“Sure, I like him,” Derek scowls right at the camera, “We’re friends.” He blinks, expression suddenly going hopeful, “Why, did he say something?”
“I have worked at Beacon Hills Office Supplies for two and a half years,” Stiles pretends to hang himself with his tie, glances out of the conference room to where Derek is signing for a package with a suspicious look on his face. “It’s not all bad, I guess?”
Stiles swivels around in his chair, lolls his head back to squint across at Derek, “What you doing?”
Derek huffs a laugh, continues filing away Finstock’s insane notes from the last board meeting.
“I’m working, Stiles, what are you doing?”
“Admiring your beautiful, dedicated face,” Stiles shrugs, sighs dramatically, “Same as always.”
Derek rolls his eyes, fights off the desire to blush like he’s fourteen all over again. “Do something else.”
Stiles flicks an elastic band across the room, and out of nowhere, Finstock launches out from his office and catches it.
“Stilinski! Your aim needs improvement,” he snaps the band between his fingers, “Let’s have a competition!”
Scott groans, drops his head onto his own desk opposite Stiles’.
“Boss, the last time we had an elastic band off, Boyd had to wear an eye patch for a week.”
“I did not like it,” Boyd looks up, glares at all of them before staring into the camera, “At all.”
Finstock shuffles embarrassedly as he glances at the camera, and then grins manically, “I’m always trying to come up with ways to improve camaraderie around the office.”
He leans against Stiles’ desk, momentarily trapping Stiles’ fingers, and Stiles snatches them away with a grimace.
Derek hides his laugh behind his computer.
Stiles sends him an IM reading I SAW THAT, TRAITOR.
Derek smirks over his desk at him. Stiles’ face goes fond. The camera follows the exchange avidly as Finstock rambles on.
“Anyway, that is how I became Captain of the US Olympics Lacrosse team, briefly.”
“We haven’t had Lacrosse in the Olympics since 1908,” Stiles mumbles, still nursing his fingers.
The camera pans in on Finstock’s face as he blinks uncomfortably. “Yes, well,” he clears his throat, laughs, “I look younger than I am.”
Derek stares at the camera flatly.
“Nobody’s dream job is to sell office supplies,” Stiles rolls his chair around before settling in front of the camera, “I mean, maybe, if you were really into stationary, I guess. Derek likes pencils. He has his name on them, printed ‘specially. One time, I found out where he had them done, and got all of the names changed to Hot Stuff, He didn’t figure out it was me for a week, and then he sharpened them all really violently whenever I looked at him,” Stiles’ face goes dreamy. “It was awesome.”
Scott squirms awkwardly, adjusts his tie, “Is this good? Am I okay, here? Do you need anything?” He goes to get up, “I can get you guys a coffee— no? You sure? I mean, yeah,” he smooths down his tie again, grins at the camera, “I started working here because I needed a job real fast. Stiles hooked me up. He’s my best friend, we go way back. And, I needed a job because my girlfriend found out she was pregnant,” he smiles even more widely, rests his chin on his hands, “We’re getting married next month.”
Boyd growls angrily from across the room, holds up a bright yellow post it note, “Stiles!”
“Don’t touch that!” Stiles hurries over, snatches it from Boyd’s hands and carefully place it back on Boyd’s ficus tree. “It’s for Derek.”
“I could never have guessed, what with all the hearts and stars and YAY DEREK’S written on them.”
“It’s his birthday!”
Boyd gives the office— covered in yellow post it notes— a deeply disdainful look. “Why don’t you just ask him out to dinner.”
“Shut up!” Stiles cries shrilly, “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
Boyd glares at the camera.
Derek comes into the office, already holding a mountain of post it notes, and following them around Stiles’ desk, Scott’s desk, and where Erica’s sleeping off her hangover in the corner. He doesn’t notice the camera, intent on reading all of the tiny notes filled with dumb jokes, Finstock’s greatest and best quotes, and personal messages Stiles hopes he understands.
Derek pauses from reading one about when he and Stiles got locked out on the roof, and ended up watching fireworks from across the river together. Stiles had written in the note that he appreciated Derek holding his hand to keep his fingers from freezing off.
It had been a nice moment, private, theirs. Before the cameras.
Stiles gives him a shy smile, and Derek returns it. His own hands tighten around the post it note.
The camera zooms in on his face, and Derek does a double take when he remembers they’re being watched.
“It’s my birthday,” he says shortly, grabs at the note on Boyd’s plant and then continues following the trail into the coffee room.
“They led back to his desk,” Stiles grins at the camera, “Where there was a picture of me in a heart frame waiting for him. He threw out the frame, but I know he kept all the notes. That was the important part.”
The picture of Stiles can be seen taped to the side of Derek’s computer, just out of view of Stiles, and the rest of the staff. Every so often, Derek looks at it, and smiles.
“Hey,” Stiles shoves his arms into his jacket frantically, hurries after Derek as the wedding party continues inside, “Are you leaving?”
“The wedding’s over,” Derek tugs at his tie, “Your speech was good.”
“Thanks,” Stiles kicks at Derek’s foot bashfully, “Such strong words of praise.”
Derek rolls his eyes, “You want a gold star?”
“No, ass, but, stay for at least a dance?”
"I shouldn’t,” Derek hesitates. “I can’t dance.”
“Neither can I! I’m a very dorky dancer.”
Derek laughs, shoves his hands in his pockets, “I know, it’s cute.”
Stiles bites his lip, smiles back at him, “Thanks.”
“Come on,” Stiles rolls his shoulders back after a moment of the two of them looking at one another in silence. “Please,” he clutches his hands together and pouts, “Please? Everyone’s coupling up, and I know you hate music and fun and joy and—”
"I do not hate joy, Stiles.”
“Merriment and laughter and frivolity and—”
“Fine! One drink!”
An hour and a half later, Stiles and Derek are the only ones on the dance floor, swaying together to The Lumineers.
“I wanted to work in a library,” Derek looks down at his hands, smiles faintly, “I like books, and I like the quiet—”
Scott and Stiles fly past the window with the fire extinguishers attached to their chairs. There’s an almighty crash as the camera closes in on Derek’s face. He barely flinches.
“They keep it interesting here,” he says after a moment. “Whilst Scott was on his honeymoon, Stiles and I saran-wrapped his desk.”
[Shot of Scott’s desk, mid saran-wrap, and Stiles and Derek exchanging mischievous glances. Boyd gives the camera a decidedly unimpressedlook. Erica is watering Boyd’s ficus plant in the background.]
“When Scott came back, he and Stiles hugged for three minutes,” Derek looks up, stares out of the glass pane at where Stiles is dusting himself off, laughing brightly. “I think that would be nice— a hug from Sti— I’m not— I mean, what was the actual question?”
Finstock shuffles papers on his desk, gives the camera a tense smile, “Every month, we have a review of how everyone’s feeling in the office. With the camera’s having been here for two months, now, documenting our lives. I thought we’d do a little re-watch. A lot has changed,” he sighs whimsically, “McCall got married, Stilinski finally got a hair cut, I fired Greenberg. I don’t like firing people, you know. I mean, the power rush is great…” He clears his throat, “I might need to fire someone, today, even.”
Scott drops his cup-noodle, and unthinkingly Stiles grabs hold of Derek’s hand.
“I knew I should have started drinking this morning,” Erica groans.
Boyd silently pushes his coffee towards her, and she takes it gratefully.
Finstock gives a brash laugh, “What? No! I was kidding, messing around!” He punches Derek on the arm, and Derek winces, loses his grip on Stiles’ hand.
Stiles very slowly drops his hand beneath the table, and bites his lip as he smiles to himself.
“But, as a team,” Finstock continues, “We’ve been doing some excellent work.”
“So, you’re not firing anyone? Because,” Derek shifts uncomfortably, “Greenberg cried in front of my desk for an hour. I would need to prepare, to… get kleenex.”
“Maybe it’ll be you,” Stiles teases, elbowing him gently. “Maybe you’ll be next to go.”
“Maybe I will,” Derek replies blithely.
Stiles’ face falls, “What, really? Are you leaving? Where are you going? Why didn’t you tell me? Don’t leave!”
“I’m not! God,” Derek pinches the bridge of his nose, turns to Stiles, “I would never leave you— this office,” he finishes with awkwardly.
Scott wiggles his eyebrows at the camera happily as Stiles stares at Derek like he’s just announced Stiles will be getting free milkshakes for life.
Stiles and Scott guide the camera into the warehouse. Boyd and Derek are tossing a basketball around in the background, Erica and Allison are sharing nutella cookies between them.
“This is where the magic happens,” Stiles beams, claps his hands together. “At lunch time, we come down here, and we kick ass—”
Boyd snorts pointedly.
“Okay, we get our asses whooped, but!” Stiles whirls around to gesture at where Derek is taking his shirt off, “I wasn’t saying the magic was about our mad skills on the court.”
“Gross,” Scott huffs.
“How dare you!”
“No, come on, man, he gets his sweaty chest all over my face, every day!”
There’s a moment of silence, and they both look around. Stiles turns back to the camera, as he breaks into laughter.
“We were totally waiting for the that's what she said moment, there.”
“Oh my god,” Scott’s eyes go wide, “We were, I was expecting Finstock to just appear out of one of the shipping containers!”
Stiles shakes his head, “He has a coffee at eleven, and then has this crazy caffeine rush till one. And, then he naps.”
Derek appears beside them, nods solemnly as Stiles pretends not to be staring at his chest.
[Footage of Stiles and Derek taping the articles and files on Finstock’s desk to his ceiling as he sleeps on his couch. Secondary footage of Scott drawing a moustache on his face as Erica draws them onto all of his photographs.]
“We convinced him he had a moustache all along,” Stiles cracks up laughing into Derek’s shoulder, and Derek beams stupidly at the camera.
“Oh yeah,” Erica glances down at her nails, “I like it here, okay. I mean, the sexual tension is rife.”
[Stiles is seen leaning over Derek’s shoulder, helping him with a powerpoint presentation on Finstock’s best dance moves from all their office parties. Derek is leaning in to the side of Stiles’ neck, snaps away when he spots the camera and goes a very bright red. Stiles continues talking, oblivious, turns to check Derek is listening and their noses brush. There is a beat, the camera pans to where Erica is holding out a hand for something from Boyd. He reaches for his wallet as Stiles straightens up, points to something on Derek’s desk. The moment is gone. Boyd smugly puts away his wallet; Erica rolls her eyes. Stiles trips over Derek’s chair as he hurries back to his own desk.]
“I mean, come on,” Erica throws her head back, “Boyd and I hooked up the first week I started here. What is their deal? Is Hale a virgin? Does Stilinski need to woo him for a thousand years, first?”
“Four days,” Boyd nods, arches an eyebrow, “I wasn’t gonna resist that beautiful whirlwind. She’s about the most interesting thing that’s ever happened to me, in my life. The best thing, probably.”
“No unions,” Finstock says immediately. “God, thank Christ.”
“Meeting Allison was the best moment of my life. No, no!” Scott waves a hand in the air, “I take it back! When she told me we were gonna have a baby! No! When we got married! No! Oh my god,” he drops his head to the desk, “What have I done? I can’t just choose one.”
"The best thing that’s ever happened to me in my life…” Stiles watches Derek come in from the coffee room, set a mug on Stiles’ desk and wave awkwardly to him through the glass partition.
“Uh,” he sits forward in his chair, rocks back again, scratches the back of his head. “My Little League won all three years I played for them. That was… pretty cool. I mean, it was a while ago, and I… I don’t miss them when I go home at night.”
He glances at his hands, lets out a breath, “Yeah, probably starting to work here, because, it was like meeting a really angry, beautiful, organised bird that I wanted to build a nest with. But, I didn’t wanna freak him out, so I never said anything. And, now we’re friends, and it’s nearly three years, later, and I… it’s still up there, to be honest.” He holds a hand up high, “Way up.”
Derek stares at the camera, looks nervously out to where Stiles is napping at his desk, “I don’t… What sort of question is that? I haven’t had the best moment of my life, yet. Unless, I have?” He stands, suddenly, “Are you here to kill me?”
There’s a party to celebrate their department not having been downsized, and Finstock gets drunk and does the moon walk on Scott’s desk. He then falls off the desk, and Stiles and Derek take him to the ER.
Stiles falls asleep on Derek’s shoulder while they wait for Finstock to get an X-Ray.
Derek doesn’t move for an hour and a half.
“I’m covered in Finstock’s glitter paint. He gets it out every time, and the whole office ends up glittery for weeks,” he complains, winces when his talking jostles Stiles. Stiles mumbles something incoherent, throws an arm around Derek’s waist and buries his nose in Derek’s shoulder.
Derek blinks up at the camera, “It.. I guess it could be worse.”
Scott slithers into the seat beside Stiles at their lunch table, drops his head onto the desk.
“I hate everything!”
Stiles puts his yoghurt down, glances first to Derek (who pulls a bewildered face), and then to the camera before patting Scott’s back.
“You wanna talk about it, buddy?”
“She kept saying she wanted peanut butter, but not the crunchy kind, the smooth kind. So, I went and got her smooth and then she cried and said she missed the nuts!”
“That’s what she said,” Finstock bellows from where his head’s inside the fridge.
Derek grimaces, steals Stiles’ yoghurt while he’s not looking.
“I don’t know how to help!”
“Keep trying,” Stiles says assuredly, “You can’t give up. She knows you love her, she knows you’re there for her, that’s all that matters. That you never give up on her.”
Stiles meets Derek’s eye above Scott’s head, looks at him steadily.
“Even when they don’t appreciate the fact you go to great lengths to make sure you always have their favorite kind of food available.”
Derek glances down at the yoghurt, freezes in place. Stiles goes back to comforting Scott.
“Mixed berries is my favorite flavor,” Derek tells the camera. “I didn’t know he… anyone knew that.”
“Oh, I know it’s going to happen,” Scott nods as he leans back in his chair. “I mean, it’s taking a while, and I sort of through Stiles might have said something at my wedding, what with it being all romantic, and Derek making heart eyes at him all night. Plus, they both came in to work really happy after… but, then it turned out it was just because they’d saran- wrapped my desk.”
He shakes his head, laughs ruefully, “That was a good one. Stiles helped me get Derek back with all these deliveries of flowers, but I think Derek just thought it was Stiles being nice, rather than annoying.”
There’s a silence as Scott watches Stiles and Derek wrap a birthday present for Erica. Stiles balances a bow on Derek’s head, takes a photograph, and without looking up Derek reaches out and punches Stiles. It startles a laugh out of him, makes him roll away from Derek. Derek returns to his wrapping with a grin on his face as Stiles comes back into his space, rests his chin on Derek’s shoulder.
Scott narrows his eyes at the camera, “I might, have to help them out, a little bit.”
[Scott is seen digging around in Stiles’ bag four minutes later.]
It’s raining, and Stiles can’t find his keys. The camera’s still focused on him, and he scowls.
“Can’t you intervene? Or, is that like against journalist rules? Integrity and shit? You have to actually film me getting soaked?”
“Stiles!” Derek comes jogging out of the office, holding a bright blue umbrella out. He stops in front of Stiles, shoves it above his head.
“You forgot your keys—” he waves them at Stiles. “I— you left really quickly, and I wasn’t ready to—” he swallows, steps a little closer to Stiles. “You always wait.”
“Well,” Stiles smiles bracingly, “Seems like all the waiting I do is sort of… you know.. I’m just waiting, right? Forever?”
“No,” Derek pushes the rain out of his face, frowns at him, “I don’t know what—”
“I love you,” Stiles yanks his car door open, and throws his bag inside. “I’m in love with you, so, there’s that. And, I know you just want us to be friends, and I have tried to respect that, but I just needed you to know, once. I might see if I can move to Accounting with Lydia, for a while. Maybe. I don’t really like math, and I’ll miss the office and you! But, I can get over it and—”
Derek kisses him so suddenly it knocks the umbrella out of his hands, and they fall against the car.
The camera zooms in closer. Both of them are smiling.
“I got a cold,” Derek smiles slyly, “So, we had to have a whole weekend in bed, and then Stiles got a cold, and I had to stay and look after him.”
“They pulled four fake sick days in a row,” Boyd shakes his head, points at the camera, “I got a lot of work done without them bothering me.”
Stiles beams silently, looks at his hands and shrugs. There’s a long silence, in the background, Derek can be seen eating his yoghurt at Stiles’ desk, clearly waiting for him to finish up.
“‘S’good,” Stiles says finally, “He loves me. Sure, we’re not in the most exciting job in the world, but… It’s more than enough.”