Genre: Jared/Jensen AU
Word count: 3500
Notes: written for this fantastic prompt over at spn_masquerade. Cleaned up and reposted. Warnings for zombies, major character death (zombification), gore, bloodplay, gunplay, murder, mental illness, necrophilia in a zombie kinda way, and what may be a curiously happy ending to the whole shebang. Roll with me on this one, but heed the warnings.
Summary: True love and the zombie apocalypse.
Something slams heavily against the door and Jensen jumps, cuts off the wind-up radio he'd had on low. It happens again and this time the doorknob rattles and that's different. It's unusual. They never go for the handle, they don't know how. Maybe they're learning, evolving, and wouldn't that be a fresh piece of hell.
His fingers trip across his machete, a home-made thing lashed to a sawed-off broomhandle and no good in close quarters. He goes for his gun instead. Safety off, a round in the chamber.
Jensen opens the door a fraction, hip planted against it in case he needs to close it in a real big hurry.
"Let me in. Please. Please." The voice is quiet against the rush of pounding footsteps and Jensen opens the door wide enough to get a body through. A pretty goddamn huge one at that, a blur of messy brown hair and bright yellow t-shirt. He shuts it again, thumbs the lock. An enormous vibration bangs through the reinforced steel as a tide of bodies hits the other side, and Jensen slams his back against the door, adds a little extra weight to it. He thinks it'll hold. It's always held before, but there's no such thing as too careful these days.
The guy's bent at the waist, hands on his knees as he struggles to catch his breath.
Jensen knows him. Sorta. 4A, two floors above his place. Eats a lot of take-out and has a tendency to come home very late and hardly ever with the same guy twice. He trains the gun on 4A's head and says quietly, "Are you bit?" When he doesn't answer, Jensen tries again, a little louder. "Are you fucking bit?"
"What?" the guy says as he straightens, goes cross-eyed on the muzzle of Jensen's gun. He flings his hands up, palms forward. "Shit. No. No."
"Take your shirt off. Spin around," Jensen commands. Wishful. Hoping. Finger still on the trigger.
4A obeys, peels his shirt off and drops his shorts for good measure, does a slow three-sixty in his boxers and beat up Chuck Taylors, arms still held aloft. It's one hell of a show, miles of taut, tan skin, marred by nothing more harmful than a beauty mark or two. Looks like he used to spend some of those late nights at the gym.
"You happy?" he says, then a second later, as he's pulling his pants up, "Hey. It's you. I know you."
"Not happy. Let's call it satisfied," Jensen says. He tucks the gun into his waistband, a reassuring pressure on the small of his back. "2B. I'm Jensen."
"Jared. 4A." He holds his hand out and Jensen takes it. It's a reflex, a rare, small bit of civilization in a world that has so suddenly and violently gone to hell. They shake, then Jared looks around. The basement is windowless and dank, filled with strange shadows from weird angles cast by the propane lantern in the corner. Other people's belongings are separated into cubicles made out of chain link and cheap padlocks. "Nice place."
The scratching sounds from the opposite side of the door have gone quiet. They've lost interest for now.
"Yeah," Jensen says. "Home sweet home."
"Fucking zombies." Jared says it like it's news.
"Yep." Jensen gets it. It had taken him two days to wrap his head around it, pinned to the news broadcasts and to the internet, convinced that it had to be some modern day Orson Welles trying to pull one over on everybody. It wasn't until he saw it firsthand from his bedroom window, watched as a man leaped from a stretcher to try and gnaw off a paramedic's face that he believed it.
Jensen's the son of a paranoid father, a real paramilitary type who went off the grid a decade and a half ago, might be living in a hut in the woods somewhere Unabomber-style for all Jensen knows, solitary and undiagnosed. It turns out that Jensen learned a thing or two from his old man, what's needed and what isn't to survive the end of civilization. He'd started to prepare, stockpiled and squirreled away, set up housekeeping in the basement storage room of his apartment building. Underground, cinderblock, a single, easily defendable door.
"What's it like up there?" Jensen's tinkering with a camp stove and keeping one eye on Jared as he paces the length of the room. It's been over a week since he's been topside.
"Half the city's on fire," Jared tells him, and when Jensen gives him a sharp look, he clarifies. "I'm exaggerating. Besides, it's the other half. You're the first human being I've seen in four days."
Jensen hums, wonders why he doesn't feel more than a vague stab of pity.
"I was starting to think that I was the only one left," Jared goes on. "Thank god there are at least two of us."
"We're gonna need more water."
The monsters are still curiously diurnal and for now the streets are empty, still and silent, the sky punched through with stars. Jared's at Jensen's nine, matching his strides, footsteps very quiet for a guy his size.
Jensen's used to going solo. Back when it mattered, he'd been a software developer, worked out of his spare bedroom. Not really a shut-in, but sorta shut-in adjacent. He likes to watch the world around him, just never has been too big on being a part of it. So far, arm's length has been close enough.
He likes Jared though, always thought he might every time he'd caught a glimpse of him out of his window or through the peep-hole. Jared doesn't ask questions, doesn't waste his breath, and takes Jensen at face value. Jensen coulda done worse.
There's a convenience store that had been locked up real careful, padlock on the gate over the door. Jensen picks it open, shrugs at Jared's impressed grin, swings the door wide and invites Jared in with a wave of his arm that says after you.
They raid the drink case, pack up all the water they can carry and Jensen's on his way to the candy aisle when he hears a shuffle. He turns in time to see a former shop clerk, red vest and Ricky on his nametag. Before Jensen can get his knife free from the sheath on his arm Jared slides in between them, dispatches the thing efficiently. An icepick through its eye.
"I was getting there," Jensen says, hardly a whisper.
"I did it so you wouldn't have to. You're letting me crash. It's the least I can do." He squints toward the back of the store, trying to see past the shadows. "We should go."
It takes most of Jensen's willpower to stop himself from dropping to his knees and sucking Jared off right then and there.
"Hamburgers on the grill," Jared's saying, voice low and hoarse. They're conserving batteries and propane and it's completely dark, nothing but black and Jensen goes for long stretches unsure whether his eyes are opened or closed. Jensen's laying on his single bed, never thought he'd need another, and Jared's made a nest out of 5C's stored sleeping bags. Jared's voice is a disembodied thing, lower and a couple feet away. Close. Maybe not close enough.
"What?" Jensen says. Whispering. Kids telling secrets.
"I think it's what I miss the most. Or the internet. It kinda runs neck-and-neck."
Jared shifts some, a dry rustle of clothing and nylon. Inching closer. "More than the internet?"
"Absolutely. More than anything." After a beat, "Get up here."
"No, it's okay. Really."
"The concrete's gotta be a bitch on your back. I need you in fighting shape. C'mon up here." The metal springs trill as Jensen rolls onto his side, makes room, and they do it again when Jared gropes blindly for the mattress, lowers himself with a sigh.
"Thanks," Jared says, and Jensen can taste his breath, falls asleep with Jared's feet notched cold against his.
A pounding on the door and Jensen's up and on his feet before he's even awake. Jared's not there. Jensen shines his flashlight across the room, the beam all jumpy and sporadic. Jared's not anywhere.
Another knock on the door, three quick taps, a pause, two more. As soon as Jensen opens it, Jared falls through. His backpack drops from his shoulder, the straps torn all to hell and a dozen candy bars spill out. Snickers. He's got his hand plastered to his neck. His fingers are bloody. Jensen bites the inside of his cheek and wills himself to not throw up.
"Give me the gun." Jared snaps his fingers. He's very pale and his teeth chatter like he's cold even though he's sweating, hair stuck to his face in damp ropes.
"No." Panic rushes over Jensen, a flash flood of it and he forces it down. Jared's new. Jensen's only just gotten him. He's not ready to give him up yet. There's so much potential.
"C'mon. Just give it to me. I'll--I'll do it outside so you don't have to see." He's stammering, one hand held out in supplication and the other still pressed to his neck. "You won't have to deal with the mess. They. They'll clean it up. You know they will." Jared takes a step toward him, and it's gotta be Jensen's head playing games with him, but it seems like he can feel heat baking off of Jared's skin.
The fever sets in quick, that's what everyone says.
Jared peels his hand away and stands up, straight-backed and determined. The wound on his neck is a bright shock of red against his waxy skin. He's scared, trembling all over but keeping it together. So very brave.
"No," Jensen says again, and does the most damnable thing. He points the gun at Jared and aims low. His left knee. A non-lethal threat and Jared pulls up short. "Get on the bed."
Jared opens his mouth to argue, shuts it real quick once Jensen chambers a bullet. He trips over his own feet, sloppy and uncoordinated, lands on the bed so hard it skitters clear across the floor.
"Good," Jensen says. "And by good I mean fucked sideways. Let's get you cleaned up."
Two days. The fever runs so hot that Jared's babbling for most of it. Shits himself and pisses all over the place and Jensen cleans him up, uses too much of their water keeping cold wet rags on Jared's forehead. Every four hours he thumbs antibiotics into Jared's mouth, pours water down his throat and holds his nose until he swallows. He knows it's as pointless as the bandage covering the bite on Jared's neck. A waste. He does it anyway.
On the second day, in that hazy non-time between late night and early morning, Jared has a moment of clarity. He pushes himself up onto his elbows and regards Jensen with eyes that are sharp and bright. Jensen bends in close, wishes with everything he has that he'd met Jared sooner, that he'd had the balls to say hello to him a year ago. Jared's smile is small and his fingers are gentle as they trace Jensen's hairline.
"My favorite book is The Grapes of Wrath," Jared tells him. A dry croak. "And Pearl Jam. Man, what I wouldn't give to hear a little Pearl Jam right about now." He grits his teeth, fights against another shiver. "I wanted you to know. Give you something to remember." He falls back to the bed but keeps his eyes trained on Jensen's. "Remember that, okay? Don't forget."
"Yeah. I won't forget."
Jensen watches as Jared's breathing slows. Stops.
He finds Jared's wallet, takes out his driver's license and looks at the photo. Jared's grin in it is bigger than his face. Jensen learns that Jared's middle name is Tristan. He likes it, maybe loves it a little. He takes his own wallet out and slots Jared's license in behind his.
Something breaks free deep down in Jensen's chest, rattles around for a second then gets reabsorbed. He smoothes Jared's hair back, cleans the sweat from his face and arranges his arms by his sides. Then he grabs the chains.
Jensen times it, not really meaning to. It just sorta happens. Twenty minutes. Jared starts breathing again. It's rapid, a series of quiet grunts. Another two minutes and Jared opens his eyes. Somewhat cloudy but still the same color. Jensen bends down low over Jared's face. His breath is a little sour but Jensen still likes the taste of it.
Jared fights against the restraints, fists opening and closing reflexively. He lunges at Jensen with a decisive snap of his teeth, misses by an inch and Jensen laughs. He shoulda seen that one coming.
It's like raising a baby. A six foot four, incredibly aggressive baby. Within three days, Jared's cheeks start to sink in, his moans become mewling and pitiful. Jensen tries to feed him canned meat and he spits it back out. The rotten stuff he ganks from the grocery store's defunct freezer section doesn't pass muster either.
Jensen's sitting on a stool beside the bed, small mirror in one hand and his razor in the other. He prefers himself clean shaven, doesn't like the look of himself with a few days' growth on his face, the way it dredges up some stuff better left under the muck. One small slip of the razor, one small nick and Jared starts to rattle against his chains, a low growl like some lesser beast. It's the most life he's seen in him since. Well, since.
Calmly, Jensen finishes, wipes himself clean then stands over Jared. Jared stares at him, strains as far as the chains will allow, his lips parted. His tongue lolls out, faintly purple like the rest of him. Jensen makes the shallowest gash across his middle finger, lets the blade barely sink in and squeezes his finger until the blood beads then holds it over Jared's mouth.
It's fascinating. The first drop hits Jared's tongue and he groans, long and low and if Jensen didn't know any better, he'd think that the guy's getting fucked dirty and deep. Two more drops and Jared's hips shoot up, his toes curl and he opens his mouth wider, licks his lips.
A bolt of heat skitters down Jensen's spine as he slices another finger open, deeper this time and better. Jared's hips are still thrusting against nothing and Jensen knows how he feels, uses his free hand to push his pants past his hips and fist his dick, half hard and getting harder with each heartbeat. His blood is falling at about a drop a second and some of it spatters onto Jared's chin, more of it painting his mouth a vital red color and Jared's looking him in the eye now, hot and wanting and predatory, staring at Jensen like he's the only thing that's real. Jensen bucks into his hand, lurches forward almost a step too far and Jared's fingers skuttle against his thigh, not able to latch on but still too close. A couple more sharp tugs on his dick and Jensen comes, angles his body and shoots into Jared's mouth, his spunk mixing with the blood on Jared's lips until they're pink. Pretty as can be, especially when Jared licks that up too.
It should be surprising, the lengths that Jensen will go to in order to protect his own. As it stands, he isn't. Not at all. Not even a little.
It took some doing, a few nights prowling around pet stores with Jared waiting patiently for him at home to find it: a leash attached to a stiff rod, the kind that dog catchers use. Jensen almost loses a hand the first time he loops it over Jared's neck, but that's hardly Jared's fault. He's hungry and Jensen's running low.
They're walking home after another supply run, Jared shuffling complacently at the end of his tether, when there's the distinct sound of a footfall behind them. Jensen spins and sees a man, filthy and disheveled but still definitely human peering from the mouth of the alley they'd just passed.
Jared leaps toward him, face set in a vicious snarl and hands held out in claws. He opens his jaw so wide that it looks like it might come unhinged, and it takes all of Jensen's strength and then some to hold him back.
The man blinks at them, tilts his head like a particularly dim dog and says, "What kinda sick fuck are you?"
It's not the right thing to say. It's a million miles away from the right thing to say so Jensen prods Jared with the rod, pushes him forward and drops the leash.
Jensen's voice is even as he says, "You have no fucking idea."
He watches as Jared overtakes the guy, a backward sorta pride warming him all over, and he keeps on watching, palms his cock through his pants because Jared's beautiful like this, massive and powerful, slick and covered with red. Once Jared's finished eating, he looks up at Jensen, a full, bloody-toothed grin as he holds his hand up. In it is a twisted mass of muscle, and it takes Jensen a second to cotton on. A heart, glistening and dark, dark red, but Jensen sees it for what it is. An offering.
Some days are good and some aren't. This one started out fucked to hell but it's getting better. Another supply run. They'd been shot at and Jared took the hit. The fucker had learned his lesson, and now Jared's belly is full, but Jensen had needed to stitch him up, put him back together, feed him a pint of his own blood to get the other guy's taste out of Jared's mouth.
Now Jared's on the bed, spread eagle, Jensen's blood staining his lips and his teeth. The chains dangle unattached from the frame and droop to the ground in loose coils. He trusts Jared. He really does. Just not completely. Figures now is as good a time as any to test the limits.
There's still no such thing as too careful, though. The muzzle of his gun is pried between Jared's teeth and Jensen fucks it in and out, likes the anemic, diluted stain of his blood on the dark gunmetal. He's got two fingers shoved into Jared's ass and it's surprisingly warm in there, hotter than the lukewarm temperature of Jared's skin, as if the fever that Jared had suffered is still inside of him, latent and biding its time.
Jared's gurgling around the gun, soft keening noises that come from the back of his throat. His fingers twitch with misfiring nerves, grasping at nothing and Jensen likes that too. He pulls out and spits on his hand, slicks himself with it and sinks on the bed, waiting, searching for some sorta reaction.
Jared snugs his lips down tight on the gun and struggles to lift his head from the pillow, take more of it in and that's exactly what Jensen needs, precisely what he's been waiting for and he pushes forward, past the tight clench of Jared's rim, fast and hard from the start.
The gun hits the back of Jared's throat, but he doesn't seem to mind, only grunts around it, the muscles in his neck standing out in thick cords. He stares at Jensen the entire time, as Jensen fucks into him, pushes his leg up to drive further inside, chasing the heat of Jared's body. Jared's pale, makes Jensen think of China dolls only a lot less delicate, and it might be Jensen's imagination, but he believes he sees a change, some vague flush that colors Jared's cheeks, creeps down his throat.
A thin layer of sweat coats Jensen's body, a little thicker in all the places they're touching. Jared starts to move with him, stilted and stunted but actually moving and Jensen glances between them. Jared's cock rests in the cut of his hip and he's not hard, not by anyone's definition, but he's definitely thicker, small drops of stringy come leaking from the tip. It steals Jensen's breath away, makes him feel like he's been given some sort of gift. Another secret, important like Steinbeck and Pearl Jam and Jared's middle name. And when he looks back up at Jared's face, Jared's grinning around the gun, teeth bit down tight on the unforgiving metal, eyes shining and very, very bright. Jensen bottoms out, pounds so hard into Jared that the bed threatens to loosen from its fittings and keeps fucking him through his orgasm and long after he's spent and his muscles start to scream, and long after his spunk goes cool and sticky where's it's leaked out of Jared's ass.
Jensen's hand goes numb and the gun clatters to the ground. Jared reaches up, and his fingers are gentle as they trace Jensen's hairline.
Thanks for reading!