Author: Regala Electra
Fandom: CW RPS
Pairing: Jared/Jensen (reference to Jared/Other)
Warnings: I don't write RPS
Word Count: 1,037
Summary: The ficlet where Jared moves in with the most loveable misanthropic drug-addicted doctor in the whole wide world.
Author’s Notes: AU where Jared Padalecki is basically Dr. James Wilson and Jensen Ackles is Dr. Gregory House a la House, M.D.. This crazy House AU has been eating my brain for a while and the ‘verse itself is called Chasing Zebras. You don’t need to know House to read this fic. However if you are familiar with the shows, this ficlet is set during the second season arc where Wilson moves in with House. Um, this was beta’d by and written for ignited and she also is responsible for the title that makes me smile so. Thanks to USA for airing a nonstop House marathon for all my enabling needs.
Shenanigans and UST ensues under the cut.
Jared doesn’t mean to brag but he’s always excelled in psychology. It’s one of the necessary skills he frequently hones when dealing with the delicate art of informing patients that their lives may be cut down to years, months, weeks, days.
Everything he knows about human interaction is meaningless when it comes to Jensen.
Which is why he should have—kindly—refused Jensen’s offer of his ratty old sofa as a temporary shelter after Jared’s wife kicked him out.
“So what is it, three strikes and you’re out,” Jensen asks late into the night, playing Free Bird on Guitar Hero. “Do you get to get married for the fourth time or are you a confirmed bachelor now? I pity the nurses looking to get a piece of your parceled estate.”
“I’m barely separated now, Ackles,” Jared says. He wants to yank the plug out of Jensen’s PlayStation because Jensen’s starting up Free Bird again, this time on expert level and he’s showing no signs of stopping.
“Right, you’re only sponging off my hospitality in the hopes that Wife Number Three will see the error of her ways and ask you to come back so that you’ll continue to ignore her.”
“I didn’t ignore her, damn it. You know that. I…” Jared can’t bring himself to say the words. I always choose you over her.
“Can’t help needing to be needed?”
“I don’t need.”
Jensen screws up on purpose, setting down the guitar covered in Hello, Kitty stickers. Oh God, please don’t let Jensen have stolen that from Pediatrics ward, please. He’s still banned from the maternity ward after stealing their flat-screen TV for a General Hospital marathon. “You, Jared, are King of Needy.”
“And I expect you’re King of Detached Loners Who Hate the World?”
“A long title,” Jensen says, after considering it, heel of his hand massaging the missing muscle of his right thigh. “But I’ll accept it so long as I can have my pick of concubines. I plan on invading Needonia by the way. I advise you to commit seppuku to save yourself the dishonor of being overthrown.”
“Oh, I already sent my ninjas to your castle to poison your food,” Jared says, taking the one non-empty beer bottle off the coffee table. Dramatically swinging the beer bottle as though he’s about to toast Jensen, he adds, “I’ll turn your kingdom into a free clinic. And a care center with lots of clowns making balloon animals to cheer up patients.”
“Funny, Padalecki. That’s not beer by the way.”
“You were in the bathroom. No point in waiting. It is my apartment.”
Carefully, Jared sets the bottle back on the coffee table on Jensen’s side. So that when they clean up, Jensen will deal with it.
Jared can often be accused of being an extreme optimist.
“I won’t be here too long, you know. Once I find a place I’ll be out of here and you can play Guitar Hero and make crank calls and hold your secret poker games that I’m not allowed to join. I mean, if you want, I could find a hotel—”
“You didn’t think about going to a hotel though,” Jensen says in that soft, dangerous voice of his, the one where he’s examining someone, putting them under his speculative knife. Dissecting their motivations and reasons and leaving nothing to chance. Shredding everything down to the bone.
Fortunately Jared has a thick hide. And miles of scar tissue. That’s the only way this friendship has lasted so long.
Yeah. The only reason. Right.
“No. I wasn’t thinking, I guess,” Jared says, frustration coloring his voice. “My marriage is ending.”
“Your marriage was over a year ago,” Jensen snaps, tossing aside that evidence. “No, you showed up on my doorstep, looking like a drowned giant rat, wearing a tie your wife obviously didn’t pick out because she’s gotten you away from that disgusting baby pink color you love so much and you expected me to take you in.”
“Obviously I was wrong seeing as you kicked me out by ordering takeout and having my favorite beer in your fridge.”
“I was curious. Wanted to see if you’d manfully squeeze out a few tears or try to…” Jensen breaks off, a strange hitch to his breath. “That’s not important.”
“What’s not important?”
“Finding out for certain whether or not you’d reveal that you let the former Mrs. Padalecki give it to you like a real man.”
Gaping around Jensen is a habit that one day Jared would love to break. Because next up is sputtering indignation. “I would not…Jensen…that is…What?”
Jensen nods. “Just as vanilla and bland as I feared. Maybe if you spiced up the marital bed, the Missus won’t mind you ignoring her the rest of the time. I’m going to bed.”
It’s an abrupt switch; he almost smoothly gets up from the couch, save for the unsteady grab for his cane.
“I guess I’m going to couch,” Jared says, regaining a little of his mental equilibrium. “Jensen?”
“What,” Jensen asks, awkwardly turning around, his socked feet gaining poor traction on the polished hardwood floor, leaning on his cane.
“If you’re curious about how I perform in bed, you could always ask to watch.”
Jensen swallows hard before recovering. “I’ll wait until it gets leaked to the internet. That’s the way God intended.”
If Jared really was the great people person that Jensen accuses him of being he’d be able to parse this uneasy moment and see what it means. He’d analyze it quickly for the best response and he’d do the right thing and all would be well.
But this is Jensen and Jared always remains a step behind.
So he says as he eases the too-small quilt over his frame, “’Night, Ackles.”
Jensen says nothing and as Jared drifts off, he could swear he felt something touch his cheek, a lingering warmth that follows him into sleep.
When he wakes up the next morning, he doesn’t know why he’s surprised by the modernistic rendering of a giant phallus across his cheek. The handlebar mustache is a nice, classic touch.
He thinks he’ll make pancakes this morning. That will give him plenty of time to plot his revenge.