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Your Darkness Will Be Rewritten

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It takes one to know one, the saying goes.

She had blond hair and a fierce grin, and even from half a block away Stiles could smell her twisted desire. At first he thought it was the typical ephebophilia he'd seen amongst plenty of adults who just couldn't stop chasing teenaged tail. There was something different about her desire, however, which had made Stiles stop walking and pretend to study a darkened store window while he watched her and the teenager from the corner of his eye.

The boy was maybe fifteen. Not too hard on the eyes, but obviously still in the awkward puppy stage and not yet grown into his paws. His bunny teeth were kind of cute, though. He showed them off a lot as he smiled at the woman, obviously besotted and flattered by the adult's attention.

As the wind shifted, Stiles' shoulders stiffened. Well. The puppy analogy was more fitting than he had originally thought. Seemed the kid was a werewolf. Even though the woman was human, she had a familiar scent about her, too. Something Stiles couldn't quite put his finger on, but that made him feel itchy under his skin.

Stiles listened to her murmur words like “trust me” around pouty lips. The kid didn't stand a chance. “We can't tomorrow,” he whispered back, young voice filled with regret. “All of my family will be home. We have this—thing—that we do every month.”

“Maybe afterwards?” she pressed, honey dripping from her words.

“I can't. Why not Saturday?”

Her grin was a white slash in the shadowy night. “Sounds perfect. If you think your family won't be a problem.” She played with his hair, long nails flickering red in the dim light. “All of them are meeting up tomorrow? I know your house is huge, but is it really big enough for everyone? You Hales are a pretty large group.”

Stiles could hear the boy's heart speed up, and could smell it was partly due to nerves and partly due to desire. “There's, ah, more room inside than you'd think.”

The woman chuckled as if he'd said something funny. Something clicked within Stiles' mind at the sound, a memory of the same laugh echoed by a male voice. Argent. That's why she smelled so familiar. The woman was an Argent. Well, fuck.

Turning away from them, Stiles kept walking down the street until he rounded a corner. There he made certain no one was around to see him, and he shifted to his other form. Gone was the image of an attractive, pale young man with tousled dark hair, honey-brown eyes, and a charmingly upturned nose. In his place stood a hairless creature with skin as dark as midnight sky on a new moon, glowing gold eyes, and taloned claws for hands.

He began scaling the building, keeping in the shadows as much as possible. From the rooftops he stalked the Argent woman, following her once she got into her SUV and headed from downtown to the suburbs. When the buildings grew sparse, he darted along yards, hiding in the long shadows of trees and dense darkness of shrubs. Never once did he lose sight of her vehicle, nor did he allow himself to be seen.

At last they reached her house, which reeked of gunpowder and oil. How she was able to rid herself of the stench before visiting her werewolf boy, Stiles had no clue. He waited outside as he listened to her move about to prepare herself a late dinner. She called her father while the microwave hummed, telling him with barely restrained glee that the plan should be finished tomorrow. “Those monsters will get exactly what they deserve,” she said with a wide grin in her voice, confirming Stiles' suspicions. He'd never met an Argent who wasn't some supernatural-hating fuckbag hellbent on genocide.

Leaning back against the house's aluminum siding, Stiles thought over his options. He could tell the Hales. Warn them. Though that felt like a temporary fix, as it wouldn't really stop the Argents. Directly confronting the woman or any other members of her family wouldn't work, because more powerful beings than Stiles had tried and their bodies had never been found.

It seemed this was going to be one of those special occasions, when Stiles would have to set his reservations aside and use his powers. Typically the very idea left him feeling a little slimy, but the knowledge that it was for the sake of an entire family helped him feel a bit better about what he'd have to do. Mind made up, he slunk off to find a nice dense tree to hide in while he staked out the place.

 

The next day, he was awoken sometime in the late afternoon by the sounds of the Argent woman barking out orders on her phone. Her minions on the other end of the line seemed to be frustrating her with their incompetence, as she had to repeat the proper mix for the accelerants multiple times. Finally she just growled out that she'd be there shortly to do it herself, before ending the connection and stomping about in her preparations to leave.

From his perch, Stiles watched as she stormed out of the house, jumped into her SUV, and headed off to what was likely the werewolf boy's house. Well now, that just wouldn't do.

Once the coast was clear, Stiles slid down from the tree, took human form, and raced down a street parallel to the one he'd seen the human take. Running as fast as he could, he managed to get ahead of the SUV by three blocks before he finally switched directions to get back to her road. There he waited until she was just about to reach him, and then stumbled out into the street. The SUV screeched to a halt just before slamming into him, and Stiles recoiled as if having only just noticed it was there.

“What the hell is your problem?” the woman yelled as she got out of the SUV and slammed the door shut.

“Sorry,” Stiles gasped out, then looked back to where he'd come stumbling from as if he was more afraid of whatever was back there than he was of her and her vehicle. “Can you help me?” he asked, licking his lips and turning to her with wide eyes. “I was mugged. Some teenagers jumped me.” He watched as the anger bled from her expression and she went on alert. “I need to call the cops.”

“They armed?” she asked, trying to look back the direction he came from as if she would still be able to spot the culprits. Luckily the sun was quickly sinking, providing ample shadows for any potential muggers to lurk in unseen, thus aiding his story.

Stiles ran his hand back through his hair, doing his best to look flustered. “Yeah. Jesus, what's this town coming to? I thought this was a safe area.”

With a cluck of her tongue, she strolled over to him and placed a comforting hand on his shoulder. “That's why I'm always carrying. You can't be too careful, sugar.”

He leaned subtly into her touch and turned his large, warm brown eyes on her. “I suppose you're right. Guess you can't really trust people nowadays.”

She smiled gently at him, unable to look away from his eyes. “You can trust me, honey. C'mon now, let's get you to the station. You'll be safe with me, no worries.”

Practically melting into her personal space, Stiles let his features soften and showed a hint of a grateful smile. “Thanks. I don't think I'd feel comfortable being alone right now.”

“It's no problem at all,” she assured as she led him back to the SUV. “I'm Kate, by the way.”

“Stiles,” he offered, extending his hand for her to shake. As soon as her hand was in his, he felt the allure slot fully into place. Like hooking a fish, he thought to himself with a twitch of a smirk.

----

Kate stayed with him at the station as he was interviewed by a deputy and filled out forms, taking turns between holding his hand and caressing his upper arm in comfort. Stiles made sure to show her how appreciative he was, and let her catch him checking her out a few times. Towards the end of the charade of his claim being filed, Kate's chair was so close to his that she was practically plastered to his side.

“Call from the Hale house out in the preserve!” a deputy suddenly yelled out at the room at large as he rose from his desk. “Reports of a group of men attempting to set the place on fire. Anyone who's free, hop to it! Let's go!”

All of the color drained from Kate's face, and she was tearing herself away from Stiles so fast she nearly tripped. “I have to go,” she offered as a frantic excuse, watching the deputies scramble with dread in her eyes.

Stiles reached out and grabbed her wrist before she could flee. “Will I get to see you again? Maybe take you out for drinks to thank you for all your help?”

For a moment, it was as if she'd completely forgotten about the call and the deputies rushing out to capture her accomplices. She only had eyes for Stiles. “Of course. Here,” she offered with a flirtatious smirk, reaching out to grab the pen Stiles had been using, and then writing her number on his hand. “Call me.”

“Absolutely.” He watched her saunter out of the station, then turned to the deputy who'd been working with him. “You know if the Hale family are okay?”

He clacked at his computer for a moment, likely bringing up the 911 call info. “Should be. Seems they were able to stop the guys from starting the fire in time.”

Stiles slouched back into the hard wooden chair in relief. “Awesome.” Everyone was safe, and with any luck and a little pressure, hopefully Kate's accomplices would sing. Preferably a song about a beautiful blonde plotting the whole sordid mess.

----

Much to both Stiles and the Sheriff Department's delight, they had done just that. The only problem was that Kate had seemingly disappeared.

Well. Stiles had an easy way of solving that. The thrall should still be fresh enough that hearing his voice over the phone would be enough to rekindle her interest. All he had to do was lure her right where he wanted her, which happened to be a romantic restaurant just within the Beacon County border.

A heated kiss filled with promises ensured she would wait right there for him. “I'll be right back,” he lied smoothly, sliding from the booth.

He left her sighing dreamily, but she was screaming as the deputies hauled her out. Her snarling face would be plastered all over the news for weeks. “Mad Woman Plots Mass Murder,” the headline read. Reporters speculated about her perhaps being in a cult, to explain why she had so many accomplices, why she was so insistent that “the monsters deserved it.”

----

He had left town shortly after making certain Kate had been put away, not wanting to be around in case she contacted any of her murderous family once the thrall wore off. For about seven years he just bounced from place to place, barely giving Beacon Hills much thought. The only reason he eventually found himself on a highway back towards California was because his buddy Scott—probably the only Latino faoladh in existence—had given him a call about some strange hoodoo going on. Well, not literal hoodoo. That was something entirely different. But bad magics, in any case. Something to do with three-fold deaths and magic currents. The usual Bad Shit.

The reason Scott thought Stiles would want to know about any of that, however, was the virgin sacrifices. “In cases like this,” Scott said over the phone, voice curling on the edges in worry, “it's usually to obtain power related to each type of sacrifice. Deaton thinks the virgins will give the person doing this some kind of allure or powers of enthrallment like yours.”

“That just seems weird, though, doesn't it?” Stiles asked, one hand on the wheel while the other held the phone to his ear. The road in front of him seemed to stretch on to infinity, with nothing but flat wasteland to either side. This was his least favorite part about driving back out west. “I mean, it's not like virgins really have a lot of sexual power? Since they don't have any experience? Like, shouldn't this person be sacrificing the biggest players in the town or something?”

Scott sighed down the line. “I don't know. Maybe it's that they're just chock full of sexual energy because they haven't—you know—released any.”

“And why are you working with the Hale Pack's emissary? Are you trying to get adopted into the Hales? I thought you were an independent wolf who doesn't need no alpha.”

“As a newish wolf in town, I need to play nice with the local pack. Besides, I like helping out at the clinic. Puppies and kitties, Stiles. Puppies and kitties.”

“You are an adorable teddy bear and not a werewolf. Maybe a wereteddy?” Stiles chuckled at his own joke while Scott just sighed again. “Alright, I'm on my way. I'm not sure what good you think I'm gonna be, just because there's someone else out there using sexy magic.”

“You'll be able to sense it, yeah?” Scott asked. “You might be able to help us figure out who's behind it. Plus you can nullify it, so they won't be able to use it against any of us as long as you're around.”

Stiles squinted at the endless road and huffed a breath out of his nose. “Fine.”

----

Scott wasn't alone when Stiles arrived at his house. At first, this put Stiles on alert, worried that the one doing all of the sacrifices had gone after his friend. A moment later, he realized that there were too many heartbeats for it to be that, and he went ahead and knocked. He only had to wait a second for it to open, and then Scott was beaming at him with his adorable, crooked smile and drawing him into a tight hug.

“Come on in,” Scott offered brightly with a sweeping wave of his hand.

His living room was occupied by Dr. Deaton, Alpha Hale, and a few other werewolves who Stiles assumed were part of her pack. Maps were strewn across the coffee table, with what appeared to be swirling lines cutting through parts of Beacon Hills, a few bright red dots peppering the lines.

“Everyone,” addressed Scott, beaming around at the room at large, “this is my friend Stiles, the incubus I told you about. Stiles, you remember Deaton and Alpha Hale. And this is her oldest daughter, Laura, her brother, Peter, and her oldest son, Derek.”

Stiles smiled at the three beta werewolves and received a return smile from Laura, a leer from Peter, and a dark, murderous glower from Derek. Actually, Derek looked a little familiar... “It's an honor,” Derek practically spat at Stiles, making it quite clear how little he believed his own words. When he talked, the cutest little bunny teeth had become visible, and holy shit.

“You're the kid!” Stiles pointed unabashedly.

Kid?” snapped Derek.

“Well, not now, obviously.” Good lord, definitely not now. Little Werewolf Boy had grown into Hot Werewolf Hunk. Goddamn. “But back then.”

Hell, even Derek's grumpy face of confusion was hot. Really, Derek was the wrong kind of supernatural, because obviously he would make a way better incubus than Stiles. “Back when?”

Shit, wait, yeah. The kid hadn't seen Stiles back then. None of them had any idea what Stiles had done. “Nothing,” Stiles said quickly, waving his hand as if to wipe away the conversation. “It's not important.” Clapping his hands together, he turned his attention to everyone else. “What is important is getting to the bottom of all this, amiright?”

Peter sank down to sit on the couch and patted the seat beside him as if in invitation for Stiles to join him. “Exactly. I think we should get back to business,” he said in explanation of his actions. “I'd be delighted to catch Stiles up on everything.”

“I think Scott covered most of it when I was en route,” Stiles politely rebuffed. He watched as Derek took the seat which had previously been offered to Stiles, and then happily moved to sit on the arm of the couch beside Derek. “My job is pretty much to go around and try to detect any magic similar to my own, right?”

“That's right,” agreed Deaton, taking an arm chair across from the couch as Alpha Hale sat to the other side of her brother and Laura and Scott grabbed the loveseat. “Whoever is doing this must be planning to use the acquired power for something. My guess is that they're waiting until all of the sacrifices are finished, and then unleashing the power on a specific target. Still, they might be utilizing some of the newly acquired abilities to help them obtain the rest of the sacrifices.”

Stiles nodded along. “Like luring people to their death kind of deal. Yeah, I'm familiar with a few beings who enjoy doing such things.”

“Like incubi?” Derek grumbled under his breath.

Types of them, yeah,” Stiles shot back, smacking the jerk upside the head. “Just like some werewolves like to go around ripping people apart.” When Derek sneered up at him, Stiles gave him a mocking air kiss.

Laura snorted, then tried to cover it up with a stern clearing of her throat. “So what can we really do? Just go around and hope we encounter someone who feels or smells off?”

Worry wrinkling his forehead, Deaton stared almost bleakly at the map before giving a reluctant nod. “Unfortunately, that may be our only option. I suggest we divide the area into parts and assign people to each section, so we can systematically check everywhere.”

“Sounds good,” agreed Alpha Hale. “I suggest we have everyone be in at least pairs, since we are still unsure of just how powerful our target is at this point.”

“I call Scott!” Stiles raised his hand, grinning across the table at his friend.

Just as Scott started to grin back, Deaton shook his head. “I'd prefer to have each of you work with a Hale, as this is their territory and you are both technically guests.”

Leaning forward so he could look around his nephew to leer at Stiles without shame, Peter said, “I'll happily take Stiles.”

“Derek will go with Stiles,” corrected Alpha Hale. “Laura will go with Scott, and you'll go with me.” Her voice brooked no argument, and her younger brother leaned back again with a petulant grumble. Then she shifted closer to the table and ran her long, elegant fingers along the map, dividing it into imaginary slices. “Derek's place is here, so he and Stiles will take this section. Likewise, Scott and Laura will take this piece. We'll have Mitch and Eliza take here...” On she went, laying down plans for who would search where, including the names of pack members Stiles had yet to meet.

Stiles watched and listened, memorized the swirls drawn on the map and each little red dot. He thought he could see a bit of a pattern there, but it was incomplete. Which, if these truly were ritualistic killings, a pattern would make sense. Rituals always required patterns. Repetition. Precision.

“Who else were killed aside from virgins?” Stiles asked once Alpha Hale had finished dividing the hunting grounds.

“Warriors and healers,” Deaton supplied, his dark eyes staring back at Stiles unblinkingly. The emissary was always a little too intense for Stiles' liking.

“What do you mean by that? Soldiers and doctors?” Another thing Stiles never really cared for was Dr. Deaton's attempts to sound official by using what he likely perceived to be antiquated phrasing. Having lived back in ye olden days, Stiles didn't appreciate the posturing.

Nodding, Deaton confirmed, “Those with connections to military training and three of the doctors from the local hospital.”

“Alright,” Stiles started, taking in a deep breath and rising from his perch. “So we can assume our target also has increased combat skills in some way—I'm willing to bet super strength, personally. Healers for healing, so anticipate supernatural developments there. Whoever this is, they're trying to be something more than human, something more like us.” He waved his hand around to encompass the werewolves and himself. “There's the possibility it's for the cliché desire for more power, but with something this elaborate I'm guessing there's more going on. Revenge is a good motivator, so maybe look into a human with occult knowledge getting fucked over by someone supernatural. I think Dr. Deaton's right about this being a build-up to use on a specific target.”

Also rising, Alpha Hale tipped her head in something like a nod, “I agree. We don't know how many more themed killings this person will commit, and just how powerful it will ultimately make them. This goes beyond the simple desire to be stronger, and feels more like gathering reinforcements before striking against a powerful foe.”

Deaton began rolling up the maps, a dash of concern bleeding through his attempt at remaining calm. “I'll keep researching what rituals require these sorts of sacrifices, and on these specific types of magical currents.”

“We'll all start searching tomorrow,” Scott continued, standing to be a good host and see everyone out. “Laura, meet back here at seven?”

“Sounds good.”

As the Hales and Deaton headed towards the door, Stiles followed. Derek gave him a confused glance, which then turned into an absolute scowl once they were outside and Stiles had followed him right up to his car. “What are you doing?” asked Derek, making no move to unlock the sleek, black Camaro.

Stiles shrugged. “Going home with you. I figured since we'll be canvasing that area tomorrow, I might as well just stay the night there so we can get an early start.”

“You're not going home with me,” Derek deadpanned, his thick brows pressing low over his eyes. “Go sleep on Scott's couch or get a hotel room or something.”

“Rude,” chided Stiles. “And also dumb. Weren't you listening in there? We're potentially dealing with someone who is working on gaining strength so they can fight supernaturals. Your mother wants us to stick together in pairs.”

“Then pair up with Scott for the night.”

Shrugging again, Stiles stood his ground. “Scott's girlfriend is probably coming over, and she'll be more than capable of protecting him.”

Derek squinted at Stiles in obvious suspicion. “Why? Who's his girlfriend?”

“A human.”

“A human?”

“Yup.”

“A human will protect him from a serial killer with super powers?”

“Trust me. Safest place he could be is with her.”

Heaving a deep, put-upon sigh, Derek asked, “Then, once again, why don't you also stay here so you can be under her amazing protection?”

Eyes wide and innocent, Stiles did his best to bite back a smirk. “But then who would be protecting you?”

“You're not going to let this go, are you?” The defeat was evident in Derek's voice, and Stiles could feel a little thrill of glee from the victory.

“Nope. Your safety is important to me.” Which wasn't really a lie. How much would it suck for Stiles to have saved Derek's life years ago, only to allow him to meet a gruesome end now?

Rolling his eyes, Derek unlocked the car. “I'm sure.”

“It is,” Stiles insisted, trying for a glare but fearing it may have looked more like a pout. Quickly, before Derek could change his mind, Stiles opened the passenger side door and slipped in. “Now let's just go. I've been on the road for hours and I'm sleepy.”

Dropping into the driver's seat, Derek's face was once again scrunched up in confusion. “Wait, if you have a car, then why are you riding with me?”

“Because I don't want to drive anymore.” Another shrug. “I'll pick it up later.”

Derek just stared at him for a moment, as if trying to puzzle him out, but then seemed to give up and turned to start the car. “You're staying on the couch, and if you try to use your magic on me I'll kill you.”

“Of course I'm staying on the couch, and I swear I'll never use my magic on you.” Even as he tried to keep his tone civil, Stiles could tell it came out a little snappish at the end. He was just so fucking sick and tired of people thinking he'd just go around enthralling people, just because he was an incubus. “Just so you know, I try to avoid ever using my power. And I definitely never use it for sex, since that wouldn't make it actually sex.”

Derek snorted in disbelief as he navigated the shadowy streets of Beacon Hills. “You're an incubus,” he muttered darkly, “so don't think I don't know exactly what you do to people.”

“No, you're not listening. I said I don't do that.”

“Right.”

Opening his mouth to continue arguing, Stiles realized it was futile. Instead, he turned away to watch the sleepy houses pass by while he tried to settle his rankled nerves. The rest of the car ride passed in awkward, tense silence. He wondered if maybe he should have done as Derek suggested and just stayed with Scott.

But. No...

No, there was a strange pull, like an instinct, telling him he needed to stick close to Derek. Why, he wasn't sure. Maybe residual protectiveness from when he'd saved Derek from Kate years ago? It was possible.

----

When they got to Derek's apartment, Stiles could smell that a woman had been there recently. Ah, so that explained the adamant refusals to let Stiles come crash with him. Stiles tried to be polite and not sniff too much, but there was a strange note to the scent that he couldn't quite place, and it niggled at him a bit.

“I'm sorry.”

Derek's sudden, quiet words startled Stiles, and he spun around to blink owlishly at Derek where he stood in the bedroom doorway. Piled in Derek's arms were blankets and a pillow, and his face was soft with regret. “What I said in the car...it's obvious that bothered you. Your pulse had been steady, so you weren't lying about not using your powers, and I was an ass. So. I'm sorry.”

For a stunned moment, all Stiles could do was stand there and stare. Then, he slowly stepped closer to Derek and reached out to take the stack of bedding. “It's fine,” Stiles lied, and he watched the twitch at the corners of Derek's eyes when he caught it. “People often assume that because of what I am, I...”

“It's not fine.” Hands now empty, Derek seemed unsure what to do with them, and eventually settled for crossing his arms. “I was out of line.”

Though tempted to brush it off again, Stiles studied the sincerity on Derek's face before giving a slow, shallow nod. “Just keep it in mind, and don't make such accusations again.”

Derek nodded back, some of the tension leaking from his shoulders. “Get some rest, since you want to get up early tomorrow to start the search.”

Lips twitching into something almost a smile, Stiles began to step backwards towards the couch. “Ditto. Need you fighting fit in case we run into our culprit.”

The small smile Derek gave him in that moment made Stiles' heart flutter in a most disturbing way.

Oh.

Oh no.

----

Sleep didn't come easy nor stay very long. Wrapped up in blankets that smelled like Derek, it was difficult to ignore what he was only just starting to realize. Then, of course, there was the lingering scent of a woman and the still-unidentifiable something that made Stiles restless and anxious and a little sick to his stomach. There was more to it than jealousy, but he didn't want to examine the emotions too closely.

By morning, Stiles was strung-out and starving.

“Up,” he commanded, tugging Derek's blanket and sheet off and steadfastly ignoring how he looked in only tight boxer briefs. “Breakfast and then hunting.”

“Is it even dawn yet?” grumbled Derek, as he buried his face in his pillow and groped blindly for his absent covers.

“Dawn's over and done with. It's edging on six. Let's go. Up and at 'em.” When he saw Derek continue to just lay there, Stiles grabbed his ankles and started pulling him off the bed as well.

Derek obviously hadn't expected Stiles to be so strong, judging by how he squawked and clawed at the bed in shock while unable to save himself from the same fate as his blankets. Landing on his pile of linens with a dull thud, Derek rolled over to snarl up at Stiles. The effect was ruined by his adorable bedhead, and Stiles had to clench his fists to resist reaching out to touch his fluffy hair. “What the hell?”

“Breakfast!” Stiles repeated, punctuated by a loud grumble from his belly. It probably wasn't helping that he was in Derek's bedroom with a mostly-naked Derek sprawled out at his feet. “Get dressed and take me to the closest diner that doesn't suck.”

Pulling himself up off the floor, Derek grumbled some more and shuffled over to his dresser. “Fine. Go wait in the living room; I'll be out in a minute.”

----

“There's no way you can eat all of this.” Derek looked around at their table in horror, his plate of bacon and eggs pulled protectively close.

“I'd start singing 'Uptown Funk' right now if I didn't have far more important things to do with my mouth.” Like shovel an entire waffle into it, fuck yeah. Every square inch of their table was covered in dishes piled to the brim with food, and Stiles was done with talking for a while. Eating. Eating was all he could focus on, trying to fill the seemingly endless void inside him, satiate the insatiable. Physical food would never really be enough for him, but it at least would take a bit of the edge off.

The only person more morbidly fascinated with Stiles' vacuum-like consumption than Derek was their server, who quickly and obediently cleared away empty dishes to make room for additional servings. After nearly an hour and a half of constant eating, Stiles finally decided to put a cap on it and settled back to leisurely slurp some coffee. Derek, having long since finished his own meal, just continued to stare in mute shock.

“Will that be all, sir?” Jeff, their mystified server asked, though his voice made him sound fearful of the answer.

“Yes, thanks. All on one check.”

Shoulders slumping in relief, Jeff scurried off to process their orders. “I hope you plan on paying,” said Derek, speaking again for the first time since Stiles dove into his feeding frenzy.

“Of course,” sighed Stiles as he shifted and lifted his hips a bit so he could retrieve his wallet. “I'm never a rude date.”

“This isn't a date.” Derek's ears turned red, and Stiles caught the scent of something that made his hunger stab through him again.

“Learn to take a joke.” Stiles kept his voice pitched casual, flippant. His hunger he dealt with by swigging down the rest of his coffee, then draining his ice water, ice and all. “I know you're taken.”

“I—wait, how?”

Jeff returned before Stiles could respond, but was quickly sent back on his way again with Stiles' credit card in hand. “You aren't the only one with magically heightened senses,” Stiles pointed out with a teasing little lilt. “Her scent is all over your apartment.”

“Just...don't go telling anyone. Things are still new, and I don't want my family sticking their noses into it and scaring her away.”

Stiles frowned and absently reached for a sugar packet. “I seem to recall another time you had a secret girlfriend, and just how well that turned out.”

Across the table, Derek froze. Every part of his body had gone tense, and Stiles belatedly realized his mistake. “What.” Derek's question came flat and low.

“Um.” Stiles bit his lip and fiddled with the sugar packet, stalling as he tried to think of something to say.

The delay just increased Derek's suspicions, and he narrowed his pretty eyes at Stiles. “You recognized me last night.”

Daring a glance at Derek's scowling face, Stiles gave a little nod.

“So, what, you saw us together? Is that how you know about...” Derek didn't seem able to even say her name. Honestly, Stiles couldn't imagine how fucking awful it must have been for young Derek to see his girlfriend's unflattering photos in the news alongside headlines about how she wanted to kill him.

“I did,” Stiles quietly admitted.

Derek looked stricken at those words, and he looked around with a sudden paranoia. “You didn't,” he started to ask, voice a whisper. “You haven't told anyone, have you?”

“Of course not,” assured Stiles, expression earnest. “That's not my place.”

With a heavy, relieved exhale, Derek drew back as far as the booth seat would allow him. “Well. In any case, this is different. Jennifer is different.”

Something itched under Stiles' skin, and he tore the sugar packet open. “If you say so,” he mumbled doubtingly, before tossing his head back and swallowing the contents of the sugar packet as if taking a shot of tequila.

----

Hunting for the serial killer was boring. Ugh. It was especially bad because Stiles was still starving, which made him weirdly antsy. “So tell me about yourself,” Stiles prompted as they strolled down the sidewalk, both of them trying to act totally normal while they subtly sniffed the air and tried to sense any sort of weird magic.

“No.”

“Rude.” They passed two young ladies huddled close by a window and giggling as they exchanged affectionate smiles while looking at the rings on display. Stiles' stomach grumbled. Loudly.

“Seriously?” asked Derek, shooting him an incredulous look. “We just ate three hours ago.”

“You don't really know how my kind work, do you?” It was a rhetorical question, so Stiles went back to looking around instead of waiting for Derek's response.

Surprisingly, he got one, anyway. “Don't you just, like...sneak into people's houses at night and have sex with them while they're sleeping?”

Stiles' entire body did a shuddering cringe at that. “Jesus. Fuck. No wonder you were so suspicious of me last night.” He stopped walking, prompting Derek to as well. They turned to stare at each other, and Stiles hated how much it was hurting him to know that's what Derek thought he was. “That's a certain type of incubus, yes, but that's not what I do. My kind have the ability to snare people in 'allures,' as we like to call them. Much like the theories about our serial killer here, my kind can make people find us irresistible. Like, we can be all they think about, all they want.”

The more he talked, the more repulsed Derek looked. Hell, maybe Stiles was better off letting the guy think he was the other kind. “Why? What's the purpose of doing something like that?”

A thin, mirthless smile came to Stiles' lips. “Because sex is our food. Or, well, the energy our partners generate and release during sex. So, we sort of developed the allure magic as a means of ensuring we'll be able to eat.”

Derek drew back. “But you said you don't use it.”

“I don't.” It was tough, but Stiles managed to not roll his eyes. “Just because I have the power doesn't mean I want to use it. All of my meals come packed full of rational, coherent consent. No manipulation. The only time I'll use my powers is for protection, to prevent someone from harming me or someone else. But I never sleep with anyone under my allure.”

“That's,” Derek trailed off, staring at Stiles with a new look in his eyes that had Stiles blushing and glancing away. “That's strangely noble.”

With a snort, Stiles leaned in and playfully patted Derek's shoulder. “Sorry to disappoint you, man.”

“What, no, you just...I didn't think that's what someone like you would do. Or not do.”

“Whatever.” Stiles tried to shrug it off and turned to start walking again. “In any case, physical food is never enough to sate me. Just hold me over until my next actual meal.”

Derek started walking again, too, moving quickly to catch up and keep pace. “So you'll have to...soon.”

“I'll have to soon?” Arching his eyebrows, Stiles smirked.

“You know. You'll have to. Feed.”

“Derek, if you can't say the word, you really shouldn't be doing it,” Stiles tsked teasingly.

“Sex,” snapped Derek, perhaps a touch too loud. People gave them odd looks and moved to keep their distance on the sidewalk. It was cute how when Derek blushed it went all the way to the tips of his ears. “You'll need to have sex soon,” he said more quietly, leaning in closer to Stiles as if sharing a secret.

“Meh, eventually.” Stiles shrugged again and paused at the mouth of an alley. It only smelled of garbage and piss, so he kept walking. “Maybe I'll go out tonight. That one club still around? What was it...Forest?”

“Jungle.” The response seemed to come a little too quickly for someone Stiles had assumed was straight, considering it was a gay night club. “And what happened to sticking together out of safety?”

Stiles considered him for a moment, wondered if the situation were different, if there were no “Jennifer,” if Derek would be trying to offer him an alternative. But things weren't different, and so there was no way that's what Derek was thinking. “I need to eat, or I won't be any good to anyone. Haven't you ever been so hungry that your brain sort of starts to shut down?” He refocused on his task, rolling his shoulders, trying to get rid of that strange, persistent itch that was back. “You can have Jennifer over, if you're worried about being alone.”

“What about you, though?”

“I won't be alone.” Stiles laughed a little before smirking at Derek. “That's kind of the point.”

They walked in silence for a while, though Derek was practically radiating his displeasure. Finally, as if he just couldn't hold it back any longer, Derek asked, “What if the guy you go home with is the serial killer?”

“Then case solved.”

“What?” sputtered Derek, as he reached out and grabbed Stiles' arm. “He'll kill you!”

Another laugh was about to burst forth, but Stiles swallowed it back when he saw the sincere worry on Derek's face. Slowly, Stiles turned into Derek's grip, allowing himself to be pulled closer. “I'll be fine. Believe it or not, I can take care of myself. Have been for hundreds of years.”

“Hundreds—” Derek let him go and shifted away, looking gobsmacked. “Just how old are you?”

“No clue on exact age. But I'm older than this country.” Though really, that wasn't saying much when it came to beings with lifespans like his. “So you don't have to worry.” Stiles reached out and patted Derek's cheek, and he had to fight back the urge to let his hand linger, to brush against the rough stubble that hadn't yet become a beard. “I'm a big boy”

Hunger suddenly spiked through Stiles, confusing him until he registered the look in Derek's eyes and the scent on the air. Derek was...holy shit, Derek was aroused. But why? Stiles thought Derek barely even tolerated him, but there was no mistaking the want in his expression.

“We need to keep looking,” murmured Stiles, then he shook himself and turned away. “C'mon.” It didn't matter. Derek's interest didn't matter. It wasn't serious, wasn't something that would last or come to anything. People found other people attractive all the time; it didn't mean they wanted to jump their bones or date them or cuddle up with them on cold nights and sip hot chocolate together.

Stiles hoped Jennifer appreciated what she had.

----

Returning to Derek's apartment the next morning, Stiles felt sated but not satisfied. Which was odd, because they both came from the same root word, and meant basically the same thing. But just because sex is how he ate, it didn't mean he always enjoyed it. The guy last night was a filling meal, but rather...meh in the sack. Probably didn't help that he wasn't nearly as interesting or attractive as Derek.

Stiles paused outside the door, listening to make certain that Derek was alone, then knocked. No response. Derek's heartbeat didn't change, and there was no sound of movement. Trying the door, Stiles found it unlocked, so he let himself in. He found Derek standing in the kitchen beside the sink, looking as if he'd been doing dishes until his mind wandered off in thought.

“Hello?” Stiles asked cautiously, moving closer and ducking around to bend over the sink and look at Derek's face. His eyes had a sort of glazed look about them, but then they blinked and seemed to focus on Stiles with a renewed clarity.

“When did you get back?” Derek looked away from Stiles, hands dipping into the sudsy water to retrieve a plate.

Eyeing him for another moment, Stiles slowly withdrew and stepped back. “Just now. You okay?”

“It's nothing. I just zoned out for a minute, thinking.”

Must have been one hell of a distracting daydream. “Penny for your thoughts?”

Derek shook his head as he rinsed the plate. “Jennifer wants to meet my parents. Or, well, my mom. She wants to have her and me over for dinner in a couple days.”

Something pricked at Stiles and he narrowed his eyes. “Why just your mom?”

That gave Derek pause, and he stared down at the wet plate in confusion. “You know...I have no idea. Honestly, that hadn't even occurred to me as strange until just now. Last night when we were talking about it, it all made perfect sense.”

A ripple of dread ran down Stiles' spine, and he had to focus on keeping his human form. “Well, maybe she just thinks it'll be easier to divide and conquer. Get your mom to love her, then worry about your dad.”

Slowly Derek started to nod. “Yeah, maybe that's it. That's probably what it is.” He went back to washing dishes, and Stiles moved to sit on the counter nearby.

“So tell me about Jennifer.” Stiles pitched his voice to be gently teasing, a smile tacked firmly in place. “She pretty? How'd you meet?”

Ducking his head, Derek smiled a little and set a plate in the drainer beside the sink. “She is. And we met when I found her stranded on the side of the road, her car broken down.”

“Ah, and who can resist a damsel in distress.” The dread grew, but Stiles kept his expression bright and full of interest. “So I bet you were happy to have some time together last night, me out of your hair.”

Derek reached into the water and pulled the plug, then rinsed his hands. Instead of answering Stiles' question, Derek asked, “How did last night go for you? Get to feed?”

Stiles' smile dimmed a little and he slid off the counter. “Yeah, I did.”

Head snapping up, Derek turned to give Stiles a confused look. “You don't sound happy about it.”

Shrugging, Stiles moved to start looking aimlessly through the cupboards. “It wasn't something I did for pleasure, just for sustenance.” He glanced askance at Derek. “And before you say anything, no, I didn't use my powers. But I did do my best to make sure he enjoyed it.” Gaze wandering over the assortment of glasses Stiles found in one cupboard, he added softly, “The more they enjoy it, the more food for me.”

“Wait.” Derek stepped slowly away from the sink and towards Stiles, his confusion gradually melting into something more horrified. “You're saying you don't...”

Stiles grabbed a glass with R2D2 on it, lips twitching up into something that tried to be a smile. “Oh, don't worry. I enjoy it sometimes.” The almost-smile turned into a smirk and he slanted his eyes Derek's way. “Funny, isn't it? I'm kind of the opposite of what you thought I was.”

Suddenly Derek was storming up to him and snatching the glass out of his hands. “Go sit on the couch,” he ordered, eyes blazing so fiercely, Stiles was honestly surprised they were still human.

Holding his hands up, Stiles quickly moved to do as he was told. Barely a minute later, Derek was setting that same glass down on the coffee table in front of Stiles. It was filled nearly to the brim with milk, and a small plate with chocolate chip cookies was placed beside it. “Eat those. I'll be right back,” was all Derek said before stomping off again.

Too stunned and confused, Stiles just blinked at the milk and cookies. Eventually Derek returned, setting down a mug of what smelled like chamomile tea. “What's all this?” Stiles asked, looking up at Derek, who just stood there hovering.

“You shouldn't have to live like that,” said Derek, which wasn't an answer. Stiles was starting to suspect Derek was bad at answering questions. Or, at least, bad at answering questions he didn't like.

“Yeah, well, a man's gotta eat. And seeing as I'm currently between relationships, I gotta get it from somewhere.”

“Couldn't you at least find someone you want to have sex with?” There was something dangerously close to pity in Derek's eyes, and to avoid it Stiles focused on picking up the cookies and milk.

“Of course.” Stiles nibbled a little on one of the cookies, took a sip of milk. He wasn't hungry, and so it was hard to make himself eat. “And like I said, it happens sometimes. I just wasn't feeling it last night. It's not a big deal.”

Derek made a frustrated sound and walked away, heading towards his bedroom. Alarmed and confused, Stiles set the cookies and milk down and ran after him. “What's going on?” he demanded, following the wolf into the room and watching as Derek seemed to pace a little.

“I don't know,” snapped Derek. “I just...I feel like tracking down whoever you were with last night and—” As if to illustrate, Derek held up his hands, fingernails extending and thickening into claws. “And at the same time, I want to wrap you in a blanket and keep you safe, and it's stupid! I don't even know you!”

Not sure how to respond, Stiles started to open his mouth. He closed it again as Derek turned on him, looking crossed between furious and desperate. “The worst part is that the moment I met you, the moment you walked into Scott's house, I stopped thinking about her.”

Swallowing, Stiles took a slow step back. If Derek was going to accuse him of using his powers again...

“She was all I could think about, ever since I helped her with her car. Then you walked in, and I didn't care.”

“Derek, I didn't—”

“I know!” Derek practically roared the words, startling the breath out of Stiles. But the words themselves kept Stiles where he was, made him feel safe enough not to flee, and curious enough to see where this was going.

“I know,” Derek repeated, softer that time, the heated energy bleeding out of him. “It happened again when you came home just now. Last night, while Jennifer was here, it was like before, except...”

“Except?” Cautiously Stiles took a few steps closer.

For a moment, Derek's eyes didn't seem able to focus on anything, and then they caught with Stiles' and held. “Except I kept thinking about you out with some random guy, and the kinds of jerks that are usually at Jungle, and I'd get dizzy. Like when you stand up too fast, that sort of thing. Until eventually it all became Jennifer again.”

Stiles licked his lips. So he wasn't the only one who noticed how off Derek had been earlier, how suspicious this Jennifer person was. “When I got home, you were acting a little oddly.”

“Because it was like the other night. You walked in, and it was like I could /think/ again.”

Silently, Stiles walked up and took Derek's hand, then led him back out into the living room. He sat him down on the couch and put the mug of tea into Derek's hands. “I think you need this more than I do.”

Letting out a shuddering breath, Derek clutched the mug closer and took a sip. “So she's the one,” Derek murmured into the tea, looking defeated.

“It's either that or she's a succubus,” Stiles nodded, scooting the cookies and milk aside so he could sit on the table in front of Derek. “I'm sorry.”

Derek shook his head, looking up at Stiles from across the mug. “It's not your fault. If anything, I should be thanking you.”

“Thanking me?”

“For whatever reason, your presence breaks the spell.” He took another sip, then leaned forward to set the mug next to Stiles on the table.

Shrugging, Stiles picked up the mug and took a sip. “I've seen it happen. A lot. My kind's one of the more powerful types of incubus-slash-succubus, partly because we sort of nullify any existing allures cast by less-powerful ones. While our own allure magic is something we have to actively, willfully cast, the nullification's just kind of a constant, involuntary magic. It's like blinking and breathing, in a way.”

With a sad little chuckle, Derek rubbed both hands over his face. “Do I have a sign on my back saying 'If you're a manipulative psycho, seduce me?'”

Stiles hummed and leaned forward, stretching his neck and trying to look at Derek's back. “Let's see... Nope. Don't see anything.” He patted Derek's shoulder. “Just shitty luck.”

The next laugh that came out of Derek was still a little shaky, but at least sounded more genuine. “That is a massive understatement.”

After considering Derek for a moment, Stiles gave his shoulder another pat and then stood up. “You stay there. Drink some more tea. I'm going to call Scott, get him to notify the others about who we're looking for.”

“Use my phone.” Derek motioned towards his room again. “It's got her number and address.”

So Stiles did as suggested, and sent out her info to Scott, Deaton, and Alpha Hale. They'd see to it that everyone else was notified, and Jennifer captured. What they planned to do with her, Stiles didn't know, but he hoped it all went well and everyone (except for her, obviously) stayed safe.

When he returned to the living room, Derek was still sitting there, sipping the milk while the cookies and tea were all gone. Stiles sat next to him, close enough to be a comforting presence without intruding into Derek's space. “How are you?” he asked gently, watching Derek's expression. One of the reasons Stiles hated using his powers was because he knew just how damaging it could be to the target.

Derek shook his head and downed the rest of the milk before responding, “Angry, mostly. Now that I can think about everything with a clear head, it all seems so obvious.”

“Maybe I should move back here,” joked Stiles with a playful smile. “My nullification abilities might come in handy again.”

But Derek didn't laugh, he just turned his head to look at Stiles, his stunning eyes sharp and considering. “Maybe you should.” He set the empty glass down and then leaned a little closer to Stiles. “The newspapers said Kate was captured thanks to an anonymous tip. She claimed that she was set up, that someone asked her out on a date and then called the authorities. Her accomplices testified that she was supposed to have been there, but something must have happened to prevent her from showing up. Without her, they got the accelerants wrong, and the arson attempt failed.”

It seemed Derek was all that and brains, too. Which just wasn't fair at all. No matter how many centuries Stiles spent on the earth, he was still susceptible to that telltale flutter in his chest and little hitch in his breath.

When it didn't look like Stiles was going to say anything, Derek continued, “Scott said you had considered moving here about seven years ago, but only stayed for a little while before moving on.”

All Stiles could do was nod, unsure what he could say or even if he needed to say anything at all. “I'm starting to think you're like some guardian angel,” Derek confessed with a little chuckle as if he was joking. But his eyes told Stiles there was no joke about it. The two of them seemed to be getting even closer, both of their hearts beating faster, harder.

“I'm no angel,” Stiles weakly protested, looking from Derek's eyes to his lips as he tried to tell himself this was a bad idea. They should wait. Give Derek time to heal, to get over this recent betrayal.

That's when the door burst open, a gorgeous brunette rushing into the apartment in tears. “Derek,” she cried. “You have to help me!”

The men stood from the couch with a start, and Stiles felt his form shift as he sensed the fizz of her allure magic wash against his nullification. It felt wrong, unnatural. Obviously something stolen and twisted. Weak against his own abilities.

Jennifer—for the crying woman could only be the infamous Jennifer—had started to rush to Derek when she stopped short at the sight of Stiles in his full incubus form. It's possible she'd never seen anything like him before. Few ever had, as most of his kind typically remained in their human forms, except for times when stealth was needed.

She seemed confused, looking from the embodied darkness that was Stiles to Derek. “Save me,” she begged. “People are trying to hurt me.”

For his part, Derek didn't seem more than momentarily surprised by Stiles' transformation, turning to instead fix Jennifer with a flat glare. “By people do you mean my family?”

Head jerking back, Jennifer side-eyed them before her eyes flashed silver and Stiles could feel her stolen power try to intensify. Stiles hissed at that, his lips parting to reveal long, sharp teeth. Before he could do anything else, her eyes were flashing again, and he felt himself shoved back by an invisible force, crashing him into a bookshelf.

Ah, she was a druid. That magic had been her own, though enhanced. It tasted of druid power, but dark and rotted.

Suddenly Derek was roaring with a bestial fierceness, his own form shifting to that of a beta werewolf as he faced off against Jennifer. Playing the part of the brave hero, he moved his body between her and Stiles. A sweet gesture, but a stupid one. There was no way Stiles was going to let Derek get hurt, for his sake or anyone else's.

Rising from where he'd landed, Stiles willed himself to look human again, and rushed to throw himself in front of Derek. “Wait,” he yelled, wide eyes on Jennifer. He sent his own magic out, made all the more potent by the energy obtained through his recent meal. “I get it,” he said to her, voice soft, sympathetic. “Someone hurt you, didn't they? Someone did something horrible, and all of this...it's just to stop them from doing it to anyone else.” It was a gamble, but he was banking on his theory about the killer working towards revenge.

Jennifer faltered, her anger fading into something dazed and mystified. “Yes,” she said, smiling in relief. “You understand.”

“Of course.” Stiles edged closer, could feel his magic sinking deeper into her psyche. Behind him, Derek had stopped snarling, no doubt watching in morbid curiosity. “I've been around for a while; I can tell these things. You're just the victim in all this.”

“I am,” she agreed quickly, taking a few steps towards Stiles as she gazed at him with something like adoration and longing. “I never would have done any of this, if they hadn't hurt me, left me for dead.”

He nodded, moved his arms in an open invitation for a hug. “I know. It's okay. I'll protect you.” The soothing voice and words worked perfectly with his allure to send her the rest of the way into his arms. Holding her close, he rubbed her back and rocked her gently in comfort, all while watching Deaton sneak up behind her through the still-open door. In the vet's hand was some type of syringe gun. “You're safe now,” he cooed, petting her hair, moving it aside to allow Deaton clear access to her neck.

In one quick motion, the needle was in her neck, and the clear fluid injected. Then she was slumping in Stiles' arms, and he passed her over to Scott and Laura after they followed Deaton inside. “We'll take it from here,” said Laura, eyes blazing gold when she looked at the unconscious woman. Those burning eyes then turned to Stiles and she gave a single nod of respect. “Thank you for being here.” Unsaid were the words for Derek.

“Anytime.” For all things said and unsaid.

They left quickly, wanting to get Jennifer secure before the tranquilizer wore off, so that it was again just Stiles and Derek. Alone.

“So that's what it's like,” Derek said, voice soft.

Almost afraid to face Derek, Stiles slowly turned back towards him anyway. “Usually.”

“And that's what she was doing to me.”

“Yeah.” Which was why they really needed to hold off on starting anything. If there was anything to start.

Derek seemed to realize it, too, because he was about to step closer before thinking better of it. “Are you going to stick around?”

“I might.” The only Argents still in town were reformed ones, Scott's girlfriend included. Stiles wasn't at risk of being hunted down by them so much anymore. Besides, he was starting to think Beacon Hills had its merits.

They stared at each other for a long, quiet moment, and the air felt more charged than when the druid had been throwing around her magic. “I should probably get my stuff,” Stiles eventually said, nodding towards his suitcase by the couch.

As he took a step towards it, however, Derek was suddenly in front of him, much closer than was customarily polite. “I can't do this,” whispered Derek, like a pained confession.

Stiles' heart dropped and he lowered his gaze. He hoped Derek didn't mean he couldn't do it ever, that maybe he just needed some time, as Stiles thought.

“I can't stand thinking about what you're going to do next time you feed.” Which didn't make sense, because Derek knew that Stiles wasn't going to use his powers.

Stiles met his eyes again, face twisting in offended anger, but before he could even open his mouth, Derek was shifting even closer. “The thought of you out there with some random stranger again...of how you won't even like it, how they won't even care that you don't. I can't—” Derek bit his own words off, teeth sharpening for just a second before turning human again.

“A guy's gotta eat,” said Stiles with a shrug. It was just part of Stiles' life, nothing he really worried himself over anymore.

Looking right into Stiles' eyes, Derek said without even a stutter to his heartbeat, “Then come to me when you're hungry.”

There was a that flutter again, that hitching breath, this time also coupled with heated cheeks. Stiles stepped back, tried to take in breaths of air that didn't taste of Derek, and failed. It was impossible as long as he was in the man's apartment. “Don't,” Stiles managed to say, and the word sounded embarrassingly choked. After clearing his throat, he tried again, “You should take some time, after what just happened to you. Don't do this just because you feel obligated to pay me back, or because of pity.”

Derek's eyes widened and he shook his head quickly before closing the distance Stiles had created. “It's not that.” His face softened, and then his hands were slowly, cautiously curling their fingers around Stiles' hips. “Something very striking, very telling, in the difference between Jennifer and you,” said Derek, voice low and intimate, “is that even though I can't stop thinking about you, it's not the same as how she made me focus so much on her. There was no justification for my thoughts with her, nothing about her I genuinely found endearing and interesting. But with you?” A smile came to Derek's face that had Stiles' willpower crumbling, his own hands moving to grip Derek's hips in turn. “Your personality is simultaneously frustrating and charming. There's a sarcasm and snark that definitely jives with my own, which I kind of hated at first but only because it made me like you. I want to hear stories about your adventures through the years, the places you've gone. And I feel like every story would be told with flailing arms to illustrate scenes and really bad impersonations.”

“Hey now, my impersonations are quality.”

Chuckling low, Derek pressed closer and continued, “And you're a good person. Someone I can trust.”

A small, almost whimper-like sound escaped Stiles' throat. “You're making it very difficult to hold back and wait.”

“Why do you want to hold back?” Derek leaned in, murmured the question against Stiles' cheek on his way to exhale a long, slow breath against the shell of Stiles' ear.

Shuddering, Stiles rocked towards Derek's warmth. “You need...time...heal.”

“Okay.” In a blink, Derek was out of Stiles' arms and several feet away, arms out and up as if in surrender. There was a devious smirk on his face, and Stiles hated how much it made him like the jerk. “Then come back when you're hungry.”

“That's not enough time,” Stiles whined. Fucking whined. “It's only going to be two, three days tops.” And he wanted this to work. Wanted this to be something more than food, more than fucking.

Derek seemed to read his concerns, because the smirk slipped away and he slowly approached again. “Let's date until then. Talk. Get to know each other.” Determination was set firm in his expression, and Stiles was so fucking weak for this guy.

“Yes.” Stiles may have agreed a little too quickly, but it made Derek looked happy and relieved.

“Yeah?” asked Derek, as if he was really surprised Stiles would agree. He might not have been an incubus, but his werewolf senses should have picked up just how much Stiles wanted him.

“Yeah.” As much as Stiles wanted to lean in and kiss him, he pulled away, put some space between them again. “I'll go get a hotel room. Stay there while I look for something more permanent.”

Nodding, Derek hurried to get his phone, calling out to Stiles, “Give me your number.”

----

Three nights later found them on Derek's couch watching some godawful horror movie on Netflix. Stiles' stomach growled like a disgruntled lion, despite the delicious (and plentiful) dinner Derek had made for them earlier. Derek was snuggled up against him, practically spooning Stiles where they reclined across the length of the couch. When Stiles glanced back at his face, he saw Derek smirking.

“Are you seriously trying to Netflix and Chill with me right now?” asked Stiles, trying to sound scandalized despite the laugh in his voice.

Derek blinked back at him, all faux innocence. “We're chilling, and Netflix is playing?”

“You know what I mean. C'mon, I'm hundreds of years older than you, and I understand that phrase, so you have no excuse.” He wriggled around until they were lying face to face, their noses brushing a little. “You're trying to seduce me, Mr. Hale.”

“Because nothing's sexier than a movie about giant killer ants.”

Snorting, Stiles leaned in to press his face against Derek's shoulder. “Shut up, with your stupid face.”

“You don't like my face?” Derek's arms slipped around him, pulling him closer, their legs tangling together.

“I like it too much,” Stiles grumbled into Derek's shoulder, mouth sliding until his lips were against the bare skin of Derek's neck. The temptation was too great, and Stiles gave in, mouthing at the flesh, kissing and licking and leaving small, teasing nips.

A moan vibrated against Stiles' lips as Derek began to rock against him. “Who's seducing whom, now?”

“Mmmm, baby, you know what that proper grammar does to me.” Stiles bit down a little more firmly and rocked back against Derek's own motions.

“You hungry?” Derek asked in a raspy whisper. “Need to feed?”

Stiles smiled against Derek's neck. “If you can't say the word, Derek, you shouldn't be having it.”

The hands on Stiles' back slid down to grab his ass, pulling him in firmly to Derek's body, erections hot against each other. “You wanna go into my room,” Derek said slowly, mouth at Stiles' ear, “and fuck me?”

Stiles had to take a few deep, shuddering breaths to ground himself before he untangled from Derek's embrace and stood up. “Yes,” he responded, tugging at Derek to help him up. The past few days had been amazing, each date making him fall harder for this wonderful, sassy werewolf. Derek had also made it clear throughout it all that he had no second thoughts, that this was absolutely what he wanted.

So they stumbled quickly to Derek's bedroom, laughing at each other's eagerness, pausing to kiss and touch and momentarily forget where they were going. Then Derek was splayed out across his bed, and Stiles' hunger practically tore at his gut. Opening Derek up was an appetizer like no other, tingling pleasantly along Stiles' nerves and heightening his own desire. Every sound Derek made, the way he angled his hips, pressed into Stiles' touch, was so delicious, so perfect.

“Please,” Derek asked so sweetly. Usually pale eyes stared up at Stiles, dark and heavy-lidded, and who was Stiles to refuse them.

The main course was nearly overwhelming. Stiles knew he'd had supernatural partners before, but he couldn't remember when the last time was. There was so much power, it filled Stiles up with each thrust deep into Derek.

Beautiful, enthusiastic Derek. He was stretched out on his back, feet braced against Stiles' shoulders so that his ass was at just the right angle. Arms over his head, he pressed against the headboard to help Stiles get deeper, each thrust come harder. God, Derek fucking loved it, and Stiles could taste it in the hot, glorious energy he swallowed up with each panting inhalation.

When Derek came, back arching, a cry almost like a howl rising from his throat, Stiles was nearly knocked over by the force of it. For the first time in a very long while, Stiles felt a satisfaction that went deep to his very core. Stiles practically sobbed at the perfection of it as he followed Derek over the edge.

Somehow Derek still had enough energy to lower his legs and reach up, pulling Stiles down for slow, tender kisses. “If you're still hungry,” Derek said between kisses, “we can totally do that again in a few minutes.”

Something bright and happy erupted in Stiles' chest and he gave Derek one more long kiss before answering. “Probably won't be hungry again for another week, but we can do this as much as you want, whenever you want.”

That seemed to startle and confuse Derek, until the meaning sank in and he smiled up at Stiles with so much joy that Stiles couldn't help but smile back. Derek's fingers trailed along Stiles' cheek, his thumb brushing Stiles' lips. “I think my luck's finally changing.”

Stiles playfully nipped at Derek's thumb before giving it a peck of a kiss. “Maybe I'm just your good luck charm.”

“Then I guess that means you need to stick around.” There was something cautious and worried lingering at the edges of Derek's smile as he said that.

Leaning in, Stiles kissed Derek a few more times. “I'll be here as long as you want me.”