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PRESENT.

“Aakkkhhan… Is it okay if I sit here? All other seats are taken.”

Jared lifted his eyes from his book and saw a beautiful man asking his permission. Jared suddenly became conscious of things that were not the book that he was reading. He ducked his head and his hair did a good job hiding half his face for which he was ever so grateful and nodded his head slightly.

“’S okay.” He managed to speak out.

Jared watched from the corner of his eyes that the guy has just returned from his work. He was wearing a very nice and probably a very expensive white shirt with sleeves folded neatly and a he had his Burberry blazer wrapped over his left arm. He planted himself in front of Jared and keenly peeped over to Jared’s side.

“So you are reading ‘Looking for Alaska... I’m more of a Cormac McCarthy person…” he told.

Jared didn’t reply. He nodded a little and went back to reading.

He didn’t want to start something that he knew will cause, pain and only pain to him.

He didn’t live in a fairy tale world infact he lived in a world complete opposite of that.

He knew it.

He accepted it.
He embraced it.

After a few seconds Jared became aware of the presence of the waitress when she came; she took the menu lying in front of the beautiful guy and touched his shoulder. She was all pouty lips, hollow cheeks and seductive eyes in front of the beautiful guy.

Jared winced on her pretentiousness.

He found it insulting.

He found it humiliating.

“You ready to order sweet heart.”

The beautiful guy didn’t wince away. May be she was his type. Maybe the beautiful guy loved this kind of sycophancy. May be he craved adulation just like every other guy out there. Jared knew this guy was too beautiful to be a good person.

His thoughts halted when he heard the beautiful guy talk or rather; ask.

“Would you like to order something too… you
were so kind to let me sit here so I’m buying.”

Jared met the guy’s eyes for the very first time, they were as green as the leaves that converted carbon di oxide into oxygen; as green as the algae that converted oxygen into carbon di oxide.They were as green as blue wasn’t.

Jared managed to get himself out of this reverie before he embarrased himself and shook his head a little.

Beautiful guy put both his hands on the table, tilted his neck just the right amount and looked at Jared like he was the only person in this café ‘nay’ this world.

“Please… c’mon… if you don’t order anything I don’t order anything because one thing I hate is to eat alone and if I have nothing to eat or drink with my mouth then I talk… talk a lot; and that is not an overstatement because I can talk nonstop and then you’ll regret allowing me to sit here and I never would want you to regret allowing me…”

“Okay.” Jared blurted out. His face broke into a smile and it felt weird because he really can’t remember the last time he smiled.

Felt good weird but never the less it felt weird.

Felt like the smile didn’t belong to Jared.
Felt that the smile was a stranger and will leave him in the blink of an eye.
Felt like he’d have to pay for that smile with endless tears because he didn’t deserve it, because he has maligned it.

”Coffee… black.” He managed.

“Coffee… black it is. And make that two.” He asked the pretentious waiter and diverted his attention back to Jared who realized at that instant that he was staring at the freckles of the beautiful guy. Freckles that ornate his nose, that peeked out his sleeves and that Jared could appreciate on his little exposed chest. Jared turned crimson red on being caught staring and ducked his head again.

“Isn’t this book by the same writer who wrote the book where he made two people suffering from cancer fall in love and then killed one of the lovers and left the other one to die alone…? John… John Green?” Jared’s brows did a good job showing his disgust for this comment.

“Isn’t Cormac McCarthy the guy who wrote that catastrophically depressing novel ‘The Road’” Jared spit back.

A smile floated on the beautiful guys face. “I’m a masochist that way, what can I do…? By the way I’m Jensen… Jensen Ackles.”

“Jared. And I don’t actually hate Cormac McCarthy I was just… I just…” Jared didn’t know how he came from not-ever-talking to confessing-truths; maybe the guy had such a welcoming presence and easy personality that everyone did it in his presence.

Jensen laughed, and wow… it was so full bodied, throat exposing perfect white teeth, rosy gums and Jared was stunned, stunned to his very core.

“Its okay. Tit for tat, I bad mouthed your writer you did the same for mine. Book lovers are very protective like that... I know! Anyways Jared I was just wondering should I tell you that you have the most beautiful eyes NOW or should I wait after our coffee has arrived and we’ve had a little more conversation.”

Jared felt his face heat up. He was not expecting this.

Jared didn’t have beautiful eyes infact he didn’t have beautiful anything.

He was gored,
messed up,
broken…

He placed one of his fingers in between the pages and twisted to get his bag that was hanging from his chair and murmured “I have to go.”

Jensen stood up before Jared and his 6 feet something frame did a good job blocking Jared’s way. He lifted his eyes to look directly into Jensen.

He pleaded Jensen to let him go with his eyes.

He pleaded Jensen to let him go.
He pleaded Jensen.
He pleaded.

 

Jensen refused.

“I’m sorry… I’m just a stupid person. I shouldn’t have come on to you so strong, please forgive me let’s just enjoy the coffee… please.”

But Jared was a practical guy. He knew where his place was, what he actually deserved in life and he knew perfectly well that the guy, the most wonderful perfectly perfect guy standing in front of him deserved so much better than Jared.

He deserved a man.

He deserves a resapectable man.
He deserved a respectable, honarable man.
He deserved a respectable, honorable and a complete man.

And Jared was just not it.

He left before Jensen could see his tears.

Tears… yes now… tears is the language that Jared spoke, unlike smile, tears are what has always come easily for Jared.

 

A FEW MONTHS BACK.

Matt’s cock was scratching Jared’s throat causing him pain and suffocation. When Jared tried to lift his arms to push Matt, he growled and pinned Jared’s wrist with his hard callused hand.

“You take what I give you… asshole. You don’t get to protest or throw a little tantrum like a little bitch that you are. You get it.” Jared could not nod even if he wanted. The pain where Matt had his three fingers up Jared was too much.

Too real.

Too absolute.
Too true.

“YOU GET IT!” Matt shouted again, lifting himself up and out of Jared’s mouth only to slap him, hold him, badger him, hurt him.

Wounded Jared managed a little whine.

Matt was satisfied by the hurt that he was causing.

After twenty minutes when matt had raped him, hit him, tortured him full to his heart’s content he left him there spoiled and marred.

And Jared laid there in his own filth; vomit... blood... spit...

A damaged mind...
A broken body...
A wounded soul...

He reeked of Matt’s cum on his face. His lips bruised and bleeding. His ass sore, tender and bloody. His eyes swollen and tired.

He cried but did not curse.

He sobbed but did not shout.
He wept but did not wail.

He did deserved it like a little bitch that he was.

He did deserved it like a little bitch.
He did deserved it.
He did.
He.

Chapter Text

PRESENT.

“Aakkkhhan… Is it okay if I sit here?”

Jared got irritated, he knew there was no one at the library except the ancient librarian and hence the library of his choice. He mumbled without lifting his eyes, “The whole library is empty… you can sit wherever you want.”

“Yeah I can see that but sitting here would make me really… really happy so…”
Jared could not believe the audacity of the voice, wasn’t he radiating enough leave-me-the-fuck-alone vibes or was the man pretending to be oblivious. Jared didn’t want any problems with the guy so he lifted his eyes to tell him once and for all.

“You…!”

Jensen Ackles was standing in front of Jared and the scene from 3 days back when Jared had run away from a café where Jensen was flirting with him swam across Jared’s mind.

All the blood from Jared’s face drained and he could feel himself visibly paling for the mere thought that Jensen will come to know his desires was terrifying.

All the 3 nights that has passed since that café incident has left an itch in Jared’s mind… body…soul… he has dreamt of these green eyes, yellow freckles, red lips, pink gums, brown lashes, golden hair and heard that deep… deep voice since then.

Jared had tried to erase those 15 minutes from his memory; he has given himself every reason, every cause and every explanation on how he does not deserve this man.

How any man as impure and tainted as himself can ever dream of a life with another person without poisoning there life too? And the last thing Jared wanted to do was taint Jensen’s life because that’s what he was… poison.

“You just gonna sit there and stare or say something.” Jensen was talking to him with that familiar tilt in his neck.

Jared’s cheek flushed. His voice stammered.

His body bathed in sweat, “I… I am… about that day…”

“Hey! It’s okay. I get it. I also remember some of the most important things at the craziest of moments. You were busy, you rushed out, I came after you, lost you, went back, drank 2 cups of black coffee blah… blah things happen… let’s forget that. So how was that book you were reading?” Jared could not remember when Jensen had planted himself on the bench opposite of Jared’s. He was looking at Jared with the same intensity with which he saw him 3 days ago.

Jared fought tears. His mind was shouting to run away before this mirage breaks BUT His heart was slowly and gradually bowing to the attention that Jensen was paying him. Every part of him was shouting one and only one thing;

This is a fucking lie.

You are a fucking lie.
am a fucking lie.

You will run away in the opposite direction as soon as you know the truth.

The truth about how filthy I am.

The truth about how dirty I am.
The truth about how impure I am.

“I can’t do this…”

Jensen looked at him, locked eyes with him and demanded “Do what… tell me about the book?”

Jared shook his head, before things go out of control he should do some damage control, he needs to do some damage control, “No… no… Jensen you don’t know me.”

Go away I’ll destroy you.

Go away I’ll destroy.
Go away.
Go.

But Jensen brought Jared out of his reverie…

“Then tell me about yourself, I’m all ears and curious as I have never been about anyone.”

Jensen looked at him and Jared could just melt away, just lose it but no.

“I… I just… I can’t.”

“Try.” This little word, this little three letter word, it told Jared everything.

Support.

Rest.
Encouragement.

But NO!

N.O.!

“I think I’ll leave.”

Jared was about to get up when he felt a little touch on his fingers and his whole body burned, his defenses came out in full blow, his mind shouted and his hand jerked, “HEY…”
To say Jensen was terrified from this reaction would be an understatement. He suddenly backed away, bought both of his hands up, palm out and very quietly and sincerely hinted, “I am sorry… sorry I should not have touched you without your permission I really am very… very sorry”

Jared’s heartbeat threatened to be heard in the silence of the library he could see the genuine apology forming in Jensen’s face, his expression have changed from adoration to attention in an instant, “I overreacted I’m sorry too.”

A faint smile floated between the two of them.

This man was tearing all of Jared.

This man was doing things to him he thought were not possible. This man was giving him hope and for the very first time in his life

Jared wanted.

Jared needed.
Jared craved.

“I have finished the book…You were right about John Green.” Jared told him sitting down, his head down and hands shaking because he has decided to do something.

He has decided to do something he has never done before.

He has decided to do something new.
He has decided to ‘Try’.

“Na… he is a great writer, a little sadist may be, but all that I said; was for you to get to talk to me.” Jensen was at ease now and that made Jared wonder because any other guy would be heading to the door right about now.

“Why did you want me to talk to you?”

“I don’t know… maybe because the minute I saw you pouring your soul into that book at that café something snapped inside me. I wanted to talk to you, know you, wanted you to know me and the little fact that you have the most beautiful eyes ever, did not make things easier for my little crush at first sight.”

“You know Jensen things between us will never be what you want them to be.”

“Jared…” before Jensen said something that made Jared fall more into the abyss that is about to be created Jared interfered.

“It’s not easy for me Jensen.”

“Then we’ll make it easy, I’ll make it easy.”

“Easier said than done”

“Jared I don’t know what it is that makes you defensive and I won’t ask you to tell me anything until you are absolutely ready or until I have created a trust between the two of us. But one thing I know is that I am willing to work as hard as I can because the way you blush when you talk, no matter how little and your smile, those dimples, your relationship with books, this all makes you irresistible to me.” Jensen’s sincerity and heartfelt confession stuck Jared like the earnest words from a good book.

Never once in his life has he heard someone praise him, all he remembers are cruel and harsh words of his abuser.

His abuser who took everything from him.

His innocence.
His purity.
His virginity.

His train of thought was disturbed when Jensen offered him his left hand and Jared like an intimidated child forwarded his own.

Their touch did not ignite sparks or embers rather; it calmed Jared down.

Jensen’s hand was warm against his cold one.

It was callused against his soft one.
It was confident against his shaking one.
It was calm against his trembling one.

“So I got one more sadist book if you wanna
hear about it…” Jensen asked him.
Jared gave him a smile as an answer blushing till the roots of his hair.

“Awesome!! So have you heard about ‘The Book Thief’…”

Jared had not only heard about it but it was his one of the favorite books so he nodded.

“You ever heard of Eleanor and Park?” Jared offered.

“You normally read stories of teenage girls with skinny boys in’em?” Jensen inquired with a smirk on his face.

“Hey!!! It’s a classic.”

“I know… I know. I just thought we were discussing catastrophically depressing novels only, anyways It’s just that I thought you’d more of a Da Vinci Code type of guy! All mysterious but apparently I was wrong.”

“And I thought you’d be more of a gun swinging, horseback riding western cowboy literature guy with your bowlegs but apparently I was wrong too.”

“So you did notice me and my bowlegs and here I thought I was the only one doing all the noticing!”

Jared turned crimson on this comment and Jensen’s hand tightened around his.

The library that evening became their safe haven.

They talked about books till the library closed and Jensen never once let go of Jared’s hand.

Never once.

Never.

Chapter Text

A FEW MONTHS BACK.

“You know Sades it’s not my fault but it feels like it is… it hurts… everywhere.” Jared was lying on his back, his bandaged arm which matt had decided to slash yesterday, throbbing. Sadie, his dog was lying on her stomach with her head on Jared’s stomach which proved to be a welcome weight.

He was talking.

They were talking.

Sadie lifted her head up and decided to hide it in Jared’s neck; Jared knew she was sad, helpless just like him. They always mirrored each other’s moods and Jared just can’t remember the last time she wagged her tail or woofed in enthusiasm or wanted to play fetch.

Matt had ruined him… them.

Sadie seemed to have fallen asleep in the crook of Jared’s neck, everything was quite except the sound of the fan revolving overhead.

Jared was trapped.

He was trapped in a world which was so full of pain that he was sore all over, not just his body.

Everything stung.

Everything throbbed.

His eyes refused to produce any more salty water.

His throat refused to moan.

His mind took him back to that sunny afternoon a few weeks back when he, a shy boy from a small town landed his feet in the college campus and just couldn’t believe his luck. He was not like the students who were effortlessly bright, he worked hard on getting in and loaded with recommendation letters and his non stop reading habit he got in.

He was in a new world from where he could go anywhere, be anyone.

What he became was his own worst nightmare.

A broken, shallow, unrepairable worst nightmare.

Worst.

 

It took him 3 weeks to realize he was being stalked, every illusion he had about college came crumbling down.

He had no one to go to. He had not really made friends here just yet and his roommate was more interested in blasting metal rock on his stereo and watch lesbian porn than notice that Jared was distressed and breaking down.

He had no where to go to, he didn’t want his parents to worry about his son who was so far, his father could not just leave his business that supported their family again and again. He tried going to the student council but they were more interested in booze and girls.

His lack of any action made Matt bolder, he started calling him, harassing him, bad mouthing him.

Jared just about lost his mind, he stopped eating, went nowhere apart from classes, locked himself up with his book Harry Potter in his room. The only place he found solace.

Then Jared’s roommate gave his room key to Matt one day in exchange for a mug of free beer.

Jared lost everything that day.

Matt took and took.

When matt left, he left behind a shell of a man who answered to the name of Jared, who got so lost in the trauma and torture that it broke him down to pieces so small that they scattered to never be made whole again.
Jared was always taught his body was his temple and he respected that. But when Matt took his virginity he took Jared’s purity.
Jared's innocence.

Now he was tainted.

He was corrupted.
He was maligned

He hated himself.

 

He hates himself.

Its been 3 weeks since that day. Matt comes and bends Jared to his will. Jared is so severed that he takes every hit, every smash and every crack. He deserves it… doesn’t he? He deserves everything that Matt does to him because he is a little bitch who couldn’t even protect his own body.

He deserves to be punished and Matt does it.
Matt punishes Jared by inflicting pain and this pain is Jared’s repentance.

This pain is Jared’s apology to his body, to his family, to his virginity.

Every single time Matt breeches Jared and calls him his little bitch Jared gags and prays and prays for it to end. But it does not. It keeps on going. It never stops. It just never stops.

Jared pleads with his mouth, his eyes, his hands but Matt laughs, he gets more turned on, his thrust more erratic, his pupils more dilated and Jared aches more, bleeds more, hurts more.

More.

More.

More.

More.

Jared sits up shocked, Sadie is shocked too. She can feel Jared’s heartbeat which threatens to break out of his chest, he is sweaty, he is crying, wailing, he can’t take it anymore.

”Sadie make it stop… please please… it hurts. I
am hurting…” Jared’s hands find his face. He is so ashamed of his helplessness.

He hadn’t known when he degraded to such a state. Degraded.

Rotted.
Crumbled.

Then he heard a loud knock on the door.
Sadie whined on catching the scent of the guy who has yet to appear from the door.
Jared’s body bolted in the direction of the knock. Eyes widening, body trembling, breathing elevated he looked at the door.
Matt appeared with a smirk on his face that could make Jared’s hair stand.

He crossed the room, Jared was still as a statue, his mind blank, Matt took Jared’s trembling lower lip between his finger and thumb and protruded it firmly, his nails dugging in.

Pain.

Terror.
Fear.

Matt bit on the lip.

Hard.

Tears don’t cloud Jared’s vision he can see Matt’s eyes,

Angry.

Dangerous.
Shameless.

“Get ready for me… little bitch!”

Chapter Text

PRESESNT.

“Aakkkhhan… Is it okay if I sit here? All other seats are taken.”

Jared lifted his eyes up from the book with a smile floating on his lips, he could recognize this voice anywhere and anytime.

Jensen.

Jensen who was as beautiful inside as he was outside.
Jensen who not only shares Jared’s love for books but also understands it.
Jensen who at least tries to turn Jared’s nightmare of a life into a sweet dream.
Jensen who at least tries.
Jensen.

Jared’s mind was buzzing with Jensen. His body hummed, his heart murmured.

But then immediately the smile demanded it’s due… a smile has always demanded its due from Jared.

His thought claimed… Jensen who was a dream…

A dream so un obtainable that it scared Jared.

They have talked, yet Jared is scared… of what?

Of infecting?

Of maligning?
Of the truth?

The smile faded… it had to; Jared reminded himself with a scorn.

“Something funny Jared?” Jensen sat down beside him.

They were in a public bus and Jensen could not have looked more out of place with his white shirt and designer blazer. Half his freckles were covered by the ginger stubble that he was sporting. Jared tilted his neck and re-acquainted himself with the shine of Jensen’s skin and his eyes so green, they could be marbles.

“Alright scary starer… alright don’t answer me. But I have to tell YOU something!”

A small shy smile smugly once again smoothed out on Jared’s face. Jensen did that, he made Jared smile.

His eyes came across the smirking face of his handsome seat-sharer. He nodded before he could be overtaken by a blush.

Jensen dropped his voice several decibels low as if whatever he wanted to say was suppose to be only and only for Jared’s ears, he leaned in Jared’s direction and whispered;

“It looks like I am meant to be by your side.”

Jared went red. Jensen’s closeness, his whispering voice and now this…

Jensen seemed to have noticed the heat rushing out of Jared’s body so he promptly added,

“Of course I meant it metaphorically, I mean at the café, then the library and now the bus…”

“What are you doing in the bus, Jensen.” Jared didn’t want it to come out so crude but his defenses just shot.

“Ummm… going places…” Jensen didn’t look like he minded Jared’s tone, maybe he has gotten used to it.

“You don’t look like the person who goes places in a public bus.”

“What does a person who goes places in a public person looks like?”

“…Well public buses are for librarians like me. Not for business magnates like you.”

“Wow you are a librarian… I knew it! I knew there had to be a reason I got so turned on by you.”

Jared could not believe his ears. Jensen was just so adorable when he flirted. Before Jared could say anything Jensen started again,

“My car broke down. This was the first ride that came across, I hopped on, saw you and remembered that we talked about a lot of fictional things in the library that day but forgot to exchange numbers so I came back here to get your number and voila it was as if this seat was vacant only for me and by the way I am not a business magnate. Just a small entrepreneur.”

Jared remembered how much Jensen loved to speak. He faked some anger.

“A) this seat is not vacant… this is a one person seat and you just came here squeezed me in one corner and claimed half my seat. B) We didn’t forget to exchange numbers, I refused to give you mine.”

“Oh yeah… I remember you told me… ‘you were not there yet’ so are you there where-ever there is...cause I'm waiting! And about the seat don’t be so fussy.”

Jared barked out a laugh.

A laugh.

He could not believe he did that.

When did he do that.
Before Matt.
Before he came to college.
Before everything turned to hell.

AFTER Jensen.

 

Laughing he looked at Jensen. Jensen had the most surreal and dreamlike expressions on his face.

It looked like satisfaction.

It looked like triumph.
It looked like joy.

Suddenly Jensen was even closer to him yet distant. Jensen’s touch was there but it didn’t feel willful or wanton. If anything it felt clean, careful and concerned.

Jared’s voice didn’t hitch when Jensen leaned closer and muttered out 4 words.

“Have coffee with me?”

Before he could answer and fall in an abyss so deep it had no end he shook his head.

He cannot do this to Jensen

He will not do this to Jensen.

He is damaged goods Jensen deserves so much better.

“Jensen… I can’t…”

Before Jared could speak anything Jensen interrupted, “I know… I know you can’t give me what I want, I know you think I will not understand whatever it is… but Jared I told you before, will you atleast… for me, for us …try. Please… try.”

They were squeezed in a place so small, just like jared's heart that he was surprised it whether it will accommodated them.

He felt Jensen’s warmth through the minute distance between them.

He had always kept hatred in his heart, hatred for himself, for the world, for feelings.

This hatred is his weapon.

This hatred was his weapon.

“Jensen…”

He looked defeated, tired and Jensen still wanted him. Still.

”Jared its fine but I just want you to know… that whenever you are ready, I’ll be by your side… and this time I don’t mean it metaphorically.”

“Okay…” Jared whispered.

“Good… so please allow me to let you dive in your book again because this stop is where I get off.” Jensen still had a twinkle in his eye and a coy smile on his face.

Jared loved it.

Jared dared to love it.

Before Jensen could get up and leave Jared did something for the time. He touched Jensen’s wrist, held it, “I mean okay …okay... I’ll try.”

Jensen sat back beside Jared and touched Jared’s cheek with his callused fingers, “I am glad you have decided to try because this was not my stop.” Jared ducked his head and smiled.

A smile accentuated Jensen’s already beautiful features.

It was wonder.

It was admiration.
It was selfless.

It was for Jared.

And Jared prayed hard that this smile would not ask for a due.

Chapter Text

A FEW MONTHS BACK

Jared was not claustrophobic per se but he enjoyed the sun.

The warmth.

The golden glow.

The freedom.

 

Once their neighbor had to get their roof renovated so they covered the Padalecki roof with thick blue plastic to block any debris from falling on. Jared woke up that day with no tiny specks of sun pouring in his room.

Kissing his cheeks.

Evaporating his slumber.

He did not feel the morning that day.

And he hated it.

 

Now he feels that way constantly.

Now he feels shackled but it has nothing to do with his manacled hand which Matt is bruising right now.

Now he feels shackled because it’s been 3 weeks since his roommate traded their room key with Matt and it’s been 3 weeks since Matt has done every imaginable abuse with Jared’s body and mind.

He doesn’t even feel the pain of chains on his hands anymore.

But he does feel of chains on his heart. In his heart. Through his heart.

His lips are shut tight but every muscle, every pore of his body is screaming.

 

Matt was moaning with the pleasure that Jared was giving him.
Jared was silent with the beating that Matt was giving him.

 

Every thrust through his lips made Jared realize how chained he was and when everything was over and Jared was lying on the floor with Matt’s come on his face and lips bashed and marked, Matt leaned towards him and lifted him with his hair, saw directly in his eyes and spitted, “oh baby, you are a delight wait till I tell my friends about you. They’ll be thankful all their fucking life. You’ll be such a good bitch for them. Right…?”

Jared heaved.

Matt laughed.

Jared vomited.

Matt left.

No.

No.

No.

No.

Jared’s mind was on a continuous loop of no.

He didn’t wanna get out.
He wanted the end.

Matt had already ruined his life and now he wants more.

Jared has got nothing to give.

He doesn’t even have himself anymore.

Jared couldn’t.

After Matt had left Jared got up from the filth and went to the shower. It burned him first, then it froze him. It would have drowned him if Sadie had not come.

He took his blanket and collapsed on the floor.

He could not sleep on the bed anymore it reeked of sex that Jared didn’t want but couldn’t stop.

He had been abused his whole life. He was the long lean skinny bookworm who was picked on by everyone and what Matt was doing to him was just the amplified version… wasn’t it.

Jared had suffered his whole life but not like this… never like this. Maybe he was preparing for this. Maybe he should have fought.

Then.

Now.

His brother, Jeff, he always protected him. He misses him. He needs him.

He touches the phone with his bruised fingers. They were shaking.

He somehow managed to dial the number.

If he could just listen to Jeff’s voice once.

If he could just hear another human who doesn’t think he is a bitch who likes to get fucked.

If he could just.

If.

His shaky fragile fingers could not bear the weight of the phone. It plummeted down to the floor. Tears came rolling out of his swelled eyes. He broke down.

He can’t even hold a phone without breaking it. He is not worthy of Jeff’s voice, Jeff’s love.

He was shaking with tears and trauma. He wanted to stop but couldn’t. His hiccups scared Sadie; she laid on his feet near the phone.

He should have picked it up but he didn’t have the strength, he was so tired, so exhausted.

He didn’t realize being someone’s bitch was such a draining work. But he was. Wasn’t he…?

Someone’s bitch.

Drained.

Both.

The hard floor became his bed.

Sadie’s sad trembling body, his blanket.

His sobs, his lullabies.

A slap on his face, his alarm clock.

“Bitch! Wake up we got company…”

“No!!! please.” Was all Jared could manage before his sore broken body was carried on the bed with 3 strong, hard hands whose grips were so tight that Jared fidgeted with pain.

“Shut up. Didn’t I tell you we’ll please my friends, well meet Tom and Dan. And you my little bitch… be good to them.”

Jared’s eyes flew open with horror, his mind was still not on board but his heart was thumping so hard he could feel it in his throat. Sadie was whining in the corner somewhere.

“NO PLEASE NO!!!” six hands were touching
Jared and he was hurting. They were poking, prodding, pushing, punching, pulling.

Jared was treated like rag doll. He has never felt so tiny, so weak, so helpless all his life.

One hand pushed on his sore, hurting hole and Jared leapt but could not get anywhere. One hand held him down while two fingers made their way in his lips.

He gagged but no one noticed.

“Open your eyes, show’em baby. Don’t be afraid c’mon. Be a good bitch for me.”

Someone drawled and Jared could smell tobacco. He refused to open his eyes. They slapped him hard. His face prickled with sharp pain.

He shouted but no one paid any attention.

They were laughing and digging.

Jared was crying and resisting.

They were hurting and thrusting.

Jared was praying and enduring.

Suddenly everything stopped.

There was chaos.

Someone shouted his name.

Someone pushed hands off him.

He refused to open his eyes again.

Sadie barked.

He crashed on the dirty Mattress. No one was prodding him anymore but he was scared to death.

Did he die?

Did he not die?

His heart refused to slow down. His chest was hurting.

His sobs refused to die. His throat was hurting.

End it.

End me.

Please.

Someone again called his name. His name! not bitch… but his name.

Someone touched him. Not hurt him… touched him.

Please don’t touch me. I’m filthy. Leave me.

I’m filthy…

Filthy…
Filthy.
Filthy!

Jared wished he could say all this but he couldn’t. He tried but his words died.

Or maybe not…

“Please don’t talk like that. Jared open your eyes please. Jared… Jared ?”

Jared kept on weeping and trembling.

He was afraid the hands will return.

He was afraid they’ll do more damage this time.

Where were they… why aren’t they returning?

“Jared you gotta open your eyes and look at me please… please.”

Jared was shaking so hard he had difficulty listening to the words but he would not open his eyes, he could not open his eyes.

“Jared no one’s hurting you now please…”

Jared felt hands on his face.

Not hurting but soothing.

Not demanding but listening.

Not claiming but requesting.

He lifted his eyes. They hurt.

“J… J… Jeff…???”

He lost consciousness…

but in peace…

Chapter Text

PRESENT

“Who is he?” Jeff asked, his eyes suddenly big and scary and his body stiff and erect.

“It doesn’t matter I’ve changed my mind… I’m… I’m not going” Jared was tired, his mind had been working overtime since he had promised Jensen to ‘try’.

“Why? From whatever you’ve told me about him, he seems like a nice guy, okay a little talkative and persuasive but it seems like he’ll complement you.”

He seems like a nice guy.
Yes that’s why Jared was not going.

He seems like a nice guy.
Yes, that’s why Jared is not worth him.

He seems like a nice guy.
Yes, that’s why Jared is bound to destroy him.

“I’m not sure why…”

“Jared…”

“I just… I’m not… I’ll ruin it.”

Ruin ‘him’.

“You are scared. I get it but you’ll not ruin it. C’mon tell me what you are scared of.”

“…”

They were sitting at the coffee table and Jared had a big book in his hand which he used as defense more than a reading material. He gripped that book tight against his chest and hanged his head.

In his stubbornness to not answer.
In his submission of fears.
In shame.

“You have to tell me what you are scared of brother. I can’t help you if you don’t open up.”

“I remember his every feature like it’s carved in my mind, my… my soul.”

“And that’s a bad thing…?” Jeff looked absolutely puzzled.

Jared looked directly in Jeff’s eyes. His fear sparkling in the tear drops that threatened to flow down his cheeks.

“Matt raped me, repeatedly for 3 weeks” Jeff winced and the anger on his face came like a swift storm demanding to destroy but Jared was thankful he didn’t interrupt, “he forced me to look at him, watch him while he split me open, Every. Fucking. Time.” Jared was trembling with fear but he continued “and I can’t remember what he looked like, I can’t remember his… his face or… or his mouth and I have met Jensen thrice for such short periods and half of the time I didn’t have the courage to look at him yet his every mark, every freckle, every scratch is implanted in my mind. THIS… this scares me Jeff. Now can you help me Jeff?”

(Help me Jeff…)

Jared was not angry, he was defeated. His fears, his negativity stared at him.

Laughed at him.
Threatened to swallow him.
Whole.

Jeff was silent, his coffee cold and thick, inedible, worthless just like Jared.

Jared continued on his path of depression and disapproval, “This fear, it’s all I have, this is my weapon Jeff. Don’t… don’t take it away. If Jensen or anyone else, if they… I don’t think I’ll survive a second time.”

I’m barely surviving this time.

Jeff stared at Jared. His stare was scary but for Jared.

“I know why you think like that, I know it. What you went through it can bring anyone to their knees but not for one second I’ll let you believe that you deserved it. Jared everyone has their share of nightmares, now it’s the time of sweet dreams.”

Jared wanted to believe that, he did but no matter how much he struggled he just failed. He felt doomed… troubled.

It felt like an invisible hand was reaching in his stomach and squeezing it, his nose felt the tell tale heaviness in his sinuses for the tears which threatened to fog his vision.

He bit his lips and looked at Jeff.

Please…

Don’t force me…

Aren’t you suppose to protect me…

Don’t make me go…

Jeff looked at him firmly, “Go Jared, don’t lock and beat yourself up for something that was not your mistake.”

Was it not my mistake?

Didn’t I let it happen?

To my body?

To myself?

Jeff was now on his knees on the side of Jared’s chair, his hand in Jared’s trembling weaker one.

“Don’t make me fucking go look for this boy and bring him here so that you can have your date right in front of me. That’ll be pretty awkward for both you and me.” Jeff looked directly in Jared’s eyes and his eyes were filled with love and care and Jared’s heart was hit by a tsunami of emotions for his brother.

A faint blush and a fainter smile adorned Jared’s cheek, “You don’t even know his name.”

“Well if you remain stubborn on keeping him hanging then I’ll have no choice but to find it or you can save me the trouble and go on the date.”

“I’ll…”

“Jared Tristan…”

“Fine! I’ll go.” Jared blurted out before Jeff could say his full name because he knew what came after his full name, a threat of telling his mother and he didn’t want matters in his mother’s hand.

It seemed that the invisible hand was not only squeezing his stomach now but was roiling and whipping and tossing it.

His hands tightened his book even more to his chest.

Maybe things won’t be so bad.

Maybe Jensen won’t be so bad

Maybe he won’t be so bad.

 

PRESENT

“So a guy offered you his seat three times and you have fallen in love with him.” Josh, Jensen’s big brother was sitting in his grand office overlooking a very fine New York skyline and Jensen was standing in front of him like a student standing in front of the principal. Only difference : He was not scared.

“He didn’t offer me his seat. I asked for the seat.”

Josh looked visibly haggard, “Forget the seat part, come to the love part you moron.”

Okay, now Jensen was a little scared.

“I might be in love him.” Jensen blurted the truth out.

“Who is he?” Josh looked like he could throw the expensive dolphin paperweight on Jensen right the fuck now.

“He is… his name is Jared and he… loves books and he is a librarian.” Jensen offered.

“…” Josh lifted his eyebrow in what looked like a very questioning gaze.

Okay, now Jensen was officially scared.

“He is a… a good guy. It looks like he may have had some demons in his past life.”

“And you are what… trying to be his god!”

Jensen’s defenses shot up, he looked directly in josh’s eyes and he was not scared anymore, “What! God! No… I am just trying to be human to him Josh! Something which I’m sure not most of the people have been to him.”

Josh must have seen something in Jensen’s eyes, he got up from his seat, hugged his little brother, looked directly in Jensen’s eyes, winked and drawled, “Tell me if you get laid tonight?”

“Josh! Stop being a pervert for a second, okay! I’m here because I’m afraid he might be the one and I’ll mess it up.”

“No you won’t. Trust me. Now go get’em cowboy, and don’t show me our ugly freckley face until you have got’em.”

Jensen smiled for the first time in what felt like ages and hugged his brother. His mind lost in the hazel eyes of which Jensen could not think enough.

He was about to leave when his mind came up with another super important question, “OH! And Josh… what do I wear?”

Josh’s laughter roared in his office and Jensen just stood there bewildered.

“Oh brother you are so gone…!”

Jensen wanted nothing but Jared too to think the same way for him.

For them.

Chapter Text

PRESENT

“Aakkkhhan… Is it okay if I sit here? All other seats are taken.”

Jared lifted his eyes up and looked in the ones so green that they could give a complex to Kermit The frog.

Jensen was standing in front of him, in the little café that he has selected for their first date, a goofy grin on his face and looking as if Christmas came earlier.

“We are on a date, would you rather sit somewhere else?” Jared retorted.

Laughter bloomed from Jensen’s chest.

So pure.

So uninhibited.

So… his.

“I thought this was our standard greeting, is all” Jensen shrugged his shoulder and sat down on the opposite seat and placed his hand on the table, looking directly at Jared, it was a clear indication that he wanted them to hold hand.

A breath got captured in Jared’s lungs…

What was he doing?

Why was he digging this well for himself?

What has changed in him in the past few months? Nothing, he is still damaged. Yes his body healed but isn’t he still the same guy who let someone else take his virginity and was too coward to stop him.

Did Jensen need to deal with his cowardice?

Didn’t he deserve the truth?

Shouldn’t Jared NOT be a coward, just this once and tell Jensen?

Can’t he be honest with Jensen?

Didn’t he deserve the facts?

BUT…

But then time and again hasn’t Jensen proved himself?

Hasn’t Jensen put up with his insecurities?

Hasn’t Jensen made him realize that he wants him despite everything?

Didn’t he decide that he would at least try?

Didn’t he promise Jensen, Jeff and himself?

Didn’t Jensen deserve a move from his side for being so patient, so sure?

Will Jensen’s hand wait for him for a long time if he makes it wait?

Yes…
It will…

A trembling hand crossed the table and rested on Jensen’s and then it was not trembling any more.

“You… look very handsome tonight.” Jared was blushing when he gave Jensen this compliment.

Jensen looked him in the eyes and asked him something he could have never guessed Jensen would deduce, “Is this your first date Jared?”

Jared’s stomach dropped, that invisible hand that liked to play with his stomach when he was stressed returned. He spoke what came first to his mind, “With… with you it is.”

“I know it is your first with me dummy. I’m asking is this your first date ever.”

This is it. It is ending even before it has started.

Didn’t he tell Jeff this was a bad idea?

Didn’t he tell Jensen the same thing?

Jensen doesn’t need this in his life.

As if Jensen heard the continuous monologue of Jared’s, he tightened his grasp on Jared’s hand and whispered, “Tell me if I do something wrong, I don’t want to be a jerk and ruin your first date.”

“YOU are nervous!”

“Duh… first date is kinda of a big deal, isn’t it. Let me tell you, mine was a complete disaster.”

Jared watched him, he could not ever understand this guy. He was sitting here looking the way he looked with so much patience and compassion in his heart, so clean, so lovable, so whole and he was afraid that he would mess up, “You could never ruin it Jensen, but now that you have mentioned it, I would really like to know about the disaster that your first date was.”

Jensen looked at him with amusement in his eyes.

A twinkle of eyes.

A smile.

Golden freckles.

Ah! Perfection.

“I was seventeen, this guy kept asking me out, he was a big fellow, funny, insistent and I agreed. Two reasons… a) free booze and b)I may have been kinda sorta probably scared to say no to him.” Jensen shrugged his shoulders.

Jared felt a smile on his lips and his head shook involuntarily at the cuteness overload named Jensen that was trying so hard to not let Jared know that he was once afraid of something.

“Continue please…”

“So yeah arrkhhhan, he bought me to this really sleazy bar, my first clue that I should end the date but as you know how naïve and innocent seventeen years old are, I went. He bought the booze and we sat in the corner and started talking, well more like he drank and talked and I sat and stared. That was the first time I noticed that his beard was patchy and green, no no don’t look at me like that I swear it was green, my second clue that I should end the date but then I thought ‘okay it may JUST have started growing’ and then his words started getting all jumbled up and that’s when I realized he was a lightweight, I mean two beers in and he was intoxicated and that should have been my third clue.”

Jensen shook his head and continued, “So he got so drunk that he started talking non-sense and then I thought, okay this date is officially over mister but then you know what he did, he clung to me and started whining like literally whining, like,” Jensen changed his voice to that of whiny undertone and made a pouty face before diving into a full blown acting of his date, “No Jensen don’t leave me, I will die. Oh god I will end and then he was like ‘I live with my mother and she’ll kill me if I die today’”

By now Jared was trying very hard to keep his expression straight but when he realized that the narration was not over yet so he tried harder.

“So that should have been my fourth clue but you know what I did, I consoled him, I told him it’s okay that I’ll talk to his mother and that we could blame me for getting him drunk but he kept on crying and then he got hold of my shirt’s collar and started shouting at me, you know what he said ?”

Jared shook his head, he was trying so hard to not laugh, god knows he was.

Jensen made a poutier face and held invisible collars in both his hands, “He held my collar and shouted at me ‘I AM WEAK JENSENNNN… WEAK… SO EMOTIONALLY WEAK, I WILL SPILL THE BEANS. SO WEeeeeAaaaK…’. And that’s when I realized that this has got to end, I called a cab and ran from there, seriously worst date ever.”

Jared burst out laughing.

He felt the laughter bloom in his chest and his cheeks hurting and his eyes watering but he could not stop.

He was not afraid that the laughter will be cursed with punishment later.

He was not afraid that the man sitting and laughing with him right now would take it away from him.

He was not afraid that the laughter will want its pay.

He laughed because Jensen was there and he made him happy.

He laughed because Jensen was there.

He laughed because – Jensen.

He laughed!

He!

 

When the laughing fit was over he looked at Jensen and how beautiful he was, how complete.

Jensen…

Try…

Effort…

Go…

Now…

 

He got up, took Jensen’s hand in a tight grip and tugged him out of the café.

Green eyes questioned him, kept questioning him.

Jared swiftly came outside the café with Jensen in tow.

They found themselves in a narrow lane covered with red brick walls and innumerable plants.

Jared jerked Jensen’s hand and their lips were together.

A Touch.

A Feel.

A Belief.

 

An Acceptance.

Jensen took charge of the kiss in no time, moulding him, composing him.

When they surfaced from the kiss, Jensen looked at him, question in his eyes, “Jared?”

“I was afraid of laughing… of smiling.” He touched Jensen’s cheek, if he could feel the freckles he knew they would have felt like the cover of a new book, warm, fresh, something that would take him to a newer world, a better world.

“And…?”

“Now I am not.” Jared blushed.

“Would you like to inside and finish the date.”

He tucked a strand of Jared’s hair back behind his ear so carefully and slowly as if it was a secret, his secret, their secret.

Jared melted in his touch, in him.

He could wait for a second date and a third and a fourth...

Chapter Text

A FEW MONTHS BACK

Crushed by cruelty,

Trounced in terror,

Devastated by the demons,

The last thing Jared wanted to do was open his eyes but the torch in the hands of a man in blue scrubs and white lab coat forced him to do so.

He winced.

The tiny blue light was hurting him. If he is terrified of this tiny light then how did he undertook the torture that Matt did to him, oh he knows, he under took it because he was Matt's little bitch.

Wasn’t he?

 

He was.

And little bitches aren’t suppose to think, they are suppose to lie down and take it, so he’ll do just that, he’ll take it.

A beating, he’ll take it.

Spit on his face, bring it on.

Slashing his body while Matt fucks him open, this bitch is there for that.

But

A worried Jeff looming over the blue scrubs and requesting Jared to wake up, NO he’ll not take it.

A touch of Jeff’s warm caring hand while he strokes Jared’s bruises, he’ll not take it either.

A stream of guilt that tastes like salt water from Jeff’s eyes, he’ll NEVER take it.

Little bitches don’t deserve that. They deserve a dystopia. They are meant for devastation because that is their salvation. They deserve punishment because that’s how they purge their sins. That’s what little bitches take.

A utopia is not theirs to have… it was never theirs.

Never.

Never ?

---

“Jared will you open your eyes for me. Please brother I know you are listening to me, the doctors are telling me that you won't wake up because you don’t want to… and that’s a load of bullshit, ain't it? Please Jay wake up, for me… I promise I’ll take care of you, I… I promise I’ll make every bruise heel. Just wake up once Jay. Please.”

Jared heard the need in Jeff’s voice, he heard the urgency too but he can't… he just can't.

He is numb, not good numb not bad numb just dead numb.

He realizes that the chains that were there on him in form of Matt were not really on his body they were IN his body, in his flesh.

Freezing him.
Controlling him.
Constraining him.

“Jared the police will be here shortly, I… I called them, this is big, the doctors wouldn’t accept the medical forms without making me call them. Jay I will demand them not to be here, I promise but will you please wake up for me. Mom's been calling on your mobile… what do tell…”

BEEEPPPPPPP...

Police! No… Jeff NO!

They are going to want him to speak, he can't he just can't.

He is not freezing any more, he is burning.

 

BEEEPPPPPPP...

He is on fire, he is sweating, he hates it.

The police will poke and poke and poke. Jared has nothing to give to them.

Matt is going to know Jared talked to them. He is going to be angry on his little bitch.

 

BEEEPPPPPPP...

Matt is going to rip him open. He is going to destroy him some more. Then some more and then some more again.

Will Jeff protect him again or will Jeff leave too then… what if he can't and what if he leaves?

Then there will be police and there will be Matt and there will be no Jeff.

 

BEEEPPPPPPP...

“NURSE, we need a doctor here, my… my brother, he is seizing up. CALL A DOCTOR!!! PLEASE!. Will someone call a doctor. NOW!”

 

BEEEPPPPPPP...

Why is Jeff shouting?

Why are there hands returning on his body?

Why is the machine screeching in his ears?

Where did the warmth of Jeff’s hands go?

Why was his soothing voice fading away?

Why were there robotic orders by a commanding voice floating in the air?

Was the police here already?

Are they taking him away from Jeff?

NO.

Beep….

NO!

Beep.

LEAVE ME WITH JEFF!

Beep.

HE IS MY BROTHER..

Beep.

JEFF! HE PROMISED ME.

Beep.

JEFF YOU PROMISED ME!

Beep.

JEFF PLEASE!

Beep.

DON’T LEAVE ME JEFF.

Beep.

HE’LL FIND ME. THE POLICE WILL TELL. JEFF YOU KNOW HE’LL FIND ME!

Beep.

HE’LL KILL ME.

Beep.

Jeff! JEFF! NO! YOU PROMI...

Beep…
Bee…
B…

Chapter Text

PRESENT

“Aakkkhhan… Is it okay if I sit here?”

Green, warm eyes met Jared’s and Jared found himself lost in the little frown that was forming in between the eyebrows of the owner of those eyes, “Hey! That’s my line.” The owner of those eyes said.

“I guess not any more…Jensen.” Jared smiled .

Yes he does that now a days. He smiles.
He beams.
He tries.

Jensen lifted himself from the ancient stone chair, outside of Jared’s library and very subtly gestured a hand towards Jared as if to check the waters before…

Before what?

Hugging.
Kissing.
A handshake.

Yes, on their date last night Jared had kissed Jensen and not for one second, Jared regrets that but this little gesture of Jensen just spoke volumes to him.

It told him that Jensen wanted things to go on Jared’s pace.
It told him that whatever Jared wants is more important than what Jensen wants.

When was the last time someone did that for Jared?
When was the last time Jared did that to himself?

The answer was not what Jared would like it to be.

 

He shifted his body towards Jensen and allowed him to place a small kiss on the corner of his mouth and it took an unimaginable amount of energy to not give in the temptation of letting his body go all stiff.

Jared was struggling but striving.
He was fighting but falling.
He was tired but trying.

The touch of soft rosy lips made him lift his eyes and look in Jensen’s.

“It’s four degrees out here. What are you doing here?”

“Waiting for you dummy?”

“You could have come inside and read…,” Jared tried to see the book in Jensen’s hand but he could not catch the name yet he saw some stars and constellation on the cover, “what is it that you are reading anyways?”

Jensen lifted the black laptop bag that he had on one shoulder and smoothly shoved the book inside, “I didn’t want to disturb you at work, besides I love the weather.”

“Your nose is cherry red…” Jared could not keep the adoration out of his tone.

It was something new in his tone.
It was something he liked about his tone.

“Do you like it?”

“What!” Jared felt himself blushing.

“My cherry red nose… do you like it.” Jensen did the head tilt thing that left Jared defenseless.

“Jensen!”

“Oh! You like it. I know you like it.”

Jensen was right.
Maybe.
Disputably.
Certainly.

“Jensen… what are you doing here?”

“I missed you.”

“We were on a date last night and we agreed to go out this Saturday, so what you are basically saying is that you couldn’t wait 3 more days.”

Jensen bit his thick bottom lip and nodded.

A heavy breath left Jared’s mouth, very foggy, very visible in the chilly evening and they both shared it.

“Jensen… ?”

“I want to take you somewhere.”

It was not a statement.
It was not a question.
It was a request.

It made Jared nod.
It made Jensen smile.

Jared was warm in Jensen’s SUV. It may be because it smelled like him, just a thousand times concentrated and then some more.

Jared didn’t know why he did it. Why he sat in the car with Jensen. He has enough scars on his body and mind to prove how wrong it could all go but then he also had the time that he had spent with Jensen that proved to him that it could not go wrong at all.

He was jittery, his mind filled with Jensen’s rambling, his eyes fixed on the road ahead and his skin cold under the layers he was wearing but his heart… his heart was warm.

“So, where exactly are we going?” Jared tried to keep finger pointing if any out of his tone.

“It’s umm… I wanted to… it’s actually…”

“Jensen if you of all people are having trouble with words then I should be absolutely panic stricken right now, shouldn’t I?”

“No,” a breath left Jensen’s body, “It’s just that this is kinda special to me so I don’t know how to phrase it.”

“This place must be very close to your heart…”

“It’s not actually some ‘place’ it’s actually some ‘one’.”

“Jensen!”

“It’s not my mother I promise!” Jensen lifted both his hands off the steering wheel in the most adorable manner but Jared was not going to fall for any of that.

Jensen should know how difficult this is for Jared.

He promised they’ll go slow.
He promised.

“Jensen I… you know this is all,” and then suddenly Jared noticed where they were going, “why are we going towards the lake Jensen?”

“Because that someone is towards the lake and Jared I am assuming you are not big on surprises so I promise you it’s not that, it’s just that I really wanted to be with you tonight and can you please just trust me?”

Jared doesn’t know why Jensen has that effect on him but he eventually calmed down and before he knew it he was moving his left hand towards Jensen’s right.

Jensen never pushed him.
But he sure as hell pulled him.

 

Before Jared could ask any further or make it clear to Jensen that he was not very comfortable right now but he will try and he is trying, the car slowed down, came to a halt under a tin roof cum parking space, Jensen turned off the ignition and was on Jared’s side opening the door, “We’ll walk from here.”

Jared took the offered hand.

It took plenty from Jared to show trust in Jensen.

They walked in the chilly evening until the boats on the shore started to make appearances and then Jared’s breath hitched in his lungs when he saw the most beautiful boat with the words ‘Aurora : Property of Jensen Ackles’ on it.

“You were bringing me to your boat!” Jared turned and looked in Jensen’s large with excitement eyes.

“Yacht. And yes this is my ‘someone’ I wanted you to meet.” Jensen was blushing and smiling looking proudly at the boat.

“You wanted me to meet your boat.”

“Yacht. And yes, I wanted you to meet Aurora, that’s her name, it means…”

“Dawn.” Jared completed his sentence.

“Yes, Dawn… I sometimes tend to forget how intelligent you are, forgive me. Umm would you like a tour.”

Jensen was opening himself to Jared slowly and gradually.
It was a process of so much beauty that Jared couldn’t help but forget everything that was not Jensen.
Forget his troubles.
His past.
Himself.

He nodded and they both went inside, “So will I be serenaded by about half a dozen maids and a butler who’ll call you Mr. Ackles and me Mr.”

“Padalecki… No! no one comes to Aurora but me, she is special.”

“Never.”

“Ever.”

 

They went inside and Jared could see how special it was for Jensen. It was not decorated in the fake store bought interior designer décor, it was personal. It was perfect.

Everything from the wooden fireplace to the family photos to the broken and pierced dart board made the yacht as ‘Jensen’ as possible. It didn’t scream ‘Jensen’ it just hinted it. Nothing was over the top the bar on the corner just enough, the stools made of rich wood and the book shelf filled with sci-fi genre and Cormac McCarthy’s novel.

Jared was admiring the plush sofa covered in nude and beige covers when Jensen came to him with a glass of red wine in his hands, “I don’t know your drink preferences, Is red okay?”

“Red is perfect.”
Like this evening.
Like Aurora.
Like you.

Jared took a sip and red was indeed perfect, it was delicious, rich, chocolaty and made him warm.

“So what are we doing here?”

“We are going to the deck now.”

“To the what now?”

“The deck, it’s my favorite part of Aurora, it’s safe and very comfortable I promise you.”

“Jensen it’s three degrees out there.”

“And Jared I love the weather I told you! and besides we’ll carry blankets for you.” Jensen started picking the big blue blankets from under the sofa cupboards, “Will you carry my drink while I carry the blankets upstairs.”

“I don’t know what you are thinking Jensen you’ll catch a cold and anyways what is it that you want to do in the deck.”

“Jared remember when I was asking you to go out with me and you kept turning me down…” Jared flushed and nodded, “remember how patient how was… now it’s your turn padalecki!”

“But…”

“No! You know in that library I told you how you are the man of few words, well I take that back.”

Jensen looked absolutely adorable with that fake anger on his nose but Jared decided not to tell him that because he was busy faking his own.

They reached the deck and it was not chilly, it was freezing.

Jensen like a kid was laying down blankets and when he was satisfied with his handiwork he lay down and stretched his hand gesturing Jared to lie down with him.

Jared shook his head.

“Fine I’ll remove my hand, you don’t know it but it makes for a very comfortable pillow. I will be in my area of the blanket and you can be in yours, in fact we can have a space of about 2 to 4 centimeter between the two of us if you want.”

Jared shook his head again.

“Jared come on… please.”

This time he could not bring himself to shake his head, he started to lay down beside Jensen, “You are ridiculous, we will both have pneumonia and I can already see your nose turning pink and in no time it’ll be red and your nails… Jensen can't you see they are all blue…” he could not finish what he was saying.

Jensen had placed one of his fingers on Jared’s lips and with other hand he pointed out to the sky.

 

“Fuck.” Jared swore, “Are those… are those?”

“Stars.”

“I… I have never seen them… like this ever.”

They were beneath a piece of blue sky that was so busy with the stars that Jared thought they were sneaking directly into heaven. For the first time in his life he saw them like this; big, small, alone, in clusters, white, twinkling… stars.

They lied there in that cold evening with each other.

Sharing breaths.
The cold in the wind.
The heat in their bodies.
The stars.
The universe.

Jared didn’t realize when their hands had come so close that Jensen’s fingers could not be differentiated from his own.

He realized it when Jensen spoke for the first time, “I came to your work, kidnapped you and brought you to Aurora because I came to know that tonight was the perfect night for star gazing and I wanted to do it with you.”

“They are so many.”

“Yeah I felt the same way when I first saw them.”

“And they actually twinkle.”

Both were lying there on their backs gazing nowhere but the stars when Jensen’s hand interrupted the view and pointed to Jared’s left, “Jared, can you see those bright stars on your left.”

“The ones which are aligned?”

“Mm hmm… if you see closely you’ll see that the stars above them make a trapezium sort of figure… that’s the constellation, Andromeda.”

“The greek princess?”

“Yeah… the greek princess.”

“She was chained to the rocks in the sea…” Jared had read that somewhere.

“Do you know why?” Jensen’s voice was softer and it resonated with Jared’s heart beat. It was perfect.

“No.”

“Her mother boasted that she was the most beautiful of all creatures and when the sea god asked her to take that claim back, she refused and instead sacrificed her daughter to them and the sea god then chained her daughter, Andromeda to the rock.”

Jared lied there and listened to Jensen tell the story.

“She became the chained lady; she took the punishment, though it was not hers to take.” Jensen lifted himself on his right elbow and looked directly at him, “Jared… I know that you are chained too,” Jared could see how much energy it took of Jensen’s to say this but still he continued, “and I will never ask you to what, because I don’t want to know but there is something I want ‘you’ to know, I feel… I feel that you are not responsible for it, I don’t know how but I just know that.”

A tear trickled down Jared’s eye.
The invisible hand that loved to play with Jared’s stomach returned.
He said with a constricted throat and with eyes digging in the blanket, “What if I was responsible?”

“I know you weren’t. I know! Isn’t that enough for you.”

Was that enough?
It didn’t feel enough.
But then every rule changed when it came to Jensen! May be it’ll start feeling enough.

Jared stared at the stars now foggy because of his tears, they had lost their sharp edges, may be Jared will too, one day.

“Will you complete the story… Jensen.”

“She was rescued. By Perseus. It has a happy ending, he came on winged sandals and rescued her, married her.”

“That’s a beautiful story. Thank you.”

Jared’s tears dried with time, stars shined again.

Both of them lied there enjoying the night, the silence, the company.

Jensen entwined their hands again and whispered, “Why do you like me Jared?”

Jared whispered with his own set of words, “Because you are refulgent.”

“That sounds like a bad word.”

“Believe me, it’s not.”

“I don’t know what it means.”

“Then find out.”

“Where am going to find an oxford English dictionary here, nerdy and I don’t even have my phone with me.”

“Is it just me or does that make it even more romantic?”

Jared leaned and buried himself in Jensen’s neck before he heard him complain again. He was done with the stars in the sky; he had his own personal one now.

Chapter Text

A FEW MONTHS BACK

Once, a few years back when Jared was learning to ride his bike, he was hit by a speeding car. At the corner of his street, a red car had hit him and he was flying from his bike all the across the road and while he was doing so every part of his body was screaming. ‘It’s going to hurt; it’s really going to hurt’.

That was the first time Jared experienced that and since then he has become afraid of this feeling rather than the hurt itself.

The next time Jared experienced it was, when Matt entered his room with a sleazy smile, his mouth smelling of tobacco and his hands sweaty and rough.

And then that feeling never left.

Matt kept returning.
The feeling kept returning.

Until it embedded itself in Jared’s body.
Mind.
Soul.

Jeff had rescued him and they had been in the hospital for three days when the doctors gave him a green signal to leave and Jeff shifted all his belonging from Jared’s room in the hostel to his own house.

Jared’s been living with Jeff for nearly a fortnight now and he feels safe and taken care of and that feeling should have receded, but it did not it merely transformed into something even more ugly and even more repulsive…

Guilt.
Shame.
Degradation.

He would sleep with a phantom pain in the most private parts of his body and wake up hallucinating ugly blue bruises on his hands and legs.

He would look in the mirror with the eyes filled with tears and look away with a mind filled with embarrassment.

He would have nightmares about cyanide blue eyes and the words bitch would echo in his brain until he was all stiff and he shook his head violently to make the echoes go away.

He would try living a normal life and cook or clean or do laundry and he would end up in Jeff’s arms a crying mess because his body and mind would be too tired because of the nightmares he has every night.

Hopeless.
Helpless.
Heartless.

 

Jeff was hiding something and Jared knew what it was, it was the police. He thought that if he mentions the police Jared would seize again just like he did in the hospital but Jeff didn’t know that Jared knew.

A complaint had been filed in the local police station, his body photographed and his ass swiped for samples, this all was done when Jared was in a half conscious state under drugs. Jeff was advised by an inspector friend of his to take these steps before it was too late and he was the one who had filed the complaint too.

He heard Jeff on the phone one day talking to his friend asking him how much longer they can go without Jared’s statement and that day he got the hint that now Jeff can't wait any longer.

Was Jared ready?
Will he be able to talk to the police without turning into a puddle of tears and pain?
Will the police know how much of a coward Jared is?
Will Matt know?

But Jared never got enough time to know the answers to these questions because one afternoon he found Jeff standing at his door looking pale and haggard…

“Jared, I… I have to ask you something?”

Jared knew when pain came to ask its due from him.

“Okay.”

“We have to ummm… the polic…”

Jared knew pain.

“Okay”
“Okay?”

“Yes, I am okay with going to the police” his heart was thumping, his sinuses heavy indicating the arrivals of tears, his stomach a mess of nervous energy, “Will you accompany me please…?”

“Of course, you didn’t think I was gonna let you alone, did you. I’ll be there and Nick will be there, we’ll take care of you.”

“Nick?”
“You remember Nick, Nicholas holt my college friend…”

Jared remembered Nicholas, he was a serious, simple man, a man of few words. Jared also remembers he was studying and training to be in the police academy. He was always a gentle man and the way he looked at Jared with so much love and care made him always a welcomed guest in Jared’s life.

He would help Jared in his sociology and mathematics homework and Jared would always feel very secure around him. He would make sure to send Jared a book for his birthday before Jared went to college and those birthday presents turned in sweet memories.

Jared didn’t feel like a weird nerdy book worm when in company of Nick because Nick would hear his stories and question them, he would go to book conventions with him and they would hit literature festivals. Jared remembers how Nick was the best listener.

Jared nodded to acknowledge the promise that Jeff made him.

That night Jared dreamt of Nicholas, the way his eyebrows arched, the way his grey eyes always promised safety and the way Nick would always make sure that Jared was never on the traffic side of the road when Jeff, Nick and he went to get lemonades on summer afternoons. Just like a big brother.

He dreamt of summer afternoons in sepia that night.
This dream very different from the cold winter dreams that he had been having in grey every night.

 

Three days later Jared was fidgeting in a stiff wooden chair in a too warm police station, sweat running its course in his back and his mind full of questions and doubts while his brother was talking to a soothing male voice that Jared thinks belongs to Nick.

 

A few moments later Jared felt a hand on his shoulder and he knew it was Jeff. He looked up and saw that Jeff was looking at him, wanting him to go inside for his statement.

He braced himself he is as ready as he will ever be.
He will never be ready.

He entered and saw him…
The room was warm just like Nick’s gaze.
Safe just like Nick’s presence.

He entered and saw Nick for the first time in two years. He looked more mature, more dignified even. He had a few grey hair but his face was still the same of a man who adored Jared.

Does he still adore him; after he knows that he is maligned, he has been broken into and used?

Jared didn’t know.
He didn’t hope.

“Jared?” his voice went straight to Jared’s heart, it was the same it has always been, peacefully resonating like a harp’s yet commanding like a cello.

Jared’s eyes dropped and he nodded in acknowledgment.

“I am so sorry for what…”

“Don’t be,” Jared didn’t have the courage to look up and face NICK, if he faced him all the good times that they had spent together in the Padalecki backyard discussing books and literature festival would make him ashamed enough to swallow him whole,

“did you catch him?” he meekly asked.

“He is on a run, but not for long I promise.”

Nick must have expected Jared to believe him but he can't, he doesn’t believe anyone anymore. Not even himself let alone the world.

But Nick was not the world.

He was never the world.
He was Nick, Jeff’s best friend and a constant presence in Jared’s life.

A strong protective shadow to Jared’s lithe torso.

Everyone thought they will be a couple but Jared had always seen Nick as an older brother and he thought Nick felt the same brotherly love for him.

Nick didn’t take his eyes off Jared and that should have made him uneasy but surprisingly it didn’t.

“What he did; your rapist...”

“Jeff said you wanted my statement for the record. I’m here. Where do I sign?”

“Jared don’t do this to yourself, you are just hurting yourself even more… people like Matt, they don’t deserve breathing.”

“But he is… he IS breathing.”
(Because I’m a coward.)

“And when he feels like it, he’ll come back for more.”
(Because I’m his bitch.)

“Jared don’t talk like that, we’ll get you help and I’ll catch Matt, he can't run forever and once I catch him…”

“I don’t care what you do with him… I… I just want him out of my life. out of my fucking MIND. So just tell me where I sign and I will go home.”

Nick got up and took heavy steps towards Jared. His eyes set on him and the veins of his hands prominent under his folded sleeves.

He looked directly in Jared’s eyes and the lack of distance between them made Jared dizzy.

“He’ll never get out of your ‘fucking mind’ Jared. Never! If you keep doing this to yourself, if you keep punishing yourself like that he will always be here,” he touched Jared’s forehead with two fingers and continued, “he got a nice little cozy spot here and he is never leaving until you throw him out.”

“I want to go home.” Jared sounded pathetic to his own ears.

“Jay, please listen to me… please, we’ll get help, I can get you the best psychologists, the best healers and you could even go back to college.”

“Home.” Jared was trembling now, his eyes flooded with the fattest clearest tears, he was biting his lips so as if to prevent from howling out all the pain in his chest.

“Jared. Do it for your brother for your family, may be… may be do it for me…” nick has never sounded so defeated… but right now he was.

Jared looked him in the eye and pleaded those grey ones to understand him, what he wanted he himself didn’t know;

Was it; Leave me alone…
Was it; Help me, I’m scared shitless…

A broken sob left his chest and he all but begged Nick in a broken voice,

“Home… please?”

Chapter Text

PRESENT

 

“Aakkkhhan… Is it okay if I sit here?”

Jared looked up from the oven to the kitchen door and found Jensen pointing out towards the vacant spot on the counter.

He looked adorable in the white T-shirt and blue jeans. Jared nodded with a smile…

The smile knows him now…

 

Its for Jensen
Its from Jensen.

 

They were on their fourth date when Jared suggested a fifth one. Jensen was invited to Jared’s house for a home cooked meal and a movie marathon of ‘Die Hard’. Jensen had accepted the invitation but with one condition, they’d watch Despicable me movies instead of Die hard and Jared had nodded and smiled the same way he was doing it now.

Jensen came to the house bearing gifts, a box of the most delicious Brazilian dark chocolates and a bottle of the same red wine which they shared on Aurora.

Jared still could not believe how much he was attracted to Jensen and how Jensen made it all easy.

He kissed Jared lightly on the door and was the perfect gentleman when Jared introduced him to Sadie, Jensen let her sniff him, lick him, drool over him and finally befriend him.

 

They talked for a while before Jared asked him to set the entertainment system while he checked on the food, praying a silent prayer that Sadie would prove a good company while Jared was in the kitchen.

Apparently Sadie did not, because now Jensen was here in the kitchen sitting on the kitchen counter, eating strawberries directly out of the box and watching Jared deal with the casserole and the lasagna in his kitchen apron that was full of Shakespeare quotes.

 

Jared felt opened.
He felt unguarded.
He felt exposed.

 

He didn’t feel scared.

 

He felt loved.

 

“Did you set up the movie?”

“Yep.”

“Do you like Sadie?”

“The important question is did she like me.”

“She liked you.” Jared blushed.

“See, this is why I came here in the kitchen…”

“What do you mean?”

Jensen tilted his neck the way that made Jared weak in knees and kept watching Jared with atmost devotion.

“The sofa in the hall, it was comfortable, I would have waited for you there while you worked in the kitchen… but you see the view here is so much better.”

Jared blushed some more.

 

While the food was cooking they were on the sofa, Jensen’s head in Jared’s lap and Jared had a million things in his brain.

This was the first time Jared had allowed another man in his house. Voluntarily.

 

He was listening to Jensen, who was going on and on about how the yellow color was the perfect color for the minions and how Agnus deserved the perfect family when Jared blurted out, “Jensen, tell me a secret.”

Jensen lifted his head and looked directly in Jared’s eyes, Jared swallowed but for the first time did not break the eye contact. It was now…

He had to do it.
He had to be brave.
He had to be truthful.

To Jensen.
For Jensen.
With Jensen.

“Jay…?”

“Tell me a secret.”

“I don’t understand…”

“It’s simple Jensen. Tell me a secret.”

Jensen got on with the program, he settled his head down in Jared’s lap and relaxed in an instant, “I... I am falling for you. Pretty hard.”

“Okay. Now tell me another.”

Jensen lifted his head again and stared at Jared, “Jared I just told you I might be falling for you and you… you?”

“Please, tell me another.”

Jared was using all his strength to not end this conversation here. He could see in Jensen’s eyes that he was beyond bewildered but Jared kept going… kept pushing.

“What do you want to know?”

“Just another secret…”

“Jared I don’t know what to tell you. I really don’t… would it help if I told you I am scared of Josh because that is surely a secret I wanted to take to my grave.”

“Okay… now tell me another one.”

“What! Jared I don’t… I.”

“Tell me another one.”

Jensen was sitting now, befuddled and Jared was sitting there, calm.

He had to do it. He reminded himself.
This is all for Jensen. He reminded himself.
This will be over soon. He reminded himself.

“I… I am just. Okay… lemme think… okay umm I use to suck my thumb when I was a kid and… and I have this super secret super crush on Ron Weasley and I… I get panic attacks if I watch high speed car chase in movies… is that enough or… or do you want more!”

Jared knew he was hurting Jensen and he knew that Jensen would never make Jared realize that.

He was being a dick but he has to.

He licked his lips, touched his hair and felt the words as he said them, felt himself sinking with every word as if the words were weights.

He prayed that those words would not crush him. Crush them.

“Jensen, tell me something bad that you did.”

Jensen sat straighter and hugged himself, he let out a breath that he was holding. He looked at the Jared’s lap and lowered himself, Jared’s fingers instantly found his blonde hair and he started stroking them.

“I have never told this to anyone… I was 12, I was in school and my parents, they had these high impossible expectations from me and I… I was always a shadow of Josh so I started getting pretty competitive,” Jared felt Jensen tremble and he lifted his hands to hold Jensen’s, for the first time Jensen’s hands were cold and shivering against Jared’s warm ones, “There was a boy in my class, he was taller, smarter, better. I was always second to him. Second in academics, second in debate, second… then one day our teacher gave me our English notebooks to distribute in the class. Jared I don’t why but I… I stole his. I will not defend myself and say that I was not thinking because what I did.. I have no excuse. I was sweating the whole day and I could not leave my bag because I was scared.”

Jared felt a little moisture on his jeans. Jensen continued…

“I was so scared and he kept searching the book and he was so confused. That notebook had all his notes for the whole year and I just stole it. I don’t even know why but I did. I went home, straight to my room and I tore it. Into little pieces, I was mad, not at him, never at him. I was mad at how cheap I had become, how shallow… I didn’t know I had these demons in me…”

“You don’t have any demons… Jen.”

“Is that it Jared, because believe me I have nothing more to give to you…”

Jared saw Jensen’s face it was splotched with tears. He had done this. He had done this to the man who bought nothing but happiness to him.

If anybody had demons, it was Jared.

And that’s why it was time for them to come out.
It was time.
Now.

 

Jensen was staring at Jared, their hands tangled and breaths in sync.

“Won't you ask me…”

“What?”

“My secret…”

Jensen shook his head, Jared could see the firm resolve in his eyes.
“Ask me!”

“No.” Jensen whispered.

“Ask me Jensen. Please ask me.”

“NO!”

“Ask me damn it!”

Jared got up, he was suffocating. Jensen was suffocating him.

Jensen should know the truth, he deserved the truth.

Jensen came closer to Jared, he held his hands and hugged him, his heart was right there.
Jared could touch it, hear it, feel it…

Jensen was calm and in control, “Jared I read some where that if you look into an abyss for too long, the abyss starts looking into you. Stop looking in the abyss Jared.”

“Please…”

“NO! I don’t want you to tell me your secret when you are badgering me to ask you. I want to know your secret when you trust me enough to blurt it out yourself.”

 

Jared freed himself from Jensen’s touch. He turned around, he could not look at Jensen right now. His head was aching and his eyes ready to spill. He heard himself his voice, broken but bitter.

“I will never blurt it out Jensen, SO JUST FUCKING ASK ME ALREADY!!!”

“You are not ready.” Jensen was standing to his back but Jared could still feel his heart beat. Why was that… he will never understand.

“I will never be ready.” Jared whispered.

For Jensen
For himself.
For both.

 

Jensen turned him around, his hands on his on Jared’s body. He tilted his head and muttered, “I am fine with never.”

Jared kept staring at Jensen. He was falling for him. He was falling in him.

But still he will never understand him.

Never.

Chapter Text

A FEW MONTHS BACK

 

“They caught him.”

This was all Jared heard before his phone shattered on the ground just like Jared’s illusion of safety.

Jared had shift from Jeff’s home about a month back and Nick had been a very comforting presence beside him. He was trying to help Jared, move on…

To a new home.
From the old pain.

Nick had succeeded in accomplishing one out of the two.

It took a lot of persuasion and some stern words to find Jared a psychologist. Jared was not happy with this development but he soon learnt to be.

Nick had come as a blessing in disguise in Jared’s life. The things that Jared could not say to Jeff because he was too humiliated or ashamed he would say to Nick and he would listen. Always.

Nick was the one who filled his application to apply for the course of Diploma in library studies and Jared just could not refuse because books were his life and the idea of working in a room full of books was his definition of moksha. He was happy in the company of his books, they promised to take him in newer world… better world.

The previous month with the moving and the appointments of the doctor and the studies, for a while Jared had forgotten the aches… but he should have known that the aches would return with a vengeance.

Jared had thought he would cheat himself into being happy but the pains were too soaring for that to be possible.

He didn’t know he had risen just to fall again.

Jared frantically started searching for the phone, he should call Jeff.

Jeff should be here…

Wasn’t he talking on the phone just yet.

Jeff should be here right now…

His body trembled, his eyes watered, his limbs were ready to give in and give up.

Why isn’t Jeff here…

His mind was on the continuous loop of Jeff - Jeff - Jeff.

 

He didn’t look on the floor in his distress, where the phone was lying, innocent as if it had not just delivered a vibrant shock to Jared’s already weak heart…

 

---

 

Three hours later Jared and Jeff were in Nick’s office, sitting on the same stiff wooden chairs where Jared sat during his first meeting with Nick, he was saying something about the need of Jared’s identification of Matt and his little gang so that the proper court procedures can happen and they can be punished.

They can be punished…
They BE punished…

Jared didn’t get it. The court will punish Matt… but what about the punishment that Jared had been living.

Can the court wipe out those three weeks of abuse that Jared had to endure on his body… his mind?

Can the court give Jared his virginity back?

The court can't do any of it.

What the court can do is make Jared live all these horrible memories again and again.

Make Matt stand in front of Jared day after day during the proceeding so that his cyanide blue stare can make Jared realize whose little bitch he is.

 

“Jared!” Nick’s voice resonated in the room along with Jared’s mind.

He swallowed and looked at Nick, “Yeah, ummm I’m here.”

“Okay you gotta listen to me, we found him in this rave down town where some of my buddies picked him on charges of disruption. He has his lawyer with him, if you identify him then we get to keep him here because rape is an un-bailable offence.”

Jared’s brain was all but clear, he was trying too hard to not get up and run.

Never ever he wanted to be in the same building with Matt and now Nick, his friend, wants them in the same room.

“Do you understand? You do this and everything will be over soon.”

Jared should nod.
Jared should.
Jared.

“Jared!”

His head snapped and he looked in Jeff’s eyes and muttered, “I don’t want it to be over soon, I want it to be over now…”

Instead of Jeff, Nick chose to speak, “it doesn’t work that way Jared, you have to go and identify him. There will be court proceedings and he’ll end up in a lock up for a very very long time. He’ll not hurt you again. I promise.”

“You can't promise that.”

“I can and I am. Things will go your way from now on.”

“Nothing goes my way, Nick! Ever! I see him and point him and his friends out. You throw them in lock up. They get lawyers, the court keeps giving us dates, then there are more proceedings then there are out of court settlements. This will never be over. I will carry this weight with me forever and you have no right to lie to me. So don’t you FUCKING LIE TO ME!!!”

Jared’s little out burst must have affected Jeff but not one line of Nick’s face morphed. He sat there and very calmly asked Jeff to leave Jared and him alone.

Jeff left.
Inspite of Jared’s request to stay Jeff left.

“You know Jared what my biggest regret is?” Nick's voice was several decibel low and eerily haunted… Jared shook his head a little, never making eye contact with Nick.

“If it would have been me who caught Matt and his little minions, I would have ripped their heads off there and then. They would never have seen another day’s light and you know why I would have done that…”

Jared shook his head again.

“Because no one messes with you and lives to tell the tale.”

Jared lifted his eyes and looked in grey once, they were full of anger and revenge. A shiver went down his spine and he knew it was going to there.

Nick proclined a little towards Jared, “Now they are here, under my thumb and I am not letting them go.”

Jared was staring at Nick, taking in the little dimple on his temple, the thinning of lips and the veins on his arm when Nick leaned a little closer and whispered, “I never lie so let's get these motherfuckers ”

---

Jared saw the white cell where Matt was sitting in a white chair and a man in a suit, probably his lawyer was sitting beside him. Nick was making sure he had every file before they entered it.
After ten minutes Jared sans Jeff entered the room with Nick's presence like a wall accompanying him.

Jared had just entered the room when the commotion started, Matt jumped off his chair towards Jared but he could not go a long way because two uniformed men got hold of him promptly…

“HI! Little bitch,” he shouted with his mouth full of yellow brown teeth and his words slurred with whatever drug he has taken, “ I see you have come for more. I knew you loved daddy, come here my little precious, daddy’s gonna fuck his liitle bitch…”

“SHUT UP!!!” Jared didn’t know how and when they came out but these were his words.

His words, shut Matt up.
His words.
His.

Before any more could be said or done, Nick was between Jared and Matt. Matt’s lawyer trying his best to control Matt but failing to the drug that was running in his system.

Nick held out a recording device and placed it on the table top. He guided Jared on the chair and himself sat down too.
“Mr. Jared Padalecki, do you recognize this man as the man who raped you multiple times and once attempted gang rape on you.”
Jared knew it was now.

His redemption was not, what Matt did to him in a closed room. It was THIS.
His salvation was not Matt cutting him and never sewing back. It was THIS.

It was not Jared who had to purge his sins. It was HIM.
It was not Jared who needed to cleanse. It was HIM.

 

 

Jared nodded.

Chapter Text

A FEW MONTHS BACK

 

It was over.
It was done.

When Jared came out of the court room, he was pretty fucked up. After the verdict the court room felt claustrophobic so Jared did the only thing he knew to do, he came out of there and immersed himself in a book.

It was The Alchemist.

It was company.
It was solitude.

 

He was trying to concentrate but when he read the same line for fourteenth time and still could not make sense out of it, he quit and closed it. He rested his back against the wooden back of the court room chair and closed his eyes.

The verdict revolved around his brain for the infinite time.

Like a black hole.
Absorbing him.
Immersing him.

Freeing him?

“The court finds Mr. Matt Delacort guilty of all charges and grants him jail time of 20 years along with a ten thousand dollar fine.”

When the judge hit the hammer it nearly drowned the cry of ‘NO!!’ that escaped Matt’s mouth but Jared was out of there so fast that these sounds were nothing but blurred spots in his memory.

 

He was sweating and his leg was twitching non-stop in the anxiety attack that threatened to take him, he could hear the court room emptying and he wanted to congratulate himself for finding such a secluded spot but his heart was racing and in no time and with no permission from his brain his legs matched the rhythm of his heart…

Jared ran out of the court, literally.

The first drop of water that fell on his cheek could have been anything…

A tear.
A raindrop.

He didn’t care, what he about cared was running… what was he running from, he had one person from whom he wanted to run, his abuser and now that he was himself bound then what was Jared running from? His past, himself, his future.

Jared would have run to the end of the world, if the honk from a car horn hadn't stopped him. He turned around to face Jeff’s car. His ears ringing from the exhaustion and his long hair in his eyes made it a little difficult for him to decode what Jeff was saying from the inside of his car but the logical part of his brain got the gist and he slid himself in the passenger seat.

“What are you trying to give yourself pneumonia from running like a lunatic in this rain!” Jeff bellowed at the top his lungs and that’s when Jared realized that it was indeed raining, more like pouring.

The car was thumping from all the rain drops that were assaulting it’s metal body. Jared oddly found the situation spoke to him. The raindrops; little pieces of needles stabbing in the car's body and the car shouting its revolt in answer.

Only difference, no one was listening to the car’s mutiny whereas Jared’s was heard. His assault was justified, revenged, taken care of.

“Are you okay, are you even listening to me?”

“I am.”

(Listening to you… yes.)
(Okay… I don’t know.)

“Jared this is good thing, the bastard got what he deserved.”

“Yes.”

“Put him behind you; put this whole situation behind you. We’ll start anew; I mean you already got the apartment and the job.”

“Yes, okay.”

“Good, good.”

It seemed like Jeff was talking and reassuring himself more than he was doing for Jared, Jared was okay with it, at least one person in the car was sane.

“I wanted to umm, talk with you about something, okay…”

“Okay.”

“So what I wanted to say,” Jeff cleared his throat, Jared realized that Jeff had not practiced it and for some reason that made him genuinely interested in what he wanted to say because lately too many things that came out of Jeff’s mouth were calculated and they made Jared nothing but frustrated, “ahem, I wanted you to promise me something.”

“What?”

“Jared will you promise me that you’ll you know… you’ll keep your mind open about love.”

Love.

Distant.
Vague.

Love.

“I mean you understand right? What happened with that piece of shit… that cannot affect your love life? right? Right?”

“Okay.”

“No! Don’t ‘okay’ me. Promise me that you’ll allow people to fall in love with you and then you’ll live your life like you deserve to.”

“No one is falling for me Jeff…” Jared mumbled fumbling with his fingers.

“Yeah! Not this very second, no one is, but someone WILL eventually and you promise me that you’ll not shut them out.”

“I… I don’t know what to say Jeff.”

“C’mon Jared Matt is taken care of! He is going to rot in that fucking jail and right now my only priority is you and you living a good life. Don’t tell me you have never thought of a life partner, a home, a life.”

Jared doesn’t remember when he used to think of those things for himself, it was a nebulous memory…

But it was there.
A little hazy.
But there.

He use of think of a man… tall and lean, talkative unlike Jared, cropped hair… again unlike Jared, his face blurry but brainy, scattered but scholarly, ambiguous but academic.

He was the dream before all the nightmares.
His memory distinct then… distant now.

Jared used to dream of holding his hand when he would read ‘Harry potter’ on the sofa with him or when he would lay his head on his shoulder and broad chest when they read ‘PS I Love You’ together in bed or the way Jared would feel his laughter vibrate from his ribs when he read ‘The Hitchhiker’s guide to galaxy’ on a picnic on a sunny afternoon or the way Jared would wipe his tears when he would read ‘Love in the time of cholera’ and the way he would hide Jared in his strong arms when Jared would get scared of the monster of ‘Frankenstein’.

May be just may be Jared would get lucky.
May be just may be Jared would have promised Jeff.

Chapter Text

PRESENT

“Aakkkhhan… Is it okay if I sit here?”

Jared was too lost in the world where a Jensen Ackles was dressed in plaid and a beautiful smile; playing golf in front of him and a good book in his hands to recognize this voice.

It was gravelly like the one that kept hogging his dreams now a days, deep and full of humor too; but it did not belong to Jensen because a) his voice, Jared can recognize anywhere, anytime… in any dimension and b) Jensen was in front of him swinging the five iron.

He teared himself from the beautiful view and looked in the direction of voice…

A long slightly stocky man was watching him, he had jet black hair, a great smile and a matching personality to go with that… Jared nodded.

 

“What are you reading?”

 

Freckles. The guy had freckles… Jared didn’t know how but it kinda soothed him.

He concentrated on those.
He likes freckles now.

The million doorways of happiness.
The thousand suns of brightness.
The hundred of golden promises.

Freckles remind him of Jensen.
Jensen.
A smile floated on his face…

He replied through that smile, “Silence of the lambs.”

“And who are you eyeing?”

The tall guy jerked his neck towards the direction where Jensen was playing.

Jared blushed some and his eyes dropped, he swallowed and tried to find an answer… he could say friend but he SHOULD say boyfriend.

He will go with could.
He is not ready for the should.

“F… friend.”

“Or boyfriend?”

“…” Jared was still forming an answer when the tall guy spoke again.

“I’ll tell you, who you are eyeing? My little brother.”

“Josh… uh I… I mean Mr. Ackles.”

“That’s right, so… friend or boyfriend?”

A hand snaked around Jared’s waist before he could reply and Jared found himself washed with the cologne that Jensen wore, he took a deep breath and let it drown him. He doesn’t need to answer now, Jensen is here…

“Boyfriend.” Jensen said with a protective hint in his voice.

Jared found himself coloring because of the hint.

“So you must be Jared.” The taller man smiled and extended his hand out.

Jensen was all smiles and tight hands around Jared.

“Yeah, Jared padalecki meet my brother Josh Ackles, Josh this is my Jared.”

Jared automatically extended his hand but his heart was drumming bad.

He pasted a smile but his brain was radio silent.

“Umm, hi.”
“Hello Jared.”
“You know Jay, I have been asking my brother to come to a game with me for quite some time now, but I told him you were going to be here today and he suddenly gets time.”

Jared was not going to be nervous but he was.

He was not going to think about Matt right now but they were involuntary thoughts that hogged his mind when someone saw him with investigatory eyes like Josh was right now.

He was not going to lean in Jensen some more but he was.

 

“Jensen is joking Jared, he never invited me to a game before.”

“Hey, I have!”

“Whatever Jensen, anyways I don’t think you play that good.”

“You are kidding me, tell me you are kidding me. Jay tell him how good I play.”

“I have eyes little brother.”

“Yeah eyes that can't see far enough than your accounts book.”

“They see better than…”

Jared smiled through the entire conversation, his heart silently getting under control and his mind easing to the fact that Josh was not here to judge but to support his brother…

Their conversation was halted when Jensen was called in the game again and Jared and Josh were left alone.

 

“So, Jared can I ask why are you reading about the world’s creepiest serial killer while eyeing my brother.”

“I… I was, it’s not that.”

“Hey! I am kidding. Jensen told me you like serial killers.”

“I don’t actually, I like serial killer catchers.”

“Hmm, now that makes sense.” Jared saw Josh nodding his head like he was introspecting some very complex thoughts.

“Josh... I mean Mr. Ackles.”

“Josh is fine.”

“I… just I wanted to tell you that I’d never hurt Jensen. He… he is the good thing in my life.”

“I should hope so… he is the good thing in my life too.”

 

Jared didn’t know that but he could make that out.

The love between the brothers.
The rhythm of comfort.
The dependency.

He liked it.
He felt a greater connection with Jensen may be because he shared the same with Jeff.

Jensen returned and Jared’s smile too.
It didn’t feel like a stranger any more, it felt real now.

Belonging to Jared.
Smile.
Jensen.
Both.

“You interviewing my baby?” Jensen chided.

“No.” Jared replied instead of Josh and earned a smile that made him warm all over.

“We were just talking about how stupid you are.” Josh winked at Jared and a blush threatened to creep over him.

“Ha ha, Josh your jokes are just like you. Old.”

“Well then in that case don’t let me keep you youngsters from anything, I’ll go and see if I can hog some money from those old white clad business men pretending to play golf over there.”

Josh offered a hand to Jared and a hug to his brother before leaving them alone.

“I am sorry, Josh can be a bit…”

“I know, I can't wait for you to meet Jeff, he is a delight… promise.”

“Anything for my…”

 

Before Jensen could complete his sentence the sky roared and big drops of water started to fall. In a fraction of a second the sunny cold afternoon turned into a wet cold afternoon and Jared found his hand in Jensen’s dragging him somewhere.

“Shit! Jay… wow its really coming down, move! I have a cottage at the end of the club.”

Jensen’s whole look changed from relaxed to protective in an instant and Jared found himself whispering something totally nerdy…

“You have water on your eyelashes.”

“Duh, it’s raining dummy. There’s water every where, here let me take that book for you.”

Jensen took ‘The silence of lamb’ from Jared’s hand and hid it in his shirt from the back and Jared heart just exploded from this tiny gesture.

He knew now.
He saw it.
He fucking drowned in it.

He was in love.

Chapter Text

PRESENT

 

Dumbfounded on the comprehension of the new knowledge that was gnawing on his brain, Jared followed Jensen.

There was water everywhere, his hair, shirt, face; everywhere but the palm that Jensen was holding.

The hold was so tight that not even air could pass through it and no matter how much Jared tried he could not remove his eyes from their hands.

In a while Jared found himself in front of a small wooden cottage and Jensen was chatting non stop about finding the key hidden behind a stone turtle that was there, then about electricity or the lack of it in the cottage and about how he hates rain and Jared just stared at him as if the new revelation, made him see Jensen in a new light… or may be for the first time.

He chewed on his lower lip and tried to control the color of his cheeks because he didn’t want Jensen to see that he has fallen for the perfect, the purest, the most beautiful man.

He has dared to.
He had the audacity to.

 

Jensen opened the wooden door and Jared found himself on the other side of the door, attached to it from his back and to his front was his Jensen, hands all over a very confused Jared, tugging the over shirt that Jared wore which was darker because of water now.

Jared has no idea what turned on meant but right now with a beautiful man with pink moist lips and with hard hands and soft touches; Jared dared to think that most probably he was turned on.

“C’mon lets get rid of this wet shirt, told you I hate rain all wet all time.”
“God! Your hair babe I’ll find a towel, it’s really coming down isn’t it.”
“Why are you shivering Jared, wait lemme just warm your hands for you. Is this okay?”

Jared was very aware of his body right now. His cheeks were flaming red under Jensen’s heated gaze, his spine tingling with the anticipations of the unprecedented touches, every pore and hair on his body alive with the mere presence of Jensen.

With the over shirt gone and only his thin T shirt acting as a barrier between Jared’s lithe frame and Jensen’s ever present strong hands, Jared for the first time wanted.
For the first time.

Jared for the first time craved.
For the first time.

For the first time dared.
For the first time.

 

Jensen’s hands touched his biceps and Jared shivered. Lips found the intimate part behind Jared’s right ear… eyes found the pink moist lips and just as sweet and as ever a gentleman as ever Jensen waited for the permission.

Jared closed his eyes and leaned in. He granted the permission.

A theatrical breath left Jensen’s body and Jared was hyper aware of everything.

The little fat of his tummy.
The dimples on his thighs.
The mole on his face.
The wrinkles of his fingers .

But somehow the awareness shifted involuntarily to things that were not Jared.

The soft warm touches of Jensen.
The stately ginger beard of Jensen.
The strong jaw with a delicate smile of Jensen.

Jensen…!
Jensen…
Jensen.

“I love you Jared.”
And just like that the illusion shattered.

Suddenly the realization that this is not the first time someone wants Jared came crashing down on Jared.

Jared opened his eyes and looked. Jensen was kissing his jaw and making statements that Jared wanted to collect and kept with him perhaps in little envelopes or boxes.

The purity of Jensen’s heart, his absence of inhibitions, his trust, his presence… deserved truth.

“Jen… I… I have not…”

“You have never done this before.” Jensen surfaced.

Jared turned as crimson as the evening sun which was about to set and lost the world…

“Hey… it’s alright. It’s perfectly fine. You trust me and I am putting all my trust in you to tell me if I do something wrong. Okay baby… this is fine, we’re fine.”

Trust… Jared lost it.
Trust… Jared found it.
Trust… Jared was not going to lose it again.

“I am not a virgin.” Jared whispered.

“Jared, you know I am fine with…”

“I was raped.”

Slowly everything was shut.

Hearts beated.
Love struggled.
Jared prayed.
Jensen breathed.

“Multiple times.”

Jared wished he could see what was going in Jensen’s brain. Could hear his thoughts.
Jared wished Jensen would remove his ever present hands from Jared’s body so he could prepare himself for leaving.

None happened.

“Are you in pain?”
The hands were not leaving.

“Physically, not anymore.”
The hands never left.

“I wanted to tell you, believe me please, but I was weak, a coward and you were there and you are so good, perfect even and I got addicted and…”

“You are not a coward.” The love in Jensen’s eyes never dropped, never vanished.

“His name is…”

A finger snaked on Jared’s lips and Jensen shook his hand, “I don’t want to know.”

“He is in jail. He won't bother me… us. I promise.”

“This is my promise to make Jared and I am making it. No one but me.”

A stream of salt water that Jared didn’t know for how long he had been hiding streamed out and he let it.

He was crying happy tears while Jensen was a trying to embrace him in a protective embrace.
An embrace of a love and belonging.
An embrace which was the right fit and was for Jared.

Jared’s body trembled as if it got free from the huge weight that was preventing him from stirring.

“Why?” Jared choked out.

“Because when I first saw you pouring your heart out in that book, I knew you. I knew you would break for love and I want to be the person who you break for because I know I’ll put you together.”

“You promise me?”
“I promise you.”

“Nobody but you?”
“Nobody but me.”

“Forever?”
“Forever.”

For the first time Jared melted in the arms that surrounded him.

They were hard like the ones that caused him pain but they were soothing.
They were tight like the ones that ripped him but they were calming.

Scars were forming.
Wounds were healing.
Chains were receding.

Jensen was Jared’s Perseus on winged scandals.
Jared was ready to be rescued.

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