Genre: J2 RPS
Word Count: ~600
AN: Written for spn_30snapshots : table 09, prompt 01.
The edge of the bathtub bit into the backs of his legs as Jared sat balanced there. Jensen was sprawled on his back before him; legs bent crookedly, his head at an awkward tilt as he angled his neck for a better look at the leaking pipe above him.
“I can still call the plumber. It’s not too late,” Jared offered, after Jensen uttered a low curse.
“No, I got this,” Jensen replied, his voice too nonchalant, as if Jared wasn’t the only one he was trying to convince.
Jared ran a hand over his mouth, trying to wipe away his smile, knowing that this was somehow important to Jensen. In the same way that it was important that Jensen mowed the lawn himself, or changed the oil in their cars, or any number of small things that he did instead of hiring someone else to do it for him. It was Jensen’s way of keeping his feet on the ground, of not becoming too Hollywood.
A small grunt escaped Jensen’s lips, and Jared watched as Jensen stuck his knuckle in his mouth, removed it a second later, and peeled away at a small flap of skin there.
“You okay? You bleeding?” Jared asked.
“Just a scratch,” he said, and wiped his hand on his sleeve.
There were people who said that it was possible to tell the story of somebody’s life by the look in their eyes, but Jared thought that wasn’t quite right. He thought that the truth could be found in a person’s hands. Take his agent, for instance. Soft skin and nails so clean and even that Jared knew he had them manicured. Evidence of a life spent behind a desk, on the phone making deals for other people’s time. Or Old Pete, the foreman at the ranch outside San Antonio where Jared had worked the summer between his junior and senior year. His palms had been as rough as sandpaper, the skin on the backs of his hands the color of leather, and just as tough.
Jared peered under the sink, watched Jensen’s hands as they worked to replace the fitting on the pipe, cataloguing the scars there. He knew all of the small marks those hands bore like they were his own. He could tell the story behind the mashed up fingernail that had grown back wrong, the pale line of new skin along Jensen’s thumb, or the jagged red scar on the pad of his index finger. They were minuscule imperfections, barely noticeable, but all Jared had to do was add them up, and if he listened close enough, they would speak volumes.
For a moment, Jared allowed an idea to creep up, and he wondered if there would ever come a time when he wouldn’t know these scars, a time when Jensen would get new ones, and Jared wouldn’t know how or why they came to be.
But then that second passed, and Jensen was snapping his fingers in front of Jared’s eyes.
“You with me?” Jensen said, eyebrows raised and lips curling in a grin.
“I’m with you,” Jared nodded.
“All fixed. Just don’t run the water for a couple of hours.”
Jared stood, grabbed Jensen’s outstretched hand and hoisted him to his feet. “What would I do without you?” Jared said, and the words came out smiling, like a joke, but he was thankful when Jensen just rolled his eyes and kept quiet.
After all, he really didn’t want to know the answer.