Stiles drives his jeep to the Beacon Hills woods; his only safe haven. His father has been on a case of murders that he just couldn't wrap his head around, and it was really getting to him. He had been taking it out on Stiles more and more lately, not meaning to, but it was happening.
His father had started drinking a lot, and as a result had become a danger to Stiles and himself. Stiles started sleeping in his Jeep in the woods so he'd be safe from his father's reckless behavior.
He pulled into his usual spot, looking down at the city, the moon in his view. It was a tiny crescent this night. As if someone had taken a bite out of it. Stiles laughs to himself, remembering how he used to think someone would take a bite out of the big cheese ball in the sky.
As he sits in his Jeep his train of thought touches many topics of his childhood, and he's smiling a lot, enjoying himself; remembering things he wouldn't have normally. Things like when he found a little garden snake and decided to keep him, and his dad said only if he would feed him. Naturally, he said yes and tried feeding his reptile friend a ham sandwich.
He loses his smile then. Coming back to reality. He looks at the moon again, and it's covered by clouds. He sighs, and lays back on his jeep's seat. Immediately after that, a branch falls on the roof of it, and it comes within inches of crushing his head.
"Fuck..." Stiles says to himself. He groans, realizing he'll have to tell his dad. But for now, he needs to at least try to sleep.
He tries relaxing, when he hears a knock on his door.
"It's not safe for you to lay there, another branch might fall. I'll help you out," a man says.
"No it's-" Stiles starts to say, but the man opens the door, grabbing him under his leg, sliding him out lightly. He pulls himself out when he has enough room.
"Thanks," Stiles says to the man, and then he sees him.
Dark hair, stubble covering his face, a leather jacket, and when he looks into his eyes, they're a gorgeous green. He knows who it is: Derek Hale.
"Derek Hale, right?" he asks him.
"Yeah, and you?" Derek returns.
"Right. Well, Stiles, would you like to stay with me tonight? Since you don't have anywhere else to go."
Stiles wasn't sure what to say. Derek didn't even know who he was, and yet he was offering him somewhere to stay. He wanted to say no, that he'd be okay, but he wouldn't be.
"Yeah, thanks. You're so nice."
Derek lightly scoffs at what Stiles said, "I'm not nice."
And on that note, he turns and walks to where he's staying. Stiles, realizing this, hurries after him, not wanting to be stuck in the middle of the woods.
After a minute of walking, Stiles asks, "How did you know that branch fell on my jeep?"
"I heard it hit the roof, it was a pretty loud noise. Hard to miss," Derek replies.
"Oh..." Stiles says simply, feeling a bit ashamed for asking the question; implying that Derek might have been stalking him.
Another minute passes, and Stiles sees a tent.
"I was camping tonight, so if you aren't used to camping, you might not sleep so well," Derek says,
"I've been camping a lot," Stiles lies. He had only been camping a few times, but he lied for some reason. Almost as if he was trying to impress Derek.
Derek looks at him as if he knows he's lying, and then he goes in through the tent flaps. Stiles follows suit. Derek is taking off his jacket when he comes in, and then his shirt, following with his pants. Stiles feels a bit uncomfortable, but doesn't show it. He strips down as well, and then realizes how cold it is. He also realized there was only one sleeping bag.
"Uhh... There's only one sleeping bag."
Derek looks at him, then the sleeping bag. He unfolds it, showing that it's a rather large sleeping bag.
"I keep it folded because I'm the only who uses it. I didn't mean to make you uncomfortable," he says, a bit sheepishly.
Stiles doesn't know what to say, he feels stupid now, for embarrassing Derek.
He crawls into the sleeping bag; Derek gets in on his side. Stiles is super cold, but hopes he'll get warmer.
Thirty minutes later, Stiles is still cold, and is shivering now. He's about to reach for his shirt, when he hears a sigh, and then the sound of the sleeping bag moving. Wondering what is going on, he's about to turn around, but then he feels a warm body against him and an arm wrap around him. Instinctively, he moves as close as possible to the warmth, and he grabs the arm. He immediately regrets it, but he doesn't move away.
'Derek is using himself to keep me warm... Maybe he thinks I'm asleep?' Stiles wonders to himself. He'd keep thinking about it, if he wasn't so tired, and now comfortably warm. He falls asleep quite fast.
Stiles wakes up and he's alone. He looks to where Derek would have been. Laying there was a note.
I did my best to fix your jeep. It should be fine until you can have it properly repaired.
He checks his phone: It's 8:37. He dresses himself and runs to where his jeep was, and sees that the roof is in perfect form, the paint is just messed up, and it might need to be smoothed a bit. He gets in and makes his way down the road to the town. His dad would have left for work already, so he can change clothes before going to school.
Once at school, he goes through his normal day. Nothing interesting happens. Nothing interesting ever seems to happen anymore. At least for him. He feels that he's in a rut in his life. And he doesn't know what to do to possibly get out.
On his way home, he thinks about Derek. It was strange what happened between them. That kind of thing never happens, and Stiles has a strange urge to go see him again.
Stiles pulls into his driveway, a bit worn out from lacrosse practice. He has an hour before his dad gets home. He takes this time to take a shower and eat. It's almost become routine.
He decides that he'll leave to go to the woods early today. Hoping that Derek will be there. That he'll be what gets him out of this rut in his life.
It's a few past 8:00 when he gets to his usual spot. He's unsure of what to do next. He doesn't know if Derek will still be camping, but he hopes he is.
After a half an hour, Stiles starts to think maybe he isn't coming, so he gets out of his jeep, and starts to walk to where the tent was.
He comes to the spot, to find it void of the tent, and any sign of Derek. He turns around, about to go back to his jeep in disappointment, when he hears a familiar voice.
"Looking for me?"
Stiles turns around again to find Derek there, carrying his tent under his arm. He smiles sheepishly and replies, "Yeah... I like sleeping in a tent more than my little jeep. Its more comfortable than I expected..." he pauses for a moment, and sees that Derek still has a face of indifference, and he adds, "If you don't mind."
Derek smirks and drops the tent down before saying, "As long as you help me set it up."
Stiles smiles, and walks over to help set up the tent.
They're nearly finished, just putting in the remaining support sticks, when Derek asks, "Stiles, why do you sleep up here? Don't you have a family worrying about you?"
Stiles, not expecting the question, looks up at Derek, and in the process, is smacked right in the ribs by one of the support sticks.
"Ahh!" he cries out in pain and surprise, he trips over a tree root and lands on his back.
Derek laughs loudly, and it gives Stiles butterflies, which confuses him deeply.
"You okay?" Derek asks him, offering his hand.
Stiles takes it, his face red. Derek smiles at him, hoping to ease his embarrassment.
Stiles abruptly says, "I sleep up here because my dad drinks too much, and I don't want to get hurt..."
Derek loses his smile, he simply says, "I'm sorry to hear that. But I know it will get better."
Stiles hadn't told anyone else about what was happening at home, and it took all of his being not to cry. His dad was all he had left. And he was losing him. He couldn't say anything or else he knew he would lose it.
But Derek knew this, and said, "Don't cry..."
Stiles lost it then, and he felt like and idiot for crying. He knew it was going to be awkward. But Derek didn't say anything, he didn't walk away. He just pulled Stiles into an embrace, and held him as he cried. He let Stiles bury his head into his chest, hiding himself from the world.
When he finally stopped crying, Stiles looked at Derek not knowing what to say. He looked at his shirt, and saw that there was a rather large wet spot.
"Sorry about your shirt..." Stiles says, mortified. He can't believe that he just cried that much on Derek's shirt.
"Doesn't matter, I have plenty, and I won't be wearing it much longer," Derek replies, taking it off, along with his jacket as he puts the last support stick in the tent hole, before crouching through the flaps. Stiles smiles to himself as he goes through the tent after Derek. He's already in the sleeping bag, so Stiles strips down and gets in the bag on his side.
Stiles thinks about how he felt earlier. When Derek laughed, he had butterflies, which is strange to him. He'd only had that feeling around Lydia. Who never pays attention to him anyway, he can hope that one day she'll notice him. But it seems that Derek already has. He smiles again.
"Hey, Derek?" Stiles asks meekly, hoping that he's still awake.
"Yes, Stiles?" Derek answers, sounding wide awake.
"Can we... can we do this every night?"
Derek is silent for a moment, but then he turns around, facing Stiles' back, "Sure, as long as you help with- actually, maybe you should stay away from the tent," he laughs.
Stiles laughs, and turns to face Derek, who is closer than he thought; merely a foot away. He is getting cold, but doesn't know how to say it.
"I'm getting kinda cold..." he says, unknowing of a better way.
Derek makes a face, almost as if he's debating something in his head. And then he scoots closer and wraps his arm around Stiles, who looks up at Derek and simply says, "Thanks."
He thinks about what he's doing, how it doesn't feel weird. Even though he's never done something like this with another guy, it doesn't feel alien. It almost comes naturally.
He thinks about it more and more, but ends up falling sleep before getting a better understanding of it.
In the morning, Stiles wakes up to find Derek is still with him, and that now he's behind him. He grabs his phone and checks the time: 7:43.
"You're awake, finally," Derek says.
Stiles, who thought he was asleep, jumps, which causes both of them to laugh.
He turns around, "Yeah, and it's early. Wanna go eat breakfast? My dad's gone for work, so we don't have to worry about him."
Derek nods, "I'll follow you with my car."
When they're both dressed, they pack the tent up and part ways; Stiles waits at his jeep while Derek gets his car.
Stiles has a feeling that he's out of his rut, that he has a new routine. And he just can't stop smiling.