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You Might Just Find You Get What You Need

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            “Derek. I have the flu,” Lydia announced down the phone. She sneezed loudly to emphasise the point.

            “Let me guess. You’re supposed to be working tonight.”

            “You know, a little sympathy wouldn’t kill you.”

            Derek rolled his eyes, trusting that his silence would transport the sentiment down the line.

            “Fine. Be like that. Can you cover for me?”

            “You want me to cover you?”

            “Come on Derek. It’s a really easy gig. You won’t even have to do anything.”

            “It’s my night off,” he asserted.

            “I know. Please. I’ll make sure you get double pay.”

            “You get the Boss’s go ahead on that promise?”

            “Oh you know Peter would do anything for me. I’ll make sure he swings it. Besides this is a really important client. We can’t afford to lose him. You don’t even have to do anything, all you need to do is sit there and let him talk at you for a few hours and then go. Easy.”

            “Wouldn’t Erica or Allison be better ‘equipped’ for this?”

            “All you need to do is make him feel comfortable. Give him someone to talk to for a couple of hours.”

            “Talking is not exactly what I’m renowned for you know. I’m the strong and silent one.”

            “Look, you’re the only one of us who’s free. It’s either you or Peter. Will you do this or not?”

            “Fine. I’ll do it. But not for you.”

            “Great. I already cleared it with the client.”

            “Before I said I would do it?”

            “I never doubt my powers of persuasion. We’re giving him this one on the house by way of an apology.”

            “Peter okayed that as well?”

            “I told you. Little finger. Wrapped around. I’m the only reason this business doesn’t go under. This guy sends a lot of business our way. He’s in town all the time and always looking for a little company.”

            “Company?” said Derek questioningly.

            “You know our policy. We offer our time not our bodies-”

            “I know those lines Lydia. I helped write them. We might pretend we’re not hookers but that is we are.”

            “Escorts, Derek. We escort people, to dinner, to galas, to art gallery openings. Sometimes, yes, we escort people to their hotel rooms and then we escort them out of their clothes but this guy really is only looking for company. He’s had everyone on the books at least once, except for you, and as far as I know he’s never done anything with any of them. In fact, if he doesn’t specify I always schedule him for myself. He’s a really funny guy.”

            That’s just what Derek needed. An evening with ‘a funny guy’. All he wanted to do was spend a night in, catching up on his DVR but no. Now he had to go and pretend to laugh at some stupidly rich yuppie’s jokes.

            “Just give me the details so I can get this done.”

            “He’s staying in the penthouse suite of The Beacon Hotel. He’ll be expecting you at seven for dinner.”

            “Meeting in his hotel room and none of you have ever had to have sex with this guy?”

            “I hear Erica tried to have sex with him and he refused. He had to refuse quite a lot I understand. That’s how likeable this guy is. I defy you not to like him.”

            Challenge accepted, Derek thought as he hung up the phone and went to get ready.

 

*****

 

            Derek always arrived bang on time to his clients. They saw it as being courteous but really it just meant he could leave sooner. This was a job, like any other. Office workers weren’t the only ones who counted the minutes until they got to go home. He’d started out as a stripper to pay his way through college which pretty rapidly turned into hustling when he realised how much a guy who looked like him could make. When his uncle found out Derek thought he was in for the screaming match of the century. Instead Peter had offered him a job.

            Peter was a pimp. He preferred to think of himself as an agent but he was a pimp. He wasn’t even a very good one. Lydia was the one who kept the show running at Hale’s Menagerie. Cunning and clever yet beautiful.

            He didn’t exactly hate the job, it just wasn’t where he’d thought his life would take him. He’d carried on after college because the money was too good to pass up. It wasn’t like with Erica, who loved sex. She could keep going for hours, wild and rough. He’d seen some of the claw marks she’d left on more than a few of her clients. That was how she’d earned her name: The Bobcat.  They all had names. It was one of the few things Peter had done for the company. It was their unique selling point, their branding. They were The Menagerie and Peter was their keeper. Boyd the Bull could ram his way through a dozen bored divorcee’s without breaking a sweat. Allison, with her penchant for the darker edge of sex, was the Raven. Jackson the Snake, because you could never tell what came next with him and Isaac was the Pup because of those big blue eyes that made men and women fall to their knees over him. Lydia was the Fox because what else would she be?

            Derek was the Wolf.

            He knocked at the door. He realised then that he hadn’t actually gotten the guy’s name off of Lydia at any point. Very professional.

            “It’s open!”

            That was unusual. Normally, when someone was waiting for a prostitute to show up they were much more clandestine about it.

            Derek walked into the room. He’d been in the penthouse suit a few times before. The last time he was with three of his co-workers. ‘Entertainment’ for some big party. It looked a lot bigger now, probably because it wasn’t crammed full of people. It seemed to be pretty empty actually.

            “Sorry. I’ll be there in a minute. I’m just finishing up here.”

            He followed the sound of the voice until he found its creator. Sat on the floor with his back against the sofa was a man dressed in his boxers and a very worn t-shirt. A laptop was balanced on his knees and he was surrounded by scraps of paper with doodles and notes all over them.

            “Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand done!” he said, hitting a key emphatically on his laptop. He set it on the coffee table and began to stand up. “Had a sudden burst of inspiration you know and I just had to-”

            The both started in shock at the same time. Derek knew why Lydia hadn’t given him the guy’s name now. There wasn’t any need. He hadn’t been living under a rock for the last five years.

            “Mr Stilinski?” he said trying not to sound too in awe. It wasn’t the first time he’d had a famous client or even one as fantastically rich as Stiles Stilinski, the young founder of FriendSpace, a social networking site so prevalent that even Derek used it. It was, however, the first time he’d had a client who’d been on the cover of Time Magazine.

            “Yeah. You’re the Wolf, right?”

            He looked shocked, like Derek wasn’t quite what he’d been expecting. He must have seen him on the website. They only posted their Menagerie names up there, so they could use whatever pseudonym they felt like that day. Derek usually just stuck to ‘Wolf’. It added to his persona of mystery and danger.

            “Did the Fox not tell you about the change?”

            “Oh, no. She did. I was just –uh, I wasn’t expecting you is all. I thought it would be one of the others, someone I’d had before.”

            “If there’s a problem I can call-”

            “No, no, no,” Stiles said flustered. “I’ll um- I’ll go put some pants on and be with you in a bit. There’s a bottle of wine on the table, help yourself.”

            He disappeared off into the bedroom and Derek poured himself a large glass of wine, necking it quickly and then pouring another. He felt it was going to be that sort of a night. He looked at the notes on the floor. There were scratches of computer code and strange diagrams of interconnecting lines and points. He picked up one but it was gibberish to him. He looked at the books that were on the floor as well. Medical textbooks, cracked open and highlighted thoroughly, more notes scribbled in the margins. There were a couple of stranger ones too, fiction books with titles like Contagion and Pandemic. The Ultimate Zombie Survival Guide particularly caught Derek’s eye.

            “You don’t need to worry,” said Stiles walking up behind him. “There’s no virus on the horizon about to wipe us all out. At least not one I know of. I’m trying to adapt the algorithm we use to predict who your friends might be based on your interactions with your current friends. Some immunologist or bioscience guy wrote this article a few weeks ago about how FriendSpace can be used to track the spread of viruses and stuff. They make logs of people whose updates mention certain terms that suggest they’re sick. We find that the people you interact with most online are the people you see regularly in real life, so the people you are most likely to pass an illness on to. I’m hoping that we can use the algorithm to not just track illnesses but actually predict where they’ll spread next.”

            Stiles looked up at Derek for the first time since he’d come back in. Derek stared at him blankly. Stiles rubbed the back of his neck and grinned.

            “You don’t care about any of this do you. I’ve been at this for hours, it’s got me a little obsessed. I just get a problem in my head sometimes and I just have to know how to fix it or it drives me insane. I thought that maybe we could use the information we get off of FriendSpace to do something useful for once, rather than working out what type of advertising you’re most likely to click on.”

            The young billionaire had changed into a pair of crisp black pants and a purple shirt but he was still barefoot, scrunching his toes into the long pile rug.

            “So. Dinner? I skipped lunch today so I’m starved. What do you want?” asked Stiles.         

            “What would you like?” asked Derek.

            That was his job after all. Making sure the client got everything they wanted. The guy was rocking backwards and forwards on his heels, his hands constantly in motion. It was difficult to tell if he was flustered or whether that was just the way he was. Derek seemed to remember some article he’d read about the guy having ADHD and going through boxes of Adderall whenever a big deadline loomed.

            “Oh I’m going to get the steak. I always get the steak here, it’s awesome. You eat meat?”

            It had been an innocent enough question and it took a fraction of a second for Stiles own unintentional innuendo to hit him. He turned away from Derek under the pretence of pouring himself another glass of wine.

            “I mean you’re not a veggie. You don’t look like you are. You’re like a mountain of muscle. I mean-”

            “Steak sounds good,” said Derek out of mercy.

            “Oh thank you, I’ll just go order- On the phone- I’ll get the- room service.”

            “We’re not going out?” Derek asked. He should have guessed from the lack of shoes but this seemed less and less like ‘a bit of company’ job and more and more like a sex job every minute.

            “Uh, no. If I ever go out there are like a dozen reporters on my case, what with being a young handsome billionaire and all. If they worked out I was having dinner with a hooker- escort! Shit! I didn’t mean to call you a prostitute. Hooker! You guys aren’t- I know- Fuck!”

            Derek laughed slightly. If this guy was always like this he could see why the others would fall for him. While he himself found it a bit pathetic, they would all think it was adorable. He got clients like this sometimes, especially the guys. He never understood it himself. Why would you hire someone like him if you were terrified of actually doing anything? He’d learnt how to work them though, how to put them at ease so that they forgot all about what was really going on.

            “Do you wanna start over?” Derek asked.

            “That would be great. I’m not usually like this. It’s been a hard day,” Stiles said looking relieved. He held out a hand for Derek to shake. “Hi, I’m Stiles.”

            “Call me Wolf.”

            “Steak?”

            “Sounds good.”

            “I’ll go order.”

            Stiles went off to order their dinner while Derek made himself comfortable on the couch. He picked up one of the scribbles, casting his eyes over it. There were various blobs connected with lines, arrows pointing from one to the other and back again. Stiles came back in and let out a little yell before snatching out

            “Top secret doodles?” Derek asked.

            “No. It’s just I don’t like people to see me when I’m at this stage, when it’s all just me trying to get things out of my head into some kind of order. I like to keep up the pretence of being a genius and I guess I’m just worried that if people could see me doodling friendship clusters on the back of a napkin they’d think I was an idiot.”

            “Friendship clusters?” Derek asked.

            Derek was vaguely interested in what this guy was talking about but it was obvious that the client wanted to talk about his work, as much as he might pretend not to. What was it Lydia had said? He just wants someone to talk at. The kids face lit up as he sat himself down beside Derek on the couch and started to wave his hands emphatically.

            “You know how you have different friendship groups. College friends, high-school friends, work et cetera. Those are friendship clusters.”

            He carried on, explaining how the website used these clusters, the mathematical processes that tracked and traced them, calculating which were your most active friends to promote on your news feed and how he planned to adapt them for his new pet project. The more he talked the more easily the words came, his entire body went into explaining everything. Derek had no interest in mathematical formulas or in immunology studies but he couldn’t help being drawn in by the guy’s enthusiasm. It was easy to see why people had been so keen to throw money at this guy when he was just a kid with a good idea for a website.

            “My head hurts just trying to understand the problem,” said Derek when Stiles paused to take a breath. “I can see why you were fried when I got here if you’d been thinking about this all day.”

            “I wish I’d been working on this all day,” Stiles said collecting up the papers and stacking them into some order that mystified Derek. “I never get to do this stuff at work anymore.”

            “But isn’t that your job? Isn’t that why you’re so stupidly rich, because you’re good at doing this stuff?”

            “That’s why I got rich,” said Stiles. “Now I have to run the company in order to stay rich, spending every waking minute in meetings and appointments and flying across the country to go to other meetings and appointments. That’s why I’m here, overseeing the new office. It’s so boring!”

            “So you do this to relax?” asked Derek, picking up a sheet of paper covered in numbers and Greek letters. “You do Math. For fun.”

            “Hey! Don’t mock me. I am a genius. Time Magazine said so.”

            Stiles went to grab the piece of paper out of his hand but Derek kept a hold on it, still trying to read what was there. Stiles gave it a more definite tug, trying to claw it back. His face broke into a crooked smile as Derek tugged it harder, overbalancing Stiles so that the two of them collided in laughter. Hair brushed along Derek’s jawline as they repositioned themselves.

            Two big brown eyes looked up at Derek. The pupils were wide. He could practically smell the arousal coming off this kid. Obviously Lydia and the others didn’t have whatever mojo Derek had, because while Stiles might not have wanted them he most definitely wanted Derek. When Derek tilted his head slightly to get a better angle before swooping in, Stiles began to mutter something weakly. A protest?

            There was a sharp knock at the door. Stiles jumped up as if it were an electric shock and ran to answer it.

            “Room service?” he asked loudly and pointed the waiter over to the table.

            He was too bright and jolly, overcompensating. Something was off. When Derek went over to sit with him he was already talking, loud and fast about the new office and the advancement it would mean for the company. He was looking everywhere but at Derek. The guy wanted Derek, that much was obvious, but for some reason he was holding back.

            Taking his place at the table, Derek watched as Stiles poured himself another glass of wine. He clung on to the glass tightly, the liquid threatening to spill every time he gesticulated to emphasis his latest point while Derek sipped delicately from his own.

            True to Stiles’ word, the steak was delicious. They continued to talk while they ate or rather Stiles talked and Derek watched him talk. It wasn’t long before all the traces of embarrassment from before had gone and Stiles was back in full swing.

            Derek tried to ask questions but it was all so far above his head he could barely think of any that didn’t make him sound like a complete moron. Sensing this, Stiles tried to turn the conversation to something that they could both talk about, asking what Derek liked to do when he wasn’t off entertaining sad, lonely billionaires. He went with baseball. It was a nice generic topic that Derek actually knew something about but was unlikely to spill into something more personal than he wanted to share. It was a good topic it seemed. Immediately Stiles was off, talking about the amazing Giants game he saw when he was in San Francisco last. Before Derek realised it, they’d finished their meal and another bottle of wine.

            Stiles yawned widely.

            “Man. What time is it?”

            Derek pulled his phone of out his pocket to check.

            “Eleven thirty.”

            “Seriously! Shit.”

            “You want me to go?” Derek asked.

            He realised with a slight pang that, actually, he didn’t want to go. He was enjoying himself. Damn, he hated when Lydia was right.

            “Nah, it’s cool.

            Derek looked back down at his phone and chuckled. He had four new emails, a text and three FriendSpace updates. He told Stiles so.

            “It’s weird,” said Stiles. “It was this crazy idea I came up with when I was still a teenager and now it’s just something everyone has. It’s part of life.”

            “How did you come up with the idea. Of FriendSpace I mean,” Derek asked.

            He made sure to smile at Stiles, trying to set him at ease. Derek was not what you’d call the smiling kind but around this kid it was hard not to smile. Even when he was talking about something he proposed to find dull and boring he spoke with passion and fierceness.

            “Well there are two sides of running something like FriendSpace,” said Stiles. “There’s the boring math side of it that came to me in a psych lecture during my first term at college when I was pretty fucking high.”

            “You went to your lectures high?” asked Derek incredulously.

            “There are many reasons I didn’t get to the end of my second year. The fantastically successful website was just one of them. Anyway, the other side is the idea, the spark. I was pretty popular, had a lot of friends and social activities but I also had like a billion other things I had to do, plus I wanted to keep in contact with all my friends from home. I couldn’t keep track of it all. I figured there must be other people who felt the same way and bam! FriendSpace.”

            Derek found himself just watching the boy’s face as he talked; the way his lips moved, his eyes grew wide, how his fingers moved. He realised he was doing it and the first few times he pulled himself back, putting up a wall of professionalism but Stiles hadn’t emptied the two bottles sitting on the sideboard by himself. This was dangerous territory, Derek knew that but he couldn’t help himself all the same.

            “Are you saying that the most popular website in the world is just your college diary?”

            Stiles laughed out loud. When he laughed, he laughed with his whole face Derek noticed. All the muscles of his face worked together to bring that laugh into being.

            “Just me trying to keep myself busy. I like to be busy. I guess it was just me trying to make sure I was never on my own. I don’t like to be on my own.”

            It had been a small, off the cuff remark. Stiles hadn’t really even noticed he’d said it but it told Derek so much. It made him want to know so much more.

            “Can I ask you something I’m probably not supposed to ask?” said Derek.

            “Ask away,” said Stiles. He obviously loved to be the one with the answers or the one to go hunting for them if he didn’t know.

            “Why does a guy like you need to hire an escort?”

            The question shocked Stiles slightly, he hadn’t been expecting that. He’d sunk into that world where him and Derek were just two guys having a conversation. He’d forgotten what was really going on here.

            Derek continued, “You’re rich, famous, smart and funny. You could go down into the bar and have a hundred people all over you.”

            Stiles leaned back in his chair and stretched his arms up over his head.

            “That’s just it. There’d be a hundred people, all clambering for a bit of Stiles. I’ve spent all day with kiss-asses and brown nosers on my case, people looking to get ahead and to use me to get there. After that, all I want to do is kick back and have an actual conversation with someone. One on one. I find someone in a bar and they always want to talk to me about their shitty little idea they want me to invest in or they’re just trying to sleep with me so they can sell the story to the papers or some other crap deal. I don’t want to constantly be thinking ‘are they just after my money’. With you guys, I know you’re not because you’ve already got it. All my friends, my real friends, are back home. I was complaining about it one day and someone pointed me on to you guys. Said you were good for company, smart as well as sexy.”

            His voice tripped over the last few words. Derek pretended not to notice it but he had. It made him feel very happy for some reason.

            “And are we?”

            “Smart or sexy?”

            “Either.”

            Stiles was avoiding looking at him.

            “Both.”

            “And you’ve never been tempted to get everything you paid for? Take everything you can get?”

            Stiles scratched just behind his ear, giving his hands something to do.

            “I didn’t hire you guys for that. Specifically did not. I’m not that guy. No offence. I only want to have sex with someone because they want to be with me, not my money. Right now, I just want someone to talk to so I don’t go out of my mind. I’d talk to myself but then I look like a crazy person and Scott threatens to call the men in white coats so…”

            “Scott?” asked Derek.

            “Best friend. He’s kind of my PA. At least he’s on the company pay roll and tends to do what I tell him. He’s can be a bit useless at times.”

            “Ah. He’s your Jackson,” said Derek without thinking.

            “Really? Jackson seemed kind of intense to me, very much the Snake. Scott’s more like Isaac, he’s a lost puppy too.”

            “Isaac has that persona when he’s working but he’s smart and- wait. Did you just call him Isaac?”

            “Yeah, why?”

            He’d used Isaac’s name. His real name. And he’d known who Jackson was too. You never gave out your real name. That was company policy. That was sex industry 101.

            “It’s just- it’s nothing.”

            “Oh is this because I know who they are? I know who most of you are. They showed me their FriendSpace account when it came up in conversation. It’s kind of hard to keep your identity secret from me. I’m Baron of the Cyberworld. I can find out anything on anyone if I want to. All I need is a name.”

            “Which is why we’re all supposed to use fake ones.”

            “I could find you if I wanted Mr Wolf,” said Stiles.

            “Then why don’t you?” asked Derek. There was a little bit of him that was hoping Stiles wouldn’t see it as just an idle joke.

            “Ha. Easy. You must be friends with Lydia on FriendSpace so I can just look you up through her contacts.”

            He was friends with Lydia on FriendSpace? God. What was it about this guy that made everyone completely lose all sense of professional decorum? He needed to watch himself around this guy or he’d get into trouble with the Boss.

            “Seems a bit low tech,” asked Derek.

            “True. But also not-illegal, like most of the other options.”

            They both laughed at the joke, even though it really wasn’t very funny. Stiles was sat with his elbow on the edge of the table, his fingers laced through his hair. He was looking at Derek slightly sleepily.

            “You wanna go sit back on the couch,” Derek asked. “My ass is falling asleep over here.”

            “Sounds like a plan but I warn you I might fall unconscious on you.”

            Derek had an image in his mind of Stiles falling asleep and sliding down to rest on his shoulder. He wanted to run his fingers through his hair and press his lips to the top of his head as he watched his sleeping face.

            Crap. Bad thoughts. He was drunk. He should go now before he did something stupid.

            He sat down on the couch instead. Stiles was still barefoot and curled up on the cushions so his feet were gently brushing against Derek’s leg. The point of contact seemed to burn. Derek wanted to press it closer but was worried that Stiles might baulk away from it if he pushed too hard. Or did he want him to make a move? Stiles was talking again. His eyes were scanning across Derek’s face, pausing at his mouth. Derek could tell his own eyes were doing the same across Stiles features, dipping to the hint of collar bone that showed through the triangle of skin left exposed by his unbuttoned shirt.

            Derek gave up trying to deny it. He wanted Stiles. He wanted to press his lips to his neck and leave his mark in that creamy skin. He wanted to feel of tongue against his and he wanted to taste every inch of that body. The worst of all though was that he knew Stiles wanted it too. He screamed it with every motion of his body. They were both mad with desire but neither of them was willing to do anything because they both knew what that would mean. It wouldn’t be two people having a good time. It would be a hooker and his John.

            Derek was so screwed. He had another glass of wine.

            “I feel like we’ve been talking about me and my work all night,” said Stiles. “Am I allowed to ask about yours?”

            “Of course you’re allowed. I’m just surprised you want to know.”

            “I’m interested okay. Call me weird but I am. I get that you can’t give names or details but come on. You must be able to give me something. Do you like doing what you do?”

            “It’s okay,” said Derek. “I mean the pay’s great and you get to meet some really interesting people.”

            “I take it I’m one of those interesting people.”

            “Of course,” said Derek.

            “But…”

            “But I’m still essentially just a glorified hooker. I know we ‘sell our time, not our bodies’,” he said faking his uncle’s voice. “We’re only meant to sleep with people if we feel a connection to them or some bullshit. Like you don’t have sex with everyone you date.”

            “But you don’t work like that?”

            “Not really. I usually just try to get in and out as quickly as possible so I can go home and watch ESPN. I’m not very good at the talking thing.”

            “I got that from your profile on line. ‘Strong and silent, the Wolf’. It’s why I never requested you even though I’d had all the others.” There was a hitch in Stiles voice. He wasn’t exactly lying but he was bending the truth. “You’ve been pretty talkative tonight though.”

            “Like I said. Sometimes you meet interesting people.”

            Derek smiled at him. A full, proper smile. He knew what effect those had on people. He didn’t use them often but he knew what happened when he did. Stiles smiled back warmly, but it faltered and he turned his head away and muttering to himself under his breath.

            “I think,” he said slowly, “you might be getting your ESPN after all. I think it might be time for bed.

            Stiles scooched to the edge of the sofa as he readied himself to stand up. Derek closed his fingers around his wrist. He didn’t know he was going to do it until his hand was there. The man could have easily broken away if he wanted to but he didn’t want to, that was the point. Derek leaned in closer. He could smell the wine heavy on Stiles’ breath as it caught in his throat. They were both drunk. He should stop now. He should back away, go home and not think about Stiles again.

            Instead he leaned in and said, “You do learn something in this line of work. You learn how to read people. My job is to give people what they want without them having to say anything. Their bodies become pages and the flick of an eye or the way they hold their hands becomes as good as an essay.”

            “What are you doing?” asked Stiles. He was struggling to keep his eyes open, forcing himself to hold back and not close the distance between them when everything that he was screamed at him to do it

            “I’m giving you want you want. You want this but you won’t let yourself have it because you don’t want to be ‘that guy’. You never asked for me because you wanted me and you knew this would happen. You knew if you had dinner with me you’d end up like this, dying to tear my clothes off.”

            “I’m not- I don’t- I can’t do this.”

            “But you want to.”

            Stiles made a whimper of longing but moved his head away.

            “Look, Wolf-”

            “Derek.”

            “Huh?”

            “My real name. It’s not Wolf. It’s Derek. Derek Hale”

            Stiles breathed in deeply to calm himself, his hands gripping onto the edge of the couch. He knew what that meant to Derek, handing over his real name like that. When Stiles said it, he almost spoke with reverence.

            “Derek. I told you before. I don’t want to be with someone just because of my money. Right now I’m paying for your time, for you to give me what I want and that’s what you’re doing right now. You’re doing what I paid you to do.”

            “You’re not paying,” said Derek.

            “Huh?” said Stiles, turning back to look at Derek.

            “This one’s on the house. You’re not paying and it’s my night off. I’m not the Wolf tonight. I’m Derek and right now, Derek really wants to kiss you.”

            Emotions warred across Stiles’ face for a moment. He was searching Derek’s face for a sign that he was speaking the truth and Derek was, with every fibre of his being he was.

            “Fuck it,” said Stiles.

            Stiles tongue was in his mouth before Derek could think. His hands were on Derek’s body. The force of it surprised Derek and he toppled backwards, Stiles falling on top of him. He regained himself and grabbed the back of Stiles’ neck, the man letting out a grunt of desire. With his other hand, Derek grasped at Stiles’ shirt, pulling the fabric and squeezing the flesh beneath. He began to move his hips back and forth, pumping their rapidly swelling erections against each other. Stiles reached behind him and moved Derek’s hand down his body so that it rested on his ass.

            “So now you know what you want,” said Derek, Stiles tongue still pressing against his lips. He squeezed Stiles ass hard enough to make him gasp.

            “I always know what I want,” said Stiles as he kissed him. “I want you. Oh god I want you. I fucking want you.”

            He repeated it over and over like a mantra as he kissed along Derek’s neck, as low as he could go before Derek’s shirt got in the way. Stiles sat back. His lips were already shining with saliva. His eyes were wide with need as he went to work undoing the buttons on Derek’s shirt. Derek did likewise on Stiles’. While Stiles fast fingers made light work of Derek’s shirt, he found that he couldn’t get the tiny buttons of Stiles’ undone.

            “Screw it, I have others,” said Stiles.

            He grabbed the lapels and pulled them apart, Derek helping him tear and the fabric gave way in a shower of buttons. He let his hand slip up and under between the shirt and Stiles’ skin. Their chests pressed into each other, hot and hard. It felt so good. It had been so long since Derek had had it like this. Where the fire was real and his thoughts were fixed on the person in front of him. He pressed in closer to Stiles’ needing to remember what this was supposed to feel like. What it was like to want something so bad you’d do anything for it. He dug his fingers into Stiles’ back. He could feel the edge of his fingernails bite into his flesh. Derek wanted to mark Stiles. Leave great scratches down his back, suck great welts into his neck and body, leave some sign that he’d been there and for that brief instant this man had been his, all his.

            Stiles keened long and needy as Derek sunk his teeth into his neck, leaning into the bite to make it harder and pulling Derek’s head in closer to him. Stiles grabbed his fingers into Derek’s hair and yanked his head back to kiss, chewing their tongues together as he scratched his own nails down the side of Derek’s throat.

            Suddenly Stiles jumped up. He grabbed Derek’s legs and swung them off the sofa so he was sitting up straight on the seat. He flicked open Derek’s belt and quickly pulled off his pants so that Derek was completely naked in front of him. He was already so hard it nearly hurt. The grin on Stiles’ face nearly made Derek blow his load there and then. Derek arched up, knowing what came next. Derek’s clients, male or female, were always apoplectic with desire to get their lips around Derek’s cock. He could see it on their faces throughout the entire evening, their eyes constantly flicking down to his crotch.

            Derek awaited the feel of Stiles’ hot lips around him. Instead the man grabbed his knees and yanked him even further down the couch so that his ass was tilting up giving Stiles a perfect view. His tongue darted out to lick his lower lip as he stared into Derek’s backside. His fingers came up, gently rubbing back and forth across his hole, tugging here and there, finding the spots that made Derek gasp, tuning him like an instrument.

            “Huh. Thought so,” said Stiles.

            Derek didn’t want to ask what he thought. He wanted Stiles to stay there all night, slowly working his ass until he could slide his fingers inside, one by one, but Stiles seemed to be purposefully not doing what Derek wanted him to do. He stood up, Derek following him until he was sat teetering on the edge of the sofa, looking up at Stiles. His face must show his need, so pure it almost scared him.

            “You’re not the only one who’s good at reading people,” Stiles said. He dragged his thumb against the ridges of Derek’s lips, pulling them open slightly. Derek’s tongue flicked out to find it and Stiles let him suck down the digit into his waiting mouth. “I’m good at it to. It’s why the site is so popular. I’m really good at knowing what people want.”

            “And what do I want,” Derek asked. He wasn’t sure himself at the moment. He wanted Stiles. He didn’t care where or how, he just wanted him.

            “You knew this wasn’t supposed to be on the table tonight,” he said, “but you got your ass ready just in case. I bet every time you’re with a guy, all they want to do is for you to fuck them. You know that’s what they want, it’s what they always want but you still make sure your ass is ready just in case this one time they want to fuck you. Because you’re the one who really wants to be fucked. Hard.”

            Derek bit down on Stiles thumb in affirmation. Even with hook-ups they always thought he was a power top, leaving him to sort out his real need after they’d gone.

            Stiles’ hand drifted down his abs, grasping at flesh as he worked his way towards Derek’s cock, always staying a few inches away to torment him.

            “Am I right? Is that what you want Derek?”

            “Yes,” Derek gasped. He pushed his hips forward, trying to reach Stiles grasp but he pulled his hand back out of reach.

            “You want me to throw you down. You want me to bend you over and ram my stiff hard cock into your ass over and over again. I bet I wouldn’t even have to touch you. You’d come just from the feel of me inside you.”

            Derek’s mouth was open slightly as he looked up. He was lost to this man. He was so used to being the one control that he wasn’t sure what to do. He surrendered totally as Stiles pushed back on his shoulders, making him collapse back down onto the sofa. Stiles knelt down before him, manoeuvring his shoulders underneath Derek’s knees. He ran his finger along the crevice of Derek’s ass, making the muscles of his buttocks clench as a shiver ran through him.

            “Relax,” said Stiles softly. “I know what I’m doing. I promise you’ll like it.”

            Stiles’ finger was replaced by the tip of his tongue. He started at the top of the channel and ran smoothly along, brushing over Derek’s hole and sweeping up the underside of his cock. Derek clawed into the edge of the couch as he tried to follow Stiles’ tongue, unwilling to break the contact. Stiles repeated the action, this time taking a slightly shorter stroke. Then again. And again. And again until all he was doing was flicking the tip of his tongue backwards and forwards across the pucker of Derek’s ass hole. At first Derek clenched instinctively away from it until Stiles’ lay his tongue flat against him, delicately undulating. Every wave of that wet muscle went right through Derek, eeking out the tension from him.

            The slip of Stiles’ tongue as it finally entered him had Derek breath in long and ragged. Despite the long build up it still came as a surprise, sending a shock of sensation to every extremity. He was pretty sure he should be freaking out right about now. Some guy he’d just met currently had his tongue probing around his most personal of cavities. Instead he was reaching down and threading his fingers through Stiles hair, urging him deeper.

            Even though Stiles looked clean shaven, Derek could feel the subtlest hint of stubble rubbing itself against his inner thigh. Stiles’ lips were moving against the sensitive skin between Derek’s legs. He could feel Stiles’ hot breath as his nose nuzzled into the underside of Derek’s balls. Inside, his tongue was wriggling with expert precision until it found a spot inside that made Derek’s entire body tense and curl up in the agony of ecstasy. He could feel himself clench around Stiles tongue, trying to force him out but the man just licked forward even harder. Derek went blind from the pleasure, making a strangled noise as it cut off his ability to use his vocal chords.

            A few minutes, or it might have been several hours, later Stiles eventually withdrew his tongue and laughed.

            “I’m guessing no one’s ever done that to you before,” he said.

            Derek tried to form words but all he could manage was a strangled yelp.

            “I’ll take that as a no.”

            Expecting Stiles to return to seeing to the rest of him, Derek was taken aback again when he felt slick fingers slid into him. A good little sex worker, Derek always made sure he was stocked up on lube and condoms when he went out on any job. They must have fallen out of his pocket in the rush to rip his clothes off and Stiles was putting them to good use.

            “Have you even ever had anyone do this?”

            “Just me,” Derek managed to say.

            “Man, I get to pop your cherry as well? I should break my own rules more often.”

            “Me to,” said Derek.

            What Derek was doing tonight wasn’t so much breaking the rules as it was smashing them with a sledge hammer and setting them on fire. Never get personally involved. Appear like the client is the only thing in the world you care about but always remain distant on the inside. It was the reason for the fake names. It was difficult to get caught up in the moment when they were screaming the wrong name. You could enjoy yourself, all of the others certainly did, just always remember the relationship for what it truly is: a business transaction.

            ‘You’ll tell Lydia to take back your fee’, Derek thought as Stiles kissed along the length of his abs, hand still deftly working him. ‘Or give it to charity. You’re not working tonight. The rules don’t apply’.

            Stiles had worked his way up Derek’s body and was kissing him. He baulked slightly, remembering where his mouth had been moments before but it was forgotten after the meaty taste of Stiles tongue washed the memory away.

            Pulling out his hand, Stiles brought forth a whine of loss from Derek as he left him empty. He wanted more. Stiles laughed in his throat as he pulled away from Derek, standing up. His purple shirt was still hanging off his body, framing him in a swathe of colour. His pants had worked their way down low, showing off the curve of his hip bones. Though Stiles muscles weren’t as defined as Derek’s own they were still there, the suggestion of a physique rather than a honed, tight body. Stiles grabbed a towel from the edge of the sofa and used it to wipe the lube off his hand, carefully working the cloth in between his fingers. It was a sign of Derek’s heightened state of arousal that even that simple act was turning him on as much as the touch of his tongue had.

            “I think I’ve done enough of the work for now, don’t you?”

            Derek nodded.

            Stiles dropped the towel to the floor and stepped forward. Derek sat himself more comfortably on the edge of the seat as he reached up towards Stiles’ waistband. He threaded his fingers through the belt loops to draw him close and kiss the soft flesh of his abdomen. He had no trouble with the buttons on his trousers and soon had them undone. He slowly slid them down Stiles’ legs.

            Derek looked at the distended cotton of Stiles’ boxers. He swallowed hard before carefully plucking the fabric from around Stiles’ dick and letting the underwear fall to the ground. It was looking right at him, inches away from his face. Derek licked his lips, wanting to taste it but unable to bring himself to close those last few inches. Stiles fingers softly threaded their way through his hair. He chuckled, making his cock bounce slightly.

            “Have you not even tasted dick before?”

            “No,” said Derek quietly.

            “Shit! What have these other guys been doing with you?” Stiles said. “Just take it slow. Don’t push yourself further than you can go. Try giving it a lick first.”

            Taking a deep breath Derek ran his tongue along the tip. He could taste a hint of something but it was more a sensation of hot wetness. He wanted more. Trying to remember what he liked, Derek wrapped his lips around the tip of Stiles’ cock and began to swirl his tongue around.

            “Oh fuck, you learn quick,” said Stiles.

            Grabbing on just below Stiles’ ass with one hand and enclosing his other around Stiles’ shaft, Derek began to work his way down. Every down stroke was a little lower down Stiles’ length, Derek testing himself to see how far he could go. He reached his limit a lot sooner than he would have liked, the touch of Stiles against the back of his throat making him gag. As Derek’s throat convulsed around him, Stiles legs shook a little.

            “Go steady,” he soothed. “Fuck that felt good but go steady.”

            Derek tried again, slower this time. He managed to get a little deeper but he couldn’t overcome his gag reflex. Whenever he did choke on Stiles’ cock though, Derek could tell that the other man liked it. He tried it as many times as he could until he knew he had to stop. He was going to go back to just working what he could manage but Stiles pushed him off roughly and sank down on him, wrapping his own mouth around Derek.

            The man engulfed Derek in one go. Derek wasn’t exactly huge but he was definitely on the larger side of average. Stiles managed to get his whole length into his mouth without any trouble.

            “Oh sweet fucking Christ!” Derek yelled as Stiles began to move his tongue in that same undulating motion that he’d used earlier against his ass.

            Again Stiles smiled, the play of his lips tightening as he did so. Derek tried to stop himself from thrusting his hips, not wanting to hurt Stiles or break whatever magic spell he’d put on his throat to be able to do that.

            Stiles drew himself off with a slurp.

            “I was on the lacrosse team in college,” he said. “I didn’t get to play much, had to find another way to work off all that energy. Always plenty of guys looking for a quick BJ in a college locker room, most don’t particularly care who’s giving it to them.”

            “Good to see you learned something useful at school,” said Derek.

            Stiles slunk his way up Derek’s body.

            “I think it’s time to take this to the bedroom,” he said.

            Derek nodded in agreement as Stiles’ threw his arms around his neck and kissed him deeply. Derek let Stiles lead him towards the bedroom. They’d redecorated since he was here last he thought in some vague part of his brain that was still capable of coherence.

            The thought was like ice water down his back. Stiles was turning back towards him, running his fingers through his hair. Derek kissed back, trying to lose himself in Stiles’ lips once more and failing.

            Stiles sensed it and pulled back. “What’s wrong?” he asked

            “I’ve been here before,” said Derek. “With another- with a client.”

            “Oh,” said Stiles. He dropped his arms so they rested on Derek’s shoulders but didn’t move away.

            “Does that bother you?” Derek asked. His heart was fluttering. Could Stiles feel the race of his pulse as the two of them pressed together like this?

            “I don’t know. Am I just another client to you?” Stiles asked. He was trying to sound nonchalant but there was a catch in his voice.

            “No. It’s my night off and I met this smart, funny, handsome guy and decided I wanted to go to bed with him. Really, really wanted to go to bed with him.”

            Stiles smirked, bringing his hand up to scrunch into Derek’s hair.

            “Yeah. Sounds familiar. Derek, I don’t care what you do for a living. I don’t care if you’ve been with a thousand other guys, in this very room.”

            “It was a woman actually. Most of my clients are-”

            “So not the point. I don’t care about that. You want to know something? You were right earlier. I never asked for you because I really, really wanted this to happen. There were times when I would go onto your profile on the website and just stare at that picture where you’re wearing those black jeans and you’re leaning against the wall and oh my God I just wanted to fuck you so hard! Then you show up here and I have to keep tell myself ‘Stiles, he’s paid to do this. It’s his job to make you feel special, make you feel wanted’ so don’t for a second think I’ve forgotten what you do. I’ve not forgotten. I just don’t care. Because I tried to hold back when you started coming on to me but then you told me your real name and looked at me like you are right now and if this isn’t real right now then I am just going to have to throw myself out the fucking window so can you please stop freaking me out.”

            Derek put his hands on Stiles waist and pressed their lips together.

            “This is real,” he whispered and for the first time since Derek can remember, it is.

            “Fuckin’ A.”

`           Stiles pushed Derek down so that he was sitting on the edge of the bed. Derek looked up in, trying to find his confidence but he could tell his face was uncertain. His eyes didn’t falter from Stiles’. The other man sauntered up close, his stiff cock inches away from the mouth that Derek had to keep open ever so slightly because he was finding it difficult to breathe right now. Derek wanted to take that flushed skin into his mouth again but Stiles took a hold of Derek’s shoulders, leaving his cock a few tantalising inches away.

            “Move back a bit,” he cooed low, his eyes hooded by his own lust.

            Derek climbed back so that he was lying on the bed as Stiles stalked on hands and knees, straddling his body. Derek could feel the tip of his dick as it dragged along Stiles’ torso, the bump of Stiles’ own against his thigh. Stiles was leaning in close, his voice all breath in Derek’s ear.

            “Do you want me in you?” Stiles asked.

            “Yes,” Derek gasped.

            “Do you want me to make you come?”

            “Yes,” Derek said. He didn’t trust himself to say anything more.

            “I’m going to get you all ready for my cock and then I’m going to fuck you and you’re going to scream and moan and let me know just how much you want me in you.”

            “Yes!”

            Derek’s eyes were screwed shut but he could feel Stiles’ body weight lift off of him, his fingers caressing down his body until his hands were on Derek’s hips. He felt the brush of Stiles nose between his legs and again a tongue ran along the channel. Slowly fingers caressed Derek’s hole, his muscles quickly allowing them passage into his body. He’d always been a quick learner when it came to his body. He could hear the familiar sound of a packet being ripped open. Opening his eyes up he watched as Stiles rolled the condom on. Fuck. Was the sight of watching a man’s hands on his own dick supposed to be that sexy?

            Kneeling up on the bed, Stiles hesitated. He looked all over Derek’s body, idly stroking his own dick, which was already impossibly rigid.

            “No. This way up is better,” he said. “I want to see your face when I first get inside of you.”

            Derek wanted it to. He wanted to see Stiles’ face as his ass willingly gave way to his cock. He wanted to hear his moans and -

            Oh fuck!

            Stiles was pressing forward, at first just the tip but then the rest of his dick slipped inside of Derek. Derek tried to keep his eyes open, tried to watch the way Stiles’ smile changed as he took up his position but the sensation was just too much, not entirely foreign but new and wonderful. Derek shut his eyes tightly and scratched against the bedsheets. He tried not to wriggle away, managing to keep himself still if he couldn’t quite bring himself to thrust into it yet. Stiles let out a breathy laugh as his hips made contact with Derek’s skin.

            “God that’s good,” he said.

            Lowering himself down so that Derek had to bring his feet up to wrap around Stiles’ waist, Stiles kissed Derek. He took the time to let his tongue roam around Derek’s mouth, getting a good taste while Derek got used to the sensation of having another man inside of him.

            “You okay?” Stiles asked.

            It was his turn to be breathy with suppressed want. Derek couldn’t even form words at that point. He just nodded into the side of Stiles’ neck.

            Slowly at first, Stiles began to move his hips back and forth. He let out a strangled noise from the back of his throat as he swore softly into Derek’s ear. His teeth bit down onto the fleshy lobe, flicking his tongue back and forth across the edge. Derek was at risk of blowing his load already. He forced his breathing to come more evenly to hold off the gratification and extend the pleasure, pleasure like he hadn’t felt in a long, long time.

            Feeling more confident about what he could take now, Derek began to match the motions of his hips in time with Stiles. It came naturally, like sex always had to Derek. He wrapped his legs around Stiles’ waist tighter, pulling him in deeper, forcing the two of them together. Stiles was trembling. He was holding back, Derek could tell me.

            “Do me like you want to do me,” Derek grumbled low.

            “Are you sure?” asked Stiles, thrusting a particularly hard thrust that sent waves of pleasure down Derek’s body.

            “Yes.”

            Stiles kissed him exactly like Derek loved to be kissed; hard with an edge of teeth. It was brief but passionate before Stiles lifted his body back and adjusted himself so Derek was better settled in his lap. Gripping on to Derek’s knees he took a few breaths to steel himself before raising his hips up in a sudden, jagged movement.

            Derek grunted in surprise. Stiles gave him a questioning look, and Derek gave him a wanton look back.

            “Please,” he whispered. “I need this.”

            “You need this?” Stiles asked, pounding a few more staccato thrusts into Derek. “You need me inside you.

            “Oh god I need it!” Derek moaned as he grabbed over his head, needing to grip onto something to get the energy that pulled on every tendon of his body out of him. His fingers closed onto a pillow and gripped on as hard as he could.

            “You do need this, don’t you,” said Stiles. “You’ve needed a good fucking for so long but no one could give it to you. Tell me! Tell me how much you want me.”

            “I want you Stiles! Oh god, I only want you!”

            Stiles was hammering into him now. With one hand he was working Derek’s cock, the other was helping to drive him into his ass over and over. Derek tried to help, rocking his body back and forth but Stiles’ pace was so rampant that he was having trouble keeping up. He didn’t know how much more of this he could take but he didn’t want it to stop. Didn’t ever want it to stop.

            “I’m cu- I’m comin-” Derek gasped out. His legs muscles were tightening together, shocked by the waves of orgasm rushing through his body like waves racing to crash upon the shore.

            “Do it,” said Stiles. “Come for me!”

            Derek screamed as he felt his release. Every muscle in his body seemed to tighten at once, including the ones around Stiles. The man slowed in his pace for a bit, not pulling back as far as he had before, unwilling to slip out now.

            “God, you’re beautiful when you come,” Stiles said, more to himself than to Derek.

            Derek lay there panting for a moment relishing in one of the most spectacular moments of his life. He’d never managed to come like that before, with something inside of him, not even when he’d explored his secret desires in the privacy of his own home.

            “I really need to start fucking you again,” Stiles said. His voice was heady and intoxicated. All Derek could do was nod.

            Stiles shifted Derek’s relaxed form so that he was lying on his side. He lifted Derek’s top leg and began to move quickly, back and forth but Derek was still lost in a post orgasmic haze. It wasn’t long before Stiles motions became jagged and broken.

            “Oh fuck! Oh god! Oh Jesus! Oh-”

            The words finally choked out of Stiles as his face screwed up with the power of his orgasm. He thrust in a few more times, milking the last of his come out of himself before finally collapsing face down on the bed beside Derek.

            They lay like that for a while.

            “That was-” said Derek, knowing there were no words in the whole of the English language that would do what they’d just done any justice.

            “Yeah. That was,” said Stiles.

            They lay like that for a while. Occasionally one of them would let out a weak chuckle of contentment, unable to stop themselves but too exhausted to laugh properly. Derek sighed heavily, his eye lids sinking feeling as leaden as his limbs. With great effort he managed to flip himself over so that his side was hard up against Stiles, his warmth a comfort down Derek’s side.

            “You look tired.” Stiles ran his hands through Derek’s hair. He seemed to like doing that and Derek liked it too.

            “Just had one hell of a work out,” he said, managing a half drugged smile.

            “Stay the night,” says Stiles. It wasn’t a question but the uncertainty is plain to hear. It carried to his eyes. Derek wanted to kiss them, carry away that concern but he’s too exhausted to move still. Twitching his hand enough that it brushed against the skin of Stiles arm was effort enough.

            “I’d like that,” said Derek.

            They tilted their heads so that they could kiss, the most chaste they’d shared so far. Considering what they’d just done the thought made Derek smile. Which made Stiles giggle, which made Derek laugh and soon the pair of them were in fits of giggles unable to stop.

            When eventually they did, Derek led Stiles towards the shower where they spent a good fifteen minutes helping each other wash the sweat and sex off of each other. They kissed and they held each other but both of them were well and truly spent. Derek nearly drifted off more than once in the warm haze of the shower.

            Clean and content they clambered beneath the covers and fell asleep.

 

 

 

***** 

 

            The first thing Derek registered when he woke up was the ache in his head. That was a wine hangover. There was a particular cadence to the scum that wine left in his veins that he could always feel in the morning.

            The second thing he registered was that there was another person lying snuggled up beside him. Given his line of work that wasn’t surprising. It was rare that he stayed the night. More often than not the client wanted him gone as soon as his task was done, after the obligatory cuddle. Occasionally though, he’d have someone who wanted him to stay and the customer was always right.

            The next thing to dawn on him was the dull ache in his backside that wasn’t entirely unpleasant and oh sweet Jesus fuck that was what had happened last night.

            It came back to him in a rush.

            ‘Shit’, he mouthed silently, unwilling to wake the sleeping man beside him. The sleeping billionaire lying beside him, who he’d sex with off the books but on company time and who he’d really enjoyed having sex with and fuck shit fuck!

            Stiles stirred in his sleep beside him. Derek froze. He tried to run through last night again. Tried to process what the fuck he had been thinking! He hadn’t been thinking, that was the problem. He’d let himself get seduced. Him! He was the seducer. It was his fucking job to seduce people and this dumb-ass, gawky, brilliant, sexy kid had gotten under his skin and turned the tables, giving Derek what he wanted and that wasn’t even the worse part. He’d liked it. More than that. He’d fucking loved it.

            Derek was torn. He wanted to run. He could hear Lydia screaming in his head about damage control and Peter equally as vicious on the rules. He wanted to slink out of this bed without waking Stiles, grab his clothes and sneak out through the staff exit but the idea of leaving this kid like that horrified him. Derek remembered all the things they’d said to each other, all the fears that Stiles had laid out before him. Was he really going to just run out like some fucking one night stand? Like some cheap whore? That wasn’t what last night had been. He knew that. It was more. More than he’d ever had before.

            “You done freaking out yet,” Stiles said sleepily beside him. Derek hadn’t even known he was awake. He rolled his head so that he could look at Derek lying next to him.

            “No,” said Derek before he’d even thought of lying.

            “Okay. Wake me up properly when you’re done.”

            Stiles sighed and snuggled back into the pillow, looking perfectly content and that was all Derek needed. Fuck the job. Fuck the rules. Fuck Lydia and Peter and all the others. All he wanted right now was to snuggle up close to the man in the bed beside him and kiss him into wakefulness. So that was exactly what he did.

            After a few minutes of languid kissing, still half drunk and the other half asleep, they were brought back by the sound of Stiles phone ringing. Loudly.

            “What!” said Stiles into it groggily. On the other end Derek could hear someone shouting at him, probably admonishing him for still being in bed at ten on a Thursday morning. “Huh? Oh. Uh. I’m not feeling too good, still at the hotel... Yeah. Think it was something I ate…”

            The memory of what Stiles had been ‘eating’ last night nearly made Derek bark out in laughter and he had to bite down to stop it. He could see Stiles’ lip curl as he too got the joke. His face suddenly spasmed in fear at whatever the other person said.

            “No! I’m fine. Don’t send anyone. It’s all a bit… squicky at the moment. You know how food poisoning gets, I just need to sleep it off I think… yeah Scott. If I’m about to die I promise I’ll call you. Thanks for covering man.”

            Stiles hung up and threw the phone at the table.

            “Think he bought it?” Derek asked.

            “Not in the slightest but I own the company. I can take a personal day now and then if I want to spend it with my…” Stiles stopped himself short. He looked across at Derek. “My what?”

            It was Stiles’ turn to be vulnerable and uncertain now. Derek wanted to give him an answer. There were a hundred he could think of but none of them seemed right.

            “I don’t know,” said Derek. “What do you want me to be?”

            Stiles ran his fingers up the side of Derek’s ribs, skipping from muscle to muscle, bone to bone.

            “I want you to be here. Like this. I’m supposed to fly back to California on Friday. I could always have a slightly more serious bout of food poisoning. Stay the week? If you wanted to.”

            If Derek wanted to. He was so used to dealing with other people’s needs he still felt a little uncertain about seeing to his own.

            “I’ll have to take some time off work.”

            “Will the boss mind?”

            Derek thought about calling Lydia, who was the real boss no matter what Peter might say, to say he was taking the week off. She’d be furious but then again she did owe him a favour.

            “Nah and if she does, well I’ve been thinking about a career change anyway.”

            Stiles fingers stopped for a moment. His brow furrowed into a frown. It didn’t suit him at all.

            “You don’t have to. I told you before. I don’t care. If you want to carry on I’ll still-”

            “I’m serious,” said Derek. “I never liked the job that much, not like the others do. It was just about the money and I kind of got myself into a rut. I think I just needed someone to come along and show me what I was missing out on in life. Guess I’ll just have to fall back on that Ivy League education I did all this to get.”

            Derek looked up to see Stiles smiling back at him. There were a hundred problems with this: telling Peter he was quitting; telling Lydia their best client probably wouldn’t be paying for their time anymore; the fact that Stiles lived on the other side of the country; dealing with the press when they inevitably found out that one of the richest men in the world was not only dating another man but one that used to be a prostitute. Looking at Stiles’ sleepy face Derek didn’t care and more importantly he could tell Stiles didn’t either. After all, when Stiles got a problem in his head, he just had to fix it. This one they could work through together.