Chapter 1: Triskelion
"Think of it like gunpowder. It's just powder until a spark ignites it. You need to be that spark, Stiles. If this is going to work, you have to believe it."
These were the words Deaton said to Stiles only a week before. It had been a lot of pressure at first, but he managed to pull it off. He'd managed to surround the building with just enough mountain ash even though he'd been several feet short. He chalked it up to some supernatural ability the mountain ash had, but Deaton had said that he needed to be the spark.
Now as Stiles stood in front of his bathroom mirror, he wondered what that really meant. His long fingers traced over the black ink that had surfaced on his skin at some point. Had it been there yesterday? He didn't know. He hadn't noticed it until now, fresh out of the shower.
The familiar mark caused nausea to build up in the pit of his stomach. He didn't know much about the supernatural world, but he did know what this symbol was. A triskelion. The symbol was barely the size of a half dollar sitting just under Stiles' collarbone.
Stiles had never thought of getting a tattoo, what with his fear of needles and all. However, this wasn't exactly a tattoo, he was pretty sure tattoos didn't just show up on your skin overnight.
He let out a heavy sigh as he pulled on his t shirt covering the mark. The only reason it made Stiles so uneasy was because the only other time he'd seen that symbol was on Derek's back. The exact symbol, the size of Stiles' fist, sat between the alpha's shoulder blades.
He was about to meet Scott and Allison in the school library, he could swing by Deaton's on his way. Maybe he would know more about what this meant.
Deaton was just finishing with a patient when Stiles arrived.
"Stiles, what can I do for you?" Deaton asked opening the examination room door for Stiles to enter.
"I uh, I had a question actually," Stiles toed the floor nervously, his eyes planted on the black and white checkered pattern.
"I'll give you any answers I have," Deaton spoke patiently.
"The mountain ash you gave me..." Stiles paused not looking up.
"What about it?" Deaton urged Stiles to continue, a curiosity to his tone.
"Why did I have to do it?" Stiles raised his head to gauge Deaton's reaction to his question.
"You're human. No supernatural creature can touch it," Deaton explained simply.
"What about you? You're a druid and you can touch it," Stiles pointed out.
Deaton nodded, "You are correct, but I have magical properties. Druids aren't technically supernatural. We're in the same family as the Fey."
Stiles nodded. He recalled reading something about the Fey being separated from the supernatural the same way humans were.
"Could I..." Stiles bit at his bottom lip anxiously, "Could I have magical properties?" Stiles finally asked.
Deaton tilted his head slightly, "Why do you ask?"
Stiles let out a sigh before pulling the collar of his shirt down to expose the triskelion.
Deaton's eyebrows rose in surprise.
"What?" Stiles didn't like that look.
"Where'd you get that?" Deaton asked not taking his eyes off the mark.
"I just noticed it about an hour ago. It just showed up. I don't know when," Stiles shrugged, releasing his shirt.
Deaton turned to a cabinet and pulled out an unmarked book.
"I definitely believe you have magical properties," Deaton nodded as he flipped through the book.
"Okay..." Stiles waited for the vet to continue.
"That symbol is a common druid symbol. However, it doesn't typically just show up. There have been stories of marks showing up, but it's incredibly rare."
"Okay, so what does it mean?" Stiles shifted his weight from one foot to the other, anxious to find out.
"Some druids that use their spark for the first time will have a symbol or a mark show up on their skin," Deaton pointed to the page he landed on, "The symbol usually pertains to a certain person in the druids life, an alpha usually, or a werewolf that is destined to become an alpha at some point."
Stiles felt the blood drain from his face.
"Sometimes the symbol can be a birthmark or a family crest, or...a tattoo," Deaton looked up, meeting Stiles' eyes with his own.
"Why would Derek's tattoo show up on me?" Stiles asked uncertainly. He wasn't sure he wanted to know.
"Every once in a while, fate will match an emissary with an alpha. I believe you are Derek's fated emissary," Deaton explained gently.
Stiles reached for the nearest counter, attempting to steady himself as a wave of dizziness washed over him. He couldn't be Derek's emissary. He barely knew the guy much less trusted him.
"Have you noticed an unexplained connection with Derek? Or perhaps something that draws you to him?" Deaton asked gently, helping Stiles to stay balanced.
"What? No," Stiles shook his head.
Immediately images of Derek poisoned with Kates' wolfsbane bullet flashed in his head. Stiles had spent the entire evening helping keep him alive.
Another image of Stiles helping Derek break into the police station flashed. Then him missing his lacrosse game to help hack into the hospital computers. Then him holding Derek up in the school pool for two hours when he was paralyzed from the Kanima.
Maybe he was being pulled to Derek without even realizing it.
"Stiles?" Deaton touched Stiles' shoulder gently, pulling him from his thoughts.
"I have to go. Thank you," Stiles said, hurrying towards the door. He had to see Derek.
Chapter 2: Late
Stiles parked his jeep in front of the tall building Derek had recently started staying in. Stiles had only been here once, very briefly, a few days back. The tall brick outside was ominous to say the least and the inside was no better.
"This is ridiculous," Stiles threw his head back into the headrest. He couldn't be Derek's emissary. He hardly knew the guy. There had to be a better explanation. There had to be a way out of it at least. How could he even be an emissary? It just didn't make sense. The last few months had flipped his world upside down and he'd handled it like a champ, but this? This was too much.
A knock on his window made him jump. He gripped at his chest as he rolled down the window for Erica.
"What are you doing Stiles?" She asked with a smirk.
"Oh, ya know..." Stiles waved a hand around aimlessly.
"Derek wants to know why you're sitting out here alone," She crossed her arms, pushing her boobs up and practically into Stiles' face.
Stiles bit at his bottom lip as he forced his eyes up to the window he knew was Derek's. "I just had a question is all."
"Are you gonna come up and ask it?"
Stiles grabbed his phone to see a missed call from Scott.
"I have to meet Scott. It's not important, don't worry about it." Stiles waved a dismissive hand as he put the jeep in reverse.
Erica tilted her head in question but backed away much to Stiles' relief.
When he pulled up to the library which was thankfully not too far from Derek's, he was even more nervous. How would he tell Scott? He was a part of Scott's pack not Derek's. But if Deaton had been right, then this symbol meant he was supposed to be in Derek's pack.
"Stiles, there you are," Scott gave his friend a pat on the shoulder as he approached.
"Hey, sorry I'm late, I-" Stiles paused he knew if he lied Scott would hear it and push for the truth. "I didn't mean to be."
"It's fine, we were just getting started." Scott gestured behind him to where Allison was sitting at a table with piles of books.
"These are all the books on that symbol you found?" Stiles asked, stepping past Scott.
"These are all books that might be able to help. We're not totally sure yet," Allison smiled up at Stiles.
"We better get to reading then," Stiles took a seat across from the brunette. He could use the distraction from his newly acquired tattoo. Could it even be called that?
The words on the page in front of Stiles were just meaningless letters. He might have been looking at them, but he wasn't actually looking at them. Instead his mind was a million miles away.
"Stiles?" Allison's airy voice broke Stiles from his thoughts.
"Huh?" Stiles looked across the table where she and Scott were watching him curiously.
"Are you okay? You seem...worried" Scott asked in a concerned tone.
Stiles had to keep from rolling his eyes. Scott was clearly smelling his chemo signals. A trait he'd hated since he found out werewolves could do it. He was very aware that everyone monitored his mood.
"First you were late, which you never are, and you've been staring at the same page for twenty minutes," Allison added when Stiles didn't respond.
Stiles wouldn't have been late if he didn't stop by Derek's, but he wasn't going to tell them that. They would start to ask questions, questions Stiles wasn't ready to answer. How was he supposed to tell Scott that he was fated to be Derek's emissary and what did that even mean?
"Stiles, you can talk to us," Scott offered gently, growing concerned over his friend's silence.
"Do you believe in fate?" Stiles asked ignoring their concern.
"Fate?" Scott repeated in confusion.
"Yeah, like you were meant to meet someone or do something for a reason," Stiles waved an impatient hand around.
"Yeah. I mean I think Scott and I were meant to meet," Allison smiled, looking at the guy next to her.
Stiles rolled his eyes. "Not like soulmates, but like fate deciding Scott would get bit or deciding that we would run into Derek in the woods that day..." Stiles trailed off.
"I never really thought about it," Scott shrugged. "Why?"
Stiles dropped his shoulders slightly. "I dunno, I was just wondering."
Scott was about to push the issue when his phone started to buzz.
"It's Derek. He knows what the symbol is and he wants to meet up," Scott read from the text.
Stiles' heart hammered nervously in his chest at the mention of Derek.
"I thought you didn't trust him?" Allison frowned.
"I don't, but in the end, he helped us with Jackson and Gerard," Scott closed the book in front of him as he stood.
"He didn't really help with Gerard, you kind of forced him, literally," Stiles pointed out.
"I know it wasn't the right way to do things, I apologized for that," Scott sighed.
"I was just saying," Stiles shrugged. He wondered if the protective feeling he had towards Derek was related to the mark somehow.
"I think I'll skip the meeting. You guys go ahead," Allison remained seated.
"I'll call you later," Scott leaned over a pressed a kiss to Allison's lips.
Stiles couldn't blame Allison for staying behind. She had a rough history with the Hale's and Derek's new betas. Stiles almost wished he could stay behind as well, but he wanted to know about this strange symbol that started showing up in town. Deaton had thought it to be a warning of sorts but was unsure of it's exact origin.
Stiles could handle Derek, he just hoped Erica wouldn't pry about why he'd been there earlier. One could hope anyway.
Stiles parked his jeep in front of Derek's loft for the second time that day. He had been thankful Scott hadn't pushed him to talk about what was bothering him. Instead he rambled about the dinner date he had at Allison's house with her and her dad. Apparently Argent was coming around despite losing his wife.
Stiles cut the engine when Scott's hand reached out to grab Stiles' arm. "Hey, I know you don't trust him, but we need to know what this is about. The symbols were left in places only we would see it. We each had one in our locker at school and there was one painted outside Derek's loft."
Stiles only nodded. He knew Scott could hear the hammering of his heart. If Scott wanted to believe it was because Derek made him nervous, well who was Stiles to tell him he was wrong. It was technically true, but only in the sense that now they shared something deeper than even Stiles knew.
Stiles followed Scott up to Derek's loft fighting to keep his scent from giving him away. He knew it didn't do any good.
The door to Derek's loft opened to reveal the flirty blonde, "Hey Scott," She then turned her predatory smile to the human, "Hi, Stiles."
"Erica," Stiles gave a nod as they stepped inside.
"So what did you find?" Scott asked walking over to where Derek was standing next to a table littered with books.
"I knew I recognized this sign from somewhere, it's a threat," Derek started not looking up from the book in front of him.
"Obviously," Stiles snorted.
Derek looked over at Stiles with a look Stiles couldn't read. He feared for a moment that Derek would mention his previous visit, but the alpha turned back to the book in front of him without a word.
"It's a pack symbol. Every pack has one," Derek started.
Stiles swallowed hard as the mark hidden under his shirt burned with a reminder that he knew too well what a pack symbol was.
"What's wrong with you?" Boyd asked quietly, looking at Stiles with narrowed eyes.
"I'm in a room surrounded by werewolves, that's what's wrong with me," Stiles quipped. He often hid his discomfort behind his sarcasm.
This seemed to catch Derek's attention, "That's never bothered you before. Do you know something?"
Stiles guessed his heart rate picked up by the raised brows in the room.
"N-not about that, no." Stiles gestured to the picture of the symbol laid out on the table.
Derek studied him for a moment before moving on, much to Stiles' relief.
"It took me a little while to find what pack it belonged to. His name is Deucalion. He's...ruthless. He collects wolves from different packs and makes them more powerful before recruiting them as part of his pack.
"More powerful how?" Scott asked looking at the book laid out in front of Derek.
"He makes alpha's kill their own pack. It gives them...a boost of sorts," Derek explained.
"That's awful," Stiles frowned. That meant he would be coming for Derek. Something in Stiles' stomach twisted at the thought.
"Then why leave the symbols for me? I'm not part of your pack," Scott crossed his arms, as if it was a declaration he didn't intend to change.
"He doesn't just take Alpha's. He also makes them."
"How?" Erica piped in then, a look of disgust on her face.
"He convinces the beta to kill their alpha before killing the rest of the pack."
"He doesn't want you; he wants Scott to kill you," Stiles glanced between his best friend and the alpha.
"He likely thinks that Scott can be easily convinced," Derek nodded.
The twisting in Stiles' stomach turned to nausea. Derek was technically his alpha and Scott was his best friend. If Deucalion couldn't convince Scott to kill Derek, then he'll try and convince Derek to kill Scott. Either way one of them dies.
"Stiles?" Isaac noticed the way the human paled and how he reached out for something to grip onto.
"Hey, you alright?" Isaac reached out to steady Stiles as a dizzy spell washed over him
Stiles only nodded, not trusting his voice. Today had been too much, between learning that he had magical properties, that he was meant to be Derek's emissary and now this pack of alpha's was coming to kill everyone he knew and loved, it was too much.
"Hey, we're gonna handle this. You don't need to worry about it," Scott's hand landed on Stiles' shoulder, heavily.
Derek watched silently with curious eyes.
"I just need to eat," Stiles lied. He didn't care if the wolves in the room heard it.
"I'll go pick up something," Erica offered cheerily.
"I have to meet my mom. I promised her I'd do dinner tonight. She's finally gonna let me explain...ya know. Are you gonna be okay here?" Scott asked as he led Stiles to the couch to sit down.
"Yeah, take the jeep. I can walk home later," Stiles nodded. He knew that this talk with his mother was a big deal. She hadn't talked to him since she found out he was a werewolf. Besides, this could give him the time he needed to talk to Derek.
"Look after him," Scott said, looking up at the alpha.
"We will," Boyd nodded, taking a seat next to Stiles and placing a hand on his back.
Once Scott left, Derek crossed his arms and looked down at the human. "You're not just hungry."
Stiles bit down on his lip. "I'm dealing with a shit load of information today and it got the best of me." That wasn't a lie and it also wasn't the whole truth, but werewolves couldn't hear half truths in his heart beat. He knew that from experience. He was slowly learning to manipulate his words so that his secrets remained undiscovered.
"Is that why you were here earlier?" Derek asked.
"Sort of," Stiles didn't look up at the alpha.
"You're nervous. You haven't been nervous around me in weeks."
Stiles squinted up at Derek, if he didn't know any better, he'd have thought Derek was upset by Stiles being nervous around him. "I'm not nervous because I'm near you."
Isaac snorted, "That was a lie."
Derek's expression looked disappointed for a split second.
"It's complicated," Stiles' eyes dropped to his lap. His hands wringing anxiously.
"You can just say you don't want to talk about it," Derek offered then, his arms still crossed over his chest.
"Like you'd let it go," Stiles scoffed.
Derek's jaw clenched. "Consider this me letting it go," Derek put his hands up in mock surrender before backing up a few steps.
Stiles frowned at the alpha but didn't respond.
"You'll talk when you're ready."
"That's awfully trusting of you."
"I heard what you said to Scott after the incident with Gerard. Consider this a sign of my appreciation."
"Just cause I'm part of Scott's pack doesn't mean I always agree with him. I know you two don't get along but...I'm neutral ground, like Switzerland," Stiles waved a hand around enthusiastically. He tried to ignore the metaphorical burn on his skin where his new mark sat reminding him that he wasn't going to remain neutral long.
"And when it comes to me killing Scott or Scott killing me, will you still be Switzerland, or will you help hold me down this time?" Derek turned away then, clearly not expecting an answer.
Stiles felt the nausea build in his stomach again. He wanted to say he'd pick Scott. He should pick Scott but something in him feared for Derek's safety just as much. He knew now that it was this unseen connection between them. Once again, the mark burned under his clothing, as if begging to be revealed. But he couldn't, not until he knew more.
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Chapter 4: Recordings
The room was silent as Derek and Boyd poured over the books they had, trying to learn as much as they could about Deucalion. The books he had laid out were recordings of previous packs. Stiles would have loved to hop on the computer but felt out of place here. He wondered if he should have just left with Scott.
"You said you're dealing with a shit load of information today. What kind?" Isaac asked from his spot on the love seat across from Stiles.
Stiles cleared his throat. "I uh... I found out that I have a spark." He mumbled, not looking at Isaac as he spoke.
This caused Derek's head to snap up. "You're what?"
Stiles' was sure the wolves could hear the way his heart was hammering in his chest.
"The mountain ash I used to trap Jackson...It ignited a spark," Stiles clarified, his eyes remained on his hands. His fingers were rapping against his knee anxiously.
"How'd you find that out?" Isaac pressed.
"Deaton," Stiles answered vaguely. He knew he needed to tell Derek about the mark, but he just couldn't. He wanted to be sure there wasn't some way of getting out of it. Suddenly Stiles sat up straighter. If Scott was turned into an alpha, would Stiles be able to be his emissary? Did he necessarily have to listen to some mark?
"Are you planning on becoming an emissary?" Isaac was leaning forward now, more interested in this new development.
"Is that something I can just not do?" Stiles asked, his eyes sliding towards Derek.
"You don't have to become an emissary, you don't even have to practice but biologically you'll always be a spark," Derek answered.
Stiles only nodded.
As silence fell over the room. Boyd and Derek turned back to the books and Stiles went back to being fidgety.
"Is there anyway to tell if there are any members of these packs still alive?" Boyd asked scrolling through a list of names in one book.
"I'm not sure," Derek shook his head.
"I can check the police database and see if they're still alive," Stiles piped up then. He was good at that kind of thing.
Derek rose his brows curiously at the human.
"Research is kinda my thing," Stiles shrugged.
"I'll get my laptop," Isaac stood then, rushing off to the other room.
"Do I want to know how you know how to do that?" Derek asked, crossing his arms at the human.
"My dad's the sheriff," Stiles shrugged as if that explained it.
"Here," Isaac handed stiles his laptop and took a seat next to him.
"Okay, so I'll only be able to check some of the more local packs as my dad doesn't have jurisdiction for the ones on the east coast," Stiles said as he started typing.
"Here, these are the ones located in California," Derek held out a book, which Isaac took.
Stiles worked on putting in each name while Boyd and Derek leaned over his shoulder to watch.
"Okay, so it looks like there is one person alive. Her name is Eve. She lives in L.A. I have an address and a phone number, but I don't know how helpful she'll be," Stiles hummed as he read from the screen.
"Why?" Isaac asked leaning over further to get a better look.
"The book says these records were taken fifteen years ago. She is currently eighteen according to her birthdate. Making her three at the time. She likely doesn't remember anything that could help us."
"She's the only one out of all of those packs?" Derek asked with a sigh.
"Unless they've completely relocated and changed their name, yeah. Whoever took these records might know more," Stiles looked at the book, carefully turning the pages. "Where did these come from anyway?"
"Deaton. The emissaries of the packs kept recordings when the attacks started. The emissaries are dead now. They were the last of the pack to die. The entries always cut off before we know what really happened."
"I don't understand why he's coming for you if he already has his pack," Boyd pointed out.
"It took a while for the pack to be formed. Several of the alpha's refused him and in turn lost their life. I'm guessing he wants more power. Nobody really knows his motivation. At least not that I could find in here," Derek gestured to the book still on Isaac's lap.
"Do any of the recording say anything about how to beat him?" Stiles asked, handing Isaac the computer back.
"No," Derek huffed, making his way back to the table. He ran a hand through his jet black hair before leaning his head in his hands.
Stiles wanted to offer some sort of encouragement, but he honestly didn't know what to say. He didn't even know if Derek could be comforted.
At that moment Erica returned with a bag of food. "Okay, boys, who's hungry?" She grinned. Her eyes landed on Stiles as she set the bag down. "I'm surprised you're still here."
"I was helping," Stiles shrugged.
"Why'd you stay to begin with? I doubt it was to help. Did you ever ask your question from earlier?" The blonde pressed as she handed Stiles a to go box with a burger and fries.
"Actually, yes," Stiles nodded. He could let the emissary question count. It would keep Erica from prying further.
"Stiles is gonna be an emissary," Isaac spoke up then. His tone more enthusiastic than necessary.
"Really?" Erica perked up.
"No, no, I just...I have the ability as it turns out," Stiles shook his head as he shoved a fry into his mouth.
"You could be Derek's emissary though. I mean he's been an alpha for what a few weeks and then you suddenly become an emissary? Come on, it's like it's meant to be," Erica smiled widely at the pair.
Stiles nearly choked on potato at her words. Meant to be. Did she know? How would she know? He hadn't told anyone, and he doubted Deaton told anyone, much less Erica.
"Come on, if Stiles was gonna be anyone's emissary it would be Scott's," Isaac snorted.
"Scott's not an alpha," Boyd pointed out around a bite of burger.
"Not yet. You heard what Deucalion's plan is."
"If Scott dies would you be Derek's emissary?" Erica asked, her eyes boring holes into Stiles as he stared uncomfortably down at his food.
"I don't want an emissary," Derek spoke up then.
Something in Stiles' stomach knotted at Derek's words. "You don't want me as your emissary you mean," Stiles' tone was harsh, his eyes meeting Derek's.
"You and I both know this would never work," Derek spoke simply, trying to keep his tone even. He hadn't meant to upset Stiles, but he clearly had.
Stiles didn't answer. He dropped his eyes back to his plate instead. He would have agreed with Derek, but the mark he bore proved they were wrong.
Chapter 5: A lie
Stiles sensed Erica was going to push the issue, so he stood. "I should go, I'm feeling better."
Isaac snorted in response, "That was a lie."
"I'll drive you," Derek huffed before grabbing his keys off a nearby table, shooting a look at Isaac.
"It's fine, I can walk," Stiles insisted with a shake of his head. The last thing he wanted was to be alone with Derek in a car.
"There is an alpha pack out there, you shouldn't be alone," Derek growled. He didn't have the patience for this right now.
"I'm not a werewolf, I'm no threat," Stiles reached for the door.
"You're an emissary," Derek snapped.
Stiles whirled around; his tone sharp. "No, I'm not."
Derek's jaw clenched. He forgot how stubborn Stiles could be.
"I may have a spark or what the hell ever, but I'm not an emissary. I don't even know what abilities I have," Stiles gestured to himself dramatically.
"Then how did you know you were a spark?" Erica tilted her head in question.
Stiles swallowed, "Like I said, Deaton." It wasn't technically a lie.
"Stiles, you spend every day with werewolves; you smell like us. It's suicide to go out there alone."
The human ran a hand through his hair. He did not want to do this. He thought he would muster the guts to tell Derek but now he knew he didn't have it in him, and he just wanted to go home.
"Bye, Stiles," Erica purred with a small wave.
Stiles gave a curt nod, pressing his lip together before following Derek out. His feet felt like lead as he made his way down the stairs and to Derek's car.
Once the two were inside the Camaro and Derek had started it, he turned to look at Stiles, "You're obviously more uncomfortable now than you were inside. You stopped being uncomfortable around me weeks ago, what's changed?"
Stiles knew Derek could hear the way his heartrate picked up at the question by how his eyes dropped to Stiles' chest briefly.
"Nothings changed." A lie.
"You're nervous around me now."
"No, I'm not." Another lie.
"Are you afraid of me?" Derek asked the question almost like he didn't want to know the answer.
"No, not as much as I should be," Stiles shook his head.
"Good," Derek turned back to the steering wheel. That answer hadn't been a lie, thankfully. "I would never hurt you."
Stiles hummed in uncertainty, "I wouldn't say never."
"Come on, I only have immunity because I'm friends with Scott. Something happens to him..." Stiles trailed off.
"That's not true," Derek's tone was low as he spoke, and he didn't look away from the road. "You're part of this world now, if something ever happened to Scott, there is always a place for you in my pack."
Stiles mouth fell open slightly. "I don't understand. What happened to not wanting an emissary?"
"I don't, but you've been there for me several times, so I'm inclined to trust you." There was a pause. "Also, I know what it's like to be alone in this. I wouldn't wish it on anyone."
Stiles nodded but didn't respond. That was why Derek had helped Scott after he was bit.
"Are you going to tell me what you're hiding?" Derek asked after a few minutes.
"W-what?" Stiles snapped his heads towards Derek.
"You've been lying all night. I'm guessing there's something about this spark of yours that you're not talking about."
Stiles swallowed the lump forming in his throat. The mark under his shirt itched liked it wanted to be revealed. He could tell Derek. They were alone. He reached for his shirt but paused. He recalled what Derek had said about not wanting an emissary. His fingers rubbed the mark through the thin fabric. He couldn't do it. His hand dropped back to his lap.
"It's not my business. But I'm going to assume you're keeping it from Scott as well since you sent him off earlier while you stayed behind. Might I suggest you not keep whatever it is to yourself long. Secrets can get people hurt." The last sentence was said with such an animosity Stiles was sure it wasn't meant for him.
"I will, I just need time," Stiles answered quietly; his eyes never leaving his lap. He felt like a scolded child. He wondered how Derek knew he was keeping something. It didn't seem like he knew what, but he hoped that was truly the case.
Much to Stiles relief, Derek pulled into his driveway.
"Thanks for the ride," Stiles gave Derek an unsure smile.
"Thanks for your help earlier," Derek nodded in return.
"Sure, anytime you need me to do some research or look someone up, let me know," Stiles frowned slightly as the words fell from his mouth. Why did he just offer that like he and Derek were friends?
"Yeah, I will," Derek had a slight frown of his own.
Stiles hurriedly closed the door to the Camaro and made his way inside. Much to his relief his dad wasn't home, so he had some time to process everything that had happened that day.
He climbed the stairs and threw himself down on his bed with a groan. Why was his life always so chaotic?
Derek sat unmoving from Stiles' driveway for a moment. He and Stiles had always had an odd relationship but today had been different. Derek had been concerned for him in a way he hadn't in the past. Sure, he was always more concerned for Stiles than he'd admit to, but today it was more. Like he was part of Derek's pack. And the way Stiles had stayed behind and had worked to help him look up the remaining members. It felt...natural. He wanted to chalk it up to Stiles being a spark now and he an alpha but how could he know for sure?
He checked the clock. Seven p.m, Deaton would still be in his office. Maybe he would have answers.
Chapter 6: Fate
Deaton wasn't surprised to see Derek. He'd expected it in fact. Stiles coming into his powers and being fated as Derek's Emissary was bound to bring the alpha 'round with questions.
"Derek, what can I do for you?" Deaton asked with a soft smile. He could read Derek easily. The tension in his shoulders and the clench of his fists. The alpha was stressed.
"Stiles spoke to you earlier," Derek started, he glanced at the door as if he were worried someone would come in.
"He did," Deaton nodded before locking the entrance door and flipping the sign to closed. He could close shop a few minutes early if it put Derek at ease.
If it put the alpha at ease it didn't show. Derek remained stiff in posture as he spoke.
"So it's true," It wasn't posed as a question. Derek didn't think Stiles had been lying but hearing it from someone he could trust was comforting to Derek.
"It is," Deaton was curious as to how Derek had reacted to the news. He seemed calm despite the tension he wore.
Derek was silent. Too silent. He didn't even know how to ask what he wanted to know.
"You took it well I'm guessing?" Deaton continued when Derek didn't.
"Why wouldn't I? It doesn't affect me," Derek frowned at the druid.
Deaton clasped his hands behind him, "Does it not?"
"Why would it? If he even practices, he'll likely end up being Scott's emissary."
"Scott's not an alpha," Deaton pointed out simply.
"Not yet, but we got a pack of them on their way. It would only take one for Scott to turn," Derek gave a half shrug.
"Perhaps. I don't see Scott killing anyone though, he's too...forgiving," Deaton chose his words carefully.
"Naive, you mean," Derek corrected with a snort.
"I gather that you don't want Stiles as your emissary," Deaton continued, ignoring Derek's correction.
"I don't trust him."
Derek's jaw clenched at that. Deaton could read him. He'd known him since he was a baby.
"Not enough," Derek shook his head.
"Not yet, but give it time."
"You want him to be my emissary," Derek accused lightly. He should have suspected as much.
"It's not what I want that matters," Deaton gave the alpha a soft smile. He realized that Stiles maybe hadn't told him everything.
"Look, I just...I want to make sure Stiles isn't alone in this. I want to make sure he has someone," Derek gave a small huff. He should have known coming here was going to backfire.
"That someone not being you."
"He hasn't told Scott, I don't know when or if he will," Derek spoke through grit teeth.
"And yet he told you?" Deaton raised a curious brow.
Derek hadn't considered that. Why tell him and not Scott? "Maybe he's afraid Scott will think he's gonna join my pack."
"Or perhaps he's considering it," Deaton offered.
"No, he seems pretty spooked by the whole idea and he doesn't trust me either," Derek shook his head.
Deaton didn't respond.
"Look, I just need to know someone's got his back on this," Derek was growing irritated.
"For someone who doesn't care, you care an awful lot," Deaton pointed out gently.
"I know..." Derek trailed off, letting out a huff, "I know what it's like to be alone in this."
"But you're not alone, you have a pack."
"Yeah, and now they're lives are in danger because I didn't want to be alone. I drug them into this and now...I can't add anyone else to that," Derek shook his head hard. He was mad enough at himself.
"You're afraid of Stiles getting hurt, is that it?" Deaton asked curiously. He watched as Derek fought with the emotions he was feeling.
"I have enough blood on my hands, I don't want to add to that."
"Perhaps Stiles could be useful in this upcoming fight," Deaton splayed his hands open as if presenting the idea physically.
Derek shook his head. "I'm hoping that Deucalion doesn't know about Scott. If he's coming, I hope it's for me. But if Scott gets involved, he'll need Stiles more than me."
"The symbol was left in Stiles and Scott's lockers, I don't think they're exempt from this fight," Deaton spoke sadly. He knew of Deucalion, but it was not someone he was eager to meet.
Derek turned towards the door. He had hoped for better news from Deaton.
"You aren't going to tell me what you really came here for?" Deaton asked with a raised brow. He made no move to stop Derek from leaving.
Derek turned to give Deaton a questioning look.
"You forget, I know you Derek," Deaton smiled warmly.
Derek dropped his eyes.
"You're drawn to him, you want to know why," Deaton had sensed Derek's concern immediately upon his arrival. It was beyond just wanting Stiles to have someone.
"Is it because I'm an alpha and he's now..." Derek trailed off. He didn't want to be drawn to Stiles. He didn't want to drag anyone else into his shitty life. He felt bad enough for doing it to Boyd, Erica and Isaac. He'd been lonely after losing Laura and being rejected by Scott. He made a snap decision, he was coming to regret. He cared about his pack but he felt selfish every time he looked at them.
"Perhaps there is more to it than that."
"What do you mean?" Derek didn't like the sound of that.
"You believe in fate, yes?"
Derek rolled his eyes. He used to believe in fate. His mother always told him everything happened for a reason, that was before he lost everyone.
"No. Maybe once, but fate is just an excuse we use to rationalize the things we do," Derek unlocked the door then and left.
Deaton let out a sad sigh. He'd hoped Stiles could be the spark Derek needed in his life, in more ways than one, but it seemed Stiles was hesitant as much as Derek was. He was sure they'd come around, he just hoped it wasn't too late.
Derek slammed the door of his Camaro shut. He didn't know what he'd expected from Deaton. He was sure the druid wouldn't let Stiles flounder and that was all Derek needed to know, but of course he'd seen right through him. Derek was drawn to Stiles and he hated it, but he was sure it was just because he was an alpha and Stiles was a spark. Fate had nothing to do with it. And if it did, well fate was a bitch.
Chapter 7: Magic
Stiles sat down in his computer chair after hanging up with Scott. Dinner with his mom had gone well. Stiles had debated on telling Scott about the mark, but he just couldn't, not until he had a better idea of what it all meant.
He typed hurriedly into his search bar, eager to find out all he could. He didn't even know what he was capable of. He hadn't even thought to ask Deaton, not that the druid would necessarily know but he might have an idea of where Stiles could start to learn. Instead he was left to find out through the only way he knew how. The internet.
It was a long and mostly fruitless search as most of the things he found were just people who didn't know anything about real magic, or it's uses. However, he did find one forum where the information seemed accurate. The posts talked mostly of the history of druids which Stiles was already fairly well versed in at this point but there was one thing about different types of druid practice that caught Stiles' attention.
There were four types of magic a druid could learn. Influence magic, which had to do with controlling emotions of those around you. Natural magic, which was the ability to control elements such as water and plants. Source magic, which was more to do with herbs and casting spells. That seemed to be what Deaton was trained in. The last type was blood magic, it was a darker magic. It allowed you to cast spells that could maim and kill but it was incredibly dangerous and often very daunting on the body. It was said to alter the mind of it's user as time went on, making them crazy.
"Great, so how do I do this?" Stiles sighed as he scrolled down. He spotted a link at the bottom that offered more answers. Clicking the link brought up a chat screen in the bottom left of his screen.
"Hello?" Stiles typed hesitantly. He didn't know if this person would be helpful but he figured he'd try.
"Hey." The chat bubble beeped in response.
Stiles was surprised to get an answer so quickly.
"Are you a real druid?" Stiles asked next.
"And you just put this stuff on the internet for anyone to see?"
"Only a true spark can use this magic. I see no harm."
Stiles nodded. They had a point.
"Alright, fair enough. Can you help me?"
"You must be new to your powers. Welcome, I am Bonnie. I'd love to help in any way I can."
"Stiles. Nice to meet you. Yes, I am new. Just found out today, though I used mountain ash for the first time a while ago and it was weird as hell, but it worked and now I don't know what to do." Even in text Stiles tended to ramble.
"It can be overwhelming, but your spark is eager to learn hence being able to use the mountain ash."
"So how do I do this? Like do I pick one type, can I do all of them?"
"You can do all of them, however most are more drawn to one type over another. You can try them out and find which one feels most natural to you. Your spark will know. I don't recommend Blood Magic as it is dangerous and rarely worth it's effort."
"Yeah, I don't really plan to test the waters on that one," Stiles laughed to himself.
"Let me walk you through an easy process. Do you have a candle you can use?"
Stiles looked around to see that he didn't, but he knew where his dad kept the emergency candles in case of a blackout. He made his way to the kitchen and grabbed a small white candle from the drawer.
"Got one." He typed as soon as he returned to his room.
"Great. You're going to light it. Now clear your mind, imagine the candle lighting. It may take a few tries. Don't rush it. Take your time."
Stiles took a deep breath and stared intently at the wick of the candle.
Nothing was happening.
Another deep breath, he closed his eyes and imagined the candle lighting. He peeked open an eye to see the candle still not lit.
"Damn it," He huffed before typing, "It's not working."
"It takes patience. You have to clear your mind."
Stiles pressed two fingers to his temples and took a few long deep breaths. He remembered how he made the mountain ash reach.
His eyes narrowed at the tiny wick before it burst into a tiny flame.
He jumped up in excitement, nearly knocking his chair over in the process.
"Ha! I did it!" Stiles typed quickly, sitting back down.
"See I knew you could do it!" Bonnie responded with a smiley face.
"What next?" Stiles was beyond excited to learn more. He felt alive for the first time in his life, like he had purpose.
"Well you know how to work mountain ash, so you've done Natural Magic. All that's left is Influence which requires another person."
Stiles slumped in his seat. He didn't have another person.
"But if you want to give me your email, I can send you a few herbs and spells to practice Natural magic with. You can also try to manipulate water or plants as you did with the candle. They all use the same method. If you can do one, you can do all. Some types of magic may require more concentration but you are never limited to one type."
"That would be great! Thanks you so much!"
When Stiles finally ended the conversation with Bonnie, he felt a million times better. They had agreed to talk at the same time the next night. Stiles was going to practice and update her. He only needed to find someone to practice Influence magic on. The problem was he didn't want too many people knowing about this yet or that he was practicing. The only ones who knew were Derek and his pack. Derek wouldn't tell anyone if he asked him not to. It was worth a shot anyway.
Chapter 8: Influence
Stiles knocked on Derek's loft door anxiously. He didn't even know if anyone was home. He would have called but he couldn't convince himself to actually hit the call button. He had also drove around for almost an hour before finally driving to Derek's. It was honestly a miracle he was here at all and actually knocking instead of bailing again like he had yesterday.
The door opened to Derek who looked tired.
"Hey," Stiles' fingers rapped anxiously along the side of his leg.
Derek glanced past Stiles as if expecting to see Scott.
"What do you want?" Derek frowned when he realized Stiles was alone.
"Look, I know I'm probably the last person you want asking for favors, but I don't know who else to go to. I don't really want anyone else to know about..." Stiles waved a hand at himself.
Derek let out a sigh, "What do you need?"
It wasn't that Derek didn't like Stiles. The hyperactive spaz was actually growing on Derek. The problem was how much Derek was inclined to trust him. He didn't trust Scott or Allison and he shouldn't have trusted Stiles either, but Stiles had proven himself to be trustworthy more times than not, so here he was.
"I need...I need to practice something, but I need a second person. It's not dangerous I swear," Stiles rushed to get his words out before he chicken out.
Derek narrowed his eyes. "You're practicing."
It wasn't posed as a question, but Stiles nodded.
"I've gotten pretty good at a couple things. I've been doing it for like six hours straight," To prove his point Stiles gave a small wave of his hand and a nearby candle lit.
Derek raised a brow. "What else can you do?"
Stiles snapped his fingers and the nearby lamp light went out.
"So why do you need me?" Derek stepped aside allowing Stiles in.
"I need to practice influence magic, but I have to have a person to influence."
"Influence how?" Derek didn't like the sound of that.
"With physical contact I should be able to influence your emotions. Calm you down, make you angry, etcetera," Stiles explained. "And then with practice I should be able to do it without contact. It varies in strength based on how close to someone I'm influencing."
Derek tensed slightly. The last time he let someone control his emotions people he loved got hurt. But Stiles wasn't Kate.
"If you're not comfortable with it I understand, I just didn't know who else to ask," Stiles shifted from one foot to the other.
"Stiles..." Derek hated to say no. It had been less than twenty-four hours and Stiles already very strong in his abilities, he hated to hinder that.
"I get it, you don't trust me," Stiles nodded. He should have known Derek wouldn't agree to this. He took a few steps towards the door when Derek caught his wrist.
"I'm sorry, what?" Stiles blinked at the alpha.
"I do trust you...some," Derek released Stiles. "I don't think you should keep this from Scott, but I get it, so I'll help you."
"Really? Why?" Stiles had fully expected Derek to say no.
Derek recalled the conversation he had with Deaton about Stiles being useful in the fight against Deucalion, "The more prepared you are for Deucalion, the more you can help protect Scott."
Stiles' brows rose in surprise. "I didn't think you cared for Scott."
"Scott doesn't care for me, I tried helping him, remember?" Derek corrected.
Stiles bowed his head in shame. He hadn't known Scott was going to use Derek the way he had yet he still felt guilty.
"I didn't know..." Stiles sighed; his eyes trained on the floor.
"That's why I'm helping you."
Stiles nodded. He understood what Derek was saying. He was giving Stiles the same chance he'd given Scott. Don't screw it up.
"So how do we do this?" Derek huffed. He didn't like talking to Stiles about this stuff. It made it too real how involved he was, and Derek couldn't help but feel mildly responsible for that. It was his uncle that bit Scott after all.
"Why don't we sit. Sometimes it can make me dizzy and I'd rather not pass out on you," Stiles gestured to the couch.
Derek and Stiles sat down on the dark blue couch facing towards each other slightly.
"Okay, so I have to be touching you," Stiles shifted more towards Derek and held his hands out.
Derek hesitated slightly before placing his hands in Stiles'.
"If I do anything you don't like, stop me," Stiles spoke seriously, his eyes staring into Derek's.
Derek only nodded. He'd never seen Stiles so serious or sincere. It warmed something in Derek that he wasn't used to.
Stiles closed his eyes and took a few deep breaths.
Derek waited patiently. His eyes roamed over Stiles' face. He'd never noticed how attractive he was before. His pale skin was spotted with moles that trailed down this neck and disappeared under his shirt. His hair had grown out since last year. He noticed the slight stubble that had started to come in along his jaw and chin. His full lips were parted slightly as he took slow breaths.
Derek would feel embarrassed for finding Stiles attractive if he were even slightly older. However, the three years difference wasn't too unsettling, but he was still only seventeen, making Derek feel dirty. He couldn't find Stiles attractive. For one thing he wasn't legal, even if Derek was only nineteen, it only reminded him of Kate. Sure, three years didn't compare to seven, but it still felt wrong. He'd been not quite sixteen when Kate was twenty-three. He'd just thought she saw the maturity in him, but she'd been manipulating him.
Suddenly the anger and embarrassment started to diminish into something else. Calm, relaxing, peaceful.
"Oh," Derek muttered in surprised.
Stiles' eyes opened and a smile pulled at his lips.
"Is it working?" Stiles hadn't quite learned how to feel the emotions of those around him. That would take time according to Bonnie's email.
Derek only nodded, not trusting his voice. He hadn't felt this relaxed in years.
Stiles smiled and Derek's chest tightened at the sight of it. Stiles was stunning, he couldn't deny it no matter how much he wanted to.
"It took me longer than the other stuff," Stiles pulled his hands away from Derek's slowly and the feeling faded.
Derek had to hold back a whine. He never wanted that feeling to go away.
"Can I-" Stiles' tongue flicked out across his lips. "Can I try a different emotion?"
Derek swallowed but nodded.
Stiles held his hands out again, but Derek hesitated more this time.
"You can trust me, I promise," Stiles spoke softly, and Derek knew he was right.
The alpha placed his hands in Stiles' once again.
Derek watched again as Stiles' eyes fell shut and his lips parted again.
It happened much faster this time and suddenly Derek couldn't help but smile. A soft chuckle escaped him causing Stiles' eyes to open again.
Derek's smile grew.
Stiles bit his bottom lip before pulling his hands back.
"You're only doing nice emotions," Derek pointed out.
"I don't want make you mad or upset," Stiles frowned.
"You can undo it, just try. I can handle it," Derek urged. He was used to feeling upset or mad so it wouldn't be a big deal.
Stiles held his hands out for a third time and this time there was no hesitation. Stiles would never admit to the swell of pride at that. Derek was trusting him. His eyes fell closed and his breathing started. He concentrated on pain, and sadness.
A gasp made Stiles' eyes fly open. Derek looked devastated, genuinely.
Stiles panicked and concentrated on a happier emotion. When he opened his eyes again Derek looked relieved, but a single tear teased at the edge of Derek's eye before slipping down his cheek.
Stiles reached out and caught the tear with his thumb. "I'm so sorry. I guess I'm getting better at it."
Derek could smell the guilt in Stiles' emotions and decided right then that no matter what happened, he would protect Stiles with his life.
Chapter 9: Practicing
Stiles dropped his hand from Derek's cheek then, realizing how intimate the moment was.
"Seems like you're getting the hang of these new abilities," Derek pointed out, trying to push past the uncomfortable feeling settling around them.
"It's honestly easier than I thought it would be," Stiles shrugged; his hands now in his lap.
"When are you going to tell Scott?" Derek liked that Stiles trusted him enough to tell him, but he didn't understand it.
"Honestly, I don't know. I wasn't even sure I was going to practice, but..." Stiles trailed off.
"But?" Derek urged Stiles to continue.
"But I love it. Being able to do something worthwhile, it's an amazing feeling."
Derek understood what Stiles was saying. He had felt helpless until he became an alpha and even now, he still felt inadequate.
"So since you're practicing, shouldn't you tell him?"
Stiles bit down on his bottom lip, "I will, just...not yet."
"Why are you so afraid to tell him?" Derek didn't understand why Stiles would tell him and not Scott.
"Cause I know what he's gonna say," Stiles' eyes fell to his hands. He had thought about how to tell Scott and each time he saw the conversation going the same way.
"And what's that?" Derek couldn't see Scott being anything but supportive.
"He's gonna try and keep me away from you. He'll be worried you're gonna try and convince me to be your emissary and even if I tell him you don't want one, he'll still worry," Stiles shrugged.
Something in Derek's stomach twisted, "Keep you away from me?" It wasn't like Stiles was there all the time.
"I want to help. I meant it when I said I was Switzerland. And I would never help hold you down," Stiles added.
He smelled of guilt once again.
"Yesterday you said you didn't want to be an emissary..." Derek paused as Stiles' eyes met his. "That hasn't changed has it?"
Stiles was suddenly hyper aware of the mark sitting just under his collar bone. He could tell him now, no one else was around. But Derek didn't want an emissary. Stiles reminded himself.
Derek waited anxiously as Stiles considered the question before shaking his head.
Derek wasn't sure if he was relieved or disappointed.
"But you're practicing."
"It would be a waste not to and like you said I don't have to be an emissary," Stiles shrugged.
"Do you just not want to be my emissary?" Derek found himself asking the question before he could think it over.
"Like you said, this would never work," Stiles gestured between them before standing. "I should go."
Derek followed Stiles with his gaze but stayed silent.
"Thank you for letting me practice on you," Stiles gave a forced smile before heading towards the door. Before he could pull it open, Erica and Isaac were doing it for him.
"Hey, Stiles," Erica purred, her bright red lips curling into a large grin.
"Hey, Erica," Stiles smiled nervously. "Isaac."
"What are you doing here?" Erica's eyes darted to where Derek was now standing by the couch.
"Just talking with Derek," Stiles answered vaguely.
"Have you changed your mind about being his emissary?" The blonde asked with far too much enthusiasm.
"No." Stiles shut down the idea quickly. He could feel the mark practically on fire under the thin fabric of his shirt.
"Too bad. I think you'd make a pretty good pair."
Stiles let out the breath he didn't realize he was holding as she stepped past him.
"Uh, Stiles," Derek's voice spoke up with concern.
Stiles turned to see every candle in the room lit, granted there were only four.
"Did I..." Stiles' eyes widened.
"Someone's been using," Isaac smirked.
"You make it sound like a drug problem. I practiced a little. I was thinking about- I'm sorry," With a quick wave of his hand the candles all went out. He must have accidentally lit them when he was thinking about his mark being on fire.
"Whoa, you're good," Erica rose her brows in surprise.
"I clearly need to learn better control," Stiles huffed, he turned then to walk out when Derek spoke up again.
"What?" Stiles frowned turning back to face the alpha.
"Come back by tomorrow. We can work on it more. Isaac and Erica just volunteered to help. You can influence more than one person at a time, right?"
Stiles blinked at Derek, "I mean...theoretically."
"Good, then you can practice it tomorrow," Derek gave a curt nod, as if dismissing Stiles.
"Umm, wh-why?" Stiles frowned, his tongue flicking out across his lips.
"You just said you need to learn better control."
"No, I know why," Stiles gestured heavily at himself. "But why?" He then gestured towards the three wolves in front of him.
"Unless you're planning to tell Scott tomorrow, you need someone who knows, right?" Derek rose his brows at Stiles, waiting for an answer.
"You haven't told Scott yet?" Isaac piped in then, glancing between Stiles and Derek.
"I will, I just...need some time."
"You mean to figure out how your gonna tell him you're gonna be a part of Derek's pack?" Erica grinned.
"No," Stiles snapped. "Look, I'm gonna go but, I'll see you...tomorrow I guess."
"Bye, Stiles," the blonde giggled as he slipped out the door.
Stiles hated being around Erica. He always felt like she could read his mind and was afraid she would find out about his mark. It was only a matter of time before someone found out, he just needed to keep it from everyone a little bit longer, until he could find out how to get rid of it. If he even could. Maybe Bonnie would know. They were due to talk again that night, he could ask her then.
Chapter 10: Connection
The sound of Stiles' jeep alerted Derek to the human's arrival. He'd half expected Stiles to back out but he seemed eager to learn.
"Why are we letting him practice his magic again?" Isaac asked. He must have heard the jeep as well.
"He can be useful against Deucalion's pack when they attack," Derek answered, not looking up from the book in his hands.
"When is that gonna be again?" It's been days since they 'threatened' us," Erica piped in then, her arms crossed.
"I don't know," Derek huffed. He would admit he was getting impatient as well. It made him nervous to think that they were taking their time.
Derek heard the way Stiles' heart picked up as he knocked. Stiles wasn't scared of being alone and surrounded by werewolves, though he probably should have been. Yet his anxiety had been peaking around him and his pack lately. He assumed it had to do with the obvious tension between Derek and Scott.
Isaac let Stiles in. He looked extra tired today. His unkempt hair looked as though he'd run his fingers through it repeatedly. His eyes looked as though he had hardly slept.
"Rough night?" Derek raised a brow at the human.
"You could say that," Stiles shrugged. He'd spent hours trying to find a way to get rid of the emissary mark only to find out from Bonnie there was no way to get rid of it. He was destined to be Derek's emissary, and nothing could change that. To say Stiles hadn't taken the news well was an understatement. His right hand still ached from punching the top of his desk. In fact, he could barely open his hand.
"You want to talk about it?" Isaac asked gently.
Stiles frowned at the cinnamon haired werewolf, "Not really, no."
Isaac nodded but didn't say anything more.
"Where's Boyd, I figured he'd be here too," Stiles had noticed him being gone more.
"He's been doing perimeter checks for me. He should be back soon. Why?" Derek closed his book and set it aside.
"He's stalling," Erica answered for him.
Derek gave Stiles a questioning look, as if to ask if she was right.
"There's a chance it may not work as well on someone who isn't..." Stiles trailed off.
"Who isn't what?" Derek pressed.
Stiles swallowed. Bonnie had told him that since Derek was his fated emissary, Stiles' magic would be more receptive to him.
"Someone who isn't an alpha," Stiles answered. That wasn't technically a lie.
"Good, then the practice will be good for you," Derek nodded.
Stiles seemed to relax. He'd been afraid Derek would figure it out.
"Is it gonna hurt?" Erica asked, almost nervously.
"Not at all."
"Okay so what do we do?"
"Just take my hands," Stiles held them out to the anxious blonde.
She glanced at Derek who gave an encouraging nod.
She hesitantly reached out and placed her hands in Stiles'.
Suddenly Stiles' felt relief flood him.
"Stiles, you're hurting," Erica gasped, her hands pulling back in surprise. Her veins black from the pain she'd pulled from Stiles.
"What's wrong?" Derek stepped forward.
"It's just my hand," Stiles answered dismissively.
The alpha reached for Stiles' hand then, and instantly the pain slithered up his arm.
Stiles sighed at the relief.
Derek felt around Stiles' knuckles, causing him to hiss in pain.
"Your knuckle is dislocated, Stiles. What happened?" Derek frowned up at the human.
Like you said, rough night," Stiles shrugged.
Derek continued to frown but didn't pry. "This is gonna hurt."
Before Stiles could ask what Derek meant, the alpha quickly popped the joint back into place.
"Son of a bitch," Stiles swore.
Derek held Stiles' hand, pulling the rest of the pain.
"Thanks," Stiles gave Derek a small smile before gently pulling his hands away from the alpha and turning towards the blonde. "Sorry, Erica."
"It's okay, let's try again," She held her hands out, with more confidence this time.
Stiles took her well manicured hands in his and closed his eyes.
Erica sighed as the peaceful feeling washed over her.
"Is it working?" Isaac asked, taking a curious step forward.
Erica nodded. "Yeah, that was...amazing."
"I didn't expect it to work as well on you, but it wasn't any harder than with Derek," Stiles frowned.
"Can you try without touching?" Derek had recalled Stiles mentioning it the day before.
"I'm not really sure how to direct it at a specific person but I'll try. Isaac, you ready?"
Isaac nodded almost excitedly.
Stiles took a deep breath and once again closed his eyes. He imagined the content peaceful feeling and directed it at Isaac. He felt the warmth spread through him as his magic worked.
"It's working on me," Erica piped in then.
"I didn't feel anything," Isaac frowned.
"Erica is closer, maybe that's why," Derek offered.
Erica took a step back while Isaac took a step forward.
"There it is," Isaac hummed in satisfaction.
"Yeah, it's gone now," Erica agreed.
"It's hard to direct it," Stiles frowned, his eyes opening.
"That's why you practice right?" Isaac gave a shrug.
"Can- Can I try something different?" Stiles bit his lip anxiously.
"I can, supposedly, inflict pain. I mean not literally but I can make your body think it's in pain."
"Ooh, yeah try it on me," Isaac volunteered eagerly.
"If I go too far, stop me," Stiles held his hands out.
Derek watched as Stiles took a deep breath. A crease formed between his eyes.
"Ah, fuck," Isaac winced in mock pain causing Stiles to pull back instantly.
"Oh it works," Stiles' eyes widened at the beta in front of him.
"Stiles, you probably shouldn't do that again, your heart rate sped way up. That can't be good for you," Erica frowned taking a concerned step forward.
"Uh, yeah it's a different type of magic, it's pretty taxing on the body, I just wanted to see if I could do it. It's apparently pretty hard to do," Stiles shrugged.
"All of this should be pretty hard to do and yet you're doing it fairly easily," Derek commented then with a slight frown of his own.
"Yeah, so I noticed," Stiles' tongue flicked out, wetting his lips anxiously.
Derek had noticed he did that when he was suddenly uncomfortable with a situation. He was about to question him, but Stiles' phone rang loudly causing the human to jump.
"Shit," he mumbled as he fished the phone from his pocket. "Hey Scotty," Stiles answered the phone in a cheery voice.
"Uh, yeah I'm at the station, I'll be there as soon as I can," Stiles hung up then with a guilty look on his face.
"The station, huh?" Erica smirked.
"I don't want Scott to know I'm here. It won't help the situation when I finally tell him about..." Stiles gestured heavily at nothing.
"He's gonna have to come to terms with the fact that you belong with us, not him," the blonde gave a simple shrug.
"W-what do you mean belong with you?" Stiles swallowed nervously.
"Come on Stiles, you can't tell me you don't feel the connection," She smirked, taking a seat on the lounge chair.
"Uh, con-connection?" Stiles shifted nervously.
"You and Derek can pretend it doesn't exist all you want, but we can feel it too, just so you know," She wiggled her brows at Stiles, who looked like he could throw up.
"Erica," Derek said in a warning tone.
"Ignore her, she just doesn't like Scott and wants you to join the pack," Isaac assured Stiles.
Stiles only gave a nod before heading towards the door, "Thanks for letting me practice, and for fixing my hand."
"So we'll see you tomorrow, right?" Erica asked.
"Uh, I'm not sure that's a good idea," Stiles swallowed nervously, and it was obvious the wolves could smell his growing anxiety. If there was a way to block his scent, he needed to learn it and fast cause having everyone around him know how he was feeling was the worst thing Stiles could imagine. It was bad enough he couldn't lie to them.
He was glad when no one said anything else, allowing him to slip out the door. Now he had to face Scott and hope his best friend couldn't read him as well as Derek's pack could. Unfortunately the odds were not in his favor.
Chapter 11: Air
When Stiles walked into his room, Scott was already there.
"Hey, dude, I see you've been doing research," Scott smiled at him and gestured towards his computer which was left open to a website on druid magic.
"Uh, yeah, sort of," Stiles closed the laptop with a stiff smile.
"Whoa, why do you smell like Derek?" Scott frowned then, scrunching his nose.
"I swung by, I had a question about Deucalion," Stiles lied.
Thankfully Scott wasn't listening close enough to notice the lie.
"Get anything good out of him?" Scott asked, seeming satisfied with that answer.
"He doesn't know any more than we do," Stiles shook his head.
"So what were you looking into druid magic for?" Scott gestured to the now closed laptop.
Stiles bit his lip anxiously. He needed to tell him. Scott was his best friend he'd understand.
"I uh, why don't I show you," Stiles suggested.
"Okay, show me what?" Scott asked curiously, he leaned forward in the computer chair.
Stiles swallowed the lump forming in his throat. He could do this. It was no different then telling Scott he was bi. He'd taken it well. This was sort of like that.
"Dude, you alright?" Scott frowned as the scent of Stiles' anxiety hit him strong.
Stiles nodded and gave a snap of his fingers. Instantly the bedroom light went out. The evening glow shadowed the room, so with another snap of his fingers the candles Stiles had been practicing on lit.
Scott's mouth dropped open.
"Stiles, how'd you do that?" Scott looked over to the candle closest to him on the desk.
"I'm a druid," he held his breath as he waited for Scott's reaction.
"That's incredible, man," Scott smiled up at him.
"Really?" Stiles huffed a sigh of relief.
"How long have you known?"
"Uh, only like a week. Deaton said I ignited it when I used mountain ash. I've been practicing a bit," Stiles avoided mentioning the mark. He wasn't ready for people to know about that yet.
"A week? Why didn't you tell me sooner?" Scott frowned. He looked almost disappointed.
"I wasn't sure how you'd react," Stiles shrugged.
"Dude, I think it's great."
Stiles gave a forced smile. He felt bad not telling Scott about the mark, but he wasn't ready to accept that as his fate yet and he definitely wasn't ready for the fight it would inevitably cause between them.
"So what all can you do?" Scott asked eagerly, not catching on to Stiles' guilt, thankfully.
"Well there's a few different types of magic. I'm trying them all out a bit just to see what works for me." Stiles opened his computer and pulled up the notes he'd been keeping.
It felt good to tell Scott. He hated keeping it from his best friend. Scott listened eagerly as Stiles ran through his notes and demonstrated his abilities.
"So you can make me feel things?" Scott frowned.
"Yeah, here I'll show you," Stiles held his hands out for Scott to take.
He had done this so much over the past few days, he found it easier and easier to do. He closed his eyes and concentrated.
Stiles frowned. This was so easy with Derek.
He took another breath and concentrated harder.
"I don't feel anything."
"It's uh, hard to do," Stiles' hands gripped Scott's harder.
"Oh, oh yeah, I feel...relaxed," Scott said then, much to Stiles' relief.
"I guess I still need some practice with that one," Stiles frowned down at his hands. He hadn't had nearly that much trouble when using it on Derek and his pack.
Suddenly Stiles was hyper aware of the mark. It wasn't that he was naturally good at that type of magic, it was the fact that he was using it on Derek's pack. His pack.
"You know what, I just remembered I need to run by the station and bring dad his dinner, I'll catch up with you later, yeah?" Stiles backed towards the door then. He needed air.
"Didn't you just come from the station?" Scott frowned.
"Yeah, I did, but I promised to get him dinner. I'll call you later," Stiles called over his shoulder as he hurried down the stairs.
He jumped into his jeep and headed down the road. He didn't know where he was going, but he needed to escape.
The mark practically burned under his t shirt as if taunting him. He was destined to be part of Derek forever and Stiles wasn't handling it well at all. He pulled his jeep off onto a trail that lead up to lookout point. He used to go there when he was having a bad day after his mom died. He'd bike up there and spend hours looking over the town. He hadn't been there is years though. He didn't know why he was going now but he didn't stop.
When he finally parked the jeep, he was on the verge of a breakdown. His heart was bounding, and his breathing was short and shallow. He didn't know what to do. He couldn't do this. He couldn't be fated to Derek. It wasn't fair.
Stiles reached for the nearest tree to steady himself on. He guided himself into a seated position, his back now leaning against the trunk. He closed his eyes took a few deep breaths trying to slow his breathing. His eyes stung with tears.
Suddenly a snap sounded behind him, startling Stiles. He jumped to his feet and whirled around to see Boyd.
"Stiles?" The werewolf frowned in confusion, a hint of concern in his tone.
"B-Boyd, what are you doing here?" Stiles cleared his throat, trying to hide the panic attack he'd just been having.
"I heard the jeep and your heartrate was jacked pretty high. I'm on patrol," Boyd answered, glancing around as if expecting someone to be with him.
"Derek seems to have you on patrol a lot," Stiles commented, hoping to avoid where the conversation was heading.
"It's my choice actually, I find it better than sitting around waiting for something to happen," Boyd shrugged.
Stiles nodded. That made sense.
"What are you doing out here? You shouldn't be out here alone, it's dangerous."
"I needed...air," Stiles shrugged.
"You seem stressed, anything you want to talk about?" Boyd offered taking a tentative step forward.
"I'm just struggling with these new abilities is all," Stiles shook his head.
"I get it, Isaac went through something similar after the change. He couldn't control it and he didn't like that."
Stiles recalled an incident in the hospital where Isaac had almost attacked him. Derek had stepped in, thankfully.
Boyd leaned against the front of Stiles' jeep. "You'll be good at this. I don't doubt it. You're pretty smart, you'll pull through."
Stiles gave a small smile. He appreciated what Boyd was trying to do but he didn't understand why. The two of them had never been friends. Before he could question it, he recalled what Bonnie said about his mark causing an unspoken connection. Derek's pack probably felt it too.
His mouth was suddenly very dry.
"Stiles, we should go," Boyd perked up then.
"What? Why?" Stiles frowned.
"I smell someone, and they're not human."
Stiles' eyes widened. "Get it the jeep." He demanded yanking the keys out of his pocket and jumping in the driver's side door.
Boyd climbed into the passenger's side as Stiles threw the jeep in reverse.
"We need to tell the others," Boyd said pulling out his phone. "I'd call Scott if I were you. We don't know how many there are."
Dread washed over Stiles as he realized, he was out of time. Deucalion was here.
Chapter 12: Kali
Stiles could see the stress on Boyd's face. He was worried. The way his hands gripped his phone in his lap in case Derek called back. Stiles took a deep breath and concentrated on projecting his magic. He kept his eyes open, as he was driving, but he noticed Boyd relax some next to him. His shoulders slumping slightly and his hands loosening their grip. It was working. He was doing it.
Boyd frowned, as if realizing suddenly. "Are you doing that?" he asked looking at Stiles.
"Keeping calm helps you focus, one of us has to be able to make rational decisions," Stiles gave a small smile. He suddenly felt guilty. Should he have asked first? Was this a consent thing?
"It's nice actually," Boyd nodded. "Neat trick."
Stiles swallowed, "Sorry, I should have asked first."
"No, it's fine. Really."
Before Stiles could respond someone stepped onto the trail causing Stiles to slam on breaks. His jeep wasn't going to stop in time. He swerved the wheel, throwing his jeep up onto an old rotting stump.
"Son of a bitch," Stiles swore as he placed a hand over the cut that now sat on his forehead.
"Are you alright?" Boyd asked as he undid the seatbelts.
"Who the hell was that?" Stiles asked as he climbed out of the wrecked vehicle.
"They're gone," Boyd said, looking around as he climbed out of his side.
"That wasn't on accident," Stiles' heart started to race. He was sure Boyd could hear it.
"No, it wasn't. They wanted us to wreck," Boyd nodded in agreement, his eyes still trying to find someone in the now darkening woods. The sun was almost completely set.
"You should call Derek, let him know we're stranded."
"Should we stay here?"
"Hell if I know," Stiles shrugged. He glanced around again, still not seeing anyone.
"What other neat tricks can you do?" Boyd asked, glancing at Stiles.
"Not much, don't get your hopes up," Stiles shook his head.
"Okay, stay close, we should probably get out of here. If we stay, they could surround us." Boyd decided. He clearly wasn't comfortable making that kind of decision, but they were limited, and Derek wasn't there. He fished his phone from his pocket and sent Derek a text.
"You two really shouldn't be out here alone," A voice spoke up then causing Stiles and Boyd to freeze in place. A figure emerged from the woods. It was a woman, her eyes bright red. She smiled maliciously.
"Who are you?" Boyd demanded though it was obvious she was from Deucalion's pack.
"Kali. I'm here to deliver a message," She stepped closer and Stiles felt his blood run cold.
"For who?" Boyd asked again, he stepped forward slightly, placing himself in between Kali and Stiles.
"Derek and Scott," She smiled. Her teeth gleaming in the now risen moonlight.
"What's the message?" Stiles dared ask. He was sure he didn't want to know.
Suddenly she was lunging at them. Stiles jumped back as Boyd shifted, meeting her half way. It was a failed attack on his part as she sunk her claws in and threw Boyd aside.
Panic washed over Stiles before he gave a quick snap of his fingers, pulling a branch down on top of the alpha. She snarled as it pinned her briefly.
"You're no regular human," Kali sneered, throwing the branch off.
Boyd was busy trying to pull himself off the ground.
"This changes things," The alpha hissed, taking a step towards Stiles.
He couldn't decide if she was intrigued or nervous. She advanced slowly, her claws still out and bloody from Boyd's wounds.
"How so?" Stiles asked, hoping to stall her until Boyd could get up. The beta was their best shot which wasn't looking so good. If he could keep her monologuing just a little bit longer, he could buy them some time until help arrived. Hopefully.
"You were just a nuisance before, but now..." She shook her head slowly, "Now you're a threat. I was only going to kill you if you got in my way. The beta's who I wanted, but wrong place, wrong time," Her mouth pulled into another malicious smile.
Stiles tried to keep her attention on him as Boyd finally got to his feet.
"I don't believe in coincidence. My life is too chaotic for that," Stiles said hurriedly. He just had to keep her talking.
"Then we agree you were meant to die," She stepped forward just as Boyd charged her again. She heard his advance though and turned last minute, slashing at the side of his face.
Stiles grabbed the branch he'd pulled down on her and swung but she caught it and yanked forward, pulling Stiles towards her. He fumbled as he released the branch.
She swung at him, her claws raking across his chest. Thankfully it was a shallow attack and her claws only grazed his skin. His shirt was shredded though. Stiles realized then that Boyd had kicked her feet out from under her. The cuts would have been much deeper if he hadn't done that.
The sound of growling from Stiles' left told him they had more company. They weren't gonna get out of this alive.
The druid's eyes snapped open to see Scott rushing towards him.
"Oh thank god," Stiles huffed when he realized Derek was with him.
Kali was already back on her feet by now. She let out a loud roar that could only mean she was alerting the others.
"We've got to get out of here, let's go," Derek pulled Boyd off the ground then.
"Consider this a warning," Kali shouted as they hurried to Derek's car.
"Scott, hold pressure here and pull his pain," Derek ordered as he helped Boyd into the backseat.
Scott didn't argue as he climbed in next to Boyd.
Stiles slid into the front seat holding his hand over the few bleeding cuts of his own wounds.
"Are you okay?" Derek asked looking at Stiles worriedly.
"What?" Stiles frowned. That wasn't what he'd expected Derek to say.
"Are you okay?" Derek repeated; his tone impatient.
"It's not too bad," Stiles nodded. He pulled his hand away to see the blood that stained the front of his shirt.
"What were you doing out there?" Derek demanded next.
"I was..." He hesitated. He'd told Scott he was going to take his dad dinner. "I just needed to get away from it all I guess," Stiles shrugged.
"So you drive into the middle of the woods?" Derek snapped, shooting Stiles a look.
"I don't know, I just...kind of ended up there," Stiles shrugged, his eyes falling to his lap.
"If Stiles' hadn't been there, she would have killed me," Boyd spoke up then, his voice was raw from the pain.
Derek's hands gripped the steering wheel tighter. His jaw clenched. He was less than thrilled to say the least, but he didn't respond.
The rest of the car ride was quiet.
When they arrived to Derek's loft, Erica and Isaac were waiting anxiously for them.
"Is he okay?" Isaac asked, helping Boyd to lay down on the couch.
"He's cut up pretty badly, but he'll heal," Derek nodded.
"Stiles, you're hurt too," Erica frowned taking a step towards the human.
"I'm fine," Stiles waved a dismissive hand.
"Let me see," Scott reached forward to lift Stiles' shirt, but he stepped back.
"I said I'm fine," he snapped harshly.
"You're bleeding, why won't you let me look?" Scott frowned at his best friend.
"Boyd needs the help, I'm fine," Stiles softened his tone a bit.
Erica narrowed her eyes at the druid. "Stiles, what is that?" She pointed to his shirt. Peeking through a tear in the fabric was his mark.
Stiles' hand flew up to feel where his skin was showing. His eyes went wide.
Is that a tattoo?" Isaac asked from next to Boyd.
Stiles' eyes met Derek's blank stare before falling to Scott. His best friend looked confused.
Stiles was sure he was going to pass out from the stress. He wasn't ready for this. He wasn't ready for any of this.
The smell of fear filled the room as Stiles took a step back away from Erica and Scott. His hand still covering the mark.
"It's nothing," He lied, knowing full well the entire room could hear his lie.
"When did you get a tattoo?" Scott frowned, taking another step towards the human.
"It's not a tattoo," Derek spoke up then, his eyes still on Stiles, his face void of emotion. He carefully made his way across the room towards Stiles.
The human was frozen in place, terror stricken.
Derek reached out slowly and pulled Stiles wrist down, exposing the tear in his shirt where the mark was poorly concealed. He lifted part of the fabric, so he could see the mark fully.
Stiles' stared at Derek, trying to decipher any kind of reaction but there was none.
"It's a triskelion," Erica noted, her eyes looking to her alpha as if he could explain it.
"How long have you had this?" Derek asked finally, his eyes not looking away from the darkened skin of Stiles chest.
"It showed up a few days ago," Stiles answered quietly.
Derek's eyes finally met Stiles'.
"Why does it match Derek's tattoo?" Scott demanded; his tone sounded betrayed.
Stiles and Derek stared at each other, neither being willing to say it out loud.
"You weren't in the woods tonight by accident," Boyd spoke up from the couch then. "That mark led you there. I would have died if you hadn't been there."
Stiles swallowed before taking a step back, away from Derek's touch. "No, it was accidental. A coincidence."
"You said you didn't believe in coincidences," Boyd recalled Stiles' conversation with Kali in the woods.
Stiles bit down on his lower lip as he took a step back.
"Does someone want to explain what this means?" Scott snapped, his eyes darted between Derek and his pack before landing on Stiles.
"He's my emissary," Derek answered, not looking away from Stiles.
"I'm sorry, what?"
"I'm fated to be his emissary, I'm not yet," Stiles corrected.
A look of betrayal crossed Scott's face.
"You knew about this?"
Stiles only nodded.
"And you didn't tell me?"
"I didn't tell anyone," Stiles snapped. He wasn't in the mood to deal with this right now.
"Why didn't you?" Derek asked then, his face still blank. It was beginning to unnerve Stiles.
"What was I supposed to say? Hey, Derek, you barely know me much less trust me but I have magical abilities, and oh by the way, I'm fated to be your emissary, wanna see my matching tattoo?" Stiles snapped, throwing his hands around.
"You said you didn't want to be an emissary?" Isaac spoke up for the first time, his brows pulled into a confused frown.
Stiles swallowed, avoiding Derek's gaze.
"Derek, didn't want one, remember?" Stiles reminded them.
"I so told you he was meant to be your emissary," Erica crossed her arms, giving a Derek a smug smile.
"No. No way," Scott stepped forward then.
Derek immediately realized why Stiles had been so hesitant to tell Scott about his spark.
"There's no way to get rid of it, I looked," Stiles' eyes dropped to the floor.
Derek's stomach twisted knowing that Stiles had looked for a way to avoid being his emissary.
"So what, you're forced to answer to him?" Scott demanded angrily.
"He doesn't answer to anyone," Derek glared at Scott. "It's a partnership."
"I can ignore it technically. I don't even have to practice magic," Stiles looked at Scott with sad eyes.
"But you have been," Scott's tone was accusing.
"That doesn't mean I have to be Derek's emissary."
"Good, cause it's not happening," Scott said matter of factly.
"That's not up to you," Erica growled. She could see Stiles' disappointment AT Scott's reaction. He'd hoped Scott would be a but more understanding.
"Stiles, come on, it's Derek," Scott huffed as if that was reason enough to not be his emissary.
Stiles shook his head, "I can't do this."
"Switzerland?" Derek asked, his face still expressionless. Stiles desperately wanted to know what he was thinking.
Stiles was about to nod in agreement, but the hiss of Boyd trying to move while in pain kept him silent. He didn't want to be Switzerland. He wanted to help Derek. He knew it would piss Scott off, but Scott had to understand they needed to work together to beat Deucalion.
Stiles' eyes cut to Boyd. "I have a recipe for a paste that helps you heal faster. I'd like to get some, if you'll allow it," he glanced back at Derek for permission.
Derek only nodded, a brief frown of confusion crossing his face.
"Scott we need to work together, Deucalion-"
"The last time we worked together, things didn't end well," Scott cut his best friend off
"Because you lied to Derek. You used him. You could have told us what you were planning," Stiles snapped.
"This isn't very Switzerland of you," Isaac pointed out.
"I don't care, this is bigger than all of us," Stiles huffed, throwing his hands up.
"Boyd almost died, hell we both would have. We can't be on opposite sides here. This is what Deucalion wants. He wants loyalty and he wants an alpha he can control. If you two work together, it'll make it harder. I'm not going to pick a side and I'm not going to be Switzerland. I'll do whatever I can to help any of you because it's my job. I have these abilities and yeah, they scare the hell out of me, but I can't just not use them. Did I consider it, yes? But it's selfish of me. I can do things that no one else can. You may not like it, but I don't care. It's who I am and I'm going to use it. I may be fated to be Derek's emissary, but I can't think about that right now. Right now all I'm thinking is Boyd is in pain and I can fix it, so that's what I'm going to do."
Stiles turned then, stalking out the door.
Derek's chest swelled with pride at Stiles' words. He appreciated what he'd said.
"He shouldn't go out there, alone," Boyd said, around a wince.
"I'll drive him," Erica grabbed the keys to the Camaro and hurried after the human. She wanted to talk to him anyway.
Sorry for the wait, my computer is being difficult and not charging. I need to get a new one, but they're expensive!
Stiles reached the bottom of the steps when Erica caught up with him.
"You shouldn't go out alone," She dangled the keys in front of him.
"Erica, please, I'm not in the mood," Stiles could handle a lot of things, but Erica right now, was not one of them.
"I'm just offering to drive," She shrugged innocently.
Stiles gave a huff. He didn't have his jeep right now, cause it was lodged on some tree stump in the middle of the woods. "Fine."
"Are you okay?" The blonde asked as she started the car. Her tone sounded genuine which Stiles wasn't used to.
He was about to dismiss her, but he paused. She would know he's lying, and he really didn't feel like being pushed to talk.
"Look, I know this is a lot, but I think it's really great what you're doing. Derek has been under a lot of pressure and knowing you have his back is comforting. I mean maybe it's the whole mark thing, but I don't think so. You're smart and you've always been there for Derek when he needed you. Try not to let the pressure get to you. We don't expect anything from you."
Stiles frowned, "Scott does."
"I think you put Scott in his place. Without you he's completely alone. He can't afford that, and he knows it. He knows if he doesn't accept Derek being in your life then it's gonna cause a problem. I don't think he wants that," Erica offered with a shrug, her eyes sliding over to Stiles.
"I just don't want to let anybody down," Stiles slumped in his seat. He hated this. He didn't want this pressure on him.
"You won't because there's nothing expected of you."
"You say that, but I'm literally fated to be Derek's emissary. I'm expected to choose between him and Scott. I'm expected to practice. I'm expected to protect you all. I don't know if I can do that," Stiles shook his head harshly. He was trying not to send himself into a panic attack.
"Stiles, Derek would never make you choose, he's not like that. And you're not expected to practice and protecting us isn't your job. You can help us, sure, but you're never expected to. We all work together, you're not alone in this, I promise."
Stiles looked at Erica carefully, gauging if she was just trying to make him feel better or if she was being genuine. He liked to think himself fairly decent at reading people and she seemed to be pretty genuine.
"Thanks," Stiles gave a small smile.
Derek felt the tension in the room grow once Stiles left. Scott was glaring at him, but he remained silent.
"You should be more supportive of Stiles, he's under a lot of stress with these new abilities," Isaac spoke up, looking at Scott.
"I do support him. I just don't trust him," Scott jabbed a finger towards Derek.
"Well Stiles does," Boyd piped in, his tone still thick with pain.
"Are you gonna make him be your emissary?" Scott asked looking at Derek with pleading eyes as if begging him to not make Stiles do something he didn't want to.
"I can't make him do anything."
"Do you want him as your emissary?"
Derek's jaw clenched. He honestly didn't know how to answer that. He hadn't ever wanted an emissary because he didn't trust anyone enough, but over the past few days Derek was beginning to trust Stiles but now, he worried it was just because of the mark. But wouldn't the mark mean he could trust Stiles? It was all too much.
"I don't know," Derek answered finally.
"If he wants to be your emissary and you decide you don't want him, what happens?" Scott asked next.
"What if he doesn't want to be your emissary and you do want him?"
"The mark won't go away?"
"What if he becomes another alpha's emissary?"
"I don't know," Derek spoke through grit teeth. Scott was trying his patience.
"Why don't you just let what happens happen," Isaac snapped.
"If I didn't know any better, I'd say you want Stiles as part of the pack," Scott crossed his arms at the other werewolf.
"Yeah, maybe I do, that doesn't mean you should get in the way," Isaac crossed his arms to match Scott.
"Okay, enough. We have more pressing matters to deal with at the moment. We can worry about alliances later, but Stiles is right, for now we need to work together," Derrk cut in using his alpha tone.
Stiles walked back into the loft with his bag of ingredients. He avoided all eye contact as he beelined towards Boyd.
"How are you feeling? No fever or anything right?" Stiles asked, kneeling next to the beta.
"Why would I have a fever?" Boyd frowned.
"Sometimes an alpha wound, if it's deep enough can cause a minor infection. It's not super common. It's called alpha infection; I know super creative name, right? I didn't come up with it," Stiles quipped as he pulled out the different ingredients he'd ordered.
"How do you know that?" Scott frowned.
"Research, kinda my thing, remember?" Stiles glanced up at his best friend.
"How do you know how to do this?" Isaac frowned peering at a glass bottle labeled echinacea.
"I have a teacher," Stiles shrugged, avoiding eye contact with anyone.
"A teacher?" Derek spoke up this time, his brows raised in question.
"She's been helping me," Stiles said as he carefully measured the different ingredients.
Stiles paused and looked up at Derek, "Can you trust me, please? She's been helping me learn how to do all types of magic."
"Is she an emissary?" Scott piped in then, his own expression pulled into a frown.
"No, she's a witch," Stiles answered dismissively.
"A what?" Scott gaped at his best friend.
"Look, she's versed in all types of magic. She just uses it differently. She can harness energy whereas I am energy, it's complicated," Stiles huffed. He mixed the ingredients carefully, creating a salve.
"Witches are real?" Isaac didn't like the sound of that.
"You're a werewolf, did you really just ask me if witches are real?" Stiles looked up at Isaac with an incredulous look.
"Are you sure this is going to work?" Derek piped in then.
"She gave me the exact recipe, It will work, I just have to activate it," Stiles gently coated Boyd's cut up cheek with the olive colored paste.
Boyd hissed at the contact. Derek immediately knelt next to Stiles and reached for Boyd's hand, pulling the pain as Stiles continued to work.
Once the paste was applied evenly, Stiles hovered a hand over it and closed his eyes. The paste slowly seeped into the wound.
"It tingles," Boyd noted.
"Good, it's working," Stiles nodded slightly, pleased with himself.
"Let's get the rest of this on you," Stiles gestured towards Boyd's torso.
Derek watched as Stiles covered the rest of the wounds. He could see the gashes on Boyd's cheek already starting to heal faster.
"There, it'll still take longer than a normal injury to heal, but it'll be a little faster. I can apply it once every twelve hours but anything more than that will cause hallucinations. Something about yarrow root and spindle weed in large doses," Stiles explained with a shrug.
"Thank you, Stiles, for this and for taking some of the heat earlier," Boyd placed a hand on Stiles' arm in an appreciative gesture.
"I'll do some research and see if I can find something to help with pain," Stiles smiled shyly before standing.
Derek stood too, reaching for Stiles' arm. "Thank you, you didn't have to do this."
"I wanted to."
Derek noted how Stiles heart didn't skip. He wasn't just pretending to care, he actually did. Stiles would no doubt make a good emissary, maybe it wasn't such a bad idea after all.
Thank you so much to those that have supported me via my Ko-fi, I can't thank you enough!!
Chapter 15: Trust You
To say Stiles was a wreck was an understatement. He didn't know what he was doing. All he knew was that he was pacing Derek's balcony and trying to not freak out. He'd stepped out for some air, while the wolves were inside coming up with a plan. Scott had begrudgingly agreed to stay.
Nobody said anything about the mark and Stiles was honestly glad, however he was dying to know what Derek thought. The alpha had remained infuriatingly emotionless throughout the whole thing.
Speak of the devil.
Stiles turned to see Derek slip through the sliding glass door.
"Uh, sorry do you-do you need me for...something?" Stiles asked, rubbing his sweaty hands down the side of his jeans.
"No, I was just...checking on you," Derek glanced over his shoulder, towards the door as if debating on making a run for it.
"Don't do that," Stiles huffed, rolling his eyes. He turned back to face the railing.
"Do what?" Derek frowned taking a cautious step forward.
"Act like you care. Just because I have this stupid mark doesn't mean you have to act different towards me," Stiles answered, not looking away from the passing traffic in the distance.
"I'm not. I know this is a lot for you, and Scott isn't exactly being understanding," Derek didn't want to tell Stiles that he felt a connection between them. He didn't know if it was just because of the mark or if it was always there and just brought to the surface now.
"It's a lot for everyone," Stiles shrugged dismissively.
"But we've all gotten used to our abilities, you're still learning. And it sounds like your learning from a complete stranger, which I don't really like the idea of..." Derek mumbled the last part, but Stiles still heard it.
"She's the only one that is helping me. She's not limited like Deaton is. She's taught me so much about the different types of power. Deaton wouldn't even tell me about the fourth type. I text him asking about it a little bit, but he was very dismissive. Bonnie explained everything to me," Stiles snapped.
"What fourth type?" Derek frowned. He wasn't as familiar with the different types of magic.
"It's called blood magic. It's...a darker type. It's also more dangerous," Stiles answered vaguely. He didn't want Derek to know he had used it a few times.
"Dangerous how?" Derek pressed, leaning against the railing.
"It just kind of takes a toll on the user," Stiles again, answered vaguely. "My point is, even if I'm not gonna use it, I'd like to know about it. And how to counter it. Did you know there are defensive spells I can use during a fight? It's hard to practice cause I don't have anyone to square with but I think it would really come in handy. Especially against Deucalion."
"Why don't we practice tomorrow? I can throw a few punches for you to counter if you think it'll help," Derek offered. He was willing to do anything to help Stiles. He thought it would be the best way to get him to agree to be his emissary as well. He just worried that Stiles didn't want to.
"You'd do that?" Stiles didn't know why he was surprised. Derek had helped him with his magic the past few days.
"Yeah, like you said, it would be helpful against Deucalion."
"You're taking this surprisingly well," Stiles looked at Derek carefully, gauging his reaction.
"How should I be taking it?"
Stiles hated how controlled Derek kept his expressions, it made him impossible to read.
"I just figured...you'd be...distant," Stiles hesitated for lack of better a word.
"You just strike me as the type that doesn't like to get too close. This would give you a really good reason to push people away," Stiles shrugged, dropping his eyes to the street below.
A moment of silence hung in the air.
"You're right," Derek finally admitted earning a surprised look from Stiles.
"Normally I would be pulling away and distancing myself but...with you...it's different," Derek averted his eyes this time. Scanning the view as if it was the most interesting thing he'd seen all day.
"Why? Because of the mark?"
"No," Derek shook his head before turning his attention back to Stiles. "Because I trust you."
Stiles frowned slightly but didn't respond. He knew trust wasn't something Derek was known for. He had been let down too many times to be a trusting person.
"You may not trust me fully yet, but I hope one day you will," Derek reached forward, hooking his finger in the tear of Stiles' shirt, exposing the mark.
"I..." Stiles swallowed hard. "I do trust you. Don't ask me why," He snorted.
Derek's sage green eyes met Stiles'. "Come on, let me take a look at your cut, and I'll get you a new shirt."
Stiles licked his lips nervously as he followed Derek inside.
"Erica, can you get the vodka and a few napkins?" Derek called as he led Stiles into the back room of the loft.
"Vodka?" Stiles frowned.
"I don't have a first aid kit," Derek shrugged.
"Take your shirt off," Derek ordered gently as he pulled a shirt from a dresser drawer.
"Is this your room?" Stiles asked inspecting the small room. It had a large bed draped in blue bedding. A small table with a lamp sat next to it. On the opposite wall was the dresser Derek pulled the shirt from.
"This might be a little big on you, but it's not torn or stained in blood," Derek offered a grey t shirt that had three buttons. "And yes, this is my room."
Stiles carefully peeled his shirt off just as Erica walked in.
"Mmm, look at you, Stiles," Erica winked, handing Derek the supplies he'd asked for.
Stiles blushed heavily as he took Derek's shirt.
"Let's get these cleaned up," Derek frowned at the raw wounds on Stiles' chest.
"This really isn't necessary, they're not too bad," Stiles looked down at the two claw marks. They weren't deep and the bleeding had stopped long ago.
"We should have cleaned this up already," Erica crossed her arms.
"Sit," Derek pointed at his bed.
Stiles swallowed but didn't argue.
"Here, you take his pain, I'll clean, you're not exactly gentle," Erica took the vodka damp napkin from Derek.
Derek sat next to Stiles on the bed and slid his hand into the druid's. "Squeeze if you need to."
Stiles was sure the two wolves could hear the way his heart was pounding heavily in his chest, but neither one mentioned it.
Stiles let out a hiss as Erica blotted the wounds with the napkin.
"You know it's cute really," Erica said as she continued to clean. "The whole matching tattoo thing."
Stiles held tightly onto Derek's hand as he pulled the pain slowly.
"I didn't even know that an emissary could be fated to a specific alpha. Like what if that werewolf never became an alpha, or the emissary never came into their powers?"
"I'm sure it happens," Derek answered stiffly.
"Deaton said fated emissaries are pretty rare," Stiles said around grit teeth.
"I guess that makes you two special," Erica quipped as she stood up. "Alright, all clean."
"Should we wrap it?" Stiles frowned down at the still stinging wounds.
"Oh, there's gauze in the bathroom," Derek nodded.
"I'll be right back," Erica bounced out of the room.
"Thank you," Stiles mumbled.
Derek shifted so he was facing Stiles, his other hand reached up to gently trace the triskelion under Stiles', collar bone.
"Is it weird for you?" Stiles asked then.
"A bit," Derek nodded.
Before Stiles could respond, Erica reappeared.
"You know I just had a thought. Boyd, Isaac and I could all get the same tattoo, you know, to represent the pack."
Derek raised a brow, "You'd want that?"
"Why not, we're family and Stiles already has one," the blonde smiled at the druid.
"It might make it less weird for you," Stiles gave Derek an encouraging smile.
"Let's get through this thing with Deucalion," Derek pulled his hand from Stiles' as Erica finished taping on the gauze.
"You're afraid we won't live through this," Erica said, standing. It wasn't posed as a question.
"I'm afraid I might not make it through this. I'll do anything I have to to make sure you all do," Derek spoke sternly before stepping by the blonde and out the room.
Erica turned to where Stiles was pulling on Derek's slightly loose-fitting shirt. "I'm so glad you're here."
Scott and Stiles stayed at Derek's that night. Stiles didn't do much sleeping much like Derek. Scott was snoring softly in Erica's room. She had agreed to bunk with Boyd that night. Stiles was in the living room on his computer and practicing his magic.
What he didn't know was that Derek had come out of his room and was watching quietly from behind him.
Stiles gently lifted a pencil that had been sitting on the coffee table. His eyes set on the floating wood. With a snap of his fingers the pencil broke in two.
"Ha," Stiles gasped out excitedly, careful to keep his tone low so as to not wake anyone.
Another snap and the pencil went back together.
"Wow, impressive," Derek's spoke up finally, causing Stiles to lose concentration. The pencil fell to the table with a soft clank.
"Sorry, did I wake you?" Stiles glanced behind the alpha half expecting the others.
"No, I came out here cause I couldn't sleep. I was watching for a minute. You put the pencil back together," Derek gestured to the coffee table before coming around and taking a seat on the couch next to Stiles.
"Yeah, according to Bonnie, I can undo my own magic to an degree. I can unlight flames I lit or fix sticks I break. I cannot however, heal wounds I make," Stiles explained.
"Bonnie," Derek nodded.
"She and I have been emailing back and forth. She's teaching me a lot."
"In exchange for what?"
Stiles frowned. "She wants me to use my magic for good."
Derek smelled the guilt coming off of him.
"I know," Stiles nodded, his eyes boring holes into the wood flooring.
"What aren't you telling me?" Derek knew that Stiles was leaving something out.
"She made me promise not to use blood magic."
"But how else am I supposed to take out Deucalion?" Stiles finally looked up, meeting Derek's eyes.
"You don't," Derek frowned. "We're doing this together. You just do what you can without getting yourself killed."
"That's not gonna be enough," Stiles tone turned hostile, "You've seen what he can do. The packs he's wiped out. I'm not letting that happen to mine."
Derek, who had been ready to shut down whatever Stiles was saying, fell silent.
"I didn't mean...I just meant...You know what I'm trying to say," Stiles huffed, backtracking.
"Stiles, I appreciate what you're trying to do, but you said blood magic was dangerous. I don't want you going down that road. You don't have to do this alone. We'll be with you. And I'm not saying it's gonna be easy but-"
"It's gonna be impossible. What do we have that the other packs didn't? They had numbers. We don't. They had experienced emissaries. We don't. What makes us so different?"
"Are you always this doomsday?" Derek smirked slightly.
"Only when it's true," Stiles huffed, leaning back in his seat.
"Maybe that's what's gonna help us win. Smaller numbers, less experience. They see us as easy targets but they may be underestimating us."
"How are you this calm? You've literally lost everything once. Aren't you afraid of losing it again?" Stiles snapped.
Derek stiffened at Stiles' words.
"I'm sorry, that was unnecessary," Stiles dropped his head.
"I'm the reason I lost everything once. I'm not making that mistake again," Derek's tone was sharp.
"Trusting the wrong person? Are you sure?" Stiles gestured to himself.
Derek raised a brow at Stiles.
"I know about Kate," Stiles rolled his eyes at Derek's confused look.
"Are you comparing yourself to her?" Derek's jaw was clenched.
"No, I'm just saying that you claimed to trust me. Isn't trust the mistake you're referring to?"
Derek reached out, pulling the collar of his shirt down, exposing his mark on Stiles' pale skin. "I trusted you before with hesitation. This lets me know it's the right choice."
Stiles pulled away, standing then. "So the mark is why you're acting different towards me. I told you I don't want you to treat me any different because of this."
"Stiles listen to me," Derek snapped standing now too. "Everytime, I turned around I found myself in your care. The bullet. The hospital with Peter. The pool. It was you, every time. And I fought that. I hated you because you made me want to trust you. I didn't want to. I have been trying to fight whatever this was for months. And now..." he took a deep breath.
"You're giving in because of the mark," Stiles guessed.
"I used to believe in fate. My mom always told me to. But then she was taken from me. How was that fate? But this," Derek gestured between him and Stiles. "This is literally fate. You didn't ask for this. I didn't ask for this. Yet here we are. I don't know what this means, not completely, but I know it's bigger than my trust issues so yeah, I'm giving in because of the mark."
Stiles' tongue ran over his lips anxiously.
"So what you all of a sudden want an emissary now?" Stiles was trying to keep his walls up. He couldn't let Derek in, not fully. Once all this with Deucalion was over, this thing between them would be too. Derek just needed him.
"I didn't say that," Derek's guard was still in place even if his walls weren't.
"Just admit you only need me to deal with Deucalion. Don't pretend you actually care. You saw an opportunity with my magic and now with the mark. I'm already on your side, you don't have to try anymore," Stiles threw a hand up. He went to turn but Derek caught his arm, pulling Stiles in close.
"I don't need you," Derek growled. He was only a foot from Stiles now.
"Then why help me? Why let me help you? I could fuck this all up," Stiles was sure Derek could hear the way his heart raced but he fought to keep his tone even despite it.
"Because..." Derek's eyes dropped to Stiles' full lips before landing on his caramel colored eyes once again. "I care."
"Why?" Stiles pushed. He wanted answers.
Derek's jaw clenched. "Because you were always there," He released Stiles then, taking a step back before he did something stupid like kiss him.
"Wait, you cared before my magic?" Stiles blinked at the werewolf.
"Why do you think I took the hit from the Kanima? Or kept Isaac from ripping you apart? Trust me I didn't like feeling that way, but I did."
"When did you start trusting me?" Stiles needed confirmation. Proof.
"The hospital. You gave up starting line for me," Derek's eyes dropped to the floor, unable to look at Stiles.
Stiles brows rose. "Oh."
"Why did you?" Derek looked up again. "All those times. You could have left for dead...You barely knew me when I came to Scott with the bullet."
"Because I know what it's like to be alone in this world. To lose people who matter to you. To need somebody there."
Derek stepped forward cautiously, his eyes not leaving Stiles'. "Be my emissary."
Stiles gaped at the werewolf. "Wh-what?"
"I know you don't want to be one and you're probably hoping Scott gets turned into an alpha but...I want you to be mine. I never wanted one until now. Just think about it."
Stiles continued to gape as Derek turned away to go back to bed. "Goodnight, Stiles."
Stiles would have pinched himself if he could bring himself to move. Had that whole thing really happened? A heart to heart with Derek? Derek admitting he cared about Stiles and not just for his magic? Derek asking Stiles to be his emissary? What had his life become?
Okay I'm officially back to updating more regularly. I just had a project I was trying to finish up. Anyway. Hope you like it!
Chapter 17: Know him
The next morning the werewolves found Stiles face down on the table in the living room. A candle was still lit nearby.
"What happened to him?" Erica asked with a raised brow at the human.
"Couldn't sleep," Derek answered.
"Hey, Stiles," Scott nudged his friend.
Stiles snapped upright, his eyes wide, "What's wrong?"
"Nothing's wrong, you fell asleep on the table," Scott snickered, gesturing towards the piece of furniture.
"Oh," Stiles wiped the sleep from his eyes and yawned.
"Isaac and I will go grab breakfast. Can you three play nice while we're gone?" She pointed at Scott, Derek and Stiles.
"How's Boyd?" Stiles asked then, standing up.
"He's better," Erica gave a soft smile, gesturing towards the back room where Boyd was.
Stiles hurried off to check on him leaving Scott and Derek alone.
"I heard you, you know...asking him to be your emissary," Scott said, not looking up at the alpha.
Derek tensed. He hadn't meant for that be common knowledge just yet. He didn't want Stiles to have any outside influences persuading him one way or another. He wanted this to be Stiles' decision.
"He'll do it ya know. He believes you, that you're not just using him."
Derek remained silent.
"I don't. I know you're just using him," Scott's eyes finally met Derek's. There was a bitterness to his look.
"I'm not," Derek finally answered. He wouldn't normally care what Scott thought but Scott could easily convince Stiles that Derek was in this for personal gain.
"And why would you care about Stiles otherwise?" Scott snapped, taking a step forward, almost like he was challenging Derek.
"Why do you?" Derek countered.
"Because he's strong in ways that matter. He's loyal. He's kind and caring despite his trust issues. He's always got my back. He'd risk his life for anyone, even people he doesn't know well, like Boyd," Scott gestured towards the direction Stiles had disappeared.
Derek gave Scott a look that said he'd just answered his own question.
"Don't pretend to know who Stiles is," Scott growled. A new anger to his tone.
"I may not know him as well as you do. But I know him better than you think I might." Despite Scott's hostility Derek's tone remained calm.
"Just because you both have lost family doesn't mean you know him," Scott spat again.
Derek's jaw clenched.
"He's saved my life more than once. When I came to you, in fact. He's never once done anything that makes me think I can't trust him, unlike you. I know the reason he was hesitant to tell you about his magic. I know how much Deucalion scares him and yet he's still willing to fight, for you and for Boyd...he's not selfish when he could be. He's helped me do research when I didn't know where to turn. I may not know him like you do, but don't think for a second I don't plan to," Derek took a step forward now. His eyes glaring, and tone sharp.
At that moment Stiles walked into the room with Boyd slowly behind him.
"Are you two behaving?" Stiles noted the tension between the two werewolves.
"Yeah," Scott lied; thankful his best friend couldn't tell.
Derek decided not to disagree.
After breakfast, Derek had offered to help Stiles with the training like he'd promised.
The pack and Scott gathered outside at the edge of the reserve to watch.
"Okay, just come at me," Stiles gestured for Derek to attack.
"I don't want to hurt you," Derek sighed.
"Trust me, I won't let you, but you have to try."
"Can't I attack one of them and you counter that?" Derek frowned, glancing at the other wolves.
"Later, for now, come at me," Stiles insisted.
"Fine," Derek stepped forward and threw a punch.
Stiles caught his arm with what looked like an imaginary rope, and twisted, forcing Derek to his knees. He looked up at Stiles with surprise to see the human equally as shocked.
"I so didn't expect that to work," Stiles gave a chortle as he released Derek.
"What did you do?" Derek stood back up, turning to face Stiles again.
"It's not really traditional druid magic, it's more of spell that witches use, but because I'm a druid I don't need to harness any special thing to do it. I can harness myself. It's just a small spell, but it's effective, apparently."
"This Bonnie Witch taught you this?" Derek frowned.
Stiles nodded, waiting for some type of reprimand.
Derek only nodded.
"We talked last night after you went to bed. She thinks it could help against Deucalion. The only problem is it'll weaken me. Like I'll get tired, but it's not dangerous. Not like blood magic."
"Good, then I'm really gonna come at you this time, are you ready?" Derek asked.
Stiles nodded, and spread his feet, getting himself ready for any blow Derek might throw his way.
The alpha leapt. He was coming down on Stiles with an unclawed hand.
Stiles, using the same simple spell, held his hands up as if holding a foot-long rope. It served as a shield. Catching Derek by the throat with it, Stiles used his magic to muster up enough strength to force Derek onto his back, the imaginary rope still at his throat.
Derek coughed with a groan.
"Oh my god, I'm so sorry," Stiles' eyes widened.
"No, it's okay," Derek answered in a grimace.
Stiles helped him up into a sitting position.
"Did I hurt you, I might be able to-"
"Stiles," Derek cut the druid off. "I'll heal. Werewolf remember?"
"So I did hurt you," Stiles' eyes widened again. He was now knelt in front of the alpha.
"I'm pretty sure you broke a rib," Derek chuckled. He glanced over at his betas who were clapping. Even Scott was clapping at that one.
"I'm so sorry, I didn't mean-"
"Stop," Derek pressed a finger to Stiles' lips halting any further words from leaving the human's mouth. "It was a good move. I really think that particular spell will help a lot."
Stiles wondered if Derek heard the way his heart thudded in his chest at the contact.
"Let's keep practicing. Try some other things?" Derek held a hand out to Stiles who helped him to his feet.
"I don't want to hurt you again," Stiles frowned.
Derek's chest tightened at the concern. Stiles, despite the fact that Derek was a werewolf, was worried about hurting him. Derek was sure the fluttering in his stomach wasn't normal. He'd only ever felt that once and that was when he was in high school.
"Let's let Isaac try then," Derek took a step back from Stiles. He couldn't let himself get that close. Being pack members was one thing but letting the feelings go deeper than that, was something else entirely.
Chapter 18: It could change
Derek watched as Stiles used his different magic abilities against Isaac. Next Erica joined in. Stiles only faltered a few times, but he was able to work his magic most of the time.
"He's really good," Boyd spoke up as Stiles managed to throw Isaac back with a blast of wind.
"He's incredibly strong," Derek agreed. He felt a sense of pride at the fact that his fated emissary was so strong. He still wondered why it was Stiles though. Why did fate have them together?
"He's just a weapon to you," Scott snapped, tossing a glare at Derek.
Derek's jaw clenched. He wasn't in the mood to have this discussion again.
"No, he's pack," Boyd answered before Derek could; his eyes not leaving Stiles.
Derek smelled the anger rolling off of Scott, mixed with jealousy.
"You could have been too," Boyd added, turning to look at Scott.
Before Scott could respond Erica let out a snarl that caught Derek's attention. Isaac was also bristling next to her, Stiles stood behind them, confused.
Just as Derek was about to ask, he caught wind of another wolf.
"Boyd get back to the loft," Derek ordered. He was too injured to fight right now.
"No, I'm not leaving-"
"That was an order," Derek flashed his eyes.
Boyd huffed before doing as he was told.
Stiles stepped around Isaac and Erica putting himself between the figure emerging from the woods and the betas.
"Stiles," Scott rushed forward.
"Who are you?" Stiles demanded.
"We're just here to talk," another figure answered coming out from behind the first. Twins it looked like. Couldn't have been any older than Derek.
"What do you want," Stiles stance was defensive.
"We have a proposition," The first guy said, "One for Derek."
"And one for Scott," The other finished.
Stiles held a hand out to keep Scott from stomping forward.
"One of you will join our pack, we're allowing you to choose. You have until the full moon tonight to decide or we start killing your pack. Starting with the human."
Scott growled but Stiles kept hold of his friend.
"Why do want Scott? He's not an alpha," Stiles asked then, his tone calm.
"We believe he has potential. Unlike the other runts in the litter."
Erica growled this time.
"I have a message for Deucalion," Stiles stepped forward. He pressed both hands forward as if he was pushing an invisible object. The first wolf was thrown back with a snarl.
"Aiden," The second werewolf ran to his brother's side. "What did you do?" he snapped.
"I filled his stomach with mistletoe. You might want to get him to a vet or something," Stiles quipped.
"You..." The second wolf went to charge Stiles, but he threw up another blast. This one made small cuts along the wolf's arm's making him snarl in pain.
"You should leave before I do the same thing to you," Stiles snapped.
"We're definitely killing you first," He grabbed his brother and helped him back into the woods.
"What the hell Stiles? Now you've just pissed them off. What's gotten into you?" Scott snapped turning to his friend.
Stiles went to respond but instead he coughed, and blood spurted from his mouth.
"Stiles," Isaac caught the druid as he faltered.
"I'm fine, just dizzy," Stiles grabbed Isaac's arm for support.
"You're bleeding," Erica glanced worriedly at Derek.
"Stiles, what kind of magic was that?" Derek demanded stepping forward to help Isaac carry his weight.
"Just a little defensive magic is all," Stiles mumbled. His lips were still tinted red from the blood.
"Why is he bleeding?" Scott followed worriedly.
Derek growled but didn't respond.
"I'm fine, really," Stiles insisted as they climbed the stairs.
Boyd was pacing inside and having heard them reached the door as they did.
"Stiles, are you okay? What happened?" Boyd's tone was full of concern.
"A couple of wolves from Deucalion's pack. They delivered a warning and Stiles delivered once back," Erica explained, grabbing Boyd's arm worriedly.
"He's been doing magic all day and this didn't happen, what's going on?" Scott demanded.
Derek and Isaac lowered Stiles to the couch.
"Erica, get him some water. Boyd get him a towel. Isaac a pillow," Derek barked orders.
"I'm fine, Derek," Stiles insisted.
"No, you're not. You used blood magic, didn't you?" His tone was harsh. His hands clenched and unclenched at his sides.
"I needed Deucalion to know we're serious. If he sees what we did to them, he might-"
"That's not going to scare him. He's the most feared alpha alive. He's not worth it. You told me it was dangerous, and you weren't going to use it. And you use it as a threat? Not even in the actual fight?" Derek cut him off.
"Look I get you're pissed cause I wasted the magic on them, but I'll have plenty to use then, don't worry," Stiles snapped back.
"Can you not phrase everything like I'm using you for beneficial gain? It's not like that, I told you," Derek huffed.
"Let's handle Deucalion and revisit that thought," Stiles snapped again.
"Damn it, Stiles, when are you going to get it? I'm worried about you. I don't want you to use that magic anymore. It's not worth losing you over," Derek took a step forward. The other pack members had fetched the supplies Derek asked for but none of them dared interrupt. Even Scott remained silent.
"It's worth it if it keeps me from losing you. Or Scott," Stiles stood then, his dizziness having passed thankfully.
"No, it's not. I've lost too many people. I won't lose you too."
"I've lost people too, why should I have to accept losing someone? Hell we've all lost someone, why can't I fight for us? Why won't you let me?" Stiles' eyes pricked with tears.
"Because I'm not important. There are people who need you. No one needs me," Derek's tone was raised, and his jaw clenched once again.
"I need you. And not just because of this stupid mark. They need you," Stiles gestured towards Boyd, Erica and Isaac. "You're more important than you think. You've been through enough. You're whole life you've had to look over your shoulder. Well now you have me, so you don't have to. As your emissary, I need you to trust me. Please." His tone started off strained and turned into a plead.
Derek paused. "My emissary?"
"Yes," Stiles nodded, careful to avoid Scott's eyes. "I belong here, with them, with you. Mark or not, I've always been there. We weren't fated from the beginning. Our choices over the past few months is what fated us together. It could change even, but I don't want it to."
"It could change?" Erica asked finally.
"I spoke with Bonnie a bit and she talked to a few of her witch friends. Fate isn't something that we're born with, it changes as we do. You could become an alpha and if we got closer and changed our relationship, I could be fated as your emissary. His mark would fade and one that was specific to you would show up," Stiles explained again. He could only imagine the look on Scott's face, but he didn't dare look.
"Our actions brought us together, brought the mark to my skin, it's not some random chance." Stiles turned back to Derek.
"Instead of trying to change it, you're accepting it?" Derek frowned.
Stiles licked at his bottom lip and nodded. His eyes finally daring to look at Scott.
Chapter 19: Pack
Stiles' eyes met the frown on his best friend's face.
"Scott I know you don't like this but-"
"It's not about liking this Stiles, it's about trusting them," Scott jabbed a finger towards Derek and his pack.
"And what reason have you given them to trust you?" Stiles snapped in response.
"Why are you siding with them? They're just using you."
"Maybe they are, but does it really matter? They need me. Deucalion is coming tonight for either you or Derek and I'm not going to let him have either one of you. I'm not siding with anyone."
"He's gonna come for Derek after what you did to his pack."
"He could come for you too, you're my best friend."
"Yeah well, he's your alpha, apparently," Scott gestured to Derek.
"He could be yours too," Boyd piped in gently.
Scott frowned, "He's made it clear how he feels about me."
"And how is that exactly?" Stiles asked, looking between Scott and Derek.
"He doesn't trust me."
"Can you blame him? You tricked him. You could have told him, or me what you were doing but you didn't."
"I'm sorry, I thought I was doing the right thing," Scott huffed, running a hand through his hair. "I am new to this. I don't know what to do about it."
"Let Derek help you," Stiles was practically begging.
Scott's eyes darted to Derek who had remained silent. "How do I know I can trust him?"
"Cause I do," Stiles stepped forward. "Do you trust me?" he put a hand on his best friends shoulder.
"Yeah, of course, Stiles," Scott nodded.
"Derek?" Stiles looked at the alpha hopefully.
"I don't make any decisions without consulting my pack," Derek turned to look at Boyd, Erica, and Isaac.
"I say we need to stick together," Boyd agreed.
"I'm with Boyd," Isaac nodded.
Everyone turned to Erica then. "Oh fine, but I've got my eye on you."
Derek nodded turning to Scott, "I'm giving you another chance, but only because I trust Stiles. Don't make me regret it."
Scott nodded, his head dropping slightly as if in shame.
"Good, now can we please figure out what we're gonna do when Deucalion gets here?" Stiles let out a sigh of relief. He really didn't want to have to live without Scott in his life.
"He's gonna be pissed because of what you did," Scott said, his eyes meeting Stiles'.
"Or impressed," Erica hummed thoughtfully.
"They likely didn't know you were an emissary, so you pose a threat they didn't know about," Isaac added. "We could use that to our advantage.
"How so?" Stiles frowned at the betas.
"They don't know what all you're capable of. You're not being trained by a druid. You're being trained by a witch. They won't know what they're up against. That magic you were using against Erica and I...that's not traditional. If you can use a few more spells. We might actually have a chance at beating him."
"It's a pack of alpha's, my magic not that strong."
"We don't even know how many there are," Scott added.
"There's at least three," Boyd piped in then. "The two from today and then the one from the woods, Kali."
"If I put on more salve, those wounds should be healed in time, hopefully," Stiles gestured at Boyd. "That's one for each of you and then that leaves Deucalion for us three."
"Deucalion will be more powerful than the others. And there may be more of them." Derek finally spoke up. He looked concerned. He didn't want to lose anyone, especially now that he had a true pack. With Scott and Stiles added, he already felt more powerful. He forgot how much having a pack could do.
"I can learn a few more spells. I know I don't have much time, but if we can at least put up a decent fight...maybe he'll..."Stiles trailed off. Hoping the bad guy would back down wasn't really an option. "If we cut off the head, the body flounders. We just need to get Deucalion."
"Cut off the head and two more grow back," Scott pointed out.
"This isn't a hydra, it's a pack," Derek nodded, "Stiles might be on to something."
"You're only as powerful as your pack members. If we take out the most powerful one, the others will be easier to take down."
"Okay, so what we just walk up to Deucalion and kill him? I don't think it's gonna work like that."
"No, but if you three can keep the others occupied, then that gives Derek, Scott and I a chance to get to him."
"That's still assuming there's not any other members," Isaac spoke up again.
"We can only work with what we know," Boyd looked thoughtful.
"But we have to be prepared for what we don't," Stiles shook his head.
"Can we find out how many of his pack there are?" Scott asked then.
"Erica and I can check the records," Isaac offered.
"I'll call Deaton, see if he has anything that might help," Scott pulled out his phone to call his boss.
"I'll put more of that salve on Boyd," Stiles gestured for the beta to follow him.
Derek felt a swell of pride at the way his pack was working together, even Scott, though he worried that he had only agreed to keep an eyes on Stiles. Either way he'd take it.
The pride unfortunately didn't last long as the dread from what was coming washed over him. He didn't want to lose any of his pack. Isaac, his first beta. Erica, his most ferocious. Boyd, most loyal. Scott, the most determined. And Stiles, his most trusted and perhaps strongest. He had managed to get Scott to see reason when he was sure he wouldn't. He had scared off two Alpha's just to try and prove a point to Deucalion. Stiles, once he really learned his true potential, would be a force to be reckoned with. He couldn't bare the thought that one of them might not make it through. He would do anything he could to make sure they all survived. Even at his own peril.
Stiles would be lying if he said he didn't feel drawn to Derek more now that Derek had admitted to wanting him to be his emissary and since Stiles had agreed. He had suspected that the feeling would get stronger, but it seemed to be in a different way as well. Something inside him wanted to protect Derek at all costs. A few weeks ago that idea would have been laughable to anyone who knew Derek was an alpha werewolf. But a few weeks ago Stiles was only a human, now he actually had the means to protect Derek and his pack. Stiles had never felt so powerful and these few spells he'd gotten from Bonnie made him powerful and unpredictable. Deucalion wouldn't be expecting witches magic from a druid. He wondered why more druids didn't use witch's spells. Bonnie had said that most druids saw witches as cheap imitations, but Stiles respected someone who could harness the power from earth and do magic.
"What are you thinking about so hard?" Derek asked, walking out onto the balcony where Stiles was.
Stiles turned to the alpha only to feel a pull he hadn't felt before.
"Is it different for you too? This...connection between us?" Stiles frowned. He suddenly felt nervous. He was reminded how attracted to Derek he had always been. But now the attraction was more than physical, there was trust and respect. He hadn't considered that those feelings might be heightened with the agreement.
"It's...stronger," Derek chose his words carefully. He'd been feeling more things towards Stiles over the past few days, but it seemed like just in the few hours, their agreement to share such a connection had escalated any romantic feelings he had for the younger guy. It made him uncomfortable. He didn't want to feel this way. It wasn't safe getting close to people much less falling for them. The last people he'd fallen for, didn't work out so well for him.
"Are you scared?" Stiles asked then, hoping to change the subject. He had been curious if it was different, but he didn't want to delve any further. The last thing he needed was Derek finding out about his feelings for him.
"Not for me," Derek answered honestly, taking a step forward.
Stiles only nodded. He felt the same way.
"Stiles, I need you to promise me that you won't do anything stupid," Derek reached out, his hand landing on Stiles' arm gently.
Stiles was sure Derek could hear the way his heart leapt at the contact.
"Only if you promise the same," Stiles responded, hoping his voice would drown out the loud thunder of his heartbeat.
"I'm serious, Stiles. I can't lose you."
Hearing those words made Stiles' stomach flip. He couldn't believe Derek Hale was saying this to him.
"What about them, do they get the same lecture?" Stiles gestured towards the wolves inside.
"They'll listen if I say backdown. They don't have a choice. They answer to me. You don't."
"And that scares you," Stiles guessed.
"It terrifies me," Derek corrected.
"Why? Just because of some mark?" Stile was a bit frustrated that the only reason Derek even felt this way was because of the stupid mark.
Derek reached forward and pulled the collar of Stiles' shirt down to expose the mark. He would be lying if he said he didn't like seeing his tattoo branded on Stiles, like a claim. God why did he have to make it creepy?
"No," Derek growled out, releasing stiles' shirt.
"When are you going to get it through your head that I care?" Derek sighed, as if in disappointment.
"It's just a new concept to me. I don't have anyone that cares. Except my dad and Scott," Stiles gave a shrug.
"You have tons of friends at School," Derek frowned.
"They don't know me. The real me. The messed up, jaded, distrusting, magical me."
"Those are the things I love about you," Derek took a step forward, wanting to reach out and touch Stiles again but he refused to be like Kate.
"Love about me?" Stiles snorted.
Derek hadn't realized how he'd worded that. He tensed and tried to think of how he could backtrack.
"I just meant-"
"It's fine," Stiles cut in, "I know you're not in love with me," he smirked, his eyes darting out towards the view over the balcony.
Derek wanted to say it, wanted Stiles to know, but he couldn't risk it. Not when he could lose him.
"You never promised," Derek changed the subject back to the previous one.
"I promise to do whatever necessary to keep Deucalion from winning," Stiles answered knowing it wasn't the answer Derek wanted.
"Damn it, Stiles," Derek growled. He should have known Stiles would be stubborn about it.
"I can't lose you either, Derek. I care too much. I finally belong, I can't lose that. This pack is my family now. I refuse to let that go without a fight," Stiles gestured to the door as he turned back to face Derek once again.
"I'm not asking you not to fight, I'm asking you not to kill yourself in the process. If things go wrong, you give him me. That's the plan. If we can't pull this off then-"
"No," Stiles cut in harshly, "I won't give him you. I won't give him anyone."
"Stiles, this is a fight we can't possibly hope to win, we have to be prepared that we might not," Derek's tone was stern but patient.
"I refuse to believe that. I won't let some power-hungry bully ruin my life. I will do whatever is necessary," Stiles snapped. His tone wasn't nearly as patient as Derek's, however that patience was going quickly.
"Damn it, Stiles, you don't understand what losing you will do to me. Please, I've lost too many people, don't make me lose you too," Derek's tone was pleading.
Stiles stiffened. Derek knew just what to say.
"Fine," Stiles nodded, "I promise."
Sorry it's been a while, life's been crazy. Enjoy!
Chapter 21: Deucalion
Derek held his breath as he breached the clearing at the edge of the reserve. He decided if Deucalion was going to attack, then he wanted it to be as far from innocent civilians as possible. He knew the pack of alpha's would find them.
"Derek Hale," A deep smooth voice stepped out of the shadows in the shape of a man in dark glasses holding a cane.
"Deucalion," Derek growled.
"Now that introductions are out of the way, can kill them yet?" Aiden, the previous twin Stiles had attacked, spat.
"Introductions are not yet through," Deucalion held up a hand. "We know them but if they are to join us, then we should give them a chance."
"Nobody's joining you," Stiles snapped, stepping forward.
Derek put an arm out to keep him from progressing forward.
"You must be Stiles. The magical one," Deucalion gave a half bow. "I've been looking forward to meeting you."
Derek growled possessively.
"He's the one who poisoned me," Aiden snarled but didn't move any closer.
"It was a nasty job you did. Impressive."
"What do you want?" Erica snapped, her patience wearing thin.
"Not you," Deucalion answered simply. He took a tentative step forward, stopping only a few feet from Scott.
Derek grabbed Stiles' arm to keep him from making a move.
Deucalion sniffed at the air between him and Scott. You have so much potential. New and...well, until recently, alone. It's a shame that you've sided with this pack. You could have been so much more," He shook his head in disappointment.
"You can't have him," Stiles snapped, straining against Derek's grasp.
"I don't want him. Not anymore. I want Derek," Deucalion smiled turning to the alpha.
"Why?" Isaac piped in then, though they knew the answer.
"His power has grown just in the last several days. He's gained a new beta and a rather strong emissary. I want him to join me."
Derek remained unmoving.
"Come with us, and I won't kill everyone here," Deucalion made it sound like an offer rather than a threat.
"It's that simple?" Derek could spare everyone in his pack simply by going with Deucalion?
"I promise to let your betas go," Deucalion placed a hand on his heart as if making a promise.
"Just like that?"
"Derek, no," Stiles turned to the alpha with a horrified look. He couldn't seriously be considering it.
"If this is what it takes to keep you alive, I'll do it," Derek's jaw clenched as he spoke. He knew Stiles wouldn't like it but it was better than losing everyone.
"Oh, no, he'll be coming with us," Deucalion piped in.
Derek snapped his head towards the other alpha. "You said-"
"I said I'd let your betas go. Stiles will be coming with us," Deucalion cut in. His tone still oddly calm.
The betas growled at the threat.
"Why do you want him?" Scott asked then. He wasn't opposed to letting Derek sacrifice himself to save everyone but not if Stiles was part of the deal.
"His power would be...unlike any other I've obtained," The malicious smile made Derek's skin crawl.
"No," Derek knew what Deucalion had to do to obtain the power. He would have to kill Stiles.
"Oh come on, is killing one not worth saving the rest?" Deucalion asked gesturing to Scott, Boyd, Isaac, and Erica.
"You can't have him," Derek snarled, putting himself between Stiles and Deucalion.
"Then I will kill you all and take him anyway. Or...you kill them, and I let Stiles live."
"Or we kill you first," Stiles squeezed his hand in a tight fist and Deucalion dropped to his knees, clutching at his throat.
This caused another larger wolf, that the pack hadn't seen before, to step out of the woods.
"Ennis," Kali yelled, as he lunged for Stiles.
Derek stepped in the way catching the other alpha by his throat. Ennis slashed at Derek's chest, causing him to let go with a hiss.
This set off a chain reaction. Derek's pack and Deucalion's pack merged in a tangle of claws and teeth.
Stiles saw out of the corner of his eye, Ethan, the other twin, lunge towards him. Forcing him to release Deucalion, he performed the spell he'd learned that acted as an imaginary rope. He used it to block the attack and throw the alpha back, giving Erica a chance to recover from her own blow, and attack.
"Stiles," Derek shouted. Stiles turned to meet Deucalion's walking stick. The end a fine tipped blade that skewered into his shoulder only inches from the mark he shared with Derek.
Derek fought to get away from Ennis who had him pinned. Erica, and Scott were also pinned by the twins, while Boyd and Isaac fought to keep Kali busy.
Anger swelled in Stiles at the fact that they were losing. They couldn't afford to lose this fight.
The world around him seemed to stop as he mustered all his strength and thrust as much power at Deucalion as he could.
The smug smile on the alpha's face fell as blood bubbled in his mouth.
"Do you know what I'm doing to you right now? I'm boiling your blood," Stiles snarled, as he ripped the blade from his shoulder.
"Stiles, no," Derek shouted, fighting against Ennis.
The twins, in a desperate attempt to save their alpha, released Scott and Erica.
Stiles saw them coming and with a strain of effort pulled another spell, bringing them to their knees. He was vaguely aware of the pack shouting at him to stop, but he didn't listen. The only thing that mattered was ending Deucalion.
"No more will die by your hands. No more power will be yours, not mine, not Derek's, no one," Stiles felt the blood running from his nose and he felt his own mind start to numb as if he was losing grip on his reality.
In a final attempt at ending this, Stiles pressed his magic over the edge just slightly, forcing all the blood in Deucalion's body to his heart. He felt his magic burst and both he and Deucalion dropped.
"No," Derek yelled finally breaking free of a stunned Ennis. He dropped to Stiles' side and cupped his face in his hands. "Stiles," his tone broke.
Scott was next to them in an instant. "Is he..." he couldn't finish his question.
"He's alive, but only barely," Derek felt his eyes prick with tears.
Ennis, Kali and the twins took off leaving their dead alpha behind.
"Damn it, Stiles, you promised," Derek, grit out, his hands shaking slightly as he brought their foreheads together.
"We need to get him to the hospital," Erica said, suddenly next to Derek.
"No, they won't be able to do anything. Deaton, call...call Deaton," Derek's voice was strained as he fought the tears. He couldn't lose Stiles, not like this. Not now. Not ever.
Chapter 22: Coma
Derek stood stiffly by the door while Deaton checked Stiles over. The rest of the pack sat around the room. No one said anything. No one knew what to say.
"He's overstressed his magic. He's in a depleted coma. He should come out of it in a few hours, but blood magic is dangerous. There will be side effects to what he did," Deaton spoke calmly setting aside the stethoscope he had around his neck.
"What kind of side effects?" Derek asked. His tone was full of anger and concern at the same time.
"It's hard to say. It can vary by person. He won't just be physical though. I'd be prepared to account for psychological side effects."
"Psychological?" Scott frowned.
"Anger outbursts, hallucinations, confusion, memory issues."
"Great, that sounds..." Scott pressed his fingers to his temples.
"What do we do to fix him?" Isaac piped in then, his tone calm despite his worry.
"I'm afraid I don't have the answer for that. I'm not as well versed in blood magic. I do know that after a certain point it's not longer reversible. And I don't know if Stiles has reached that point," Deaton wore a sympathetic look as he spoke.
The room fell silent. No one knew what to say. Everyone hoped that Stiles wasn't past that point, but no one knew for sure and they didn't know how to find out.
"So what now?" Boyd looked to Derek.
"Take him home. Wait til he wakes. And I wouldn't leave him alone, just in case," Deaton suggested handing Derek a book. "This is everything I have on different magic types. There's not much on blood magic but..."
Derek took the book a with a nod. He would do whatever he had to in order to help Stiles.
Back at Derek's loft, Derek laid Stiles on his bed. The rest of the pack tended to the wounds they had now that they knew Stiles would live.
The alpha settled in a chair near the bed with Deaton's book in hand.
He spent the next hour flipping through it and reading anything he could find on blood magic.
"Damn it, Stiles," Derek snapped closing the book harshly. He wasn't finding anything that would help. "You promised. How could you do this?"
Stiles remained unmoving on Derek's bed.
"You don't even know what you do to me," Derek scrubbed a hand over his face tiredly. "You make me feel things I haven't felt in a long time. I don't want to feel these things. Don't you get that? And then you go and pull a stunt like this and..." he trailed off, his eyes looking at Stiles' pale lips.
Derek didn't know what to do and it was eating him alive. He didn't want to lose anyone and though Deaton had assured him he wouldn't lose Stiles, Derek couldn't help but feel like he was.
"I couldn't say this before, because I so badly didn't want it to be true, but I...I love you," Derek slid his hand through his hair and gripped harshly. "Fuck," he mumbled under his breath.
He hadn't intended to feel this way towards Stiles. He'd tried so hard to keep it from happening and yet here he was admitting I out loud for the first time.
The alpha stood up then, he needed air.
"Scott, you're up," Derek spoke stiffly as he stepped into the living room where the pack had gathered around books and computers, trying to find something on blood magic.
The shocked looks he received from the betas told Derek they'd heard his confession. Thankfully, no one said anything as Scott scooped up his book and stepped past Derek.
"No change?" Boyd finally asked, hoping to dismiss the growing tension.
"No," Derek growled as he took Scott's seat on the sofa. "Anything useful?"
"Not really, but I found a site with some legit info. There's a way to contact someone. Her name is Bonnie," Isaac gestured to the computer on his lap.
"Bonnie," Derek perked up then. "The witch, Stiles was learning from. Maybe she can help."
"Do you think it's the same one?" Isaac turned the computer so Derek could see.
"There's only one way to find out."
Within fifteen minutes Derek had managed to confirm that this was the same witch and had gotten her number.
The phone barely got through the first ring when a velvety voice answered. "Derek?"
"Yes. Bonnie I presume?" Derek had merely explained to her that Stiles was in a magical coma and needed help.
"Is Stiles going to be alright? What happened?" The woman's voice sounded genuinely concerned.
"We went up against a pack of alpha's and he used blood magic."
"No," Bonnie practically pleaded. "I told him it was dangerous. How much did he use? It had to have been a lot to put him in a coma."
"He killed one of them."
The line was silent.
"Hello?" Derek checked to make sure they didn't get disconnected.
"Killing someone takes an obscene amount of blood magic to do that. He really shouldn't have," Bonnie's tone sounded very worried which did nothing to ease Derek's own anxieties.
"A druid friend said he'd wake, but that there might be side effects. He didn't know how irreversible those side effects would be."
"A lot of times, they aren't but that's usually for long term users. He's only been using magic for a little while so that's hopeful, but he did kill someone using blood magic, that's not promising. I have some sources I can look through. Let me call you back in an hour or so and I'll see what I can't find out. Keep me posted on when he wakes up and what symptoms he shows. Make sure he doesn't wake alone. He'll need to be grounded by friends or family or a pack member, someone he's close to. It'll help keep his mind grounded."
"Okay, thank you. I don't know why you're helping, but thank you," Derek wanted to be suspicious, but he was desperate for any help he could get.
"I'm helping because I care. People as powerful as Stiles need a guide. Without a support group and a guide that's how villains are made. I strive to prevent that. I'll call you soon."
Derek set his phone down once she hung up. He didn't feel any less anxious, but he did feel hopeful that they had someone with the knowledge to combat this.
"Are we trusting her?" Erica crossed her arms over her chest when Derek hung up.
"Yes," Derek nodded sternly.
"Because Stiles trusted her."
That seemed to be answer enough because Erica only nodded, not bothering to argue any further.
Twenty minutes after Derek hung up with Bonnie Stiles woke up.
"Stiles, you shouldn't get up," Scott's voice alerted the pack that the druid was awake.
"I'm fine," Stiles responded before appearing in the doorway.
"Stiles," Derek sighed out, relief evident in his tone. He took two steps forward and stopped.
Scott reached out to help steady the seemingly dizzy druid but Stiles pushed him off. "I said I'm fine."
"Stiles, you really should rest, what you did-"
"I'm really fine," Stiles cut in again.
Scott tossed a look to Derek as if asking him what he should do.
"Stiles, come one, at least-"
"Can you stop fussing over me? I'm really okay. See?" Stiles gestured to himself.
"I would still prefer if you would sit," Derek was trying not to be harsh with Stiles, despite wanting to yell at him for using blood magic after he promised he wouldn't.
"Can you back off?" Stiles snapped. The wolves in the room smelt the anger spike in the druid.
"He's lashing out because of the effects of the magic, right?" Erica asked, her eyes worried as she looked to Derek.
He only nodded.
"Oh my god, if I have to say I'm fine one more time-"
It was Derek's turn to cut in, "You are not fine, Stiles. You used blood magic. Again. After you promised you wouldn't. You were out for several hours. You could have died. Nothing about that is fine," he growled.
"You're just pissed cause I beat Deucalion and you didn't."
"You really think that's what this is about?" Derek couldn't believe his ears.
"If that's not it then what?" Stiles crossed his arms over his chest.
"I'm thrilled you killed Deucalion. I didn't have a doubt in my mind you could do it. I just didn't want you to use blood magic to do it. Why did you?"
"I've lost people too and I didn't want you to be one of them," His tone was harsh.
"So you were gonna make me lose you?" Derek snapped. He took a step forward.
"It's just me," Stiles rolled his eyes.
It took everything in Derek not to push him against the wall and kiss him. Show him that he wasn't just anyone. That he was loved and wanted and important.
"When Bonnie calls us back, you're going to tell her exactly what you did," Derek growled instead, not moving.
"You called Bonnie?"
"We found her website and she told us what was going on. She-" Scott was cut off by Stiles.
"Why would you do that?"
"You were unconscious," Derek barked.
"That doesn't give you the right to tell her."
Scott took a step forward, his hand reaching out to Stiles, "Just listen to Derek, okay?"
"What?" Stiles turned to face his best friend, "Since when do you agree with him?"
"He cares about you," Scott answered, his eyes darting to a suddenly tense Derek.
"What the hell made you decide that?" Stiles scoffed. The fact that Scott was trusting Derek was surprising.
"I'm gong out. I need air," Stiles went for the door but every member stepped forward with a protest.
"Oh my god, can you all back off?" Stiles gave a wave of his hand and the entire pack dropped into unconsciousness.
When Derek came to, his phone was ringing loudly in his ear. He pulled himself off the floor to see the rest of the pack laid out around the room.
"Damn it, Stiles," Derek swore.
He kicked Isaac's boot stirring the beta awake.
"Stiles. Get the rest of the pack up, I need to find him," Derek grabbed his now silent phone to see Bonnie was the one who had called.
Derek hurried out the door and dialed Bonnie's number.
"Derek, I've been trying to call you. How's Stiles?"
"Missing. He woke up we argued and he took off."
"You let him take off?" Bonnie huffed into the phone.
"He used a spell to put us to sleep, I didn't let him do anything," Derek growled in response. He didn't like being accused.
"Lashing out, it's part of the side effects. You need to make sure he doesn't do any more magic. He will just weaken himself and make things worse.
"He won't listen to me, what am I supposed to do?" Derek took a deep breath searching for Stiles' scent before heading towards the woods.
"Ground him. Find something that means something to him. Or get one of his parents or siblings to reason with him."
"His dad doesn't know about any of this. He'll be pissed if I involve him. He doesn't have any siblings and Scott tried to reason with him, but it didn't work."
"Then you need to subdue his magic. I have an herbal remedy that will make his magic dormant temporarily. Do you think you can get him to take it?"
"What is making his magic dormant going to do?" Derek sniffed the air again, latching onto the familiar scent and changing direction slightly.
"His magic is what makes him lash out and unreasonable. If we can reason with him, we can get this under control," Bonnie's tone sounded worried and the Derek heard pages turning in the background.
"Fine, what are the ingredients?"
"I'll text them to you, right now you need to find Stiles."
Derek hung up the phone and yelled for the druid, praying silently that he hadn't gone after the rest of Deucalion's pack.
He hurried through the thick underbrush when the scent of blood caught his nose.
"No," Derek whispered to himself before running towards the sticky smell.
He felt relief wash over him at the sight of Kali dead at his feet, the marks on her body let him know a hunter had done this. Not Stiles.
The alpha turned to see Allison Argent, her bow up and aimed at him.
Derek froze at the sight of a pale looking Stiles behind her.
"Stiles," He took a step forward but stopped when Allison didn't lower her bow.
"The loft, he's fine," Derek nodded towards the way he'd come, his eyes not leaving Stiles.
"Take me to him," Allison demanded, her bow still up, but her hands were shaking now.
"Okay, just let me get him," Derek nodded to where Stiles was leaning against a tree.
"I found him on the edge of the woods. What's wrong with him?"
"Magic. He's not using it the right way," Derek caught Stiles before he fell to his knees.
"I've got you," Derek whispered quietly.
"I've been trying to call Scott but..." Allison trailed off.
"Take my phone from my pocket and text Scott. Tell him to meet us at Deaton's."
Allison carefully reached into the jacket pocket and pulled out Derek's phone.
"Did you kill her?" Derek asked referring to the werewolf behind them.
"Yeah, my dad was hunting the male she was with. We go separated."
"There were twins, did you see them?" Derek asked worried that Stiles had gotten to them.
Derek looked down at Stiles who was on the verge of passing out again. "Stay with me, we're almost there."
When they finally arrived at Deaton's, Scott was already there and Stiles was unconscious once again. Derek held the druid in his arms, his face desperate for someone to do something. He was barely holding it together.
Sorry it's been a minute. I've been crazy busy!
Allison threw her arms around Scott, "I was so worried about you. My dad found out about the alpha pack and then you weren't answering your phone."
"I'm sorry, I was with Derek," Scott turned to the alpha who was lying Stiles on Deaton's desk.
"I have a-a-a list," Derek's hands shook as he pulled up the text from Bonnie. "I need, echinacea, and-and-and yarrow root and-"
Deaton took the phone from Derek's hand, "I'll get what you need, just breathe."
"I can't...I can't lose him," Derek's voice broke as he looked down at Stiles worriedly.
"You have to tell him," Scott spoke up then causing Derek to tense.
"Tell who what?" Deaton looked at Derek in question as he went to his ingredient cabinet.
"No," Derek growled.
"You're fated for a reason," Scott pointed out. He knew this was going to be a sensitive subject.
"I said no," Derek growled again, though he didn't look at Scott. It was like he was embarrassed.
"Since when are you on my side anyway?" Derek snapped. He had fully expected Scott to tell him to back off.
"I just didn't trust you, but Stiles does and you're my alpha now, so I do too."
"What?" Allison gaped at Scott, but he ignored her. He knew she wasn't the biggest fan of Derek, but he would deal with that later.
"You love him. We all heard you and I can smell it on you. Even now," Scott gestured to Derek.
"It's inappropriate," Derek growled out, his hands clenched in fists at his side.
"Why because he's your emissary?" Scott frowned.
Derek's jaw clenched. "No."
"Then what? Age?" Scott snorted at the idea.
Derek's posture tensed further signaling that Scott had guess correctly.
"Dude, you're only a couple years older than him, who cares?" Scott waved a hand. "Trust me, he'll want to know."
Before Derek could argue, Stiles rolled over and heaved, but nothing came up.
Derek reached for the druid as he sat up.
"Where are we?" Stiles blinked as he tried to decipher his surroundings.
"Deaton's," Derek answered, his hand hooked around Stiles elbow.
"Here, drink this," Deaton handed Stiles a cup of herbal tea.
"Wait," Derek grabbed Stiles' wrist before he could bring it to his lips. "Is it safe?" Derek hadn't wanted to go in with blind faith about the herbal remedy.
"Completely," Deaton assured him.
Stiles sipped at the bitter liquid with minimal complaint.
"What am I doing here?" Stiles looked to Scott then to Allison. "You found me, in the woods." He nodded, remembering the huntress.
"You ran off," Derek spoke between clenched teeth trying not to upset Stiles.
"You were making me mad," Stiles shrugged. "This makes my mouth tingle, is it supposed to do that?"
"Yes, that's normal," Deaton nodded.
"Are you sure it's making me feel really...weird," Stiles smacked his tongue around his mouth as if it were going numb.
"The tea will help subdue your magic temporarily, it's an old recipe," Deaton took the now empty cup from a dizzy Stiles.
"What happens after his magic is subdued?" Scott asked before Derek could.
"He'll be Stiles again, without the effects of the blood magic altering his mind. We can convince him to stop doing magic and he needs to draw from something or someone to help cleanse what he has done. He's not too far gone thankfully."
"How do you know?"
"The herbal remedy wouldn't have worked."
Derek deflated with relief.
"What should he draw from?" the alpha asked as Stiles slumped against him in a drowsy state. Derek's arm wrapped around the human protectively.
"He could draw from several things. I place of immense power, such as the nemeton or something he's close to, say, his alpha," Deaton gave Derek a pointed look.
"Okay, I'll do whatever he needs," Derek didn't care about anything but Stiles' health at that point.
"It can be a rather...intimate thing...it requires complete trust and being completely open with all emotions," Deaton waited for Derek to back out and change his mind.
Instead the alpha only nodded, his shoulders filled with tension.
"He'll likely feel it all," Deaton spoke vaguely, hoping Derek would understand.
"I'll deal with that when we get to it," Derek wasn't going to let his feelings compromise Stiles' chance at being okay again.
"I'll start preparing, you'll have to get him to agree, as it has to be mutual in order to work."
Derek ran a hand absentmindedly over Stiles' hair. The druid was still slumped against his chest, in a not quite awake state.
"How are we supposed to get him to agree to anything like that?" Scott gestured to his best friend.
"The effects will wear off in a moment and he'll be coherent after that we have maybe fifteen or twenty minutes before his magic resurfaces."
Derek swallowed and pulled back slightly to get a better look at Stiles' face.
"S'matter?" Stiles mumbled, bleary eyed.
"We're gonna do something to help you, okay?" Derek wiped at a streak of dirt that had found its way to Stiles' cheek at some point.
"Do what something?" Stiles straightened up though he remained a bit woozy.
"It's to help strengthen you, you're gonna draw from me, okay?" Derek's hand was still around Stiles shoulder.
"Wait, what?" Stiles was coming around more now.
"You need to cleanse your magic, the blood magic you used tainted you in a bad way, you have to draw from me," Derek explained, hoping that Stiles wouldn't react negatively.
"Oh," Stiles' dropped his head in shame.
"Hey, look at me. You're gonna be okay. Just do as Deaton says," Derek lifted Stiles chin so he could look into the druids eyes.
"Is it gonna hurt you?" Stiles asked, glancing at Deaton who had just walked back in.
"It will take a lot out of him, but he'll be fine and it won't hurt him," Deaton assured the pair with a gentle smile.
Stiles nodded, "Okay."
Derek took a deep breath; he could do this. It was for Stiles. He would do anything for Stiles.
Sorry it's been a minute. I promise to update sooner!
Deaton handed a cup to Derek and Stiles. "You'll need to drink this. Then take each other's hand and close your eyes."
Stiles and Derek did as the druid said. Derek's hands gripped Stiles' tightly, his nerves at the forefront of his mind.
"Concentrate on each other, think about the connection you two share," Deaton ordered. His voice sounded distant in Derek's ears. He heard the druid continue to talk but he couldn't make out anything except the steady thrum of a heartbeat. Stiles' heartbeat. He focused on it as a warmth spread over him.
Suddenly images of himself hit him. Him smiling. Him running an anxious hand through his hair. Him worrying over Boyd. Him on the balcony. He was seeing Stiles' memories of him. He felt the wash of warmth but this time it swelled like a wave over him instead of spreading through him. It was so familiar and yet he couldn't quite place it. Then just as quickly as it came it was all gone.
Derek's eyes flew open, the scent in his nostrils was unmistakable. The panic in Stiles' eyes confirmed it.
Stiles loved him.
The pair remained hand in hand, staring at each other in silence.
"It's done," Deaton said, when neither one moved.
Stiles parted his lips slightly as if considering saying something but paused.
Derek's eyes darted to the Emissary's mouth briefly before settling back on his eyes.
"How do you feel?" Scott asked, when the pair remained unmoving.
It was only then that Derek pulled his hands away, dropping his eyes.
"Fine," Stiles answered refusing to look away from Derek. He was trying to decipher what he'd just seen. Derek's memories of him researching. The way his tongue would flick across his lower lip. His hand in Derek's while he laid unconscious in Derek's bed. Him caring for Boyd.
"Is that it?" Scott looked to Deaton as if waiting for a catch.
"That is it. But Stiles. Blood magic-"
"Is dangerous, I got it," Stiles cut in.
"Do you?" Derek snapped then. His anger getting the better of him. He was still frustrated that Stiles took that risk.
"I know you're pissed but I did what needed to be done," Stiles sighed.
"You promised," Derek barked, taking a half step forward. His hands craved to reach out and touch Stiles.
"I know, but they were getting the better of us and-"
"I've lost too many people, Stiles. Don't you get that?" Derek cut in, his hands clenching at his sides.
"I've lost people too and I didn't want you to be one of them," Stiles gestured at Derek, with a huff.
"So what, it's okay to add you to my list?" Derek fought to keep the growl out of his tone but ultimately failed.
Stiles' eyes dropped to the floor then, unable to look at Derek anymore, "It was different. Or at least I thought it was."
Derek frowned, "Different how?"
"For you I was just a pack member, not even a close one. I was beneficial but a means to an end. But for me..." Stiles trailed off and Derek instantly knew where Stiles was going with this. He tensed but said nothing.
"I thought you mattered more to me than I did to you," Stiles' tone was quiet, and he still refused to meet Derek's eyes.
"Well you were wrong," with that Derek turned and stalked out of the office. He couldn't have this conversation Stiles.
Stiles frowned at the door as it swung shut behind the alpha. "Wait, where-" Stiles hurried after Derek.
"Derek, where are you going?" Stiles grabbed the alpha's wrist to stop him.
Derek yanked away, turning to face Stiles with a hard stare. "Home."
"Are we just not gonna talk about it then?" Stiles huffed, throwing his hands up.
"There's nothing to talk about," Derek growled. It was a warning he knew Stiles understood.
"Nothing to-are you kidding me? I know you felt it too, so how is there nothing to talk about?" Stiles flailed his hands wildly, ignoring the warning completely.
"Because it's not going to happen," Derek's jaw clenched. He would never regret saving Stiles, but he really wished his secret had remained just that.
"Damn it, Stiles why are you making this harder?" Derek was losing his patience.
"Making what harder? I just found out you feel the same way I do, and I'm supposed to what, pretend you don't?"
"Why? Derek I lov-"
"Don't," Derek snapped, cutting Stiles off. "Don't say it."
"Why? Because then you can't pretend it's not real. Well guess what, it is. I love you, Derek. Whether you like it or not."
Derek's hands clenched and his jaw tightened. Hearing Stiles say the words out loud did make it real and it made Derek want to give in.
Stiles stepped forward, closing most of the space between them.
"Stiles," Derek's tone was almost a plea. As if begging him not to come any closer.
"Tell me you don't feel the same way and I'll let it go," Stiles' voice was quiet and timid like he might scare Derek away if he wasn't careful.
Derek didn't respond, his chin dropped to his chest.
"Do you love me?" Stiles asked. He had to hear Derek admit it. He had to know it was real.
Derek closed his eyes. There was no use in lying. Stiles knew the truth. It had been splayed out for him to see.
"Yes, but..." Derek couldn't meet Stiles' eyes as he spoke.
"You don't want to be with me," Stiles' stomach twisted with disappointment.
Derek, once again, didn't respond.
"At least tell me why?" Stiles tried to hide the sadness in his tone, but he knew Derek could smell it on him. His magic hadn't resurfaced yet, so he couldn't even try and mask it.
"You're only seventeen."
Stiles rolled his eyes with a scoff. "Are you serious right now? This is about age?"
"It's not just that. The only two people I've ever..." he trailed off unable to say it. "They ended poorly."
"I'm not Kate, and neither are you," Stiles snapped.
Derek flinched slightly at the mention of her name.
"There was also Paige," Derek mumbled so low, Stiles almost didn't hear. "She was human and I lost her."
"I'm not human-"
"And I still almost lost you," Derek cut in, his tone sharp once more.
"I was protecting the pack. Deucalion would have killed me anyway," Stiles responded defensively.
"You don't think I know that? I hate that you're in this. You shouldn't have to be. You're too-"
"If you say young, I swear to god," Stiles growled.
Derek let out a sigh but didn't finish his sentence.
Stiles scoffed before stepping past the alpha.
"Where are you going?"
Stiles whipped around, "Look, I just got out of a magical coma and was immediately magic roofied and then dumped by a guy I'm not even dating. I'm going home to sleep for a week."
Derek fought to ignore the guilt that swept over him. He could smell the regret and heartbreak on Stiles. And it was because of him.
Okay guys, so there's only gonna be one more chapter. I know, it's sad, but fear not. I have a new one in the works. I'll have it posted in a day or two. ❤
Two days. It had been two days since Stiles had seen Derek. Sure, he'd heard from him via text, as Derek had been concerned that the effects of the blood magic hadn't completely disappeared, but it was strictly business. Could it be called business? Was a werewolf pack really a business? Stiles decided it was and he was taking some time off. However, as he stared at his phone, he realized that maybe he didn't get a say.
"Mandatory pack meeting in one hour," Was all it said.
Stiles was afraid it had something to do with the alpha twins, so he pulled himself from his bed and made his way to the shower.
His magic was back in full swing and with Bonnie's help he learned how to keep himself strong by drawing from earth's sources. Certain herbs mixed with dirt from the nemeton made for a disgusting but strong tea. He promised her he wouldn't use blood magic again and he intended to keep that promise. Instead she had given him more defensive magic spells he could do. Deaton also helped by teaching him how to mix certain herbs to manipulate his magic. All in all, the past two days had been very educational. It had helped keep his mind off Derek.
Thankfully no one mentioned anything to Stiles about Derek which helped as well. Now though, he was going to be forced to see the alpha. How was he supposed to be in a room with him knowing that Derek loved him but refused to be with him?
Stiles wanted to be mad, and he was, on some level. But he also understood. Derek was afraid to lose Stiles. Not being with him wouldn't make him any safer but there seemed to be no telling Derek that.
He would do his best to mask his scent and try to keep it strictly professional during the meeting. Then he would come back home and drown himself in studying again.
What he didn't expect to find when he got there, however, was an empty loft.
"Hello?" Stiles called out as he closed the door behind him. Derek would have told him if the pack meeting was being held elsewhere, wouldn't he?
"Stiles," Derek's voice sounded almost surprised, like he hadn't expected him to show up. He supposed that made sense as Stiles didn't actually respond to the text.
"Where is everyone?" Stiles asked, summoning his magic to mask any feelings that might surface.
"Don't do that," Derek stepped forward, a frown pulling on his features.
"Do what?" Stiles took a half step back.
"You're using your magic to hide. Don't."
Stiles swallowed but didn't say anything. He mentally debated on letting his defenses drop or keeping them in place.
Derek's pleading stare won him over and he let his magic fall away.
Derek closed his, letting out a sigh, like it was a relief to feel Stiles letting go.
"Where is everyone?" Stiles repeated.
"They're not coming," Derek's eyes met Stiles' again.
"You tricked me," Stiles threw his hands up.
"I knew you wouldn't see me otherwise."
"What am I doing here, Derek?" Stiles huffed, giving Derek an annoyed glare.
"We need to talk."
"We did that. It didn't go well."
"I was wrong," Derek blurted.
This gave Stiles pause. "I'm sorry, what?"
Derek took a step forward, his hands clenching and unclenching at his sides. "I was wrong. About us."
Stiles frowned but waited for Derek to continue.
"The age was an issue for me because of Kate, yes. But...I know it's different. There's no manipulation and..." Derek's eyes dropped to Stiles neck. He gently reached out and pulled the collar down to see the mark. "This mark isn't just an accident. It's more than just an emissary and an alpha. It's..."
"Fate." Stiles finished for him.
Derek's finger traced the blackened skin gently, causing Stiles' breath to hitch.
"I love you, Stiles," Derek breathed out in almost a whisper; his hand falling away from the mark.
A wave of dizziness washed over Stiles at the confession. Hearing Derek say it was so different than him just admitting it.
"But," Stiles waited for Derek to keep going.
"There is no but. I just...love you," Derek's eyes were sad, like he was too late, and he knew it.
"I love you too," Stiles wanted to reach out, but he was too afraid. This was a big step for Derek and if he pushed too far it could scare the alpha away.
However, Derek swooped in then, catching Stiles' lips on his. It was a soft kiss and Derek didn't dare touch Stiles anywhere else.
"Is this something that you want?" Derek asked against Stiles' lips.
Stiles only nodded.
"Then we take it slow. Can we agree on that?" Derek pulled back; his hand gently reaching up to brush his thumb along Stiles' cheek.
Stiles wasn't sure if he knew how to form sentences anymore, so he only nodded again.
Derek closed his eyes and leaned his forehead against Stiles'.
This was completely the opposite of what Derek had said two days ago. Finally finding his voice, Stiles asked, "What changed your mind?"
"Two days without you," Derek responded. "And two days of listening to the pack berate me for being stupid." He laughed.
Stiles chuckled, taking Derek's hands in his.
"For once, I decided to be selfish. I know this could get dangerous, but you're already in it. And I'd rather have you by my side."
Stiles couldn't help but reach up and press another soft kiss to Derek's lips. Knowing he could do that elated him. "Thank you." He spoke into the kiss.
Derek only hummed in response, his lips melding with Stiles'.
Suddenly the alpha pulled back. "One other thing."
Stiles held his breath waiting for the catch. He knew this was too good to be true.
"No more blood magic. I don't even want you researching it. Understood?" Derek's tone was pleading despite his authoritative phrasing.
"Don't worry, Bonnie already reamed me for that one," Stiles smiled with relief.
"Good, then I should probably text the pack and let them know they can come back home."
"Did you really kick them out?" Stiles laughed.
"I didn't want them listening in," Derek pecked Stiles lips before pulling out his phone.
Stiles watched with admiring eyes as he dialed Boyd's number. It would be weird dating Derek, but it felt right. He reached up and touched the spot where the triskelion marked his skin. Fate had a funny way of playing out.
Alright guys, that's it. I know it's shit. I am the absolute worst at endings. Literally, they are my least favorite thing ever. Anyway, thank you all for reading and commenting and voting. I means so much to me!
I have posted the first chapter of my new Sterek story 'I would fake forever with you' if you want to check it out. It's a super tropey fake dating au. Hope to see you over there. Love you guys!!❤❤❤