Actions

Work Header

Singularity

Chapter Text

The pack meeting was called suddenly, by Derek of all people, and that usually meant something bad was happening. So, naturally, to soothe a group of hungry werewolves, Stiles bought four large meat lovers pizzas to take with him. It was obvious, really. Soothe the man eating beasts with lots of greasy, meaty, cheesy goodness.

 

When Stiles pulled up outside of the Hale house in his jeep, he paused for a moment. It was… strange. Everyone’s cars were parked outside, and it was unusual to see everyone already there, ahead of Stiles. It was almost as if they had started without them.

 

But they were a pack. They wouldn’t do that. Would they?

 

No. Stiles could feel the twinge of the pack bonds, warm and swelling in his chest, reassuring himself that he was pack and part of the group, and loved. The bonds helped to ease some of his anxiety that naturally hummed under his skin, the soft presence assuring him that there were at least these people to make sure he was safe.

 

After a brief moment of checking and making sure the bonds were still there, that the love he felt was still strong and bright, he hopped out of the jeep and grabbed all four pizzas, managing to balance them in his arms as he walked to the door. Just as the cardboard boxes were set down, there was a loud voice from inside. Stiles froze where he was standing, cursing his human hearing for the first time in a while. They were arguing.

 

He was torn; should he go in and try to calm the situation, or should he leave it to be dealt with? Listening in through the door won out, in the end. And what he heard would change him for a very, very long time.

 

---------

 

Derek had called everyone to his home to talk about the pressing matter on everyone’s minds. Stiles. He was the human of the pack, and had recently been the focus of the last few attacks on the pack. He was the weakest member - with Derek, Scott, Isaac, Boyd, Erica, and Jackson as wolves, and Lydia a banshee, paired with Malia and Kira, they had the supernatural elements covered. Even Allison, the other resident human, had extensive training and self defense knowledge. Stiles was the weakest link.

 

So when Derek brought up the idea of pushing him from the pack, he was met with varying reactions. At first, it was complete resistance from everyone but Jackson. But after the reasoning was explained - it would keep him safe, distanced from the pack and the people that could hurt him - more of the pack started to accept the idea. Everyone but Scott and Lydia, really.

 

It had taken everyone by surprise when Scott had literally growled at Derek. They were co-Alphas, so fighting between those two could be very, very dangerous. Isaac had been the first to notice Stiles’ scent coming closer and staying outside of the door, as well as the pizzas. When Isaac suggested that the growling match stop was when the yelling started, by Scott, of course.

 

“How can you guys just take this lying down?! This is Stiles. Human of the pack, best researcher we’ve got - no offence Lydia - and he’s smart, in case you haven’t noticed. We need to be able to keep him safe! Pushing him from the pack would make it harder to do that!” he yelled, his eyes flashing red when he glared back at Derek, who growled before raising his own voice in response.

 

“You think I want to put Stiles in danger? Pack is family, Scott! But he’s doing more harm than good to himself at this point, and he needs to distance himself from us. We need to push him out. Stiles isn't pack anymore,” Derek frowned, his eyebrows drawing together as he glared at Scott.

 

Neither of the Alphas were open enough to their surroundings to hear or smell Stiles outside of the door; and not even the salty damp scent of tears didn’t break through their angry haze. What finally did was the sound of the Jeep door slamming shut, the engine starting, and Stiles practically ripping out of the driveway to get home. Home. Not the Hale house. Not the place he had considered home a few hours ago.

 

It took Scott a moment to make his way to the door and open it, and the residual scent of grief and sadness and self-hatred combined with greasy meat pizza told him that Stiles had been there. He had heard. Stiles knew.

 

Scott turned sharply and growled, low and rough, and practically pounced on Derek. “He was there! He heard us!”

 

Derek scoffed, trying to put a front over his pain. He had lost Stiles. His Stiles. “Good. We won’t have to tell him.”

 

-------

 

Stiles had to pull over on his way home thanks to emotions. He was tempted to reach down for the pack bonds in his chest to reassure him, but they felt a little weaker. So he settled for an appropriate pain response to try and pull him out of his fairly bad anxiety attack, and dug his nails in the skin around his wrist, leaving behind deep half moons, bruised from the pressure. He was able to take heavy, shaking breaths at that point, and let out a soft sigh. Fuck.

 

He wasn't pack. But the bonds were still there - weak, but still there. It was hard to think about no more puppy piles, no more cuddling and help with nightmare and taking the pain away when he was on the cusp of a panic attack. He wasn't pack.

 

It weighed heavy on his shoulders as he drove home, pulling into the driveway and shutting the jeep down, pausing to breathe and control the light tremors in his hands. Pack had been... Everything. He felt safe, happy, with those wolves. But they left him.

 

On feet that felt too close to jelly for Stiles' comfort, he moved to walk to the front door and enter slowly, toeing out of his shoes before moving to his room. He managed to make it up to his room before collapsing into the bed, and just... Crying.

 

Wailing, snot and tears all over the place kind of crying that made it seem like his world was ending. Breathing was shaky and he couldn't stop the flood of tears; the last time he had cried that hard was when his mom had died.

 

The memory of his mother pulled Stiles together a little better. This wasn't as bad. He felt the weak pack bonds in his chest and nodded, trying to sit up and breathe. Of course he was tired from all the crying, and he felt his eyelids droop gently and he curled up in bed, eyes puffy and red and face wet with tears.

 

He slept for a good few hours, and he was only woken by a hand on his shoulder. Stiles opened his eyes with a yelp, and looked up at his dad, a frown pinching his face.

 

John smiled faintly and rubbed his hand up and down Stiles' upper arm, "hey, kid. You doing alright? I haven't seen you crashed that hard in your jeans for a while."

 

Stiles nodded, "yeah. Just... Yeah. I'm fine. I'll be fine, I promise. I just... Need time."

 

John huffed, "you need to talk to me, Stiles. I can't help if you're not honest."

 

And Stiles paused before telling him. Everything. How they were looking for the body and Scott was attacked and turned. Finding Derek. When he made the pack a pack. Refining in the Hale house so the pack had a home. Gerard and the torture he put on all of the pack members including Stiles, the stress the pack was under. The puppy piles and how Isaac helped with nightmares. The nogitsune. His spark. And Derek kicking him out of the pack, and how that hurt worse than he thought it should because he was his Alpha and he actually cared for Derek as a little more than a friend.

 

John listened in mild states of distress, but moved to pull Stiles into a tight hug once he had finished, ignoring the fresh tears on his son's cheeks.

 

"Do you want to go somewhere else?" John asked after a moment, pulling back from the hug and running his hand up and down Stiles' back. "Uncle Phil might be able to take you. You could finish up school in New York. How does that sound, huh? Distract yourself from the... Pack?"

 

Stiles looked up with wide eyes, "really? You think we could call and find out? I think distance would help. The bonds are weak, and it's only a little longer before they break unless I go and affirm them, okay? And like yeah I think I need time. To... Get over the pack. Find a new one, maybe."

 

John looked a little doubtful, but nodded and clapped a hand to Stiles' shoulder. "I'll call up uncle Phil in a bit, alright? Do you want to eat, or am I eating salad on my own tonight?"

 

Stiles gave a little smile, "you think you can stick to your diet if I go to bed? Crying takes a lot out of you."

 

The teen watched as John left the room slowly, a small and sad smile on his face. Stiles soon burrowed under his blankets, but paused before moving to his window. He shifted to put a quick circle of mountain ash around the house, helped to spread by his spark.

 

He moved to settle back into bed and fall into an uneasy sleep, feeling the least bit secure that no wolves would be creeping into his window tonight. And maybe tomorrow would be different. Maybe there would be a glimmer of hope in his future - to stay with his Uncle Phil and finish school in New York.

 

Chapter Text

When morning came, Stiles had trouble opening his eyes. The pack bonds had always been so loud and full of life this time of the morning during the summer, with the warmth of the wolves out for a run in the morning. But this morning, it was barely there, flipping and jumping with the life of his pack, only excluding himself.

 

He worked out of bed slowly and stumbled down to the kitchen, stretching and regretting not changing out of his jeans from last night. He found a note propped up on the table, along with a little box of cut fruit.

 

Hey kiddo. I got called in for a robbery early this morning, but I had an apple on the way out. Also, Uncle Phil told me to get you packing. He's gonna have you start the school year out there. Your flight leaves tomorrow morning at eleven, so we have to be at the airport at ten.

I'll be home at about four. See you then, stiles.

Love, Dad.

 

He was going to New York. Stiles mother fuckin' Stilinski was going to New York City to stay with his Uncle and live the life while getting a high school diploma and take the city by storm. Fuck yes.

 

Stiles practically jumped up and snatched the little plastic container, running up to his room to start packing. Tomorrow, he was going to New York. But today, he had to get ready.

 

And that meant suitcases. He had a big one under his bed, and stiles dove to get it, ignoring the twinge of pain from the latest run in the pack had had with harpies. Evil things, harpies. Gorgeous, evil things.

 

He shook the memory free and focused on digging out his big suitcase and nice backpack for a carry on. He moved and opened the suitcase on his bed, and quickly got to work pulling clothes from his dresser and easily got to work, rolling the shirts and jeans and other clothing items into tight rolls before packing them into the suitcase, situating small artifacts and articles here and there between the cushioned rolls of clothes to keep them safe.

 

A Rowan wood staff in a pair of jeans so it would seem like a creasing rod. A pouch of mountain ash in the center of a roll of a shirt so it looks like a breast pocket. A few bottles of feathers and teeth and fur that are hard to come by, and a sack of pixie dust tied neatly inside of a beanie. His suitcase was thrumming with the magic inside. And it only got stronger when he tucked his grimoire under a jacket, and a few books Deaton had given him in other languages tucked in as well.

 

Looking at some of them hurt, especially the ones he could read. His spark let him translate most languages automatically, and he didn't realize it had happened until recently when a nice couple had complimented him on his Russian when he was reading ingredients in the exotic foods aisle. The books brought up memories of the pack, of saving their asses from the next magical beast that came to shred their furry butts, and being scolded for saving and shunned for failing.

 

He swallowed and zipped the bag closed, moving to pack a carry on full of cool novels and his computer, as well as snacks and chargers and emergency clothes. But there was something inside of the backpack, which struck Stiles as odd. He only used that backpack for one thing - when he needed something for a spell to banish some creature to save the wolves. But what he pulled out what not what he expected to find.

 

Derek Hale's pullover hoodie. It still smelled like the bastard - like pine and smoke and coffee.

 

Stiles was thrown into a memory of this stupid fucking jacket, given to him by a stupid fucking Sourwolf with the prettiest eyes known to man.

 

~~~~~~

 

Stiles had not expected to be doing this on his Thursday night, but then again, he had probably done far stranger and more dangerous things. So, respectfully, running at full speed through a dense forest at midnight towards the growls and snarls of his pack mates might not have even made it into his top three.

 

Did he ever listen when Derek told him to ‘stay by the car’? Of course not.Would he learn from this experience to stay by the car? Maybe, but no one should be counting on it.

The growls began to get louder and louder as Stiles neared the fray, which he could only assume was under the harpies’ nest. Harpies were bird women of myth and legend, or how Stiles like to describe them, “Gorgeous, Evil, Demon ladies with really pretty feathers.”

 

This had obviously gotten him one of the famed looks featuring the bushy eyebrows, from the sourwolf himself.

 

As Stiles reached the fighting, he felt a large weight lift off of his shoulders when he saw that most of the harpies were either down for the count, or being chased after by Issac and Scott, so the baseball bat he had brought would be good enough on the ground.

 

Maybe he had missed the fighting, but Stiles had never really been much of a fighter anyway; so he could just put his hands on his knees and lean over to catch his breath as the rest of the pack stared over to him. No one was really surprised he was there and Derek didn’t look too pleased, but at least he didn’t feel as useless as he had just standing by the car.

 

“Well done, good job everyone. I mean, the food chain doesn’t lie right?” Standing back up, Stiles smiled. “Birds don’t eat wol-“

 

The only thing he registered was Derek reaching out to him, eyes wide and a loud voice shouting his name, but Stiles was already 20 going on 30 feet in the air, being carried by large talons wrapped around his upper arms. He remembered screaming, kicking, and squirming, trying to get free, but he only heard the flap of wings and the whistle of wind and the pack was gone, too small to see at this height, and now covered with the canopy of trees.

 

And all of a sudden, he was in a nest. Or rather what looked like a nest, buta good three times the size of a bald eagle’s nest (which can weigh in at over one ton). Well duh Stiles, harpies were giant bird ladies. Big nests needed.

 

For a moment Stiles panicked, scrambling back as far as he could. He could feel twigs, sticks and all sorts sticking into his hands and damn, he would not have fun picking those splinters out later. Before he could think any further, the harpy that had taken him landed neatly in the nest, folding her wings behind her back.

 

Now, Stiles wasn’t exactly sure what she was going to do to him, but he still continued to back away, trying to find the edge of the nest, looking for the possibility that maybe he could just fall to safety.  

“You’re much easier to catch than those mutt friends of yours.” She said, her eyes gleaming as she took a step forwards, which had Stiles backing up even further in his panicked crab walk.

 

“What? Them? No, no I don’t know them. Who would want to be friends with them? They’re so snarly and…And growly.” Okay, it was a very bad lie. A very, very bad lie. The harpy just rose a brow in response, stopping in her tracks in her slow prowl towards Stiles. And, yeah, from the look on her face, Stiles could see she didn’t buy it but that he didn’t know the pack of wolves. If he could just stall for a few more minutes until the pack could find him, then maybe he would actually survive. But that was a very strong maybe.

 

In the distance, Stiles could hear his name being called out. He could hear Derek, above all the voices, and it made a little spark of hope bubble in his chest. Stiles didn’t think he had ever been so happy to hear Derek yelling his name, but god he was now. However, the harpy didn’t have the same feeling towards the voice because her head flicked up not a moment later and she made a snarling sound low in the back of her throat.

 

“They just don’t give up, do they?” It was probably a rhetorical question but Stiles couldn’t help himself.

 

“No, they don’t. Annoying right?”

 

Everything happened at once after that, really. Stiles’ hand found the edge of the nest just as the harpy lifted one of her legs and aimed her talons at his chest. He wasn’t quick enough to lunge over the side of the nest by the time her talons caught his chest, but she have succeeded in killing him if it wasn’t for the arrow that came out of nowhere.

 

Thank god for Allison Argent.

 

Stiles didn’t stay to see the rest, but he heard wings flapping and a cry of pain before he was falling out of the nest and plummeting to the ground. Landing with a thump on the forest floor, Stiles grunted and took a breath, feeling a searing pain in his chest, back and, okay, maybe just everything hurt after falling through all of those branches.

 

Trying to move was a bad idea, so Stiles tried to stay still in the leaf litter blanketing the ground, looking up into the tree he had just fallen from as he tried to catch his breath before having another go at moving. The next time was more successful and he managed to sit up, looking down at his chest to see three, long scratches starting in the middle of his chest, moving around to his side and just nicking his arm. They were bleeding, but they weren’t too deep so he wouldn’t bleed out and die before anyone found him. He might not even need stitches.

 

Soon enough, Stiles could see Derek through the trees, his eyes Alpha red and face contorted into his beta shift. As soon as he reached Stiles, his face slowly returned to the normal, unfairly attractive Derek that Stiles had come to know and...love. But just a little!

 

“I told you to stay by the car.” The wolf huffed, kneeling beside him as he looked over the wounds on Stiles’ chest before tugging his hoodie over his head and moving to gently pull it over so Stiles was warmer.

 

“I’ve never really done what I’m told, why would I start- Oww! – Start now?” Stiles replied, giving him a smile as Derek helped him stand up. Derek only huffed in reply but with an arm around his waist, keeping him steady. Derek helped him walk back towards the pack. “Well you’re safe now.”

 

To Stiles, that could only mean that Derek had been worried about him. And instead of properly thanking him, he just cooed. “Aww, Sourwolf, I didn’t know you cared!”

 

Derek didn’t get a time to reply as Scott and Issac seemed to run out of nowhere, crowding around him and making sure he wasn’t dead.

 

Stiles didn’t notice but Derek let him go, replaced by Scott who was  hounding him with questions, asking if he needed a hospital. The other Alpha just watched them help Stiles away, frowning slightly, a deep furrow between his dark eyebrows.

 

Derek disappeared after that, and he didn’t come to Scott’s house and watch Melissa check Stiles over. He didn’t stay for Stiles telling the pack what happened while he was in the nest. But what did stay was Derek’s jacket, keeping Stiles warm all night long.

 

~~~~~~~

 

Stiles blinked out of the memory, a weird sense of unease coming over him. He was going to leave this? His pack?

 

The pack that didn't want him, because he was a weak human.

 

Ignoring the warm tears beading in his eyes, he moved to wipe under them and sniff heavily, laying the hoodie out carefully. Stiles moved to his Chest of drawers and pulls out his softest flannel pajama bottoms that had come from Isaac, the soft grey batman shirt from Erica, and pulled on the hoodie from Derek. He felt a little better, the scents of pack surrounding him. He wore the pajamas during pack cuddle night, and his spark waking up had helped with his senses a little, and he could smell the pack smell lingering on the clothes.

 

His chest tightened, and a bit of the wetness escaped onto his cheeks, but Stiles kept going. He moved to pack his carry-on, relishing in the scent of pack around him. He didn't get a goodbye puppy pile - he got kicked out. Goodbye Hale-McCall pack.

 

It hurt like hell to know his pack would leave him. He didn't have very much family, but he had had pack. Now... Now he didn't even have them. The bonds were still there, but they weren't bright and filled with life. It like someone had put s thin cloth over them, so they were still seen a felt, but not to the brightness that they had previously reached.

 

Stiles made sure he was packed before moving to set his bags next to the door of his room, sighing and flopping back on the bed. That was when he got an idea to try and end the boredom, and make him forget about the pack for a little while.

 

He moved to change quickly into basketball shorts and one of his lacrosse shirts, digging out his running shoes. Weak human his ass, he was going to train and get stronger. There were gyms in New York, he could keep up there.

 

Stiles started with stretching, like any good person would do, before moving to head out the front door at a nice jogging pace. Contrary to popular belief, Stiles was in good shape. Not perfect, but not horrible. Lacrosse training helps.

 

He made if four blocks before he found himself wishing for a wolf running buddy.

 

Two more and his chest was heaving, sweat dripping down his pale skin that was flushed with exertion.

 

One more, and he could see his house again, and he struggled to walk to the front door. His chest was burning, lungs absolutely on fire as he tried his best to get inside where he would find refuge in cold water and a shower to clean off.

 

As soon as Stiles was inside, he let himself catch his breath before moving to walk up the stairs on wobbly legs, tired from the run.

 

He managed to get into the shower, letting the warm water run down on his pale skin and flush it pink. He scrubbed to get clean with his strawberries and cream body wash (who says dudes can’t smell pretty? Hello, not Stiles), and clean his hair. After getting out and drying off, he changed into his pajamas once more and made his way downstairs, resolving to start dinner. It was already about one in the afternoon, so a good labor intensive dinner would keep his mind off of leaving tomorrow.

 

-------

 

When John came home, he knew something was different. He heard Stiles singing in the kitchen, just like Claudia used to. It was Polish, a soft song that Claudia had taught their son when he was small. It made him smile and move quietly to the dining room, unclipping his gun belt to set on the table. He smiled when he saw Stiles standing in the kitchen, stirring a few pots at once, humming and singing softly in a rich voice that Stiles kept hidden rather well.

 

The older man coughed slightly, “Stiles? You makin’ dinner?”

 

Stiles jumped and smiled, moving to hug John tightly. “Yeah. I had time, so I figured I could do something labor intensive. So I’ve got chicken stuffed with goat cheese, spinach, and a little bit of bacon. There are whipped potatoes on the stove, still cooking, with green beans. And there’s a cake in the oven right now. Chocolate, and I have a cream cheese frosting in the fridge for later.”

 

John raised an eyebrow and hugged his son back with a little smile, “It’s good to see you happy about something, kiddo. It all sounds really good. Thanks for making it.”

 

“Yeah. Last dinner with me for a while should be something special, you know? And… I’m used to cooking for a lot of people, so there are enough leftovers for you to bring some to work for lunch tomorrow. If it turns out well.” Stiles moved to shuffle back to the stove to stir a few things, and when he found that the potatoes were done, it was easy to strain and mash and then whip them up with a little butter and cream with bacon bits, moving to transfer them to a bowl. The green beans were next, and then the chicken came out of the oven.

 

Stiles grinned at his dad, who had just been standing in the door frame. “Go on and get the table set up. Plates are with me, but forks and knives and everything. I’ll plate up and bring it out in a minute,” he smiled, moving to start to plate.

 

John easily obeyed, smiling all the while. Stiles seemed more happy than he had been in a long while, and it was always good to see your son happy and smiling. Even if Stiles was leaving for New York tomorrow. He let out a little sound, moving and sitting at the table when Stiles came out with two plates, portioned with chicken and potatoes and greens.

 

They ate in companionable silence, the idle comment here or there on the food or the weather. No real in depth conversation happened that night, because nothing needed to be said. Everything had been talked about last night. When Stiles moved to try and clear the dishes, John put an end to that quickly.

 

“You go head down for bed, alright? I’ve got clean up, since you made all of this. You have to be up early, and I’m driving you to the airport at nine thirty tomorrow morning. Go try and get some sleep, or relax, or something,” he smiled, and shooed Stiles up the steps to his room.

 

The dishes got done, the food put away, and a lunch packed for tomorrow. He went up to check on Stiles and see if he had gone to sleep, and found the kid passed out on top of the covers of his bed, phone in hand. John chuckled before moving to tuck his son in, pausing in the doorway to let his eyes linger over Stiles. God, the kid had been through so much. But he was so proud of Stiles for everything he had done, and agreeing to go to New York for a fresh start.

 

---------

 

The morning came sooner than Stiles would be willing to admit. He rolled out of bed with his alarm at eight thirty, groaning and trying to stretch the sleep out of his muscles. He had slept well, and Stiles was surprisingly awake. He had a sudden urge to get dressed nice - he was meeting his Uncle Phil again, in person, after about five years of not seeing him. There were calls and video messages every Christmas, but in person, it had been a while. He smiled and moved to his suitcase, pulling out the outfit for the day.

 

A nice deep blue henley of his own that showed off the lean muscle he had gained over the years, matched with a pair of khaki skinny jeans and a read beanie, the poof of his hair curled nicely. He pulled on his red converse to match, and was rather proud of what he looked like. Hot, his mind supplied.

 

He tucked Derek’s hoodie into his backpack with a soft sound and moved to tug on his own red hoodie, leaving it unzipped. He looked good, dammit. Stiles made his way down the stairs with his suitcase trailing behind him and his backpack slung over his shoulder, grinning when he saw his dad. “That’s right! Stiles Stilinski, up voluntarily and ready at nine in the morning. Boo-yah.”

 

John rolled his eyes and chuckled, “C’mon, kid. Let’s get food in you before we head to the airport.”

 

They settled for cereal and coffee, Stiles’ grin stupidly big the whole time. He was ready for this. The pack hadn’t texted him, so he didn’t try to make contact and tell them he was leaving. Instead, he smiled and moved to text one of his friends from online that lived in New York. He ate and texted, tapping his foot.

 

John laughed and rolled his eyes, “Who’re you talking to, kiddo?”

 

“Just a friend. Lives in New York, how cool? I’m really excited to go. See Uncle Phil again, see Lola. Make sure that the other old man in my life is eating well and keeping healthy,” he joked, “and I’m gonna call you, every Wednesday night. With updates and stuff. But if anything major happens, I’ll try and call when you’re not on duty.”

 

“Sounds good, kid,” he smiled, moving to grab their empty bowls, “Go get your stuff in the car, Stiles. We have to head to the airport here in a few minutes. I’m going to rinse out the bowls and we’ll be ready to head out.”

 

Stiles dragged his things to the Jeep, a sudden pang of sadness hitting him when he realized that he wouldn’t have Roscoe with him in New York. He’d probably be able to walk, anyway. Stiles sighed and moved to slip his things in the back seat, perching in the passenger's seat. His dad came out a few minutes later, and got in the driver’s seat.

 

Stiles turned on the radio when John turned on the car, and Stiles’ smile brightened when he realized there was some fun little pop song on the radio, and the kid knew every word. He grinned and hummed, moving to stretch and wriggle in his seat, singing along as John drove and laughed.

 

They got to the airport before Stiles ran out of breath from his singing, and before John had gotten tired of listening to the singing. He smiled and moved to pull out Stiles’ plane ticket, “I drove up yesterday to get it printed for you, so there’s less to worry about. You just have to get to the terminal and get to your plane. And you have a whole hour to do that, so there’s time for you to browse and get a snack and find your terminal and gate and everything. It’s only eight hours, and your Uncle Phil is going to be waiting on you when you get off in New York, alright? Don’t get lost, and text me when he picks you up. Please.”

 

Stiles laughed and hugged his dad tightly over the center console in the car, holding for a moment before pulling back and grinning to hide the sadness he had with leaving his dad. “I would take you with me. But you’re the only Sheriff here that knows about wolves and can try to keep the pack from getting thrown in jail. And they need it. They might not want weak humans in their pack, but you’re the Sheriff. You’re not weak, so they shouldn’t have a problem accepting you.” He didn’t realize there were tears in his eyes until he felt one roll down his cheek, wiping it away quickly.

 

John gave him a weak smile, “Listen to me. Those kids don’t know what they’re missing when you leave, alright? They’re losing something valuable and amazing when they’re losing you.” He brought Stiles in for another hug, pressing a kiss to his temple before holding out the plane ticket. “Go, kiddo. You have a new part of your life to start. In New York. Your mother always wanted to go. See the top of the Empire State Building for her, alright?”

 

Stiles nodded and smiled, moving to jump out of the Jeep and get his things before he lost the courage to do it. He moved and and got his bags from the back, waving brightly before running into the airport.

 

--------

 

Security on both ends had been a nightmare. So had the creepy people that had stopped to ask for help, not too subtly looking him over. When one handsome stranger swooped in to help him find the terminal, it had gotten a little easier.

 

Somewhere over Oklahoma there had been turbulence, and Stiles had not liked that at all. His spark hadn’t either. The lights had flickered and a can or two of soda popped open - but they blamed it on the air pressure and bumpy ride. As soon as it smoothed out, Stiles made sure to calm himself down, and got in a few hours of sleep before one of the flight attendants gently shook him awake. The plane was empty, and he scrambled to get up and get off with a bright and crooked grin on his face towards the attendant.

 

He had run off and out towards baggage claim, finding his case easily and dragging it behind himself, looking around for his Uncle. He knew what the man looked like, but he wasn’t expecting him to be in a full out suit. Stiles approached slowly, “Uncle Phil?”

 

Now, Phil Coulson wasn’t someone that was surprised easily. But the last time he had seen this kid, he was twelve and dealing with his mother’s death, weighing in at 100 pounds when wet and a buzz cut on his head. So when he saw this kid walk up to him, nerves buzzing under his skin with a twinge of something else there, bright amber eyes and a nice hair style, and decent muscles, he did his best not to show the surprise. “Stiles,” he smiled, nodding at the kid. He moved after a beat to open his arms, and was surprised when the kid practically jumped him for a hug.

 

Stiles hadn’t realized how much contact he received in the pack until he had been deprived of it, and hugging family was fucking awesome right now with the pack bonds as tender as they were. He pulled back after a moment and dipped his head, missing the raised eyebrow from Phil, “Sorry. Got excited to see my favorite Uncle, you know?”

 

The agent chuckled and nodded, “Alright. Come on, I have a car waiting outside to take us to my apartment. There’s a room for you to make your own, so you can settle in tonight.” He lead the way out to his prized possession, Lola, parked on the curb.

 

Stiles gasped, “She’s beautiful! I thought my Jeep was gorgeous, but look at this one! Oh my god, please tell me we get to ride in this.”

 

“Yeah, Stiles. This is the one. Her name is Lola, and she’s my pet project. A few friends at work have been helping give her a few extra perks. So don’t touch any buttons,” Phil warned, smiling and looking at the other with a little sound. He hummed and moved, climbing into the car and turning the keys, grinning when the engine purred to life.

 

Stiles climbed in soon after with a bright grin, humming and moving before pulling out his phone to text his dad.


Arrived safe. Uncle Phil has a totally amazing car, and we’re on the way to his apartment. I get my own room here too! I’ll text you with updates, and call you when we start school and stuff. I think it’s in a few weeks, but I’ll ask. Anyways, I’ll talk to you soon, dad. Love you. I have a new chapter of my life. Stiles Stilinski takes on the Big Apple. Uncle Phil is totally judging how long this message is. I’ll talk soon. Bye!

Chapter Text

 

The drive back to Phil’s apartment was fairly uneventful. Stiles put in his headphones and rocked out to a little bit of Taylor Swift, glad that his Uncle didn’t have Wolfy hearing to know he was doing the little wiggle he did to Shake It Off. That was his jam, alright? And the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate. And Stiles? He just had to shake, shake, shake, shake, shake it off.

 

He heard his stomach growl about five minutes in, and turned to Phil, one earbud already out of his ear. “Do you know anywhere good to stop and get something? Preferably curly, and fried. Maybe made of potato?” he asked, a lopsided grin on his face.

 

Phil was just glad to see Stiles happy. He had been briefed by John on everything but the supernatural elements, so the man knew that he was going to be looking after a teenager that had just been abandoned by his entire foundation and group of friends, right before senior year. He nodded and let out a little sound, almost like a chuckle, “Yes, Stiles. There’s a burger place half a block from my apartment. We can park Lola, and grab something to eat before heading home. Sound good?”

 

Stiles nodded brightly, “Hell yeah! Oh, uh, I mean Heck yeah!” He grinned, unable to stop the laugh from bubbling in his throat when his uncle scowled.

 

“Does your dad let you curse, Stiles?” the agent asked, raising a dark eyebrow without looking at Stiles.

 

“No.”

 

“Well, then I will,” he smiled, looking at the younger man from the corner of his eyes. “You’re seventeen, turning eighteen while you’re here. New York is a big place, and there’s a lot someone can do to get in trouble. I don’t want to find you passed out with alcohol poisoning on your eighteenth birthday. So I’ll give you a little more freedom than your dad does, alright? As long as you promise to come to me if anything happens. Anyone tries for sex, drugs, money, alcohol, anything. Tell me.”

 

Stiles looked at Phil like he had grown a second head, and paused his music to settle in for this conversation. New York traffic came in handy for a few things. “Woah, woah. Wait a minute. You’re gonna let me curse. And have freedom? Dude, this is awesome. Never would have happened back home,” he said slowly, and looked up with his wide eyes, the color catching the sunlight and looking strikingly similar to honey, “Does this mean I can get a tattoo when I turn eighteen? There’s one I’ve been wanting, and it’s really awesome and it’s supposed to help focus your ma-” Holy shit. Holy shit, he had just about said magic. “Mind. And with the ADHD, I need all the help focusing I can get, you know?”

 

Coulson could tell Stiles had slipped on a word. But he didn’t comment, only gave a vague nod in response. He was a ‘secret agent’ after all, he was paid to notice things. “You’ll have to clear it with your dad first. And I need to hear it from him, I don’t want you forging an email. I’ll be on the phone with him, making sure he’s fine with you getting a tattoo. I know people, we can get you in a good place if it’s what you really want, alright?”

 

Stiles grinned, “Thanks uncle Phil! Really. Thank you. Having someone trust me is… it’s a good thing. A real good feeling.” His smile was a little less bright after that, and the Taylor Swift song swapped for something a little more melancholy, but when a happy song came on after that, Stiles bopped along gently.

 

Phil smiled and watched, his heart aching for the kid. God, this kid had been through some shit. That much was obvious. He nodded and turned back to the road, silently thanking whatever Gods there were that traffic was easy to get through today. He pulled into a reserved parking space outside of a large apartment building just across the street from the Avengers tower. He smiled and nudged Stiles, moving to get out of the car.

 

It was all Stiles could do not to scream. Holy shit. His uncle lived across from the fucking Avengers. That was when Stiles started to put two and two together, really. He had heard about SHIELD, the Strategic Hazard Intervention Espionage Logistics Directorate (yes of course he had it memorized), and their work with the Avengers. His uncle was always in a fucking suit, and rarely ignored calls on his ‘work’ phone. Oh yeah, his Uncle totally worked for SHIELD. But Stiles would totally bring it up all subtle like. Not that subtly was really his thing, but… still. Subtle was key.

 

So Stiles totally pretended not to watch as his uncle sent off a text to someone and leave a little note on the windshield of his car, humming softly. He moved and moved to follow his uncle Phil, who smiled and gestured for him to pull the headphones out. Stiles paused before nodding and unplugging them, tucking them into his pocket before walking next to his Uncle. He smiled softly and nudged the older man with his shoulder, earning a raised eyebrow and slight nudge in response.

 

Oh yeah, he had a cool Uncle.

 

They made it into the little burger place after a few minutes of walking in a comfortable silence, the bustle of the city around them. It was still a bit much for Stiles, but he was growing used to it quickly. There was always something for him to listen to, to look at, to smell. It helped with the ADHD, so he could focus on more of himself easier than it had been in Beacon Hills, where it was rather quiet most of the time. It was a pleasant change, and he felt the energy of the city thrumming under his skin, his spark thriving on the environment.

 

It had been different, at home. It had been free to spread through the Hale property, feeding and drawing power off of the forest around it. But here, in the city, the spark was confined just under Stiles’ skin, keeping him moving and jittery, trying to expend little bursts of energy here and there. It was amazing for his spark to be able to draw on a new kind of energy. He could feel Central Park not too far away, and his spark was drawn to the green grass and trees, but for now he kept it contained to his skin and kept it buzzing and alive. Everything was so much more. The colors brighter, the smells smellier, the sounds louder and everything so much more. He couldn’t imagine how dull it would be without a spark.

 

The burger joint, some little place tucked between two bigger buildings, offered a small space where greasy burgers and, as the sign said, the city’s best curly fries. Stiles grinned brightly and bounced on the balls of his feet, eyes honey gold and flashing with excitement.

 

Phil chuckled and rolled his eyes, walking up and placing an order for one of the turkey burgers he normally got, and some greasy horrific thing that Tony usually ordered, with a side of curly fries for Stiles. He smiled and lead them to a table, sitting down and shifting with a little sound.

 

Phil looked over at Stiles with a little smile, “So. You like New York so far? It’s a little different from Beacon Hills, from what I remember, but it’s a good city.”

 

The teen laughed and nodded, “Yeah. It’s… different. Beacon Hills is… it makes you feel like you can run to the nature museum at two in the morning and smoke pot. Totally illegal, by the way. Found that out the hard way. My dad was so disappointed. Anyways! New York is the kind of place you go when you want to see famous people and feel like maybe you matter a little.”

 

That made Coulson pause. But he nodded a moment later. “I see. Is it a bad difference?”

 

“Nah. Just… a different difference,” Stiles clarified, “Not bad. I like it here so far. It’s vibrant. Everything is brighter. Beacon is green and grey and brown. This place has life.”

 

They got their burger orders just fine, Stiles enthusiastically diving in for the curly fries, eating half before moving to the burger, beginning and ending the meal with curly fries. Phil just chuckled and watched with an amused expression, glancing at the door when he heard the small bell toll. It was habit. He had positioned himself so he could just glance up and see the door, and who he saw made him freeze.

 

Clint. Fucking. Barton.

 

Now, he was trouble in any form of the word. But dressed in a soft grey hoodie and dark jeans meant he was out and looking for trouble. He and Phil had been seeing each other for two years at this point, ever since the battle of New York when he had taken a blade to the chest. They had been inseparable for the first few weeks, but had gradually grown better and developed a healthy relationship.

 

So seeing Clint out and about dressed in the shirt that the archer knew showed off his impressive shoulder muscles and some tight jeans, he was either looking for Phil, or for trouble. Which he found both of, right in front of him. Stiles hadn’t turned around, so really, it didn’t look too good from the initial sweep Hawkeye did of the place.

 

------

 

Clint had gotten the text from Phil about halfway through practice. His phone had gone off with the little tone, and the bow had been placed down almost immediately in favor of the phone.

 

Pick up the bags from Lola’s trunk and put them in the spare room of my apartment, please. I’m having a guest.

 

It wasn’t that odd, but it still ruffled his feathers that he didn’t know who this ‘guest’ was. He didn’t like not knowing who Phil was with, but… he could deal with it for now. He would see later, evidently, if they would be staying in Phil’s apartment. But he still didn't like not knowing.

 

So of course, being the tactical genius that he was, Clint decided he needed to go and try and find Phil with the mystery man.

 

Clint stopped by the car, looking at the bags in the trunk briefly. One was a large suitcase, made it seem like this person was staying a while, and the other was a packed backpack. Airplane, then. Probably.  Who did Phil need to house that took public planes?

 

He huffed and moved to walk around the block before an idea sprung up. Phil wouldn't take this person to the tower, so that left the little burger joint. Literally, those were the two places Phil didn't fight going to aroun here. So the burger place was where Clint went.

 

He walked in quietly and almost forgot about the bell, eyes flicking to Coulson, who was giving him a stink eye.

 

But it wasn't what Clint had expected at all.

 

It had to be a kid sitting in front of Phil. A kid. With his hoodie over the back of the chair and dark blue shirt pulled tight over his thin form. A beanie covering whatever color hair the kiddo had. But what the hell was Phil doing with a kid?

 

Clint did the only thing he could find logical right then, and moved to pull a chair up to the table with a bright grin, "hey, kid! Phil."

 

Phil scowled and raised an eyebrow at the other man, "Clint. You don't need to be here. I told you to get the bags, not to come and find me."

 

Clint scoffed, "I saw the bags and I figured you had a guest. Not a kid. What the hell are you doing with a kid? Did you steal him?"

 

"Hi, hello, I have a voice. No, he did not steal me. I'm staying with him so I can finish senior year, since shit got screwed at home."

 

Ooh, feisty. Clint chuckled, "you're a little squirt, then. How do you know my Phil, then?"

 

"He's my uncle. My mom had a brother, and this is him," Stiles snipped, "now who are you?"

 

"Kid. I'm Hawkeye. You might have seen me on the news? You know, saving the world?" He grinned, and Phil shot him a look.

 

Coulson rolled his eyes, "Stiles, don't let him fool you. He's not exactly the model citizen everyone thinks Hawkeye is."

 

"And you think back in Beacon, I was a model citizen? My dad is the Sheriff,  Uncle Phil. I went out in the woods looking for dead bodies. We found her, too. Ugh. Death stinks, you know. Like, really bad."

 

Clint raised an eyebrow, "you go looking for dead bodies? You look like you could be bowled over by a strong breeze."

 

"Yeah? Well, I've fought a lot stronger than some wind. Stronger than you, probably. I'm not saying I got away uninsured, but I'm most of the way still alive."

 

That piqued Phil's interest. "What's out in Beacon Hills that could be stronger than an Avenger?"

 

"Trust me, Uncle Phil. I've cuddled with people that could probably take you out. In like, two seconds. I'm the most defenseless person on my team. Well, I was.They didn't want the responsibility of keeping me safe anymore"

 

That killed the mood, really. Stiles dropped off into silence and turned to his food, leaving the two adults to puzzle over what the teenager had said.

 

Kids were a mystery.

 

------

 

Stiles had gone quiet, and not said a word since. He suspected that Clint and Phil were speaking through eye contact alone as they walked to Phil’s apartment. He followed slowly, the healing bruises on his ribs throbbing gently on his side as he walked. He needed to calm down and try to breathe and make sure he didn’t start panicking, because that was fucking embarrassing.

 

He managed to calm down when they reached the rather nice apartment, and Phil gave him a soft, warm smile as they walked inside. Stiles smiled back, small and tentative, before walking in. Automatically toeing off his shoes, he moved to pad after Phil and Clint with a yawn. Plane rides were exhausting, and it was still four in the afternoon in Beacon, even though it was closer to eight in New York. He was exhausted, and he supposed it was a good thing for getting himself on track for sleeping here.

 

Phil raised an eyebrow at the yawn, “Tired already, Stiles?”

 

“Just a bit,” Stiles nodded, his skin fading to a soft tingle. His spark had been buzzing constantly, and it had taken constant supervision to keep it from doing little things like changing hair color on the poor people in the street and changing clothes on others. It was exhausting.

Clint laughed, “He’s a teenager, Phil. They’re supposed to sleep and eat and be lazy.”

 

Phil just shrugged, “Uh-huh. Let’s get you settled in the room, then, kiddo. We’re up at noon tomorrow at the latest, I have to take you to register for school.”

 

Stiles grumbled, but followed his Uncle down the white hall to a rather large room, with a large soft bed in the center. And he just couldn’t resist. Stiles moved and jumped onto the bed, flopping on his stomach with a little groan. It was so /soft/. But it was big, and felt a little too empty for his liking.

 

Pack wasn’t just the bonds in his chest and a drive to protect each other. Pack was close contact and completely platonic touches and physical reassurance. Hands on hips and hugs and a kiss or two here and there, and help with nightmares. More often than not, the pack doubled up in beds in the big Hale House, and Stiles had taken to cuddling with the pack puppy, Isaac.

 

But Isaac was all the way in california, and not in New York. So Stiles would have an empty bed tonight, and it made his chest ache just a little bit more. The distance made it hard, but that thought that he was alone made it worse.

 

Stiles’ eyes drooped closed easily, and he was snoring before the five minute mark. Phil chuckled and moved to tuck the kid into the bed, ignoring the little peeks of bruises and scars he got when Stiles’ shirt rucked up a little too far. He just made sure he was tucked into bed before walking back down to join Clint with a little grin on his face.

 

“So, the kid is asleep?” Clint asked, raising an eyebrow and grinning.

 

Phil scowled. “There will be no sex in this house while my nephew is in. Now, if you can get a day off while he’s at school, and I’m sure I can pull some strings…”

 

Clint looked like he had woken up and it was Christmas morning when Phil said that. “Oh, you’re the best,” he grinned, moving to press a kiss to the older man’s cheek, “Can’t wait until school starts.”

 

-----------

 

Phil had let Clint stay the night after relentless poking from the archer, and they had changed into pajamas when they heard someone shuffling around down the hall. Phil shrugged, putting it off as Stiles getting up for something to drink. But when they didn’t hear a door close once more after a good thirty minutes, Clint nudged the older man’s shoulder.

 

“You should go check on him,” he whispered, which got a quiet grumble from Phil.

 

“Only if you come with me,” Phil murmured, moving to press a kiss to Clint’s lips. It lingered for a moment before the agent pulled back and stood slowly, stretching before moving to walk towards the door silently, raising an eyebrow.

 

Clint followed with a little sigh, and the two men walked silently down the hall. They checked the bathroom to see if Stiles was in there, and then the guest room. When they found them both empty, they walked down to the living room to see if he was in there getting a snack or something.

 

But what they saw surprised them.

 

It was Stiles. At least, probably. There was a small pillow fort built off of the front of the couch, blankets and such draped over, around, and inside of the pillow skeleton. It looked to be a fairly sturdy blanket fort, and there was light glowing from inside. Clint paused, moving to hold Phil back when he was ready to go and ask Stiles what was happening.

 

The soft crying surprised both men.

 

They had suspected laughing or Stiles to be watching a movie, not for him to be crying. Clint still didn’t know the full extent of what had happened with Stiles in his old place in California, but he knew it was a good ten times worse than he suspected with the kid crying in a blanket fort.

 

Phil let out a soft sound and looked at Clint, hoping to find an answer. But they were broken from their reverie when they heard an empty dial tone being put on speaker phone. Stiles was phoning home?

 

Hell yeah, Stiles was phoning home. He was tired of the empty aching in his chest that was the lack of his pack reaffirming the bond. Isaac had been his nightmare buddy for a long time. And he had had a bad one that night, about his time as the nogitsune. He needed his nightmare buddy.  It was probably only five at Beacon, and he hoped Isaac wasn’t at dinner. He had pulled himself together and gotten his blanket fort built that they usually built on bad nights.

 

When the phone picked up, Stiles felt his breath hitch. “Isaac?” he asked weakly, wiping at the dampness on his cheeks, burrowing into the blankets he had rolled himself in.

 

“Stiles?” came a soft voice, crackled slightly by the phone. But the audible sigh of relief was heard by the two adults that had settled for sitting on the floor to hear this discussion. They didn’t know who Isaac, was, but they would find out soon.

 

“Oh, god. You answered. I had another one. One of the bad ones,” Stiles blabbed, his voice cracking about halfway through his little spiel.

 

Okay. Okay. Do you want to talk about it? Which one was it about? Gerard, or the nogitsune?” the voice asked, worry clear in his tone.

 

“Gerard,” Stiles said simply, a shiver running through his body. He had been trapped in that basement with Erica and Boyd, and they knew what Gerard had done to him, how much he had suffered. But they weren’t allowed to take his pain or turn him, so he had to suffer and heal all on his own.

 

“Fuck. Okay, Stiles? You gotta listen to me, alright? The pack is out for dinner, so I’m here on my own. Did you build a blanket fort already? Your dad told me you went somewhere cause I got worried. But, uh, I just need you to talk to me for now, alright? You in the blanket fort?”

 

“Yeah,” he sniffed, moving and rubbing a hand over his eyes, curling a little closer around the blankets and pillows he had inside.

 

“The impenetrable Stilinksi blanket fort, or the one of a kind impregnable Lahey pillow castle?”

 

There was a pause, and a shuffling sound from the fort before Stiles’ voice answered, “A little bit of both. Hyphanated. Stilinski-Lahey Pillow and Blanket fort. Trademarked.”

 

There was a chuckle from the line, and a soft squeak. Isaac had gone to lay down, then. “Good. It sounds like fun, yeah. Nice and warm, and completely safe. No hunter can get you now, you know. Not the crazy ones that go after people like me, not the absolutely bat shit ones that would go after Derek or Scott. Like, who even hunts Alphas? Fucking idiots.”

 

Stiles giggled. “Did Derek threaten to rip his throat out? With his teeth?”

 

“He’s being his typical broody self. Pouting, scowling with his eyebrows, scenting everyone more than usual. Ugh, he’s been so scent-possessive.”

 

“Oh my god, does he do that thing where he combs a hand through his beard to get his scent and then, like, casually touches the back of your neck or your arm or something to scent mark you?”

 

“Jesus, I thought he only did it to me! Oh my god. That’s fucking hilarious.”

 

“I miss the touch, you know? It’s… weird. The bonds feel too tight, like they’re sore and covered by a sheet or something. They’re still there. I think one is getting stronger, ‘cause I’m talking to you, but the rest are still muffled. I just… yeah. I was mad at you, at first, since I didn’t hear you standing up to Derek. But he’s your Alpha, and you’re my nightmare buddy and the puppy. So I couldn’t… I couldn’t stay mad at you. And Lydia. You two are the only ones I’m talking to right now.”

 

There was a brief beat of silence before Isaac slowly replied. “Derek told all of us not to talk to you. I don’t really care. He’s my Alpha, but I don’t think it’s right to kick you out of the pack because you’re a human. He doesn’t know you’re a spark, but… I think he would have still sent you away. It’s not that you aren’t a wolf, it’s that he cares. I think. I dunno.”

“Derek Hale? Caring about me? Haha, Isaac, very funny. He said I was a weak piece of shit that gets hurt too much and can’t stay safe enough not to be a burden to the pack. Those aren’t the words of someone that cares. I mean, I can’t believe I puppy piled with the same guy!”

 

Isaac sighed, “I know, Stiles. But, you have to… You have to know that he did care about you. I could smell it on him whenever he got to cuddle with you. I’m not gonna push and tell you more than you need to know right now, but… he does care about you.”

 

“Back to talking about my nightmare?”

 

“Back to talking about your nightmare.”

 

There was a lull in the conversation where Stiles tried to build himself up to talking, and Clint took it as the opportunity to communicate with Phil that they should stay right the fuck there while Stiles talked. To know more, and to understand.

 

But Phil shook his head and stood up slowly, moving to tug Clint back to the room. He used the ASL he knew Clint used, thanks to the hearing aids he had found a few months back.

 

Come on, birdbrain. Give the kid some privacy.

 

Clint grinned when he saw Coulson using his hands to talk. He followed reluctantly, but he did follow.

 

Don’t we want to find out who Gerard is? And what he did to your nephew? And what the fuck a nogitsune is, or whatever the Isaac kid said on the phone?

 

Phil just sighed as he crept into his room, ushering the other in before dropping his voice to a soft whisper, “Yes. I want to know about Stiles and what he’s been through, but I don’t need to eavesdrop on his friend talking about nightmares. We have more to be concerned about with what they were saying about pack and wolves. It doesn’t sound too much like a cult, but… you never know.”

 

Clint rose an eyebrow, “He doesn’t seem like the cult type. Plus, he left voluntarily. So, we’ll have to find out from the SHIELD computers in the morning?”

 

“Yes, fine. Just go to sleep, Clint,” Phil sighed, rolling his eyes. Sometimes the man was more child than adult.


So they left Stiles in his blanket fort/pillow castle, snuggled up and talking about his nightmare to Isaac, and he eventually fell asleep on the phone with the other teen. If Stiles went to bed with tear tracks on his cheeks and his hands balled up in the blankets he was cocooned in, no one was there to see it.

Chapter Text

Pain.

 

Pain.

 

Everything was aching down deep into his bones, starting in the center of his chest where there had only been warmth and life before.

 

The pack bonds had broken.

 

He had just talked to Isaac last night, though. Stiles didn’t understand why it would happen today of all days. He had only gotten here fucking yesterday and today had to be the fucking day that the Alphas fully cut him off from the pack.

 

It could have been the distance, he tried to tell himself. It could have been how far away it was and how strained they were to begin with. But… it still hurt, to have the lack of the pack bonds. He couldn’t feel anything like he had felt before. The colors weren’t as bright, the smells weren’t as vibrant, and the sounds weren’t as defined now that he had been cut off from the wolves in his bond.

 

Stiles just… didn’t see a reason to get up from his little nest. Everything hurt. Moving hurt, thinking hurt, and breathing hurt. The bond was gone. And the bright and vibrant world he had known was gone.

 

He didn’t register the way his body curled on itself and his nails bit into his palms to the point of drawing blood. He didn’t register the anguished scream that tore at his throat on the way out, or the way every piece of glass in the living room shattered with the force of his spark acting out its pain.

 

-------

 

Phil had been sleeping when he heard the scream. His first thought was that Clint was watching some movie, but when he felt warm hands of the archer on his shoulders trying to shake him awake, and a loud shattering sound from the living room, he was up and out of bed in ten seconds.

 

“What is it?” Phil asked softly, and Clint pursed his lips.

 

“Your nephew. Not a nightmare. He was awake before he screamed. But just barely. I was getting ready to head and make breakfast when I heard him screaming. It just stopped. That kid’s throat is probably raw, you need to check on him. It was one hell of a nightmare, and I don’t think he’s moved since.”

 

Phil frowned deeply and nodded, moving to stand and stretch slightly before padding to the door. He slowly walked to the living room, the frown impossibly deepening when he didn’t see Stiles right away. He moved and crouched next to the blanket fort, opening the flap gently and peeking inside.

 

“Stiles?” Phil asked tentatively, taking in the way the boy was curled around a blanket, pretty much burritoed up, his phone set on the floor.

 

Stiles moved every so slightly, and gave a weak sound, but that was all he could muster. His chest ached, it felt like an empty pit opened up in the center of his chest and surrounded his heart, and he couldn’t feel anything aside from that. The emptiness that was the lack of a bond tugging and filling his chest.

 

That set off a number of alarms for Phil. This kid had been bouncing around the day before, and now he was… immobile. He was hardly moving. The sad kid with ADHD that had been hopping around and trying to surround himself in newness was nub to the world in his living room, and he had no idea why.

 

“Stiles,” he tried again, “You need to tell me what’s wrong, alright? If you don’t, I’m going to call some people to try and help you.”

 

Stiles managed a weak whimper and moved to press a hand to his chest, grabbing at the thin fabric of the sleep shirt (previously Isaac’s) that covered his skin.

 

“Your chest?” Phil asked, worry slowly creeping up in his stomach, “Stiles, what’s wrong with your chest? Can you breathe alright?”

 

Another little nod and a soft whimper, but this time it was followed by a single word, croaked out of Stiles’ raw throat. “Empty.”

 

Phil had no idea how ‘empty’ could relate to Stiles’ chest hurting, but he gave a simple nod and moved to duck from the blanket fort, avoiding glass as he walked back to the room, Clint now quickly following him.

 

“What did he say?” the archer pestered, “Come on boss, tell me what the kiddo said!”

 

“He said his chest is empty, Clint,” Phil replied dryly, moving to his work bag to pull out his cell phone. Clint was frozen in the doorway and shifted on his feet ever so slightly when he caught sight of the phone.

 

“You’re calling SHIELD in on this one? He’s your nephew. You saw his screaming. What happens if they decide he’s a threat? Or that he needs to be a part of the training program for gifted kids that don’t make it to Xavier’s. Don’t think I don’t listen to your phone calls.”

 

Phil narrowed his eyes and let out a little huff. “What the hell else am I supposed to do? My nephew is in obvious pain, and he’s hardly mobile. That kid has some of the worse ADHD I’d ever seen, and he should have been flying off the walls without his adderall. I don’t think this is just homesickness, Clint. He needs a doctor that knows about the things we deal with.”

 

“Bruce,” was the only answer Clint could suggest, because there was no way in hell he would remotely want Tony near that kid.

 

That got Coulson to perk up. “Bruce! He’s a five minute walk away. Good. We just have to get him to the tower. He seemed pretty excited about how close we were to it yesterday, do you want to go and see if he’ll get up if we can go?”

 

Clint nodded and narrowed his eyes, but he knew Phil still needed to get dressed. The archer walked to the living room just as Phil had done earlier, slowly crouching in front the fort and poking his head in.

 

“Hey, kiddo. So, your uncle Phil wanted me to come and ask you if you wanted to see the Avenger’s tower? Obviously I know some people, and there’s a doctor in there that might be able to fix whatever is bugging you, alright? And your uncle is really worried about you, Stiles. You think you can make it there? Five minute walk, max.”

 

Stiles stayed still for a moment before giving a weak nod and pushing up on his arms, cradling a hand against his chest once he was sitting. He looked pale and tired, much more so than he had the day before. He managed a weak and painfully fake smile at Clint before the archer backed out of the fort.

 

“Just get dressed and meet us out here, alright? You’ve got time, and I’ll keep Phil off of your back so you can have space.”

 

“Thank you,” Stiles managed, but his voice was weak and almost a whisper. He moved to stand slowly and shuffle to the room they had given him, pain obvious in every movement he made.

 

Phil came out a few moments later, and Clint grinned. “He’s gonna give walking a shot. I don’t think it’s horrible, but I told him I could get him into the tower to see some kick-ass doctors to see if they could fix it. He might know what’s wrong with his chest, but I’m not sure. He’s getting dressed now.”

 

“Why would you think he knows what’s wrong?” Phil asked, raising an eyebrow and adjusting the simple blue button down he had chosen for today.

 

“He didn’t seem scared by what was happening. Just… sad.”

 

-----------

 

It took Stiles a good twenty minutes to get his shit together and get dressed. There were lots of tears, and a few times his spark lashed out and tore a shirt that had belonged to one of the pack. But eventually he got himself together and shuffled out of the room in a simple maroon long sleeved shirt and a pair of jeans, black converse on his feet. He managed a small smile towards his uncle and Clint before walking up to them, resisting the urge to place a hand to his chest to try and stop the ache.

 

Instead, he gave a little not and managed a small, “Ready,” which still sounded too scratchy and painful for his liking.

 

Phil and Clint both paused before nodding and moving to lead the way, walking out of the apartment with a soft sound and heading down the steps. Once they made it out to the street, they were sure to keep to the teen’s pace so they didn’t lose him in the early morning crowd.

 

The walk was slow and silent, the city buzzing background noise around them. When they reached the Avengers tower, the only person that the people in the lobby gave a second glance to was Stiles. He smiled awkwardly until they were on a large elevator, and Phil looked right up at the ceiling and spoke.

 

“JARVIS? Care to take us to Bruce and Tony’s labs? We have a patient for Doctor Banner,” he nodded, and held back a chuckle when Stiles flinched at the responding voice.

 

“Of course, Agent Coulson. Should I alert Bruce that Mr.Stilinski will be a patient of his?” JARVIS asked politely, and Phil gave a curt little ‘yes please’ before the elevator started moving.

 

--------

 

“Doctor Banner. Agent Coulson and Agent Barton are on their way to your lab with a patient for you to see. Would you like the initial scans I have taken of him?”

 

Bruce looked up from the work on the table and blinked before managing an answer, “Yes, please. Send it to the large projection screen, and read it out to me while I look, please.”

 

JARVIS pulled up the projection of the simple scan he had done of Stiles. “Genim Stilinski. Seventeen years of age, recently moved to New York to stay with Agent Coulson. He suffers from Anxiety and Panic disorders, as well as severe ADHD. Mr. Stilinski has not taken his Adderall in two days, but shows none of the typical signs that this is true. His mother, Claudia Stilinski, suffered from frontotemporal dementia and died when Genim was ten years of age.”

 

Bruce let out a low whistle, “What’s the energy reading we’re getting? Two of them? One in his chest, close to his heart, and the other is weaker, but centered more under his ribcage. Does he have anything on him that would give those off?”

 

“No, Doctor Banner. Genim is not wearing or carrying anything that gives off those signals. I have not seen an energy signature like this since I was permitted to do a full scan on Tony, and revealed an energy signature similar to the one close to Genim’s heart.”

 

Bruce hummed in interest, and made a little note to look into that later. “Thank you. Are they -”

 

A little ding cut him off, and he turned, expecting to see them either carrying or pushing the boy in a wheelchair. But he was standing, all on his own. Which was not what he had expected, considering the blood pressure and sugar levels in this kid.

 

Phil and Clint moved to help him, but Stiles wanted to do it on his own. He hobbled to the man in the white coat and gave a thin smile, “Stiles. Nice to meet you, Doc.” His voice was still scratchy and raw, but not as bad as it had been earlier this morning.

 

Bruce moved to direct him onto a table where he could move machines to take better scans of him. He glanced back at Phil and nodded, asking him to launch into a story.

 

Which he did.

 

It lasted a good five minutes while he took readings on the anomalies in Stiles’ chest. The teen stayed oddly still on the table, his eyes staring out at nothing more often than not and staying there for a length of time before flicking over everyone in the room, like he expected someone else there.

 

“Stiles?” Bruce asked after a moment, “Would you take your shirt off so that I can see if any of the readings are a false positive?”

 

“No.” It was a simple answer, down to the point. But those honey amber eyes were fixed on Bruce the second it was said. “No.”

 

“Stiles, I really need to see what’s going on in your chest. It could be life threatening.”

 

“It’s not. I know what it is. Can you fix it, or do I have to do it on my own?” he asked sharply, surprising all three of the men in the room. Stiles had been anything but aggressive yesterday, and now he was lashing out at a simple request. But Bruce was used to patients like him.

 

“Of course. If you know what it is, would you mind telling us? My machines can’t tell me what it is, because they’ve never encountered something like this before,” he explained easily.

 

“Show me,” Stiles said simply, and Bruce hesitated before pulling up the full body scan, showing the two areas of energy. The chest, near his heart, where the bonds had broken. It was cold and sad and blue. And under his ribs, near the center of his body, where the light was bright and golden. He moved a hand there on his own body, smiling faintly at the familiar buzz his spark sent across his skin.

 

It was time to tell them.

 

He reached a hand up to show them the diagram, moving and pulling the small glowing ball that showed the energy in Stiles’ chest off to the side so he could expand it. There it was obvious that it looked like strings woven together, and all but one were cut and frayed, like they had been ripped.

 

“When a wolf makes a pack,” he started, surprised at how calm his voice sounded, “they form bonds with the other members. Each pack member has a bond with the other members of the pack. But the bond with the Alpha is the strongest, only rivaled by a mate bond. Mate bonds are rare, and I haven’t seen one. But this one here, the thickest strand, was the connection to my Alpha.” He blinked and moved to zoom in a little more, pointing to the thickest chord, and the end looked to be tinted black.

 

The men were more than taken aback by what Stiles was saying, but let him continue. They were wrapped up in the boy’s voice and how he seemed to ooze sadness when he spoke, and didn’t notice the quiet footsteps of Tony entering the room.

 

“A pack is not all made of wolves. Sometimes, human members can exist. My pack at home was mostly wolves. My two Alphas, the five beta wolves, a banshee, and two humans. But I was the weakest one, according to one of my Alphas. The other human was a hunter, you see. She killed wolves before she realized that not all are bad, and now protects them all. But me? I was the fucked up kid that could carry a baseball bat and get all the weird info on spells and creatures that were a threat to my pack. So I was important.

 

“Life was good. I was part of the pack, I had family again. Puppy piles to strengthen the pack bond every saturday night. We watched The Notebook so often, oh god. Our banshee had a thing for seeing the wolves try and hide tears. But it was good. Then I started slipping up. Got hurt a few times. Harpies, kanimas, witches, fae, you name it, they got in a hit on the human of the pack. And they started seeing me as weak. A hinderance, if you will. So one of my Alphas decided to cut me from the pack. No ifs, ands, or buts. Just out I went. The bonds didn’t break right away. That would have made it easier. They broke this morning. I…”

 

He had to pause to wipe the tears from his cheeks before continuing, his hand moving to brush at the strings in the little hologram. “This morning, I woke up to pain. Pain, pain, and emptiness. The world is duller, now, since I don’t have wolves on my bond to let me see and hear and smell better. My chest feels empty. The bond is like a constant presence, thrumming with life and twinging and moving every second of every day. It’s there so you know if your pack is in danger. It was warm and golden and bright, but now it’s… dead. And empty. It just feels like -”

 

“Like your heart was ripped out of your chest, and that nothing can fill that void,” Tony butted in, moving to walk towards the kid.

 

Stiles looked at him with wide eyes and gave a dumb little nod, his eyes intently focused on Tony’s face. Something about the man made his chest ache a little more. But it was… there was a curl of warmth there that he had lost this morning. It was tentative and small, but it was seen on the screen. One bright little tendril, moving to weave together with another one.

 

Stiles immediately rushed forward and wrapped the other man in a hug, who he returned surprisingly easily.

 

Bruce, Phil, and Clint looked in a mix of confusion and curiosity at what had just happened. But Stiles was busy rubbing his cheeks on Tony’s chest, and the older man was chuckling.

 

Their little moment of bonding and physical reassurance was interrupted when Bruce coughed, “Tony? How do you know what breaking pack… bonds feels like?”

 

“When I was in Afghanistan. And the bomb almost killed me? Yeah, that part. The guy who took me and in and hooked me up to a car engine, he told me he had two options. Get me somewhere I could make something like my reactor, or give me the bite. He was ready to turn me, but I wasn’t ready to turn. Like this little dude said,” he nodded, patting Stiles’ back, “I had bonds. He was essentially my Alpha. And it was the most painful thing I’ve ever experienced to have those bonds broken.”

 

Stiles gave a soft sound, like a whine, and pressed his forehead against Tony’s shoulder. He smiled and moved to hug the teen tighter. “How big did you say your pack was, kiddo?”

 

“Two Alphas, five betas, sometimes six, a banshee, two humans. Maybe more, now,” Stiles nodded easily, moving to hold closer to Tony.

 

“God, you poor thing,” the man rumbled, placing a comforting hand on the back of the boy’s neck. He remembered what touches had made him feel, especially ones like that. Safe, warm, home. He wasn’t surprised when Stiles made a little sound of agreement at the touch, and Tony grinned.

 

“So, kiddo. I’m Tony, but you probably know. What can I call you, now that we’re two humans with a little bond forming, huh?”

 

“Stiles. Stiles Stilinski.”


“Stilinski, huh? Sweet name, kiddo. Now, about that other energy source JARVIS is picking up on…”

 

Chapter Text

The day Stiles left Beacon Hills, everything went to shit. Isaac was the first to feel the strong bond with Stiles shift and tug as he got further and further away. When he had eventually told Erica, she had said she felt the same thing. Like he was tugging, and the string was tighter and tighter until it was almost hard to breathe.

 

They had an impromptu meeting without the Alphas, everyone crowding together and trying to figure out what was happening with Stiles. He could have been sick, or dying. There could have been another accident, like the nogitsune or like Gerard.

 

But it was that night, when dinner had been hastily scraped together by Isaac and Malia, that everyone noticed the hole in the pack. Stiles had always been the one that could cook for an army - make enough dinner for everyone and then some for leftovers the next day - and it was always delicious. But that night they had slightly overdone spaghetti and ground beef mixed with pasta sauce; no one knew how to cook in the pack better than Stiles, and Lydia was refusing to help because Derek was being a stupid Alpha.

 

The pack had deemed the pasta inedible, and had decided to go out to the diner for something to grub out on. Isaac declined, claiming he was exhausted from training that day. Derek clamped a hand to the back of his neck before giving a silent, broody nod, and following the pack out to head to dinner.

 

He got the call moments later, and had to talk Stiles down from the nightmare. It had made his chest ache to talk to his Spark again, and to lay in the bed without feeling his solid presence beside him. He knew Stiles had left Beacon Hills going off of the phone call, rather than him coming here. That, and there was always soft Celtic sort of music in the background when Stiles called from his house, and it was absent in this call.

 

Once he heard the soft snores that meant Stiles was asleep, he hung up and let himself wallow in the emptiness it made him feel not to have Stiles next to him, to be able to scent mark the other man. The fact that he didn’t know where Stiles was, only that he was far away, made it worse.

 

But when the pack returned, laughing and smiling, he tried to push the sorrow from his mind and hide it from his scent with happy memories of when Stiles had tried to break the record for most orders of curly fries eaten in one sitting at the little diner, and had succeeded. He out-ate two other werewolves. Stiles doesn’t joke about his curly fries.

 

The rest of the night was alright. The pack, sans Derek, cuddled in the movie room while they watched some show Boyd had chosen. He had been strangely put-out now that Stiles was gone, but… Isaac didn’t read into it too much. Everyone was feeling the loss of their Spark.

 

But the gentle ache from the bond was nothing compared to the sudden flash of white hot pain that he and the rest of the pack, including Allison and Lydia, felt in their chests when the bond was severed from Stiles. It would have been faint in comparison to what Stiles felt, but the sudden snap of the bond made it feel like someone had stabbed each wolf through the heart.

 

The anguished howls of the pack could be heard for miles. Everyone in town was left wondering if there really were just mountain lions out in those woods.

 

--------

 

Derek had elected to go back to Deaton’s after dinner, rather than to the house once more. It was too… too empty. He needed Stiles out of the pack for good, so the tugging in his chest would be gone for good. It would be gone and he wouldn’t have to worry about Stiles being traced back to the Hale-McCall pack, and being put in danger.

 

He pulled up to Deaton’s office in his camaro, stepping out and walking in easily, even though the sign on the door said ‘closed’.

 

“Ah, Derek. How’s the pack? I haven’t heard from Stiles in the past few days, is he alright?” Deaton asked in that soft voice he always spoke in, his tone neutral and unassuming.

 

Even though Deaton hadn’t been informed of the status of Stiles and the pack, Derek couldn’t help the growl at the words. “No. Stiles is out of the pack. The bond is still there, and I need to cut him off from the pack.”

 

Deaton looked surprised. “You would be leaving a valuable resource to your pack, Derek,” he stated carefully, knowing it was better to keep an Alpha calm than to make one angry.

 

Red eyes flashed, and the Alpha had reached his cap. “Stiles is not a resource to the pack. He’s a weak human that gets hurt and refuses the bite, so I can’t do anything to help him. He can’t defend himself, and he needs to be gone.”

 

“He may not be able to defend himself, but he is the pack mother. Your pack needs one of those, or it will not be able to -”

 

“Don’t try and talk me out of this, Deaton. I want Stiles out of the pack. I know there’s a spell you can do on one of the Alphas, and it severs all bonds with the person chosen,” he grit out, obviously trying to keep the fangs from slipping out.

 

Deaton pursed his lips, but nodded after a moment. “You are aware that this will be painful for not only you, but your pack as well. And Stiles will be in immeasurable amounts of pain,” he said, his tone remaining fairly flat, but there was a tone of aggravation behind it as well.

 

“But Stiles will survive,” Derek growled.

 

“Yes. He will live through the separation,” Deaton sighed. “I assume this is an order to me, as your emissary?”

 

“Yes,” was the simple answer the druid recieved, and he had to grumble and move to get the ingredients from a cabinet.

 

The whole process took under half an hour. Derek took off his shirt, and Deaton made up a paste of berries, leaves, spices, and a few liquids that didn’t have labels. It was spread on Derek’s chest in a pattern of elaborate knots and woven lines, and Deaton whispered under his breath as he painted it on the Alpha’s chest. The reddish paste glowed and flashed a brilliant gold before dissolving, seeping into Derek’s skin.

 

The Alpha grit his teeth and growled loudly at the pain from breaking the bond and the pain from the bond from his pack mates. But it was done. He got up as soon as he was able to tolerate the pain and pulled his shirt back on, offering a simple dip of his head to Deaton before walking back to the camaro and driving to the Hale House.

 

It was obvious that the howling and whining wolves inside were in agony, and as an Alpha, it made him angry. His pack should never be in that much pain because of something he did. But he moved to walk inside anyway, and was met with a wall of scent; fear, anger, pain, anguish, and hate.

 

He moved to walk to the movie room slowly, his brow furrowing. But when he walked in, he knew the pack could smell the herbs and berries on his skin, and they knew he had done something.

 

Scott was the first one to growl, eyes flashing red and claws popping. “What did you do?” he asked, his voice deadly calm. When Scott got this mad, no one wanted to see it. “Derek Hale, what have you done to our pack?”

 

Derek was almost… almost scared to answer. The wrath of a True Alpha wasn’t something to fuck with. “I did what needed to be done. I’ve been an Alpha longer than you have, McCall, and I knew it had to be done.”

 

Erica snarled from where she had been curled up against Boyd, moving to flash her amber eyes at him, fangs long and sharp under her pink lips. “You broke the bond! Stiles isn’t pack anymore! Do you know how important he was? He was like…”

 

“The glue,” a deep voice spoke, and everyone was stunned to see it had been Boyd. The normally silent and stoic man was now on his feet, eyes flashing a dangerous shade of gold. “Stiles Stilinski was the glue that kept this pack together. He fed us, made sure we bathed and were caught up on our schoolwork when he was the one worked to the bone researching what was happening to us and what monster we had to fight next. But you saw him as weak, Derek. You care too much about him, and you saw him as a weak human. He was the strongest one out of all of us. You don’t know what he went through with Gerard. He didn’t tell anyone the whole truth. I had to watch every moment of it. Every. Single. Second. Don’t stand there and tell me that you did what was best for the pack, because Stiles was the heart of that. You’re not the only one that cares about him, Derek. The decision to break the bond wasn’t yours to make.”

 

Everyone was stunned. That many words from Boyd at once was unheard of. But he was pissed. An angry and rather vocal Boyd was something no one in the pack was familiar with, so after a moment or two of silence had passed, the large man brushed past the others and walked silently outside, his lips sealed once more.

 

Isaac was the next to speak. “Boyd is right. Stiles… Stiles hasn’t told me everything Gerard did. But he’s told me a lot. He wakes up most nights with nightmares. Not just the normal ones either. His pack dying. Not being able to save them. Not being strong enough. Something like the nogitsune happening again. Something like Gerard happening again. And some nights… it’s just memories. Those are the worst for him, because it’s real. He has those every night, and he puts himself in danger every single day because of how much he cares about us. And you think that cutting him out of the pack for saving us was a good idea?”

 

“No!” Derek yelled, his eyes flashing red. “I couldn’t stand seeing him constantly injured! It was one thing after another with him, and every bruise and cut that didn’t heal within a day or two reminded me that he was human, and fragile, and we could lose him. It would be easy to find him cold and with no way to help him but to bury him in a casket! He deserves to be happy, and safe, and live a normal human life.”

 

Scott looked stunned by the admission. “You care? You care about Stiles, so you kicked him out of the pack? What kind of fucked up logic is that?”

 

Lydia chose just that moment to put in her two cents. “The kind of fucked up logic an Alpha uses when he refuses to recognize the feelings he has for someone when his past two relationships have been horrible disasters,” she offered, leaving Derek and the rest of the wolves in the room speechless. She brought up Kate and Paige, at the same time, and the effects they had on Derek, in less than three seconds. That was almost suicide for anyone except for Lydia Martin.

 

Scott screwed up his face, “Dude, no way. Derek isn’t gay, he couldn’t swing that way for Stiles. And besides, everyone knows Stiles has the hots for Lydia. It’s been that way since third grade, guys.”

 

Lydia and Allison chuckled, “Oh honey. You really didn’t notice? Well. Stiles is far from straight, and our Alpha here has been giving the most pitiful lingering looks for quite some time.”

 

“What? Why wasn’t I told?” Scott demanded, which earned a serious bitch face from Lydia.

 

“Because it was Stiles’ secret to tell, not mine. Just because you’re the Alpha doesn’t mean you get to be belligerent and ruthless and rule over us like we’re your minions. We’re your betas, and you’d be an Omega without us. We’re a pack.”

 

Everyone in the room - Erica, Scott, Allison, Isaac, Derek, Malia and Kira - were all stunned at what Lydia had said. It was true, really, but she had said it with such sharp venom that it sounded like an insult.

 

Isaac smiled and moved to stand a little closer to Lydia, “We’re supposed to trust each other with secrets. Not… not keep them secret until it tears the pack apart. Maybe Stiles was scared to tell you, or didn’t have enough time.”

 

“Didn’t have enough time? I know he researches and stuff, but he didn’t have time?”

 

“What the hell do you mean, researches and stuff? Scott, really? Stiles wakes up before dawn to get on a run with me so he can keep up with the pack. Then he goes to school, struggles all day with the ADHD thing and his wolfy friends sensing things he can’t yet, and yeah there are still bullies. Then lacrosse practice every other day where he’s practically killing himself on the field. Then we move on to the fact that he gets home and you all go for more training, and I have to make sure he can move and shower and put the muscle cream on so he can lay down and sleep. Until he wakes up for dinner and stays up for homework and research for the pack and for Deaton and his training, and then it’s nightmares and he usually sleeps in my bed. And you, with your Alpha duties and Allison - no offense, Argent - but Stiles doesn’t have a lot of time for fun, you know?”

 

Isaac got a good number of looks from that speech. It was almost as if the pack didn’t know how far Stiles had been stretching himself.

 

But Derek was the first one to speak up. “What do you mean, Deaton and his training?”

 

Fuck. “Uh, right. Stiles was training under Deaton. He has been for like, six months now. Since the nogitsune, he’s been going on Saturdays and Sundays when he says he’s helping at the station. Scott doesn’t work weekends, so he’s got time with Deaton. Stiles is, uh, special.”

 

“Special?” Erica asked, glaring at Isaac. Which was new. “What the hell do you mean special, Isaac?”

 

“Well, uh,” Isaac sputtered, looking up with wide eyes when Boyd came in, having picked up on Isaac’s rabbiting heart rate. “He’s, uh, he’s different. Not all the way human. I mean, he is! He’s human! But there’s… something started after the nogitsune left, Deaton said.”

 

Boyd raised an eyebrow and moved to stand closer to Isaac, tilting his head to the side to try and ask him to continue.

 

“He’s a spark,” he managed after a moment, “The nogitsune was a thousand years old. I don’t know what it was, Deaton said something about the thing playing with Stiles’ brain, stirred up the magic he already had. Stiles is really weird and powerful and he could be a mage or something, I think, is what Deaton said to me.”

 

Derek’s eyes widened, and a spike of fear rolled off of him. “He said the word mage? He called Stiles, he specifically said, mage?”

 

“Yeah. I thought it was a weird name, why?”

 

“Mages are… they’re some of the most powerful magical creatures out there. Like, Merlin from the King Arthur Legend, was a low level mage. They can control weather, Isaac. Mages are dangerous if not trained.”

 

Isaac could only laugh. “Oh, it figures. Stiles ends up being some super powerful motherfucker and you want him back in the pack, don’t you? Well, no. You’re… you’re not allowed to.” He gave the best glare he could, but ended up looking away when Derek flashed red eyes.

 

Scott, in the meantime, stepped out and moved pull out his phone. Stiles was a mage, and he hadn’t told him? It hurt, but… Stiles had apparently been busy and not too good with taking care of himself. He had to talk to him.

 

The phone was all loud empty ringing, until he heard the phone pick up. But the voice on the other side was very distinctly not Stiles.

 

--------

 

Stiles had been about to explain the other energy source the scan picked up in his chest when his phone rang, the loud ringtone of ‘Who let the dogs out’ blaring in the silence. Bruce and Phil both frowned, but Tony laughed out loud before sobering when he remembered that the pack had practically torn themselves from Stiles. He let out a little sound and moved, holding out his phone. Stiles held the thing in his hand, pink glittery case looking oddly fitting in the teen’s palm.

 

“Give it here, kiddo. I’ll take care of it,” Tony grinned, taking the phone and putting it to his ear.

 

“Stiles Stilinski’s phone, but this is a very different person speaking. How can I direct your call?” he asked, and Stiles couldn’t help but giggle.

 

There was a brief pause before a soft voice answered on the other end. “I need to talk to Stiles. Is he okay? He’s not usually letting older men answer his phone.”

 

Tony scoffed, “I’d hate to think I’m not special. He’s fine, but not available for your call. I can take a message, of course.” He didn’t want to say anything yet, because there was always a chance that this was one of Stiles’ human friends that was unaware of the pack.

 

“Well, uh, right. I need to talk to him, really. After everything went down with Derek and I… Isaac told the pack some things and we just-”

 

“Oh! So you’re one of the famed Alphas of his pack, right? One of the Alphas that kicked him out of the pack and essentially tore his heart out? This kid had the assistant director of SHIELD dragging his ass up to my lab to check on him. I can only assume that he’s in stupid amounts of pain,” Tony spoke, moving to walk away from Stiles. But at the pitiful sound he got from the teen when he walked away that got a glare from Phil and a curious look from Bruce, Clint having gone off to make sure none of the other avengers came down, he moved back to wrap Stiles in a tight hug, grinning when he saw the golden thread in the hologram grow a little bigger.

 

“What do you mean, your lab? What does SHIELD have to do with Stiles?”

 

“Oh, right. Well, Stiles here came to stay with his dear Uncle to get away from your pack. Now, I don’t know why you would kick someone like him out, but he’s hurting. Your pack had to be a good size from what he’s said, and how touch starved he is. The poor kid is like a remora, he doesn’t want to let go.” When Scott tried to butt in, Tony cut him off with a quick sound.

 

“Bad dog. I’m talking, you don’t have the right to talk right now. You hurt this kid, alright? You hurt him worse than you know. I know you felt it, the way the bond snapped? Imagine that, times however many pack members you have, all at once. He was numb when he walked in, I saw the footage of him in the elevator. So no, you don’t get to talk to him. If he decides he wants to call you once he’s stronger, or better, or once he gets a better head on his shoulders and heals, I’ll make sure he calls. Until then, I’ll talk to you later.”

 

The red ‘end call’ button was easy to press, and the phone was gently handed back to Stiles. “There you go, kid. He was the Alpha, not Derek, the other one?”

 

“Scott? Scott. He called? He’s usually too busy to talk to me,” Stiles mumbled sadly, pulling back from Tony’s embrace with a soft sound, stretching and yawning.

 

Bruce chuckled faintly, “Do you need to rest? You went through significant trauma today, so a nap might do you good. We have rooms you can use if you need it.”

 

He sent a look to Phil, and when he received a nod, Bruce grinned. “There’s a guest room you can use. Tony, show him up?”

 

The man in question grinned brightly, and lead Stiles up to his floor of the Avengers tower, into the side room that he usually saved for Pepper when they were fighting. But tucking Stiles up into the bed up there and making sure the kid was asleep was going to be fine by Pepper, most likely, going by how adorable he looked all curled up under the fluffy cream blankets.

 

---------

 

Scott looked down at the phone with a pinched brow. Who the hell was that? Some older guy talking about SHIELD and the Avengers tower.

 

Stiles was in New York.

 

With the Avengers.

 

And he had just spoken on the phone with Tony Stark.


What the hell was going on?

Chapter Text

Living in New York was weird. Especially when you found yourself waking up in a very warm and very soft bed that smelled like lavender and honey, recalling events of the morning as sleep cleared from your mind.

 

Stiles was in for a surprise when he remembered what the hell had happened. He had told Bruce Banner of all people that werewolves existed, and he still hadn’t had a chance to explain the second energy signature. His spark. The one thing that he knew would keep him safe.

 

So when Stiles got up and stretched, his sock clad feet settling on the cool wood floor, he was stunned by the silence. Remembering what his uncle had done earlier, he looked up at the ceiling and paused before calling out in a rough voice, “JARVIS? Uh, is anyone else here?”

 

“The Avengers have been called out on a mission, Mr. Stilinski. But Loki is still in the tower, currently about to set off the fire alarm programmed into my system with the smoke coming from the food he’s attempting to make.”

 

Stiles snorted, “I got it. Don’t turn the alarm on, I can handle it.” He moved and stretched before getting into the elevator and shifting on his feet before unloading at the kitchen floor, coughing at the stink of burned toast.

He walked into the kitchen, hair ruffled from sleep and amber eyes slowly brightening as he woke up. Because he certainly didn’t expect Loki to look how he did.

 

The thin man was standing in front of a toaster, his dark hair pulled into a bun with a bright pink hair tie, and a pair of loose grey sweats hanging from his hips. He had a deep green shirt on his narrow frame, but Stiles was struck by how human he looked then. He didn’t look like Loki the god, he looked like a poor guy that had been abused by a toaster.

 

Stiles giggled and moved to help, “C’mon. You just gotta press… this, and the toast comes out. You just left it in for a little too long.”

 

Loki paused and looked curiously when the boy walked in front of him and expertly tossed the smoking toast into the trash bin. He gave off a warm aura, golden and shimmering and absolutely crackling with potential power. But there was a darkness, buried deep within. Like a gaping scar trying to close. It was interesting, and reminded Loki of himself.

 

“I have not seen you in the tower before. I believe SHIELD would have thought better than to put another magical being in the same building, let alone the same city, as me,” Loki remarked dryly, his lips quirking when the boy turned with a look of shock on his face.

 

“H-how do you know?” he stuttered, trying to hide his nerves. He couldn’t let it show. He dug deep, trying to reach down to the warmth in his core to give him strength to be a little brave right then.

 

“I can feel it. Your power is great, but untrained and unmastered. And very different from what I have seen before. Then again, I have only seen power like this on Asguard, and you are very obviously human.”

 

Stiles figured it was better to tell Loki what he was, because hello, if Loki could help with his magic it would be like a dream come true. “I’m, uh, I’m a spark. It’s like… there’s energy and electricity and power inside of me, but it’s a weird nature based kind of power. Trees and things are like conductors, for me, and I can recharge like a battery. But from what Deaton - this old druid that was mentoring me before - said, I’m weird and strong and something he called a mage?”

 

The sheer volume of speech that just came from the teen’s mouth was enough to have Loki pausing. “You’re a mage? The last time I encountered one of those, he had angered Thor by figuring out how to control lightning.” The god chuckled faintly at the memory before turning back to the child, “What training have you received?”

 

“Mostly learning like a million languages and stuff. I learned a cool spell when I was looking through books I wasn’t supposed to. It was written in runes and everything, and it took me like two days to do because I needed crystals charged in a full moon, but now I can totally read, write, and speak like any language as long as I have this guy with me,” Stiles grinned, pulling out a small green crystal on a thin chain from under his shirt.

 

Loki was in awe, simply. He had heard of these spells once, but they didn’t call for any crystals. “Did the spell call for a crystal?”

 

“No, no. I kinda added that part in on my own, you know? Cause it said something about gods bringing the book from their home, and whoever mastered the spells would be all powerful. I just knew I couldn’t handle and keep up the magic on my own, so I took crystals charged on a full moon when all the planets were lined up, and I just… cast on those. And voila! I can talk to dogs.”

 

“You have some talent, boy. That book is a story my people tell. The foolish boy that gave our knowledge to a world that was not ready. If you truly can speak any language, I may be able to help you learn more. To help you grow to the size of your spark,” Loki hummed, “and in return…”

 

Stiles was suddenly a little anxious. But when Loki didn’t continue, he took the hint. He had to come up with something in return. “I’ll teach you how to cook.”

 

And that was exactly how the team came home, dirty and bloody and exhausted later that evening, to see Stiles and Loki wearing matching aprons. Stiles was in a pink one with ruffles, and Loki’s was purple. Stiles was speaking in Polish, and Loki was answering fluently with a grin on his face as he watched the teen mix and stir varying ingredients into a large pot.

 

Steve and Tony walked in just in time to see Stiles pour vinegar into a large container of fresh duck’s blood and dip his pinky into the container to taste before pouring it into the large pot on the stove.

 

But Stiles hadn’t seen them yet, and continued blabbering in Polish to Loki with a bright grin, picking up the plucked and pale duck and moving the wings, making little sounds. Loki said something to him, and Stiles grinned before setting the duck very gently on the cutting board, listening to what Loki was saying before moving to focus on the duck.

 

A moment later, a little bolt of lightning hit the bald fowl’s corpse, and he grinned as it jumped up and did a little jig, climbing into the large pot and relaxing like it would in a jacuzzi. It dropped in and stopped when Stiles caught sight of Steve and Tony standing in the doorway in awe. He looked a little guilty, but otherwise alright, and moved to wash his hands, spewing a little bit of Polish before he realized it was /actually/ Polish. It had been his first language, after all, so he had to focus to swap back to English.

 

“Loki said you were on a mission in Russia, so I assumed you would be a little while. And Loki was burning toast, so I offered to help him learn how to cook. So obviously, Czarnina was the best option. You either love it or you hate it,” Stiles explained quickly, his hands still moving to throw things here and there into the pot, stirring now and then with a long wooden spoon.

Tony raised an eyebrow. “I think we’re more concerned about you making the bird do a little dance, Stiles,” he nodded, and Stiles let out a little sound.

 

“Right. Uh, I’ll explain over dinner, okay? Loki knows cause he’s super cool and magic and stuff, but he’d probably do a shit - whoops. Bad job of explaining,” the teen nodded, his attention moving to Steve standing in the doorway.

 

The Captain had a little smile on his lips, and he rose an eyebrow. “You’re wearing a pink apron.”

 

“Yeah, bro. I’m not color blind. I like the color pink. I can be a bubblegum bitch like this, and hello, who doesn’t want to be one of those?” Stiles grinned, doing a little twirl. “I can probably get one in your size, if you’re into pink. Obviously it comes in other colors, Loki is modeling the pastel purple model. Color change spells are super easy and really helpful with clothes.”

 

Steve shook his head and laughed, “I think I’ll settle for my t-shirts, thank you though. I’ll let you know if I need an apron, though. Promise. For now, I’m going to go and get out of this suit.” He turned and walked up to his room, letting out a little sigh as he got to the room. Tony had said something about Phil’s nephew, but he hadn’t been expecting all of… that.

 

Tony, however, walked to Stiles with a little hum and held out his arms. Stiles immediately walked into the embrace, despite the hands covered in crumbs and bits of fruits and vegetables for the soup. He hummed and pulled back, “I think I’m starting to rebuild. I can feel three little bonds down in there. You, dad, and Loki. I have a feeling I’m gonna add more tonight, though.”

 

Tony looked pleased and nodded, stepping back and brushing a hand over his shirt. He had taken off the armor already, obviously, but he was still tired from the fighting. “Everyone’s a little grumpy. A few people got injured out there, so they’re nursing wounds.”

 

“Oh! I’ve always been good with healing spells. I brought a few books with me, so I can call uncle Phil and have him bring those when he comes for dinner. I’m making enough Czarnina for everyone, so we’re all gonna hang out and have duck blood soup. Yay for pack time.” Those words made him freeze, though, and he let out a little sound. Pack time had been every Saturday night when he made some big meaty meal, and there was a puppy pile with cheesy action movies.

 

Tony noticed the sudden drop in mood and smiled softly, “Hey, kiddo, don’t worry. We’re gonna eat your… duck blood soup, and we’ll play video games in the living room until your Uncle drags you home tonight, alright? Don’t think about them tonight, we’ve got new bonds to form with everyone. It’s easier because you’re a spark. You form bonds easily - I knew someone like you once upon a time.”

 

Stiles grinned and moved to hug the older man, letting out a little sound. He smiled at Loki, moving to hug him too. “Just like old times. I’m the only one in the pack that can cook. I mean, other people can cook kinda. But last time I was in Beacon Hills and Scott tried to make me soup when I was sick, he burned it. He burned the soup.”

 

Loki chuckled, “You’ve said it’s one of the hardest things to get wrong. That’s why you’re teaching me your favorite soup recipe,” he nodded, and couldn’t help the smile that crawled onto his features when Stiles nodded and hugged him a little tighter.

 

Clint chose that moment to walk in, clad in dark sweats and a loose shirt. “Woah, when did frosty get friendly with Phil’s nephew?”

 

Stiles felt a pitiful growl curl in his chest, and he hid his face in Loki’s shoulder. He just growled at his uncle’s boyfriend, oh god. Loki chuckled faintly and ran a hand up and down Stiles’ back, already beginning to feel the curls and urges of the pack bond to touch and be close to the other members of the pack.

 

Loki turned his eyes to Clint and rose a rather unimpressed eyebrow, “I don’t believe you’ve been in a pack with a supernatural creature before, Barton. He was in a pack with wolves, he told you this morning. Wolves are highly tactile creatures from what he’s told me while we were cooking, so naturally I can assume that it’s rubbed off on him, and will rub off on Tony and I soon, as well as whoever he forms a pack bond with from here on out.”

 

Clint looked a little surprised, and he nodded gently. “Right, yeah. Just didn’t want you getting on Phil’s bad side when Thor just got you back. Thunder boy is a little touchy with you still, so I didn’t want him going crazy and getting upset with Phil when I’ve got plans for him.”

 

Tony grinned, “Plans? Ooh, bird boy, what’s going on?”

 

Stiles smiled brightly, “Are you gonna propose to my uncle? Do I have to give you the speech? I’m just gonna start calling you uncle Clint now, cause I know it. You’re totally planning on proposing to my uncle, oh my god.”

 

Clint rolled his eyes, but the faint blush on his cheeks spoke volumes. Stiles smiled brightly and moved, “You gotta let me see the ring, oh my god. I mean, if you have one. If not, I have dziadka’s ring. Dad has it in the lock box back home. And I have babcia’s rings, but they’re probably a little small for both of your fingers…”

 

“Wait, is Phil your mother’s brother, or your father’s?” Tony asked, his brow furrowing.

 

Stiles gave a little shaky sigh and moved, “Well, uh, he was my mom’s brother. He was older, though, by a long shot. So he moved out of the house before Mom had graduated high school. I grew up with him in New York, so I saw him on holidays and called him and everything. But, uh, yeah. He’s a super cool Uncle, and stuff he does reminds me of mom still. Kinda sucks? But it’s good, too. Dad says I’m a lot like mom, so I think that’s cool too.”

Loki nodded gently, understanding that it was a tender topic, but Clint hadn’t formed a pack bond with Stiles yet, so he couldn’t really feel the sadness curling in Stiles.

 

“Was? What happened?” the archer asked, and Stiles looked up with wide eyes before letting out a little breath.

 

“She had, uh, frontotemporal dementia. So she forgot everything. She was, like, thirty five when she started going downhill. She was getting sick and starting to forget things like birthdays and ingredients. But she forgot who I was, the day she died. Four days after my birthday, she didn’t know who I was anymore. A month before Thanksgiving, I was the only one in the room with her when she died.”

 

A soft silence fell across the four men in the kitchen, until a loud sound came from the room that signaled that Thor was arriving. Stiles quickly wiped at the damp skin under his eyes, and Loki smiled softly and hugged Stiles tightly. “I have not read many books on this world, but I recall one quote from a rather brilliant novelist. J.R.R Tolkien wrote “I will not say do not weep, for not all tears are an evil.” I think there is truth behind his words, Genim. Stiles. I cry over memories of my mother occasionally. It is not a shameful thing.”

 

Stiles smiled at the words and nodded gently, moving to step back and collect himself a bit. “Go say hi to your brother. I have to finish the soup and get some bread together to have with it. I have a feeling I’m feeding a lot of people tonight.”

 

He smiled as he watched Loki and Tony move to go and greet the new arrival, and he fished his phone from his pocket to talk to Phil. He asked about coming over, and what time he’d have to be home. And ugh, apparently he had school tomorrow. Tonight would be interesting.

 

It went quickly, though. Everyone was distracted with hearing the latest gossip from Asguard, so Stiles got to relax in the kitchen. And when he knew the soup had about half an hour left on it, he whipped up batter for brownies. He tripled the recipe before baking them, so there would be enough, and smiled softly. He finally had a pack to cook for again.

 

Stiles finished the dinner and transferred the soup to a large bowl and set the table, setting out plates at every seat on the large table. He counted them out and placed napkins all along on each plate and bowl, singing under his breath in Polish. It was a soft song his mother taught him when he was younger, and he smiled sadly when he remembered. But it turned into a happy smile when he realized that he was singing it just how his mother had, when he was younger and she was setting up the dinner table.

 

He rang the dinner bell ten minutes later, moving to call into the den. “Dinner’s on, everyone! Homemade Polish food, made by moi! Let’s go before it’s all gone!”

 

Stiles grinned when he heard shuffling, and moved to take off his apron and hang it on a small hook on the wall. He hummed and moved to look at the people filing in. He was struck by the normalcy of it all.

 

The way Clint made loud footsteps when he trudged to the table. How Nat smiled when she recognized the food that was on the table. The little crinkle in Thor’s brow when he saw the new person standing proudly by the table. Everyone was just… themselves. They weren’t the heroes that saved New York and the rest of the world from crazy shit - they were just people then. Aside from the little things that made them different, like Thor’s cape and Bucky’s metal arm and Tony’s reactor, they were just like everyone else. One big happy family that Stiles was a part of.

 

The little ding of the elevator signaled that his uncle was here, and he grinned before waving him to sit next to Clint, taking the empty seat between Tony and Loki.

 

Steve tilted his head like a puppy and looked at Stiles, “I don’t, uh, mean to be rude. But what is it, exactly?”

 

Stiles grinned, “Oh! It’s like, my favorite food in the history of forever. Czarnina. It’s this Polish thing my dad hates but I love. Basically, it’s a duck that gets cooked with duck blood and a whole lot of yummy veggies and fruits and things. You either love it or you hate it. And there’s homemade brownies for dessert, so be good boys and girls and eat at least one bowl. There’s bread to help it go down easier if you don’t like it.”

 

He grinned brightly as people dug in, dishing out soup and letting it cool down before digging in. And the joy only grew a little more when only Thor seemed not to like the soup, but he ate like a champ for the brownies later on. Stiles felt at peace, and at home.

 

He could feel the pack bonds slowly forming, and it filled his chest with something new and bright and happy. Stiles moved and shifted in his seat, blinking with a bright grin when he saw some people go back for seconds.

 

Tonight ended up being a good night after all.

 

Dinner and conversations lasted a while, and Stiles was happy to sit back and listen for once. The bouncing of conversation and the ease that came with the magic that was no longer bottled up under his skin certainly helped him stay still.

 

He had zoned out a bit, and came to when he heard a loud snapping and recognized someone was clapping their hands in front of his face. He scrambled and had his hand on a knife in a second before pausing to breathe, letting his hand slip into his lap with a little sideways grin.

 

He, like the people that had noticed the immediate reaction to grab and defend, ignored it. "What was that?"

 

Thor chuckled deeply, "I believe the Captain asked why you are living with your Uncle."

 

Stiles shifted in his seat and nodded, Tony giving him a soft glance.

 

"I, uh, it's gonna sound crazy. But I was part of a pack. Of werewolves. There were lots of them, well, there are lots of them. But, uh, one of the Alpha's of the pack decided that the weakest link was me and that I couldn't protect myself. Like sure, I'm not a banshee or a kitsune or a wolf or a hunter. But I'm me, you know? And it hurt to think that they would kick me out cause I get hurt, because I'm human. The pack bonds broke this monk g, and it kinda felt like my chest was completely hollow. And... Yeah. I've felt that before, but way different situation. Anyway, I figured a cross country trip to stay with my awesome Uncle Phil would help me clear my head.

 

"And it looks like it is. Because I'm not... All the way human. Loki knows. I'm, uh, what they call a Mage. That's the other energy reading you were getting, Bruce. Was my spark. It's the little piece of magic that I have. And Loki said that it wasn't all that little, so he's helping me wake it up and everything. It was suppressed and woken up at the same time when, uh... That's a story for another night. But yeah. So pack bonds are forming and stuff because I'm providing food for you so I hope you're okay being bonded to me in a family pack sort of way, because it's sorta happening whether you like it or not."

 

Tony chuckled at the blank look he received from Steve, but everyone else seemed fairly at ease with the situation. Thor was the one that broke the silence.

 

"My brother is helping you with your magic. He has not offered to do such with any other until now. What is it that changed his mind?"

 

"Uh, well, Loki might explain it better?" Stiles offered, turning to the black haired man in question.

 

"Stiles mastered allspeak by modifying it to a crystal that he wears around his neck. So long as he wears the necklace, he can speak any language. Even ones he has not heard before. He is powerful, and when he grows into himself I would fear the power he has. I can see into the heart of his spark, as he calls it, and it is similar to the energy found in the center of a black hole."

 

"A singularity," Bruce supplied, and Tony grinned.

 

"Oh, that's totally going to be your superhero name if you join the t-"

 

"No," Phil said sternly, earning pouty eyes from Tony and Stiles.

 

"No. He's seventeen, he doesn't need to be -"

 

"Need to be what?" Stiles asked, furrowing his brow slightly, "exposed to this? I've been through a lot, uncle Phil. Like, more than the normal car accident and traumatizing homecoming. Like, the level of shit you guys deal with. And all I've had to defend against it is a baseball bat."

 

That practically silenced everyone at the table. Tony whistled lowly, looking up when Stiles stood and started clearing plates. Tony had been about to say something when Stiles huffed angrily and a soft purple light surrounded the dishes, and they all very gently floated to the kitchen.

 

Stiles followed, murmuring his little song under his breath. Everyone was left a little speechless by the teen, and there were looks exchanged around the table.

 

When he came back a few minutes later bearing a large tray of brownies dusted with powdered sugar, there were a few groans to go around. "Mom's recipe. Everyone should get two first round."

 

And they did. Everyone took two, and they were still shocked at the brownie they bit into. It was warm in the center and soft, but had an edge to it thanks to the cream cheese Stiles had put in the batter. All in all, best brownies ever.

 

Well, minus the ones at the end of year party last year that Jackson had brought for the pack. Wolvesbane and weed spiked brownies. Those were fucking amazing.

 

-----------

 

The rest of the evening went pretty smooth. Everyone migrated to the living room where they cuddled in a makeshift puppy pile, Stiles brought out more brownies, and stories were exchanged.

 

They were a pack. And not of superheroes, but a pack of people that needed each other.

 

Phil called it a night at Eleven. He pulled Stiles home and showed off the school supplies he had ordered, letting the teen get those packed and ready before sending him off to bed.

 

Stiles decided that tonight would be an opportune moment to post a selfie to let people know he wasn't dying.

 

It was a simple one, just him laying in bed all buried in the white blanket, with the soft golden light of the lamp illuminating his face. He looked... Hot. Stiles grinned as he posted it, the caption reading 'looking good in my home away from home in New York City baby! School starts tomorrow, and here comes hurricane Stiles.'

 

--------

 

As it turns out, waking up at six in the morning was harder than Stiles wanted to admit. Back home there was a huge time difference, so it was still around two in the morning in California. Stiles was tired, but he knew it was his first day of school in New York today.

 

He grinned and hopped out of the bed, moving to grab his phone and start his music. Rixton’s Make Out came on, and Stiles was grinning brightly as he moved to bop along and get dressed. He was having trouble with his shirt, though. Does he go with the white shirt speckled with little black squiggles that buttoned high on his neck, or the classic baseball color shirt in a dark maroon and charcoal grey? Stiles pulled on the baseball shirt and adjusted the red sleeves before tugging on khaki skinny jeans and his red converse, skidding to a halt in front of the kitchen where his uncle was calmly making pancakes.

 

“Uncle Phil,” he panted, “does this shirt make me look gay enough?”

 

Phil laughed and rolled his eyes, “If you fix your hair, I think you’ll be all set, Stiles. The skinny pants help. So, go and do your hair, and I’ll have breakfast for you.”

 

Stiles nodded and grinned, moving to hug Phil tightly before running up to his room once more, standing in the bathroom. He was trying to fix his hair, and settled for combing through in a nice little poof in the front, humming as he walked back downstairs. He was hot today, and he knew it. Stiles grinned and moved to sit down at the table, stretching back slightly. His shirt rode up slightly and it revealed the beginnings of a thick scar on his right hip, just above the waistband to his Calvin Klein boxers (because hello, Stiles was hot stuff and splurged on underwear) .

 

Phil caught sight of the scar and raised an eyebrow, setting down a plate of pancakes doused in syrup. Every kid had his scars, but that one looked like a little more than a bike accident. He didn’t press and ask about it - he had his fair share of secrets.

 

Stiles grinned and moved to dig into the pancakes, finishing them fairly quickly. He rubbed his stomach and grinned at his Uncle’s baffled look. “What? I spent most of my time with werewolves. Eat or someone eats your food for you.”

 

Phil nodded and raise an eyebrow, “Alright, kid. Let’s go. Nat is driving you to school this morning. I have a meeting with my team, and they owe me a favor. She’s waiting outside. And it’s best not to keep -”

 

“Not to keep pretty ladies that can kill you with their pinkie finger waiting, I know,” Stiles grinned, slinging the bright pink backpack over his shoulder. He walked out of the apartment with a grin and a wave over his shoulder, sauntering down to the sleek black car on the curb. He smiled when he saw Nat in the driver’s side, and his grin brightened when he saw Tony next to her. He quickly climbed into the back, letting out a little sound.

 

“Good Morning, Stiles,” Nat smiled, looking in the mirror at the kid in the back seat. He smiled brightly in response and moved to stretch.

 

“Hey, do you think I could put on a song? I’m feeling this one this morning and I feel like Tony would love it. Also, good morning Nat,” he grinned, moving to take his phone out of his pocket.

 

Tony rose his eyebrows and fished out the chord to hand to Stiles so he could connect his phone to the speakers, and after a moment of silence, the song came on.

 

Fashionista by Jimmy James. Oh dear lord.

 

And of course, of fucking course, Stiles knew every single word. He sang them in his smooth voice, grinning and dancing in the back of the car. Tony was far, far quieter in his rendition of the song, murmuring the words under his breath. Nat had gotten her phone out as soon as Stiles plugged in his phone, and was recording the whole thing for embarrassment purposes later on.

 

They reached the school as soon as the song was over, and Stiles smiled brightly and pecked a kiss to Tony’s cheek and got one on Nat’s hand before dashing out of the car and to the school.

 

The obligatory first stop was the main office, where he got a map and a schedule. Stiles made his way to his first period class, art, where he settled in. Of course the teacher had trouble pronouncing his name, but it was normal.

 

That was his day, really. Settling in, catching up on notes, and exchanging numbers and instagram usernames with other people at the school. He signed up for baseball, because he was good enough with a bat when he had to hit harpies and fae, so why not?

 

Stiles’ most interesting class by far was his AP psychology class, where they started looking in on mental illnesses. Stiles offered plenty of answers for the ones he had, and he was interested in seeing hands around the room pop up and answer questions as well.

 

He was called forward after class to talk to the teacher on how he knew so much about the illnesses, and he just shrugged and explained that he had a lot going on. She gave him a crappy little fold-out brochure for the school’s safe zone, to which he happily agreed to go to the meeting next week.

 

And before he knew it, the more classes went by and the bell was ringing and he was walking out towards the front of the school so he could call his uncle to have him pick him up, when a pair of hands grabbed his shoulders and pulled him into a janitor’s closet. Stiles tried to say something, but a hand with perfectly manicured purple nails clasped over his mouth.

 

His amber eyes widened as he turned them to go and look at whoever had grabbed him. And god, she was gorgeous. The girl was in his art class in the mornings, and she was just… flawless. Beautiful blue/green/grey eyes that could almost put Derek’s to shame, full lips, smooth skin speckled with freckles, and a beautiful mop of curly blonde hair on her head. He caught sight of something white down on her leg, under her skirt, and when she pushed him back, he knew it was a prosthetic leg.

 

Okay, goddess with a plastic leg. Something was funny here, but Stiles had no idea. And the lights were out before he could think of something to ask her, but in the blink of an eye they were on again, and a pair of bright red eyes was looking down at him, and a soft and silky voice reached his ears.

 

“I’ve been looking for you for a few days now. So glad I finally found you.”

 

 

Chapter Text

 

Stiles didn’t want to die. It was his third fucking day in New York, and he really didn’t want to die. He moved and let out a little sound, trying to bare his neck to show the Alpha that he wasn’t a threat.

 

But to his surprise, he felt someone move and a loud laugh erupt from the girl in front of him. “Oh my god. You look like you were about to shit your pants, I’m dead,” she laughed, gasping and hanging her head, running a hand through her wild mess of curls.

 

Stiles looked up with wide eyes and rose a brow, “Wait, you’re not gonna kill me? Rip my throat out with your teeth?”

 

The girl looked confused for a second, and shook her head. “Oh. You’re in a pack already, aren’t you? That’s how you know about wolves and stuff. Oh god, please don’t tell your Alpha -”

 

“Hey. Hey. I was in a pack. They cut ties with me because they thought I was a human and didn’t want me getting hurt. There’s a new one forming, kinda, but everyone else is human,” he cut her off, smiling softly at her. “You wanna turn on the lights so we can make proper introductions?”

 

The lights flicked on, and it was easier to see. The tall girl standing in front of him, wearing a tight white top and a floral print skirt that fell just below her knees, the white leg standing in contrast with the caramel colored one on the other side. He smiled, “Beauty and a Beast, huh?”

 

The girl laughed, “Oh my god. My name is Belle, that makes that line so much better. I like you.” She smirked, “You said you weren’t human. What are you? You don’t smell like a wolf.”

 

“Nah, I got offered the bite awhile back, but I didn’t want to take it from creeperwolf. I’m a mage,” Stiles nodded, “My name is horribly difficult to pronounce for people that don’t speak Polish, so just call me Stiles.”

 

Belle grinned, “Stiles. Nice name. I haven’t really met a mage before, but it sounds fun. I mean, I haven’t met much of anyone before.”

 

Stiles raised an eyebrow, “You’re an Alpha, Belle. How are you not in the know with all of this?”

 

“In case you didn’t notice, I’ve got a prosthetic leg. Good for a few things. Stand-in baseball bat, and turning wolves away because you don’t have all the limbs you’re supposed to in order to be an Alpha.”

 

Stiles scoffed, “Hush it. I’ve got some mad ADHD, that doesn’t stop me from being a powerful mage. We’re just… differently abled. That’s all. Plus, you seem way cooler than my last Alpha. Sourwolf was a little on the grumpy side all the time, and you seem a little more bubbly than he is.”

 

Belle grinned, “Well, Stiles whose name is way too Polish for me to pronounce, I’m Belle. The girl with hippie parents that named her after a horribly deadly flower and I just took the first part. Belladonna Marvell. Nice to meet you.” She stuck out her hand, smiling brightly.

 

Stiles knew shaking her hand would mean starting a pack with her. But she was cool… he didn’t see a reason why she couldn’t be in the pack with Tony and Loki and everyone else at the tower. He took her hand firmly and grinned, “Genim Stilinski. My mom was Polish, and my dad gave her whatever she wanted. “

 

Belle giggled brightly and nodded, moving to pull him into a tight hug. Stiles immediately melted into the familiar warmth of a wolf’s embrace, letting his eyes close gently. He nuzzled at the base of her throat gently, and Belle laughed softly and held her tightly.

 

The hug was… more than a hug. It was a sealing of the bond. The close contact between the mage and the Alpha solidified a strong bond, one of the nice thick bonding ties that linked the two together in something that would only get stronger and more durable the longer it was there.

 

During the bonding of an Alpha and any other creature aside from a human, a linking of souls occurred. He could feel how warm and pure her soul was, and how it felt like he had known her all his life. And she could feel how broken and hurt Stiles was, but deep inside there was something so bright she had to shy away from it. He would be full of life, and the heart of any pack. They were an Alpha and a Beta now, joined together by a strong pack tie that would stay in place for a long while yet.

 

After a good five minutes of just holding each other, Belle broke the silence. “You wanna come to my place? My parents are in the Congo. My mom is a new age medicine lady, so she went down to try and help some people out there, so we have the place to ourselves.”

 

Stiles grinned and pulled back, “I think it sounds awesome. Puppy pile?”

 

Belle laughed, “Puppy pile. I got you. We can do homework, I’ll catch you up on the school gossip and who is who. Where are you from?”

 

“Beacon Hills, California.”

 

“Oh my god,” she gasped, looking at Stiles with wide eyes. “You’re serious? Oh my god. That’s where the Hale-McCall pack is from. Oh my god, you were in that pack?”

 

Stiles sighed, “Yeah, that was me. I kinda brought everyone together, you know? Scott got the bite when we were sixteen, almost two years ago and stuff. And we found sourwolf, and he was turning kids at our school. And now, what do you know? Biggest double Alpha pack on the west coast, and they got rid of one of the most powerful mages ever. They’re a bunch of idiots.”

 

Belle grinned and took his hand, tugging him out of the closet and down the hall. “I don’t live that far away, so we can walk. And we can hang out, and puppy pile, and I’ll catch you up on notes and gossip. And while we walk, you can tell me what you need me to hear.”

 

“What I need you to hear? Don’t you mean, uh, what you want to hear?” Stiles asked uncertainly, tilting his head to the side.

 

Belle shrugged, “Nah. Everyone has their secrets, and I’m not pushing you to tell me everything just yet. I just… I wanna be able to know so I can help you, you know? I’m your Alpha and all.”

 

Stiles nodded gently and moved to take her hand as they stepped out of the school, letting out a heavy breath. “So. We were sixteen and out looking for a body in the woods, right? Scott gets hit with this animal. It was like, he healed up quick. And then he started getting stronger and his asthma went away and yeah, we were in for it. Then we ended up getting into the pack with Derek and Peter and Isaac and Erica and Boyd.”

 

He took a breath, moving to lean a little closer to the Alpha. She moved her hand to the back of his neck to try and comfort him, and he let his eyes droop a little at the feeling. He moved and shifted to take a breath before continuing.

 

“Then we started getting into it with the Argents. Famous werewolf hunters. Victoria got bit, so she put a bullet in her head. Chris and Allison are part of the pack now, because they took a new vow. But… Gerard. Their, uh, Chris’ dad. He caught Boyd, who is a mountain of a man, and Erica. And me. He thought I was a wolf too. But when he found out I was human… I was the only one he tortured. They weren’t allowed to turn me or take my pain, so I suffered for a good month before Derek found us.”

 

Belle gave a soft whimper, and she pressed a kiss at his temple. Stiles let out a shaky breath, “I still get nightmares. But aside from the normal attacks from vampires, werejaguars, harpies, fairies, kitsunes, and the like - there was this dumb thing with a spirit where I possessed. Nogitsune. I, uh, I wasn’t myself. I could only see through my eyes, but the nogitsune spoke to me and used my body. Cut me up, so I watched myself maim my body? Yay. And I almost killed one of my best friends. So I really don’t…. they have a reason to be hating on me and stuff.”

 

Stiles let out a soft sound and quickly wiped at his eyes, sniffng gently before straightening his shoulder. “But I have a friend that’s helping me get a handle on my magic, so I’m not really at as much risk as I was then.”

 

Belle nodded gently and moved, running a hand up and down his back. “Oh, it’s alright Stiles. I just have one question for you, yeah?”

“Yeah, of course. Ask and you shall be rewarded with knowledge,” he grinned, a glitter of amusement in his eyes.

 

“Do you know how I can get a tattoo? I tried, but the ink didn’t take and it healed in like three hours.”

 

“Oh, you know I do. I hooked my old pack up with some cool as hell ink. I can make them move!”

 

--------

 

“Fuck!” Belle yelped, looking down at the dark mark now resting squarely in the center of the strip of underboob skin. It was a large paw print, the mark dark and shimmering.

 

Stiles grinned, “Now, I told you it would hurt, big bad Alpha. But the cool part is that I charmed it to be sparkly and stuff, and it gets warm when the pack is in danger. I’ll have to get you to meet the rest of them.” He yawned, feeling the exhaustion of a new spell starting to hit. He huffed loudly and touched the skin where the new mark laid on her body, and grinned.

 

Belle rolled her eyes and swatted his hand away, moving to stand up. Yes, she was topless. But Stiles was pack, and she was asexual. So it’s not like anything would happen. She moved to pull on a bright white crop top that stopped just under her breasts, letting the tattoo be seen, as well as the words blazed on the front in purple letters.

 

Hunt you down eat you alive, just like animals, animals, animals.

 

Stiles grinned and turned his head while she changed into a pair of barely-there booty shorts that showed off her nice figure. He laid back on the bed, now clad in the basketball shorts he had brought for gym and his shirt. His scars were a little intimate.

 

But when he saw that Belle was hesitating to pull off her leg, he smiled. “We’ve all got scars. Yours are probably looking way cooler than mine, though.” Stiles shifted and after a moment, he tugged his shirt over his head. The pale skin was crossed with pale silvery lines, some puckered and some still raised and large and pink. He sighed and laid against the pillows, smiling when he saw her slowly slip off the prosthetic and set it to the side.

 

“Nap time,” he grinned, moving to press himself against her side, and Belle snuggled right against him too. He set his phone on the pillow next to him and let his eyes close, and it was obvious how he had forgotten what it was like to sleep with someone in his pack. It was pretty fucking awesome.

 

-----------

 

Now, Stiles was supposed to call when he was ready to be picked up from school. But it was eight o’clock and dark outside, and none of the team had gotten a call or a text from Stiles yet.

 

Naturally, it had Tony worrying and having JARVIS check every security camera in the city, and Phil was silently pacing behind the other genius.

 

In the end, Tony gave up and had JARVIS dial a FaceTime with Stiles’ phone. He almost hadn’t been expecting an answer. But what he really, really didn’t expect was who answered the call.

 

It was a girl, with a large mop of curled hair and bright eyes, caramel skin looking almost golden in the low light of the room. She sat up, a pale arm slung to the side of the camera frame as she sat up.

 

Tony almost blushed when he realized that she was hardly covered, and a tattoo was square between the underboob that was visible under the crop top she was in. Her voice was obviously sleep logged when she spoke.

 

“What is it? We were sleeping, you know. Well, Stiles is still sleeping. I’m not,” she huffed, raising a perfectly groomed eyebrow at the men on the screen.

 

Tony sputtered for a moment, “Why is, uh, why is Stiles at your house? He didn’t call, or text, to tell us he wasn’t dead.”

 

“You think it’d be easy to kill a mage like him? I dunno if you’ve seen his scars, or heard his story, but he’s been through one hell of a lot. Hell, even you in your suit would have a hard time taking my beta out.” Her eyes widened when she realized what she had said, and she let out a little sound.

 

“Your Beta? Last time I checked, I didn’t know Stiles had an Alpha,” Tony snarked, and was taken back when her eyes flashed a dangerous red.

 

“You can bite me. But I feel like me biting you isn’t an option, and I like to bite back. Stiles needed a wolf - he’s been around them for too long not to be in the company of one. I knew there was a spark in my neck of the woods, and I’m just glad I found him before the main pack found him.”

 

Tony rose an eyebrow, but Belle’s look stopped him from saying anything. “He’s a good kid, you know. He’s been through a lot. We’re the same age, but he trusts so qiuckly… it’s amazing, really.”

 

Phil nodded, “Yeah. My nephew is a good kid. For him to trust you, you’ve got to have some kind of good in you. So… have him home by ten. Make sure he gets here safe and warm. You’re his Alpha, and from what I understand, you’re supposed to keep him safe.”

 

Belle nodded with a little grin, “Aye aye captain. I’ll have him at the tower by ten.”

 

Phil rolled his eyes, watching as Tony hung up the call. He frowned at the billionaire before he had a chance to speak. “You’re not asking her if she’s eighteen, and you’re not allowed to be more than friends with that girl. If anything, I expect Stiles to get with her. But he won’t. He asked me if he looked gay enough this morning.”

 

Tony laughed hard enough that tears came to his eyes that he had to wipe away. “Oh god, that kid. He’s hilarious. One of these days, he’ll be in for it. The sass is gonna get him in trouble.”

 

“Don’t I know it,” Phil sighed, scrubbing a hand over his face.

 

----------

 

Stiles made it back to the tower in one piece. One big, soggy, tired piece. As soon as he stepped foot into the main floor, his wet shirt was peeled over his head. In the haze of still being half asleep, he didn’t really connect the fact that most of his scars were now on display. Instead, Stiles snuck into the kitchen to try and make himself a cup of tea.

 

He needed to be warm, and it was what his mom had done when she was starting to slip here and there. She made herself tea to calm down and keep warm.

 

The teen was so focused on the task of measuring sugar to put into the cup that he didn’t hear Tony’s steps coming into the kitchen, but he certainly heard the mug fall to the floor and shatter. He quickly turned around, which was a mistake, because it showed a few of the worse injuries.

 

God, Stiles was covered in scars. Tony of all people would know what being covered in scars looked like, but Stiles was… absolutely littered with them.

 

Horizontal lines on his back where Gerard had had a bit too much fun with different kinds of whips and lashes.

 

Clusters of puckered marks where Gerard’s hunters played with cigarettes against his skin.

 

Long deep gouges in his stomach and chest where the nogitsune made him cut his own skin from the muscle.

 

Puckered and mottled burns up one of his arms, from elbow to shoulder, from an accident with an over-friendly dragon.

 

The long raised lines from hip to collarbone from the talons of the harpies.

 

And smaller ones that looked to be healed over at this point that the other ones overlapped and covered.

 

Tony let out a soft sound and felt his hand connect with the counter. “Who did that to you, Stiles?”

 

“Which ones? I mean, a lot of these are from a lot of different things,” Stiles started, but Tony cut him off.

 

“You know damn well which ones, kid. No one just gets whip marks on their back,” Tony huffed, “Now, who is he and where is he, so I can kill him?”

 

“Oh, that part’s done. I got to bash his head in with a baseball bat until he looked like jello and we kinda cut him up into little pieces and buried him over the preserve back in Beacon Hills, so he won’t be coming back to life any time soon. Happened once with a different guy, we weren’t risking it with Gerard,” Stiles shrugged, the long pale scar just next to his spine now blatant and visible when he moved his skin.

 

Tony shook his head and let out a whistle. “You weren’t kidding when you told everyone you’d been through some shit, were you?”

 

“Haha, no. Most of these are either battle scars, like this one from the dragon or the claw marks from the harpies. But the ones on my back and shoulders and hips and thighs are from Gerard. He liked seeing me squirm. And the ones on my front? Those are mostly when I was possessed by this dark fox spirit thing called a nogitsune. It’s like a thousand years old, and it kept me captive in my own body for a while. I carved myself up and killed a few people. Woo, fun and games.”

 

Tony’s eyes widened, and he nodded minutely. Stiles blew on his mug of tea, like they had been talking about the weather. But the young mage flicked his wrist and the cup Tony had dropped was cleaned up, and turned to walk up to a guest room. He hummed softly as he went, leaving Tony staring after the teen as he walked away, leaving little wet footprints as he walked.

 

This kid was a mystery, and he had been through some ridiculous stuff that was really hard to believe. And he knew the kid was just starting to heal after going through all of that shit, so he didn’t want to tip the scales by telling Phil about Stiles’ past. So he just made sure Jarvis took in-depth scans of each scar, and let out a little sigh before going to make a little bit of coffee and head back down to his lap for the night.

 

Stiles curled up in bed, letting out a little sigh. He was curled in blankets, but it felt cold. Incomplete. He moved to stand and stretch, looking around before creeping out of his room. He figured out what room was Loki’s and stepped inside, easily worming his way into bed with the other man. He knew his scars were still on display, but he snuggled up to the warm figure, and gave a happy sigh when Loki draped a long arm over his waist.

 

Stiles fell into a shallow, dreamless sleep, curled against Loki’s chest. He didn’t try and think about what anyone would think if they found them, he just let himself enjoy the feeling of being curled against a warm body and comforted by feeling safe tucked near Loki.

 

He was safe, and at home. With his pack. People that cared about him.

 

Home.

 

 

Chapter Text

 

Stiles had gone to sleep with a warm chest pressed against his bare back, and a protective arm slung around his waist. He had felt safe, and warm, and content. But when he woke up to a flash that was bright in his face, Stiles squinted at first.

 

He assumed that it was just the sun shining in through the curtains, but when he felt Loki pull him closer, Stiles let out a little sound and cracked open his eyes. When he saw what - or who, rather - was standing at the side of the bed with a phone in their hand, Stiles shot up like a rocket. Loki grumbled loudly when Stiles got up.

 

Clint, the little fucker, was standing there with a phone, and taking pictures. Stiles immediately reached for a shirt, tugging it on over his head to cover the scars on his body. He let out a sound and moved, sliding off of the bed. He had forgotten that he fell asleep in his boxers, and flushed slightly.

 

“Ooh, kiddo had a good time, didn’t he?” Clint teased, and Stiles gave a pitiful growl before moving and bumping Clint on his way to get to the bathroom.

 

Clint laughed and rolled his eyes, “Don’t worry, Stiles. I won’t tell Phil.”

 

Loki seemed to finally catch on to what was happening, and sat up with a huff. He was shirtless as well, but his chest was as pale as ivory and flawless but for a few moles speckling his skin. He stared at Clint, glaring with those harsh blue eyes.

 

“Stiles is hardly eighteen, I understand enough of your views to know that someone over a few centuries old is hardly compatible with someone that hasn’t turned eighteen yet,” Loki groused, his voice thick and rich with sleep.

 

Stiles was hiding in the bathroom, and decided to take a shower. Because hell, he couldn’t go out there right now.

 

Clint saw how upset Loki seemed, and took it as a sign that the two really had slept together. “You know, I’m sure Phil won’t completely tear you apart when he knows you fucked his nephew. Don’t hurt the kid.”

 

Loki pursed his lips and moved to stand, waving to shoo Clint out. When the archer got away with a wiggled eyebrow and a laugh, he moved to walk down to the living room where he saw Thor waiting.

 

Clint grinned, “Oh my god, point break, you’ll never guess what I just found,” he started, clicking to the photos section of the phone with a little grin, moving to plop on the couch next to the other.

 

-------

 

Loki was cautious. He got dressed slowly in a pair of dark jeans and a collared shirt, pulling his dark hair into a bun before moving to knock on the door tentatively. “Stiles?”

 

The teen had just gotten out of the shower when Loki knocked. He wrapped a white towel around his waist quickly and moved to peek out of the door, his face pink from the scrubbing and the little bit of crying he had done. “Hey, Loki. Hey. Do you need the shower?” he asked, tilting his head to the side slightly.

 

Loki smiled and shook his head, “No, I was making sure you were… okay. Clint was vulgar, and I am sorry that he made that assumption. I understand the need for closeness among a pack, as you call it. The bond that has formed made me appreciate the physical contact as well.”

 

Stiles smiled slightly and nodded, laughing gently. “Yeah. I’ll be okay. It’s not the first time it’s happened, really. Dad walked in on my and Isaac cuddling one morning and immediately assumed that we had had sex. So it’s alright. At least he didn’t throw condoms at us,” he shrugged, moving to step out of the bathroom, the steam seeping out of the door behind him, “Besides, out of anyone here, you’d be my first choice.” Stiles winked and pecked a kiss to Loki’s cheek before moving to grab his clothes and head out of Loki’s bedroom with a soft sigh, retreating to his own room to get ready. He had school today, anyways.

And get ready he did. Stiles got himself together fairly well. He hummed as he looked through his suitcase, pulling out a small bag that he had tucked in the bottom of his big suitcase. It was where he held the clothes he only wore on some days.

 

Today, though, it was a nice pair of high waisted shorts. They were the absolute brightest shade of highlighter pink he could find, and they matched perfectly with his pale skin. Stiles loved it, really, and it made his butt look fucking wonderful. He felt beautiful in the shorts, and that was fucking perfect for him. He needed a self confidence boost today, and this outfit was just the thing.

 

Stiles pulled out a nice black shirt with little lace cap sleeves and tucked it into the waistband of the shorts, humming softly. He did a little spin and moved to look at himself in the mirror, suddenly glad that he had shaved the day before last, before he had gone to school.

 

He pulled on a pair of white over-the-knee socks, and fished in his back for a pair of black chunky combat boots. Stiles pulled them on with a little grin, moving to get the little makeup bag he had set in his backpack.

 

He walked into the little bathroom that was connected to his room, setting up in the mirror. It was easy to curl the little puff of hair back in the front, and settle the thick white headband around his head. The little bow on the front was put just off center, and it was time for makeup.

 

Light pink lipgloss that smelled like cotton candy, and a thin line of eyeliner went first. Mascara and a little bit of glitter followed, and Stiles felt gorgeous. He added a bit of cotton candy scented body spray and moved to grab his backpack, slinging it over his shoulder.

 

As soon as he stepped out of his room, he bumped into someone’s side. He stepped back and smiled faintly when he saw that it was Bruce. And Stiles couldn’t help but giggle at the look on his face. “What? Never seen a boy look cute before?”

 

Bruce blushed and stuttered, “I, uh, I just... “

 

Stiles rolled his eyes and patted his shoulder, “It’s a shocker, I know. My butt looks amazing in these shorts, and I’m wearing girl’s clothes. It’s a lot to take in. Also, don’t listen to anything Clint tells you about Loki. Not a word.” He winked before turning to saunter down the hall, his boots making soft thuds as he walked to the elevator to catch a ride to the big common floor.

 

The elevator ride there was quiet, but nicely so. Stiles made sure his lipgloss hadn’t smudged yet before he stepped out and walked through the living room, setting his backpack next to one of the armchairs before walking to the kitchen to start getting himself together with breakfast.

 

He was settling on a bowl of yogurt with fruit tossed in when he heard someone walk into the kitchen. It was Tony, no surprise there, raising an eyebrow at Stiles’ outfit.

 

Stiles ignored the eyebrow in favor of getting out the vanilla yogurt and a few different kinds of berries. He hummed and looked over his shoulder, smiling when he felt the bow flop onto his temple. “You want any of this while I’m making it?”

 

Tony shook his head, trying to ignore how feminine Stiles looked. It was none of his business what the kid wore. “I’m not a health nut. I’m sure Bruce would take some if you offered, but I’m more of a coffee and donuts kind of guy,” he grinned.

 

Stiles rolled his eyes as he placed the food back into the fridge, humming slightly. Carrying the bowl to the table didn’t seem like a fun option - he didn’t want to just sit alone. So he walked into the living room where a few others were gathered, and he grinned when he folded up in an arm chair and he had eyes on him.

 

Loki rose an eyebrow, but nodded gently. “The top fits your figure nicely, Stiles,” he commented, looking back down to the book in his lap. Stiles grinned and put a spoonful of yogurt into his mouth, humming around the spoon.

 

Thor chuckled, “Should I assume that the relationship between you two is going to end up in a courtship, brother?”

 

Loki shot a glare at Thor when he heard Tony choke on his coffee in the kitchen and come out with wide eyes, and Clint started cackling where he was perched on the back of the sofa.

 

Tony wiped his mouth with the back of his hand, “Excuse me? What relationship is greased lightning over here talking about?” He sounded… angry. Almost.

 

Stiles had frozen with the spoon in his mouth, and slowly put it back into the bowl when Loki responded more calmly than Stiles could have done right then.

 

“Stiles needed physical touch, and shared a bed with me last night. Barton assumed there had been sex, and told my brother,” Loki explained, and Tony seemed… a little less upset. But Clint just had to butt in.

 

“No, no. He didn’t tell all of it. Loki was all on top of Stiles, and neither of them had shirts on. Stiles was just in his boxers, like how did they not have sex?” he grinned, and Stiles stood up suddenly. He let out a loud sound and moved to set down his bowl on the coffee table, picking up his backpack with obvious tension in his jaw.

 

“I’m going to school early, I have to talk to my Language teacher anyway. She wanted to put me in a higher level class,” he said lowly, moving to walk to the elevator quickly before getting into the elevator, closing the door behind himself with a soft sound. Stiles barely heard the little comment Thor made about a one night stand. He was more than used to people thinking he had sex with someone before, but it was just the fact that they had been so certain of it when they had said that they hadn’t.

Stiles just needed his Alpha. Phil bumped into him when he was storming out and holding back tears. Stiles dipped his head slightly and walked out of the building and decided to walk to the school himself that morning.

 

He got a few whistles, but they did very little to pick up his mood. He was just… upset, really. He had only wanted to cuddle, but they had been teasing him about sex. Ugh.

 

Stiles spoke with his language teacher about swapping out his language class for another fun one when he proved that he was fluent in just about every language she threw his way. Especially Polish. The little crystal was around his neck, displayed like a little charm.

 

The day was turning out a little bit better, slowly but surely. He walked to art, and his mood dropped again when a few of the football players laughed at him and his shorts. He let out a little sound, walking into the art room just in time to hide the first tear as it slipped down his cheek.

 

And then, there were arms wrapped around his back just under his shoulders, and he knew it was his Alpha. Stiles immediately hugged her tightly in return, trying to keep from smearing his makeup on her outfit today. When he collected himself, Stiles pulled back from the hug with a little smile and wiped at his cheeks, sniffing slightly.

 

“Thanks, Belle,” he murmured, swallowing slightly and letting out a little sigh. “I just… haven’t had a good morning,” he murmured, leaning in to her hand when she cupped his cheek. He was glad she was the only one that was in the room at the moment, aside from himself.

 

“Of course, Stiles,” she murmured in return, pressing a soft kiss to his forehead. She had dressed herself in a nice powder blue dress today with a deep blue cardigan and white heels. Belle smiled and set a hand between his shoulders, rubbing small circles there. “It’s my job, isn’t it? Do you wanna talk to me about it, darling?”

 

Stiles nodded slightly, and he let out a soft sound when they moved to the back corner of the room to sit next to each other. He stood to grab a block of clay and tied an apron around his waist, smiling at Belle slightly. “I forgot my adderall this morning, so I have to keep my hands busy so I can keep on track with talking,” he explained, moving to set out the necessary items for sculpting. It was an AP Art course, so he had a sort of free reign to try whatever he could do and wanted to try.

 

Today was clay with a side of emotions.

 

Belle chuckled and sat next to him, letting him have his time and talk. He moved and let out a little sound, wetting the clay before starting to talk as he cut away at the block with his little knife.

 

“I felt alone last night. I needed contact, you know? So I snuck in with Loki. He’s warm and nice and everything, so I went for it. But I woke up, and Clint had seen us. And he told everyone that Loki and I had sex, you know? And normally, I don’t have a problem with it. I can be a big slut if I want to be. But the fact that they didn’t take our word on the fact that I didn’t actually get fucked by Loki? That was… yeah. I think that was it. But I get to swap out of Language, since I’m fluent in like everything, so I get drama. And then some assholes were talking about how I shouldn’t be wearing this. But I look cute, so I’m trying not to let them get to me and everything, and I just… day sucks.”

 

Belle smiled and pressed a kiss to his cheek, “Well. I know how to fix it. You’re gonna come with me after school, and we’re going to get a new dress each, and I’ve been meaning to dye my hair for ages and you can help me, and we’ll do yours too. But for now, keep going on that. It looks fucking awesome.”

 

Stiles nodded with a little sound, moving and looking at what he had been sculpting. It was a really, horribly realistic rose. He smiled slightly and moved to keep shaving at it, blowing on the petals to help them harden slightly so he could get them a little thinner. “It sounds like it would be a good day. Thanks, Belle,” he murmured, looking down when people started entering the room.

 

Since Stiles still had a huge hunk of clay left, and he had already gotten four roses done after an hour into the class, he decided to make a little base and start to stick them together, humming as he did so. It was a nice little rose vine at this point, curling up the base. Stiles only got an idea that it looked good when people came up and started complimenting him on how real the roses looked.

 

His day was looking up, slowly but surely.

 

After he had gotten through art, it was time for science and math. And now that he didn’t have Lydia to compete with, he was leaps and bounds above the other people. He was moved to all AP classes by the end of the day when he got to his final class - drama.

 

And god did he love drama. It was like the island of misfit toys in the drama room, and he fit right in. He was good with exaggeration and acting and putting on faces, so obviously he was good with acting. When the bell rang, Stiles walked to Belle’s last period and waited outside of the door until he saw his Alpha, and hugged her tightly.

 

They took each other’s hands and walked out of the school, heading immediately to a nice shopping district. Stiles was a little hesitant to go into some of the stores to look at the clothes, but when Belle pushed him into the dressing room with four dresses and a jumpsuit, he came out with two of the dresses that fit him and a bright smile on his face.

 

After that, they changed into the new clothes and got themselves together. With their old clothes in Stiles’ backpack, they sauntered off to a hair salon. Stiles decided to go with bright fucking pink on all of his hair, and Belle went with a nice violet.

 

It took a good two hours, going through bleach and dye for each of them. But when it was done, they both found themselves more than thrilled. With a new hair color, they decided to head to Belle’s place again.

 

After the walk, Stiles flopped down on the bed with a tired sigh, running a hand through the newly dyed hair with a bright grin. He moved and looked at her, tilting his head. “Can I see your Beta shift? I dunno if you can do a full shift, but I kinda want to know what my Alpha looks like. I mean, I can totally show you some magic.”

 

Belle grinned brightly and moved, nodding slightly. It took a moment, but soon enough, she was shifted. Furry, with fangs and bright red eyes. Stiles grinned and ran a hand through her hair, humming softly. “It’s really cool. I haven’t seen a female Alpha before. So it’s like, sexy and scary and cool all at once,” he hummed softly.

 

Belle giggled and shifted back, pressing a kiss to his nose. “Now it’s your turn, magic boy. Show me something special.”

 

He grinned and moved, laying back on the bed while pulling her down with him. Once the pair got settled, Stiles focused and waved his hands slightly, and small orbs of light floated from his palms. They danced above the pair, twinkling and swirling in the dimly lit room. He chuckled, letting one settle on Belle’s nose.

 

The lights faded away, and he sighed softly before pressing his nose against her shoulder, “Do you have plans for tomorrow? It’s my first Saturday in New York tomorrow. They might have plans for me, but… I dunno. My feelings were hurt and stuff.”

 

Belle let out a little whine and rubbed a hand up and down his arm, “Well. You go home and show them how amazing you look all bright and pink, alright? You had a good day at school, and a good day with me. So go tell them they can kiss their own asses if they hate on you. You’re wonderful.”

 

Stiles smiled and stood slowly, stretching before looking down at himself. The new dress he had put on was beautiful, if a little short. He was just glad he had opted for lace panties today. It was a deep shade of navy blue with white trim on the seams, and a cute line of beads down the front of the corset top, and a high neckline made of sheer white lace. He pulled on his back pack, adjusting the little white bow in his hair before pressing a kiss to her temple and heading out.

 

He walked home, once again, with a smile on his face. It faltered when he walked up to the tower, but he pasted it onto his face when he got back on the elevator, heading up to the living room. Stiles was certainly not expecting everyone to be there to see him in a short blue dress with his bubblegum pink hair, white socks and combat boots.

 

It was one hell of an awkward silence that followed, but in the end, it was Phil that broke it.

 

“That dress is too short for you to wear without tights underneath, Stiles. Fingertip length is a rule.”

 

Stiles couldn’t help but giggle. He rolled his eyes, “Yeah, but it’s at least midthigh, and it’s not like I’m showing boob.”

 

Phil sighed, and scrubbed a hand through his hair, “Can you sit down, Stiles? We need to talk.”

 

Stiles rose an eyebrow, and the Avengers that had gathered shifted in their seats. Tony had a slideshow ready on his Stark tablet, and it looked like Bruce was ready to run at any second. Loki looked thoroughly ruffled, and Thor was a little confused.

 

Stiles sat down slowly, making sure to cross his legs in front of him as he curled up in the chair, looking at the group of men (and Nat, who slipped in silently and perched herself on another armchair).

 

When Tony coughed awkwardly before starting to speak, Stiles knew he was in for a wild ride.

 

“So,” the man started, running a hand over his knee, “So. You’re almost eighteen. And since New York isn’t a little town in California, and you might run into a girl or guy that you want to be…” Tony moved and clicked a part of his tablet, pulling up slide one. It literally read, in large white letters, So you’re ready to have sex - let’s talk about it

 

“Oh my god. I’m getting the sex talk from Tony Stark. Oh my god,” Stiles snorted, shaking his head. He ran a hand through his bright pink hair, rolling his eyes.

 

Steve, who had been silent until this point, frowned and looked at Stiles, “What? Are you saying that you don’t need it?”

 

Stiles shrugged, “I mean, I’m not saying I haven’t had sex before. I need fingers and toes to count it. But really, guys, it’s not that bad. I’m safe, and totally not putting myself in danger for anything. I had most people get tested before hand, and if not, I took all the morning after shit and made sure condoms were used.”

 

Bruce’s eyebrows climbed higher on his forehead, “Stiles. You’re seventeen. And you’ve had sex already?”

 

The teen in question let out a soft sound and shrugged, “I mean, yeah. It’s physical stuff. Comfort, release.”

 

Thor chuckled, but was silenced by a glare from Loki.

 

Clint snorted, “You added another to your little list last night, Stiles?”

 

“Loki and I didn’t have sex, asshole,” Stiles snapped sharply, making the archer blink, “I napped with Belle earlier yesterday, and it hasn’t been a week since I had a pack to puppy pile with every single Saturday night. So you can stop assuming shit, alright? I needed to cuddle, and Loki is warm.”

 

Stiles stood and brushed his skirt flat, huffing slightly. “So yeah, thanks for saying that shit. Makes me feel warm and fuzzy and loved. You’re lucky you love my uncle, or I would beat your ass. I’ve been fucked over more than enough to know how to fuck someone like you over, thanks. I’m tired, and cute, and I’m not gonna let you dull my sparkle right now. Tony? Meet me in your lab in five minutes. I’m gonna down some adderall and change into something more work appropriate.”

 

He walked away with a little huff, stomping off to his room. Tony couldn’t help but laugh. God, that kid made Clint look like he was going to piss himself while wearing a cute dress with pink hair. Awesome. He got up and grinned at Phil before walking down to his lab, eager to see what the kid was there for.

 

Stiles got down to the lab a few minutes later with a sketchbook in his hands. He had changed into jeans and a t-shirt, showing some of the scars on his upper arms, but he ignored them for now. He just stuck with laying out the sketchbook on the table with a grin, looking up at Tony.

 

“Operation: Make my Alpha a kick ass prosthetic leg is on. Do you have a 3D printer, or are we going to have to make all of this by hand?”

 

“You’d better believe I have a 3D printer, kid. Let’s get to work with measurements and specs. But we’d have to dull the edges, don’t you think? And since when does your Alpha need a leg?”

 

“She threatens to beat people with it if they’re assholes. So let’s make it sharp enough to cause real damage. And she’s had it for some time, I didn’t ask. It’s just white and she doesn’t like the scar, so I left it alone.”

 

“Well, let’s make it beautiful again.”

 

 

Chapter Text

Stiles grinned ear to ear. This leg was going to be great. He moved and sat at one of the benches, pulling his sketchbook into his lap with a little sound and starting to sketch. It started with where her leg ended, and he drew the basic shape he knew he wanted the leg to be before starting the details he wanted for the leg.

 

After a good five minutes of Tony shuffling around excitedly and setting up the printer, Stiles stood and held the book out to the older man with a raised eyebrow. “How does this look?”

 

Tony whistled and nodded, looking at the sketch. It was gorgeous, and the way Stiles had drawn it, the leg looked like a bouquet of flowers. Different shapes and sizes of roses, lilies, chrysanthemums, marigolds, pansies, and a shit ton of other flowers were collected together in the leg shape.

 

Stiles grinned slightly, “Is it doable?”

 

“Hell yeah. We can make the edges smooth, or we can get the flowers. It’d only take an hour for Jarvis to put an order to the florist’s shop and have them deliver, and we can encase the flowers in a resin?”

 

Stiles gave a little gasp, “Oh my god, yes. And I want a specific kind inside. But they have to be the colors and flowers I listed - they’ve got druidic significance, I have to run to a little shop to get one of them because normal people don’t sell it.”

 

Tony rose an eyebrow, “It’s not weed, is it?”

 

“Haha, no. I can get that other places. Wolfsbane. There are different kinds that give different effects. Like the strain with the yellow flowers is crushed and added to alcohol to let werewolves get drunk. And if you powder it and mix it with a little weed, they can get high. Pretty awesome. But the strain I want for Belle is pink, and it’s one that increases the strength of pack bonds and helps bind the person to their anchor a little better. And, yeah, I dunno. It seems pretty awesome to me,” Stiles explained, waving his hands as he went.

 

Tony nodded and waved, “I’ll have JARVIS put in the order so it’ll be here when you get back from your magical plant quest. Don’t get lost, have sex, do drugs, or get killed.”

 

The teen rolled his eyes and lifted a hand, recalling a spell the nogitsune had taught him. He hated to use them, but… they came in handy. Electricity crackled around the hand he was holding up, and he winked at Tony. “This thing is more powerful than you think. I could power this tower for three years with a few minutes of this. I’ll be fine.” He let it fade, the hairs on his arms laying flat once again, before he turned to walk out of the lab with a stunned Tony behind him.

 

He smirked and walked down the hall, pulling out his phone to go to this little website he had helped Danny put up for magic users and sparks around the country that could advertise their little shops. He found one close to the tower, and walked to his room to pull on a pair of worn converse and grab his little bag to carry supplies in.

He heard the door open, and didn’t expect to see Clint standing in the doorway, looking a little ashamed.

 

Stiles narrowed his eyes and stood, slinging the bag over his shoulder. He remained silent, and Clint floundered for a moment before he found his voice.

 

“I just wanted to say sorry. For earlier,” he managed, his hands moving and gesturing slightly. Clint looked nervous, and ashamed, and Stiles felt a little bit of pleasure curling in his chest at that. But it faded, when Clint continued. “I just… I saw you tucked under Loki like that, and I didn’t know what to think. You just came here from having your pack leave you, and I didn’t want you making some decision and regretting it later. And… yeah, maybe I’m just trying to protect you. I want to marry your Uncle, which kind of makes me your uncle too. So you’re family, and I was trying to keep you safe and not… you know. Hurt or in danger.”

 

Stiles smiled softly and shifted, but forced the smile down. “You said some pretty shitty stuff, Clint,” he huffed, “It might take time. But you’re being honest about it, so I think there’s forgiveness that can happen. Just not right away.”

 

Clint seemed happy with that answer and nodded, “Alright. Where are you headed? It’s going to be dark soon.”

 

“Just to pick up a few supplies for something I’m making with Tony. Nothing bad, I’m going to a shop recommended by a friend,” Stiles chirped, easily sliding past Clint and out to the elevator. He got down to the main floor and started walking, whispering a soft spell under his breath so that he was guided to the little place.

 

It was sketchy, and small, but not every city had the best druid in town holed up in a veterinary office. This one just so happened to be a joint tattoo and body piercing studio, with a magic shop in the back.

 

Bramblebush tattoos. Sounds legit.

 

Stiles smiled slightly and moved to open the door, looking around with wide amber eyes. The door was dark, with runes scratched into the wood by a shaking hand. He could feel the tremors in the protection, and let out a little sound as he stepped inside. There were a few men and women, most dressed in black with plenty of piercings on their bodies, sitting in chairs and talking with beers in their hands. Stiles could feel the magic in the room, and he felt like he was intruding.

 

But when one man stood, large and broad in the shoulders, Stiles blinked. He felt calm when he made eye contact with the large man’s blue eyes, and Stiles’ amber ones almost sparkled in response.

 

“What can I do ya for, kid?” the man asked, ignoring the little protests of the woman (wolf) right next to him.

 

“I’m looking for an herb, for a friend. The, uh, the website my friend and I set up had you listed as one of the best places in the city to find rare herbs that can be used for slightly more furry friends,” he smiled, resisting the urge to run a hand through his hair.

 

The man’s eyebrows rose on his wrinkled forehead, and he chuckled. “Right, kid. Out with it. What are you, and what do you need?”

 

“I’m Stiles. Hi. I’m a mage. Like, a baby one though. I can’t do too much yet. Uh, I need the wolfsbane strand with the pink flowers. My Alpha has a prosthetic leg, right? And I’m making her a new one. I already have plenty of other flowers, but I wanted that one too.”

 

Everyone in the room froze the second the word ‘mage’ escaped his mouth. This little twig of a kid was a mage of all things? One of the most powerful creatures on their side of normal?

 

Stiles smiled slightly, “Do you wanna see? I learned one. Uh, it’s a fancy powerful one, right? I know the original is a dark spell, but I modified it a little so I just take energy from the air, not other things.”

 

It took a moment, but the big burly man moved to nod and gesture to a seat. “Sit your skinny arse down and show us what you’re about kid. And if you’re good enough, I have a proposition to get you that pink wolfsbane you’re looking for.”

 

Stiles nodded and let out a soft sigh, moving to take a seat. He had to close his eyes to go back into his memory to find the spell he used, and ignore the ones that wanted to flood in of the nogitsune and the pain. He opened his eyes and looked at his hands to see a large ball of purple light, crackling with energy, floating between his palms. He gave a nervous little grin and looked up, letting it float from palm to palm with a little sound.

 

The man grinned brightly, “Good! You didn’t even need to chant to get that one down, kid. But I do have to ask how you know it.”

 

Stiles looked at the hands to see it slowly fade and fizzle out, and he gave a weak breath. “Can I know your name first? It’s not a fun story.”

 

“Jasper,” the man nodded, “The name’s Jasper Ghor. Now, I’d love to hear your story, Stiles.”

 

“You know about the Hale-McCall pack, in Beacon Hills?”

 

“Who the hell doesn’t? First case of Alphas that can both run a pack together that aren’t mates, and both have an Alpha status.”

“I was the one that brought those two numbnuts together. Scott was sixteen when he got the bite, and he dragged me along on the journey. Then we met sourwolf, Derek, and it went downhill. They didn’t know I was a mage when they kicked me out of the pack and cut my pack ties because I was a human and wanted to keep me safe. I mean, I understand it. I’ve been possessed, kidnapped, tortured, and injured in battles and the like. So I get that they don’t want me hurt, but still. That was my old pack. I was possessed by a nogitsune, and I won. But I mean, my magic is only that kind of crazy strong when it needs to be. Most of the time I can only make little ducks that are getting ready to go into some soup dance, or get a little curtain to shield myself from people going. I’m learning, and I’ve got a pretty good teacher. So.. soon I’ll be up to the crazy powerful level that comes to mind when you hear the word mage.”

 

Jasper’s eyes widened and he nodded, moving to stand slowly. “I’ll get you some wolfsbane. Do you need anything else while I’m back there?”

 

“Maybe some mountain ash? I don’t need too much, really, just enough for a few circles around a few places, you know?”

 

Jasper smiled, “Can you fix the protection spells I’ve got on this place? I know they’re not too strong.”

 

Stiles nodded brightly, “Yeah, of course! Give me five minutes and you’ll be warded from your head to your toes.”

 

--------

 

Half an hour later, Stiles was walking back into the tower laden down with the basic herbs and obscure odds and ends that magic users need to have. He had everything from the wolfsbane he had gone to the shop for to the smallest scale on a baby dragon’s stomach. He was buzzing with energy again, and knew he had to release it somehow.

 

And as if he could sense it, Tony came walking out when Stiles got off of the elevator, almost hopping to the lab area. He fished out the wolfsbane from his bag and grinned brightly, “I got it! So we can make a form for a leg and cast it in some resin, right? And we just toss the flowers in, and I can hold them in place until it dries enough for me to let go.”

 

Tony rose an eyebrow, “This has to do with the whole dancing duck carcass the other day, right? That was you, not Loki. I know that much. And the whole electricity coming from your hands thing too”

 

Stiles chuckled, “Yes, Tony. I’m a mage, I can do it. It’s kinda like breathing, really. The whole using my magic thing. Plus, after stopping by the shop, it needs to be worked out a little. Otherwise I fear for the electrical wiring in the tower.”

 

Tony’s eyes widened, “Alright, kiddo. Let’s set it up so you can keep all the magic inside of you and not destroying my tower.”

 

Stiles grinned and moved, not able to hold back the small twitches and movements that had become so much of a part of him in the past. The way his fingers curled or his shoulders shrugged, his foot tapped or hips swayed slightly. It was just… Stiles. The magic buzzing under his skin, itching and fighting to get out.

 

He watched carefully as Tony grabbed the mold he had Jarvis make, and got a large container of resin. Stiles moved to set the flowers in the mold before Tony poured the resin in, and the teen let out a little sigh when he felt his magic stretch to position the flowers correctly in the resin.

 

Stiles fell asleep leaning back against the desk, a soft purple glow surrounding his slumbering form and the case that the resin leg was drying in.

 

He hardly stirred when he felt strong arms lift him up and carry him to bed.

 

But he did wake up when he felt someone start to tug his shirt over his head, eyes flying open. He had his hands up and trying to block whoever it was when he realized it was Steve, dressed in soft pajamas and looking sleep-rumpled. All of a sudden, he felt bad.

 

“Sorry,” Stiles whispered, his voice thick from sleep.

 

“It’s alright,” Steve said gently, “I know I wouldn’t want to wake up to someone pulling my shirt off. No matter what’s under there.” The super soldier smiled gently at the other, taking a slow step back. “Tony told me you had scars, I didn’t think. I just… I was trying to tuck you in. That’s all.”

 

Stiles paused and looked around, blinking when he saw he was in his room. Well, the guest room his Uncle Phil had moved his thing into under the insistence of Tony and Bruce. It kept him closer, so they could watch this new power source. And they had ended up gaining a family member in the process.

 

The teen was brought back by Steve awkwardly shifting, and Stiles reflexively moved to scoot over and hold out his arms for the other. He paused when he realized what he had done, and Steve blushed slightly.

 

Stiles moved and shifted to let his hands fall gently, but Steve moved before Stiles could pull his arms all the way back. He smiled when Steve sat on the bed next to him, a warm feeling curling in his chest. Stiles moved his head to rest in Steve’s lap immediately.

 

He paused when he realized it was something he had done with Isaac. The wolf had always know how to scratch his scalp and play with his hair to have Stiles boneless and drifting off to sleep.

 

Considering how intimate the position was, Stiles was surprised when Steve tentatively ran one of his large hands through Stiles’ bright hair. He smiled and let his eyes flutter closed, resisting the urge to nuzzle into the bigger man’s thigh.

“While I have you here,” Steve started, his voice soft and a little deeper than it normally was, thanks to his whispering, “I wanted to ask you something.”

 

Stiles let out a little sound and nodded, moving to look up at the other. Steve kept running his hands through Stiles’ hair, like he was nervous.

 

“Are you… gay?” he managed awkwardly, a bright blush creeping onto his face.

 

Stiles paused, but shrugged, “I dunno. I don’t really see gender as an issue? It’s like, there’s a beautiful kick-ass girl, and then a really hot guy, and maybe some super beautiful genderfluid person? Like, it’s about who they are to me, not if they’re a girl or a boy or whatever. It’s called being pansexual.” He looked up at Steve, “Why?”

 

Steve shifted on himself and let out a little sound, “Back in the 40s… it wasn’t easy, you know. Kids could be beat to a pulp and put in the hospital because they were seen holding hands with another guy. I couldn’t… explore. I knew it wasn’t just girls, for me. But I never had the chance to explore. When I got in the army with Buck, it changed. Men were… they were with other men, but only because there weren’t any dames there.”

 

Stiles stayed quiet and relatively still, letting out little sounds to try and encourage Steve when he slowed or paused. He was glad he made Steve feel safe enough to talk about this with him.

 

“Buck and I… everyone always assumes that I’m some innocent boy from back when things were simple. I was in the army. Buck and I had our days. And now that I have him back, and the times are different, it’s… the feelings are more than they were back then.”

 

Stiles nodded and gave a soft sound, looking up with a soft and wide-eyed glance. Steve smiled and moved to run a hand through his hair before going back to speaking softly under his breath.

 

“But when I woke up, from the ice, I was alone. I met Tony. Howard’s son. Howard was the man that made me who I am, but he’s different. He flirts and does stupid things because he cares so much for everyone else. And… there might be feelings there too.”

 

Oh, god. Steve. Stiles was going to be a therapist for the Avengers, oh god. When Steve didn’t say anything, Stiles took up the helm a little.

 

“Back home, in Beacon Hills, there are two guys. One is big and bad and very Alpha. And the other is… he’s bigger than me, but thin and sweet. He’s like a puppy, and I can’t… I can’t choose between the two of them right now. Because they’re both amazing. Isaac is the one that calms me down after night mares and holds me when I can’t sleep, but Derek is the one that reminds me to eat and makes me take my meds and gives me one of his rare smiles when I feel sad. Sometimes, there’s no choice. But I know that I probably don’t have a chance with Isaac, because he’s working his way into a polyamorous relationship with Scott and Allison at the moment. You have to take that into consideration. I’m just… dating people is hard, but don’t go after someone that has their eyes on someone else, you know?”

 

Steve nodded gently and ran his hands through Stiles’ hair again, letting out a little sound. “Thank you, Stiles. You look tired, though. Maybe you should sleep, and wake up tomorrow to start a new day?”

 

Stiles nodded and moved to let his eyes close, and soft snores came from his mouth a few moments later. Steve moved him to lay him down on the pillows, humming softly as he got up to leave.

 

The super soldier walked out of the room, something new and warm curling into his chest. He had heard something about pack bonds, how they were warmth and joy, and could only assume that was what that was. He smiled and moved, deciding to make his way to Tony’s lab to make sure the man got some decent rest.

 

----------------

 

Stiles woke up bundled in blankets and warm. He smiled and stretched, padding out of bed and into his bathroom to take a shower. When he realized how early it was, and that it was Saturday, he gave a little groan before getting dressed. One of Derek’s henleys that showed his long pale neck, and dark skinny jeans. He made his way downstairs and hummed, blinking and looking around when he saw that no one was down here - not even Loki.

 

Perfect for making breakfast for everyone, then.

 

He went with the light breakfast that his mother had always made him when she had control - a nice homemade bread, cold meat cuts, and boiled egg slices. He hummed as he worked, kneading the bread dough and finding various cuts of raw and cooked meats in the fridge. By the time the sun rose, he had gotten a large platter of cold meats, fresh warm bread, and sliced eggs together and on the table.

 

Stiles put on a pot of the most aromatic coffee he had available to him, and grinned when he saw people funnel down the hall and into the dining room where breakfast was waiting.

 

Natasha was first. “You cooked?”

 

Stiles snorted, “Yep. I made the bread fresh and everything, so yeah. There’s that. I mean, I hope it’s good. I pretty much have the recipe memorized, but it’s been a good ten years since I’ve made it. Just… go get some, and some of the cold meats. They’re really good, I tasted as I went.”

 

The woman smiled and planted a gentle kiss to his temple, and Stiles smiled brightly. Apparently everyone had been briefed on his love and need for physical contact.

But once breakfast got into full swing, and Bucky and Natasha were happily chittering in Russian, Stiles decided to show off his little allspeak charm and join right in. He just dropped a line, a joke that they had been trying to remember, and everyone at the table sort of… stared. Stiles laughed brightly and focused on English for a moment before speaking.

 

“Come on, really? You act like You’ve never met a teenager that can speak a few languages,” Stiles hummed.

 

Loki rose an eyebrow and rattled something off in some language, Swahili, his brain supplied, and Stiles’ response was immediate. He responded in turn, and blushed when he realized he had just broken out into fucking Swahili of all languages.

 

Thor was the first to speak and break the silence. “It seems as though Loki was correct. The young mage has perfected use of allspeak, but as a spell his people can use. It is a mighty feat, what he has done. And very young as well. How old are you again, brother Stilinski?”

 

“I’m, uh, seventeen,” he nodded, which sent Thor’s eyebrows up.

 

“I will never get used to how short the human life is. At seventeen, I was no more than a babe in my mother’s arms. I was four hundred before I could speak two languages, let alone all of them. I admire something which takes so much talent, brother. You have done your pack proud.”

 

Oh, those words made heat rush to his cheeks and his head bow slightly. “Thanks, buddy,” he murmured, smiling down at his hands. He felt all the bonds there, tugging at each one sitting around his table, his uncle Phil at work, and his dad back in Beacon Hills. Then there was the one with Belle, his Alpha. He froze when he remembered inviting her over this morning.

 

Stiles was on his feet within a second, bolting to the elevator just in time to hear it click to this floor.

 

Belle walked out, looking flawless as always. Stiles was dressed well, but Belle was… she was beautiful. The beauty and the beast, all in one.

 

She was dressed in a bright white top today that tucked into her olive green shorts, and a black cardigan over top. The Alpha wrapped him in a big hug right away, and took to scenting him. Stiles preened at the attention, and didn’t really think it all that weird, until he heard someone clear their throat somewhere behind him at the table. Stiles blushed and pulled back from Belle’s embrace, and looked up at Tony, who had one eyebrow raised.

 

Stiles let out a little sound, and the mild anxiety curling in his chest was eased when he felt a soft but firm hand on the back of his neck, sending gentle reassurance through the bond.

 

Belle smiled and pulled Stiles against her side, humming softly. “I was invited for breakfast. Sorry if I interrupted something, but Stiles.... he’s used to wolves surrounding him. I have to do the wolfy thing around him for him to feel safe and happy and everything,” she explained, smiling and pressed a kiss to his temple before taking a step towards Tony, her prosthetic only creaking a slight bit as she reached out a hand.

 

“Belle Marvell. Beauty and Beast, all in one. Also Stiles’ Alpha. Good to meet the rest of his pack,” she nodded, her small smile curving into a bright smirk. “He told me you were hot, but I didn’t think he really meant it.”

 

“Belle!” Stiles whined, pouting slightly, “C’mon, I said that Steve was pretty. He has eyes for someone else, leave them alone.”

 

Tony’s eyebrows rose, and he turned to find Steve averting his eyes and blushing. Interesting. He heard a quip from Stiles that made him whip around at almost breakneck speed.

 

“Besides, if you need someone to help you that’s beautiful and has a penis, I’m here.”

 

Belle snorted and laughed, doubling over and resting her forehead on Stiles’ shoulder while she laughed. The Alpha stepped back and set a hand on his lower back, “Oh, Stiles. Prosecutor and Attorney, remember? I won’t need those wicked moves you showed off in drama yesterday.”

 

Fuck. That had a blush creeping on his cheeks. Belle giggled and continued, ignoring the way the team silently snuck closer to listen, “Oh my god, no one would have known you of all people could move your hips like that. Really, Stiles, I had like three of the football players ask me if we were dating. When I said no, they asked for your number. You’re getting to be hot stuff. Probably because you look a little twink-y with the pink hair, babe.”

 

Clint stepped in with an arm out, “Woah, woah. Stiles can dance? And it sounds like it’s the kind of dancing you don’t have at recitals.”

 

“I can do ballet, thank you very much! I took lessons when I was twelve and refused to take off my pink tutu for more than bathtime and bed,” Stiles rebuttled, “I just… fighting lets you know how to move your body. And I’ve done plenty of both, so yeah. I can dance. Maybe in the vicinity of a pole. In heels. It was one time, and there was alcohol and drag queens. I made like three hundred bucks, okay?”

 

Tony sputtered out a laugh, “Oh god. Kid. You actually stripped. At a real club? Who the hell would watch that?”

 

“Plenty of people, thank you very much. They called me Little Red. Because all I wore was a little red p-” Stiles was cut off when Belle pressed a finger over his lips.

 

“Shh, Little Red. You ran with wolves, and you wore red lacy panties. Big deal. No need to play the ‘I’m hot shit’ card, you already have it. Now, can we eat? I can probably out eat most people here.”

 

Stiles grumbled and took her hand, tugging her to the kitchen to get her food. The rest of the team was left almost… speechless. That was what packs did? They were so close, so many little touches and brushes and kisses. None of them had known why Stiles was so touchy feel-y, but if he had been surrounded by that, it made sense.

 

When they saw a thin purple veil go up around the kitchen, they got a little confused. But it was Stiles, he was probably just… doing something.

 

------

 

Stiles was indeed doing something. He put up the curtain so Belle could go into her full shift. But she had to strip to do that. Like any gentleman, he turned his back so the girl could step out of her clothes and her leg, and shift silently into her wolf form. It was a deep caramel brown with soft speckles of blonde.

 

She had three legs, and a stump in place of the other. When she walked, she had to do a sort of hopping maneuver. Stiles giggled and moved to kneel in front of her, letting his magic curl around them. The shield dropped, and Belle darted out of the kitchen with a bark, her running looking almost fluid and bright. Stiles laughed and chased after her, clumsy in a strangely graceful kind of way.

 

Chasing Belle through the tower, Stiles looked like a kid. Laughing and reckless and bright and smiling; Tony didn’t have the heart to tell him not to break anything.

 

The game of chase went on for a good five minutes before Stiles darted back by the kitchen to get clothes, and disappeared to his room. He came back down with Belle a few moments later, and gave a little smile. She was in a pair of his loose sweats, her white tank top, and one of his plaid shirts. Her hair was ruffled, and her cheeks flushed.

 

Thor, of course, made a remark. “If I did not know that she was a close friend of yours, brother Stilinski, one would assume that lady Belle is one of your conquests.”

 

Stiles huffed and rolled his eyes, “Careful, big guy. She might get angry. And you never make an Alpha angry.”

 

The next part, Belle and Stiles said together. “They might rip your throat out. With their teeth.” The pair dissolved into giggles, and made their way to the table.

 

Breakfast was bright and fun, with jokes and horrible questions - some serious and some completely ridiculous - and only a few pieces of chilled meat thrown.

 

When Steve and Loki offered to clean up, Belle excused herself to the bathroom, and Stiles looked to Tony.

 

“Do you think the leg is ready?” he asked eagerly, and Tony smiled and nodded.

 

When Belle got out of the bathroom, Stiles grabbed her hand and practically dragged her to the lab. Turns out, Tony had come up here before he had gone to breakfast, and put it together. It stood on the backlit table, the resin clear and flowers bright in the leg. The joints were a beautiful glossy steel, and it was… beautiful.

 

Belle gasped and moved to walk towards the leg, touching it very, very gently. “Oh my god. It’s gorgeous, Stiles! Is it for me?”

 

“I don’t know any other three-legged wolf more deserving than you, Hopalong,” Stiles grinned, moving to grab it. It was surprisingly light, and he could only smile brighter. “I picked the flowers and herbs, so it should help you with strength and self confidence and everything. That, and it looks kick ass.”

 

She hurriedly hopped on a stool and pulled the white leg off, slowly pulling the new one on and fastening it. Even the way Tony had designed the bottom where it could have a foot attached was beautiful, curving and steel and managing to look almost delicate.

 

“It’s amazing,” Belle breathed, moving to hug Stiles tightly. “Oh god, I love it so much. Thank you, Oh my god.”

 

“Stiles is just fine, thanks,” he grinned, chuckling when she punched his shoulder gently.

 

Today would be a good fucking day, damn everything else. His pack was happy and fed, his Alpha was happy, and for the first time since before the nogitsune, Stiles thought he might be happy too.

 

 

Chapter Text

It had been a long, long time since Dominic had felt such magic pass his borders. He was the Alpha of New York City, and he hadn’t felt anything this powerful since there had been a visiting mage when he was a young boy, and that had been half the power that this new creature held.

 

Dominic didn’t take too kindly to intruders in the City. Every wolf, vampire, fae, siren, druid - anything other than a human - had to stop by his pack to ask permission to enter the city.

 

So the moment he felt the barrier pierced by something he hadn’t been expecting, Dominic had been outraged. No one disrespected their pack. They were some of the strongest in the states, their pack numbers at fifty and rapidly growing. They would bite and turn any terminal, desperate, or needy person that came their way. Some were weak and didn’t take to the bite, but the ones that did… they were the strongest of the strong.

 

He had not felt a magic such as the one that crossed his boarders in years, and the second the initial surge passed, he was getting a dozen phone calls from his head Betas, reporting the magic in case it hadn’t been felt. Which it had.

 

The only option was to call a pack meeting and address the issue. All fifty wolves were anxiously pacing around in the large apartment building they called home base, waiting on words from their Alpha.

 

Dominic was a tall man with deep amber skin and deep brown eyes that made you feel safe, until they flashed red. His hair was combed back and a similar shade of blackish/brown, and he had a broad and tall figure that screamed werewolf. He was pure muscle, and he looked every inch of the Alpha title he had carried for fifteen years.

 

When he stepped into the main foyer of the apartment building, everyone noticed. The buzzing conversation quieted, and every pair of amber and blue eyes turned up to meet the blazing red of their Alpha. And when he spoke, their eyes returned to the normal human shades.

 

“We have a problem,” he began, his voice accented with that rich sound only those that had Spanish as their first language had. “Someone has crossed our borders, without asking permission and accepting me as the Alpha of this town. I’m sure most of you felt the surge of electricity a few hours ago? It’s the mark of a mage. One I have not seen the power of for a very, very long time. More powerful than the spark I felt in my youth, even. We are in danger, here. And we need to be protected against this threat.”

 

A concerned murmur started in the room, and the Alpha let it roll and tumble for a moment before he brought the focus back to himself.

 

“Be calm! We will divide ourselves out into groups and search the city for this mage that has broken our laws. We will bring him here and show him that we do not take kindly to intruders on our territory,” he spoke, and the tension and fear in the room seemed to drain immediately. He let out a soft sound and smiled, “Good.”

 

A Beta cautiously raised his hand, and Dominic nodded so the woman would speak. “I would like to lead one of the parties. One of the fae staying near our borders told me she felt some strong mage, but with a guardian. A human, but a guardian.”

 

“Good, Angelica. You take your four and go investigate. Take Riley with you, he can keep you safe.”

 

The woman nodded and motioned to the five Betas she would have with her, and they slowly slipped out of the apartment building quietly, leaving other Betas to scramble for leading positions as well.

 

Angelica and the other five made their way to the fae that had heard something of these two, but she pointed them in the direction of a small magic shop deep inside of the city, called Bramblebush Tattoos.

 

They arrived to feel a strong magic coming from the entryway, and freshly carved sigils of protection and warding in the wood. They crashed inside, looking at Jasper with golden and blue eyes.

 

“Where is the mage?” she asked sharply, her fangs obstructing her speech slightly.

 

Jasper only scoffed and shrugged, “You’ve missed him. He only came in for mountain ash and wolfsbane, anyway. He’s young.”

 

Angelica wasn’t having his shit today. They’d had issues with Jasper hiding refugees and intruders in the past, and they weren’t one to forgive repeat offenders. She rushed forward and grabbed the big man around his throat, her sharp claws pricking his skin ever so slightly. “Where. Is. He.”

 

“I d-don’t kn-ow,” he choked out, his face rapidly turning pink and eyes bulging slightly. “I don’t - don’t know.”

The Beta laughed and shook her head, “You wouldn’t not take a name. Give me a name, and your little shop will live another day without another violation.”

 

He almost looked conflicted. But Jasper quickly coughed up a name. Angelica released him and nodded, brushing her hands on her black jacket. “Thank you, Jasper. We’ll be back when he returns.”

 

“I wouldn’t doubt his strength because I said he was young,” the man warned, his voice still rough from the abuse to his throat, “He told me he was possessed by a nogitsune. And survives. He walks and speaks on his own, with no help from others. He is a force, and from the Hale-McCall pack. Formerly.”

 

That stopped the Beta in her tracks. Hale-McCall, and more importantly, he had defeated a nogitsune once possessed? She pulled her phone from her pocket and called Dominic immediately, waiting until she heard a click that meant the phone had been picked up to begin talking.

“He’s more than we thought. He won possession with a nogitsune. That’s never happened before. And he’s young. Seventeen, at most. Our informant got to chat with him. He’s a mage, a very very powerful one. He hasn’t formally begun training.”

 

There was silence on the other end of the line before Dominic growled and barked out a rough, “Name. Give me a name.”

 

“Stiles. Stiles Stilinski.”

 

--------

 

Since the phone call Scott had gotten to share with Tony freakin’ Stark, everyone had been worried about Stiles. He had told the rest of the pack, immediately, that Stiles was in New York.

 

Isaac was immediately growling and trying to lunge at Scott, but Boyd held him back. “How the hell do you know? You bastard! You didn’t do a damn thing to try and keep him!”

 

Scott growled low in his chest, and his eyes flashed a deep red. It quieted Isaac immediately, and he got to speak. “I didn’t know he was leaving was why. If anyone, you should blame Derek for him leaving!”

 

Derek looked up from where he was sitting in the arm chair, but said nothing to his defense.

 

Allison was the one that spoke next, after a terse moment of silence. “Isn’t there a big pack up in New York City? They have some weird rule about borders, or I’ve heard from contacts.”

 

Derek’s eyes widened, “The García Pack. Dominic García is the Alpha. I visited with… with Laura. He’s ruthless. If Stiles is a mage, like Isaac said, he could be in real danger if he didn’t check in with Dominic before he entered the city.”

 

Scott’s nose wrinkled, “Why the hell would you care about Stiles, Derek? You’re the one that kicked him out of the pack!”

 

Derek paused and looked down at his hands, clenching his jaw. “He couldn’t be around me. I care too much. He would have gotten hurt.”

 

Lydia scoffed, “When you care about something, you can’t just ship it awa-”

 

“I can if the people I care about end up dying,” he snapped in return, eyes flashing red at the Banshee. Her jaw snapped shut and she narrowed her eyes at the Alpha, tilting her head to the side.

 

Something hit her just then - a realization. It had been too left field to catch until now, but when she put the pieces together, it all made sense.

 

The long, angsty glances Derek sent to Stiles, and the ones Stiles sent right back - but only when the other wasn’t looking.

 

The way Derek clammed up with his smiles and laughs whenever Stiles entered the room.

 

How Derek’s visits to the gym and the number of broken punching bags would increase whenever Stiles talked about being with someone or kissing a girl or a boy at The Jungle.

 

When Derek touched Stiles, how his hands would hesitate before the touch and be slow to pull away.

 

“You love him.”

 

 

Chapter Text

Stiles had been going through a rough spell lately. One thing piling up after another, and another, and another.Over the past few months, things had just been going south. His magic had been acting out more and more now that he had some semblance of freedom, his grade in AP Calculus had been plummeting thanks to his ADHD and dealing with living with the Avengers, the soreness from losing his pack, and some all around stress from life.

 

On top of all of that, today was the anniversary of his mother’s death.

 

It had happened eight years ago, when he was ten, but the memory was fresh in his mind whenever he brought it up. It had been a Sunday, and Stiles had been reading his favorite story book to his mom while she slept. Now, sometimes she didn't remember him back then, and he knew now that her brain had been dying, but back then it seemed silly. But when he had been reading, alone, while his dad was at work, he heard a loud beep. When he tried to wake Claudia up and she didn't move, the nurses had to pry the ten-year-old from her body while Stiles cried and cried until he couldn't breathe and blacked out.

 

The first words from his lips when he woke up were simple, to the point. “I'm sorry.”

 

And fast forward to eight years later, a month before Stiles’ birthday, it was the anniversary once again. The teen knew it, the moment he woke up in a cold bed. There were messages on his phone from Isaac and Lydia and his dad, checking to see if he was alright. He didn't respond, just buried himself in the blankets on the bed, hardly finding the motivation to move.

 

He couldn't find the motivation, or the warmth, of his spark. It was… Behind a wall. Or a shroud. The warmth was there and bright, but Stiles couldn't touch or use his spark.

 

In the morning bleariness, Stiles couldn't process it logically. His spark was gone. He was weak, and his new pack wouldn't want him. He was too weak.

 

He let himself cry into his pillows, letting his alarm blare in the background. He didn't have the energy to shut it off.

 

Only three months in, and he was falling apart.

 

 

----------------

 

Natasha knew something was wrong when she returned from her early morning run. On school days, she would run and shower before making sure Stiles was up and dressed, they would go and get breakfast, and she would drop him at school.

 

But when she passed by his room today, instead of hearing the normal waking up sounds, the alarm was blaring some jumpy pop song, and there was a soft sobbing sound under the loud music. She knew the crying wasn't part of the music track, but she wasn't one to invade a private moment.

 

Instead, she knocked on his door. “Stiles? I'm going to finish getting ready. Meet me in the kitchen, alright? You can skip one day of school,” she said softly, smiling when the alarm clicked off and she heard a gentle ‘okay.’

 

Her shower was brief and scalding, just how she liked it, and her outfit was what she wore on days off. Dark skin fitted jeans, a tight black tank top, and one of Bruce’s hoodies. Natasha sat silently on a recliner in the living room while she waited for the teen to come and join her.

 

it took him a while, but he eventually did meet her in the living room, dressed in simple dark jeans and a hoodie that obviously didn't belong to him. No one had to know he kept it because he could smell Derek in the fabric, and they most certainly didn't have to know that he had only kept it because Derek was still his Alpha. The bonds had been cut, but Stiles had been using a little magic every day to heal the end of his bond with Derek in hopes that it would reach out.

 

Natasha smiled when she saw Stiles up and dressed, his hair having been recently dyed back to a more natural brown and tousled nicely. It looked good on him. She stood and held out a hand, “C’mon, kid. We’re going to go and get ice cream, and come back to spar.”

 

“I won’t be any good sparring,” Stiles muttered, “I can’t reach my magic. It’s like there’s a wall.”

 

Nat frowned, but nodded slightly, “Well. We can get Loki to help with that when he gets up. Until then, we can work on your hand to hand as a backup, alright?”

 

Even though all she got in response was a smile, Natasha knew Stiles liked the idea (especially considering he was doing his best to hide a smile).

 

They made their way down the elevator and out the front door in mutual silence. Nat knew Stiles was down, and didn’t need her attempts at conversation to try and cheer him up. He needed silence, and his weird combination of ice cream that he loved.

 

Stiles put in his ear buds and walked quietly, letting soft and fortunately instrumental music clear his head as they made their way to the little ice cream parlor. When he got there, of course he ordered the usual - pistachio and coffee ice cream in a bowl, with the cone on top.

 

Natasha got Strawberry on a cone, as always.

 

They migrated to a small table right by the window, Stiles wrapping up his headphones and tucking them into his pocket. He took a bite of his ice cream and looked out the window, grinning slightly. “Hey, Nat. Look at that guy. Right there, in that blue sweater.”

 

Natasha raised an eyebrow and turned slightly, grinning when she did. “Stiles. Are you looking at asses while you eat ice cream? And you didn’t let me know first?”

 

He giggled, shrugging slightly. “Well. We can make it a game if you want. Who can find the best looking butt wins.”

 

Nat smiled and nodded, “Deal.”

 

Of course Stiles won in the end, and he knew Nat had surrendered to him. His observation was never that good without his spark. But he had ended up seeing a beautifully round butt, nudging Nat while he just stared. She had easily given the victory to him then, because no ass could be that beautiful.

 

Except for Derek’s.

 

Stiles hated how no matter what he did or where he went, he always found his mind slipping back to Derek. The few rare smiles he had gotten from the Alpha, the gentle noises when he did join in the puppy piles, the little touches and scenting that he did sometimes. Stiles missed him so much that his chest ached, and there was nothing he could do about it.

 

His mood was only slightly darkened by the thoughts of Derek, but he tried to stay happy and positive. Giggling with Natasha when he saw a nice butt, or smiling when she tried her hand and Polish. She was a remarkably quick study.

 

By the time they arrived back at the tower, it was nearing lunch time. They agreed on sparring for a bit, getting a light lunch, and continuing the training. Both parties went to their rooms and changed into light clothes, tighter and more suited for sparring.

 

Stiles made his way down to the basement, where the specially equipped gyms were for the avengers. He walked up to Natasha, where she was shifting on her feet on a large mat in the center of the room. He walked up to her and smiled, “Hey, Nat. You’re gonna take it easy on me, right?”

 

She laughed and shook her head, “You wish, Stilinski. You need to learn that your magic won’t always be there for you. You have to be able to fight like this.”

 

Stiles huffed and nodded, moving and spreading his feet slightly. “Alright. Let’s go, then,” he nodded, raising his fists in front of himself. He had wrapped them earlier, smiling slightly, “Gimme all you got. Don’t stop if you see blood, I’ve had worse.”

 

And it began. Dirty tricks and punches that had Stiles’ nose bloody and dribbling down his face, his lip split, and a nice bruise on his cheekbone. Not to mention the blood smudged on the floor from when he was taken down. But he got a few good hits in on Nat as well, leaving her nose bloody.

 

They kept going. Stiles opted for a break about halfway through, wiping the blood off of his lips so he could take a drink. With the sweat making his shirt stick to his torso, he decided against leaving his shirt on and pulled it off easily. He let his scars be seen, in the open, and he let out a little breath before returning to the mat

 

Natasha looked impressed and a little startled by the scars, but she kept going. Fighting and sparring until Stiles had somehow managed to pin her, straddling her hips and grinning down at her. “I told you. Living with Werewolves helps a little when it comes to fighting.”

 

Stiles looked up when he heard clapping from behind him, Natasha shoving him off. He chuckled from where he was splayed out on the mat, sitting up and wiping his mouth to get some of the blood from his lips.

 

Clint was standing there, looking rather impressed with a smug smile on his face. “Considering you got in a bloody nose and knocked her down, I’ll have to say you’re pretty good, Stilinski. Especially without your fancy magic tricks.”

 

Stiles shrugged, “What can I say? I fought too many fucking werewolves and shit to not know how to defend myself.”

 

Clint nodded, “Fair point, kid. What do you say - I don’t tell your uncle, and you can hook me up with that ring?”

 

“Fuck yes,” he smirked, “Fuck yes! Oh my god, I can’t believe you’re gonna propose. I’ll get dad to express mail it when I skype him tonight.” Stiles moved and wiped his nose, grimacing slightly, “After I see Loki. Have you seen him around?”

 

“I think he was in the kitchen baking something when I came down.”

 

Stiles rolled his eyes and moved to pull on a shirt, ignoring the pain in his nose as he caught the elevator up to the common floor, humming and looking around as he walked off. Immediately, Loki walked up to him, a picture of worry. He had changed the apron to a dark green to suit his favored color palette better, and his brow was furrowed as he looked down at the younger man.

 

“Genim, what happened to you?” he asked, moving to cup Stiles’ cheeks gently.

 

“Nothing, Loki, really. I just sparred with Nat. No holding back, and I can’t really reach my magic. Obviously I’ll get a little roughed up,” he shrugged, smiling slightly at the other.

 

“Your nose is broken, and your cheekbone could be cracked. Don’t call that nothing. And what do you mean, you can’t reach your magic?”

“No. It’s like… it’s like there’s some kind of veil keeping me from it,” he nodded gently.

 

Loki frowned, “That’s nothing to be taken lightly. It could be another source of power that’s separating you from your magic.”

 

Stiles frowned, “Can you… find out? Take a look and see what’s going on with it?”

 

Loki nodded gently, moving to gesture to the center of the living area. “Sit, please. Close your eyes.”

 

Stiles followed directions easy enough, moving and letting out a little sound before settling, peeking an eye open. Loki tutted, moving to place his hands on the boy’s temples.

 

There was a warm rush of air, and Stiles let out a little sound when Loki’s hands seemed to heat up against his skin. The god pulled back a moment later, and Stiles opened his eyes to try and look at the other man.

 

“It’s not an external source,” Loki said softly, shaking his head. “You… your magic has been blocked by emotions. Grief, sadness, pain. Would today or anything lately have caused those feelings or emotions?”

 

Stiles looked down at his hands and nodded gently, “Yeah, actually. Uh, my mom. Today is, uh, today’s the day she… you know. Eight years ago, exactly, today.”

 

Loki nodded gently and moved to cup Stiles’ cheek gently, “You must come to terms with your grief if you wish to regain a hold on your magic once more.”

 

“It’s not that easy, though,” he said softly, running a hand through his hair, “It’s not just that easy, Loki. I can’t just come to terms with my mom dying. I was the only person in the room when she died! The only one!”

 

Loki blinked and shifted from where he was sitting, nodding gently. “I see.”

 

Stiles stood and shook his head, moving to stalk to his room. “I’m gonna shower, and I’m gonna go out. I’ll be home sometime soon.” He walked to the elevator silently, taking it up to his room. The teen was really, really upset.

 

But then came an idea. He was eighteen in a month and a half, so it was easy enough to match up to the age on his fake ID. Perfect.

 

Stiles grinned and moved to pull together an outfit and rush to the shower, setting his nose (which was thankfully not broken) and cleaned up his cuts. He showered easily and got dressed in the revealing outfit he had pulled from the drawers of clothing. A nice pair of dark skinny jeans that clung to his muscled thighs and the pert curve of his butt, a tight white shirt with dark grey sleeves that showed off his rather nice muscle, and a pair of converse to match. He was totally, 100% ready.

 

And very glad that none of the others had been out and about. It was only about two in the afternoon, but it wouldn’t hurt to go walk around the city for a few hours until it got dark. Stiles packed up his wallet with money and his fake ID and a few condoms (just in case, you never know) before sneaking to the elevator and out the front door.

 

He managed a good five hours walking around and looking through shops, putting little reminders in his phone for things to get people for Christmas. Once it got dark outside, it was easy for him to find some club with flashing lights and thumping music. He flashed the ID and slipped inside with a wink and a swing of his hips at the guard.

 

It was even easier to persuade the bartender to let him have a good drink (even though it was more coke than whiskey, but the buzz wasn’t letting him complain).

 

Another thing Stiles wasn’t about to complain about? The quarterback from school approaching him and grinning at him with that look that just meant trouble.

 

Stiles let the guy - Richard, he remembered - drag him onto the dance floor. Stiles tended to be awkward when it came to walking and running and playing sports. But when Stiles was sparring, and when he was dancing - he was graceful. A mess of limbs too long for his body were graceful and sinful when Stiles was grinding back on someone twice his size, reaching back and holding tight to the other.

 

Richard grinned and let himself mouth at Stiles’ neck, nipping and sucking gentle marks there. Stiles didn’t mind in the slightest - he was feeling something, leaving the grief behind. When Richard suggested they go back to his apartment, Stiles agreed.

 

The trip was short, considering Richard lived a street away. The pair walked into the small apartment, and Stiles started the kiss. It was desperate and not at all caring or loving - it was just a drag of lips and teeth and tongue and stubble while Richard dragged the pair back to his room.

 

Desperate hands tugged at clothing, and they only broke their kiss to pull shirts over their heads and tug their jeans down over their hips.

 

Stiles was tossed down onto the bed once he was down to his black boxer briefs, and Richard climbed over top of him once he was down to his boxers as well.

 

“God, saw you at school nd didn’t think y’were all this. Fuck, Stiles,” Richard slurred, too drunk to notice the scars. And Stiles was far too drunk to care about covering up. All he cared about right then was how hard he was, and how much he needed Richard’s lips to keep going lower.

 

And Richard certainly didn’t disappoint.

 

His mouth slowly worked down Stiles’ neck and chest, leaving large dark marks in his wake. He finally made it to the waistband of his boxers and looked up, asking for permission. Stiles nodded and gave it easily, and Richard wasted no time pulling the boxers down and licking up Stiles’ hard length.

 

Stiles gave a sharp cry and arched, his hands tangling in the other’s hair. Richard grinned and moved to tug his boxers all the way down, pulling his down as well. He smirked and moved to get something from his bedside table. When he came back with lube and condoms, Stiles’ stomach did a little somersault.

 

Excitement and fear swirled, but when Richard squeezed out a dab of the lube and circled his puckered hole, the apprehension immediately faded. He whimpered and spread his legs, almost begging for the other to press inside.

 

Stiles cried out sharply when Richard first slipped a finger in, and he was whimpering and begging when it came to the second and the third. It was slow, Richard teasing his hole and crooking his fingers as he planted gently kisses to his hips, but finally he was up to four fingers and apparently satisfied with how desperate Stiles was, because he pulled back and let out a little sound.

 

The condom packaging was torn open and the condom easily rolled onto Richard’s member, and extra lube was applied. Their lips met once more, and Richard slowly slipped inside of Stiles’ lose hole. Richard grinned into the kiss as he slowly bottomed out inside of Stiles, the smaller man’s legs wrapping tightly around his waist.

 

Richard wasted no time in pulling one of Stiles’ legs up and resting the boy’s calf on his shoulder, gently rocking his hip into the other. He wished he had a camera to record the absolutely blissed out expression on Stiles’ face, and the loud moans and whines the smaller man was making. God, it was gorgeous.

 

The thrusting slowly picked up pace, and Stiles was arching and grabbing at Richard’s back harder. Faster. More desperately. He whimpered and tilted his head to the side, allowing Richard to nip and suck and bite at his neck, leaving it bruised and mottled with kisses.

 

“Close,” Stiles gasped, his nails scratching down the other’s back. Richard groaned and nodded against the other’s neck, “Yeah. M’close too.”

 

A moment later, a particularly long thrust made Stiles see stars and cum, spreading pearly ribbons of his release over his and Richard’s chests. Richard came a moment later, spilling himself in the condom before pulling out and tossing it. He came back with a damp towel, wiping Stiles off. He was boneless and blissed out, his eyes half-lidded and mouth hanging open slightly. Richard smiled and snuggled up under the covers with him, falling asleep before he saw Stiles pull on a shirt and lay down for a few hours of sleep. Thank god it was a Friday - Saturday now, but who was counting? - and that he didn’t have school.

 

 

----------------

 

Derek knew something was wrong when he felt some kind of apprehension and disgust curling in the center of his chest, right behind his solar plexus. It felt inexplicably wrong, whatever was happening.

 

He knew all of his pack was safe, they were all curled up in the living room in front of him, watching Allison and Lydia play Call of Duty. Each member was there, but it felt like one of the bonds was tugging, like someone was in danger.

 

Derek politely excused himself and walked to the study, where he had managed to find some of the family’s old diaries. He pulled up one from his mother, sitting at the desk and opening the old leather-bound journal. He paused before flipping to a specific section, chewing on the inside of his cheek when he felt the sensation intensify for a brief moment, making him feel betrayal and sadness.


The Alpha directed his attention down to the journal, his brow furrowing when he started reading an entry written in messy scrawl, obviously from when his mother was younger.

 

 

Talia Hale. January 24, 1969.

 

Dear diary,

 

My mother told me about a mating bond today. She explained that it was something to be cherished, not frightened. When I told her about the feeling I had, below my ribs, she explained to me that it was my mate. I haven’t met him yet, but mom told me that it was good that I had him there. The mate bond isn’t like a pack bond. It’s supposed to be invisible, but if your mate is a human or something, you have to turn them for the bond to be a pack bond. And it’s stronger than one with your Alpha. Wow, right?

 

The weird feeling I get, like something bad is about to happen or I might get sick, is him with someone else, doing the dirty. So he’s older than me, I think. I’m only ten, so he has to be at least fifteen to be with someone, right?

 

Anyway, I wanted to write it down. I have a mate! I’m part of a mating bond! Those are supposed to be fairy tales, where two wolves come together and make beautiful little wolf babies and have a wonderful strong pack.

 

I just have to meet him first, and hope that he realizes I’m his mate.

 

I haven’t met him yet, but I think I love him.

 

Then again, I am only ten. He might be rude. Or worse, he might like baseball. Ew.

 

Yours Truly,

Talia Hale.


Derek blinked and shook his head, pressing a hand to his chest. It couldn’t be a mate bond. He would have known before if he had a mate. Especially one that was with other people. The only other time he had felt like that was when he had heard something come from Isaac’s room, and Isaac was downstairs currently not having sex.

 

He had found out later that Stiles was the one that had been in there with Isaac.

 

No, no no.

 

Stiles was not his mate. He wouldn’t have cut him from the pack if he was his mate.

 

He wasn’t that heartless, was he?

 

 

-----------

 

When morning came back around in New York, the light shining down onto Stiles’ face as he laid in the bed, the teen blinked awake blearily and yawned. He froze when he felt himself without boxers, and just a shirt on. And there was a warm body next to him. He slowly turned to look, ignoring the pounding headache in the back of his skull.

 

Oh, God. Richard. The quarterback on the football team at school.

 

Stiles hurriedly got to his feet and pulled on his clothing, wincing at how sore he seemed from last night. Shit had gone down, apparently.

 

He hurried himself and got out of the apartment, taking his little walk of shame. But he made sure to grab a scarf on the way out the door, to hide the bruises that were promising to be dark and last a very long time.

 

He sighed as he made his way down through the streets, checking his phone as he went. Well, fifteen missed calls and twenty six text messages from various Avengers wasn’t good, that was for sure.

 

Stiles read through them and made his walk back to the tower, knowing his hair would be messed up from the sex he had had last night. And it was only for fucking forgetting his grief. And that made it worse, in the end.

 

The teen made it back to the tower about an hour later, wandering and walking back in the slow afternoon light. It was probably about eleven, maybe eleven thirty. He walked to the front door and let out a little sound, walking in and giving a weak smile to Happy as he walked in.

 

Happy looked at him with a bit of worry, but waved him up to the elevator, discreetly letting Tony know that Stiles had returned. The whole team had been nervous ever since Stiles had been gone the day previous, and they could only thank heaven that Coulson hadn’t found out yet that his nephew had gone missing.

 

But when Stiles showed up in last night’s clothes, smelling like alcohol and sex and regret, Tony and the rest were a little apprehensive. The kid wasn’t even eighteen, and he had gone to a club and hooked up with someone.

 

As soon as he saw Tony, he practically ran to the older man and hugged him tightly, trying to pretend like he wasn’t sobbing into his shoulder.

 

Tony looked a little helpless in this situation, but he rubbed a hand up and down Stiles’ back to try and soothe him. “Hey, kiddo. Hey. Shh, you’re alright. You’re home now. Right? You’re home.”

 

Stiles nodded and let out a little sound, crying against his shoulder. The boy pulled back a minute later, wiping at his eyes with a sheepish smile. “Sorry,” he murmured gently, “I… feel bad.”

 

Tony nodded and smiled at the other, “I know, I know. It’s okay though. Everyone goes out and does stupid stuff. You want help trying to get rid of those bruises, kiddo? Before your Uncle comes knocking and and sees ‘em?”

 

Stiles smiled slightly and nodded, “You’d help me out?”

 

“You’re pack,” he murmured, “You’re pack. Of course I’ll help you out. Always. Always.”

 

Stiles smiled and moved to press a kiss to Tony’s cheek, moving and stepping back with a little sound. He felt the sadness start to pull back, and joy start to replace it. Stiles only paid a bit of mind to the weird tugging feeling in the center of his chest, like a deep empty tugging that demanded his attention. It was soft, though, and dull in comparison to the love he felt from his pack.

 

The pack that had taken him in and made him feel like home.

 

Not the one that had kicked him out and cut the pack bonds, and most certainly not the pack that betrayed him after he had sacrificed his life for them.

 

And even though he felt the hate and anger still, he couldn’t help but feel a bit of longing and hope and a little bit of love for his pack back in Beacon Hills.

 

The pack with his best friend, his puppy, his catwoman, his expert wingman/number one red head, Creeper wolf and his daughter, their awesome fox spirit, the not-so-stoic bodyguard, the not-so-much-of-an-asshole-anymore, and the sourwolf he couldn’t help but feel a little warm towards, no matter how horrible the Alpha was to the him.

 

His family. No matter how much they had hurt him, or turned on him, or hurt him, he couldn’t turn his back on them.


Not yet.

Chapter Text

It had been a month since the incident. The night he had gone out and snuck into a club and had sex with someone to try and forget his feelings.

 

And today? Today was going to be fucking awesome. Because it was Stiles’ birthday.

 

And he was turning eighteen.

 

That meant he could finally get a tattoo - after school, of course.

 

The day was full of well wishes and happy birthdays, little gifts of chocolate and small toys and smiles from his classmates. It ended up being an absolutely wonderful day at school, despite having his AP Physics and AP Calculus classes that day.

 

Belle met up with him after school and walked him back to the Avengers tower, insisting that she pay for the tattoo he wanted. Stiles knew it would cost very little considering his standing with Jasper at Brambleberry Tattoos, but whatever his Alpha wanted, she got.

 

Stiles was already in a bright mood when he got home, so seeing Clint and Tony hanging out in the living room playing some video game that probably hadn’t officially come out.

 

When the two men saw Stiles and Belle come in and put on their heavier coats, they were curious.

 

“Where are you two pups going?” Tony asked, raising an eyebrow.

 

“I’m taking Stiles for his birthday present, no worries,” Belle grinned, waving a hand slightly as she tried to shoo Stiles out the door, hands pressing into the soft black jacket he had bought a few days ago. It didn’t get this cold in Beacon Hills.

 

“Where are you two going?” Clint asked, “Don’t try and slip any bullshit by us. Stiles looks guilty already, so he knows. Come on, tell me where you’re going.”

 

“I’m getting a tattoo,” Stiles shrugged, “No biggie. Just one on my side, I’ll be fine.”

 

Tony just about choked on air. “You’re kidding me, right? You were just going to sneak out of the house and get a tattoo? No way in hell I’m letting that happen.”

 

“I already made the appointment, though. Jasper is expecting me to be there in like thirty minutes,” he whined, “Come on, please don’t make me miss the appointment and stuff.”

 

Tony frowned, “Fine. We’re going with you.”

 

“What?Come on, really?” Stiles huffed, and Clint grinned.

 

“Hell yeah, kiddo. It’ll be fucking great to watch you cry when you get inked. There’s a reason none of us have tattoos.”

 

Stiles rolled his eyes, “I’ve been through worse. I’m not gonna cry.”

 

Belle chuckled, “You cried when you stubbed your toe this morning, Stiles.”

 

Stiles scoffed and shook his head, pulling his beanie on and stepping onto the elevator quickly. Tony, Clint, and Belle all followed, chuckling quietly in the elevator. Stiles did his best to ignore them as they rode down to the first floor so he could step off and start walking.

 

Clint and Tony stayed quiet for the most part, looking around curiously when Stiles started taking turns down alleys and back roads.

 

“Stiles, are you sure this is the right place?” Clint asked, looking at the seedy little place Stiles had stopped in front of. “I’ve been in some weird places, kid, but this looks a little… not good.”

 

“It’s fine, really! Jasper is a cool guy, and I freshened up his wards against other creatures, so he’s chill with me,” Stiles nodded, smiling and moving to open the door. He stepped in and smiled brightly the scent of various herbs and spells lingering in the air.

 

Belle looked up with wide eyes, “You’re kidding! You got an appointment in with him? He’s like, in the highest demand for magic tattoos, holy shit.”

 

Stiles smirked when Jasper, that mountain of a man, walked out of the back and wrapped him up in a tight hug that pulled him off his feet.

 

“Little Red! It’s good to see you again. Especially now. You’re eighteen, and you can begin to practice as a proper mage. Have you found your spirit guide yet?”

 

Stiles shook his head and shrugged, “No, but I heard you had a spell that could help me out with that.”

 

“Of course I do! I’ve got a little of everything. If your… guardians wouldn’t mind, we can go to the back to do the spell and find your guide. You want it tattooed, yes?”

 

“It depends. If it’s something lame like a rat, maybe not. But if it’s something cool? Yeah.”

 

Clint and Tony shared looks when the big man lead the two teens to the back, but followed to a small dark room nonetheless. They settled on the pillows they were indicated, and Stiles sat in the center of the room.

 

Jasper grinned, “Belle? As his Alpha, I need your help in this spell. I’ll do the chanting, but your hands must stay on his temples at all times. You will know what his guide is, and you must tell us while you see it.”

 

Belle nodded and settled in Stiles’ lap, moving and pressing her hands to his temples, closing her eyes with a soft sigh. Jasper began to chant softly, taking small pinches of spices and feathers, spreading the powders over the pair.

 

Stiles coughed and groaned, and Jasper held up a hand to Tony, who looked ready to jump up and get at him out of the situation.

 

Belle gasped and moved to open her eyes, her voice soft when she spoke, “A fox. A red fox. Bright, and big. But it was with something. Someone. A big wolf. Black. Red eyes.” She blinked and slid off of Stiles’ lap, trying to gauge his reaction. And it wasn’t a good one.

 

Stiles felt his breathing pick up, and his hands start to tremble. A fox. Like the nogitsune. It had been a dark fox, but it was still a fox. Belle’s touch started to calm him down, and he was able to process the ‘big black wolf’ part of her speech.

 

Jasper looked down at the boy and knelt next to him, pressing a hand to his bicep, “How have you not told me that you have a mate, Stiles?”

 

Stiles shook his head, his mouth opening and closing much like a fish, “No, no. I don’t… I don’t have a mate. I only know one black wolf, and he’s an Alpha if he has red eyes. It can’t be him.”

 

Jasper ran a hand up and down Stiles’ arm, “It is true. That spell does not lie. If this Alpha you have now is not your mate, and you know who your mate is, it’s a miracle that you didn’t notice he was your mate, or that you were his.”

 

Stiles nodded gently and gave a weak smile, “Thanks, Jasper. You… you think we could go and tattoo now? The pain I can handle, but this is stressful. Sitting here and thinking.”

 

Jasper smiled and nodded, “Yeah, kiddo. C’mon, I’ve got a chair open for you. Eli, that skinny kid that was here when you came in the first time, is gonna watch. That alright?”

 

Stiles nodded gently, “Yeah. Yeah, thanks.”

 

“Oh, I meant to tell you. Some wolf came in looking for you, said her Alpha wanted to talk with you,” he nodded, and Belle growled.

 

“What did you tell her?” she grit out, moving closer to Stiles.

 

“Just that he stopped by for some mountain ash,” Jasper nodded, hands raising in an imitation of surrender, “That’s all.”

 

Belle nodded, “That’s the old Alpha that kicked me from his pack. Like a three legged teenager posed a threat to his empire or something. He’s an ass.”

 

Stiles snorted, “Most Alphas are. Not you, Belle.”

 

--------

 

Once they had gotten to the back and laid Stiles out on his side, his shirt folded nicely to the side, Jasper called Eli over before he laid the stencil for the tattoo he had drawn up.

 

At first, the man had been startled by the scars the teen had collected on his skin, but Stiles shrugged it off and let him go and draw up the tattoo. It was beautiful, really, a lithe and lean red fox in an elegant battle with the dark wolf, their eyes the stark difference. The wolf’s eyes were bright and glowing red, and the fox’s eyes were a deep shade of amber and gold.

 

It was beautiful.

 

Stiles smiled when the template was laid on his skin, and shifted slightly to get comfy before nodding at Jasper. The needle buzzed when he started it up, and he dipped it in the ink.

 

“Now, why is there only one color of ink? The drawing was in color,” Clint pointed out, crossing his arms in front of his chest where he was sitting on a stool towards the corner of the room.

 

“Stiles is a mage. His spark is one of the strongest I’ve seen in my lifetime and heard of over others’ lifetimes. This ink is a blend of herbs and ink that will…. come to life with his spark. The tattoo won’t move, but the colors will be able to change. If his wolf mate ever surrenders his Alpha status and become a Beta, his eyes will be gold.”

 

“Blue,” Stiles said softly, looking at Jasper with a faint frown, “His eyes will be blue. He was young, it was a mistake.”

 

Jasper paused and nodded gently, “Blue, then.”

 

Tony looked between the two, “What’s the difference with eye color, then?”

 

Belle chuckled, “It’s for wolves. Three eye colors, that we know of. Red is for Alpha, like me. Gold is for Beta, like most. Blue is for Beta, or Omega. Betas with blue eyes have killed an innocent, and Omegas are feral werewolves, and are prone to kill easily. Blue eyes are a warning.”

 

“And your mate, you know he killed someone innocent?” Clint asked, tilting his head to the side.

 

“He was young, it was his first love, you know? He tried to turn her, and she didn’t accept the bite. She died, and she was innocent. So, beautiful blue eyes for him, until he gained the Alpha title.”

 

“Well, it’s a good thing he got it, right?” Jasper asked, trying to keep the mood light as he worked on Stiles’ tattoo. The teen showed no sign of pain, which was rather odd considering it was on his ribs and over scar tissue.

 

“I mean, his whole family had to die for it to happen. They were sorta burned alive by hunters,” Stiles nodded, swallowing quietly, “Trapped in the house with wolvesbane. Mother, father, sister, younger brother, aunts and uncles. All of them but his youngest sister and him, and his uncle somehow. His uncle is a creep, though.”

 

When Stiles finished speaking, the room dulled to the faint buzz of the needle as Jasper worked, everyone feeling a little awkward. But Stiles just closed his eyes and let himself doze off to sleep.

 

Clint looked around the room once the teen was asleep, letting out a little breath, “Is it weird to anyone else how the kid is literally taking a nap while he’s getting his ribs tattooed? Like, is that odd?”

 

Jasper shrugged, “Kid’s been through a lot. Scars are proof enough of that. The ones on his back mean he’s been tortured, for a good month or so I’d say. He can take the pain. And he said something about a nogitsune - those buggers like to inflict pain. So for sure, he’s good with it.”

 

Tony coughed and stood, trying to hide the obvious pain in his voice when he managed a small, “I’ve gotta make a phone call.”

 

Jasper nodded and went back to work on the tattoo, the color appearing in the ink as soon as it was in Stiles’ skin.

 

It only took about an hour and a half to finish the piece, considering all Jasper had to do was fill in the lines with one color of ink. Once it was finished and neatly healing, Belle woke Stiles up gently. She paid for the tattoo with a grin and a kiss to Jasper’s cheek that left the man blushing even after he started cleaning up his station.

 

As usual, he filled Stiles’ arms up with goodies from his shop, making the mage promise to come back and return soon.

 

Stiles promised he would come back for Christmas gifts and gave Jasper a warm hug before he lead the group out of the little tattoo shop and back to the Avengers tower. Tony had to break off because there was apparently some delivery or something waiting for him, but Stiles, Clint, and Belle all went right up to the common floor.

 

The rest of the team was there, along with two new people Stiles hadn’t met before. A girl that looked maybe twenty, and a man that was much taller than her but looked about the same age.

 

He smiled at Stiles, and the girl looked a little apprehensive. When he spoke, it was with a thick accent that Stiles immediately recognized. So they were from Russia, then.

 

He immediately let himself drop into Russian, making the female of the pair smile warmly.

 

“I’m Wanda,” she nodded, her voice easy now that she was speaking her native tongue, “this is my brother Pietro. We’re from Sokovia, how do you speak the language?”

 

“I’m a mage,” Stiles nodded, grinning when he saw the look of confusion on Steve’s face, (it was yet another language he could speak thanks to the green gem around his neck, “Loki tells that I have allspeak, but I found a spell and transferred it to a crystal I wear around my neck, so I can speak any language.”

 

Wanda smiled, “So you are a mutant too, like us?”

 

“No, I’m a mage. I’m in tune with nature. It’s strange, but like werewolves and ghosts and banshees? I’m one of those kinds of things. What can you two do?”

 

Pietro grinned and flitted around the room, ending up next to Stiles holding his coat that had been in his room. Wanda rolled her eyes and simply let the red glow encompass her hand before quickly dissipating it. “They call us Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch.”

 

“Awesome. I don’t have a superhero name yet, but I should get one soon. I’m Stiles, by the way.” He shook both of their hands and turned to the rest of the team, who were looking in an odd sort of fascination at the trio. Including Belle. Stiles just shrugged and grinned, running a hand through his hair.

 

“Oh! I wanted to show you! I got a tattoo, present from Belle,” he nodded, moving to roll up his shirt to show the fox and the wolf, smiling softly when a few inched closer to take a look at the mostly healed piece of art in his skin.

 

“Why a wolf?” Bucky asked, his voice quiet and low.

 

Stiles paused and smiled faintly, “Well. My… mate, you could call him, is a werewolf. That’s what his full shift looks like. I just learned about him today, but apparently my spirit guide is all tangled up in that mess with him, so the guy that did my tattoo just added him in there. And he… fits.”

 

Their little moment was over when Tony returned, holding a rather large box covered in stickers and tape, a large return address on the top.

 

“Dude, what is that?” Stiles asked, dropping his shirt back down and raising an eyebrow.

 

“I don’t know. But I do know that it’s for you,” Tony nodded, his face abnormally grim and still.

 

“I didn’t order anything online, though, I swear,” he said, shaking his head slightly.


“It’s from Beacon Hills, Stiles. For you, from the pack.”

Chapter Text

Beacon Hills, one week ago.

 

“We have to get a Christmas present for Stiles,” Isaac said softly, one day when the pack had joined in the movie room sans Derek. “We might not have the pack bonds, but he brought us together, you know? We have to get him something, but I don’t know what to get him.”

 

Lydia nodded, Allison and Malia shifting on themselves until Allison spoke up, “What about… I dunno, you know how he would always wear everyone’s clothes? Maybe everyone could send him a sweatshirt or something? So he has the scent.”

 

Erica grinned, “That’s perfect! He’d always pretend he didn’t take our stuff, but we know it was him. I think he took some of our stuff to New York anyways.”

 

Isaac smiled brightly, “Oh my god, yes! And everyone can record a video for him, and put it on a DVD or something? Decorate the case to represent us or whatever?”

 

Kira smiled and nodded slightly, “I like the idea. Is everyone on board?”

 

“What about Derek?” Scott asked, “Is he gonna do the video thing? Stiles always stole his stuff the most.”

 

Erica shrugged, “We can just take one of his big hoodies or something. For the DVD, we just have to catch him off guard.”

 

-------------

 

The next few days were filled with sneaky passing around the video camera and asking Danny for help with the DVDs, and Lydia for help with the cases.

 

They each had a little video on their disc in their cases, wrapped up nice and neat like a present in the article of clothing they were sending to Stiles.

 

Boyd sent a worn t-shirt Stiles liked to borrow on laundry days, Erica sent her Catwoman sleep shorts, Lydia sent a nice scarf and beanie set, Scott his favorite hoodie, Allison sent a pair of sleep pants covered in little pink flowers, Kira sent a simple apron, and Malia sent the robe Stiles had borrowed of hers.

 

With their DVDs all snuggled in the articles of clothing, all that was left was Derek’s piece. But Isaac said he had that covered.

 

True to his word, the next day there was a warm hoodie from Derek’s closet and a little DVD with a simple black and red cover. They packed the box and shipped it off, hoping it would make it in time for Stiles’ birthday.

 

--------------

 

Stark Tower, present day

 

Stiles moved to take the box slowly, hesitating when he felt how much it weighed. Not too much, but not light either. He looked up at everyone and gave tight smiles all around before turning towards his room, “I’ll, uh, be down soon. Promise. Sorry to disappear, but….”

 

Tony nodded and smiled, waving him up. The teen scurried to his room and closed the door, opening the box slowly. He was hit with the scent of pack as soon as he opened the box, and ignored the tears on his cheeks while he moved to pull the first bundle out. An apron, with a simple red and gold cover on the case inside. He grabbed his laptop and slipped the DVD in, smiling softly when he saw Kira’s face on the screen.

 

Her message was short and sweet, and Stiles giggled at a few of the jokes she told.

 

Next up was the Catwoman shorts and a bright yellow case, Stiles having to pause before he put the DVD in his computer.

 

“Hey, Batman,” Erica smiled from where she was sitting, on her bed. Boyd was holding the camera (it was easy to see him in the mirror behind Erica).

 

“So, it’s been a while. I know. And… I miss you. We miss you, Stiles. The pack is managing, but just barely. I’m glad you’re doing well out there in New York or wherever, I really am. Your instagram posts of the scenery out there are life since out here it’s just trees and open land. But, uh, I miss you Batman. I do, a lot. I hope you’re doing alright, ‘cause we’re managing over here. Love you, Stilinski.”

 

Stiles wiped his eyes and sniffed, pulling out the next. Scott’s hoodie that literally never left his back. It even smelled like it hadn’t been washed in three weeks, as usual. But that’s what made it Scott’s hoodie.

Scott settled from where he was obviously recording himself while seated at a desk, clearing his throat slightly.

 

“Hey, buddy. Uh, I know it’s been a while. And I know it’s been ridiculous, not having you here and you being all the way in New York. My dad’s up there, I think. Or in Washington. I dunno anymore. Anyway. I just… I miss you, Stiles. It’s hard not having my wingman here.”

 

He smiled faintly at the camera, “I know I’ve been busy with Allison and Kira and all of that lately, and I just… I didn’t know how hard you were working. I’ve been a shitty best friend, not noticing all of that. Isaac told us how worn out you were. So… I guess you’re better off there, huh? Where we can’t hurt you any more.”

 

The Alpha wiped at his wet eyes and sniffed, “I miss you, Stiles. It’s like I’m missing my other half. But… if you’re safer or happier or both up where you are, I’m happy you’re there. I love you, man. You remember when we were eight and running in the woods and we both scraped our elbows? Blood brothers, forever. Just because I’m a wolf and you’re not doesn’t mean anything. I know Derek’s offered you the bite in the past, so I won’t go and say if you want it to come to us. But… if you do… I’d love to help you figure out how to be a wolf, just like you helped me. I never would have made it without you, man.”

 

God, tears stung when they got too salty. Stiles wiped at his eyes and let out a little sound, having to take a minute to catch his breath before stretching and pulling out Malia’s DVD. Hers was short and sweet and small, and Stiles smiled after the sadness that had been Scott’s disc.

 

Isaac’s was next. He smiled softly and breathed in the Pup’s scent while he watched the DVD. It was surprisingly short, but interesting.

 

Isaac sat in the hallway, grinning slightly. “Hey. You know I love you and all, but Derek has started doing something and it's on his disc. Watch Allison’s and everyone's before his. Save it for last.”

 

“Isaac?” Came Derek’s voice, “are you coming?”

 

Stiles giggled and watched Boyd and Allison’s videos, smiling at each. But then… Then came Derek’s.

 

It was very obviously filmed from a sneak camera on Isaac’s shirt or something. The video quality and frequent movement told him that. But what was odd was that Isaac was sitting at a… Piano? And Derek was sitting off to the side on a stool? What was going on?

 

Isaac started on the piano slowly, his fingers dancing over the keys. He made sure his camera could see Derek, and he had obviously gotten a good microphone, going on how well the audio was coming through.

 

Stiles was expecting something weird, about sniffing butts and eating raw deer hearts. But when he heard the first line in that rich voice, the teen froze.

 

“Hello. It's me.”

 

Derek was singing Adele, and her new song of all things.

 

And he was singing it beautifully.

 

Stiles was sobbing by the time Derek finished, but he could see Derek look up when Isaac whispered something about a camera. Cue a chase scene across the whole house, and Isaac explaining it was for Stiles.

 

Derek seemed to freeze up in the video, but he nodded and disappeared.

 

The video ended, and Stiles didn't know what to do with himself. Derek had just belted out some stupid ridiculous Adele song and Stiles’ chest felt tight.

 

He moved to switch his shirt out for the pullover that had belonged to Derek, closing his eyes and sighing softly when the familiar smell of pine and spice surrounded him.

 

Stiles walked back down to the living room and smiled softly, running a hand through his hair. He smiled at the group in the living room, shifting slightly on himself before taking a seat next to Tony and leaning against the older man, closing his eyes gently.

 

Tony wrapped an arm around Stiles’ shoulders gently, rubbing his arm gently. “You wanna share what was in the box, kid? Was it skins of those wolves?”

 

“They made me videos,” Stiles said softly, “each one. They… Had a camera and recorded themselves and each other. Talking. They sent a piece of clothing too.”

 

Steve raised an eyebrow, “and who does that one belong to?” He asked, gesturing to the hoodie Stiles was wearing now.

 

“Derek,” the teen murmured, “this one was Derek’s.”

 

Belle gave a little gasp and cooed, moving to scoot from her place at Natasha’s feet to Stiles’.

 

“Who is Derek?” Pietro asked, wincing when Wanda hit his shoulder.

 

“He was my old Alpha. The pack I was in. He was my Alpha. And is, apparently, my mate,” he murmured, looking down at his hands, “the whole tattoo thing.”

 

Clint let out a little sigh, “kiddo, maybe you don't wanna wear that one? He's the one that hurt you, didn't he? Because he thought you were a human?”

 

“Yeah,” Stiles sighed, “but he… Cares. Can… Can Jarvis pull up the video? From my computer? I left the disc in there.”

 

“I most certainly can, Mr. Stilinski. Just a moment,” JARVIS replied, the TV flicking to life.

 

The video played slowly, and Stiles had to hide his face to try and keep the tears from coming. But when he looked up after the video had finished, he saw he wasn't the only one crying. Clint and Bruce had a few tears in their eyes as well.

 

Natasha shifted and looked to Stiles with a frown, “that's your Mate? The one that sang?”

 

Stiles gave a small wordless nod in response, almost scared of her response.

 

But Natasha just hummed and moved to stand, reaching behind her chair to pull out a small box, nearly wrapped in white glittery wrapping paper.

 

“I know we normally wait until after cake to do presents, but I think there's a reason to make an exception this time, don't you?”

 

Tony smiled and nodded, “alright, everyone, go get your gifts!”

 

Pietro and Wanda shifted awkwardly in their seats, and Stiles grinned. “You two came in today. Meeting you was enough of a gift. Promise,” he nodded, easily putting the twins at ease before everyone else came back, toting presents.

 

Stiles settled on the center of the living room, pulling Natasha’s gift into his lap. He paused and looked around, frowning slightly. “Where's Uncle Phil?”

 

“Right here, Kiddo,” Phil smiled, stepping off of the elevator with a large box in his arms, wrapped in soft pink wrapping paper.

 

Stiles grinned and waved him over, “C’mon! We’re doing presents now.”

 

Phil furrowed his brows, “I thought we were going to do cake first, Tony? Isn’t cake the most important part of a birthday? Not that I’m quoting something you said, it’s just a guess.”

 

Tony scoffed, “Stiles got a package from Beacon Hills, from the pack. He was a little upset, so we’re doing presents now.”

 

Phil nodded in understanding and carefully laid the box down among the other presents, pulling up a chair from the dining room a moment later. “Alright, kiddo, go on. Open it up.”

 

Stiles smiled and moved to carefully peel the wrapping paper back, grinning when he had to open a simple wooden box to get to a set of simple yet elegant and surely functional silver knives.

 

Natasha shrugged from where she was sitting, “I heard silver was what could hurt wolves. Figured you might make use of a set of silver knives.”

 

“They’re beautiful, Nat. Thank you,” Stiles smiled softly, folding the wrapping paper up and moving to set the box to the side.

 

Belle growled and looked at the box, “you know if those touch me, you're gonna have secrets spilled from one coast to the next, right, Stiles?”

 

The next was a red and gold bag, clearly from Tony. Stiles grinned as he pulled it closer to himself, humming and moving to open it slowly.

 

When he pulled it out, he found a sort of blanket. But it had something in it to make it heavy, and a sort of metal thing inside. “I know it’s a blanket, but…?”

 

Tony chuckled, “It’s, uh, sorta like a weighted blanket. So it feels like a hug. And there’s a thin metal skeleton inside, so it can.. hug you. You always talk about feeling lonely when you sleep, so I figured this might help?”

 

The teen smiled brightly, “Dude, Tony, it’s amazing. Thank you so much. I’m gonna use it for a nap later on, oh my god. This is amazing.”

 

Tony chuckled and shrugged, “It’s nothing, kiddo.”

 

“Hush. You invented something for me, I get to be in awe for a little while.”

 

Clint rolled his eyes, “Alright, Stiles. Open the purple one next. You’ll like it.”

 

‘The purple one’ was a bundle of something wrapped in a matte purple paper that looked like it was barely holding together with a bit of scotch tape here and there. Stiles moved to open it tentatively, and sighed at what he found. It was beautiful, yes, and probably very effective.

 

But it was a fucking red cloak, made out of some of the softest material he had ever felt, even though it was somewhat rigid and almost surely bullet resistant.

 

“I heard that guy at the tattoo shop call you little red earlier, so I ran out where I remembered seeing this in a lab at the Shield building. It’s got pockets and stuff,” Clint shrugged, smiling slightly.

 

Stiles grinned and looked at the fabric, how delicate it looked but how sturdy it felt. “I love it, Clint, really. I’ll tolerate you calling me little red if I can wear this.”

 

Clint grinned, and Thor laughed. “Now we can match, brother Stiles!”

 

“Now we can match, big guy,” the teen nodded, humming slightly as he folded it back up.

 

Stiles was a little slower when he reached for the next present - a large rectangle that felt strangely delicate in his hands. He smiled and moved to set it in his lap before gently pulling the wrapping paper off, gasping at what he found.

 

This one was from Steve, then.

 

It was a drawing of him, sitting out on the roof. It had been a few weeks ago, when he had just dyed his hair back to brown. The scene was beautifully drawn in pencil before outlined and colored pens had been used to go over the lines, making a colored outline looking piece. It was difficult to describe, but Stiles took a deep breath and looked up at the supersoldier, managing a soft ‘thank you’ to the other man before looking down at the picture.

 

He sniffed and set the picture to the side carefully, smiling and wiping at his eyes once more before moving on. A few people were craning their necks to take a look at the picture while Stiles opened up the next gift - a deep green box with a purple bow on top.

 

Stiles gasped at what was inside and immediately jumped up to hug Bruce, letting out a little sound. “Oh my god! You got like, all of the rare plant seeds I have been scouring the internet for forever holy shit!” he grinned, pulling back and grinning before sitting down again, looking over the small packets in the box that held what would promise to be some lovely plants in his room.

 

Tony rolled his eyes, “Only you could get that excited about plants, kiddo.”

 

“You talk to me when you’ve spent three years trying to get your hands on seeds for Mandrake root and you get like twenty seeds!”

 

“Yeah, you’re definitely something else,” Tony chuckled, shaking his head. “Come on and keep unwrapping, kiddo. We have dinner in like, an hour, and I know you’re gonna want to play with your new toys.”

 

Stiles huffed and moved to look over the bags left, selecting a small silver box with a deep forest green ribbon around it. Something felt different about it. Stiles moved to open the box gently, gasping when he saw what was inside.

 

On a bed of soft green velvet sat a small circlet that looked like it was braided with shimmering silver string, small green jewels woven in. On some of the thicker parts of the braiding, there were small runes carved into the circlet. Stiles picked it up very gently and looked at it with wide eyes, trying to find a tag of a name.

 

Loki smiled at Stiles and shifted where he was standing in the corner, “It comes from Asgaurd. One of the royal blacksmiths started jewelry making, and I asked him to make this. It focuses and strengthens energies and magics when you perform spells, so you don’t need to be as vocal with your casting.”

 

Stiles smiled brightly, “Oh, it’s so beautiful! I love it so much. Thank you, Loki. Really, it means a lot. It’s stunning.”

 

Loki dipped his head to acknowledge the thanks, too embarrassed to say more.

 

Phil’s box was next. The large box was very, very light. Stiles moved to pull it down, letting out a little sound before opening it slowly. It was empty, save for two pieces of paper tucked in an envelope taped to the side.

 

Stiles reached down and grabbed the envelope, opening it slowly.

 

“No way.”

 

“Yes, way.”

 

“Holy shit,” Stiles grinned, moving and holding up two tickets to a Mets game, “Oh, god, these must have cost a fortune,” he said softly.

 

“Just look at where the seats are,” Phil grinned, sitting back in his seat, arms crossed over his chest.

 

“Row numb- Oh my god. Oh my god, you got the seats behind Home Plate. Oh my god, Uncle Phil!” Stiles grinned, looking up with wide eyes.

 

“I remember you telling me that sitting in those seats was on your bucket list. You and your dad, watching the Mets, right behind home plate. So, I got you the tickets.”

 

Stiles smiled up at him and nodded slightly, “Thank you, Uncle Phil. It means a lot.”

 

There was a very, very brief lul before Thor broke the silence with a big clap, “Well, brother Stilisnki. It seems as though it is my turn to give you a gift for the anniversary of your birth.”

 

Stiles chuckled, “Alright, big guy.”

 

“I wish for you to have the chance to lift Mjolnir,” he nodded, grinning slightly. Thor held out his hand, and the hammer came flying into his palm effortlessly. He set it down on the floor and nodded to Stiles.

 

Stiles shifted on himself and bit his bottom lip, “I don’t… I don’t know…”

 

“Aw, Come on, Stiles. Why wouldn’t you be able to lift it? You’re just now eighteen,” Clint poked, grinning slightly at the younger boy.

 

He paused as memories of the nogitsune came back and flooded his head, killing people and trying to kill people he cared about, and all of the supernatural creatures he had taken on to protect the pack. Even with all of those memories buzzing in his head, Stiles moved to reach forward and grab the handle, closing his eyes before pulling up.

 

And the hammer lifted.

 

The room was filled with shocked silence for a moment, and Thor belted out a loud laugh. “It seems as though the young Mage is truly powerful, and has already managed to balance his light with his dark. It is a feat even some of our most powerful sorcerers have struggled with, and you have accomplished it so early in life. You are truly special, brother Stilinski.”

 

Stiles stared at the hammer in his hand and tilted his head to the side, “I don’t understand. Why am I… why am I worthy? Steve isn’t even worthy! How am I worthy?”

 

“We don’t question the hammer, Stiles,” Tony admonished, earning a pinched look from Thor, “Oh, come on. You’re young. You haven’t done too much bad with your life. I mean, bad shit has been done to you, but-”

 

“No, really Tony,” Stiles pressed, I’ve k-”

 

“Done things that you regret,” Natasha butted in, knowing exactly what road that line of thought went down. “You’ve got red in your leger. All of us here do. But what Thor said, about having light and dark, you just balanced the light with the dark. It takes strength to do that. You’re worthy of that hammer, Stiles.”

 

Steve smiled and nodded, “You are. None of us here but Thor are worthy of that thing, and now you are too.”

 

“I believe Natasha was also able to wield Mjolnir,” Loki chipped in, grinning slightly.

 

“What? Nat, you didn’t tell us you can hold the magic god hammer?” Clint pouted, and Natasha shrugged, “I already knew when you all decided you needed to know. That’s why I didn’t need to find out.”

 

Stiles laughed, “Oh my god, this is amazing. Like, absolutely amazing. Natasha can lift the hammer. Sweet.”

 

Phil clapped his hands together and stood, moving to walk to Stiles, “You should go and put the gifts away while we get dinner ready, kiddo.”

 

“You all made dinner? I’m terrified.”

 

“Haha, very funny. Loki cooked most of it,” Bruce shrugged.

 

Stiles relaxed slightly and nodded, “At least I have faith he can magic the food to taste good if he burns it. I’ll be back soon.”

 

Stiles gathered all the gifts and put them in appropriate places in his room, smiling softly when he put everything where it belonged. It felt right. He made his way downstairs to the dining room once more, grinning when he saw everyone at the table with freakin’ grilled cheese sandwiches in the middle of the table, stacked high on a platter.

 

“Holy Shit. There’s no way the God of Mischief made grilled cheeses.”

 

“But he did, and they’re delicious,” Clint nodded, already on his second.

 

Dinner went by easily, filled with little conversations, big laughs, and even bigger smiles. It was getting late, and no one had the baking talent Stiles did, so there wasn’t a cake. But cupcakes were shared, and happy birthday songs were sung, and everything was… nice.

 

Domestic.

 

It felt right, but like it was missing something. Just a little something that left him aching for more.

 

Stiles finished up and called it a night, hugging everyone and thanking them for their presents before heading up to his room. When he got there, his phone rang.

 

Weird, it was dinner time in Beacon Hills, his dad wouldn’t be calling him. And everyone had wished him happy birthday at school today. But when he saw the name on the caller ID, everything sort of clicked into place.

 

Sourwolf

 

Derek was calling him.

 

Stiles slowly answered and pressed the phone to his ear, answering with a tentative, “Hello?”

 

What he got was definitely not what he had been expecting. He had been thinking Isaac using Derek’s phone, or the pack surprising him.

 

Definitely not Derek Hale himself and his stupid rich buttery voice singing some slow acapella version of ‘Happy Birthday’ that made Stiles want a million hugs and maybe a kiss or two. That was his mate, singing that song.

 

After it had ended, there was a soft silence on the phone before Derek whispered, “I’m Sorry,” into the line, clearly meaning to hang up.

 

Stiles just managed to get out a hurried, “Wait!” before the Alpha hung up. “I… I wanted to say thank you. I got the package, from the pack. I’m wearing your stupid hoodie Isaac sent for you, and your video. I cried. And… yeah. Life is dumb and you’re amazing. Also, you’re my mate. So… yeah. Don’t be sorry that you just made my night.”

 

Once again, silence. Derek had never been much for talking.

 

“I’m glad to make you happy on your birthday, Stiles,” the Alpha said softly, “but I don’t want to hurt you more than I already have.”

 

“Oh, shut up, sappywolf. If I’m your mate, you won’t get rid of me that easily.”

 

“Happy Birthday, Stiles. Goodnight.”

 

The call clicked to an end, and Stiles went to bed with a smile on his face that night.

 

Chapter Text

Stiles wasn’t the only one to go to bed with a smile on his face that night. Derek, after hanging up on the call, could feel the first real smile tugging onto his face in what seemed to be months. He had been miserable since Stiles left. The mage had been the glue that kept the pack together, and he was trying to keep everyone together. But his act in separating Stiles from the pack had driven the others to hold some serious grudges against him, and the pack wasn’t doing well because of it.

 

But talking to Stiles again? Being able to wish him a happy birthday and tell him that he was his mate? That made him smile and radiate more happiness than he could remember giving off since before the Hale fire.

 

And that was something.

 

He slept without nightmares for the first time in weeks, the morning coming all too quick for the deep sleep he had been in. But he woke up to the smell of pancakes and bacon, and got up quickly. A quick shower and some proper clothing later, and he was headed down to the kitchen to find a few groggy pack members chowing down, and a very awake Allison and Lydia making the breakfast.

 

He offered the two a small smile, ignoring the stares he got with the scent of happiness that he was carrying around, and the fact that he had actually smiled.

 

Isaac was the first to speak up. “What’s got you so happy today, Derek?”

 

Scott tilted his head and listened in, clearly interested.

 

Derek just shrugged, “Talked to a friend last night,” he murmured, knowing they wouldn’t hear the pip in his heartbeat, because he wasn’t lying.

 

“On the phone?” Scott asked, raising an eyebrow.

 

“Yes, on the phone. It’s not exactly easy to skype with someone living in a house of wolves,” Derek bit back, earning a surprised grin from Isaac. So maybe Stiles was good for him.

 

“Who?” Allison asked, turning around and smiling at the wolves in the little dining area from her spot at the stove, still in her pajamas.

 

Now, that was a difficult question. Should he tell them? Before Derek could think twice, all that came out was, “My mate.”

 

“Your mate? ” Lydia asked, peeking in behind Allison with a loaf of bread in her hand and a breadknife in the other. “How the hell didn’t any of us know you had a mate, Derek?”

 

Derek’s jaw clenched and he let out a soft sigh, “I found some of my mother’s journals, that didn’t get harmed by the fire. They were in storage. Her and my dad were mates. True, destined, soul mates. And when they sleep with someone else that isn’t their mate, like my mate did about a month ago, I felt sick. Like I was going to vomit, and like something was grabbing my heart. So I read, and it’s… when your mate is with someone else, you can feel it. And, well, there was only one person that made sense. I had felt it a few times before, but it was strong this time.”

 

Isaac and Scott were staring at Derek - he didn’t talk that much at once for no good reason. And the slight blush on his cheeks meant it was a very, very good reason.

 

Lydia, on the other hand, had her eyes narrowed as she looked Derek over. “You’re serious? Him? You’ve got some work to do, buddy.”

 

“Wait, who is it?” Scott asked, looking to Lydia and back to Derek for answers.

 

Isaac paused for a moment and tilted his head, his mouth forming a little ‘o’ when he figured it out. “Stiles.”

 

--------------

 

A few weeks later, the delicate balance Derek’s pack had reached was tested. He received an email from the Garcia pack, and it was… worrying, to say the least. But at least they had been contacted.

 

Hale-McCall pack,

 

I am contacting you on behalf of the Garcia pack, located in New York City. It has come to our attention that a very powerful mage has crossed into our territory and has taken up residence with some high profile people, so we cannot sort out this territory dispute. We spotted him wearing a Beacon Hills sweatshirt, so we are contacting you in order to find out if he is part of your pack, and why you sent him without telling my pack.

 

Regards,

Garcia Pack.

 

Derek knew that was bad news for Stiles. Very, very bad news. He sighed softly and moved to stretch where he was seated as his desk, running a hand through his hair. It had gotten long since Stiles had left, there was no one to remind him to cut it.

 

Derek looked down at his hands and huffed, trying to figure out a response to the email. He eventually got one up, and sent it back to the Garcia Pack.

 

Garcia Pack,

 

I apologize for his intrusion. He was cut from the pack recently, and went to spend time with extended family in New York. He means no harm to your pack, or to the city. We hurt him and he wanted to get away. Please let him be, and contact him in a safe manner.

 

Hale-McCall Pack.

 

There, that should do the trick. Now, the only thing to do was wait.

 

---------------

 

Four days later, an email came in. And the content was… worrying, to say the least.

 

Hale-McCall Pack,

 

The mage has still not come to us, despite his months in our territory. We will be arranging a meeting of sorts in one week’s time. Advise him on matters, but do not believe that we will leave this infraction without appropriate measures.

 

Garcia Pack.

 

Derek let out a distressed whine after reading the short email, picking up his laptop and immediately carrying it into the livingroom. When he found no other Pack members there, he paused before sitting on the couch and letting out a deep breath.

 

He could do this.

 

He was Derek Hale.

 

The Alpha moved and let out a sigh, quickly going to a travel website. He booked nine airline tickets to New York six days from the present. It wasn’t like he didn’t have the money. The Hale family had always had quite a bit of financial padding, and the Life Insurance policies for most of his family and the house helped a good bit.

 

The pack was going to New York City over Spring Break.

 

He made sure to drop an email to the Garcia pack, to let them know when and where they would be crossing the territory lines and how long they would be staying.

 

It would be one hell of a week.

 

-----------------

 

Stiles was having his own issues, up in New York. He was on track for early graduation, the sunday afternoon right at the end of Spring Break. His AP classes and high test scores had him boosted to Valedictorian quickly thanks to there being no equal to Lydia Martin at his new school.

 

Early graduation, with honors, Valedictorian, 4.5 GPA. Stiles was going places. He knew he would have to look at colleges at some point, but for now he was focused on getting the last few exams knocked out so he could get that diploma and walk across the stage.

Belle had been absent for two days, telling him something about a surgery she had to get to fix something in the stump of her leg. Stiles didn’t mind - it gave him a chance to stop by somewhere he had been meaning to go and look into something.

 

After school, which had been exhausting and long thanks to his exams he was taking early, he went ahead and walked to Bramblebush Tattoos, walking into the shop with a bright grin on his face. “Hey, Jasper.”

 

The man looked up with wide eyes - he hadn’t been expecting the young mage back for a few days. “Hey, Stiles. What’s got you in this neck of the woods?”

 

“Well,” he started, shifting and running a hand through his hair, “I was wondering if you were hiring? I’d like a job since I’m graduating on the early track over spring break, and -”

 

“Say no more, Stiles. You’re more than welcome to start. How about you come on back and get going with the paperwork, and we’ll sign you up for some shifts to fit into your schedule?”

 

Stiles grinned and nodded, “Hell yeah, that sounds like a plan. I might have to get a few more tattoos to fit in with the rest of the employees.”

 

Jasper snorted, “Friends and family get ink as long as they can give me something in return. Working shifts, magical wards, teaching us spells, sharing stories, cooking meals for everyone. Trade me something and you can have some ink.”

 

“Oh my god, that’s fucking awesome,” the teen grinned, moving and walking back behind the counter. “So. Tell me what I need to do to do get started working for you.”

 

After half an hour of paperwork, a bit of magic working, and a little tattoo on his wrist, Stiles was officially part of the team. The tattoo was a little full moon with clouds, spread over his pale wrist. He smiled softly and took the shirt with the logo on it and tucked it in his backpack, ready for his shift after school. He moved and made sure the tattoo was wrapped properly before heading out and walking back to the Avengers tower.

 

He hopped on the elevator and grinned, Jarvis already taking him up to the main floor of the Avengers section of the tower.

 

He was fiddling with the plastic wrap and smiling when he stepped off, but it was wiped away soon enough. He stepped out of the elevator and stopped in his tracks, looking at everyone standing in the living room and looking serious. And who was there, besides the entire Avengers team and his uncle?

 

Nick Fury.

 

And he was holding a sleek black box with a bright pink bow on top, and it made Stiles nervous.

 

“I heard I missed my Assistant Director’s Nephew’s birthday, I thought I would contribute something to the birthday gifts,” the man spoke, gesturing and waving the box. “It doesn’t bite. I know I’m late, but better late than never.”

 

Stiles nodded warily and moved to set down his back pack, letting out a little sound and walking up to grab the box, which was surprisingly heavy. He was slow to open it, but when he saw what was inside, he just about screamed.

 

The boy pulled the present from the box, looking down at the suit with a small smile. It was a one piece catsuit made of a thicker fabric, most likely some kind of durable leather reinforced with kevlar. It was jet black with bright silver seams. There were pockets sewn in for certain things, and Stiles smiled brightly. “Oh my god. It’s amazing.”

 

“And I understand that it matches a present that our archer gave you?” Nick asked, his voice strangely monotone for a question.

 

“Uh, yeah. The cloak, ‘cause I’m like little red riding hood,” Stiles nodded, smiling slightly, “nice gift, and it matches the suit. But… why?”

 

Nick shared a look with Phil for a moment, and Phil gave a small nod.

 

“Welcome to the Avengers Initiative, Agent Stilinski.”


“Wait, what?”

Chapter Text

At first, Stiles didn’t know how to feel. It had been a dream for him for a long long time, hearing those words. Half his wardrobe was superhero t-shirts (which he had managed to strategically avoid wearing around the team until now), and he was part of the Avengers with his own kick ass superhero suit and oh god it was real.

 

Then came the sadness.

 

He had thought he was over the pack, and what they did to him. But he realized about half an hour after he had stumbled out of the room in a daze that what the pack had done to him hadn’t fully healed.

 

Not with Belle, not with his uncle Phil or with the team of superheros he cooked for on a regular basis, not with baseball and being the captain of the team and not with the job working for Jasper and certainly not with the birthday present from the pack.

He still wore Derek’s hoodie, even if the Alpha had hurt him.

 

It smelled like home.

 

The fact that yet another group, another pack, wanted him to join into the fighting and the fray, had him on edge. He didn’t want to be put down for being human, just a human, and cut from the pack.

 

But there were humans on the team too. Tony was human, Steve was human with a little bit of help, Bruce was mostly human, Nat and Clint were human, Phil was human.

 

Really, it was Thor and Vision that weren’t ‘human’. Even Stiles really wasn’t human - he was a mage. Kinda human, with a dash of magic and a dash of whatthefuckismylife.

 

The one thing he didn’t think he was, was a superhero. Certainly not someone worthy of joining the fucking Avengers, Mage or not. He wasn’t a super solider, or a super spy, or super fast, or a God, or a genius billionaire, or someone with crazy mind powers, and he couldn’t turn into a big green rage monster.

 

But he was a Mage.

 

One with the ability to heal and too much power for his own right. His magic was born of blood and bone, winter storms and spring rain, life and death, and the soul of the universe.

 

Stiles was a Singularity stuffed inside of a narrow and very nicely muscled form, pale and dotted with enough moles to rival the stars in the night sky.

 

And he was going to be an Avenger, even if it was just to show himself that he was worth it.

 

-------------------

 

The first time Stiles put on the suit, he learned exactly what Drag Queens had to complain about when they griped about tucking.

 

That shit sucked.

 

But Stiles looked fucking good, and nothing would stop him. The leather clung to his slim and muscled form, silver trim accentuating the parts of himself that were newly trimmed with muscle. He shrugged on the large cloak that Clint had gotten him, smiling as he moved to start filling the pockets and pouches with herbs and things for spells, casting a quick charm on the rowan wood staff he had brought to darken the wood and let it curve so there was a good handle, and a few nice decorative twists in it.

 

He stood in front of the floor length mirror in his bedroom in the Avengers tower, and hot damn. Stiles hardly recognized himself - he had grown. He looked like he wasn’t someone to fuck with. The black made him look strong and dangerous, the cloak giving him a sense of mystery and intrigue, and the large rowan wood staff made him look damn near deadly. Not to mention the glint of the knives strapped to his thighs.

 

He felt good.

 

Like an Avenger.

 

Stiles quickly grabbed his phone, setting it up and using the bluetooth button to get a good dramatic shot with the New York Skyline in the background, immediately posting it on Instagram and Facebook with the caption ‘ I may have accidentally joined the Avengers. Whoops.’

 

Not ten minutes later, he got a call from his father.

 

“Genim Prezmys∤aw Stilinski! You need to call me before you go and do dumb shit like Join a team of superheros!” John barked sharply, hardly giving Stiles to say ‘hello’ before he started his rant.

 

“Dad, oh my god. Calm down! Nick Fury gave me the suit and Phil and he had some weird nod thing going on and he was all ‘Welcome to the Avengers Initiative, Agent Stilinski’” which came complete with the imitation of Nick’s deep voice, “And I really need to think up a superhero name, because hello I can’t just go by Stiles still.”

 

John groaned loudly on the other end of the phone, running a hand through his short hair. “I’m too old for this. You want to keep me from having heart attacks, Stiles. It’s been five months since you left, and you’ve already managed to get on the Avengers team and your own super suit.”

 

“I guess I shouldn’t tell you about the job at the tattoo shop, then.” Stiles immediately regretted the words with his father’s short cry of outrage, and a demand for explanation.

 

That conversation was quite a bit of fun to have, pacing the room in his superhero suit while he tried to calm his father down so he didn’t have a heart attack across the country when Stiles wasn’t experienced in teleportation.

 

Life as an Avenger was interesting so far to say the least.

 

The rest of the day went fairly well - bonding with his team and his pack, bring brought into the loop on missions and explaining where he would be most useful. Front lines, on the attack. Tony and Loki weren’t too terribly happy about the fact that he was on the assault, but Natasha and Clint both confirmed he was a short distance combat fighter and needed to be close to the action.

 

They played Mario Kart after, and Stiles wiped the floor with everyone but his Uncle.

 

Life was good.

 

Of course, that’s when everything went to shit.

 

---------

 

Stiles had been relaxing the day after his Mario Kart tournament with the team when he heard the urgent pinging on his phone of texts from the pack. Sure, he had gotten the few calls and texts from the Beacon Hills pack, but he could usually ignore the few messages that came through.

 

These messages were right after the other, from all of the pack members sans Derek. Stiles paused his relaxing afternoon to check the texts, and felt his heart stutter in his chest and then pick up quickly once he opened the messaging app and looked at the messages coming in.

 

Erica : I knew Batman liked big cities, but this is crazy. Stiles I don’t know how you can deal with living in a place like this

 

Scotty: Dude, where r u stayin w/ur Uncle?? W r in NY n we all miss u!!

 

Lydia: Stiles, the pack are going crazy. They know you’re here but there are too many people here for them to catch your scent. Derek is brooding, per usual.

 

Isaac: Derek is so grumpy, the pack is bouncing and he’s pouting. Wish u could see.

 

Boyd: I like New York, I see why you like it here. It’s loud enough that no one notices you’re quiet.

 

Allison: Scott is too much to handle, I’ve lost him three times and we’ve been here for three hours. I don’t know how you managed so long with him as your best friend.

 

Allison: That came across wrong.

 

Malia: I hate New York. I want to run away.

 

Kira: Malia has almost shifted and tried to run away I have to hold her hand.

 

Stiles couldn’t breathe right, not right now. Not with the pack so close in New York. They were looking for him, which was the worst part, and it made his heart rate skyrocket and his lungs sieze up, making breathing almost impossible.

 

He stumbled off of his bed in his room, curling into a corner he had padded with a pillow just for this reason. He needed to feel grounded and like he was in a spot where he was safe, and the corner it was.

 

He could hear JARVIS over the intercom, but it sounded echo-y and fragile. He nodded to confirm whatever he was saying, drawing in a shaky breath. He felt tears running down his cheeks,  and he curled up into a small ball in the corner.

 

Stiles was practically numb and dead to the world until he felt cold metal on the back of his neck, shocking him into looking up and blinking tears from his face, his hazy amber eyes finding Bucky’s icy blues. He saw the soldier’s lips moving, but couldn’t make out the words he was saying but for a few sounds.

 

It took a moment and a few nudges and calming pats from Bucky for Stiles to suck in a deep shaky breath and blink his eyes, listening to the deep rumble of the man’s voice.

 

“That’s it, just breathe for me, kiddo. Back to the land of the living, then?”

 

Stiles sucked in a soft breath, nodding gently and managing a weak smile up at the man. He couldn’t manage speaking yet, and his limbs were still clenching and unclenching with the aftershocks of his muscles shaking endlessly in his attack - he felt like jello.

 

Bucky smiled softly and ran a hand through Stiles’ hair, moving to pull the boy closer and cradle his form against his chest. “Hey, you’re safe here. No one’s gonna try and come near you while I’m here, the metal arm is a little intimidating,” Bucky soothed, and Stiles managed a weak chuckle.

 

He was coming back, slowly, his body relaxing and turning a bit more into jelly instead of spasming jelly as he calmed down. Stiles noticed that Bucky was in workout clothes and damp, and he flushed slightly as he squirmed in his arms slightly.

 

“Can you walk?” Bucky asked, tipping his head slightly and looking down at the boy.

 

Stiles shook his head, closing his eyes and letting out a soft sigh. He just wanted to sleep, he was exhausted. Panic attacks took a lot out of someone.

 

Bucky nodded and moved to pick him up easily, hesitating. He grabbed the teen’s phone and carried Stiles, who was now pretty close to being asleep, down to the main common area. A few of the team members were lounging on the sofas, and Bucky silently moved Clint from his perch on the center of the couch so he could lay Stiles down, where the boy slumped, limp and asleep, against the cushions.

 

Steve looked down at the boy and blinked, “He normally moves in his sleep, doesn’t he?”

Bucky shrugged, “He had a panic attack, I didn’t want him up in his room alone.”

 

Tony looked up from where he was tapping away on a Stark tablet sitting closer to Steve than usual, almost close enough for their hips to touch, looking up with a dangerous glint in his brown eyes. “A panic attack? Winter, are you sure?”

 

Bucky nodded, “He was curled up in his corner, shaking and crying. Couldn’t talk, didn’t even register I was there until I got him to calm down.”

 

Tony sighed and nodded, “Do you know what triggered it?”

 

The soldier shook his head, “No, but his phone keeps going off.”

 

Tony nodded and moved to pick up the phone, pausing when he saw the texts coming in. “His pack is back in New York.” He looked down at the kid, limp on the couch and slumbering silently.

 

--------

 

Getting the pack on an airplane for a seven and a half hour flight had been hell. Malia especially. She hadn’t liked the idea of being in a confined place in the air, only to go to a big and heavily populated city.

 

Boyd was not a fan of airplanes either, surprisingly. He had to wear sunglasses or one of the covers for eyes when people slept on planes to hide the bright golden glow of his eyes thanks to his fast heart rate.

 

Scott and Isaac had taken to it like a fish to water, excitedly scuffling for the rights to the window seat. They both got an aisle seat in the center row, with Allison in between the pair of hyper-active wolves to try and keep them calm.

 

Derek had gotten next to Lydia, trying to refrain from clawing the armrest.

 

The whole pack sans Derek was asleep an hour into the flight. Derek kept calm with little plastic cups of water and miniature bags of peanuts on the plane, ignoring the growing pile on the table tray.

 

The landing was rough, and if he had flashed his eyes and growled a bit under his breath, Lydia didn’t say anything otherwise.

 

It was much easier to unload everyone in their sleepy state, herding them to get their bags and go to the hotel room after talking to Alpha Garcia.

 

He knew the pack was texting Stiles, but he didn’t contribute. He had gotten a phone call with Stiles a week or two previous, it wasn’t necessary. Especially when he had been the driving force in kicking Stiles form the pack.

 

Instead, he let himself relax after the long flight and the even longer day, falling into a light slumber in the corner of the hotel room he was sharing with Boyd and Isaac.

 

He could go and visit other places he had frequented before his move to Beacon Hills after a nap.

 

-----

 

Stiles woke up from the post panic attack nap with a little gasp, sitting up and scrubbing over his face. He reached for his phone blindly, pausing when he realized that he was on a couch, not in his room like he usually was.

 

Bucky probably carried him down here.

 

He moved and reached for his phone, looking up at the slumbering Clint in an arm chair, checking the time.

 

Fuck, he had a shift today at the tattoo shop.

 

Stiles had to get up, pausing and stretching to try and get a bit of strength back in his limbs. The teen stood and crept to his room, changing quickly into a pair of tight dark jeans and his dark shirt with the Bramblebush Tattoo logo across the back, his name tag clipped to the right of his shirt over his chest.

 

He pulled his thick jacket over his outfit and shrugged a backpack on with water and snacks and his phone and computer and a sketchbook, starting his walk to the tattoo shop.

 

It was a good ten minute walk in the chilled air before he walked into the shop, grinning brightly as he walked to the back room where Jasper took him up in a hug immediately.

 

“Stiles! Good to see you made it for your first shift here,” He grinned, patting his back before the teen set down his things, tucking his phone in his back pocket.

 

“Yeah, I woke up from a nap and got myself together a little quickly, but I made it on time. What’s the plan for today, big man?”

 

Jasper chuckled and smiled, “I’m gonna let you sit in on a tattoo I’ve got in ten minutes, see if you want to learn how it works. If you can’t draw, you could do runes.”

 

Stiles nodded and smiled slightly, “I’m a little bit squeamish, though.”

Jasper’s eyebrow went up, “You slept through a tattoo on your ribs, and you’re squeamish?”

 

“I didn’t watch, did I? I can’t look at blood, it makes me sick. I’ve passed out before.”

 

“Kid, you’ve got another thing comin’ if that’s your outlook on blood.”

 

Stiles only shrugged and let out a little sound, “Yeah, yeah. Anything you need me to do before we get started on the tattoo?”

 

Jasper grinned, “I’ll show you how to mix up the ink, this one is for a succubus so we have to put a compound in the ink that we make up from a few herbs. She wants it in a personal area, so you do your best not to stare and offend my clients, alright?”

 

Stiles flushed slightly and nodded gently, “Yeah, yeah. It’s not like it’s nothing I haven’t seen before. My Alpha doesn’t have a fondness for clothes, really.”

 

Jasper laughed, “That’s Belle.”

 

The ink wasn’t hard, Stiles let his spark guide him and add in a few herbs to make it a nice iridescent purple, and Jasper grinned.

 

When it came time to tattooing, Stiles put on his poker face and controlled his heart beat when he walked in on the topless succubus with beautiful chocolate skin that shone in the lights and eyes as dark and coffee grinds on a bright sunday morning.

 

She was stunning, but Stiles kept himself under control, acting surprisingly professional as he sat to the side and watched Jasper ready the tattoo gun. Stiles got a little uneasy as Jasper started cleaning her skin between her breasts, and his skin got a little pale as he watched the first mark of the needle go down in her skin.

 

When he saw Jasper wipe the first drops of blood off of her chest, Stiles went down like a rock. There was a dull thud when he fell onto the floor, and Jasper sighed loudly. “Dammit, Kid.”

 

The big man apologized to the woman, who said it was fine, and Jasper set Stiles up on a small cot in the corner of the staff room before going back to the tattoo and finishing it up quickly. He got payment and waved her out with a smile, going back immediately to check on Stiles.

 

The teen was waking up a few moments later, blinking as he sat up and let out a little sound. “T’ld ya I was squeamish,” Stiles muttered, rubbing at his eyes groggily. He looked up at Jasper with a little sound, “Sorry.”

 

Jasper shook his head and smirked, “It’s fine, kiddo. We’ll just have you on herb inventory, making potions and carving runes into things. You’re a cute face, you can work the front. Bring in more customers that way.”

 

Stiles blushed, but didn’t argue. He smiled and moved to stand up, reaching out and grabbing Jasper’s arm with a little sound. “Thanks, Jasper.”

 

“Of course, kiddo. Get some water and go to the front desk. Don’t flirt with too many customers.”

 

Stiles rolled his eyes and moved to stand slowly, nodding and grabbing a water bottle before heading to the front desk, sitting heavily behind the front desk.

 

After his shift that day, he hit Jasper up and got a full sleeve done in one sitting that had him in the studio until dark, napping as his arm was tattooed with a large tree, the roots curling over his knuckles and the branches up his shoulder onto his back and neck, runes carved into the bark of the tree. Afterwards, Stiles figured it wouldn’t hurt to get his ears pierced with little black studs, runes carved into the flat of the thing. He looked kick ass

 

He wrapped his arm in the plastic he needed to before shrugging on his coat, the pleasant burn of the ink in his skin fueling his smile as he walked home to the Avengers tower.

 

Of course he was questioned when he got home, and he knew his Uncle would be mad, but he was on a mission and that talk would come later.

 

-----------

 

A few days later, once it had healed and he was officially on spring break, Stiles went in for his next shift at BrambleBerry Tattoos with a smile on his face and his hair styled up nicely, the new tattoo on display and earrings dark against his pale earlobes.

 

He was working the front when he heard a doorbell ring, scribbling something down in his notebook while he muttered a brief ‘just a second’ before closing the book and looking up, pausing at what he saw.

 

Uncle Phil, god damnit.

 

“Your father called me a few days ago,” he explained, “While I was flying out for a mission in the middle of the Ukraine, and told me you had a job at a tattoo parlor,” Phil drawled, moving to lean against the counter. And yep - he could see how this guy made it on a team of superheros.

 

“Okay, so, I got the job because I want money that I make myself so I can do stuff? Like, normal stuff. Save up for a car, since Roscoe is stuck in Beacon Hills in dad’s driveway. I need some way to get around when I decide I want to go somewhere.”

Phil raised an eyebrow and pursed his lips, “I knew about the tattoo on your ribs, Tony told me, but your arm and your ears? Stiles, you’re eighteen, but you still need to ask permission before you do things like that.”

 

Stiles sighed and ran a hand through his hair, “Uncle Phil, I know. I just -”

 

“Stiles,” Jasper called from the back, “I need you to mix up some tea for Lena, that Succubus that was in a few days ago! She’s not keen on getting pregnant, you know the recipe.”

 

Stiles sighed heavily and nodded, “Got you, Jay!” He turned to Uncle Phil, “You can come with me while I mix up some moon tea for Lena, or you can sit in the waiting room and hope to god an incubus doesn’t come in to make Clint want someone to hunt down.”

 

Phil nodded and moved to follow Stiles as he started going around the back room, setting up tea full of herbs and spices to brew in a pot. He moved to sit on the plush cushions on the floor and offered Phil a spot, letting him relax. “So, as I was saying before. It’s… the tattoos aren’t just tattoos to be ink on my skin, you know. They’re there to help focus my magic, to help focus my energy to keep me from like, accidentally turning your hair purple or something.”

 

Phil nodded sagely and let out a little sound, “It makes sense. Still, I would appreciate it, and I’m sure your father would too, if you let me know before tattooing yourself or piercing parts of your body.”

 

“And I get that, Uncle Phil, I do. I just… you know. I’ll try and let you know before I do things like that in the future.”

 

Phil smiled slightly, “Good. Now, I have to go and make sure Clint hasn’t gotten into trouble while I’ve been gone.”

 

“Go and check on him then,” Stiles grinned, pausing and tossing him a little bag of herbs. “Ask Bruce what it is if you’re curious. Make it into a tea. You didn’t get it from me, you got it from Jasper. Got it?”

 

Phil glanced at the bag and nodded, letting out a soft sound. “Be safe, kiddo.”

 

Stiles smiled and moved to hug him tightly, letting the older man head out of the shop. He went back to his shift at the front, moving to run a hand through his hair and slump on the stool he had perched on.

 

Stiles got his water and a snack, doodling in his book with a little hum. He heard the door jingle and didn’t glance up, turning to call to Jasper, “That tea should be ready for Lena, in the back room! Pink teapot.” He went back to the doodle book, hardly glancing up as he pulled out the logbook for appointments, “Hey, can I help you?”

There was a pause, and he hesitated before glancing up, freezing at who he saw.

 

“Stiles?”

Chapter Text

Derek woke up from his nap feeling a little better about life in general. He wasn't as fatigued from the trip, and even though it was getting dim outside he could take the pack on a tour of the city to see the lesser know places that he had frequented when he had lived in New York.

 

After he got the pack changed and smelling a little less like stale yesterday, he made sure they stuck together before leading them, telling the pack about his time at NYU and his visits to the city.

 

The pack was so caught up in Derek’s smile and the excitement he had when he spoke about the city to notice one little puppy slip off on his own to follow a lead.

 

---------

 

Isaac saw someone that looked oddly familiar out on the street. He just couldn't think of where he could recall the man in the suit from.

 

It hit him a moment later, when he caught the scent of warm herbs and sunshine - Stiles.

 

He had seen the man in the family photo on the mantle of Stiles’ fire place, when the kid had two missing teeth and long hair and his mom was still alive.

 

And that man in the suit was Stiles’ uncle. He paused and looked at the pack, who were staring up at some building, before slipping away silently to follow the trail of the man that smelled like Stiles, tracking where he had come from.

 

When he came up to a tattoo shop, and a little bit of a sketchy looking one at that, Isaac got a little suspicious. He paused before opening the door, blinking at the rush of magic and smells inside of the shop.

 

He froze when he saw who was at that counter. It looked like Stiles, but much different. The voice did it though, and he knew.

 

“Stiles?” He asked, his voice pitched and hesitant.

 

Stiles froze where he was at the desk at the sound of that familiar voice, looking up with bright amber eyes that scanned Isaac quickly before getting up and standing in front of the wolf, looking over him more closely.

 

Isaac let Stiles do his inspection while he did his own, making note of the tattoos and the new muscles, and the crackle and new scent of power on the man.

 

“You're different,” Isaac said softly, looking and catching Stiles’ eyes with a soft whine.

 

Stiles smiled softly and nodded, shifting to grip the back of Isaac’s neck and pull the taller wolf into a hug. “Not bad different. I'm stronger,” Stiles whispered, “not a useless human anymore.”

 

Isaac whimpered, “you were never useless. Derek wanted to push you out to keep you safe, Stiles, not to say that you were too weak.”

 

Stiles stilled and pulled back slightly, clenching his jaw. “He's my mate. He would have known, I don't know what kind of logic involves kicking your mate out of your pack, but it wasn't a good strain of thought.”

 

Isaac nodded gently and shuttled his feet, “I miss talking to you. You unfriended the whole pack on Facebook and everything so I couldn't talk to you or see how you were doing. There were a lot of times I couldn't sleep.”

 

“You know I'd always answer the phone for you and Lydia. Always,” Stiles murmured, moving to press his forehead against the other’s. “You're my puppy after all.”

 

Isaac smiled and nodded carefully before moving to tuck his face in the crook of Stiles’ neck. He recoiled when he realized there was another scent, strong and sure, that belonged to an Alpha.

 

“You… Have a new pack,” Isaac murmured gently.

 

Stiles froze, “Nono, Isaac, just an Alpha. The rest of the pack are human, and I live with them, alright? No new werewolf pack, no puppies, nothin. Pinkie promise.”

 

Isaac was slow to nod, but eventually he flung himself forward and nearly crushed Stiles in a hug, who didn't complain like he would have before. Natasha didn't pull her punches during training, he was used to some pain.

 

Stiles just smiled and pressed a gentle kiss to Isaac’s cheek, ignoring his damp cheeks as he held the man tightly. “I missed you so much, Isaac. I forgot how nice wolves can hug. You know, crack a rib or two.”

 

Isaac pulled back in a rush, “Ohmygod, I’m so sor-”

 

“It’s fine, pup, I’ve been through worse when I sparred with my trainer. She doesn’t pull her punches, and they’re not gentle with me. I’m part of their team, after all.”

 

Isaac raised an eyebrow, “You’ll have to share all of that with me, you know. You sound like you’re in a cult.”

 

“Not a cult, Isaac. But yeah, I’m on a team. Check facebook, it should work. For now, I have a shift. You can stay here with me, I can send you in to see Jasper to get a tattoo, or you can roll out with the puppies and find them again,” Stiles smiled softly, running a hand through Isaac’s curls gently.

 

Isaac nodded, “I’d like to stay. I can text Derek and tell him I found a place I wanted to look at, and that I can get a way to the hotel later.”

 

Stiles grinned, “Let me show you around Bramblebush tattoos, then, pup. It’s a whole hell of a lot of fun.”

 

--------------

 

Derek got the text from Isaac that he found a little magic shop to check out for the rest of the day. The Alpha was worried, but he knew he would be able to tell if Isaac was in danger, and there was only joy in the bond with Isaac.

 

He decided that in the end, he needed to speak with Alpha Garcia on his own. He dropped the pack off at the hotel and took a taxi to the apartment building where the Garcia pack was based, similar to the Hale house for his pack. ‘

 

He was escorted to the penthouse suite by a Beta in a thick leather jacket and too much eye makeup. She showed him up to the office and made sure he was sitting in a chair before offering him a drink, which he turned down. The Beta frowned but nodded, saying Alpha Garcia would be in in a moment.

 

Derek sat in the office, looking around at the sparsely decorated office, distantly thinking that their pack building was very very different from this pack. He looked at the black and white and blue interior, settling into his seat a little better when he heard someone walking down the hall to the office.

 

“Alpha Hale,” Dominic smiled, walking in and flashing his eyes red as he closed the door, “It’s good to see you here.”

 

Derek gave a small nod in return, his eyes flashing red in response, “Alpha Garcia, thank you for seeing me.”

 

Dominic nodded and waved a hand, shifting to take a seat behind the large white desk, “I understand you’re here to talk about that Mage that I informed you was on our territory.”

 

“He’s new to his powers, and he’s visiting family for some time to get away from the drama that Beacon Hills has,” Derek explained, “He’s not infringing or attempting to take over any of your territory.”

 

Dominic clicked his tongue, “He’s still in highschool, I understand that he is no danger to my territory, but if I allow anyone to simply freeload into the territory, I’ll have creatures walking over their welcome left and right. I have to teach your little Mage a lesson for having him infringe on our territory without coming to me.”

 

Derek barely suppressed the growl in his throat, moving to sit up a little straighter in his seat. “My pack and I came to settle the dispute with the Garcia pack and settle the disagreement you have with the Mage.”

 

Raising an eyebrow, Dominic moved to look up at the other with a gentle chuckle, “You’re attached to the boy, aren’t you?”

 

Derek flashed his eyes and clenched his jaw, which only made Dominic laugh a little louder.

 

“Well,” Dominic said, “We’ll just have to use that to our advantage, won’t we?”

 

Derek was about to ask what he meant when he felt a sharp pain at his temple as he was knocked out of his chair, hit in the side of the head with a baseball bat by a Beta. They had him unconscious now, and he was moved to the basement where he was put in a large cage, his ankles chained to one wall and his body pillowed in the sparse straw on the floor of the cage.

 

-------------

 

Belle was on her way to pick Stiles up from his shift at the tattoo place when she was pulled into an alley on one of the sketchier back roads.

 

It was New York, she had taken a self defense class before and she was a werewolf. The Alpha reared her leg back to aim for the nether region of her captor, and tried to scream, but it was blocked by a damp cloth with a sickly sweet aroma that filled her throat and nose and made her woozy. There had to be another compound in the chloroform to make it work that fast on a werewolf.

 

Belle went limp in her captor’s arms, her eyes closed and body slack.

 

It was easy to take her to the basement of the Garcia pack compound and apartment building, chaining her ankle to the cage before leaving her there in the same cage as the visiting Alpha from Beacon Hills. They had taken her prosthetic leg to ensure she didn’t have a weapon with her.

 

------------

Stiles had been walking Isaac back to the road the hotel was on when both his and Isaac’s phones started ringing at the same time. Both boys looked at each other and answered, putting the phones to their ear.

 

Isaac was being called by Scott, who was busy screaming into the phone and freaking out about how Derek had gone to talk with Alpha Garcia and had never returned, like this was the plot of an action movie.

 

Stiles got the ever level-headed Lydia, calmly explaining last time they had seen Derek, the last text, the last everything they had had with him, and asked if his friends would be able to help them out. Stiles eagerly agreed, especially in the case of his mate.

 

He moved to set the phone in his pocket, looking at Isaac who calmed Scott down and ended up getting details from the Alpha before hanging up.

 

Isaac turned to Stiles, and they shared eye contact for a few seconds before Stiles moved to check his phone, pausing when he saw texts from Belle, the last being ‘On my way!’ Shit. She had been on the way to his work over four and a half hours ago, and had never showed up.

 

That wasn’t good.

 

Stiles immediately grabbed Isaac’s hand and tugged him along, “You’re gonna meet my mostly human pack now. Come on, puppy, don’t freak out when we get there, okay?”

 

Isaac made a face, but agreed after a moment, shifting and taking a tighter hold of Stiles’ hand before starting on a jog wherever Stiles was leading him.

 

------

 

Derek woke up first, groggy and disoriented. His head was throbbing. Derek sat up and paused when he heard large chains dragging when he moved his ankles.

 

They had chained him up, then.

 

The Alpha moved to look around in the cell, pausing when he noticed the slumbering figure of a girl, an Alpha by her scent, with one leg. The injury wasn’t fresh, so it had happened a long time ago. Derek moved as far as the chains would allow and prodded her shoulder with his hand, pausing when he recognized the familiar scent of Stiles clinging to her skin, and the prodding picked up much quicker when he saw she was wearing his shirt.

 

She could be dating him, then. Alright. Derek swallowed the jealousy while he tried to rouse the girl, watching as she came to slowly.

 

Belle groaned as she woke up slowly, starting away from the hand on her shoulder, a growl already rising in her throat before she raised her eyes to look up at the man in the cage. He looked strong, and smelled like rain and forest.

 

Derek looked down at her with a raised eyebrow, “Are you alright?”

 

Belle growled as she moved to sit up, using her hands to maneuver since she was only chained on one side. “I’m fine.”

 

There was a brief pause while both of the Alpha wolves took in their surroundings before Derek broke the silence, surprisingly.

 

“Who are you?”

 

Belle scowled, “Belle. You?”

 

“Derek,” he answered simply, and Belle rose her eyebrows.

 

“Derek Hale, right? Alpha in Beacon Hills?” the girl questioned, wanting to make sure she had the right Derek before she got upset.

 

“Why?”

 

“If I wasn’t chained to the fucking wall, I would beat you up. You hurt Stiles. You should have seen him, he was so touch starved when he got here,” Belle said, her eyes glowing red.

 

Derek backed up an inch, eyes widening slightly. “I thought I could smell him on you. But his scent is different than it was before he left Beacon Hills.”

 

Belle bared her teeth at the bigger Alpha, “he needed to get away from all the shit there. That, and I heard you kicked him out. His mate of all people, you kicked him out of the pack.”

 

Derek felt that one, a low blow to his ego. “I wanted to keep him safe. I thought he was a human, I didn’t know he could protect himself.”

 

“That shouldn’t matter!” Belle said sharply, “Even if he was just a human, he’s smart. He’s graduating in three days because he passed his exams and has the highest GPA the school has seen with all of the AP classes he’s been taking, and extra classes on the side. God, you should be there for his nightmares. He put more into your pack than you know. And you kicked him out because he was human.”

 

Derek clenched his jaw and looked at the other, his eyes flared red after her speech. “I didn’t know he was my mate before he left. He wasn’t eighteen, I’m twenty three. I had feelings. He was getting kidnapped and tortured and lying to his dad and being put through situations where he got nightmares from what he’s been through, and I wanted a better life for him than going into each day expecting to die and being stuck with a mate that’s older and broken!” He said sharply, pausing and withdrawing into his shell that he normally kept himself in, ignoring the anxiety curling in his chest from how much he had just revealed.

 

Belle sat in stunned silence at the Alpha’s words. She had to admit there was some reason, but from what Stiles had told her, the way he had gone about kicking him out of the pack was one of the worst ways he could have done it.

 

“It doesn’t excuse what you did,” Belle huffed, “I can see the reasoning, but it doesn’t mean that it was okay.”

 

Derek nodded gentle and shifted, “Thank you.” He looked her over and looked around, shifting and picking at the cuffs around his ankle with his claw, “So. You’re Stiles’ Alpha.”

 

Belle smiled, “I found him at school, yeah. I was excited when he said yes to the bond. He gave me a tattoo with his magic mage mojo, and he’s got a job at the supernatural tattoo place in the city,” she nodded, “fell asleep during a rib tattoo. He’s been through some shit, hasn’t he?”

 

Derek blinked, “I… I’m not sure,” he said meekly, “I haven’t really seen him without a shirt on. Sure, there have been a few scars on his arms from a few battles, and one with Harpies a few months back, but… I haven’t seen him shirtless. We went to the beach once with the pack and he kept on a long sleeved sunguard shirt.”

 

Belle hummed, “He’s scarred up, bad. It’s not my job to tell you about it, but it looks like he’s got years of scars on all that skin.”

 

“Wait, you’ve seen him shirtless?” he asked, raising an eyebrow at the girl.

 

Belle shrugged, “He’s seen me shirtless too. I don’t care, and he’s getting more comfortable with himself. So, yeah. He’ll sleep shirtless sometimes.”

 

Derek pursed his lips and nodded, moving to settle against the cage. “Right.”

 

Both wolves sat in silence, a comfortable lull in conversation this time, before their heads shot up at the sound of someone walking into the room, leisurely and slowly, whistling under their breath. “Well well. Look who brought me Alpha puppies to play with, hm?”

 

--------

 

Isaac stood in shock outside of the building Stiles had dragged him to.

 

The fucking Avengers tower.

 

Stiles laughed and tugged the werewolf inside, winking at Happy before walking into the elevator, looking up at the ceiling. “Take me up to the common floor, please, JARVIS,”

 

Isaac froze when the loud accented voice came over the speaker, “Of course, Stiles. Would you like me to inform Tony that you have brought a guest with you?”

 

Stiles paused and set a hand on Isaac’s shoulder, “No thanks, JARVIS. Just take me and Isaac up to the common floor, and turn down the volume for Isaac? Loud noises aren’t too good for the puppy.”

 

When JARVIS came back on, his volume was drastically lower. “Of course. My apologies, Mister Lahey.”

 

Isaac nodded gently and moved to let out a little sound, scooting close to Stiles.

 

The boy responded in turn and pulled Isaac closer, looping his arm loosely around Isaac’s back and shoulders, pressing a kiss to his cheek. “You’re okay, Isaac.”

 

Isaac could only manage a small nod in return, doing his best not to tense up when the elevator doors slid open and he saw everyone in the living space staring at Stiles, who was pulling him into the room.

 

Tony looked up when he heard the elevator, and his eyebrows rose higher on his forehead when he saw Stiles with his arm around a tall blond boy who looked a bit panicked. “Stiles. We talked about bringing strays to the tower.”

 

“Oh shut it, Stark. This is Isaac.”

 

Clint perked up, “He’s the one you were on the phone with the first night you stayed with Phil, right?” he asked, pausing when he saw the attention pull to him, “Not that I know anything about that, of course. Like, at all.”

 

Stiles glared, “How much did you hear?”

 

“Up until you two agreed to go back to talking about the nightmares,” he explained, earning a surprised and vaguely panicked look from Stiles.

 

“And you managed not to ask any questions about what I said?” Stiles asked, raising an eyebrow.

 

“A man’s nightmare is a man’s nightmare. He picks who to talk to about it,” Clint shrugged, letting out a little sound.

Isaac smiled slightly and nudged Stiles, “Look at you, getting good pack members.”

 

Stiles rolled his eyes, “Shut up, Isaac. You have Scotty and Alison. Don’t tell me you’re not working in with those two.”

 

Isaac blushed and hit Stiles in the arm, ducking his head. “Shut up!”

 

Loki smiled and stood, walking up to brush a hand over Stiles’ shoulder. “As much as you know we enjoy seeing you so happy with someone your age, Stiles, you did come home significantly later than your shift ended and you had us worried. Do you have an explanation for your whereabouts?”

 

Isaac paused and looked at Loki with calm eyes, trying to decide whether the tone the man was using was caring or something a little more controlling. “It was my fault,” he blurted, before he could think better of it, “I wanted him to walk me back to the hotel the pack was at, but then we got calls from Scott and Lydia and Stiles said we had to come here. I’m sorry he was late.”

 

Bruce’s eyebrows furrowed from where he was sitting on the arm chair, glancing at Natasha, who was staring at the boy as well. The spy spoke up after a moment, “Isaac, right? He’s gone out for a night and not come home, this isn’t your fault. Don’t worry, none of us are angry with you and you should relax. If Stiles cares enough to walk you home, and then trusts you to bring you here, it means something.”

 

Isaac relaxed slowly, shifting and letting out a little sound as he nodded at the redhead with a little smile.

 

Thor shifted where he was sitting on the ground, “Brother Isaac stated something about Brother Stilinski stating that you needed to return to the tower. Why was this?”

 

Stiles perked up, “Right! So, basically, the pack lost Derek and he was probably kidnapped, and Belle too. They’re both Alpha werewolves, but they don’t have Scott even though he’s more like the best choice being a True Alpha and all, but they have both of the Alphas that are the closest to my heart - no offense to Scott and out eleven and a half years of friendship, but Belle is my Alpha at the moment, and Derek is my mate. So I… they have both of the Alphas I really care about so it’s something more than likely linked to me and I figured that you guys might be able to help me rescue them.” It came out in one long stream of words, Stiles hardly breathing between sentences, and he was a bit flushed in the cheeks when it was over.

 

Tony chuckled, “Slow down, kiddo. So, your friend got kidnapped? Friends? And you want our help?”

 

Stiles shrugged, “I figured it would be a good reason for the Avengers to Assemble, including their newest member yet to make his debut.”

 

Isaac looked at him, “No way, there’s a new Avenger?”

 

Stiles smirked, “Just you wait, Pup, just you wait.”

 

Tony laughed and shook his head, “don’t get full of yourself, Stiles. We’ll help you find your friend - do you have any idea where they are?”

 

Isaac nodded, “Yeah, I have the last address Derek was at, if that would help.”

 

Tony nodded, “Well then, I think we can say it. Stiles, I know you want to do the honors. Steal it from Steve, since he’s up sleeping.”

 

“JARVIS. Let all members of the Avengers not present here know that it’s time for the Avengers to Assemble and save some furry butt.”

 

“Would you like for me to include that it’s time to ‘save some furry butt’ Mister Stilinski?”JARVIS asked, making a ripple of laughter peel across the room.

 

When Stiles came down and made his little debut in his super suit, black fabric pulled tight to his body, and the red cape draped on his shoulders and the hood pulled up on his head, he smirked and held the staff in his hand, standing firm in the living room.

 

“Damn, Stilinski,” Isaac whistled, “You didn’t even look that good naked that one time.”

 

“Isaac!” he yelped, moving to beat him with the staff but stopping when he remembered the wolvesbane oil he had rubbed into it. “Don’t bring that up. I sleepwalk, and I was too tired to put on clothes.”

 

Tony snorted, “as amusing as this conversation is, boys, we’ve got wolves to save.”

 

Stiles nodded and smiled, “Let’s go kick some wolf ass.”

 

Clint stopped him before he could go very far, “If you’re gonna be on the Avengers, you need a name, kiddo. What about Little Red?”

 

Stiles paused and narrowed his eyes, “Nah. Makes me sound like a kid. What was it that one time that Tony and Bruce called me?”

 

“Singularity. They called you a singularity,” Loki nodded, gesturing with a hand. He was staying at the tower, thanks to his house arrest.

 

“Singularity. He sounds badass. I guess that’s me.”

 

----------

 

When the man walked into the room that held the cage, which in turn held Belle and Derek, he was grinning. Not a happy sort of grin, one that spoke of how excited he was to see someone in pain.

 

He had been given orders to play with the wolves, however he liked to play a little rough. The man walked to the cage while picking up a cattle prod, touching it to the metal bars of the cage, giving both wolves a shock through the metal that was touching them.

 

“Oh, playing with you puppies is going to be fun.”

 

Derek and Belle shared a glance, and Belle glanced at her leg, and all was understood. Derek flashed his eyes and roared his Alpha roar, making the building seem to quake.

 

Belle took the opportunity to slip into a full shift, her ankle sliding from the cuff. She pounced on the man and took him down, knocking him out with her weight. She walked over and took the keys from the man’s belt, passing them to Derek so he could unlock himself. They had an escape mission to carry out.

 

Derek stayed human, now armed with a cattle rod, and Belle stayed shifted in her large wolf form, eyes red and lips drawn in a snarl as they walked out of the basement and up the steps to the main lobby. They both paused when they heard growling from a good number of wolves, and a few very human taunts goading at the wolves. They snuck up slowly, taking in the sight.

 

The Avengers were there, squaring off with the Garcia back. Well, Tony and Clint in their full suits.

 

And among the Avengers was Stiles, a bright yellow glow to his eyes and a rowanwood staff in his hands, looking strong. Like he belonged. It hit Derek with a pain in his chest, but he stood still and silent until one of the Betas on Alpha Garcia’s side made the first move for Hawkeye, and all hell broke loose.

 

Wolves were tearing at the humans, and the two Avengers were fending off the wolves as best they could, but it was pretty obvious that pack numbers nearing fifty might be a bit much for all two of the Avengers in attendance.

 

Even with Tony in his armor Clint with his arrows and super spy skills, it would take a little bit of a miracle to win.

 

Stiles was frozen.

 

The blood and the roars and the violence - it was easy for him to be the one being hurt, but to see other people he cared about being hurt was too much for him to handle, and Stiles was getting a little pale.

 

Derek jumped into the fray, fighting from the back, leaping gracefully into his full shift and tearing through a few wolves easily.

 

Stiles could see the big black wolf, and his chest tugged when he saw it. That was his mate. And he saw another wolf too, deep caramel russet brown with one missing leg, though she fought like she wasn’t disabled in the slightest. She was fierce, taking down a good number of Betas.

 

Fighting in a hotel lobby was awkward enough, but with that many people and that much conflict, it was even harder. Knowing he had Tony and Clint at his back did help, though. Someone in a super metal suit, and someone with special kickass arrows.

 

But then, one by one, he was taken down. Clint was pinned to the wall and barely fending off a larger Beta by using his bow to keep him back, and Tony with at least six wolves pinning his suit down to the ground and trying to rip the metal plating to get to his skin. They were loosing.

 

He saw Belle make a jump that he knew she couldn’t make, trying to leap over one Beta in particular that happened to have a knife in his hand. Stiles wanted to scream, to warn her, but it was too late by the time he had tried to call out.

 

The large knife was shoved deep inside of her chest, and she let out a long whimper at the pain of the knife wound in her chest. Stiles’s vision seemed to hone in on his Alpha, watching her bright crimson eyes fade to the human blue grey coloring.

 

Her body slowly shrunk back down to human size, curled up and limp with the large knife stuck from her chest.

 

His Alpha was dead, and his chest was gaping once again. The world seemed to shrink in on hims, making his heart skip a few beats and making him fall down to his knees, his wooden staff clutched in his hand tightly.

 

He was almost sure the battle was lost, almost positive that there was no way out of this battle without a dreadful end. Stiles couldn’t even lift his eyes to look up to see how his mate was fairing.

 

Stiles was lost and and losing hope quickly. He was losing hope that leaving for New York had been the right choice - Belle had been a symbol of his new beginning. His new pack, his new Alpha, the ten steps he had taken forward after his heart was torn out of his chest after his mate pushed him from his pack.

 

With the Garcia pack winning, it felt like he was taking twenty steps backwards and drowning in memories of past battles that were far too close to losing that pulled up in their favor at the last second. Only these wolves had two Avengers on the ground and his Alpha was dead with a knife in her chest.

 

Stiles had lost hope with each of those twenty steps he had gone back, his body was teetering dangerously on the verge of limp, the will to fight leaving his body.

 

There was just no point in trying so hard if all he ever accomplished was failure.

 

But even in a place where failure seemed to be the only option, there was hope. This time, it came in the form of an Alpha’s roar. Deep and vibrating and gripping at Stiles’ soul, calling him out of his terror induced fog. Now is time for action the roar said, there will be time to grieve when we have won.

 

Chapter Text

Flashback - about a year and a half ago

 

“Wait, are you telling me we’re fighting Bigfoot?”

Deaton rose an eyebrow at Stiles’ awed expression, moving to nod gently. “It certainly seems as if we’re fighting a Bigfoot. The evidence that Scott and Isaac have brought back is compelling in terms of evidence.”

Stiles huffed, “No evidence has even been collected before! I mean, footprints and photographs and that one shitty video that could have been someone in a ghillie suit, and some pictures.”

Deaton let out a gentle hum, “I can understand your reluctance to accept the Cryptid as our foe of the week, but the evidence provided by Scott and Isaac doesn't point to anything known in my journals other than one written by someone from Russia, which in that case was a Yeti. But a southern relative, like Bigfoot or Sasquatch, would be logical.”

“Fine. Say that we are fighting Bigfoot - why would it have attacked like it did? We didn't provoke it, unless Isaac just wanders around looking to pick fights with the local monsters,” Stiles started, moving to lean forward on the large metal examination table.

“Mating season.”

“Excuse me?”

Deaton’s lips pursed slightly, “during mating season, large animals like bears and cougars get extremely territorial and will often fight anything other than a female of their species.”

“Woah, okay, so Bigfoots are like bears?”

“In theory,” Deaton nodded, “they are likely very solitary creatures, and would come together during mating season long enough for breeding to occur, and the male would leave. The female would be left to care for her young until they can survive on their own, and then the cycle repeats,” he explained.

Stiles paused, “it would explain why there are never more than one or two sited together at one time. But there have been accounts of hearing more than one call in response to wolf howls or man-made Bigfoot calls. Wouldn't it make sense, especially if they are an offshoot of Australopithecus, that they would be together in more of a small tribe situation? Small groups of four or five, depending on how they view familial trees, that live and hunt and migrate together. They'd probably be cave-dwelling, based on the lack of shelters found.”

Deaton hummed and nodded, “it very well could be a combination of the two. Small familial groups that breed when they cross another’s path, migrating and meeting along the way.”

Stiles nodded, “right. So. Bigfoot. How do we fight it?”

“I'd imagine it would be a good idea to talk strategy with the pack, so that you can inform them of the situation and figure out a game plan,” Deaton nodded, pausing briefly after. “Come back after you've spoken with them, I would like to speak with you about something.”

“No need to sound so ominous, doc,” Stiles laughed, “you make it sound like you're gonna tell me I have cancer.”

“No, but it does have the potential to affect your health,” the veterinarian nodded. “But not to the point of severe injury. Go and speak with the pack.”

-------------

Stiles had been a little on edge since Deaton had given him that little piece of news - he had something not so urgent to talk about that could affect his health? Not terrifying at all.

The teen stopped by the pizza place on the edge of town to place a large order, carting eight large meat pizzas to the Hale house after sending out a text to the group chat he had named Furry Friends.

When he pulled up, it was just the Camaro and the mom van, meaning Derek and Isaac were probably the only people there.

Stiles grabbed the pizzas and a large leather book that was a good eight inches thick that Stiles had yet to unveil to the pack. It was his personal bestiary, one he had been compiling over time and copying from the Argent’s books and Deaton’s. His was large and perfectly illustrated with large pencil sketches of the creature or phenomenon that he spoke of in the book, every word written in soft Polish scrawl that he had chosen simply because it would be near impossible for anyone else to read.

The book was balanced on the eight pizza boxes as Stiles walked up to the door, shifting to one of the boy’s arms as he opened the door to the Hale house with a key he may or may not have stolen from the dish on the side table in the entrance hall.

Because Derek Hale was the kind of man that had a key dish in his entrance hall.

A key dish.

Stiles grinned as he walked into the house, navigating down the hall and turning into the large kitchen, setting the pizza boxes down with a soft sound. He didn’t hear anyone else coming, but he knew Derek was home, and paused to try and figure out whether or not the wolf was coming to help.

The teen listened and heard water running further in the house and let out a soft sound, definitely not wanting to think about Derek Hale in the shower, his bathroom clouded with steam and hot water flushing his skin pink and sliding down his muscled body-

Fuck. Stiles had to get a hold of himself. He shook the thoughts of practical god Derek Hale out of his head and focused instead on setting out all the pizzas and skimming through his beastiary, letting out a soft sound now and then as he found a picture he needed to adjust or shade differently, or how he had misspelled a word.

He settled down at the dining room table, sketching out another side profile of one of the creatures he was working on an entry for at the moment - a Questing Beast. Logically, Stiles knew they’d more than likely never come across one, but it was good to have preparation.

Stiles ended up so absorbed in his sketching and writing, glancing at his phone and translating before writing it down on the soft yellowed pages, that he didn’t hear Derek walk into the kitchen.

The older man stepped in, his hair still damp from his shower and soft pajamas clinging to his form. He had smelled pizza, and a more familiar and more comforting scent of Stiles underneath the greasy and enticing smell of the pizza. He walked up behind the human, looking at the large book he was sketching in with a frown. It wasn’t in English, and Stiles seemed engrossed in the book. Derek moved and tapped the boy’s shoulder, taking a quick step back when Stiles /immediately/ went into defence mode.

The teen had the pencil brandished like a weapon, gripped in his hand like he was ready to attack. He was still a bit fragile, emotionally, after all. The third entry in his book was nogitsune.

“Derek, you scared me,” Stiles said, body deflating and hand lowering, the pencil that had been held like a weapon now rolling across the wooden tabletop.

“I didn’t mean to scare you. I wanted to ask what you were doing, since I can’t read it,” Derek murmured, shifting to take a seat next to the younger man.

“I've been putting together a beastiary. From the Argents and Deaton and a few other sources I've been tracking, I'm almost done with this one and then I can move onto another book,” he explained, shifting and dating the page before sliding it to Derek.

“What language is this in?” The wolf asked, his head tipping to the side as he tried to focus on the pictures as he carefully flicked through the leather book, “it's not English, or any of the easy ones to read.”

“Polish,” Stiles murmured softly, “it was my first language. Mom taught it to me before I learned English, and I keep practicing to keep it alive. It's a part of her that I still have.”

“It's good,” Derek nodded, smiling softly at Stiles when he passed the book over, “it looks detailed, and the drawings are amazing. You're a good help to the pack, Stiles.”

“Thank you,” Stiles murmured, dipping his head to hide the flush that overtook his cheeks at the soft praise. He was looking up at Derek, who was looking down at him, when there was a knock and the door and their moment shattered.

Stiles almost wanted to pout, but he pulled up the info that Deaton had emailed him about Bigfoot and started to gather his thoughts on how to tell the pack that they had to get Bigfoot.

Obviously, it didn't go to plan.

Stiles tried to break the news while everyone was stuffing their faces with pizza and soda, but that only resulted in a few wolves choking and glares sent his way.

“Bigfoot?! Stiles, are you insane?” Scott asked, sending a sharp glare his way. The True Alpha hadn’t looked at Stiles the same since he came back from the Nogitsune, but Stiles was… slowly getting over that fact. Scott was coming back around, things were getting better, and people were recovering slowly.

“I talked to Deaton about it earlier,” Stiles nodded easily, “He said it sounded a lot like a Yeti that one of his friends had seen record of before. I have the files, they sound like what we’ve had going on here.”

Isaac looked up, “It just attacks people? Out of the blue?”

Stiles grimaced, “This is where theory comes in. It’s fall, mating season. Bears, deer, other large game animals are in it to win it with mating season. They’re doing whatever it takes to get the down and dirty so the ladies of the species can have a bun in the oven so they can help keep the species alive. And as you know, pregnant ladies, especially big game animal ladies like mama bears, can get very very territorial.”

It took a moment for that information to sink in for everyone. But once he had half the pack staring at their pizza like they could understand the universe, and the other half looking at him like he had started speaking Polish, he took pity on them.

“Meaning we have a pregnant Bigfoot, and we need to figure out how to make a deal with her.”

---------------

It ended up being fairly easy, in the end. Stiles was the least threatening of the bunch, so he was lead to where Isaac got attacked with an absurdly large fruit basket, plus some homemade food he had thought to bring for the expectant mother.

He set the things down quickly and waited for a bit in the trees, watching the creature (holy shit bigfoot was real) take the food and examine in, looking right up through the branches at him before nodding and carrying the food away, her belly making her gait a bit wider than usual.

It was an odd thing to have experienced, but… all was well. He wrote down everything he saw and learned in his new bestiary, smiling at the finished entry. He’d have to be sure to go back and see her and her babies, if she allows it.

He wanted to draw them. Or it. It’d be cool to have some of the first documented information on the baby bigfoots.

Once Stiles got back from handing over tidings of good will to the mother-to-be, the pack decided it was time for a pack cuddle.

The past few pack cuddles had been… different. Stiles wasn’t sure if it was easier for the pack to relax from new school stress while they were together, or if it was part of a pack forming, but they had recently started to become more comfortable with each other. A lot more comfortable.

Everyone would get together, on pack nights, and they would… well… be together. Everyone in the pack, sans John, Melissa, and Deaton, would all huddle in the big living room of the Hale house - Peter included - and just let things take their course.

Sometimes it was a rated R movie that was on the screen. Whenever the sex scenes would come on, there would be a bit of shuffling around a few of the wolves, but no one made a big deal of it. Only Allison had had initial reservations, but the second time around, the shuffling and soft sounds were making their way from her part of the living room as well.

This time, though, things felt different. There was no rated R movie on the big television, no raunchy sex scene that the whole pack new was coming. Everyone had settled down, and Erica had brought her laptop and hooked it up to the television screen.

She paused and glanced at everyone, some people already snuggling down together, before pulling something up on her computer.

Porn.

They were going to watch porn. As a group.

And the weirdest part was that everyone sort of… accepted it.

Of course, there was a brief moment of awkwardness when Erica was browsing saved movies on her computer, but the giggles that started when the title and horrible awkward porn dialogue started eased the tension. Blankets shifted, people got closer to each other.

Boyd and Erica teamed up, obviously. Scott and Kira curled together, Allison and Isaac, Jackson and Lydia with Malia quickly working her way into the middle of the closely bundled pair, and oddly enough, Stiles ended up pressed between Peter and Derek.

The porn was good. Very good. Despite the odd title, it ended up having a little bit of everything that everyone liked. A bit of sweet vanilla sex, a bit of name calling, a bit of bondage, a bit of the weirder range of kinks.

At the halfway point, when one of the women in the porno was being tied to bed posts, Erica let out an absolutely filthy moan and some turned to look, only to see Boyd with his head between her legs. Kira very soon found herself straddling Scott, Isaac with Allison underneath of him.

Stiles was a bit more shy with the Hales sandwiching him in, Peter taking the more aggressive approach and nearly mauling his neck with deep bruises and light scratches from fangs that didn’t break the skin. The slim boy couldn’t help but squirm under the ministrations, especially when Derek moved and pushed his shirt up, maneuvering a bit with Peter to get the three of them shirtless.

Peter latched onto his neck again not long after, and Derek took to mouthing and biting at Stiles’ chest. Stiles was a mess of moaning and squirming under the two men, whining and babbling loudly.

He knew he had an audience, he knew that Lydia and Jackson and Malia were looking at them, staring and starting their own routine of gentle touches and soft whispered words.

After Peter had marked up Stiles’ neck up enough, he moved down and passed Derek, growling at the Alpha and flashing his bright blue eyes before moving to undo the button and fly on Stiles’ jeans with his teeth.

Stiles hadn’t known he had a thing for that until it happened.

A glance around told him that Scott and Kira had migrated to be closer to Isaac and Allison, a few more articles of clothing being shed and movements getting more intimate.

Derek demanded his attention, snarling and running a fang over his nipple. Stiles squeaked loudly and let it dissolve to a moan as Peter started mouthing at his legs through his tight cotton briefs.

A loud growl caught his attention from one side of the room, Erica arching and moaning loudly, scrabbling for purchase on Boyd’s neck as he growled from between her legs, rutting against the ground to try and reach his own climax.

Lydia had managed to lay herself out so she could help take care of Derek, her carefully manicured fingers working through his fly to get to his member, making the older Alpha growl with pleasure when he felt thin fingers on his member. Lydia had Malia between her thighs, and Malia had a very different part of Jackson between hers, making her bounce against Lydia and give an all around very pleasurable experience.

Stiles was right on the border of being overwhelmed, but any unease he was feeling was soothed once the pack scooted closer and he felt careful hands brush along his almost nude body, soft chirps and hums of reassurance filling the room.

After Peter took Stiles’ cock into his mouth, he had no idea what went on. He knew someone ended up sitting on his face, both of his hands ended up occupied with someone to bring them to pleasure. The whole pack managed to orgasm at around the same time, after most people had gotten completely nude.

They all collapsed into a big sweaty heap, panting and reeking of sex. It was… surprisingly amazing.

“Is that… normal? For a pack?” Malia asked, nuzzling into Lydia’s chest gently.

Peter grinned and nodded from where his head was resting on Stiles’ hip, “Reaffirming pack bonds. Bringing us closer together, making us more intimate and comfortable with each other. It’s normal, and very good.”
Derek rumbled happily and scooted a little closer, pulling Isaac closer to his side. “Pack.”

They fell asleep like that, curled together in a big heap of damp skin and bodily fluids.

Waking up in the morning took a while, grumbles and groans and growls rising when certain people rose to take showers.

The atmosphere was different, after Stiles got up and showered and pulled on a pair of boxers - he knew they weren’t his, but didn’t know who they belonged to - and started to cook after tying an apron around his body. Wolves came and went, offering small kisses and touches and brushes of skin.

They all sat in the living room with plates of pancakes and bacon and eggs and hash, cups of coffee and tea and hot chocolate balanced around their puppy pile of scantily clothed pack members.

Life was good for the Hale-McCall pack, and they were a unit. A family.

A true pack.

----------

Stiles managed to untangle himself from the pack pile and get dressed despite whines, giving each of his pack a tender kiss, the one for Derek just a bit longer and more tender than the rest.

He knew he had to talk to Deaton about something, so he figured he’d get it over with. Stiles stole one of Scott’s shirts, a jacket of Derek’s, and a scarf of Isaac’s to try and hide the insane amount of hickeys he had decorating his pale skin.

He walked to his jeep and mourned his early departure, but made sure he had his beastiary tucked in the front seat with him before he headed out to go to Deaton’s.

He got to the vet’s office after a few minutes, traffic fairly light that early on the Sunday morning. He pulled up and knocked, letting himself in when he found the door unlocked. “Deaton? Doc, you here?”

“Stiles?” he asked, raising an eyebrow at the young man’s wardrobe. And the dark bruises on his jaw. “Were you hurt in your confrontation with the bigfoot?”

“Huh? Oh, no,” Stiles laughed, “No, these are not from that. She was pregnant, and we gave her lots of food, and she looked at me and we had a moment, and she left. I guess she felt like she was safe on our land.”

Deaton nodded and let out a soft sound, looking very serious. “I have to ask, Stiles, what are the bruises from? No one hurt you?”

“No, Peter and Derek, and probably some other people. The pack, uh, bonded,” he explained, his cheeks blushing.

“Ah,” the vet nodded, “That’s good news for the pack. It will make you stronger.”

Stiles smiled and nodded, “Yeah.” He paused and looked up at the other, “Before, uh, you said you had something to talk to me about?”

“Ah! Yes,” he nodded, “You were supposed to come by earlier, if I remember.”

The teen had the decency to look a little guilty. “Yeah. I talked with the pack, and we took care of our bigfoot, and then pack night. I left everyone this morning because you said it was serious.”

“It is,” Deaton hummed, moving to grab a book and a few small jars of different powders. “You’re a spark.”

“Wait, a what?”

“A spark. You possess some degree of magic, though I have to say I’m not sure what type -”

“Wait, no. Since when do I have magic? I’m not Harry Potter,” Stiles started, backing up slowly. Him and magic got along just about as well as a wolf and wolfsbane, especially after the nogitsune.

“I suspect your possession by the nogitsune triggered something in your brain,” Deaton nodded, saying the exact words that Stiles did not want to hear.

His heartbeat sped up, and his breathing quickened at the mention. “You mean it did this to me?” he asked, his eyes wide.

Deaton realized what was wrong and moved to approach the boy, quickly setting down the books, “No, no, that’s not what I’m saying. Sparks as strong as yours seem to be usually need an act of magic to activate your magic, Stiles. It didn’t leave anything inside of you.”

Heartbeat slowing, chest loosening, Stiles nodded. “How strong is it?”

“I can tell you in a moment, if you allow me to do a spell.”

Stiles nodded his assent, and it began. Deaton drew a sigil on the floor in chalk and had Stiles sit in the center, lighting different candles and sprinkling a bit of oil on his forehead. He had Stiles breathe deeply as the druid chanted gentle words, giving a small gasp when he got a glimpse to the boy’s magic.

It was brighter than anything he had ever seen, golden and beaming and bright, absolutely vibrating with untapped potential. There was a dark scar in the center, but it looked to be healing with golden strings. It was beautiful, and strong.

“You’re a mage, Stiles.”

“What does that mean?” Stiles asked, breaking the little bubble of golden glow that had been around the pair.

“It means that you are the heart of the pack, Stiles. You are incredibly strong and have very few limits on your magic, and you will be able to do great things. But you need to keep hold of the light, because the call of the dark can be a strong one.”

Stiles giggled, “Don’t give in to the dark side. Understood, Deaton. Stay with the light, let the Jedi path guide you, fight the empire, blah blah.”

Deaton smiled and nodded, “If that makes sense, then yes. Use a Star Wars metaphor. Magic is like The Force - it should not be used for everything, but using it makes you better at using it.”

Stiles turned and moved to set down his beastiary, “Give that a read, if you can do Polish. I’m gonna go back and see if everyone is still settled down for cuddles.”

The teen turned to leave the office, but paused when he heard his name from the older man in the back.

“May the Force be with you, Stiles.”

Chapter Text

The Alpha’s roar woke something inside of Stiles - something that had been dormant until that point.

 

It opened his ferocity and his ruthlessness - not that of another creature inside of his body, but his own - in order to protect his pack.

 

Derek. His mate.

 

To Avenge his Alpha.

 

Stiles gave a loud scream to match with the roar of his mate, his back arching and eyes opening. His irises glowed a bright gold flecked with purple, and a purple glow seemed to explode from his body. It spread like a smoke, but glowing and bright, moving quicker than seemed possible to wrap around every wolf that wasn’t in his pack.

 

It circled them, gripping tight and raising them up, twisting sharply. Their necks broke from the whiplash, and Stiles stopped screaming. He went limp, eyes falling shut slowly as he slumped down to the ground.

 

Numbly, Stiles could feel strong arms holding him up, shaking him, trying to get him to wake up. He knew it was Derek, the tug in his heart made it so he knew, and he turned to nuzzle against the other with a soft sigh. He felt his magic slowly seep back into his body, the corpses of the wolves falling limp. He could feel the Alpha power trying to get in, to transfer from Belle to him as her second, but he pushed it off. He didn’t want it. He pressed it towards Derek through their newer bond, his magic helping to shift the powers off of him.

 

As soon as he felt Derek jolt with the power being pressed through the bond, he went entirely limp in Derek’s arms and fell asleep as the exertion of the day caught up with him.

 

Tony wanted to rip Stiles away from the werewolf that was holding him, but the second he caught sight of tears on the older wolf’s face, he took a step back. This was Stiles’ mate, whatever that meant, and he looked to be fairly emotional at the moment.

 

“Hate to ruin the moment,” Tony said after a brief beat of silence, “But we should get him back to medical - he went down pretty fast, and he might need a bit of Brucie-bear love.”

 

Derek growled and pulled Stiles closer, making Clint chuckle. “Don’t worry, kid. He’s safe, Bruce is a doctor that’ll just make sure he’s healthy, alright?”

 

The Alpha flashed his eyes at the two men, who stepped back slightly at the show of aggression. He nodded and moment later, standing and pressing a tender kiss to Stiles’ forehead before handing him to Tony. He moved to where Belle was laid out and slowly picked up her body, peeling his shirt off of his body to wrap her in it. He shifted her broken body in his arms and nodded at the two men, “Lead the way.”

 

“Are you sure you want to bring h-”

 

“I’m not leaving Stiles’ Alpha here any longer than she needs to be. We’ll arrange a burial when Stiles wakes up, and a ceremony so that he can mourn the loss of his Alpha,” Derek snapped sharply.

 

Clint only nodded and moved to open the door, letting Tony and Derek through, making sure the people in their arms were safe as they walked out of the building. They were quick, essentially running to the tower. As soon as they got to the elevator, Jarvis assessed Belle and Stiles and the other occupants of the elevator before bringing them to the floor that the lab was on.

 

Bruce had been notified as soon as they had entered the elevator, rushing to the lab to get ready to receive two patients. He saw them come up, and he knew in an instant that Belle had passed.

 

He moved after a brief moment of processing the information and opened the door, “Set Stiles down on the bed closest to the door, Belle can go on the other table. Tony, I need you to call Phil and tell him that Stiles is injured. Clint, see if you can calm down the other man. I assume you’re a werewolf, so calm down and don’t disturb anything, and make sure Belle isn’t going to heal.”

 

Bruce pulled on gloves and moved to assess Stiles as quickly as he could, everyone spreading out to do their work and leave Bruce to check Stiles over and make sure he was okay. Derek did a lot of hovering, making sure his mate would be safe.

 

Tony stepped out of the room and made his way to his lap to take off his armor, ignoring the few bruises he had gotten under it, before having Jarvis dial Phil while he sat back on the chair in his lab.

 

“Tony, this had better be good,” Phil snapped, “I have better things to do than listen to your prank calls, Tony St-”

 

“Phil,” Tony said softly, and that shut the agent up faster than anything. Tony was the kind of guy that had nicknames with everyone. This was first name Agent, last name Coulson Tony. Not the guy that called him Phil.

 

“What’s wrong? Is someone dead?” Phil asked immediately, his tone switching from angry to afraid.

 

Tony took a pause and let out a soft sound, scrubbing a hand over his face. He needed a drink. “Yeah, Phil. Belle’s gone. We lost her to another pack,” he said softly, and he heard the deep shaky breath on the other end of the phone. “Before you have a chance to ask, Stiles is fine. Unconscious, but he used a lot of magic all at once, so I think it’s good he’s out and resting. Met Derek, by the way. Stiles’ mate or whatever? He’s older. And an Alpha. And surprisingly gruff.”

 

Phil huffed, “While I’m glad that Stiles is safe, do you know Belle’s family? Do you have their contact information? We should-”

 

Derek stepped into the room and looked a little sheepish at interrupting the conversation with the loud slide of the door. He powered through his embarrassment, though. “Stiles should be the one to tell her. A surviving member of the pack should be the one to tell the family of the Alpha that their pack member has passed.”

 

Phil scoffed, “I can have an agent do it, it’d be less traumatic for Stiles if-”

 

“No.” Derek was straight in his answer, “No. Stiles must do this. If it had been a police officer to tell my older sister that my family had died, it would have ended much worse. Let Stiles do it. He was her first beta, he needs to do this.”

 

Tony sighed, “He’s right, Phil. No matter how much it hurts, Stiles has to do this. That’s why our dearest director told Barton when Loki did his thing during New York, you know. It wouldn’t have been the same if the word had come down the grapevine.”

 

Phil huffed, “Yeah, yeah. I understand. And Derek?”

 

The older wolf suddenly looked up with a distinct look of fear on his face, “Yes sir?”

 

“If you touch Stiles before I have a chance to meet you, I won’t hesitate to have my agents load up on silver bullets.”

 

Derek shifted, “Have Stiles teach you how to fill them with wolvesbane. Those poison wolves - the silver ones only hurt and keep up from healing.”

 

Phil hummed, “Good to know. Not many give out information on their weaknesses.”

 

“I’ve been shot more than I’d normally admit, and Stiles is on my side. I’ll be fine.”

 

Phil smiled softly and nodded, shifting on his end of the call. Tony looked up with a raised eyebrow, waiting on a response.

 

It took a few minutes, but eventually Coulson cleared his throat and spoke to Derek. “You seem to be invested in Stiles.”

 

“He's my mate,” the Alpha answered immediately.

 

“Yeah, he's your mate. One that you hurt, pretty badly,” Tony piped up, “the kid was a mess when he first got here.”

 

Derek shifted on his feet, “Stiles has been hurt, a lot. With enemies and other packs and Darachs and by his hand when he was possessed, he's been hurt. He's covered in scars.” He swallowed and shuffled slightly, “wolves don't scar. They don't need stitches normally, they don't bruise, they don't take weeks to heal. Every time he gets hurt is a reminder to me that I can't keep my mate safe. The Alpha's mate should be the strongest, and most protected member of the pack. But he always gets hurt, and I can't protect him.”

 

Phil sighed heavily, “ever since Claudia died, Derek, Stiles has grown. His father… He threw himself into the bottom of a bottle to try and drown the memories of his wife. Stiles was the one that cooked and cleaned and kept his dad on schedule - he was eight. He's a guardian, a protector, a warrior, whatever you want to call it. Even if he knows that he's not as strong or as invincible, he’ll throw himself into saving other people, because that's who my nephew is.”

 

Derek let out a shuddering sigh, “I know. And I thought… I thought if I pushed him from the pack, if I pushed him from the danger, that it would be better. That he would be safer.”

 

Tony snorted, “that kid made friends with a God the second day he was in the tower. They were all chummy, making some duck soup and speaking on Polish or whatever.”

 

Derek paused and looked at Tony, trying to keep his eyes from flaring red. He felt a small growl rise in his chest, and he was only briefly embarrassed by his wolf’s jealousy.

 

“Oh, pal, maybe I shouldn't tell you about them sharing a bed,” Tony chuckled, ignoring the warning from Phil that maybe you should stop, Tony.

 

“He slept with him?” Derek asked, eyes flashing.

 

“Frosty? No, he didn't sleep with frosty. We lost him for a day, he was real quiet and he kinda left, came back covered in hickeys and looking like he'd just let everyone down.”

 

That set off alarm bells in Derek’s head. Stiles, sneaking out for sex?

 

“When?” Derek asked softly, all senses of hostility gone.

 

“A few weeks ago, why?”

 

Both Derek and Phil cursed, and Derek was too busy putting his head in his hands to answer Tony, so Phil took over. “It was probably the anniversary of his mom’s death, Tony.”

 

“He never handles it well,” Derek said softly, “we had this big pack cuddle the last anniversary, and he was okay. But I didn't know he'd handle it like that.”

 

Phil sighed, “listen, kid. That one isn't your fault all the way. You didn't make him go out and have grief sex, but you did take away his support system. He's got the team now, and I want you to know that we’re his pack. Belle was his Alpha, and we were his pack, I guess. It's still weird staying that.”

 

Tony chuckled, “you get used to it, Coulson.”

 

----------

 

Stiles woke up before he opened his eyes, scrunching them shut and whining before he opened them, only to close them immediately after. It was way too bright. Too white. He moved and put a hand above his forehead, trying to block out the light, and huffed when he felt a tug. He tried to pull his hand free of what was holding it, but he was interrupted rather quickly.

 

“Woah, woah, Stiles,” Bruce said softly, “you'll tear out the IV.”

 

“IV?” he managed, words slurred slightly from overuse of magic and exhaustion.

 

“Yes, Stiles, the IV. You’re in the medical bay at the Avengers tower,” Bruce answered, moving to lay Stiles’ hands down on the bed once more. He moved to look him over, “You passed out from overuse of your magic, and you need to rest.”

 

“M’fine,” Stiles argued, “Fought goin’ on worse.”

 

Bruce frowned slightly, “That doesn’t mean you’re fine, Stiles. You’re alive, but you need to recover and get up your energy.”

 

“Bruuuuuucccceeee,” he whined, cracking open his eyes to look at the scientist, ignoring the frown on his face.

 

“No arguments, Stiles. You’re staying in the bed until you’re back to full operating capacity.”

 

Stiles huffed, but didn’t argue further. He knew there was no point, really, he would just lose the argument. As he was sinking lower into the bed with a pout, he heard the door open and looked up, trying to see who was coming in.

 

Derek stepped through the door, and Stiles immediately straightened with a sound, looking at the other with wide eyes. He looked a little ragged, a little worse for wear, but he was still the broody sourwolf Stiles knew from home.

 

“Stiles,” Derek said softly, the pain evident in his voice, “Stiles, I’m so-”

 

“No,” Stiles said sharply, “You don’t get to come in and say you’re glad I’m okay and that I’m not dead, because of what you did. You were the one that pushed me away, Derek. You were the one that pushed your mate away from your pack. You were the one that drove me to New York, away from the pack. It’s your fault!”

 

Derek seemed to shrink back on himself with Stiles’ words, but the young mage kept going.

 

“I’m your mate, Derek. You kicked me out because I was a liability, and now you’re coming to New York and trying to play guardian and be all happy go lucky and save the day. It doesn’t fucking work like that, Derek Hale. You don’t get to waltz back into my life like nothing’s happened and like you didn’t do anything that ripped my heart out of my chest!”

 

Bruce looked concerned in the corner of the room, “Stiles, I would recommend calming down. Your heart rate and blood pressure are a little out of control.”

 

Stiles let out a small shaky breath and moved to run the hand over his forehead that didn’t have the IV in the back, looking at Derek with a frown. “I’m your mate. You don’t deserve forgiveness for what you did.”

 

“I know-”

 

“No, Derek, you don’t. I’m going to forgive you, but you’re going to have to work for my forgiveness. It’s not going to be something I give to you on a silver platter like I would have before, but… you’re my mate. I literally got a tattoo of you on my ribs, man, I have to forgive you some time.”

 

Derek’s eyes widened and he looked at Stiles in shock. He would forgive him? Before he could think, he was nodding eagerly and let out a soft sound, “Okay. Okay. Anything you need, want, whatever. However I can earn your forgiveness, I’ll do it.”

 

Stiles smiled softly and let out a little sound, “Come sit and let me hold your hand. Work your pain drain, please.”

 

“You didn’t tell me you were in pain, Stiles,” Bruce said, frowning at the younger male. “I could have given you something.”

 

“Not physical pain, Brucey-bear,” he said softly, letting out a little sound, “just some mental stuff. I’ll be okay.”

 

Derek nodded and moved to sit in the chair next to the bed, taking Stiles’ hand after a brief moment before letting his veins go black and the pain come through, making him whimper with what he knew Stiles was feeling. He bent to press his head to Stiles’ hip, and the boy ran his fingers through the wolf’s hair.

 

Bruce left the room after making sure Stiles was okay, letting those two have their private moment.

 

-------------

 

Tony wrapped up the call with Phil and made sure Clint was settled before trailing after Derek, only to bump into Bruce on the way down to their medical bay.

 

“Give it a little,” the doctor said, “Stiles just yelled at Derek, and they’ve made up. I think. I’m not sure.”

 

Tony frowned and moved to look at the other, “And you left them alone? Bruce, seriously? I’m going to check on them.”

 

He pushed past Bruce gently and walked down to the medical bay where Stiles was staying, pausing when he could see through the large windows. Stiles had fallen asleep with his hand in Derek’s hair, and Derek seemed to be sleeping where he sat next to the other and held his hand.

 

The intimacy of the position made him pause. They had been angry at each other - screaming, from what Bruce had said, and they had fallen asleep like that? Tony had JARVIS take a few pictures before heading back to the main floor to get something for dinner. He wasn't going to deal with this on an empty stomach.

 

Derek heard Tony enter the room and stayed still, more for the sake of Stiles than himself. He shifted and nuzzled at the Mage’s hip and waited for Tony to exit the room before slowly extracting himself from Stiles’ hold. His heart ached at the thought of having to leave his mate, but he made sure that JARVIS would let his mate know that he had just gone downstairs.

 

The Alpha made his way down stairs, slow and cautious when he approached the common room where most of the heroes were settled. He cleared his throat, and did his best to hold back the flinch when all of the sets of their eyes landed on him.

 

Derek paused for a moment and opened his mouth to speak, but Tony beat him to it.

 

“What are you doing here? Why are you in New York?” the man asked, raising an eyebrow and crossing his arms over his chest.

 

Derek glared at the other and crossed his arms over his chest as well, furrowing his brows. “Why do you want to know?”

 

“You were in there canoodling with Stiles, I think we all deserve an explanation from the Alpha that cut him off from his support system. That kid came to us broken and defeated, and he’s been building back up. He’s graduating in a week, and he doesn’t need your influence when he’s doing so well.”

 

Derek growled and felt his eyes flash, glancing to the side when he heard Clint snort. “Canoodle, Stark? That’s the best word you could think of? That guy is bigger than you.”

 

The wolf seemed a little startled by the information, but he eased up a little. He didn’t want to intimidate the people Stiles had been calling family. “The established pack controlling New York City contacted me because they saw Stiles in town and smelled his spark, and he was wearing Beacon Hills clothing.”

 

Tony paused and glared at the other, clenching his jaw. “So that pack that we had to fight, that was the one?”

 

Derek nodded, “Yes. The Garcia pack was a well established wolf pack in New York City, but now that they have been disbanded, it’s open for others to claim. I would recommend having Stiles explain how to claim territory to your pack.”

 

“How can it be a pack without an Alpha?” Clint asked, raising an eyebrow and tipping his head slightly.

 

Derek clenched his jaw, “Any group of wolves, or those that were in a pack, when banded together, can become a pack. A pack is family, not a hierarchy of wolves that control one and other.”

 

Tony nodded slightly, “I have to agree. Stiles and Belle…. They had never talked about controlling us.”

 

“I assumed it was because we could have kicked their asses,” Clint shrugged.

 

Derek scoffed, “If you think that Stiles could only do what he did today, you’re mistaken. Our Druid in Beacon Hills had begun training Stiles as a mage, he will eventually be one of the most powerful supernatural creatures ever.”

 

Clint nodded, “Didn’t Loki say something about training Stiles?”

 

Derek paused and glanced at the other, “Loki is going to train Stiles?”

 

“From what I’ve been told, Loki’s teaching Stiles how to be in-tune with his magic, and Stiles is teaching Loki to cook,” the archer nodded, grinning slightly. “Who would have thought? God gets lessons from a magic kid how to make soup.”

 

Derek smiled softly, “It sounds like Stiles. He risked his life to give a pregnant Sasquatch a fruit basket and some organic banana bread.”

 

“Wait,” Tony said, “You guys met Bigfoot?”

 

“Stiles did. And Bigfoot was pregnant,” Derek grinned.

 

“No shit.”

 

--------------------

 

Stiles had fought Bruce in getting into a wheelchair for dinner. He insisted he didn’t need it, but Bruce made him. With an IV! Stiles huffed and puffed, but he was secretly glad for it once he had changed into soft sweat pants and a hoodie and had a soft fleece blanket over his lap.

 

He tolerated Bruce helping him into the chair, thanking him, but he insisted on wheeling himself. Stiles made it to the elevator before Bruce had to take over, pushing him to the table to his usual spot, Derek having added another chair.

 

Tony had ordered Chinese food from a place down the road, and Stiles smiled happily at his Lo Mein before slowly eating it, looking a little tired halfway through. Derek had gotten an extra large serving of the General Tso’s chicken.

 

The Alpha noticed how tired Stiles seemed to be and let out a soft sound when he saw Stiles drooping, glancing at Bruce. “Is this normal?”

 

Bruce frowned, “I wouldn’t say so. Even after Loki does substantial magic, he’s never this tired.”

 

“Stiles?” Derek asked softly, “What’ve you done today? When was the last time you slept?”

 

Stiles huffed and shrugged, “Before you guys got to New York. Had… had a panic attack, and a nap. Went to work. Came back with Isaac. Fought.”

 

“Jesus, kid, and I thought I was the one that overworked myself.You need to take a day off,” Tony sighed, shaking his head.

 

Stiles gave a little sound of protest, “I’ve gone longer on worse,” he said, grumbling softly to himself.

 

“When?” Derek asked, raising an eyebrow.

 

“School. Pack meetings. Patrols. Keeping people from dying. Homework. Taking care of my dad. Research. Deaton. Therapy,” Stiles listed, “That was like, just one day. I got like, two hours of sleep a night. You know that, right?”

 

Derek paled and shook his head, letting out a soft sound. “No. I… I did not know that.”

 

Clint and Tony exchanged glances and let out a little sound, “Okay. Kid. Well, you’ve been doing a lot better here. We would have gotten you into therapy here, we have a lot of therapists, kid.”

 

Stiles huffed, “Dad had a hard enough time letting me go. Didn’t want people to think I was weak, or whatever.”

 

Tony shook his head. “Kid. Therapy don’t make you weak. Admitting you need help and being willing to work on yourself is the bravest thing someone can do. Letting someone in like that? It takes a lot.”

 

Stiles nodded and smiled slightly, “I’m tired. But I’d like it if we could… you know. Find a therapist. I’d love it.”

 

Clint nodded happily. “Alright, magic boy. Let’s get you to bed, and we can work out therapy later.”

 

Derek nodded and smiled softly, walking to stand behind Stiles’ wheelchair. “Is he going back to the medical bay, or is he going to another room?”

 

Bruce hummed, “He should be fine to go back up to his rooms, but keep the IV pole up and in his arm. He needs rest.”

 

Derek nodded and smiled, moving to wheel Stiles to the elevator. The young mage was in and out of consciousness, soft and almost boneless in the chair. Derek was a little worried about his condition, but he knew Stiles would be fine with some of the best scientists in the world on call in case anything got a little worse.

 

The elevator ride up to Stiles’ small apartment was quick, and Derek paused in awe when he saw how big the rooms were, and how Stiles had livened the place up. Posters, clothes, blankets, everything he could customize, he did.

 

Stiles hummed in the wheelchair and tipped his head back to look up at Derek, a goofy grin on his face. “C’mon, Sourwolf. Bed time,” he murmured, smiling and giggling a little.

 

Derek raised a brow, “Stiles?”

 

“Mm, hey Der-bear. M’sleepy.”

 

“Well. That’s good, seeing as you’re going to be going to bed here in a few minutes,” Derek hummed, moving to scoop Stiles up into his arms. He grabbed the IV pole as well, walking it to the bed and hooking it up to one of the bed posts before gently laying Stiles on the bed.

 

He worked the blanket and sheets from under him, deciding to leave him dressed in the soft clothes and tucked him in, hesitating before pressing a kiss to his forehead gently.

 

“Sleep well, Stiles. You need the rest,” he murmured, brushing a bit of the hairs from Stiles’ face before he turned to exit the room, pausing when he saw the super suit hung up on the closet door. He shook his head and moved to leave the room, murmuring to himself.

 

“What did you get yourself into this time, Stiles?”