Pairing: Jensen Ackles, Jared Padalecki
Summary: AU - trauma survivor!jared, PT!Jensen.
Rating: NC-17 (eventually)
Disclaimer: This story never happened.
A/N: Hope you enjoy this chapter. The next one is the one I've been waiting to write, so hopefully it shouldn't be long between updates. Feedback is love.
chapter 1 / chapter 2 / chapter 3 / chapter 4 / chapter 5 / chapter 6 / chapter 7 / chapter 8
Tom could see Jared hadn’t slept well the second he was wheeled into the room. Tom nodded his head at the nurse and she left the room, closing the door behind her. Tom set down the equipment in his hands and made his way over to Jared. “Hey man, how you doing?” he asked as he got behind the chair and pushed Jared over towards the middle of the room where the railings were. He planned to get Jared to makes his first steps today.
“I’m ok, I guess.” Tom came to stand in front of him, his arms crossed over his chest.
“I haven’t seen Jensen with you for a while. Not since last week when Chris and Steve were here.” Tom said quietly and Jared dropped his gaze. “What’s going on Jared? You’ve been here 3 months and in all that time, it’s only the last week that I haven’t seen, or heard of, Jensen checking in on you, even if it’s just to talk. Then Steve and Chris burst in here, tell you something that seems to have your head all over the place, and suddenly Jensen disappears from your life. Tell me that’s just a coincidence.”
Jared ran a hand through his bangs. “Chris just gave me some things to think about, that’s all.” He turned his gaze to the railings. He was ready to get on with his therapy. He didn’t want to talk about Jensen, didn’t want to think about what he was doing to the other man.
“Yeah, you said that before. All week, in fact. And yet, you seem to be getting less sleep as the week goes on, not more. Don’t tell me that he’s messed with your head. You’ve got enough to deal with, without Chris adding more to your plate.”
Jared shook his head. “Can we just...” he gestured to the equipment in the room. “Get on with it please?”
Tom shook his head, resigned. “Sure. So we know that your arm is almost back up to full strength. Your cast has been off for a few weeks, and it’s healed well. Your leg is healing well too. Your strength is coming along nicely. Now it’s time for you to get out of that chair and back on your own two feet. By the end of next week I think you should be ready to say goodbye to that chair, and hello to a pair of crutches. Hopefully you’ll be out of here in a week or so and your outpatient care will be primarily getting you to walk properly again.” Jared watched Tom set up some stuff as he talked. “Now I want you to remember that it’s going to take time for you to get back on your feet. Your leg, while getting stronger, hasn’t been used to hold you up, or to walk or run on, for 3 months. That’s a long time. Your brain remembers what you need to do to walk, but your leg will have trouble doing it for a little while yet. Once you’re out of here, it will still take probably 3 months of rehab before you can walk on your own without the use of a cane or other aid.” He turned to Jared. “Don’t get disheartened Jared, you will walk again. You will be as good as new, but it will take time, effort, and hard work. If you’re prepared to keep working like you have been, you’ll be up and around in no time.” He stopped, looking at Jared will a careful gaze. “You ready to try this thing?” he asked, patting the hand rails affectionately.
Jared steeled himself, looking at the rails, at his way to freedom, and nodded. He could do hard work. If it would get him out of this hospital and back into his life, then he was going to put in everything he could.
Jensen steeled himself as he walked into Jared’s room. To say he was confused was an understatement. Jared had gone from warm and friendly to cold and distant in less than a week and Jensen wasn’t sure what he’d done wrong. He knocked quietly and walked into Jared’s room at his quiet yes. Jensen took a deep breath as he entered the room, closing the door behind him.
Jared looked up from the sketchbook to find Jensen standing at the end of the bed. The older man looked nervous, twisting the silver ring on his right hand. Jared was speechless. This man took his breath away every time he looked at him, yet he knew he had to hurt him. Jared was leaving, he knew that. His mother had already organised to have his files transferred to San Antonio so he could live at home while his outpatient care and physiotherapy continued.
Jared couldn’t stop Chris’ words from rolling around in his head. “Are you in this thing because of Jensen, because he’s what you want? Or are you in it because he’s the end goal? Because he’s been through the same thing you’re going through and come out the other end? Because he’s someone who understands what you’re going through? Is he what you want or what you want to be?”
If you’re not, 100% in this for Jensen, because he’s who you want to be with, then end it now. Before anyone else gets hurt. Or more hurt. Jensen’s in deep kid and I don’t think getting involved with someone who lost a friend the same way Jen lost Sam is a good idea. Are you in too?”
In this line of work, people mistake gratitude for love and affection. If you’d seen him in a bar, when you were hanging with your college friends, would you have even spared him a glance? Given him a second thought? Meet up with him for coffee or a date?”
Think about Jensen and what you feel for him. If you could fit him into your life when you go back to college? If he fits in your life at all? If you want him to fit, where does he fit? Is he a friend, an acquaintance, or something more?”
Jared came back to himself when Jensen cleared his throat. He was rubbing a hand across the back of his neck, a nervous habit. He took a deep breath and let his hand drop. “Have I... have I done something wrong Jared? Did I do or say something to upset you? To hurt you? If I have I’m sorry, but you’ve gotta tell me what I did man. This not knowing is killing me.”
Jared let his gaze wander of this beautiful man in front of his for a minute longer before he opened his mouth. And had cursed himself as he said the biggest cliché there is. “It’s not you man, it’s me.”
Jensen just rolled his eyes. “Right. Like I’ll believe that.”
Jared sighed. “It’s true. Someone said something to me the other day about us, and what I want and it’s made me think, that’s all.”
Jensen laughed hollowly. “ Right. Someone said something. If you’re going to lie to me Jared at least make it believable.”
Jared ran a hand through his hair. “Chris asked me to think about us, about what would happen when I got out of here, where I’d go, if you would fit into my life. He made me question whether or not I actually like you for you, or if I like you because of some misplaced hero worship because you were to one to pull my ass out of my head.”
Jensen’s gaze hardened, his eyes like stone. “And what conclusions did you come to?” His voice was quiet, low.
Jared dropped his gaze. He couldn’t bear to see the look on Jensen’s face when he said the words he was about to. “I’m leaving. At the end of the week. Tom said I’ll be good enough on the crutches to be allowed home without the wheelchair. My papers are being sent through to a hospital in San Antonio. I’m going to live with my parents until my physiotherapy is over with.”
“Yeah, Tom said you were up and walking again.”
Jared continued like Jensen hadn’t spoken. “I like you Jensen I do, but I’m not sure if it’s because I like who you are, or if it’s because I like what you represent. You’ve been in my position and you’ve come out of it. You made a life and a career for yourself, and that’s what I want. If I’d have met you in a bar I’d have thought you were a great looking guy, but that was about it. I don’t even think I’d have asked you for a one night stand.” He heard Jensen’s sharp intake of breath. “I’m sorry Jensen, but I need to go home and figure myself out first. I need to get my head straight, and I need to get me sorted out before I can try to get anything else sorted out. I like you, but I can’t be with you. I’m going home.” Jared lifted his eyes and watched as Jensen closed his, muscle jumping in his jaw as he clenched his jaw so tightly that he heard Jensen’s teeth ground together. He watched as a tear rested on Jensen’s eye lashes, but it never fell. He watched him swallow tightly before he opened his eyes, and dropped an envelope on his lap, before he turned on his heel, hands clenched into tight fists, and left the room, the door closing silently behind him.
Jared closed his eyes, letting his head fall back onto the pillows behind him. He let a few tear fall, his sketchbook forgotten, before his eyes landed on the envelope Jensen had left him. He couldn’t bear to open it.
Jensen slammed the door to Mike’s house, making everyone jump. Chris shot Tom a nervous look. “Jenny!” Mike shouted. He handed Jensen a beer. “Have a drink.”
Jensen never stopped moving. He pushed past Mike, setting the unopened beer on the coffee table in the middle of the room before making his way to Chris, hauling him up by the collar of his jacket and shoving him roughly into the wall. “What the hell did you say to him?”
“What the hell Jen?” Chris spluttered. He was just slightly scared. Chris may be built but Jensen had a good few inches on him, and when pissed, Jensen was one scary guy.
“What the HELL did you say to Jared?” Jensen enunciated each and every word and the colour seeped out of Chris’ face, leaving his blue eyes standing out on a now pale face.
“I just gave him a few things to think about.” Jensen slammed him into the wall again. “I just asked him why he was with you ok! Asked him if it was because he wanted to be with you, or if it was because you’d been through it as well and if he actually liked you or if it was some misplaced hero worship. That’s all! I just didn’t want to see you get hurt again.”
Jensen let go of Chris’ jacket but kept him crowded against the wall. “Stay the hell away from me.” His voice was low and deadly. Chris opened his mouth to say something but Jensen cut him off. “Stay away from me Christian, stay the hell out of my life.”
Jensen stepped away from Chris, and then made his way out of the house, ignoring everyone on his way out and slamming the door closed behind him. The house was silent as each person tried to work out what had just happened.
Mike was standing where Jensen had essentially pushed him, mouth open, eyes darting between the door and Chris. Danneel was sitting on the couch, beer raised halfway to her mouth, eyes wide. Tom was standing in the doorway leading to the kitchen, sad blue eyes trained on Chris. And Chris? Chris was leaning heavily against the wall, eyes closed, hands running over his face and through his hair, over and over again. They could see him shaking slightly as he tried to get a grip on what had happened.
The whole room was silent. Each person wondering what would happen to a 2 decade’s long, rock solid friendship, when the dust had settled.
Please don't kill me. I promise to fix them... eventually. *hides now
- Where I Am:Home
- How I Feel: awake
- What I'm Listening To:Dead or Alive - Bon Jovi