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(I Ain't Scared of the Fall) I've Felt the Ground Before

Chapter Text

The Beacon Hills High lacrosse team is actually horrible. Kind of fun horrible, which is always nice. The kind of horrible where there are good natured jokes and no ones sad anymore when they lose. They might even do it on purpose at this point.

It's surprising for a team with four werewolves. Everyone knows they should be winning, but their werewolves are the least coordinated werewolves. Boyd is maybe the only viable player on the team and Ennis has the potential to brutally murder someone on the other team, but neither of those things win games when everyone else sucks so royally.

It really wouldn't be that bad except Derek is expected to cheer for a losing team. Why does the lacrosse team even have cheer leaders? It's like having cheer leaders for the hockey team. It makes no sense. And yet he's there in his shorts and tank top with the girls, trying to cheer on a team that revels in their inadequacy.

The football team wins. So does the basketball team. And for some dumb reason no one cares about those teams. All anyone cares about is lacrosse. The team that can't win. Even when they try.

Derek watches from the sidelines as a giant boy from the other school slams into Scott McCall, one of the useless weres and technically a part of Derek’s pack, and sends him flying across the field. There's a crunch and the crowd gasps, but he's a werewolf and he's fine.

That doesn't stop Coach Finstock from screaming at the top of his lungs at the ref for letting it slide.

Erica pops her gum and leans on Derek. "This is almost more embarrassing than usual."

"I don't think that's possible," says Derek. His eyes go from Scott to Finstock to Stilinski, who is standing like his pale skin and fragile bones is going to protect Scott from anything. Derek does not count the moles on his cheek or think about the delicate curve of his nose. 

"Bilinski!" Finstock points at Stiles. "Take McCall's place."

Stilinski is somehow annoying from fifty feet away. He's both cocky and anxiety ridden, his whole body flails as he pulls on his helmet and grabs his crosse. He looks at the stands, no doubt finds Lydia Martin, and then grins like he could be the one to win this game. He jogs out onto the field and fist bumps Scott as they trade places.

Derek wants to take his smug face and shove it into the field. He can only hope that someone from the other team does it for him.

Part of it is that he’s the only person who doesn’t seem to stare at Derek constantly and he’s also the only person Derek wishes would look his way. But that’s a complicated feeling that Derek just ignores in favor of really liking the way his shoulders fill out t-shirts or thinking about that one time he was playing baseball and his shirt rode up and there was this dark trail of hair that Derek wanted to sink his teeth into.

Erica groans beside him, her eyes glinting gold in the field lights. "Why would they replace one of us with Stiles?"

Derek shrugs. "Because at least if they lose with all humans it'll look better."

"Can you two please perk up?" Allison asks. “And, Erica, you can't chew gum on the field.”

Allison and Derek are technically co-captains of the cheerleading squad, but Derek is mostly symbolic. Because not only is he the only male cheerleader, but Allison's crazy aunt seduced him and then tried to kidnap him and murder his whole family last year and, as Erica says, you just can't keep the damaged omega boy from being captain of the cheerleading squad.

Allison is a much better captain and Derek doesn't begrudge her that, but captain of a team looks good on college applications and those bad boys all went out a couple of weeks ago. Derek doesn't need as much help as he can get, but he wants it. He wants to get as far away from Beacon Hills as possible.

"How are we supposed to perk up when we are being slaughtered?" Erica asks.

Erica is kind of the best. She mostly started cheering because it meant she could ogle Boyd, but she stayed because of Derek. And Derek can't not appreciate that.

“Just focus on Boyd,” Allison says. “You can just pretend that you’re only cheering for him.”

“And all you bitches are cheering for him too? No way. No one else gets to ogle that fine ass except for me.”

Allison mutters something in French, which is her go to when she needs to swear at a game. “Let’s just—we’ll just—can you idiots just get in formation and do what you’re supposed to be doing?”

Derek takes one last look at the field, lets his eyes fall on Stilinski, and then hoists Erica onto his shoulders.

Being one of three omegas in Beacon Hills and about five hundred in the country really wouldn't be that bad if Derek was one of those four hundred and ninety-nine other omegas and not himself. They probably don't attract psychopaths like he does. Or maybe they do, but they manage to stay away. They also probably have families that don't silently pressure them to find a mate before college. Actually that’s a thing they probably do have. Or maybe they already have mates because they aren’t as useless as Derek is.

Most weres find mates by eighteen, the rest aren't omegas so it doesn't matter. And yeah, for a week every March, Derek itches to be claimed. But it's just biology. It's not like he's going to die without a mate. His vibrator is fine enough (it isn't) and he's of the mind that marriage and mating are just another form of legalized slavery for omegas. Laws surrounding omega mating are still outdated and the wording always makes omegas out to be objects, possessions to be traded. There aren’t enough of them anymore to actually bring about change.

Derek isn't about that life. He might have been a little bit about that life when Kate did that thing with her tongue that he liked. But then she tried to murder his family and kidnap him. So that stopped being a thing he was into.

He was a stupid kid a year ago. He didn't know that people were out to hurt him. He didn't know the difference between love and lust. He didn’t believe what his parents said about people trying to take advantage of him.

Now he does.

So he keeps his head down in the hallways, does well in classes, and tosses cheerleaders into the air at games. That way he at least gets to do a sport without worrying that another player is going to tackle him to the ground and try to fuck him. Of course standing on the side lines isn't always that safe, but Erica turned out to be pretty great at glaring down any dumb alphas who would pause and sniff in his direction.

And sometimes being in class is uncomfortable and in the hallways some alpha will try to get too close, but he can power through it. He gets a little angry sometimes, but he knows that lashing out doesn’t make it better. Just makes whoever has “accidentally” grabbed his arm want him even more. Derek fighting back just makes them itch to claim. They can't help it. It's just biology. In theory there are laws in place protecting Derek from being assaulted, but they rarely come into play. 

Mostly it's fine. And after the game, Derek heads into the girl's locker room because he's the only boy on the cheerleading squad and also an omega and no one knows how to handle it, but throwing him into a locker room with a bunch of sweaty boys probably wouldn't be good. Derek knows he could handle it easily, he has heightened senses after all. At least he wouldn't go crazy in the locker room. He smells sweaty boys at school and honestly they're disgusting. He's over all the pheromones. The same probably can't be said for the other boys. 

Once he's changed into his jeans and leather jacket, he’s walking down the halls of the school alone and he should be paying attention, but he isn't. So he doesn't hear the growl until it's in his ear. Until he's pushed up against the lockers, his backpack dropping to the ground.

"Smell fucking delicious." It's Ennis, this brutish senior alpha, who has definitely repeated senior year a few times. He's know for stupidity and violent outbursts and he's only on the team because Finstock hopes it'll make a difference. He's been eyeing Derek for a while, making snide comments in the cafeteria, when he's feeling extra bold he might put a hand on Derek's back. His breath reeks of wolfsbane liquor. "Shouldn't be out here alone. Little omega bitch."

Derek wants to protest against being calling little (he is the opposite of little), but instead he slams back against him. They could be a match for each other, but Ennis is all alcohol and adrenaline and hormones and he doesn't go far. He gives Derek enough time and room to get turned around before he's slamming him back against the lockers again and this time it hurts.

"Fuck." Pain blossoms in the back of his head where it hits the locker. "Get the fuck off me, Ennis."

"No," Ennis says, his breath is hot against Derek's face. "Need to be fucked. Bet I could make you all wet. Get you begging for it. I bet you'd just—."

"Hey!"

Ennis turns with a growl at the voice at the end of the hallway.

Derek hates his body for being relieved at the smell of a new alpha. One he knows too well. One he thinks about.

"Get the fuck away from him!" Stilinski says, sounding a lot more threatening than he is. He's is human and Ennis isn't.

But it still makes Ennis pause. Makes him growl at Derek, "This little piece of shit your alpha, Hale?"

Derek takes the space and opportunity to slam his fist into Ennis's jaw. Stilinski shouts and runs towards them.

It hurts. He didn't hold his hand right and his thumb is broken. It'll heal, but it fucking hurts. And it’s humiliating. Hitting Ennis did nothing and Stilinski is heading towards them with his phone out like he’s the one that’s going got do something.

"You little bitch!" Ennis roars.

"Dude," Stilinski says, his phone out in his hand. He's shaking. "I'm calling the cops. So like back the fuck off."

Derek wants to murder Stilinski too. Maybe he'll rip off Ennis' arms and beat Stilinski to death with them.

Ennis seems to consider his options. Then he takes off down the hall, grumbling about bitch alphas and bitch omegas and really overusing the word bitch. It stops losing meaning after a while. It doesn't even hurt, Derek tells himself.

He rounds on Stilinski, who isn't any smaller than Derek really, but he looks small in the moment. "Don't call the cops, Stilinski."

"You should report him," Stilinski says, backing off. "He can't treat you like that. Look, I'll just call my dad and I know—."

"You don't fucking know anything."

"Why are you mad at me? I just helped you."

"Thanks, Stilinski, for stopping another fucking alpha from attacking me. I really appreciate it. Whatever would I do without your glorious alpha strength?"

"Okay—well."

"Fuck off," Derek says, pushing past him and towards the parking lot.

His mom is waiting for him on the porch when he gets in. She has her arms crossed over her chest and her face is set and for a moment Derek thinks that Stilinski somehow got in touch with her. And then he realizes as he gets out of the car he probably smells like anxiety and fear and sadness and fucking Ennis.

He needs to shower for a goddamn week.

"Are you okay, baby?" she asks as Derek stomps up the steps to the porch even though she obviously knows. Derek walks through her hug and she pouts. 

"I'm fine," Derek says. He drops his bag and jacket in the hallway and starts heading upstairs.

"How was the game?" his dad asks, he's drying his hands with a dish cloth.

"Fine. We only lost by ten points so, you know, not horrible. I'm going to take a shower."

"Derek," his mom says, she's not using her alpha voice, but she's using her mom voice and that's probably worse.

He turns. Raises an eyebrow. "Yeah?"

"You're okay?"

"Yeah. I'm fine. I just want to shower."

"There's leftovers in the fridge."

"It's fine. I'm not hungry."

In the shower Derek scrubs himself down. Scrubs until his skin is red and raw and it hurts. It’s fine by the time he gets out of the shower towels off. He pulls on sweatpants and a sweatshirt. He really wanted some quality alone time tonight. He had a plan. A plan that involved him jacking off for too long and trying to get as many fingers in his ass as possible. 

And instead he had to go get pushed around by Ennis. He feels gross. There’s no way he’ll get off now. So he flops down into his bed with his notebook and scribbles ideas for stories while he listens to Adele and feels bad about relationships he’s never had.

Laura opens the door to his bedroom and sits down on the edge of his bed. Derek doesn’t say anything to her because he’s writing scenes where his characters murder people in fits of glorious rage.

"You know what the solution is," she says.

"The solution to what? Why are you here?"

"You're so angsty."

"Laura."

"I came home for the weekend. And the solution to you being hit on all the time and annoyed by mom and dad."

"What's the solution?"

"You get an alpha."

"Thank you for that, Laura. I'll file it away with the other idiotic ideas I've already tried to handle."

"No. I mean like find someone sweet or dumb or something and like fake it for a little bit. Just to make everyone chill out."

“How do you know that it’s a problem?” Derek asks.

“Because mom said you were in a mood when you came home and you smelled like an alpha. She’s just worried about you.”

“Yeah, well, it’s stupid. And if she would just leave me alone it would solve one of my problems.”

“I’m just saying that getting a mate would solve your two major problems.”

“I don’t want a mate.”

“A fake mate. Cora totally agrees with me.”

“Cora’s in on this?”

Cora kicks the door open and then slams it behind her. “Damn straight I am.”

“Jesus Christ, Cora,” Derek buries his face in his pillow.

“Look, dude,” Cora says, sitting on his back. “All you have to do is get yourself someone who is willing to go along with being your dumb boyfriend and you won’t have to worry about this stuff.”

“What happens at the end of the school year?”

Laura shakes her head. “You’re going to college, Derek. People break up.”

“Not mates. Not omegas.”

“Well, you do everything a little weird anyway.”

And it’s not fair. Derek is the middle child. He’s the one that’s supposed to be left alone all the time. His sisters are betas and they’ve got it easy. They get to do whatever they want. Laura is in law school and Cora is frightening and fifteen so mostly she just has to be home by curfew and no one cares what she does.

“Do you have anyone in mind?” Cora asks, tugging on Derek’s hair. “Because I do.”

Derek flips over, knocking Cora to the floor. “You do?”

She huffs and looks up at him. “Yeah. I mean that Stilinski kid is a good choice, right? He’s non-threatening. And an alpha so you’ll have that extra level shit going on and like a total idiot so you could reasonably be dating him.”

“He barely knows me.”

“Yeah, well that’s probably the only way you’d get someone to fake date your ugly mug.”

Laura kicks Cora in the shin. “Be nicer. Our brother is having a crisis.”

Derek looks up at his ceiling and he doesn’t know why he’s letting this happen, why he’s so resigned to it. “Yeah. Stilinski is probably fine.”

Chapter Text

Derek sits himself down in front of Stilinski at lunch and Stilinski's eyes go wide. He's frozen in place, about to bite into his sandwich. Derek usually sits with the same group that eats with Stilinski so it’s not totally bizarre. It’s just that Derek usually sits at the opposite end of the table, doesn’t make eye contact and doesn’t talk.

Today Scott and Allison are probably making out somewhere and Erica and Boyd are probably banging in a closet and Kira and Lydia disappeared to do work so Stilinski is alone. And normally Derek would use a day like this to go eat his lunch alone in the library. No one ever thinks to find him there.

"D-Derek?"

"St-Stilinski?" Derek mocks. It's not a great way to start the conversation, but he can't help it. Just the way Stilinski is holding his sandwich is infuriating. Derek just can’t stop thinking about those long fingers wrapped around—

Jesus fucking Christ.

Stilinski frowns. "What do you even want? Are you just here to be a dick to me?"

Stilinski is infuriating and useless and Derek wouldn't even be here if he didn't need an alpha and if Stilinski wasn't the only viable option. Why does everyone else have to be coupled up? Why do all the other alphas have to be such creeps?

God it probably says something that Stilinski is so disgusted by Derek that he's not even creepy to him. Scott might say it's because he's a good guy, but Derek knows. Because he knows the way that they all talk about him and look at him and when they don’t want him they hate him. Derek is a used, ruined omega. He's not worth anything.

"I need an alpha," Derek says and Stilinski chokes on literally nothing.

"What?"

"It's not—look, we should talk about this somewhere else."

"What the fuck are we even talking about?"

"I need you to pretend to date me. We should meet after school and you can figure out what you want from me, okay?"

Stilinski just opens and closes his mouth a few times.

"I'll meet you after practice by my car.”

Derek gets up to leave because he doesn’t want to hear Stilinski sputter. He doesn’t want to hear him be outright disgusted by his offer. If he walks away maybe Stilinski will consider it and Derek won’t have to try to figure out his next step. Maybe he could date Lydia Martin just to spite him.

Of course, Lydia Martin is intimidating and untouchable and Derek doesn’t really care about her. He couldn’t fake it with her. He could fake it with Stilinski. At least on some level it wouldn’t be fake.

The cheerleading squad practices on the field next to the lacrosse team and it's not fair because Ennis is there and he's staring at Derek and Stilinski is also staring and Derek can't help watching them, watching the way Stilinski moves, which is uncoordinated at best, dangerous at worst, and in this weird way totally graceful. It’s amazing that there are so few broken bones every game.

Finstock has them running suicides as Derek and Allison have the girls stretching. Allison is talking at him about something. Probably trying to nail down a routine for regionals (“we need to win this year, Derek, we're seniors and our whole school needs a win”), but Derek is instead watching Stilinski slide across the wet grass, head first into an orange cone.

He stops his body from flinching in sympathy.

"Derek!" Allison says. "Can you pay attention?"

"Yeah. Sorry. What's up?"

"I heard you asked out Stilinski," Erica says from where she's stretching. "Is his glorious flat ass distracting you?"

Derek realizes he's never really looked at Stilinski's ass before. "I'm sure it's not that flat."

"Guys," Allison says. “Can we please stop talking about his butt? We still haven't chosen a song. We only have two months. We need to figure this out, Derek.”

“What’s the song from Bring It On?” Erica asks. She’s doing some weird twisty thing with her body that puts both her ass and chest in the air and Boyd has completely stopped running in favor of watching her.

“Boyd!” Finstock yells and Boyd just does that quiet smile thing and gets back to it.

“Can you stop being such an exhibitionist?” Allison asks Erica, her face red. “And we can’t do the song from Bring It On. We’re not doing anything from Bring It On.”

“You know I only joined this team for the Bring It On jokes,” Erica says, lying down in the grass.

“Derek, practice throwing Erica in the air,” Allison says, walking away from them. “And think of what song you want and then think of a routine!”

“She’s going to murder you,” Derek says, helping Erica onto his shoulders.

Erica runs her fingers through his hair. “It runs in the family.”

Derek grunts because Erica is always making pretty solid jokes about Kate, but he still hates them.

“Are you ever going to tell me about this thing with Stiles?” she asks.

Derek shrugs hard enough that it threatens to topple her. “It’s not that big a thing. I—we talked after the game on Friday and so—just omega/alpha shit, you know.”

Erica hums. “I guess so. That’s not really your thing, though.”

“It is now. And if you talk about it anymore I’ll drop you.”

“I’ll be fine. There’s a reason that I’m the one you throw in the air.”

He tosses her from his shoulders and she spins before landing in a crouch.

“Oh my god,” she says and she’s already laughing at herself. “We should do ‘Hungry Like the Wolf.’”

Stilinski is waiting by Derek’s car by the time Derek gets there. And Derek can smell him. He smells like anxiety and cinnamon and sweat and hormones. They’re the same age and Derek still feels like he’s got years on him.

“Hey,” Stilinski says, shouldering his backpack. He’s just in his jeans and a flannel again. It’s cold for February, but there’s sweat around his hairline so he’s probably still warm from practicing.

“Hey,” says Derek. “Did you think about what I said.”

“Is this about Friday?” Stilinski asks.

Derek shrugs and then he realizes that Stilinski is waiting for something. It physically pains Derek to say it because he doesn't think he should, but, "I didn't thank you for Friday night, Stilinski. So thanks. I—I'm sorry. I know you were just trying to help. And it worked. So thank you."

"What? No. Are you kidding me? That's—I did literally nothing."

"You know that's not true. You were there. You said something. That doesn't always happen."

Stlinski shoves his hands in his pockets. "I get why you were mad at me, I think. Like the whole needing an alpha thing to come protect you. That must suck. Especially—I mean—you're not exactly small and defenseless."

"Yeah, well, I was."

He looks for Ennis, but can't find him. He's probably failing an after school test or beating up a child. Ennis might actually be too old to go to high school at this point.

"Why do you want an alpha?" Stlinski asks. "You're kind of like 'I'm Derek Hale and I don't need no alpha to protect me.'"

"Apparently I do," he grits out. "Look, Stilinski, I just need to get through the rest of the year and I need to get my parents off my back and I can't have some fucking beta all right. I need an alpha and you're my best option. You don't actually have to fucking date me. Just scent me and pretend to date me. I'll pay you."

"You don't have to pay me."

"I'll probably feel better if I pay you. Then it's—well then we know what it is."

"What are you going to do next year. Or for the rest of your life?"

Derek shrugs. "Maybe I'll write the code for an app and make a few million dollars and then I'll just become a hermit."

"Can you do that?"

Derek shrugs. "Not really. But I'll figure it out."

"Derek—."

Stlinski can't seriously back out can he? Not that he's in. But Derek asked. Is Derek that undesirable? Is he that much of a mess? Even Stiles won't be paid to date him. And the thing with Kate. People talk about it. And people say shit. But he never thought that it was that big a deal but maybe it is. Maybe people don't want an omega who's already been fucked. Who's damaged goods.

"Please, Stiles," says Derek before Stilinski can say anything. "Please. This—this isn't easy for me. But I need someone."

"Okay," Stilinski says quickly. "Derek. Okay." He reaches out and, probably to show he's willing to do this, he lays his hand over the back of Derek's neck.

Derek's whole body calms instantly at that. He lets out a sigh, which alarms even himself. But Stiles’ eyes go wide. "Thank you, Stiles."

"Is it that good?" Stiles asks.

Derek closes his eyes because he doesn't want to look at Stiles when he nods. "Yeah." He pulls away from him. "We should figure out how this is going to work. I have to get home for dinner, but—uh—we should maybe have lunch together tomorrow."

"Okay."

Derek nods once. "Can you just—?"

Stiles nods and then his hand is back and Derek hates himself for it. Stupid biology. It shouldn't even matter. Assigning worth and social roles to his biology is just a construct. It doesn't mean anything. It could have been different. Hell in some ancient societies omegas were the powerful ones. They've learned that in school.

"This doesn't mean you're weak," Stiles says.

Derek jerks away. "Fuck off, Stilinski."

He goes around to the driver's side of his car and gets in.

"See you at lunch, sweetheart!" Stilinski calls. He's got this sour smile on his face and Derek flips him off as he drives away, his stomach lurching.

Chapter Text

Derek has English with Stilinski right before lunch the next day. And Stiles sits in the desk behind him. When Matt, who normally sits there, complains, Stilinski kicks his feet under Derek’s seat and puts his hands on Derek’s shoulders and says, “Sorry, Matty. I gotta sit behind this sexy lug or my alpha senses just go all haywire, you know? Can’t having my boyf smelling that much like other people.”

Matt’s eyes go wide and he turns to find Stilinski’s old seat next to Scott, who is turned around in his own seat with his mouth open. Erica looks equally stunned, but it turns quickly into a wry smile. Stilinski pulls his hands away, but he keeps his fingers brushing Derek’s arm for the rest of class and Derek tries not to squirm.

It's not that Derek doesn't like to be touched. He obviously likes to be touched. It's just that he wished people announced their intent ahead of time and gave him the space to agree or disagree.

He leaves class without saying anything to Stilinski or Erica and even though he’s supposed to get lunch with Stiles he heads to the library with his bagged lunch. He waves to Isaac, who is working at the desk, and heads up to the stacks, his go-to hiding place.

Derek is blessed with a few minutes of peace to enjoy his ham sandwich before he hears the sound of feet coming up the stairs and into the stacks.

“Erica said I could find you here,” Stilinski says when he slides into Derek’s row. He’s got a to-go container from the cafeteria that smells like fried chicken and curly fries.

And of course Erica knows where Derek hides. He can’t keep anything from her.

“Yeah,” Derek says.

Stilinski sits down next to him. “Did I freak you out? I’m not really sure what people do in this situation.”

“It’s fine,” Derek says.

“It’s clearly not fine. You ran away from me. We were supposed to have lunch together.”

“Sorry. I’m not sure what to do either.”

"I feel like part of this is that we need to get to know each other," Stiles says, sitting down next to him. "Did you get into any schools yet?"

"No."

"Where'd you apply?" he asks like he genuinely interested.

"Columbia, NYU, BU, Harvard, Yale."

"Jeez. Those are good ones. Also did you only look in the north east?"

"Yeah."

"You just want to get as far away as possible?"

"Yeah. Pretty much. What about you? Where'd you apply?"

"Stanford and MIT and Berkley and—uh—Harvard too, actually. There are like twelve others. It's such a bitch. I got into Berkley and Stamford though on early admission so I'm just waiting on the rest."

"I had no idea you weren't a total idiot."

"Ha. Is part of getting to know you trying to understand your sarcastic ass?"

"Who said I was being sarcastic?”

Stiles lets out a loud laugh and scoots closer to Derek.

"So how do you want to work this?" Stiles asks. "We're going to have to spend time together outside of school. Also are we telling our friends? I haven't told anyone but, like, I'm tempted to."

"My sisters know," Derek says. "They came up with the idea in the first place. You can tell Scott if you want. I trust him."

"I thought you didn't like him."

"He's fine. I don't think he'd ever try to hurt us."

"No. I don't think so either. But everyone else?"

"I don't think anyone else can know. It could get out and then what's the point?”

"Yeah. We should sit next to each other in bio too and we can do lunch together and we should hang out after school. We can just do homework together and whatever. Also we should swap clothes. Maybe when I come over I'll bring some stuff and you can bring some stuff. We just need to get like each other's scent all over ourselves. Also like you should look happier, man. Especially if I'm boning you on the reg."

"Are you that good?"

"I like to think so." Stiles hums. "So you're kind of like an atypical male cheerleader, you know. Like you're hella smart and kind of grumpy and really hairy. I mean, why?"

Derek debates coming up with some lie about it. But he just says. "Because I'm with a bunch of girls and I don't have to worry about getting attacked and I still get to be on a team."

"Oh. Really?"

"If I was on the lacrosse team, Ennis would have a lot of excuses to tackle me."

"Shit. And none of the girls care."

"None of them are alphas. And they're girls. For the most part women get it. They don't like the unwanted attention either."

"For the most part," Stiles echoes and Derek wonders if he's thinking of Kate. Because that's who Derek is thinking of.

Allison sends out a group text telling them to meet in the gym instead of outside for practice and Derek doesn’t know what she has in store, but he’s already dreading it. He’s dreading it so much he can’t even devote the energy into being angry with her. It probably has something to do with not seeing Stiles at practice. He doesn’t know what Stiles is saying to people about him.

Erica comes up to him as they go from the locker room into the gym in their work out clothes. She bumps their arms together and touches her fingertips against his. She is the only person that gets the lack of touching and Derek reacts just enough to be angry with Allison when she walks in with a girl he’s seen around campus.

“Okay, team,” Allison says, clapping her hands together. “I’ve got some news. This year we really want to win regionals so I asked Jennifer Blake, captain of the dance team, to help us choreograph our routine.”

There are a few scattered claps and Erica says, “Hi, Jennifer!”

“We don’t have a song yet,” Derek says.

“I chose ‘Someone Like You.’”

“Fucking Adele?”

“Everyone stretch while I talk to Derek alone,” Allison snaps. She points towards a corner and Jennifer does this little smile with the corner of her mouth.

“You don’t have to be all—.” Derek waves a hand at the side of his head when it’s just him and Allison.

“Derek, if you actually tried to be involved I could have picked a song you like,” Allison says.

“You didn’t tell me what you were thinking either. You didn’t tell me you were thinking of fucking Adele! How the hell are we supposed to do this thing to Adele?”

“I like Adele.”

“Who cares. Why don’t we put it to a vote?”

“This isn’t a democracy,” Erica says from where she’s balancing on one foot. “It’s a cheerocracy.”

Allison purses her lips, which makes her dimples so pronounced that Erica loses her balance and falls over.

“Fine.” Allison looks over at Jennifer. “Jennifer, why don’t you put together a list of five songs that you think you could help us choreograph a cheer to. We’ll vote tomorrow when we don’t have practice. And we’ll start working on our routine on Thursday. Now we’re going down to the weight room since we don’t have a routine to practice and then we’re going to work on aerials, Derek.”

“I’m taking Advil now,” Erica says.

Derek growls. “You’re a werewolf, Erica. Shut up.”

Derek has Stiles over after school the next day. Stiles sits at his desk doing homework while Derek tries to write. He doesn't need to for school or anything but it's really the only thing that makes him feel sane. It gets him through all the times he feels too much too strongly.

Now is one of those times. Stiles is wearing one of his t-shirts and it's a little too big on his torso, but it's stretched right across his shoulders. Derek is wearing one of Stiles' hoodies.

Derek had no idea that having Stiles' scent on him would settle him down so much. Hell, he didn't even know he was in a constant strung out state until he pulled it on and immediately relaxed. Being relaxed doesn't mean that he isn't also feeling a lot of things

There's a knock on his bedroom door and Derek sits up. "Yeah?"

The door cracks open and his mom pokes her head in. "Just checking in. Hi, Stiles."

Derek’s family knows Stiles and his dad because the same rogue alpha that bit Erica, Boyd, and Isaac, also bit Scott. And stiles and Scott are kind of a package deal. And Talia took them in after Chris Argent and his wife killed the alpha.

That was before Kate came to visit and was a long term English sub.

“Hi, Alpha Hale.” Stiles looks like the perfect boyfriend right now, smiling at Derek’s mom and calling her by the right title.

"What are you boys up to?" His mom asks like they're nine and not eighteen and like she isn't secretly hoping that Stiles is there to at least try to date Derek.

"Homework," Derek says.

"Okay. Well if you need snacks or anything you know where they are." She starts to shut the door. "That's a nice sweatshirt, Derek. Is it new?"

And she knows. Because is not a nice sweatshirt. It's just an old red hoodie.

"It's mine," Stiles says with this dumb smug smile and Derek remembers he's supposed to be attracted to Stiles. So he blushes.

"Whatever," he says. "I was cold."

"Okay. Well, have fun, boys."

She shuts the door and Derek and Stiles are both silent.

"So your family is part of the reason that—."

"Shut up."

Derek falls asleep wrapped in Stiles' sweatshirt that night.

Chapter Text

Stiles finds Derek reading in the stacks and drops down on the floor next to him.

"I'm reading," Derek says.

"Whatchya readin'?" Stiles asks, taking the book from him. "The Fellowship of the Ring? Really? You nerd."

Derek snatches it back. "It's a classic."

"Is this your first time reading it?"

Derek blushes and he hates Stilinski a little more. "No."

"Do you write fantasy?"

Derek freezes. "How do you know I write?"

Stilinski shrugs. "You're always scribbling away at something. And I feel like you aren't the reflective journaling type."

"I don't write fantasy."

"But you read it?"

"I read Tolkien."

"I fuckin love fantasy, man."

"You just called me a nerd for reading Tolkien."

"What can I say? I'm complex." Stilinski looks a little smug at that. "I'll give you some stuff if you want. You know me and you swapping books, sharing clothes, how cute is that."

Derek nods. "Yeah. That would be…nice."

"Should I be courting you? You know, like should I be bringing you flowers and stuff? Making my intentions known?"

"I don't think I'd want that normally. If we're too over the top everyone will know."

He shrugs. "Well anyway, I came to see if you wanted to go to the party at Erica's place tonight. I know it's not really your thing, but it might be good for us to, you know, make an appearance. As a couple."

"That seems smart," Derek says.

"I can put my arm around you and be all possessive and people will know."

Derek nods. "Okay." Then he realizes something. "I never—we never talked about how I could pay you for this."

"Dude. Don't. It kinda makes me feel like a prostitute. Not that there's—I mean like sex workers need love and rights too. But like I don't like how it feels."

"You aren't a sex worker."

"I'd rather just do it out of the goodness of my heart. Plus. My dad is kind of into me dating someone. He says it's kind of a cliche that you're a cheerleader but you're a dude so I think it's okay."

"You told your dad we were dating?"

"I just told him I was interested. I have to talk to him about things, man. And, like, he noticed when I was wearing your shirt."

"Oh." Derek blushes again and he hates that he can't control his stupid body ever.

Stiles absentmindedly runs his fingers over the back of Derek's neck as he stands up. "Well. I'll leave you to your reading. I'll pick you up at nine, babe."

Derek's stomach clenches. "Don't call me babe."

Stilinski freezes, his mouth pulling down into a frown. "What?"

"I don't like—don't call me babe or sweetie or anything like that."

"Okay, sourwolf. See you at nine."

Derek hasn't been to a party since the beginning of last year. It was just better not to after the Kate thing. Lots of drunk teenagers trying to get in his space seemed like it would be a horrible time. But maybe with Stiles. Maybe it would be worth it.

He feels weird. Like there's something gnawing away at his stomach. Nerves probably. It's not like he can get sick. He feels so pathetic when he pulls on Stiles' shirt to wear. It's a little snug, but it's so good. The pressure in the points where it's tightest slow his heart rate.

Right after Kate he refused to be attracted to anyone. He didn't trust himself. If he could nearly get his family killed once what's stopping it from happening again. But then Stiles kept weaseling his way into things. He sat at their table at lunch when Scott and Allison started dating at the end of last year. He got better at lacrosse and ended up on the field. He never really spoke to Derek, but it was hard not to be drawn to him. Stiles is bright and happy and all the things that Derek isn't. He's enthusiastic for his friends and smart and always has something to say and Derek has been slowly falling for him since September.

And now he's wearing Stiles' shirt and Stiles wouldn't be doing any of this if he weren't just doing it out of the goodness of his heart. If he didn't pity Derek. 

He's also hard. Which is…not surprising? The clothes sharing thing has had an effect on him. He's washed Stiles' sweatshirt that he jerked off into about four times before deciding that he couldn't give it back to Stiles and, since it didn't smell like Stiles anymore, threw it out.

He just doesn't even want to jerk off right now. He's feeling mopey and he wants to talk to his mom about this. And sometimes when he smells Stiles' scent it feels like mate. Like for real mate. Like home and forever and cinnamon and warmth and too much talking and curly fries.

Not like when he convinced himself that Kate was it. When he ignored the queasy feeling in his stomach whenever she touched him. He thought he was just supposed to be grateful she was touching him and he'd learn to like it. He did learn to like it. A lot.

He sighs. A shower before the party can't hurt.

He lets the water run hot as he pulls off his clothes. He folds Stiles' shirt neatly on top of everything before he steps under the spray. He takes his time. Washes his hair and soaps up his body before taking his half hard cock in his hand.

He closes his eyes and let's himself think pleasant thoughts. He wonders what it would be like if Stiles was in there, crowded behind him, dick against his ass.

He feels slick leak down his thighs. It doesn't usually happen unless he's in heat, but sometimes it comes out in the weeks leading up to it. It's only a month away. And he's not sure how he's going to deal with it. But he can let himself imagine being wet and open, bent towards the tile, Stiles pounding into him relentlessly.

He tightens his fist and reaches his other hand around. He presses two fingers against his hole and they go in easily. He's slick and warm and it's an odd angle that hurts his wrist, but he pumps his fingers in an out.

Stiles would probably kiss the back of his neck as he fucks him. He'd probably wrap his hand around Derek's cock and jerk him just like he likes. Derek would have to brace his hands on the slippery tile and bite his lip to keep quiet. Stiles would know exactly what to do somehow. Stiles has that whole doesn't think he's good at things so he puts a lot of effort into them vibe. And he had that girlfriend, Heather, last summer, even though Derek pretended not to care. And there were rumors about how fucking big Stilinski's cock was and maybe Derek fucked himself with his vibrator then thinking about it.

Stiles would be rough in all the ways Derek wanted and gentle in all the ways he needed. Derek pulls his hand from his ass and, even though he knows it's a little gross, he licks the slick from his fingers. 

Stiles would be so deep when he came. He'd hold Derek so tight he'd leave bruises on his skin. Even if they would disappear Derek would know. Stiles would know.

Derek would be his. Inside and out.

Derek comes quietly on a whimper. He gasps Stiles' name, closes his eyes tight and all he sees is that stupid face Stiles makes when he's caught off guard. With his mouth open, lips parted and fuckable.

Derek is, without a doubt, totally screwed.

Derek's mom is the only one home when Derek pads downstairs. She's watching TV and eating a salad. Derek plops down on the couch next to her.

Derek eyes the salad. He snorts. "Rabbit food."

His mom turns off the TV. "What's wrong?"

"Nothing's wrong."

"You know there's no point lying to me."

Derek shrugs. "I don't know. Stiles is picking me up to go to a party in a little bit."

"That's good!" And there probably aren't many mothers who are happy their son is going to a party where there will definitely be alcohol. "Are you nervous?"

"Yeah. I guess."

"About the party or about Stiles?"

Having the pack alpha for a mother is sometimes horrible. And sometimes it's nice when she already knows things.

Derek still just shrugs.

She pauses. "You're wearing his shirt."

"It—well you know. I just feel more put together when I'm wearing his things."

"It smells right," she says. "You still smell like anxiety. Are you two just sharing shirts or…?"

"We're going to the party together," Derek says. "Like, as a couple."

"That's really nice, Derek."

"Yeah."

"I know that it's tough. Navigating life with everything that you are and everything that's happened. But this is a good step."

Derek hates when she says stuff like that. "Yeah."

"You like him?"

Derek blushes now because once again he can't stop it. "I really like him."

Talia smiles, but she runs her fingers through his hair, comforting. "You know you don't have to do anything you don't want to do. Even if you really like him. If that's what your nervous about. Stiles is a good boy. He'll understand."

"Jeez mom."

"I'm looking out for you. You feel safe, right?"

"Yeah. I'm not, like, threatened by Stiles Stilinski." He rests his head on the back of the couch and groans. "I'm just—I'm feeling a lot of things and I'm freaking out."

"You really like him."

"Yeah. I said that."

"I just wasn't sure if it was that or you were keeping an alpha around to feel safer."

Derek opens one eye and narrows it at her. "It might be a little of that too."

"People are bugging you at school?"

"Not right now. And I do like him so it's okay. It kind of works out."

"It does. Do you want to keep talking or do you want to watch some TV?"

"TV works for me."

Stiles shows up right at nine. He actually shows up at ten of nine, but sits in his car for ten minutes like he isn't parked outside of a house full of werewolves who absolutely know he's out there. Derek pulls open the door too quickly probably and Stiles takes a step back. And then he smiles.

"You're wearing my shirt."

Derek jerked off to the thought of that smile.

Derek shrugs. He's a mess, but he hides that shit well. "I figured it couldn't hurt."

"It looks—I mean it looks tight, but it looks good. Cool. Are you ready?"

"Yeah." Derek turns inside. "Bye mom! I'll text you when I know what my plan is for the night."

Stiles swallows.

"Okay, boys! Have fun!"

Derek slams the door behind himself. It was replaced right after the fire damaged the front of the house, but it's already been replaced three times. Because when Laura and Cora fight, nothing is safe. Right now there are long claw marks across the front, but Talia has given up.

"Your mom doesn't care if you stay?" Stiles asks.

"She trusts me."

Stiles nods. He and Derek get in the car and it takes a while for them to actually start talking to each other.

"I—are you cool with this?" Stiles asks. "I mean, I thought it would be a good idea, but if you're not cool with it, then—."

"It's fine," Derek says. He rubs at his forehead. "Honestly, it's probably good. I need to be less scared."

Stiles reaches over and rubs the back of Derek's neck. "You've got me and I'm cool with leaving whenever you want."

"Thanks." Derek leans into the touch and Stiles doesn't move his hand away.

He loves it and hates it. Loves it because it’s nice and it feels like he needs it. And hates it for the same reasons. Also because he thinks of the way Kate would lick the back of his neck and call him a “pretty bitch.”

It’s humiliating and no one even knows except for the two of them. Of course people know. That’s part of the problem. Everyone knows he let a substitute teacher fuck him because he was desperate and stupid and that she tried to kidnap him and kill his family. They all know that Derek had no idea she was using him until it was almost too late. But they don’t know all the horrible little details that keep Derek awake at night.

He doesn’t have nightmares. People expect nightmares. His dreams are anxiety ridden, but probably in the same way other peoples’ are. He’s naked at school, all his teeth fall out, that sort of stuff. But the bad part is just before he falls asleep. When he tells himself how disgusting he is. He can’t stop it. Anxiety dreams are nothing compared to that.

They pull up to Erica's house. It's already loud and there are thirty cars parked on the street and in the yard. There are people on the porch and by the basement.

Derek gets out of the jeep and Stiles comes to stand next to him. He reaches over and takes Derek's hand.

"Ready to go sourwolf?"

Derek nods.

Chapter Text

Scott is bouncing on his heels at the door when Derek walks in. The whole pack is waiting for them, like they’re the only ones that matter, even though there are literally sixty other people milling around.

It’s kind of nice it’s own way. Derek has never felt like this before. He's had the same group of friends for forever, but he's only realizing now, as Scott pushes a shot glass and then a solo cup filled with foamy beer into his hand, that hasn't hung out with them like this in years. And he's never hung out with them since Stiles and Scott joined their group. He missed it. 

“Wolfsbane shit,” Scott says after Derek and Stiles throw back their shots and Erica curtsies.

“Thanks,” Derek says.

“You never actually come to these things,” Erica says, dragging him over to the thankfully empty couch.

There are people dancing and drinking. Jackson and Theo are involved in a very loud and bro-y sounding game of beer pong. Lydia is standing by, staring at her phone.

Stiles doesn’t look at her, Derek notices, and he feels a little smug at that.

Erica pulls Derek down and Stiles squishes close to him and Scott and Allison fall on top of each other in the empty space.

“Do you think this will be a regular thing?” Erica asks. “You know, if you’re dating Stiles.”

Derek shrugs. “Depends on how tonight goes.”

Erica nods. Then she points to Stiles. “This is the part where I tell you that if you hurt my best friend I will literally rip you to pieces.” She twirls her hair around one clawed finger.

Stiles gives Derek this kind of dopey looking smile. He's a good actor. “I don’t think he has to worry about that.”

Derek’s stomach swoops. Because there is no way he doesn’t come out of this without shedding some tears.

“Yeah,” Derek says and Stiles wraps an arm around his shoulders. “I’m not worried.”

Erica looks at Stiles’ arm and raises her eyebrows. “Okay.”

Stiles elbows Scott. “Bro.”

Scott looks away from Allison. “What?”

“You’re supposed to threaten Derek.”

“Why?” Scott looks aghast at the idea. “I wouldn’t do that.”

“No about hurting me.”

“He wouldn’t hurt you. Derek’s a good guy.”

Derek snorts and Stiles runs a hand over his face. “Christ, Scott.”

At some point, Derek is sitting with his legs over Stiles’ legs, his body twisted so he can rest against his shoulder. It’s nice even if it’s carefully crafted so that they look like a couple. Their arms are twisted together, Stiles runs his fingers over the inside of Derek’s wrist. Derek shudders and Stiles has to feel it. 

Erica and Boyd have disappeared somewhere and Allison and Scott are playing beer pong and being destroyed in the other room. So it’s just them, on the couch still. They were talking about something, but Derek lost his train of thought and silence felt comfortable.

Derek finishes the beer in his cup. It’s his second and he’s a little drunk. He wants to defend himself by shouting at people that he doesn’t ever drink so it’s not really that big a deal that he can barely handle two shitty beers and a shot. But he thinks that might not make his case. 

“You want me to get you another drink?” Stiles asks. Stiles is still nursing his first drink, the cup still half full. The beer is probably a little warm and stale by now.

“No,” Derek says, he pulls himself away from Stiles and Stiles’ hand stays against his arm a little too long. “I’ll get it myself.”

“I’m your big, sexy alpha,” Stiles says with this little smile that breaks Derek’s heart. “I should be getting you a drink.”

“It’s okay,” Derek says and he turns before Stiles can see the color rise to his cheeks and the tips of his ears.

Derek heads to the kitchen and over to the counter covered in mixers and bottles of liquor. He knows that it’s a bad choice, but maybe he could be drunk and a little normal. Sitting with Stiles feels like the best thing that’s happened to him in a long time and he’s not sure he wants to give it up.

Derek blames the alcohol and the memory of Stiles' hands on his skin for not smelling Ennis come into the kitchen. He's with this other alpha, Kali, with him. Derek isn't sure what their deal is. But he knows that there's something going on. Not that he really wants to know the details of Ennis's private life. 

Derek turns to face them and he can tell that at least Ennis didn't expect him to be in here. He didn't follow Derek to the kitchen to corner him with Kali.

"I didn't know Derek Hale went to parties," Kali says like she's speaking to Ennis, but she's staring at Derek. "Thought the shame kept him at home."

Derek wants to back up. The alcohol is not going to help him in this fight. But he doesn't look away, doesn't flinch.

"Maybe he's here trolling for an alpha," Kali says, tilting her head to the side, taking a single, slow step closer. "I mean, it's not like we haven't all marked our calendars."

"We could share him," Ennis says. He smiles. "You'd like that, wouldn't you, omega?"

"I have an alpha," Derek says. He tries to move, but Ennis's arm shoots out and blocks his way.

"You don't have an alpha," says Ennis. "Stilinski is barely an alpha. He's weak. Fucking useless at everything."

Derek bristles at that. "He's an alpha."

Ennis leans in close. Let's his breath out over Derek's ear. "Bet he can't fuck you like you need it. We'd give it to you so fucking good, baby."

"Derek!"

Ennis backs off right away. It's better than the last time this happened. But Derek's cheeks flush this time. Somehow this is worse. 

Stiles looks livid, though, and that's kind of nice. He stands between Derek and Ennis and Kali. "Ennis, you piece of shit. If you put one fucking finger on Derek again I will break your hand."

"I'd like to see you try," Ennis says, ears elongating, eyes flashing red.

"Derek isn't yours," Stiles says.

Ennis's face returns to normal. "He doesn't exactly smell like he's yours either. You haven't claimed him. Hell, I don't think you've even fucked him."

"It's not your business," Stiles says and Derek wants to melt into a puddle and die.

Ennis looks between them. "Fucking used omega and defective alpha—huh. Kind of makes sense."

He nudges Kali and they leave.

Stiles puts a hand on Derek’s arm and Derek flinches away from him.

“I need air,” Derek says and pushes out through the door and into the yard.

It’s not that much better. There are still people milling around. They all watch as Stiles shouts after Derek and follows him. Derek keeps walking away from the party, towards Stiles car. It’s easier to hide among all the cars. At least people can’t really see him there. They can’t notice the way his hands are shaking and his balance is a little off.

“Derek!"

Derek turns, anger rushing up to the surface. But he doesn't yell or punch or roar. He doesn't do anything he wants to do.

"Go back inside, Stilinski."

"No. Derek. I know that it sucks that you need me to come in and save you. I understand that—."

"You don't understand," Derek says before he can stop himself.

Stiles runs a hand through his hair. "Then help me understand. This isn't going to work if you don't let me do what you asked me to do. And I know that you don't want it, but I'm trying and you don't give me anything. I don't think you even know what you really want from me."

Derek feels sick. He was so stupid to drink and come to this party and ever think that he could be normal again.

"I don't," Derek says, letting his body relax. He leans against the jeep.

Stiles wraps his arms tight around Derek's shoulders. And he tended up again, unsure of what to do. He doesn't hate it, really. It's almost nice, it just prickles at something in his stomach.

"What are you doing?" Derek asks.

"Hugging you."

"I know you're—why are you hugging me?"

"You need it. Stilinski hugs have magical properties. Oh—wait. Is this a touch thing? I thought—do you—."

"It's not." Derek relaxes a little. "You caught me off guard."

"Ennis is a piece of shit, Derek."

Derek nods. "I know."

"And I know it still sucks. So like I'm not saying that to not make it suck. I'm saying it because it's a fact."

"Thanks."

Stiles pulls away. "Tomorrow, my dad is gone all day. You can come over without any werewolfy super hearing powers listening to us. It'll be good. We can really talk about it."

Derek nods. "Yeah. We can do that."

"Cool. Um, do you want to go back in?"

Derek shakes his head. "Can you just drive me home?"

Stiles nods. I can do that."

Derek stays silent for most of the ride home. But Stiles gets out of the car too when they stop in front of his house. The lights are all off, but he hears heartbeats, knows that his mom is awake. He glances up at her bedroom window and he sees the curtain flutter. Cora's does the same.

"My mom is watching us," Derek whispers when Stiles walks around to him, hands in his pockets. "Cora is too."

"Gross, really? What if I was giving you a secret handy?"

"I think that she's a werewolf. She knows what's going on."

"Right."

"I don't think I'd let that happen anyway."

"A secret handy?"

"Not out here."

Stiles shakes his head. "No. I'd—if you and I—ugh. Never mind."

Derek wants to know what Stiles would do to him. Maybe take him apart slowly. Derek doesn't like to imagine that Stiles would be too rough. Not at first.

"You should kiss me," Derek says, his voice gruffer than he means. "To—uh—for—."

Stiles grabs the front of his shirt and Derek lets himself be pulled in. Stiles smashes their lips together. It's not a great kiss at first, too toothy and just on the edge of unpleasant. But then Stiles slows down, brings his hand up to cup the side of Derek's face.

Derek doesn't know where to put his hands. He's never really thought about it before and now he doesn't even know. He has no idea. He doesn't even know what to do with his hands ever. Hands are so weird. So are fingers. Why do they even have nails?

Stiles scratches his nails at the back of Derek's neck. He pulls back and stares at Derek. Derek feels like he missed something. 

"You okay?" Stiles asks. He looks totally composed and cool and like he knows what's going on, but Derek can hear the rapid rhythm of his heart.

Derek nods. "Yeah. I'm fine."

Derek is thankful that Stiles is a human. He can't hear the stutter in Derek's heartbeat as he says those words.

Chapter Text

Derek avoids Sheriff Stilinski. His mom sent over cupcakes to the Stilinski house last year after the sheriff pulled Derek from Kate's car. But Derek doesn't like seeing him, he doesn't like remembering it. And he remembers it. He was feverish at the point so the memories are fuzzy, but they're there.

The look on Sheriff Stilinski's face when he saw Derek, huddled in the front seat of Kate's SUV. The pity that was there. And he remembers the way he swore under his breath and if Derek was human he wouldn't have heard it. But he heard. Just before Sheriff Stilinski put on his sheriff voice and said, "It's okay, son. I got you."

So he was fine with going to the Stilinski house, when it was going to be just him and Stiles. But he pulls up and the sheriff’s cruiser is in the driveway and that’s not what Derek wanted.

He considers leaving, but Stiles is pulling open the front door like he’s been waiting from him, so he can’t. Stiles grins at him and waits on the porch for Derek to drag himself out of his car. Derek has his backpack slung over his shoulder. The lie Derek told his mom was that they’re doing homework and he’s kind of hoping they have time to get some done. Stiles is much better at bio than Derek.

Stiles jogs down the steps and stops in front of Derek. His hand reaching out like he's going to touch him. His eyes meet Derek's. And that's how Derek knows he's totally gone on this idiot. Stiles gets things without Derek having to say anything. He knows that after last night Derek might need permission before touching.

Derek nods and Stiles' hand slides over his elbow. Derek suppresses a shiver.

"I didn't know your dad would be here," Derek says, voice low.

Stiles frowns. "He wanted to have lunch with us. Is that okay?"

"Yeah," Derek says. "It's fine. I just—it's fine."

"Okay." Stiles is standing really close and it's doing things to Derek. Emotional things.

They kissed last night. And it was just kissing, but it felt like something more.

"I can hear his heart beating," Derek says.

"Can I kiss you again?" Stiles asks. "You know—make us look like a couple for my dad."

Derek nods.

"You have to look happier," Stiles says.

And Derek lets himself think about what it would be like if this was real. How things would be different and probably the same. Stiles actually liking him. Stiles not just doing this because he feels like he hast to.

Derek smiles into the closed-mouth kiss and Stiles hands come up to tug at the front of his shirt a little before they break away from each other.

“You okay?” Stiles asks.

Derek nods and Stiles turns to face his house.

Stiles presses his fingertips to Derek's like Erica does and Derek doesn't know how Stiles learned that but he's grateful for it. He needs that reminder even after they kissed again. For the second time. Just the second time. There weren't even tongues for Christ's sake. 

Derek is a mess. And he's shaking the sheriff's hand. 

"Sir," Derek says. Because he's polite and his mom would murder him if he just curled into a ball and wept like he wants to. 

"You can just call me John, Derek," he says. "It's okay." 

"Oh. Yeah. John." 

The sheriff looks him up and down once. "You doing okay?" 

Derek nods. "Yeah. I'm fine." 

"I made sandwiches and salad," Stiles says, waving his arms as he talks on his way into the kitchen. "Dad can we have beers?" 

"It's noon and you're only eighteen, Stiles." 

"Come on, dad. If we're under twenty-one at our wedding you're not going to allow us to have booze?" 

Derek chokes on nothing and has to steady himself on a chair. Stiles lets out a loud laugh. 

"You may have made a mistake, son," the sheriff says, clapping Derek on the shoulder. "Stiles is an idiot." 

Derek nods. "I'm trying to look past it." 

"Oh please," Stiles says. He pulls some things from the fridge and a plate of warm sandwiches from the oven and sets them on the table. "Look at your alpha providing for you, Derek." 

"Once an alpha brought me a deer," Derek says like it's a funny thing that happened and he's cool and is able to say off-hand things like that. Even though he was only thirteen and had just presented and was a mess for weeks afterwards. The bloody corpse was horrifying and disgusting, but gave Cora and Laura something to laugh about for years. Literally. 

The sheriff laughs. "You might have to step up your game, Stiles." 

"I will not be murdering Bambi for you," Stiles says. "Is Coke good? In lieu of beer? Dad we can't have Coke at our wedding." 

"Sparkling apple juice for the toast." 

"Coke is good," says Derek. "I don't expect you to murder any deer for me." 

"Thank you." Stiles sits down, handing around their drinks. "So, dad, any good cases at work? Any gross deaths?" 

Lunch is easier than Derek expected. The sheriff doesn’t bring up the whole Kate thing and Derek probably should have assumed that he wouldn’t. But he’s still a little stiff and nervous even after the deer story and Stiles keeps eyeing him while he eats his sandwich and it’s a relief when the Sheriff stands up to go to work.

“Do you want to go upstairs?” Stiles asks after his dad leaves.

Derek nods. “Yeah. I should—I mean if this is—I should tell you a thing.”

Stiles gives him this smile that kind of confused and kind of nice. “Okay.”

Up in his room, Stiles sits down on his bed and Derek paces a few times.

Derek stops and balls his hands into fists. “Okay.”

“Derek. You don’t have to tell me anything you don’t want to tell me.”

“No. I should. I mean—I should have told you anyway. Your dad—I don't know how much you know, but he was the one who stopped Kate. He and Parrish and a few others. But he got me out of her car and brought me to the hospital."

Stiles picks at an invisible thread on his comforter. "I didn't know he brought you to the hospital. Why didn't he call an ambulance?"

"I was—." Derek cuts himself off. Because he doesn't know how to phrase it. 

"You don't have to tell me everything Derek."

"I think he was worried about leaving me alone with anyone between there and the hospital."

Stiles nods. "I didn't think—I mean I knew he was there because he's the sheriff and I know he was working. But he doesn't talk about it. And I don't ask. So I'm sorry. I didn't think to tell you that he'd be here."

"It's fine. I've seen him since and everything."

"Your mom sent cupcakes after."

Derek snorts and sits down in the chair at Stiles’ computer. “Yeah. She’s like that.”

Stiles barks out a laugh and stretches to grab a notebook by the side of his pillow. Derek looks away from the patch of skin that's exposed when his t-shirt rides up on his stomach.

“Okay,” Stiles says, opening the notebook. “I made a list. Because I thought it’d be better if we had it writing. What were you thinking about? You know, convincing people we’re dating wise?”

“I don’t think we spend enough time together,” Derek blurts and it’s partially because of the whole fake boyfriends thing, but also because he wants to spend more time with Stiles.

“Yeah,” Stiles says. “I mean we have lunch together already and those two classes, but like maybe we should walk together between classes. Can I—like—put my arm around you or whatever? I mean you can say no. That’s fine. I get it.”

“Yeah,” Derek says. “You can put your arm around me. Maybe just—don’t surprise me.”

“Okay. I won’t do that. And we’re doing the clothes sharing thing. If you’re okay with the kissing it might be good to do it before games or after practice or whatever. It doesn’t have to be a big thing. Like just dating people kisses. Not like full on making out in front of everything. I don’t think I’d be into that either. I mean Scott and Allison are annoying enough.”

“Kissing is good,” Derek says. “We should—we should go on dates.”

This is probably pathetic on Derek’s part.

“Places where people see us,” Stiles says with a nod and makes a note in his notebook. “We should hold hands at school. Are you okay with that?”

“Yeah. That’s fine.”

“I have sweaty palms. I apologize in advance.”

Derek feels himself laugh despite the weird uneasy feeling in his stomach. “It’s okay.”

“What about sleeping together?” Stiles asks and then waves his hands. “No! I mean—not like—jesus—fuck. I just meant like sleeping in the same bed. Not like penetration. Oh jesus. That made it worse. Oh god.”

“Sleepovers could be fine,” Derek says because he just wants Stiles to stop talking.

"I don't know how my dad is going to feel about sleep overs," Stiles says, scratching his chin.

"You just suggested them."

"I know. I just—I mean I know we won't actually be having sex, but he'll think we are."

"If you claim me my mom will be fine with it," Derek says and honestly he’s been thinking about it a lot. He thought about it all night. Stiles claiming him would solve a lot of his problems. 

Stiles eyes go wide. ”What?"

"If you—she’ll let me sleep over if we’re mates. If you do a claiming bite.”

"Shouldn't I ask for your hand or something?"

"It's not marriage."

"Yeah, but it's permanent."

Derek shrugs. "Yeah. But it'll help me."

"But what if—I mean you're going to college. What if you meet someone?"

"I don't know if that's in the cards for me." He doesn't mean it to sound so depressing. But he's pretty sure that if there's anyone out there for him, that person is sitting in front of him right now, contemplating giving him a fake/real mating bite to keep other people away.

Stiles nods. “Okay. But—yeah. Okay. You think it’ll help you?”

“I mean it’ll probably help me forever, right? If I’m some other alpha’s property someone’s not going to come after me.”

Stiles makes this kind of strangled noise. “You’re not my property.”

“This probably isn’t the time for like an omega rights discussion. I agree with you. But it’s kind of how it is.”

“Yeah." Stiles looks sad for a minute before he takes a big breath. "Okay. When do you want to do it?”

“Just do it now?” Derek stands up and starts pulling up the bottom of his shirt.

“Now? Jesus.”

Derek pauses. “Why not?”

“It’s just a big thing. My dad might be pissed. Your parents might be pissed. We’re basically claiming eloping right now.”

“Stiles. I’m an eighteen year old omega. Someone should have already done this.”

Stiles doesn't say anything about that even though Derek knows he wants to. "Okay. Yeah. Let's do it." 

"You should stand behind me," Derek says. He pulls his shirt over his head and looks down at his feet. "That's where—I mean if we did this the way it's supposed to be done."

Stiles stands behind Derek. He runs his hands over Derek's arms. "I think that I'd want to see you. If it was really happening."

The least the world could do for Derek is open up a Derek size sink hole and just swallow him up. He deserves it at this point really.

"Make sure you break the skin," Derek says, swallowing.

"I don't want to hurt you."

"It's fine."

Stiles' breath ghosts over Derek's skin and Derek shivers. He wants to pull away and lean into it at the same time. He wants Stiles to just bend him over and fuck him.

Stiles whispers Derek's name into his skin. His lips touch the place where he's going to bite first. And then his teeth are there, biting down. Hard.

Stiles' grip on Derek's arm tightens until his nails are digging into his skin. His chest is flush against Derek's back and—Jesus Christ—he's half hard. Derek feels every bit of it even though Stiles seems to be somewhere else completely. He wants to push back against the swell of Stiles' cock, sink down on it, keep it buried inside of himself.

Derek might have to bite off most of a moan when Stiles' teeth finally break his skin. When Stiles growls and his tongue starts running over the bite, stinging and making Derek want to weep with how turned on he is.

Stiles stops.

He takes a step back and lets out a shaky breath.

"Shit, Derek," he says. "Sorry about that."

Derek turns. Stiles is standing with a pillow over his lap.

"Sorry," he says again.

Derek shrugs. "It's just biology."

A blush blossoms on Stiles' neck and cheeks in splotches. "Yeah. Biology."

"Do you have a first aid kit?" Derek asks, gesturing to his neck. "I'm going to clean it out and cover it up."

"In the bathroom," Stiles says. "I just—I'll be fine in a second."

"It's cool."

In the bathroom Derek doesn’t jerk off like he wants too. They’re bonded. He can feel the low hum of Stiles’ presence in the other room and Stiles would know. Even with his human nose he would be able to smell Derek through the claiming bite.

So Derek does what he said he was doing. He cleans the bite between his shoulder and neck. He runs his fingers over the broken skin and clenches his teeth around a moan. He has to splash water over his face before covering the bite with gauze and medical tape.

When he goes back into Stiles’ room, Stiles is stretched out on his bed. He sits up when Derek comes in and pulls his shirt on.

“You should stay,” Stiles says. “I was going to take a nap, but like this was part of the plan, right?”

“Okay,” Derek says. He hesitates a minute before crawling into the bed with Stiles. Stiles spoons up behind him, but he doesn’t touch him. And Derek gets that he’s doing it because he doesn’t want to do something that Derek doesn’t want. But this feels worse. More intimate than if Stiles had an arm wrapped around him.

“You okay?” Stiles asks for like the fifth time since he showed up.

“Yeah,” Derek says. “I’m fine.”

He doesn’t say that he feels Stiles more than he did before. He smells different, better. Even when Derek liked him before it’s more now. It’s like his body is fully settled next to him and Stiles could take care of him for the rest of his life.

Stiles gestures at Derek's neck. "So Kate never…?"

A good way to kill the mood is to talk about Kate. ”No. Probably should've been a sign."

Stiles doesn't say anything. He just traces his fingers over the edge of the bandages on Derek's neck. Derek shivers and closes his eyes.

"What do you want to major in?" Derek asks because they should talk about things that aren't Kate. His voice comes out of him like he's being strangled.

"Forensic science maybe," Stiles says. His hand drifts down Derek's arm. "Do you mind this? The touching?"

"No. I don't. Not here."

"My mom was an omega rights lawyer," Stiles says.

And Derek remembers her a little from when they were younger. He mostly remembers when she died. Her deteriorating health and the sheriff's grief were stories he heard from his mother. He knew she was an omega rights lawyer. He thinks it's a mainly useless job, but he doesn't tell Stiles that.

"I don't know if I'd be specifically an omega rights lawyer, but I wouldn't mind being a human rights lawyer," Stiles says. "What about you?"

"Creative writing or English probably," says Derek.

"Your dad's an English professor, right?"

"Yeah. I wouldn't mind that life."

"You could be constantly mad at people for being idiots, but also keep it quiet if you want to. I can see that."

Stiles runs his fingers up and down Derek's arm. "Do you have practice tomorrow?" he asks around a yawn.

"Yeah. You?"

"Not until Tuesday."

"If you wanted to be—I mean you know, since you're supposed to be my mate and all you could come watch. Sometimes Lydia's there to wait for Allison."

"Okay," Stiles says. "Yeah. That'd be cool."

"I'm falling asleep," Derek says, settling back. Stiles feels so warm and safe. He's never been so comfortable.

"Me too," Stiles says. "I think that we should definitely do sleepovers because I'm so fuckin' comfy and sleepy right now. I'll sleep so well."

"Yeah."

"Maybe one day this week?"

"If you want you can come over for dinner and stay over after practice on Wednesday."

"Yeah," Stiles says, pressing his face against the back of Derek's neck. "That sounds good."

Derek wakes up as Stiles moves away from him. His back immediately feels cold and because he’s sleep-stupid he tries to push back into Stiles’ heat.

“Sorry,” Stiles says, his voice a whisper. “I’ll be right back.”

Stiles leaves the door open and Derek hears the bathroom door shut. He sits up in Stiles’ bed and tries to wake himself up. His brain feels weird and fuzzy and his stomach and shoulder hurt and he just can feel Stiles down the hall.

He didn’t even get any homework done. He pulls all his stuff together and sits on the edge of the bed until Stiles comes back in the room.

“I should go,” he says and Stiles just nods, like he’s not fully awake either. “Okay. Bye.”

He practically runs out of Stiles’ house and he feels like an idiot. But then he’s half way down the street when his phone buzzes with a text from Stiles.

Stilinski: I’m going to start texting you about dumb stuff because that’s what I do. You should probably know that about me.

And then Derek gets about fifty texts that he will cherish for the rest of his life about comics and feminism and penises.

The texts are a nice addition to the fact that Derek can feel Stiles’ presence. Even as he gets further away from him. He knows exactly where Stiles is. And Derek knows deep down that it’s because they’re true mates.

Which might not be a thing he believed in really until right now. Even with Kate. He wanted to be mates, but he didn’t believe that they were destined to be together. He didn’t feel it like this. And looking back on it every part of it feels cheaper now. Like Derek should have known that all he was feeling was lust and that Kate was using him. 

He wonders if the feelings are the same for Stiles. If Stiles can feel Derek the way Derek feels him. Derek doesn’t know how it works for humans. He barely knows how it works for werewolves. It’s not something that happens to everyone. It’s something for romance novels and soap operas. But the universe is really into dealing Derek shitty hands, so why wouldn’t he be true mates with someone who might not even be able to tell?

Instead of going straight home, Derek drives out into the preserve to call Laura. He needs to be as far away from the house or any other prying ears as possible.

"I think—I think this plan is backfiring on me."

"What plan?"

"The fake relationship plan."

"Oh right! That's a good one."

"It's not that good."

"Why not?"

“Stiles claimed me. I mean not like with the intention of it being forever. But he marked me."

"Derek."

"It seemed like a really good idea at the time, but I like him, Laura. I should have picked someone I knew I didn't like. And like I just know where he is now. And I can feel him.”

"Or maybe you should actually be mates."

“I think we are mates. Like you know in the true mates capacity of the word.

“Oh. Well shit. Does he know?”

“I don’t know. He’s human. I don’t know if humans pick up on this stuff.” 

“Maybe you should tell him?"

"I know that he doesn't want me like that."

"Do you really know that?"

Derek doesn’t know explicitly. But why would Stiles keep it to himself if he knew. ”Yeah. I do."

"Well…I don't know, kid. I'm sorry. This is all shitty."

Derek’s phone buzzes with another text from Stiles. ”It is."

Chapter Text

Stiles watches Derek leave and Stiles feels him drive away. His presence or whatever. And it makes his skin itch and his brain feel all fuzzy and he's just so fucking keyed up after that nap. What the fuck even happened? 

They're like real boyfriends—mates really—who never kiss. Except for twice and both times made Stiles want to cuddle Derek until they died or something. And he doesn't want to push Derek, he really doesn't. Because he understands. Like Derek is a little fucked up and and it totally understandable. It is 100% understandable. Stiles gets that they're not like going to be like a totally cute in love couple ever. Even if Derek loved him. Not that he does. Because that's just not who Derek is and honestly that makes Stiles like him more. 

But fuck. Stiles wishes he did. He bit him. He tasted his blood. And it was so weirdly sexy. Stiles is pretty sure that it was less the blood and more like the mating ritual thing. Because that's what people who are mates do. Typically when they're fucking. 

God. Stiles was so turned on. He's still like low-level horny. After sleeping with Derek. He's been kind of chubbed up since the biting happened and it's amazing that Derek didn't just punch him in the face because if Stiles had gone through what Derek went through and goes through he'd probably punch everyone he ever saw in the face. 

Stiles lies back in his bed and texts Derek something so inane that he doesn't even know what it is and oh god. Derek is so strong. He doesn't even know how strong he is. He goes to school every day and people eye him and shout at him and smell him. And Stiles smelled it too. Fuck. The second Derek showed up to school smelling like omega, Stiles was gone. He popped a knot that night and it was all downhill from there. 

But Derek deserves all the respect and Stiles knew it then. So he just stayed away. If something was going to happen between them then something would happen. And then over the years Stiles learned how smart he was and even though he was kind of an asshole he was an asshole in a good way. Like he would say snarky shit, but Derek's a good person.

Stiles noticed when Derek started hanging around with Kate. She wasn't subtle. Even when she was teaching, she'd run a hand down Derek's arm and Stiles would have to keep himself from murdering her. He knew. And he wishes he had told Derek, but Derek barely looked at him. He didn't care about Stiles. So Stiles didn't say anything and well…

Stiles doesn't know the whole story. He knows that she had Derek in her car and Derek wasn't in a position to get away from her. He knew that she had set a fire at the Hale house. There had been mountain ash involved, but the fire department was called, the ash barrier broken, everyone was fine. Only the side of the house had to be replaced. 

Derek was in Kate's car an hour before Stiles' dad caught up to them. He can't even imagine what Derek was thinking, how he felt. 

Stiles' dad came home that night, exhausted. He sat down on the couch and told Stiles to get him a beer and to grab one for himself. 

"Just sit with me," he said.

It had been weird and his dad was all silent. Eventually he said, "It could have been really bad today and it wasn't. I'm sure—I'm sure it'll be all over the school tomorrow. But when Derek gets back, just be kind to him. He'll need that." 

Stiles didn't know what had happened really at that point. He didn't get what his dad was talking about. But he agreed. And when Derek came back to school among whispers and even bolder alphas, Stiles tried to be kind. As kind as he could be without being totally overbearing. 

And the more time they spent in the same friend group, the more Stiles fell for him. Derek could have been destroyed by what happened to him. And he wasn't exactly in great shape. But he was okay. He survived and he didn't let any of the comments in the hallways break him. 

So it's not like Stiles could have ever said no to him. It's just that he thought maybe it wouldn't be so hard, pretending that he was Derek's mate. Especially because he already wanted it. So pretending wouldn't be that difficult. But it's worse. Worse because he wants it. 

And he might be a bad person. Because he really likes Derek and he claimed him and Derek doesn't like him. Derek was the one that suggested it though. And he'd have to be an idiot to not know how Stiles feels. But it feels wrong. Like he's lying and taking advantage of him. 

He stays in bed, texting Derek stupid shit so that maybe he'll feel normal. Until his dad gets home and he hears up some left over vegetable lasagna for them. 

"I have to talk to you about something," Stiles says, stabbing his food with his fork. 

"Is it about Derek?" 

His dad knows everything

"Yeah. Yeah, I—uh—well I claimed him. I gave him a mating bite." 

His dad puts his fork down. "Oh. How—I know there aren't many omegas so it's difficult to know all the—you're very young, Stiles. You and Derek. And I know that omegas and alphas mate young, but don't you feel a little like—not that I don't really like Derek, but—." 

"It's not real, dad." 

"What does that mean? Is that possible?" 

"Well, it's real. But like we're not—it's a lie. We're not dating or mates or whatever." 

"But I thought—." 

"Derek's getting harassed at school. And he's getting bugged by his parents and he doesn't want to worry about it. So he asked me to fake date him and then it turned into fake mates so we can smell like each other. And it's supposed to be fake, but I'm feeling really real things about it." 

"You're an idiot." 

"Thanks, dad. I really appreciate your safe fatherly advice." 

"Stiles, did you know you'd start feeling real things?" 

"I didn't know that I'd feel like love things."

"Love things?"

"Yeah. I just—I wanted to spend time with him. And it's so shitty of me. Because he doesn't know and he's just letting me do this stuff and I'm as bad as the other alphas." 

"You're not as bad as the other alphas. Do you think he feels the same way about you?"  

Stiles shakes his head. "I don't think so. I don't think Derek feels that way about anybody. And I wouldn't force it, you know. I get where he's coming from." 

"He's complicated." 

"Yeah." 

"You think you love him?" 

"Yeah. I really love him. I think that we're true mates. Like destiny type shit." 

"I can't imagine he doesn't feel it." 

"Yeah but even if part of him recognizes, it wouldn't it make sense that he doesn't care about it? He just wants to be keft alone. Or like maybe he doesn't know that we're true mates because he doesn't want us to be. I don't know. But I'm not going to force it." 

"Maybe you should talk to him about it?" 

"I can't screw this up. If he pushes me away then he's got this mating bite he'll have to explain for the rest of the school year. I mean I know it's forever, but it'll keep alpha's away if they don't know that I'm not really a thing, you know?" 

"I don't think I follow your logic, but you should tell him. If you continue this when you have feelings and he doesn't know, you're taking advantage of him." 

"Yeah. You're right." 

"Of course I am. If this is going to be—do we plan a wedding?" 

"No! Oh god. I don't even think Derek would want to marry me. Even if we were like officially really mates. I don't think he'd want that. I don't think he likes all the omega traditions. And you're right. We're young." 

"I am right." 

When Stiles goes to bed he sits up for a while, staring at the texts he sent Derek and Derek's few responses. It doesn't seem like Derek doesn't want Stiles to talk to him. He's just better at listening than talking and that kind of works out. 

Stiles can't text Derek about his feelings. If it's something that's going to happen then it'll just happen. 

Chapter Text

Derek waits to tell his family about the bite. Even though he and his mom sit through breakfast on Monday morning together. Derek wearing a t-shirt and Stiles' hoodie to cover up the mark.

His mom scents the air when he sits down across from her with his cereal. She puts down her paper.

"You smell like an alpha," she says. And Derek wonders what it's like for her. Because despite being The Alpha of Beacon Hills, she's a beta. Derek's dad is a beta. His sisters are betas. Peter's an alpha, but he's never around and it's not like he's typical of anything.

Derek is almost certain that his mother is more lost in this than he is. She has no idea what's happening to him. No real idea. She can read as much as she can, try to understand what Derek's going through. But she doesn't really know.

"Well I'm kind of dating Stiles," he says and it feels right. He wants to say more. He wants to say that Stiles is his mate and they'll probably be together forever and they'll probably adopt little werewolf babies together because Derek wants kids he can run through the woods with. But he's getting ahead of himself.

Stiles doesn't even like him like that.

"You two seemed really close the other night," she says.

"Mom."

She puts her hands up. "Okay. But if you want to talk about it, we can talk about it. I'd like to know what this alpha's intentions are towards my son. Maybe you should invite him over for dinner."

“I’ll ask, but don’t be weird." Even though he already did ask. But whatever. His mom doesn’t need to know that.

She smiles. “Okay. I’ll try my hardest, but the same can’t be said for Peter.”

“Mom. You can’t invite Peter over.”

“Stiles has to meet the family.”

“Peter doesn’t have to be family if we don’t want. I’m okay with that.”

Derek’s phone buzzes with a text.

Stilinski: Do you want me to pick you up for school? Because I’m on my way over.

“Is that Stiles?” his mom asks because he’s blushing, he can feel it. She pats him on the arm. “I’m proud of you, Derek.”

He nods and looks down at the long string of texts from Stiles that didn't end until well after midnight. "Yeah. Thanks, mom." 

“I told my dad about the claiming thing,” Stiles says in the car.

“I haven’t told my parents yet." Stiles face falls and a guilty feeling settles in Derek's gut. “I just—it’s going to be a whole thing. How did your dad take it?”

“He thinks we’re too young.”

“I’m practically a spinster.”

Stiles smirks. “Yeah. You are pretty old. I mean you should have gotten that bite on your birthday back in December.”

“You know when my birthday is?”

“We hang out with the same people.”

“Oh. Right. Yeah.”

“You don’t know when mine is?”

“I feel like this makes me a bad person.”

Stiles laughs. “No. You’re a pretty shitty boyfriend, but it’s fine. It’s in October.”

“You’re older than me?”

“Yeah. Who knew. It’s because of your freaky werewolf stuff that you can grow that dumb beard.” Stiles reaches out like he’s going to rub his hand on Derek’s beard, but he hesitates and pulls back.

“You can touch me,” Derek says, looking down at his hands. “You don’t always have to ask.”

"Okay. I just—I know it's—well it's more than a thing right? But like I don't want you to be uncomfortable."

"I trust you," Derek says and Stiles scratches his hands through his hair.

When Derek walks onto the basketball court for practice his eyes immediately find Stiles and Lydia in the bleacher. Stiles grins and waves like a dork and Derek blushes. Lydia pulls Stiles' hand down and rolls her eyes. Derek’s whole body relaxes.

He hasn’t seen Stiles since they had English that morning and he felt tense without him. He always feels tense, but it was a different sort of feeling. Like something was missing. 

"Your boyf came to see you," Erica says, standing at Derek's side.

Derek shrugs. "Mate. I think."

Her eyes go wide. "I'd hit you, but I don't think you'd react well. I can't believe you didn't tell me! I knew you looked too happy."

"Are you cool with it?"

"I kind of wish you had talked to me about it first, but it's cool. I trust this. Weirdly enough. At least I make better decisions than you."

Derek nods. “That’s true.

Erica reaches down and presses their fingertips together. “I’m actually really happy for you, bro. This takes a lot of pressure off of you right?”

“Yeah. It does.”

“Derek!” Allison shouts. “Can you come over here and have a meeting with me and Jennifer?”

Derek nods. Even though he knows it’ll be less of a meeting and more of him being told what everyone else is going to be told first. Especially since he was pissed about Jennifer in the first place.

“I tallied up the votes and we’re going to do a Pussycat Dolls/Britney Spears mashup,” Allison says and Derek would never admit it out loud, but he voted for Britney. He will always vote for Britney.

“Okay,” Derek says.

“That’s it?” Allison asks. “Just ‘okay?’”

“Yeah,” Derek says. “It’s fine.”

Allison looks at Derek and then up at Stiles in the bleachers and then back at Derek. “Okay. If this is what this is doing, then I’m not going to fight it.”

“Great.”

“Jennifer is going to walk the group through the routine, but I thought you and I could look over her choreography and make tweaks and stuff, okay?"

“Okay,” says Derek because he’s agreeable as fuck and really it doesn’t matter to him. He wants a win, but he doesn’t feel like he needs to get angry about anything either.

“Remind me to thank Stiles,” Allison says with a smirk.

Derek spends most of practice going over Jennifer’s choreography, making little tweaks here and there. But she has a solid six minute performance, which is how long they’re supposed to take. And it actually looks good. Derek only actually makes his changes because he doesn’t want Allison to think he’s become a total pushover.

The rest of practice is spent working on blocking some of the more difficult parts of the choreography.

By the time they’re half way through even Erica and Derek are sweating.

Erica does a quick sprint and then backflips and Derek is supposed to catch her and toss her in the air because if they’ve got weres they’re going to use them. Except either Erica overshoots it or Derek is standing in the wrong place because Erica completely misses him. She goes sliding across the floor and there’s the distinct sound of bone cracking when she hits the wall.

Erica stands up slowly, cradling her arm and glaring at Jennifer. There is gold bleeding into her brown eyes and she’s looking a little too hairy for school grounds.

“Fuck you,” Erica says to Jennifer. “I just want to say that very sincerely. Fuck you. This sucks.”

Jennifer gives her this weird almost evil smile that has Derek walking over to Erica even though she’s going to be fine.

“This is why we don’t have humans doing these things,” Jennifer says.

“Wolves can still die,” Erica says. This probably is not a thing that would kill her. 

Derek puts a hand on her arm and pulls some of the pain. “Are you okay?”

Erica growls low in her chest. “I’m fine. It’s healing. Stop taking care of me.”

Derek backs off. “Sorry.”

“It’s not your fault. I think that bitch is evil.”

“I think she’s just driven.”

“Ugh. That’s the same thing.”

“Come on, you two!” Jennifer shouts. “From the top.”

Derek stands in the same place and Erica gets ready to do her backflips.

“You’re not in quite the right place,” Jennifer says.

Her hands touch his sides and Derek’s stomach lurches. But he moves where she tells him to move. What else is he going to do? He kind of wants to vomit, which is really too much of a go-to reaction for him. It just makes his skin crawl.

Stiles stands up in the bleachers, but he looks like he’s waiting for Derek to do something before he comes down.

Derek lets it go and when Jennifer’s hands are gone he doesn’t quite relax, but her hands are gone. The only problem is that this time he’s not ready for Erica and they’re both in the right spots. So when she hits him with her whole body, Derek goes flying backwards.

Right into Jennifer.

“Oh my god!” Erica screams. She’s somewhere to Derek’s right.

Derek is just trying to stand up and apologize to Jennifer and help her up at the same time without touching her. But she has no problem touching him. She smooths her hands over his shoulders and touches his arms and fixes the bottom of his shirt.

Derek looks up at the bleachers and Stiles is still standing, but he’s moving down towards them. Derek gives him a little shake of his head and Stiles stops. He turns back to Jennifer.

“Sorry,” Derek says.

“Don’t worry about it,” she says with a little smile. “I’m resilient. Are you okay?”

“I’m fine. Thanks.”

“Maybe we should call it a day,” Allison says, worrying her lip with her teeth. “This is getting dangerous.”

“We’ll get there,” Jennifer says. “We have how many weeks?”

“Nine,” Allison says. “And if we make it states are in eleven weeks.”

Jennifer smiles. “We’ll be great.”

Derek is drying his hair with a towel in the locker room when he hears Allison shriek. "Stiles! What the fuck!"

Derek stands by his locker because he knows Stiles is coming for him. He appears at the end of the row of lockers. The girls around him, except Erica, look scandalized. Erica is just in her bra and underwear fixing her makeup and Stiles doesn't even notice her.

Stiles drops his bag in front of Derek and pulls off his shirt.

Derek sucks in a breath.

"Wear my shirt," Stiles says, shoving it in Derek's face.

"What?"

"Wear my shirt, Derek. Please."

"Will you wear mine?" Derek asks, digging his shirt out of his bag and handing it to Stiles.

Stiles nods and takes it. They only break eye contact to pull the shirts on and then Stiles sighs. He reaches out to Derek's sides and waits for Derek to nod before running his hands over him.

"What was that about?" Derek asks.

"I could just smell her all over you."

"No mating in the locker room!" Allison shouts. "Stiles!"

Stiles grins. He kisses Derek quick. "I'll be outside, dude."

Stiles is waiting out by his jeep, wearing Derek’s shirt. He pulls Derek in and kisses him. And God. It’s filthy. There are tongues this time. Stiles licks into Derek’s mouth right away, his fingers dig into Derek’s shirt and Derek just sighs. He can’t help that when he kisses Stiles his body goes all soft and pliant.

It feels so fucking good to kiss him. It gives him something to concentrate on. For those few moments they’re touching Derek doesn’t have anything to worry about. He doesn’t have his usual hangups and anxieties. 

He just trusts Stiles so much. He trusts him with his body and he hasn’t felt like that ever.

Stiles breaks away from him. He whispers, “Everyone is watching. Fucking Jennifer too.”

Right. Because this is fake. They're putting on a show for everyone who might touch Derek without permission again.

He still trusts Stiles. If he gets hurt because of this it’s because he let himself. Not because Stiles was trying to hurt him.

“You don’t like Jennifer?” Derek asks, going around to the passenger’s side.

Stiles gets behind the wheel and starts the car. “I don’t think you do either.”

“Well she wasn’t making Erica launch herself at your chest.”

“I get weird vibes from her. Do you get weird vibes? Like maybe she’s not human vibes?”

“She’s not a were.”

“Yeah, but she’s like too weird. I don’t know. I just don’t like her. And she was touching you so much and like I know that mostly it’s for show, but like instinctually I just want to wrap you up in all my blankets to get her stink off of you.”

“Maybe you should bring over a blanket on Wednesday night,” Derek says. “You know you can leave it at my house and you can take one of mine for when we don’t do the sleeping together thing.”

“That’s a good idea.”

“I know.”

“Are you going to talk to your parents about me today?” Stiles asks.

“Yeah.” Derek still isn’t exactly sure how he’s going to approach the subject with his parents. It probably isn’t something that can be done lightly. “I just have to figure it out.”

“They won’t hate me right? I’ll feel like shit if they hate me.”

“They’ll probably be really happy. I’m just trying to figure out how to deal with it.” Derek flips through his texts with Laura, which mostly consist of him freaking out about Stiles. “Maybe you should just drop me off and we’ll hang out tomorrow? Do you want to pick me up for school again?”

“Yeah,” Stiles says. “Do you want me to bring you coffee?”

“I’m not really a coffee drinker.”

Stiles looks up at the ceiling and away from the road like he’s cursing something. “Of course you’re not. Do you drink tea?”

“Yeah. Green tea usually.”

“I’ll bring you green tea.”

Derek blushes even though it’s just him and Stiles and no one else needs to see him blush to believe that they’re fake dating. “Thanks.”

Derek waits until dinner the next night to tell his family about the claiming bite and mating thing. He didn’t factor in Peter coming over, but he told himself all day he was going to do it, so he can’t stop himself.

His mom is pouring wine for his dad and Peter and laughing at something that happened to Peter, though Derek can’t really remember what they were talking about because he's freaking the fuck out. Cora is texting under the table like she’s going to get away with it.

“I have to tell you guys something,” Derek says. He has Stiles’ hoodie on again, but this time his t-shirt underneath doesn’t hide the mark on his shoulder all that well.

His dad gives him this look like he knows. Derek’s mom might be his confidant, but his dad is the one who actually kind of gets him. In his own quiet way.

“What is it?” his mom asks and she might know too. She puts down her wine and has this weird watery twinkle in her eyes.

“Um—well—Stiles and I—just—here. Look.”

He shrugs off the hoodie and reveals the side of the claiming bite on his neck.

Cora finally looks up from his phone. “Holy. Fuck.” And maybe she’s freaking out even more because she knows that the whole thing was supposed to be fake and maybe Derek is in way too deep.

“You didn’t talk to us about this,” his mom says. The watery twinkle is gone and replaced with something like anger.

Derek doesn’t know if he expected that reaction. “Well, I’m eighteen and—.”

“Derek. You’re—you can’t just let someone claim you.”

“Why not?”

“Because you can’t. You’re supposed to register it." 

“We’ll register it when we’re ready to register it.”

“You’re too young.”

His dad puts a hand on his mom’s arm. “Talia, Derek is—.”

“Derek cannot make this decision for himself,” she says.

Derek clenches his fist on the table. “Yes I can. I did. I trust Stiles.”

“Derek, with your history."

“My history?”

“Do I need to say it out loud.”

“Kate,” Peter coughs. “Oh, sorry, excuse me.”

Tears burn at the back of Derek’s eyes. He didn’t expect this at all. And maybe all the being worried about him wasn’t coming from the place he thought it was coming from. Maybe his mom was worried about him moving on too soon.

“You kept bugging me about finding a mate,” Derek says. “I’m old for an omega.”

“You’re not that old for an omega. Not really. Maybe a few months older than is ideal, but that doesn’t mean anything.”

“It does when most omegas are mated by the time they turn eighteen.”

His dad frowns. “I didn’t think that was something you cared about.”

Derek’s face burns. “It’s not—or it wasn’t—I don’t know. It’s not. But I love Stiles and I’m pretty sure we’re true mates so it happened.”

“True mates?” Cora asks. “Mom. He’s lying.”

“I’m not lying,” Derek says. “Listen to my heart. We’re true mates and I love him and this happened so just back the fuck off.”

His mom sighs and sits back in her seat. She takes a gulp of her wine before she speaks. “I want him to come over for dinner. And I’m going to have a talk with you two about rushing into things. Does his father know?”

“Yeah.”

“When did this happen?”

“Sunday.”

“I knew it,” Cora says. “Everyone at school says you’ve been acting like you got—.”

Talia holds up a hand. “Cora!”

She rolls her eyes and starts texting furiously.

Talia levels her gaze with Derek. “I will not back off, Derek. But you’re right. You’re eighteen. You can make your own decisions, no matter how brash they may be. But we are understandably worried about you.”

“Yeah. I know. But Stiles isn’t Kate.”

“I know. But that doesn’t mean you won't get hurt.”

“I know.”

“When should we invite Stiles over for dinner?”

“What about tomorrow?” Derek asks probably too fast. “Could he sleep over?”

Peter starts laughing so hard he has to put his head down on the table. His mom and dad exchange a look and Cora looks like she’s ready to flip out.

“You want him to sleep over?” his mom asks mostly with her eyebrows. Derek gets that from her and not from his dad, like everyone thinks.

“It’s fine,” his dad says. “If you’re really true mates it must be difficult to be apart.”

Derek takes a second to focus on the constant tugging he feels in his chest when he isn’t next to Stiles. “It is. It hurts.”

“In your chest?” his dad asks.

Derek nods.

His mom and his dad share a look and his mom’s shoulders soften a little.

“Okay,” his mom says. “Your dad is right. It’s fine.”

Derek quickly texts Stiles under the table even though everyone knows: We’re on for tomorrow. Bring a blanket.

Chapter Text

Stiles leans against Boyd's locker before English and grins at Derek. "Should I bring anything for dinner tonight?"

"Are you going to bake between practice and coming over?"

Stiles picked Derek up for school and the whole family watched them go. Except Cora, who had left early for swim practice and doesn't really care. Stiles had barely even noticed Derek's crazy family and just pointed to the floral quilt in the back seat and said: "Ready for tonight!"

And now he’s just leaning against Boyd’s locker and his mouth is really big. They’re going to sleep in the same bed and Derek can't about Stiles’ mouth and the way his pouty lips might look wrapped around his dick right now.  

It’s too early to be thinking like that. But Derek is almost constantly thinking about Stiles like that.

“I was thinking we could go to the store,” Stiles says with a smile.

God and shopping with Stiles is probably too stupidly domestic for Derek to handle. Stiles pushing a shopping cart, picking out things to bring to Derek’s mom. He’s too young for this shit.

“I might have told my parents that we’re true mates,” Derek blurts. “When I told them about the claiming bite. Just because it started going downhill.”

Stiles’ eyes go wide.

“What? It went bad? Why didn't you tell me this morning? Jesus Christ. Your mom could literally murder me and it would be fine. My dad wouldn’t even press charges. He’d be like ‘I understand. Stiles isn’t good enough.’”

“It’s fine. She’s not mad. She got over it. I just thought that she’d be happier.”

“She wasn’t.”

“Not really. She brought up Kate.”

“Ugh. God. I’m sorry. That sucks.”

“And you have to meet Peter. I’m sorry in advance for everything he might do. You’re just lucky that Laura isn’t coming home for this too.”

“I like Laura. You know, the few times I met her. She’s horrifying. But I like her.”

Derek looks Stiles over kind of as a joke, but also partially because he likes looking at Stiles. “Yeah. I see that.”

“Yeah?”

“Yeah. You’re both sarcastic assholes.”

“But so are you, man.”

Derek shuts his locker. “How dare you.”

Stiles puts out his hand. “Would you like to walk to English, oh true mate mine?”

“I would.” He takes Stiles’ hand and Stiles pulls him in for a quick kiss.

“Ennis is watching,” Stiles whispers and then he runs his thumb over the back of Derek’s neck.

When he pulls away Derek doesn’t see Ennis, but he probably already walked away. And it’s a good thing because any were would be able to tell that Derek’s stomach is somersaulting at the casual kiss.

While the lacrosse team practices out on the field, the cheerleaders are back in the gym. There’s a game on Friday and their plan is to have the first forty-five seconds of their new routine down—the part that’s to a quick snippet of “Toxic”—well enough that they can do it at the game.

And really the team is so bad that they can just use the game as a practice space anyway.

At least this time they don’t have to work on Erica’s flip into Derek. Instead Jennifer has them working on back flips. It’s less of an excuse to put her hands all over Derek, but it doesn’t stop her from trying. Even Allison notices after a while and pulls her away to do something else.

“I don’t like her,” Erica says, panting and swaying a little. The backflips have them dizzy. “For like a million reasons. But why is she touching you so much?”

She doesn’t tell Derek that he should say something because she’s the only one who knows everything, but it looks like she wants to.

Derek sits down in the ground and drinks from his water bottle. “I don’t know. She’s an alpha.”

Erica sits down too and stretches. “Yeah, but isn’t there like some instinct part of this. Like doesn’t she know that Stiles is your mate? I mean, you have a bite. We can all see it.”

“I don’t think she cares.”

“Dude, but even fucking Ennis has backed off. Especially since the party. I thought that everyone just kind of knew.”

Derek just shrugs. What would he even do about it?

“People shouldn’t be able to do that. I just—the more I think about it the angrier I get.”

“I know,” Derek sighs. “I know. But it’s not worth it. We’re almost—we’ve only got until the beginning of May.”

“Right. Unless we make it to states.”

“Yeah. But even then we’ll just—I mean we graduate in June. So…”

Erica shakes out her blonde hair and flops onto her back. “God. I’m still pissed for you.”

“I appreciate your solidarity.”

She flips him off without looking up.

Stiles scents Derek like crazy while they walk through the dessert aisles at the grocery store. Stiles is debating between doing a fancy berry tart thing or just sticking with ice cream cookie sandwiches, which are less fancy but more tasty. He still sticks Derek in front of the freezer, hands on his hips, and face buried in his neck. 

"I'm sorry for being so possessive," Stiles says after he kisses the bite on Derek's neck for the millionth time. 

"Instinct," Derek says. "Some other alpha was rubbing up on me. You need to mark your territory." 

"You're not my territory," Stiles says. 

Derek would be okay if he was Stiles' as long as Stiles was his. They could work together really. If they tried. Sometimes they argued, yeah, and sometimes Stiles texted too many annoying things, but Derek liked all that stuff. He liked the dumb Stiles stuff. 

"You're my mate," Stiles says softly. Derek watches as Stiles reflection in the glass door of the freezer smiles. "And I'm yours." 

God it's so cute and nice Derek might vomit.

“Stiles?”

Stiles breaks away from Derek and Derek takes a deep breath before turning to face Scott’s mother. He knows her vaguely from pack things, but she tends to avoid the werewolf stuff when she can. She’s wearing her scrubs, but looks a little rumpled, like she just came off a shift.

“Scott told me that you two were a thing,” she says with a smile. “I just couldn’t believe that you’d do so well, Stiles.”

“Har har,” says Stiles. He wraps an arm around Derek. “I’ll have you know that he is happy to have me.”

“Mostly,” Derek says and Melissa laughs.

"What are you boys up to?"

"Deciding on a dessert to bring for dinner at Derek's," says Stiles. "Should I do the berry tart or ice cream sandwiches?"

"Ice cream sandwiches," Melissa says without thinking. "Everyone loves ice cream sandwiches."

"Told you," Derek says.

"So smart," Stiles says and kisses him on the cheek.

Melissa smiles at them in a way that tells Derek that she might think they're being a little too cutesy. "Say hello to your parents for me, Derek," she says. "And Stiles, maybe tone down the PDA."

Stiles salutes her and she goes on her way.

"She loves me," Stiles says and Derek rolls his eyes for probably the hundredth time that day.

Spending time with Stiles is this weird mixed bag of emotion. On the one hand, Derek loves it. He loves being with Stiles. He loves when they walk to class together or hang out and do homework. It's just nice to be with him. On the other hand Derek is pretty much dying.

So, like, it's difficult.

"Did you ever tell Scott?" Derek asks in the car on the way back.

"Hmm? Tell Scott what?"

"The whole real story with us. Like that it's fake."

Stiles bites the inside of his cheek. "No. I just figured that it would be easier to keep it all straight if everyone just thought it was real."

"Okay. Cool. That's cool."

"Did you tell Erica?"

Derek shakes his head. "No. But I didn't want you to feel like—if you need an ally or something, you know."

Stiles does this weird shoulder shake thing that Derek can't read, but he can smell anxiety on him. "I don't know. We've got each other."

Derek nods. "Yeah."

Derek doesn't really have time to unpack what that could mean because they're pulling up to his house and his mom is standing on the front porch holding a large envelope in her hand. She must have heard Stiles' car for the last mile or so, it's so loud.

"What does she have?" Stiles asks as they drive up.

"Oh god. She probably got paperwork for us to register the claiming bite."

"What—oh no wait! Dude! I think that's an acceptance letter." 

Derek's stomach flops. "Oh."

His mom is grinning when he gets out of the car. He can feel the happiness coming off her in waves. It's this bright sunshiny smell that totally overpowers the anxiety that was coming off Stiles earlier. Like yellow flowers and warm breezes and it's so nice. It makes Derek less worried about Stiles coming over for dinner and really happy that he got accepted to somewhere.

"You're going to college," she says, handing him the envelope. Her eyes are shiny like she's going to cry. 

"Now I don't have to live with you forever," he says and means it as a joke, but his voice cracks. The whole thing is kind of a shock. Not that he didn't think he'd get accepted anywhere. It was just a possibility. He knew people that didn't. Or only got into one of their schools.

"Now I don't have to provide for you," Stiles says on a laugh.

The acceptance letter from Boston University is in a red folder and Derek's hands shake as he reads it. Stiles and his mom stand close, his dad and Cora are at the door. Peter is probably somewhere inside. Drinking. Waiting to say something rehearsed and ridiculous when they walk in.

"I'm so proud of you," Stiles says.

Derek's mom squeals—not a sound he's ever heard her make before—and she wraps her arms around him. Stiles joins in. Then his dad and Cora. And they're a big squealing hugging mess on the front porch of the house that was nearly destroyed a year ago.

Tears threaten at the back of Derek's eyes and he turns into his mother to pull himself together. But Stiles' hands tighten on him and he might know. Just because he has to know. Even if Stiles doesn't know if they're really true mates or not he must be able to feel some things. He must be able to feel how Derek feels.

"I'm so proud of you," Stiles says again when the celebrating dies down. He kisses Derek lightly. "I'm so happy for you, dude."

"I think this is cause for celebration," Talia says. "I'll open the wine."

"I brought ice cream sandwiches!" Stiles says. "I'll get my stuff from the car!"

Stiles runs off the porch and Talia pulls him inside. She looks at him very seriously. "I'm so proud of you, honey." She kisses his forehead. "And I think you made a good choice with Stiles.

Derek looks back at the jeep where Stiles is struggling with all of his things. "Yeah. Same."

Dinner goes quickly and easily. Even Peter—after making some inappropriate comments about sexual positions—seems to have a good time and behaves himself as much as he can.

Derek's parents let them drink wine in celebration, despite Cora's protest that it's not fair that they get to drink wine in front of her and on a school night.

"Guess we're just better," Stiles says.

Stiles fits in so well with Derek's family that it's actually stupid that Derek never spent an extended amount of time with him before this. Stiles and Cora make fun of each other all night, he dodges Peter’s weird questions the best he can, he even handles a conversation with his parents about the future and school and what it means if Derek and Stiles are true mates.

“This is really serious for dinner,” Derek says.

“It’s fine,” says Stiles, rubbing a hand over his shoulder.

“I just want to know what he’s thinking about if you don’t end up at the same school,” Talia says like she isn’t be a crazy person.

Derek puts his head on the table and growls.

“I haven’t really been thinking about it honestly,” Stiles says, rubbing Derek’s back now because Derek is mostly focused on not looking at anyone. “I think that when we know exactly what’s going to happen we’ll figure it out? I mean our eduction comes first, right. We’ve got each other forever at this point.”

Derek suppresses the urge to just jump Stiles right there. He forces himself to think it’s fake it’s fake it’s fake.

“Good answer,” Derek’s dad says and Peter punches Derek’s arm.

Getting ready for bed with Stiles is weird. They stay up late watching Netflix and eating ice cream sandwiches instead of brushing their teeth and everything because the rest of the family is getting ready for bed too. And Derek has to share a bathroom with Cora and his parents keep walking in and out of their bedroom.

But when they finally do brush their teeth side by side in their pajamas, it feels strange and kind of nice. And Stiles makes faces at him in the mirror and bumps his shoulder when he’s done. Stiles leaves the bathroom first and Derek gives himself a silent, but stern talking to about boners and inappropriate times for them.

Maybe his body will listen to a stern talking to.

When he goes back into his room, Stiles is spreading the floral quilt onto his bed.

Stiles turns to him and smiles. ”My mom hated this quilt."

"Did you bring it over because you didn't mind getting rid of it?" Derek gets into the bed and Stiles follows him. Derek is pretty sure he’s not going to read tonight because how could he even begin to read with Stiles in his bed. So he pretends to look at his phone.

"No. I mean it's really ugly, but—after she died I was like fuckin' obsessed with it. You know how kids just go crazy over something. I mean I wasn't that little but I was little enough. And like I just loved it. And my mom hated it. She kept it in a cedar chest and I dug it out and I would just cry into it all time. Anyway I still sleep with it so it really smells like me."

"Are you sure you don't want to have it?"

"No. It's—it's cool. I think that because I bit you there's all this weird instinctual stuff going on and like I just really want to give you things I like. You know, like provide for you and shit. So it's nice knowing that you have this. Plus my mom would be so pissed at me for giving you this. She hated it so much. She would not think it was good enough for you. So its a little funny."

"Why did she get it? Do you mind if I turn off the light?”

“No. And she and my dad were in Amish country and it was the cheapest quilt they could find. So I think it’s this weird sentimental thing.” Derek turns off the light and Stiles spoons up behind him. “This okay?”

“Yeah,” Derek croaks. “Like—like when we napped. That was—I was comfortable.”

“Okay. Good. I don’t want you to ever be uncomfortable with me. So you just have to tell me if I don’t remember to ask.”

“Okay. Cuddling is fine usually. I mean—you know—weird sometimes. But Kate and I—we never cuddled. Probably also should have been a sign.”

“Nah,” Stiles says, he laces their fingers together on Derek’s stomach. “No one would have known.”

"Thank you," Derek whispers in the dark. "Thanks for doing this for me."

“I like it,” Stiles says, his voice small. “I want to do this for you.”

Chapter Text

In the weeks after the first dinner with Derek's parents and the nighttime cuddling and bed sharing that was becoming constant, something kind of strange happened. The Beacon Hills High lacrosse team started winning. And the cheerleading team got really good at their routine.

Almost everyone attributed it to Stiles and Derek's relationship. Stiles was playing better, with more confidence and that, in turn, spread to the other members of the team. Derek was more focused when he was at cheerleading practice and that kept the girls more focused. Allison nearly cried when he and Erica got their flip down.

Stiles was pretty convinced that their success was entirely dependent on their good luck kisses before the games.

"We're doing this before every Mets game too," Stiles says, pulling Derek in for a kiss before a game on a Friday night a couple of weeks later. "Opening day is next week."

"It's not like our kisses are magic," Derek says when he pulls away.

Stiles looks back at the field. "I'm pretty sure they are, boo."

Finstock is also pretty convinced that the kisses are doing it, which is the only reason he isn't screaming at them for PDA on the field. He blows his whistle in their direction when Stiles isn't moving fast enough.

Stiles slaps Derek on the ass quick and Derek's eyes go wide. He told Stiles it was okay weeks ago, but he's still not used to it.

"Can't wait to see you at halftime," Stiles says before jogging back towards the team.

Derek looks up at the bleachers where Laura and Cora are sitting. Cora is on her phone, but Laura gives him a little wave and an exaggerated wink.

Derek blushes and turn to the field.

Derek watches the game more than he used to. He actually understands what's going on now and maybe he did at some level before, but now he cares. Now he watches Stiles move and he shouts when anyone gets a goal for Beacon Hills. Even Jackson, who is even more of a douchebag now that they're winning.

The team wins again and Derek is smiling when they head back to the locker room. Who knew that it was so nice to cheer for a winning team?

Stiles waits for him after he changes. Once Derek walks out into the hall, Stiles throws his arms around him and Derek staggers back with the force of his hug.

Stiles kisses him on the cheek when he pulls away. "Dude. I swear to god we are the reason we keep winning. It is fucking amazing."

Derek nods. "Yeah."

Stiles looks so good right now, hair wet from the shower, t-shirt clinging to his body. Derek is so attracted to him. And it's the high from the team winning and from their routine going perfectly that makes Derek pull Stiles in for a kiss.

"I'm glad I'm not cheering for a shitty team anymore," Derek says and Stiles lets out this bark of a laugh and kisses him again.

"Are you guys coming to Heather's?" Erica asks on her way out of the locker room. "Or are you just going to bang? Because like I can smell your boners and you're disgusting."

"We're going to Heather's," Stiles says, pulling away from Derek, but taking his hand.

"But we have to go say hi to Laura first," says Derek.

Stiles nods. "It's important to make a good impression. Even if I've met her before."

"Okay, idiots," Erica says, already walking towards Boyd. "I'll see you there."

Jennifer walks past too, puts her hands on Stiles and Derek's shoulders. "Good work tonight, boys. I'll see you both at Heather's right?"

Stiles' eyes narrow and he nods. "Yeah. See you there."

She walks away and Stiles pulls Derek in for a rough kiss.

"I don't like her," he says and Derek just wants to melt. Just become a boneless mess that Stiles can fuck.

"Let's go see Laura," Derek says.

Laura and Cora are waiting by the car. Laura and Stiles get along in a way that Derek envies. Stiles had only spoken to her a few times before she graduated and their conversation is still easy. Easier than Derek could even hope for himself and anyone he's ever met.

Still, before Derek and Stiles walk to Stiles' jeep to go to the party, Laura and Cora pull Derek aside.

Laura's eyes flash. Her voice gets low and even. She speaks slowly. "You hurt our brother, Stiles, and we hurt you."

Cora ties her hair back into a ponytail, making sure Stiles can see her claws. "You got that?"

Stiles laughs nervously, but Derek knows his sisters aren't joking and he feels a swell of pride at that.

"Got it," Stiles says, reaching back and taking Derek'a hand.

“So,” Derek says, tucking his hands under his thighs. “You and Heather—.”

“It’s less—I don’t know—we’re friends and I think we both just wanted to get laid and I don’t know how to do things casually. But I never really wanted it to be a long-term thing. Plus then it sucked because like she knew what I looked like naked and she told other people what I looked like, you know.”

Derek had heard the stories about Stiles and Heather, but in the way that everyone in their class vaguely knew each other’s lives. Derek is silently thankful that there weren’t naked pictures of him around like there were of Stiles. Kate took pictures, but they died when she did.

“People talk about stupid shit,” Derek says.

Stiles smiles. “Yeah they do.”

“So it’s not like weird with Heather?”

“No. Not anymore.”

Derek nods once. “Good.”

The Hale house is big, but it’s homey. There are messes everywhere, dumb photos on the wall, dishes in the sink. Heather’s home is perfect even with the rooms full of drunk kids. Nothing is out of place and it makes Derek uncomfortable.

So he drinks and drinks some more. It’s okay, really. He’s with friends. He and Stiles beat Jackson and Theo at beer pong. Then they lose to Scott and Allison—mostly Allison, really, because Scott spends the game staring at her. At some point after Derek’s had too much wolfsbane tequila probably he sees Heather take Stiles’ arm and say something.

“We’re going to grab some wolfsbane wine in the basement,” Stiles shouts to him over the music.

“Wine cellar,” Heather corrects.

Derek is pretty sure he’s okay with that. He doesn’t think it’s a problem really. He’s not jealous. Stiles only used to have sex with her and only the whole school knew that she said he was amazing.

She called him Big Dick Stilinski, which isn’t very creative as far as nicknames go, but Derek has been thinking about it recently. The closer he got to his heat the more he thought about just being filled by him. Just being stuffed and full and warm and happy. And maybe they’d fall asleep with Stiles still inside him and it could be weird, but it could also be nice.

“Derek!”

Derek turns and Jennifer is smiling at him.

She looks hungry. “Come dance with me.”

She takes Derek’s hand before he can respond and pulls him into the crowd of dancing bodies in the living room. He doesn’t really want her to touch him, but Stiles disappeared with Heather and he has the vague sense through their bond that Stiles is laughing.

She lets it happen. Lets Jennifer put her arms around him and dance on him. He doesn’t know if he’s having fun, but it’s not horrible either.

Anger cuts through Derek’s bond. Sharper than anything he’s felt from Stiles since the bite. And Stiles is there, pulling Derek out of the crowd and into a dark corner of the room.

Stiles reaches out and rubs his hands over Derek's neck and his face. And he makes this frustrated noise when he's done.

"You smell like her," he says, tugging at Derek's shirt. "Jesus. I can't ever smell anything and she's all I can smell. Derek, I want it to be like us.”

“Yeah,” Derek breathes, bearing his neck and Stiles gives him this hungry, wicked smile that makes Derek want to explode.

Stiles holds him steady with a hand to his chest and turns his nose inward. He breathes deep and heat pools low in Derek's belly.

"Can I—."

Derek gasps. "Stiles."

Stiles presses his lips to Derek's neck, his hand tangled in Derek's thick hair. The kiss is followed by a scrape of teeth and Derek gasps, his hand reaching out to settle shakily on Stiles' arm.

"She touched you too much," Stiles growls.

"You—shit—you were talking to Heather."

Stiles pauses and pulls back. His eyes search Derek's face. His eyes are dark and serious like Derek has never seen before. "You were jealous."

Derek shrugs. "I guess so."

"Shit Derek, I need to smell like us. It's like primal. Like I just need to be on top of you and over you and inside—."

Derek closes the distance between them. His lips against Stiles' lips. He relaxes and at the same time his body feels tight and hot and he opens his mouth, licking into Stiles' mouth. Stiles moans, pressing him back against the wall, slotting his thigh between Derek's legs. Derek who is already half hard. His face warms and Kate would have made fun of him. Stiles doesn't. 

“Come out to the car,” Stiles says, pulling on his hand.

It feels illicit when he opens the back door to the jeep and Stiles slides in after him. Stiles crowds him in and they kiss again. Derek reaches up and slides his fingers into Stiles’ hair.

Stiles kisses up Derek's neck. "C'mon, Der," he mumbles, hands fumbling with the fly of Derek's jeans. "Let me—fuck—just let me touch you. I bet if you came on me I'd really smell like yours."

A sound Derek has never heard himself make before bubbles up in his throat. His hands clutch at Stiles' arms.

"What if I came on you?" Stiles breathes into his ear. "You'd like that, right. You'd really smell like me then. Smell like my mate. Mine. No one would ever touch you again. Fuckin' Julia or Jennifer or whatever the fuck her name is won't touch you anymore."

Derek wants that, but it doesn't feel right. Not outside a party in Stiles' jeep. Not drunk and Stiles even more so. And not when there's this gross slimy, coiling feeling in his stomach. Like snakes and bile. 

"Stiles," he says. His voice gets caught in his throat.

"Yeah." Stiles doesn't stop, just kisses and licks at any skin he can get to and Derek's heart feels like someone has a grip on it. Like they're choking the life out of him.

Derek fumbles for the door handle and falls out into the dirt. He's done this a few times now and it's never okay. It doesn't hurt him to land on the ground, really. But it adds another crack. 

"Derek?"

Oh god. He's going to cry. He's going to cry right here in the dirt next to Stiles' jeep and he's a little chubbed up and it's the worst he's felt in a while. He leans against the car parked next to the jeep and tries to pull himself together.

Stiles scrambles out of the car and runs over to Derek. Instead of the concern Derek was expecting from Stiles he is surprised to smell and feel anger. It’s rolling off Stiles in waves. Like heat washing over Derek, it makes him angry too. It’s strong and fast and he pushes himself up off the ground.

“What the fuck was that?” Stiles asks.

“I wanted to fucking stop,” Derek says. God. It's not fucking right that Stiles can tell him it's okay to say no and then turn around and be angry with him.

“You know if you want people to believe this bullshit your’e going to have to pretend to like me.”

“Who was that for?” Derek asks, gesturing to the jeep. “You weren't putting on a show to help me out here. You just wanted to get fucking laid.”

“What if I do? God, I do so fucking much for you. Sleep at your house. Deal with your fucking family.”

“Fuck you. You wouldn’t have done this if you didn’t need to make yourself look like a less pathetic alpha. Get yourself a fucking omega and maybe people will take you seriously."

Derek isn’t sure where that came from, but it feels true.

“I don’t know how to break this to you, Derek, but you’re a fucking broken, used omega.”

“Fuck off.”

Stiles’ eyes narrow. “Why would you fucking choose me if you're so disgusted by me? If you think I'm so pathetic? Why the fuck would you choose me? Just tell me that." 

"Because you're the lesser of a lot of evils. Because I knew it wouldn't be a problem if I stood up to you." 

"Thanks, Derek. Thanks for that boost of confidence. I don't even—people see this shit. See you pushing me away and what's even the point of this?" 

Derek shrugs and he just feels deflated now. "I don't know. I'm going home." 

"You're going home? Are you going to walk?" 

"I'm texting Laura," he says, sending her his address. He knows she'll be there. "Go inside." 

"You don't tell me what to do, Derek." 

Derek rounds on Stiles, anger bubbling up inside of him again. "You tell me what to do, is that right? You want to assert your useless dominance? You want to be my fucking alpha? Is that why you were with Heather, because I'm not enough of an omega for you. I'm broken and I won't just roll over and take it? Fuck you, Stiles." 

"That's not—." 

"This is fake," Derek says. "I don't even know why I care. Just go inside and fuck Heather. At least she's willing to put out." 

"Yeah," Stiles says, sounding a little lost. "I don't know why I keep forgetting that. Me and you. We don’t mean anything really." 

And then he turns on his heel and walks back inside and Derek wipes tears from his eyes on the back of his hand. Maybe he hears Stiles sniffle too. He was stupid. He shouldn't have had so much tequila. He shouldn't have danced with Jennifer. He shouldn't have followed Kate into her car after school one day. He shouldn't have let her fuck him in the woods. He shouldn't have—

Laura pulls up in front of him before Derek can go back inside after Stiles. He drops himself into the front seat of her car and she sighs at him. 

"Good night?" she asks. "You smell like booze and tears so I had to assume." 

"Can we go home?" 

"Yeah, baby bro. Want to tell me what happened?" 

"Not really." 

"It was Stiles?" 

"Who else would it be?" 

Laura is silent for the ride home, but she doesn’t hold it in when they get to the house. Derek is barely drunk anymore and she follows him up to his room and it’s horrible. He just wants to curl into a ball and just sleep for a few years.

He checks his phone and there aren’t any messages from Stiles. But there is a missed call from Erica, but he doesn’t bother texting her.

Laura sits on the end of the bed and rests her hand on Derek’s ankle. “Maybe—and I'm not saying he wasn't an asshole—but what if you're hurting him too?" 

"What? No." 

"What if it's real for him, but you're pretending like it's not, you know, and maybe it's kind of fucking with him too." 

Derek’s phone lights up with a text from Stiles and he turns it off.

“Maybe you should talk about your feelings.”

“You didn’t hear what he said.”

“Was it that bad?”

Even if somehow Stiles only said those things because he was drunk he still said them. And Derek still said things he didn’t want to say, but did anyway. It was all out there between them.

“Yeah,” Derek says. “Can I just sleep, Laura?”

She rubs his leg and stands up. “I’m around all weekend, Derek. If you need me.”

He presses his face into his pillows. “Goodnight.”

“Goodnight, baby bro. I love you.”

Derek grumbles it back to her and she leaves the room. He wants to ask her why she isn't eviscerating Stiles right now. But he doesn't even know where the words either of them said came from. But he feels the anger. It just doesn't feel deep. The effect feels like it's in his marrow. But the words themselves—the anger he felt towards Stiles—it's like it's artificial.

Still. He can't stop it.

Chapter Text

Cora and Laura sit on the hood of Laura's Camaro when Stiles opens the front door for his run on Sunday night. He feels like shit. Like he's been beaten up. He's cried through four showers and he still doesn't feel any better.

It's been two days and the words he said to Derek repeat over and over again in his head.

Used, broken omega.

He didn't mean it. And he knew that he didn't mean it the second Derek was gone. He had never thought them. He didn't know where the sudden anger had come from. It was like there was someone else inside him when he yelled at Derek.

But he was the one who had said it. He had yelled those horrible things at him. And Derek may have yelled back, but he looked shattered.

Two nights before the fight Derek had climbed through his window, breaking the paint that sealed it shut, and fell into bed with Stiles. It was three in the morning and Stiles just felt so warm and settled and he knew that Derek had had a nightmare and he was here to be comforted. Stiles loved him so much in that moment. Loved how grumpy he was. Like he was deigning to cuddle with Stiles. And Stiles had kissed his shoulder and just wrapped his arm around him.

Derek had sighed and laced their fingers together. 

Stiles can't believe he might have lost that. 

Cora hops off the hood of the car, flicks out a claw and slashes his jeep's front tire.

"I deserve that," he says.

"You deserve worse than that," Cora says. "Remember what we told you? You hurt him, we hurt you?"

Stiles wants to ask if Derek is hurt, but he’s not an idiot. Of course Derek is hurt. Stiles hurt him. He hurt his mate.

Because, Jesus in a leotard, Derek is his mate. True mate. All that lovey dovey stuff from the rom coms and romance novels Stiles pretends not to like.

"I didn't—I don't know what happened. But it wasn't me. I—I would never talk to him like that."

"Then who was it?"

"I mean it was me, but I can't—I don't even know how I said those things. I've never—I love Derek."

Cora pauses in picking bits of Stiles' tire from her nails. Laura hops down off the hood.

"You love him?" Laura asks.

"Yeah," Stiles says. "Yeah. I love him."

"What do you love about him?"

"I mean everything? That's probably a shitty answer. But I love when he anger cuddles and the way he wears that stupid leather jacket and his shirts are so tight. I love how much he loves you guys. He's so loyal and so good. And he loves Erica too. And the way people love him back. I know he doesn't get to know people, but I don't know anyone that really knows Derek who doesn't actually love him. I love that he makes people do that. And I love that he gets drunk off of one fucking beer."

Cora snorts. "He's so lame."

"He's such a dork," Stiles says. "And he has such a weird sense of humor and he feels like warmth and comfort and home."

Cora and Laura exchange a look.

"Okay," Laura says. "So if it wasn't you then we need to find out what happened. Because Derek is really hurting."

Stiles' stomach twists into a knot at that. It's still better than if he felt nothing at all, but it hurts so much to know Derek is hurt. That Stiles is the one that hurt him.

"I'll talk to Chris," Laura says. "Maybe he knows something. Can you think of anything, Stiles? Anything that might be helpful."

"That girl Jennifer is weird," Stiles says. "I feel like someone mentioned that they don't think she's human and she's a little obsessed with Derek. Are you guys going to talk to Derek about this? I tried calling him and he won't answer."

"He's wallowing," Cora says. "He is a professional wallower."

"I need to apologize."

"We'll tell him we're trying to figure it out," Laura says. "But like maybe you should tell him you love him."

"I don't want him to feel like he has to love me back. I mean it's like a total power imbalance, you know. Like there's so much pressure on omegas to have an alpha mate and I know that's not something he wants to get in to."

"Dude," Laura says. "You are literally mated."

"Yeah, but I don't want to do this on anything but his terms."

"He obviously likes you," says Cora. "He's just freaking out. People don't genuinely like him. Actually that's not true. There are a lot of people that genuinely like him. But there aren't a lot of people like you. There aren't any people like you. Alphas tend to—you know—suck.”

"He's scared of being used," Laura says. "You just have to show him that you're not using him. You really like him and he really likes you. So just like say it to his face.”

Stiles nods. “Okay. Yeah." He looks over at his slashed tire. "Would you guys want to help me put a donut on my car?”

Cora laughs. “Fuck no, idiot.”

“I’ll talk to Chris,” Laura says again. “You should call Derek.”

Stiles goes for his run. He’ll put the donut on his car when his dad comes home. It’s not like he needs it until he goes to school.

He showers and changes and finally gets up the courage to call Derek one more time.

He doesn’t answer.

Stiles isn’t really surprised. It’s not like Derek knows that Laura and Cora spoke to him or all the love stuff he said. Or he does know all the love stuff he said and he doesn’t want a part of it. Stiles can’t really do much about it anyway.

He tries to go through his routine. He makes dinner and when his dad gets home they change the tire on his car. His dad doesn't ask any questions, but Stiles is pretty sure he knows it has something to do with Derek because he puts his hand on Stiles' shoulder and squeezes. They watch baseball together and the Mets lose so what’s even the point.

His flops down into his bed around midnight and his phone starts to vibrate.

But it’s not Derek. It’s Allison.

And Jesus Christ, why didn’t he talk to Scott the minute he fought with Derek? Is that how depressed he is? How caught up in Derek he is? That he didn’t even think that Scott’s idiotic cheerfulness would help him. Scott would have known how to handle it right away. Scott would have believed that Stiles couldn't say those things to Derek. He would know

"So Laura spoke to my dad about Jennifer," Allison says. "And I just thought I should call you and let you know that she's dead. I called Derek."

"Wait. What? Back up. Your dad didn't just kill her."

"She's a succubus. One that my dad's been tracking. We knew that she was at the school, I found out she was Jennifer—Julia actually. I think. I mean who even knows. She's been going from school to school doing this and a few students have died."

"You knew it was her? She was your choreographer!"

"I was keeping an eye on her. We couldn't do anything without hard evidence. Anyway my dad went to check on her and she was in the middle of killing Greenberg!"

"Greenberg?"

"Yeah. I know. I was surprised too. My dad thinks she probably had a few people she was feeding from. Derek was probably one of them. Anyway that's probably what made you fight. She can make you think whatever she wants, you know."

"You know about the fight?"

"Everyone knows about the fight."

"Oh. Well. Thanks, I guess."

"I'll let my dad know I told you. Maybe don't talk about her not being there, though. I don't think everyone is supposed to know my dad killed her."

"Right."

"Well I'll see you in school tomorrow," she says brightly. "I'm glad this got resolved."

She hangs up and Stiles closes his eyes against the onslaught of emotions.

It should be okay. It didn't take much for that to be resolved. And in the end it wasn't really his problem. He just happened to be involved in it.

So why don't things feel okay?

Chapter Text

The phone call from Allison is unexpected but relieving. Derek feels a little better. Less better once Stiles calls him and he realizes that they’ll have to talk at some point.

He doesn’t know what to say to him. He doesn’t know what he wants from Stiles in return.

He sits on his bed staring at the last forty texts from Stiles. All variations of the same apology. The apology he kind of believes because he feels the same way. But he can't get over how even if that wasn't Stiles. He was still right.

And then there's the newest one.

Stilinski: Allison called. Do you want to talk? Just tell me what you need. 

And like fuck. He's so perfect. What a bastard.

His door opens a crack and his mom pokes his head in. "Hey, sweetie. Erica is here. Do you want to see her?"

Derek throw his phone into the chair on the other side of his room and he doesn't even know why. "Yeah. Yeah."

"Okay. I'll send her up."

He didn't tell anyone about the fight except for Laura. But he hasn't left his room for anything except carrying too much food up to his room and wallowing. It hasn't even been good fuel for writing. He's too depressed to write. Mostly he's listening to The Smiths and sad Miley Cyrus songs.

He's in a pretty bad place.

Erica practically kicks down the door. "Okay. You haven't answered your phone since you left with Stiles on Friday. And I'm not a fucking idiot, Derek. I know something happened."

"Can you just shut the door?"

"Why didn't you call me?"

"I'm wallowing."

"God. Boys. You're so gross. So many stupid emotions. Why are you wallowing?"

Derek really and truly appreciates Erica like this. She always knows what he needs friend-wise. If he needs sympathy or brutal honesty or fake everything is perfect friend stuff.

He tells her about the fight and Jennifer. She listens to everything he says and then at the end she looks him in the eye.

"That is idiotic. And shitty. What did you do in a previous life that made the universe hate you so much?"

Derek shrugs. "I don't know."

"Well why haven't you called Stiles back?"

"Because I don't know what to say."

"You say that you're sorry about what happened, but ultimately it wasn't your fault and you move on. You can go back to the way it was."

"We were faking it, Erica."

"No you weren't."

"No, we were—."

"No. I know what you're going to say. And you my have thought you were faking it, but any jackass with eyes could see that you two are totally gone on each other. You're literally the only two people not seeing it. So you just have to talk to him."

"I don't know if I can."

"You can. I know you can. Just be explicit with your feelings and he'll be explicit back. You don't have to call him tonight, but you've got English together tomorrow."

"Right."

"So you're going to have to see him anyway."

“I know.”

“So just talk to him.”

“It’s not that easy.”

“Why not?”

Derek falls face first into his pillows. “Because it makes my head hurt and my chest and I’ve cried a lot over the last two days so if I could not do that I'd like to not do that.”

“Not talking isn’t going to make it better. Plus we need you on your A-game now that Jennifer’s dead. But good riddance, right?”

“Right.”

He feels weird about that anyway because she’s a person that’s dead, but like also she was probably going to kill him. And he wouldn’t be in this situation if it wasn’t for her.

Erica cards her fingers through Derek’s hair and she’s one of like two people he’d ever let do that.

The other being Stiles.

He groan. “Okay. Fine. I’ll talk to him.”

Derek feels small when he stops in front of Stiles' locker before English. His mom dropped him and Cora off at school a little late so Derek could avoid Stiles and he kept his books with him so he wouldn’t have to go to his locker between classes. But he’s going to have to see him eventually. 

Stiles doesn't say anything, he doesn't smile. His eyes are wide and beautiful and it's really easy for Derek to say what he wants to say. 

"Skip English with me," Derek says and Stiles nods.

"Skip the rest of the day with me," Stiles says and Derek bites his lip and nods right back.

They end up at an ice cream shop because Stiles says, “We’re going to have to talk about feelings. Lets do it over ice cream.”

And Derek is in the mood for grilled cheese, but he’s also basically always in the mood for ice cream. Maybe they can get grilled cheese after. Grilled cheese and tomato soup.

He’s just really hungry and emotional and food always helps him when he’s having too many feelings.

They go up to the counter and order and when Stiles takes out his wallet to pay Derek pushes him aside.

“I can pay,” Derek says because it matters. Not that he would really mind Stiles paying for anything, but it’s the gesture. That he doesn’t need Stiles to be an alpha. He doesn’t need any of those stupid roles. He can take care of himself. 

Derek sets his brownie sundae down in front of himself and smiles at it before raising his spoon and digging in. He gets some brownie and ice cream on his spoon and then dips it in the whipped cream. It’s like heaven. Maybe he could just have ice cream and Stiles forever.

Stiles is giving him this dopey smile over his own sundae that’s made to look like a face with peanut butter cups for ears and chocolate for eyes.

"What kind of ice cream did you get?" Stiles asks, gesturing at the dessert with his spoon.

"Espresso," Derek says. "It's perfect. Do you want to try some? It has chocolate covered espresso beans."

"You're kind of an old lady."

Derek hums. "Yes."

"I've never seen you eat so much," Stiles says, digging his spoon into Derek’s ice cream.

Derek frowns.

Well shit.

"Oh my god. That's not what I meant. Derek you should eat as much as you want. Honestly I've always thought you could eat more. Like you're ripped but you're skinny. And you're really attractive no matter what you look like. You could totally rock being chubby. Oh my god. Not that you'd get chubby. Shit. Shit shit shit."

Derek chews his bottom lip.

Fuck.

"You okay, dude? I'm sorry. I was just making an observation. I don't care what you do with your body as long as your happy."

Derek shakes his head. "It's fine, Stiles. It's—I was depressed. This is what I do."

God and Stiles can probably feel his anxiety and depression and lie through their bond. Of course Stiles can feel it. Because he can feel Stiles’ concern. So he shuts it down. Just closes himself off.

"I really like ice cream," he says.

Stiles sucks on his spoon, but thankfully he doesn’t push anything. ”It’s not a bad thing to like."

"When can we start talking about Friday?" Stiles asks.

"It wasn't us," Derek says. "Not really."

"Yeah, but I don't think you'll be able to forget that. I don't think I'll ever be able to forget that.”

Derek shrugs. “What I said about you wasn’t that great either.”

“What you said about me isn’t something that people say to me constantly. You know that I don’t think that at all, right? Like, I think you’re perfect."

God and Derek knows he’s blushing again. He shoves ice cream into his mouth until he can think of what to say next.

“You know that I don’t think that about you either,” he says. “I mean, you’re—you’re also pretty perfect.”

Stiles’ cheeks and neck and ears go all blotchy and red and he stabs his ice cream with a spoon. “Thanks. So…do you want to keep doing what we’re doing?”

“Yeah.” Derek nods. “Yeah. I want to keep doing what we’re doing. Maybe—um—not that I don’t like—maybe we should just like make out less? Just—I think that—I don’t know. I know that it wasn’t just her when we were doing it, but it’s hard to trust right now.”

“That’s okay,” Stiles says. “Whatever you want, Derek. I’m doing this for you.”

This is exactly the reason why Derek’s dumb body is feeling like it needs to eat so much. Stiles and his perfect self. Even after Jennifer, Stiles just wants to help him. God.

“I know,” Derek says.

They end up staying and talking for a while. Not just about Jennifer and Derek being an emotional wreck, but about everything. They move from the ice cream shop to a diner to order the grilled cheese and tomato soup that Derek wants. Stiles gets cheese covered curly fries and Derek eats about half of those too.

About half way through their second plate of curly fries they realize that they’re both missing their practices thanks to increasingly angry texts from Scott, Erica, and Allison.

They both laugh when they get a text from Boyd that says: Don’t listen to them. We’re happy you made up. It’s easier that way.

“It was like not even three days,” Stiles says.

“It was a rough three days,” Derek says.

Stiles frowns. “Yeah. But it’s better now.”

“It is.”

Stiles drives Derek back to his house afterwards, when it’s already starting to get dark. He turns Derek’s hand over when he parks his car and presses their fingertips together. Heat pools low in Derek’s belly, the mark on his neck throbs.

If Derek hadn’t said the thing about making out he would just straddle Stiles right here and now.

“Want a ride to school in the morning?” Stiles asks.

“No,” he says. “I’ll go with Cora.”

“Okay.”

“It’s only because I told her I would drive her.”

“That’s fine. Maybe we can hang out after practice or something.”

“Yeah. I’d like that.”

“Cool.”

“Okay,” Derek opens the door. “I have to go. Bye.”

Derek hurries inside and he can smell that is dad is making pasta with meat sauce and a bunch of other things he wants to eat all of. But he runs up to his room, past his parents questions about why he isn't at practice, and dives for his computer.

He checks through his calendar and he realizes now that he was an idiot. An idiot. He didn't think ahead. He didn't like to think ahead about this very important thing so he just didn't. And he was so fucking caught up in the social dynamics of it he forgot about the very real biological part of being an omega.

His heat is about to hit.

He is hours away from the first awful pangs of it. The bone deep tired he'd be the first day. Not ready to fuck, but resting up for days of what's supposed to be a mated heat. Worse maybe because of the bite. He can't have children, he is an individual without a uterus, but his omega presentation does not care. It wants to settle down with the alpha that bit him and fuck until they're too exhausted to move.

God and without even thinking slick dribbles out of his hole.

And he's starving.

Derek is a mostly healthy eighteen year old werewolf. Even if Stiles said he never saw him eat so much he likes to fucking eat. He can eat a lot and doesn't shy away from the food offered him. But eating for a heat is different. It's like bulking up for the winter. He wants calories. Calories that will make him soft and full. Easily pleased.

Easily pleased by Stiles maybe. That's who it's supposed to be. God he'd love it. He hasn't thought about full on sex in so long, but he has to be sticking shit inside himself to get the heat over with so it might as well be stiles' dick. Maybe Stiles' long fingers. Or his quick tongue.

He giggles because of his crazy near heat and thinks that his butt is really jealous of his mouth because he got to get Stiles' tongue in his mouth.

A shower. A shower is his best choice right now. A shower and then dinner.

Dinner is awkward. Probably because he came so loudly in the shower that there is no way his family members did not hear him. Even through the sound proofed walls of their house.

"Did you make up with Stiles?" Cora asks like she's totally innocent.

"Yeah," Derek says.

"We're you and Stiles having a fight?" his dad asks. "Why didn't you tell us, Der?"

"It was messy," Cora says.

"Did you smell it and not tell me?" his dad asks his mom.

Talia shrugs but she sucks at lying. Even though she's a werewolf who can control these things, she blushes and can never make eye contact when she lies. That's why she's the stoic, wise leaders. And Derek's dad is the pack emissary.

"Derek didn't tell me anything," Talia says. "I've been trying to respect his and Stiles' privacy. And you're true mates. You were bound to resolve it."

"Does it work like that?" Derek asks. "If we're true mates we'll settle every fight?"

"You're compatible in every way as true mates, but sometimes there are divorced true mate pairs. They have a hard time staying apart even if they don't like each other."

Derek states down at his pasta. "Oh."

True mates doesn't mean forever really. It just means that even if they hate each other they're going to want to fuck. Maybe that's the motivation to making up instead of fighting.

"Derek, you and Stiles are really good together," his dad says. "But you're only eighteen. Things change. Just keep and open mind."

"And an open heart," his mom says.

Cora pretends to retch into her food.

 

Derek wakes up early in the morning, skin too hot and itchy, stomach churning from all the food from dinner and the bag of Cheetos he snuck at around two in the morning.

He was an idiot for not telling his parents the night before. So stupid and useless and weak. No one else goes in to heat. Just idiot omegas and Derek is one of them.

He curls his blankets around him and tries to go back to sleep.

Chapter Text

Derek curls in on himself and turns off the alarm on his phone. And he thinks about last year. When Kate pulled him away from his home on the second day of his heat and had him get into her car.

And he thinks about the smell of gasoline and smoke, too weak to do anything. It was the sheriff who cut off Kate's car, who pulled Derek out of the front seat, who helped him get into the back of a cruiser, who told him his family was safe, his home was safe, but he was taking Derek to the hospital.

Derek didn't see his family for a week. Just stayed in a heat room in the hospital and worked it all out of himself and cried. 

When his mom picked him up, he curled into her arms and wept in the car outside the hospital. He apologized and apologized and she smoothed back his hair and kissed his forehead and told him it was all going to be okay.

And then she called him sweetie and Derek thought for one horrible moment that he was still in that car with Kate. He slammed himself back against the door, opened it and spilled onto the ground before he realized that he was still with his mom. Falling out of cars seems to be the way he deals with things. 

His mom knocks on his bedroom door and it pulls Derek out of how horrible he feels for just a second.

"Honey?" she asks, because she doesn’t call him sweetie anymore. "Do you want me to call the school?"

"Yeah," Derek croaks. His voice already sounds foreign.

"Do you want me to call Stiles?"

Derek tenses. "No!"

"Are you sure?"

"Yes. Jesus. Please don't."

"Okay, honey."

The sound of her feet walking away are the only comfort as Derek falls back to sleep.

The first day of his heat is the easy day. The day he just feels kind of ill and depressed because the hormones in his body are doing things that they probably shouldn’t. He just wants to stay in bed and weep and listen to sad music and maybe jerk off a little while wearing Stiles’ hoodie.

He’d have to get out of bed for Stiles’ hoodie and he’s just not there yet physically. It doesn't even smell like Stiles anymore. 

His phone keeps buzzing. Texts from Erica and Stiles. And when he finally drags himself out of sleep he reads them.

Erica: Where are you?

Stiles: Dude. You weren't in English? I thought wolves didn't get sick.

Erica: Are you sick?

Erica: Oh. Wait?

Erica: Holy fuck. Oh my god. But he's here. Why is he here?

Stiles: I'm worried about you

Stiles: Where are you?

Stiles: Erica just told me

Erica: Stiles looks like he’s going to cry

Stiles: Do you want me to come over?

Stiles: Derek. Please. Let me know something

Stiles: Are you okay?

Stiles: I'm coming over.

Derek scrambles to text Stiles back, to tell him to stay away, but doorbell rings too loud through the house and he hears his mom open the door downstairs. That's the other problem with this whole thing. Everything is too loud and he can't do anything about it.

"Stiles," his mom says, she sounds a little like she’s underwater, but it’s just Derek’s oversensitive clogged up ears.

"Is Derek—? I just—I wanted to check on him. He didn't tell me."

"He didn't want me to call."

"Oh. Well, I know—I brought him a shirt. I know that like scents and whatever can help make it easier. My scent."

"Why don't you go up and give it to him? It's just the first day. It's fine."

Derek wants to scream at his mom and he wants Stiles to come up and just fuck him. He's barely wet, but he'd be fine if Stiles just came up the stairs and sunk into him. He'd heal. His body would adapt.

It takes all his willpower to stay curled into a ball on his side as he hears Stiles walk up the stairs. He pulls the blankets over his head and screws his eyes shut.

The door cracks open and Stiles smells so good. So fucking good. He whimpers when Stiles walks into the room and shuts the door behind him.

"You under there, big guy?" Stiles asks and Derek whimpers. His voice is soft and calm. "Why didn't you call me, Der?"

"Stiles," he gasps, pulling his blankets back because it's too hot. Stiles' eyes go wide. His nostrils flare. “Please. Just—.”

Stiles' hand is on the back of his neck now and Derek wants to cry. "Derek. I can stay."

"No. No. Please. Just go."

"Why?" Stiles asks like Derek can have a coherent conversation about all his sexual issues.

"Please. I don't—I don't want you to look at me. I just want you to go."

The set of Stiles' mouth softens, his takes his hand off Derek's neck. "Okay. But I brought you one of my shirts. So, like, you can have it. I'll just leave it here."

Derek feels him tuck a shirt by his head and he resists the urge to turn towards it and bury his face in it.

"I wish you had told me," Stiles mutters.

"Stiles. Please." Derek curls in on himself more. He can't look at Stiles who smells so perfect and good and is so disappointed in him like everyone else.

"Right. I'll leave."

"Thank you," Derek says.

Stiles pauses at the door. “You don’t have to be—are you embarrassed? Because you’re—fuck—you’re perfect however you are, Der.”

Derek doesn’t say anything. Stiles knocks on the door frame once and leaves. Talia comes back up the stairs after she lets Stiles out, but doesn’t come into the room.

"Derek, honey." Her voice is soft and sad. He wishes his mom kept normal hours instead of working in the afternoons and at night. He just wishes she was gone. "It doesn't have to be a punishment. You don't have to suffer."

Derek doesn't say anything back because of course he does.

Derek's heat is worse that night. When his family is distracted he stumbles down to the heat room in the basement, clutching Stiles' shirt to his chest.

He's the only one that uses the room since he's the only omega in his family in the last hundred years. They redid it for Derek four years ago. There’s a bed and a little bathroom, everything updated so it’s not a cell, but just a nice place to be. Sometimes when Laura has to get school work done, she shuts herself inside of it so she doesn’t have to listen to her family.

She claims that it’s less weird than Derek insists that it is.

Derek didn't use it for his last heat so it's been nearly two years. He expects stale air and gross sheets. He was so wrapped up in everything with Stiles that he wasn’t really prepared for it. He didn’t have time to clean up before he needed it.

But the room smells like it's been aired out. The sheets on the mattress on the floor are new, the mini fridge is stocked with water and food.

There's a note from his mom by the bed that reads, "We love you." And Derek crumples it up in favor of flopping onto the mattress and rooting around in the container next to the bed for a knotted dildo.

It's worse the next morning. Derek is a sweaty, disgusting mess. He has a few moments where he manages to shower before he's jerking off, so hard and fast that it’s painful. When he comes he slips and falls into the side of tub. He feels the bone in his arm break and focuses on the healing and pain.

He sits against the back of the tub and waits for his arm to heal, the water from the shower hitting him in the chest.

He lets his head fall against his chest. If he breathes deep enough he can almost smell Stiles shirt in the bed. It’s already full of puncture holes from his claws and has more than a little come on it.

“Fuck,” he says to himself.

Nothing is enough. Nothing fills him the right way or soothes the itch in his belly. His skin feels too hot and tight and it's just going to get worse. He has two more days until it peaks and three days after that to come down.

He still makes it through the day, sobbing as he fucks into his fist and tries to coordinate thrusting the dildo into his ass.

He caves the next morning because he comes with Stiles' name on his lips and he's so hot he can barely move or think. He didn’t sleep at all the night before. And he wants Stiles. Stiles is willing to help. It's stupid to push Stiles away when he can help himself.

He fumbles for his phone and finds Stiles’ number. When he doesn't answer he tries again and then again. He keeps his hand fisted around his dick. How did he not think of listening to Stiles’ voicemail before. It’s stupid, but hearing his voice is so nice.

He can’t feel Stiles in here like he can everywhere else. The walls are too thick. Scent proof, sound proof. Apparently mate proof too.

"Derek?" Stiles should be in class but he's answering his phone, voice sounding worried. And maybe it's because this is the third time Derek has called.

Derek comes all over his hand and he doesn't care that he should be embarrassed. "Stiles. Fuck."

"Shit." Stiles voice pitches low. He sounds like he's moving. "Derek. Are you okay?"

"Need you," Derek whines into the phone. "Please, Stiles. I was so stupid. I didn't—I didn't—I'm an idiot. I tried. I want—."

Stiles shushes him and it's okay. It's soothing really. "It's okay, Derek. Do you want me to come over?"

Stiles.”

“Just—please just say it. You have to say it.”

"Yes. Please. Come over.”

And Stiles hangs up the phone. 

Chapter Text

Derek sends a text to his mom at some point, letting her know that he thinks Stiles is coming over. He doesn't have to wait long before he hears the handle on the door jiggle. It sounds so loud in the room even though Derek's harsh breaths might be louder. 

"Derek." Stiles says his name like a prayer and Derek sits up on the bed when Stiles enters the room. Stiles closes the door behind him and locks it. 

Derek changed the sheets on the bed, cleaned up as much as he could. But there were only a few calm moments after every lonely orgasm. He didn't have a lot of time to get it perfect. He wanted it nice for Stiles. As nice as it could be.

Now he's harder than he's been, so hard it's painful and somehow his cock lurches when Stiles is just standing there in front of him. Slick dribbles from his ass and Stiles' pupils go wide, his nostrils flare.

"You're here," Derek says. And he didn't mean for it to come out on a moan like that. He just meant to say it. But he's so relieved. His body just sags back against the pillows. 

Stiles crosses the room and leans down to press a kiss to Derek's sweaty forehead. "I'm here." He sits on the bed and kisses his cheeks. "Derek." He kisses his jaw. "I'm here." He kisses his lips.

Derek kisses him back, wrapping an arm around his shoulder and pulling him down between his legs. Derek rocks up against him and moans into Stiles' mouth.

"Are you okay?" Stiles asks, pulling back.

Derek nods. "Now. It's better with you close. I can think."

Stiles runs his hands over Derek'a sides and somehow his head is clearer, like his fever broke, but he's so incredibly turned on he just wants Stiles to fuck him.

"You want me here?" Stiles asks.

"Of course."

"It's just that we didn't talk about this before and the other day you wanted me to leave and I want this so fucking bad Derek, but I'm not going to do it if you don't want it."

"I want it."

"There are a lot of consent issues and I don't want you to think I'm just this asshole alpha who wants to—."

"I am consenting," Derek says, pressing a kiss to Stiles' lips. "I'm consenting a lot. And I really need you to fuck me. I'll be even better if you fuck me. I want you to knot me."

Stiles kisses him and it takes too long for him to pull away. But eventually he does when Derek starts pulling at his clothes because it's not fair that Derek is the only naked one. He gets his hands under Stiles' shirt and Stiles lets him pull it over his head. Derek leans forward and presses kisses to Stiles' chest. He lets his tongue dart out over a nipple and Stiles shudders against him.

Derek looks up at Stiles and gives him a small smile.

"That feels devious," Stiles says.

"I want you to fuck me first," Derek says, pushing Stiles away from him and turning onto his stomach.

"Derek." Stiles' voice is low, like he's worried that if he speaks too loudly he'll shatter all of it. "Jesus, Derek."

And Derek puts his ass in the air because he knows what he wants. God and he wants this so much. He wants Stiles in every way that can mean. But he really just wants him to fuck him.

"God," Stiles breathes, running his hand over Derek's back. "You're so wet. Jesus."

"Fuck me, Stilinski."

"You don't want to—you don't want to like do it face to face? You know slow bone it? Like one glistening tear because our love making is so beautiful type of thing?" 

"There are still four whole days after today," Derek says, resting his cheek on one of the pillows. "I just really need you to do this now."

"Okay," Stiles says.

He presses a palm against Derek's ass, spreads his cheeks. And then he just leans in and licks the flat of his tongue over him. Derek writhes and moans and reaches under himself to pull as his cock. But it's almost too much.

Stiles pulls back. "I've never—Heather said I was really good at eating her out—."

Derek growls. Fucking Heather.

"No, I mean like—I've never been with a dude before, but I think I could really like eating you out."

"Another time," Derek says. "Can you just fucking knot me before we graduate?"

"You're a little demanding," Stiles says, but Derek sees him pulling off his jeans out of the corner of his eye.

"Pushy omega stereotype," Derek mutters.

The mattress dips when Stiles climbs back behind him. "I could get used to it."

"Come on, Stiles, get on with it."

Stiles bends over him, his dick, hard and leaking, presses between Derek's ass cheeks. Stiles places a kiss to his spine.

"This isn't fake for me," Stiles says. "Before I—I mean if you want I can just help you through this and we can move on, but I can't—this is real for me. The only time I was lying was when I acted like we were doing it for anyone else."

Derek swallows and nods. He thinks he might feel emotion lumped in his throat, burning with the desire to cry. Maybe the one glistening tear thing isn't so far off.

"It's real for me," he finally gasps. He pushes back against Stiles. "Please, Stiles. I want this so much. I want it forever."

Stiles kisses his back and his shoulders and every place he can reach. "I love you, Derek. I love you so much." He runs his hands over Derek's chest and he doesn't seem to care that Derek doesn't say it back. Derek wants to. He really wants to, but he can barely speak. "God. You're so good, Derek. So good."

"Stiles, come on." Derek pushes back. "Fuck me. Knot me."

"Okay. Are you good? Are you okay if I…?"

"Yeah. Yeah. Now, Stiles."

Stiles rests the head of his cock against Derek's hole and pauses and Derek is sick of it. Sick of waiting. He fucks himself back until Stiles' balls press against his ass and he stays there. Stiles might be too stunned to move, but Derek feels so good. This is what he's been waiting for.

Derek sighs and comes all over the bed.

"Fuck," Stiles gasps finally.

"That's the general idea," Derek says, leaning forward onto his arms. He's probably going to stay hard, but it's less demanding now. He doesn't need to get off. He just needs Stiles to get off inside of him.

Stiles laughs. "That is a bad joke." He pulls out a little and pushes back in. "I'm not going to last very long. Christ, Derek."

"I don't need you to last long."

"Well, fuck."

"Stiles," Derek says around a little gasp. "Keep going."

"Right, right."

Stiles moves again with a little more confidence. He runs his hands over Derek's sides, digs his fingers into his hips. Derek feels full and good and they could probably do it better again the next time, try to coordinate it so that Derek isn't just this blissed out lump of a werewolf. Not that he's a totally useless lump. He's just a lump who's gasping and whining against a pillow and pushing back against Stiles whenever he has the energy.

Derek thought that maybe Stiles would be silent in bed to offset how much he babbled everywhere else, but Stiles just babbles through fucking him. It's less rambling about human rights and Iron Man and more, "Oh fuck, Derek, you're so tight. Jesus Christ. I'm not going to last. God. You're perfect. You're so beautiful. Look at you. You're taking me so well. Jesus. I love you. Fuck. Derek. Mother fucker. This is—perfect. You're perfect."

Derek reaches back and takes Stiles' hand and it feels a little stupid and maybe too intimate, but he laces their fingers together. And it shouldn't be stupid. They're there probably. Derek shouldn't be embarrassed about wanting to hold Stiles' hand.

He knows that it's because when he tried to hold Kate's hand she laughed at him. But he pushes that thought away as soon as it comes so he can focus instead on the slide of Stiles inside him. The way Stiles' dick is starting to grow, catching on Derek's rim. The way everything feels perfect and good. The way Stiles leans forward, presses his forehead to Derek's back, and starts to come on a groan.

"I love you," Stiles says again.

Derek is so fucking full. He pushes back against Stiles even though he really can't and he moans, his voice the loudest thing in the suddenly quiet room.

"Jesus," Stiles says.

He maneuvers them so that they're on their side and the way Stiles' knot pulls at Derek's rim draws all these whimpering sounds out of Derek's mouth. It feels so good and dirty and Derek is much harder than he was a minute ago.

Stiles gets a hand around Derek's cock and Derek lets his head fall back against Stiles' shoulder.

"Bite me again," Derek says. He moves head head so that Stiles can fit his mouth over the scar of the bite mark on Derek's neck.

Stiles barely bites down, but he doesn't need to, and Derek is coming, spilling over Stiles' hand and the bed.

"Fuck, Stiles," Derek says.

Stiles wipes his hand on the sheets and runs his hand down Derek's arm. Every breath pulls where they're joined and Derek wants to just curl up in that feeling forever. It's so nice. He never could have imagined how nice it was. If there was ever a reason to not become a spinster it would be this feeling right here.

It might have quite a bit to do with the way Stiles is pressing kisses to his skin and drawing patters over his arm and sides with those long fingers. The long fingers he's looking forward to riding at some point. Maybe he could get off from just that.

"How are you feeling?" Stiles asks, shaking Derek from his thoughts.

"Good," says Derek and for the first time in days he feels like he can think clearly. "So good, Stiles. Thank you."

Stiles runs a hand down over Derek's hip. He kisses his shoulder. "I love you. You know that right? Like I really love you. Like gross mushy stuff."

"I know," Derek says. He tries to push against Stiles more, so that they're even closer together. He laces their fingers together and presses a kiss to Stiles' hand. He takes a deep breath. "I love you too."

"We're so dumb," Stiles says. "We could've been doing this for weeks now."

"Idiots," Derek agrees.

They're silent for a while, Stiles just kissing Derek's shoulder, running his hands over him. It takes a while for him to start talking again, but when he does its typical Stiles.

"You know it's kind of weird that human alphas have knots," Stiles murmurs into Derek's neck. 

Derek shifts and Stiles is still inside of him. "I mean it's weird in general because it doesn't really do anything extra for us." 

"Yeah. The whole thing is weird. You know." 

"Laura's doing research in genetics and she says that we all have the same basic genetic code, which includes the whole presenting thing, but then some people have the gene for shifting, which is what makes us werewolves." 

"So it's like people who have the gene that makes them love cilantro." 

"Yeah. Pretty much. That sounds right." 

"I get that you're making fun of me right now. Also what about weres that are bit?"

"Something about saliva," Derek says, he slides his fingers through Stiles' and turns his hand over. "Laura says it actually doesn't have anything to do with being a pack alpha, but the people who have that saliva thing tend to be alphas. But you could get changed by a beta or an omega." 

"Maybe I'll study genetics." 

"Yeah," Derek says, but he's feeling distracted. "You should—fuck—you should kiss me."

"Oh my god." Stiles eases out of Derek and pushes him onto his back. "I'm an idiot."

"Yeah." Derek doesn't really care. He leans up and goes in with his mouth open. Stiles meets him and Derek groans when they finally kiss. His fingers tangle into Stiles' hair and his dick is already getting hard.

"Can I take my time this time?" Stiles asks.

"Maybe not that much time," Derek says.

Stiles pulls back and runs a hand over Derek's chest. He looks down and takes Derek in. And Derek blushes. Stiles is looking at all of his hair. And fuck. He didn't even think that he'd have to get ready or shave or anything.

"I'm sorry I didn't shave," Derek says softly and Stiles turns his head a little.

"What?"

"I didn't shave." Derek gestures to the hair at the base of his half hard dick and at the rest of him. "I didn't think that you'd be—I didn't think—I know people don't like it and—."

"Derek, dude, I love body hair," Stiles says. "I love your body hair. But like more importantly it doesn't matter what I like. It's your body, man. I'm just happy to be having sex with you. I would never want you to do something you don't want."

"You like it?"

"Yeah, man. You're fucking sexy. I like it. But even if you wanted to wax your whole body I'd be there for that too."

"I mean I don't like shaving. I just thought—it sounds stupid, but Kate made me and like everybody in porn is—not that I've actually watched porn in a while, but—."

"Trust me when I say that I love you no matter what you want to look like. I know that's not like going to magically undo all the damage that Kate did, but I am very much attracted to you like this. So much so that I'd really like to kiss you right now and like maybe suck you off a little."

Derek tangles his fingers into Stiles' hair. It's not like he's going to argue with him.

Derek has his legs wrapped around Stiles' waist. Stiles pounds into him, his half formed knot catching on his rim. Stiles teeth are back at the mark on Derek's neck and Derek is begging.

He grab's Stiles' ass. He pulls him in tighter. His finger glances between Stiles' cheeks.

"You could fuck me some time," Stiles says, voice pitched low and filthy. Derek nearly comes. "If you wanted. After your heat. Maybe I'll suck you off, just until you're about to come and then you can fuck me on my back. Or maybe I'll ride you."

Derek whimpers. "Yeah. Yes. Fuck."

"This is for real," says Stiles like he's in awe. He has his arms wrapped around Derek and he keeps kissing everything he can reach. "I mean, let's be honest, it was always real for me."

Derek turns to face him. "It was always real for you? Like, not just—you know—now?"

"Yeah. Come on, man. I've had a crush on you for years. You couldn't smell it? What's the point of those werewolves senses if you can't smell it?"

"I can smell arousal, but not—."

"Love," Stiles finishes with this wry smile.

A smile tugs at Derek's lips. "Only if I'm looking for it."

"You never looked for it with me?"

"I just never thought that I would smell it."

"Can you smell it on me now?"

"Too much jizz," Derek says, pressing Stiles onto his back and climbing over him. He buries his face in his neck. He smells warm and homey and like cinnamon and sugar and like Derek. "I'll try later."

"We could shower."

Derek shakes his head. "I'm not—it going to peak again. I tried to shower the second day and I slipped and broke my arm. Not that it matters really, but it still hurts."

Stiles rubs his back. "Okay." He leans up and kisses this side of Derek's face and shifts his hips. Derek feels him, already a little hard, moving against Derek's ass. "Was it always real for you too?"

"Yeah," Derek admits. "Pretty much. At least—I had a crush on you at first, but it didn't take long."

"We're so stupid," Stiles says. "We were literally mated and didn't even realize it."

"I think—." Derek sits back and rubs his hand over Stiles' chest. He's more filled out that Derek's ever expected. He knew it kind of. He saw it on the lacrosse field, those few times they were shirtless together. But Derek gets to feel it now. It's all his. Forever. "I think that we're true mates."

"Yeah. Me too. When you told me that you told your parents that I thought I was going to weep."

"I didn't—I mean I knew that we were, but I didn't think it was a real thing."

Stiles nods and pulls Derek down for a kiss. "My parents were true mates. I know it's not like something anyone can see really. But they were. And I always wanted that."

"You're a sap," Derek mutters as he kisses over Stiles' jaw.

"Yeah I am." Stiles rubs Derek's thighs. "I really like your body hair, Der."

"I'm glad you do," Derek says. He pushes back against Stiles' cock, already a little hard. He strokes his own dick once. "Finger me," he says.

Stiles nods. He slips his hands around Derek's thighs and nudge them against his slick hole.

"I love how wet you are," Stiles says, pressing two fingers inside of Derek.

"It's for you," Derek says. "Want you to fuck me. Knot me again."

"What if I just fingered you," says Stiles. "I wish we had started counting orgasms at the beginning. That would be fun we could take bets."

Derek shakes his head. "You'd win."

"You think?"

"You'd guess more than me and then you'd get me off that much."

"You think I could really do that?"

"Yes." Derek's head falls forward and he moves his hips a little. His cock is leaking precome all over the place. Stiles pulls his hand off Derek's hip and swipes it over the tip of Derek's cock. He sucks his fingers into his mouth.

"Still amazing," Stiles says.

Derek's mind gets a little lost while Stiles jerks him off and fingers him. He's moving in little thrusts and shifts of his hips and whimpering because he can't get enough and he's so amazed that he's enjoying this so much. He never thought that he'd have this. The last year has been such a chore and he probably isn't fixed, but he feels so happy. Stiles makes him happy. Even before when they weren't open about their feelings, he was so happy.

"No one else is like you," Derek says, leaning forward and kissing Stiles. "Your fingers feel so good, Stiles."

"Yeah—Jesus fucking—yeah. Yeah. How are you still so tight? God. It's so good. You're so wet for me."

"Can't wait for everyone to really know that I'm yours."

"Mine." Stiles' mouth falls open. "Derek, can I—fuck—can I fuck you now?"

"Jesus, yes. I thought—thought I was gonna have to beg."

"Next time." Stiles manages to smirk before groaning as Derek positions his cock at his hole and starts sinking down on it.

Derek hangs his head. "Shit, Stiles. You feel so good."

"Made for you," Stiles says. "Fuckin' true mates. That's the real deal. I exist for you. My dick exists for you." Derek snorts and Stiles thrusts upwards hard. "No laughing."

"Your dick exists for me?"

"Yeah. Come on, you can't tell me you don't feel it."

Derek pulls himself up and drops back down. "Yeah. I think I do. Nothing is as good as you. You feel so good, Stiles."

"You flatterer." Stiles laughs and closes his eyes. He throws his head back. "Derek I think I'm already going to come. God. You're so tight. So perfect. Can't even look at you, you're so beautiful."

"You're filling me up so well." Derek rolls his hips. Stiles' knot is already forming and catching at Derek's rim. "God, yeah. Love how your knot feels. Jesus, Stiles."

Stiles opens his eyes and thrusts up into Derek a couple more times before he's coming, knot swelling. Derek loves the way it feels. He's so full of Stiles. Marked inside and out. It's so good

"I love you," Derek says when he comes all over Stiles' chest.

Stiles gives him a lazy grin and rubs his thighs. "I really love you too."

Stiles bends his knees up so Derek can rest against them and he does. The pull of Stiles' knot makes him gasp a little and he fists his half hard dick in his hand. Stiles reaches his hand up to join him.

"Wish we could stay like this forever," Stiles says. "Me just buried inside you and you jerking off all over my chest."

"We'd get gross," Derek says, voice hitching. He grinds down on Stiles a little.

"I think in the scenario where I'm knotting you forever we can pretend that we won't get gross. Plus, we're already pretty gross."

"Tomorrow night it'll start winding down," Derek says. He finds Stiles' free hand with his own and laces their fingers together. "How gross can you handle being?"

"I'll clean up up when my knot goes down."

"That level of caring and domesticity might kill me." Derek's breath catches. "Tell me about how you're going to take care of me."

"That get you off?" Stiles asks.

Derek shrugs and rolls his hips. "No one's ever said the sweet stuff you say to me before."

"That makes me want to murder people."

"My big, bad alpha."

"You're mocking me."

"Come on, Stiles."

"During your next heat we'll have our own place," Stiles says, thrusting up a little. "Our own apartment. We won't have to deal with this heat room bullshit. And we'll fuck on every surface. I'll knot you on the couch so we can watch TV. Or maybe I'll knot you on the couch and we'll throw up some porn and I'll just jerk you off again. We'll have one of those big jacuzzi tubs so we can just rest in there while we're tied together. Then, when you're resting and I'm wired from fucking you, I'll cook for you. I'll make you all your favorite food and feed it to you."

Derek nods and tries to move into Stiles' hand wrapped around his dick but it's hard. He doesn't have a huge range of movement and he needs to get off faster than he is.

"I'll take such good care of you, Derek," Stiles gasps, his hand tightening. "I'll give you everything I can give you. I'll be there for every heat. I'll help you through it. You're going to love it. You'll look forward to it. To a whole week we get to spend together. Every year for the rest of our lives."

Derek makes a high pitched whining noise. "Stiles."

"I can't fucking believe it," Stiles says. "Can't believe I get to be with you. So fucking smart and beautiful and good. Jesus, Derek. You have no idea how lucky I am. God our apartment is going to smell like us and we're going to wrap ourselves up in it. And we'll cuddle when it's cold and take showers together when it's hot. We'll do both those things no matter what, but we'll have each other. Forever."

Derek's stomach spasms and he comes all over Stiles' chest again and he feels Stiles pulse inside of him just a little. Much less than he did before. Derek leans back on Stiles' knees and wipes sweat from his forehead.

"Forever," Derek says.

Stiles rubs his thumb over Derek's hip and nods.

Chapter Text

The fifth day is when it starts slowing down. When Derek doesn't wake up, push Stiles onto his back and ride him even if he's so tired he can barely keep his eyes open. Now the need is quieter. Derek's muscles ache and they want to heal. And there are going to be a couple more days of low key needing to get fucked, but that's it.

They're almost done.

"Want to take a shower?" Derek asks in the morning, when he feels Stiles shift behind him.

Stiles has showered a couple of times, only to come out and find Derek begging, whining because Stiles wasn't there touching him. Derek would make sure to come all over Stiles' chest and Stiles would make a big show of cleaning Derek up afterwards. Wiping him down with a wet cloth, kissing the spots he cleaned, and murmuring how perfect he is into his skin.

This is the first day Derek actually feels kind of gross.

"You up for that?" Stiles asks. "We could eat or something first."

"No. No lets take a shower."

"Maybe change the sheets after."

Derek turns over to face Stiles and nods. "We could eat something and watch a movie."

Stiles kisses him and he tastes like morning breath, but also he eats Derek out and then makes out with him so Derek doesn't really have any boundaries.

"Okay," Stiles says, sitting up. "Let's go."

They both brush their teeth in the little bathroom and Derek turns on the shower.

"Do you mind if it's not hot?" Derek asks. His skin is still sweaty and warm and he wants something cool.

"You'll keep me warm anyway," Stiles says, pressing a kiss to Derek's shoulder. "Come on."

The shower is barely big enough for the two of them, but Stiles stands behind Derek and kisses his shoulders and back. He washes his hair and then his body, arms circling around him to wash his front, taking extra care with his cock. By the time he's done, Derek has his eyes closed and his head back on Stiles' shoulder. Stiles is hard between them, but it doesn't seem urgent.

Stiles strokes Derek's cock once. "Probably shouldn't knot you in here."

"Probably not," Derek says.

"Maybe I’ll fuck you in the shower when you’re not in heat," Stiles says. His fingers move down over Derek's ribs and back over his ass. Stiles squeezes it and then presses two fingers against Derek's hole. He circles them around the rim. "We're going to keep doing this, right? We'll be together after."

Derek nods. "Yes," he sighs. "Fuck yes."

Stiles pumps his fingers inside Derek once. "Good. I'm gonna miss this though. Miss how ready you are for me all the time."

Derek nods again. He isn't sure if he can talk. He doesn't know why this is so much more intense. Why his ties are already curling and his hands are struggling to find purchase on anything.

Stiles sounds like he's feeling it too. He whimpers Derek's name and thrusts his hips against him. Stiles strokes Derek's cock with more purpose, adds a third finger, thrusts his dick against Derek's back.

"It's not creepy if I tell you I'm going to be barely able to concentrate in school because of you, right? Because it's going to take me a while to not think about this. And I get that people don't stop fucking, but we're going to have to work around it more. Do you think your mom will let me sleep over? Because, fuck man, I don't think this is going to make the bond any looser. It might even hurt more to be apart. I kinda want it too. I want to need to be near you. I want other people to know that we need each other." He bites Derek's ear. "My mate."

Derek comes over Stiles' fingers and Stiles spills over his back. He pushes him around and kisses him furiously in the small space. Stiles rubs his hands all over Derek's torso and rests their foreheads together.

"I love you," Derek says.

Stiles grins. "I know."

Derek pushes him even though he can barely move a foot. "You dork."

"Honestly, I'm surprised I haven't thought to use it before. You should be proud of me for going this long without saying it."

"I'm not." Derek breaks into a grin. "But I'm surprised it's the first time."

"Yeah exactly."

"You're still a dork."

"You're a male cheerleader who listens to The Smiths and writes. You're the dork."

"You're the one who quotes Star Wars after finger fucking someone. Now help me clean up, nerd."

"I could definitely be nerdier."

"I doubt that."

Derek kisses him and it feels nice and sweet and maybe what they could have forever. And Derek is silently very proud of himself for being able to consider forever.

On day six, Stiles and Derek spend most of the day knotted together, getting off when they need to, but there's no rush. Derek just doesn't want Stiles to ever leave. And they only stop to eat and drink and shower again.

In the evening, Derek curls against Stiles' side and Stiles has his laptop propped up on his knees. They're making their way through Girls and Derek hates it, but Stiles giggles every so often, which makes Derek's belly all fluttery and warm. And then Stiles go on about the merits of unlikable characters and why certain shows work better than others.

Derek knows that it's all ending. He can feel it. And, yes, there is the whole forever thing that he's pretty sure he's got, but the real world is daunting. College and moving and jobs and the future.

Stiles runs his hand through Derek's hair. He pauses the episode.

"What are you freaking out about, big guy?"

Derek hesitates before speaking. "I didn't apply to any west coast schools."

"You don't want to be on the west coast."

"But you—you already got in places."

"I applied to a couple of east coast schools," Stiles says, shutting the laptop and dropping it to the floor. "I could potentially get into both."

"I'm not doubting that. But I don't—should I have applied to west coast schools?"

"You don't want to be here. So you shouldn't have to be here."

"Yeah, but now—I wouldn't ask you to leave."

"I wouldn't ask you to stay. And, Derek, if I get into an east coast school then that means I got into Harvard or MIT. That's not exactly slumming it."

"No. I know. But what about your dad?"

"My dad is an adult. And there are a lot of people who can keep an eye on him. And wherever we end up he might come too."

"Right."

"Do you—do you get sad about leaving your family?"

"I don't know. Laura is like five hours away and she's still too involved."

"So you're not worried?"

"Not at all."

Stiles rolls over on top of Derek and slots himself between his legs."Good. Because, like, you know, I get sad when you're sad."

Derek blushes and turns his face to the side. “Well you can’t help it with the bond.”

Stiles kisses the top of Derek’s cheek. “Yeah. That’s definitely all it is.” He kisses across to his ear. “Definitely not because I love you or whatever. Just the bond.”

“Yeah,” Derek says, reaching up to run his hand over Stiles’ back as he kisses down his neck to the bite mark. “Definitely not love.”

“I love this,” Stiles says, pressing kisses to the mark. “I love you.”

Derek turns his head and captures Stiles’ lips with his own. He wraps his thigh around Stiles’ hip and pulls him closer, blunt nails digging into Stiles’ back.

“Fuck me,” Derek says between kisses.

Stiles pulls back and blinks a few times. He nods like he’s never fucked Derek before. He trails his fingers down Derek’s chest, and Derek might be moving slower now than he was before, but that makes him all the more sensitive. He arches up into Stiles’ touch, exposes his neck for Stiles’ to press his face into it as his fingers ghost over Derek’s cock. They run over his balls before pressing against his wet hole.

Stiles just presses one finger inside and Derek doesn’t beg for more. He knows that Stiles knows he can take more. Of course he can take more. He’s so ready to take more. But he lets Stiles go slow, focuses solely on the feeling of his finger pressing in, teasing him.

Derek runs a hand over Stiles’ shoulder and over his chest. He brushes his fingers over Stiles’ jaw and Stiles pulls two of them in his mouth. Stiles moans around them as he adds another finger to Derek's ass. It's not long before he adds one more. Derek bears down on him, rolls his hips and moans.

"Think you can come without touching yourself?" Stiles asks after removing Derek's fingers from his mouth.

Derek nods. "Probably."

"Okay. Then don't touch yourself unless you have to."

Derek nods. "Okay."

Stiles pulls back. "Roll over. Ass in the air."

Derek does what Stiles says. He drops down onto his arms and presses his ass out like he's presenting himself. Stiles grabs a handful of his ass and squeezes. Derek closes his eyes and tries not to cry, but it's so good. Too good. Too much.

"Stiles," he gasps. "Please fuck me."

"Yeah," Stiles says. The head of his dick rests at Derek's hole. "Fuck yeah."

"Stiles," Derek says again.

Stiles presses inside and Derek relaxes for him. He lets out a low noise as Stiles bottoms out. Stiles rests his head between his shoulder blades. He barely moves. Just strokes his hands over Derek's sides, spreads his fingers against his ribs.

Derek isn't sure he needs him to move, really. He's feeling so much.

Stiles pulls out a little and thrusts back in. He moves in small, slow rolls of his hips and Derek presses his forehead against his arms.

“Love you,” Stiles says, forehead still resting on Derek’s back. “Love you so much. Forever. You feel so good, Der. You’re so good for me.”

Derek feels so full. It’s not like the frantic heat from before, just good and slow and when Stiles moves his whole body thrums with it. The second Stiles’ knot starts to catch at Derek’s rim, Derek chokes on nothing and comes all over the sheets.

“I love you,” Stiles says again.

Derek nods, pushes back even though he’s oversensitive. “I love you too.”

On the last day they eat snacks and cuddle and watch Netflix until Derek starts kissing Stiles' face and Stiles turns them over and slides into Derek like its nothing. And god it's so good and nice and Derek is going to combust. Stiles touches him everywhere, but it's slow. The slowest they've gone.

Stiles presses his forehead against Derek's. "I love you. No matter what happens next year. I love you."

Derek kisses him and he’s not worried.

Chapter Text

The next day at school isn't totally weird, but Derek doesn't want Stiles to stop touching him. He doesn't want to stop touching Stiles. They hold hands in the hallway, kiss between classes, keep their ankles linked during English and biology. They even end up late to their practices because Stiles finds Derek outside the locker rooms and decides that that's the best time for a blow job.

And really, Derek could never say no to Stiles. Not when blow jobs are involved.

They drive home together in the Camaro. Stiles is staying for dinner and his dad is meeting him there. It's going to be a big family getting to know each other thing. Which Laura dubs the "lets pretend our sons didn't just fuck for a week" dinner. Which is probably pretty accurate. None of them are really sure about the protocol of this, but it seems reasonable that they should all have dinner together.

"You nervous?" Stiles asks.

Derek shrugs. "It's not like they don't already know each other."

"They don't know each other in the our sons are definitely banging capacity."

"That's true. But I think it's normal."

Stiles nods. The tires of Derek's car crunch over the dirt driveway. "Totally normal."

"Are you nervous?"

"Kinda. I just—it could turn on me really quickly. Like what if your parents hate me? My dad isn't going to defend me."

"They don't hate you. You had breakfast with them yesterday."

"Yeah after I spent five days fucking their son. I think they were in shock."

"We're adults. And I'm capable of taking care of myself. They won't hate you for having sex with me."

"I know." Stiles puts his hand over Derek's on the gear shift. "I really love that you drive standard. It is up there next to your ass on my list of things I love about you."

"Shut up." Derek leans over at the red light and presses a quick kiss to Stiles' lips.

Stiles squeals a little. "You like that I like it. I should try giving you road head sometime." 

"Not now," Derek says quickly, thinking very hard of the dinner they're supposed to have and not about Stiles bending over and sucking his dick. 

"Another time," Stiles says. But he rubs his hand on the inside of Derek's thigh. 

"Stiles." Derek lets out a long hiss of air between his teeth. "My whole family will know." 

Stiles pulls back on a sigh. "Fuckin werewolves."

"We've got a lot of time for road head," Derek says. 

"The rest of our lives." Stiles grins. 

When they pull up to the house Talia and Sheriff Stilinski are standing in the front porch. They're both holding envelopes in their hands. One large. One small.

"God, I feel like we're facing a firing squad," Stiles says.

"College acceptance letters," Derek mutters. "Kind of the same thing."

Derek gets out of the car and grabs his backpack from the back seat. Stiles does the same. And they approach the house together. Derek's fingers itch for Stiles but he's not sure that it's the time for that.

His mother presses the envelope into his hands when he gets up onto the porch and tries to conceal a smile.

Derek's fingers shake. It's big. He knows what that means. The thing is that Stiles is holding the small one with the same school name in the corner in crimson with a crest and Latin. And he wishes they were alone again not for the first time since his heat ended. They had the whole world to themselves for five days.

"Open it," Stiles says, nudging Derek's arm. 

Derek opens it, opens the folder, Stiles hand slips into his as he reads the letter.

Dear Derek,

Congratulations! I am delighted to inform you of your admission to the Harvard College class of 2020…

He looks up at Stiles, who hasn’t opened his letter yet, but is holding it tightly in his hand. He can feel warmth and pride and anxiety through their bond.

He gets to the financial aid part of his package and he got money. More money than he could have hoped. This is his dream. This is all he wanted for years. And now he has it. And he feels so good and so fucking sad at the same time. 

His mom squeals and hugs him and he's overtaken by family. Stiles slips away from him, let's go of his hand. And he lets it happen, but when his family starts breaking away from him to put together dinner he can't find Stiles or his dad anywhere.

He can feel sharp sadness, smell Stiles' cinnamon sugar scent. He heads towards the back yard and stops when he hears voices.

"It's not that I care if I got in or not," Stiles says and he's crying.

"Son, it's okay if you're upset about a rejection. Everyone gets upset about rejection."

"No, but, like, I got in other places. But I don't want—I'm—what if I'm not with Derek next year."

"People date long distance."

"Dad, it fucking hurts when we're not together."

"You can't ask him to not go to Harvard."

"I wouldn't."

"And you can't give up college for him."

"I could work for a year. People do that. I could get an internship or something. It wouldn't be hard in Boston. I could apply to more schools in a year."

Derek steps outside and Stiles looks up at him, eyes rimmed in red. He smiles at Derek and wipes his tears on the back of his hand.

"I didn't congratulate you yet," Stiles says.

"I'll leave you two alone," Sheriff Stilinski says. He pats Derek on the back. "Congratulations, son. I'm proud of you."

"Thanks." Derek can't look away from Stiles and the second the sheriff walks back into the house, Stiles is in front of Derek, kissing him hard.

“It’s okay,” Stiles says between kisses. “It’ll be great.”

"We'll figure it out, Stiles. You can't not go to Stanford for me. And you haven't heard from MIT."

"MIT is a long shot," Stiles says, falling away from Derek. "More than Harvard. I don't have the science or math classes like I had history and English." 

"I can—."

"You have to go to Harvard, Derek. It's, I mean it's fucking Harvard, man. You don't just not go to Harvard."

"If you say it enough times it loses its meaning."

Stiles kisses him again. "I'm really proud of you, Derek. You're so fucking smart. Jesus Christ. You're like the smartest person I know. You deserve this so much. I'm just—you're really amazing."

Derek ducks his head against his chest. "Oh god. Too many compliments.”

"Too many compliments? How is that even possible?"

"I love you," Derek says. And it's feels like a big deal out here in the air. They haven't said it outside the heat room and even though Derek is fairly sure that this is real, it still feels big. And Stiles knows it because his eyes go wide.

"I love you so fucking much. We’ll figure this out."

"Yeah we will."

Derek's mom orders Harvard sweatshirts for the whole family that night and an extra one for Stiles. And Derek crawls into bed alone again with Stiles' t-shirt bunched up by his head.

Derek calls Stiles and they talk until they fall asleep. Derek closes his eyes to Stiles saying something about looking at internships.

"Mother fucking Harvard!" Erica shouts at practice the next afternoon. "Why the fuck didn't you tell me right away? Oh my god. You're such a nerd!"

"I thought I'd tell you in person," Derek says. Except mainly it's because he forgot to tell her.

"I can tell that's a lie, but I'm choosing to ignore it. You smart, sexy bastard. Jesus. You're amazing. Can I hug you?"

"Yeah," Derek nods. "You can hug me."

Erica throws her arms around him and she pulls away a little. "Is Stiles going to get all possessive if he smells me on you?"

"No."

“Dude!” She hugs him. “We still have to talk about last week!"

“We don’t have to talk about it.”

“Was it great? You’re all glowy. Oh my god. Did he fuck you to happiness?”

Derek frowns and Erica lets out a delighted laugh.

"I'm pretty happy," Derek says. 

"But not all the way happy?" 

“Stiles didn’t get into Harvard,” he says, picking at the bottom of his shirt.

“Oh.” She reaches out and presses their fingertips together. “How does that feel?”

“Uh, kind of horrifying actually.”

“Look at you talking about your feelings.”

“Jesus Christ, Erica.”

“Sorry. And I don’t know. You guys love each other and gross shit, so you’ll figure it out. It’s not the end of the world.”

“I know.”

“Are you regretting not staying around here?” she asks. She hasn’t heard from any schools yet, but she’s applied all over the country. There's probably very little chance they'd be together anyway. She only applied to one school in Boston. 

“No. I still don’t really want to be here.”

“Well that’s good. You shouldn’t change who you are even if you’re getting good sex.”

“Thanks for that advice.”

“Erica! Derek!” Allison has her hands on her hip and her lips pursed. “You’re supposed to be practicing! Derek, you need to be getting back into shape after your week off.”

“Derek was keeping up his physical fitness last week if you know what I mean,” Erica says with an exaggerated wink.

“You could’ve done better with that joke, Erica,” says Allison. “Give me two laps around the gym and then you’re working on your toss.”

“Evil bitch,” Erica mutters, starting to jog, but she’s got that fond look she always gets when Allison is a little mean.

Derek climbs the side of Stiles' house that night. He doesn't really need to. It's just kind of fun to pull open the window and watch Stiles freak out. He does the flailing arms thing in his bed while trying to get up and then pulls Derek inside by the front of his shirt.

"We're mated, idiot," Stiles says, pressing a hard kiss to Derek's lips. "You don't need to do this shit."

"I know."

Derek smiles into their next kiss and let's Stiles push his jacket over his shoulders. Stiles maneuvers them into the bed so that Derek is lying across his chest, pressing little kisses to his jaw and chin.

"I was worried about you," Derek says.

"Dude, I—you never have to worry about me."

"You're sad. I can feel it."

"I mean I know, but I'm not—I know you're sad too."

"So maybe I also need this," Derek says. "Do you want to talk about it?"

"About how fucking scared I am of not being together next year? I don't even know how to talk about it." He runs his fingers through Derek's hair. "I want to follow you. I mean, I know my dad will be pissed, but—."

"You can't give up college for me." Derek rests against Stiles. Stiles is smaller than he is, but he feels right and calm and protected when he's curled up with him. "We can do long distance. It'll be tough, but people do it."

"Not alphas and omegas. Not true mates. And, like, everyone would expect you to give up Harvard for me, but maybe I'll give up Stanford for you."

Derek’s heart hammers against his chest and Stiles stills his hand in Derek’s hair. “I can’t make you do that, Stiles.”

“No, people do gap years. It’s totally thing. And I can get a paid internship and we’ll have an apartment or you can live on campus your first year so you get to do all the fun living on campus stuff and then we’ll get an apartment. Or I’ll do Americorps or something. I don’t know. But all that stuff will boost my applications and I’ll apply again for next fall. And maybe I’ll get into Harvard, but there are a thousand good schools in Boston. I would love to be anywhere in Boston. I just want to be with you.”

Derek wraps his arm around Stiles’ torso and kisses his chest. “Okay. Then we’ll figure it out. You just need to talk to your dad.”

“He’s stubborn, but I’m stubborner.”

“That’s not a word.”

“Yes it is. See. I’m stubborner.”

Derek cranes his head to kiss under Stiles’ chin. “Okay. You win. It’s a word and you’ll totally win your dad over.”

“Thank you.”

“I love you a lot.”

“I love you a lot too.”

In the morning the sheriff knocks on the door and shouts, “If you two want pancakes and bacon, you better wake up now.”

Stiles sits up and splutters a lot while looking at Derek.

“If you think I didn’t know Derek was there, you two are idiots.”

“I know!” Stiles shouts. “And don’t even think about eating any bacon!”

The sheriff chuckles and Stiles falls back into bed next to Derek.

“We should get up,” Derek says, sitting up and swinging his legs over the side of the bed. “School and stuff. And if your dad made pancakes, I’m not passing that up.”

Stiles grabs Derek’s hand and presses kisses to his fingers. “I really like when you eat sweet things. It makes my heart melt. It makes me want to buy you pink shirts.”

“I will die before I wear pink, Stiles.”

Stiles groans and pushes Derek’s hand away. “Worst omega ever.”

Derek smiles because he knows Stiles doesn’t mean it. Or maybe he does. But he means it in a good way. In the way Derek always wanted it to mean.

“Come on,” Derek says. “I bet we could take a quick shower together.”

Stiles raises his eyebrows. “With my dad in the house?”

Derek shrugs. “I bet you can think of creative ways to keep me quiet.”

Stiles is out of bed and at the bathroom door before Derek leaves the bedroom.

Chapter Text

The first week of April is unseasonably warm. And most of Beacon Hills High is outside during lunch and break periods, wearing sun dresses and shorts to class, fanning themselves with notebooks. It feels almost like summer. 

Stiles is caught up in some lacrosse thing all day and gets excused from his classes and Derek is fine with it. But he kind of misses him. And then Ennis gets real close in the lunch line and whispers, "Makes sense you'd have some gay ass looking alpha." To which Derek wants to point out that Ennis wanted to fuck him and that’s, like, kinda gay. But he doesn’t because what’s the point. And honestly he doesn’t get what Ennis is saying.

Now he does. 

He, Erica, Allison, and Lydia, walk to meet Stiles and lacrosse crew out on the quad after practice. Scott and Isaac are laughing about something, Boyd is reading, and Stiles is lying with his head on his backpack, staring at his phone. And it wouldn’t be that big a thing, but Stiles is wearing shorts.

Short fucking shorts.

Like the kind of shorts that show off his muscular thighs and don’t leave a lot of the imagination. And they’re fucking pink.

Derek drops his coffee. Well not his coffee. The coffee he was bringing to Stiles. 

Because legs. Legs for fucking days. God. And they're so toned and the hair on them is somehow darker in the sun. And Derek wants to get his hands on them, put himself between them, get his mouth on them, get his dick on them. He wants to rub himself off on Stiles’ thighs. He wants to dig his fingers into them as he fucks Stiles.  

"Shit, man," Stiles says, standing up slowly to walk over to where Derek spilled the coffee. He’s a little flushed. He has to know how turned on Derek is right now. “You okay?”  

Derek looks down at the coffee on the ground. It missed his legs. 

He gestures at the coffee. "That was for you." 

Boyd snorts, but doesn’t look away from his book.

"God you're so fucking sweet," Stiles says, pressing a kiss to Derek’s lips.

“We should go do homework or something,” Derek says, grabbing his hand and pulling him in for another kiss.

“Okay,” Stiles mutters. “So that’s what I was feeling. It’s not wishful thinking.”

“Your shorts are doing things to me.”

“Boner things?” Stiles raises an eyebrow and Derek regrets for a second the being mates in love thing.

Derek rolls his eyes. “You look really good.”

“You like my legs.” Stiles grins. “What are you thinking about? Thinking about them over your shoulders or—.”

Dude,” Scott groans. “We are all right here and mostly werewolves.”

“Just go,” Lydia says like she’s not at all interested, but Derek can see the slight flush of her neck.

“Okay, okay,” Stiles says. He grabs his backpack and takes Derek’s hand. “You good?”

Derek nods quickly and pulls Stiles out to the parking lot. “Jesus, yes, Stiles.”

Boyd lets out a single loud laugh and Erica cackles.

They drive to Stiles’ house in separate cars and it's nearly unbearable. It's a miracle that Derek obeys traffic laws while driving behind the jeep thinking about Stiles thighs. About what they're going to taste like when he gets his mouth on them.

When they get out of their cars at Stiles' house, Derek can't stop himself from pouncing on Stiles and Stiles just goes with it. Kissing Derek between heading towards his house. 

“My dad’s gone until late,” Stiles says walking up to the steps. Derek presses kisses to the back of Stiles’ neck as he goes to the door. He trips over his feet and he doesn’t want to stop. “You could stay for dinner if you wanted. You don’t have to. I know that—.”

“Shut up, Stiles,” Derek says, turning Stiles around and kissing him hard on the lips. “What do you think your neighbors would say if I just blew you right here on the porch.”

“I bet they’ve never seen such a good show.” Stiles puts his hand to Derek’s chest. “Just let me get the mail. Go upstairs.”

“Be quick,” Derek says, pulling open the door and taking the stairs two at a time to Stiles’ bedroom.

He’s not really sure what the plan is, but he dumps his bag by Stiles’ desk and pulls off his shirt and jeans. He thinks that maybe he could fuck Stiles today, but they haven’t talked about it a lot since Derek was in heat, but he really wants it. And Stiles’ legs are just calling him. He grabs the lube from Stiles’ drawer and puts it on the night stand as Stiles walks in, carrying a folder.

Derek’s stomach does a lot of weird things in that moment.

“Derek,” Stiles says, his voice is soft and it’s never really soft. “Shit, Derek.”

“Where’s it from?” Derek asks.

Stiles’ face breaks into a smile. “MIT.”

“Oh my god.”

“I know! I got money! I got enough money. I don’t know why they would give me so much money and it’s not full tuition, but it’s a lot of tuition. Plus a work study job and I’ll get another job to pay rent and we can live in Cambridge together, Derek. It’s going to be perfect.”

“Oh my god.” Derek pulls Stiles into his arms and kisses him. “I’m so happy.”

“Me too because like I would have done anything to be with you, but I really wanted to go to college.”

“I know.” Derek is pretty sure he’s crying as he kisses Stiles. “I’m so proud of you.”

"Do you remember that time I said you could fuck me?" Stiles asks, dropping the letter on the trunk at the end of his bed.

“Yeah. I do. Of course.”

"You could do that now."

"Uh—yes. Yeah. I'd like that."

"Good. Me too. I’m really proud of us. We’re going to such good schools. Together. I’m going to MIT!”

Derek pulls Stiles’ shirt over his head and kisses his collarbone. “You’re going to MIT.”

“Yeah,” Stiles says, working on his shorts. “Celebratory fucking.”

Derek breaks away from him. “Are you okay with this? We don’t—.”

“I really want this.”

“Okay. I just want to make sure. I don’t want—just tell me to stop and I’ll stop.”

“I don’t think I’m going to tell you to stop,” Stiles says.

Derek pushes Stiles' shorts over his legs, following them down to the ground as he does. He rubs his hands over Stiles' perfect thighs. He leans forward and presses kisses to his knees and then up to the inside of his thighs, so close to Stiles' hard cock. Derek stands up quickly. He picks Stiles up—despite Stiles’ squawking—and deposits him in the center of the bed. Derek falls in after and leans over him.

“I’m so proud of you,” Derek says, nudging Stiles’ knees apart with his legs and kissing him. “You’re so smart. You really deserve this.”

“So do you. We’re like a power couple. We’re the smartest mates ever.”

“We don’t know that.”

I know it.”

Derek kisses down Stiles’ torso, taking his time on Stiles’ nipples before trailing over his ribs and to his bellybutton. He pulls off Stiles’ boxers and presses his nose into the base of Stiles’ cock. He takes a deep breath. That smell is his mate. He rubs his hands over Stiles' thighs again and pulls one of them over his shoulder so he can just get his mouth against the sensitive skin. He presses kisses to Stiles' balls and keeps his hands gripping his legs. They're just so perfect and big in his hands. 

Stiles hand works into Derek’s hair. “Derek—.”

“Let me suck you off while I finger you,” Derek says and Stiles’ body lurches.

“Oh god. That is so sexy.”

“I think you’ve done it to me,” Derek says and presses a kiss to the base of Stiles’ cock.

“It was sexy then too, wasn’t it?”

“Yeah. It was.”

Derek grabs the lube from Stiles’ bedside, slicks up his fingers and presses one against Stiles’ hole. He leans back a little to gauge the look on Stiles’ face. But Stiles has his eyes closed. He looks like he’s already blissed out.

“I’m gonna fucking come when you actually get your fingers in me,” Stiles says.

“Then do it.” Derek bites the skin below Stiles’ bellybutton and presses a finger inside of him.

Derek gets his lips back over Stiles’ cock as he works one finger into him and then another. Stiles babbles through it. Most of it not making sense while he pulls on Derek’s hair. By the time he gets a third finger inside of him, Stiles is almost crying.

“Derek. Shit, Derek. I’m gonna—are you sure you want to—fuck!

He swallows Stiles down. God he loves it every time. He hasn’t had a lot of alone time with Stiles. It’s not like their parents don’t know what’s going on. But they aren’t going to do it while their parents are just a few rooms away. But he misses it sometimes. The way Stiles takes and how he smells and the little noises his makes.

Stiles’ body is limp and he paws at Derek’s shoulder as Derek wipes the last bit of come from his lip and licks it off his fingers.

“Kiss me,” Stiles whines. “And then fuck me.”

Derek pulls his fingers from Stiles and Stiles makes another noise of protest.

“You can’t have it both ways,” Derek says, kissing him softly.

“You taste like my jizz,” Stiles says, but opens his mouth for the kiss.

“You’re perfect." Derek meant for it to come out sarcastic, but it comes out sappy and sweet and he's okay with that.    

Stiles rolls over onto his stomach. “Come on, Derek. I’m ready.”

“You want to do it like this?”

“Yeah—fuck yeah—I want that. I think—I think it’ll be easier for the first time.”

“Okay,” Derek says. He spreads Stiles’ ass with one hand and presses his fingers back inside of him. He almost comes at the way Stiles’ ass just swallows his fingers. And he’s still tight somehow. Tight and hot and perfect. “Fuck.”

“Fuck me,” Stiles says, leaning forward on his arms and presses his ass back. Like he’s presenting himself to Derek. People would go insane if they knew an alpha was presenting to an omega like that. People would write articles about it.

Derek presses the tip of his cock against Stiles’ hole. “Are you ready?”

“Yeah,” Stiles says. “Fuck myself on my fingers thinking about you doing this.”

“Shit, Stiles. Fuck.” Derek sinks into Stiles and it's tootighttoomuchtoohottoowet. Stiles gasps, hangs his head forward.

"Derek." He sounds so desperate. "Please. You can move more, faster."

"I can't," Derek gasps. He digs one hand into Stiles' hip, the other into his thigh. "Fuck. You're too—Jesus—it's too good. I'm going to come too soon."

"Want it," Stiles mumbles. "Want you to come in me. Can't wait to feel it, Derek. You're fucking marking me. I'm yours.”

Derek gasps. “Stiles. Jesus.”

“You should bite me. I want you to mark me. Let people know.”

Derek presses his forehead to Stiles’ back and rocks into him. He can’t move beyond small thrusts. “I—people don’t—can I even?”

“You can. People don't do it, but that doesn’t mean we can’t. Jesus fuck, Derek. Just do it. It would be so good. Fuck me harder and then bite me.”

Derek pulls back and takes a deep breath. He isn’t going to come. He isn’t going to think about Stiles’ whole back just there in front of him. He isn’t going to think about his dick disappearing into Stiles. He isn’t going to think about how the bond feels so good. How proud he is of Stiles.

Then he slams back into Stiles and Stiles cries out. He does it again and again, Stiles crying out each time, practically sobbing, reaching back and digging his nails into Derek’s ass. Derek keeps going until he can’t anymore. Until he has to lean over Stiles, fangs pushing through his gums, and bite into the soft flesh between Stiles’ neck and shoulder.

Stiles comes all over the bed and collapses. Derek withdraws his teeth, ruts into Stiles a few more times, and then presses his head against Stiles’ shoulder as he comes.

“Yeah,” Stiles says, voice heavy and sleepy. “Just like that. Fuck, Der. I love you so much.”

Derek rubs his hands down Stiles’ sides. “I love you too.”

“Don’t move.” Stiles takes Derek’s hand and laces their fingers together. “Just stay like that for a little bit. Like I got to stay in you.”

“Okay.” Derek moves them onto their sides and he kisses the bloody mark on Stiles’ neck. “We have to clean this out.”

“I want it to scar.”

“Doesn’t mean it needs to get infected.”

Stiles squeezes his hand. “Okay. We’ll do that in a second. Just stay here with me.”

“Okay,” Derek says. He kisses the mark again. “You’re mine. In Cambridge.”

Stiles sighs. “I’m yours. In Cambridge.”

Chapter Text

Erica flips through the air, Derek catches her and hoists her up in his arms and the crowd goes wild. Stiles is in the stands with his dad and Scott and Derek’s family, screaming, holding up signs for Derek and the rest of the team. Stiles even painted his face with their school’s colors.

Derek feels good. Good about the routine, good about school, good about his mate—he might blush a little when he thinks that—standing up in the stands watching him. Jennifer might have been a succubus trying to kill teenagers, but she put together one hell of a show.

Derek lowers Erica to the ground and he runs off the stage with the rest of the cheerleaders and into the back.

Allison throws her arms around him in a hug and he’s not entirely okay with it, but he’s marginally okay with it. He hugs her back.

“Thank you,” she says. “No matter what place we came in, I know we did our best.”

“Yeah,” Derek says, breaking away from her. He believes it too. He knows that the couldn't have done better and he's proud of it. 

He’s bowled over again with another hug, but this time it comes with Stiles’ warm scent. With cinnamon and sugar and caffeine and mate. Mate mate mate. His. 

“You can’t be back here,” Derek says, wrapping his arms tightly around Stile’s torso.

Stiles pulls back and peppers kisses all over Derek’s neck and face. “I don’t care. You were so good. You looked so fucking good. We’re going to have so much celebratory sex after this. I mean our parents are making us go out to dinner, but then so much sex.”

“Can you two like fuck not in front of us?” Erica asks, but it’s the first time Derek has ever seen her with a non-sarcastic smile.

“Never,” Stiles says. He gets close to Derek’s ear. He breathes, “Let me blow you in the bathroom.”

“No!” Erica shouts.

Stiles pulls back and mutters, “Fuckin werewolves.”

“After we win,” says Allison, who’s probably thinking about Scott.

They don’t win. But they come in second. Which means they’re going to States and also means that a second after they leave the awards ceremony, Stiles is pulling Derek into a private bathroom that says “employees only” on the door and locking it.

He drops down to his knees and presses his nose right into the front of Derek’s shorts. Derek lets out a loud breath and runs his fingers into Stiles’ hair. The bond is thrumming with pride and arousal and happiness. Derek was disappointed with second place, but it’s hard to stay disappointed with Stiles feeling so good.

“You smell so fucking good,” Stiles says to his crotch. “I know it’s kinda gross, but I love you all sweaty.”

Derek is having a hard time forming words. Especially when Stiles pulls his shorts down to his knees and sucks down Derek’s half hard cock. He whines when Stiles pulls off and mouths at the base.

“Wanna take my time,” Stiles says. “I’m gonna take my time later. We’re gonna fuck for hours.”

“We only came in second,” Derek says with a gasp.

"Still so fuckin proud." Stiles reaches his hand around so he can spread Derek's ass with his fingers. "Come on. I just want you to come in my mouth."

Stiles swallows him down again, pulls Derek forward until his nose is pressed into the hair at the base of his cock. It's really a testament to how often Stiles sucks Derek off that he can just take all of him. Derek feels a little swell of pride at that.

It's not long before Derek is fucking into Stiles' mouth and biting his hand to keep his voice down. Stiles moans around him and Derek tights his hand that's still tangled in Stiles' hair.  Derek comes on a growl and Stiles swallows him down, moaning like he's hungry for it. Derek slumps against the wall as Stiles pulls off, resting his head on Derek's thigh.

"I love you so much," Stiles says.

Derek cards his fingers through Stiles' hair. "I love you too."

Stiles pulls his mother’s quilt up around him and Derek and wraps an arm around him. Derek pushes back against him and lets out a sigh.

“After States we’re looking at apartments,” Stiles says. “Ones with big showers and big bedrooms.”

Derek hums. “That sounds nice.”

“And I’ll cook for you and we’ll go to class and do homework together.”

“And we’ll have friends that we invite over for parties.”

“Yeah. And we’ll get really into wine and cheese. We’ll get cheese boards.”

“Maybe we should get married. Then people will buy us cheese boards.”

Stiles splutters. “Do you—do you want to get married? I know that—well, I know you had reservations about it and everything. And we’re mated and stuff.”

“Do you want to get married? I mean we’re only eighteen. We don’t have to for a while.”

“But cheese boards.”

“Weddings are more expensive than cheese boards.”

“We could just get engaged.”

Derek hides his smile in his pillow. “We could.”

Stiles kisses his shoulder. “Would you marry me, Derek? Eventually?”

“I think I would,” says Derek. “Eventually.”

Derek and Boyd and Scott hoist the couch up the final staircase and through the door into the tiny third floor apartment in Cambridge. Stiles and Erica are uncorking a bottle of wine in the kitchen and giggling at their inability to do it right. Stiles is wearing shorts that are too short and his legs are too long and it makes Derek want to drop the sofa, kick Boyd, Scott and Erica out, and just throw Stiles down on the couch.

Stiles winked at him when they got out of the car in front of the apartment that morning so he knows what he’s doing.

"You know," Derek says to Stiles, catching his breath and gesturing at the couch. "You're the alpha."

"I thought stereotypical gender roles aren't our thing," Stiles says.

"We could use some of that stereotypical strength."

Stiles shrugs and he's wearing a tank top too and it is sinful what it does to Derek. "Maybe later."

And then he winks and Erica shrieks when the cork pops out of the wine bottle.

That night they all sleep on the floor with floor fans going because it's too hot to sleep anywhere else. Boyd and Scott are leaving on a flight first thing in the morning to start their semester at BHU. Erica is meeting her parents at BC to move into the dorms a few hours after that. And then Derek and Stiles have orientation at MIT and Harvard.

Derek sighs. Everything is starting.

Stiles scoots over to Derek and wraps an arm around him. He kisses his sweaty forehead and whispers, "We're buying an air conditioner tomorrow. Fucking New England humidity."

"Good idea," Derek says. "There's no way I'm having sex when everything is this gross."

Stiles hums. "But I do like you sweaty."

"I think we'll still manage to get sweaty."

A pillow hits the wall over Derek's head. "Shut the fuck up, idiots," Erica growls and promptly resumes snoring.

Stiles grins and presses a light kiss to Derek's lips before settling in next to him. Derek closes his eyes and makes a mental list of what he has to buy after orientation. Maybe a record player for their tiny living room. He hasn't listened to The Smiths in months.