|Michael/Tom fic: What He Learned from Tom
||[Feb. 1st, 2010|10:07 pm]
Pairing: Michael/Tom...with bonus Jensen!
Warning: RPS is definitely not to everyone's taste! If it's not your thing, please skip this one :)
Disclaimer: No real people and not a word of truth in it!
Summary: Jensen's having a rough time. Tom & Michael help him relax.
The first time Jared got engaged, Jensen thought it would kill him. He'd been forced to act all the time: twelve hours a day as Dean and the rest of the time, playing the part of a guy who's happy for his best friend.
It's not that he doesn't want Jared to be happy, he does. But mostly he wants Jared.
When that engagement had ended, there was relief, followed by almost instant guilt. And now there is worry. Jensen is sharing a house with Jared and sometimes a bed. There's an uneasy sense of balance; Jared often slips into Jensen's room at night and smiles at him in the morning.
It can't last forever though. At some point Jared will want a change, a wife, permanence – and Jensen will lose him. Jensen tilts back and forth between bliss and worry, comfort and panic: such is the state of him in November, 2009.
* * * *
Tom never lets anyone know when he's coming to the set. Jensen finishes his scene, looks up and suddenly Tom is there, propped in the corner of the studio. For a big guy, he's skilled at making himself inconspicuous.
"Here's trouble," says Jensen, joining him.
"You wrapped early today?" says Jensen.
"Yeah, go figure," says Tom. "A mere ten hours."
"Lucky. We got another two to go."
"I won't keep you," says Tom. "Are you in L.A. on Saturday? Want to come over to Rosenbaum's?"
Jensen hesitates. He's not really in the mood for a party. Tom seems to read his mind.
"No big deal. Just beer and movies."
Jared has plans this weekend. Jensen's alternative is to sit home and brood. He says:
* * * *
Michael opens the door and pulls Jensen in for a hug.
"C'mere, you. How long has it been? Good lord…"
"When did you last drag your ass to Vancouver?"
Michael thumps his back and tugs him into the living room. Tom is sprawled on the couch, feet propped on the coffee table.
"He's cooking for us," says Tom.
"Consider yourself honoured," calls Michael, from the kitchen.
"Beer," says Tom, pointing at a cooler.
Michael makes great tacos. His dog circles the table, hoping for a dropped bite.
"So, home stretch for you?" says Michael. "Last season?"
Jensen shifts in his chair.
"Not sure. They're looking at one more year…"
"And you hassled me for re-signing," says Tom.
Jensen throws his hands up.
"Yeah, I owe you an apology…had no idea what the pressure could be like."
"Do you want to go another season?" asks Michael.
Jensen hesitates. The truth is…he wants another year with Jared. Even if it's a compromised year, even if it's better to end things with a band-aid rip before they both wind up married…
"I don't know," he says. "There's the crew, you know. Loyalty to Eric…"
"And there's Padalecki," says Michael. "What's he think about it?"
And that's the question, isn’t it? Jensen answers with a shrug.
"Tom misses me on set," remarks Michael.
"There's no one to constantly pinch my ass and make me crack up during takes," says Tom. "It's a tragedy."
"You need regular ass-pinching," says Michael. "It grounds you."
He reaches for Tom, who amiably tilts his hips in Michael's direction.
"Or is it you who misses his ass?" says Jensen.
"I do. Yes," says Michael. "It was part of my morning ritual. Coffee, head shaved, gossip with Nathalie-"
"Harass co-star," says Tom.
"C'mon, you loved it." Michael turns to Jensen. "Sometimes he'd feel neglected and shove right up against my hand, just like Irv does when he wants to be petted."
"This never happened," says Tom.
Jensen watches them. The banter isn't surprising – they always talk like this; it’s the way they're looking at each other, the open affection. It’s as though they've put themselves on display for a night – for his benefit? When they sit down to watch the movie, Tom throws an arm around Michael. Michael adjusts the remote, then leans back against Tom's shoulder. Jensen notices, then pretends not to notice, but as the credits roll, he wonders again – what are they trying to show him?
Michael falls asleep midway through the movie.
"I guess Kieslowski films aren’t his thing."
"We have these movie nights; they’re just excuses to get together, really."
Jensen turns to look at Tom.
"He's right. I do miss him. When he left Vancouver…. I was very unhappy at first, but it's worked out. It’s good for me to have him as an outlet to talk about the set. Change isn't necessarily bad, you can roll with it."
"Is this…thinly veiled advice?"
"Only if it’s applicable."
"Yeah," says Jensen. "Well….you know how it is. Another season, hanging in the ether. We don't know where exactly things are headed."
Tom scratches his knee:
"There's a balance, you know. He gives me the runaround sometimes. We text a lot but if it’s too long between visits, then suddenly it’s radio silence from him."
"And you're in the dog house," says Jensen.
"Yeah," Tom glances at sleeping Michael and grins.
"Yeah, I've been there," says Jensen.
Michael yawns and opens his eyes:
"Are you talking about me?"
"Of course not," says Tom.
Michael yawns again and stretches.
"The film's paused…are we fooling around with Jensen or not?"
"Subtle, Michael," says Tom, and smiles at Jensen.
Jensen blinks. Okay, then…
He'd thought about this sometimes on Smallville, wondered if Tom and Michael had something going on. Wondered if he might get an invite one day. And now, on the threshold of Michael's bedroom, he wonders if it’s going to turn out horribly awkward.
Michael breaks the tension by taking off his t-shirt with a bump and grind, then segueing into a little dance. Tom watches from the bed, laughing. Jensen takes a step toward the bed and Michael tackles him the rest of the way. Jensen rears up and nips Michael's thigh.
"Oh, so that's how it's going to go," says Michael. "You see that, Tommy?"
Tom and Michael maintain their usual characters in bed: Michael is chatty and not shy when he wants attention. Tom is an observer and likes to direct the action. When he wants Michael and Jensen to kiss he guides them together; when he's ready for them to stop, he gently pulls Michael back.
Then it's Jensen's turn to watch and though both Michael and Tom have amazing bodies, it's their faces that fascinate him. Michael, staring up at Tom, suddenly looks very young and vulnerable. And Tom – to see Tom, who rarely gives anything away, to see him give everything to Michael, just for a second…it’s a minor miracle.
They turn their attention to Jensen. He is held in Tom's arms while Michael does things and occasionally narrates why he's doing them. Jensen wriggles and gasps. He is warm and safe, Tom's mouth is on his neck; there are four hands moving across his body. Michael dips his head again and Jensen comes, collapsing into Tom's chest.
"Awesome," says Michael, pleased with himself. "Take a bow, guys." He leans over to kiss Tom and ruffles Jensen's hair. "One more thing to check off my Bucket List."
Tom does a little more "directing" and climbs over Jensen to put himself in the middle of the bed. Michael yawns and falls asleep almost instantly, propped against Tom's shoulder. Jensen hangs back, shy, but Tom reaches over and pulls him in anyway.
"Symmetry," says Tom.
Jensen rests his head on Tom but doesn't sleep. It's nice to have had fun sex again, un-freighted by aching love and anxiety.
Presently Tom says:
"You know, you can set your own course. If you have the right partner, if she understands and accepts you just as you are – and you accept her, just as she is: you're all set. There's room for her," he nods at Michael. "And him. As long as you're honest."
Jensen listens. It's one of the longest speeches he's ever heard Tom make. He says:
"And if you choose the other way?"
Tom laughs; his chest rumbles against Jensen's ear.
"Then that's all right too. It's your life, dude. You don't owe it to anyone to follow their template. We'll still like you."
Michael is sleep-muttering, confiding secrets to Tom's shoulder. Tom is watching him fondly. Jensen watches both, then leans back and closes his eyes.
He loves Jared, he does. But maybe it is time to reclaim a little power. It's his turn to drive the bus for a while..