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Fic: Family Affairs 2/2

Previously on this LJ: Family Affairs - Part 1

And now onto the conclusion:

Family Affairs – Part 2

The Padaleckis had invited Jensen over for lunch the next day, but he'd begged off, claiming he had some errands to run. In reality, he was planning on spending the day holed up in his apartment, away from the family he could only have through lies and away from the guy who tempted him to add even more lies to the already tightly spun web.

He looked morosely over his new easel sitting in a corner of his small living room, all pristine and untouched. Jensen couldn't bring himself to try it out, not only did it serve as a reminder of ill-gotten gains, but he might have to give it back later anyway, so better not risk doing any damage to it.

A small shuffle to his left drew Jensen's attention, and he looked at the little cage to find a pair of beady eyes staring back at him. Jensen leaned over and gently stroked the hamster's soft belly, the small animal pressing into his touch.

“What am I going to do, buddy?”

Predictably, his pet didn't answer him.

Just then Jensen's door came under assault from an overzealous fist. “Jensen. Jeeenny, open up.”

Mike. Jensen sighed. He loved the guy, but right now he wasn't exactly in the mood to deal with one of Mike's ´emergencies'. They mostly consisted of sex, sex and oh, not to forget sex, anyway. Still, it was Christmas so he guessed he should show some of the old holiday spirit. Besides, Jensen's door would probably give in before Mike would.

“Coming,” he called out, dragging his feet. Maybe he could convince Mike to come back later?

Of course as soon as the door was opened even a smidge Jensen found himself flattened against the wall while a large bundle of clothes breezed right past him. He figured Mike was in there somewhere, at least his legs could be seen sticking out, and, as soon as he'd dropped the bundle he carried his head and torso appeared as well.

“Jenny, you have to help me. It's a disaster, I'm telling you, a disaster.” Mike was wringing his hands dramatically, shooting imploring looks at Jensen.

Gritting his teeth against the stupid nickname, Jensen nevertheless tried to soothe his friend's obviously overwrought nerves. “Calm down, alright. What's the problem?”

“It's Tom,” Mike wailed in lieu of an answer, causing Jensen to roll his eyes.

He should have known, Mike may have been a bit of a drama queen, but there was only one thing that truly had the ability to rattle his cage, a tall, dark-haired hunk going by the name of Tom Welling. Jensen reminded himself that he had no room to talk really. At least Mike hadn't gone off and insinuated himself into the Welling family by pretending to be their son's fiancé. “What about him?” Jensen tried again.

“He…” Mike stopped, dropping his voice to a hushed whisper, “He asked me out.”

O-kay, that came as bit of a surprise. Not that Mike was unattractive, maybe not quite a conventional beauty especially with the shiny bald head he sported, though somehow it suited him, but Tom had struck Jensen as the real unattainable type. He frowned. “He did?”

Mike looked a bit miffed. “I don't see why this would be such a shock.”

Jensen restrained from pointing out how Mike's whole flustered behaviour so far had implied just that. “I didn't mean it like that. Tom just seems really…”

“Shy?” Mike proposed, nodding vigorously. He already seemed to be over Jensen's unintended little slight. “Yup, I thought the same thing. And as it turns out I was right. But he must have gotten over it or something, because today he marched up to me and asked me on a date, point blank.” Mike's eyes glazed over at the blissful memory. “It was glorious.”

“And now the problem is?” Jensen prompted him gently.

“Well, what the hell am I going to wear, of course.” Mike gestured to the clothes strewn all over Jensen's couch, making an exasperated clucking sound like it was really obvious. “You need to help me choose an outfit.”

Jensen scratched his head. “And you needed to bring your whole wardrobe up for that?”

Mike gaped. “Don't be silly, this is like one hanger. If we don't find anything good in there, I can bring more.” He frowned thoughtfully. “Maybe I should do that now.”

”No.” Jensen held up his hands defensively. Mike's last request for Jensen to help him find an outfit had resulted in an eight hour fashion show. Jensen wouldn't survive this a second time. He smiled confidently. “I'm sure we'll find something.” Blindly grabbing into the bundle, Jensen came up with a pair of navy-blue paints. “How about these?”

“Are you sure? Hm.” Mike looked dubious but was already in the process of unfastening the pants he currently wore to try on the ones Jensen held up.

“Mike, these are your pants. You know how they fit and look,” Jensen said desperately. “At least go change in the bedroom.”

“Don't be silly.” Mike waved him off. “You're way too uptight, hun. You need a good fucking to blow off some steam.”

“Is this a bad time?”

Jensen froze upon hearing the newcomer's voice. Why do you hate me so, God? Tentatively, he glanced over his shoulder, and sure enough Jared Padalecki was standing in the open doorway – damn Mike for his grand dramatic entrances which led to Jensen forgetting to close the damn door – holding a small package in his hands and looking less than pleased at the little tableau he'd stumbled upon.

“Um, this is not what it looks like,” Jensen hastened to assure him.

Jared just raised an eyebrow sarcastically and Mike, curses on him, had to go and make it worse by looking Jared up and down before giving a loud, appreciative whistle. “And he looks like just the right man for the job, if I might say so.”

If there was something like karma, Mike would be reborn as an ant and Jensen as a mean little boy with a magnifying glass, Jensen thought grimly.

Before he could tell Mike to shut it however Jared had already spoken up. “I think he would have his fiancé to do that,” he forced out.

Mike's eyes widened comically. “Fiancé? Our Jenny here? I think I'd know about that. We're totally close.”

“Really?” Jared's eyes travelled between Jensen and the still only pants-less Mike questioningly. “And how close exactly are you then?” He took a menacing step towards Mike.

Jensen groaned. This was going from bad to worse. If he didn't do something soon, Mike would find himself on the business end of Jared Padalecki's fist. As much as Jensen himself wanted to slap Mike right now, if he let Jared loose on him, there would not be enough left to fit in a shoebox. He cleared his throat. “Mike, I haven't told you guys yet, but yes, I'm engaged.”

Ignoring Mike's shocked gasp, Jensen turned to Jared. “And Jared, Mike is my neighbour and good friend. He just came by to get some fashion pointers for a date he's going on. With somebody else. So no need to go all caveman here.”

Finally, Mike seemed to realize the danger he had been in. “Oh, you thought…no, man, no way. Jenny is hot and all, but I like 'em tall and dark.” Again his eyes travelled over Jared's body appreciatively. Then he nodded at Jensen. “You really held out on me, which, by the way I will demand reparation for. But damn, I can't knock your taste.”

Jensen sighed. “I'm not engaged to Jared, but to his brother.”

Mike looked taken aback. “Really? I mean really? Wow, must be some dude, to be even hotter than you. Almost Tom-hot.”

Jared frowned, not understanding and Jensen waved him off, grabbing onto Mike and dragging him to the still open door, pushing him steadily by Jared who stepped further into the apartment. “If you'll excuse us for a bit. I need to talk to Jared.”

“But what about…” The door closed with an audible bang, though Mike's whine could still be heard on the other side. “…my stuff?”

“Later,” Jensen yelled and, blessedly Mike could be heard walking away, his muttering growing dimmer, though Jensen could still make out an “hope to hell he gets laid already.”

“So.” Jared leaned against the wall. “That was something.”

Jensen sighed. “That's Mike for you. He is one of a kind.”

“No kidding.” Jared coughed uncomfortably. “Sorry if I was out of line, but you have to admit a half-naked guy calling you 'hun' and proposing you get laid? Not exactly the very picture of innocence.”

“No, yeah, I mean, I understand,” Jensen waved off the apology. “I just hope you believe me when I say I'm not the cheating type.” At least that was one truth Jensen could tell Jared. It felt nice.

Jared snorted but his eyes held their usual sparkle once more. “Well, seeing as, if you were, you would suck at it – I mean, with the neighbour and the door wide open – I'm inclined to believe you.”


“Mom sent me over to bring you some food.“ Jared held up the package. “I figured I'd swing by and see if you were home.”

“Thank you,“ Jensen took the offered item. “She shouldn't have gone through the trouble, really. And you neither.”

Laughing, Jared shook his head. “You don't have much experience with big families, do you?”

Jensen shook his head. “No, my mom died when I was born so it has mostly just been my dad and me. And then two years ago he died as well so.” He shrugged.

“I'm sorry. Didn't mean to drudge up bad memories,” Jared said gently.

“It's okay.”

For a moment, an uncomfortable silence descended over the room. Then Jared's features brightened. “Well, you have a family now. And…” here Jared adopted a dramatic pose, “…we will leave no man unfed.”

Jensen laughed. “You're silly.”

“It's my greatest charm.” Jared beamed.

“You know, don't take this the wrong way, but I can barely picture your dad doing funeral services, but you?” Jensen giggled, expecting Jared to join him or make some self-deprecating joke.

To his surprise Jared had grown serious, seemingly flustered. “Yeah well, it's the family business, you know.”

Jensen tilted his head. “Did you ever want to be something else? I mean, like Jeff?”

Jared's eyes darkened. “Jeff's career choice hit dad real hard. If I were to go off as well, he would be crushed.”

“That doesn't really answer the question,” Jensen pointed out gently.

Shrugging, Jared averted his eyes. “It's a job. And at least the customers are mostly quiet and unassuming.” He gave a laugh but it sounded forced to Jensen.

Still, Jensen felt it wasn't really his place to pry any further. “Then yours are better than mine,” he joked to ease the sudden tension.

Jared gave him a grateful smile before he started looking around the apartment with interest. "Nice place," he commented.

For some reason, the innocent comment made Jensen angry. He knew how his living conditions compared to the Padalecki home. “You don't have to lie, I know it's a ditch," he said testily.

Jared looked surprised at the reaction. “I wasn't lying. It's quite homey."

Immediately Jensen felt bad about his little outburst. “Well, it's not what you're used to, I know.”

“Money isn't everything, Jensen.” Jared looked at him intently. “I hope you know that for our family, it doesn't matter where you come from. Or what you do.”

For some reason Jared's words warmed Jensen. However, his dawning smile soon died upon Jared's next words.

“All that matters is that you are a good, honest person.”

Honest. Of course. And that was the one thing Jensen couldn’t be. Suddenly he felt like crying.

Fortunately for him, Jared's attention had been drawn by something else, namely the hamster's cage in the corner, so Jensen had time to get himself together again. "That's Sammy. He is a uh…hamster," Jensen explained, feeling like an idiot for pointing out the obvious.

But Jared only laughed. "I had a feeling he was." He held out a finger and cooed. “Hey buddy.”

To Jensen's surprise, Sammy actually came closer to the bars and allowed Jared to touch his soft fur. “Wow, usually he is shy around strangers.”

"Ha, your pet already loves me. Means I'm a shoe-in, right?" Jared joked.

Jensen swallowed heavily. “I guess you are,” he said softly.

* * *

The next day Jensen popped by the hospital again to look in on Jeff, whose condition still hadn't changed. Honestly, Jensen didn't know how he felt about that. He figured that made him a horrible person. How could he not be wishing with all his heart for a sick person to get better again? Especially as, despite all their cheeriness, he could see the toll it took on Jeff's parents.

Sighing deeply, he reached out a hand and tucked a stray lock behind Jeff's ear, just like he'd wanted to that night in Eddy's. “What am I supposed to do?”

“Oh honey, you musn't give up hope.”

Jensen nearly jumped at Sherri's voice. What was it about these Padaleckis that allowed them to sneak up on him? Twice in as many days now had it happened, first the son, now the mother. Maybe they hailed from Ninjas or something.

He turned around. “Sherri, hi. I didn't hear you come in.”

She sighed and went over to join Jensen at her sons bedside. “It's hard, seeing him like this, isn't it?”

Jensen was spared an answer as the rest of the family began piling in. Nana was once again being led by Jerri, who helped the old lady sit down in a hospital chair. Everybody gave Jensen a friendly greeting, Megan even enveloping him in a hug.

Doing his best to avoid Jared's gaze, Jensen grabbed his jacket. “I guess I'll be going then. Give you guys some time with him alone.”

“Nonsense,” Jerri's hand came down on his shoulder. “You have as much right to be here as we have.”

Don't bet on it, Jensen thought.

And as if some higher power agreed with him a nurse entered into the room, looking a bit thrown at the assembled masses. “Um, Mr.Padalecki?”

Jerri nodded. “That's me.”

“Well, a woman has been calling, a Mrs.Matthews wanting to be updated on your son's condition. She claims to be his fiancée. I just wanted to ask if you can verify this? Otherwise, we can't give her any classified information.”

Jerri frowned. “My son's fiancé is right here.” He nodded at Jensen.

“Oh.” The nurse looked uncomfortable. “I'm sorry, Sir. I just transferred to this wing today. Nurse Hendricks sent me over to ask you about this.”

Oh god, oh god. Jensen tried his best not to hyperventilate.

“What did you say this woman's name was?” Sherri asked.

“Um, Matthews, I believe, Mrs.Matthews,” the young nurse stuttered. “I don't know about her first name but I could check back if you want?”

“That won't be necessary, dear. We can tell you her claims to be my son's fiancée are false. Like my husband said, we already have a fiancé here.” She patted Jensen's hand.

“Alright then, but this means we can't give her any information over the phone.”

Sherri smiled. “Whatever your regulations are on this, dear.”

The nurse nodded and left the room.

Jared turned to his mother, frowning. “Mom, shouldn't we at least find out who she is?”

Sherri raised her eyebrows. “Well, obviously she is an ex-girlfriend of your brother's. I mean what else could she be?”

“Maybe she is exactly what she says she is,” Jared challenged.

“Jared Padalecki, you're not accusing your brother of being a bigamist, are you?” Jerri spoke up heatedly.

Nana tilted her head. “Who`s a ligatist?”

“A bigamist, Nana. That's a guy who has more than one wife. You can go to jail for that,” Megan supplied helpfully.

Nana seemed to ponder that. “Leo Albertson from down the street had more than one wife, and he never went to jail.”

“No Nana, it's when someone has them at the same time,” Megan explained.

“So Jeff is two-timing the sweetheart here,” she pointed at Jensen. “Because that's not nice.”

“No one is two-timing anybody, mother,” Jerri soothed her.

Jared rolled his eyes. “I'm not saying he is a bigamist. Just wondering why this chick would be calling and saying she is Jeff's fiancée.”

“Well, you just heard about the hospital policy here,” Sherri pointed out, “She probably figured if she lied about her relation to Jeff they'd tell her something.”

“Okay, maybe,” Jared allowed, “But—“

Sherri folded her arms in front of her chest. “No but, young man. You're being very rude to poor Jensen here. Who, by the way, is at your brother's bedside. In person. Unlike this unknown and seemingly married woman who feels it sufficient to just call.”

Suddenly, Megan piped up. “He can totally prove it.” Turning to Jensen. “Can't you?”

Now all eyes went to Jensen again and he had a strange feeling of deja-vu about it. Maybe it was for the best. He was doing this on borrowed time anyway and now he'd finally be given the necessary push to come clean. Taking a deep breath, he opened his mouth to tell the truth and nothing but the truth. “He has a tattoo of Snow White on his ass.”

For a second, nobody spoke, mouths hanging open in shock.

Jensen couldn't believe what he'd just said. Granted, it was the truth, at least as far as he knew, but totally not the one he'd meant to tell.

“What?” Jared's voice was beyond incredulous. Sherri looked positively crestfallen.

In for a penny, in for a pound, Jensen figured. “There was this bet he had with his buddies, first one drunk was going to be pranked. And they…they took him to this tattoo artist and…” Jensen trailed off.

“Okay then, somebody – who is not me – has to look,” Megan argued.

Jerry intently studied the floor and Jared was still busy gaping at Jensen, so finally Sherri came forward. “Alright, I'll do it,” she grumbled. She pulled back the sheets and shifted Jeff's body just the slightest bit to get a good look at his backside.

Jensen noticed how everybody else suddenly seemed to discover an absolutely fascinating spot on the wall.

Sherri's little squeak announced that obviously she had found what she'd been looking for, but it was actually Nana who sealed the deal, wearing a thoughtful frown. “The colours on the dress are wrong.”

When the assembled family left Jeff's hospital room, Jensen once more firmly in their midst, not a word was spoken.

* * *

More time went by and before Jensen knew it, New Years was around the corner. Of course, it had been decided that he would spend it with the Padaleckis. That was, Sherri had decided and Jensen had given a polite nod for appearance sake's, when in reality he'd had no choice but to meekly obey.

To secure Jensen's cooperation, Jared had even been sent over to Jensen's apartment, to give him a lift back to the Padalecki residence. Jared had insisted they take Sammy with them, because even a hamster shouldn't be alone on New Year's and, despite Jensen's claims that the little guy mostly slept anyway, his cage was now firmly secured in the backseat of Jared's car.

The drive was short, with Jared chattering away amiably. After the little scene in the hospital, Jared had once again apologized profusely for implying that he'd doubted Jensen in any way, which only made Jensen feel like shit because of course Jared would be absolutely right in doubting Jensen. Worse yet was Jared misinterpreting Jensen's guilt as holding a grudge, which led to Jared working twice as hard to get back into Jensen's good graces. And let it be said that Jared's charm in combination with the puppy-dog eyes of doom was a deadly weapon. With every passing day, it became harder for Jensen to deny the truth: that he was on the fast track of helplessly falling in love with Jared.

Jensen had tentatively breached the subject with Mike and Chris, asking for their advice on how to get himself out of this mess. And what a blinding success that had been. Not. Chris had urged him to seek professional help as soon as possible, while Mike was sticking with his original idea, namely that Jensen needed a good lay and Jared was just the man to do it. Of course, the both of them had been adamant on one point, Jensen needed to come clean.

And Jensen planned to, just not for the duration of the year, which, seeing as the year only had about six hours left, seemed fair enough. Also, it went without saying that Jensen wouldn't ruin the first day of the new year by springing his little surprise, so maybe the week after that? Yup, that seemed like a reasonable time. Then again who was he kidding? If this was left to Jensen's devices, he would probably celebrate his eightieth birthday with the Padalecki family.

Once they arrived, Megan squealed over Sammy and immediately began trying to draw him out of his little house. His pet thus occupied, Jensen had no choice but to drink punch, eat Sherri's cooking and smile at Jared's antics. It was the perfect hell.

He looked up at the Christmas tree that was still standing there, decked out in ornaments, with the shiny glass angel on top, seemingly mocking Jensen. Suddenly, said angel toppled over and was now dangling precariously close to the edge.

Megan giggled. “Oops.” She had been in the process of gyrating, Jensen figured it was supposed to be dancing, through the room, when she must have bumped into the tree.

Sherri looked up from an old photo album she'd been studying. “Megan Padalecki, who much punch did you have? I told you one glass only.”

The girl pulled a face, exchanging guilty looks with her father. “Not…” A hiccup followed. “Not many.” She looked up at the tree, lower lip jutting out in a pout. “Aww, now the angel is all uneven.”

Jensen got up from his seat. “I'll right it,” he offered, going over to the tree and raising up on tiptoes to reach for the top, still coming up a bit short. Damn, this tree was as freakishly tall as the men in this family.

“Here, let me give you another lift,” Jared's voice reached his ear before Jensen found himself lifted off the ground.

To his dying day, Jensen would deny the undignified squeak that came out of his mouth just then. His feet pedalled in the air. “Hey, put me down!”

“But you won't reach the top otherwise,” Jared pointed out. “Shorty,” he added affectionately.

Jensen tried very hard to ignore how Jared's huge hands nearly encompassed his waist and how the guy didn't even seem to break a sweat hoisting Jensen up like this. “Then you can do it, you tall freak,” Jensen grumbled.

Jared only laughed. “This is actually quite cool. Maybe instead of lifting weights, I should lift you?” As if to prove his point, he moved Jensen up and down a little bit.

Oh God. Jensen absolutely wasn't thinking of Jared manhandling him this way during sex. And it absolutely wasn't hot. He squirmed harder, till Jared was forced to let go of him, and as soon as Jensen was back on his own two feet he jumped backwards, now bumping into the tree himself.

Smiling indulgently, Jared leaned over him to fix the dangling ornament before he took a step back as well.

Jensen heaved a little relieved sigh as his space was thus no longer crowded by Mr. Pheromone himself.

“Sorry,” Jared said, winking at Jensen to make it clear he was anything but.

“Boys, no roughhousing around the tree,” Sherri gently reprimanded them.

Jared beamed, throwing an arm around Jensen's shoulders. “Sorry mom, he is just too…squishable.”

Squishable? What the hell was that supposed to mean? Jensen wondered if Jared didn't have a glass of punch too many himself, even though he hadn't actually seen the man drink more than four. It looked like the Padalecki children couldn't hold their liquor very well.

Jensen disentangled his thoughts from Jared in favour of fleeing over to Sherri and pretending to look through the photos with her. When he looked up, he noticed Jared studying him intently. Jensen didn't bow his head back down quickly enough to escape noticing the word a smiling Jared mouthed him. Coward.

Despite the obvious intent to tease him, Jensen knew Jared had referred to more than just Jensen's momentarily tactical withdrawal and his shoulders slumped. Jensen developing feelings for Jared was bad enough, considering the circumstances, but Jared reciprocating was a disaster.

Later, when the clock was ticking down the seconds to midnight, Jensen accepted Jared's friendly hug and slight kiss on the cheek the same way he accepted those of the others, but inside he felt like screaming. Happy New Year indeed.

* * *

Two days into the year of 2007 it happened, Jeff woke up. Jensen had gotten the excited call from the hospital around 7 a.m. and instantly the last remnants of sleep had been chase from his weary limbs. He contemplated simply not going, but somehow couldn't bring himself to. The family would want an explanation. He owed them that much at least.

As luck would have it Jensen arrived shortly after the Padaleckis since, as he entered Jeff's room, they were already standing in a half-circle around the bed.

Upon seeing Jensen, Sherri rushed forward, weeping tears of joy. “He is awake. See. He is awake.” She pushed Jensen towards the bed.

Jeff's eyes focused on Jensen, before he uttered the three words that had the power to tilt Jensen's newfound little world upside down. “Who are you?”

The whole room collectively seemed to hold its breath. Jerri was the first one to breach the silence. “My god, he has amnesia.”

Moments after Jeff's lids fluttered close again, and Jensen figured that either God loved him or hated him. At the moment he wasn't sure which.

* * *

Over the next two days the doctors indeed came to the conclusion Jeff suffered from – partial – amnesia. How else to explain the man didn't remember his own fiancé? Jensen had had to work both days, but immediately afterwards he'd gone to the hospital to talk to Jeff. Everything had started with Jeff, so maybe if Jensen went back to that point, he could finally unravel this mess.

Understandably, Jeff had been very confused and still very much out of it, so there wasn't much progress to be made there. On top of that, Nana had suffered a mild heart attack due to all the stress, and Jensen knew he had to thread very carefully now.

He was in the process of getting himself ready for another trip to the hospital when he heard a knock on his door. To his utter surprise, Jensen found Jared standing outside when he went to open to door.

Jared's eyes travelled over him. “You going out?”

Jensen nodded.

“To the hospital, right?” Not waiting for an answer, he walked by Jensen into the room and started pacing agitatedly. He looked up at Jensen. “Have you had a chance to talk yet? About the wedding?”

“Well, um…seeing as he doesn't even remember me at the moment, not so much, no,” Jensen answered.

Jared looked pained. “But you, you still plan to, right? As soon as Jeff is better?”

“I…” Jensen started to think of the right words to say, but Jared pretty much cut off all rational thought by coming over to Jensen, grabbing his face in both of his hands and covering Jensen's mouth with his own.

It was wonderful and terrible at the same time. And it was one hundred percent crazy. Jensen needed to put a stop to it now. His traitorous body interpreted that as wrap arms behind Jared's neck.

Jared moaned against Jensen's mouth. “We…we can't do this.”

“Right,” Jensen agreed, all the while tightening his arms, drawing Jared closer.

Jared's hands roamed over Jensen's body, his mouth moving lower to suckle at Jensen's neck. “You drive me crazy. From the moment I saw you,” he whispered against Jensen's skin. Urgently he started pulling Jensen's T-shirt and sweater upwards and over his head.

Jensen helped him by lifting his arms and as soon as his head had cleared the two items, Jared's mouth was on him again, using the garments to trap Jensen's arms helplessly in their outstretched position.
He didn’t know what had gotten into him. This whole thing, giving yourself to the moment, that wasn't Jensen. He'd always been the epitome of a good boy, shy and socially awkward, never working up the courage to make the first move. How often had his friends bemoaned Jensen's inability to just let loose. Well, they should be proud of him now, because for once Jensen wouldn't, couldn't stop and be the good boy. This might be his only chance with Jared, so he would take it, consequences be damned.

Jared's hands slid lower, over his bare back, down to his butt where they cupped Jensen's buttocks through the material of his jeans.

When he felt himself being lifted, Jensen gave a slight squeak. With his arms still trapped, he started twisting around, instinctively searching for some hold which in the end caused them both to topple over and land on the couch.

Jensen giggled and Jared joined him, the action somewhat breaking the passionate spell they'd just been caught in.

Now Jared gazed at him with an unreadable expression. He gently pulled the restricting garments all the way off, freeing Jensen's arms but replacing the hold on Jensen's wrist with his own hand. “You're beautiful,” Jared whispered.

A warm blush spread across Jensen's cheeks. “So are you.”

Jared's expression turned pained. “But I'm not him.”

"Who?" Jensen murmured, still transfixed by what he saw in Jared's eyes.

Jared looked at him oddly, frown appearing on his forehead. "Jeff - my brother. Your fiancé."

"Oh…um…sure, Jeff." Jensen was perfectly aware how lame he must have sounded right then.

Predictably, Jared's frown deepened. He let go of Jensen's wrists and heaved himself off him. "You know, for a guy who plans on getting married soon, you have a pretty hard time remembering your fiancé's name. Who happens to be my brother, by the way.”

While the accusation was technically correct, Jensen didn't feel he should be the one shouldering all the blame either. "And how about you, Mr.High and Mighty? Just now you didn't seem to have such a hard time lying on top of said brother's fiancé, trying to perform a tonsillectomy. And if I recall correctly you kissed me first. Among other things." he pointed out heatedly.

Jared's features darkened. "Point taken." He started redoing his shirt buttons jerkily. “But you didn't actually put up much of a struggle. I guess it doesn't matter as long as it stays a family affair, huh?”

Incensed, Jensen leaned up and slapped him clear across the face.

A muscle under Jared's eye started twitching. He rose to his feet. "Maybe I should leave."

Jensen rose as well, folding his arms in front of his chest. "Maybe you should."

Putting on the jacket he'd shed earlier Jared avoided looking at Jensen.

Once the door was shut with an audible sound, Jensen's shoulders slumped. He looked over to the hamster's cage and sighed. "Sammy, I am well and truly screwed.”

Sammy just grabbed another nut from his food bowl and started nibbling on it, but Jensen had the distinct impression his pet agreed with him.

* * *

The next day found Jensen entering the offices of “Padalecki Funeral Services” which, considering he didn't expect the little talk he intended to have with Jared to be all that much on the cheery side, seemed oddly fitting. Jensen knew it was probably better to let sleeping dogs lie, but he just couldn't leave things like that with Jared. If Jared was willing to betray his brother's trust by putting the moves on his fiancé, that ought to mean something. Maybe if Jared knew the truth he would be happy even? Happy enough to forgive Jensen for all the lies?

So Jensen had swung by the Padaleckis, only to learn that Jared had gone to the office, claiming some paperwork he still had to do. As this was highly unusual for Jared, Sherri had even asked Jensen if something had happened Jensen had barely been able to look her in the eye.

And now here he was, standing among coffins and contemplating his future. Great.

He moved further to the back, where the offices were supposed to be. “Hello? Jared?”

A muffled voice answered him. “Jensen? Is that you?”


Jensen could hear Jared cursing, and his heart sank. He considered leaving, but then thought the better of it. For once in his life he'd see things through. Pushing open the door to what he guessed was Jared's office, Jensen froze in shock.

The sight was almost comical. Jared was hopping around on one leg, obviously trying to change into the pair of jeans and the shirt Jensen could see thrown over a chair. That alone wouldn't have surprised Jensen. He figured Jared wasn't the monkey-suit type that you expected to see in this business and would slip into his preferred casual wear as soon as he could. However, either the Padaleckis offered funeral services of a rather strange nature or Jared had lost his mind, for currently he was wearing a brightly coloured flowing outfit with wide pants and huge fake feet. A red wig completed the ensemble. There was no doubt about it, Jared Padalecki was a clown. Literally.

For his part, Jared had stopped hopping around and slumped down against the wall. “Close the door, will you?”

Jensen did as requested before turning his questioning gaze back to Jared.

“So, I guess you found out my big secret.”

“Um…” Jensen didn't exactly know what to say.

Grabbing the red wig from his head, Jared raked a hand through his hair. “This business? I hate it. I like to make people laugh.”

“So you dress up as a clown?” Jensen was confused to say the least. He had envisioned quite a lot of scenarios for this little talk, but not in a million years had finding Jared in a clown’s outfit been one of them.

Jared sighed. “Whenever I can, I work in children's wards of various hospitals. Try to cheer up the kids, you know.”

“This is wonderful,” Jensen marvelled. And really, could he be more in the love with the guy? Even in that ridiculous attire?

“Not for my, dad. Not when I want to quit Padalecki & Son to do it fulltime,” Jared explained. He sighed. “You have no idea how hard it is to tell the truth sometimes.”

Jensen bit his lip. “You would be surprised,” he said softly.

“You won't tell on me?” Jared studied him.

“No, of course not. That's none of my business anyway,” Jensen hastened to assure him.

Jared nodded, still not looking very pleased. “Right.” He cleared his throat. “What brings you here anyway? Something about Jeff?”

Nervously Jensen picked at the hem of his jacket. “No. And yes. I wanted to talk to you about last night. What happened—“

“Was a mistake. And I assure it will never happen again,” Jared spoke firmly. “Whatever I…you belong with Jeff and I have to respect that.”

“But I—“

Jared held up a hand, shushing Jensen. “Don't. Just don't. I think it's best you leave now.” He turned his back to Jensen.

Getting his heart broken by a freaking clown, Jensen figured the universe had a sense of humour after all.

* * *

Jensen would look at Jeff and twist his expression into the kind of pained smile that usually fooled nobody.

Jeff, however, seemed pre-occupied with other matters. “So, engaged?”

As Jeff had asked this same question or a variation thereof fives times now, their talk hadn't progressed very far yet.

“Yes.” Nevertheless, Jensen answered in the affirmative. Again.


Jensen gritted his teeth. Usually that was the point where the conversation looped itself back to the beginning.


This time a nod would have to do.

Jeff scratched his bandaged head. “So we do it?”

“Do it?” Jensen gazed back blankly.

“You know, sex?” Jeff clarified. The he frowned. “You don't put out?”

Jensen took a deep, calming breath. Even from his rather short exposure to Jeff, he had gathered certain key facts, one being that Jeff had little to no sense of tact in dealing with people he knew or at least assumed he knew. After only knowing his as the seemingly polite and mild-mannered stranger, it had come as quite a shock to Jensen. And he couldn't help but compare the two brothers' personalities now, which led to poor Jeff coming up a little short.

“I don't think this is the right time to talk about that,” Jensen tired to deflect.

“But why don't I remember you?” Suddenly, Jeff's features brightened. “Maybe we can jostle my memory?”

This didn't sound so good. “Um…how?”

“I remember being into chicks,” Jeff explained. “But I don't remember ever being into guys. Maybe I just need to…I don't know, try it out and then it will come back to me? Like riding a bike?”

“No one is riding anything here,” Jensen nearly yelled before lowering his voice back down to a normal level. “I mean, that's hardly the same thing.”

Jeff looked thoughtful. “Hm.” He smacked his lips together. “Man, I'm thirsty.”

Jensen stood up. “Just wait. I'll get you a coffee from the vending machine.”

When he returned with the paper cup, Jeff had acquired some more visitors in the form of his family.

“There you are, Jensen. We hardly see you around anymore,” Sherri clucked disapprovingly.

Jensen gave her a tight, apologetic smile in response, doing his best to ignore Jared's attempts to ignore him. “Sorry.” He handed over the coffee to Jeff. “There you go but be careful, it's hot.”

Jeff seemed frozen for a second, and then he snapped his fingers. “Of course. Now I remember you, you're the guy from the restaurant.” He pointed at Jensen. “And I'm pretty sure I'm not engaged to you.”

Finally Jensen's nightmare had come to pass, and this time he knew there would be no out at the last minute. He started walking backwards. “I'm sorry, so sorry. It was all just a misunderstanding and then…I didn't mean to lie. But you were all so…and I was…” He turned to Jared, looking at him imploringly. ”I know you have no reason to believe me but I do…I do love you. Please forgive me.”

Not waiting around for anybody to reply to this sudden confession, Jensen fled the room. And he kept running blindly until he was about a good ten blocks from the hospital. Only then, at some dirty street, did Jensen break down, slumped to the ground defeated and burrowed his face in his knees. Game over. And he'd lost everything.

* * *

Mechanically Jensen wiped the counter.

Chris put a hand on his arm. “Come on, go on home. We're closing in half an hour anyway. I can handle it.”

Jensen shook his head. “I'm fine.”

“You're not fine,” Chris argued. “You've basically been a ghost for the past month. Call him already.”

“And say what?” Jensen challenged. “From the moment we met I did nothing but lie to him and his whole family. I probably disgust him.”

Ignoring Chris' sigh, he went back to cleaning the counter, rubbing in wide, angry circles now. He ignored the ringing of the door bell, let Chris deal with the customer.

“Coffee, black. And a husband to go, please.”

At the sound of the voice, Jensen's head shot up, not believing his ears. But there he was, Jared. And not just him, no, the whole Padalecki family was standing there. Even Jeff was among them and oddly enough all were smiling.

“Wh…wha?” Jensen stuttered.

Jared beamed. “First I want a coffee. And then I want you to say yes to my proposal.”

Chris hooted, but Jensen was still too dazed to really register what was going on. “Proposal?”

“Yup.” Jared nodded. “My marriage proposal.”

Jensen's eyes widened. “B…but I…I thought.”

“We heard the coffee they serve in this place is only okay, dear,” Sherri now piped up. “But the sons-in-law are the best in miles.” She smiled.

“Yeah, I figured we had a little backwards last time,” Jeff teased.

Meanwhile, Jared apparently had enough of waiting for Jensen's brain to reconnect with his body, because he stepped around the counter and with one fluid movement pulled Jensen into his arms. “Will you marry me?”

“Yes,” Jensen whispered, still fearing it was nothing but a beautiful dream.

“In that case, strike the coffee, I got what I came for,” Jared said. Then he pressed his lips to Jensen for a passionate kiss and honest to god dipped him. Followed by the thunderous applause of the whole family and a few cat-calls that could have been either Chris or Megan, Jensen wasn't sure.

* * *

Jeff once asked Jensen when it was that he'd fallen in love with Jared. And Jensen, in the midst of preparing the gallery for his second big outing with all earnings to be dedicated to the children's charity Jared worked for, had simply smiled and said: “it happened while you were sleeping.”

- The End -


( 161 have dazzled me — Dazzle me )
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Feb. 29th, 2008 09:52 pm (UTC)
You know, I have been excited about this one ever since you posted the snippet back at the beginning of the month.

This? Completely lived up to (and in some cases surpassed) my expections. Fantabulous adaptation, hon. Thank you!
Mar. 1st, 2008 06:45 pm (UTC)
This? Completely lived up to (and in some cases surpassed) my expections. Fantabulous adaptation, hon.

Yay, with such a great movie it was hard doing it even a tiny bit justice so that makes me very happy to read. Thank you muchly.
Feb. 29th, 2008 10:29 pm (UTC)
I loved the movie and I thought this fic was amazing. Great Job!!!!
Mar. 1st, 2008 06:46 pm (UTC)
Whee. Thank you so much. The movie is one of my favorites as well so I did my best not to butcher it. :)
(Deleted comment)
Mar. 1st, 2008 06:59 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much. The movie was a hard one to live up to so I`m glad you liked my rendition. :)
Feb. 29th, 2008 11:23 pm (UTC)
So lovely! I loved the movie and you did a brilliant job adapting it. It made my little romantic heart sing with joy :D
Mar. 1st, 2008 07:02 pm (UTC)
Awww, thank you muchly. This makes me happy to read. The movie is so beloved, I tried my best to not totally butcher it. :)
Feb. 29th, 2008 11:35 pm (UTC)
Awwwwww that was gorgeous...oh siiiiigh ....I feel all mushy and romantic now...
Mar. 1st, 2008 07:03 pm (UTC)
I feel all mushy and romantic now...

Yay, then my job is done. :) Thank you so much, I`m glad you enjoyed it.
Feb. 29th, 2008 11:46 pm (UTC)
That was wonderful! I had so much fun reading that. It was really, really enjoyable. Thank you!
Mar. 1st, 2008 07:04 pm (UTC)
*dances* Thank you muchly. Happy you liked.
Mar. 1st, 2008 12:46 am (UTC)
I was waiting for someone to write a J2 to this movie! One of my fave movies of all time, so I'm very happy to raed this!!! So, so gorgeous and romantic! Good stuff!
Mar. 1st, 2008 07:06 pm (UTC)
I was waiting for someone to write a J2 to this movie! One of my fave movies of all time, so I'm very happy to raed this!!!

Yay, I`m happy to oblige and of course that you liked my version of it. :) Thank you so much.
Mar. 1st, 2008 01:15 am (UTC)
awww, that was so sweet! and adorable! the whole Padalecki clan was so deliciously affectionate, Jensen just awkward enough... hey, I loved Sammy the hamster too! thanks so much, i really loved it!
Mar. 1st, 2008 07:09 pm (UTC)
the whole Padalecki clan was so deliciously affectionate, Jensen just awkward enough

Yay. I`m glad you liked my version of the Padaleckis taking poor awkward Jensen under their wing.

I loved Sammy the hamster too!

Hehe. He was kind of a gratitious in-joke so cool that you enjoyed it.

Thank you muchly.
Mar. 1st, 2008 01:20 am (UTC)
Oh this is making me squeee so hard right now!!

Adorable job hun!!!
Mar. 1st, 2008 07:10 pm (UTC)
And your comment is making me squee. Squeeee. :) Thank you so much.
Mar. 1st, 2008 01:55 am (UTC)
Firstly, LOL! at Padalecki Funeral Services. Secondly, I rarely read RPF where I can actually hear the character's speaking, but when Jared first came in at Christmas, I totally heard him. I don't know why that is, but I'll attribute it to the writing. *wink*

It's been so long since I saw this movie, I was actually wondering how it was going to be resolved. LOL. Very sweet, and the touches of the Nana and the Snow White tattoo, and especially the hamster named Sammy.

Loved this. *smishes*
Mar. 1st, 2008 07:22 pm (UTC)
Secondly, I rarely read RPF where I can actually hear the character's speaking, but when Jared first came in at Christmas, I totally heard him. I don't know why that is, but I'll attribute it to the writing. *wink*

Woohoo, thanks for the great compliment. *bows*

It's been so long since I saw this movie, I was actually wondering how it was going to be resolved. LOL.

Heh. I popped it in recently again. Purely for research purposes of course. :D

Very sweet, and the touches of the Nana and the Snow White tattoo, and especially the hamster named Sammy.

Heh. Sammy seemes to be a hit which makes me all squee-y.

Thank you muchly.
Mar. 1st, 2008 02:30 am (UTC)
Aww, I've never seen this movie, but I imagine it's so sweet. You did a great job!
Mar. 1st, 2008 07:24 pm (UTC)
Aww, I've never seen this movie, but I imagine it's so sweet. You did a great job!

Oh, you haven`t? It`s really awesome, so funny and cute. *pimps movie*
But of course I`m glad you enjoyed my little story nevertheless. Thank you so much.
Mar. 1st, 2008 02:46 am (UTC)
Mar. 1st, 2008 07:25 pm (UTC)
Yay. Thank you.
(Deleted comment)
Mar. 1st, 2008 07:27 pm (UTC)
Man, now I'm going to have to go rent the movie!

Heh. Mission accomplished. :)

Thank you so much. I`m happy you liked the characters and the story.

Mar. 1st, 2008 03:40 am (UTC)
“We heard the coffee they serve in this place is only okay, dear,” Sherri now piped up. “But the sons-in-law are the best in miles.”

Aww. This line actually made me get all weepy. *sniffles* What a lovely story. And I adored Nana. Ha! The colors on the dress are wrong.
Mar. 1st, 2008 07:34 pm (UTC)
Awww, thank you muchly. I struggled with the ending and I`m a little bit of that line so I`m happy you found it moving.

And I adored Nana. Ha! The colors on the dress are wrong.

Heh. Nana was really fun to write. Thank you.

Mar. 1st, 2008 03:51 am (UTC)
OMG. I was hoping that someone would redo While You Were Sleeping and you totally made my day when I saw it. So awesome. <333333
Mar. 1st, 2008 07:40 pm (UTC)
Thank you muchly. I love the movie so much so I`m glad my take on it wasn`t a total letdown. Yay.
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( 161 have dazzled me — Dazzle me )



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