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The library chairs aren't designed to be comfortable, anyone who says otherwise is lying. Stiles doesn't think he should have to spend Monday afternoon sitting in one when he spent Sunday night being thrown over a fence by a rogue werewolf. The chair has found every single part of him that's bruised or scraped, and is now poking all of them like some sort of medieval torture device. There are also multicoloured bruises up both forearms - which he's currently hiding because, oh my god, that looks bad - that look an awful lot like fingers. He's pretty sure Lydia was side-eyeing them earlier. But now she's not paying attention to him at all, sliding her fingers through the shelves like she's looking for something.

He needs to find a new hobby. Monster-hunting is painful, and no one appreciates the fact that he's stoically bearing said pain in a manly way.

Lydia dumps a pile of books next to him, little cloud of dust floating off the top. She briefly leans over the table to steal one of his highlighters. Then she folds herself into a chair and starts vandalising the psychology textbook she's holding, with the sort of focused enthusiasm that says she doesn't believe the word 'vandalism' applies if you're improving something.

Her hair smells like raspberries.

"So, you and Derek," she says, over the 'scriff, scriff' of fluorescent yellow being furiously applied. "Is that normal?"

It takes Stiles a second to work out that she's talking to him, and then to replay what she said. But when he does it still doesn't make sense.

"Is what normal?"

She rolls her eyes at him, as if people refusing to grasp what she's saying is a constant annoyance.

"You and Derek, last night, is that normal?"

Sometimes he forgets who he's supposed to be keeping the werewolves a secret from and who he isn't. He reminds himself that Lydia knows now. She was there last night, for most of the running and manly screaming, and she was definitely there for the being thrown over a fence part. Also, for the Derek pinning him against the wall and yelling at him for putting himself in danger, part. Stiles can't remember anything particular that wasn't normal, aside from the general werewolf-ness of it all. But Lydia was around for the whole 'Jackson turns into a lizard' thing, so she's already seen more abnormal than most. Stiles's normal life is starting to feel remarkably like an episode of the twilight zone. He's starting to worry that he won't notice when the really freaky shit happens. He'll have completely lost the ability to judge when to start really panicking. Someone else will have to tell him when to panic, and he doesn't really trust anyone he knows with that amount of responsibility.

"Umm, yeah, I guess. I mean, as normal as things get for us anyway."

Lydia's eyebrow goes up, mouth going soft in a way that he knows means she's unhappy about something. So that was clearly the wrong answer. Eventually she blows out a breath and leans forward, hair falling over her arms.

"Don't get me wrong, I completely understand. He's the kind of hot people would sell their own grandmother to get a piece of, and he's older in that sexy, dangerous and totally illegal way. Also, the whole werewolf thing is probably exceptionally kinky and awesome. But I really think you need to take a good look at your relationship."

His what?

"My - what?" Oh my God, does he give off some sort of signal or something? And if so how does he make it stop. Him and Derek are not having a relationship, there is no relationship. There is maybe an antagonistic friendship, which involves a lot of shoving and growling. Yes, ok, there is a little of Derek being sexy, Stiles is not completely blind after all. But it's mostly in an aggressive, threatening sort of way. Why does everyone think they're in a relationship? Even Lydia thinks they're having a relationship, and Stiles has probably stared at her more than he's stared at anything in his entire life. She of all people should be aware of the non-relationship-having-ness. "We're not having a -"

Lydia waves a hand in front of his face, as if anything he has to say couldn't possibly be important enough for her to have to listen to.

"Your friends clearly think you're all adorably mismatched and exciting, and they're probably covering for you while you go off and do - whatever. But if you love him then you need to put your foot down, because abusive boyfriends are not cool."

"What?" Stiles has officially become incapable of saying anything else.

Lydia spins the book she's been holding and taps the top of the page with a perfect, shiny maroon fingernail, before sliding her way free of the library chair and sashaying away in her perfect heels.

She's helpfully highlighted the right paragraph, and it takes Stiles a moment to stop appreciating her walking away and actually focus on it.

'Stockholm Syndrome can be seen as a form of traumatic bonding, which does not necessarily require a hostage scenario, but which describes "strong emotional ties that develop between two persons where one person intermittently harasses, beats, threatens, abuses, or intimidates the other."'