Word Count: ~ 4,200
Disclaimer: Look up fiction in the dictionary. You won’t find a picture of this story, but the definition of the word ‘fiction’, which this is.
Summary: In which Jensen continues to be accident prone and Jared continues to fret. At least it's nice to know that some things never change.
Notes: This is a timestamp in the reinventing love 'verse and it takes place the summer after magnets. It was written for a_ro_d, who made a donation for this story over at my fic for charity exchange. Beta by the always fabulous kamikaze_redux.
Jared and Jensen are on the floor.
Don’t ask why. They just are. It may have something to do with their raucous morning (more like early afternoon) lovemaking, it might not. The world may never know.
(Okay, fine. They were fucking so hard that they fell off of the bed. And then just kept fucking. Now they’re just cuddling. On the floor.)
“Something’s in my back,” Jensen mumbles. “I think it’s the top hat.”
“Strip Monopoly wasn’t our greatest idea,” Jared replies. His face is buried in Jensen’s sweaty neck so the words come out sort of muffled. Jensen grins lazily and tangles his fingers in Jared’s damp hair.
“I forgot how fucking long that game took to play,” Jensen replies. “Can’t wait that long for sex.”
They lay there in silence for a few minutes, chests rising and falling in perfect sync.
“Summer is boring sometimes,” Jensen breathes. He shifts slightly and reaches back to grab the game piece. He was wrong. It was the iron.
“Well, you’re playing lacrosse in what,” Jared pauses to look at the clock, “an hour?”
“Something like that,” Jensen replies. “Sucks you can’t come and watch. I know how much it turns you on.”
“Duty calls,” Jared says with a shrug. “You turn me on just fine when you’re not covered in dirt and grass stains.”
“Good to know.” Jensen stretches languidly in the ray of sunlight coming through the window. Jared’s eyes rake across his naked body hungrily.
“Speaking of,” he mumbles as he slides his hand down Jensen’s taut stomach. “Think we have time for one more round?”
“There’s always time for one more round,” Jensen replies just before crashing their mouths together.
Jensen really loves playing lacrosse.
It’s something he’s insanely good at. He carried their high school team through the championships and scored the winning goal. It was one of his proudest moments.
Now he just plays for fun – with old teammates or friends who love the game. They get together sometimes when everyone is in town to play in the park. Jensen lives for these times. He loves putting on his gear and running around that field. He could do it every day.
No matter how good he is, it doesn’t mean he shouldn’t have to take basic safety precautions.
Jensen’s team is up by two. Losers have to buy pizza and beer. Call Jensen competitive, but he really wants that pizza.
“Yo, nineteen!” Drew calls. Jensen perks up at the sound of his number and turns just in time to catch the ball in his net. He goes sprinting up the field, spinning a circle around Kevin just in time to throw the ball into the goal. Jensen throws his arms up in the air and Drew runs by to bump their gloves together.
Jensen takes his place back in the middle of the field. The unbuckled straps of his helmet skim across the sweaty skin of his neck and he takes off running when the ball is back in play.
Dane passes it to him and he jumps up to catch it, but on the way down he’s hit on both sides by members of the opposing team. The wind escapes his lungs in a quick rush and the momentum sends his unbuckled helmet flying off of his head.
“Jensen!” The voice is frantic. “Watch out!”
Jensen turns just in time to see the lacrosse stick careening towards his skull. It connects with a sick crack, and Jensen crumples to the ground.
His eyes don’t open.
“Fuck, fuck. Okay, the ambulance is on its way.”
“Shit, Jensen. Wake up, man!”
“No, don’t fucking move him. I said don’t!”
“I didn’t mean to – “
“We fucking know that, alright? Your sorry ain’t doing shit right now.”
“I got his phone from his bag. Jared isn’t answering.”
“Call him again!”
“I called him four fucking times, alright? He’s not answering!”
“Fuck! What about Josh?”
“He lives like an hour away. Call his mom, you fucking retard.”
“Shit, okay! I’m calling.”
“Jensen, you fucking asshole. Wake up!”
“Please wake up.”
Josh is on the couch submerged heavily in a video game while Sandy lazes behind him reading a magazine. His phone rings and he ignores it. It rings again immediately and he pauses the game. The display reads Mom and he picks it up.
“Josh, I need you to come to the hospital.” His mother’s voice is frantic and Josh jumps to his feet.
“What is it?” The panic in his voice makes Sandy sit up and put her hand on Josh’s shoulder.
“It’s Jensen,” she replies. “There was a lacrosse accident. He’s – he’s unconscious.”
“Fuck, okay,” Josh replies as terror slips through his veins like ice. He knocks the video game console over as he heads for his shoes. Sandy follows without a second thought, without even knowing what’s going on. “I’ll be there as soon as I can.”
“Do you know where Jared is? I can’t get a hold of him.”
“He wasn’t at the game?” Josh asks as he grabs his car keys. He’s shaking so badly that he drops them. Sandy picks them up and her brows are furrowed in concern. His mother is making little hiccupping noises and Josh tries not to freak out. “It’s okay. I’ll find him. We’ll be there.”
He hangs up the phone and Sandy stares at him with wide, panicked eyes.
“It’s Jensen,” he says, and she lets out a gasp. Her eyes immediately fill with tears. “Jeff!”
Jeff comes out of his bedroom looking confused at the tone of Josh’s voice. He sees the panic in Josh’s eyes, the tears in Sandy’s, and swallows hard.
“What happened?” Jeff asks. Josh tries hard to get himself under control. “Josh, what the fuck?”
“We need to find your brother.”
Jared is currently shaking his ass to classic rock at Edwin’s while making a triple-shot latte with extra foam, completely unaware that at least a dozen people are searching high and low for him.
He didn’t think it’d be necessary to tell anyone but Jensen that he picked up a last minute shift.
He slides the latte across the counter and takes the cash from the customer as the bell over the door jingles. He doesn’t look up to see who it is before giving triple-shot her change.
“What can I – “ Jared is cut off when he’s suddenly slammed against the wall by his big brother. Triple-shot squeaks and runs out the door. Ed comes out of the back to see what all the commotion is. “Jeff, what the hell?”
“Where the fuck is your phone?” Jeff growls. Jared furrows his brow and pushes Jeff back roughly by his shoulders.
“In the back,” Jared replies. He still has no clue what the fuck is going on. “What’s your problem?”
“Why the fuck didn’t you tell anyone where you were?” Jeff demands. Ed shoots Jared a baffled look and Jared shrugs. “We’re all looking for you.”
“I told Jensen,” Jared replies. “Why didn’t you just ask him?”
Jeff meets his eyes and Jared finally sees the panic in them. Then he realizes that Jeff is shaking, barely there little trembles. He looks pained and Jared’s heart jumps up into his throat. Then he feels it. He feels it like ice in the pit of his stomach. Something isn’t right.
“Jeff,” he says through the lump in his throat. “What is it?”
“There was an accident at Jensen’s lacrosse game,” Jeff replies. He looks ready to jump out of his skin, he’s so freaked out. Jared can barely hear over the pounding of his heart. “He’s in the hospital.”
“Still doesn’t explain why you couldn’t ask him where I was,” Jared says. It’s almost like he’s in denial now. It’s just another sprained ankle or bruised knee. He doesn’t understand why they couldn’t just ask him.
“We couldn’t ask him because he’s not awake, Jared. He won’t wake up.”
Once again the Ackles (sans Alan, who is across the country on business, and plus Sandy, who is currently wrapped around a shaking Josh) and Padalecki families gather in the emergency room’s waiting area to wait for news on Jensen’s condition.
Jared really wishes he would stop landing himself in the fucking hospital.
Two people are allowed in the room, and no one argues when Donna and Jared jump up. They’re ushered inside and Jared nearly crumples at the sight of Jensen. Thick white gauze covers half of his pale, swollen face and his eyes look sunken in and slightly bruised. Jared rushes over to him and leans over his prone form.
“Wake up, Jensen,” he whispers. “C’mon, babe.”
Donna sniffles and they each take one of Jensen’s hands. Jared brings it to his mouth and kisses his knuckles as hot tears leak out of his eyes. Neither of them moves for the next hour. They don’t speak. They just stare at Jensen.
Finally, his eyes flutter open and he lets out a groan.
“Oh god,” Donna cries. “Jensen?”
Jared’s heart starts beating even faster and he clutches Jensen’s hand. His eyes open fully and they lock first on Donna and then Jared. He squeezes Jared’s hand back and smacks his lips together.
“Where am I?” Jensen croaks. Jared leans in and puts his hand on Jensen’s shoulder.
“You’re in the hospital, babe,” Jared says softly. Jensen blinks and then swallows, still staring at Jared’s face.
“Okay,” he replies tiredly. “And who’re you?”
Jared’s heart skips two beats and he blinks. This can’t be happening. Donna gasps and a sob tumbles out of Jared’s mouth before he can help it. His vision is blurred by tears and white hot pain rips through his chest.
“Oh my god, Jared!” Jensen suddenly says, pulling at his shirtsleeve. “Jared, I was kidding.”
Jared stiffens and sniffles. He stares at Jensen through burning eyes.
“I’m fine,” Jensen says. He reaches out to touch Jared’s cheek and he jumps up while sucking in a harsh breath.
“You were kidding? What the fuck, Jensen?” Jared cries. Donna stands up and glares at Jensen. “If you weren’t in a hospital bed I’d kick your fucking ass.”
“What the hell is your problem?” Donna asks. Then she lets out another sob and kisses Jensen’s cheek. It’s like she doesn’t know what the hell to feel.
“Well jeez,” Jensen replies. He shifts a little and then winces. “I just got knocked out, right? It’s not like I almost died or anything.”
“We didn’t know that!” Jared yells. Jensen looks properly chagrined. “We were worried about you!”
“I’m sorry!” Jensen replies sincerely. “I didn’t think it was that big a deal. Lacrosse is a full contact sport. This shit happens all the time.”
“Not to you,” Donna mumbles. Jensen sighs and closes his eyes tight for a moment.
“Kevin has been knocked out cold like, six times or something,” Jensen says. “And he’s fine.”
“Kevin fucking forgot his multiplication tables, Jensen!” Jared replies. Jensen looks over at him.
“That’s what calculators are for!” Jensen says. Jared glares at him and sniffles again. Jensen lets out a breath and reaches out for him. “I’m really sorry, okay? No more joking from hospital beds. I promise.”
“How about no more ending up in hospital beds at all, asshole,” Jared replies. He sits back down in his chair and takes Jensen’s hand.
“I’ll try my hardest,” Jensen says. He squeezes Jared’s hand and tries to pull him closer. “I’m sorry.”
“It’s okay,” Jared says on a sigh. He leans over and carefully kisses Jensen’s forehead softly. “Asshole.”
“I’m an asshole,” Jensen mumbles as he kisses Jared’s cheek. “I think that’s been firmly established.”
Donna cups Jensen’s cheek and leans over him as soon as Jared moves out of the way. She presses their foreheads together and Jensen closes his eyes.
“I’m going to go get the doctor,” Donna says calmly. “And when you’re healed? I’m going to slap you across the face.”
“Deal,” Jensen replies automatically. Donna leaves and Jared sits on the edge of the bed.
“How do you feel?” Jared asks. He’s calmer now, and he takes a deep breath as his heart rate returns to normal.
“Well, my face hurts,” Jensen replies. He lifts his hand and moves it across his temple. “Not here.” He moves his hand down to his chin. “Or here so much.” He moves his hand back and forth across his cheek. “But right here.”
“You’re quoting Tommy Boy at me right now?” Jared asks. “Seriously?”
“Jared, I’m just trying to show you that I’m okay,” Jensen says seriously. He takes Jared’s hand and threads their fingers together. “My head hurts like hell, but I’m fine.”
Jared eyes him dubiously.
“Come on,” Jensen says. “Two times two is four. Three times three is nine. Four times four is – “
“Shut up,” Jared says, and carefully presses their lips together.
Jensen is released into the vigilant care of his mother and his boyfriend. He got away with a pretty good concussion and two stitches above his left eyebrow.
“I’m tired,” Jensen whines as Jared tucks him into his bed. Jared drops down into the desk chair and picks up Jensen’s little trash can basketball.
“I don’t give a shit,” Jared replies smoothly. Jensen crinkles his brow and then winces as the movement pulls at his stitches.
“I said I was sorry about the amnesia thing like seventeen times,” Jensen mumbles. He really does feel terrible about it. Jared ignores him in favor of the television and Jensen lets his eyes slip shut.
He’s about to drift off when the little basketball hits him in the stomach. His eyes pop open and he glares at Jared.
“No sleeping for twelve hours!” Jared shouts. “Doctor’s orders!”
Jensen huffs and then reaches over to grab his iPhone from its dock. He opens the internet browser and starts to type. His vision is still a little fuzzy and his fingers slip clumsily across the screen.
“What’re you doing?” Jared demands. Jensen ignores him until he finds the information he needs.
“Ha!” Jensen says as he holds out the phone. “According to the Mayo Clinic, I can sleep. I just need to be woken up every few hours to make sure I can regain consciousness!”
“Not risking it,” Jared replies. Jensen narrows his eyes at him.
“Asshole,” Jared retorts. Jensen sighs and stares at the ceiling. His head is throbbing and keeping his eyes open seems nearly impossible.
“Can I have another pain pill?” Jared gets up and comes back a few moments later with a glass of water and a pill. Jensen sits up, takes it, and then flops back down. Jared turns back towards the chair and Jensen reaches out to grab his arm and pull him down onto the bed.
“Careful!” Jared chides as he bounces next to Jensen. He pulls his boyfriend close and drapes the covers over him.
“I’m cold,” Jensen lies. He pulls Jared’s arm around him and rests the unharmed side of his head on Jared’s shoulder. They’re quiet for awhile as they get settled. Jensen basks in the comforting warmth of Jared. “Are you still mad at me?”
“I’m not mad,” Jared replies. He turns his head to press a kiss to the top of Jensen’s head. “I just don’t like to see you hurt.”
“I’m a little banged up, but I’m fine.” Jensen yawns and traces a pattern on Jared’s stomach through his shirt. “Do you think I’ll get a manly scar?”
“I think you’ll be rubbing vitamin E on that shit as soon as your stitches are out,” Jared replies. Jensen yawns again.
“Probably,” he replies sleepily. “Can’t mess up my pretty face.”
“Sure can’t, gorgeous,” Jared says. A few minutes pass as Jared trails his fingers up and down Jensen’s arm. He yawns again, so hard his eyes water. “Go to sleep, Jen. I’ll wake you up in an hour.”
“I love you,” Jensen says gratefully. His eyes slip shut and his breathing evens out almost immediately.
“Love you,” Jared whispers, and it’s the last thing Jensen hears.
“Jensen. Hey, come on.”
“Wake up. It’s been an hour.”
“’M up. Can I sleep again?”
“Who’s the president?”
“Who am I?”
“The boy I’m gonna marry someday. But only if you let me sleep.”
“Fair enough. Sleep.”
Jared ends up setting the alarm on his phone for every two hours after that so he can get some sleep as well. He keeps the volume down low and sticks it under his pillow so the shrill noise doesn’t bother Jensen.
He’s more cooperative after that first time, mumbling the correct answers to Jared’s stupid sleepy questions before they both drift off again.
Once it’s morning, Jared turns off the alarm and lets Jensen sleep a little longer as he examines him in the sunlight filtering in through the dark curtains. The swelling has already gone down a lot but Jared can’t tell how bad the bruising is under the gauze. He hasn’t even seen how bad the wound is. He isn’t sure he wants to.
Jared places his palm on Jensen’s chest and slides it down slowly, rubbing up and down gently as he leans in to kiss Jensen’s stubbled jaw. After a few moments Jensen begins to stir. He turns to press their mouths together and his hand slides down to the waistband of Jared’s pajama pants as if purely on instinct. Jared chuckles into the kiss and grabs Jensen’s wrist to still it.
“Don’t think so,” Jared says. Jensen’s eyes blink open and he looks a little dazed. He blinks a few times and stares at Jared’s face. “Doctor said you couldn’t operate heavy machinery.”
“Wow,” Jensen rumbles. “You really just said that.”
“So, what – “
“The year is 2010, we’re under the Obama administration, and you’re the guy that just turned down a handjob,” Jensen rasps. He puts his hands on the sides of his head and lets out a low whine. “Ow. For which I’m suddenly very grateful.”
“Need another pill?” Jared asks gently. Jensen nods and then winces. Jared reaches over to grab the bottle of painkillers and the cup of water off of the nightstand. Jensen manages to get one down and then lies back on the bed with his eyes closed.
“I need to change my bandage,” Jensen says after a few quiet minutes. Jared sits up.
“I’ll do it,” Jared says automatically. He grabs the first aid kit off of the floor. Jensen moves to shake his head but holds up his finger and waves it back and forth instead.
“No you won’t.”
“Why not?” Jared replies. He doesn’t bother listening to Jensen. He just unzips the kit to find what he needs.
“I haven’t even seen it,” Jensen mumbles. “What if I’m horribly disfigured?”
“You’re not horribly disfigured,” Jared replies exasperatedly. “It’s two stitches and probably one hell of a bruise.”
“Fine,” Jensen huffs out. “Promise you won’t go even more mother hen when you see it.”
“Promise,” Jared replies. He takes Jensen’s hand and helps him back up into a sitting position before gently peeling back the gauze. Jared lets out a little gasp and Jensen eyes him warningly. The bruise is a deep purple, disappearing into his hair and curling around his eye. The cut is an angry red color but at least it looks clean, like maybe it won’t scar.
Jared carefully cleans the area before placing a smaller, thinner gauze patch over the stitches and taping it down. He kisses Jensen’s forehead and tries to remind himself that killing Tyler slowly would be a bad idea. He didn’t mean to hit Jensen with his stick, and it was Jensen’s fault for not buckling his helmet anyway.
“If I ever find out you played without wearing your gear properly again,” Jared mumbles. “I will beat your ass.”
“Don’t worry,” Jensen replies. “Lesson learned.”
Jensen puts his hand on Jared’s cheek and kisses him softly. He pushes his fingers into Jared’s hair and tucks it behind his ear. Jared lies down and pulls Jensen with him, letting his boyfriend curl around his larger frame. Jensen sighs happily.
“Are you convinced that I’m not gonna die yet?” Jensen mumbles through a yawn. “I’m tired, baby. Let me sleep?”
Jared checks his phone. It’s been thirteen hours since Jensen was released from the hospital. Jared nods and slips his hand under the back of Jensen’s shirt as he pulls the covers up over them. He could go for a little uninterrupted sleep as well.
Jensen is passed out against his chest before Jared can even answer the question. He kisses the top of Jensen’s head and wraps his arms tight around him before drifting off as well.
Jensen is sort of out of it for the rest of the day.
His reaction time is a little slow and he just seems a little tired and confused. He just wants to sleep but people won’t leave him the hell alone. It seems like every single person he’s ever considered a friend comes traipsing in and out of his room all day. It’s completely unnecessary. It’s a fucking concussion. It’s not like he has cancer or anything.
The only really welcome visitor is Sandy. She curls up in bed with him and lets him doze against her shoulder while she plays with his hair. She’s soft and smells like roses and vanilla. He likes it best because Jared curls up on the other side of him and they all nap together. It makes Jensen happy that they’re all such good friends now. The entire situation had the potential to go so badly and Jensen truly feels like they dodged a bullet.
Josh comes to get Sandy and spend a good amount of time generally annoying Jensen. Chad and Sophia stop by, but they bring him Starbucks so they’re okay. But now it’s late at night and Jensen has barely left bed. His mother has finally retreated and now it’s just him and Jared again.
“I hate this,” Jensen whines, referring to the fogginess in his mind. The wound on his head has started to throb in time with his pulse and he knows it’s time for another pain pill. Jared is there by his side almost instantly, handing him water and a pill. Jensen takes it and then curls up on the bed, molding himself against Jared’s side.
Jared presses his lips against Jensen’s uninjured temple and rubs his hand up and down Jensen’s back. It’s relaxing and quiet, and then Jared starts to softly sing.
“’Cause all I want to be is the minute that you hold me in,” he sings softly, slightly off key, slower than tempo, starting in the middle of one of Jensen’s favorite songs. His lips curve up into a smile against Jared’s stubbled jaw. “When you pretend that I’m all that you waited for.”
“What’re you doing?” Jensen mumbles, unable to keep the sleepy grin off of his face. In that moment, more than ever before, his heart beats solely for Jared. Sometimes it’s still overwhelming just how much he loves the boy in his arms.
“It always makes me feel better when you sing to me,” Jared answers. His fingers curl into Jensen’s hair, thumb slipping gently along the edge of his bandage.
“Because I have a good voice,” Jensen teases. Jared scoffs and bites the lobe of his ear playfully.
“Fine then,” he breathes. “I’ll stop torturing you with – “
“I’m kidding,” Jensen interrupts. He holds Jared tighter, almost like he’s afraid that he’ll slip away. Sometimes it’s hard to believe that Jensen’s one wish actually came true. There are moments where it feels like he’s dreaming, and the fuzzy state of his mind isn’t helping. “Sing to me, Jared.”
“Time slips to nothing and I’m better than I’ve ever been,” Jared continues, like Jensen had never interrupted him in the first place. Jensen slides his hand under Jared’s shirt to feel warm skin and closes his eyes as he listens to him sing.
Jared’s voice isn’t the best, he fumbles a few lines, skips some others, and laughs to himself every so often but in that moment, it’s the most beautiful thing that Jensen has ever heard. It’s better than the prettiest orchestra, more resonant than the twang of any guitar. It’s the voice of the boy he loves, who loves him back, and it’s only for him to hear.
“I love you,” Jensen whispers fiercely when Jared has finished. The words are whispered into the dark, mumbled against Jared’s warm cheek, but the passion in them cannot be denied. “Thank you for taking care of me.”
“I’ll always take care of you,” Jared replies easily. He kisses Jensen’s brow, lips soft and gentle against his bruised skin. “When we’re old and gray and you’re still tripping over your shoelaces, I’ll take care of you.”
Jensen almost wants to cry. It’s probably a mixture of the concussion and the pain meds, but every emotion he feels is intensified, and right now all he feels is love.
Instead of letting the tears fall, he finds Jared’s lips in the dark and kisses him. He kisses him and kisses him until he can’t anymore, until he falls asleep in Jared’s grasp.
Jared watches him for a long time, almost until the sun rises, before drifting off with his lips brushing Jensen’s cheek.