Pairing: mainly Jensen/Jared
Summary: Many years ago, Jensen's way of life cost him everything he cared about. He's never forgotten. Past lives and reincarnations abound.
Disclaimer: I don't own these beautiful men. Slavery is bad. But fantasies are okay.
Warnings: Mentions of brutal deaths.
Author's notes: I started this a long time ago in response to a prompt by imogen-lily. This is her idea, I'm just playing with it. I'm finally posting it, hon!
Denmark: Winter, Year 1451
The large length of the room was barely illuminated by the flickering flames of the five candles on the floor, the light casting an eerie shadow on the figure laying lifelessly on the large four-poster bed a few feet to the right.
Small white pieces crumbled and fell from the chalk each time it dragged over the hard stone of the floor. Jensen concentrated hard on keeping his trembling hand as still as he could; the lines had to be straight and flawless, and he had been forced to start over a few times already.
Beads of sweat gathered at his temples then slid down the sides of his face to drip from the sharp, tense line of his jaw.
His drawing complete, Jensen rose to his feet and looked over the alter with a careful eye. He’d used the candles as guidelines; formed a circle around them then connected the edges by vertical and slanted lines.
Satisfied there were finally no errors, Jensen placed the chalk aside and picked up a small knife at his feet. Slowly, he walked around the alter counter clockwise with measured steps, his green eyes never leaving the candles even as his irises burned from the bright light of the flames in the dimly lit room.
“Principality of Fire, I call upon the Flame to summon you,” he said, his voice hoarse. “I call on the strength of all the Dark Creatures of Nature to summon you. Principality of Fire, hear me as I call. Rise from the coiling flames!
“I summon you in the name of the Seven Plagues. Azazel, I summon you in the name of the charred and blackened stars that reigned at your beginning!
“Cthonie, rise out of the darkness of the earth. I call you forth from the subterranean rivers of blood, from the smoke of the torment which rises forever. In the name of every Dark Spirit that is obedient to you, I invoke you: COME FORTH.”
In one swift movement Jensen lifted the knife and sliced his palm from between his thumb and forefinger down to nearly the end of his palm, cutting his lifeline in the process.
The flames flickered more wildly but did not distinguish as an unnatural wind encircled the room. Jensen lifted his head to see a sandy-haired man some years older than himself, features rugged with a defined jaw and high cheekbones. His thin lips stretched into a predatory smile, eyes a deep golden yellow. He was dressed like a noble but Jensen did not recognize the face of the man the demon had chosen to inhabit.
“Young King Ayres,” Azazel greeted, dark delight in his voice. “What a surprise this is.” He took in the sight of the alter. “And yet you seem to have gone through great lengths to gain my attention. How flattering.”
“You know why I called you,” Jensen replied, letting his hand dangle at his side. His palm felt sticky with the blood that was slowly dripping a puddle onto the floor.
“Do I?” Azazel turned towards the bed and Jensen tensed as the demon’s hand reached out to touch the soft, chestnut hair of the mattress’ occupant. “What a beautiful man,” he cooed mockingly. “I can see why you’re all choked up about this, being so newly married and all.”
Jensen clenched his hands as soon as he felt them start to tremble.
Jensen and Tristano had only been officially married for two years, but they had known each other for five. When their eyes had first met, Jensen had been enchanted. Tristano had been elusive, unwilling to submit to his king. It had taken three years of courtship and care before Tristano finally admitted his love to Jensen. He’d claimed to have felt it right away, but wasn’t sure he was the right one for Jensen and thus that was why he had refused him at first.
Their life together had been perfect, and now it was gone with the life that had been so cruelly torn from Tristano.
“If only you had been home,” Azazel scorned. “But alas, killing others meant more to you than the welfare of your dear beloved.”
“Shut up, Demon! You don’t know a damn thing!” Jensen snarled.
“Don’t I?” Azazel moved his hand back to Tristano’s hair, carding long, thin fingers through the thick strands. “I am the master and death and evil, Ayres. I practically control the darkness in men’s hearts and so you, in all your kingly desire to shed blood, were really doing my work. You were my slave as you fought in the war, leaving your sweet Tristano to meet his death. And we both know how that came to be, do we not?” Azazel’s smile was cruel. “It was not illness that took this man. No, that would have been too easy. Instead he was raped and violated then finally murdered while you were away, but during it all did he once beg for mercy? No, of course not. Your own pride taught him well.”
Jensen lunged and grabbed the front of Azazel’s shirt, yanking him forcibly away from Tristano’s corpse. He held him so tightly his knuckles whitened. Intense hatred and anger and pain burned through his veins like a liquid inferno, his lips curled to bare his teeth. “Stop it right the fuck now! I didn‘t know what was going to happen! I was just trying to--”
“Defend your kingdom. I know, Ayres. It’s not I you’re trying to convince, but merely yourself.” Azazel’s borrowed features showed nothing but amusement, yellow eyes glowing more brightly than before. “You know his attackers raped him, too. Once you peeled back the covers laid so delicately over Tristano’s body you saw all the blood between his legs. Both from inside of him and outside where he tore beneath their brutal thrusts. I wonder.. do you also know that they found even more pleasure by his agonized screams? That they took turns with him? That their semen mixed with the blood staining their penises from his broken body?”
Jensen’s fist smashed into the demon’s face, but he wasn’t nearly satisfied enough when he saw red trickling from the large nose and split lip. He was even more furious as the demon merely laughed at him.
“Oh, you are something,” Azazel smirked. “I’m enjoying myself. Is it for revenge that you summoned me? Does your dark heart sing for more blood? Tell me.”
Jensen shoved himself away and ran a hand over his face, smearing the drying blood from his palm. He refused to admit aloud the darkness in his heart but he knew it was there.
He had been at war many years in the name of freedom, and he had taken the lives of numerous enemies. He had killed them to protect his kingdom, his people, and his livelihood but at the cost of the one most dear to him. Because of his duty to protect his homeland, he had failed to protect his beloved husband. He had failed Tristano.
“I know the attack was planned,” he said. “The Brigands only killed Tristano and the guards that had tried to protect him. They destroyed little else of this castle. Every search for them has turned up empty and I want--”
“I do not deal with wants,” the demons said. “They are a waste of my time.”
Jensen grit his teeth. “I need to find them. To find out who sent them and to make them suffer for what they did.”
Jensen’s desire for revenge had all but consumed him, taking over his body like an illness. He ordered his soldiers to abandon their duties for the kingdom and do little else but search for the Brigands. Only to come up empty again and again.
The members of his court were furious with Jensen’s decisions, casting aside the fact he was King and had the authority and instead were constantly complaining and arguing. They claimed he had begun to fail them but it wasn’t them that Jensen cared about.
Azazel studied Jensen for a long time, his eyes calculating in the silence. By the time he spoke again the alter candles had shrank to less than half their original size.
“No,” he stated matter-of-factly.
The king started in shocked anger. “What?!”
“I won’t make this deal.”
“I’ll exchange for anything you want,” Jensen insisted vehemently. “Without Tristano little else matters to me. Take my life, my status, my money, my home. Anything. I just want the revenge denied me.”
A slow smile spread across Azazel’s face, reminding Jensen of a cat who just learned how to catch the fat canary. “Anything?”
And without any hesitation, nor the true knowledge of just what he was agreeing to, Jensen replied, “anything.”
Texas: Summer, Year 2010
When Jensen awoke in his large, four poster bed, he found himself to not be alone. Instantly agitation overtook him as he turned and focused on a familiar and handsome face.
A face that belonged to a man who knew better than to do what he had done.
“Justin,” Jensen sat up and tore the blankets from the blond’s body, both of them without a scrap of clothing on. “How many times do I have to tell you to leave before morning?”
Ignoring the hostility in Jensen’s voice, Justin Hartley moved closer and wrapped his arm around the other man’s waist.
“Come on, baby,” he cooed, making Jensen bristle even more. He hated pet names. “This is such a big bed and a big house, there’s plenty of room for both of us.”
Jensen lived in a mansion that had three massive floors including the attic and a countless number of rooms. He also had more money than he could ever dream of using and at his young age of twenty one it surprised and impressed everyone that a man with no family had been able to gain such wealth in such a short period of time.
But Jensen was no ordinary man and he wasn’t even really twenty one. Despite his appearance and what the public believed, Jensen’s age was actually closer to five hundred eighty and he had spent his long years wisely.
It had been five hundred fifty nine years prior that Jensen Ayres, King of Denmark, had made that deal with the demon Azazel. With the yellow-eyed creature’s power, Jensen had finally found the band of Brigands that had murdered his husband so ruthlessly. He tortured and slain them, even going so far as to use the men’s own weapons against them in ways that Jensen didn’t even want to think about anymore.
He had been driven by dark emotions, knowing only some of them were the ones that Azazel’s power had imprinted on him, and at the end of it nothing recognizable had been left of the men. But even with their dying breaths, they had refused to give him the name of the one who had hired them.
After it was over, he had attempted to take his own life. He had done as he had set out to and he was ready to join Tristano in the afterlife.
But it was not to be.
Jensen stabbed himself in the stomach with his knife, but instead of bleeding out the wound simply healed without even a scar. He tried to hang himself, but all the ropes broke. He tried to jump from a tall window, but when he hit the ground it had barely even hurt and he simply stood up again without so much as a broken bone.
And so Jensen did not die that year, or the year after. He continued to live unchanged while everyone around him grew older and his kingdom both expanded and shrunk through the years. And when Jensen finally decided to confront the demon about what price the deal came with, he was still haunted by the answer he had received:
“You promised me anything. I took your mortality, and now you will live forever with your guilt.”
Jensen had gotten the revenge he had wanted, but was denied any chance of being reunited with Tristano.
Upon finding out of his foolish deal after Jensen’s failed suicide attempts, Jensen’s best friend since childhood and his most trusted advisor, Christian Kenna, had summoned Azazel like Jensen had done and asked for the same fate as his friend.
Jensen knew that Azazel would never agree as easily as Christian claimed he did to such a request, and so he must have given up something the demon would have wanted in exchange. But when Jensen confronted him about what it was, Christian refused to give an answer.
Sometime during the eighteen hundreds Jensen and Christian changed their last names to Ackles and Kane in an attempt to leave their old lives behind and start as new as they could. Jensen had given up his status as king long before, uninterested in the welfare of Denmark. He also wanted to get away from the suspicions of his people when he had remained unchanged by the years.
He and Chris worked any job that would take them even as other men declined. They survived mine cave-ins where every other worker died. They lived through diseases and plagues that took people old and young and destroyed families. On the trip over to America the boat sank and everyone drowned except for them.
Although Jensen hated that Christian had to suffer through the years of torment and horrific images with him, he was also grateful not to have to go through any of it alone.
They gathered every bit of meager money that they gathered. They invested and learned and adapted.
In the newest time period they found themselves CEOs of Texas’ most lucrative oil company.
But being so “young” and powerful did not come easily. Almost everyone who worked for both of them talked behind their backs, accusing them of every horrible thing they could imagine. Jensen hated the backtalk and yet he understood it.
It was unheard of that men his and Christian’s alleged ages would be where they were without some kind of scandalous activities. So it was easier to just let everyone assume the worst of them than to reveal the nightmarish truth.
Not that anyone would believe it anyway.
The only other person they allowed to stay in their lavish home was Samantha Ferris. Her official role in their lives was as the maid, but the word really didn’t suit her. She was much more than that: a friend, confidant, mother-figure. Samantha was also the only one who knew of Jensen and Christian’s secret.
When they had first decided to tell her after a lengthy time of service, Samantha had told them in no uncertain terms that they were crazy and had stormed out of the large house, threatening to call the insane asylum or the police if they ever contacted her again.
Chris had refused to acknowledge her threat, and spent a lot of time convincing and coaxing her to come back. She only did once he and Jensen proved their story by trying, to her horror, to kill themselves and it was only after they of course lived that she gave in and believed.
Chris had been so adamant in getting Samantha back in the first place because he believed that she was someone they needed. He and Jensen had spent so many years alone and Chris was afraid that time was turning both of them bitter.
Jensen especially, since even after so many centuries he was still obsessed with his deceased husband.
Jensen tried to hide his feelings by having numerous lovers over the years, but he only slept with women and with men who had no resemblance in the slightest to his Tristano. They were all shorter than or at least the same height as Jensen, none of them had brown hair, and he wouldn’t give anyone a second glance who had the same shade of blue that Tristano’s eyes had been.
Jensen had met Justin when he had come to him for a receptionist job. He was blond and in his early twenties and beautiful, but in the eighteen twenties a word for what he was came to be: gold-digger. Justin was constantly looking for something bigger and better, for someone to support him because he didn’t want to make the effort to support himself.
Chris also kept referring to Jensen as Justin’s Sugar Daddy, which irritated Jensen to no fucking end.
“I want you gone,” Jensen said, pulling from Justin’s grasp and his attempt to coax him into a kiss. “Get your crap and get out.”
Realizing that like the many times before, he wasn’t going to change Jensen’s mind, Justin huffed and slid off the bed. He scooped up his clothes that were strewn about the room and started pulling them on, knowing by then that Jensen wasn’t even going to grant him the luxury of a shower.
Despite his lover’s, if he could call Jensen that, cold attitude, Justin truly believed that he was wearing him down. They spent more nights together than they used to, desperation and need in Jensen’s touches and the sheer desire and heat way he fucked Justin through the mattress. It was only a matter of time before Justin would be welcome to stay indefinitely, and perhaps even marry Jensen, and he would live the rest of his life in comfort while never having to lift a finger for anything.
All Justin had to do was wait.
Jensen made sure that Justin left as he’d demanded, then took a hot shower and changed into his suit for the day. By the time he made it to the kitchen, the delicious scents of pancakes, waffles and eggs were already wafting around the room while Chris enjoyed his own heaping plate of food.
“You always make too much, Sam,” Jensen told the blonde woman fondly, gratefully taking the mug of coffee that she handed him.
Black, just the way he liked it.
“I try telling her that every morning, but she doesn’t listen,” Chris chuckled around a bite of bacon. He was dressed in a suit as well, no tie and his top button undone. He preferred a more casual look.
The woman laughed. “I keep trying to make you two fat and unappealing. How am I supposed to keep you to myself otherwise?”
“Sorry, you’re just going to have to learn to share us with the world,” Jensen grinned.
He sat across the counter island from Chris where his own heaping plate was waiting, syrup dripping off the sides and onto the Formica top. He took a sip of coffee just as his eyes traveled to the folded newspaper beside him and instantly his mug dropped from loose fingers, coffee spilling out over the counter in a dark puddle.
He didn’t even hear Chris’s confused and worried inquiry, his eyes glued to the achingly familiar face that was printed on the newspaper.
He would know those beautiful features anywhere - the cat-like slanted eyes, hazel instead of blue, the hair that curled a little at the back of his neck, the bright smile and deep dimples.
There was no doubt in his mind that he was looking at his husband, Tristano Peney Ayres, exactly how he had looked before his death. But the printed words beneath the picture claimed that the young man’s name was Jared Padalecki and he was about to celebrate his eighteenth birthday.
Jensen’s heart pounded against his ribcage.
“Jensen!” Chris was up and at his friend’s side instantly, shaking him. “Jensen, snap out of it! What’s wrong?”
“It’s Tristano,” Jensen replied finally, pointing at the paper.
Chris looked at the photo. “I’ll admit it looks a lot like him, but--”
“It’s him, Chris! Damn it, don’t patronize me!”
Chris scowled and snatched the paper up, ducking out of the way as Jensen dove for it. The stool that Jensen had been sitting on crashed to the ground and the two men wrestled for the newspaper.
“Think for a moment, Jen!” Chris insisted, trying his best to hold the article out of his friend’s reach.
It wasn’t easy; Jensen was taller than him by a few inches.
“How can this boy be Tristano when he died over five hundred years ago?!”
“Isn’t it obvious?” Jensen feinted to the left and then grabbed to the right, snatching the paper from Chris’ hand. He then almost lovingly smoothed the wrinkles from it’s surface so the could see the picture again. “He’s been reborn. I couldn’t end my life to be with him, so he’s come back to be with me.”
Chris pinched the bridge of his nose, trying vainly to warn off the headache that had started just behind his eyes. He’d dealt with his friend’s obsession for so long that it was expected to a degree, but this was ridiculous.
“Jen… even if what you’re saying is true, and I’m not saying it is! How are you going to meet this kid? Stroll in and say, ‘hey, you’re my dead husband! Let’s fuck!’?”
“Somehow I think his reaction would be similar to my first one,” Samantha said, her hands on her hips. “If he doesn’t follow through right that second with the threat of authority figures.”
Jensen’s green eyes scanned the article beneath the picture. “Look here: it says that Jared’s father is Jeffrey Dean Morgan.”
“That successful lawyer?” Samantha asked in surprise. “They say he’s the best in Texas. I heard that he gave his kids their deceased grandmother’s last name while they were growing up in order to protect them from the media or something. Not that their identity stayed a secret very long. Some people have big mouths,” she tsked.
“The need for gossip has never changed,” Chris said amusedly. His expression sobered as he looked at Jensen again. “Jensen, I’m begging you. Just forget about this kid--”
“No, Chris,” Jensen replied vehemently. “I want him back. I just have to go to this party and talk to him and everything will be okay.”
Chris shook his head and looked up at the ceiling as if the white surface held all the answers. “Damn it.. I knew I should have ditched you back in the seventeen hundreds.”