Disclaimer: I do not own Brokeback Mountain…. Annie Proulx is the genius behind that.
NOTES: This is an A/U story…. I'm gonna pretend that Jack never died. OK? So this is gonna kinda take place of that event instead…. Got it?
Also…. I did see the movie BEFORE I read the story… so this will contain references to both… since the movie and book have so many different things in them. So… if you read something and go "Hey that never happened in the book!" remember… the movie.
Plus… it's a fanfic and I can make up whatever I want… so I might change small things to fit my story.
Anyways… On with the story!
When Love Takes You In
Ennis flipped through his mail as he sat in the seat of his old beat up truck. He paused mis-sip of his coffee when he saw one envelope that stood out from the rest. He recognized the return address as Jack's but the handwriting was definitely female.
He hesitantly opened the envelope, wondering if maybe Lureen had discovered his and Jack's secret and wanted to hollar at Ennis.
I'm writing to inform you that Jack is in the hospital. He was found injured and is now in intensive care. I found your address in one of the post cards that Jack has saved from you. I know that you and he are close friends and I thought you should be informed of his situation. The doctors don't know if he'll make it through the night. I do hope this letter reaches you in good time.
Please do whatever you see fit.
Ennis forced a breath into his lungs. He could feel his heart suddenly squeezed by an invisible icy fist. Jack's wife didn't specify the type of injuries or how they were acquired, but Ennis thought he knew. His mind flashed images of men standing over Jack with a tire iron…. Bloody and beaten Jack.
"…The doctors don't know if he'll make it through the night…"
That one sentence made Ennis feel the need to gag. He knew that if Jack didn't survive, Ennis wouldn't be able to continue living either. The letter was postmarked one week ago… checked his mailbox sooner. Whether or not Jack was living at the moment, Ennis didn't know…. But he knew he had to be there. He would pack a bag and drive down to Texas. Jack needed him… alive or dead.
And this time… forever.
After fourteen worry-filled hours on the road, Ennis finally reached Jack's home as addressed on all the post cards. His jaw slackened slightly when he realized the size of the structure.
He'd known that Jack was financially more well off then he was, but for the first time he felt slightly embarrassed by his own poor standings and lack of money.
Slowly, Ennis got out of his truck and made his way up to the front door. He knocked twice and shuffled his feet nervously.
"You must be Ennis." He looked up when a small female voice answered the door. He recognized Jack's wife from the family picture Jack kept in his wallet.
"Yes'm." He politely took of his hat and nodded to her.
"Well, come in. I bet you'll be wantin' to hear about Jack's progress, seeing as I sent that letter out a week ago." She said in a curt tone.
"Uh yes. Thank you, ma'am." He wrung his hat tigntly and tried to make himself relax. She had referred to Jack in present tense…. He was alive. Lureen led him to the living room and they sat opposite of each other.
"If I'd known a phone number, I would have called to give you the news sooner." Lureen said.
"You did what you could and I thank you." Ennis nodded, wanting her to get on about Jack.
"Before I say anything about Jack… I.. I want you to tell me the truth first, Ennis. Jack was never the most affectionate person with me. I was usually the one initiatin' intimacy." Lureen said matter-of-factly. Ennis looked up at her with confused eyes.
"Ma'am, I don't know if I should be hear--"
"Let me continue. I've suspected for quite some time, the reason why. The way he talked about you… the look he got in his eyes. They never got that way for me. I need to hear it for sure. Are you and Jack…. Well, do you love him?" Lureen asked.
"I think that's a conversation for you and Jack to be having ma'am."
"Ennis please." Lureen finally showed some emotion for the first time. When Ennis looked at her, he saw her wet eyes and the way she was biting on her manicured fingernails.
"Yes ma'am. I do love him." Ennis admitted.
"Thank you. I just needed to hear it. Jack's always been a good husband and a father… I'll never say any different. But we never made the full commitment to each other, I think."
"I'm sayin' that if Jack decides to leave me for you, I won't fight him."
"So Jack is… he's alright? Or going to be?"
"Jack is going to recover. He'll be healthy, but the doctors say he may always need the use of a cane for walkin'… and… his face will never look the same again. He'll have some mighty big scars for the rest of his life." Lureen informed him.
Ennis let out a dry sob of relief. He dropped his head into his arms for a moment and took several breaths.
"He's gonna be fine. I don't know what I- - I don't think I could have gone on if…" He trailed off.
"Yes… I think he'd feel the same about you."
"Can I see him?" Ennis asked.
"Yes, of course. I figured you'd come and I've informed the hospital that you are to be treated as family." Lureen's voice had gone back to the cold, distant tone that it had been at the beginning of the conversation. Ennis figured his welcome was overstayed and quickly got directions to the hospital that Jack was at.
As Ennis hopped into his truck and pulled away, both he and Lureen knew that their lives would forever be different from then on.
End chapter one
So…. You like so far? Any good at all?