The students in the Tues-Thurs Sex and Violence in Popular Culture class are a lively group. Joseph is happy that so many of the students are vocal and opinionated because it makes his job a lot easier when the students are responding to his lesson plans. While he could do without the flirtatious front row, as Chris likes to call them, he’s used to getting appreciation for his appearance because he’s always been good-looking and well-built, so it doesn’t really affect him at all. He doesn’t ever flirt back, never has, but he can’t lie and say it isn’t a bit of an ego stroke to have bright young things find him attractive despite the fact he’s in his mid-fifties now.
Of course, the only bright young thing he cares about is Stiles, who hasn’t ever been concerned about the fact that Joseph is almost thirty years older than he is, fortunately. Thinking about his young lover distracts him from the current discussion of sexuality in music videos, and he ducks his head when he feels his lips curving into a smile. It wouldn’t be good to get caught smiling like a smitten teenager when one of his smarter students is breaking down misogyny in rock and hip hop video trends. Everyone’s playing nice and civil, though, so he allows himself the brief distraction. Thinking about Stiles and Chris and their relationship isn’t something he does that often, but it always makes him content when he indulges in the memories.
While Stiles is actually enrolled as a student at the university, Joseph isn’t involved in any of his coursework, and he isn’t responsible for his grades. The fact that Stiles is a grad student helps a lot, too. His focus is on Anthropology and Queer Studies, the latter of which is in Joseph’s wheelhouse, but they’ve been candid with the university since their relationship became sexual four years ago. There hasn’t been any sneaking around or anything improper because they’re too old for that nonsense, regardless of Stiles’ actual chronological age. Neither of them wanted to risk their academic careers regardless of the attraction they felt, and their relationship is complicated enough since it also includes Chris, so being honest and open was the best idea.
It’s true that Stiles did take Joseph’s Intro to Women’s Studies class his freshman year, but he’d been eighteen at the time, incredibly intelligent and opinionated in a way that had honestly piqued Joseph’s interest in his brain, but it hadn’t ever been more than a mental awareness. It had taken running into him a year later at a club before the physical awareness happened, so no grades were ever influenced. Really, Joseph’s just damn lucky that Chris had immediately been interested in Stiles even before Joseph realized that this attractive young man was the argumentative passionate kid he’d had in class two years prior.
His relationship with Chris is solid, has been for nearly a dozen years now, and they worked through all their issues before ever making any formal type of commitment. Being the ex-husband of one of the most powerful alphas in the Western United States gives Joseph a bit of a notoriety, after all, and Chris’ daughter is the head of one of the nation’s largest hunter groups, so it’s an odd combination, on paper. Somehow, it works well in real life, though.
Chris has always managed to balance Joseph’s laid-back attitude with an intense fierceness that has even earned Talia’s approval, which is important to Joseph. Despite the fact that they’re divorced and have been for nearly fifteen years now, they still love each other, are great friends, and have raised beautiful children together. The relationship that worked so well when they were young just couldn’t withstand the stress and expectations that came with Talia becoming alpha. One of the primary reasons Joseph and Talia ended up divorcing was his lack of interest in the pack politics and his inability to be the quiet submissive beta who tolerated archaic nonsense some of the other pack’s practiced.
Joseph spent several years being supportive, biting his tongue when he saw some packs ostracizing their youth for their sexuality or gender, playing the part of submissive beta, but Talia knew it was making him unhappy. They both changed, and it isn’t anyone’s fault, so they quietly divorced and remained best friends. Chris came into his life a couple of years later. Widowed father to the head of Argent hunting family dynasty with a gun on his thigh and an attitude that got Joseph’s attention, there had been sparks when they met. Aggressive sex became something more over time, and they’ve been surprisingly happy together.
Then Stiles came into their world, knocked them both on their old asses, and they’ve scandalized their children and many others by taking up with a sarcastic smartass almost thirty years younger, in Joseph’s case, and nearly twenty years younger, in Chris’ case. Talia and Allison approve, Joseph’s kids have come around, Stiles’ dad accepts anything that makes his boy happy, and that’s all they really care about. Everyone else can fuck off. The three of them balance in a way that helps them handle any jealousy or issues that naturally come up in this kind of polyamorous relationship, and they’ve made something no one thought would last become a stable serious relationship.
Stiles argues with Chris until they end up making out against any firm surface because Joseph doesn’t argue with Chris the way he likes. Stiles pulls Joseph into passionate debates that often lead to rutting any and everywhere because Chris finds academia dull. The fact that Stiles knows about the supernatural world is just an added bonus. He’s managed to revitalize Joseph and Chris in a way that surprises them because they hadn’t realized they’d become a bit routine and predictable. They’ve been dating Stiles for four years now, and he moved in with them after graduating with his bachelor’s degree two years ago. It’s serious between them, and Joseph honestly can’t remember being happier since those early years with Talia pre-alpha inheritance.
“Dr. Hale?” A timid voice interrupts his thoughts. Looking up, Joseph smiles wryly when he sees his class looking at him expectantly. He obviously tuned out more than he realized. “What do you think?”
“I think that I got lost in my head for a bit there,” Joseph admits, smiling wryly as he drags his fingers through his hair. “Why don’t you remind me what was said, and I’ll tell you my thoughts about it?”
“It’s alright, Doc. Katie was going on and on anyway,” Chad tells him with a grin. “I think we all tuned her out when she started repeating herself.”
“I’m sorry. Maybe I should have used smaller words so your male brain could understand them?” Katie says sweetly before looking at Joseph. “Doc, do you think the recent increase in attacks on women in public gatherings is influenced by the images we see in music videos?”
“Good question, Katie.” Joseph focuses back on actually doing his job, straightening up and walking around as he answers the question and plays a few comparison videos. He brings his lecture around to the opposing view, always trying to provide both sides of facts so his students can think for themselves. When he finally wraps class, a few students linger after, like always, and he leans against his desk as he speaks with them.
“So popular,” Stiles teases as he enters the room, giving two of the front row flirts a smug look as he moves his hand over Joseph’s bicep rather possessively. “I got tired of waiting, Dr. Hale. Are you almost done?”
Joseph arches a brow, having to bite back a smile when the two young ladies stare at them and whisper before saying their goodbyes. “You’re incorrigible,” he mutters. “I’m not late.”
“I don’t like how they flirt with you like you’re actually attainable,” Stiles points out. “I just like making sure they realize you’re mine. They can look, because, hell, who could blame them when you’re teaching in those snug jeans that make your ass look banging and that shirt won’t even stay down. You’re just a big tease, Joseph. Flashing those poor students with glimpses of that eight pack that these kids just wish they could touch.”
“Don’t feed his ego, kid,” Chris grumbles as he enters the room. He looks at Joseph and snorts. “Seriously? You look like you should be walking barefoot on the beach, not teaching women and gender studies classes to impressionable young minds.”
“It’s my shirt,” Stiles says suddenly. “God, no wonder it won’t fit right. It’s like two sizes too small.”
“Oh, is it?” Joseph feigns surprise as he looks down at the snug Wonder Woman t-shirt. “I guess that’s why it’s tight.”
“At least he’s wearing a shirt over it. Otherwise, he might have incited a riot,” Chris says dryly, giving him a knowing look. “He’s also wearing my jeans, so he obviously had a temporary memory lapse this morning.”
“Yeah, those are yours, aren’t they? No wonder his ass is banging. No offense, but your ass doesn’t quite fill those jeans like Joseph’s does.” Stiles slaps Chris’ ass in apology and waggles his eyebrows. “Not that I’m complaining about your tight butt.”
“I guess I made a mistake,” Joseph drawls, flexing his arms slightly because he enjoys the way his lovers both trail off and stare at his muscles. He might be in his early fifties, but he definitely has the body of a man half his age. It’s not even the werewolf thing, either, because Joseph likes working out and exercising. It’s an easy way to bond with his kids, and the four of them often spend several hours a week in the gym or playing sports when their schedules allow.
“Right.” Chris snorts. “You knew how hot it’d make us seeing you in our clothes, and you probably like smelling us during your longest day of classes.”
“I’d vote for the smelling thing,” Stiles decides, leaning in to kiss Joseph’s jaw. “You know he hates having that evening class on Thursdays because he doesn’t get home until bedtime and always misses dinner with us.”
“It really is torturing your students, though,” Chris adds, giving Joseph a knowing smirk. “I’d be surprised if they even remember anything you teach them today when you’re walking around looking like that.”
“Stop objectifying me.” Joseph sniffs haughtily. “I’m more than muscles and a nice ass.”
“Next time, maybe just have us roll around on your clothes,” Stiles suggests. “That way, you can get the scent thing you need without looking like a sex god come to life.”
“There you go feeding his ego again,” Chris groans. “He struts around enough without comparing him to a sex god, Stiles.”
“I don’t strut.” Joseph rolls his eyes when piercing blue eyes stare at him. “Fine, maybe a little, but there’s nothing wrong with having a healthy ego. Anyway, you should talk with your prancing around like a walking wet dream.”
“No arguing, boys,” Stiles says with a laugh. He always gets amused when he gets to tease them about being more mature than them despite being so much younger. It’s not something he gets to do often, though, so Joseph and Chris humor him. “We should probably get lunch because I’ve got an Intro to Anthro class that starts at two, and I need some lover time before dealing with apathetic freshmen who annoy me to death. They’re just so young and immature.”
“Says the ancient one.” Chris grins as Joseph moves his arm around his waist, resting his hand possessively on Chris’ hip. “You were one of those immature freshmen just a few years ago.”
“Don’t remind me.” Stiles makes a face. “I wasn’t apathetic, though. Pathetic, maybe, what with crushing on my hunky Women’s Studies professor that fueled many a pleasant fantasy that semester, but I wasn’t as obnoxious as some of these students seem to be.”
“Can we please not discuss jerk off fantasies you had when you were barely legal?” Joseph kisses Stiles’ forehead before taking his hand. “I like being able to honestly say that I wasn’t attracted to you when you were my student for ethical reasons, but the more you talk about that infatuation, the more I start to wonder if I somehow unconsciously felt something that semester.”
“You didn’t.” Stiles shakes his head. “I was just another member of the Doc Hale fanclub. You never flirted or even ogled. Not until that night at Smokey’s, at least. Then there was a lot of ogling and flirting.”
“Oh, I think you made an impression on him because I remember hearing about this opinionated student with this unique way of looking at the world that was fascinating,” Chris remembers, bumping his hip against Joseph’s. “But he was enamored with your brain, not the rest of the package. Just goes to show how honorable he is because how he could resist indulging in even a one-time fantasy about that mouth and those hands, I’ll never understand.”
“I’m not a lecherous old man. Unlike some people.” Joseph smirks at Chris who grins unrepentantly and leers at Stiles, who flutters his eyelashes while blowing kisses at Chris. “You’re both brats,” he mutters fondly. “Alright, where do we want to go for lunch?”
“Pizza.” Stiles nods emphatically. “We can go to Harlow’s so you can also buy me dessert because I totally deserve it for putting up with Dr. Morrell assigning a ten page research paper that I’m being forced to grade.”
“Ouch. That deserves dessert and a beer,” Joseph admits, squeezing Stiles’ hand. “Since you’ve got to teach this afternoon, we’ll get the beer later, but definitely dessert. Harlow’s good for you, Chris?”
“Yeah, it’s fine.” Chris opens the door for them, following them out before coming up on Stiles’ other side this time. “Allison knows it’s a long lunch whenever I come to campus to see you two, so she isn’t expecting me back until after two.”
Joseph looks at his lovers as they walk across the common towards Harlow’s, which is right off campus. He’s listening to Stiles complain about the research papers he’s grading while Chris is obviously trying not to laugh at Stiles muttering about kids these days when he’s not quite twenty-four himself yet. He listens to their heartbeats as they walk, the scent of them making him happy, like it always does. That’s why he wore their clothes today, which maybe is silly, but he’s a werewolf so whatever. He’s allowed some eccentricities.
When Chris and Stiles look at him, Joseph smiles and moves behind them, putting his hands on their shoulders in a possessive way. While he might get his fair share of appreciative stares, he hears the whispers, sees the looks, and smells the arousal from women and men who look at Chris and Stiles. They are both intelligent, attractive, and definitely good catches, so he wants everyone to know that they’re his. Chris mutters about territorial werewolves while Stiles just leans into Joseph’s touch and continues talking about grad school. As they walk, Joseph can’t help but smile smugly because he knows he’s lucky to be able to call them his.