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You Don't See Straight

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"Oh my god Derek please are you trying to murder me?" Stiles panted raggedly.  Derek laughed against his skin, teeth poking out to bite at his stomach once more.  Stiles groaned, back arching as he tried to get more contact.  His hands twisted in the sheets uselessly, as they'd been doing for what felt like a small eternity.  Derek pulled his thighs apart again, settling between the trembling limbs.  Stiles groaned again.  "No, no, please Derek you're killing me." 
            "You don't want to come again?" Derek demanded, a growl chasing the words.  Stiles shook just at the thought of it.
            "A third time?  Oh god Derek please seriously I'm going to die."  Derek pressed a kiss to the inside of his thigh before biting with blunt teeth.  Stiles squirmed.  He was fairly sure Derek had done every pleasurable thing that could be done to his body.  With one last quick lick Derek crawled up his body, hovering over him. 
            "So you wanna stop right now?" he questioned, peppering kisses along Stiles' jaw. 
            "Mm, going to die," Stiles protested faintly. 
            "That wasn't a yes." 
            "Derek please." 
            "Please what?" 
            "Will you fuck me already?" Stiles demanded.  Derek grinned for just a moment. 
            "How do you want me?"  Stiles trembled as he flushed.  God that should not be as hot as it was. 
            "Immediately."  Derek nipped his jaw before moving to his mouth.
            "You know what I mean," he said against Stiles' lips. 
            "Oh god I want everything," Stiles admitted, shaking again, "give me everything."  Derek growled, muscles rippling as the change overtook him. 

Stiles kissed him desperately.  In some dark part of his brain he felt this shouldn't turn him on but it did.  Sharp teeth and hints at fur.  When he was a wolf but still man as well.  Plus he kind of wanted Derek to lose control.  It would be a small payback for all the torture he'd been putting Stiles through.  "Hurry please," he gasped out, making the effort to spread his heavy legs.  Derek pulled one of his legs up and over his hips, claws trailing along Stiles' calf.  He whimpered, half in the pain of anticipation.  God his lungs were pressed so tight he could hardly breathe.  He felt ridiculously close to just bursting into tears or simply dying.  Dying sounded better.  Derek bit his throat, fangs indenting his skin as Stiles' heart throbbed at the action.  "Derek," he pleaded, the name ending on a hiss as Derek finally slid inside.  Derek had already teased him over the edge with what Stiles was sure was going to remain the best hand job of his life and then again simply stretching him open with his fingers.  Not to mention all the biting and scratching and teasing of pain along every centimeter of bare skin.  He trembled again, which he couldn't seem to stop doing.  His hands were up and over Derek's back, gripping at the ridges of muscle.  One hand skated into his hair and he gripped tight before pulling.  Derek growled and Stiles' eyelids slammed shut.  He felt ridiculously over stimulated, nearly every nerve ending burning in protest.  But he didn't think he ever wanted it to stop either.  A broken groan couldn't be helped as Derek started to swell inside him.  Derek shoved in roughly and Stiles yelled hoarsely.  "Oh god, oh god," he panted weakly against Derek's neck.  "So good damn..." 
            "You're so…" Derek breathed, cutting off to kiss him again.  Stiles clutched him tighter.
            "Mm you're killing me," Stiles mumbled, "but it feels sooo good."  Derek rocked his hips just barely, Stiles groaning again as their bodies stayed locked together.  "Fuck," he let out. 

Stiles drew his legs tighter around Derek, one around his hips the other around his legs.  Derek stayed unbearably close, eyes glowing blue.  Stiles couldn't take it anymore, snaking a hand between them and wrapping his fingers around his cock.  He couldn't help crying out even with the first tentative touch.  It was too much sensation but he needed to feel that sharp relief again.  He gave a quick stroke, whining between his gritted teeth.  Derek hummed against his skin, teeth gliding teasingly.  "Fuck," Stiles managed again.  Derek's hands settled on his hips, claws pricking the skin.  Stiles' hips jerked as his orgasm slammed into him.  He couldn't help a long groan.  He sounded like he was in pain.  Maybe he was.  Maybe he just hadn't realized yet.  Derek bit into his shoulder, breaking the skin, heat welling through the surface.  Another weak groan and then Derek was coming inside of him, hot spurts that sent entire waves of heat up and over Stiles.  He lay under Derek and trembled, unable to even form words.  He couldn't do anything but tremble and breathe; sort of surprised he could manage both.  His body felt boneless.  It felt half alive.  His heart stuttered languidly as Derek lapped at the blood on his skin. 
            "Sorry," he breathed, pulling up and blinking the blue away.  Stiles snorted, letting his eyes close.  The knot was disappearing rapidly and Stiles was in wonder at how quickly Derek could make the change now.  Especially that specific part of it.  He was tempted to blush even with Derek still inside of him. 
            "Don't even worry about it."  He was silent for a few moments and Stiles peeked up to find Derek watching him. 
            "Shower?" Derek questioned as he averted his eyes.  Stiles snorted again.
            "You can go shower.  I'm going to stay right here and pass the fuck out." 
            "No you're not.  You'll feel better after you shower."  Stiles' protests cut off on a squeak as Derek lifted him, sliding out and then back in. 
            "Oh Jesus," he groaned. 

It was true.  Stiles felt better as soon as the hot water hit his skin.  Derek blocked the spray until it was warm enough and then gently set Stiles on his feet.  It was almost embarrassing how taken care of Stiles felt.  Then again it was because of Derek that he couldn't really walk under his own power so he supposed Derek owed him in a way.  Stiles wrapped one arm around Derek's neck and leaned against him, sighing as Derek's hands smoothed over his skin.  A shower somehow turned into a massage and other than a grumble about this not turning into a happy ending Stiles didn't protest.  Turned out Derek was really really good at massages.  Or maybe he just like knew where to touch Stiles, how to touch him.  Because of the bond or something.  Stiles would experiment on him but he was too tired.  "Okay enough shower," he grunted, "bed."  Derek reached to turn the water off, one arm still wrapped around Stiles' back.  "For sleep," Stiles clarified, because he felt he should. 
            "Mmhmm," Derek agreed quietly.  He wrapped a thick towel around Stiles' shoulders and Stiles glanced to the mirror, reaching to swipe through the layer of condensation. 
            "Huh," he exhaled, "that's…not as bad as I thought."  He certainly didn't look like he'd just been mauled by a werewolf.  In fact his neck looked a lot better.  He must have been peering at his skin for too long because Derek chuckled, grabbing a towel for himself.  "How?" 
            "How what?"
            "You made me your personal like…chew toy.  But I'm fine." 
            "Not too sore?" 
            "How nice of you to check now," Stiles exhaled dryly. 
            "You're not as fragile as you look and we both know it."  For some reason Stiles fought the urge to blush at that. 
            "Thanks?"  Derek ran a hand through his hair and grinned at him.  Stiles paused as his heart thumped a bit heavier in his chest.  God.  That was…but he didn't want to examine it.  He didn't want to acknowledge it. 

It was a relief when Derek left, toweling off his hair as he went.  Stiles dried himself slowly, examining the places he remembered Derek biting and scratching.  There were marks but they were faint.  As if they'd been made a few days ago.  Stiles frowned to himself.  That wasn't possible.  Or at least it shouldn't be possible.  He wrapped the towel around his waist and made his way to the bedroom.  "Derek?"  The bedroom was empty and Stiles wandered down the stairs.  "Did you do something to me?" he added, approaching the kitchen.  Derek turned from the open fridge, smirking at him in nothing but a pair of jeans.  Stiles rolled his eyes quickly.  "Asides from the obvious.  Obviously."  He set his hands on his hips before gesturing to his torso.  "I mean this.  Care to explain yourself?" 
            "We should start working out again.  You're starting to lose some definition," Derek said before turning back to the fridge.  Stiles' jaw dropped open. 
            "That is not what I was referring to.  Rude."  Derek's lips might have twitched, he wasn't sure. 
            "You hungry?" Derek questioned, shooting him another quick glance.  Stiles huffed.
            "You can't tell me I'm losing definition," he used air quotes rather than rolling his eyes, "and then offer to feed me it's not like I have a good record with decision making." 
            "So we'll work out later." 
            "You're trying to distract me," Stiles accused.  "We're talking about this," he didn't gesture to himself again, unsure what he would do if Derek made another jab at his body.  "Explain how I've suddenly developed healing powers please."  Derek shut the fridge with a sigh, leaning against it before looking back to Stiles. 
            "You haven't," he said finally. 

            "Oh really," Stiles countered.
            "Can we just not talk about this right now?"
            "Derek seriously just tell me.  Don't make this a big deal." 
            "The bond is getting stronger.  I'm more in tune with you.  It's easier to heal you."  Stiles blinked rapidly, stomach dropping as if water had just closed over his head.  He pushed the confused panic back, blinking once and drawing in a deep breath.
            "I'm sorry.  Easier?"  Derek nodded once, cheek dipping as he bit it.  Stiles did roll his eyes then, losing his patience.  "Reverting back to the mysterious silences are you serious?" 
            "Well…" Derek looked uncomfortable.  "It's not like you're sticking around.  I'm not exactly supposed to tell you everything."  It was sort of stunning the way that Stiles remembered precisely how it felt to get tackled in lacrosse practice.  Maybe even more stunning that Derek could make him feel that way with just a few words.  Like a jab with the end of a stick right in the middle of his ribs.  Then an elbow sharp to his back.  Finally, mercifully at this point, the unstoppable force that propelled him to the ground. 
            "That's not fair," he exhaled. 
            "It's true isn't it?"  Stiles had to pause there and take a breath.  The panic from before was rising in him again.  Derek looked upset.  He looked more than upset.     
            "That's not fair either." 
            "I don't care if it's fair Stiles.  You're not staying.  You're not planning on staying.  I'm not sure what either of us is playing at." 
            "What?"  He inhaled quickly, mind starting to race as he tried to avoid saying anything that would start a fight.  As if it could even be avoided at this point.  "Where is this-?  We were just-  You can't keep doing this to me!  I think everything is fine and then you just rip the rug out from under me that's not fair Derek!"  Oh well that was brilliant his mind supplied. 
            "Is that all you're going to say?  This isn't fair to me either."  Stiles bit his lip.  Hard.  He couldn't say the first words his brain provided.  This is your fault.  You chose me.  I didn't ask for this. 

            "We were fine."  It was almost desperate, the way that he said it.  "We were just fine."  He searched Derek's expression with the same urgency, trying to read his mind.  "Weren't we fine?" 
            "I was trying," Derek said with a quick, bitter smile.  "It was easy.  For a minute.  I stayed human.  I pulled the wolf back.  And it was easy.  It was easy to be human for you.  But that's not what you wanted.  It's what you need but it isn't what you want Stiles.  And I can't give you what you want andwhat you need.  It has to be one or the other."  Stiles had to close his mouth to swallow and gather what he wanted to say.    
            "I never asked you to be human Derek."  He thought he saw it then.  Derek's attempts; holding the wolf back and leaving the settlement so it was just them, it seemed obvious once it was pointed out.  "I would never ask-"
            "I know." 
            "Then why-"
            "Because I can't leave.  I can't leave and look over my shoulder.  Worry every time you're running late or don't answer your cell phone.  I can't leave the security a pack offers.  And you won't stay."  Stiles made a quiet, upset sound.  His lungs wouldn't open fully and his heart was beginning to pound against the muscles holding it in place. 
            "You've been thinking about this.  About us?  You've been thinking about what it would be like…"  His fingers trembled.  "I didn't even ask you to I mean not that it's healthy the whole human thing but-"
            "I knew it was what you wanted," Derek cut off his verbal flailing firmly.  Stiles blushed and he tried to ignore it. 
            "But if it was just going to lead to this," he protested on a whisper. 
            "It always leads back to this," Derek muttered.  "If we totally ignore everything we shouldn't ignore things are great between us.  The bond is strong, probably natural.  And I-" he cut off, biting at his lip and looking away quickly, "I want you so badly.  But it will never work."  He pushed off the fridge and paced two steps before stopping.  "I wish I could be mad at you.  I wish you'd just let it go and we could have just kept pretending, for a few more days.  I could have kept pretending at least." 

Stiles wished he'd let it drop too.  But how was he supposed to know to tip toe around Derek being a werewolf?  It sort of was the entire basis of their relationship.       
            "I didn't know," he mumbled.  It was never a land mine if you knew you were stepping on it.  "So we're fighting again," he sighed.  He wished he'd dressed before he came down.
            "We're not fighting we're just not…compatible."  Stiles scowled at him.
            "I know you did not just say we are incompatible.  Not after all this shit." 
            "Our situations then."  Stiles didn't have an argument for that.  It wasn't just that he wouldn't stay.  He couldn't.  Three months was bad enough.  Forever?  No.  He couldn't. 
            "So what are we going to do about our incompatible situations?"  Derek shook his head again.
            "I don't know."  Stiles sighed.  But Derek had described it so accurately.  When they ignored the things they shouldn't ignore things were perfect.  The sex was hot and mind numbing and they'd finally figured out the communication.  Stiles knew the ghosts of Derek's past and he even wanted to try and fix him.  Derek calmed him down in a way that he didn't fully understand.  Derek wanted to hear what he thought.  But simmering just under the surface was this.  This deadline hanging over their heads.  And they couldn't be after that. 
            "Well don't try to be human anymore," he said first. 
            "I wouldn't do any good," Derek returned dryly.  Stiles didn't tell him he didn't see it doing any good the first time around. 
            "So we…go back…to being friends?" Stiles said haltingly. 
            "I don't know."  He nodded and chewed on his lip. 
            "I'm going to dress," he let out eventually, turning away.  "I'm not hungry." 

He dropped onto the bed and closed his eyes.  Pain was flaring in his chest and he knew it wouldn't be long before it broke free.  Tucking a pillow into his arms he rolled into the other one and buried his face in it.  It wasn't fair.  He wanted to stay.  He wanted things to be okay.  But he couldn't just abandon his life.  The door opened quietly and Derek hesitated, one hand on the knob, the other on the frame.  Stiles' eyes burned and he pushed his face back into the pillow.  Derek was in the bed with him, pulling him close, before Stiles' lips had opened to protest.  He curled his body into Derek's before pushing his face into Derek instead of the pillow.  "Can we pretend?" he asked weakly, eyes wet.  "Can we just pretend for a little while?"  Derek hauled him closer.
            "Why?" he breathed, "It wouldn't help anything.  Not really." 
            "Why did you want to pretend then?" 
            "It's easier pretending."  Stiles' heart squeezed painfully in his chest.    
            "Then let's pretend."  He wrapped his arms tightly around Derek.  "Just a little while longer."  Derek's fingers ran through his hair before settling at the nape of his neck.
            "Alright."  He dropped a kiss on the part of Stiles' forehead he could reach.  "A little while longer."  Stiles felt better and worse at the same moment. 
            "Good."  It was an answer for now and that's what he focused on.  They would be okay.  Just for now. 

They didn't talk much after that.  Not even into the next day.  Stiles chose the escape of a book and Derek selected a different one.  It was always so much easier to dive into someone else's problems. 
            "I have to go to work," Derek said finally.  "Do you want to come?"  Stiles glanced up.  He hadn't been expecting that. 
            "Yeah," he said, swallowing.  "Yeah I'll come."  Pulling on his shoes Stiles realized he had no idea what exactly going to work with Derek entailed.  Still he'd already agreed and he didn't really want to spend the next several hours alone.  He sighed and grabbed a hoodie, tugging the hood up as he descended the stairs.  Derek was waiting by the door and Stiles didn't have to force a small smile as their eyes met.  It was sort of…tangled and bittersweet.  Both agreeing to pretend.  Stiles should feel bad for asking for it.  He's mostly sure he should anyways.  But he doesn't know what else to do.  It seems like all they can do is pretend.  Just pretend they don't already know it's going to end.  Trying to stop it had done no good.  Why try anymore?  "So what are you teaching tonight?" Stiles asked once they'd been on the road for about fifteen minutes. 
            "Kick boxing, advanced kick boxing, and self defense." 
            "You teach self defense?" 
            "Yeah," Derek smiled, "I'm pretty good at it too." 
            "I'm sure your students are all desperately in love with you," Stiles teased. 
            "Actually it's my favorite class because they're not.  They're not there for fun.  They're there to learn.  Not to mention it's the most useful in everyday life." 
            "Why is it so different from your other classes?" 
            "Because most people think it will never happen to them.  They think they'll never be attacked.  They don't even conceive anything worse than a mugging.  Most of them know someone.  A friend, a sister, maybe their mother.  Sometimes it was them.  They aren't learning self defense because of me." 
            "Oh," Stiles managed quietly. 
            "I could teach you some too," Derek offered haltingly, "if you wanted."  Stiles rolled his eyes.
            "My dad is a sheriff remember?  I know basic self defense."  Derek nodded once.
            "Good."   

            "So what exactly am I going to be doing?" Stiles questioned.  "While you're teaching class I mean." 
            "Well you can either participate, use the gym, the pool, or hang out in the back."  Stiles perked up at this.
            "There's a pool?  Awesome."  Derek smiled as he shook his head. 
            "You are such a child."
            "Um, exactly.  Fuck growing up I'm not doing it."  Derek shook his head again.
            "Aren't you a little old to be playing Peter Pan?" 
            "Ha!  Never."  Stiles grinned at him.
            "Ridiculous," Derek told him but he was smiling so Stiles let it go.  Silence settled between them and Stiles might have accidentally spent the rest of the ride casting his own version of Peter Pan.  Jackson as the villainous Hook, until Mr. Harris took his place.  Coach Finstock as the lovable but misguided Smee.  Scott got to be the entire cast of the lost boys…maybe Danny too.  Lydia was a perfect Tinker Bell and Derek was his werewolf Wendy.  Pretty apt as Peter and Wendy didn't end up together either.  Stiles didn't divulge this to Derek for that reason…and the idea of Derek as a curly haired blonde in a nightgown would probably get Stiles mauled.  To death.  Best to just keep this to himself.  Definitely. 

The woman at the front desk was mystified.  She stared unabashedly at Stiles both before and after explaining that Derek had never, literally she wasn't kidding, never brought a visitor in with him to get a visitor's pass.  Stiles did his best to smile innocently while deliberately not equating this with meeting the parents.  He truly was ridiculous.  With the bracelet securely on Stiles trailed after Derek to the locker room, averting his eyes the second time his tongue darted out to wet his lips.  "So," Derek addressed him, tugging the hem of his shirt into place, "what are you gonna do?"  Stiles pursed his lips as he thought.
            "Well I have to observe at least one class."
            "My advanced class will leave you in the dust," Derek offered with a smile.
            "Regular kickboxing then," Stiles said, sticking his tongue out.  Derek pulled another pair of shorts from his locker and tossed them to Stiles.
            "Don't forget it was your idea." 
            "Of course not Mr. Hale," Stiles did his best to simper.  He yelped when Derek lunged, body caging his against the lockers.  The only response to Stiles' glare was a lightning fast smile and a barely there press of lips against his mouth.
            "Get changed or we'll be late."  The words ghosted across his cheek and Stiles forced himself not to shiver. 

God this was a mistake.  This was such a mistake.  Derek's thin grey t-shirt was already damp with sweat and clinging in the most teasing way possible.  Then he had on navy blue gym shorts, feet bare on the floor.  God his legs.  Stiles had never like actually noticed them before.  But the way the muscles just glided under his skin.  The definition.  Stiles was having a drool problem.  And the things he could do.  Stiles groaned again, glad that most of the class thought he was having issues with the workout.  Apparently Derek's class got visitors fairly often.  No one had even asked who he was.  Stiles was okay with not making a scene, even though it was obvious that nearly a third of the class was full of tittering fan girls.  The knowledge that Derek couldn't stand them went a long way to helping Stiles deal with them.  He had nothing to be jealous of.  He just had to keep reminding himself of that. 
            "Um, Mr. Hale?" one of the barely dressed girls questioned, "Could you show us the takedown from last week again?"  Stiles paused and set his hands on his hips to judge her more properly.  She was only wearing a baby blue sports bra and black shorts so short they were practically underwear.  Stiles squinted.  Maybe they were underwear.  His nose wrinkled. 
            "Oh yeah," another added, "I can be the other body."  She ran her fingers through her pony tail before flipping it over her shoulder.  Stiles had the urge to growl at her.  Derek wince/smiled just enough to show his teeth. 
            "Actually how about our new meat instead?  Stiles?"  Stiles already approved of this.  He didn't even know what the takedown was.  He didn't care. 
            "Stiles?" one of the girls questioned, sounding offended. 
            "Yes Mr. Hale?"  Derek's lips twisted and he crooked a finger.  The people in front of Stiles parted and he could practically feel the glares on the back of his head as he made his way to the front of the room. 

Derek gripped his hips and spun him quickly.  He nearly choked on a gasp, feeling his cheeks heat. 
            "Ready?" he whispered. 
            "Um," was all Stiles managed. 
            "Now," Derek was addressing the class again.  "You want to start with a strong stance.  You're not getting anything done without that.  Only try this if you know you can pull it off because otherwise it's going to leave you vulnerable.  For example if you're in front don't try to move behind just to do this.  You won't make it."  Stiles didn't hear Derek move but he could very nearly feel it.  His eyes drifted down to see Derek's foot working between his.  Two seconds later he was on the mat.  Derek smirked for a good three seconds before offering a hand. 
            "So you two like…know each other?" the first girl demanded, lips pursed in a snarl.  Stiles grinned at her.  He couldn't help it.  Derek hadn't dropped his hand yet and Stiles yanked, succeeding in propelling his body into Derek's.  His free hand went to the back of Derek's neck, sweetly damp with sweat, and he kissed him.  Someone behind them actually gasped and Stiles wanted to laugh.  His stomach felt like soda.  Breath was knocked out of him roughly as he landed on the mat again. 
            "Maybe you should hit the showers," Derek suggested, cheeks faintly flushed. 
            "But if I shower now you can't join me," Stiles pointed out before he could stop himself. 
            "Stiles," Derek growled. 
            "Going," Stiles yelped.  He rolled and shoved off the mat before hurrying back through the aisle of people and towards the locker room.  If he paused at the door to shoot one last satisfied glance at Kickboxing Barbie it was only for him to know. 

Stiles had barely sunk onto one of the benches, debating the pool or a shower, when the door slammed open.
            "That was totally inappropriate," Derek gritted.  He sounded a bit breathless and Stiles' stomach squeezed. 
            "I know," he admitted, running a hand over his hair.  "But those girls." 
            "Those students in my class you mean?"  Stiles sulked a moment before nodding. 
            "Yeah.  Thosewhores." 
            "Stiles," Derek sighed.  "This is my job.  You could have really messed that up." 
            "Well I know I'm only temporary," Stiles forced out, "but for now you're mine.  Maybe I wanted them to know that."  Derek looked stunned. 
            "Oh," he let out eventually.  He crossed the room slowly, crouching in front of Stiles.  "They're just girls in my class." 
            "I know."  He was sulking again.  Derek's hands settled on his thighs, thumbs tracing small circles. 
            "What about your next class?" 
            "I have a few minutes," Derek told him.  Stiles didn't realize right away what Derek was doing.  He was calming him down.  Soothing the jealousy and anger in the bond with his proximity.  He sighed, feeling his shoulders slump as the breath left his lungs. 
            "I'm sorry," he said eventually. 
            "It's not a big deal," Derek told him. 
            "If it helps," Stiles told him, tongue flicking over his lips, "it was only partly the whores."  Derek smirked slowly.
            "Oh?" 
            "You're a really hot teacher."  Derek's smirk widened.
            "Oh?"  His hands slid down about two inches before moving up again, under the fabric of the shorts.  Stiles swallowed with a bit of difficulty.  "You never said that while I was helping you work out." 

He had to work to untangle his tongue from his teeth.
            "You were personally-ah-trying to torture me." 
            "Maybe," Derek admitted quietly.  Stiles bit down on his curse as Derek's hands inched higher.  When Derek pulled his hands back out and stood Stiles' jaw fell open. 
            "Derek what the fu-"
            "I have class." 
            "But you just-you were just-" Stiles spluttered, unable to properly form a sentence. 
            "See you in an hour and a half." 
            "You…you tease!"  Derek paused and turned back.
            "And you're not?  Kissing me in a class full of people?"  Stiles jaw dropped open.
            "I didn't do that to tease you!"  Derek just smirked before turning again and heading for the door.  Stiles huffed.  "Well I'm going to jerk off in the shower!  Twice!"  Stiles nearly fell off the bench when two men walked in, towels over their shoulders.  One arched an eyebrow while the other just chuckled.  Stiles waved miserably, ducking his head and waiting for them to walk away.  That didn't kill the mood or anything.  He ran both hands over his hair, nails digging in briefly.  He wondered suddenly if the second pair of trunks Derek bought were still in the car.  He hadn't used them so…  Stiles stood and pulled open Derek's locker, leaning in as his hand searched jacket pockets.  The inside of the locker smelled like leather and Derek.  The smells were nearly synonymous anyways and Stiles took a few moments to appreciate it.  His fingers curled over the keys and he just stayed still, holding them.  After another moment Stiles felt a bit creepy so he stepped back and pulled the keys out, closing Derek's locker before heading out to his car.  He offered the woman at the desk a wave and a smile.  She winked at him.  His cheeks heated again and he tried to ignore it. 

The walk back to Derek's car was shorter and Stiles thought it must be because his mind was so busy.  He was busy thinking about Derek and trying very hard to not remember their current status as pretending.  Because pretending was really an awful word and if he thought about it long enough it burned in his chest and left a bitter taste sitting under his tongue.  He didn't want to be pretending.  But it wasn't as if there was another solution.  They'd already talked about that.  Stiles couldn't stay.  Derek had admitted he couldn't leave.  But he'd thought about it.  He'd thought about leaving and that made Stiles dizzy.  Just a bit.  Dizzy enough that he ended up leaning against the back of the car instead of actually looking for the swimming trunks he came out for.  Derek is like a carnival, he decided after an unknown amount of minutes.  He's like a carnival because he's scary and a bit strange but beneath that he's so…sweet.  Like cotton candy melting across his tongue.  He's sweet like summer air.  And he makes Stiles ache.  Like a moment he wants to hold onto forever.  He never wants to lose this feeling.  He never wants to lose Derek.  And it was then, finally, that Stiles realized.  Standing on the street, leaning against Derek's car, looking off into the distance at nothing in particular, Stiles realized that Derek was like a carnival.  And that he loved him.  It was so mind blowing.  Not the carnival analogy.  It was passable at best.  But the fact that Stiles loved him.  Not just that it was complicated.  Not that he had feelings.  But the love.  He remembered before absently.  Before: when he thought that he loved Lydia Martin.  When he thought that he knew what love was.  That that was in fact, love.  But that compared to this was so…thin.  Brittle and breakable and really not worth thinking about at all.  He loved Derek.  He was in love with Derek.  "Shit," he exhaled, clicking his teeth together. 

It seemed to pull him out of his haze and his eyes focused as his hand flicked the keys aimlessly.  But his eyes locked on a man only a few feet away.  A face he recognized.  To Stiles the moment of recognition took an oddly long time.  Like the movies when the audio fades out and everything is suddenly in very slow motion.  That was the man.  The one who was staring at him.  The one they'd run from.  Stiles could still remember the way he smiled at him.  He didn't have any trouble at all recalling it in fact because the man was wearing the same expression now.  He started towards Stiles and Stiles panicked, he gripped the keys and pushed off the car, turning unsteadily.  At that point he didn't really have a plan but getting in the car seemed like a good idea.  The only problem was that he'd forgotten the two options for who the man was.  He'd forgotten that maybe the man wasn't human.  In fact, he wasn't.  The man's smile was even more unsettling up close.  He wasn't even a foot away now so Stiles did the first thing that came to mind.  He curled the hand the keys were still in and delivered a solid punch to the man's solar plexus.  The only reaction was a quiet cough. 
            "Stiles," he said smoothly, "it's nice to officially meet you."