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The (Figurative) Death of Destructo-Derek

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YouTube Video
Channel: BestBeaconBitch
Title: Destructo-Derek compilation part 2
Posted: April 7th
Length: 12:14

Scott: (sitting in front of the camera for a private video diary entry for TBP TV, the behind-the-scenes web series following the lives of boy band The Beacon Pack) Okay, so, I’m pretty sure Derek’s cursed? He breaks everything! He doesn’t even try, he just touches stuff and it breaks, and it’s getting worse! I never thought a person could be destruction, but that’s, like…that’s Derek.

Cut to The Ellen DeGeneres Show interview of The Beacon Pack. Derek Hale, Scott McCall, Vernon Boyd, Isaac Lahey, and Jackson Whittemore are seated opposite host Ellen DeGeneres.

Ellen: So, Derek, I hear you’re a little accident prone.

The group members nod and snicker. Scott elbows Derek.

Derek: (ducks his head) Yeah, I’m kind of clumsy, and stuff around me tends to break. It happens enough that the guys started calling me Destructo-Derek.

Cut to TBP TV clip of Derek and Isaac showing off fan gifts at the TBP house and thanking their fans.

Derek: Beacons, you’re the best fans anyone could ask for. Thank you so much for your amazing gifts. We got these in the mail today… (He points to the golden steampunk wolf statue in Isaac’s hands and the black steampunk wolf-man statue standing on its hind legs on the table in front of him.) The letter says you built these for us. That’s so incredible.

Isaac: Right? (squinting and turning the golden wolf this way and that, marveling at the craftsmanship) Wait, there’s a gear turning in there. I think these are supposed to do something.

Derek: (picks up the black wolf-man and studies it) Huh, you’re right. Maybe there’s a button somewhere? (frowning) What do you think they do?

Isaac: I’m pretty sure they move. Maybe if… (He bites his lip and lightly flicks the wolf’s tail. The wolf figurine sits and opens its mouth in a tinny howl.)

Derek: (Awed, turns to his figurine and flicks the tail. The tail falls off and lands with a clatter on the table.) Oh my—Dammit!—I think I—

Isaac: (Turns to look just as the figure’s right leg falls off too. His eyes narrow.) Again?! (Isaac grabs Derek’s statue and cradles it and the golden one close to his chest.) Don’t touch anything else, Derek, I’m serious.

The compilation continues along this vein. Derek sits on a stool for an interview—a stool identical to those the other four are sitting on—and it collapses under him, sending him sprawling and the other group members scattering as Derek’s effort to catch himself drags two more stools down with him. Derek is cooking stir fry and the pan catches fire for no discernible reason. Derek puts a book on a shelf and the slat tips, sending books crashing into him. When Derek dexterously and impressively catches every single book, the shelf follows them and sends everything—Derek included—to the floor and out of frame. Derek is jogging in the rain for a music video and suddenly takes a nosedive, crashing into the camera. It shakes and falls with him, then cracks and goes black. Derek picks up a fortune cookie and snaps it open; instead of breaking in half like everyone else’s, Derek’s explodes; pieces fly everywhere. Derek looks in stunned silence at the shards of cookie he still holds delicately in his fingers.

There are three compilation videos of Destructo-Derek so far. As they progress, the destruction ramps up in scale—and danger.

*

When Scott appears on Stiles’s computer screen, Stiles almost falls off his chair. “What the fuck happened to your face?” he yells, pinwheeling his way back to balanced and upright.

Scott frowns, then immediately winces and smooths out his expression and takes a few measured breaths. Stiles has a feeling looking anything but stoic, like Scott’s bandmate Boyd, will pull at the butterfly bandages hooking Scott’s forehead and left cheek together, and the mini splint helping his nose heal. “If you think this is bad, you should see Derek,” Scott says. His voice comes out gummy and thick.

“What?! What happened to Derek? Is he okay? Are you okay? What even happened? When did it happen? Also how, how it happened is good too.” Stiles scrapes a hand down his face and then grabs a golden snitch fidget spinner to mess with under his desk so he doesn’t do something stupid like grab his laptop and break it trying to get as close to Scott’s face as possible to check for residual spell traces—because whenever Derek’s involved, so is his curse.

“Whoa, Stiles, slow down! My head kinda hurts still.”

“Sorry, sorry, just… Okay, when did this happen?”

“The shoot started at 5am, so maybe four hours ago? Six?” Scott shrugs. “I’m not really sure—Danny says I got knocked out when the floor broke.”

“The floor broke?! In your house?!

“What? No! The burnt house we’re shooting the music video for ‘Moon-Crossed’ in. Fuckin’ Destructo-Derek did it again! The stairs gave out under him and he knocked into me on his way down and sent us halfway through the floor! I got a splinter in my eye, Stiles!”

“Eeesh, that’s—” Stiles’s face scrunches in horrified fascination. “Did you take pictures?”

Scott snorts. “You’re so weird.”

“Scooooott,” Stiles whines.

Scott grins suddenly, and keeps grinning even through an obvious wince at the pull on his healing skin. “I got you video, dude,” he says. “Danny says just before the floor broke, I begged him to get a video of how bad it looked so I could show you.”

Stiles grins. “This is why you’re the best!” His expression sobers. “Did he get Derek in the video?”

Scott nods and does something on his computer. A moment later, Stiles’s Dropbox notifies him of a new upload to their shared folder. Stiles opens the video the moment it finishes downloading.

It…It’s bad. There are blackened pieces of bannister sticking out of Scott’s face and chest as crew rushes in to clear debris from his and Derek’s unconscious bodies and pull them away from the collapsing wooden floor. Stiles can see bone jutting out of Derek’s legs and right arm in multiple places. There’s blood everywhere. Above them, a jagged chunk of the stairs is missing.

Scott and Derek are werewolves; Stiles knows intellectually that they’ll heal, they’ll be fine by this afternoon, this calamity won’t kill them. But Derek…the curse that muddies the air around his body and slugs its grotesque way through his head and heart and spinal column…it’s barely the sickly rust-and-mud color Stiles had grown used to when seeing images of Derek in years past. Now, most of the curse is the brown-tinged black of rotten, infected blood, like an Alpha bite gone bad.

The curse is almost a decade old now—Stiles has narrowed down the time frame it was cast to the summer Derek was sixteen. Sometime during that summer, Derek Hale pissed off Kate Argent, and Kate enlisted the help of witch Jennifer Blake to make him pay for it. The spellwork is some of Jennifer’s early stuff, not as precise and intricate as the more recent spells the Interesting Times Consultants have been hired to fix, but the malice fueling Derek’s curse is all Kate, and all Allison’s digging has yet to yield an answer about its cause. Most of Jennifer’s curses kill swiftly, but this one? This one was designed to make Derek suffer and suffer until it finally took his life—and the lives of the people around him.

People like Scott.

Stiles has no doubt the only reason the curse hasn’t killed Derek already is that he’s secretly a werewolf and has that healing factor going for him.

But this…?

“Your video cut out,” Scott says, “and I can barely hear you moving. It’s…it’s really bad, isn’t it?”

Stiles pauses the video on a frame showing the entirety of Derek and Scott’s prone figures and resizes the window so he can resume the vidchat with Scott.

Scott, who is finally starting to look scared—just like Stiles has felt ever since the curse’s vomit green started giving way to the brown of dried blood, and the black of wolfsbane poisoning and rejected bites.

“It’s…” Stiles scrubs a hand over his face as if rubbing hard enough will tear away his mounting anxiety. “It’s gonna kill him soon. And it’s probably gonna kill whoever’s with him when it does. Scotty…you have to let me break it.”

“Derek still says—”

“Derek can’t see what I see, and neither can Deaton! There’s a sigil in there to make the curse invisible to druids!”

“I know, I know, but—”

“How long were you unconscious, Scott?”

Scott shifts uncomfortably.

“Scott.”

“Almost an hour,” Scott says in a high-pitched almost-whine.

“An hour?!” Stiles yells, shooting to his feet and sending his desk chair crashing to the floor behind him. “Do you know how fucked up you had to be to stay knocked out for an hour? Jesus christ, you probably had brain damage!”

“Maybe, but Stiles, I’m fine—”

“Only because you’re a werewolf! That spell’s gonna kill Derek soon, and it’s probably gonna kill you too, and I can’t let it do that, Scotty, I can’t—”

“I know—”

“So either you let me fly out there tonight so I can fix it—”

“Peter’s sending a driver to come get you now, he’s got a private plane standing by to bring you here.”

“—or I will drive down there myself right fucking now…” Stiles frowns as Scott’s words finally register. “Wait, he’s…” In a flurry of motion, Stiles rights his chair and pulls up to his laptop to squint at the screen up close and personal. “You’re letting me help? He’s letting me help? Really? Ugh, thank fuck, finally!

Stiles immediately trips his way to his closet, and then, with a grace most wouldn’t expect of him, pulls out The Derek Bag. Inside the sturdy, black leather duffel bag is everything he’s put together to help break Derek’s curse, waiting for the day Derek either invites the Interesting Times Consultants to come do it, or Stiles gets worried enough about Scott that he shows up at The Beacon Pack’s house uninvited, tells Scott to keep everyone away, traps Derek in a tiny ring of mountain ash, and fucking just does the damn thing. “When’s the driver getting here?”

Right on cue, the doorbell rings. “Got it!” Kira calls from downstairs. A few minutes later, she yells up, “Stiles?”

“Never mind, gotta go, I think he’s here. Bye, Scott!” Stiles doesn’t waste time ending the call, just shuts his laptop and shoves it into his messenger bag. Oh, right, the driver! Stiles throws open his door. “Kira, tell him I just need to grab my travel bag and then I’ll be ready to go!”

A door opens down the hall as Stiles pulls one of his travel duffels out from under his bed. “Is that The Derek Bag?” he hears Lydia ask from his doorway.

Stiles really hopes he’ll outgrow flailing around when people sneak up on him. That day is not today. “Jesus, wear a bell next time,” Stiles snaps, trying to regain equilibrium.

Lydia strides right in and fingers the handle of The Derek Bag. “It is! It’s about time he called. What finally disabused him of his denial?”

The video of Scott and Derek broken in a burnt out husk of a house flashes through Stiles’s mind’s eye.

“Hm,” Lydia says, looking him up and down disapprovingly. She turns and tears through Stiles’s closet, pulls out black skinny jeans, a tight graphic t-shirt, and the jacket Stiles wears to get laid, and thrusts them over The Derek Bag. “Put these on. And the pendant. Now.” She pauses at the other duffel on the bed. “Is this one of your regular travel bags?”

“Oh, yeah.”

“Leave it. We packed one for you already. Allison!” Lydia strides right back out, no further explanation forthcoming. “Alli, Stiles needs The Derek Suitcase!”

Ugh, they’re all cheering. Stiles kicks his door shut and strips, pulls the protective pendant out of The Derek Bag and loops it around his neck, then shimmies into Lydia’s outfit that, admittedly, makes him look pretty decent—not that Derek ever sticks around long enough to notice, and why would he anyway, he’s way out of Stiles’s league, honestly, but whatever, can’t blame a guy for trying. And so what if Stiles has been obsessed with this curse for a decade, and had a crush on Derek Hale for even longer? That doesn’t mean everyone has to make a big deal about the call finally coming in. Which they clearly are.

Probably within earshot of the driver, too, shit.

Stiles grabs The Derek Bag—well, his Derek Bag—and hurries downstairs to meet the driver and accept whatever fate his roommates cum business partners cum terrifying but wonderful friends have in store for him.

Allison hands Stiles a sleek-looking designer rolling suitcase at the bottom of the stairs.

“Go get ‘em, tiger,” Kira says, dragging him into a hug before stepping back and lightly punching his arm.

“You look good,” says Lydia, eying him up and down with approval before pulling him in, kissing his cheek, and shoving him towards the person—driver—waiting at the door. “Good luck.”

“Yeah,” Allison says, hugging him. Before he can resume his walk to the driver—

Wait, Peter sent Cora Hale? He must know they’re itching to get her to join their team of consultants, and she’s local. That crafty bastard! Giving Stiles at least three hours of travel time to convince Cora to join them is probably his way of bribing Stiles to leave immediately—

—Allison re-snares his attention by putting a hand on the suitcase to stop him. Stiles does his best to put his racing thoughts on hold and turns back to listen to her. “Tell him I’m...” She pauses and corrects herself. “The Argent family is sorry for Kate’s actions. There’s no call to cast a spell like that, none, and my dad and I will find her and stop her from…from hurting anyone else.” Allison gives him a wan smile and steps back.

Stiles can’t help smiling at all of them. “I will. Thanks, guys.” God he loves them. They’re his three badass fucking furies—at home, in the office, in the field—and he wouldn’t give them up for anything.

“This is sweet, but we’re burning daylight,” Cora snaps from the door. “Plane takes off in an hour and noon traffic is a bitch.”

And it’s time to go.

So Stiles does.

*

Stiles finds out in the car on the way to the TBP house that Derek still doesn’t think he’s been cursed. The Beacon Pack manager, Peter Hale, told him Stiles is coming to get his picture taken with Derek, and to visit Scott.

Apparently, only the people in the car, Scott, and TBP’s head cameraman, Danny, know Stiles is coming in his official capacity, not just as Scott’s guest.

“Don’t worry, I’ll help you hold him down,” Cora assures Stiles.

“As will I,” Peter says from the passenger seat.

Both sound far too amused.

Stiles snorts. “You can’t just tell him to hold still?”

Peter sucks in a breath. “My nephew is…highly resistant to the notion that he’s cursed. Violently resistant, of late.”

Ugh, he’ll have to get a good look when he arrives, but if the anti-druid sigil is layered over an anti-Derek sigil, trapping Derek to break the curse is probably Stiles’s best bet; the curse will actively fight Derek’s ability to perceive or entertain its existence. When Stiles tells them so, Cora and Peter quiet, and the tension in the car ramps up into uncomfortable territory.

Violently, Peter had said. If the spell is designed to defend its tie to Derek, like a parasite… “Is there any chance we could do this outside? Like, at least fifty feet from the nearest building? Is there a private, open space we could use for this? I’m starting to worry the house will come down on us.”

Peter redirects the driver, and they drop Stiles, Cora, and The Derek Bag off at a grassy clearing near a trail head at an empty park outside the city. “We’ll be back soon.”

“Bring Scott! And Danny!” Stiles calls after the car.

Cora cocks her head slightly. “They’ll be here,” she informs him a moment later.

“Alrighty then,” Stiles says, rubbing his hands together and assessing the clearing. “Let’s get set up.”

*

When everything’s in place, and Cora’s been instructed not to let anyone near him and Derek until he gives the all-clear, Stiles texts Lydia.

Stiles: Is Kira wit u?
Stiles: Curse maybe has failsafe???
Stiles: Gonna need that backup spellwork asap

Strawberry Blonde Goddess: We started two hours ago.

Stiles: I left 3 hrs ago

Strawberry Blonde Goddess: I was there. Text me right before you start. You wearing the pendant?

Stiles: *thumbs up emoji*

Stiles is putting his phone in his pocket when it vibrates again; new text from Lydia.

Strawberry Blonde Goddess: Be careful.

Stiles: K

Strawberry Blonde Goddess: I’m serious. Don’t push yourself. If it’s too much, disengage.

Stiles: ?
Stiles: What arnt u telling me
Stiles: ???

Strawberry Blonde Goddess: There’s an itch in my throat. Be careful.

Stiles pauses, thumbs hovering over the keyboard. What do you even say to that? He finally sends:

Stiles: K

Stiles doesn’t tell Lydia he has no intention of disengaging. She probably already knows.

Stiles doesn’t tell Cora about the mountain ash pouch in his pocket. If she can smell it, she doesn’t ask.

Stiles doesn’t tell Scott there is a manila envelope with his name on it in The Derek Bag with instructions to follow if things go horribly wrong, and letters to give to his loved ones just in case.

Instead, when the car pulls up and Peter walks into the clearing with Scott, Derek, and Danny in tow, Stiles wraps Scott in a bear hug; slips Danny his business card with scrawled instructions to break the mountain ash circles if Stiles is incapacitated—Danny clearly thinks it’s Stiles’s number, again, and that Stiles still has a crush on him, and Stiles winks to preserve the illusion; and re-introduces himself to Derek with a jaunty wave while trying not to stare at the spellwork he’s finally seeing up close and personal instead of from across a room as Derek beats a hasty retreat. Usually, when Stiles visits Scott, Derek avoids him like wolfsbane.

Derek had looked Stiles up and down as they walked up, almost like he was interested—Lydia’s outfits are always on point—but when their eyes met the curse flurried around his feet and Derek tripped. He managed to stay on his feet, but when he looked back up he was blushing, and the minute he got within a few feet of Stiles, his customary meeting-Stiles glare had slammed into place. “So. You’re Stiles,” he says, nodding by way of greeting.

It’s kind of a running joke that Derek never remembers Stiles exists, much less that they’ve met several times since Scott joined The Beacon Pack.

It isn’t a funny joke.

Derek sniffs the air a few times—subtly, but Stiles can spot a scenting werewolf at fifty paces—and his eyes widen in surprise before narrowing and flashing blue at Stiles. Derek’s hands curl into fists at his sides. “What are you,” he snarls, with no questioning inflection whatsoever.

“Here we go,” sighs Peter.

“Hey,” Scott says, stepping between Derek and Stiles, “you know Stiles! He’s my best friend, and he’s a huge fan! You promised you’d be nice!”

Slowly, with what looks like tremendous effort, Derek’s fingers uncurl. “Why does he have no scent?” he finally grits out.

“Uh…” Scott looks in bafflement at Derek, then Cora and Peter. “He does? He smells like he always does?”

Cora nods curtly.

“Derek, I shouldn’t have to keep telling you this,” Peter says, voice tinged with exasperation. “He has a scent. Your nose is acting up again.”

“Oh.” Derek’s shoulders hunch and he looks away.

Stiles feels bad for him. It’s not Derek’s fault; Stiles can see the curse gumming up his nose. It’s kind of distracting.

“Let’s get this over with,” Derek says. “Where do you want to do the pictures?”

“Wait, I need my—thanks.” Danny accepts an expensive-looking camera from the driver, loops the strap around his neck, and starts fiddling with it. “If you have a spot picked out, go and decide how you want to pose while I get ready.”

”Cool!” Stiles says, letting his inner Derek fanboy out to support the charade. “Dude, thanks so much for agreeing to do this with me, I know you don’t like doing fan pictures outside, like, scheduled times and places with the group, and I know you’re only doing this because you owe Scott a favor, but still, it’s really great of you to…” He rambles on autopilot as he leads Derek past the first mountain ash circle and swipes it closed behind him, passing it off as the excited hand-waving he’s prone to. Nobody seems to notice it close.

A few yards later, Stiles and Derek cross into the outermost ring of purification stones—the first of three layers that will help siphon off the curse’s negative energy and weaken it.

Stiles looks at Derek, hoping he’s beginning to relax, or at least not getting suspicious again—and leaps back, hands swatting the air in front of him.

Derek frowns at him. “You okay?”

Stiles sucks in a shaky breath. “Thought I saw something,” he says. Namely, the curse trying to grab ahold of him. Before when they’d crossed paths, the curse seemed hellbent on ignoring him, avoiding him just like Derek, but now? Now it’s focused on him—something infinitely more dangerous, especially now that the curse is actively malignant, deadly. From the corner of his eye, Stiles watches the curse spin out scorpion tail-like tendrils from the length of Derek’s spine, black and viscous and pointed. They stretch toward Stiles and hover like they’re watching. “You really don’t like me, do you,” he mutters at the curse.

Derek freezes, then cocks his head and flushes. “It’s not that,” he says with a surreptitious glance back at where the others are waiting. “It’s not you, it’s…I’m just…I’m not usually this bad at remembering people. Or this rude when I meet them. It’s not your fault.”

“Chill, dude, I’m not offended.” Anymore, Stiles adds silently, remembering years past. He wonders which of the werewolves at the edge of the field chewed Derek out for not disagreeing with Stiles’s assessment immediately. His mouth twists into a rueful grin. “I know I’m kind of an acquired taste,” he admits. “Oh—the spot’s right there.” He points as he steps inside the middle circle of purification stones and, a few yards later, takes his place inside the innermost ring. He ushers Derek to stand in front of him as he gets out his phone and texts Lydia he’s starting the curse-breaking.

Derek stands where Stiles directs, then shyly admits, “My sisters say that about me too, sometimes.”

Through the curse, Stiles sees his eyes glint with flecks of green in the late afternoon sunshine, and for a moment, Stiles gets lost in them.

The pendant connecting him to Lydia and Kira’s power amplification and protection spells suddenly throbs hot against his chest—a curse tendril is poking at his side, testing his defenses.

Stiles pockets his phone, surreptitiously pulls a handful of mountain ash out and drops it, and wills it into a tight circle around Derek before holding out his hand. “I think we got off on the wrong foot again. Fresh start?” he asks.

Derek nods and tries to shake Stiles’s hand.

The mountain ash barrier is so tight around him, his arms stay trapped at his sides. Derek tries to rock back, then forward, and barely moves an inch in either direction. “What the hell do you think you’re doing?” he snarls. “Open it. Now.”

Stiles tunes Derek out and gets his mind right, his magic right, his spell-breaking priorities in order, and finally takes an up close and personal, unhurried look at the curse he’s about to break.

It seems to know it’s in danger—tendrils of it have snaked out and are swooping around Derek with frenetic speed, shorter ones trying to get inside Stiles’s shields, longer ones reaching around him, trying to envelop him in a writhing, noxious darkness.

It’s now or never.

Stiles pulls a knife, slices Derek’s shirt open over his thrashing protests, takes a deep breath, and simultaneously presses his own hands over Derek’s heart and against his forehead where his third eye would be.

The moment Stiles touches Derek, the curse can touch him, and it does. It very much does. The tendrils sting distractingly as they try to burrow through his skin and take him down.

They have no chance; Lydia’s spell is feeding the purifying foxfire of Kira’s magic into his skin. As much as the tendrils try to burrow, each attempt is met with a shimmering glow of temporarily visible foxfire barrier.

Priority one: make sure the curse can’t kill Derek.

Stiles pushes his magic through the writhing curse and into Derek’s body. The spell wants to kill Derek, so protecting him has to come before destroying the curse. Stiles burns away the spellwork coating Derek’s heart and brain and spinal column, the places a connection to the curse can turn lethal between one breath and the next. He burns those connections away with more power than finesse; it’s probably a dangerous waste of energy, but if he’d gone slower and the curse weren’t so focused on hurting him, it could easily murder Derek with those pathways.

“Oh my god,” Derek gasps when the noxious coating over his mind is gone, “I remember you. I remember you! You’re Mrs. Stilinski’s kid!”

Stiles feels that like a punch to the gut. He tries to make himself tune Derek out.

Priority two: clear Derek’s senses (and probable disconnect from his wolf).

Stiles carefully funnels Sparkfire through the spell tissue gumming Derek’s eyes and ears and nose in filthy sludge, and hears Derek gasp again. He grins wolfishly. Derek probably hasn’t had access to the full extent of his werewolfy senses since he was sixteen—he’s probably getting the bitten wolf experience right now, like Scott did when Talia’s bite took.

Focus.

Next comes the sigil blinding Derek to the spell—nestled beneath the druid-blind clause, as Stiles had suspected—so he’ll stop thrashing and let Stiles work.

Stiles burns through those markings with no small amount of glee. Abruptly, Derek stills against his hands.

“Oh no,” Derek says. “No, no, no, your scent, that’s right, you’re my—fuck! You have to get away from me, Stiles, right now! It’s not gonna kill me anymore, she designed it to kill you!

“Hold still,” Stiles snaps; Derek’s thrashing even harder now, but Stiles has no intention of backing down. He needs to focus on following the threads still latched onto Derek, and mostly he does, razing a path of broken spell clauses in and out of the air around Derek’s body, burning through it line by line, whorl by whorl, loop by loop, sigil by sigil, leaving only the ghost of Sparkfire in his wake.

He’s destroyed most of the spell tentacles reaching for him, and the air around Derek is entirely curse free. Derek is entirely curse free. Stiles starts chasing the spell back to himself, burning it away before it can break through Lydia and Kira’s shielding. He takes a relieved breath as he feels sunlight beam down onto his face through the cleared space above him. It’s almost done. He’s got the curse on the ropes.

That’s when he feels it:

The pendant cracking.

The curse severing his connection to Lydia and Kira.

All his protection spells, suddenly gone.

Stiles hasn’t devoted any energy to protection spells for himself because Lydia and Kira had that handled, and they’d known it would take all of Stiles’s energy to break the curse, he couldn’t half-ass it energetically speaking. So now he’s fucking defenseless. Stiles needs to disengage. He can protect himself if he disengages right now. The curse won’t get its hooks into him if he does it now.

But if Stiles lets go of Derek, lets go of the curse to shield himself, it will wrap itself back around Derek, and probably straight up kill him now that it knows Stiles has its number. He’s burned away all its instructions, but the curse’s deadliest part, its driving force, is Kate’s venomous intent, and there’s more than enough of that left to kill even a werewolf.

Stiles pushes his magic out from Derek and keeps—fucking—burning.

Curse tentacles lance through his body, determined to take him since he won’t let it take Derek.

Stiles’s vision turns black around the edges as pain begins blooming all over his body, planting the oil slick aftertaste of Kate Argent’s malice under his skin.

He really needs to stay conscious right now. “Tell Danny break the circle,” he tries to tell Derek, but the curse chokes the breath out of him too fast. He can feel his heartbeat slowing.

“Stiles!” Derek is shouting, fear etched across his face as he frantically tries to break through the mountain ash barrier.

He’s trying to help me, Stiles realizes as pain drops his arms from Derek’s skin.

Derek is begging now, begging him to stay awake, to fight, screaming for Scott and Peter, for Danny to break the mountain ash barrier and fucking help him.

Stiles collapses under the curse’s onslaught. It enfolds him in darkness, in despair. He can’t see anything. He can’t breathe. He can’t move.

“She’s killing my mate,” Derek whines from somewhere above Stiles. “She’s not even here, and she’s killing him.”

What?

“I just killed my mate,” Derek says. He sounds stunned, broken. “This is all my fault.”

Stiles feels a flash of indignation. He hopes to god Derek doesn’t really believe that. Anger slashes a hole in the despair covering him like a shroud, and Stiles sucks in air like a drowning man.

Something hard nudges his hand where it lies in the grass. The thrum of magic buzzes under his wrist. Mountain ash. He should really…let Derek…out…

With what feels like the the dying gasps of his Spark, Stiles breaks the mountain ash circle trapping Derek.

Immediately, someone picks Stiles up, cradles him, moves him.

The next three things happen almost at once:

Stiles feels the echo of a scream ringing in his mind. The scream carries with it the burn of familiar, purifying foxfire.

The curse loosens its hold on Stiles, shifts some of its focus to the person holding him.

The sticky film of despair clouding Stiles’s mind and judgement begins seeping away, leached into a fresh ring of purification stones.

Later, Stiles will consciously put together what caused those three events, and he will marvel at his luck. Now, Stiles feels just clear-headed enough, just free enough, for rage to burn through him at what the curse has almost done—at what it’s still trying to do.

He can’t let it win. He won’t.

Stiles’s magic roars out of him in a desperate explosion of shimmering heat and determined rage that nearly knocks his rescuer off his feet. Stiles burns the spell out of his body, burns its pain and despair and malicious filth out of his mind, and suddenly he’s strong again, strong enough to chase it down on all sides like the shockwave of a bomb blast. He is ruthless and relentless, growing stronger the longer he burns. His Spark is an inferno. He mows down the curse with brute force and terrifying speed, and leaves nothing behind.

When his vision kicks in again, Stiles sees blue sky and sunshine and Derek’s shaken face staring down at him. The air around them feels…clean. But is it really? “Lemme down,” he mumbles, trying to drop to his feet from Derek’s bridal carry.

“You’re—you’re breathing!” Derek looks and sounds stunned. “Scott, he’s breathing!”

“Need to make sure it’s gone,” Stiles insists, struggling, eyes frantically darting around the parts of Derek he can see.

“Okay, whoa, hold on, just let me…” Derek sets him on his feet and holds him at arm’s length. Holds because he’s mostly supporting Stiles’s weight since Stiles feels ungainly as a baby giraffe.

His gaze burns over Derek, head to toe. No curse obscures him now, it’s just sexiness all the way down. “Turn,” he says, “need to check your back.”

Derek looks hesitant, but at Stiles’s insistence, he lets go of Stiles and, when he doesn’t fall over, makes a slow turn, arms out, everything on display.

No curse.

Just a sexy, sexy man with an incredible ass.

Finally. Stiles fucking did it.

An elated smile breaks across his face. “I think we’re good,” he slurs, before a shock of laughter rips through him. An onslaught of relief and fatigue crashes through him then, and he suddenly knows: “I’m gonna pass out now.”

Derek whips around—smooth as a werewolf motherfucker and perfectly sculpted pecs taunting Stiles through the rip in his shirt—and catches Stiles before he falls.

And for a little while, that’s all she wrote.

*

YouTube Video
Channel: The Beacon Pack
Title: TBP TV episode 58, “Smooth Operator Derek: the new King of Sexy?”
Posted: June 16th
Length: 9:27

Timestamp: 3:51

Caption box (with a cutout of Jackson’s pouting face bouncing next to it): Jackson’s jealous! Let’s see what’s upsetting TBP’s international King of Sexy!

Jackson: (sitting in a front row auditorium seat holding a camera on the end of a selfie stick, as shown by clips splicing together Jackson’s video of himself with the TBP TV cameraperson’s) This is bullshit! I hate him so much. Do you see this?

The camera flips to Derek performing a dance onstage with Scott that’s far more acrobatic than Derek’s—and the group’s—usual fare. Derek is nailing it, moving with liquid grace, and when Scott stumbles right into Derek’s path, Derek leaps over him like a panel out of a superhero comic and spins right into his next dance move on Scott’s other side. Camera flips back to Jackson.

Jackson: He’s been doing shit like that for two months! How is he suddenly not a walking disaster? What happened to Destructo-Derek?

Boyd: (laughs offscreen) Jealous?

Camera cuts to Boyd, standing near the stage and drinking a bottle of water while he watches Derek and Scott rehearse. Sweat gleams on his neck and forehead. The onstage run-through of his solo finished at timestamp 3:14.

Jackson: Something weird’s going on. You don’t just go from the god of destruction to… (he motions at the stage)

Isaac: (offscreen) The god of pelvic sorcery?

Onstage, Derek and Scott roll their hips to the rhythm of ‘Moon-Crossed’, the track blasting from the speakers. When Scott does the dance move, it feels joyful, playful, flirtatious—but ultimately innocent. When Derek does the same move, it looks cocky and lewd, like he’s tantalizing the audience with a glimpse of how deftly he can fuck.

Video cuts to Isaac popping into the row behind Jackson and clapping him on the shoulders, giving him a hard shake. Boyd and Isaac laugh at Jackson’s frustration. Back onstage, Derek and Scott are snickering too, although it’s unclear how they’d hear the conversation over such loud music and their earpieces.

Camera cuts between the offstage members of The Beacon Pack as they converse.

Isaac: I’m pretty sure he had help.

Boyd: An intervention, I heard.

Isaac: Jackson, don’t tell me you miss Destructo-Derek! Remember when he dropped your electric razor in the toilet?

Boyd: And broke your phone?

Isaac: Twice. Oh—and when he made the balcony fall off the house.

Boyd: And the times he almost burned down the house.

Isaac: And when he broke both the beds in his hotel room!

Jackson: (disdainful) Uh, Isaac? He broke those last week.

Isaac: (laughing mischievously) Yeah, and I’m pretty sure he had help.

Boyd: The same help.

Boyd and Isaac titter as they glance periodically at something offscreen on the other side of Jackson.

Jackson: (huffs and stands) Whatever, I’m still the internationally acknowledged sexiest person in this group.

Boyd: Actually, Derek’s been looking more and more sexy the past few months. You might not be the King of Sexy anymore, Jackson. What do you think, Isaac?

Isaac: Oh, I’d totally have sex with Derek. You? (He looks at the camera.)

Cameraman: (offscreen) I definitely would. We should all have sex with Derek.

Jackson: (betrayed) Et tu, Danny? Really?

Cameraman (Danny): (offscreen) Sorry, Jackson, you’re not my type. Derek, though… (he chuckles, briefly shaking the camera)

Jackson: Hey! I’m everyone’s type.

Jackson sniffs primly and stalks backstage. As the camera follows him, it pans past a mole-speckled man, dressed in nerd chic, sitting in the audience and raptly watching the performance—mouth open, face flushed, hips shifting restlessly as the camera darts quickly away.

Video cuts to Derek’s smirk as he watches something in the audience—presumably Jackson rage-quitting the auditorium.

Scott frowns and shoves Derek, who startles and looks chagrined. Scott glances offstage, and his expression softens when he looks back at Derek. He shoves Derek again, playfully this time, says something inaudible as he pulls out his earpiece, then flags down a tech and holds it out to her with consternation. Derek, looking out at the audience, abruptly bursts out laughing. The camera zooms in on his wide smile, which he’s unsuccessfully hiding behind a fist.

Caption box (with a cutout of Derek’s smiling face bouncing next to it): We’ve caught Derek laughing 13 times today! Can he make it to 15 before rehearsal ends?

Video cuts to Boyd and Isaac rolling their eyes and grinning wistfully.

Isaac: Someday I’m gonna be that ridiculous.

Boyd: (nodding) Definitely Relationship Goals.