Jensen woke up a little hazy. He felt confused. Then cold. He stretched his back and realized that it ached horribly. The cause must be the fact that he slept sitting up with his back pressed against the headboard of the bed. And Jared’s head in his lap.
But Jared was gone.
Jensen glanced around the room, fearing that Jared fell, but it seemed that he simply got up. Jensen blinked a couple of times and tried to feel more alert. As he rubbed his sore neck the memories of restless sleep hit him like a freight train. I wish I could kiss you. Jensen hadn’t been dreaming. Jensen groaned. And now it was morning, and they would have to deal with the aftershocks of Jared’s confession.
Unless he’d forgotten the whole thing. Jared was pretty out of it. The painkillers were strong stuff. Jared could have been in a weird state of mind when he confessed those things to Jensen and now he’d forgotten and it was irrelevant. Jensen wasn’t sure which one would be worse.
Jensen rolled out of the warm bed. He yanked his sweatpants and a sweatshirt, sighing with the warmth and made his way downstairs, the scent of coffee propelling him. Jared was sitting at the table eating cereal. “You should be in bed,” Jensen scolded.
“Fuck you, I made you coffee.”
“Did you take more painkillers?”
“Yes. I’m pretty sure it was 10 hours after I took them, considering the last time I took some was 10 last night. And it’s-,” Jared glanced at the clock. “8 am. Am I good, or do I need a lecture?”
Jensen threw a cheerio at him. “Shut up.” As far as Jensen could tell right now, Jared didn’t remember anything. Jensen felt strangely sad.
Jared yawned. “Did I wake up last night? I’m exhausted.”
Jensen froze. “Um, no. Well, you might have, but I was asleep the whole night.”
“Even though my head was in your lap?”
Jensen blushed. “You’re warm. Didn’t bother me much.”
Jared poured a cup of coffee over to Jensen. “Well, you look fucking exhausted.”
“I had to take care of you,” Jensen explained. “And you’re a horrible patient.”
“Screw you very much, Ackles. I have a head injury.”
Jensen winced. “Don’t remind me.”
Jared looked apologetic. “Sorry.”
“Don’t apologize, it’s not your fault. But if I ever see that PA again…” Jensen took his head. “I’m pissed, but not at you.”
“It’s not his fault,” Jared defended the PA. “It was his first time.”
“So, instead of training him they let him put a harness on you? Just try it out, see if he could do it? I’m not okay with that!” Jensen exclaimed. “Not at all.”
“I know. You’re like an attack dog, always willing to protect me,” Jared joked. When Jensen still didn’t smile Jared walked over to his friend and threw an arm around him. “Please don’t be upset. I need my friend to comfort me, not pout.”
“I’m not pouting,” Jensen said bitterly.
“Oh please. You’re practically a teenage girl.”
“Shut up, asshole,” Jensen snapped, but he felt a grin forming on his face.
Jared beamed. “See? There’s a smile. So, do you want to go watch movies until our eyes hurt because I really can’t do anything else?”
Jensen tossed another cheerio at Jared and he managed to catch it in his mouth. “Alright. Because you can’t do anything else.”
Jared poked Jensen’s side. “So generous. Always willing to sit on your ass and watch movies with me.”
“Hey, I have to listen to you whine about how much pain you’re in, and then I have to pet you like a fucking dog.”
Jared smirked. “You love petting me. My hair is amazing.”
That managed to coax a laugh out of Jensen. “I’m amazed you don’t attract birds with the nest you call hair.”
“Alright, Ackles, you’re so in for it now.” Jared lunged at him and Jensen ducked. He scurried up the stairs and Jared followed, laughing. Suddenly Jensen heard a thump and a moan from Jared.
“Jared!” Jensen practically sprinted down the stairs to see his friend lying on them and holding his ribs. “God, stupid, I shouldn’t have made you run. Do you need the hospital? I’m taking you to the hospital.”
Jared grabbed his arm. “Stop freaking out, I’m fine.” He winced as he stood up. “Can you get me some ice for my ribs? And my head?”
“Of course, Jay. But first I’m getting you into bed.”
“I’m not that easy, Jen,” Jared joked. A smile broke out on Jensen’s face, but his heart stung a little because really there was nothing he wanted more. “Now help me up.”
Jensen wrapped his arms around Jared and helped him to his feet. “Be more careful, dumbass.”
“Didn’t mean to scare you, Jensen.”
“Wasn’t scared,” Jensen muttered.
“Oh please,” Jared scoffed. “You were full on panic mode.”
Jensen moved Jared into a more comfortable position so his arm was around Jensen’s neck. Jared gave a yelp of pain and Jensen immediately regretted it. “Sorry, sorry!”
“Will you shut up? I can take it. I’m the one that’s injured and you’re the one that’s moping like a child!”
Jensen helped Jared limp up the stairs. “I just don’t like seeing my best friend hurt.”
Jared stopped Jensen at the top of the stairs. “Jen.” Jensen looked at Jared with confused green eyes. Jared didn’t say anything else but wrap his arms around Jensen. “It’s not your fault. And it’s not my fault,” Jared murmured into Jensen’s hair. “So relax.”
Jensen’s heartbeat was going much faster than normal. He looped his arms loosely around Jared, scared if he held him any tighter he might do something he would regret. Like kiss him until he couldn’t breathe. “Okay,” Jensen finally said. “I’m good. Now, you said we were going to watch a movie?”
Jared unwound himself from Jensen’s arms. “Okay. Let’s go. I bet even with bruised ribs I can’t beat you to the bedroom.”
Jensen almost blushed but replied, “There’s no way you’re running in your condition.” He grabbed the back of Jared’s shirt. “So we’re going to move slowly to your room while I make sure you don’t fucking fall again.”
“Don’t trust me worth a damn. What kind of best friend are you?” Jared teased.
The kind that’s hopelessly in love with you. “The kind that wants to keep you from getting more injured that you already are.”
Jensen helped Jared hobble into bed. “Okay, lie down and don’t move. Anything you need, I’ll get it. You trip and fall again I’m gonna tie you down so you don’t move.”
Jared pulled the blankets over him. “Can you get me some ice?”
Jensen nodded and jogged downstairs to fill up a few bags of ice. He wrapped it in a paper towel so it wouldn’t be too cold on Jared’s skin. He grabbed the Cheerios with a smile and jogged back upstairs. Jared had the blankets curled around him and was massaging his temples. “Hurts, Jen.”
God, Jared knew just how to break his heart. Jensen wanted to wrap his arms around him and take the pain away. Instead he carefully handed the bags to Jared. “Hope this makes it feel even a little better.”
Jared held the ice to his ribs and another to his head. “I can’t hold both of them,” He whined.
Jensen rolled his eyes. “Okay, I’ll help you.”
“Put the movie on first.”
“So needy,” Jensen said playfully. He found a horror movie in Jared’s extensive collection. “Horror okay?”
Jared nodded and continued to try and hold the ice packs in two places. “Yeah, it’s awesome.”
Jensen crawled back onto the bed with Jared and his head immediately fell into Jensen’s lap. “You hold one, I’ll hold the other?”
“Alright,” Jensen agreed. He pressed one of the bags to Jared’s head. “Feel better?”
Jared hummed happily. “Run your fingers through my hair?”
“You’re a fucking girl, you know that?”
“I’m okay with that,” Jared said. “I can blame it on the concussion later.”
Jensen laughed. “Idiot.” But he held the ice to Jared’s head and ran his fingers through Jared’s hair with the other hand. “You’re gonna owe me big time when this is over, Padalecki.”
“I’m lucky you’re my friend then, because I know you’ll never cash in that offer. You’re too fucking nice to me.”
“I know. You owe me about 100 favors at this point.”
“There will be a day, Padalecki,” Jensen promised. “And I’m gonna fucking cash in all of them.”
Jared pulled the blanket over both of them. “I’m gonna fall asleep.”
“You’ve been asleep longer than you’ve been awake these few days,” Jensen said. “At least try and watch the movie.” Jensen knew exactly what would happen if Jared fell asleep. Jensen would go crazy with his fantasies. “Come on, Jay. Just stay awake for a little bit. For me.”
“For you,” Jared mumbled sleepily. Jared pressed the ice firmer into his ribs. “But this means you only have 99 favors left.”
Jensen chuckled. “Okay. I’ll make good use of them.”
Jared managed to keep his eyes open for most of the movie. All Jensen could concentrate on was Jared’s steady breathing and his witty commentary in some parts of the movie. Jensen didn’t even know the plot. But he knew there was an ache in his chest that was screaming for Jared, screaming to hold him and kiss him and love and protect him. It was like fighting a monster and Jensen barely held it at bay.
“Jen, are you watching the movie?” Jared finally asked him.
“Huh? Oh, yeah. I am.”
“Really? What’s going on right now?”
Jensen glanced at the screen. “Um… someone’s dead. There’s blood, I think that guy’s a bad guy.”
“You haven’t been watching,” Jared sighed. “I told you to relax for a little.”
“I watched a little bit in the beginning,” Jensen said defensively. “I just sort of lost track of it and started to drift off.” He noticed the ice was starting to melt. “I’ll go get some more ice.”
“I’d pause the movie, but it’s not like you really care what’s happening.”
Jensen rolled his eyes at his friend and trudged down the stairs. He tossed the paper towels in the trash and the ice down the sink, which was more water at this time. Jensen refilled the bags with ice and winced as a few of them fell on his bare feet. The ice numbed his hands and sent shivers through his body, even if they were wrapped in a paper towel. He grabbed Jared’s painkillers even though he wasn’t allowed to have any more for 4 hours. The small orange bottle rattled in his hands. Jensen jogged back to Jared’s room with the ice and the pills. Jensen smiled and rolled his eyes when he reached Jared’s room. The colorful lights of the move flickered on his friend’s face but Jared was fast asleep, his arms curled around a pillow. Jensen tucked the blanket around him and Jared let out a sigh. He snuggled tighter into the pillow and Jensen stroked Jared’s hair absentmindedly. “I guess I’ll let you sleep, lazy ass.”
Jensen flicked off the movie and sat in a chair next to Jared. It was an awkward position to sleep in, but Jared’s steady breathing was like a lullaby and Jensen quickly drifted into blissful unconsciousness.
He was woken by someone shaking his shoulder lightly. “Jen. Jen, wake up.”
Jensen blinked his eyes open. “Wassup, Jared?” Jensen mumbled.
“More pills now? Everything hurts.”
Jensen glanced at the clock. “Okay. It’s been six hours.” Jensen fumbled with the orange bottle of painkillers. “Take two.”
Jared gratefully took the pills and swallowed them with a glass of water he kept on his nightstand. “Thanks, Jen.”
“Thank the doctor.” Jensen capped the bottle and tucked it into his pocket. “Ice packs won’t work for everything.”
Jared eyed the bags of ice that had fallen at Jensen’s feet. “I didn’t mean to fall asleep, I was just really tired.”
Jensen eased Jared back onto the bed. “It’s okay, Jay. It’s alright, you’re fine. You can sleep if you want to.”
Jared’s long body barely fit across the bed. “Gonna stay in here with me?”
“I think you’ll be okay by yourself, don’t you think?”
Jared shook his head. “I need you.”
I need you more, Jensen thought. But all Jensen did was lie down beside his friend and try to calm his rapid heartbeat.