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Peter can smell Stiles before he even gets the door open. He has his own key and Peter’s place is a hell of a lot nicer than Stiles’ shared apartment outside the university campus, it’s hardly a surprise that he’s been camping out here the two weeks Peter has been gone. Peter knows it goes much deeper than that though. He’s waiting for him. He’s nesting. That’s exactly what Peter needs right now.

He lets himself in, raising an eyebrow at what he finds. There’s books and empty snack wrappers and coffee cups littering his expensive coffee table, dirty dishes stacked on the island that separates the living room from the kitchen. There’s sneakers and hoodies and plaid shirts scattered on the floor and slung over furniture. It’s a mess. It’s faked though, Peter can tell.

Some of the coffee cups have different names on, but Stiles is the only one who’s been here, Peter would smell it if he wasn’t. He also knows exactly how Stiles discards of clothes when he’s getting flustered, by a reading assignment or Peter’s lips, and they never end up as far flung as this. It’s all for effect, a chance for Peter to slip effortlessly into his role. Taking care of Stiles is what grounds him, and Stiles knows that he’s going to need that right now.

He closes the door softly behind himself because the set up might be fake, but Stiles laid out on his couch fast asleep definitely is not. Peter sets his bag down before moving into the apartment, starting to collect the trash from the table. He feels so ungraceful in his human form now, having to get used to his own skin again. Stiles can help him break his body back in later.

He scratches at his beard as he looks through the cupboards, knowing that Stiles will be in need of a good meal. It was a long drive back, he could use some sustenance too. He grabs ingredients, placing a pan on the stove and adding everything in. While the sauce in simmering he goes back over to the living room, placing post-it notes on every open page so that Stiles doesn’t lose his place, before stacking the books and placing them out of the way.

He stirs his sauce, having a little taste, adding just a touch more salt. He puts some pasta on and then loads up all of the dirty dishes into the dishwasher, setting it going. He looks around, everything in order, and he feels calm. His domain, his mate nestled safe in the middle of it. He’s being a good provider. That flush of pride and belonging never gets old.

He goes over to the wine rack, picking out an expensive bottle of red. It is his homecoming, that’s reason enough. He pours himself a glass, leaning back against the island and taking a sip. Smooth and rich, just like him. He smirks to himself.

Stiles stirs behind him, making that adorable snuffling noise that signals his awakening. He’s like a puppy, right down to the belly rubs. Peter turns, watching him stretch out on the couch, his skinny limbs seeming to go on forever. Peter takes another sip, enjoying the view.

“You’re home,” Stiles says without looking at him.

“I am,” Peter agrees. “Sorry to ruin the frat boy vibes you had going on in here.”

“Did you just say vibes?” Stiles asks. “I want a divorce.”

“We’re not married,” Peter says. It’s a familiar refrain between them. Peter wonders if Stiles would find another line if they actually got married. He’ll have to test it out one day.

Stiles flips himself onto his stomach, looking over the arm of the couch and getting his first look at Peter. “Oh, hey there wolfman,” he says. “They don’t have razors in Oregon?”

“I’ve been in wolf form for most of the trip, assimilating with the pack,” Peter says. “It’s important for bonding.”

Stiles nods thoughtfully. “If you were in wolf form and I shaved your furry little chin…”

“I’d maul you to death,” Peter says.

“But your human form…”

“Would still grow a beard,” Peter confirms.

“Fascinating,” Stiles says, propping his arms on the edge of the couch. “Do you know what would be cute? A little mohawk right down your wolf’s back.”

“I would maul you to death,” Peter repeats deadpan, putting his wine glass down and turning to stir the dinner.

Stiles sits up with a sigh. “You made nice though, right?” he asks. “We have allies?”

“If we need them,” Peter confirms.

Stiles nods, the matter settled. He trusts Peter. That never gets old.

“That smells really good,” Stiles says.

“Someone has to feed you,” Peter responds.

“Then what are you going to do with me?” Stiles asks, his voice taking on a suggestive note.

“We’re going to take a shower,” Peter says. “Because I don’t know when you last took one, but it wasn’t today.”

“Not today,” Stiles agrees. “I’ve been studying.”

“Mmmhmm,” Peter says knowingly, grabbing a couple of dishes.

“I need a new textbook for my forensics class,” Stiles says, feigning innocence.

“Oh yeah?” Peter says.

“It’s crazy expensive,” Stiles says. “The American education system is broken.”

“You poor dear,” Peter says, tasting the sauce again.

Stiles sighs dramatically. “I guess I’ll just fail the class.”

Peter rolls his eyes, reaching into his pocket and pulling out his wallet. He throws it at Stiles. Not to. At. Stiles still grins at him.

“Thank you,” he says sweetly. It’s worth it just for that.

Stiles grabs his laptop from where it’s shoved in the couch cushions, opening it up. While it loads, he takes out Peter’s credit card. He knows exactly which one to use. Peter should probably just give him his own, but he likes this song and dance. He likes the acknowledgment from Stiles. It gives him a little glow inside where his soul should be. Maybe that’s what it is.

“I am going to give you such an awesome blowjob in the shower,” Stiles says as he taps at the keys of his laptop.

“No, you’re not,” Peter says. “I am going to wash you from head to toe, then I am going to toss you onto the bed and fuck you into the mattress.”

He can see Stiles’ cheekbones colour. “That works.”

“It certainly does,” Peter agrees, dishing up the food. He grabs another wineglass from the cupboard, pouring Stiles a drink. “Dinner’s ready.”

Stiles makes a pathetic noise, holding out grabby hands towards him as he finishes up his order. Peter rolls his eyes but he picks up Stiles’ bowl and glass, just like they both know he’s going to, taking them over to him. Stiles closes the laptop, tossing Peter’s credit card onto the table before taking the things from him. Peter goes back to retrieve his own dinner, sitting beside Stiles who takes a single sip of his wine before putting the glass down on the table. It’s kind of wasted on him but Peter doesn’t care. He’ll get tipsy and be adorable and lean too heavily on Peter. Perfection.

Stiles sits back, looking up at Peter fondly. He reaches out, fingers sliding into the deep V of Peter’s T-shirt, gripping the material and using it as leverage to pull himself forward. Their mouths meet and it’s slow, intimate, like learning each other all over again, reading what’s happened while they’ve been apart. Peter uses every one of his senses and his wolf gives a deep, contented rumble of approval. Pack. Home.

Stiles pulls back, hand trailing up to touch Peter’s beard. “I don’t hate this,” he says. His fingers move higher, into Peter’s hair, touching the messy strands. “Soft,” he says, something like awe in his voice. “I like it like this. You don’t need all that product.”

“Darling,” Peter says. “People expect a certain level of fabulous from me. I’d hate to disappoint.”

“Sure,” Stiles says, still touching his hair, and it takes every ounce of self-control Peter has not to shiver. “But maybe tomorrow it’s just us. Like this. You can be scruffy and I’ll be sleepy and we’ll fuck. A lot. You have two weeks to make up for, I’m going to need some serious deep dicking.”

“I can get behind that,” Peter agrees. “But right now, your dinner’s getting cold.”

“Mmm,” Stiles agrees. He leans in, another lingering kiss, before he finally shifts back, picking up his fork. Peter watches him eat, needing to know that his mate is looked after, is content. Only then does he start to enjoy his own food.

“You know,” Stiles says. “I’m going to need another shower by the time you’re done with me. That’s bad for water conservation. You should just fuck me first. Immediately. You should fuck me immediately right now.”

“You should learn some patience,” Peter counters. “Shower first. You do not smell fuck worthy right now.”

“Yes I do,” Stiles insists.

“Shower first,” Peter says, putting authority into his voice. He can see Stiles melt under it. “You won’t need one after, you’ll be passed out.”

“Oh, ride me hard and put me away wet?” Stiles asks.

“You love it,” Peter says.

Stiles smiles. “I love it,” he agrees.

He leans in, brushing a kiss against Peter’s mouth. It’s so sweet and appreciative and communicates so much more than either of them could ever express with words. Peter savours it. He savours everything when they’re together. Stiles puts his charred heart at ease.