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18 December 2009 @ 07:48 pm
24 Gifts Of 2009 - Day Eighteen - Never Gonna Be Alone (The OC/Gilmore Girls, Ryan/Jess)  
Part of my Ryan Atwood/Jess Mariano Universe. There's bad language and much angst and heartbreaking-ness, but I promise, it's okay in the end.

Never Gonna Be Alone

Jess sat by Ryan's bedside, holding his boyfriend's hand and watching him sleep. "Come on, Ry," he whispered. "Just open your eyes, okay? Make fun of me for worrying like this." He paused, trying to keep the tight control over his emotions that he always strived for but having a hard time with it. "If you'll just open your eyes for me, I promise I will never make fun of you sitting on the balcony to sketch again," he said as he leaned forward and pressed his forehead to Ryan's temple. "Just wake up," he repeated, not even caring as his voice cracked. "Please, Ry."

"Oh honey," a soft voice said.

Jess lifted his head to see Sandy and Kirsten in the doorway, and he took a deep breath to try to pull himself together. "No change since before your flight," he said, trying to seem casual and unconcerned as he shifted slightly and leaned back in his chair, though his hand still held Ryan's.

"What happened?" Sandy asked as they came the rest of the way into the room and closed the door to block the noise from the hall.

"I was running late," Jess said. "I had to talk to one of my professors after class, so I was running late. When I... when I got outside, I could hear them yelling and I... I walked over. Got there in time to see one of them slam his head into the brick wall. God... that sound..." he whispered.

"But you got him help, that's what matters now," Sandy said, watching his wife slide into the seat on the other side of Ryan's bed, her eyes darting enviously towards Jess and Ryan's hands, clearly not happy to be on the side of Ryan's cast encased broken wrist and unable to hold his hand herself. "Have you slept at all?" Sandy asked Jess.

Jess looked up at him, stunned. "He got his head fucking smashed in, and I'm not leaving him alone. So no, I haven't slept."

"We're here now, you can go get some..." Kirsten began.

"I'm not tired," Jess said, returning his gaze to Ryan's battered face.

"What about food? You need to eat..."

"I've gone longer than this without eating," Jess said. "I'm not leaving him."

"Jess, we're here, he won't be alone," Sandy said, hoping to reason with the young man, even as he thought that finally Ryan had found someone who actually loved him back. "How do you think he'll feel if he wakes up and you look almost as bad as he does?"

Jess hesitated, then shook his head. "I'm not leaving him."

"You know what he's like, Jess," Sandy pressed gently. "He'll blame himself if you're exhausted and half starved..."

"He's not gonna be out long enough for me to be half starved," Jess said stubbornly.

"Jess, he loves you, and you know it'll upset him if..."

"And what's he gonna think if he wakes up and I'm not here?" Jess snapped. "He'll think I left him, and there's no way in hell I'm gonna let him think that for even a second." His gaze slid from Sandy to Kirsten and back again. "If it was her, would you leave?" he asked the man. "And Mrs. Cohen, if it was your husband, would you leave?"

"You and Ryan aren't married," Kirsten protested.

"Yeah, 'cause it's not legal," Jess snapped. "The only reason they even let me stay with him is because Nana knows so many people here and she yelled at them for trying to keep me away because I'm not 'family'." He turned his gaze back to Ryan. "So, no, I'm not leaving him. You'll have to call security if you want me to leave."

"Do that and I'll disown you," Sophie warned from the doorway as she arrived back. "Coffee and a bagel," she told Jess as she handed him a bag. "Ryan'll understand if you let go of him to eat."

Jess smiled slightly and released Ryan's hand to take the bag. "You can have this chair if you want, Mrs. Cohen," he told to Kirsten as he stood, letting them know that he understood her real reasons for wanting him to go.

Kirsten nodded slowly in gratitude and moved around to take Jess' chair, gripping Ryan's limp hand in her own. "Thank you," she said.

Jess nodded and moved to the lumpy couch that sat against the wall, starting in on his breakfast. "Thanks, Nana," he told Sophie.

"My grandson needs you to be okay for him," Sophie said as she sank down to sit beside Jess. "So eat up, and then you're taking a nap on this couch, and we'll wake you up if there's any change."

"Okay," Jess agreed, nodding.


"I'm officially stunned," Sandy said later, after Jess fell sleep on the couch, his back turned to all of them and a jacket that Sandy recognized as one of Ryan's pulled up over his shoulders as a blanket.

"Why?" Sophie asked as she turned away from gazing absently out the window.

"In two seconds you got him to eat and sleep," Kirsten said.

"Because my way didn't involve making him leave," Sophie said pointedly. "Do you know why those boys did this to Ryan?" she asked.

"Mugging?" Kirsten said.

"They did it because he's gay," Sophie said. "They did it because they saw Ryan and Jess together, and they thought Ryan deserved to be beaten like this for it."

"Jess blames himself," Sandy guessed, sighing.

"He kissed Ryan outside that building that morning. He was late getting out of class," Sophie said. "He's a lot like Ryan when it comes to blaming himself for the bad that befalls his loved ones."

There was a noise from the bed, but before the Cohens could react, Jess was awake and right back at Ryan's said, one hand brushing over his boyfriend's cheek. "Ry?"

"Hey," Ryan murmured, voice soft.

"You scared the shit out of me," Jess said, the soft expression in his eyes in complete contradiction to the words that he intended as a rebuke. "Don't do that again, okay?"

"Deal," Ryan replied, smiling. "What'd I do again?"

"Got your ass kicked," Jess said. "But for what it's worth, it took three of them to take you down."

"Did you kick their asses?" Ryan asked.

"Tried, but by the time I finished with one, the other two had run off like a bunch of pussies," Jess replied, smiling slightly. "How do you feel?"

"Like I got my ass kicked," Ryan admitted.

Jess smiled slightly, and leaned his head down. "I'm not crying and if you tell anyone any different you'll regret it," he whispered.

"Jess Mariano doesn't have tear ducts," Ryan replied with a tired smile of his own. "But you are so crying," he added just quiet enough that only Jess could hear him.

Jess responded by laughing slightly, but it was accompanied by a fear more tears slipping through.

The End
KLlving_darkness on December 19th, 2009 04:39 am (UTC)
im not gonna lie. I usually don't like Slash. Authors tend to take it to far. But this was beautiful. and wonderful, and it was about love, not about (zomg! two hot boys lyke kissing), and for that I thank you. It re inspired me to give slash a second chance, because most of the time I wont even read it.
I love your Jess, his dedication, his commitment, his strength. He was so very adult, and so very much the Jess we would have seen grow up. And I love your Nana, always so tough and headstrong and fierce. Nothing better than a fierce Nana.
60schic60schic on December 19th, 2009 04:58 am (UTC)
Very nice. You brought The Nana into this! And she was the voice of reason.
ihearttwojacksihearttwojacks on December 19th, 2009 09:07 am (UTC)
I love this verse! Your Jess is amazing, your Nana is tough and smart, your Kirsten and Sandy aren't total idiots or perfect pod people. This verse is so rich with detail and emotion, I'm always happy to see more snippets from Ryan and Jess's life, (even if they are sad like this one).
fifimom on December 19th, 2009 12:27 pm (UTC)
jujuberry136jujuberry136 on December 20th, 2009 04:31 am (UTC)

I love the Jess/Ryan 'verse, the teasing about crying at the end was too sweet.