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Honor Among Thieves

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Derek groggily makes his way out of bed to the video intercom of his penthouse. The persistent ringing through his home wakes him out of his much needed rest from a hard night. Hard is putting it mildly. Most people’s definition of a hard night is recovering from a hangover or surviving overtime at work. For Derek, it is surviving fatal gunshot wounds. The amount of trauma his body endured the previous night took its toll on his healing abilities. The long rest leaves Derek almost fully recovered, he looks perfectly fine to anyone else but he can feel he isn’t at his optimum level.

Derek leans against the wall and pushes the button to the intercom. “Mr Hale, you have a--”

Derek cuts off the security guard in the lobby. “I distinctly remember telling you not to disturb me for the rest of the day.”

“Yes sir, sorry but you have a guest. One Mr Kreznik.”

“I don't know any...Kreznik.” Derek answers tiredly wanting this exchange to end so he can slink back into bed.

“Excuse me, sir. The young man says to inform you that he is of the...Kreznik triplets?”

Derek plops his head on the wall with a sigh. “Send him up.” Derek had hoped to never hear that ridiculous alias again. He makes a mental note to ask Stiles what he was thinking when he conjured up with that foolish identity. When Stiles comes inside his apartment...any minute now...

A newfound source of energy surges in Derek pushing him to tidy up. The werewolf wants to preserve some illusion of togetherness that the thief seems to think of him. The place isn’t exactly a mess but he does need to tidy up. The elevator from the lobby to his penthouse won’t allow much time for a good, thorough clean up. So Derek decides to focus on the front area where Stiles is mostly likely to venture into, pushing work files haphazardly into stacks and tossing clothing strewn around in a discreet pile in his closet. He can’t explain why it was so necessary to maintain a facade of togetherness in front of Stiles when the thief had seen him at his worst. It could have to do with the hard set mentality of keeping up appearances. A trait that was hard to drop after a lifetime.

The werewolf hears his guest’s heartbeat on the other side of door and knows time is up. Before Stiles has a chance to ring the doorbell, Derek opens the door - bordering on ripping it off its hinges.

“Hi. Eager to see me?” Stiles smiles easily.

Derek catches Stiles' eyes roam over his body, belatedly realizing he only has on loose fitting sweatpants hanging low on his hips where Stiles’ gaze seems to linger the most. “If you’re worried Stiles, I’m fine.”

“Yes, yes you are. I’m just making sure you are in good health. And I have to be thorough about it.”

“Do I pass the inspection?” To see Derek’s bare chest, one would never think he caught two fatal bullets in his chest and shoulder.

“Do you mind if I--” Stiles’ words hung in the air along with his hand close to where he had applied pressure on open wounds last night. A nod from Derek causes Stiles to close the distance between his fingertips to graze over Derek’s chest, eliciting a twitch in response. “Shit! M’sorry, does it still hurt?” Stiles rushes out panickedly.

Derek stares away from Stiles’ concerned eyes, a flush of embarrassment reddens the werewolf’s face. “No, it...tickled.”

The thief snorts, “Oh my god, you are like the worst depiction of a werewolf. You’re not a big, bad scary thing. You’re a --” Stiles stumbles thinking of a response and despite Derek’s glare the thief snaps his fingers before continuing when inspiration hits. “You’re a care bear is what you are! All soft and warm and full of feelings.”

“Shut up Stiles before I throw you out.” Derek’s face is pouting more than scowling to his dismay. He isn’t a care bear. Derek doubts there are any care bears that have had bullets extracted in someone’s bathroom.

“Aww, don’t be mad.” Stiles coos to the annoyance of Derek.

Suddenly, there’s a dramatic change to Stiles’ scent and the thief’s bright smile visibly downturned into a frown. “What’s wrong? You became sad all of a sudden.”

“I - uh, it really sucks thinking people are out to kill you for no real reason except out of hate. You really are a great guy, Derek.” Stiles’ sad brown eyes stare into Derek’s surprised ones, much too openly for the werewolf to handle properly without the tips of his ears to burn red.

“Now who’s the care bear...” Derek murmurs.

“I know, right.” Stiles huffs humorously. “Are we planning on staying in the hallway? ‘Cause it’s nice and all but…” Stiles lifts the bag Derek hadn’t noticed he was holding. “Not a great place to eat dinner.”

Dinner? Derek completely lost track of time, he had expected Stiles to drop by later in the day. When Derek left Stiles in the living room, Derek saw on his phone it was later in the day - much later. And a few missed texts told him Stiles had been trying to reach him throughout the day, each sounding increasingly worried.

The werewolf returns to his guest in a Henley with drinks to go with the food, Derek finds Stiles rummaging through the library. “Can I help you find something, Stiles?” Derek asks with amusement. Maybe it wasn’t the best idea to leave a thief alone in a millionaire’s home and not expect him to rifle through his things.

“Where’s your lair?” Stiles questions, continuing to push and pull on the books of Derek’s impressive wall sprawling bookshelf.

“My what?”

“Your lair. Secret base of operations. You know, a batcave like Batman. I mean you have the money, the whole saving the innocents thing, and the brooding, dark looks. You have to have a batcave of some kind.” Siles informs the werewolf.

“I’ll get on that right away, I didn’t know the obligation I had to own an in-home...lair.” Derek says sarcastically as he sets the wine bottle and glasses on the coffee table.

Stiles sits on couch and scoots to the edge to set the food on the coffee table. His movements are halted when he hears a deliberate, loud ‘ahem’ . Derek, with raised brows, flickers his eyes from the couch to the floor to signal where Stiles is allowed to park his rump.

The thief blows a breath out of annoyance as he obeys the werewolf’s rules. “If we can't sit on the couch then why aren't we eating in the kitchen? You know, where there are chairs .” Stiles complains as he wiggles his butt to find comfort on the hardwood floors.

Derek tosses his guest a throw pillow, hoping to end Stiles’ imitation of a dog wiping itself on the floor. Once again Derek has to question how this kid was the one to nearly destroy all of his hard work protecting the identities of werewolves in hiding.

“I want to see the news coverage, make sure no one saw me.” Derek squatted down next to Stiles on the cushion he brought for himself, flicking on the news with sound low and keeping an eye on the headlines scrolling across the screen.

“Dude, I think you're in the clear. I'd imagine if a shot millionaire was caught on film you would have a parade of reporters downstairs. Did anyone even leave you any messages?

“No.”

“See? Quit worrying and turn to something decent.”

Instead of turning the TV off Derek mutes the low volume completely. His eyes belatedly catch the contents of the spread before him on the coffee table. “I paid you 250 thousand dollars and you brought me fast food?”

“Yeah, that’s why I got a deluxe, only the best for my Der.” The thief gives a wink and Derek decides to ignore the playful way Stiles claimed the werewolf as his.

“I’m not sure the 1944 red wine goes with a...deluxe.” Derek states with disdain, regretting his choice of wine for the evening’s meal. Normally the werewolf’s supernatural sense of smell would have detected Stiles’ choice of food but his powers are still in recovery mode. Derek would have just ordered in but even fast food at this point is a temptation he can’t deny his empty belly.

“Because the wine’s too old?”

“Yes, Stiles let’s blame the wine in this scenario.” Derek dryly replies. His sarcasm clearly went over Stiles’ head as the thief was too embroiled in his order of curly fries.

“Anyway, split three ways between my team and with my former debts, not much is left. Be grateful I didn’t bring over instant noodles.”

Derek remembers the guy who dropped off Stiles at the party was the same one who the thief spoke to on the roof. That only left one other person he knew of. “Wait, three ways ? You actually paid that Jackson guy - the same one who double crossed you?”

“I know, I know. But, it’s complicated.”

“You're a loyal friend to have, Stiles.” Derek says in awe.

“Yeah right.” Stiles mutters. A dark, downcast look overtakes the thief’s features.

“It's true. As someone who doesn't have many you’re a good one to have.” Stiles smiles at the compliment but Derek can easily see it is for show.

“What do you plan on doing now that this is over?”

“Is that you asking me on a date? Kidding.” Stiles’ heartbeat skips indicating a lie. “Anyway, I uh, um I have a new job lined up and then it’s a normal life for me. Or as normal as I can get knowing there are friggin' werewolves out there.” Stiles snorts.

The thief doesn’t sound too keen on returning to his criminal career. And once again Stiles’ scent keeps switching on the fly from relaxed to melancholy. Derek’s powers may be diminished at the moment but sitting close next to Stiles and the intensity of the thief’s emotions makes it noticeable to detect.

But before Derek can comment on Stiles’ mood, the thief shifts the focus of the conversation onto Derek.

“So you really don't have anyone?” Stiles asks.

“Not really, no. But it's better this way.”

“Better for who?” Stiles debates. “Certainly not you. Or the people you're protecting if you have no one watching your back. I mean, even someone as wonderful and talented as me -- I still need help. You can't do everything on your own.”

“I do have my uncle...when he’s not blowing through his savings on his hedonistic lifestyle. And I have you. I mean, for a modest fee.” Derek jokes, but it leads to the opposite effect intended on Stiles. Never claiming to have a speciality with tact, Derek bulldozes ahead into what was weighing on his mind since Stiles came through the door. “What the hell is wrong with you? Your emotions are all over the place. You’re fine one second and depressed the next. What is it?”

“I… I think this is one problem greasy goodness can’t fix right now.” Stiles laughs but it comes out more ragged and broken than the thief probably intended. “You know what’s wrong with me? I am stone cold sober. Pop that cork and have a drink with me.” Stiles claps his hands and then rubs them together.

If Stiles wants to avoid talking about his feelings then Derek is fine to accommodate. It isn’t exactly an area of the werewolf’s expertise.

~+~+~+~+~+~

“Oh my God, I can’t believe you're actually swinging from a chandelier. Sia would be so proud.” Stiles laughs looking upon the werewolf high on the light fixture.  

With a flip, Derek dismounts to the ground in front of Stiles with perfection. “A dare is a dare. So don't plan on playing if you are not ready to go all in.” Derek gazed into Stiles’ eyes with not so hidden purpose.

“Uh, are you usually this...um,” their proximity and Derek's intense stare is muddling Stiles' usual motor mouth. “Are you usually so… happy when you drink?”

“I am when there’s a reason to celebrate and someone to celebrate with.” Derek tries to go in for a kiss, feeling loose and relaxed with the security of knowing there is nothing to fear at the moment. And the bottle he polished off helps too. He wants to continue their flirtation and expand it into something more. But Stiles doesn’t seem to be in the same state of mind when the thief ducks out of the way.

“Hey, uh, Der. You know how I never told you about Scott’s job...”

“Yeah.” Despite his answer Derek feels himself shaking his head at the question. He’s more focused on Stiles’ tongue darting out to lick his lips. The werewolf is confused by Stiles’ nervousness around him after he was so bold and forward on the roof. It seems Stiles is truly different without the mask.

“Okay, so...he’s a veterinarian.”

The new information removes Derek out of his thought process. “You took me to an animal doctor? Me, a werewolf? To a guy who fixes puppies and...other stuff with four legs?” Derek stares blankly at Stiles, head slightly bobbing with instability.

“Yeah, Derek, you are officially drunk. One more drink and you are done for the evening.”
~+~+~+~+~+~

“Wire...” Derek pauses then shakes his head. Apparently Derek translates a drink as another bottle. “Why you not drinking more? You should drink more.” The werewolf pushes Stiles’ half full glass closer towards the thief. “Afraid the big bad wolf will take advantage?”

“I've give you the big part,” Stiles traces a finger down Derek’s arm, reminding Derek of the masked version of Stiles. “But you're about as bad as a stuffed wolf toy.”

“Ya know, I've never been with a werewolf before.” Derek admits, even though he’s not sure why.

“Really? That makes two of us.” Stiles responds around the rim of his glass.

“Always been drawn to humans.” Derek whispers huskily, eyes concentrated on the moles sprinkled along the side of Stiles' neck. He moves in slow enough for Stiles to protest and by the time Derek makes it to the jugular with no interruption he begins slowly kissing and sucking the dotted skin. Derek has been ready for the moment, knowing where he wants to taste and touch to see how well it matched with his fantasies.

“Derek, stop.” Stiles weakly demands.

“Why? I can smell how much you want me.”

“Okay, don't listen to my body, listen to my words. We can't... I can't.”

Derek brings his head back far enough to look Stiles in the eyes. “Because imma werewolf?” Derek pouts. Stiles isn’t like that, right? He isn’t like the Argents who hate people for being different.

“No!” Stiles sighs and then downs his drink, wincing at the burn. “We're not in the right state... it isn't the right time.”

“Okay.” Derek accepts soberly. “One last kiss though?”

“Sure, big guy.” One kiss turns into a press of bodies, tangling two sets of thighs and arms, and brings them to breathless pant once they part. “I shoulda set a limit for that one last kiss.” Stiles plants his palms on Derek’s heaving chest. To Derek's great disappointment he and Stiles managed to stay upright while they made out.

“You want me.” Derek whispers into Stiles' ear before descending on the thief's neck once more. Derek wants more but settles on stroking his thumbs on the exposed skin of Stiles’ waist. From the feel of Stiles’ fingers carding their way in Derek’s hair, the feeling is mutual. It was nice being able to let his guard down with someone. Someone who might be able to understand him.

“Oh my god, I can’t think straight.” Stiles exclaims, wiping a hand over his face. “My brain is not working.”

“So, what. I’m not after your brain right now.” The werewolf murmurs.

“Okay, okay. Time out. Derek, we talked about this.” Derek makes a pitiful whine before dropping lightly on Stiles' thigh, missing the crotch inches away. Stiles comforts Derek by running his fingers through the alpha's hair. “Sorry, Derek.” The thief says quietly.

“S'good. I think you ver right 'bout waiting. Feel weird...sleepy.” The werewolf slurs.
“I really do like you, Derek. I hope you believe me.” Derek can hear the truth in Stiles’ voice that sounds disconcertingly sad.

“I'm glad I didn't strangle you, Stiles.” Stiles chuckles, Derek warms from the vibration caused by Stiles' laughter and knowing he was the one to produce it.

A soft peck on his temple was the last thing Derek felt before the alcohol saps the last of his energy and he falls asleep in Stiles’ lap.