A/N: Written for day of Stydia fanfiction week for Study Month, and also because this plot would not stop pleading with me to be written and I am emotionally compromised from it and also a little dead. The title is from Hollow Body by Pity Sex. If you are offended by casual sex turning into not-so-casual sex, I would turn back. If not, enjoy and please comment! ~writergirl8

It's been three minutes of non-stop staring.

Stiles knows because he'd been looking at the clock when Deaton had first said it, and he has watched the minute hand move from 10:04 to 10:07. It had been long, slow, and excruciating, watching the second hand tick around the clock, but it had been better than the alternative- looking at Lydia.

He really fucking doesn't want to look at Lydia right now.

"Are you sure?" Scott asks, even though Deaton has been meeting his gaping stare without so much as a blink.

True to form, he nods.

"It doesn't always work, but if someone has the power to pull you back from the dead, it means their body can also have a strong pull towards you, not just their soul. The anchor can tighten your hold around each other in certain circumstances, and the emotional connection can offer physical strength. If Lydia's been draining herself mentally because of her powers, the best way to replenish them quickly is to use that connection."

Stiles, for the first time, speaks.

"So," he says, voice thick. "You're saying that the best way to heal Lydia is for us to have sex."

Deaton looks solemn, at least, which is better than the horror on Kira's face and the way Liam is silently attempting to repress his nervous laughter. It's not funny. Lydia is barely able to keep her head up, hasn't been able to use her active powers since earlier in the evening, and they need her. So, yeah. None of this is funny.

"What will the ramifications be if we don't?" comes Lydia's voice, so much smaller than usual. Kira, sitting by her, glances down at Lydia with the most sympathetic eyes Stiles has ever seen. He gets it. He's probably looking at her the same way.

"Lydia-" Scott starts, but she shakes her head.

"Quiet, Hero-complex. What'll happen?"

Deaton glances over at Scott before speaking. He hesitates at the stoic look on Scott's face, but keeps going regardless.

"You've been draining your strength by relying too much on your active powers. Therefore, any control you've been able to master over both the active and passive ones using mental exercises will be lessened. You won't have access to your active powers at all, and the passive ones will seem to revert to how they'd been before you'd started being able to manage them."

"For how long?"

"Depends on how much you've drained yourself. You don't know your limits yet- you don't know how far you've gone."

"I know that I went as far as I needed to go," she says pointedly, and even though her voice is feeble and her lips are pale, cheeks sharply void of color, Stiles can see the fierceness in her eyes from all the way across the room. "I know that I'd do it again."

The sentiment is slightly ruined by the fact that her eyes flutter sleepily closed as she says it. Kira pats her hand comfortingly.

"She just needs sleep."

"She won't be able to," Deaton says. "The voices are attracted to her magical field right now. They're all pressed up against her, and she won't be able to block them out."

"But if Stiles.. helps?" Scott asks, wincing as he says it. Liam lets out a pained chuckle. He looks like he wants to run out of the room- like he doesn't think he's old enough to be here. Stiles sort of agrees.

"Depends on how strong their connection is, but she should be okay by tomorrow."

"I'll do it," Lydia says. Scott startles as though she's yelled instead of barely managing to hiss out the words. "It's the best thing to do."

"Stiles?" asks Deaton, and he doesn't know what to say, because this is kind of really unprecedented. Lydia just agreed to have sex with him. But she isn't going to be having sex with him because she wants him. She's trying to have sex with him to get well, and it's wrong on about eight million different levels.

He can't take advantage of Lydia.

"Uh, no," he says. "No thank you."

Lydia will probably thank him later. Because he's protecting her. He's always been protecting her.

"I already consented," she says, sitting up. The blanket slides off of her shoulders, revealing her low-cut shirt. Stiles swallows.

Lydia is so pale that Stiles thinks he can see the blood that runs through the veins on her wrists. She seems so delicate, so breakable.

"You don't know what you're saying."

At this, she raises an eyebrow.

"When have I ever not known what I was saying?" For once, he doesn't have a smartass answer, and maybe right right now it's better to be silent. "Stiles, the voices... They're so loud. I need them to stop."

When he looks at her, he thinks about the beginning. When she didn't know what was wrong with her. Didn't have any control. Didn't know the extent of what she could do. They're still unfolding her, slowly and carefully and together. But the further away they get from her beginning, the harder it will be for her to go back to that place. Lydia can't help herself right now. He can help her.

The problem of this exceedingly morally gray area is that Stiles doesn't know what is right and what is wrong. He doesn't think there's an actual answer here. Maybe it's just about what is right for them.

"I... I don't know," he says slowly. Lydia looks exasperated.

"Stiles, we don't know when they're going to strike again. I have to be ready to protect people. Would you just suck it up and fuck me?"

Everybody in the room physically reacts to this statement. It's the redness of Liam's ears that makes Stiles realize that they seriously need to be alone together to have this conversation. He walks over to Lydia and takes her hand, slowly pulling her off of the couch and away from Kira. She leans on his body for support, looking up at him searchingly.

"I'm going to drive Lydia back to my house," he says, staring right back at her. "And we are going to make a decision about this in private."

Nobody says anything as they leave, Lydia's small hand clutching onto Stiles' arm for support. He gets her into the car and buckles for her, cognizant of just how pale she is. Any sudden movements and he feels like Lydia could crumble and flake away.

"You know," she says, once they've definitely gotten too far away for Scott to be able to hear, "most teenage boys would jump at the chance to have no-strings-attached sex with me." When he looks over at her incredulously, she just shrugs a shoulder and adds, "I'm just saying."

He's so mad, because he's wanted to have sex with her since he was fourteen and this is absolutely ridiculous, the idea that he would be saying no when she is literally offering herself up to him. Except he never wanted it like this, and maybe it's the fairytale in him that is making his stomach churn at the idea of sleeping with her in this scenario. Maybe, after everything that has happened with their friendship, he is still holding out for something more.

But to do that would be dumb. He's had a relationship. He's not the same virginal teenage boy who used to dream of Queen Bee Lydia Martin falling for him. And the fact that he still has that hope, despite being such a different person, makes Stiles sick to his stomach. Because Lydia isn't even the same girl as the one he had initially fallen for, and he isn't the same boy who had pined for her all those years. So why the hell does he still want her so bad?

It's because of her. Because he always knew, even as a kid, who she really was. And even when he was falling for one part of her, he was actually falling for the other part, and he's never been able to really let go of either.

He thinks he might want her in a way that will never stop clawing at him.

By the time they pull up to his house, he's already made the decision not to sleep with her. He kills the engine, pulls out the key, but doesn't get out of the car.

"I'm not gonna sleep with you," he says. Lydia doesn't turn to him.


"I'm not gonna do that."


"But you're gonna come in anyways, because I'm gonna watch out for you."


"You look like you're about to pass out and you still have it in you to give me the most sarcastic one word answers possible?"

She hesitates.



He rolls his eyes and unbuckles his seatbelt, then unbuckles Lydia's for her when she doesn't move. They trek through the door and Lydia follows Stiles like a kicked puppy as he takes the stairs two at a time. She's slower, though, and he's able to clean up his room a bit before she finally makes it to him. He hasn't had a girl in here in ages. Kind of forgot how tiny Lydia looks as she stands in the entryway to the door, a light sheen of sweat at her upper lip from the exertion of climbing up the stairs.

"Lie down," Stiles instructs. Lydia rolls her eyes but sits down on the bed, not complaining when Stiles grabs his duvet from the floor and drapes it over her.

"What've you got on the board?" she asks, ducking her head into his pillow, and he knows that she knows that it's his favorite pillow, but she nuzzles into it regardless, not seeming to care.

"Just... trying to figure it out." When he turns back to the board, he forgets where they are, losing himself in the pictures. Slowly, Stiles approaches it, trying to see a move more up-close. He runs his finger along one red string. "Do you think this connects to that?" He points to a picture, then turns expectantly back to Lydia.

"No." She shakes her head. "That's reaching. Don't reach. You can solve this without reaching."

He knows she's right, so he sighs exasperatedly and runs a hand through his hair, pouting slightly at the stupid board. Absently, he starts to pull at the taut yarn, letting it bounce.

"Stiles!" Lydia admonishes through gritted teeth, and when he turns around, she's got both hands over her ears, eyebrows scrunched.

"Sorry!" he says, hastily pulling his fingers away from the string. "Sorry."

"You should be," she says, massaging her head. "It's your fault."

He's going to ignore that.

"I'm missing something."

Lydia yawns.

"What are you missing?"

"That's not helpful."

"Oh, sorry, I thought we were saying obvious things."

She pulls back the bedcovers and steps off of the bed, going to stand next to Stiles.



"Did you ever think-?" He follows her eyes to the board and notices it instantly.

"Aw. Shit."

His heart starts to quicken and speed; even Lydia looks slightly flushed with excitement even though she's using Stiles' desk chair to keep herself upright.

"So they're-"

"Using the hospital as their power source, yeah," Stiles finishes for her. Lydia's breath begins to shorten.

"And if we can stop production-"

"-we can chase them out."

"But how do we find out when they're approaching?"

He glances over at a calendar.

"Full moon in three nights. They're gonna want more power."

"But they're also going to not want to face Scott when he's more powerful," she argues, tugging at the bottom of the braid she'd been wearing all day. She's been doing that constantly. It's been driving Stiles crazy. He wants to tug on that braid, too. And then he wants to unravel it the way she is constantly unraveling him.

"Except... the way they move around the board... They're so much more offensive than defensive. There's so many of them. They end up throwing themselves in, sacrificing themselves, rather than care about who gets stabbed."

"So full moon, then," Lydia agrees, eyes bright. "We'll tell Scott to call Derek. Maybe he can get Mr. Argent and Isaac?"

"They're both in Mexico right now, chasing some lead."

"So we call them back. We need them for this."

"I'll text Scott," Stiles says, grabbing for his phone. Lydia pats his left buttcheek absently before pulling the phone out of the pocket and handing it to him.

"And then we have to call the hospital and ask them to-"

"Yeah, I can do that tomorrow."

"I can do it."

"Focus on feeling better."

And she grins, tickling the bottom of her lip with the tip of her braid.

"I sort of already do."

He beams at her, and she beams back because there is nothing better than this feeling of invincibility.

"We did good," she says, her tired eyes drooping slightly lower.

"Woah," says Stiles, lurching forward just in time to grab Lydia as she slumps forward. "Okay. Back in bed."

This time, she doesn't listen, instead searching Stiles' drawers for a t-shirt. She pulls out the Beacon Hills lacrosse hoodie that she always wears, the one with the strings she likes to chew on. She pulls off her dress- Stiles averts his eyes- and pulls the hoodie on over it, snuggling into it before sliding under the covers and, once again, claiming Stiles' pillow.

It's gonna smell like her for the next week. He's so mad.

"Can you help me?" Lydia asks, and he sort of perks up because yes, that's his job, that is why he was put out here on this earth.

"Sure," he says easily. "What's up?"

"I need to get my braid out before I can go to bed."

"My bed," he grumbles, but he sits down beside her anyways, never mind the fact that she's on his preferred side.

There's literally no reason why his hands should be shaking as Lydia hands him the end of her long, strawberry blond braid and gives him an expectant look before turning around. It's just that his hoodie looks so good on her, and he thinks he might be losing his shit as he slowly pulls the tie out of her braid.

"Just... comb your fingers through it or something," Lydia suggests, voice nervous, and Stiles doesn't know why because she's Lydia Martin and she's never nervous about anything.

"Kay," he replies, voice low and close to her ear, and her entire body jumps at the feeling of his breath washing over her. He can suddenly see her body locked with tension, and he puts one hand on her waist for a moment, just to steady her. "You okay?"

"Fine. Just tired." It's pointed. He ignores it. Instead of paying Lydia's annoyance any mind, Stiles decides to slowly unravel her braid, undoing it piece by piece until her hair is completely undone. Then he combs his fingers through the waves, starting at the base of her skull and going all the way down to where her hair rests at her ass. Lydia isn't moving, is barely breathing, and suddenly Stiles' gut aches with a new idea, something just occurring to him.

"Lydia?" She barely nods; instead lets out a small 'mmm,' which is too close to a moan to allow Stiles to react in any way other than to swallow hard and try not to concentrate on his dick. "God, okay, Lydia you gotta... You gotta tell me it's not just about fixing you. Tell me it's something else too."

Her eyes pop open, green searching his, and when she starts to smile, he know that she knows that she's caught him. She turns around, hair framing her face, and in his hoodie she looks so comfortable. So much his. He will never stop wanting her.

"It's not just about fixing me," she murmurs, eyes fixated on his lips. "It wasn't ever going to be."

Yep. He's doing this. He is so, so doing this. He's gonna have sex with Lydia Martin and he is going to like it. God, is he going to like it, if the look on her face is any indication.

Stiles' phone buzzes, and he doesn't have to look down to see that it's Scott. He checks it anyways, just to make sure it's not dire. When he sees the text there, his stomach jolts with excitement.

"Scott says we were right."

"About the hospital?"

"Yeah, we have confirmation."

Lydia's smile grows.

"That's a game changer, Stiles."

He nods. Sees the look of amazement on her face. Then dives in to kiss her.

Lydia doesn't seem the least bit surprised. She kisses him back fervently, and he wants to count, wants to say that this is number two and this is everything he wanted number one to be, but number two quickly turns into number three, and number three involves Lydia tilting her head more to the side and opening her mouth bigger, devouring him. She doesn't seem tired anymore. Her eyes are lit up when she pulls back and allows him to have at her neck, covering it with hickeys and kisses and grunting with annoyance when his hoodie blocks him from reaching any more of Lydia's skin.

He goes to pull it off, but Lydia shakes her head.

"No time," she says, reaching for Stiles' belt buckle. He glares at her, and she pulls her hands away.

"Take it off," he instructs. Lydia stares. "I'm not fucking you with that dumb hoodie on." She sighs and tugs it over her head, revealing a deep purple bra.

"Fine, but the voices are driving me up the wall so please don't take your time."

He smirks.

"Can I go back to it later?"

Lydia swallows.

"I mean... There's no telling how many times we might have to do it before I'm fixed."

"Could be twice."

"Maybe even three times."

"Then a nap."

"And then we might have to do it again."

"Yeah," he agrees. "You can never tell with this supernatural stuff."

"It's a mystery," says Lydia breathlessly, the second syllable of the last word crushed by Stiles' lips. She moans breathily as she rubs against his knee. "Stiles-"

"Okay, okay," he says, grabbing for his belt buckle.

"Shirt first," Lydia interjects, reaching for the hem and pulling it over his head. "Now pants."

As he shucks off his jeans, she pulls back the covers, revealing a pair of white panties that don't match her bra, and that makes him smile because she clearly wasn't planning on fucking anyone when she woke up this morning, yet here she is, on his bed, face flushed, eyes full of life. He hasn't seen her look like this since... since...

It doesn't matter because she's panting in his blue sheets and he can see her nipples poking through her bra and he's just glad that he's not wearing is Star Wars boxers, although these white ones with cherries all over them aren't exactly ideal.

"Stiles," Lydia says. "Stop staring."

"Um. Sorry."

"You have seen a girl naked before, right?" she asks teasingly, and he hits her with a pillow, making her burst into laughter.

"You know I have."

Lydia's smile falters slightly.

"Right," she says. "I know." She stares at him, chewing contemplatively on her lower lip, and he thinks she's going to make him stop. Them she wrinkles her nose and says: "Do something with your hands, will you?"

It takes him about two seconds after that to follow orders, and pretty soon he's worked his way up to three fingers while her breasts heave over the cup of her bra and she bites into her fist to keep herself from being too loud.

"I'm not... usually... like this," she pants, clutching onto his other arm.

He grins.


Lydia shakes her head, eyebrows suddenly contracting.

"You're gonna make me-"

"Okay," he coaxed, voice soft. "C'mon."

"No. Not yet."

He wants to see her come so badly, but she's looking up at him with this earnest expression that has no place in sex, so Stiles pulls his fingers out of her and absently sucks on them, one at a time, as he searches his bedside table for a condom.

He eventually finds several in the third drawer of his dresser. Lydia breaths a sigh of relief, snatching one from him and ripping it open easily. She pushes down his boxers and rolls the condom into him, entire body flushed slightly red as she waits for him to finally be inside of her.

"Okay," he says, guiding himself to her entrance, and when he hesitates for a moment, it's Lydia surging up towards him that finally pulls him inside of her.

He thinks he wants to die like this, for sure, because there is nothing better than the relieved moan Lydia lets out simply at the feeling of him being inside of her. She is so hot around him, clenching to accommodate his size, and her tightness makes him realize that she might not have been doing this as much as he'd thought she had.

"Are you trying to kill me?"

"Uh... no?" he replies uncertainly.

"Then move. Or do I have to do everything?"

"God, stop being so bossy. I was having a moment."

He surges forward, grunting as he does, and Lydia cries out when he drives himself deep inside of her.

"That's the kind of moment a girl's looking for."

"Yeah yeah," he says, pulling out and pushing in again. "If you want another one, you'll start saying nicer things.

There's several moments where neither of them says anything, instead choosing to listen to the obscene sounds of Stiles' body slapping into Lydia's. Eventually, Lydia brings her legs around Stiles' body and digs her heels into his lower back, pressing him harder into her.

He pulls down the cups of her bra and takes her right nipple into his mouth, kneading it with his tongue while Lydia writhes above him. Lydia threads her hands into his hair, and he can literally feel her hurtling her way towards an orgasm. Eventually, she tenses around him and sinks her head back into the pillow, arching up towards him as she comes.

He's pretty sure he's not imagining the strange glowing in her skin when she does. As soon as Lydia comes down, it seems to go away. She doesn't notice, instead surging up to kiss him and crying out as it changes the angle slightly.

"Oh, God, Stiles!"

He finishes when she opens her eyes to his and just stares, lips parted and turned up at the edges.

"Do you think you can... again?"

She nods, and they both go for her clit at the same time. His long fingers find it and he rubs in circles until she comes again, more quietly this time. And fuck, she's glowing again.

Is he the only one that's seeing this?

"You glow," he gasps when she's stopped coming.

"What?" Lydia questions, still short of breath.

"When you come, you glow."

"No, I don't."

"I saw it. It was like... Reddish yellow."

"No way."

"I bet you ten bucks."

She quirks a smile.

"Want to bet in orgasms instead? Makes it much more interesting."

"Plus easier to test the theory."

"So efficient," she says as he gets closer, quirking an amused eyebrow at her. "I love efficiency."

He makes her come with his mouth and is pretty sure they both win when Lydia rides him later that night.

"She glows?"

"Dude, it was weird."

Scott barks out a laugh as Stiles slams his locker door shut and hitches his backpack into a more comfortable position.

"So you didn't like it?"

"Did I fucking say that? I made her glow!"

"I have to talk to Deaton about that one," admits Scott as they begin walking down the hall. "That's too weird."

"It's not weird," Stiles argues, because he thinks it's kind of beautiful, even though he wouldn't say that in front of Scott.

"Maybe it's some weird healing thing."

"Or some weird tether thing."

"Or some weird Lydia thing."

"There's nothing weird about Lydia." Although she may have a magic vagina, because Stiles hasn't been able to stop thinking about tasting her again ever since he did it the first time. But other than the magic vagina thing, there's nothing weird about Lydia. She's perfect.

"That's what you've been saying since sophomore year, yet I think Lydia has proven time and time again that she has weird things about her."

"Your eyes glow, your nose changes, and you get claws and sideburns," Stiles says flatly. "Dude, I really don't think you have room to talk."

"So before you made Lydia glow, did you two talk about your relationship?" asks Scott as they turn into English class. "Like, are you together now?"

Stiles frowns.

"Um. No."

"Did you tell her that you're in love with her?"

"Um. No."

"Did she tell you anything about how she feels about you?"

"Um. No."

"Goddamn it, Stiles," sighs Scott, pulling out his cell phone.


"I owe Mason twenty bucks."

"Should've bet in orgasms," Stiles mumbles to himself, smirking as he pulls out his copy of Brave New World.

"What was that?"

"Nothing. I said 'stop betting on my life, you asshole,' and then-"

And then Lydia walks in, and sits at the desk next to Stiles, and his mouth has never been this dry.

"Hey," she says, twiddling her fingers at him, and he thinks about how those fingers had been jerking him off less than 24 hours ago. "What's new?" They both stare at her. She sighs. "Aside from the fact that Stiles and I had sex several times last night."

Scott is the first to speak.

"Nothing. Literally nothing"

"Well, that'll blow over," Lydia says idly.

Stiles chokes on his own spit at the word 'blow,' glaring at Lydia incredulously.

"Okay," she says, sliding out of her chair. "We're doing this, huh?"

"What?" Stiles frowns, confused.

"Hang on, just a sec," Lydia says, just before she perfectly faints to the ground.

Stiles rolls his eyes.

"Lydia, are you okay?" he asks in an over-exaggerated voice.

"Where am I?" she replies dramatically.

"Um, Ms. Abbott?" says Scott, sounding like he's trying not to laugh. "Lydia fainted. Again."

"Stiles," says Ms. Abbott without looking up.

"Got it," he says, grabbing her hand and lifting her. Lydia winks at Scott as they leave the room, and he looks like he doesn't know whether to laugh or flip them off.

Lydia stops leaning on Stiles the moment they get out of the classroom.

"Where do you want to go?" she asks, brushing invisible wrinkles off of her clothes and fixing her hair from the faint.


"Yeah, the library sounds good, you're right."

He follows dutifully behind her as her black heels echoing loudly through the halls as she winds her way through the school. As Stiles follows her up the stairs, he slams into the wall when he realizes that he can see the bottom of her asscheeks underneath her plaid skirt.

Jesus fuck. It's like she planned this.

Wait. She totally planned this.

Lydia leads Stiles to the back of the library, running her fingers across the spines of a few books as she goes. She only stops when she's reached a wall and has sunk to the floor, crossing her arms over her chest and staring at Stiles expectantly as though she is seated at a mahogany desk in her personal office. He swallows, settling on the floor in front of her, knocking his knees against hers.

"So," she says primly, once she has decided that Stiles is comfortable enough. "I think we need to talk about what happened."

"Sure," he says, giving her nothing because this was all Lydia's idea and he knows she probably has a plan that he would be interrupting if he dared open his mouth.

"Look, it was really helpful. The whole sex thing. And feeling way better thing."

"I'm glad."

"Right. But, I mean, you just got out of a relationship and I, apparently, just exited an obscenely long dry spell-" Wait, what? "-and I just think that now isn't the time to be, you know, having a lot of sex. All over the place. All the time."

"Right," he says blankly. "So you're saying… we should only have a little sex, in one specific place, some of the time?"

She throws a book at his head. Stiles ducks. Gracefully.

"I'm saying that I think we should keep our sexual relationship purely professional."

He feels like this is a bad idea, but Lydia is looking at him expectantly, so Stiles just nods in agreement, which seems like the right thing to do when it comes to sex with Lydia. Always nod. Always.

"Professional," he says, testing out the word. "So, we're surrounded by books, yes?"


"And books are professional."


"And we have at least fifteen minutes to kill until we can convincingly go to class."


He ends up fingering her against the stacks, hand clamped over her mouth to make sure she doesn't make too much noise in the library. And this, he realizes, is why Lydia Martin's habit of wearing skirts is a very, very good thing.

Neither of them can look at Scott when they walk back into class and see the horrified look on his face.

When Lydia collapses, nobody sees it coming.

They're all fighting their own battles- most of the pack has their claws out and are ripping into the closest accessible bad guy. But Lydia is fighting with everything she has, using the wisps of white power that seem to erupt from her scream to protect everybody she can possibly get to.

Stiles is supposed to be monitoring her. He's supposed to be looking out for her. But he's been caught up in his own fight, swinging at everything he can with his new baseball bat, and besides, Lydia has been doing fine. She hasn't needed anything in a month. He figures, quite stupidly, that she finally knows her own limits.

When Lydia does collapse, it's because Kira is just far enough away that shielding her is impossible. And Lydia, being Lydia, refuses to accept that. As she collapses, Stiles can feel her falling, and he knows. He's facing the opposite direction, but he knows. He whizzes around and begins shoving people out of the way with his bat as he struggles to reach Lydia, not caring if his targets are friends or foes. As Lydia falls to the ground, anyone that keeps him from reaching her is an enemy. Pure and simple.

He scoops her up from the ground, swiping at the blood coming from her ear as he begins to carry her, bridal-style, off of the field. Her body is limp in his arms, hair brushing the ground as he readjusts her before finally getting out of the field and into the woods with her limp body.

It's several minutes before he starts wondering why Lydia isn't waking up.

Only when he has her stuffed into the backseat of the jeep does Lydia begin to stir, sitting up far too quickly.

"We... we have to go back," she murmurs, licking her dry lips. "I have to save Kira."

"I'm sure Scott or Malia has her," Stiles says, slamming the door to the car. It's dark, so he leans forward to the front seat of the car and sticks his key in the ignition so that the lights will turn on. Lydia is pale, her lips blue with cold, and she's still blinking fiercely at Stiles, trying to command him with her eyes.

"Stiles, she's in danger."

"It's been nearly fifteen minutes at this point. And you can barely hold your head up." She pauses.

"So we know what to do now."

Stiles frowns.

"Get you to safety? Good. Glad we're on the same page."

"No, Stiles."

His heart jumps into his throat, so he reaches into the front to fiddle with the radio, changing the station from some indie pop song that would make Kira drool to a Train melody that he's heard way too many times. He concentrates on trying to recall the words as Lydia begins to kiss her way up his neck.

"Y-you seem fine now," Stiles stutters, because he really wants to have sex with her but for sure couldn't go through with it unless he knew he'd run through every other possible option. It's not that he thinks Lydia doesn't want to sleep with him. It's just that she's made it clear that she's in this for what it does for her powers, not because she wants him in any sort of emotional capacity.

She's sort of... using him. But in a way that doesn't feel like he's being used at all. Not when she's looking at him like this.

"Come on," Lydia coaxes, voice soft. "I need you."

The ridiculous part is that Stiles knows that Lydia is trying to break him and he's still so receptive to it. He nods slowly as she begins to kiss at his jaw, then his cheek, and exhales lengthily as she finally hits the corner of his lips.

"Yeah, okay," he agrees, giving up before he's even really begun to fight. "Whatever you want."

He can see the triumphant smirk spreading across her face as she realizes that she's worn him down, and for a moment, Lydia strokes his cheek with her thumb and stares at him, taking in the look on his face. Then she leans in and kisses him again, her movements slow and steady, like she doesn't want to scare him off.

Everything she does, no matter how minuscule, sets him on fire. He revels in the slowness of her kiss. Completely succumbs to the way she yanks him down to her so that she won't have to reach for him, pulling the weight of his body on top of hers. She sighs heavily when she feels him, moving her hand from his cheek to his hair, tenderly stroking the strands. Unable to stop himself from being gentle, Stiles kisses her neck and sucks in the soft part of her earlobe, letting himself do what he wants.

Opportunities to have sex with Lydia Martin in the back of his jeep don't come around very often.

The way she matches his softness makes him forget the fact that they are keeping this purely professional. Because, as he moves over her, he can't help but think that it feels like something bigger than that. Something that he doesn't think either of them want to miss out on.

But then they both finish and Lydia closes her eyes and attempts to use her powers and can't, so Stiles, dutiful supernatural-sex-partner that he is, fingers her until she comes again. This time, she is able to make a wave of white wisps flow from her fingertips.

"Good," she says, looking immensely cheered and more flushed than he's ever seen her. Stiles yawns.

"Glad you're all fixed."

It feels really wrong to say that. He'd forgotten. He'd genuinely forgotten.

"Thanks, doctor," Lydia says as she searches the car floor for her panties. She pulls them on under her skirt, which they hadn't bothered to take off.

"You still glow, by the way."

Lydia purses her lips at him.

"That's really become a sticking point for you, hasn't it?"

His pants are buttoned, his belt buckled, his shirt right-side-out, and now that there's no other logistics to think of, yes, he would like to know why Lydia glows when she comes.

"It's just... It seems like we should know why."

"Well, I would say it's a tether thing," Lydia says, pulling her hair up into a bun. "Because I've looked and it never happens when-" She stops, turning red, and Stiles lets himself bark out a laugh.

"When what, Lyds?" he inquires, feigning innocence, and Lydia smacks him. He'd forgotten that he was in such easy reach.

"Stop thinking about it," she instructs, but he doesn't, because he is a human being, not a chair. "We need to head back in there."

There's no way. The others don't need them, and Lydia may be able to use her powers again, but neither of them know how recharged she is and he's not leading them directly into battle.

"We'll meet the others afterwards," he promises, climbing into the front seat of the car as Lydia's mouth drops open indignantly. "They'll be fine without us."

"Stiles Stilinski, if you put that key in that igniti- okay, if you hit the gas... Dammit, Stiles!"

"I'm not letting you go back there," he says smoothly, turning the wheel jerkily to avoid trees.

"I'm going to kill you!" she hollers, and he thinks she might be channeling some banshee because rarely has Stiles heard anyone yell this loud.

"You don't scare me," he says, even though it's a lie.

"And why not?"

"Because you glow," replies Stiles easily. "People who glow don't scare me."

"Werewolves' eyes glow," Lydia reasons, losing the edge of her anger as she tries to out-logic him. "Aren't you afraid of them?"

"I have a bat," he says, as though this is a proper answer. It is not. He knows it's not.

"Oh my god," Lydia groans, hitting her head against the backseat of the car. "If our friends all die because I'm not there to save them, I truly will never forgive you."

"And if you died because I let you walk back out there, I truly would never forgive myself."

She doesn't say anything for the rest of the ride home.

He's watching a movie with Scott when his phone buzzes with a call. Normally, he would just ignore it, because nobody is more important than the Empire striking back. But then Lydia's contact picture pops up, a shot from early in their friendship when he had made her laugh so hard she couldn't possibly pretend anything anymore, and he had snapped a picture of the look on her face. She hates it. He thinks it's one of the best things he owns.


"I need a recharge."

"Yeah, the weather's great on my end too."

"Oh, shut up."

"Aww, Lydia, I had a lovely day! Thanks for asking. You're so thoughtful that way."

Scott stifles a snicker and reaches for a handful of popcorn.

"I was doing my mind exercises in my bedroom and I suddenly just... ran out. I didn't pass out or anything, but I had to sit down, and-"

With a strange feeling in his stomach, Stiles leans forward to pause the movie. Scott looks outraged.

"Lydia, how long were you practicing?"

"Oh, no, it's fine-"


"About three hours?"


"What can I say. Layovers are so tacky."

"I'm coming over there."

"What?" Scott mouths.

"I'm already on my way to yours," Lydia tells him. "Kick Scott out, will you?" Scott looks horrified.

"Hey, you shouldn't be driving when you're like that," Stiles admonishes, ignoring the latter part of Lydia's statement entirely.

"Sure, whatever. Take a shower, will you? You sweat when you watch Star Wars."

"Um, I do no-"

"You do," Scott says regretfully, cutting him off. "And I'm taking the DVD."

Stiles never lets anyone borrow his Star Wars DVDs, but he thinks it might be about six times more difficult to fight the disk away from a true alpha than the usual dorks that try to borrow the movies, so he bites his tongue and waves the DVD goodbye before he steps into the shower.

Lydia shows up midway through his shower and pushes back the shower curtain.

"Hey," she says, toeing off her shoes and, as a result, dropping about five inches in height. "How was your day?"

He splutters, spitting water out of his face as he watches Lydia unzip her skirt and move her hands to her shirt hem.

"Uh, fine until some banshee interrupted my Star Wars marathon."

"Ha," she says, tugging off her panties before checking the water to see if the temperature is to her liking. She turns the water a bit hotter, then steps in and raises her eyebrows at Stiles. He maneuvers himself so that she has more space and she smiles in thanks before handing him the shampoo. "Which one?"

"Empire Strikes Back."

"Scott must want to kill me right now."

"You're the banshee, you tell me."

When she flicks a spray of water at him, Stiles doesn't do anything but flick one back.

"So," Lydia says conversationally. "What are you doing for Memorial Day?"

"Mrs. McCall usually gets the day off so we have second Thanksgiving. Can you pass me my loofah?"


"Thanks. What are your plans?"

"Oh, nothing."

"You're hedging for an invite, aren't you?" he asks suspiciously as Lydia grabs the loofah from him and rubs it over her torso.

"Who, me?"

"Yeah, you."

"Couldn't be," Lydia replies, eyes sparkling.

"Fine, you can come."

"Thank you," she says, rising on her tip-toes to kiss him. "You're my absolute favorite emotional tether."

"Now you're just kissing up."

"No, really," she says, touching his chest to show how earnest she is. Her voice softens. "Thank you."

"You're welcome," he says simply. "My pleasure. Oh, speaking of. Do you need to feel better?"

Lydia hands him the loofah and he rubs it up and down her back as she shrugs.

"Sort of. I guess. I don't know."

He frowns. Usually, he gets a frantic call about her powers in the middle of the night, when neither of them are fully aware of what's going on. Usually he drives over to her house and she lets him in looking like she can barely stand up, much less rely on active or passive powers. Usually it's hushed and quick under Lydia's rustling sheets, their facial expressions hidden by the darkness. And usually Lydia is able to vocalize exactly what is wrong with her.

"Is it your active or passive powers?"

"Active," says Lydia decisively.

"So you're improving!" he says, keeping his voice cheerful despite the sinking in his stomach.

"Deaton says that if I keep exercising my mind, I eventually won't need..." She trails of. Pauses. Gestures between the two of them. "This. Anymore."

"Great," says Stiles, barely recognizing his own voice because the idea of not getting hysterical phone calls from Lydia in the middle of the night suddenly makes him panic. What if they go back to the way they were before they realized what their bond could do for her? He doesn't think he could stand to go back there again- to spend every day missing her. "That's fantastic, Lydia."

She bites her lip and nods, searching his eyes for something. She must find it, or maybe she doesn't, because she smiles tiredly and shrugs.

"But for now..."

His chest soars.

"For now?"

"We're here," she says quietly, leaning up on her tip-toes to kiss him as the warm water slides between their bodies. "You're here."

He doesn't know if that last part is for him, but he kisses her harder just to prove that he's not going anywhere. Not until she asks him to.

The response that resounds through Lydia's eyes is enough to make Stiles want to stay in this shower forever. He places his hand on her back, pulling her closer, and she winds her arms around his neck, stretching herself as tall as she can go so he doesn't have to slump so much.

"Okay," she says, pulling away with a glint in her eyes that makes Stiles swallow hard. "Stand there."

She rearranges him so that he's facing the wall with the water at his back. Then she kneels in front of him, protected from the spray by his body.

His heart is pounding like mad in his chest.

"What are you doing?" Stiles asks, voice shaking with the effort to contain himself. Lydia Martin is on her knees in front of him in his shower. Holy shit.

"Testing a theory," she says, tilting her head to the side and squinting at his dick. Then she nods decisively and takes it in hand, pumping it a few times as she checks Stiles' face to see his reaction. When she is satisfied, she takes his dick into her mouth and hollows her cheeks.

"Oh fuck," Stiles moans, pressing his palm flat against the shower wall. "Lydia, this is supposed to be... about you."

He doesn't exactly know what they are or what their relationship means, much less the sex, but he is relatively certain that Lydia's powers aren't benefitted by her sucking his dick.

"I told you," she says after she releases him with a pop that makes Stiles moan loudly, the sound too echoey in the bathroom. "I'm testing a theory."

"This is a research blow job?" She hums around his dick, starting to use one of her hands as well, and Stiles braces both palms against the shower wall, trying to even his breathing out.

Okay. Stiles likes research.

When he comes, she spits it down the drain and straightens up, a satisfied smile on her face. Stiles leans his head down on the wall, breathing hard. The confusion as to why this just happened is outweighed by the mental image he will forever have of Lydia between his legs, eyes locked on his as she sucked his dick.

He's never gonna get enough of that image.

"Meet you in your bedroom?" Lydia asks, swiping at the corner of her lips. He presses a kiss to her forehead before she goes, not caring about it being too sensitive.

"See you in a minute."

When he finally does get in there, she's dressed in one of his t-shirts and a different pair of panties than she had been wearing when she stepped into the shower. She's reading a book that she'd brought from home. And she's got her head on his pillow again, getting it soaking wet.

"Hey," he says, unwrapping his towel before grabbing a pair of boxers and sliding them on. "You staying tonight?"

Lydia shrugs.

"Might as well."

He crawls into the bed, settling in next to her and pressing his lips to her neck, kissing, biting, and licking lazily. She ignores him and steadfastly continues to read.



"You know it's 5 PM, right?"

"I'm aware."

"And you're ready for bed?"

"It feels like a lazy day," she says flippantly, turning the page. "No murders to solve. No enemies to fight. It's quiet. And you need to sleep more. I've been waking you up so much lately."

He settles back on his elbows, momentarily distracted from Lydia's skin.


She turns another page.

"Yes, Stiles?"

"What was your hypothesis?"

For a moment, her hands freeze on the book. Then she determinedly lets her eyes skid across the paper, taking in the words.

"That reciprocation in certain circumstances can be just as good as receiving."

He swallows. Hard.

"What was your- uh- conclusion?"

Lydia glances over at him.

"You can read all about it in the lab report."

He nods thoughtfully as she turns her gaze, once more, to the book she is reading.

"Hey, Lydia?"


"A single data point isn't enough to discern a pattern." She stares at him blankly as Stiles closes the book for her and pushes it to the ground. "Turnabout is fair play."

He slinks to the end of the bed and drags her panties down her legs, trying to ignore the way he feels like he's flying. Friends-with-professional-benefits do not make each other feel like they are flying.

"Ready?" He asks, pulling one of her legs over his shoulder, and Lydia bites her lip and nods. "Okay. We can compare results afterwards."

With that, he ducks his head down.

When the phone rings, Stiles staring at his homework. He is barely startled, due to the fact that he hadn't been able to concentrate anyways, and so he scrambles quickly for the phone, pressing it against his ear without looking at the caller ID. It's either Scott or Lydia. It always is.



Lydia. Cool.

"Are you feeling okay?"

"Oh, yeah, I'm fine," she says, yawning. "I just… can't sleep. So I wanted to talk."

He raises his eyebrows, leaning back in the desk chair.

"Have you tried counting werewolves? It's what I do."

"No, but sometimes I count dead Peter Hales."

That's the Lydia he knows and loves.

Um. As a friend.

It's fine.

"So what do you usually do when you can't sleep, then?"

Lydia pauses, considering.

"I don't know. I haven't had that problem in a while."

"Probably because I tire you out so much," Stiles says jokingly, but Lydia just laughs softly on the other end of the line.

"Probably," she replies softly. He's taken aback by the sweetness of her voice. "God, I'm way too tired to put my guard up. Yeah. Definitely. You're definitely right."

Okay, this gives him way too much power.

"So," he says. "Um. What can I do for you? What do you need me to talk about to get you to go to sleep?"

"Start with your Ewok theories and then we'll go from there."

"Um, ouch?"

"You have an eighteen page essay about it. Nobody cares that much about ewoks."

"Scott would if he ever sat down long enough to finish Star Wars."

"He would not."

She goes off on a tangent about why his ewok theories are incorrect because, yes, true to form, Lydia had gobbled up the entire eighteen page paper and had formed her own opinions on it. And, as Stiles listens to her, he feels the question surging up again, starting in his gut and rising to his throat.

When he says it, it's only because he has to.

"Do you remember that day in the library when you said that you'd been going through a dry spell? What did you mean?"

"Oh," she says, the word coming out in a quiet puff of air. "Shit."

"You forgot you said that?"

"Seems like you didn't."

"Couldn't if I wanted to."

Maybe his filter is down, too.

"I don't want-"

"You don't have to answer," he says, cutting her off. "I don't know, I was just surprised by it, is all, and-"

"I wasn't fucking Parrish," Lydia says, her voice slightly harder than it needs to be. "The last person I slept with was Aiden. And then you."

He lets out breath in a long puff of air.


"Mhm," she affirms. "I guess I just… I was busy."

"Right! Right."

"And I didn't meet anyone that I wanted to sleep with."

"I get that." He's silent for a few moments. "I really wish I hadn't asked that."

Lydia laughs slightly.

"I guess I'm glad you did."

He's kind of shocked by that one.


"Because… I don't know. It made me think."

"About what?"

"About how I look at sex differently than I used to."

He swallows. Hard.


"Meaning that… when I sleep with someone, it's a bigger deal than it used to be. In my mind."


There's a smile in her voice as she says, "Goodnight, Stiles."

After Lydia hangs up, he's the one that can't sleep.

"Dude, there is for sure a difference between jam and jelly."

Scott shakes his head emphatically, taking a bite of his sandwich and pointedly slurping some jelly from the side of his mouth. Kira hands him a napkin, clearing her throat teasingly, and Scott takes it from her, using it to dab at the corner of his mouth pointedly.

"No, Stiles, jam and jelly are the same thing."

"One of them has bigger chunks of fruit!"

"Liam, what do you think?" Stiles demands, just as Liam is about to take a bite of his ham sandwich.


"I'm your alpha," Scott reminds him.

"I'm right," Stiles scoffs.

"Stiles is right," Lydia confirms, plopping into the seat next to him.

"Did you even hear what we were talking about?" Scott inquires, but Lydia ignores him, turning to Stiles.

"So I'm planning on practicing the elastic move today after school."

"Cool," Stiles says, taking a bite of his wrap. "Do you need me?"

Lydia wrinkles her nose at him talking with his mouth full.

"Unfortunately, yes," she teases. "Can you come over around five?"

"Sure," Stiles says. "You wanna study after?"

"History test?"


"Fine, as long as you quiz me on the battle dates."

"Yeah, I made flashcards already."

"Okay, so we can do that afterwards."

"Sounds good," Stiles says as Lydia gets up and grabs her backpack from the floor. "See you later."

"See you," she responds, grinning as she leans down to peck him quickly on the lips.

Stiles turns back to his wrap, wondering if he had put on too much lettuce.

"Um, Stiles?" Scott says, and Stiles looks up in surprise, having forgotten that anybody else was there. "Just how much sex have you and Lydia been having?"

Kira looks so concerned that Stiles feels like he has no option other than to lie.

"Not a lot," he assures Scott. At the skeptical look on Scott's face, he revises. "Okay, some. Well, no, just a normal amount. Alright, maybe more sex than I've ever had in my life." They all stare. "It's fine."

"But have you… talked about it?"

"It's fine."

"Are you dating?"

"No, but it's all good, Scott."

"That doesn't seem all good," Kira points out. "That seems like it's going to end really badly if you keep ignoring it."

"We're too smart to let it end badly," Stiles says.

"You're in love with her," Scott reminds him incredulously, and when Stiles opens his mouth to refute this statement, Scott shakes his head. "I can smell emotions, Stiles."

"It's not going to end badly," promises Stiles. "Because we both have it completely in control. We are sleeping together when Lydia needs a power boost."

"And?" nudges Kira.

"...And sometimes when Lydia pretends to need a power boost and we both know that we both know that she's lying."

"There it is," Scott says. Liam looks like he isn't sure whether he should be here or be running from the table to avoid what they're talking about. "And is the glowing thing still happening?"

Stiles grins. Wiggles his eyebrows.

"Oh yeah. Frequently."

"I'm going to talk to Deaton," Scott decides, frowning. "See what that's all about."

"Maybe I'm just that good," Stiles suggests, wiggling his eyebrows.

"Ha," Kira says. The three boys turn to look at her, and the smile slides off of her face. "Oh. Right. Sorry."

Today, Stiles is concentrating on the bed springs.

Lydia is on top of him, her hands curling around his shoulders as she bounces, her eyes closed, her chest heaving with exertion. Even though she's not looking at him, he can still feel the way she wants him.

The bed springs creak underneath them, up and down and it only seems to spur Lydia on. She licks her lower lip and sucks it into her mouth and gasps when she repositions herself slightly and Stiles ends up hitting a particularly good spot.

"Fuck, Stiles," she whines, moving one of her hands into her hair and dragging it down her neck, to her chest.

When she pinches her nipple, it takes everything Stiles has not to come.

But he doesn't want to come. Coming means that this is over- whatever they have. Whatever connection that comes from sex. When their bodies move together, he knows that it's like they are the only two people on the earth. For both of them. This isn't just him. It's not just him that feels good when they do this.

He loves that about sex with Lydia.

And he loves the way her hair frames her face, and sometimes her breaths blow it away because she's panting so hard.

And he loves her skin; kissing it, finding hidden freckles. She is porcelain, and yet she is the least delicate person he has ever met.

Somehow, he loves the fact that she could break him.

He loves her lips, how full they are. How they feel on his body. He loves her eyes, how he can measure her pleasure by the animalistic look in them, whether she's mischievous or lost to the world because of what he's doing to her. He loves... He loves...

"Oh god, Lydia, I fucking love you."

She stops bouncing. Stiles freezes. They stare at each other, and, oh god, he's just ruined these moments and they're never gonna have sex again, he's never gonna see her naked or see the face she makes when she comes, never gonna know that he did that to her, never gonna-

"Um," she says. "I can forget you said that."

"Please," Stiles rasps out. "Please do."

Lydia nods uncertainly.


"Um. Okay."

There's a long, terribly awkward pause.

"You wanna be on top now? Reclaim your masculinity?"

"I never lost my masculinity," Stiles grumbles, but he can't look her in the eyes so he ends up flipping her around and letting her grab onto the headboard while he fucks her from behind, trying to lose himself in the feeling of her body around his.

"Today has been shit."

Stiles glances down at his watch, frowning.

"It's only eleven."

Lydia shrugs, leaning against his locker door with her shoulder to close it as Stiles shoves his chem textbook into his backpack, shaking it to make sure that the book fits with the rest of the papers littering the bottom of the bag.

"That doesn't change the fact that it's been shit," she tells him, following him as he begins to walk down the hallway.

"I'm sorry," Stiles says genuinely, waving obnoxiously at Danny as he passes them in the hallway. Danny pretends to miss this. "Is there anything I can do?"

Lydia halts, head tilted to the side, considering.

"Yes," she says decisively, and that is when she grabs Stiles by the sleeve and pulls him into the nearest supply closet, slamming the door shut behind them and putting a chair under the knob. Stiles' mouth drops open as she slides her panties out from underneath her skirt and hangs them precariously on top of a mop.

"You want me to fuck you," he says, just for confirmation.

"Yes, please," says Lydia warmly.

"In a supply closet."

"That's the idea."

"Because you're having… a bad day."

She tsks.

"The worst."

He thinks on it for a moment.

"Fine," he says, and Lydia smiles cheerfully as she reaches for his buckle. "But!" She pauses, her hands still on his hips. She's so close; he can't even think. "Only if you agree to try the Reverse Mambo with me tomorrow night."

Lydia rolls her eyes.

"Why are you so obsessed with that position?"

"The name is hilarious! Say it. It's so fun. Reverse Mambo."

"So you want to have sex with me because you think the name of a position is funny?"

He hesitates.

"Is 'yes' the wrong answer here?"

Lydia laughs, kneading her forehead with her hands.


"Well, how about you pick the position right now?"

"How generous of you," she says drily, standing on her tip toes to kiss him deeply. He wraps his arms just under her butt and lifts her into the air so that she no longer has to reach so far to kiss him. Lydia throws her head back and laughs. "Why have we never thought of this before?"

Stiles shrugs, grinning lopsidedly at her, and when she takes her hands off of his shoulders to stroke his hair on either side of his head, her thumbs lightly skimming his ears, he closes his eyes against her touch. When he lifts his lips to hers again, he's eager, and he can feel Lydia smiling against his lips.

"Hey, Lydia?" he asks, smushed up against her.


Stiles pulls away.

"Is your day a little bit better now?"

She seems so happy as she looks down at him, shaking her head as though she can't believe she's in a supply closet with him.

"It will be," she says.

For the rest of the day, Lydia doesn't stop smiling.

There's a pencil floating in the air.

Stiles looks up from between Lydia's legs to stare at her face as she comes. He can tell she's about to, because her skin is starting a light glow. But what he doesn't expect to see is the pencil floating in the air next to her head, surrounded by a foggy white mist.

He's so surprised that he lets out a little yelp, and Lydia opens her eyes in a panic, glaring down at him for stopping.

"What? What, Stiles?" she asks urgently, just as the pencil falls down.

"Um. There was a pencil. Floating in the air. You were making a pencil float."

Lydia raises an eyebrow.

"Are you insane?"


She hesitates.

"Well," she says slowly, "see if I can do it again."

She turns to the pencil that is lying on the bedside table and squints at it. Nothing. Lydia returns her gaze to Stiles, frowning heavily.


"Nothing," she confirms.

Stiles nods seriously before opening his mouth and latching his lips around Lydia's clit, sucking gently, with the pressure he's perfected to keep her just on the edge but not quite coming. She moans loudly and bucks her hips towards him, almost smothering him, but when she opens her eyes and sees the pencil that has just begun floating in the air, she lets out a surprised noise that is way too similar to the one that Stiles had just made.

"Holy shit."

He wants to smile just then, because he made her feel so good that she literally made something float, and that's all it takes for him to suck hard, causing Lydia to shriek and drag a pillow over her head to muffle herself. Meanwhile, the pencil shoots higher into the air and shivers there. Stiles only straightens up and wipes his mouth when it falls back to the desk and settles on the wood.

He crawls up to Lydia and takes the pillow from her, enjoying the flush of her cheeks.

"What the hell are you, Lydia Martin?"

She smiles lazily at him. When she's come this hard, she barely has any filter, and that's really all it takes for her to snuggle into him, chin rubbing up and down his bare chest.

"A banshee," she says, and he may have spent way too long between her thighs, and his jaw may feel like it's on fire, but the way her words are slurring makes it totally worth it.

"There's so much you can do that we don't know about."

"I've never made anything float before. I'm not sure if I'd be able to do it again."

"It could be a one off," Stiles admits. "But... It's there. We know it's there now. And that sex can bring it out."

"Sex with you."

He chooses to ignore that.

"Maybe heightened heartbeat?"

"Raw emotions?"

Sometimes unfiltered Lydia says things that he doesn't have the emotional capacity to understand.

"Right," he says, pretending like he does. "That could be it."

She nods, throwing her body slightly more over his as she starts to fall asleep.

"I have to go home in two hours."


"For dinner."


"Wake me up?"

She's already basically out, so he has no problem with kissing the top of her head as he nods his assent.

The look on Scott's face can be described as only one thing: purposeful.

Stiles hates when that happens.

"What?" he asks before Scott can even say hello.

"I brought you starbursts," Scott says. "That's all."

Stiles takes the candy, squinting at it.

"This is apology candy. What did you do?"

Scott sighs.

"It's more what I'm about to do."

"Hey, Scott," Stiles' dad says, waving from where he stands in the kitchen, grabbing plates for the Chinese food that they'd ordered. "You staying for dinner?"

"My mom's actually home tonight, so I'm going to head back. I just need to ask Stiles a quick homework question."

By homework, he means Lydia. Stiles can already tell. He has a terrible feeling about this. Maybe the emotional tether will give Lydia that feeling too, and she'll know that Stiles is in trouble, and she will save him.

Scott motions for Stiles to follow him, which he does unwillingly, hands shoves into his pockets, shoulders almost up to his ears. As soon as they're in his room, Stiles shuts the door and skulks by it while Scott crosses his arms and looks at him seriously.

"I talked to Deaton," he says.

"I feel like I'm getting a detention," complains Stiles. Scott ignores this.

"I talked to Deaton, and he told me that he left some stuff out when he told you and Lydia about why sex would help her heal."

Stiles frowns.

"Why would he do that?"

"Because he didn't want you to freak out," Scott says like it's completely obvious. "He knew it would work and he didn't want you to fight against it because you're stubborn."

"Fight against what?"

"The fact that… the sex thing only works if the people are soulmates."

"There's no such thing," Stiles says immediately. "Falling in love is circumstantial."

"And that's why Deaton didn't say anything."

"Scott. Are you seriously buying this shit?"

"He said to tell you that a soulmate isn't necessarily romantic. You can have platonic soulmates. People who you are just supposed to meet… people who change your life. But-"

Stiles narrows his eyes.

"But what?"

"But I don't think Lydia was ever meant to be a platonic soulmate for you, Stiles."

He feels so heavy all of a sudden, like Scott's words are weighing down on him.

"Is that why she glows?"

Scott nods in affirmation.

"That's why she glows."

Stiles shoves a hand through his hair, pulling on it slightly as he begins to pace.

"I can't… I can't just keep that from her."

"I know," Scott says.

"But I can't tell her."

"I know."

"How do you just go up to someone and say… we're soulmates. We might be platonic soulmates or we could be romantic soulmates, but, regardless, that's why you fucking glow when I get you off."

"Plus the emotional tether. Random soulmates don't glow. It's the whole 'tethering you to life' thing."

Stiles balls his hands into fists.

"Yeah, you're right, I can't tell her."

"What? Dude, I never said-"

"That's not a conversation anybody should have with anybody. I can't… I can't do that. I can't."

"You can't keep that from Lydia, Stiles."

"I can."

Scott looks completely taken aback.

"What if you two are supposed to be together but you're keeping this from her?"

"If Lydia wants to be with me, which she doesn't, she should decide that she does because of me, not because we could possibly be soulmates."

"That makes no sense."

"It makes perfect sense. So I'm keeping it from her."

"You know you can't," Scott argues. "Lydia needs all the facts, just like you do. You're similar that way. How would you feel, knowing that she knew you were soulmates and didn't tell you anything?" Stiles doesn't say anything. "You're not going to keep this from her, man."

Stiles squares his jaw.

"Watch me."

Lydia has been kissing him for ages now.

Normally, by this time, they could have had sex at least three times. Maybe twice, depending on foreplay and whether they'd taken a nap at any point. But they're on the couch in her living room, supposed to be watching a movie, and instead of doing that, they're making out.

It's kind of unreal, because the entire time they've been sleeping together, it's been about getting off. Going quickly and efficiently so that Lydia feels better and Stiles gets what he needs as well. But he'd come over after school, just to hang out, and as they'd been watching The X-Files, Lydia had just started to kiss Stiles. Slowly but with a certainty about it that he's not quite used to. She doesn't seem to plan on moving faster or forward. Just seems to want to kiss him as the world slides by, breathless and with swollen lips and the smallest of smirks lifting her cheeks, which Stiles has his hands splayed out across.

He loves making out with her. Loves the feeling of her small body pressed up against his, loves the way she seems to want to take it slowly, rubbing lightly against him and making noises that are probably the cutest thing he's ever heard.

This is perfect. Everything with her is just… so much better than he could imagined. He never thought he would be so happy to not be having sex. But then again. It's Lydia. He's such a sucker when it comes to her. Always has been.

Maybe that's why he's so scared of all of this going away. But maybe he doesn't have to be. Maybe she's a sucker for him as well. Because everything she's been doing lately- the late night phone calls just to talk, the tenderness, all of the sex- has been so… couply. Like she cares about him. Like she would want something more if he just asked.

He's not going to ask. But he's also not going to put something directly between the two of them. And right now, that's what he's doing, isn't it? He's forcibly thrusting them apart with this secret. Nothing's going to change unless he says something. And if he ever wants them to evolve, he can't be holding something between their bodies, keeping them apart.

"Lydia," he says.

"Hmmm?" Her words come out in a breathy sigh, like she's not focusing on anything but the slow movement of their lips.

"I gotta tell you something."


"Lyds, it's kind of… serious."

She pulls back, biting her lower lip.

"Okay," she says, drawing it out. "What's wrong?"

"Nothing's wrong," Stiles says, hedging. Lydia sits up, and he immediately misses the weight of her body on his. But she folds her legs underneath herself and settles in for the long run, looking stunning with mussed up hair and puffy lips.

"So then what is it?"

"Well," he replies slowly. "Scott talked to Deaton and he figured out why all of this… happens."

"Like what?"

"Like the glowing thing?"

"You told Scott about that?"

He puts his thumb and index fingers close together and tilts his head to the side.

"Just a little bit?"

She gives him a look.

"Did Deaton know?"

"Well, he said… he said that I'm able to fix you when you're feeling sick because of the emotional tether."

"We knew that," she points out.

"Um, more, specifically. It works because we're soulmates." Lydia just stares. "Like, it doesn't mean we have to get married or anything. It just means that we were meant to be in each other's lives. That's it."

Lydia juts out her lower lip, swiping her tongue across it slowly as she thinks.

"How long have you known?"

His eyes widen.

"Oh, not very long. Just, like, a week. Or maybe two. Three tops."

She lifts her hand to bite her thumb nail, then thinks better of it.

"And you kept it from me?"

"Sort of," he says. "Not really. I just… how do you tell someone they're your soulmate?"

"So do you think there's only one soulmate per person?"

He hesitates.

"I don't know, Lyds. Maybe."

Suddenly, he feels tired.

"I don't know either," she says quietly. "I don't believe in soulmates."

"I do believe that I've seen you glow," he says, voice teasing. She doesn't laugh.

"Why did you keep it from me?"

He looks down at his hands, stretching them and balling them into fists, then stretching them again.

"I didn't want you to feel like you had to be with me just because of that. I mean, we've been sleeping together all year and I thought that… I wasn't sure, but I thought… maybe it meant something. That you always came back to me. Every time."

Lydia, for the first time in Stiles' twelve years of knowing her, looks blown away.

"You thought that I would want to be with you just because Deaton said we were soulmates?"

A small smile is beginning to spread across her lips.

"I mean. I guess."

"I thought you were smart, Stilinski," she says, unlocking her legs and crawling up his body, closer to him. He moves his gaze from her eyes to her lips as she gets closer. "Here's the deal."

"There's a deal?"

"Here's the deal. We're going to go upstairs to my bedroom and we're going to sleep together. Not because I'm not feeling well. Not because we're supposedly soulmates. Not because someone else said we should be together. But because… god, Stiles, I've spent the past couple of years falling for you, and if you want to be with me too, we can stop pretending that any of that other shit matters. It's just about us, okay? What we want. So what do you want, Stiles?"

He leans up so that he can get her lips to his more quickly and kisses her deeply, bringing his hand around the back of her head and pulling her close.

"I want you," he says, pulling back so he can look at her. "Fuck, Lyds, I've always wanted you. Before any of this shit went down. At the start of all this, I was just realizing that I never stopped wanting you."

"Good," she says, smirking as she unbuttons his flannel. "Keep wanting me. Keep wanting me for as long as you want to."

"And you're gonna keep wanting me?" he asks, stopping her fingers.

She throws him a sarcastic look.

"Of course I am, dumbass. You make me glow."