Please don’t vomit. Please don’t vomit. PLEASE don’t vomit.
Danny’s mantra continued running through his mind as he half carried, half dragged a drunken Stiles from The Jungle and out to the Jeep. He’d take his own car, but his begrudging charge looked a bit too green in the gills for his comfort, and Danny really didn’t want to clean Stilinski’s bodily fluids out of his upholstery.
“C’mon, Stiles, just a little farther,” The unmistakable jeep wasn’t hard to spot in the lot. “You can take a nap in the car, but right now, I need you to start using your legs a bit.”
“Legs. Legs are good, aren’t they? ‘Specially mine.” Stiles mused, making some effort to get his feet underneath him. “D’you think I have nice legs, Danny?”
“Yeah, Stiles, your legs are great,” Danny humored him, paying little mind to what was actually coming out of his mouth.
As they reached the passenger side door, Danny propped Stiles on the side of the car and began digging in his pockets for the keys. Stiles giggled a bit, but somehow refrained from making any further commentary. Danny thought for sure that he’d at least make an innuendo, but the last round must be hitting him really hard.
“Okay, Stiles,” Danny spoke as he found the keys, “I’m going to pick you up and put you in, but you have to help me, okay?” Stiles nodded, lips pursed in a way that reminded him of how his little sister nodded when she’s really serious about whatever she’s agreeing to, and the childlike innocence strengthened Danny’s conviction that keeping Stiles from doing something stupid was absolutely the right call.
After swinging the large door open, Danny got to Stiles’ left side, putting an arm around the other boy’s back under his own arm, and his other arm at the back of Stiles’ knees. With one last burst of energy, Danny scooped him up and put him in the seat, careful to buckle him properly and get his legs in before shutting the door. A moment’s pause, a sigh, and he was ready to walk around and get in the driver’s side.
It was fortunate beyond belief that his mom had made him learn how to drive stick, because this piece of crap Jeep was old, and therefore, manual. Fuck, I hate stick.
Stiles laughed outright- Danny must’ve said it out loud.
“Thought you only liked stick, Dan,” Stiles smiled, “’cause you’re gay.”
Danny softly punched Stiles in the arm, only belatedly realizing that the motion could be very bad for Stiles’ apparent and well deserved nausea. Still, Stiles took it in stride, and closed his eyes for the trip.
Arrival at the Stilinski house meant the same maneuvering issues as the trip to the Jeep, but with the added excitement of stairs. It was tempting just to leave Stiles on the couch, but Danny liked to think he was better than that. Leaving him there would increase the likelihood that Stiles’ dad, the SHERIFF, would discover that he was drinking, which, at his age, is very much illegal. And quite frankly, though he got the impression that Stiles and his dad have a loving relationship, he also believed that the Sheriff would arrest his own son, if only as a scare tactic. Up the stairs it was. Fortunately, Stiles’ power nap in the car seemed to help. Unsteady as he was, he managed to slowly lift each foot as Danny pulled him up step by step.
Once they made their way to Stiles’ room, Danny helped him take off his shoes and jeans before tucking him into bed. Afterwards, he surveyed the area and found a small trashcan beside Stiles’ desk, which he placed by the bed. He wasn’t entirely convinced that Stiles wouldn’t throw up sometime in the night.
He settled into the computer chair- he had a long night ahead of him Stiles-watching.
Stiles came to slowly, and everything was blurry and wavey, and everything felt weirdly great. It was like, when he stood up, the room went side to side, and he felt top heavy- but it was okay. Everything was okay.
Stiles started by his nightstand, searching every surface for his phone. It sure wasn’t in his pockets, as he discovered how shockingly empty they were, sitting discarded on the floor. Danny must’ve stolen his shit. Whatever. He took him home. Wallet, keys, Danny could have ‘em. All he wanted was his damn phone.
He stumbled to the desk, palming his way across it until he found the pile Danny had made of his stuff. Keys, wallet, an assortment of receipts, some coins…phone. Finally. Now he could make it better. Just had to find the right contact.
Dust- the fine layer of dirt above the desert, kicked up by the tires of the van they traversed this barren land in- scattered through the air like stars in the night sky. There was nothing here, and yet, they had to look, no matter how unpromising the lead may be. The so called Desert Wolf was elusive, and they could leave no stone unturned.
Still, as they drove, Derek had nothing better to do than to watch specks of Earth flying past his window. Braeden insisted on driving, leaving Derek to his own devices. He had no illusions- he knew that the search for Malia’s mother could take a while, or end fruitlessly. But if he’d really thought about it before jumping right into traveling with Braeden, he’d have brought a book or two.
It wouldn’t surprise him at all if he were losing his sanity. He felt a dull buzz in his pocket, but he figured it was all in his mind. Given how Braeden had stated her annoyance with him early in the trip when he kept checking his phone all day, he decided it best not to look. He could check it later at wherever the hellhole they’d be staying tonight. If he was lucky, he might get a couch. He was sick of sleeping on the floor, as he was wont to do these days. Things between he and Braeden had settled back into a working relationship once their crisis situation with the list and the Calaveras had ended, and he was too much of a gentleman to stake a claim on the bed. She was, after all, doing most of the work. Derek was just there to feel like he was doing something worthwhile.
Stiles woke up with a pounding in his temple, followed by the sharp pain of sunlight assaulting his vision.
I’m gonna throw up.
He made a mad dash to the bathroom before emptying his guts into the porcelain god, thankful that he’d been quick enough, and cursing the amount of booze he’d consumed the night before. He was there to get laid, not get shitfaced. Hell, he probably did more in the way of scaring off perspective bedmates in his drunken state than he gained in confidence. Truth be told, he couldn’t really remember.
When it felt like his insides had settled enough, Stiles stood and turned on the light. His instinct was to flinch away, and at first he did, but slowly he acclimated to it, and drew his arms away from his face so he could get a proper look at himself in the mirror.
Still pale, still gaunt, and with the added appeal of a raccoon. Or Harley Quinn. Red and black eyeliner smudged on either side of his eyes made him look…well, not as bad as it should have. He almost looked like he belonged with the kids at his school who were stuck in their emo/scene faze. More like stuck in 2004, if they were teenagers back then. Teenage vampires. That’s it! I look like a teenage vampire from 2004. Cue Hawthorne Heights playing in the background.
He snorted at his own terrible sense of humor as he pulled a washcloth down to the sink. He had to get this makeup off before his dad got home. The last thing he wanted right now was to play 20 questions. Sure, he had leeway, but Stiles couldn’t be certain how far that leeway extended. The less out of place Stiles could make himself seem, the less likely his father was to pick at it. He didn’t want his father to pick at it- he wanted to be left alone.
“Hey, you’re up.”
Stiles nearly jumped a foot out of his own skin as Danny appeared in the doorway, looking mildly concerned. When did Danny get here? He didn’t sleep with him, did he?
“No, we didn’t.” Shit. Stiles didn’t realize he’d been voicing his thoughts.
“Well, uh, thanks for…taking me home?” As he said it, the pieces started to come together. Danny took him home last night, which would have been noble if he hadn’t cock blocked him first.
“Not a problem, Stiles.” He disappeared from the doorframe, returning a moment later to add, “But don’t make this a habit. I don’t know if you remember last night, but I meant it when I told you getting shitfaced and sleeping with a stranger isn’t worth it. Okay?”
Stiles would do it again. He would! He couldn’t lie to himself about that. But, he also cared enough about Danny (and appreciated his concern) to mumble out an “okay,” before Danny smiled and left, presumably to go get his car from the club. Stiles didn’t ask. He’d offer him a ride if he didn’t feel like a car ride in his hungover state was a bad idea. Instead, he opted to go back to bed, after a shot of whiskey from his dad’s bottle. Hair of the dog that done bit his ass would ease all his troubles and pains- he hoped.
As soon as Braeden went into the office to book their room for the night, Derek pulled his phone out of his pocket. The buzz from an hour before may have been nothing, but even Scott’s periodic texts of ‘Hope you’re okay’, and Malia’s ‘Did you find her yet?’ were a break in the monotony. What he got instead was a voicemail from Stiles.
He looked in through the office windows to see if Braeden was heading out (she was not) before dialing his voicemail and bringing his phone up to his ear.
The heavy, lilting sound of his voice was enough for Derek to quickly deduce one thing- Stiles was drunk. Derek braced himsef, for what was to follow would either be bad enough to bring him back to Beacon Hills, or terrifyingly nonsensical in the way that only Stiles could be.
“Why aren’t you here anymore? I know she’s preddy- she’s so preddy- but I’m preddier, right? I was’n jus’ imaginin’ how you use to look at me, right? An’ I love you more than she does. I know that. She doesn’ know you like I do. An’ when you’re not here, it’s like the sun isn’t gonna rise again. Everyth’n is dark, an’ sad, an’ lonely. ‘M lonely, Der. I wan’ you ‘t come home, ok? Miss you.”