A Map of Your Body, Jake/Ryan, for archer_indigo, somewhere in this universe.
Jake hasn’t been doing this as long as Ryan. Sometimes Ryan forgets how quickly Jake came to MMA, how good he got in a short period of time. He’s half-assed on his stretches because he doesn’t know yet how his body will turn against him, he pushes too hard because he’s never felt his shoulder screaming at him through a fog of pain pills. So much muscle, so much strength, he doesn’t realize how his knees can’t just support it without his help.
Ryan knows today is the day Jake starts to feel it. Jake is flagging, his muscles are tired, stretched thin, the buildup of lactic acid in his muscles is slowing him down. The sheer pounds of pressure Ryan is delivering with every strike isn’t being given back.
“Hey, c’mon, stop.” Ryan stops the punch Jake’s about to throw by grabbing his wrist and twisting him to a standstill.
Jake breathes heavily and he slowly relaxes. The muscles under the skin of his shoulders are jumping violently. Ryan sighs.
“Your body is worth more than a Tesla Roadster,” he says to Jake’s neck. “You’ve gotta treat it like such.”
Jake doesn’t understand. “Jean Rocqua’s got me running seven miles a day and you aren’t letting me eat saturated fat anymore!”
Ryan laughs. “That’s just being healthy.” He reaches up and closes his fingers tight around a knot of muscles in Jake’s shoulder. Jake twists and curses under Ryan’s grip, trying to shrug it off. Ryan slowly eases back the pressure. He leans in, nose brushing the velvety skin over Jake’s trapezius muscles, and whispers, “You might live to be a hundred and five doing what you’re doing, but you’ll be cursing the last 70 years of it.”
Jake rolls his shoulders. Flush builds up over his skin. Ryan used to think it was embarrassment spreading, pouring out his capillaries, but now he knows it’s Jake’s reaction to Ryan’s physical contact. “I don’t know what I’m doing wrong,” Jake says, plaintively.
Ryan smacks the outside of his thigh and grins. “Come on, you baby, I’ll give you a massage.”
Ryan’s father is home, and he knows that Jake is always surprised at how much Ryan can get away with touching Jake before his dad will start to ask questions, but even Ryan knows not to push it. He leads the way to his room and then checks twice that the door is locked.
He shoves Jake at the bed. There’s a tin of muscle balm in his closet. Baja bought it for him at Whole Foods, and though he hates the way it smells as well at its provenance, he can readily admit it works.
Jake wriggles when Ryan settles his weight back against Jake’s ass.
He dips his fingers into the orange goo and then smacks them down against Jake’s skin. “I’m not going to sodomize you.”
Jake snorts. “It seems like the natural progression of things, you know? Assault and then rape.”
Ryan bends his head and licks a stripe up Jake’s spine and then sinks his teeth into the muscle at the base of Jake’s skull. Jake jerks underneath him, a cry torn from his chest. Ryan looks down at him darkly although Jake can’t see. “Don’t joke.”
He massages the balm into Jake’s skin, pressing deep with his fingertips, working the muscle so that it releases from its clenched hold. Jake sighs, his face pressed deep into Ryan’s pillow. He looks comfortable, at ease. Jake worries about too much and simultaneously not enough. Ryan always wants to tell him things will be all right, but he doesn’t know that.
“Most people carry their tension here,” he says, digging his palms down into Jake’s trapezius. “But you also have it here in your lats,” he skims gentle hands down until he’s pressing into superficial muscles in the small of Ryan’s back. “And here,” he runs his hands back up again to Jake’s neck, “in your sternocleidomastoid.”
Jake moans, fingers flexing in the bedding. Ryan feels it go through his body in his palms and in the thighs he has clenched around Jake’s hips. “How do you know this shit?” Jake asks, lifting his head slightly.
Ryan snorts, thumbs working deep into the muscles in Jake’s neck. “Bitch, I’m a genius.”
Jake trembles underneath him with laughter. “Yeah, all right.”
Ryan smiles. Jake’s tan is getting darker. He needs better sunscreen. Charlie should learn him one. He remembers when they went out on the Lake and Ryan got Jake’s fingers branded into his skin from Jake’s half-assed job of putting sunscreen on his back.
“I bet you store all your tension in your forehead,” Jake tells him.
Ryan leans hard into the knots tangled up in Jake’s back. Jake’s hips rock underneath him. “What makes you say that?”
His voice is strained, like it’s being pressed out of him from the strength of Ryan’s hands. “When you’re upset, you always smile, but your forehead gives you away.”
Ryan sits back on Jake’s buttocks, tries to ignore the warm feeling he always gets when he realizes how much Jake knows him. Nobody knows him, but Jake does his best. He rolls off of Jake and lies flat on his back, rubbing his palms against the sheets.
Jake turns over to follow suit. “I love your bed,” he says and yawns, face dangerously close to Ryan’s.
Ryan jumps the gap and presses his mouth to Jake’s. “Well you should. It’s 700 thread count of Egyptian cotton and a pillow top mattress.”
Jake shakes his head, eyes opening and shutting rapidly like he’s fighting sleep. “It smells like you.”
Ryan thinks he should want to retch, he thinks he should be coming out in hives, but instead he finds himself staying still, watching Jake fall asleep under his sheets.
Sense Memory, j2, for pocketfullof
The first time Jared kissed him it was as they walked out of Hot Fuzz and his mouth was salty and slick with popcorn butter. They were the last to leave the theater after a nearly empty matinee showing and Jared just leaned over, arm sliding around the small of Jensen’s back, fingers hitting the dip in his spine so that he shivered. At the time, Jensen thought it was long overdue.
Now when Jensen smells popcorn, warmth grows in his belly and he has to fight getting hard like he’s sixteen and wearing nylon gym shorts again.
“What are you thinking about?” Jared asks. He fiddles with the brand-new popcorn maker they got for housewarming. Butter is melting in a saucepan and the kernels are just starting to pop.
Jensen wraps his arms around Jared’s waist and presses his cheek to Jared’s neck.
“Hey,” Jared says, palm coming down to rest over Jensen’s interlocked hands. Jensen can feel him smiling. Jared says, “I love you too.”
Writerly Aspirations, j2, for lemmealone
“Are you writing a romance novel?” Jensen asks, biting into an apple, waiting for the lighting crew to finish up with the latest set.
“No,” Jared says, typing furiously on his airbook.
“A Star Wars tie-in?” Jensen asks.
“Ooh, ooh, a historical novel about Viking men who rape lots of women?”
Jared lifts an eyebrow but doesn’t look away from his screen. “It’s a novel about how 6 million children starve to death each year, and the sex trade in Moscow, and 90s me culture.”
Jensen chokes on a piece of apple. He hacks for a couple of seconds while Jared tries not to grin at the screen. Jensen recovers himself. He looks a little chagrinned. “Really?”
“No,” is all Jared replies.
Jensen shrugs and leans back in his chair. “It’s just you’re always typing away at that thing between takes, and you won’t tell me what it is.”
Jared shoots him a quick amused glance before turning back to his laptop. “Yup.”
“You’re life isn’t interesting enough that you can write a memoir you know,” Jensen tells him, gesturing with the apple core. “ ‘Once I was on Gilmore Girls and then I was on this shitty show about ghosts where the fangirls are mental and think I’m fucking my costar, and oops, THEY WERE RIGHT, haha. Buy my epically moving book now please, and the shitty promotional poster.’ ”
Jared purses his lips and starts typing faster.
Jensen leans over in his chair, trying to get a look at Jared’s screen. “You’re not actually writing that right? Or, no, you’re writing it from the perspective of this is my terrible struggle with being gay in Hollywood after prop 8 passed?”
Jensen waits for Jared to say something, but he doesn’t. He only shifts so that Jensen can’t see his screen. They sit in silence for another five minutes.
“Okay, you know what, I won’t have sex with you if you don’t tell me what you’re writing, I’m serious." His face is severe and he holds up a disciplining finger. "No handjobs or blowjobs either.”
“Yeah right, you love sex more than I do,” Jared says dryly. Jensen sighs and throws up his hands. Eventually they’re called onto set, and he doesn’t have another opportunity to ask, because Jared stops bringing his computer to set.
But one day when he comes down to get his morning coffee he finds a glossy orange and blue book lying next to his favorite mug. Piggy Bear it says on the cover, written by Jared Padalecki and illustrated by James Christensen.
“You wrote a children’s book?” he says softly, when Jared walks into the kitchen, showered after his run.
Jared pours himself a glass of carefully room temperature water from the Britta filter. “Yup.”
“About a bear that looks like a piglet?”
Jensen stares at him. “You let me think you were writing an epic gay memoir, with Vikings raping Luke Skywalker, while you typed away at a book for kids?”
Jensen smiles fondly. “You’re a dork.”
Jared whacks him on the butt as he walks to the door. “Whatever, you were my inspiration for the piggy.”
1. I can't even imagine them doing actual comforting. Ryan would never comfort anyone, I think, he'd be shit at it, and he would never LET Jake comfort him. But I figured he'd probably comfort physically if he was in pain, because Ryan understands the importance of taking care of your physical self. Also, I don't think he has trouble being affectionate, re: constantly touching Baja in public.
2. All I have to say is now I really want popcorn
3. I fear like I often make them uber intellectuals, as balefully pointed out. So, I decided this time, I'd have to go a different way with a prompt like books.