|He Won't Tell You
Author: handmedownrobes PM
You're in a car with a beautiful boy. He won't tell you that he loves you - but he loves you. Title and summary borrowed from Richard Siken. Warning: this may be the fluffiest Sterek oneshot you will ever read. Underage drinking, bloodied up werewolves, and plenty of angst.Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance - Stiles & Derek H. - Words: 4,075 - Reviews: 4 - Favs: 47 - Follows: 6 - Published: 06-23-12 - Status: Complete - id: 8246617
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
A/N: Warning - this is an incredibly fluffy Sterek oneshot. I'm not entirely happy with the pacing... I feel like it could've used more development, but that would mean a more elaborate plot and God knows I hate those. So this is what it is. Also, this was inspired by a beautiful graphic on tumblr ( -andrews. tumblr post/ 25444465188 if you're curious). Sorry to everyone else waiting on other stories... college is kicking my ass and I've flitted in and out of fandoms as a result :( I'm hoping I'll get back to them this summer though! No promises, but the desire is definitely there. Anyway, thank you for your patience!
He Won't Tell You That He Loves You (But He Loves You)
you're in a car with a beautiful boy
and he won't tell you that he loves you –
but he loves you
- Richard Siken
It's been three weeks since Sheriff Stillinski was released from the hospital. Three weeks of opening his father's door as silently as he can every night, checking to make sure he's still breathing before Stiles can go to sleep. Three weeks of restless sleeping, and relief every morning when he hears the engine of his dad's cruiser as it pulls out of the driveway. Three weeks of staving off panic attacks and drinking too much from his dad's secret stash of Jack Daniels to keep the negative thoughts at bay.
Stiles isn't one to ask "why me?", but he's getting pretty close.
Out of everyone he knows, Stiles seems to have the worst luck. His dad is the sheriff of a town populated by abominations, hunters, vigilantes and werewolves. And his dad is all he has left, the one thing he can't afford to lose.
Stiles likes to think that he's pretty good at keeping his own interests out of his decisions, at sorting out his priorities. He's definitely better at it than Scott, although that's not really saying much. But his dad is the one thing that he lets himself hold on to, damn the consequences. His dad is the only reason why he decides to ask Derek to give him the bite. It takes him three weeks before even a bottle of Jack can't keep the nightmares at bay; three weeks before he finds himself climbing into his jeep and driving to the very last place he wants to be.
Derek's house is just as broken and creepy as it was the first day he saw it. More, maybe. Because now he knows the truth – he can almost imagine Kate Argent standing in the street, just out of view of the house's inhabitants, grinning like a shark with her face bathed in the light of flames. Breathing in the ashes of Derek's family.
The thought makes him shudder and bury his hands deeper into his jacket pockets.
Stiles reminds himself that Derek was a werewolf, and even he couldn't stop it. Tries to talk himself out of this one last time. He knows what he's giving up – the bite is a gift, he believes that, but only if you don't plan on going to college or having a normal life or dating someone who isn't supernatural or some kind of crazy ninja warrior like Allison.
The bite is for people like Isaac and Erica – people who would otherwise have to live with monsters more powerful than them constantly licking at their heels. People with less to lose than they have to gain. But Stiles isn't like them – Stiles doesn't mind being human. He doesn't mind having stupid teenager problems. He doesn't even mind being the "normal" one. But he does mind the idea of his father being hurt. In fact, he thinks it just might kill him.
So he takes a deep breath, sets his shoulders, and puts his brave face on.
Derek is, quite predictably, doing chin ups on a bar nailed into the top of the kitchen doorway. Or, Stiles thinks it's the kitchen. There are dents in the dusty floor where the island would've gone, and the rusty box in the corner looks like it could have, at some point, been an oven.
Derek flings himself from the bar, wipes off some of the sweat with a dirty towel, and pulls on a shirt. Stiles clears his throat, suddenly feeling a little uncomfortable and glad that the shirt is on. It doesn't help much, considering it's about three sizes too small for him, but it's better than bare skin. He has enough to worry about without having to deal with his constant (and constantly pesky) attraction to a creepy werewolf whose erratic presence in Stiles' life is the most reliable signifier of forthcoming doom. But it's not easy when Derek goes around shirtless and sweaty and staring at him like that.
Stiles begins to think that he hangs out with dudes too much.
"Ahem. So, I was thinking the other day that you and Scott could probably use some more wolfy backup, for when you inevitably nearly get yourselves killed again. And, well, I was just wondering if you were gonna offer me the bite," he blurts out, grimacing. Derek probably already knows why he's here, he tells himself. There's no point in going through it all. He continues, "I mean, Peter offered and I said no, but I was hoping that it wasn't a one-time thing. Besides, we both know you could definitely use me in your little pack of misfits. Just, please don't make me wear one of those tacky biker's jackets, okay?"
Derek gets a dangerous look on his face, which Stiles briefly thinks must be indignation at him dissing the Black Leather Brigade. He shoots Derek a cheeky grin. Derek actually growls.
"You really want this?" he asks softly, with a dangerous edge to his voice. He's wiping his hands on the towel, taking a slow step forward.
The whole picture is definitely menacing. Stiles gives it a mental 8.5.
"Yeah, I am," he replies, and congratulates himself on only one voice crack. Keep this up and the big bad wolf might not even know you're scared, he thinks.
Derek gives him a hard look. "If you refused Peter, why ask me? You're better prepared than them; you know what you're signing up for, and we both know that you don't need it."
Stiles bites back a sigh. "I need to protect my dad," he says bluntly. "With all of you fanged creeps running around, he might as well have a target painted on his face. I don't know the stats on this, but I'm guessing the sheriffs of towns with extreme supernatural creature infestations don't have high life expectancies."
Derek droops slightly, massaging his eyelids like he's trying to get rid of a headache, and grimaces. "It's a mess," he says quietly after a pause. "This is bigger than I ever thought it would be."
Stiles wonders briefly why Derek is telling him this – they're allies, occasionally car buddies, but not friends.
"So, are you going to give me the bite?" Stiles asks, internally kicking himself for how softly it comes out. He knows the answer will be yes; it has to be. Derek Hale, of all people, should understand what it's like to want to protect your family.
But he just looks up at Stiles grimly and shakes his head. "Go home," he says simply.
"What?" Stiles hisses. At first he's stunned into silence; everything goes blank. He feels the fury burning through his throat and overtaking his lungs. He's dangerously close to doing something stupid that will most likely end with Derek's claws embedded in his skin. For all his talk, he's still scared shitless. Derek Hale is a killing machine, and Stiles never forgets it. But this – this is uncalled for. It's fucking ridiculous, actually.
"No," he croaks, his voice hoarse with rage. "No, you do not get to tell me no. Not after everything I've done. I almost amputated your arm, okay? I held you up in that pool for two hours so you wouldn't drown when the kanima paralyzed you. Who drives your getaway car? I do. And I don't ask for a damn thing because I didn't do any of it for myself, you stupid hulking asshole. I do it because I am a good person and it's the right thing to do. So that's why you're gonna give me the stupid bite, because it's the right thing to do," he screams.
Derek remains quiet through his outburst. Stiles expects to feel the hard wood of the wall against his back any second, with Derek's claws ripping through him. What he doesn't expect is Derek's arms circling tightly around his waist and lifting him up. His body is tossed over Derek's shoulder like it weighs as much as a pillow.
If he wasn't so incredibly pissed, Stiles would be positively indignant at the fact that Derek didn't even bother to pretend like lifting him was a difficult task. But Stiles is so incredibly pissed right now, and he screams cuss words at Derek's back until he's unceremoniously dumped into the driver's seat of his jeep.
"What the hell, you dick?" Stiles chokes down tears, but he can feel them ripping up his throat and leaking from his eyes. "Are you gonna deny me this? You? If you had the chance to protect them, wouldn't you take it? No matter what the cost? Just let me do this," he pleads, not caring how pathetic he must sound. "Please, just let me protect him. He's my dad," Stiles cries, his voice breaking.
Derek just looks at him solemnly and says, "You don't need to take the bite to protect him. Trust me. Just this once." Stiles bites back an angry laugh. He remembers the time he said those exact words to Derek, in the pool. He remembers saying them just before he let Derek sink.
He nods viciously, biting down on his lip so hard it bleeds. "Fine," he breathes. "Fine. But if anything happens to him – anything – don't bother asking for my help again."
He starts the car and doesn't look in his rear view mirror again until he's halfway home.
Stiles doesn't like waiting around for something to happen, but even he realizes the futility of trying to foresee every possibility, so he settles for doing as much research as he possibly can. He ends up going on a week-long Adderall binge and ripping through half of the library, but he's beginning to feel like maybe, just maybe, he can actually handle this.
Scott shoots him some strange looks, but he helps him carry his books and keeps him updated on all supernatural occurrences, so Stiles doesn't bring it up. Silence becomes a more frequent guest in their friendship, which has been strained ever since Scott was bitten. But Stiles will sacrifice anything to do what's right and to protect his friends, except his dad. He thinks Scott understands, at least on some level, but Scott's mom is a nurse. Still in danger, just like anyone else in Beacon Hills, but aside from Gerard's threats, she isn't likely to end up in the crossfire.
And Gerard would have no reason to hurt Scott's mom if Scott would just stay away from Allison. But that's about as likely as Bruce Wayne inviting the Joker out for drinks, so Stiles decides to let that one go. One less thing to worry about, and right now he can't afford to worry about much more than he already does.
He's looking up whether kelpies usually have black hides or white ones when he hears the slight click of his window lock opening. He grabs the silver knife he keeps taped under his desk (well, for the last week, at least) and whips around to face the assailant –
only to find his face smashed into his wall with his arm twisted behind his back.
"What the hell was that?" Derek's terse voice asks from behind him. He's pressed up against Stiles completely, solid and warm against his back and breathing heavily in his ear.
"Thought you were an intruder," he snarls. "Oh, wait. You were."
He can practically feel Derek rolling his eyes. He releases Stiles and backs away, leaving him to nurse his sore arm in peace.
"Would you rather I came in through the front door?" he asks innocently.
"I would rather you didn't come in at all," Stiles replies blithely.
Derek's lips fold into a perfectly straight line. "Stop reading so much," he demands. "We need you healthy, not hopped up on drugs and barely alive."
He says it bluntly, without a trace of tact or care. Stiles wishes he had the capacity to be upset by this, but honestly he's just tired.
"I don't know if you noticed, but every day you are here my father is in mortal danger. So, no, I'm not going to stop doing the only thing you've allowed me to do in order to keep him safe. Is that all?"
Derek shoots him a glare. "I told you, I'm taking care of it," he hisses. "Just – just trust me, okay?" His face opens up for the slightest second, and Stiles gets a glimpse of sincerity, before it snaps back shut again.
It's the eyebrows, Stiles decides. They're so... broody. "I'm doing the best I can," he scowls. "But I'm only good at sitting on the sidelines when it comes to lacrosse, so don't expect me to hang around twiddling my thumbs here."
This is met with a heavy sigh and a slight shrug. "Fine, but don't let me see those bags under your eyes again," he orders. "You're not going to be any help with anything, including protecting your father, if you're half-dead."
Stiles sends him a half-assed salute and replies, "Sure thing, Captain Obvious."
Derek sighs again, softer this time, and shakes his head all the way to Stiles' windowsill, which he promptly jumps out of.
"Fucking werewolves," Stiles mutters, re-taping his knife to the under side of his desk.
Derek is bleeding profusely all over Stiles' seats, but for once he's not paying attention to that. They're both out of breath, their lips tingling.
He's still having trouble figuring out just how it happened – one minute he's driving the getaway car with Scott being nursed by Allison in the back seat, when suddenly he slams on the brakes and finds himself on the verge of a massive panic attack.
His dad's cruiser is parked on the opposite side of the road. One of the vampires from the forest must've broken away during the fighting, and it's currently talking to the sheriff. It's a woman, and she's about his dad's age. She's smiling at him coyly, looking for any excuse to lure him into the forest. It appears to be working.
Stiles is ripping the seat belt out and fumbling with the door handle when Derek appears in the corner of his eye, limping visibly but trying to keep it together in front of the sheriff.
He should already be miles away, Stiles thinks dazedly. He said he was going to find the sire.
But Derek is not miles away, because he's right here, talking to Stiles' dad like it's the most normal thing in the world, even if the look on his dad's face is still highly suspicious. Stiles stays in the car, his fingers glued to the door handle, ready to spring into action as soon as things go downhill.
Derek keeps him talking, and the vampire is getting visibly frustrated. She grabs at the sheriff's arm, only to find herself shoved into the patrol car by Derek.
Stiles' heart is beating like it's trying to bounce out of his chest. An ocean roars in his eardrums, and everything sounds like static. His breath hitches.
Derek doesn't wolf out in front of his dad – he keeps control. The vampire takes advantage, flinging him off of her. She goes for Stiles' dad again, realizing the easier kill right away, only to be blocked by Derek's body. She slashes at him with her nails, leaving deep grooves along his chest. He grits his teeth.
"Stiles," Allison screams from the back seat. "I have to get him to a hospital!"
"Then go," Stiles grinds out.
She nods at him in the rear view mirror and begins to slide a banged up Scott out of the truck as gently as she can. They keep to the sidewalk, out of the sheriff's line of vision, and Stiles turns back to the fight.
Derek is bleeding in too many places to count, and Stiles can see him panting from where he sits, at least sixty feet away.
The vampire is furious, and every time Stiles' dad tries to get in the way, she takes a shot at him. Derek blocks her every time, dancing around her like a boxer.
He can't hear what they're saying, but it looks like she's taunting him. Stiles' dad is angry, but mostly he looks confused. He hasn't seen anything yet, but the longer this goes on, the more likely it is that he will. The panic threatens to choke Stiles. He can hardly breathe. He's about to get out of the truck, damn the consequences, when Derek lands a hit – he punches the vampire, sending her staggering.
She glares at him, sizing him up, and realizes that they are fighting at the edge of the forest. When he reaches it, Derek will be back in the shadows and able to change into his alpha form again. Her eyes widen, and she turns suddenly, sprinting in to the trees.
Derek staggers, gritting his teeth and waving away his father's attempts to help. They're turned away from him, so he has no idea what's going on, but Derek seems to be talking to his dad, explaining all of this somehow. Derek eventually turns around and begins to limp down the street. His dad gets back into his cruiser and drives away in the other direction. Stiles decides that Derek is the uncontested champion of lying on the spot; even with his superior skill and almost two decades of experience of living with the sheriff, there is no way Stiles could have convinced his dad to just leave like that. Stiles makes a mental note to buy Derek a milk shake or something later.
As soon as the car disappears from his line of sight, Stiles is out of the jeep, his feet pounding on the pavement. He catches Derek, who immediately slumps in his arms, nearly taking them both down, and staggers back to his car.
He shoves Derek into the passenger's seat, and walks around to his.
They sit there in silence for a few minutes, before Stiles bursts out, "Why did you do that?"
It's not that he isn't grateful, because God, he'll owe Derek Hale until the day he dies, but he just needs to know why. Needs to know that he's right, for reasons he can't explain. He needs to know that Derek is only doing this because it's the right thing to do, just as he would. That is why he does these things, he reminds himself.
Derek stares at him blankly. "Why do you think I did it?"
Stiles glares, shaking his head. "I don't know," he says, chewing on a fingernail. "You could have died, just to keep my dad from knowing what's going on here. Why?" He thinks about Derek dying for a second, his body sprawled on the pavement, blood running over the asphalt.
But that's ridiculous; Derek can't die, he's Derek.
Suddenly Stiles remembers something he read a few weeks ago – about how vampire wounds don't heal quickly for werewolves. In fact, they take even longer than regular human wounds do to heal. A sickening feeling takes root in his stomach.
"You. Could. Have. Died," he repeats, gesticulating for emphasis.
"And you could be a little more grateful," Derek barks. "You want to know why I did it?"
"Yeah," Stiles says emphatically, "That's why I asked. Twice."
Derek scowls, and Stiles thinks he isn't nearly as shaken as he should be for someone who just nearly died. In fact, Derek hasn't even threatened him once since – actually, since that night in the pool.
His eyebrows furrow. He glances back up at Derek, his heartbeat hitching a little at the sight of him. Since when does that happen? he panics.
And then he realizes. Derek is giving him that look – the look that Scott gives Allison whenever she does something cute, only this is the less sickening and slightly more aggravated version. Actually, it's the opposite of sickening. It's kind of... nice. (It's kind of awesome, really.)
Derek's eyes fall to Stiles' lips, which he immediately licks. (It's a habit.) Derek's eyes darken in response. "Why do you think I did it?" he murmurs.
"Do you – I mean, do you, like, care about me? Uh, you know, like more than friends?" Stiles stutters.
Derek raises his eyebrows incredulously. "What do you think?"
And he asks the question like he seriously doesn't know that he's being absolutely infuriating. Stiles' heart is beating double time, like it's trying to swim out of his body through his throat. A panic of a completely different brand is consuming him.
Because, yes, he's had a bit of a thing for Derek ever since he realized that, as shitty as his methods may be, Derek is probably the only person in this town who actually understands – and he's also painfully attractive, which doesn't hurt. (Stiles has a long history of being attracted to impossibly beautiful things.) But he shoved all of that aside (priorities, remember?) and focused on trying to keep everyone in his life alive.
But somewhere along the line, probably pretty far back, if he's being honest, he ended up falling for Hale just a little bit. Maybe it was his complete willingness to throw himself out there for people he didn't know, or maybe it was his way of kicking Scott's ass into shape that got Stiles all hot and bothered, but in the end, the point remained the same: Stiles had a thing for him.
And it wasn't as little as he liked to pretend it was.
Derek is staring at him stubbornly, determined not to give anything else away. Stiles realizes he is okay with that. He has something of his own to give.
He reaches out and grabs a fistful of Derek's bloody shirt, careful to avoid any injuries, and pulls him forward slightly, (he mostly just moves over to where Derek is) his lips crashing into Derek's. It's hot and wet and mostly chapped lips moving against each other. But it fills him up in a way, spreading heat throughout Stiles' limbs and making his mouth tingle.
Derek reaches up with his uninjured arm to grab Stiles' face, pulling him in closer and deepening the kiss. Their tongues move against one another, sending shivers up both of their spines. It's slippery and wet, and it smells like blood and sweat, but it's perfect. After a few minutes, when they're both breathing heavily, he pulls away slightly, sighing into Derek's mouth, and whispers, "We really need to get you to a hospital."
Derek laughs against his lips.