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On The Edge of A Cliff

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Scott is both nervous and excited about this trip. There was a period in his life when he honestly didn’t think he’d live long enough to make this trip; now, with the word spreading through Beacon Hills about his true alpha status, things have finally settled to the point where he can. He and Stiles are taking full use of their excused absence college visit days, leaving Thursday to drive down the coast to visit a few college campuses. They also might be taking advantage of the fact that they’ll be near the beach on those days, too, before driving back on Sunday to Beacon Hills.

It had taken some sweet talking and promises of many check-ins and chores when they came back home, but both Stiles and Scott had convinced their parents to let them take the trip alone. Neither the Sheriff nor Mrs. McCall could afford to take off work all four days. Plus, even though things have quieted down in their town, it’s better to have some adults around that know about the supernatural in case something were to happen.

And it’s that risk that has Scott incredibly nervous about leaving. He knows that everyone they’re leaving behind is more than capable to handle anything should something arise. Derek is still around, Lydia can handle most everything, and even Parrish has been briefed on any potential threats of the supernatural variety. Seriously, everyone can handle it. It’ll be fine. The alpha can take a vacation for a little while.

At least, this is what Stiles keeps telling him over and over again.

“Scott! Buddy! Friend! Pal! Stop worrying, man. Derek’s going to run patrols with Parrish and my dad, and Lydia’s so much better at her powers now, so she can sense if something’s up. They promised to call if they couldn’t handle it, but, dude, they got this. Can we please go now?”

Stiles is standing outside his door, his jeep idling in Scott’s driveway, already filled with their luggage and the necessary road trip snacks. Scott takes one last look behind him, trying to make sure he didn’t leave something, before giving a firm nod and locking the door behind him. His mom already said goodbye an hour before when she was on her way out for her work shift.

He turns around to find Stiles beaming at him, excited that they’re finally leaving.

“This is going to be so awesome,” Stiles says once they are both in the car. He turns his head to look at Scott, and his face falls. Scott’s fists are balled up on his legs, and he’s biting his bottom lip. As they drive further away, Scott gets more and more tense.

“Scott?” Stiles asks, worried that maybe this trip isn’t going to be as awesome as he thought.

“Hmm?” Scott replies, obviously distracted. Stiles reaches over and places his hand on one of Scott’s.

“Are you okay? If you don’t want to go, we don’t have to. I can just drive us to school, and we can go some other time?” He glances over at Scott, and Scott doesn’t miss the concern and hint of disappointment in his eyes as Stiles’s gaze shifts from him to the road.

Scott shakes his head. “No, it’s fine. I want to go, I’m just… what if something happens while we’re gone?”

“Then Derek will handle it.”

Scott opens his mouth like he’s going to add another condition to his what-if scenario but snaps his mouth shut. He looks out the window and then back to Stiles. He opens his hand and twists it so that his palm is against Stiles’s, gives it a little squeeze. “You’re right--he can. It’ll be fine. Let’s hit the road!”

The last sentence is a little more enthusiastic, which Stiles takes as confirmation of Scott’s acceptance of leaving, so he continues on to the highway, letting his hand linger inside of Scott’s for longer than he probably should.

The first stop they make is only an hour outside of town to visit the closest state university to them. It’s small, and Stiles has no intention of applying to it, but Scott feels some obligation to stay as close to Beacon Hills as he can. He feels like he has to be there to protect it; if he had his way, he’d stay in his territory and go to the community college. But, he knows his mom would be disappointed if he didn’t at least try to go somewhere else, and an hour away seems good enough.

They park in the visitor parking and locate the main office to take their tour. Stiles had set up the appointments for all the campus tours ahead of time, and Scott was grateful because organizing and coordinating all of that is not something he’s good at doing. Stiles is the best, and he’s thankful every day to have him as his best friend.

Lately, though, things have been… different. It’s not bad, or weird--just, different. Ever since the nogitsune, he and Stiles both have been more touchy-feely around each other? As if they have to reassure themselves that they are there, real and alive and okay. It hasn’t bothered Scott in the slightest, even a year later, but the last few months he’s noticed that he craves Stiles’s touch more than anyone else’s. And Stiles’s touches have become less quick reassurances and more lingering caresses.

Scott’s not sure what it means, what it could mean about their relationship, but he doesn’t think it will be bad. If anything, he’s hopeful about where this could lead them.

After finally locating the office that will take them on the tour, they and their guide hop into a golf cart and get shuttled around the campus, the guide pointing out buildings and the highlight statistics about the school. There’s nothing all that noteworthy, and Scott can tell Stiles has long since tuned out the tour.

To be honest, the more they travel the small campus and listen to the guide, the less Scott feels like this is the place for him. Granted, it is the closest university to Beacon Hills, which means he wouldn’t have to travel far to keep watch over the territory or if something were to happen. But at what cost? The school doesn’t have the subjects he’s interested in, and he’s not sure being the only school with underwater basket weaving is really that big of an achievement.

When the tour is finally over, Scott and Stiles both thank the guide and accept the packet of information he gives each of them. Once they finally pile back into Stiles’s jeep, Scott turns to Stiles.

“So, what do you think?” he asks, watching as Stiles turns the key in the ignition and starts backing out of the parking space.

Stiles shrugs. “I don’t know, man. I think it’s more important what you think. We went there for you.” He glances over at Scott, whose mouth is twisted in uncertainty. “What did you think about it?”

“It wasn’t that exciting. And it’s a pretty small campus. It’s not… it’s not what I would have pictured as my college experience, you know?” He watches as Stiles bobs his head in agreement, his lips curled in a smirk.

“Definitely not. But, it’s what you make of it, you know?” Stiles says with a small shrug. “Anyway, we’ve got like 5 other schools to visit this weekend, so it’s not like you have to decide now.”

Scott nods and relaxes back in his seat. Stiles turns up the radio, and they drive in companionable silence, bobbing their heads to the beat, Stiles tapping on the steering wheel and Scott doing the same only on his own leg.

They had agreed to drive to Berkeley first and then find a place to eat nearby before they go visit UC-Berkeley campus. There’s a burger joint close by campus that seems to get great reviews on Yelp, so Stiles pulls up to it and parks. They order and wait for their food, then find a place to sit. It’s crowded, but since it’s later than normal for lunch, there’s still a table available.

They chow down on their food, and the reviews were right. Scott tries his best to enjoy the food, but there’s a thrumming underneath his skin that he can’t seem to ignore. He thinks it has something to do with the distance he’s put between himself and his territory, the nervous worrying energy gnawing at him the further he gets away from Beacon Hills. It’s distracting and makes him uneasy, and he knows Stiles can tell that despite the delicious food he’s not enjoying it as well as he should be.

“What’s wrong, dude?” Stiles asks around a bite of his burger.

Scott shakes his head, saying, “Nothing, just… thinking.”

“We’re on vacation!” Stiles exclaims, like that’s the only reason Scott needs as to why he should quit.

Scott snorts. “I can… I can feel it… like I can feel myself being pulled back to Beacon Hills. But, I can’t tell if that’s just in my head or if it’s actually some kind of werewolf thing.”

Stiles narrows his eyes at Scott like he can see the difference and then shrugs. “Maybe it’s both. But we know it can be done. Derek and Laura went to the opposite end of the country from their territory for years before coming back. Pretty sure you could live a few hours away for a few years if you needed to.”

He knows Stiles means well by bringing up the Hales as an example, but it doesn’t relieve his anxiety in the slightest. He tries to act like it does, though, giving Stiles a small smile and a nod before going back to his food. The rest of their meal is in silence--well, he’s silent, while Stiles talks about visiting Berkeley, the school Stiles really wants to get into. Scott wouldn’t mind going there either, and he’s pretty sure he could keep his grades high enough to get in.

He feels bad though that he doesn’t do more than hum and grunt as responses to Stiles. Knowing how much Stiles has been looking forward to this trip, he tries not to let his fear about being away from Beacon Hills and his werewolf instincts to interfere with that. He wants to have a good time too, to be with Stiles away from everyone else and not have to worry about school and supernatural things. But, so far, it’s not starting off that way, and he can’t seem to shake the feeling.

The tour at Berkeley goes well. They get a few more freebie memorabilia on the tour than they had at the previous campus, and it makes Stiles irrationally happy to have a Berkeley pen and window decal. They make a stop at the campus bookstore to buy a hoodie for Stiles, T-shirts for Scott and his mom, and a hat for the Sheriff. Eventually, they get back on the road toward San Francisco.

They have a hotel reservation in San Francisco and are going to get in early enough to tour around a little before going to sleep. Then they’ll get up to drive to Palo Alto to visit Stanford before making the long drive down the coast to LA, but with the scenery and the company, it should be fine. Scott just hopes he’ll be calmed down or distracted enough by tomorrow to actually enjoy it.

They check into their hotel first to drop off their bags and change before setting back out again to do tourist-y things. The hotel only has a room with one queen-sized bed, but it isn’t a problem for either of them, having shared much smaller beds in the past. Stiles claims the right side immediately and then claims the bathroom first, too. Scott doesn’t mind and starts changing right there in the room. It’s not like Stiles hasn’t seen him in various states of undress anyway even if he weren’t in the bathroom.

He’s just taking off his pants (he wore nicer slacks for the tours, somehow thinking he needed to impress them or something) to exchange them for jeans when Stiles comes out of the bathroom.

“Hey, I’m done if--” Stiles stops as Scott turns around in nothing but a shirt and his underwear. Scott doesn’t miss the way Stiles’s face reddens and his eyes dart away when Scott turns to face his friend, like Stiles was checking him out and got caught.

“Yeah?” Scott prompts with a crooked grin.

Stiles clears his throat and starts again, “Bathroom’s free.”

Scott nods and gives him a big grin before grabbing the jeans and shirt from his bag and moving past Stiles to the bathroom. He has the brief thought to purposefully brush his body against Stiles when he walks by, but Stiles seems embarrassed enough as it is. Plus, Scott thinks that Stiles would take it as teasing, which it would be, but he kind of wants Stiles to take it as flirtatious not friendly. He’s not sure when he started thinking of his best friend in that way, but if Stiles’s reddened cheeks and flustered look after he eyed Scott’s near-naked body could be interpreted, he thinks Stiles might have started thinking of him in that way too.

Maybe this trip is more than just scoping out colleges and deciding on their futures? Maybe it’s deciding on their future, singular, on whether all they remain is best friends or if they have the potential and ability to make that something more.

He spends far too long in the bathroom thinking about it because Stiles bangs on the door asking if he’s dead or fallen in and needs to be saved. Scott laughs and calls out that he’ll be ready in a minute and splashes some cold water on his face to wake him from his daze of thoughts.

“Finally,” Stiles breathes when Scott emerges from the bathroom, dressed and ready. Stiles’s car keys are already in hand, the hotel key visible in his pocket. “We’re losing daylight, man. No need to primp for me,” Stiles says with a wink.

“What if I wanted to?” Scott says, and when Stiles gives him a slightly confused look, he quickly adds, “Primp for you.”

Stiles’s cheeks flush, like they had before, and he shrugs. “Who am I to deny you? Would I get a modeling show, too?” Scott can tell Stiles is trying to pull off some bravado when he says it, but Scott has known him too long not to catch the tiny hint of hope in his voice.

“Maybe. Come on, let’s go,” Scott says, opening the door and stepping out of their room. The moment seems too much for them right now, and Scott needs some distance from it. They haven’t discussed anything; although they’ve flirted with each other before, this seems different, too real.

Stiles follows Scott out the door and into the elevator. Neither of them say anything until they reach the lobby, but then Stiles asks where he wants to go first.

Scott tilts his head, like he’s thinking about it and says, “Let’s go to the Golden Gate Bridge first.”

His best friend grins at that in agreement, and they both hop in the car. It takes some time--the traffic is terrible--but they do finally get there and find a place to park. They bump shoulders as they walk to the “tourist” spot where there are several other people smiling and taking pictures, the bridge behind them.

It’s ridiculously windy and cold, but Stiles and Scott take some selfies in front of the bridge, not that it can be seen that well behind them. Stiles asks a fellow tourist to take a picture of them, and they pose with bright smiles, their arms around each other’s shoulders.

When they get the phone back, they admire the picture. Since it was Stiles’s phone, he sends it to Scott and his dad immediately, then posts it to Instagram for the rest of their friends and the pack to see. Scott admires it on his own phone and sets it as his background while they make their way back to the car.

By the time they make it out of the parking lot and onto the city streets, it’s nearing dinner, and Scott can hear the rumblings of Stiles’s stomach.

“We should find a place to eat,” Scott says because he knows that Stiles would ignore his hunger and keep sightseeing if Scott didn’t say anything about it.

“I picked lunch; it’s your turn.”

He pulls out his phone to try to find good places that are nearby. He finally settles on a seafood place near the pier that doesn’t seem too expensive but still gets great reviews. Once they are seated, at a rather cozy table near the back, they both take their time looking over the menu, pointing out things to each other that sound good.

“These coconut shrimp sounds good,” Stiles starts, “oh and so does the shrimp scampi, and the shrimp stuffed flounder.”

Scott laughs, “Sounds like you’re in the mood for shrimp.”

Stiles glances up from his menu, his brows furrowed, but then quickly they smooth out and his mouth curls in a grin. “Shrimp it is. What are you getting?”

Scott shrugs, his eyes shifting back to his menu. “That flounder you mentioned sounded good to me, too.”

His friend nods. “Maybe we should order a bunch and share?” Stiles suggests.

It seems like a great idea, so Scott agrees. When they order, the waitress’s look of shock at how much they both are ordering is brief. The conversation between them is normal as they wait for their food, and it continues during the meal. The usual topics of their parents, school, the pack, their future possibilities, all covered while they eat. They had ordered quite a lot, but it just means they take that much more time polishing it off, with Stiles eating far more shrimp than should be possible for a human to consume.

In all the years he’s known Stiles, they’ve never run out of things to talk about. It’s probably why they are still the best of friends. Despite the ease of conversation between them, it still feels like there is an underlying tension, as if they are both avoiding talking about something. It’s an odd feeling, one Scott has never had with Stiles. He’s been able to talk with him about anything, but that was before he had any type of… feelings (if that’s what he can call it so early in the game) towards him.

After dinner, they agree to walk along the pier before returning to their hotel. They have to get up early to make their morning visit to Stanford and then drive the five or six hours to LA. Neither of them had much plans for San Francisco than that, so they pay their bill and head out into the early evening to the pier.

Stiles pulls him into a few shops, and they get a few souvenirs, hats and t-shirts mostly for themselves and their parents, keychains for the pack. They stop to get ice cream and then continue strolling down the pier as they eat. Scott comments on the people they walk past, Stiles making up stories about them, which Scott either disproves or not using his werewolf senses.

Scott has long since finished his ice cream cone, but Stiles, too distracted by the people and scenery around him, is a mess with dripping ice cream on his hand and arm, and his mouth. Seriously, it’s like he’s still five years old.

“I am not five!”

“And yet…” Scott says eyeing the sticky mess that is his best friend.

“I was telling stories, okay? My mouth was occupied.”

Scott tries to ignore the fact that his mind jumps to all the other ways Stiles’s mouth could be occupied and guides him towards a water fountain. Stiles does his best to rinse off the stickiness on his hand and arm and turns to Scott, his arm out for approval.

“Much better,” he says, “although…” Scott takes a step closer and lifts his hand to point out a spot on Stiles’s face where he still has some ice cream residue. He almost wants to do it for him, or even better lick it off, but he resists. Stiles tries to wipe at it, but he misses it entirely. “Here,” Scott says, wetting his own hand with the water fountain and wiping the ice cream from Stiles’s cheek and corner of his mouth.

“Thanks, dude,” Stiles says, his voice quiet. Scott’s eyes linger on Stiles’s lips for longer than they should, and they flit back up to meet Stiles’s. Scott sees Stiles’s eyes do the same thing though, move from Scott’s mouth back to his eyes.

“No problem,” Scott says, taking a step back, noticing a couple waiting off to the side to use the water fountain. “Should we head back?” he asks, stepping away from the fountain with Stiles following so they aren’t in the way.

Stiles shrugs. “I don’t know, it’s kind of nice out, and I’m not tired yet?”

The sun has been setting the entire time they’ve been on the pier, and it’s now mostly below the horizon, only a small sliver of light remains. The street lights are all on, so it’s not dark, but they soon will be the only source of light, since it’s a new moon.

“Okay,” Scott replies. “We can keep walking.”

Both of them continue along the path, although as it gets darker, there are less people to comment on or make up stories about. Along with fewer people, the breeze gets colder, and there’s a nice chill in the air. Unconsciously they both walk closer together, their arms and the backs of their hands brushing against each other as they walk.

Then, suddenly, instead of feeling the back of Stiles’s hand every few steps, Scott feels Stiles’s warm, solid palm in his. He stops and looks down at their joined hands and then up at Stiles, whose face is one of hesitance and caution. He doesn’t like seeing Stiles so unsure, especially with him, so he threads their fingers together and gives him a small smile of reassurance.

The smile that spreads on Stiles’s face at the gesture is blinding. It’s so cute, that Scott leans forward and kisses Stiles on the cheek, and when he pulls back, Stiles is blushing more than all the times he had earlier that day.

He doesn’t comment on it though and instead starts to walk again, pulling on Stiles to follow.

“You still nervous about being away?” Stiles says after a few minutes. It’s late now, and the air is chilly as they make their way back to where they parked the car. Scott can feel the involuntary shivers that make their way down Stiles’s arm.

“A little. I can feel it, like something is pulling me, but it’s not as bad right now. I think--I think ‘cause you’re here?”

“I’m your little piece of home?”

Scott chuckles. “Something like that. I know things have quieted down, but even though I know that, it’s like instinct for me to stay, to protect, you know? But… one of the people I need to protect is with me, so the pull isn’t as strong?” He’s not sure if it’s right, he’s not even sure what he’s feeling is actually some werewolf territory bonding instinct or if it’s his own head and nerves, but Stiles nods like Scott is right. “I should probably ask Derek when we get back if he felt this when he was in New York. Part of me thinks it’s just me being nervous in general. You know, making all these plans to take these life-changing steps. It’s a big deal, and I don’t want to mess it up.”

“You won’t mess it up. You got me. And we can fix it if it is. Promise.”

They’ve reached the jeep again, standing in front of it, their hands still locked together. Scott looks down at their hands and back up at Stiles.

“What if I’ve already messed it up?” Scott asks, voice quiet, hesitant, barely above a whisper.

Stiles steps in closer to Scott, squeezes Scott’s hand in reassurance before bringing their joined hands up so they are pressed between them when Stiles moves closer. Scott’s eyes can’t help but stare at Stiles’s lips as they curl up in the corners. “You haven’t,” Stiles whispers, “I promise.”

And even though nothing is certain, and it feels like they are both on the edge of a cliff, with the safety net of friendship behind them and this new, weird, different, exciting prospect of something more below them, Scott takes the leap, hoping Stiles will too. He presses in, his free hand coming up to palm Stiles’s cheek. Their noses bump as Scott tilts his head, leaning in for a kiss.

“Stiles?” he asks, his lips just barely brushing against Stiles’s. This is it, this is where they both jump, and Scott needs to know if he’s going to have his best friend with him.

As an answer, Stiles surges forward, closing the distance between them, and kisses Scott. It’s not their first kiss, since they had kissed once or twice as practice when they were little, but it’s their first kiss that means something, something more than what they’ve been to each other all these years.

After the initial rush and press of lips, Stiles eases up a little, and the kiss is better, their lips sliding against each other, the occasional tongue slipping between, making it wet. Scott’s not sure when they let go of each other’s hands, but now, Stiles has both his hands in Scott’s hair and Scott’s arms are wrapped around Stiles’s waist.

Both seem hesitant to go further, to let the kiss get deeper or dirtier, to open their mouths wider for their tongues; while Scott isn’t against, it doesn’t seem right for them just yet. He pulls back with a few more pecks on Stiles’s reddened lips and grins at his best friend.

“Not messed up?” Scott asks.

Stiles shakes his head. “Definitely not. Come on, let’s go to bed.” Stiles goes to reach for Scott’s hand and then freezes, as if he realized what he just said. “Not… I mean, not like that, we don’t, that’s not what…”

Scott grins and pulls Stiles in for a quick kiss to stop his rambling. “It’s okay, dude. I know,” Scott says, and Stiles bites back a smile. It’s good, nice even, that they aren’t strangers, that they’ve known each other for most of their lives. This whole thing might be unknown territory, but Scott knows Stiles, can understand him when others can’t, understands him when sometimes he can’t express himself clearly.

The drive back to the hotel is a comfortable silence, filled with the sounds of the radio and the cars around them driving by. When they get into their room, fatigue finally hits Scott, and all he can think about is slipping under the covers and wrapping his arms around Stiles. Because he can do that now, he thinks, he doesn’t have to make sure he stays on his side. He lets Stiles take the bathroom first to brush his teeth as he pulls the comforter and sheets down. After he takes his turn in the bathroom and reemerges, Stiles is already under the covers, smiling up at him.

“How early are we getting up tomorrow?” Scott asks as he rummages through his duffle bag for his pajamas. He contemplates sleeping in just his boxers, but with the recent developments between him and Stiles, he doesn’t want it to seem… forward? He’s probably over-analyzing this way more than he should. It’s still Stiles. It’s still his best friend.

“I set my phone for seven so we have time to shower and catch the free breakfast before we hit the road. They have a waffle maker!” Stiles says, not hiding the fact that he’s watching Scott as he strips out of his jeans and shirt to pull on his worn sleep shirt and thin flannel pajama pants that he’s pretty sure Stiles has a matching pair of somewhere.

He turns, fully dressed, sees Stiles’s unapologetic, reddened face and can’t help the slight grin that creeps across his face.

“Waffles are pretty great,” Scott says, pulling back the covers to his side of the bed. When he does, he can see that Stiles is in pajamas, too. He scoots into the bed, fluffs up his pillow a little, and lies down facing Stiles. “You know what else is pretty great?” Scott says, sliding in even closer so that their noses are almost touching.

Stiles grins, like he knows exactly what Scott is going to say next, but he lets his face grow more innocent and curious. “What?”

“You, duh,” Scott answers, leaning in to rub his nose against Stiles’s. Stiles rolls his eyes and catches Scott’s lips with his own.

“You’re not too bad either,” Stiles whispers against Scott’s lips. Stiles kisses him a few more times, and then pulls back enough to look at Scott’s face. He brings his hand up to cup his cheek, run his thumb along Scott’s cheekbone. “Is… this okay?” Stiles asks, his brow furrowed, voice hesitant and small.

He’s not sure what his face looks like, but Scott thinks it must be worrying Stiles for him to ask and sound so scared. Scott pulls Stiles closer to him, their bodies pressed against each other, and kisses Stiles firmly.

“This,” he says, indicating between them, “is definitely okay. I’m just… tired.” It’s a lie, but Stiles doesn’t have the werewolf senses to know, although he might know Scott well enough to catch the lie anyway. Scott’s still worried about home, about traveling even further from Beacon Hills tomorrow, but he’s mentioned it enough today and can’t do anything about it; he doesn’t want to rehash it with Stiles right now.

Stiles doesn’t say anything though, just nods and loops an arm around Scott’s waist. He pecks him a few times on the lips and mumbles a good night before cuddling in closer to Scott. It’s nice and warm and comfortable, and it quiets the low humming Scott’s felt under his skin the whole day. He wraps his own arms around Stiles, kisses the top of his head that’s now tucked under his chin, and lets himself focus on the steady heartbeat of Stiles, the sound of his even breath as they both fall asleep wrapped around each other.

~

What first rouses him is the fast, shallow breathing and rapid heartbeat of Stiles. He opens his eyes when he hears Stiles whimper, as if he’s in pain. Stiles is still asleep though, facing away from Scott now, with Scott’s arm loose around his waist. He pulls Stiles in close to him, squeezes him and shushes him as he rubs his nose and cheek against Stiles’s neck. After a few minutes, Stiles seems to calm down from his dream and slowly opens his eyes and twists his head to look back at Scott.

“You okay?” Scott whispers, concern evident on his face where the first rays of sunlight are shining through the curtains.

Stiles nods. “Thanks.”

“Of course,” Scott says, kissing Stiles on the cheek. Stiles turns back to rest his head back on the pillow and pulls Scott’s arm tighter around him, his hand resting over Scott’s. They still have a few more hours to rest until Stiles’s phone alarm goes off. But, Scott can’t seem to fall back asleep.

“Does that… do you get those a lot still?” Scott asks because he can’t help it. He’s worried about his best friend and wants to know how he can help.

Stiles shrugs. “Not a lot, just… every once in awhile. Being in an unfamiliar place doesn’t really help, but… with you here it didn’t… it didn’t last very long.”

Scott intertwines his fingers with Stiles’s and presses a kiss behind his ear. “I’m here whenever you need me.”

He can’t see it but he can tell Stiles is smiling, can hear the blip of excitement in his heart rate, can smell how the scent of fear dissipates and is replaced with contentment and happiness.

“Love you,” Stiles says on a sigh, so quiet that if it weren’t for Scott’s werewolf hearing, he might have missed it.

“I love you, too,” Scott says just as softly as they both fall asleep for a few more hours.

~

The next time they wake, it’s because of the alarm, and they both grumble about how it’s too early and refuse to escape the warmth of each other’s bodies and the covers to turn it off. Finally, Scott climbs over Stiles to turn it off and ends up staying there, sprawled out on top of his best friend, their bodies perpendicular.

“Dude!” Stiles says, his arms trapped underneath Scott’s body.

“Too tired… to move… staying here,” Scott says around a fake yawn, pretending to fall back asleep.

Stiles manages to free one of his hands and goes for the one spot on Scott’s side that he knows is ticklish. Scott yelps and squirms enough for Stiles to free his other hand, which he uses to continue tickling Scott. They are both laughing and giggling as Scott tries to escape, the sheets a tangled mess around them and most of the pillows on the floor, until finally he manages to straddle Stiles and pin both his wrists above him against the bed. He tries to free himself from Scott’s grasp, but he can’t.

“No fair. You’re using werewolf strength,” Stiles mutters out, breathless from all the activity.

Scott smirks as he looks down at Stiles, his eyes wide looking up at him, his cheeks and lips pink. He looks so beautiful. He bends down to kiss Stiles, and unlike the mostly chaste kisses they’ve been sharing, this one is less so. He swipes his tongue against Stiles’s lips, and Stiles opens his mouth in invitation.

He licks into his mouth, warm and wet and perfect. He can feel the tendons and muscles of Stiles’s wrist strain under his palms, still pinned to the bed. He shifts and moves his hands down Stiles’s arms to his chest and torso, sliding in underneath the hem of his shirt. As soon as Stiles’s hands are free, they fly up, one in Scott’s hair, the other around his back to bring him down. He obliges, rocking his hips down and can feel how hard they both are underneath their thin pants and underwear.

When he moves, Stiles moans into his mouth. God, Scott loves that sound, so he rocks his hips again to see if Stiles will make it again, keeps slowly shifting and sliding until he does.

Hmmm, oh god, Scott,” Stiles says against his lips.

“This okay?” Scott says, biting back a moan himself.

Stiles nods and then shakes his head, which makes Scott freeze, his stomach dropping. But before he can shift off of him, Stiles slides his hand underneath the waistband of Scott’s pants and underwear and pushes them down until his cock is free. Then quickly, he does the same to his own pants, shifting his hips up a little to make it easier, causing their now naked cocks to brush against each other.

“Now it’s okay,” Stiles says, pulling a now relieved Scott back down to kiss.

They continue to rut against each other, moaning into each other’s mouths. Scott kisses along Stiles’s jawline, down to his neck, licking and nipping along the tendons there. Stiles’s hands rub down his back to his ass, and eventually a finger find its way between his cheeks, brushing along his hole. It all feels so good, and Stiles tastes and smells wonderful, like them, like they belong.

Stiles,” he says, not able to finish his sentence or thought as Stiles pushes in a fingertip. He’s so close, just needs a little more.

He slips a hand between them and grasps both their cocks, jerking them off, the precome and sweat from both of them helping the slide.

“Fuck, Scott,” Stiles manages to get out before his body tenses and Scott can feel him coming in his hand and against their stomachs. Scott continues to thrust against him and stroke him until Stiles lets out a whine. Scott lets go of Stiles’s sensitive cock and strokes his own, Stiles squeezing his ass and pressing in his finger more as he does. Soon, he’s coming with a gasp, collapsing back down on Stiles.

When he lands on him, Stiles lets out a little grunt, but doesn’t seem to protest when Scott doesn’t immediately move off of him. Stiles lets his hands trail up and down along Scott’s back, kissing along Scott’s hairline.

“We should have been doing that ages ago,” Stiles finally says once Scott has recovered enough to shift so only half of his weight is on Stiles.

“Well, I’m not sure about ages, but… I think I’ve liked you that way for a little while now,” Scott admits, looking up at Stiles.

“Me, too. But, I was… worried.”

“Me, too.” Scott stares at Stiles, searches his face to see if that worry is still there, but he doesn’t think so. “But, there was no need to be, right?”

Stiles lips curl up. “No,” he says before kissing Scott. “Come on,” he says after he pulls back, “I still want waffles, and we need to shower still.” He rolls out of bed and turns to Scott expectantly.

“Does this mean we’re showering together?” Scott asks.

“Duh,” Stiles says before he grabs a hold of Scott’s arm and yanks him out of the bed.

They just barely make it before the waffle bar closes.

~

The next half of their trip is a whirlwind. Well, not really, but it seems that way because he can’t seem to get enough of Stiles now that he’s had a taste.

 

They arrive in Palo Alto to the Stanford campus fifteen minutes later than their scheduled tour time, but they make up an excuse about traffic that the guide seems to accept. They both tune out most of the tour, both because neither of them actually wants (or thinks they’ll get in) to go to Stanford (Stiles’s dad had insisted they visit just in case), and because they can’t seem to stop touching or staring at each other. If anyone else from the pack were around, they’d be declaring them gross.

After picking up a few things from the campus bookstore, eating at one of the restaurants in the student union, and stopping for gas and snacks, they hit the road again. They have a hotel reservation near Los Angeles, which will take about six hours to drive there. It ends up taking even longer because they pull off every now and then to take pictures and make out.

By the time they check in, it’s dark and they are both starved. They decide to order a pizza and spend the rest of the night watching whatever dumb movie they can find on the free cable. Of course, it eventually leads to them making out some more, and Scott tries his first, rather successful blow job, which Stiles more than willingly and enthusiastically returns.

When they fall asleep, Scott can feel the pull of his territory and the rest of the pack, straining because he’s so far away. But when he burrows in closer to Stiles, lets his arms wrap around him, his body press against him, the feeling lessens until it fades completely.

The next day, they both decide to skip out on all of the other planned campus visits and drive to San Diego to spend the day on the beach. They goof off in the water, lay out in the sand, hold hands, get food from the nearby vendors and trucks, and find a secluded spot to kiss and touch. Eventually they make it back to the car to drive back to their hotel in LA, sharing a shower to rinse off all the sand and sea salt before falling into bed together, exhausted.

The last day of their trip is the roughly eight hour drive back to Beacon Hills. For anyone else, Scott’s sure they would be tired of each other by now, or at least antsy after so many hours driving. But with Stiles, he doesn’t feel that way at all. They still have plenty of things to talk about, sing annoyingly loud to cheesy songs that come on the radio or that Stiles plays from his iPod. They stop for gas or food or to stretch or to pee and a few times just because the scenery is gorgeous. Most of which tend to lead to some heated kissing before one or both of them insist on stopping before it goes further because they are still out in public and have so many hours of a drive ahead of them. It’s relaxing and calm, and Scott couldn’t imagine spending it with anyone else.

Part of Scott thinks it should be weird, that he’s now kissing and having sex with his best friend, but it’s not weird at all. It seems like the most natural transition, like they’ve always meant to reach this point. It’s so easy for Scott to say he loves Stiles because he’s always loved him and always will, and he knows Stiles feels the same.

He’s not quite sure how to tell everyone else when they get back home because there’s no way he’ll be able to hide his love and affection for Stiles for long, but he doesn’t think he’ll have to. Their friends and family will probably think it was only a matter of time.

He reaches over to clasp Stiles’s hand and brings it up to his lips. “Thank you,” Scott says. Thank you for this trip, for being my best friend, for being there for me, for loving me, he doesn’t say, but he’s positive Stiles gets all of that.

Stiles glances over at him and gives him a big smile. “Love you,” Stiles says before focusing back on the road, a sign passing them saying they’re only a few miles outside of Beacon Hills.

Scott beams and squeezes Stiles’s hand, bringing their clasped hands to rest on his thigh.

“I love you, too.”