Derek is stumbling into the bathroom one morning, bladder full and brain still asleep, when it happens. Laura is already there, leaning over the basin and peering into the mirror, inspecting a spot on her chin while attempting to brush her teeth at the same time.
“Good morning, grumpy head,” she says around her toothbrush, which has been her standard greeting for him since childhood.
Derek grunts at her, and wonders if she’ll leave if he starts pissing.
And then he catches a lungful of her scent, and it hits him somewhere visceral—sweet, ripe, home, need, touch, mate—and what the fuck is that about? Laura is his sister, and Derek’s not the creep of the family. That’s Peter’s job.
Jesus. Has it really been so long since he got laid that he’s getting turned on by his sister?
He turns and flees.
“Der?” Laura yells out after him. “Derek? What crawled up your ass and died?”
Derek locks himself in his bedroom and waits until she goes to work before coming out again.
He might get desperate enough to piss out the fire escape as well, but he’s taking that secret to his grave.
Ever since returning to Beacon Hills a few months ago, Laura and Derek have lived in a loft on Lincoln Street. It’s semi-converted, which Derek thinks means the developer ran out of money before he finished turning the place from a total shithole into something actually habitable. The loft is caught somewhere in the middle. It has running water and heat, but also holes in the walls. The rent is cheap though.
Derek works as a bouncer at some dive bar downtown. Peter calls it playing to his strengths; he gets to wear his leather jacket and get paid for glowering. The hours he keeps are as bad as Laura’s. They’ve both become more or less nocturnal, which suits Derek. He goes to work when it’s dark and comes home when it’s dawn, and rarely says more than a few words to anyone during his shift. That suits him too. What the fuck has Derek got to talk to anyone about anyway?
The fact he lost almost his entire family in the fire? The fact he and Laura spent close to the last decade on the run from their past before Laura dragged them back here? The fact that he has so little contact with the outside world that his sister’s scent gave him an erection?
No talking about that.
But it probably is a sign he should make an attempt to extend his social circle a little, right? Laura’s been talking about expanding the pack for a while now, and yes, Derek would very much like some non-blood relatives to hang with. As long as he doesn’t have to make small talk. Derek is not good at small talk. Or talk of any size, actually.
Pack is good though.
Being uncomfortable around new packmates is a much healthier option than wanting to have sex with his own sister, right?
Peter turns up one Sunday morning with a bag full of bagels and a smirk.
“Good morning, nephew,” he says.
Peter sweeps inside. “Eloquent, as always.”
“What the hell are you doing here?” Derek asks. “I thought you didn’t get out of bed before noon.”
“Your sister called a pack meeting,” Peter says. “Didn’t she tell you?” He looks Derek up and down. “Oh, well, why would she? Where else would you be?”
It’s a fair point, but Derek glowers anyway. “What about?” he asks.
“Our newest pack member, I would imagine,” Peter says. He sits down on the couch and puts his feet up on the coffee table.
Their what now? Has Laura already approached someone? Has she already bitten someone? Laura can be spontaneous, but surely she wouldn’t bring anyone into the pack without running it by him first?
Derek only has a moment to grapple with his confusion before Laura appears. She’s wearing an old t-shirt and Hello Kitty pajama pants. She sits on the couch beside Peter and attacks a bagel.
Derek sits down warily on the end of the coffee table, and inhales carefully. There’s still a hint of something about Laura’s scent, but he doesn’t have the same visceral reaction he did that day in the bathroom. Thank fuck.
“Did you bring the money?” she asks Peter around a mouthful, spraying crumbs down her shirt.
“All six hundred dollars.” Peter pats his jacket pocket. “Which is appallingly cheap, I must say, and I honestly don’t know which one of you it reflects more badly on.”
“I already gave him two hundred upfront,” Laura says. “So excuse you, but it’s eight hundred total, not six hundred.”
“You bought semen, Laura,” Peter says, rolling his eyes, “not a ’98 Nissan that needs a new transmission.”
Derek’s brain shorts out.
“You bought what?” he manages at last.
“Semen,” Laura says. “Two hundred up front, and six hundred if it took.” She shrugs. “It took.”
Holy shit… Their newest pack member. Holy shit.
“Is this why your scent is—” Derek stops himself before he says something incriminating. Like ‘alluring’. “Different?”
“I guess so,” Laura says matter-of-factly, like she hasn’t just dropped a massive fucking bombshell. “There are more bagels, right?”
Peter tosses the bag at her.
Derek is still struggling. “When you said you wanted to expand the pack, I didn’t think you meant that.”
Laura tears into another bagel. “This wasn’t exactly my first plan either, but this guy… there’s just something about his scent that fitted, you know? He smelled right.”
Derek really doesn’t want to talk about scents at the moment, actually. He rubs his forehead. “Jesus, Laura. Seriously?”
“It’s no strings, Der,” Laura says, her voice softening. She sets the bagels on the table. “He’s not going to be a problem. He’s a college kid, and he needed the money. We drew up a contract. He has no parental rights, and I can’t go after him for child support later.”
“You drew up a contract?” Derek asks. “You did?”
Because that does not sound like the Laura he knows.
“A contract is a contract, even if it’s written on the back of a napkin,” Laura informs him.
“Oh, Jesus.” Derek drags his fingers through his hair. “Laura, I can’t believe—”
There’s a knock on the door, and Laura leaps up to answer it.
Derek isn’t looking when the door rolls open, but that smell hits him again. It’s stronger this time. It’s more, and Derek wants. It’s home, and safety, and the future, and warmth, and sex, and everything, and Derek’s wolf pushes to the fore. His eyes are shining blue when he turns his head sharply, and he can feel his beta shift coming over him.
“Holy shit!” the guy says. He’s young, pale, with gorgeous dark eyes and mole-spotted skin. “What the hell is that?”
“Derek!” Laura exclaims.
Derek sucks in another lungful of that wonderful scent. “Laura,” he growls. “Your baby daddy is my mate!”
Laura’s jaw drops. “Oh fuck.”
“What?” the guy asks. “What the hell is going on? What happened to his face? Why are there… fangs and grr? Seriously, what is going on?”
Laura pats the kid on the shoulder, and holds Derek’s gaze. “Stiles, this is my brother Derek. Derek, Stiles. Um… well, this is awkward.”
“Oh, no,” Stiles says. “I know awkward, trust me. This isn’t awkward. This is the Twilight Zone.” But he makes no move to run. “Actually, it’s probably more straight up Twilight, isn’t it? Oh. Am I Bella? I don’t want to be Bella.”
Derek shifts back. “What?”
“What?” Stiles echoes, eyes round.
“Oh fuck,” Laura says again. “Oh fuck.”
Because where the fuck do they even start?
On the couch, Peter collapses with laughter. “I am so glad I got out of bed for this now!”
“Oh,” Stiles says, and inches further forward into the loft. “Are those bagels? Because I haven’t eaten yet.”
He’s not screaming and running. Why is he not screaming and running? Derek wonders if his mate is braver than hell, or just an idiot. Knowing Derek’s luck, it’s the second one.
And that’s fine.
Derek will take it.
“Um,” he says, “we also have muffins in the kitchen.”
“Ooh!” Stiles’s eyes light up. “Muffins! I love muffins!”
And yeah, Derek thinks as he gets up to fetch them, this is a total clusterfuck, and Stiles is probably an idiot, but he’s Derek’s idiot, and he’s Laura’s baby daddy, and he’s not screaming and running, and that’s a good sign, right?
Who knows, but this clusterfuck might even work out in the end.