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Breathe

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"There's not enough room in here for you two. Take the next one." Says one of their chaperones on the trip.

It wasn't a class trip per se but a trip for a club their school had that was centered on business and management.

Today they were visiting a corporation and seeing firsthand how things worked.
Jackson liked it.

The students got in. All wanting to squeeze in instead of wait. The elevators were jammed and Stiles and Jackson were the only two left out.

It did not seem to matter to Stiles. Jackson on the other hand felt nervous as he watched the elevator doors close in his face. He could feel himself sweating and fidgeting.

If it wasn't for them being on the 18th floor, Jackson would've taken the stairs.

What were the chances! What were the freaking chances that the guy he's been in love with for four months just happens to be the one left to take the next elevator with him. Jackson did not know if he should be grateful or..

A part of him wants to small talk with Stiles but he knows the moment he opens his mouth he'll stutter every word then he'll be humiliated beyond belief. So Jackson tries to look at him from the corner of his eye.

He gets a little brave and turns his head in Stiles direction. Stiles who has his earphones in and does not seem to remember that he wasn't alone waiting for the elevator.

Stiles was wearing black Vans, Black fitted jeans, and a burgundy t-shirt that hugged his chest and biceps. His light brown eyes taking in the office and workers. Tapping his right foot and bumping his head to whatever he was listening to until he feels eyes on him and turns to Jackson.

Jackson quickly averts his gaze. Trying to act normal but failing. Pulling at the sleeves of his navy blue cardigan and worrying his bottom lip.

Stiles raises an eyebrow at the strange behavior but then looks down at his smartphone at a text.

Jackson sighs. He doesn't even know you exist, not in the way you want. He's sooo out of your league. Jackson thinks, frowning and pushing up his glasses up the bridge of his nose.

The elevator comes and they get in.

There's a man that enters on the 11th floor but leaves on the 9th. And Stiles and Jackson are alone again.

Jackson hates silence. It causes him to overthink and it gets harder to block the voice of his self doubt and insecurity.

Suddenly the elevator shakes. Jackson eyes widen and his back hits one of the four walls. Stiles looks startled too and has his earphones out of his ears and in his right hand, looking at Jackson in shared fear.

The elevator stills then shakes again and Jackson has to close his eyes. He's having trouble breathing."Oh G-God." He needs air. He needs oxygen. He needs to get out of here.

Jackson starts to sink to his knees.

"Hey! Dude, relax. We're gonna be fine." Stiles tries to reassure the guy who looks like he's on the verge of a panic attack.
He also says it to reassure himself.

They have to be. Right? Coach would be pissed if he died before the game next week.

The elevator shakes once more then falls and fuck Jackson is gonna die. His heart is beating wild and he can not breathe. Stiles gets down, reassuring calmness is out the window. Stiles closes his eyes also and screams as they continue to fall. Unintentionally he moves closer to Jackson.

This was the end? How could this be?

They came to a still again and Stiles opened his eyes. They weren't dead yet.. Stiles looked at Jackson who was now laying on his back. He seemed paralyzed and was struggling to breathe as if he would soon die. "Crap. C'mon man, breathe." Stiles patted Jackson's shoulder. "It's okay we're not dead. We're gonna get outta here and I'm gonna sue this place. Breathe Jackson."

If this was any other situation, Stiles saying Jackson's name would've been everything but right now he's so far gone that just being told to breathe is not gonna help him. "C-can't" Jackson said with a pained expression.

Stiles realizes that Jackson is not gonna calm down and it might be too late for him when they do get the elevator door open. He needs to distract him, but how?

Stiles lowers his head and mouth to Jackson's, kissing him. "Breathe" he whispers against his lips before kissing him again.

Stiles breaks away and Jackson's chest rises and falls. His breathing is getting a little back to normal and he uses his forearms to help him up into a sitting position. Staring up at Stiles with wide eyes in confusion and appreciation.

"T-Thanks." Jackson mumbles.

"Yeah, don't mention it." Stiles replies like it's no big deal.

Yeah of course not. Wouldn't want people to know you kissed geeky Whittemore.

Stiles checks his phone. "No connection." He sighs to Jackson and gets up away from Jackson and closer to the closed door. "HELLO! GET US OUT OF HERE!!" Stiles shouted in hopes that someone would hear.
"HELLO!!! WE'RE IN HERE!"

"WE'RE GONNA GET YOU OUT!" A male voice replies. "TRY TO REMAIN CALM!"

"Oh yeah, we'll just 'remain calm' because this is a fucking dream. It's not like we've almost fucking died."

Jackson stays silent and eyes the elevator floor.

"You okay?" Stiles asks him, concerned.

"Y-yeah."

Stiles nods and sits down also. In the center of the elevator.

Jackson squeezes his eyes trying to wield himself to speak to Stiles.

"Y-you k-k-know.." He takes a breath in hopes of calming down because this was really embarrassing. He couldn't help stuttering. Stiles probably thought he was a freak or something.

But Stiles waited patiently for Jackson to start again. When Jackson shakes his head as if to give up Stiles says gently "It's okay. I'm not judging you. Finish what you were gonna say."

Jackson looks up at him and Stiles gives a faint smile.

"My n-name." Jackson lets out.

Stiles pauses then gets what Jackson means by that. "Oh, yeah. Dude we have two classes together plus this club of course I know your name."

He says it likes its no big deal when Jackson wanted to be. And just like that Jackson doesn't feel Stiles saying/knowing his name is that significant anymore. Stiles knew his name but it didn't mean anything. Nothing whatsoever.

Jackson nods.

They hear tools and men talking and the voice of their classmates.

"You've had conversations without stuttering right?" Stiles asks.

Jackson nods at the question. "T-There a-are t-t-times."

"So what stops you?"

"I-I get..I-I o-over think in c-certain s-s-situations."

"So you're over thinking right now."

Jackson shrugs. What was it Stiles was referring to. Being stuck in an elevator? Or the fact that he's talking to the object of his affection?

"You shouldn't. It's matter of time before we get out of here."

"I k-know." And you'll go back to knowing my name but nothing else about me. Back to being popular. Back to your girlfriend. Not knowing that I'm in love with you. Never knowing.

"You should come out to the game next Thursday." Stiles says breaking Jackson away from his thoughts.

"I-I'm not r-really into s-sports." Jackson admits.

"Alright." Stiles replies.

The doors open. There's a distance between the ground outside the elevator and the elevator itself. One of the men responsible for getting them out, outstretched a hand to them for them to safely reach the ground.

Stiles lets Jackson go out first then he takes the mans help and gets out. Once he's out he's crowded by his friends and the other students of the club curious as to what he has to say. They want to know. They think he's brave even though almost dying in a elevator would not be his choice.

Only three students who Jackson associates with comes to him instead.

The grown ups asks them if they are okay.
They nod.

 

One Week later

Jackson walks off the cafeteria line and heads to sit beside his best friend Danny. They always sat with the rest of the nerds and geeks. On his way there, someone calls Jackson's name. He turns his head looking for the person. It's Stiles. He's standing, messy hair that shouldn't look so good and he's smiling towards Jackson. Stiles is at the head of the popular table with his girlfriend, lacrosse buddies and some cheerleaders.

Jackson smiles back shyly. Since when does Stiles Stilinski, lacrosse captain pay him any mind?.. But Stiles has been a lot friendlier ever since the event.

"Come sit with us!" What? Jackson must have misheard but that wouldn't explain why the lunch room was quiet, students listening and wondering what the hell was going on.

Maybe this was a joke.. But Stiles never seemed like the asshole type.

"Um" Jackson looks around at the faces looking at him and he finds Danny "S-some o-other time." He says to Stiles.