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Maps Are No Easy Thing

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Derek grips the steering wheel of the Camaro tightly. He is so angry right now, he could punch somebody.

Stiles, sitting in the passenger seat and sulking as he looks out the window, doesn't need his boyfriend's werewolf-y senses to know who that someone is that Derek wants to punch.

They had been speeding angstily through the mountain roads for an hour now. Despite his passive-aggressive sulking and Derek's usual sulking, Stiles was almost enjoying the way the muscled-out sports car was taking the banked turns and catching the slightest of air over the many rises and dips in the road.

Instead, he tries desperately to suppress this defiant enjoyment, knowing that Derek will sense it.

Stupid werewolves and their stupid werewolf-y heightened senses.
He chances a look at Derek quickly. He doesn't want to be caught breaking their silence pact first. He would never hear the end of it.

Unfortunately, the way Derek’s arms look flexing against the steering wheel is kind of hot. Really hot, actually. If only he weren’t wearing one of his usual shades-of-grey tight shirts. If only…

The thought of Derek shirtless makes his heart quicken. Stiles officially decides that his body hates him.

Derek must have caught the uptick in Stiles’ pulse, because he inclines his usual sideways glare towards him before Stiles can avert his gaze, which, despite his best efforts, has softened considerably.

Goddamnitt. How is he supposed to stay mad at the ridiculously attractive werewolf when his body clearly doesn’t understand the concept. He tries to look away as quickly as possible, which he realizes looks like the nonverbal equivalent of falling out of his chair. Which he has done hundreds of times, but even still, it still makes his ears burn.

Derek lets out the smallest of chuckles. It clearly managed to escape his tightly wound layers of stubbornness and muscle.

Stiles definitely did not notice how cute it sounded. He definitely did not. Nope. He would not give in. He was resolute. He was sto—

“I really hate how cute you are sometimes.” Apparently Stiles’ mouth was not as stubborn as he was. He blinks at the betrayal while trying desperately to stare out the window innocuously.

Derek says nothing, but Stiles can feel the satisfaction radiating from the werewolf for winning their silent stalemate. He really needs to rethink his choices in men.

Derek must have sensed an opportunity, returning his sideways glare to the road. “And I hate how you cannot tell which way is North on a map.”

“Here we go again.” Seriously, Stiles’ mouth has it in for him.

“You really should be able to use basic navigational skills.” Derek says it softly to the windshield. Like he knows what he is getting himself into by continuing.

Stiles shifts in his seat to face the brooding wolf. “Not all of us have super-ridiculously attuned werewolf senses, asshole.”

“You don’t need to be a werewolf to know that we needed to go NORTH on Route 20 and not SOUTH.”

“Yeah, well, how am I supposed to know that?! I’ve never been to friggin’ Idaho before!” Stiles feels his incredulity is justified. It was, after all, Derek’s idea that they take a few days and drive to Yellowstone National Park. Stiles had been on-board until he found out that Yellowstone was in Wyoming. Seriously, there is nothing in Wyoming, or Idaho, for that matter.

He should have reconsidered this whole vacation idea. Especially the part where this highway to nowhere didn’t have a cellphone signal to save his life. And it literally might come to that, if Stiles gets stuck in the middle of nowhere with a hungry alpha werewolf.

He would hate it, if it weren’t so friggin’ beautiful. Derek was right about that. Man he hates it when that smarmy werewolf is right. Stupid werewolves. They are all stupid, especially Scott, who encouraged this whole ridiculous adventure, and Derek, who is sulking in the driver’s seat as they careen down the highway towards West Yellowstone. What a creative name. Stiles crosses his arms in defiance, and resorts to staring out the window again.

After a few long moments of silent sulking, Derek chances a sideways glare at Stiles, who, despite being about as far as possible from werewolf-y, can feel it on the back of his head.

This time it is Stiles’ chance to catch Derek off-guard. His attempt to avoid Stiles’ glance results in him almost spinning the car down the highway, he overcorrected so much.

Despite being terrified of dying for about one and a half seconds, Stiles allows himself to feel a little satisfied that he is not the only awkward one. This time, his body obeys his will to be stubborn.

He can literally feel Derek squirm as he tries to figure out why he hasn’t broken Stiles’ silence yet. He keeps looking back and forth between Stiles and the road.

Finally he stops, and sighs, defeated.

Stiles once again regrets his choices. All of them, really. Especially the ones involving big, brooding werewolves.

“I’m sorry I snapped at you.” Derek’s apology is strained, god he hates losing. It makes Stiles chuckle.

Derek, master of side-glares, looks at him and lifts his right eyebrow of doom inquisitively.

“S’ok. But you are still an asshole for dragging me out here.”

“You love it. Don’t even try to deny it.”

“Fuck you.”

“We’ll get to that.” It’s a simple response, really; one carefully uttered and designed to elicit a specific response. Stiles really, really hates that it works. He feels his ears heat up and his dick twitch.

He simultaneously wants to jump the alpha and burst into flames for being so goddamn readable.

“I’m sorry I called you an asshole.” Stiles offers one olive branch. Never again. “And that I messed up the directions.”

Derek considers him coolly, his stubborn armor chinked by Stiles’ apology.
Stiles knows it, and goes in for the kill. He quickly leans across the expanse of car he created to kiss Derek lightly on the cheek. Then he adopts his most innocent position possible. The werewolf lets out a low growl.

“I really hate you.”

“Lies. You love me. Even I can see that. And I don’t have your ridiculous alpha-senses, or whatever.” He dismissively waves his arm at this, for emphasis. He lifts his chin to feign pretension.

Derek looks at him, eyebrows raised. He is fighting a smile. Stiles watches as Derek’s armor falls away in pieces as the smile lights up his face. To his credit, the werewolf tries to turn back to the window to hide it.

Stiles chuckles again, then reaches over and pulls one of Derek’s hands off the wheel, moving his fingers down the wolf’s corded forearm to his calloused palm. He allows his fingers to play over it as he interlaces them between Derek’s.

“Don’t worry, I love you too, you big idiot.” They sit in comfortable silence until they stop for gas outside West Yellowstone.

When they pull up to the pump, and stop the car, Derek leans over, close to Stiles, waiting for him to turn his face towards him. He does, and before he can react, Derek plants a firm kiss on his mouth. Startled at first, Stiles is frozen, and Derek can hear his heart literally stop mid-beat.

Fortunately, it starts back up again, and Derek finds that his neck is being caressed by Stiles’ agile fingers, and they both sink deeper into the kiss, tongues darting in and out of each other’s mouths breaths coming out in short, bated gasps.
Before it goes any farther, Stiles pushes Derek back. “Go pump the gas, Der.”


“We can finish that later.” Stiles winks at him and gives him the finger gun. Derek rolls his eyes, adjusts his jeans, and moves to get out of the car.

Stiles definitely does not notice the pronounced bulge that Derek’s adjusting doesn’t really fix.

He decides that this is going to be a good vacation after all.