing across the tabletops.
“Hey,” Chad echoes, eyes flitting to Sophia, rummaging through her purse.
“How’s it going?”
“Ah, good, man. Finished my Crim Law and Tort exams.” Jared nods in attentiveness. “That’s great. Congrats.”
“Yeah, thanks. You ready Soph—“
“I’ve been thinking about coming back home,” he says before he loses the will to. Mike and Tom were great to let him crash on the couch but living with the two of them is an excursion into oddity he’s not that interested in making full-time. Their sleeping patterns are all over the place, Tom is a veritable and better looking Jekyll and Hyde when Jared denies him his cigarettes and Mike won’t stop asking him what tricks his hooker boyfriend did on him for his birthday.
Sophia glances at him darkly. “Sandy’s probably coming over tomorrow night.”
“She never has to see me. I could stay in my room the whole time,” he argues ardently.
He finally meets Jared’s eyes but they don’t remain there long. “I don’t think it’s a good idea, man.”
After everything, it still feels like a twist of the knife Chad had already planted in his back. “I didn’t expect this from you. Maybe I should’ve but I really didn’t.”
“What do you want to me say, Jared? Why didn’t you just tell Sandy you were gay?” The few students milling around the cafeteria hang back to listen but no one is moving a muscle after that bombshell. But this isn’t about that and Jared is sick and tired of responding to it.
“Why didn’t you just tell me you were in love with her?” he shoots back. Sophia’s eyes narrow and she turns on him. “So it’s true?”
“I don’t want to hear it, Chad. You are so fucking transparent and I’m not interested in being your consolation prize.” She snatches up her purse and knocks into him as she stalks away, leaving Chad glaring dangerously.
“This is how it is, huh? You never were a nice guy, you were just a fag all along! And you hired your fucking boy toy to work with you!” Jensen’s chair screeches as he bolts to his feet and makes a beeline for Chad. But Jared holds him back, speaking calmly.
“I always did everything I could for you Chad, and sometimes, sometimes I thought it actually sunk in. But in the end, you’re just a spoiled, selfish, unappreciative jerk and you’re not going to talk about someone that’s been a real fucking friend to me.”
“Or what?” His bravado is faltering badly.
“Or—I’m going to kick your ass. And then Jensen is going to kick your ass. Probably Sophia too.”
Chad isn’t any more of a fighter than Jared is and he shakes his head in anger. “Fuck this. Have fun buttfucking each other senseless, I don’t give a shit.”
“My name is on the lease too. I’m coming back to the apartment,” he says after Chad’s retreating back. He flips he and Jensen off and shoves open the glass door.
Scowling, Jensen rubs calming circles into his back. “You alright?”
“I’m—good. Long time coming, I guess.” His eyes are still wide and disbelieving that he actually told someone off. Chad of all people. It didn’t feel wrong. He turns to Jensen. “Do you want to come over tomorrow?”
“Don’t you have to move back in?”
“Nah, I only had a couple of bags with me. I snuck in when they weren’t there to change out my books and clothes and stuff.”
After a hearty snort, he gives Jared’s back a final pat. “That’s my boy.”
“If you hadn’t told me you wanted to be a teacher like your Mom when you grow up I’d guess—G.I. Joe?” Jensen hops onto the bed beside him. Apartment devoid of Sophia, who was royally pissed at Chad, and Chad who always did suck at confrontation despite his big talk. He was probably hitting on girls at the cafeteria out of pride-shielding reflex at that very moment.
“Ha, ha ha.” He offers Jensen the bowl of popcorn he just made but he waves it off. Jared scoops up a handful and starts munching.
“Really. How’d you end up so—wholesome?” Jensen asks curiously, eying him like a specimen.
Jared smiles bashful and hesitant. “Not so wholesome anymore.”
Jensen feigns immense shock. “You used to be such a fine, upstanding young man. Ah, you’re still squeakier clean than anyone I know.”
“Thanks?” Jared chuckles then starts to pick at the bedspread. “My mom—she was on her own, you know? And after my Dad—“ The futile rage starts to build up in his throat and he has to stop for a moment. “We had to move so he couldn’t find us. I just—never wanted to be him.”
Jensen tilts his face up. “You’re nothing like that. Not even in the same ballpark.”
“I never told anyone about it. Even Chad. Just that my Dad left when I was a kid. Apparently not too late to royally screw me up anyway.”
“What the hell are you talking about?”
“People think I’m cute in a novelty sort of way or they laugh at me or are convinced I have some ulterior motive. Doing good things, I always hoped it would inspire other people to do the same but it just turned me into a joke. Sometimes I’m sorry I ever bother.”
“Don’t be. You want to see the best in people. The bitch is that people in all likelihood are just going to let you down.”
“Can I ask you something?”
“That day I went to your place, Chris said you went to school.”
“For a little while.”
“What happened?” Jensen’s face contorts into a grimace like he’s trying to swallow the words.
“Sorry. I’ve always had a problem minding my own business.”
“Stop apologizing for everything.”
“Sorry.” He grins cheekily, throwing up a vague hand. “I’m not good with this sort of thing. And it’s not like I didn’t tell you enough the other night.”
“Wanted to show me a lot of things too.”
It reminds him of something that had been nagging at his conscience since Jensen came to work at the café. “I’m sorry if I hurt you—when I was like that.”
“You didn’t hurt me. Asked me if I was okay a thousand times, especially when I went down on you. But overall, you were—soft. Like we were in love or something. Kinda messed with my head,” he admits.
“How do you talk about it like that? Like it’s nothing.” He hopes it doesn’t come off too judgmental when it’s a question he genuinely wants to know the answer to.
“Flesh and friction. The analogy I use is a really juicy hamburger. You just want to enjoy your burger and not think about the killing fields, yeah?”
“I feel bad for the cows but it still makes me nauseas thinking of them touching you like that.”
“Because I’m so helpless?”
“Because that’s not how it’s supposed to be. It’s supposed to be with someone you care about, it’s supposed to make you happy. Not be a chore or a means to end.” Like it was with Sandy, he realizes.
He changes the subject. “Want to watch a movie?”
“Alright, let’s see what you got.”
“Spiderman, Batman, Superman, the Rocketeer,” Jensen flips through Jared’s DVD’s. “The utter shock I’m feeling, there just are no words—“ he deadpans. “Elektra! Ugh.” He holds up the offending film. “If I find a Catwoman DVD I’m outta here.”
Jared scrambles off his bed to stop him and Jensen lets out a booming laugh as he tackles into him. “Meow, watch out, this kitten has claws.” Jared sits on his thighs to keep him from kicking and manages to wrestle each wrist into each of his own oversized hands.
“Oww. Forgot how strong you are,” Jensen pants, gazing up at him. The smile slides from Jared’s face at the intensity of it, fear creeping in. Pressed against him, holding him down—his dick is beginning to stir in his jeans, deprived of a warm body for weeks.
Jensen licks his lips and his eyes track the movement in slow motion. He cranes his head up and leans forward, and Jared can almost feel those lips against his own already. Sense memory filtering back and quickening his pulse.
“Stop—doing that,” he gets out a moment before Jensen touches their lips together. He lets his head fall back against the floor heavily in frustration. “Then stop being such a fucking cocktease and let me up,” he groans.
Jared stands up and settles on the razor thin edge of the bed, accurate representation of his mood. Tries not to watch as Jensen runs a relieving hand over the bulge in his pants. “You’re so uptight, dude. You act like you’ve never had sex before and we both know—“
“I’ve had plenty of girlfriends,” he refutes before Jensen can finish that thought.
“Uh-huh. Lots of girlfriends and lots of vag which I’m sure you love so much.” Dripping with sarcasm, as he expected and he is done with this perpetual conversation.
“Whatever you say,” he concedes tiredly.
“Does it not strike you as odd that the first chance your dick has to get away from your brain—it goes for ass? ‘Cause I would sit up and take notice if it were me.”
“Okay,” he decides on the spur of the moment.
“Okay—you admit you like cock?”
“Okay, what do I have to do to prove to you that it was just the alcohol,” he asks in a no-nonsense voice.
“Tell me you didn’t get turned on just now.”
“Fine, I didn’t.”
“Bullshit. Your novice lies aren’t going to get past me. I’m a master.”
“How am I ever supposed to prove it then?”
“Alcohol’s the independent variable. Take it away and let’s see what happens.”
Jared’s brain isn’t the swiftest chariot in these situations. “Wait, you want to have test sex?” The apprehension must be radiating off of him because Jensen wrinkles his nose.
“That’s right, you have that thing about assholes unless you’re sloppy drunk. How about I blow you and we have to look each other in the eyes the whole time? If it’s just moisture and suction getting you off, you’re straight. If it’s me getting you off, then you got some peanut butter in your jelly.”
“This is ridiculous.”
“I can always regale you with more tidbits of what you fuck like during a blackout? Oh, the way your hips bucked when I tongued your balls,” he recalls affectionately. Normally, it’s pure unpleasant fidgeting when someone talks that way around him, crass and dirty, but this time he has the actual experience to compare it to, albeit scattered in fragments across his mind. Warm, wet brush over the seam of his sack.
“You like that?” He swallows heavily as Jensen catches on.
Sandy. Sandy. Sandy. Chants it like a mantra. Because he’s just missing her, only an unfortunately timed coincidence that he was with Jensen the last night he was with her.
The two are bleeding into one another beyond his crumbling control. In his mind, Sandy’s touches are taking on a rougher edge, pads of her fingers calloused and worn instead of silken soft. Strong hands planted on his chest, short, blunt nails skidding their way down it. Slim shoulders suddenly as broad as his own.
“It was my come on your stomach that morning,” he murmurs conspiratorially at Jared’s ear, eliciting a shiver.
“Those big paws jerking me while you were still inside.” He puts his hands on Jared’s clenched thighs. “Tell me again you don’t want this.”
“Liar, liar—” There goes the button of Jared’s jeans. Followed by the zipper. He’s paralyzed. “—Pants on fire. Better take ‘em off.” With a few rough pulls Jensen has them removed and tossed carelessly, hands at the waistband of his boxers.
“Gonna stop me?”
Jared gapes because it’s unreal. He’s not here, somehow ended up in someone else’s body that he doesn’t know how to work.
Jensen exposes him, eying his needy, stiff cock worshipfully. Casting his eyes to Jared’s, he wraps his lips around the head and gives a single suck. Which is when Jared comes as rapidly as if no one had ever done this to him before. It feels like they haven’t.
It catches Jensen off-guard and he splutters half of it onto his chin, Jared’s cock, the bedspread. Unfazed, he gathers up the release from his face and licks at it in victory, staring Jared dead in the eyes again.
He bolts up and dashes out into the sanctuary of the bathroom. Wrapping a towel around himself in a feeble effort to cover his shame. He sits in a tense pose on the lid of the toilet until he hears Jensen letting himself out the front door.
Jensen whistles breezily as he kicks the door shut behind himself and drops a bag of burgers onto the table. Chris looks up from a notebook, spitting a pen cap out of his mouth. “’Bout time you got back from your playdate. Called Steve. He thinks he can get us that amp cheap.”
He pops a piece of gum into his mouth instead of reacting to him. Chris’ eyes narrow in suspicion. “Thought you spent the afternoon with the Boy Scout.”
“So why are you chewing gum like you only do to get the taste of jizz out of your mouth?”
“Keeping my jaw limber,” he rolls his eyes and switches the t.v. on, stretching out on the bed and smashing his face into a pillow once he finds a baseball game. Chris hasn’t averted his gaze. “You don’t stop staring at my ass I’m going to think you want a piece of it,” he mumbles through the cotton.
“You blew him, didn’t you? For free.”
“Don’t give me that. If we banged chicks, every now and then you’d find one you felt outside of the job too. Because let me tell you, the kid’s proportional.”
“Nuh-uh. ‘S more than that. You sling overpriced pastries with the motherfucker, it’s not like you just fuck him on the side when the mood strikes.”
“I’m tired, you got a point?”
Chris comes to stand over him. “Sometimes I don’t know if I ever taught you a god damn thing, boy.”
“Overreact much? I know. Everybody experiments in college. The suburban kids think hustling’s exciting deep down no matter what they say,” he recites.
“Forget that shit. That kid? Thinks it’s his own personal job to save the world and every poor whore in it. On the long list of reasons he’s got to pay attention to you, you are circling the bottom, you better believe that and wake your ass up. We got a trip to plan, are you focused or not?”
Jensen sits up and takes the gum out of his mouth. “I’m focused,” he answers, subdued after the tongue lashing.
“Jen, you know it’s for the best that you don’t take it too seriously. That’s how they are. They play with their shiny toys and then go back to the ‘burbs with their pieces of paper, the respectable wife, pop out 2.5 kids. Leaving you a distant, neglected memory with runny eyeliner and hurt feelings.”
The reality of Chris’ caustic words hits him akin to a ton of bricks. Rookie fucking mistake letting a moptop and dimples blind you. Put a bunch of dancing, fantastic crap in your head that exists solely in tedious romcoms.
Jensen forgot he knows firsthand what people like Jared turn into. “You’re right.”
“No shit Sherlock. Come on. I made a few changes to the bridge in Eyes.”
Flipping through his notebook, he points out various scribbles and then demonstrates them on his guitar. Jensen follows his talking and makes suggestions with a faint scowl for the rest of the night.
On the fourth ring Jared’s thumb hovers uncertainly over the disconnect button until he hears the distant voice of his mother.
“J.T. are you there?”
A wave of relief washes over him. Spring Break was in a couple of days, he would see her then, but more than enough time had passed since he’d given in to the urge to call her. Unusual (and sexual) occurrences of the last two weeks or so his primary deterrent.
Every time he foolishly assumed he had finagled a tentative grasp on the situation, it tumbled down around him like some cruel, mocking house of cards with the Kings laughing as they stab themselves in the brain with their swords.
Fact: He let Jensen go down on him. Fact: He had never felt so turned on yet scared shitless during sex in his entire life, including his first time. Fact: He came hard and fast enough to rival those first sticky fumblings when he discovered it felt good to touch, “down there.”
Fact: He’s on the phone with his mother and she’s waiting for him to extract himself from his gay fantasies.
“It’s really good to hear your voice,” he says wearily. Nothing else is as capable of grounding his reeling head right now.
“Amongst other things.”
“Tell me about it, Mister. I’ve got time. How was your birthday? Did you have fun like I told you to?” She ribs.
“I—“ And that’s definitely not a question that could be answered in an interesting variety of ways. “I—met this guy. A friend,” he settles on.
“What’s his name?”
“Jensen. He’s not a student, but we work at the café together. He’s—a musician too. Hasn’t let me hear him sing yet though.”
“Aww. So adorable.”
“Yeah, we really hit it off. We’re close,” He’s walking a fine line, pulse thundering in his ears. His mother won’t read the ambiguity in his words, he’s almost positive, but it’s a risky gambit to even voice them all the same.
“Maybe he should come to visit over the Break if you’re so in love with him,” she suggests.
He nearly chokes on the spit in his mouth. “What?”
“Oh, I know the lingo. Bromance, right? If he’s not doing anything, you should invite him over.”
“Bro—“ he wonders what student explained the concept of bromance to his mother and the urge to laugh cuts through the tension. “I guess. But I think he’ll probably be busy over the break.”
“That’s too bad. I so wanted to meet your new man.”
“Mom! Subject change please,” he whines like a twelve—no thirteen year old, damn it. She chuckles at him.
“How’re Sandy and Chad?”
Probably anally fucking like bunnies, his mind supplies darkly as his face scrunches up in a mixture of disgust and anger. “They’re—good,” he forces out awkwardly.
When she doesn’t respond immediately, he fears she may have latched onto the offness of the whole conversation at last but she returns with. “Hate to interrupt, sweetie but I’m getting another call. If I don’t talk to you again, I’ll see you this weekend! Love you!”
“Love you too Mom.”
Jared has to get ready for work. Although, he thinks his morning has been more geared toward being able to see Jensen. You know, if he’s being honest.
Jared is assuredly not hurrying into the café because Jensen started an hour before him. Just like he totally didn’t trip over his feet in that non-hurry. And that surge of apprehension and excitement, non-existent.
All of it is evidently for naught because when he finally steps into the café, only the usual thinly veiled hostility of Sophia meets him. “Where’s Je—Ross?” he asks her.
“Thought you two would’ve come in together,” she quips.
“He was supposed to open but he no-showed his shift and didn’t call. Misha called me all pissy this morning to see if I wanted it.”
His face falls. Jensen ran. Got freaked over Jared’s stupid emotional honesty that apparently knows no gender in its ability to scare people off and ruin his relationships. Friendships. With benefits. Whatever.
He’s half tempted to run off, all impulsive child-like, to find him. Know for a fact that Jared the Amazing Doofus just chalked up another one for the annals. Eight hours here is eternity stretching out before him. Jensen may have already left town by the time he’s free to search him out.
Sophia brings him back to reality by throwing an apron at him. A line is forming but he isn’t able to muster his usual smile as he operates the other register, pouring out drinks with a grimace. Before the crowd clears out, a girl tells him he looks like he drank bad milk and wishes him and Sophia a better day.
Looking over, he catches a brief glimpse of gratitude from Sophia as the girl gathers her drink and bustles off that vanishes when she notices him. She grabs a rag to start cleaning up the counter and Jared hovers nearby.
“How’s it going with Chad?”
“Chad can blow me. And so can Sandy for that matter,” she responds without looking up.
“They’re not—“ he starts in dismay.
“Have fun listening to your exes fuck through the wall from now on, I bet Sandy’s a screamer,” she bites out, voice wavering slightly.
“I know you probably don’t want to hear it but I’m—“
“Just leave me alone, Jared.”
She’s quiet for the rest of the shift. Obeys all his requests and without attitude. It’s kind of like working with a pod person. But, sympathy for her proves an unhealthy distraction for the rest of the shift. Commiserating in his head on the shared feeling of being abandoned by the people you care about. Thought you knew.
For as long as they’d known one another, it had been hope and not belief that Chad valued their friendship the way Jared did. With his money and his popularity. Cooler friends than Jared that probably liked him for a lot less. Wanted to think there was more to him than that. Pointless.
Sandy—the Sandy he cared about would never have gone out with her best friend’s boyfriend, her ex-boyfriend’s best friend.
Jared doesn’t know anything. But he knows that.
His nervous anticipation for the end of the day gradually turns to subtle dread.
“Is Jensen home?” Chris has the door open as minimally as possible. Fills what space there is with himself so Jared can’t see in the room.
“I know he’s in there,” he sighs in exasperation.
“What do you plan to do about it?”
“I just want to talk to him.”
“And I already told you he’s not here.”
Jared makes a move to get past him and Chris blocks it, blinking innocently at him. “Did you know that your nostrils flare when you get pissed?”
He wouldn’t know. But he didn’t come all this way for nothing. Faking Chris out, he uses his reach to push the door open from above his head, revealing Jensen on a bed, shoveling Chinese take-out into his mouth with headphones on. He glances at Jared disinterestedly and takes them out.
“Why weren’t you at work? You didn’t call or anything,” he blurts out, having waited long enough to get him face to face.
“Something came up. A Mr. Smith, eight inches.”
“Why didn’t you call me?”
An incredulous chuckle. “Are you serious? You’re not my keeper, dude.”
“But I thought—“
“Experiment, Jared. I was just doing you a favor. I’m not your boyfriend.”
Something is different about his whole demeanor. Usual amused gaze shuttered and impassive. Sarcasm tinged with a cutting incisiveness that reminds him more of—Chris than Jensen. Huh. For once, it may not have been his fault. Not if Chris was the cynical bug in Jensen’s ear. What he felt, before the sex, didn’t seem like pretend.
“No, you’re my friend. And I worry about you.”
Chris snickers from behind him like Jared’s the nerdy kid who worked the nerve up to ask to sit at the popular kids’ table. Predictably, Jensen takes his cue from it.
“Well, I’m all in one piece. Thanks for dropping by,” Jensen brushes him off, Chris boring holes into his back with his eyes.
“It’s just—I’m leaving for break tomorrow and I wanted to make sure everything was cool. That you were gonna show up again.”
“You’re getting to visit your Mom?” There’s an inkling of interest under the blandness and Jared pounces on it regardless.
“Yeah. Been looking forward to it after—“ he clears his throat. “Um, I don’t know if you were doing anything but she invited you to come over. Even if it’s just for a couple of days or something,” he mumbles.
“How fucking adorable,” Chris butts in. When Jared looks back at him though, Jensen is wearing an endearing, little smile at his apparent cuteness. “Thanks, Jared but I think we’re going to be busy.”
“That’s cool. Won’t stop me from calling to check on you while I’m gone though,” he throws in.
“Yeah, I know,” Jensen sighs in exaggerated suffering. Jared takes care to keep the burgeoning smile off his face when turns back around to find Chris holding the door open for him.
“Bye,” Jared offers them both before Chris closes it an inch from his nose.
“Suck my dick,” Jensen pre-warns him.
“And they call it puppy love,” he croons as Jensen puts his headphones back on to drown him out, sneaking a last glance at the door. Bitch is singing Donny Osmond bubblegum and has the nerve to make fun of him?