You look like you're having a pretty rough day."
Works sucks. Clients are picky. He lost a case today. Lisa won't stop calling him every half an hour to make sure that he knows she has to work late tonight. The girls are sick. The nanny is calling with the dumbest of questions. And Mackenzie isn't talking to him because he was 'too snippy' earlier.
Bad day doesn't even begin to cover it.
Jensen looks up from his sorely needed drink and studies the bartender for a moment. Hot, tall, in about his early twenties, and entirely too innocent looking to be in a place like this. He sticks out like a sore thumb.
"You could say that," Jensen answers slowly.
The bartender only adds to his inconspicuousness by grinning at him. What's he doing here? These aren't his kind of people at all. He belongs in a mall or something. "I can solve that," he announces, reaching under the bar for God only knows what.
"Look," Jensen sighs, moving to grab his wallet from his pocket. He'd rather had a drink at home. There he can get some peace and quiet after a small struggle.
"Name of the game's blackjack," the brunette announces, slapping a worn deck of cards down in front of him. He suddenly seems much older when he turns a curious look on Jensen. "Are you in or are you out?"
There's a part of him that knows he shouldn't be at a rundown bar in downtown Austin, hiding from his wife and kids and responsibilities, drinking and playing card games with an exceptionally good looking bartender but he nods anyway.
He never expected to see that bartender again--he never even got his name--but here he is taking a shortcut on the way home from work, not really paying attention to where he was going and having the dumb luck to run into the brunette and knock half his bags to the ground.
"Sorry," he says hastily, kneeling to pick up both their bags at the same time as the tall bartender does and they end up smacking each other's skulls with a rather spectacular thunk. It makes him laugh and he feels much younger then he is, enjoying this light moment with another man he spent six hours playing blackjack and swapping life anecdotes with.
"Hey," the bartender says, a little breathlessly. His smile is shy today, which Jensen finds intriguing. Jensen wants to know what other smiles he has and exactly what it takes to provoke each one.
"Hey," he replies, caught in the same spell that the brunette is.
"Thanks." The bartender says, when Jensen hands him his bag. There's a moment during which they just stare at each other and then he breaks the eye contact, looking down at the sidewalk. "I should be going," the bartender mumbles and Jensen didn't take him for a mumbler before but he finds this side of the boy much more alluring then the bold, tough bartender one.
"Yeah, me too," Jensen agrees, running a hand through his hair. Nervous habit. He couldn't stop it even if he wanted to.
There's a light flush to the bartenders cheeks as he smiles again and nods. "I'll see you around," he says it like it's not even a question that they'll run into each other again.
"See you around," Jensen echoes, watching him walk off for a few moments.
"Hey!" the bartenders voice cuts through the crowd easily and he stops immediately, turning to face him. "What's your name?"
He smiles inexplicably with dimples appearing and nods. "I'm Jared."
Jensen waits until another horrendous day comes his way before going back to the bar. It doesn't take long, just five days.
Work still sucks. Clients are still picky. He won his latest case but his client was completely guilty and that doesn't sit with him well. His wife is in Dallas for the weekend. The girls are with their grandmother. They're in between nannies. He isn't fighting with Mackenzie but they aren't talking nearly as often as he would like.
It's not hard to predict where he's going when he walks out of the office building. Jared is working tonight--thank fucking God--and he greets him with a grin and a shot of tequila. Jensen smiles and thanks him, settling in for a long evening of drinking. It's how he deals with bad days.
"Hey," Jared says, sliding the pack of cards his way and looking like a little boy with his hand caught in the cookie jar as he does so. "I'm busy right now but play me later?"
Jensen can't refuse that and he plans on being here for a long time anyway so he nods. He hasn't got anything else to do.
It six hours, ten drinks, and forty-two rounds of blackjack later when he finally stumbles out of the bar.
He goes back the next night.
And the next.
And the next.
The next time they meet on the street it's not that awkward. They're practically old friends now because of all that talking they do while playing cards and drinking until they're laughing themselves stupid over nothing.
The only thing making it awkward is that he's with his girls.
Jared takes the seven year old twins in stride, treating them both with his 'kid' smile and asking them meaningless questions about their lives; their favourite toys, where they go to school, their friends, why their daddy is the coolest daddy ever. He looks genuinely interested. He's not just asking for his sake.
"They're cute," Jared comments.
Jensen nods, keeping one eye on the two girls as they run off to get ice cream from the kiosk twenty feet away. They're waving the money he handed to them like it's a banner and it's all he can do to keep from rolling his eyes. He loves his girls but sometimes it's obvious they inherited their mother's lack of sense.
"Where's your wife?"
"At work." It's awkward talking about Lisa with the man he's spent more then just handful of nights with, drinking and laughing, and undoubtedly flirting with.
He tries not to let it show but he senses that Jared picks up on it anyway.
"She work a lot?" he asks, tucking a hair behind his ear.
They're touching on a very sensitive subject. His marriage is even off limits to Mackenzie and yet, Jensen finds himself wanting to spill all of the dirty little secrets of his marriage to this bartender.
Like how he married her because his family wanted him to. Like once the girls were born, they took to separate sides of their king sized bed. Like they haven't bridged that space in almost two years now. Like he's certain that she's cheating on him instead of working. Like he doesn't even care. Like how he’s gay and the feel of Lisa’s body against his feels wrong.
"Yeah," Jensen shrugs to show that it doesn't bother him and that's as honest as he's going to get right now. "It's hard on the girls sometimes."
Jared’s eyes are on the twins but Jensen knows his statement is directed to and meant only for him, "I'm sorry."
Oddly enough, he's not having another bad day when he visits the bar where Jared works again.
It's a pretty average day. His client isn't lying but doesn't stand a chance in getting her rapist convicted. Lisa is working--sleeping with some guy--again. The girls are having a sleepover with their cousins at Mackenzie’s whom he's on good speaking terms with.
He just didn't feel like sitting at home and working even though he needs to be.
The bar's practically deserted when he walks in and Jared doesn't even try to hide the fact that he perks up when he sees Jensen. Their conversations about everything and nothing are a source of comfort for more then just him. Jared is homesick and Jensen makes the city seem less overwhelming.
Jensen’s not even that drunk when he leans over the bar counter and kisses the Jared.
The kiss lasts for mere seconds before Jared pulls away with a gasp. He likes this man but not enough to make him an adulterer. It's not fair to his girls and while he's only met his girls once, he loves them. He feels like he's known them all their lives from all the stories Jensen’s told him.
It's not even about his wife but still he feels compelled to say, "You're married."
Jensen’s smile's bitter. "Only in name."
He frowns. Confused. And that only makes him that much more cynical. He couldn't possibly know about Jensen’s marriage troubles because that's the one subject they don't talk about.
Jensen fiddles with his brandy glass. There's a lot of pent up sexual tension in him and Jared seems like the perfect outlet for it because whether he admits it or not, he's falling for the bartender but if he's uncomfortable with this, he'll swallow his feelings and never mention it again.
"I’m gay," Jensen says with another bitter smile.
Jared’s mouth forms a little 'o' and he swipes his hand through his hair, considering.
"And she's cheating on me."
Jared’s eyes widen at Jensen’s blatant comment. He seems okay with it. The cynicism comes from the fact that everyone thinks he has the perfect marriage when he really doesn't. Not from the faults themselves.
"I think I might love you," Jared tells him after a few silent minutes, his eyes staying focused on his hands as he picks up the cards. It's nearing closing time.
"I do love you."
He gasps and arches into his mouth, gripping the hair on the back of his head tightly. If Jared can keep those lips and that tongue of Jensen’s there forever, then he can die a happy man and he just might anyway from the feelings Jensen’s invoking in him.
"Oh my God," he breathes, running his fingers down the back of Jensen’s neck and part of his spine which in turns makes him shiver. Fuck, that's nice.
"Jensen..." he groans, grinding his still clothed hips against Jensen’s also clothed ones. Their shirts had just come off when he'd taken a sudden fixation to Jared’s neck and now the rest of him was impatient for some attention.
Jensen chuckles, the action making Jared’s skin vibrate, "So impatient." But his hand moves from stroking the side of Jensen’s neck down his body, leaving trails of fire in its wake, to the waistband of his jeans. For a moment, his fingers play with the material there and then Jared makes another impatient noise and he takes that as his cue to undo the button on his jeans.
He lets an audible sigh of relief when Jensen finally gets his jeans off him, leaving Jared in nothing but boxers. Thank God no one else is home tonight because Jensen plans on turning that sigh into a scream before they're done.
He should feel bad about bringing Jared back to his house and then proceeding to make love to him in the bed he shares with his wife but he doesn't. If anything, it makes everything that much better.
His hands move down Jared’s legs, committing the feel of his strong, tone muscles to memory. Right now, all he can do is think how of he wants to feel those legs wrapped around his hips as he pounds into the bartender.
The mental image makes him groan and push his hips against the others, instantly made annoyed by the fabric in his way.
Jared is way ahead of him though, and his hands reach the button and zipper on his slacks before Jensen can even finish the thought to get to them off himself. His hands expertly push the slacks over Jensen’s hips and he's torn between relief and jealousy.
Relief because Jared’s not a virgin and his first time should not be with a married man.
Jealousy because he's his and no one can make him give the bartender up and the thought of another man touching Jared makes Jensen growl deep in his throat.
Jared looks up at him curiously, and Jensen shakes his head, bringing his mouth down on his again to drive the thought from both of their minds. Tonight is about them and their needs and their wants and what they're going to do in this bed.
Jensen spends a long moment just kissing him, showing him and himself that this isn't just about relieving their needs. That's a part of it, he's not denying that and he couldn't if he had to. Two years is a very long time and who knows how long it's been for Jared but there's more here. It's the start of a relationship.
The bartender’s hand gripping Jensen through his boxers drags his mind back to the present with startling speed and force. Incredulous and amused and a hundred other things, he looks down at Jared to see him smiling cheekily at him.
"These'll have to go," he remarks, his hand moving slowly up and down Jensen’s cock. Fucking hell. That's good.
"Then get rid of them."
That makes Jared smile wider, and laugh softly and he wastes as little time as possible in pulling the boxers over Jensen’s hips and down his legs, tossing them off to wherever when his legs are finally free. Jared makes him groan and drop his head against his shoulder when the bartender grips him again and moves with earnest this time.
So close. So good. So... gone?
His eyes snap open and his head leaves Jared’s shoulder to look at him curiously. Jared is grinning at him, stretching out under him like a cat and he lifts his hips in a tiny nudge as though to say get on with it.
Jensen returns the grin and sneaks a quick kiss in and then his head's gone, moving down Jared’s body, pausing at his navel to swirl his tongue in the birthmark, and then he reaches his boxers and takes the band of those in between his teeth.
He's Jared’s first lover to even attempt removing his underwear with his teeth and Jared suspects that he's the first person he's even tried it with because after a couple faulty and stumbled tries, Jensen gives up and removes them with his hands. Jared still appreciates the effort. Jensen takes the time to slide his lubed up digits one by one into Jared, making the bartender shudder with delight as Jensen twists his finger, hitting that spot inside of him.
"You're so..." he pulls out and stares at the bartenders muscular body, taking in his tan skin that ends abruptly at his hips. Feeling compelled, he moves his head and kisses along the line, effectively making him squirm by the time Jensen’s done.
"Beautiful?" Jared supplies with a blush when Jensen doesn't continue the thought. It's cliche but Jared likes it.
Jensen shakes his head, confounding the younger. Beautiful just doesn't cover it. There's more to this man than beauty. There's grace and laughter and smarts and wit and charm and a thousand and one different smiles, each one he loves almost as much as his girls.
"Unbelievable," Jensen says after some consideration. Unbelievable that Jared is there with him, under him, naked with him, wet for him.
That makes Jared smile and he moves his head off the pillow to kiss Jensen slowly. "I want you inside me," Jared whispers in his ear, pressing his lips against the spot where Jensen’s jaw and ear meet.
Jensen’s more then happy to give him that, sliding into Jared in one smooth, slow thrust. He feels so fucking amazing and it really has been too long since he's last had sex because he almost comes right then and there.
Jared shifts under him, face distorted in discomfort, and Jensen gives him time to adjust.
“Are you okay?” Jensen asks, generally concerned. Jared responds with a deep kiss, and Jensen takes this as confirmation for him to start moving.
Just the smallest amount of friction makes them both moan and soon, Jensen is panting and groaning harshly against Jared’s throat and Jared is crying out all kinds of "oh god"s, "fuck"s, "sweet jesus”, there"s, "faster"s, "harder"s, and "Jensen!"s.
But Jared is not screaming yet and Jensen never goes back on a promise, even if it's just to himself, so he moves his hand from its spot on the bed sheets to in between their bodies and starts to stroke Jared. Jared cries out loudly and it's this close a scream but not close enough, which means Jensen has to work harder.
He stills and Jared whimpers, clinging to his shoulders like he's afraid that Jensen’s going to leave him now, right on the edge but he smiles at him and kisses the bartender to mollify his fears. Silently, Jensen manoeuvres them so he's sitting against the headboard, Jared is straddling his lap, cock pressed against both their stomachs, his head's falling against Jensen’s shoulder, and his lips are forming a silent gasp.
His hands move to grasp Jared’s hips, moving for him until his senses catch up and Jared takes over the motion himself. He sets a torturously slow pace, and ignores the urging of having Jensen’s hands wrapped around his member.
It doesn't take long for him to give into the same urgency that's gripping him and Jared begins moves faster, bringing his hips down harder with each thrust, each time Jensen going all the way in.
"I'm close," Jared whispers, resting his forehead against Jensen’s.
Jensen remembers why he switched their positions then and if Jared is close, then he doesn't have much time. He trails his fingers teasingly down the side of Jared’s cock, then wraps his whole hand around it, jerking him off and applying the right pressure in all the right places.
It's enough to push Jared over the edge and he screams as he comes, just like Jensen wanted and Jensen follows him into bliss soon after, the combination of Jared’s inner muscles clamping down on his cock, the soft pants and "oh my god"s he's doing, and because he's been needing something like this for a long time.
He isn't sure how long they sit there, cradling in each other in the post-coital bliss before Jared shifts and looks up at him with his guilty smile. "I should go," he says.
Jared is right and Jensen hates it so much but he nods anyway. "I'll see you tomorrow night?"
Jared knows exactly what his question implies and it's not just cards and alcohol at the bar. "Sure."
The change having an affair with Jared has on him is obvious to just about everyone.
His co-workers think he's simply excited about his latest case. The nanny doesn't know what to think but she's glad that her boss is no longer stomping around and snapping at her when she asks a question. Mackenzie thinks the strain on his relationship with Lisa has finally righted itself. His girls think that a happy daddy is the best daddy in the world and they don't question what causes it.
His wife is the only one who understands the change.
"Who is she?" Lisa asks, on the rare night that she's home and he's not with Jared.
"The girl you're sticking your prick into three times a week."
His girls choose that moment to start yelling for Daddy to come read them a bedtime story and he's grateful for the interruption. Fighting with Lisa is inevitable at this point but the longer he can put that off, the happier he'll be. Not to mention having to mention the ‘girl’ is really a man.
"We both have our dirty little secrets, Lisa," Jensen tells her, pausing by the door. Panic fills her features and she knows then that he knows about her indiscretions. "Let's just leave it at that."
"Where are we going?"
Jensen glances at his twins in the rear view mirror. He stole them out of their beds in the middle of the night, put them in his car, and has been driving ever since. The last pin dropped on his marriage to Lisa and she left the house soon after. Staying in that house seemed impossible after that.
"A friend's," he says and that contents them.
Jared is stunned stupid after he opens the door to reveal a soaked from the rain Jensen with one girl sleeping in his arms and the other with her arms wrapped his leg, blinking up at the tall stranger sleepily.
"What happened?" Jared asks, ushering them inside.
"The inevitable," Jensen answers. With Jared’s permission and insistence, he tucks the twins in on his bed and returns to his living room to join him on the couch.
"I'm sorry," Jared says, biting his bottom lip. He's more sorry for his girls because the life they're so used to is over now and nothing can make it go back but still, he doesn't want to be the reason why Jensen’s marriage ended.
"It's not your fault," Jensen says, like he can read the bartender’s mind. His eyes are closed, his head resting against the back of the piece of furniture, and he reaches for Jared’s hand blindly. Jared gives it to him readily, saving him the trouble of groping around for it.
"It feels like it."
"It's not," Jensen repeats. He's a part of it, yes, but Jensen has taken all the blame for their affair on himself. He doesn't mind it. Jared is worth it.
Jared squeezes his hand, his eyes trained on his lovers face. "So what now?"
"Can the girls and I stay here for a while?"
The divorce is just as ugly as he predicted it would be. Jensen filed the papers a mere week shy of their tenth anniversary, which means that their prenuptial doesn't apply. That doesn't stop Lisa from hiring the best lawyers she can and fighting for his money and his girls anyway.
But he's surprisingly got his father working on the case with him and his lawyers and there's no possible way Lisa can find a loophole.
In the end, he pays her half of the money she's asking for and she's more then happy to give into his request for sole custody of the girls. They'd only slow her down on her impromptu tour of Europe with her lover anyway.
His girls have taken to calling Jared 'daddy' and he knows that he should propose to Jared sooner rather then later. The divorce has been final for a year now. The house he shared with Lisa was sold and with that money, he bought a penthouse for him and the girls. Jared moved in two months after. Things like marriage aren't discussed because they don't need to be.
He wants to marry him, and his girls and Mackenzie and even his co-workers approve.
He pulls a ring out in the middle of dinner, and gets on bended knee in front of Jared, his girls grinning conspiratorially behind him. He asks him to join his family, be a father to his girls, and generally to make this complicated story of theirs a fairy tale.
Jared can't say no to that and he wouldn't if he could.
The day of the wedding dawns clear and bright and warm but not too warm. Nothing's gone wrong with the caterers or the florist or the church. This wedding planner seems to know exactly what she's doing. None of the guests missed their flights. It took a little bribing but everyone has a room to stay in. Everything's on time and in order.
And Jensen is excited.
That's how he knows this time it's right.