Jensen brushes a hand down the lapel of his suit jacket and sighs. It’s been a long day already, and it’s barely even started. When Aunty Kelly had asked if he wanted to be in the wedding party and spreading the petals down the aisle, he was eager to accept. Jensen’s Momma had talked to him about weddings before. How it was a celebration of love. The biggest day of your life. He hadn’t thought it would be this boring though.
There is another boy there, too, dressed the same as him. His Momma had said he is related to Uncle Ethan the same way Jensen and Aunty Kelly are related. Jensen frowns, he doubts that’s true. The boy, who is really tiny by the way, barely looks human. Jensen thinks he looks more like one of those trolls in one of those fairy tales that Josh likes to read to him. His hair is covering his eyes and Jensen can see that he tries to blow it out, or brush it away, all the time. Didn’t his Momma ever take him to get a haircut?
Why did his Momma make him get dressed this early, anyway? He’s been waiting around for hours, not even allowed to play, because his Momma had shaken her head and said it would ruin the suit. It makes him wish he didn’t have to do this. Josh gets to be outside, playing on the grass with his new found friends. Jensen wants that, too.
He looks over at the other boy. Maybe he should go talk to him, even if Jensen still isn’t sure he’s actually human. With the way he’s climbing on someone that might be his dad, Jensen doesn’t think so. He is trying to decide what to do when the room around him goes dark. Looking up, he sees Uncle Ethan standing there.
“Hi there, buddy. Are you excited?” he asks, crouching down to Jensen’s eye level and smiling.
“Not really,” Jensen huffs, crossing his arms and pouting before he realizes that his Momma said that was rude when he did it once before. He drops his arms to his side and sits down on the chair behind him. “I’m bored. We’ve been here for hours. It’s hot!” He wipes his forehead with the back of his hand to prove his point.
“I know, buddy. Why don’t you go play with Jared for a while?” Uncle Ethan suggests, smiling at Jensen and ruffling his hair.
“Jared?” Jensen frowns. He can’t remember hearing that name before. Smoothing his hair down, he shuffles in his seat. “Who’s Jared?”
“You see that boy, over there? That’s Jared.” Uncle Ethan turns to his side and Jensen can see him pointing at the boy climbing all over the old man.
“The tiny troll?” Jensen asks, blinking, and making Uncle Ethan laugh.
“Jared’s not a tiny troll, Squirt. He’s your age, actually,” Uncle Ethan smiles, making his eyes scrunch up and his cheeks dimple out.
“He’s not my age, he’s tiny,” Jensen says again, emphasizing the last word.
“True, he’s short, but I promise he’s a big boy just like you,” Uncle Ethan says, tickling his side, and Jensen can’t help but laugh at the feeling and squirm away from his hands.
“Momma said I couldn’t play because I might do something to make the clothes dirty,” Jensen complains, after he calms down. “I thought this would be fun, but all I’ve done is sit here alone for hours.” Jensen pouts when Uncle Ethan just laughs at him.
“You only got here half an hour ago, buddy. I’m sorry you’re bored though. Come on, let’s go talk to Jared and his dad, I’m sure if you play inside your clothes will be fine.”
“Okay,” Jensen agrees. He’s still not sure that his Momma will like that he’s playing, even if Uncle Ethan said it was okay, or that that boy Jared is really human. But it’s better than to be even more bored, so he follows Uncle Ethan across the room.
Jensen has to nearly run to keep up with Uncle Ethan. He never noticed how long his legs were, he barely reaches Uncle Ethan’s hip. When they’re in front of the tiny troll – Jared – Jensen has to remind himself, and Jared’s dad, Uncle Ethan goes down on one knee and catches Jared in a bear hug.
“Hi there, Jayman,” Uncle Ethan says, blowing raspberries on his cheek. “How are ya? I swear you’re getting bigger every time I see you.”
“Don’t be silly,” Jared laughs, shaking his head and Jensen can feel himself smile. “You just saw me a few minutes ago. I haven’t grown since then.”
“Oh, I wouldn’t say that, you seem bigger to me,” Uncle Ethan says, and Jensen can see him winking out of the corner of his eye. Jensen’s attention is still focused on Jared, though. Up close he actually doesn’t look like a troll, he’s still tiny, but he doesn’t look like a troll. “I want you to meet someone, Jared. This is Jensen.” Uncle Ethan puts an arm around his shoulder and Jensen has to step closer not to trip.
“Hi,” Jared says, and grins at him. “I’m Jared.”
“Jensen,” Jensen supplies, even though he doesn’t have to, since Uncle Ethan already told Jared his name.
“Jensen, that’s a funny name,” Jared says, giggling. “I’ve never met anyone called that. Where did your parents get that name from?” Jared’s face scrunches up in thought.
“I don’t know,” Jensen says, shrugging. This Jared boy is a little strange and not really nice either. Jensen isn’t so sure he wants to play with him anymore. It doesn’t seem like it would be all that fun.
“Jared, be nice,” Jared’s dad says, ruffling his son’s hair. “I think Jensen is a nice name,” he says, this time directed to Jensen. “Are you having fun, Jensen?”
Jensen has to bend over backwards to be able to look Jared’s dad in the eyes. “Not really. My Momma won’t let me go outside to play with my brother in the grass, she doesn’t want me to ruin my clothes, but Josh isn’t dressed in his nice clothes yet because he’s not a flower boy.” Jensen thinks that’s unfair, just because Josh isn’t a flower boy it doesn’t mean that he shouldn’t be allowed to wait longer before he has to dress in his nice clothes.
“I’m a flower boy, too,” Jared pipes up. Jensen can’t see him at first, he must have moved when Jensen wasn’t looking. But when Jensen looks around he can see Jared hiding behind his dad’s leg. “My brother is outside playing too, I wanted to do that too, but my Momma said I couldn’t. Where’s your Daddy? Why aren’t you playing with him?”
“My Dad is with the adults, it’s boring over there,” Jensen says, shrugging.
“Do you want to play with us?” Jared asks, stepping in front of his dad now.
“Actually, Jared, why don’t you two go play in the other room? I think there might be some toys,” Uncle Ethan suggests, pointing to the door across the room.
“Okay,” Jared says, and takes off in that direction as fast as his tiny legs can carry him. Jensen just stands there, not sure what to do, until Jared comes to a halt and turns around to look at him. “You coming Jensen?” he shouts, grabbing the attention of everyone in the room, and waves him over. Jensen doesn’t have any other option than to take off in a run, too. He can vaguely hear his mother calling for him not to run inside, but he pays no attention to her.
Jensen isn’t sure how long time they spend playing. All he knows is that he’s having fun. Jared actually isn’t as bad as he first thought he would be. Sure, he’s tiny, but that’s not a reason not to like him. Jared is funny, and he teaches Jensen a lot of games that he’s never heard of. He can’t help but feel disappointed when his Momma opens the door.
“Jensen, it’s time to go and get ready now. You too, Jared.” She doesn’t sound angry as Jensen thought she might be, because he had gone off and played when she said he couldn’t. When he stands up though, the expression on her face changes. “Oh Jensen, what did I tell you about the clothes?”
“Not to ruin them…” Jensen tugs at the sleeves of his jacket and doesn’t look at his Momma as he talks. “Uncle Ethan said it was okay if we played inside.”
“Your clothes are all wrinkly now, though,” his Momma points out, her arms crossed over her chest. “What am I going to do with you, Jensen Ross Ackles?” she tuts, as she gets down on one knee and tries to smooth out the creases on his suit.
“Donna, the boys look fine,” Uncle Ethan says. He’s standing in the doorway now, and Jensen hasn’t heard him coming. “No one will pay close attention to their clothes anyway. Sure, they’re adorable, but I’m kinda hoping everyone’s attention will be focused elsewhere.” He winks at them, before turning to walk away. “Now, are you coming? I need to go inside now and you two should go get your baskets so that you’re ready. Then we can get this show on the road.” He winks at them, before leaving the room completely.
“See, I told you he said it was okay,” Jensen says, pouting for effect. “At least I didn’t get any grass stains on me. Come on, Jared, let’s go.” This time when Jensen starts running, Jared is close behind him. When he hears his Momma call after him to not run inside, he obeys.
After they’ve gotten their baskets of petals there’s yet more waiting, before they can actually walk down the altar path and spread them. This time when he waits, he’s got Jared to keep him company, though.
Apparently going to the toilet is much harder for a girl then it is for a boy. Because he saw Aunty Kelly and one of her friends go inside when they got there and they still haven’t come out. Jensen can’t help but wonder if their Momma’s never taught them to not go to the toilet in the last minute before doing something important.
He tells Aunty Kelly as much when she and her friend comes back outside. He thinks his Momma said Aunty Kelly’s friend was called a bridesmaid, but Jensen isn’t quite sure. Kelly just laughs and pats him on the head, before asking him if he’s ready to go.
When he nods, she looks at Jared and he nods, too. Then the doors open and music starts playing. Someone, Jensen isn’t sure who it is, nods at them and tells them quietly to start walking. Jensen had been told to walk slowly and spread the petals evenly, so that’s what he does, side by side with Jared.
He doesn’t look up, just looks at his hands and feet to make sure he doesn’t walk too fast, or drop too many petals in one place. But he can hear people saying “ooh” and “ahh”, and can’t help but wonder if it’s for him, or if it’s for something else.
When he reaches Uncle Ethan, he stops and looks up at him. Uncle Ethan doesn’t look down though, just looks behind Jensen somewhere with a faraway look in his eyes. Jensen thinks maybe he’s looking at Aunty Kelly, but he’s not sure.
He gets pulled from his thoughts when he feels a tiny hand grabbing his own, and pull. Looking to his left he sees Jared looking at him and cocking his head to the side. And oh, that’s right; they were supposed to stand next to Uncle Ethan and not in the middle of the way for Aunty Kelly. They step to the side right on time, so that Aunty Kelly and her friend doesn’t walk right into them. Uncle Ethan steps up to her and takes her hand.
Someone starts talking, about love and happiness and Jensen gets lost in his own thoughts again. Spreading the petals was kind of fun, and all of the adults has told him what an important job it is. He hopes he did it right and that Aunty Kelly and Uncle Ethan are happy with him. He continues to listen as Uncle Ethan starts talking. It takes a minute before Jensen realizes that Uncle Ethan is saying the same thing as the other man. Eventually Uncle Ethan and Aunty Kelly exchange rings. Jensen thinks maybe that’s what a wedding is about, to give the person you love a ring. A kiss is probably important too, because then the man says; “You may now kiss the bride”, and Uncle Ethan leans over to kiss Aunty Kelly on the lips.
Jensen doesn’t understand why you would want to do that, it gives you girl cooties, that’s always what Josh is telling him. He looks over to tell Jared as much, but then before he can say anything, Jared is kissing him. Jensen is kinda sure that two boys are not supposed to kiss. Sure, his Dad kisses him, but that’s on the cheek or the forehead, when he’s read him a good night story and tucked him into bed. There’s a gasp from somewhere behind him, and then Jared pulls back.
Uncle Ethan and Aunty Kelly starts walking back down the aisle, hand in hand. Jensen can remember that he was supposed to follow them, so that’s what he does. When he’s walked a few steps, he can feel Jared grab his hand. It surprises him a little, but when he looks over at Jared, the other boy just smiles at him and Jensen can’t do anything but smile back.
Later, after they’ve taken pictures with Uncle Ethan and Aunty Kelly, Jensen goes to find his Momma, while Jared goes to find his. It turns out they’re talking to each other, so both of them runs over at the same time. After hugging his Momma, who said he did great, he looks over to ask Jared if he wants to go play again.
Jared’s Momma is talking though, and Jensen’s Momma has always taught him to be quiet when the grown ups talk, so he stays quiet. “Jared, you can’t just go around kissing people at random.”
“But Mom, you’ve always said that you kiss people you like. I like Jensen, so that’s why I kissed him,” Jared says, his face breaking out in a big smile.
“I know you do, Jared, but other people might not understand that, and you need to think before you do that again,” Jared’s Momma says.
There’s an odd look in her eyes that Jensen can’t place. “I didn’t mind, ma’am, I like Jared, too,” Jensen says, leaning over to kiss Jared to prove his point. And that’s really all there is to it.