Title: THE DISCOVERY OF JENSEN PADALECKI
Characters: Jensen/Jared, Eric Kripke, Bob Singer, Misha Collins, Jim Beaver.
Genre: J2, non-AU
Rating: PG-13 (Some swearing, boy kissing)
Word Count: 3,742
Disclaimer: Fiction, not fact. J & J belong to themselves and each other.
A/N: Well, I just finished my 65K J2 non-AU Big Bang fic (which was my first J2 and first slash, yikes!), and wanted to celebrate with this little one-shot. This would be my first ever post for this comm., and yeah, I’m a little freaked out, since some of the best fics I’ve ever read have been in the J2 fandom. So, here goes nothing. This was of course inspired by that interview where TV Guide Network had Jen's name wrong. Or secretly right, right, right. Oh, we can dream, can't we? Comments = Love.
Summary: Jensen Ackles was a prankster extraordinaire. Nay, he was the king of all pranksters. So when Eric Kripke decided it was time for payback, Jensen had to resort to desperate measures to come out on top. He was just a little clueless as to how this suddenly involved misusing the Discovery Channel and kissing Jared Padalecki.
The Discovery of Jensen Padalecki
The entire crew, who had gathered for the impromptu showing of the TV Guide interview in the food tent, were laughing.
As in, hands slapping knees, doubled over in their chairs, heads thrown back, loud and raucous, guffawing.
Lizzie, Eric’s PA, had set up the damn projector using one of the sides of the tent as a screen and everyone and their assistant had shown up to watch, including of course, Supernatural’s two stars: Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki.
Still, it took three viewings of the clip for him to notice anything wrong. Or for Jared to notice anything wrong. And of course that just heightened the hilarity for everyone present, Eric laughing the loudest and the longest as this was all his doing. Finally, Misha – the bastard – asked for the third viewing and picking up a butter knife from the cutlery table, went through the interview and helpfully – the moron – pointed out everyone’s names as they appeared on the screen, calling for the clip to be paused when on-screen Jensen opened his mouth.
Again Jensen, real-life Jensen, scanned the foreground for anything unusual. His fly was securely fastened. There was no spinach between his teeth. There were no embarrassing markings of any kind on his face or form. He squinted at the background and again came up empty. And yet, this was the part that got the most laughter. What the hell was he not seeing? He darted another quizzical glance at his co-star, sitting in his usual place next to him. Jared too, looked flummoxed, and genuinely so. And if anyone knew Jared’s I’m-in-on-this-prank face, actor or not, it was Jensen.
Enter the ever-helpful Misha Collins brandishing his handy butter knife.
He asked for a volunteer from the crowd. Jim Beaver smirked and stepped forward. Jensen stared the older man down. Et tu, Jimmy? The smirk intensified.
“Beav, if you will please read this?” Misha asked, his manner exaggerated so it seemed as if they were all in the first-grade having fun with phonics.
“Jen-sen,” Jim happily complied. Everyone cheered. It was pathetic. Then Misha moved his forearm and pointed to the other word on the screen.
Jared stiffened next to him and still – because his brain had apparently been abducted by aliens at some point during the day – Jensen didn’t see it. Or well, he saw it, but it didn’t register as wrong.
He looked at the screen again. Jensen Padalecki.
There was something not-quite-right-sounding about that. He wondered why.
Because... because – oh. Oh.
Because that was not his name. Right. It was Jensen Ackles. He’d had that name for thirty-odd years now – he should have seen that mistake right the fuck away. But he hadn’t. Because it hadn’t seemed wrong. He looked at Jared, who was laughing now too, but not in his usual boisterous manner. His eyes looked as shocked as Jensen felt.
Thankfully, everyone was too busy laughing themselves silly as they filed out of the food tent to notice them.
“Oh, it’s on,” Jensen mumbled as Eric and Bob walked towards them, the smirk on Eric’s face gloating in the extreme. Jensen darted a quick look at his partner-in-crime. Jared merely nodded his assent in a barely perceptible manner. It was a familiar move for both of them and it translated into: Do what ya hafta do, bro – I got your back.
Jensen delved into his acting arsenal and pulled out his most sincere, embarrassed face, which was rendered even more convincing by the blush that was rising up his cheeks. That blush, unfortunately, was not faked. He just really hoped that Jared would take this in his stride with his usual good humour, because Eric was going down.
“Well, howdy, Mr. Padalecki,” Eric nodded at Jared, and then tipped an invisible ten-gallon at Jensen. “Mr. Padalecki.” Then he laughed with genuine amusement. “You shoulda seen your faces, especially you, Ackles. Admit it – I got you good!” He high-fived Bob.
“We’re still the kings, young’uns,” Bob drawled in a horrible mockery of a Texan accent. “Age and wisdom before beauty.”
“Y’all ask TV Guide to do that?” Jared asked.
“They’re big fans of on-set pranks, especially if we agree to dish the results exclusively to back to them. Heh. They are so going to get a kick outta the footage from today.”
“You filmed this?” Jensen asked in horror. Oh, he had to hand it to the man. He went all out on his retaliation.
Still though, Jensen was the master and undefeated champion of punking people on the Supernatural set. And early on in the first season when he and Jared had realized how much havoc they could wreck if they combined their awesome powers and practical joke repositories, there had been no looking back and no one safe from their Machinations of Mayhem.
Yeah, so, Jared had let Chad call it that and the stupid name stuck. Although, it sounded better than Jared’s Prank Patrol. Also, Jensen had been very drunk when he had agreed to it.
Anyway. He needed to think fast here, because Eric needed his ass handed to him.
And then suddenly, his eyes flickered to his frozen form still projected on the side of the food tent. Jensen Padalecki, he read again. And again, it didn’t seem wrong. Huh. Probably because almost every time someone said his name, it was either followed or preceded by Jared’s. And they worked together almost all the live-long day. Then they went home and lived together. So, there was that. They were practically married: together all the time, in synch in a way that was admittedly very scary if you thought about it too long (so Jensen never did), and they didn’t have any sex. Wasn’t that, like, the definition of marriage? Plus, they were bros. And dude, their bromance was some epic shit. Just ask their fans.
So, anyway, back to Kripke, who was still chuckling at the fact that they had taken so long to notice what everyone else had seen right away. “So oblivious,” he was telling Bob who was smirking at them. “You guys better admit it. We owned you with this one!” He levelled a cocky look at Jensen. “Especially you, Ackles. I’ve been waiting to get you ever since the Pepto-Bismol Prank.”
Jared snorted and Jensen bit his lip to keep from laughing out loud. That prank had been masterful in its planning and execution; there was no topping that.
Jensen ducked his head shyly, and Eric and Bob actually stopped giggling at the same time, looking at him in surprise. Jensen barely refrained from rolling his eyes. It was like they kept forgetting he was an actor, and did this for a living. And also, he was good at it. Idiots. It’s what made them such easy targets.
He pitched his voice just right and spoke. “I didn’t really notice anything out of the ordinary, because...” he paused for effect, allowing his eyes to widen with sincerity but keeping a hint of that shyness alive. He blinked a couple of times, bit his lip and darted a couple of nervous glances at Jared. His boy got it right the fuck away, and started mimicking Jensen’s body language, improvising a little here and there, putting his own spin on it, making it believable.
“What’s going on?” Bob asked, intrigued in spite of himself.
“They’re up to something,” Eric insisted, narrowing his gaze at them, and sounding like he was trying to convince himself as well as Bob.
Jensen sighed as if the weight of the world was on his chest. Then Jared did that improv thing and slung a long, heavy arm across his shoulders, dragging and tucking Jensen into the side of his big body. Jensen gave him a hesitant smile. His eyes as he looked at his co-star, though, merely stated: Dude, nice move.
“Maybe we should just tell them, Jen,” Jared said, puppy-dog expression out in full force.
“Jay, I thought we agreed not to do anything right now...” Jensen’s voice trailed off artfully as his gaze slid to the floor and he let uncertainty and fear show on his face.
Jared’s big hand – and holy crap, he had huge hands, the freak – came up to cup Jensen’s jaw. Huh. For such massive paws, they were amazingly gentle and soft to the touch, but er... Jensen digressed. Then he let out a carefully crafted shuddering breath. He looked at his producers, or his next victims, depending on your perspective.
“It didn’t seem out of the ordinary because, well, Jared and I – we...” Jensen looked up at Jared again, winding his arm around his co-star’s waist and fitting himself even closer to Jared’s body, silently asking one last time if he had the green light to go ahead with this. Jared tightened his hold on Jensen’s shoulders and leaning down, pressed a soft kiss to his temple, closing his eyes while he did so. His boy was no slouch in the acting department, Jensen thought with an internal smirk as he heard Eric and Bob’s twin gasps.
He resolutely ignored the slight tingling of his skin where Jared kissed him. Chalk that one down to a glitch in the Matrix.
“Tell them, Jensen,” Jared said quietly, his tone pleading.
Jensen drew in a deep breath and made it look like he was steeling himself for battle, directing his electric green gaze (Jared’s words, not his) at Eric and Bob. “Jared and I got married this summer.” The quiet, heartfelt words hit the other two men with the force of a scud missile, if their stunned expressions were anything to go by. Jared’s fingers twitched where they grasped his shoulder, and Jensen thought that might have been involuntary. He kept up the act and used the weird shivery feeling that was growing in his chest to add to authenticity to his acting skills. “Jared asked me to take his name. I’ve sort of been debating it. So, when I saw it on the screen...,” he shrugged delicately, letting his silence speak for him.
Eric’s jaw actually dropped. Bob simply looked frozen.
And Jensen Pada... er, oh boy, er... Jensen Ackles was still the king.
Somewhere in the lot, a car back-fired. The sound snapped Eric and Bob back to attention.
“I don’t believe it!” Eric scoffed. “Nice try, boys.”
“Yeah. No fuckin’ way,” Bob sneered.
Jared sighed, and Jensen, because he was magnanimous like that, let his co-star take centre stage for a bit. “It’s why I didn’t notice anything either,” Jared huffed, blowing his bangs out of his eyes. Jensen turned to him and with his left hand, brushed his hair back, tucking some of the longer strands behind one ear, his thumb absently rubbing across Jared’s earlobe. The sensation of the baby-soft skin on his fingertips was what alerted him to the fact that he was touching Jared at all. His fingers prickled. Huh. Weird, Jensen thought, slowly, unobtrusively lowering his hand. Jared caught it and pressed his fingers to his wide mouth, his soft lips skimming even softer kisses across them as the prickles upgraded to fully fledged jolts of electricity that shot right through from his fingers to his heart.
Jensen licked his lips without thinking but when Jared’s hot hazel gaze zeroed in on his mouth at that very second, he felt more than a little off kilter. He tried to focus because Jared was saying something. Jensen noticed this because he found himself staring at Jared’s mouth all of a sudden, inanely wondering what it would be like to lick his lips.
Hmm. Perhaps his blood sugar levels were a bit off. Maybe he was over-dosing on sugar from his co-star by way of osmosis, seeing as how Jensen more often than not tended to find himself plastered to Jared’s side. He sighed inwardly. It was bound to happen at some point, he thought, and he had seen Jared consume at least three sugary donuts at first breakfast that morning. Then there were the cookies at second breakfast. And the stripy candy thingies he ate in make-up. If Jared wasn’t such a giant, Jensen would have called him a hobbit. Jensen, mean while, had only had multiple cups of industrial strength coffee.
Wonky blood sugar influenced by osmosis and too much caffeine. That explanation sounded all kinds of plausible, so Jensen went with it.
“...haven’t legally changed his name yet. Not until we think it through, you know. That’s why it was so surprising to see it up there for the world to see,” Jared ducked his head shyly. “It just looked so right. Didn’t it, Jen?”
Jensen turned to face him, putting his hand over Jared’s heart like he had been photographed doing over and over again. “It did look right,” he reassured his best friend.
Jared smiled tremulously, his lower lip wobbling the tiniest bit. He was so talented at that. “Told you so,” he murmured softly, his voice loving, and coupled with that oh-so-sweet smile that should have come with a warning from four-out-of-five dentists, it was making Jensen’s stomach quiver. He revisited his blood-sugar/osmosis/caffeine hypothesis and decided it could be applied to explaining away the flutters in his stomach too.
“Oh, you guys are good,” Eric muttered darkly. Jensen and Jared kept their eyes on each other.
“Are they?” Bob looked dubious. Jensen refused to feel slighted that Bob didn’t think they were capable of pulling this off. Hello, actors here, Singer!
“Of course they are. You think you can pull the wool over my eyes, boys, you got another think coming!”
“If you’re really married to each other,” Bob began, and then paused while Eric got his shit together and stopped giggling, “then prove it!”
This time, they did turn to look at him.
“You want to see our marriage license?” Jared asked him, his smile so bashful that it visibly threw Bob off his game. If he could have gotten away with it, Jensen would have beamed like a proud papa. His boy was gifted. “We can get you a copy.”
Yes, they could, Jensen thought. Between Chad Michael Murray and Michael Rosenbaum, any manner of borderline-illegal things were possible. Mikey could probably hook them up with a fake Canadian marriage license in his sleep and with both hands tied behind his back. They had this in the bag.
“I’ve got a better idea,” Eric grinned, looking like he did when he came up with terms like ‘meat-suit’. So, demented, pretty much. “If you two are really married – which, by the way, is a ludicrous thought, unless you’re talking to the majority of our fans – then kiss. And for reals. That means tongues and hands, boys, the whole shebang. Brokeback style,” he smirked at Bob who grinned at his clever suggestion.
“Yeah. Yeah!” Bob laughed. “Make it convincing and we just may buy it, boys.” The producers leered at them, and a second later, Bob called ‘Action’.
Goddamn, now what?
Jensen looked at Eric and Bob, and he saw Jared looking at them too. Then they looked at each other. If Jared wanted to stop, now was the time, Jensen silently communicated to him. We’re in it to win it, Jared clearly communicated back, so bring it.
Jared Padalecki may just have become Jensen Ackles’ hero.
Aight. It’s on.
Jensen swallowed hard past the sudden lump in his throat, as Jared pulled him close and dipped his head. He just had a split second to inhale before Jared’s wide mouth closed warmly over his.
Hot. Diggity. Damn.
Outwardly, Jensen was the epitome of calm, but on the inside, his thought processes ran rampant as his brain frantically scrambled and embarked upon an information-gathering excursion, and every modicum of fact ever learned about kissing on-screen and in real life was rapidly compiled, collated and presented for review. In his mind’s eye, his past onscreen kisses flashed by like slides in a Powerpoint presentation. On crack. There were a lot of kisses, but there was also problem, however; the raid-fire impromptu information session was malfunctioning somehow; it wasn’t translating to help him out of his current predicament because Jared Padalecki was kissing the pants off of him.
Not literally, of course. Not yet, anyway. But his best friend was a sneaky bastard and Jensen didn’t want to get caught with his pants down. Figuratively speaking.
Also, note to lungs: breathe, goddamn it.
Jared’s tongue was licking into his mouth; delving deep, scraping over the edges of his teeth, poking playfully at his palate, stroking and coaxing Jensen’s tongue into his own mouth.
Jensen summarily dismissed the slideshow playing in his head. It didn’t apply to Jared. He wasn’t a girl, and since Jensen had never kissed a man before, he didn’t have anything in his mental databanks to tap into that would help him. Still, kissing was kissing. Jared had never kissed a dude before either (he would have told Jensen otherwise, because they had no secrets between them), and he was doing a pretty bang up job about it. So, in conclusion, kissing was not gender-specific. So what was throwing Jensen off his game?
Then it came to him.
Ah, gravity, thou art a heartless bitch.
Jensen had always been the tall one in the kissing scenario. He wasn’t used to tipping his head up to kiss someone. He wasn’t used to hands bigger than his lovingly caressing his face, or spanning his waist, or squeezing his ass. He wasn’t used to being shoved up tight to the flat, hard, chiselled planes of another man’s chest. He wasn’t used to tilting his head just so to try and angle the kiss better. And he certainly wasn’t used to standing on his tiptoes just so his painfully hard dick could align and rub itself along the length of Jared’s straining erection.
Huh. Who knew gravity could affect the act of kissing so profoundly?
Then he realized that his body was doing all these things, countering and upping the ante on every move Jared made, apparently working on automatic pilot, while his brain struggled to catch up.
Well. Go, body.
Jared moaned. Or Jensen did. He wasn’t quite sure. Things were getting fuzzier by the second and just when he thought, maybe, just maybe, he was getting the upper hand, Jared’s hand delved underneath his shirt to skim across the width of his back. This time, he knew exactly who moaned. His breath hitched in his chest. His blood heated from a simmer to a delicious slow burn that set his whole body alight. Sparks, originating from Jared’s fingertips, skittered across his back, and somehow ended up jolting his already sensitized cock.
That latter phenomenon was easily explained away by static electricity; Jared was always crackling with it. It probably had something to do with his ridiculous mess of floppy hair acting as some sort of super-conductor, while his inability to sit still just amplified and transferred that latent electric current to everything he touched. And he touched Jensen a whole lot, so Jensen had been zapped many a time. Never in the cock though; that was new.
And still Jared kissed him. And he kissed back of course. They were in this together. Wait, what were they in, again? Jensen couldn’t remember for the life of him, and it was making him lose his balance. Was he perhaps developing an inner ear issue? He had better make sure to hold onto Jared tighter, he thought, praising his brain for keeping it together while his arms wound themselves around Jared’s strong neck and his fingers buried themselves in that mass of silky, soft, chocolate-brown waves. This time it was definitely Jared who groaned. Just before he pulled Jensen inexorably closer. Just before his kisses became slower, deeper, wetter, hotter.
It suddenly felt as if the earth had tilted funny.
Huh. Was that even possible? From the deepest, darkest depths of his memory banks, Jensen’s brain pulled forth something about tectonic plates that he had no doubt seen on the Discovery Channel, so maybe it wasn’t hugely out of the realm of possibility that the earth had just moved.
Jensen kind of loved how science and the Discovery Channel could explain practically everything.
Except Jared pulling away from him. Why was that happening? Jensen blinked his eyes open. It took a few tries but he managed, and found himself drowning in the hazel depths of Jared’s eyes, which at the moment, were the exact shade of that first cup of coffee Jared made him every morning. Hmm. He loved that colour; it was his favourite.
Jared’s thumb rubbed across his lips and Jensen kissed it softly before Jared could take it away. Jared smiled at that, and leaned down to press another kiss to his mouth, tongue darting out to lick his bottom lip. When he pulled back slightly, Jensen smiled back at him, and gently nuzzled Jared’s nose with his. And then he sighed. He felt... happy. It was nice. Something still niggled the back of his mind but then Jared spoke and his train of thought was derailed.
“Let’s go home, Jensen,” Jared whispered, his breath ghosting over Jensen’s lips.
“Mmm, let’s,” he replied, and then let Jared take his hand, lacing their fingers together, and guide him out of the food tent to the parking lot.
It was only a few minutes later, as they pulled up to a red light, Jared gorgeous mouth peppering Jensen’s hand – which he had yet to release – with moist little licks and kisses, that Jensen remembered that the food tent had been empty when they left it.
Winner and still champion.
Then Jared leaned in towards him, and Jensen found himself leaning into Jared as their mouths met in the middle for a blazingly hot kiss.
What? It was just your run-of-the-mill centrifugal force exerting itself. Or perhaps some sort of magnetic attraction? They were in Vancouver. The geographic and true North Poles were close, and it was not unheard off than the planet’s electromagnetic fields could have played a role in pushing him and Jared together. Whatever. Jensen’s understanding of physics was rudimentary at best. He could Google it later. Or better yet, maybe he and Jared could curl up on the couch, neck a little, make out a lot, and watch some Discovery.
He grinned and thought: Jensen Padalecki, you’re pure genius.