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New York State of Mind

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Laura slows down as she approaches her building and squints a little at the person approaching her. 

“Stiles?” His head whips up and Laura holds out her hand to brace him as he stumbles to the side. “Are you drunk?”

“Shhhhhhhh,” Stiles says loudly before groaning. “I’m that obvious, right? Security won’t let me in like this. I’ll get in trouble.” He rubs one hand through his hair, which is sticking up in all directions, implying that he’s repeated this gesture already. 

“Where were you drinking?” She pulls him closer to her building so they’re not standing in the center of the sidewalk anymore. 

“My roommate took me somewhere. But he didn’t want to leave… and I did.”

Laura looks around, “Do you want to go get a slice of pizza or something? We can hang out for a bit until you sober up more.”

He groans and rubs his head again, “Laura, what the fuck am I doing? I don’t drink like this ever.”

“Hey, it’s alright,” she consoles, rubbing his shoulder. “I’ve got you. Have you eaten anything lately?”

“Yea, I got a slice of pizza on the walk here, actually. I just want to sleep, honestly, but I’ll get in trouble if security thinks I’m drunk.”

Laura sighs and glances at her building contemplatively. “Do you want to come up to our apartment? Derek’s not home now, but you can crash on the couch. He won’t mind, I promise.”

Stiles’ eyes widen comically for a moment, but then he glances down and bites his lips. “Are you… sure? I mean… I don’t want to… like… force…”

Laura squeezes his shoulder again, “It’s fine. I promise. I have to go to sleep soon anyway since I have work in the morning. You can sleep on the couch. No problem. But if you don’t want to, that’s fine too. We can hang out until you feel better.”

Stiles smiles slowly. “You’re sure you wouldn’t mind if I crash on your couch? I really just want to sleep. Thanks, Laura.”

She nods and turns to open the door. Stiles stumbles but manages to follow her into the elevator with no major problems. He leans against the wall as they ride the elevator up and trails one hand along the wall while Laura unlocks the door and lets him into the apartment before heading into the kitchen.

“Hey,” Stiles says suddenly, standing up straighter and looking around the apartment.

“What’s up?” Laura pulls her head out of the fridge and glances at him. 

“I’m in your apartment.”

She walks slowly to him and holds out a water bottle. “Yea, we just came up a minute ago.”

Stiles waves his hand vaguely. “No, no, I get that, I remember that. I mean… I’ve been hanging out with Derek for over a month now, and I’ve had coffee with you a whole bunch of times… but I’ve never been in here before.” He looks around slowly. “Derek has been to my dorm. It’s just… this feels like it’s a big deal.”

Laura’s eyebrows do a complicated series of maneuvers before settling back into something close to normal. “This is… kind of a big deal. We don’t bring people here much.” She chuckles, “Even drunk, you’re pretty perceptive.”

Stiles snorts, “Good a-little…. a-lichen…. a-literary…”

“Alliteration?” 

“That’s the one!”

Laura grins and puts one hand on Stiles’ shoulders so she could push him gently toward the bathroom. “You saw the kitchen. There’s a bunch of water bottles in there, plus I’m going to put a couple next to the couch. While you’re in the bathroom, I’m going to grab you some of Derek’s clothes to change into and a spare pillow and blanket, alright?”

Stiles nods several times before reaching an arm around Laura’s shoulders and pulling her in for a hug. “Thanks Laura. You’re a lifesaver.”

Laura hesitates for a second before returning the hug. “Of course, Stiles. We’d do anything for you.”

Stiles pulls back slightly and looks into Laura’s eyes for a moment before nodding a few times and turning to go into the bathroom. 

Laura watches the closed door for a second before pulling out her phone and texting Derek. She wasn’t entirely sure how he was going to feel about the fact that she had invited the guy he was crushing on to sleep in their apartment… but he was definitely going to have feelings about it.  

*

In the morning, Stiles wakes up with a groan and sits up slightly before freezing and realizing he’s not sure where he is. 

“Good morning, sleepy,” Derek says softly from the kitchen, where he’s making breakfast. 

Stiles sits up further so he can stare at Derek over the back of the couch. 

Derek laughs at Stiles’ expression. “Laura said she found you on the street last night and brought you up here. Apparently you were worried about the security guards letting you into your dorm?”

Stiles groans and rubs at his head. “I do remember that. Vaguely.”

“There’s more water on the table next to you,” Derek says, pointing with the spatula. “And some Tylenol. Also, the bathroom is over there, and I left an extra toothbrush on the counter for you.”

Stiles gladly swallows the pills before downing half the water bottle. He slowly rises from the couch and stares down at himself. “Am I wearing your clothes?” 

Derek glances over at Stiles again and smiles faintly. “It looks like it.”

Stiles stares down at the clothes for a minute. “You weren’t here, when I came up.”

Derek shakes his head. “I went out with Taylor, Clair, and Youcef, remember I told you?” 

Stiles nods his head a couple times before he points toward the bathroom, “I’ll be right back.” He holds his head as he shuffles to the bathroom. After a few minutes he moves toward the kitchen. “I’m sorry for crashing here,” he says softly as he leans against the kitchen doorway. 

Derek glances up, “I’m not.” Stiles just blinks in confusion a few times, so Derek continues. “I’m glad Laura found you, I mean. I don’t want you to get in trouble with the school or with your dorm. And I also don’t want you wandering around the streets at night, drunk. It’s not super dangerous, but it also isn’t particularly safe.” He turns to face Stiles and frowns. “Didn’t you have a friend or someone you could have walked back with?”

Stiles grunts. “I went with my roommate and his friends. But one of them tried to hook up with me and… I didn’t want to, so I… left alone.”

Derek’s eyebrows do a complicated movement. “Stiles? Are you alright?”

“Yea, dude. I’m fine. He was just… nothing happened. I just didn’t want to be around them anymore.”

Derek sniffs and turns back to the French toast, quickly flipping it before it burns. He glances back up at Stiles, who’s rubbing his eyes again. 

“I can practically feel you thinking,” Stiles says with a small laugh. “And wait, now you’re scrunching up your eyebrows at me.” He opens his eyes finally and laughs a little louder. “See? You are.” 

“Shut up,” Derek grumbles, although there’s no heat behind his words. 

“I am into guys, by the way,” Stiles says softly. “Just not… not that guy.”

“What kind of guys are you into?” Derek asks softly, before he could help himself. He focuses resolutely on the French toast so he doesn’t have to see the expression on Stiles’ face. 

Stiles watches Derek for a moment before answering. “The kind of guy who introduces me to new people, and humors me when I need to rant about things nonstop, and who takes me out to lunch when I don’t stop rambling at him, and who makes me breakfast after I randomly show up in his apartment,” Stiles answers, just as softly. 

Derek sighs and looks at the giant stack of French toast he had made already. “Well, it’s a shame this is all for me, then. I think I fit the description for those other things pretty well.” Stiles’ mouth falls open and he stares at Derek, who cracks a grin after a minute. “I’m joking, obviously. Half of these are for you.”

“Yea?” Stiles asks softly. 

“Yea,” Derek responds, turning the flame off and shifting so he’s facing Stiles. “And this type of guy you’d be into, do you think he should wait until after you’ve eaten breakfast to ask you out, or could he make a move beforehand?”

Stiles takes a step toward Derek, “This is real, right, by the way? This isn’t some kind of hangover hallucination?”

Derek reaches out to grasp Stiles’ hip and pulls him closer. “Are hangover hallucinations a thing?”

Stiles laughs softly and shrugs as he steps even closer. “I don’t know. There’s a first time for everything, I guess.”

Derek leans forward and presses in for a soft kiss. “So I know how you take your fancy coffee order at the cafe,” he murmurs against Stiles’ lips as he wraps his arms around Stiles’ back, “but all I’ve got is a regular old pot of coffee. Do you think you can make do with that?”

“Oh I can destroy a pot of coffee,” Stiles whispers, still pressed in close to Derek’s lips. “Just watch me.”

“You’re going to have to fight me for it, if you want the whole thing.”

Stiles throws his head back and laughs, before groaning softly. “Oh that hurt a little.”

“Let’s get some carbs in you,” Derek said with a grin, turning to grab the plate with one hand and a couple forks with the other. He takes a few steps and places everything down on the small table in the corner of the kitchen before returning to pull the milk and syrup from the fridge. He returns and pulls two mugs out of the cabinet and picks up the coffee pot before turning to Stiles, “You gonna sit?” 

Stiles surges forward and sits in the chair Derek had pulled out for him. He looks down at the plate of French toast and reaches for the syrup. 

“You really made breakfast for me?”

“Well, I figure we have breakfast, or at least coffee, together almost every day,” Derek grins and shrugs. “Since you’re here… it’s easier to make something than run down to the corner.”

“Plus, I’m not sure I’m moving too quickly right now,” Stiles says with a small chuckle as he rubs at his temples again.

“You can definitely nap, if you want,” Derek offers. “I’ll wake you before your 1 o’clock class. Or…” he glances down at his food and frowns slightly, “of course you could just go back to your dorm.”

Stiles reaches out and squeezes Derek’s hand. “I’d love to stay. I mean… you’re right, I should probably get some of my clean clothes before going to class, since we’re definitely not the same size, but I’m in no rush to leave.”

Derek laughs and reaches over to pick at his shirt, which is hanging loosely on Stiles. “I like it on you, though.”

“Yea?” Stiles asks with a wide grin.

Derek leans over and presses in for a kiss, “Or maybe I just like you.”

Stiles wraps one hand around the back of Derek’s neck to hold him in place. “That’s good too.”