Title: The Joys of Raising Five Boys (Part Jack)
Notes: Thanks to PossiblyMichaelJones for betaing and double thanks to anyone who understands lamps.
Summary: OR the one where Achievement Hunter is actually a family of five boys raised by Geoff Ramsey (The chapter that gets really shippy, involves an inside joke, and mentions of tiny boxing rings)
The room was quiet. The only noise was the soft hum of the computers surrounding him and the sounds on the computer as Jack sat in front of the desk top with his headphones plugged in. The audio rolled through, just loud enough to be heard, only to be paused and moved or paused and cut or paused and tuned and played again. He was so absorbed in working that he didn’t realize anyone else was in the room until he felt hands on his shoulders.
Spinning around, he found himself staring up at Joel. The other teen had his backpack slung across his chest and his hip cocked with his hand on it.
“Hey, what are you doing here?” questioned Jack, sliding his headphones off his ears. “I thought you were redoing your mile for Ms. Kisaragi.”
“It’s already four thirty, Jack,” Joel answered.
“What? No way,” spinning back around, Jack peeked at the clock. Much to his surprise it flashed back – 4:35. “Oh, sorry Joel. I hadn’t realized I’d been working this long.”
“It’s fine. I spent some time messing with Kara and the bowling team anyway,” Joel drawled, waving his hand. “But, if you still want a ride home, you’re gonna need to log out. Football practice is about to end so my brother won’t be around to drive you.”
“I’m coming, I’m coming,” reaching forward, Jack started the process of exiting out of the all the windows and programs he had opened and moving them back to his USB.
Joel settled into the chair next to him, spinning himself with his foot. They sat in silence for a while before Joel asked, “Do you want to go somewhere this weekend? Like the movies or that new bakery down the street from the library?”
Teasingly, Jack answered, “Are you asking me on a date Joel?” There was silence for just a second longer then normal and Jack whipped around to look at him. “Is that what you were doing?”
He hummed, “Maybe.” Without waiting for Jack to say anything he stood up, “I’m going to meet my brother on the field. See you in the parking lot.”
“Joel! Joel get back-” he didn’t get to finish before the door slammed shut.
The table was full of noise as Jack settled down with his plate of burritos between Ryan and Ray. Ray was leaning over the table, talking loudly with Dan who held on to every world like he wasn’t just Gavin’s annoying little brother. It was definitely one of the better things about the friends his younger brothers had made, they were usually friends with everyone else in the family as well.
“Hey, so, Mike said you were a little flustered when you got home,” Ryan drawled, nudging Jack with his elbow. “You wanna tell me what happened?”
“I think-” He stopped, licking his lips as he folded the ends of his burrito, before repeating, “I think I got asked out?”
Ryan raised an eyebrow, “Think? Jack, how can you not know something like that?”
“It’s not my fault!” Jack objected. “He was being all…coy about it and when I asked if he meant a date he just kinda hummed and walked out! I tried asking him in the car on the way over here but his brother was there and I didn’t want to make it more awkward.”
“He? Car?” Ryan’s eyes went wide before he hissed, “Did Joel ask you out, finally?”
“Finally? What are you-?”
He was interrupted by Gavin from the other side of the table, “Joel finally asked Jack out? Does that mean he’s going to be around more so I can make fun of him? He’s hilarious! I’ve never seen someone get more creeped out by a tiny spider bite.”
The whole dinner table erupted in noise as the words soaked in. Ray let out a loud whoop and reached across the table to give Dan a high five, the nine year old grinning even though he didn’t actually know what was going on.
“Guys! Come on – I’m not even sure he actually asked me out, much less that it’d be a good date if I said yes.”
“Oh, he asked you out,” Michael huffed. “And don’t you dare let him pussy out.”
“Michael!” Ryan growled, whipping to glare at the boy. “Dad told you to stop using words like that.”
Michael opened his mouth to protest only for Ryan to grab the burrito off his plate and shove it into his mouth. “Shut up and don’t question me, you little shit.”
Jack was sitting in his bedroom, lying across his bed with his arms spread out, when the door creaked open. He expected it to be Gavin or Michael, so he didn’t say anything. He assumed that one of them would have said something first.
There was a long beat of silence before he flipped up, hand nearly knocking over the lamp on his side table, to find his father standing against the doorway. Noting that he had Jack’s attention he drawled, “So, Ryan tells me you’re going on a date this weekend.”
Jack groaned as he flopped back down, feeling his bed sink as Geoff crossed the room and settled on it, “I’m not even sure he was asking me out, okay? Can we not talk about it?”
Geoff was silent for a minute before asking, “Are you sure?”
“Do you remember when I was like four and you bought Ryan that blow up boxing ring?”
Geoff laughed and nodded, “Yeah. Your mom was pissed and your brother almost broke my nose the first day we set it up.”
Jack closed his eyes, relaxing in the memory for a moment, before saying, “I’m more sure about this then Mom was about kicking your ass that day.”
Geoff winced before slapping his hand against Jack’s thigh, “Then stop cussing and come downstairs. We’re gonna play a Mario Kart tournament. You’re up against Dan for the first round.”
“Is he staying the night?” questioned Jack.
“Mhm, who knows? He’s either staying or sneaking out the window, because I’m going to kill him if he wakes me up in the middle of the night on his way out like he did last week.”