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Same Old Bullshit, but Freshly Imported!

Chapter Text

“Peter. Pet’r. Pete. Pee. Peeeeeeeeee-”

Peter gently took the hand that was pawing at his shoulder and held it between his own, resting all three of them on the hospital bed that Stiles was laying on. 

“Jesus, what did they give him?” Derek asked with furrowed eyebrows. 

“He had appendicitis, Derek, they gave him what he needed,” Peter scolded.

“-eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee-”

Derek was amazed he was still going. Clearly his lung capacity hadn’t been affected. 

“This is worse than his twenty first birthday.”

“You are free to go, dear nephew,” Peter said bitingly. 

Derek looked at his uncle dubiously. Stiles and Peter had started dating a few months ago, but he still didn’t quite trust him with their mostly human pack member. 

“Peter!” Stiles got more insistent. 

“Yes sweetheart?” said Peter. 

“Peter. I have to tell you somefi- something.”

Peter looked cautious. “Stiles, if this is important, maybe we should have this conversation when you’re less.. morphined.”

No. I hafta ask you. Come here.” 

Peter leaned further into the bed. Derek took a step closer, on edge while Stiles was so vulnerable. 

“Peter. Listen. Pete and Pete- no. Wait. Repete-” Stiles looked confused for a minute before he smiled and his brow smoothed out. “Pete and Repete were in a boat. Pete fell out. Who was left?”

Derek slapped a hand to his face. This was it. His uncle was going to dump Stiles right after surgery, while he was drugged up to the ears, and Derek was going to have to explain what happened when Stiles woke up for real, and-

“Repete,” Peter said, smiling softly. 

“Pete and Repete were in a boat! Pete fell out. Who was left?” Stiles was smiling even bigger. 

Derek stared in amazement as Peter once again answered, “Repete.”

“Pete and Pete- no, Repete and Pete were in a boat ‘n Pete fell out, who was left?”

“Repete, darling.”

Stiles gave a single silent giggle before cringing and bringing a hand up to his side. Peter’s adoring look immediately changed to one of concern. 

“Maybe you should try to sleep some more,” he suggested. 

“’m too funny. Too good at jokes.” Stiles’ eyes were already halfway closed. “Gotta suffer for m’ art. You should stop falling out of boats…” 

And he was out. 

Peter sat back, smoothing Stiles’ hair as he went. His head jerked up as he realized the third heartbeat in the room had gone. He shrugged internally. Derek could stay or go, it made no difference. Peter wouldn’t be leaving until Stiles did. 

Outside, walking to his car, Derek grinned to himself. Not only was Peter genuinely in love with Stiles, but he was willing to show it in front of people. They were good for each other.

Derek was going to call him Repete for the next month. 

Chapter Text

Peter’s not religious.

He’s tried out death. He knows there’s no awareness after this one small existence we’re all so obsessed with.

There are no pearly gates, no fiery torture racks, no accounting for what you may or may not have done on this bitch of an earth.

There is no reward for weekly communion and confession.

No praise for those who pray.

Peter’s not religious.

But still… he worships.

He worships at the shrine of wit.

He holds sacred the seeking of knowledge.

Dedication to those who deserve it is his commandment, and pain to those who do not is his prophecy.

And on Sunday mornings, others dress in their finery and care for their souls with comforting theatre.

On Sunday mornings, Peter worships at his altar.

Worships the pale skin scattered with marks he’s consecrated.

Genuflects over every inch, not willing to leave a single space unpraised.

Contemplates with wonder the depths of those whiskey eyes.

He sings hymns to the curves and angles of the body below his, psalms of joy and reverence.

Bows his head to the divine utterance returned.

The cries heard in his chapel aren’t of being touched by the spirit, but touched in other ways.

Peter is devout in his faith.

The subject of Peter’s worship is never left without his believer.

The subject of Peter’s worship could never doubt his devotion.

His God, his religion, his spiritual master-

He worships Stiles.

Chapter Text

*I kept seeing this gif 

and I couldn't fucking get over how dumb that little mustache is. There's no way Stiles never dragged him for that, so I wrote this. 


 

“Hey, you’ve got something-” Stiles gestured below his own nose. 

Peter brought a hand up to his upper lip, but didn’t feel anything. His brow furrowed, and he craned his neck around to look in the mirror over his shoulder.

“I don’t see anything?” he said in a questioning voice. 

Stiles frowned, squinting his eyes. “Maybe it’s just a weird shadow. It looks kind of like dirt? Like you were gardening or something and wiped your hand under your nose?”

Peter went over to the mirror to look more closely. 

“There’s nothing there,” he said exasperatedly. 

“You sure?” Stiles said with concern in his voice. “You sure you didn’t chug some chocolate milk and forget to clean your face after? It looks like there might be something under your bottom lip too. Were you eating oreos? But just, like, really messily? OH!” He was grinning now. “Are you storing them for Derek? Do his eyebrows move to your face when he shifts? Is that where they go? They look kind of sparse though-AHHH! No, I’ll stop, I -wheeze- hold on, I can’t run and laugh at the same time- Wait-” 

SLAM 

“I have my lockpick in my pocket you know! A closet door might protect you from me but it can’t protect you from terrible grooming choices!!”

Chapter Text

Prompted by this photo:

 

The sharp click of her heels was enough to strike fear into the heart of any man.

Unfortunately, it would have no such effect on her girlfriends.

“Well?” Lydia said, hands on her hips, arriving at the holding cell. “What do you have to say for yourselves? Give me a single reason why I should post your bail.” She folded her arms and waited.

They burst into explanation at the same time.

“Ally-”

“Cora-”

“There was this-”

“She said-”

“So I had to fight her-”

“But the wolfsbane whiskey was a little-”

Lydia held up her hand and the torrent of words stopped.

“Wolfsbane. Whiskey.”

Allison cringed.

“I might possibly have forgotten to give back a few strains of wolfsbane to my dad… and accidentally dropped them in whiskey… and then whoopsie-daisy taken the whiskey to Cora’s.”

Lydia pinched the bridge of her nose. “And why weren’t you drinking at home?” she asked without looking up.

Allison and Cora glanced at each other. A beat passed, heavy in the air, pushing down, until-

“I wanted puffy Cheetos,” Cora blurted.

Lydia looked unimpressed. “I know for a fact that you bought Cheetos yesterday.”

Crunchy Cheetos, they’re completely different!”

Lydia looked at Allison flatly. “And you didn’t talk her out of it why?”

“I wanted Cheetos too,” she said sheepishly.

“We couldn’t drive because we’d been drinking,” cut in Cora, “and Derek wouldn’t give us a ride.”

“And you were working, so we had to walk,” Allison added.

“-And that’s when we met the dryad,” finished Cora.

Lydia’s attention caught at that. Her eyes narrowed. “In Settler Park, where you got arrested? You met a dryad there?”

Allison nodded eagerly. “Yeah, right there in the middle of town, being completely conspicuous.”

“You’re sober enough to use the word ‘conspicuous’ and yet you still got into a fight- you know what, not the point. What happened next,” she said with a sigh.

“I asked her why she was in the park when there’s a ton of forest right there. All she has to do is ask the Hale pack and she can move right in,” Cora said, voice getting grumpier with every word. “And she said that she wasn’t going to have anything to do with a pack that associates with hunters-”

“Which is when Cora took the first swing,” confirmed Allison. “I tried to tell her it wasn’t worth it, we should just go get the Cheetos-”

“-But then she yelled at Ally, something about about having a pet dog for a girlfriend-”

“Which is when I started fighting,” Allison said with a shrug.

Lydia massaged her temple. “Of course you did.”

“And the whiskey, it’s-” continued Cora, looking at Allison beseechingly.

“It’s- a lot,” said Allison, nodding. “It’s a lot of- it’s a lot. Of whiskey. So it was kind of hard to move? And before we could really get a hold of her, she started turning back into a tree-”

“-And I could hear the cops coming, so I tried to get Ally to leave with me-”

“I was totally going to go, but- I might have said something like ‘our girlfriend’s a banshee and she’s gonna yell at you’,”

“Then the stupid dryad asked if dating a banshee made us necrophiliacs-”

“-Which is so rude, so we went back to fighting the dryad. Except she didn’t look like a dryad anymore.”

Cora and Allison looked up at Lydia expectantly.

Lydia looked up at the ceiling and prayed for patience.

“So you got arrested for public intoxication and trying to fight a tree in Settler Park,” she finished. She sighed again. “Okay. I’ll bail you out. This time. Next time, let me defend my own honor.” She shook her head. “Necrophiliacs. That doesn’t even make sense.”

A few days later, a single tree in Settler Park had a sudden, terrible, and very localized infestation of termites.

The dryad was gone the week after.

Chapter Text

Stiles wasn’t completely awake. Not even close, actually. He was about 35% awake, give or take. 40% if he’s being generous.

It was worth it though. Last night had been Kira and Allison’s engagement party. It had been a great night, full of love and happiness and gay jokes.

Scott had been the butt of most of them, being the only straight person there. He was pretty good natured about it, especially since he’d dated both Allison and Kira before they got together.

Luckily, above all else Scott loved love. He had just been so happy to see two of his friends in love, and laughingly gone along with the jokes.

Which is all to say that Stiles was in a good mood, if not entirely aware of his surroundings. He was pretty sure he was waiting in line at the coffee shop down from his apartment building. His sweater was damp so it was probably raining outside. Everything else about his environment was just superfluous information.

He allowed his mind and eyes to zone out vacantly as he waited for the line to go down.

Wait. He knew that sweater. That was Scott’s sweater. Shit, Scott was two people ahead of him. He could order for Stiles too, and then Faster Coffee.

Stiles left his place in line to step up behind Scott, and gave his ass a slap worthy of Catherine Robbe-Grillet.

“What’s up you heterosexual bastard?” he said with a grin and a yawn. A yawn that got cut off with a choke when Scott turned around and turned out to be Not Scott.

One eyebrow raised above a piercing blue eye.

“Bastard is fairly accurate, but no one’s accused me of being heterosexual in a long time.”

“Oh my god,” Stiles whispered.

“Nope, not him either. Or her, I don’t like to assume.”

Blue eyed Not Scott was definitely amused now. Stiles was just grateful that he didn’t seem angry about the ass slap; he had not been gentle.

“I’m so sorry, I thought you were my friend Scott,” Stiles explained, sputtering over his words.

The shock had woken him up more thoroughly than any coffee could, and now he couldn’t help but notice how attractive Not Scott was. Good lord, he’d slapped the ass of a fucking runway model and accused him of being a heterosexual bastard, Stiles was going to die.

“No, I’m afraid I’m Peter,” the beautiful coffee man replied. “Not Scott. Not heterosexual. Possibly a bastard, depending on who you ask. What about you?”

Stiles felt dazed. “I’m not Scott either.”

Peter’s smirk grew into a smile. “Then can I also assume you’re not heterosexual?”

“Not unless that’s what the kids are calling bisexuality these days.” Was this real? Maybe Stiles was actually still asleep and this was just an incredibly weird dream.

“Hm, I think I’ll have to judge for myself whether or not you’re a bastard. What coffee do you take?”

“What?”

“I asked what you’d like to order.” Peter gestures at the barista in front of them. When had they reached the front of the line?

“Uh, grande triple shot americano,” he said, pulling out his wallet. However, Peter had apparently already handed over his card for both of them.

(Stiles’ situational awareness first thing in the morning was truly horrific)

(It didn’t get any better when Peter started flirting with him)

(But that was alright, because Peter decided that Stiles was, in fact, a bastard)

(Exactly the kind of bastard Peter liked)

Chapter Text

Stiles and Cora were friends in high school. They slept together once, an experimentation kind of thing. Stiles confirmed that he’s into both clits and dicks and Cora confirmed that she’s exclusively into clits. One and done. 

After high school, before leaving for college, Stiles finds himself in the bathroom of the Jungle, the recipient of a spectacular blowie from a real blue eyed daddy-type. Stiles doesn’t get his name, but he does get a great orgasm and a gold standard against which to compare all future club sex. 

He arrives at NYU. The RA of his co-ed dorm is a Very Tired senior undergrad. She rules the dorm with an iron fist, but has a soft spot for Stiles because he actually takes out his recycling instead of dumping in with the trash. Just after finals before she graduates, she allows a party and comes to drink all the free booze these little assholes owe her. Stiles is pretty much the only one there worth talking to, and when he starts flirting she shrug emojis her way into his bed. She kisses his cheek in the morning, he sleepily tells her “good game, Laura” and she moves on to her graduate program (and holy of holies, her first apartment.)

The next year, he lives his very own Coffee Shop AU. He falls madly in love with the grumpy barista, tries to learn the Language of the Eyebrows, and daydreams about running into Grumpy Barista outside of the coffee shop so he can ask him out (he’s not gonna do it while the guy’s work, are you kidding). Eventually he does get to ask him out, they date, it gets serious, and Stiles finds out that his boyfriend Derek is actually Derek Hale, Cora’s older brother. 

He goes back and forth on whether or not he should tell Derek that he had sex with Cora once. It’s not like it really affects their relationship right? He’s still undecided when they go back to Beacon Hills together, and Stiles comes to a family dinner to be introduced as The Boyfriend.

He walks in, and immediately walks right back out.

Derek looks confused. Laura looks a little guilty, Peter looks delighted, and Cora’s saying “did he tell you that we fucked once?”

It doesn’t take long after that for it all to come out, and Derek goes into the front yard to coax his boyfriend back inside. 

(”It’s a little weird, I admit-”)

(”A little?? Including you, I’ve had sex with two thirds of your family, Derek!”)

(”Come on, dinner’s getting cold. It’s not like we’re going to compare notes on your dick.”)

(They don’t compare notes on his dick, but they do compare notes on his orgasm face)

(They’re mostly complimentary)

Chapter Text

“Stop fidgeting,” Peter hissed out the side of his mouth. 

“I can’t,” Stiles hissed back. “I think this dress is giving me a rash.” He shifted back and forth on his knees again.

Peter rolled his eyes for probably the tenth time this morning. It was only 6:30 a.m.  and he didn’t doubt the number would hit above a hundred before the end of the day. 

“It’s not a dress, it’s a yukata.”

“This guy is a cult leader who was born in Kentucky to two first cousins; just because he modeled it after a yukata doesn’t make it one. It’s a cult dress. An ugly one. That’s giving me a rash.”

“Brother Stiles!” the cult leader called out. “Is there something you’d like to share?”

Stiles froze for half a second before shooting to his feet, yelling “I have been MOVED by the SPIRIT! I am COMPELLED to speak TRUTHS about YOU, our FAIR LEADER!” His hands flailed about his dress/dubious yukata with enthusiasm that was just on the wrong side of earnest.

“OUR FAIR LEADER isn’t a GREAT MAN, NO,” he paused for dramatic effect. “NO. He is a MARVELOUS PROPHET! PRAISE!” and he dropped back to his knees abruptly, apparently taken in by a sudden need to pray.

The crowd of devotees automatically responded “PRAISE,” and returned to their own prayers. The leader looked down suspiciously at Peter and Stiles, but continued on with his oration.

“You just fucking had to, didn’t you?” Peter said, even more quietly this time.

“It was rubbing the skin on my ass raw, Peter, I needed to adjust it,” Stiles whispered back. “Now shut up and pray before we get given extra cleaning duties.”

__________

Peter thoughtfully regarded the dorms on the compound.

“So we’re all kept divided by gender, even married couples… do they know about the gays? Are they aware of us?”

Stiles shrugged. “I don’t know man, once he started going on about how we’re supposed to evolve past the desire for sex, I stopped listening.”

“You know, evolving past the desire for sex doesn’t seem like a very sustainable evolutionary model,” Peter mused.

“I don’t think ‘sustainable’ is what he’s going for. ‘Ultimate power over a group of people’ seems to be his main motive.”

“Well, obviously.”

“Obviously.”

__________

Stiles and Peter stared up at the cult leader as he delivered his sermon.

“I thought he was the reincarnated Moses?” asked Stiles.

“No,” Peter answered. “Last week he announced that he was actually the reincarnation of Jesus.”

“And now he’s abandoned the whole reincarnation thing, and wants us to believe that he’s Alien Jesus?”

“Yep.”

“Why are we getting another planet’s Jesus? What about Earth Jesus Original? Where’s he?”

“Maybe he had to go to another planet too. Maybe one of the Jesuses got sick and now they’re all scrambling to fill in for each other.”

Stiles snorted with laughter before straightening his expression into something earnest again.

“God I hope Christians aren’t right, otherwise we’re for sure going to hell.”

Peter raised an eyebrow. “We’re adults living in dorms and wearing shitty dresses while a delusional asshole assigns us chores for 8 hours a day and rants at us for another 4. What makes you think we’re not already in hell?”

Stiles shrugged slightly.

“Any place with you there is going to be more like heaven for me.”

A pink tinge appeared on Peter’s face.

“You fucking sap.” They were silent for a moment, and then-

“Want to see if I can give you a hand job under the dress without anyone noticing?”

“God, please.”

Chapter Text

Allison leaned against the building, stubbing the last of her cigarette out on the brick and flicking it in the trash. “I need a vape pen,” she mumbled to herself. Secondhand smoke was nasty shit.

So was firsthand smoke, but whatever. She’d quit… someday.

She adjusted her shirt, ensuring her favorite tattoo was showing so as to make an accurate first impression, and walked into class.

She handed over her transfer card to the lit teacher and idly glanced around the class.

Bored looking students zoned out around the classroom, staring out the window if they had a view- except for one. A goofy looking shaggy haired kid was staring at her with his mouth slightly ajar. Great. There was already a dude who wanted to take a walk on the “wild side.”

She held in a sigh when she realized the only free desk was directly behind him.

Just as she slid into her seat, the boy turned around and wordlessly offered a pen.

She looked from him to the pen, surprised, but didn’t take it.

After a moment he got a confused look on his face.

“Didn’t you say you need a pen?” he asked.

She stared at him, astounded that someone would so blatantly admit to having heard something that should have been impossible to hear with normal human ears- even if he had actually misunderstood her.

The teacher stood up to get their attention, and the boy finally turned back around, still holding his pen.

She watched closely, trying to peg what exactly the guy was, and it didn’t take long. The way he cocked his head every time a car drove by outside, the way he obviously sniffed when a late student arrived with their closed coffee thermos: he was a werewolf, and an absolute shame to the stealth supernatural community.

When class was over and the students were spilling into the hallway, Allison took off her jacket, revealing what would hopefully be a full tattoo sleeve on her left arm someday. If she could find another artist to pick it up, anyway. She draped the jacket over her bookbag and headed out, considering whether she should just bluntly approach the kid about his wolf-hood or try to sniff out information on why he was so blasé about it first.

Just as she stepped into the hallway, she was accosted by a short red-headed girl who was followed by a beefy “I Strut Because I’m Insecure” type; clearly the boyfriend.

“That jacket is killer!” the girl gushed. “I’m Lydia, this is Jackson,” she jerked her thumb over her shoulder at Buff and Insecure.

“Allison.” She stuck out her right hand to shake, but Lydia reached for her left one and pulled it straight to look at her tattoos. Allison twitched as she suppressed the reflex to put her in a choke hold.

“Oh, these are beautiful! What class do you have next? How did you get these? You can’t be eighteen already, do you have a fake ID?” Lydia threw question after question at her, and Allison had the feeling that it was more calculated than it seemed.

“I knew an artist,” Allison said vaguely. “And I have…” she checked her schedule, “U.S. History next.”

“With who? Ms. Masi?”

“Um,” another quick check. “Yes.”

“That’s my class! I’ll show you where it is. Bye Jackson,” she said flippantly without looking at him, hooking an arm into Allison’s and trotting along.

Allison side eyed her and glanced back at Jackson, who she caught checking out her ass. She rolled her eyes and faced forward. God, that could turn into a ridiculous mess in half a minute if Lydia turned out to be a possessive, blame-the-girl type.

Lydia chattered as they walked along, and Allison tuned in and out, keeping an open eye for any students who were preternaturally attractive/strong/whateverthefuck.

“-and we’re supposed to do a project on a landmark supreme court case, I was thinking Roe v. Wade, does that sound good to you? There’s a lot to explore since nine states have trigger laws in the case of it being overturned, with three of those criminalizing-”

“Wow,” said Allison, surprised. “You know a lot about it.”

Lydia’s stride broke for a single step before picking right back up.

“Oh, yeah, there was an episode of ‘L.A. Boys’ about it,” she said breezily.

Allison was almost a thousand percent sure that wasn’t true. Why on earth would she pretend to be uninterested in Roe vs. Wade right after suggesting it as a research topic? Why would she pretend to be dumber than she really was? Jesus Christ, what was wrong with people at this school?

“Well, you know what they say,” Allison said casually. “Smart is sexy.”

Lydia looked at her with a sharp smile. “Is it now?” she purred, pulling a classroom door open and swaying her hips as she walked in, looking over her shoulder at Allison.

Oh God, Allison thought, mouth dry and heart racing. 

Maybe it wasn’t Beefy Boy she needed to worry about.

 

Chapter Text

“Is this a straight razor?”

“Yes. It’s something adult men use to shave their faces. Someday, in a few years, you might need one too-”

“Oh fuck off,” Stiles said without heat, idly flipping Peter his middle finger. “How do you even use this?” he asked, picking it up and bringing it close to his face for examination. Peter’s fingers swiftly appeared to whisk the razor away. 

“You use it by not accidentally cutting your eye out,” he said disapprovingly, checking over the razor as if Stiles may have somehow damaged it during the .3 seconds he held it. 

“Whatever,” Stiles scoffed. “You probably don’t even know how to use it. I could definitely see you using it as a murder weapon though. Are you going for that 1920′s Irish Gangster aesthetic?” Stiles smirked. 

Peter huffed. “Why would I use a straight razor to kill when I have ten perfectly good claws?” He eyed Stiles critically. “You clearly have no idea how to shave, with either a straight edge or whatever it is you have at home. A Bic, probably.”

“Excuse you, it’s a Lady Bic, and the moisturizing strip works wonders.”

Peter actually looked pained. “This explains so much about your facial hair.”

Stiles snorted. “I’m not the one with the Disney Villain Goatee,” he said, gesturing at Peter’s face. 

“At least my goatee proves that I understand how shaving works.” Peter hadn’t stopped eyeing Stiles’ face during the discussion, and he abruptly came to a decision. “Take off that damned hoodie, I’m going to teach you how to shave.”

Stiles’ mouth hung open. “You’re what?”

“Teaching you to shave, keep up. Off with the Little Red metaphor, off-” he started pushing at the sweatshirt, getting it off Stiles’ shoulders, while ushering him into the bathroom at the same time. 

The hoodie was off and folded next to the sink by the time Stiles snapped back to it. 

“Who says I want you putting a blade to my throat?” he asked incredulously, despite the fact that he was sitting on the closed toilet seat as Peter directed. 

“Please, darling, if I wanted to turn you into a bloody crime scene I wouldn’t bother with the song and dance. I’d just kill you.” He busily moved about the small bathroom. “You’ll need to sit on the very edge of the seat to lean back with your head resting on the tank, but that can wait a moment.”

Peter fussed around at the sink for a moment before bringing back a wet, steaming towel. 

“Put that on your face. The heat will soften the hair and skin to allow for a closer shave.” 

Stiles rolled his eyes and accepted that the shave would indeed be happening. As he draped the warm towel around his neck and jaw, Peter cut a sliver of soap into an old cracked mug and began whipping inside it with a brush. 

“Wow, no Barbasol for you I guess,” Stiles said, voice muffled by the towel. “That just foams right the fuck up, doesn’t it?”

“That would be the point,” Peter replied dryly. He placed the mug on the counter and picked up the razor, digging a leather strap out of a drawer and clipping it to the handle. 

“Pay attention: this is a strop. It is not for sharpening. It’s for aligning the edge of the blade. I’ll do about twenty five laps, going up and then flipping the blade on the pass back down. Watch.”

Peter gripped the blade between his thumb and forefinger, allowing him to pivot back and forth as he quickly wiped the blade up and down. The smooth movement was mesmerizing, the delicate twitch of his fingers belying the total control he kept over the razor’s edge.  

Once he was done with that, Peter placed the blade on the counter and gently unwrapped the towel from Stiles’ face. Stiles’ chest felt tight at the care evident in the action.

Peter seemed to be in a kind of meditative zone now. “Lean back,” he murmured, putting fingertips under Stiles’ chin and encouraging him backwards. Stiles slowly lowered his head, extending his neck back in an incredibly vulnerable position, closing his eyes as he went. 

In his black world, Stiles heard Peter pick up the mug and could smell the soap coming closer. He felt the soft brush on his skin as Peter painted the lather over his cheeks, chin, and neck. He heard the mug lightly click back down on the counter, and opened his eyes just in time to see Peter standing over him, holding the razor. 

The corner of his mouth quirked up. “Is this where you go Fleet Street on me?”

Peter smirked. “If I were going to eat you, dear boy, it wouldn’t be like that. Now hush, this blade is very sharp and you absolutely cannot move as I shave you.”

Stiles was sure his eyes were as big as saucers, watching Peter come perilously close, blue eyes intense on his current occupation. 

“The blade is cut at a thirty degree angle,” he murmured, mouth close to Stiles’ ear. “So I’ll hold it to your cheek-” 

Stiles felt the bitingly cold press of the blade to his skin.

“-and bring it straight down.”

The smooth movement downward felt like silk. One of Peter’s hands rested at the top of his cheek, holding the skin taut. It was completely silent as Stiles stared at the side of Peter’s head, fascinated by the look of total concentration on his face. The heat of his hand contrasted with the cool blade that was rapidly warming to skin temperature. 

As his newly shaved skin was revealed beneath the blade, Stiles could feel Peter’s breath passing over the sensitive surface. Each exhale a caress, just as weighted as the hand holding him in place. 

Soon the left cheek was done, and Peter released his skin for the first time in minutes. Stiles felt like he was spinning, suddenly loose in the air where his tether had snapped. Peter’s hand reappeared on his right side, canting his head to the appropriate angle, and Stiles was grounded again. 

The entire process was repeated. One hand holding his skin taut, the other gently pulling the straight edge down, breath touching newly exposed skin. 

“I’m going to shave under your jaw now,” Peter said quietly with one last swipe to his right cheek. Stiles held utterly still as Peter swung a leg over Stiles’ knees, straddling his thighs, and placed a hand at his chin, ready to tilt it back to give him complete access to his throat. 

Stiles stared at him for a moment. Peter stared back steadily. Once again, Stiles bent his head backwards, closing his eyes as he went, mindfully submitting to the vulnerability of the situation with complete trust. 

No one else was there to see Peter’s eyes glow. 

Peter placed a hand on him, holding him in place, and brought the blade back to his skin. One pass down his jaw, another pass further, and yet another brought him to the throat. Smooth pale skin, softer with the care given by Peter’s hands. 

Stiles’ eyes remained closed. His other senses were so loud, demanding all his consideration- sight was unnecessary and unwanted. The sound of quiet breathing, the heat of one hand, the smell of the soap, and the hazy glow of having all of Peter’s attention was all he needed.

Too soon, far too soon, the straight edge razor made it’s last pass. Peter brought the towel back to Stiles’ face and wiped away the remaining dots of lather. Stiles’ eyes slowly opened to see Peter looking at him softly, but intently.

“So what do you think?” he asked, wiping his hands on the towel and still straddling Stiles’ thighs. 

Stiles reached a heavy arm up to feel his face; he felt a little slow- almost drugged- but even he could tell his skin had never been smoother or softer. 

“I guess the old man razor kicks the Lady Bic’s ass this time,” he said, a reluctant smile lighting his face. 

“Old man razor,” Peter snorted. “Just admit it’s a superior shave. Please tell me you’re going to throw away your disposable razors.” He raised an expectant eyebrow. 

“Well, you didn’t exactly show me how to shave, did you?” Stiles said, crossing his arms. “I couldn’t see anything you did. You can’t expect me to make the change with so little education, can you?” 

Peter smirked at him, and leaned forward, brushing his smooth cheek against Stiles’ before whispering in his ear. 

“I’ll teach you anything you like, darling.” 

Chapter Text

(RELATIONSHIP STATUS:

Soul-bonded to a 1,200-year-old Viking Warlord's screaming ghost

Heart promised in blood sacrifice to ancient Mesopotamian fertility deity

Looking to flirt)


 

“I thought you were joking!” Kira squeaked at Allison. 

“You and my last six dates,” Allison said with a sigh, getting up to leave. 

Kira watched her gather her purse, dumbstruck for a moment before yelling “Wait! Wait! I didn’t mean I wouldn’t date you! I just- didn’t realize you were serious. Please, sit.”

Allison eyed her carefully before slowly retaking her seat. 

“So,” Kira said, clearing her throat. “So, um. A Viking warlord’s ghost and a Mesopotamian fertility deity, huh? What are their names?”

Allison smiled, her dimples lighting up the whole room and Kira sighed happily. 

“Cora was a Viking warlord in her life, and she still does a pretty good job of it without a corporeal form. I’ve asked Lydia when she was born, but she insists that gods don’t have birthdays, so I should just treat every day like her birthday.” Allison rolled her eyes fondly. 

Kira was enthralled listening to her. “How did you meet?”

“Oh, the way you usually meet girlfriends, you know” Allison answered flippantly. 

Kira really didn’t. 

“They sound nice,” she said anyway.

“They can both be aggravating as hell, but I still love them. But I’m here to get to know you,” she purred, reaching across the table to sweep a stray hair out of Kira’s face. 

Kira blushed. “What do you want to know?” she asked, gazing with a smile. 

“Tell me about your family, or what you do for a living,” Allison suggested. 

“Right now I’m an office temp,” Kira said. “I’m hoping to get into a permanent position with my current company, though. I’m covering maternity leave for a woman who’s been talking about quitting permanently.” 

Allison nodded along encouragingly. 

“As for my family, I love them,” she said effusively. “They’re wonderful. My dad and I go to the farmers market every Saturday. My grandmother makes the most wonderful patchwork quilts, and my mom recently gave me a sword that’s really helped to balance my kitsune form.”

“Oh, I love the farmers market!” Allison gushed. 

Kira smiled. She could definitely see a future relationship here. 

Chapter Text

“Stiles-”

“Dad, where is the ground beef I had in the fridge? That was only eighty percent lean, you better not have-“

“Stiles, I can’t really talk right now. I have a seventeen year old boy in the back of my car and I’m running him to the station.”

“Is he cute?” Stiles asked absently as he rooted through the fridge, more to irritate his dad than anything else. Except-

“Hey, my son wants to know if you’re cute,” the sheriff said off the speaker, but loud enough for Stiles to hear.

“No-“ Stiles hissed, but it was too late.

There was a hesitation, but then a tinny voice, obviously far from the phone said “I want to say yes, sir.”

Stiles pulled the phone away from his ear as his dad’s laughter reached unsafe decibels. He snorted and laughed until Stiles heard him sniff, and just knew his dad had laughed so hard he cried. Eventually Stiles rolled his eyes and hung up, knowing he’d see his dad in thirty minutes anyway. 

Half an hour later, he pulled into the station with his dad’s dinner. Walking past the front desk, he stumbled when he saw a boy his age sitting on one of the benches outside the interview rooms. 

He knew his mouth was hanging open, but he couldn’t stop focusing on the beautiful blue eyes and insufferable smirk long enough to close it. The boy opened his own mouth, a terrible pickup line already written across his face, when the sheriff popped out of his office. 

“Hey son, thanks for bringing dinner.”

Stiles’ head snapped over to his dad, finally closing his mouth with a click. “Uh, yeah. Dinner. This is dinner.” He shoved it at his dad and then immediately strode over to the bench to sit next to the boy, who had possibly been arrested for criminally beautiful eyes. 

“Oh my God, Stiles,” the sheriff said when he heard Stiles use that exact line. “Really? Do you have to?”

“Yes,” he answered without looking away from the boy, who was glancing between the two of them with a bemused expression. 

The sheriff sighed from the bottom of his soul and opened his dinner to start picking out the cranberries, right there in the hallway. 

“He was picked up for TP-ing Adrian Harris’ house,” he said, raising a meaningful eyebrow in Stiles’ direction. 

Stiles’ eyes lit up and he leaned in closer to the blue eyed boy. “Marry me,” he demanded, enchanted. 

“You can’t propose to someone just because they TP’ed your least favorite teacher,” the sheriff argued. “You don’t even know his name!”

“Peter,” the boy finally interjected. “My name’s Peter. Are you the one who asked if I was cute?” 

“Yes. I take honesty very seriously in my relationships, so it’s good to see you weren’t lying,” Stiles said, leaning a cheek into one hand and smiling.

“I’ll probably be on house arrest for a month,” Peter mused, looking Stiles up and down. “But I’d love to take on a date as soon as I can,” he purred out, leaning into Stiles space. 

“You’re lucky I love the anklet look,” Stiles said with a grin. 

“Oh Lord,” the sheriff pleaded to the ceiling. 

Chapter Text

Here’s the thing: Stiles never intended to become the world’s worst pool boy. He’d needed the job desperately when he’d gotten it.

But his manuscript had been accepted by a publisher exactly one week after getting hired. He was not only accepted, but contracted for a three book deal.

And yeah, he could have quit. But he’d been hired through an agency. A really good agency, who gave their employees severance if they were let go by the agency.

The third but was that the agency wouldn’t let you go unless you were fired by every house to which you’d been assigned.

And the fourth but belonged to Derek Hale.


 

The idea started out so simple: be the worst pool boy known to the greater Hollywood area, and then collect the severance package to pad the publishing deal he’d be living on while he wrote his next two books.

He didn’t show up for two of his appointments and was promptly fired by those homeowners. At the third house he deliberately shoved handfuls of leaves into the filter and then pretended to not understand why it wasn’t working. His fourth house fired him after he arrived wearing a “Show Me Your Kitties” t-shirt.

The fifth house belonged to Derek Hale.

Stiles had seriously considered staying on just at Derek’s house. The first time he’d seen the astonishingly beautiful man, he’d immediately formulated a plan involving his shortest swim shorts and a stepped-up ab workout.

But he didn’t get the severance package unless he was fired by everyone . So Stiles kissed away his dreams of seducing Derek with his slutty pool cleaning moves, and showed up in his boxers with a cigarette hanging from his lips.

“Sup,” he said when Derek greeted him in the backyard. He was idly swinging the skimmer around in circles, not even looking at the water.

“Not much,” Derek answered, his little bunny teeth peering out from behind a small smile. Stiles’ determination to get fired waivered. God, he was just so fucking cute.

But no. The Severance Package.

“I forgot the chemicals today, hope that’s cool,” Stiles said blandly. “You probably won’t get, like, too much algae growing before next week.”

“That’s okay!” Derek assured him. “I forget things all the time. I forgot to buy milk the last two times I went to the grocery store.” He chuckled at himself and Stiles got lost in the sound for a moment before giving himself a stern little shake.

He pulled his cigarette out of his mouth and tapped the ashes off into the pool. Derek watched them fall, and Stiles watched the muscles around his eyes tighten. This was it-

“Well, thanks for coming!” Derek said. “I’ll see you again next week!”

He strode off into the house, Stiles’ mouth hanging open as he watched.

Damn it. It was a wonderful view, but damn it.


 

The next week he showed up in his shortest booty shorts (the ones that had been part of his original plan) and didn’t bring any cleaning supplies at all. He was disappointed when he realized Derek’s car wasn’t in the driveway, but decided to use the opportunity to its fullest potential.

He let himself into the backyard, and then entered the house through the backdoor that Derek never kept locked. He meandered around, spotting a wine rack.

“Oooh!” His favorite rosé lay on one of the rails and he took it out, considering if he was willing to go that far.

He totally was.

He went to the kitchen to dig around in the drawers for a corkscrew and popped it open. He continued wandering around, drinking straight from the bottle. He found himself in front of the stereo, staring consideringly at the iphone dock.

Still holding the wine bottle with one hand, he took out his phone and scrolled through his playlists. Tapping his absolute favorite, he set it in the dock and took another drink while he waited for the first song to start at full volume.

“The snow glows white on the hm-hm hm-hmm, not a hm-hmt to be seeeeeeeen.”

He strolled around the living room, looking at the pictures. God, he was just so pretty. Holy shit, was he a library volunteer? Stiles looked closer at the picture and yep. He even had his own volunteer button pin, not just a sticker like they give to the people who show up once a year.

Fuck, the next picture was of him reading to preschoolers, Stiles was actually going to die.

“Let it goooooo, let it GOOOOOO!” He set down the wine on the stereo and tried not to think about how he was about to get fired by the perfect man. “Can’t hold it back any-MOOOOOOOOOORE-”

“What the- what? What’s happening?”

Stiles had completely missed the front door opening. Derek had not missed the performance.

“Oh, hey,” Stiles said, lackadaisical. “I love this wine.” He grabbed the bottle off the stereo and took another drink before handing it out to Derek in offer.

Derek took it, dazed, and stared at the half empty bottle for a moment before looking back up at Stiles.

“My hm-hmm flurries hm-hm air into the ground! My duh duh duh duh duh duh FROZEN FRACTALS ALL AROUND! God I love Elsa. She’s so badass. They totally should have her marry a fire queen in the sequel.” Stiles continued wandering around, making sure to touch every object that looked particularly fragile.

“Yeah,” Derek said distantly. “Um, don’t take this the wrong way, but why aren’t you out by the pool?”

“I didn’t bring any of my pool cleaning stuff. Just slipped my mind.” He grinned at Derek. “Thought I’d check out your abode. Pretty fuckin’ sweet dude.”

“Thanks,” Derek said, with an honest to God smile. An actual fact, true as balls smile. Stiles was stunned.

“Sorry you forgot your things again,” Derek continued with sincerity. “Memory problems can be so hard-”

“Oh my GOD are you seriously this nice??” Stiles threw his arms up in the air and turned away, walking in a circle. His hands landed on his hips. “I got fired by everyone else on the first day!! You can’t possibly believe this is acceptable behavior from a pool cleaner!!” Stiles finally turned around to look back at Derek, and caught him just in time to see his eyes snap up from his midsection to his face.

Derek was frozen. Stiles was frozen. They both unElsa-ed at the same time.

“Were you staring at my ass??”

“You’re trying to get fired??”

“Okay, okay-” Stiles held up his hands palms forward. “Okay. Let me explain. It’s a money thing.”

Derek was silent as he waited for more. When none was forthcoming, he incredulously said “That’s your explanation? ‘A money thing’? How is being the worst pool boy on earth going to get you money?”

“Severance.” Stiles shrugged.

“Oh.”

“Look, my issues are vast and unendingly stupid. What we need to be talking about right now is my ass, and your eyes looking at it.” Stiles was smirking now, arms crossed.

Derek’s cheeks flushed pink and his adorable eyebrows pulled together.

“It’s- I just- I mean-” He blew out a breath, frustrated. “Those shorts!!” he finally burst out. “Your ass goes very well with them!! And the rest of you!!” He gestured widely to all of Stiles.

“The rest of me, hm?” Stiles said. “So let me get this straight: you agree that I’m the worst pool boy on earth. Which means that you’re keeping me around for a reason other than my pool cleaning abilities.”

Derek flushed deeper.

“How about a deal: Fire me. Call up the agency, tell them how awful I am, and I’ll be out of a job with a free afternoon. Completely free to say yes to a date with me, you, and these shorts.” He pointed to his butt. “And possibly, if you keep smiling at me with that adorable face, and tell me about your volunteer work, we can have a second date without the shorts.”

Derek was grinning by the end of Stiles’ suggestion, and already had his phone out.

“Hello, Siren Pool Cleaners? I’d like to report one of your employees…”

Chapter Text

They left.

Not permanently. After all, the sheriff still lived in Beacon Hills and the Hale bloodline would always be inextricably bound to the land (regardless of how they felt about that.)

But- they left.

You have to rest your ears, you see. Eventually the words lose their meaning, and you can’t distinguish the bass line from the kick drum. You have to take your headphones off and listen closely to the silence in order to hear.

So they left.

Peter, who was covered in burns that he could feel but no one could see.

Derek, who had been cut down so many times it was amazing there was anything of him still standing.

And Stiles, who’d had his insides scooped out to make room for a beast, and then lost that too.

They left.

They had no destination, no plan, and no words. The steering wheel turned with a mind of it’s own, occasionally swayed by the need for fuel or food.

A couple of nights sleeping in the car weren’t the most comfortable, but they’d all experienced far worse.

They left, and left, and eventually went so far left that they wound up on the coast, following it north until they happened to pass by a sign that said “Beach Rental,” and they finally paused in their leaving.

Getting inside took less time and identification than Stiles would have thought, but that also could have been due to the large amount of cash Peter had on hand.

Derek held the keys, Stiles their bags, and Peter some groceries when they walked into the cottage. Everyone picked a drawer from the dresser in the single bedroom, and put away their clothes. 

It was a chatty house, creaking and rattling in a friendly way. The constant crash of waves settled in the background, only becoming obvious when the windows were open. The house kept up the conversation that they didn’t. 

That evening Stiles found Derek on the couch, his head to Peter’s shoulder and Peter’s lips to Derek’s head. Neither of them tensed, simply waiting. It only took a moment for Stiles to turn off the lamp for a better view out the window, and then join them on Peter’s other side. He laid his head down in Peter’s lap and reached out for Derek’s hand, laying it on Peter’s knee to idly trace the fingers with his own. 

They watched the dark sea become pitch black. Surrounded by both sound and silence, there was a bone deep rest in the dichotomy. 

They left, but they left together. 

Chapter Text

“Dance with me!” 

In his little three year old voice, it sounded more like dance wif me,but Peter smiled, taking hold of Derek’s tiny hands and picking him up to stand on his shoes. 

They twirled to the music, Derek giggling wildly the entire time as Peter smiled in a way that he never seemed to manage with anyone else. 


 “Dance with me,” Derek begged. “Laura won’t dance with me, she says that 98 Degrees is just fake N’Sync!”

Peter secretly thought Laura had a point, but there was no way he would ever tell Derek that.

“What are we dancing to?” he asked, rolling up his sleeves. 

Derek rolled his eyes. “Because of You, duh.”


 “Dance with me.”

Derek smirked at Peter with all the confidence of a young teen newly controlling the shift. 

“What, are you afraid I’ll beat you?” Derek taunted. 

“I wouldn’t want to hurt you, darling,” drawled Peter. 

Derek scoffed. “You couldn’t-AAUGH!” He yelled a garbled mess as Peter tackled him to the ground and they immediately began rolling, tangling in a dance of blunted claws and gentle bites.


 “Dance with me?” Derek asked, cheeks burning red. “I don’t know how to- how to lead with a girl. Will you teach me before homecoming?”

Peter looked up from his book, some facet of his face closed off. 

“If you want to learn how to lead with a girl, why not ask your mother?”

Derek shifted uncomfortably, staring at his feet. “I don’t want to,” he said quietly. “I want you to teach me.”

Peter’s gaze softened. If Derek had been looking, he might have seen a glimpse of old, reckoned pain. 

“Alright, Derek. I’ll teach you.”


 “Dance with me.”

Derek snarled out the words, claws out, facing down the man who’d killed his sister. The man he’d abandoned. The man-

“I wouldn’t want to hurt you, darling.” Peter’s voice was crazed. “We both remember how this ended last time, don’t we?” 

Peter lunged forward, red eyes burning with the fire he’d lived for the last six years. It was the work of moments before Derek was pinned again, in the same move he’d been pinned at fourteen years old. 

“You remember, don’t you?” Peter purred into his ear. “You remember my body against yours, holding you securely.” His grip tightened. “You wouldn’t remember the way your mother threatened me, though, would you? You wouldn’t remember the guilt of the elder, only the fluster of the younger.”

Peter leaned in, taking a deep breath near Derek’s throat. Derek went limp, sinking into Peter’s hold, the smell of alpha, mate-

He fell onto the ground with a thud, confusion and hurt gripping him for a moment before he realized Peter was gone. 

The hurt intensified, as did the confusion. 


 “Dance with me.”

Peter murmured the request. It was the first calm morning they’d had since he’d come back. Derek stood at the sink with a glass of water, gripping it tightly, trying trying trying to forget the feeling of slicing his uncle’s neck open. 

“Dance with me,” Peter repeated, turning the radio up. Derek didn’t recognize the song- hadn’t really recognized anything on the radio for years. He didn’t turn it on for fear of hearing something he wouldrecognize; something he used to dance to. 

“Dance with me,” Peter insisted, stepping up to Derek and holding out a hand. 

Derek stared at the hand. He took a shaky breath, set down his glass, and took it. 

Peter drew him in close, holding the hand close between their shoulders and putting his other on Derek’s waist. He began gently swaying to the music, looking at Derek. 

Derek placed his other hand behind Peter’s neck, drawing him in to lean their foreheads together, and closed his eyes. They continued swaying, close enough for their breath to mingle, even after the song changed. 

“Dance with me,” Derek whispered, and brought his lips to meet Peter’s. 

Chapter Text

Stiles knew Peter was amenable to homicide. 

And he knew that he himself could stomach killing someone in proactive self defense. 

But he hadn’t known that Mr. Christopher Argent would straight up murder a mostly-innocent teenage boy who had committed no other sin than wearing a particularly tight pair of jeans to a pack meeting. 

“-and we’ll be having treaty meetings next Thursday,” Derek said, probably. Stiles couldn’t be sure, because Chris was currently standing behind him, lightly sliding a finger along the skin between his t-shirt and waistband. 

Stiles was going to die. 

Out of the corner of his eye, he could see Peter smirking as he stood next to and slightly in front of him, blocking the line of vision that anyone else might have to Stiles. 

Chris continued dragging his pointer finger back and forth over the dimples in his lower back before dipping slightly below the waistband. 

Stiles bit his lip, determined to stay quiet. 

“Good boy,” Chris whispered, just slightly louder than silence. “Oh, the things I’d do to you if we were alone.”

Stiles took a deep breath to prevent a whine that wanted to crawl out of this throat. 

“Isn’t that right Peter?” Chris continued, knowing that Peter would be unable to respond. “We were talking about it last night after you left. About what we would do if we could have you completely alone for days at a time.”

Stiles shifted his feet slightly, unable to hold still, and it sent Chris’ finger deeper into his waistband. Chris dragged it around Stiles’ side until he found the dip of his hipbone. 

“First we would undress you. No need for clothes if we’re all alone, is there?“ Stiles could feel Chris’ lips behind his ear, brushing across his skin with every movement.

“Then we would put you to bed. It’s important for you to get enough rest- and we’d want you to have plenty of energy.” 

Chris’ calloused finger was slowly rubbing back and forth in the valley of his pelvic V, and Stiles had never been so turned on in his life. 

“We’d make sure you were comfortable. We’d have to come to bed too of course, to keep you warm.” His breath ghosted over the back of Stiles’ neck, causing a small shiver down his spine. 

“I would give you a back rub to make sure you’re thoroughly relaxed. I’d rub your shoulders, your sides, all the way down to your thighs. Peter wouldn’t abandon you, though. He’d keep you busy. After all, we both know how empty you feel without a cock in you, don’t you?”

Stiles’ breath came faster, but he stood stock still, both deeply wanting and terrified to move in a way that would push Chris’ hand further down his jeans. 

“He’d feed you his cock and let you choke on it, exactly the way you love,” Chris continued to murmur. “Sloppy and needy and so, sogood. And if we were alone with all the time we needed, well- I could do anything I wanted, couldn’t I?”

Stiles couldn’t stop his little nod. 

“That’s right. I’d want to take my time. Spread your ass wide and lick you out until you were desperate; but you’re always pretty desperate for it, aren’t you baby? Always desperate. Always pretty.”

Peter suddenly leaned further in front of Stiles, hand landing on a waist high chair in front of them- and coincidentally brushing against the hard on barely restrained in Stiles’ jeans. 

Stiles sucked in a breath but didn’t move. 

“I’d lick you and eat you until Peter came down your throat. You’d come too of course- you can never stop yourself when he does that, can you?” Stiles felt the tip of Chris’ nose glide up the curve behind his ear, tongue darting out ever so slightly to taste the skin of his helix.

“And when you were all dreamy and relaxed; all come drunk and satisfied; that’s when I’d give you my cock.”

Stiles couldn’t hold back the whimper entirely this time. Peter just happened to clear his throat at the same moment. 

“You’d love that baby, wouldn’t you? You’d love to have my cock so deep that you could feel every inch of me. You’d love to be alone with us so you could forget that anything else exists. Only you, and us, and our cocks holding you open and messy-”

“I’M NOT FEELING WELL,” Stiles blurted out loudly. “I NEED TO GO.”

“Oh, poor dear,” Peter tutted immediately, taking him by the hand and leading him toward the door. “Chris and I will make sure he gets back to his dorm safely, feel free to continue on without us!”

The second they were down in the parking lot, Stiles was pressed between them. Chris still pressed to his back and Peter at his front, hand inching down to the zipper of his jeans. 

Peter’s teeth scraped along the side of his neck. “You couldn’t even wait for the meeting to be over, could you? So desperate, so needy.”

“Yes,” Stiles agreed blindly. “Yes, yes.”

Chris’ hand came around the front of his throat, pulling his head to the side so he could whisper two final words. 

“We’re alone.”

Stiles’ eyes, rolled back, squeezing shut, and he came. 


Back in the loft, Derek was pinching the bridge of his nose. 

“Not that I’m complaining, because that was stupidly hot, but do they really think we couldn’t hear that?” Erica wondered out loud. 

Derek sighed. “I wish I could say yes.”

Chapter Text

Stiles slammed the door to Peter’s apartment, marching into his kitchen. 

“I need advice. Sex advice,” he declared. 

“Why hello Stiles. I’m fine, thanks for asking. I am indeed in the middle of cooking dinner, how observant of you to notice,” Peter said, blithely ignoring the determined young man standing next to the stove. 

“I’m the one who gave you that recipe, don’t act like you’re not about to simmer for twenty minutes,” Stiles said impatiently. 

Peter rolled his eyes and turned down the heat, popping the cover on the pan. He wiped his hands on a towel and then finally turned to face Stiles. 

“Sex advice,” he said flatly, ignoring the unpleasant jealous clench in his stomach. “I’m not sure why you’d come to a gay man for sex advice-”

“Because I wanna have gay sex,” Stiles interrupted. “Well, sex with a dude. One dude specifically. And the advice I need isn’t so much about the sex itself, per se?” He trailed off, clearly losing steam. He looked away and glanced back. “Maybe I should g-”

“No,” Peter said shortly, grabbing him loosely by the arm and pulling him into the living room. “Who else are you going to go to for advice on gay sex? Your straight friends who are just as clueless as you-?”

“-I’m not clueless!-”

“-No, if you really want advice on non heterosexual sex, I’m the only person you should be asking. I give the best advice on everything anyway,” he said flippantly. 

Stiles rolled his eyes, but smiled. 

“Now, what do you need advice on?” Peter asked. 

Stiles took a deep breath. “There a guy-”

“-I gathered-”

“-who I want to have sex with. I already know he’s gay, so that’s not a problem. I think he’d be down for it with me,” Stiles hesitated. “He hasn’t said anything? But he touches me all the time and makes innuendo like six times per conversation-”

“So he wants to fuck you,” Peter concluded succinctly. “Is your question about mechanics-?”

“No,” Stiles said, drawing out the word. “I’ve watched plenty of porn, I know the importance of lube. There’s significantly more information on the internet about dicks than there is about vaginas.”

“Okay,” Peter said. “So what’s your question?”

“I don’t just want to have sex. I really, really like this guy. Like, a lot. As in I like him so much I’m probably half a step from lo-”

“Yes, alright,” Peter cut him off, trying to keep the sharp stab of heartbreak out of his voice. “You want emotional entanglements, not just physical. Do you have any evidence that he’d be open to that?”

Stiles hesitated again. “I think so,” he said slowly. 

“Then just tell him,” Peter said simply. “If you want an actual relationship, it’s foolish to begin with anything but clear communication. Just sit him down and say ‘I would love to date you romantically and also fuck like rabbits.’“

Stiles nodded along with the advice. “That sounds… reasonable. Clear, concise.” He nodded again. 

“Glad I could help.” Peter stood up, ready to leave the room and nurse his heartbreak in the kitchen, but Stiles stopped him with a hand. 

“Hey Peter? Can you sit again?”

Peter raised an eyebrow, but sat down. 

Stiles leaned forward and took one of his hands. “I would love you date you romantically and also fuck like rabbits.”

Peter’s mouth fell open, gaping like a fish for several beats as he tried to process. 

When he finally did, all he could do was say “You little shit,” and lean forward to kiss the hell out of Stiles. 

Dinner over-simmered by a significant amount of time that night.

Chapter Text

“I am no longer a child!” Stiles hollered belligerently at their bedroom lamp. 

“I would hope not,” Peter said soothingly, taking Stiles’ single shoe off. “Otherwise our marriage is very illegal.”

“And I’m not scared of werewolves!” Stiles continued, oblivious. 

“Mm, yes I would hope that’s true too, once again considering our marriage.” Peter wondered when and why Stiles had put two socks on one foot. 

“I’m a respon’sible adult-” his drunken state showed obviously in the slurring of the word responsible, “and if I wanna have chocolate milk sometimes then I’M ALLOWED TO.”

“Absolutely, sweetheart. Now how was the rest of the stag party?” Peter gave a light push to Stiles’ shoulder and he immediately fell back onto the bed. 

“It was so gooooood,” Stiles said happily to the ceiling. “I can’t believe my dad’s finally getting married again. I never thought he was gonna propose.”

“He didn’t,” Peter reminded him mildly as he shucked Stiles’ pants off. “Christopher was the one who proposed.”

“Yeah, but dad said yes! Which is kind of like proposing!!”

“Okay, baby. Can you sit up again so I can help you with your shirt?”

Stiles struggled upright, making an uncoordinated and unsuccessful attempt at pulling his arms through his shirt. 

“Stop-honey, stop,” Peter gently batted away Stiles’ hands and untangled the shirt from his head. “There we go. Drink this.” 

Stiles obediently took the glass of water and gulped it down, flopping over to place it on his nightstand when he was done. 

A moment later Peter had turned off the lights and crawled into bed next to him. Stiles immediately plastered himself to his side, nuzzling into his shoulder. 

“I’m just-” he yawned. “I’m just really happy that Chris is gonna be his Peter. I love my Peter. My dad needs a Chris-Peter.” He yawned again. “He needs someone to take care of, and someone to take care of him. Like us.” 

Peter turned his head to press a kiss to his husband’s head. “Absolutely, sweetheart. Go to sleep.”

“I am no longer a child, I’ll go to sleep if I-” he was cut off by yet another yawn, and by the time it was over his eyes were closed. A soft snore left his mouth a moment later. 

Chapter Text

“She’s beautiful,” Stiles cooed at the cat. “The most beautiful baby kitty! The prettiest girl, yes she is!”

“She’s incredibly smart too,” Peter said, the look on his face only slightly less dopey than the one on Stiles’. “She’s already figured out where we keep the extra dry food, and how to get to it. We’ve had to move it twice.” His voice could not have sounded more proud. 

“We’re so lucky we found her,” Stiles said reverently. “I know we’ve only had her three days but I honestly don’t remember what life was like before her.” 

The cat purred loud enough to be heard across the room, sounding something like a monster truck. 

Personally, Cora thought she looked kind of like a monster truck too. One that was due to be junked. 

The thirteen year old (as estimated by Deaton) cat was missing an eye and a leg, and had an underbite that would have impressed a bulldog. Her ear was missing a chunk, and one of the teeth sticking out of her underbite had clearly been broken at some point. 

Stiles and Peter sat on either side of her pillow (and it was her pillow, purchased expressly for Her Majesty) petting her and scratching her cheeks. 

“So… you guys just found her outside the apartment complex?” Cora questioned skeptically. 

“Yeah,” Stiles answered. “My poor baby was all alone and hungry.”

“… and you’re sure she’s just a cat?”

Stiles looked up, bewildered. “What else would she be?”

“I don’t know. But you have to admit it’s kinda weird,” Cora said. “You didn’t even know she existed three days ago, and now-” she gestured to the four story cat tree in the middle of the room. 

“She needs exercise!” Stiles protested. 

Peter rolled his eyes. “Princess Whoopass is nothing more than an exceptional cat, Cora.”

“Princess Whoopass??”

Peter pointedly indicated the missing leg, eye, ear chunk, and section of tooth. 

“She’s clearly been in many, many battles, and survived every one of them. I don’t know exactly how many other fur covered asses she’s kicked, but it’s got to be at least dozens.”

Cora thoughtfully considered that. Carefully, she reached out a hand to scratch under the cat’s chin. Princess Whoopass kicked her purr up another notch and joyfully leaned into the touch. 

“Yeah, okay,” Cora admitted. “She is pretty badass.” She reached out a second hand to pet the top of her head too. “But if she turns out to be a witch or a spy or something, I want the pillow.”

Chapter Text

Stiles aggressively chopped a potato into cookable chunks for the stew. He was in the kitchen while the pack cozied up in his living room during the storm because, somehow, his house was the only one with a generator. 

“-and Deaton says that pixies-” 

Stiles was trying to pay attention to Scott as he talked, he truly was. But-

Peter walked through the kitchen again, snagging a carrot on his way past. 

“-if we leave out fresh fruit or like a baked dessert-”

Peter fucking had to know what he was doing. He just had to. He’d worn that stupid shirt on purpose, expressly to ruin Stiles’ life. Stiles glared harder at his potato. 

That shirt… a V-neck, of course. Did Peter even own anything else? He knew exactly how to exhibit himself. He was perfectly aware of how it showed off his muscled neck. And the way it stretched across his shoulders…

“-and THAT’S supposed to make them sleepy-”

Stiles startled at Scott’s emphasis, and immediately resumed chopping. 

It wasn’t even just the way it showed off his muscles. God, Stiles had enough werewolf muscles shoved in his face every day that they were practically boring. It was the muscles paired with the downy forest green heather color. The fabric looked amazingly soft too, like it would be perfect for snuggling in, and the way it comfortably draped across his back-

Peter’s hand appeared in his line of vision again, stealing another carrot as Scott talked. Stiles looked from the hand, up the sleeved arm, across the shoulder, all the way to Peter’s face. 

“-they’re also allergic to pine nuts-”

“You are fucking kidding me,” Stiles blurted out loudly. 

Scott looked over, confused. “No, dude. Deaton says they’re allergic to pine nuts.”

Stiles was staring at Peter, who had the hood up over his head, tucked in like the cutest, coziest man on earth. 

“You,” Stiles pointed at him accusingly as Peter grinned at him, carrot in his cheek. “You’re doing it on purpose.”

“I have no idea what you’re talking about,” he said around the carrot, still smiling. 

“I can’t work in this environment. You either need to kiss me or change into an uglier shirt,” Stiles demanded.

Peter shrugged, swallowing his food. “I didn’t bring any other shirts, so…”

He swooped in and kissed Stiles, lightly at first, and then with more intent when Stiles pulled him back in. 

Scott gasped.

“What the- you can’t do that in front of the stew!” Scott said, scandalized. “We’re all going to eat that stew!”

Chapter Text

Stiles was pretty sure he would have his ass handed to him in 30 seconds flat if he came hand to hand with a werewolf. It was just embarrassing. 

“I should be able to last, like, at least 45 seconds,” he declared in the middle of the loft. “45 sounds so much better than 30.”

“Not as good as 60 though,” Scott said sagely. 

Stiles scoffed. “Well, let’s be realistic."

“There’s no reason you shouldn’t be able to last longer than a minute in a fight, Stiles,” Chris said from the table where his bestiary was laid out. “You just need training.”

Stiles rolled his eyes. “Who’s going to train me?” 

Three voices answered at the same time. 

“I would.”

Chris, Derek, and Peter all stared at each other for a moment before looking back to Stiles. His mouth hung open before he snapped it shut with a swallow. 

“… Okay,” he said. 

“ ‘Okay’ what, dude?” Scott asked, side eyeing the others in the room. “Who are you okay-ing to teach you?”

Stiles shrugged. “All of them. Maybe with three trainers I can get all the way up to 90 seconds.”


A month later, Stiles had receded to 25 seconds against his trainers. But to be fair, the problem was not his fighting abilities. 

He’d actually gone hand to hand with Scott a few times since he started training, and could get around him for five or more minutes- certainly long enough to get away. 

No, his problem was that any physical contact with Peter, Derek, or Chris came with a complementary boner. And training in hand to hand combat? Turns out there’s a lot of physical contact involved. Who could have guessed. 

He was currently facedown on a mat in Chris’ basement, pinned by Peter with Chris and Derek standing on the side to critique his form. 

Peter had him completely immobilized- and honestly, hand to Jesus, Stiles had not known that was a kink of his. He hadn’t known, but he did now, and so did Peter. 

Stiles was breathing fast, pupils blown, desperately hoping everyone would put his reaction down to the physical exertion of fighting- but when had his luck ever been that good?

Peter ground forward a little, just enough for Stiles to feel his answering hardness in shock. 

Voice a little strangled, Stiles whispered “Not that I’m against this, but is this really the time and place??”

Peter flipped him over, pining him again. Stiles gasped, automatically bucking his hips forward into Peter, who encouraged the motion. 

“Let them watch,” he growled out, running a hand up Stiles’ shirt. 

“I’d rather they join in,” Stiles blurted, immediately cringing at himself. 

“That can be arranged,” came Chris’ voice from directly behind Stiles’ head, taking his wrists from Peter’s hold. Chris gently rubbed circles on them as he held them completely immobile, lowering his head to press kisses up Stiles’ arms. 

Derek stepped up next to Stiles’ side and dropped to his knees without a word, pulling Stiles’ shirt up as Peter moved to Stiles’ lower half and nuzzled against his cock, drawing a moan out of Stiles. 

Derek pushed the shirt up toward his armpits, ducking his head down to mouth at a nipple, teeth grazing the skin when Stiles gasped. He pulled back just far enough to look into Stiles’ eyes. 

“We need a yes, Stiles. Do you want this? With everyone?”

“YES. Yes, yes, yesyesyesyes-” his voice cut off with a cry as Peter pulled his shorts down under his balls and took the head of his dick into his mouth. Stiles’ head tipped back and his eyes slid shut under the wave of sensation, unable to move his arms or legs. 

Derek leaned back over, kissing and biting along Stiles’ stomach until his mouth disappeared. Stiles finally opened his eyes, head still tilted back so he could see Chris staring intently down past Stiles’ navel. 

Stiles looked down too just in time to feel Peter release his cock from his mouth so he could kiss Derek, devouring him the way Stiles had felt devoured by both of them a moment ago. 

“They’re beautiful, aren’t they?” Chris murmured in his ear. “You should see them go at each other during the full moon. It’s the most savage and gorgeous thing I’ve ever seen, aside from you.” Chris turned his head to mouth at the side of Stiles’ throat.

Stiles inhaled sharply at the feel of his teeth, trying to squirm into the sensation but unable to get closer. He felt Peter’s mouth on his cock again, swallowing him down this time, and shouted, struggling further. 

But it wasn’t until Derek brought his hands back down to his nipples, pinching hard enough to send a shock down his spine, that he surrendered completely. He submitted to the siege of feeling, and came with a sigh on his lips. 

Derek and Chris pet over his skin, soothing him through the aftershocks as Peter held him in his mouth until it was over. Eventually Peter pulled back to wipe his mouth. Or at least tried to, before he was hauled forward toward Chris with a hand around the back of his neck. 

Stiles watched them kiss above him, amazed that he got to see this. That he was in the middle of it. Derek reached a hand out and tipped his face toward him with a smile before leaning in to kiss him as well. 

When Derek finally released his mouth, Stiles looked around at the three of them. 

“So… this counts as part of my fight time right?”

Chapter Text

Stiles had been alone for so long. 

He felt the sickness growing, unable to stop it, only suppress the symptoms. 

He stared blankly at the dark wall, trying to remember what it had felt like to have someone who looked after him; someone who cared for him. But it had been so long. 

The darkness was gathering around him. He wouldn’t be here much longer. 

SLAM!

“Hey baby, I’m back from the store. They only had liquid NyQuil, but if you pretend it’s a five dollar shot- sweetheart, why didn’t you turn on the lamp? It’s literally right next to you.”

The light clicked on, and Stiles was finally able to see Peter holding a RiteAid bag, looking down at him with a raised eyebrow. 

“I’m dying,” Stiles croaked out. “You left me to die. I’m probably dead right now.”

The mix of empathy and exasperation on Peter’s face was something Stiles was uniquely able to put there. It’s such a shame I’m dead now, Stiles thought. He’ll never get to have that expression again. 

“You finished off the cold medicine, darling. If I hadn’t gone to get more, you wouldn’t be able to sleep tonight. Come on, let’s get you up and into a bath.”

“Noooooo,” Stiles whined pathetically. “I can’t move. Dead people don’t have to move. Just leave me alone, you should just go.”

Peter capably swept Stiles up into his arms and started carrying him off to the bathroom. 

“I’m sorry,” he said, not sounding sorry at all. “I’m legally obligated not to abandon my husband when he’s sick.”

Stiles tucked his head into Peter’s shoulder, snuffling against his shirt. “I’m dead remember? I thought I remembered ‘til death do us part’ somewhere in the vows.”

Peter hummed as he set Stiles down on the sink counter. “You’re having an awful lot of heartbeats for a dead person.”

“It’s all in your imagination.” Stiles reached out for a handful of tissues, blowing his nose for the thousandth time that day. “You were so heartbroken by my death that you went crazy again.” Stiles gasped at his own words. “Oh babe, that’s so sweet. You love me so much.”

Peter finished fiddling with the bath tap and leaned over to kiss Stiles on the head. “I’m cutting you off the codeine.”

Stiles sniffed and almost swayed off the counter. 

“Yeah, that’s probably fair.”

Chapter Text

“It’s so cliché, though. We’re better than that.”

“It’s not cliché if it’s gay.”

“It’s still cliché,” Lydia insisted. 

Cora pulled her girlfriend backwards into her arms, not having to reach out very far in the small dressing room. 

“It might be a cliché if I were the football captain, but I’m not. I’m the lacrosse captain, taking her incredible girlfriend who happens to be head cheerleader, as well as president of the mathletes, to prom. That’s not a cliché.”

Lydia frowned at her reflection, critically looking at the ruching on dress number 4 of the try-on line up. 

“I just don’t want people to think I’m performing,” she eventually said, softy. “That was my entire life for so long- but I’m past that now. I just don’t want people to look at us, and see what Jackson and I used to be.”

Cora hooked her chin over Lydia’s shoulder. “Anyone who knew you before and after can see the difference, babe. It’s clear how much more comfortable you are now that you’ve come out.”

Lydia sighed and nodded, lightly rubbing her cheek against Cora’s. 

“Besides,” Cora added, “how could anyone look at me and see Jackson? My boobs are so much better than his.”

Lydia snorted out an inelegant giggle. 

“I don’t like this dress either,” she abruptly announced, pulling away from Cora gently. “All of these dresses are hideous, we need to go somewhere else.”

“Okay baby,” Cora said, helping her out of her dress (and possibly copping a feel or three.) “Where else do you want to go?”

The determined sparkle in Lydia’s eye as she answered was still there 3 weeks later when they arrived at the dance. 

The two girls in matching fitted tuxes danced together all night, untouchable in their bubble of love and confidence. 

Chapter Text

You do realize that I’m elected to this job, right?

9 years old, carrying lawn signs nearly as big as himself to all his neighbors, because his dad is running in an election. His dad is gonna be the sheriff. He’s the best dad, so he’ll be the best sheriff.

The signs are pretty heavy, though.

You do realize that I’m elected to this job, right?

The lights hurt his eyes, but Dad said standing still and smiling will help win the election. The election is important to Dad, so it’s important to him too. It’s hard to stand still, but he’s trying. He is.The lights hurt his eyes, and so does his dad’s hand on the back of his neck.

You do realize that I’m elected to this job, right?

It was a forgone conclusion. He’d just learned that phrase last week, and it fit perfectly. It was a forgone conclusion. Of course Dad won. He’s the best Dad, and he’ll be the best sheriff. Mom agrees with him, though she adds “-the best sheriff as long as he’s not too hungover from celebrating to show up for his first day.”

You do realize that I’m elected to this job, right?

His mom is dead and he’s 11 years old when he really realizes that there’s a re-election every four years. His dad will have to campaign every four years. Mom is dead. Who will be his campaign manager next time?

You do realize that I’m elected to this job, right?

The lights are just as bright this time, his dad’s grip just as tight, but Stiles understands their purpose better this time around at 13. Running as incumbent puts less pressure on name and face recognition, but it’s still important.

This is the face they present. The brave widower and his son. Any other faces belonging to his father stay far away from the campaign.

You do realize that I’m elected to this job, right?

It’s during the celebration of the second win that Stiles finds the mistake. A mistake with a warrant, responsibility lying directly on the shoulders of Sheriff Stilinski. A mistake that will let a violent offender go free and make months of headlines.

Stiles stays up all night, frantically worming into files and fixing things, cleaning his tracks.

You do realize that I’m elected to this job, right?

At 15 years old, Stiles considered a map of polling places, thinking about the next two years. Re-election starts early.

The best dad.

The best sheriff.

The signs are so much heavier now.

“You do realize that I’m elected to this job, right?” he said, grip tight on the back of Stiles’ neck.

Yes, Stiles thought. I realize. I realize where your poll numbers drag, I realize that less than a third of your deputies voted for you in the last election, and I realize just how easily you’re manipulated by a county wide popularity contest.

I realize what’s most important to you in this moment.

I realize what will be most important to you in any moment.

“And if I help you figure this out you’ll be re-elected, am I right?”

The signs are heavy, but Stiles has carried them for seven years. 

He’s right.

Chapter Text

The Ahools were the last straw. Scott insisted they were peaceful. They just wanted to pass through. They were on their way to Mexico to visit family. 

When the body of a seven year old was discovered, Stiles knew he’d waited too long. 

He waited for Peter in his apartment, flipping through the planner sitting on the coffee table. He was just penciling something in when Peter arrived. 

“… to what do I owe the unasked pleasure?” Peter said when he arrived home, looking around his living room cautiously. 

“We need a new Alpha,” Stiles said bluntly. 

Peter stared at him. 

“Obviously you’re the best choice,” Stiles continued, ignoring the look. 

“There’s just a single flaw in that plan,” Peter drawled, a slight edge to his words. “I’m not an Alpha.”

Stiles waved the words away casually. “That’s easy enough to take care of, and doesn’t matter. Not yet anyway. The campaign comes first.”

“Campaign.” 

“Yes.” Stiles’ voice held a bite of impatience now, as if he were frustrated with how thick Peter was acting. “Campaign. You can go out and become an Alpha right now, but that won’t mean anything if you don’t have a pack. You tried to take a pack by force once, remember? Didn’t go so well.”

“And you think a… campaign is the way to solve that?” Peter asked slowly. 

“Look, I know you’re super in touch with your wolfier side,” Stiles said with a roll of his eyes, “but I also know you’re not an idiot. It’s called pack politics for a reason, dude.”

Peter looked at him speculatively. “What did you have in mind?”

“For you, it starts with visibility. You need to show up to every pack meeting, not just the ones convenient for you,” Stiles said, getting up and walking slowly back and forth across the room. “Stay after fights. Check on everyone, patch up anyone who needs it. Start acting like the Alpha you’re going to be.”

Peter watched him move, pale hands gesturing freely. Stiles glanced back before continuing. 

“You also need to stop calling Scott an idiot in front of everyone.”

“Are we not trying to make me look better than him?” Peter asked with a raised eyebrow. “I thought that was the whole point of a campaign.”

“That’s exactly what we’re doing. We’re going to hide your petty streak and bring out Scott’s. When you start off attacking, the pack rallies around him regardless of how awful his ideas are. He is theirAlpha, and they instinctually want to protect him.”

Peter frowned, knowing Stiles was right. Even Peter got the occasional urge to defend Scott, and he thought he was useless. 

“What are you going to be doing?” Peter asked. 

Stiles smirked. 

“Managing the campaign.”

He walked over to the coffee table and picked up his keys.

“We’ll talk more soon.”

Peter watched him leave with sharp eyes. As soon as the sound of his heartbeat disappeared, Peter went to his planner and flipped it back over, searching.

There. Two months from now.

Visit Deucalion.


 

Stiles looked at the ribs visible through Erica’s wound, and did his best not to pass the fuck out. He had a job to do. 

“Come on, let’s get you to Peter,” he said, helping her out of the dirt. 

“Why the hell-” she clenched her jaw as he moved, holding back a scream at the pain. “Why the hell would I go to Peter?”

“He’ll make you feel better. Duh. He knows how to do the pain drain thing and he can make sure your ribs are all set right before they heal. Remember last time when you had to break your arm again after it healed crooked?”

Erica grimaced at the memory. 

“Yeah, alright.”

As Stiles watched Peter take care of Erica, he couldn’t help be impressed with how easily he’d turned his behavior around. Two weeks ago he would’ve been long gone by now, nursing his own wounds alone.

Now, he settled Erica in the back of the Jeep, ensuring that she didn’t jostle her ribs out of place. Once he stepped back, Boyd nodded at him once before sliding in behind her. It was practically bended-knee-gratitude from him. 

Peter sauntered over to Stiles, leaning over to whisper in his ear, “The constituents await their public servant.”

Stiles rolled his eyes, but was unable to hide the slanted smile. 

The drive back to Erica’s was quiet until Stiles said, “I’m sorry I couldn’t get to the babi before it got you.”

“Not your fault Batman. You couldn’t have reached it in time even if you were a werewolf.”

“Yeah, I guess. Peter thought it might be better for me to be closer to the warehouse doors, but Scott… had a different opinion.”

There was a beat of silence, broken by Boyd asking, “I saw you two talking before the ambush. What would Peter have done differently?”

This was why Stiles liked Boyd. He never instigated, but he wasn’t an idiot either. 

“Peter didn’t want to do the ambush in the first place. He suggested, privately, that we lock in the place and gas them, but Scott didn’t think that would be fair. You know, it wouldn’t give them a chance to defend themselves.”

“In other words, it wouldn’t give them a chance to hurt us,” Erica said sharply. 

Stiles shrugged. He pulled up to the curb. 

“Would I be helping or just getting in the way if I tried to assist you inside?”

Erica smiled at him. “I’ll be fine with Boyd. Thanks Stiles.”

“Anytime.”


 

Stiles weaseled himself between Allison and Lydia on the couch. 

“Are we talking about boys? Murder? Boys and murder?” he asked, popping a cashew into his mouth. 

Lydia gave him the stink eye and Allison sighed, rubbing a crease in her forehead. 

“The Hunter Council has been contacting my dad… frequently. He doesn’t let me in on all the conversations, but… they’re thinking of sending someone down here.”

Stiles inhaled through his teeth. “Yikes. That doesn’t sound good.”

“It’s not,” Allison agreed succinctly. 

“But what exactly is the problem?” Lydia insisted. “We haven’t had that many supernatural deaths lately… have we?”

Allison brought a nail to her mouth. “Our rate is 136% higher than other towns with a hunter presence. It’s- the council is worried that the- the local Alpha is encouraging it.”

“Well, that’s not fair,” Stiles protested. “He doesn’t encourage it. He doesn’t do much to stop it either, but he’s not encouraging it.”

“Traditionally, an Alpha works in conjunction with a hunter presence to police supernatural occurrences. You stole my cashews.” Everyone on the couch turned around to see Peter enter the room, scowling at Stiles. “I wanted those cashews.”

“What are cashews?” Stiles asked with wide innocent eyes. 

“Has your father been trying to get Scott to meet with him?” Peter asked, coming around to face the couch. 

“… yes,” Allison said, biting her lip. “Scott keeps saying he’s busy.”

Peter’s lips thinned. “He’ll still be held responsible by the council, even if he doesn’t meet with Christopher. It is his responsibility. They should have a rotating schedule and emergency plans between them.”

Lydia looked at him appraisingly. “What kind of emergency plans?”

As Peter detailed exactly what kind of plan he would set up, Stiles discreetly left to go get more cashews. 

Campaigning is hard work after all. He needed to keep his strength up.


 

Stiles’ window slid up behind him, and he turned around to see which Hale was afraid of doors today. 

“Oh, a two for one deal.”

Cora looked at Derek and then back at Stiles, confused. 

“What?” 

“Because I expec- it doesn’t matter. Why are there two Hales in my room?”

Derek straightened his shoulders higher and scowled his eyebrows lower. 

“Erica asked me what Peter did before the fire. A lot of questions about Peter, actually.”

“And Boyd asked me what our family policy used to be on pack collaboration structure,” Cora added. 

Derek’s eyebrows furrowed a little deeper. “And I saw Peter leaving the Argent’s last night. Whatever the hell is going on, you’re involved.”

“Who m-”

“Fucking yes you,” Cora said with an eye roll. “What are you planning?”

Stiles looked at them both critically. 

“Derek was a shitty Alpha.”

Derek cringed, but nodded. 

“Scott is an even worse Alpha.”

Cora was the one who nodded this time. 

“Who’s left?”

A moment of silence stretched into a minute. It finally ended when Derek uncrossed his arms. 

“If he starts murdering people again, you have to put him down this time. I’m not doing it again.”

“Noted.”


 

The Alpha power coursed through him like white water rapids. Deucalion’s body lay at his feet, heart ripped out through the chest, ribs pulled apart and crushed. 

He closed his eyes and tilted his head from side to side, settling into the new status and testing his senses. 

The single other heartbeat, beating steadily but not frantically, took up his focus. A breath, and the smell of rainfall and lightning invaded his mind. His eyes snapped open, and he could nearly feel the hot red radiating from them. 

“You alright there Cujo?”

“I’m fine, but you won’t be if you ever call me that again.”

Stiles slowly put his bag of mountain ash back in his pocket, but kept the gun out. Peter sauntered over, well within point blank range. 

Stiles smirked at him. 

“Are you ready to get yourself a pack, Alpha?”

Peter rumbled out a growl. 

“A pack, yes.” He looked Stiles up and down, taking in his scent again. “Possibly something else as well.”

Stiles’ smirk turned heated. 

“One thing at a time, dear. We have a campaign to finish.”

Chapter Text

 

“Oh, shut up,” Peter muttered out of the side of his mouth. Derek let out another disgruntled huff and tugged his leash just to irritate him.

Stiles, getting jerked along with their intertwined leads, immediately turned to snap at Derek and whack him with a whip of his tail.

“Cut it out, both of you. I’m not wandering around Rome to find the one person who can undo this curse with a couple of ill behaved pups.”

Stiles abruptly sat down on his haunches, glaring at Peter balefully.

“Don’t you give me that look! You’re the reason we’re spending this vacation with ten legs instead of six!”

Stiles let out a moaning yelp and dropped down to lay on his paws, something Peter interpreted as ”How was I supposed to know Catholic witches exist?”

Derek harrumphed and flopped over to lay next to Stiles, staring morosely up at Peter.

Peter rubbed his forehead with a sigh. “The longer you lay there, the less time we have to remove the curse. Our hotel doesn’t take animals, and I am absolutely not trying to sneak you in,” he sternly reminded them.

”Ooooh!” A voice squealed from a few feet away. “Oh, your dogs are beautiful!”

Peter looked up to see a woman looking at Derek and Stiles, delighted, and returned an amused smile.

”Yes, they are, aren’t they?” he responded smoothly. “They’re quite the beautiful puppies, even if they’re very poorly behaved sometimes.”

Derek let out a little growl, but didn’t get up from where he lolled in the Rome sun.

”They don’t look poorly behaved to me,” she defended. “They look like good boys!” She stepped closer to the group. “You’re good boys, aren’t you?”

Stiles immediately jumped up and trotted over to her, tongue out and panting happily. She crooned out compliments as she ran her fingers through his thick coat, and Stiles glanced back at Peter smugly.

Peter scowled at him. He cleared his throat loudly, saying, “Yes, well, as good as they are we still have appointments to make.”

”Oh, of course.” The woman sat back, biting her lip before blurting out, “Could I just get one picture? They’re so beautiful!”

Peter suddenly grinned.

”You know what, that is a fantastic idea. Would you mind taking one with my phone as well? It would be a tragedy for a day as wonderful as this to go undocumented.”

”Of course!”

Peter gave a little yank to the leads, gathering two very unwilling participants up to his chest as he crouched down.

”Say cheese boys,” he murmured.

When they returned from Rome (back on six legs), Peter had the photo printed and framed. On the back was written:

Roman Holiday, running around town with two hot princesses

Chapter Text

Stiles honestly wasn’t surprised about being bitten. He’d accepted a while ago that eventually he’d either be bitten against his will by a jackass, or need to be bitten by Scott to save his life.

Of course, he hadn’t entirely expected to be accidentally bitten in the bathroom of a gay club while receiving a blowjob from a stranger.

It was a great blowjob, though. Very distracting. Too distracting, actually, because they both missed the sound of the escalating argument happening two stalls over, up until the sound of a gunshot.

Adrenaline pumping through his body, Stiles dropped down into a crouch, reaching for the knife strapped to his calf and the bag of mountain ash next to it.

It didn’t sound like anyone had actually been shot, but there was more yelling and the sound of a few punches. Still tense, Stiles glanced at his companion, only to do a double take.

“What the fuck” he hissed, seeing the distinctive face ridges and sideburns, not to mention the teeth.

The guy looked back in him in horror.

“You’re a fucking werewolf?” Stiles hissed accusingly.

The stranger’s horror changed to confusion until he glanced down at Stiles knife and the mountain ash in his hand, and then changed back to horror.

“It’s not for you, idiot,” Stiles whispered with an eye roll.

The yelling continued, and Stiles stayed where he was, crouched in a stall next to a wolfed out stranger, dick hanging out.

He’d had weirder and worse Sunday nights.

It was only another moment before the source of the yelling and fists left the bathroom.

“Come on,” Stiles said. “We should go report the gunshot. It was probably just regular human drug dealers-“ He suddenly hissed in a breath at a sharp pain as he tried to tuck himself back in his underwear.

He looked down to see blood at the base of his dick, on the skin of his pelvis.

“The gun went off, you gagged me with your cock, and I panicked!” the guy blurted.

Stomach building with dread and disbelief, Stiles used the hem of his shirt to wipe away the excess blood, only to see three small but distinct teeth punctures.

Closing his eyes tightly, he took a deep breath before opening them to say, “Please tell me you’re not-“

Red eyes flashed back from a guilty face.

“Of course,” Stiles sighed.


 

It turned out the guy was a brand new Alpha of a small pack, and very, very relieved that Stiles had another pack to turn to. He didn’t even leave his phone number before hightailing it out of there.

“It sounds like it was a really small bite dude, you might not even turn,” Scott said in what he probably thought was an encouraging way.

Stiles shook his head.

“The teeth marks weren’t huge, but they were deep enough that they couldn’t have disappeared eight hours later. I’m definitely not human anymore, bro.”

When he’d woken up with perfectly healed skin, he thanked God or Shiva or the fucking moon; whoever was responsible for the luck of still being in the withdrawal period of the semester. He pulled out of his classes, citing a personal emergency, and deferred the semester before heading back to Beacon Hills.

Bitten Sunday night, arrived in Beacon Hills Monday evening, and Tuesday night was the full moon. Stiles jingled the chains again. 

“Look, I don’t have time to learn control. I don’t even have time to think about the ratchet training program I put you through, just chain me up for now and if I don’t go wolf-crazy then you can unchain me and oh my god when is the last time you brushed your fucking teeth??”

Scott looked slightly offended, but mostly confused. 

“What- dude, I just brushed my teeth right before you came over here!” He cupped a hand to his mouth, smelling his breath with a furrowed brow. “Minty fresh! Even to me!”

Stiles shook his head with a grimace. 

“Nah dude, I can totally smell the crab cakes you ate.”

Scott’s brow furrowed deeper. 

“I ate crab cakes three days ago.” He frowned. “Maybe mom has more crab in the fridge?”

Stiles waved his hand dismissively, jangling the chains again. 

“It doesn’t matter. Chain me up, big boy.”

Scott held up a stern finger. 

“Only if you swear to never call me that again.”

“Sure thing, Daddy.”

“Oh sweetheart, I thought that was my nickname?” a voice pouted from the doorway. 

They both looked over to see Peter leaning against the jamb, a smirk written across his face. 

“What are you doing here?” Scott demanded aggressively. 

“I hear a rumor that our token human has recently become our token newbie.” Peter sauntered into the room. “I came to confirm the news myself.”

Stiles stood still with a roll of his eyes while Peter circled him, gaze traveling up and down intently. 

“You certainly look delicious enough to be a wolf, but that’s not different from before,” Peter remarked casually. 

Stiles fought off a blush, sternly reminding himself that Peter flirted and leered at everything that moved. 

The room was slowly being swallowed in golden light from the sunset, and it was only another moment before Scott snapped out, “If you’re not going to help then get out of here Peter.”

“Hm. I don’t think my presence is going to be,” he paused, “useful, in here tonight.” He leaned in close to Stiles’ ear. “Good luck. If you’d like to revisit the chains for a more enjoyable evening, you know where to find me.”

Fighting off a much deeper red and failing to entirely suppress a shiver, Stiles rolled his eyes again and gave Peter a shove toward the door. When Peter actually stumbled Stiles grinned. 

That was going to be a fun side effect. 

But fun side effects didn’t negate the bad ones, and a while later Scott had Stiles chained to a radiator as they tried to fill out a crossword together to pass the time. 

“Four letter word for ‘shingled covering,’“ Scott asked with a frown. 

“Roof,” Stiles said. He sat for a pause, scrunching his nose to try to relieve an itch. “When’s the last time we climbed up for a nice sit on the roof?”

“We never had a nice sit on the roof. You’re the only one who enjoyed that,” Scott said dryly. “Six letters, tallest structure in Paris.”

“Eiffel. Tower, but just Eiffel is probably what they’re looking for,” Stiles said absently. “I bet we could climb the Eiffel tower without a problem. That would be fun.”

“… sure dude. Fun. How are you feeling?”

Stiles shrugged. “Fine I guess. Not particularly aggressive or angry. I can still smell your crab cakes though.” He pursed his lips thoughtfully. “Maybe I’m not a wolf. Maybe I’m something else.”

“What else would you be? You’re probably a wolf, dude.”

“I could be lots of things!” Stiles protested. “I’m probably way more badass than a wolf.”

Scott looked horribly offended. “More badass than a wolf? What’s more badass than a wolf? Wolves are awes-” he suddenly paused, screwing up his face in a weird expression, and then sneezed.

Which is when the evening went to shit. 

Stiles startled badly, jumping as far as the chains allowed. An inhuman rumble left his chest, and his body started to shake. 

Scott was instantly on alert, watching his best friend bare sharp teeth that hadn’t existed a moment ago as hair grew on his face.

A lot of hair.

Too much hair. 

The figure strapped to his radiator grew in bulk, tearing through the cotton of his t-shirt like tissue to reveal more fur beneath. A sloped snout erupted from Stiles’ face and moments later a roar shook the house. 

Scott looked tensely at the chains as Stiles continued to hulk out, hands turning into paws with short curved claws. The chains were strong enough to hold back werewolves, surely they would be strong enough-

With a clattering crack, the chains broke and tumbled to the floor. A seven foot tall black bear stood in his room, growling and trying to back away. A moment later, the glass in Scott’s window had ceased to exist, and Stiles was running away into the woods. 

Several yards away, Peter gleefully peered through his binoculars, watching the tiny little round tail bounce along with the rest of the brand new werebear. 


 

The sun was way too bright. Just appallingly bright. Who gave the sun the damn right to be so fucking bright. 

Stiles flung out a hand, hoping to reach the cord for his blinds, but his fingers met nothing.

Reluctantly cracking open his eye, Stiles looked for the cord. 

He found a branch. 

He sat up quickly, and immediately over-balanced, falling from tree limb to tree limb, breaking at least two of his own in the process. He groaned when he finally reached the ground, already feeling the pain start to recede as he began to heal. 

“Morning Paddington!”

Stiles opened his eyes again, only to see Peter standing over him with a grin. 

“You had quite the exciting night.” He slowly looked up and down Stiles’ body. “I hope you weren’t terribly attached to your clothing.”

Stiles tried to work up some shame about his nakedness, but just couldn’t find it in himself. 

“Paddington,” he mumbled, closing his eyes again. “What do you mean-” his eyes snapped open. “PADDINGTON? Did I turn into a fucking bear??”

Peter grinned again. “Yep,” he said with a pop of his lips.

Stiles’ mouth fell open. 

“That’s so awesome. I’m a fucking badass. Wait, shit, how do you know??”

“I suspected something about you was… different.”

Stiles’ mouth fell open again, and he hauled himself to a seated position, ignoring the twinge in his back as his vertebrae healed. 

“I can’t believe you didn’t say anything! Peter, I turned into a bear! I could have really hurt someone!!”

Peter rolled his eyes and pulled out his phone.

“Calm down, sweetheart. The most damage you did last night was to Little Scott’s window.” He pulled up a video and handed the phone to Stiles. 

The video was very dim, only lit by the moonlight, but Stiles could just barely make out a black bear squatting up and down against a tree, scratching its back in a ridiculous looking dance. Peter nodded once at the phone. 

“You did that for about ninety minutes, and then climbed another tree and fell asleep. For the rest of the night.” He pulled an aerosol can out of his pocket. “I did have bear spray, if that makes you feel better.”

Stiles continued watching himself, three or four hundred pounds and rubbing up some bark, staring in disbelief. 

“Yeah, actually. It kinda does make me feel better.”

Peter patted him on the the hand as he took back his phone. 

“You didn’t hurt anyone. You didn’t even eat any little bunnies.”

Stiles frowned. 

“I could have though,” he said, a little sullenly. “I could have eaten all the little bunnies. I’m a motherfucking bear.”

“Sure, darling. All the bunnies.”


 

Two months later, a few photographs of Stiles passed out next to a pile of honeycomb showed up on Stiles’ fridge. The photos were held up with Winnie the Pooh magnets. 

When Stiles mentioned that he needed to replace his backpack before he went back to school, a powder blue Little Bear diaper bag appeared on his desk. With a receipt. Stiles easily exchanged it. 

The vibrating Care Bears toothbrush and matching strawberry toothpaste he kept, but he also made sure to send a middle finger emoji to Peter. 

When he complained about accidentally ripping through all of his shirts with his bear claws, Peter made a throw away joke about donuts, but dozens of boxes were delivered to his house the next day, all in Stiles’ size, all agreeing with his style. Except for the single Berenstain Bears onesie that sat at the bottom. Stiles called Peter. 

“Are you courting me, you dork?” he demanded, unable to hold back his laugh. 

“If you accept, then yes,” Peter said smoothly. “After all, who wouldn’t want to date a twink that’s also a bear?”

Chapter Text

“I don’t know how many legs it has,” Peter answered in Ukranian, flipping through his notes as he held the phone between his ear and his shoulder. “Let me-”

“It had eight legs,” Stiles called from across the room, nose buried in his own notes as he scribbled something down. 

“It had eight legs,” Peter automatically forwarded in Ukrainian before pausing and looking up at Stiles. Peter watched as he stuck the pencil between his teeth and typed on his keyboard, mind apparently intent on his current task.

“Okay,” Peter’s contact answered on the phone. “I think I have something for you.”

Peter turned all of his attention back to the conversation, tucking the revelation away for another time.


“Eight legs, yellow scales, and secretes a gel-like hallucinogen?” Chris clarified with a frown. “I don’t recognize it… I have a few books you could look at, I guess. Only one of ‘em is English though. Another is in French, if anyone took enough in high school to read it,” he suggested skeptically. 

“What language is the last one?”

Chris raised an eyebrow at Lydia.

“Russian. So unless-”

“Great, Stiles can take that one, I’ll get the French, and Peter can have the English. Let’s go.” Lydia was already moving toward the safe where she knew Argent kept his supernatural books, Stiles close on her heels. 

Peter grinned lazily at Chris, following the other two and enjoying the dumbfounded look on the hunter’s face.


“Dad, just- I know you want to go look at the scene for yourself but please, please don’t go,” Stiles begged. 

Peter looked away, trying to give the father and son the illusion of privacy. He couldn’t actually leave- not when whatever beast they were tracking seemed to have latched on to Stiles specifically.

Not that they were telling the sheriff about that.

“Isaac almost got his leg cut off by this thing, Dad-”

“Another pair of eyes can’t do anything but help,” Sheriff Stilinski insisted stubbornly. “I have to help, son.”

“Dad, please,” Stiles said quietly in Polish. Peter startled at the sudden change, turning around to see Stiles squeezing his eyes shut before opening them to look at his father, slightly glassy with tears. “For once think of yourself and me first. Please just keep yourself safe,” he continued in Polish. 

The sheriff looked devastated. He was silent for a long moment.

“Alright,” he eventually responded, emotion making his responding Polish sound rough. “I’ll stay away. Until morning.”

The relief on Stiles’ face would have made a better man feel guilty for intruding on the moment, but Peter was too busy wondering just why Stiles knew so many languages.


Peter and Stiles, it always came down to Peter and Stiles, didn’t it? No matter what dumbass plan the group agreed upon, it was always Peter and Stiles left alone.

Peter growled and slashed his claws at the beast again, playing the most high stakes game of goalkeeper in his life.

Stiles frantically clicked through link after link on the laptop behind him, digging for the one spell that would turn the beast back into it’s original form, whatever that was. Well, assuming they were right about it being a transfiguration spell gone wrong in the first place.

“DORISE EMPEROCT COMMONIO” came the sudden yell from Stiles, and Peter felt a wave of energy rush past him and into the beast. 

The snarling, slavering monster shuddered, scuttling back before beginning to shrink- and shrink, and shrink some more. Two beats later, a hermit crab in a yellow shell sat on the floor in front of them.

Stiles slowly approached from behind.

“… Do you think we can touch it?” he asked.

Peter stared at it with an open mouth for another moment before rounding on Stiles.

“Latin isn’t even Slavic!” he shouted indignantly. 

Stiles blinked at him for a moment.

“… I’m gonna touch it.”

“Don’t fucking do that, it might pinch you,” Peter sniped, batting Stiles’ hands away and going to pick up the hermit crab himself. “Your pronunciation is perfect, why in God’s name are you fluent in five languages?” he demanded as he dropped the crab into a mason jar that was sitting out, puncturing the lid with his claws before screwing it on.

“Seven, actually,” Stiles said absently, tapping on the glass of the jar and startling the crab into it’s shell. “I learned French back when I still wanted to date Lydia. I had big ideas about the private tutoring sessions with the language of love.” He stood up straight. “Learning Spanish after that was only practical.”

“Seven,” Peter echoed. That outdid him by three. “Why?” he repeated, so curious he could hardly stand it. “And why didn’t I know about it?”

Stiles tensed his jaw for a moment before forcing himself to relax.

“Most people don’t know, you’re not special. Lydia knows because she dated Jackson, and Jackson knew because of his dad, and Jackson’s dad knew because he’s an asshole who takes the ‘power in information’ concept to the dirtiest lows.”

Stiles squatted back down, looking at the crab hiding in it’s shell.

“I’m adopted. It’s not that big of a deal. I always thought Jackson overreacted… but then again I remember being adopted.” The crab poked the tiniest bit of itself out, testing the environment. “My parents found me in a Ukrainian orphanage. I was four.”

“Before I left, the older children told me that they were kidnapping me to harvest my organs. Which sounds kind of hilarious in retrospect, but I stole a knife as soon as we got to Beacon Hills and kept it under my mattress.” He softly stroked the glass of the jar. “Still have it, actually. I don’t have a whole lot of clear memories of the orphanage, but I do remember that the idea of being killed for my organs wasn’t implausible based on what life was like there.”

The crab came out a little further, getting two legs all the way out.

“Anyway,” Stiles sighed. “Obviously they didn’t harvest my organs. After about six months I felt like they’d taken away something just as important, though. I started forgetting how to speak Ukrainian.” He tensed his shoulders at the memory of what it had felt like, how scared he’d been.

“I was forgetting Ukrainian, but also didn’t know enough English to fully express myself either. I felt like I was losing all my ability to communicate; I felt like I was going crazy. I threw huge tantrums, kicking and screaming and hurting myself. It wasn’t until Dad’s parents came for a visit that I could calm down.”

“Polish is a lot like Ukrainian, you know? They were first generation immigrants, so while they knew perfect English, they still mostly spoke Polish to each other, and my Dad sometimes. After a week with them, most of my Ukrainian came back, and I started picking up Polish too. When Mom saw how much calmer I was, she made the connection. She told Dad to speak to me in Polish.”

The little crab finally came all the way out, timidly skittering around the bottom of the mason jar.

“Mom had already picked up some of the language, just living with Dad, but after that she dove into it. She loved it. The whole process of learning grammar and context and cultural phrases- she just really fucking loved it. After she mastered Polish, she started teaching herself Russian, and asked if I wanted to do it with her.”

Stiles finally stood again, raising his gaze to Peter.

“It was the first thing she forgot when the dementia kicked in.”

Peter stood stunned, unable to think of a single thing to say.

“So anyway,” Stiles said as he started tapping the counter next to the hermit crab, causing it to dart back inside it’s shell. “That’s why most people don’t know. Don’t be ass about it now that you do. What are we gonna do about this guy?” He jerked his thumb at the jar with the abrupt subject change. “Or whoever was responsible for trying to transfigure him?” He glanced around Peter’s apartment. “Also, you need a new couch. Pretty sure that one is done for.”

Slowly, and in Ukrainian, Peter said “I don’t think we can give him to a pet store. Someone’s going to have to keep him.”

Stiles looked at Peter sharply, trying to parse his intention from his expression.

“Yes,” Stiles agreed eventually, responding in like. “Your counter looks like it has enough room for a terrarium.”

“I already have to get a new couch, and now you want me to sacrifice counter space for it too?” Peter demanded, more at ease now that Stiles hadn’t snapped at him. “I don’t think so.”

“Who else is going to take him?” Stiles said, throwing his hands into the air, the edge of a smile tickling his mouth. “I can’t! My dad would actually murder me, and then Scott would have to avenge my death and we both know he’d never win that fight. You’re the only option here.” Stiles picked up the jar and held it next to his face with big, beseeching eyes. “You’re his only hope.”

“Don’t you quote Star Wars at me, not when you’re trying to make me a father. You know exactly what happens to fathers in Star Wars,” Peter said despite taking the jar from Stiles and peering in at the hermit crab.

Stiles was openly smiling now, relaxed in a way Peter didn’t often see.

“I’ll take him on one condition,” Peter said, continuing in Ukrainian. “You have to be the one who cleans out his tank.”

“Half,” Stiles haggled. “I’ll do it once a week, you do the other.”

“Deal.”


If Peter’s apartment walls could talk, they’d speak Ukrainian, because that’s nearly all they heard.

They’d also have a few secrets to tell about kisses and a boy with pale skin.

Chapter Text

Thinkin bout a Steter Twilight AU written through my personal dumbass lens.

Like Stiles shows up at school, get partnered with Derek in chemistry and is all “wow you definitely don’t look young enough to be in high school what the fuck.”

Derek just stoically stares at the whiteboard, wondering why he can’t hear this kid’s thoughts.

“You know if this were a summer blockbuster and I were the new hot chick, this is totally when you’d be falling in love with me.”

Derek continues to stoically stare at the whiteboard, no longer curious about why, only grateful that he doesn’t have to put up with whatever idiot thoughts are happening in Stiles’ head.

Lunch time rolls around, and Stiles looks over at the Supernaturally Beautiful Kids Club and gestures dramatically at them, saying, “Come on! Early 20’s AT LEAST. They can’t ALL have been held back four years!!”

Erica and Boyd snigger while Lydia and Allison glance apprehensively at Derek, wondering if the new kid knows something.

“He’s a fucking moron. Just let him run him mouth to distract from how uncomfortable he is to be in a new school. He’ll stop paying attention soon.”

Spoiler alert: He Does Not.

Stiles is always Stiles no matter what universe he’s in, so he goes into the woods near the Hale’s house to “gather evidence.”

“Evidence of what, Stiles?” the sheriff asks, not entirely familiar with Stiles Being Stiles.

Evidence. They’re not normal, Dad. My current theory is either aliens or escaped genetic experiments done by the government.”

“…………”

“Don’t worry. If I get caught I can just toss my money clip in the opposite direction to throw them off.”

“What.”

“Street smarts.”

And again, in the vein of Stiles Being Stiles, he’s climbing a tree to get a look into the upper windows of their house, thinking maybe that’s where they keep the cryochamber, when he falls and breaks his leg.

He’s just starting to get really inventive with his litany of “fuck” when he notices someone standing over him.

“You seem to be in a bit of a bind. I’m a doctor, would you like some help?”

Peter looks at this boy, the one Derek had grumbled about at dinner earlier this week. He crouches down, placing a hand on his arm to subtly draw away some of the pain. Derek had gone on at length about how irritating it was to finally meet a person whose thoughts he couldn’t read, only to realize that person never shuts up anyway.

Derek had failed to mention how beautiful he was. Too bad Peter was going to have to gaslight him. 

Stiles stares at him, mouth hanging open as the blood momentarily tries to redirect from his new injury to his dick, before suddenly looking furious. 

“You are in your early thirties AT THE MOST,” he says accusingly. “For you to have gone through medical school AND residency, complete the qualifications to become a single foster parent and then ALSO complete the adoption process for FIVE KIDS would be ABSURD.”

“… I can see your tibia.”

And then Stiles passes out. 

Peter may or may not add a touch of rohypnol to Stiles’ IV drip at the hospital. Just enough blur the memories a little, so that he might start to question himself and back off of the family. 

Did u kno that certain ADHD drugs reduce the effectiveness of benzos? Cause Peter’s about to be reminded. 

A week later, Peter opens his front door to see Stiles leaning on his crutches, leg in cast, already talking before the door is even all the way open. 

“-to say thanks again for getting me to the hospital and fixing my leg and thanks for giving me and Derek a place to work on our chemis…” his voice fades away as he watches the sheriff pull away from the house, and then turns to face Peter again. 

“All right fucker, what the hell were you doing to my arm before I passed out, huh? Were you laying your alien egg babies in me??”

Peter’s mind is working so hard to turn that into something that makes sense, that he doesn’t stop Stiles from crutching his way past him into the house. 

By the time Peter catches up with him, he’s in the middle of the living room looking around. Erica, Allison, and Lydia are sitting on the couches, tensed and clearly ready to attack, Derek and Boyd poised at the top of the stairs and ready to jump down at any moment. 

Stiles is looking around, eyes lingering here and there. His gaze passes over the lunar model on the mantle, the potted anise, and the lint brush hanging next to every door. 

“Oh fuck me, werewolves? Really?”

Peter can’t help his delighted smile. It’s not often that someone figures it out so quickly. 

“Sorry to disappoint,” he replies. 

“I was expecting weird genetic clones at least,” Stiles complains before plopping himself down on the couch next to Erica and carefully placing his leg on an ottoman. 

When Peter comes to sit down in the living room, everyone finally starts to relax a little, and it’s not long after that that everyone is showing off their favorite parts of being a werewolf. It’s not something they get to share often, so it doesn’t take much to get them talking. 

Stiles keeps coming over after that, but eventually he gets curious. 

“Why do you keep inviting me over?” Stiles asks. “I’m pretty sure I pose, like, a security risk or something right?”

“It annoys Derek to have you around. He can’t read your thoughts and it pisses him off,” Peter answers immediately. “That’s definitely worth a security risk.”

Stiles eyes him speculatively. 

“What about you?”

Peter smirks. 

“I don’t need to read your thoughts, Stiles,” Peter says, leaning into his space to whisper in his ear. 

“I already know what you’re thinking.”


Anyway New Moon would go super differently because Peter’s not a fucking idiot who thinks he can make decisions for other people.

Let’s say the Hales all have to go to Italy to appear in Werewolf Court For Unspecified Reasons and Peter’s like “Babe we can’t take you it’s super dangerous, they’re not very pro-human there.”

And Stiles is all “Danger is my middle name, I can take ‘em. Also I want to see Venice. It’s fucking floating Peter, how cool is that.”

“You fell out of a tree last year. ‘Danger’ might be your middle name, but I don’t think it means what you think it means. I’ll bring you home a souvenir.”

Cut to Peter settling into his first class seat, checking out the Skymart, considering getting a ten foot tall wooden Sasquatch for the yard, when Stiles drops into the seat next to him.

“I hacked your email for the flight information, stole your credit card to buy myself a ticket, and then threatened your seatmate with outing her affair to get her to trade with me.”

Peter stares at him for a minute before saying, “I’ve never been more in love with you, but oh my god I am going to murder you.”

“Cool. Murder me after Venice.”

They get to Italy, Peter puts Stiles up in a rad hotel and is like “Stay here or I’m not touching your dick for a month” and Stiles is not willing to risk that, so he stays cozied up in the hotel, not leaving at all, right up until he gets kidnapped.

The Hales show up in Werewolf Court, and Werewolf Judge is like “Y’all have been charged with outing the werewolf secret to a human.”

And he Hales are all “W H O, M E ?????”

And the Judge is like “ya you.” And then the bailiff brings in Stiles, who waves and is like “what’s up guys. Werewolf court is pretty nice, they gave me snacks while I waited.”

The trial proceeds, looking shitty as fuck because of course the Hales are SUPER GUILTY of EXACTLY what they’ve been accused.

It’s all real bad right up until a consultant gets brought in to determine the best way to erase the human’s memory, and the consultant is like “uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

he’s not human.”

And that’s how everyone finds out that Stiles is a spark.


I’ll be real, I don’t remember what happens in Eclipse. Breaking Dawn is the one where we find out Edward is pro-choice and Bella won’t stop tryna smash, though, right? Or do I have those reversed? 

Anyway, in this AU Stiles comes back from Italy and immediately dives into learning magic.

“I’m Harry Potter, Peter.”

“You can’t do anything yet.”

“I’m Gandalf.”

“Literally the only thing you can do related to magic is unconsciously block your thoughts from nosy telepaths.” (HEY Derek yells from another room)

“I’m Merlin AND Morgana.”

“You’re an 18 year old who just barely graduated high school. Your skills include a 50% success rate at laundry hamper basketball and exceptional blow jobs.”

“I fuck like a champion too.”

“Yes, but that’s not magical.”

“I could make an argument otherwise, but it doesn’t matter Peter. You know why? Because I found a teacher in Seattle.”

So Stiles starts attending lessons with this guy who knew a guy who knew a guy who knew the Italian Consultant guy who discovered that Stiles is a spark. Cue Peter having a little bit of a jealousy problem, and constantly being like “But what do we really know about this teacher? How do we know he’s legit? How do we know he’s not really an villain in disguise? How do we know he’s not trying to seduce you away from me?”

“Sweetheart, dearest, love of my life: he’s approximately eight billion years old and smells like hot seaweed. If he’s trying to seduce me away from you then he’s guessed the wrong kink. You have nothing to worry about.”

“… are you sure?”

“Yes. But I’ll marry you if it makes you feel better.”

“Deal.”

And that’s how we get to the super duper inadvisable marriage scene. The sheriff loses his fucking mind when he finds out that Stiles is marrying Peter, until he realizes that this will make Stiles the step father of five of his high school friends, and then he loses his mind in the opposite direction. In any case, he goes fishing for a weekend and comes back reconciled to the fact that all he can do is love and support his son. And son in law. And five adult grandchildren. 

When they get back from the honeymoon and resume life as usual, Stiles catches a virus. Tired, kinda barfy, has to pee a lot-

“Oh my GOD did you get me werewolf pregnant you bastard?” Stiles screeches when he realizes what those symptoms point to. 

“Why do you assume it’s the werewolf part that got you pregnant? What if your magic is what knocked you up??” Peter counters, frantic at the idea of actually having a kid. “Jesus Christ-”

“I don’t think he was involved in this. You are gonna hold my hand through the whole goddamn abortion, Mr. Werewolf Sperm.”

He’s not pregnant, of course, what the fuck, but something is wrong with Stiles. He gets a little sicker every day, but they can’t figure it out. 

Then Italian Consultant Man comes for a visit, because he was super thrilled to have discovered a spark. They’re so rare, the guy obviously thinks of him him as an exotic specimen, but he’s not rude about it. 

As soon as he sees Stiles, though, he’s like “Oh my god, who’s been cursing you?” And he undoes the curse and tells them everything he can about the type that was cast. 

BLUES CLUES TIME leads them to discover that holy shit, Peter was totally right, the teacher in Seattle is in fact a villain in disguise. Hot seaweed is apparently the smell of black magic. Who would have guessed. 

Anyway, because I’m not Stephenie Meyer I’d definitely end with a bloody murder massacre because The Couple That Slays Together Stays Together.

The End

Chapter Text

Peter left Beacon Hills the day after he graduated.

It was strange, for a werewolf. Most wolves tend to stay close to home, close to pack.

Close to their anchor.

A few leave for school, but they always come home for holidays and sometimes even defer a semester or two when the homesickness gets too rough. The idea of leaving voluntarily for an undefined amount of time was… unheard of.

But still, Peter left.

Mostly because he needed to know. There was just so much to know, so much to learn that couldn’t be gotten from home. Things he could read about, but wouldn’t fully understand unless he experienced them, watched them, touched them. He needed to know.

So, he left.

It was different, for sure. In all the ways he’d hoped and expected; different in the ways and things he could learn. But there were other differences that he hadn’t really thought of before leaving.

No one knows you on the road. You are a transitory experience in the life of everyone you meet, just like they are in yours. No one knows who you are, or anything about you; they only know the things you tell them either by action or word. But Peter’s a werewolf. Being unknown is where his safety lay. So he continued to collect knowledge without giving away any of his own.

For years he traveled this way, learning and growing and sending back what he could to his pack. But eventually, his anchor to Beacon Hills pulled him back. The build was slow, but steady, and the taut yank he felt toward home became unbearable.

Stepping back inside the house was like walking into a room of funhouse mirrors. Everything was the same, but warped by his new perspective. Things he hadn’t noticed before, things that were always part of his environment as a child, suddenly became pronounced and suffocating.

Every word had a double meaning. Talia’s children had all learned to lie and keep secrets. The emissary, who’d never spoken a straightforward sentence in his life, had become even more opaque- or perhaps just as opaque as always, but viewed with clearer vision.

The nemeton was poisoned, and it made Peter choke.

He gagged on the air around it, but no one believed him.

It’s the same as it’s always been.

It’s no different from the other nemeta.

You’ve spent too long away from home, and you’ve forgotten.

He made plans to leave.

Peter knew he’d feel the pull of his anchor again as soon as he left, but he would deal with it then. He would change it. An anchor that doesn’t move when the ship needs to move is pointless- not a safety measure, but a cage. He would figure it out once he was far away from the scream clawing up the back of his throat every time someone asked if it was nice to be “home.”

Home.

It wasn’t even his home, but he still burned with it.

It was the final thread that broke after waking up from the coma: the realization that whatever anchored him to Beacon Hills should have burned with everyone else, but didn’t. He could still feel it, and the idea of being pulled back to Beacon Hills over and over again even after he’d healed… that’s what sent him over the edge.

Derek buried him under the house with the air that made him choke.

Perhaps that’s why it was so easy to grab hold of his two anchors, his permanent one and the one he’d made in the banshee, and pull himself back to life. Peter might never be able to move his anchor from Beacon Hills, but he would be damned if his final resting place was under the funhouse mirrors.

His new body was weaker, but his wolf senses were closer to the surface. Not the way they were after the coma, but sharper. More pointed. Pointing in one direction specifically.

Peter was in Beacon Hills. He was near his weak excuse for a pack, feet on the ground his family was bound to, but his wolf senses pointed in one direction, and his anchor pulled.

He couldn’t even say he was surprised when he found himself staring up at the second story bedroom window of the sheriff’s home.

The relief he felt at knowing his anchor didn’t lie in Beacon Hills- had never truly lain with Beacon Hills- was enough for now.

In a year or two, when Stiles needed to know, well.

The anchor moves with the ship, and the ship with the anchor.

Chapter Text

“Now, not to be forward, but I love you.”

Peter froze.

His date-

(His blind date)

(His blind date that he’d met 20 minutes ago)

-That date, sat calmly across from him at the restaurant as if he hadn’t just said the most ridiculous collection of words Peter had ever heard.

Peter was trained in formal Pack Structure etiquette, down to the pinky finger gestures. He knew the history of North African Fae migration back to the late 1500’s. He knew fifteen ways to kill a human just with his claws, and ten ways to kill another shifter (twelve if he used the salad fork in front of him).

He did not know what to do when someone very seriously confessed to love on the first date.

If his date had been another supernatural or even a human with political influence, he would have considered playing along to keep him as a back pocket resource.

If it were just a random human with whom he’d somehow ended up on a date, Peter already would have walked and left him with the cheque.

Unfortunately, Talia had set up the date, and she liked Paul the Human. She’d been very clear that she liked him, so Peter would like him too. He’d at least try to, or else.

Peter couldn’t quite bring himself to endure the weeks of petty, passive-aggressive needling he’d earn if he ditched the table this early in the evening.

So instead he smiled back vacantly, pretending he hadn’t heard.

Paul leaned in and, twice as loud, began to repeat, “NOW, NOT TO BE FORWARD, BUT I LOVE-“

“Good evening gentlemen, my name is Stiles and I’ll be serving you tonight. Are you ready to order?”

Peter was pathetically grateful to their waiter- and then even more pathetically sullen that Stiles wasn’t the one sitting across from him at the table.

He was gorgeous. He had a tall swimmers build hidden beneath waiter whites, and Peter would know because he’d made his way through at least half the swim team in high school. He eyed the column of his throat. Pale skin like that would mark up beautifully, and the dark hair, bright brown eyes-

“Sir?”

Peter jolted. The restaurant was too chic, and the waiter too well trained to physically smirk, but Peter could feel it in the air. It practically emanated from his aura.

Twerp. Beautiful, beautiful twerp.

“I love you,” Paul said insistently, completely ignoring their waiter.

“I’ll have the tenderloin with apricot chutney,” Peter said hurriedly, trying to step on anything else that might come out of his date’s mouth. “What will you be having, Paul?”

He cast a cursory glance at the menu.

“Uh, linguine,” he said carelessly, setting it aside to look intently at Peter again.

“And to drink?” Stiles continued smoothly.

“I didn’t see a wine list-”

“House red is fine,” Paul interrupted.

Peter’s mouth hung open for a brief moment before snapping shut. The house red?

That was it.

He would take whatever petty needling Talia wanted to dish out, he had to escape.

The second after the beautiful waiter left the table, Peter silkily murmured, “Please excuse me for a moment,” and headed for the bathroom before Paul could say a word.

A quick step behind a huge potted plant put him out of the line of sight of his table, and gave him a view just outside of  the kitchens.

Stiles was tapping something into a tablet when Peter darted forward and grabbed him by the arm. His hand was promptly removed with a grip much stronger than Peter could have anticipated.

“Do you need something, sir?” Stiles asked with steel in his voice, making it clear that whatever was needed better not include being touched again. Peter grimaced.

“Sorry, I’m a little desperate. Is there any way you could stage an emergency phone call for me?”

Stiles’ eyes narrowed, and then widened.

“Table four. Your date was yelling about how much he loves you.”

“It’s our first date. Not only that, this is a blind date. I need to get out of here,” Peter begged.

“… exactly how much do you need to get out of here?” Stiles asked, shrewdly speculative.

“A hundred and fifty percent tip is how much I need to get out of here,” Peter said flatly.

“Done. One bespoke emergency will be at your table in three minutes.” A satisfied smile lit Stiles’ face as he turned back to his tablet, and Peter internally wondered when he’d started to find extortion attractive as he returned to his table.

He’d been sitting for thirty seconds before Paul started up again.

“I love you. Have I told you? Because I do. I love you.”

“Mm-hm.” Peter tapped the table impatiently.

“I love you so much-”

“Excuse me,” Stiles interrupted smoothly. “Peter Hale?”

“Yes! That’s me,” Peter said eagerly.

“There’s an emergent call for you at the desk. If you could follow m-”

“I love you more than anything in the world,” Paul said loudly over Stiles. “It’s all I can think about.”

Stiles stopped abruptly and stared at the man across from Peter. Peter, meanwhile, stood up, ready to be led out immediately.

“I love you,” Paul said again.

Peter cleared his throat, frowning at the way Stiles stared at Paul.

“The phone call?” he prompted. Stiles ignored him, and instead spoke directly to the other man.

“Sir, your car alarm is going off,” he said. Paul didn’t even look at him.

“Peter, I love you. I love you, Peter.”

It was only due to his werewolf hearing that Peter understood the nearly silent “fuck” that left Stiles’ mouth.

“Perhaps you ought to come as well, sir,” Stiles suggested. Paul immediately stood up to follow, even as Peter turned a betrayed look at Stiles.

It only took a moment for him to realize that they weren’t headed anywhere near the front desk, though. Sure enough, Stiles quickly led them through the kitchen before opening a door to the alley behind the restaurant and shooing them out.

As soon as Peter and Paul were outside, Stiles stuck his head back in the door to shout out, “LYDIA COVER MY TABLES FOR TEN.”

“SCREW YOU STILINSKI.”

“I LOVE YOU TOO.”

Peter stood uncomfortably under the stare of his date, wondering what the hell was going on.

Stiles wiped his hands on a towel he’d grabbed in the kitchen, and then stepped right into Paul’s space and snapped his fingers in his face. Paul’s entire face lit up purple before fading back to it’s normal color. Then his eyes rolled back, and he fainted.

Peter and Stiles both watched him fall to the ground unceremoniously, Stiles looking mildly interested and Peter shocked.

“You’re magic!” he said accusingly.

“And you’re a Hale,” Stiles said with a shrug. “It’s not like I’m giving away secrets here. This is totally worth a two hundred percent tip, by the way. Did you know he’d been cursed?”

“What?” Peter said, incredulous.

“Come on, why else would he be so insistent that he loves you when he doesn’t even know you?” Stiles suggested reasonably. Peter bristled.

“Maybe I just inspire that kind of immediate devotion.”

Stiles snorted.

“Sure dude. Anyway, the curse should be gone now, but he’s going to wake up with a hell of a hangover, and also no memory of the date. Or anything that happened since the curse was placed actually.” He tapped his lips thoughtfully, and Peter avidly followed the action with his eyes. “It’s a pretty clumsy curse. Can you think of anyone who would want to use a curse like this against you?”

“The MacDonald pack,” Peter answered promptly. “Or rather, their emissary. She lives two houses down from me and has been trying to chase me out of the neighborhood for years.”

“Why?” Stiles sounded truly baffled. “And why use a love curse to do that?”

“My front garden always places above hers in the Parade of Homes,” Peter said smugly. “She wants the top spot, and knows she’ll never get it as long as my hydrangeas are around.”

“But a love curse?”

“It wouldn’t be the weirdest thing she’s tried,” Peter sighed. “I guess I have to take him home now, don’t I?” Peter nudged him with a toe. “I don’t even know where he lives.”

“Well I’m not digging around for his ID. I’m just the waiter,” Stiles said, stepping back. “I’m not his date.”

Peter looked at him speculatively.

“No, you’re not. But you could be mine, next time,” he said suavely.

Stiles rolled his eyes with a reluctant grin.

“Pay the cheque and leave your phone number. I’ll decide whether you and your hydrangeas are worth it.”

Chapter Text

Christopher Robert Argent didn’t have a soulmate.

It wasn’t unusual. Roughly a quarter of the population didn’t. Another quarter had more than one. The other half had the standard, One for One Soulmate Match.

But not Chris.

He knew because his dreams were his alone. They never took on that particular sharp quality that everyone described when they were viewing the day to day life of their soulmate. Around the age of 18, when most of his friends were excitedly describing trips to the grocery store, or a laundromat they’d never seen in the hope that someone else would recognize it and be able to point them in the right direction, Chris was dreaming about the stages of wolfsbane poisoning and how to recognize a banshee.

By 20, he’d accepted the sting of not having a soulmate, and agreed to the arranged marriage his father wanted. A daughter came shortly after, and Chris thought that not having a soulmate was worth this. His eventual divorce was worth this. Raising her as a single parent with no support from extended family was worth this. His baby girl was worth everything.

So how was he supposed to explain to her that he’d started having dreams about one of her best friends?


 

“Hey Daddy,” Allison said, dropping a kiss on his cheek as she sat at the dinner table. Picking up her fork, she continued, “Stiles is coming over to work on our American History project in about half an hour.”

Chris inhaled sharply and choked on a piece of lettuce. Coughing, he grabbed his water and tried to clear his throat.

“You okay?” Allison asked, concerned.

“Yes, yes, I’m fine. Uh, you and Stiles have a project together?” Chris prompted.

“Oh, yeah. We’re doing a report on William Henry Harrison.”

Chris furrowed his brow.

“The president who died a month after taking office from pneumonia?”

“Yep.”

“… That was Stiles’ idea, wasn’t it?”

“Yep.”

His idea. Because he was a high school student, invested in the shortest, easiest project possible.

High. School. Student.

Young. Probably not even capable of having soulmate dreams yet.

Chris sighed, and then concentrated on eating his dinner fast enough that he could shut himself away in his office before Stiles arrived.

He was just cleaning up the last of the dishes when the doorbell rang. Chris cursed quietly to himself, hurrying to dry off his hands and disappear-

“Hey Mr. Argent.”

Chris spun around, trying to arrange his face into a casual, no-I-wasn’t-running-away expression.

“Hello, Stiles. How are you doing?’

Stiles dumped his backpack on the table and leaned a hip against it, crossing his arms. It made the definition on his forearms stand out-

Chris deliberately snapped his gaze back up to Stiles’ face.

“I’m fine. We have a lacrosse game tomorrow night, you should come.”

Chris took a brief moment to consider Stiles, sweaty and worn from lacrosse, approaching him after-

“Ah, I have some prep work I need to do for a gun show tomorrow night, Stiles. Sorry about that.” And God, was he ever sorry.

Stiles was clearly disappointed, but just shrugged and said, “Maybe next time? We have games every Friday.”

“Maybe,” Chris agreed before hightailing it out of the kitchen.


 

“Hey Chris,” came a voice from down the aisle. Chris looked up to see Sheriff Stilinski, Stiles pushing a cart behind him.

Chris sternly reminded himself that cereal boxes are not camouflage and tried to relax his stance.

“Sheriff, what can I do for you?” Chris asked.

“Oh don’t be like that,” the sheriff said, clapping a hand on his shoulder as he reached him. “Just wanted to see how you’re doing. Make sure Stiles isn’t making a nuisance of himself while he and Allison work on their project of theirs,” he chuckled out.

Chris smiled stiffly and looked back at the cereal boxes, looking at the labels as if they were hardline journalism. He definitely didn’t say I wish your son would make much more of a nuisance. I wish he would break every single goddamn thing in my house, so that maybe I wouldn’t be so pitifully sad every time he leaves.

Instead, he said, “Nah, he’s a good kid.” Eager to do something with his hands, he grabbed a box of Trix and dropped it in Stiles cart. Then, clearing his throat, he said, “Well, I better get back home and make some dinner for Allison. Be seeing you.”

It wasn’t until he’d made it all the way home, cooked dinner, and gotten halfway through the dishes that he realized he’d picked out Stiles’ favorite cereal, the one he saw him buying in dreams at least once a week, and given it to him.

God fucking damn it.


 

Stiles didn’t have a bad life.

It wasn’t “My Super Sweet Sixteen” all the time, but it wasn’t bad. He had friends, his dad clearly loved him, and they didn’t struggle to pay basic bills.

But that didn’t mean he didn’t have bad days.

Chris woke up one Thursday morning after a dream. A sharp, clear, Stiles dream, where Finstock had reamed him in front of the whole team for fumbling a couple of catches.

Chris knew without a doubt that it had happened the day before, and he also knew that he would finally be going to a damn lacrosse game, if only to try to wipe the downtrodden expression that Chris had seen.

The next night, Chris made a point to cheer loudly whenever Stiles was on the field, celebrating his successful passes with a touch too much enthusiasm, if Allison’s looks were anything to go by.

After the game he tried to sneak out with the rush of the crowd, but Stiles still caught him.

He was sweaty and breathing hard. They’d just barely won, and he was clearly riding the high.

“Mr. Argent! You came!! I heard you cheering! Holy shit, you’re a yeller aren’t you?”

Stiles lunged forward to give him a hug, battering Chris slightly with his chest pads.

“Oh shit, sorry-” and before Chris could even think of a protest, Stiles was ripping off his shirt, and then the hard pads, leaving him in a paper thin, completely transparent undershirt. Then the hug was happening again.

Oh Lord, the hug.

Chris silently, but fervently hoped he would get a replay of this moment in a dream.

Eventually Stiles pulled back, smile beaming.

“I-”

He was cut off by a horde of lacrosse bros, barreling down on them to cheer and push him toward the locker rooms.

Stiles tried to say something else, but it was drowned out by the general crowd and excitement of teenagers.

Teenagers.

Chris sighed.

Turning to look, he saw Allison at his elbow, smiling her dimpled smile.

“Are you going to stay?” she asked.

Chris shook his head.

“I don’t want to get old man cooties all over your youthful fun,” he teased. Allison laughed and leaned forward for a hug.

“You don’t have old man cooties, dad. Not since you stopped using Brooks Brothers aftershave. You could stay, you know. It’s not just us whippersnappers who get together after games. Melissa will be there, and the sheriff if he doesn’t have to work. Derek and Peter will be there too, and Laura comes sometimes. Burgers and milkshakes are an all ages kinda deal.” She paused for a moment. “… You’re allowed to have relationships outside of me and business, you know.”

Chris stared at her as she paused again, clearly steeling herself.

“… if you happened to discover that you have a soulmate, you could pursue that.” Her words couldn’t have been more to the point.

“Allison,” Chris said slowly. “What do you know?”

“I-”

“ALLISON!” Chris heard Lydia yell from across the stands. As soon as Allison was distracted, Chris slipped away.

Whatever Allison knew, he didn’t think he was ready to hear.


Chris was two fingers deep in whiskey when there was a knock on the door.

It was late, but Allison had texted as soon as she realized her dad was gone.

10:23 p.m. Ally
I’ll be home by 1. We’re talking in the morning.

It was only about 11:30 now, so it wasn’t likely to be her. She rarely forgot her key anyway.

Chris reluctantly lurched out of his chair to check the peephole, just in case there was some kind of emergency.

There wasn’t an emergency, but there was a Stiles.

Chris opened the door just as he raised a fist to knock again.

“Oh!” Stiles said, jerking his hand back and almost unbalancing himself. Chris quickly stepped forward to catch him, but the whiskey had nibbled away at his own equilibrium, and he ended up overcorrecting and dragging them over the entryway, into the house together.

They fell back against the wall directly behind the front door, Stiles pressed against Chris, and Chris feeling too stupid to remember why that was a bad idea.

Then they were kissing.

A deep, searing, tongue tied, slick lipped kiss that started at the mouth but quickly moved to the whole body. Stiles was clearly inexperienced but very eager, and Chris had never felt so engaged in a kiss.

His hands gripped Stiles’ waist while Stiles’ framed Chris’ face, stroking along his cheekbones and petting down to the back of his neck. When Chris licked along the point of one of his canines, Stiles moaned, and Chris finally had to pull away to breathe heavily.

Stiles didn’t give him a moment, though, immediately latching his mouth on to Chris’ neck, sucking and licking his to his collarbone. Chris tilted his head, exposing more area for him to work with. He had a fleeting thought that he’d never tried to sell guns with a hickey before-

And the sudden realization splashed over him like a bucket of cold water.

“Stiles- Stiles, stop. Stop.” Chris couldn’t bring himself to physically push him away, and it clearly took a moment for the words to pierce the fog of lust that Stiles was currently lost in.

“What?” he asked, pulling back, brow furrowed and eyes slightly dazed.

“You- I- this is illegal.” Chris finally pulled a hand away from Stiles to rub it down his face. “Oh God. You’re the sheriff’s son.”

Stiles looked confused for a moment before his expression suddenly cleared.

“I was held back in fifth grade,” he said. “The year my mom died-” he cut himself off, looking uncomfortable. “It doesn’t matter. What matters is that I had to repeat fifth grade, which made me a year older than all the other kids. Which means I’m still a year older than all the other kids.”

Chris’ mouth was hanging open.

“Which means I’m definitely legal,” Stiles continued encouragingly. “And… also old enough to be having soulmate dreams?” he finished tentatively, turning the statement into a question asking something other than what the words said.

For the rest of their lives, Chris would blame his slow uptake on the whiskey.

Stiles would blame it on his mind-bending kissing skills.

In any case, it took a solid thirty seconds before the light finally clicked on, and Chris dragged Stiles all the way inside, barely pausing long enough to text Allison that she should stay at Lydia’s that night.

Chapter Text

“There’s a hole in the wall.”

“I know.”

“… A very big hole.”

“I’m so glad your powers of observation came back with the rest of you,” Derek said flatly without looking up from his book.

Peter looked up.

“At least there’s not a hole in the ceiling this time.”

The clenching of his nephew’s jaw was audible.

“Feel free to go literally anywhere else, Peter.”

Peter tapped his chin thoughtfully.

“I think I will.”

He was out the door half a moment later, missing the tense hunch of Derek’s shoulders.


 

“Do you actually like the open, industrial look, or was it just the furthest you could get from people?”

Derek answered shortly as he continued trying to get a hold of Scott.

“It was in my price range, and had a lot of places to hide bodies.”

Peter made a little “ah” sound, and continued doodling in his notebook.

When Scott’s voicemail picked up, again, Derek growled out “Answer your damn phone, or I’m going to nail it to your head.” He hung up and threw his phone onto the couch in frustration.

“If you didn’t have to consider corpses, would you still go for the open industrial look?” Peter asked, still sketching.

Derek looked up at him, confused.

“I don’t know. Maybe.”

“Maybe what? What would determine your maybe?”

Derek’s confusion was now overriding his frustration.

“What?”

“Maybe you would still like the open plan? Or maybe you would still like the industrial look?”

“I-” Derek paused. He honestly didn’t know. What did it matter what he actually liked? “The open plan, I guess. I don’t really care about the look, or whatever.”

Peter closed his notebook and chucked it at him. Derek caught it reflexively, growling and ready to throw it back, but Peter interrupted him.

“Take a look at the first three pages of designs and tell me if you think it’s open enough.”

Derek flipped through the floorplans, and then went back more slowly. It was a basic outline of what could be a beautiful single family home. Very open with a lot of windows.

Was Peter building a house?

Derek stared off into space. He wondered where Peter was building. It wasn’t on old Hale land, or he would have been notified.

Was it even in the county?

Was Peter moving?

Derek’s chest tightened- something he studiously ignored. He chucked the notebook back at Peter, aiming for the back of his head, but Peter caught it anyway.

“It’s open,” was all Derek said before snatching up his phone to try calling Scott again.


 

The Lagarfljot Worm lay in many, many pieces at their feet. Everyone was sweaty, tired, and covered in guts.

Except Peter, who somehow always came out of a fight looking impeccable.

Bastard.

Honestly, not even a hair out of place. Clothes unstretched, still hugging his body perfectly, skin perfectly smooth… completely unmarked… just like a canvas, waiting-

“Hey Derek, what do you think of this color?” Peter asked.

Derek snapped out of his daydream, startled. He hadn’t had been lost in thoughts like that since before-

He cut himself off.

“What?”

“That chartreuse green color, on the pile of stuff over there. What do you think of having that as a furniture accent?”

“… That’s a pile of livers.”

Peter waved his hand impatiently.

“Yes, but what do you think of the color?”

Derek wrinkled his nose.

“It’s… a lot.” He frowned. “Maybe a couple of pillows, but not a whole piece of furniture.” Derek paused again. Was he really giving his opinion on Peter’s liver-based color choices?

Peter sauntered a little closer as Derek spoke, eventually ending up next to him, sliding his cardigan off. While Derek was busy considering what earth tones Peter might like to go with the ugly green, Peter started wiping the guts off of Derek’s face and neck.

Derek submitted to the handling without really thinking about it. Peter had always been the one to clean him up after a particularly rowdy full moon. Pack grooming. Laura always made fun-

Derek jerked back suddenly, eyes wide. Peter raised a mild eyebrow before folding his sweater back up and tucking it under his arm.

“I’ll look into more jewel tones instead,” he said. He leaned forward slowly, giving Derek a chance to move away, before rubbing their cheeks together in a brief scenting gesture.

Then he left.

Without taking care of any of the Lagarfljot Worm.

Bastard.


 

“Open shelving?”

“Four or six burner stove?”

“Obviously a home gym, but how big of a home gym?”

Derek continued giving his input for Peter’s new home, always responding to his questions because it kept Peter around. As long as they were talking, then Peter was there, in the same space as Derek. Sometimes very close in the same space as Derek.

The scenting and pack touching slowly became heavier as the months passed. A hand run down an arm, shoulders brushing- and then more. A hand through the hair, wrist pressed against the side of a vulnerable throat. Fingers trailed down a bare back. Lips against a temple.

Nothing blatantly outside of normal pack- but just enough to make Derek ache for what it could mean. What it could have meant, in a different life.

Then the questions stopped.

For an entire week. Peter barely came to the loft, and when he did it was just for a momentary brush-by.

Derek was scowling morosely into his oatmeal when Peter finally came back, bursting into the loft with a bang.

“Are you ready?” he demanded.

The no was on the tip of his tongue, but it never arrived because Peter was already ushering him up and out of the kitchen.

It was a fifteen minute drive. The property was still on the edge of the preserve, but on the opposite side of town. There was space to run without the chance of crossing over old memories.

The house itself looked nothing like the old pack home- it was much smaller for one, and a more modern style for another. The coloring through the house was mostly shades of warm earth, interspersed with dark blues and purples. It reminded Derek of the bedding he’d had as a teen- the set he’d chosen on a shopping trip with Peter.

Peter seemed unusually tense, as if he was waiting for approval. Derek wasn’t sure why- Peter had never needed the approval of anyone anywhere, for any reason. But he was eager to ease the need anyway.

“It looks great, Peter,” he said gruffly. “It’s perfect for you.”

Peter still looked like he was waiting for something.

“… and you?” he eventually said. “Is it perfect for you?”

Derek’s brow furrowed.

“Me?”

“Yes,” Peter said. “I got the six burner stove like you suggested, but I went with electric.”

Slowly, so slowly that he could have been beaten by an oven timer, it dawned on Derek.

“Peter, did you build this house for both of us?”

Peter looked at him disbelievingly.

“Did you honestly not know? Derek, I asked for your opinion on dishware.”

Derek threw up his hands, defensively saying “I don’t know! I thought maybe you just needed help narrowing down the options!”

“Your loft is a literal hole in the wall!” Peter continued. “Did you honestly think I would leave you there? You, my mate?”

“Stop talking about the ho- what?”

Peter crossed his arms.

“You heard me.”

Derek’s mouth moved soundlessly for a moment before choking out, “Mate?”

Peter slowly stepped closer to Derek, a cautious look on his face.

“Mate. If you’re still interested. The last seven years- they’re not what I saw for us when you were younger.” He slowly brought his hands up to frame Derek’s face, staring into his lost-looking eyes. “But this is.” Peter tilted his head to gesture at the house around them. “We can have this, now. If you want.”

Derek’s mouth was still hanging open when Peter’s thumb started to brush back and forth across his cheek. It was still open when he leaned forward to capture Peter’s mouth with his own. His mouth was open when he murmured “Yes yes yes” in between kisses.

And it was still open in the morning as he smiled at Peter laying next to him in their new bedroom.

Chapter Text

Most people probably don’t reminisce fondly about their severely symptomatic mental health episodes.

And to be fair, Peter wasn’t exactly fondly reminiscing… he was just wistfully thinking back to the time when things were happening. When anything was happening.

It was boring as hell in the afterlife- which was probably appropriate, given his last actions. Peter didn’t care for it at all.

He sighed dramatically and watched another dust mote float by.

The white room he’d woken up in looked more like a dentists waiting room than anything else. There was a single chair, with a single magazine rack, holding a single magazine that ostensibly contained words and pictures, but Peter would be damned if he could remember anything from it after it was closed.

He cursed his reduced mental capacities after the coma for the thousandth time. If he’d been even a little closer to his right mind, he would have planned for this. Instead, he’d focused every bit of his energy on revenge with not a single moment spared for a backup plan.

He stood in frustration again, stalking back and forth in the room, tempted to kick the chair just to watch it break- but then where would he sit when he was tired of the floor?

Instead he prowled, his wolf instincts undulled by death. He wanted something to hunt, something to stalk, something to-

A flash of red caught his eye.

Darting forward, he flung his body up against the wall where he’d seen the pinprick flicker of color. He searched, looking, looking, but it was white, everything was just fucking white-

Another flash, and Peter marked the place with a fingernail. The red was beautiful, the most exciting thing to happen since his death. He needed more. 

Carefully, with his other hand, he dug a claw into the tiny hole, widening it. Ever so slowly, the drywall fell away, and Peter began to see that the red was lipstick. More wall disappeared, and the upper torso of a girl became obvious.

Frantic to know now, Peter started tearing away at the wall, ripping it out with the same fervor he’d used to hunt his family’s killers. 

Finally, the complete scene sat before him. 

A girl. The girl. The one he bit while trying to get the Stilinski boy’s attention. 

She sat at a vanity, brushing her hair and applying makeup. Peter stepped into the room, cautiously looking around. He was drawn straight to the girl, and he examined her curiously. 

A stillness hung in the air around her. As if the sounds traveling past her were stopping to pay their respects. Peter took yet another step closer, eyes narrowing. 

A grin broke out on his face. 

Banshee. 

Accidental or not, it looked like he’d made a backup plan after all. 

Chapter Text

“Stiles no.”

Stiles put his hands on his hips, framing his newly delivered “I Hate God and Worship the Rectum” shirt, a frown on his face. 

“’No’? ‘No’ what? No, I can’t wear my new shirt, that I had made with my money, and am wearing on my body? Or no, I can’t make our homophobic neighbor uncomfortable by letting him know that I fuckin’ heard what he said?”

The sheriff sighed.

“Mr. Hoffman isn’t our only neighbor. Mrs. Darcy is 96 years old, and if she sees that-”

“Mrs. Darcy once spent two entire hours telling me about all the lesbian sex she had in boarding school,” Stiles interrupted, voice firm. “I think she can handle a t-shirt.”

The sheriff choked on his tongue, bug-eyed and floundering for a response. All he could get out was, “Two hours??”

Stiles just grabbed his backpack and headed out the door to school. 


“Mr. Stilinski, go to the principal’s office,” was the first thing out of Mr. Seamus’ mouth when Stiles walked in the door to Physics. 

“Why?”

“Dress code violation.” Stiles could see Mr. Seamus struggling to keep his gaze from flicking back down to the shirt. 

“Exactly what rule am I violating?” Stiles pressed.

Mr. Seamus’ lips thinned as his posture tensed further. 

“The vulgarity rule.”

“The vulgarity rule applies to profanity, obscenity, depictions of drugs, alcohol, or tobacco, and sexually suggestive expressions. Nothing I’m wearing violates any of that,” Stiles said, very reasonably. 

“You know damn well that reference about worship is sexually suggestive!” Mr. Seamus hissed. 

“No, Mr. Seamus, I don’t,” Stiles said, widening his eyes and putting on his most obnoxiously innocent expression. “What about my choice of religious worship could possibly be sexually suggestive? My spiritual connection with the delicate systems of the human body-”

“Get the hell out of my class, Stilinski!” 

Mr. Seamus looked like he was about to have a stroke. With a massive eye roll, Stiles took the office slip and headed out the door. 

By the time he was finally called into Ms. Juárez’s office, first period was nearly over. He stood in front of her desk, while she silently looked from him to his file and back. 

Eventually, she said, “You turned 18 last week?”

“Yep,” Stiles answered, popping the P. 

She looked at the shirt for another long moment before sitting back with a sigh. 

“I know you’re digging for reactions with that shirt, but technically you’re not breaking any rules, and Bill Seamus is a jackass.”

Stiles had been expecting to be let go, if only because they had nothing to actually stick him with, but that last bit was a surprise. He openly gawked at the principal, and she gave a little smirk back. 

“Have a good day, Mr. Stilinski. I hope to see you at Pride next month.” With that, she picked up her coffee mug, pink stripes running from dark to light, meeting at white in the middle, and took a sip. 

Stiles slowly grinned and nodded before taking his leave. 


When Stiles went to the loft after school, Erica was howling with laughter the moment she saw the shirt. Boyd rolled his eyes, but had a grin hiding in the corner of his mouth, and Allison simply smiled and said it looked nice.

Lydia, on the other hand, leaned forward to feel the fabric. 

“That’s a good blend,” she mused. “Soft, but not too thin.” She nodded to herself. “Send me a link,” she commanded, and then turned back to her conversation with Cora. 

“‘I Hate God and Worship the Rectum’?” Peter read from the stairs, eyebrow raised. “That’s interesting. I haven’t seen you on Sunday, and I worship ass every weekend.”

The loft was dead silent for half a beat before Stiles let out a strangled, uncontrolled laugh.

“Oh my God, Peter,” Derek said loudly, running a hand down his face with a cringe. 

“Don’t bring him up, Stiles hates him,” Peter said, jerking a thumb at his shirt. “What’s that about, anyway?” he asked, curiously evaluating the statement.

It took Stiles another minute, but he finally managed to pull himself together and say, “I put a bi pride flag up in my window, and then I overheard my neighbor saying ‘he hates God and worships the rectum,’ which, aside from being cartoonishly homophobic, is also one of the funniest fucking sentences I’ve ever heard.” He gestured to the shirt. “This is just informing him that I did, in fact, hear him, and he is, in fact, right.”

Peter smirked.

“If you’d like, I could worship with you. Loudly. Definitely loud enough for your neighbor to overhear our… service.”

“PETER,” Derek warned. Peter threw up his arms.

“What!! He’s eighteen now!! I waited just like I said I would!” Peter protested in exasperation. “I even waited over a week past his birthday!”

“You- you’ve been waiting for me to be legal?” Stiles said, incredulous. 

“Oh, darling. There are still plenty of things we could do that are illegal,” Peter purred.

“The illegality isn’t a lure, Peter,” Stiles said with an eye roll. 

“What about the cordial invitation to have your ass eaten?” Peter asked casually. 

Every werewolf could already smell the yes on Stiles. Derek marched over to his front door and pushed it open. 

“Get out and don’t come back until you both have a different religion,” he deadpanned.


Stiles and Peter ran into Ms. Juárez at a face painting booth the next month, this time in matching shirts. 

“I see your church is expanding,” Ms. Juárez said with a smile, nodding at Peter’s shirt.

“We’re always happy to welcome new believers!” Stiles said. “Although you might be more interested in our sister organization.” He pointed to where Lydia and Cora stood, selling shirts that read Happy as Two Clams.

Ms. Juárez’s smile turned into a grin. 

“I just might.”

Chapter Text

“Good afternoon Mr. Hale!”

Peter ignored the intrusion and didn’t bother looking up from his crossword, preferring to simply wait out the afternoon wellness check from the nurse.

“You have a visitor!”

Peter did look up at that. He narrowed his eyes at the cheery man in scrubs, watching him check the bedcovers and make sure there was soap in the bathroom.

Peter didn’t get visitors.

Ever.

Laura and Derek had called once after he’d woken up, but the conversation had been sharp, short, and not repeated.

Cora probably would have visited, but Brazil is far away and painful memories are a powerful repellant. She called though. But that was exactly it: she called. She didn’t visit.

“Mr. Stilinski is just signing in, he should be back here in just a minute. Have a good chat!”

The nurse swept out of the room, an endless fountain of bubbling positivity in the assisted living facility. God, Peter couldn’t stand him.

Mr. Stilinski. Mr. Stilinski.

Not Sheriff Stilinski.

What did the Stilinski kid want with Peter?

The sound of a rapid knock echoed through the room a moment later, followed by silence. The door didn’t immediately pop open- whoever knocked was actually waiting for a response rather than simply letting themselves in.

A rarity, in a place like this.

Despite the extra effort it took, Peter willingly got up and haltingly moved to open the door, his more severely burned leg dragging a little more today.

Peter opened the door, expecting to see the gangly, buzz headed sixteen year old that had been acquainted with his nephew. But, of course, instead there was a twenty two year old man in business casual wearing an ID badge on a lanyard.

Another reminder of the six years he was missing.

“Mr. Hale?” Stilinski inquired, as if he didn’t know damn well whose door he’d knocked on. “I’m Stiles Stilinski.”

Instead of responding, Peter simply walked back to his chair, leaving the door open. He was abruptly exhausted.

“What do you want?” he asked bluntly, easing himself back down and watching Stilinski shut the door behind him.

Stiles came a little closer, hands casually stuck in the pockets of his trousers, but stayed a few steps away.

“I wanted to ask whether you’d be interested in a service shifter,” Stiles said.

Peter simply looked back, using every centimeter of mobility he had in his scarred face to say what a dumb fucking question that was. Instead of getting offended, as Peter had expected, Stiles smiled back wryly.

“My clinic isn’t quite like other providers of service shifters and service animals,” Stiles said. “We work specifically with long-term care facilities rather than a more… capitalistic model. My goal is to make service animals more accessible to everyone, including shifters who need help from shifters.” He looked expectantly at Peter.

Peter’s mind raced with questions

“What makes you think I need a shifter as opposed to a regular animal?”

Stiles hesitated for a moment, considering his words carefully.

“I remember you, before. Derek and I didn’t spend a lot of time together, but I remember watching you spar with his mom once. Your alpha. You almost won.” He paused again before continuing. “It obviously wasn’t through brute strength- you were smart. You were calculating. You have exactly the kind of skills that can make a PTSD flashback incredibly dangerous for everyone.”

Peter was silent.

“If you have a shifter companion, obviously the first line of defense is for them to provide emotional support and prevent a vivid flashback in the first place. However, if it can’t be avoided, then a shifter would be able to restrain you as necessary. A regular service animal couldn’t do that.”

The words were bald, free of any dainty step-arounds and oblique references.

Peter was in an assisted living facility because he might accidentally kill someone who didn’t have immediate access to tranquilizers.

… and Stiles thought he could change that. The hope that he was dangling in front of Peter felt cruel.

“I don’t know if you’re aware of this, but shifters don’t exactly feel safe with other shifters,” Peter ground out, his scarred vocal cords making his voice even rougher for a moment. “A shifter companion isn’t going to be much help if we both want to fight each other on sight.”

Stiles’ smile was much more amused this time.

“Our companions are trained for that too, along with a few extra tools.” Stiles reached inside his shirt and pulled out a pendant. “This suppresses aggressive chemo signals within a 5 yard radius. We haven’t attacked each other yet, so I think I can safely say it works,” he finished with a raised eyebrow.

“You’re a shifter?” he asked, disbelieving.

Stiles shrugged.

“Hereditary magic is funny like that. Sometimes it manifests as generations of wolves, sometimes it manifests as witchcraft, and sometimes it manifests as something no one was expecting.” He tucked the pendant away in his shirt again. “So what do you say to a trial, Mr. Hale? Want to run some errands tomorrow?”

Peter still wasn’t sure about any of it. He wasn’t sure he could actually see a shifter and know it was a shifter without getting aggressive. He wasn’t sure that a shifter would actually be able to restrain him during a violent flashback.

He wasn’t sure he could stand another day in this assisted living hell hole with Perky Nurse.

“Two o’clock. We’re getting coffee and books.”


Peter waited nervously on the side of his bed, door open so he could look down the hall.

He was dressed as nicely as possible without restricting his motion even further than his injuries already did, and trying not to think about how pathetic he felt for being this excited just to go to a bookshop.

He wondered how big Stilinski’s shifted form was. He wasn’t a wolf, that much Peter was sure of.

He was a probably a dog.

Oh God, he was probably a cocker spaniel.

What if Peter had a flashback in the middle of the shop and ripped out Stilinski’s throat? What if he couldn’t be sedated, what if he went completely feral-

A scent caught Peter’s nose, and his head snapped up to look out his door.

Delicately avoiding wheelchairs parked in the hall, a giant 400 pound black bear approached his room on all fours.

As soon as he reached the doorway, it became apparent that he wouldn’t be fitting through without a tight squeeze, so he plopped down on the tile and just poked his head in, waving at Peter.

Peter’s mouth hung open for longer than he would ever admit, but eventually he got up, dusted off his sleeve, and simply said, “Shall we?”

Surprisingly few people looked at them as they slowly walked down the block to the shop Peter wanted to visit. He supposed it might be due to the bright vest Stiles wore that proclaimed him a service shifter, but he thought it was more likely that the town had just already gotten used to seeing Stiles out and about as a bear.

“Have you provided this service often?” he asked.

Stiles shook his head.

“You just spend a lot of time shifted, then,” he surmised.

The black bear’s massive head bobbed back and forth in an indeterminate answer.

Peter supposed conversation was better saved for human mouths.

When they reached the bookshop, Peter’s leg desperately needed a rest. He took a seat at the end of the small coffee bar at the front of the shop, Stiles seated on the ground next to him. Peter was surprised when, along with the latté he’d ordered, the barista placed an iced coffee with an absurdly long straw in front of Stiles. He happily leaned forward to slurp it down, and for a while they just sat together quietly with their coffee.

Once the coffee was gone and Peter felt his leg had rested long enough, he finally got up to peruse the shelves. Stiles followed him into the history section on all fours, patiently waiting near him when Peter got distracted by a book on shifter theory through the nineteenth century.

As absorbed as he was, it still would have been hard to miss when Stiles stood up on his hind legs to his full height. One gigantic paw reached up to the top shelf, and a single sharp, yet careful claw turned back the cover of the book so Stiles could read the inside of the jacket.

Peter couldn’t help the smile in the corner of his mouth. It was just so-

A huff of bear breath blew in his face. When Peter looked, the expression of What, huh? couldn’t have been more obvious.

“You’re ridiculous.”

With a roll of his eyes (and who knew bears could roll their eyes?) Stiles turned back to the book jacket.

Eventually they continued on, Peter settling on a few books to buy and reluctantly admitting it was time to go back.

He checked out, Stiles a steady, hulking presence behind him, and they left.

They were just outside the store when it happened. It was nothing, really. Nothing anyone else would have even noticed.

A woman lit a cigarette.

The lighter was lit for less than a second before Stiles huffed it out with a gust of air, ignoring an indignant “Hey!” from the woman, and pushing Peter along the sidewalk, staying between him and the lighter.

Peter’s heart was beating out of his chest and his breath was coming quickly. His hand found Stiles’ fur and fisted in it, gripping tightly. Stiles guided them between two buildings, hidden slightly in a shadowed nook.

Peter was still breathing rapidly, trying to maintain a grip on the present, sternly telling himself that there was no danger, nothing to be afraid of.

His lungs wouldn’t listen.

His breaths were getting shallower, coming more quickly, until a massive cold, wet nose stuck itself into his cheek. Peter’s gaze shot up to Stiles, who looked back at him seriously. Both of Peter’s hands wound their way into Stiles’ fur, feeling the coarse strands between his fingertips.

It wasn’t quite like anything else he’d ever felt before. Not like wolf fur, not like cat fur, not like faux fur- it was new. It was something uniquely Stiles.

Slowly, ever so slowly, Peter’s breathing returned to normal.

They stayed in the shadowed nook for another five minutes before Peter’s leg began to protest the lack of movement, and Peter finally nodded.

Stiles led the way back out to the road, and then stayed beside Peter for the rest of the walk back. Peter felt almost normal by the time they arrived.

Well. Normal for life now.

Stiles was back on all fours when they arrived back at the front desk. Peter was amused that, for all his bulk, his shoulders didn’t clear the desk height.

“Oh, hey Peter! How was your day out?!” Perky Nurse popped out from the office to bounce up to the desk.

Peter grinned, glancing down at Stiles.

“It was fine. My new service companion was very helpful.”

The nurse’s eyes lit up.

“Oh! You decided to go with animal from Stiles’ clinic? Who did you-”

Stiles suddenly reared up on his back legs, bringing his arms up and baring his teeth in a snarl to loom over the desk.

Perky Nurse screamed and fell backwards, disappearing to the ground.

A rusty sound ground out from Peter’s throat as Stiles dropped back down and looked at him, mischievousness spread across his furry little face. It was a beat and a half before Peter recognized the sound as laughter. He ended up needing to lean against the desk for a moment to regain his breath, and thus got a full view of the nurse scrambling back up to his feet.

“Goddamn it Stiles! Just because I grew out of my asthma doesn’t mean you can scare me like that!” He was clutching his chest dramatically and glaring down at the bear, who was very clearly grinning.

Peter finally gathered himself enough to finish signing in, listening to the nurse grumble about childhood friends and betrayal. He was still smiling even as he walked back to his pathetic little room and deposited his books on a table. Stiles sat in the hall again, waiting for his final word.

Peter finished fussing around and looked at him for a moment, taking in the bulk of the bear and thinking of the man who’d visited yesterday.

“Come back tomorrow, Stiles. I’d like to work out a schedule.”


They started out three times a week for three hours. Then it increased to five days a week for three hours. By six months, they were spending five hours a day together, five days a week, and Peter was pretty sure he was Stiles’ only client.

Not that he cared about having more of Stiles’ attention. It was simply a matter of professional curiosity. He was often speaking on behalf of the clinic after all. He was one half of their first shifter/shifter companion system, and they used blurbs from his reports in their promotions. It was only natural that he’d want to be the focus of his companion’s energy.

He couldn’t help it if his foolish wolf insisted on confusing professional attention with personal attention.

Their trips were usually uneventful. Most of the time they simply went out, did a few things, and came back, Stiles’ presence enjoyed by unnecessary. Of course, the few times when something didhappen, his presence was very necessary.

Stiles had only had to forcefully restrain him once, when a television display suddenly changed to a fireplace recording. Stiles had immediately recognized the change in his demeanor and tried to pull him away, but a drunken jackass chose that moment to shove into both of them. Peter had his claws at the man’s throat in a heartbeat, but in the next he’d been pushed back and barricaded by Stiles’ bulk. He slashed and beat at Stiles, unable to do much damage through the thick fur and muscle, and it wasn’t long before Peter’s weakened body gave out.

Peter had to be driven back to the assisted living facility that day, but Stiles had wormed his way into his room and set up camp next to his bed, keeping himself within touching distance of Peter. Peter didn’t say a word to him about it, but kept a tight grip on his fur, rubbing the strands between his fingers until he fell asleep.

Aside from that single incident, Peter’s mental and physical condition had improved drastically. It still took him twice as long to do most things, but he could do them, and he was determined to move out and prove it.

It chafed considerably that he had to get the agreement of his psychiatrist, who only agreed under the provision that Peter continue to use Stiles’ services. But, once it was done, he was free.

Stiles showed up in his human form to help him move, along with Perky Nurse who turned out to be named Scott, and who unfortunately was also a friend of Stiles’.

His depressingly small amount of possessions didn’t take long to move, and it was only the work of an hour before all the boxes were in his new apartment. Scott immediately left, to go blow bubbles in a park or something equally absurd, Peter was sure. Stiles, however, stayed to help him unpack.

“You’re not on the clock, you know,” Peter said, rinsing the dust off his dishes. “I can do this by myself. You’re not obligated to be here.”

Stiles snorted and snagged a dish to dry it.

“If you think I’ve ever done anything out of obligation, then we don’t know each other as well as I thought.”

A smirk grew in the corner of Peter’s mouth, threatening to turn into a fully fledged smile if allowed.

“So you just have a fondness for helping people move, then?”

“More like I have a fondness for the person moving, you dork.”

Reveling in the warmth that that statement gave him, Peter gasped in hyperbolic offense.

“You would insult me? Me, your star client? Your spokesperson? Your-”

A damp dishtowel hit him in the face, and he couldn’t help the laugh that it startled out of him. He pulled it off, about to shoot it back when there was a knock at the door. They both looked over, surprised.

“Eager neighbors?” Stiles suggested. “Want me to answer it?”

Peter shrugged.

“Sure. Tell them you’re my live-in rent boy-” another towel hit him in the face.

Peter couldn’t quite see the door from the kitchen sink, but he listened to Stiles’ footsteps cross the floor. The new door creaked a little as it opened and revealed a louder sound of not one, but two new heartbeats.

It wasn’t until he heard Stiles speak that his own heartbeat stopped.

“Hello Derek.”


 

Derek and Laura sat next to each other on the couch, while Peter sat in the single armchair and Stiles lingered on the periphery of the room, waiting to see where and how he would be needed.

“Dr. Kiddle called and said you were moving out of the facility,” Laura said. “He recommended that we come check on you and make sure everything’s okay.”

Peter tapped his fingers along the armrest, appearing as unconcerned as possible while wishing horrific things on his psychiatrist.

“He also recommended that you either return to Beacon Hills or move my comatose body to New York in order to provide me with the pack bonds I needed to heal.”

Derek and Laura both flinched at that.

“Uncle Peter-”

“Don’t call me that.”

“Peter-” Laura pressed forward, “We just- we couldn’t-”

Everyone startled at the smell of fresh blood as Peter’s claws cut into his clenched fist.

Couldn’t.

Stiles hurried over and ran a hand down his arm, quietly asking, “Do you want me to change?”

As soon as Peter nodded Stiles squeezed his arm once and then quickly walked to the bathroom.

Laura and Derek watched the exchange reservedly, darting looks at each other back and forth.

“What’s Stiles doing here?” Derek asked gruffly as soon as the bathroom door closed.

Peter consciously kept himself from reforming a fist, and said, “He’s my service companion. Emotional support, among other things.”

Laura’s face screwed up in distaste.

“A service shifter for a shifter? Are you serious?”

“It works very well. Certainly well enough to help me find the physical and mental stability I’d lost after my pack abandoned me.”

Derek flinched again, but Laura lifted her chin this time.

“This can’t possibly be a long term solution, Peter. I think it would be better for you to move back into the assist-”

The bathroom door banged open and Stiles came out, moving quickly but delicately in the small space. As soon as he entered the living room Derek let out a wild yelp and Laura actually lifted her feet off the ground to scramble back further on the couch.

Stiles sat himself down next to Peter and quietly laid his head on the armrest. Peter dug his hand into Stiles’ fur and let the texture soothe him.

It took a few minutes, but Derek and Laura’s stunned silence eventually wore off.

“He’s a bear?” Laura nearly yelled before turning on Derek. “Why didn’t you say?”

Derek just shook his head, still apparently shocked.

“I didn’t know. I just knew he was some kind of shifter. What-” his voice cut off in a squeak and he cleared his throat. “What kind of service did you say he does?”

“Emotional support. Mostly by scaring the shit out of people I don’t like.”

Stiles curled back his lips and rumbled a sound so threatening that Derek shot out of his seat.

“We need to go. Laura, we need to go. I’m so sorry Peter, for everything, but I’m glad you have Stiles.” Derek was out the front door two seconds later, Laura following him close behind.

Silence rang through the mostly empty apartment for a moment, and Stiles carefully watched Peter, waiting to see how he felt.

When his shoulders started to shake, Stiles was instantly concerned, and shoved his face up against Peter’s to see his expression.

He was utterly startled to hear a sudden gasp for breath, and then such a hearty, loud laugh that it echoed back from the kitchen. Peter kept going, peal after peal of laughter bubbling up for minutes before hiccuping himself back to quiet.

Delicately wiping a tear of mirth from the corner of his eye, he finally spoke.

“They’re both terrible. Laura more than Derek, but they both bear a tremendous amount of responsibility for my pain that she at least will never fully admit to. But I’ll be damned if that wasn’t the best thing I’ve seen since waking up.” He looked up at Stiles, cheeks aching from his grin.

Stiles, unsatisfied with his wordless state, changed back into his human skin and grabbed a blanket to cover himself before saying, “Yeah, but it would have been better if I’d told them I was your rent-boy first.”

Peter’s renewed laughter lasted long enough for Stiles to get dressed and finish putting away the dishes.

Chapter Text

The first time Derek noticed it, it was because he was in the middle of a very important discussion with Stiles. A life or death discussion. Specifically the life of the pack and the death of several dozen gnomes that had taken up residence in the sewage system.

Stiles was holding a lighter, explaining how they could use naturally occurring methane to get rid of the gnomes, when he suddenly trailed off mid sentence.

Derek looked up at him quizzically, scrunching his eyebrows.

“Stiles?”

He didn’t respond, but continued holding the lighter and staring over Derek’s shoulder.

Derek glanced behind himself, but didn’t see anything unusual. Erica and Boyd were playing cards, Scott was staring into space instead of reading his history text, and Peter was doing pull ups in the doorway.

Derek looked back at Stiles, starting to get a little concerned, and noticed that the flame on the lighter was too close to his thumb.

“Stiles-“

“Shit!!” Stiles yelled, dropping the lighter and sticking his thumb into his mouth to suck on the burn.

A loud thunk and clatter happened behind him, and Derek turned around in time to see Peter pick himself up off the floor, rubbing his elbow.

What the hell.

Derek looked back and forth between the two of them for a minute, wondering if this was a new side effect of the gnomes in the sewers. It wasn’t until he saw his uncle’s slack jawed stare at Stiles’ mouth, and Stiles’ returning fixation on Peter’s shirtless top, that he figured it out.

“Ugh.”

Stiles startled at the sound, flushing red and determinedly looking away from Peter.

“Right. Methane.”

“I’m going for a run,” Peter announced with a slight growl to his voice that spoke of unvoiced frustration.

Derek sighed.

This was going to be a disaster.


The second time could have been passed off as general Stiles clumsiness, if it weren’t for the fact that Derek knew Peter was eating a popsicle directly in Stiles’ line of sight.

“You alright,” he asked flatly as Stiles dusted off the knees of his jeans.

“Fine, fine, I’m perfectly fine.” Stiles glanced back at Peter again. Derek raised an eyebrow.

“Do you want a popsicle?”

“NO. No. No thank you, I do not want a popsicle right now.”

“Are you sure? It sounds like you want a popsicle,” Derek pressed, thinking that maybe if he could get them both in the same spot with the same dumb thoughts, he could end this before it got horrible.

“Nope, no, I actually need to go, uh, right now.” One more glance at Peter had his voice a little more distant, but he still said, “Yeah… I have to leave right the fuck now. Bye.”

Well. He tried.


Peter walked into a wall on ice cream night.

Stiles dropped a Costco sized box of steaks on his foot when Peter bent over to put groceries away.

Stiles took off his shirt to go swimming, and Peter tripped over a pool noodle and fell into the water fully clothed.

Derek was concerned that he would soon have a permanent palm print on his forehead from how often his hand was there.

It wasn’t until the next training day that he finally found the solution to his problems.


“Peter. Stiles. You two are sparring over there.” Derek pointed to a section of grass to the right that was partially sectioned off by trees, giving it a slightly more separate feel.

Peter and Stiles both immediately tensed.

“Are you sure about that one, nephew dear? You wouldn’t want me to break our only human, after all.”

Stiles made an indignant sound.

“Break me?! You couldn’t break me!” His face suddenly froze, and he began backtracking. “But, uh, maybe he’s right. Maybe we should spar someone else-“

“No. Go.”

Derek turned away, knowing they’d sort themselves out from there.

Stiles and Peter glanced at each other, and Peter gestured forward with an arm.

“After you.”

Stiles rolled his eyes, but walked forward anyway, only to be taken by surprise when Peter slid up behind him and wrapped a hand around his throat.

“Never let an enemy behind you, darling,” Peter whispered in his ear.

Stiles thought he might pass out from how fast all the blood was draining to his dick.

Instead, he kicked a leg behind him, in between Peter’s, and knocked one away, unbalancing him. Peter’s grip loosened in surprise and Stiles spun around, kicking the already unbalanced leg again, causing Peter to fall. In a second Stiles was on top of him, pocket knife at his temple.

By the time Derek looked back, fifteen seconds after sending them away, they were making out.

“Oh thank Christ,” he muttered to himself. “Alright, go home everyone!” he called out. “Training’s cancelled!!”

“What?” Isaac said. “We just got here!”

Derek jerked a thumb over his shoulder at the two on the ground.

“If you want to stay here with them, be my guest. I’m leaving.”

Isaac actually looked tempted for a moment before Scott let out a disgusted retching sound and pulled him away.

Chapter Text

“If we can’t get any closer and he can’t hear us, what do we do?” Allison asked, voice strained with effort and stress. “He’s your packmate, right? Maybe you should try howling at him.”

Peter gave her a dry look.

“We’re packmates, but that doesn’t make him a wolf. Howling in his psychological ear seems a bit dramatic, don’t you think?”

Allison rolled her eyes and cut back, “Oh right, I forgot how widely you’re known for your timid restraint.”

“Besides,” Peter continued, ignoring her statement, “I have an idea.”

They couldn’t get any closer to the stump, but they could move around to different angles. Peter sauntered up behind the Nogitsune, still at a distance but firmly at it’s back.

He drew a deep breath, cupped his hands around his mouth, and yelled, “PETER HALE IS A VILLAIN WHO DESERVES TO BE LOCKED AWAY IN EICHEN HOUSE.”

Stiles’ head finally looked up from the game of Go to look at the Nogitsune.

“What the fuck did you just say?!”

Stiles snapped, lunging over the game of Go and tackling the Nogitsune off the stump.

Peter and Allison could feel a change in the air, and found that they could move closer now.

Closer to Stiles, who was currently on top of a thousand year old fox demon, punching it right in it’s needle-toothed mouth. 

Peter watched gleefully, while Allison creeped ahead, wondering if Stiles could psychologically beat it to death or if she should pull him off. 

It became a moot point a moment later when the Nogitsune disappeared, leaving behind a pile of rancid pile of bandages. 

“Shit!” Stiles yelped when his fist ricocheted off the white tile instead of impacting the demon. Peter and Allison finally rushed in, picking him up off the ground and checking him over. 

“What- what are you guys doing here?” Stiles looked between the two, face white and confused. 

“We’re in your mind,” Allison answered. 

Stiles looked bewildered. 

“My-” his face suddenly screwed up. “I don’t feel great, you guys-”

One foot stepped back into the pile of bandages. Stiles’ face turned to shock as he slipped and fell backwards, disappearing when the filthy wrappings swallowed him whole and he vanished just as the Nogitsune had. 

Peter and Allison darted forward, frantically reaching for him, but solid floor met their hands. They glanced at each other, despair and rage combined, when the sound of retching reached their ears from the outside. 

“He’s out,” Peter said. “He got out.” 

Allison looked at him hopefully. 

“Well then get your claws out of my fucking spine!”

Chapter Text

Stiles doesn’t really understand caring touch anymore. Touch for touch’s sake doesn’t make sense. Touch is used to move, to shove, to force. 

Gentle touch, comforting touch, touch to communicate affection- 

Stiles finds himself stunned and frozen on the rare occasion someone touches him with those intentions. 

But he still craves it. Skin on skin, in any form. How do you ask someone to touch you with love? Stiles isn’t sure it’s possible. Much easier to goad someone into touching with anger. 

He’s never met anyone easier to goad than Derek. He’s a disaster of unresolved trauma and underdeveloped emotional intelligence. Not that Stiles can blame him. Stiles is pretty sure that if he’d lived Derek’s life, then the murder arrest wouldn’t have been a false start. 

But in any case, it’s so easy. Two words here, an eyeroll there, one more carefully applied remark, and he feels Derek’s skin slam into his, shoving him backward into a wall, pinning him there with anger and a hot hand, a hint of claws at his neck. 

Stiles has to fight not to lean further into the touch, choking himself even harder just to get closer. 

Derek never notices. 

But again, Stiles doesn’t blame him. Underdeveloped emotional intelligence. Completely understandable. 

It’s unfortunate that Peter doesn’t suffer from the same. 

“You don’t have to provoke him, you know.”

Stiles didn’t look up from his laptop.

“It’s not the only way to get what you’re looking for.” Peter walked slowly up to the table where Stiles sat, hands in his pockets. “Granted, I wasn’t sure what you were looking for at first.”

“Peace and quiet?” Stiles suggested dryly, continuing to type his economics paper.

Peter leaned against the arm of the chair Stiles was sitting in; not touching, but warm enough for the heat to radiate towards Stiles’ skin; warm enough to pull Stiles closer. 

He leaned away. 

“At first I thought it was merely attention. Acknowledgement from the alpha that you’re here, and a part of the pack. But that’s not what it is, is it?”

Stiles finally looked up. 

“What what is, Peter?” he said, exasperated. 

In response, Peter reached out and placed a hand on Stiles’ arm. Not squeezing, not pulling, not bruising. Just resting, hand to arm, skin to skin. 

Stiles froze, completely still. 

Peter softly smoothed the pads of his fingers from his forearm down to his wrist, wrapping his hand around it with gentle pressure before releasing it to drag a fingertip back up his forearm. 

“You’re starved,” he murmured. “It doesn’t have to hurt, Stiles.”

Peter pulled his hand back to himself, and Stiles shivered, aching. Every thought in his head had ground to a halt the second Peter touched him. Softly. So, so softly. There was no push behind it, no direction-

“What do you want?” Stiles asked, unable to hide a slight tremor at the end of his words. 

“I think this is about what you want, my dear. Or rather, what you need.”

Stiles shook his head. 

“Just because you’re not pushing me with your hands doesn’t mean you’re not leading me somewhere. What do you want?”

Peter’s mouth took on a wry smile.

“It can’t have missed your attention that I’m hardly suffocating in hugs either.” He pursed his lips for a moment. “I need touch as well, Stiles. My wolf needs it. Pack touch. Supportive touch.” He reached out again to run a hand through Stiles’ hair, trailing his fingers behind his ear. 

Stiles couldn’t stop himself from leaning into it this time. 

“It’s beneficial for everyone. My nephew loses a punching bag and hopefully finds therapy. You no longer need to seek out touch that hurts you. And I don’t turn into an omega and go on another murder spree that ends with my throat cut.” His fingers traveled down the side of Stiles’ neck. 

Slowly, Stiles reached up and took hold of Peter’s hand, pulling it away. He looked at it for a moment, silent. 

He laced their fingers. 

“Sit down. I have to finish this econ paper.”

As he types with one hand, he still doesn’t understand affectionate touch. But exchange, he understands. 

Peter smiles, and rubs a thumb along his knuckles. 

Chapter Text

“I fucking told you they had a camera in that corner of the stacks!” Stiles hissed, smacking Peter with the back of his hand. 

Peter frowned at the sign, equally grumpy about it. This was why he hadn’t wanted to live in the dorms. Well. This, and the smells, and how loud it was, and pretty much everything else about the dorms- and, actually, he hadn’t anticipated meeting his dick sucking soulmate his first year away from home, but the point stood. 

The dorms were awful, and they had nowhere to go. 

“Ugh. Can’t we just kick your roommate out again?” Peter grumbled.

“He’s already complained to the RA twice,” Stiles reminded him. “If he complains again, I get kicked out of the dorms and not all of us can afford to live somewhere else, Moneybags.”

“Excuse you, that’s Mister Moneybags. And I already told you, my parents want me to get ‘the full college experience’ or whatever. If we lock out my roommate again, they’ll probably include homelessness in that when I get kicked out.”

Stiles ran a frustrated hand through his hair.

“Well where the fuck are we gonna go!”

Peter chewed on his lip for a moment.

“Club bathroom? Not the classiest, but they probably won’t kick us out for it.”

“They’re closed for repairs today, remember? Someone broke the sinks.”

“Oh yeah. Hey, did you hear that it was Jenny and Raul who did that? Apparently Jenny came so hard she busted the basin right off the wall and nearly ripped out a pipe.”

“What?” Stiles said incredulously. “Jenny I’d believe, but Raul? Tiny, quiet, History major Raul?”

“It’s always the quiet ones,” Peter said wisely.

“Is that why you never shut up?” Stiles asked with a grin.

Peter sent him an affronted look.

“Well if you’re so unsatisfied, then maybe we don’t need to find anywhere at all.“

He started marching away, but Stiles grabbed his hand and reeled him back in.

“Oh, come on.” He wrapped his arms around Peter’s shoulders as Peter pointedly didn’t look at him. “You know why I didn’t question whether Jenny broke the sink through sheer orgasm power? Hm? You know why?”

Peter held out for a moment before finally looking at him and letting out an exasperated “Why.”

“Because we do that all the time. Remember when you made me come so hard I blacked out?”

Peter smirked.

“And that other time I put a hole in the drywall?”

Peter was practically purring with self satisfaction now, and Stiles’ eyes were looking dreamy. He ran his fingernails up and down the back of Peter’s neck.

“And even the last time here, over in the paleontology section…” Stiles trailed off, clearly lost in the memory.

“We almost brought down that entire shelf,” Peter reminded him, ducking his head to mouth under Stiles’ chin.

“Yeah… mmm…”

Peter’s hand snuck up the back of Stiles’ shirt, pressing the small of his back to make them walk backwards as his mouth latched on to Stiles’ neck.

Just as Peter was pulling them into the first dark corner he could find, Stiles distractedly reminded him, “The sign. Peter, the sign.”

“What about it?”

“It said no dick sucking in the library!”

“So I won’t suck your dick in the library.”


 

Peter did not suck Stiles’ dick in the library.

Later, in the Dean’s office, it was clarified that the rule banned not only dick sucking, but all other sexual activities as well.

Peter’s parents ended up allowing him to get an apartment after all, citing that it wouldn’t be much of a college experience if he got thrown out of college.

Chapter Text

“I thought it was a Flintstone vitamin!”

“Why would they have Flinstone vitamins at a frat party?? Stay where you are, I’m coming to get you.”

“You’re so overprotective, is it weird how much I love that about you? … Oh shit I think it’s kicking in.”

“Jesus Christ, Stiles.”

“Peter, you’re four hours away, I’ll probably be coming down by then, you don’t need-“

“I don’t care, I’m still coming. Just stay where you are. Where’s Kira? Why isn’t she babysitting you?”

“Last I saw she was tonsil deep in mouth of the dive team captain, and it’s not like this is LSD Peter. I don’t need to be babysat. I’m pretty sure the dude in the corner took it and he’s just been rubbing his cheek against a corduroy jacket since I got here.”

“Great, go find some corduroy and then wait for me to get there.”

“I’ve been waiting for you to get here. If I might remind you, you were the one who didn’t want to ‘crowd’ me so that I could have a ‘normal college experience.’ Normal!! ‘Normal’ made a suicide pact with ‘Calm’ three years ago, and they were both buried by total insanity long before college, Peter.”

“Which makes it all the more important that you take this opportunity to get a little of that back.”

“I don’t want it. I want you, dillhole, here with me, being a jackass in person where I can kiss you.”

“You are the angriest ecstasy user I’ve ever heard, how much did you take?”

“Just one. Hold on- oh.”

“‘Oh’? ‘Oh’ what? Stiles!”

“Um. They are Flintstone vitamins.”

“…”

“… you’re still coming anyway right?”

“… yes.”

(And that’s the story of how Peter moved to Berkeley to live with Stiles)

Chapter Text

Stiles had dolls. 

Little, perfectly cared for dolls, with specially made doll clothes, and doll shoes, and doll hair. 

Not made from porcelain, but a nice cloth. 

He generally kept the dolls out of sight, tucked away safely. Not because he was ashamed of having dolls, fuck you very much. Dolls as creative outlet or comfort item are appropriate for anyone at any age. No, these specific dolls he kept out of sight so as to avoid any… misunderstandings. 

They were voodoo dolls, you see. 

Of the pack. 

Well, they weren’t “voodoo” dolls. He didn’t know much about actual Vodun practice or any of its magical variants found around the world. However, he’d found a way to create dolls that functioned in basically the same way that Hollywood said voodoo dolls worked, so the name stuck. 

They were reciprocal models. When serious injury occurred to a pack member, it showed up on the doll as a little black mark. Stiles also found that he could influence small things about their physical state. 

For instance, he had several sweaters on standby for Lydia. When the weather got cold and she found herself constantly freezing because werewolves literally never think to turn up the heat, Stiles put an extra sweater or two on her doll. It wouldn’t save her from hypothermia or anything, but Stiles noticed that she didn’t shiver quite as much. 

A few weeks later, Derek got into yet another shouting match with Erica over the way she’d handled a minotaur. Derek got there just in time to prevent her death, but paid the price by getting gored in the back. Afterwards, in pain and terrified of losing her, he yelled some less than choice words. Ashamed and defensive, she yelled back, threatening to leave the pack again before stomping out of the loft with a snarl. 

Derek kicked everyone out of the loft, demanding they go home to their parents. Stiles’ last view of him was shoulders hunched, back tense. So Stiles did go home. Not to his father though, who was at work as usual. He went home to his dolls. 

He immediately pulled out Derek’s, seeing the slowly fading mark on his back. Stiles pulled out a healing cream and dabbed it on to the mark, gently rubbing it in. Across town, Derek felt a wave of relief, and managed to fall asleep. 

Stiles pulled out Erica’s doll next and checked her over for any black marks. When he found none, he sat her doll next to Derek’s, petting her hair slightly and making her lean on him. He had no idea if it would have any affect on her state of mind, but it made him feel better to have her there. 

The dolls were more or less left alone for a few more weeks after that, until Peter dropped Stiles off after rescuing him from yet another coven. 

He limped into his room, Peter following with agitation in his step. Stiles had been lucky; only bruises this time. Peter wasn’t quite so lucky. The witches knew the Hale family history and had been perfectly willing to play against that trauma in order to keep him away from Stiles until he could be sacrificed. 

The line of fire between Peter and Stiles had given him pause, Stiles yelling for him to turn around and get out of there before the fire spread. Instead, Peter gathered himself and dashed through, snatching Stiles and covering him with his jacket before crossing the fire again. By the time they were free he’d been burned, but mildly, healing in just a few minutes. 

Of course, lingering trauma doesn’t really know mild from severe. 

“I’ll kill him,” Peter growled, pacing Stiles’ bedroom. 

“No you won’t,” Stiles said tiredly. 

“If Scott had killed those witches in the first place like I said he should, they never would have had the chance to take you. They never would have-” he choked on his words for a moment, turning his head away. “That entire row of buildings must have burned down by now,” he said after a lengthy pause. 

Stiles didn’t doubt that. The fire had gotten out of control quickly.

“You’re still not going to kill Scott. At least not over this,” Stiles said anyway. 

Peter continued to pace. 

“’They just want to visit family,’” Peter scoffed in a mocking tone. “They were dripping with blood magic! I fucking told him-”

“Yeah, I know. So did I. He still thinks everyone deserves a chance. He’s idealistic, Peter.”

“So am I. I have amazing ideas about how to kill-”

Stiles interrupted him by suddenly falling sideways on the bed, having completely lost the will to stay upright. 

“Just-” Stiles’ voice was muffled into the mattress. “Just don’t kill him until I wake up, okay? We can argue some more then.”

Peter paused in his pacing, his face softening, and then tightening again with the new view of the bruises on Stiles’ arms. But he sighed, and walked over to Stiles, pulling a blanket over him and running a hand over his hair, unable to stop himself from scent marking him. 

“If you insist,” he said quietly. Stiles grunted and poked one hand out of the blanket, giving a thumbs up to indicate he’d heard. Peter chuckled and then turned off the light, letting himself out of the house. 

Stiles was already asleep. 

Unfortunately, he only stayed asleep for half an hour before a nightmare had him shooting upright out of bed, scrambling for the light. He panted, checking his surroundings, checking his fingers, checking his closets. His heart rate finally began to slow when he was sure he was home and safe. He stood in the middle of his room, far too anxious to go back to sleep now. Instead, he pulled out his dolls, needing to assure himself that everyone was safe. 

Lydia was fine in her extra sweater, as were Boyd, Erica, and Derek. Allison had a fading spot on the ankle that Stiles knew she’d twisted a week ago. He kept her where she was, with her foot propped on a tiny pillow. 

Scott was fine. 

A buzzing sound caught his attention, and he noticed a mosquito was hovering around the dolls. He considered for a moment, and then let his petty side reign free. He held up Scott’s doll and pulled the band of his pants wide. A few magically infused words coaxed the mosquito into the pants, and then Stiles firmly allowed the band to snap closed again, trapping the mosquito inside. 

He gave it several minutes, allowing the mosquito as much time as possible to search for blood, and then let it go outside. With a slight smirk, he placed Scott’s doll back with the others. 

Finally, he checked Peter’s doll. 

The entire left side was an ashen grey. 

Stiles hadn’t seen anything like it before, and he immediately worried. Grabbing his phone, he called Peter while trying not to freak out. 

“‘Lo?” Peter answered, voice hoarse with tiredness.

“Peter? Are you alright?” Stiles asked urgently. 

“Yeah, I’m fine.” Peter’s tone was confused. “I thought you’d still be asleep for at least another ten hours. Are you alright?”

Stiles glanced back at the doll. The left side was still grey. 

“Yeah,” he said quietly. “I just had a bad dream.”

“Do you want me to come over?” Peter asked casually, in a way that Stiles knew was deliberate. 

“No, I think I’m just going to try to go back to sleep.”

“That’s probably a good idea. Those flimsy human bodies need an absurd amount of rest, you know.”

Stiles rolled his eyes, the corner of his mouth tugging up.

“Goodnight Peter. 

“Goodnight Stiles.”

After hanging up, Stiles picked up Peter’s doll, taking a closer look. 

Could psychological injury manifest on the dolls? 

And what could Stiles even do about it?

After a moment, Stiles got up and put the doll on his window sill, left side pressed up against the cold windowpane. Slowly, the grey began to recede. It didn’t vanish entirely, but it was lighter than before. 

Stiles yawned so wide his jaw cracked. Groaning, he climbed back between the covers, leaving the lights on this time. 

The next morning, Peter was so distracted that he didn’t even think about killing Scott for more than a minute or two. 

When he’d left the Stilinski’s the night before, his entire left side burned like it had years ago. The memory of his nerves burning and slowly trying to heal only to burn again was seared into his skin, felt on every inch of skin despite not being real. 

Now, however, it was gone, replaced by a soothing cooling sensation. 

Was it a curse? It was a luckily pleasant curse, if so. Had the witches done something? Would the cooling sensation slowly turn back into a burning sensation, or slowly freeze him from the left to the right?

He got up and headed straight for Stiles, partially to check on him after last night, and partially because he knew (slightly) more about curses than Peter. 

As soon as he arrived at the house he knew Stiles was still asleep. His slow, even breathing was a balm to Peter. He quietly let himself into the house, unconcerned with the second slow heartbeat behind the sheriff’s bedroom door. 

He slid into Stiles’ bedroom, a slight tension in his chest easing with the visual evidence of Stiles’ wellbeing. He glanced around the room, wondering if Stiles had changed his laptop password since the last time he guessed it. There might be a few files on curses in there-

Suddenly he noticed the doll. An unmistakable miniature version of himself sitting on the windowsill, leaning on the glass. He crept over, fascinated, and picked himself up. Suddenly his left side warmed. Not burning, but no longer pleasantly cool either. His eyes widened, and he put the doll back up against the window. The cold sensation returned. Peter’s mouth dropped open and he picked up the doll once more. 

He’d never say what possessed him, aside from the need to be absolutely sure, but he grabbed hold of the doll’s arm between two fingernails and pinched. 

“Ouch!” he hissed, rubbing the sharp pain on his own arm. 

Stiles suddenly stirred, blearily alarmed eyes scanning the room before falling on Peter. 

“Pet’r?” he mumbled. “What’re you doing here s’ early?” He yawned and rubbed his eyes. 

Peter said nothing, and just waited for Stiles to finish waking up and notice what he was holding. 

It only took another moment. 

“Oh shit,” Stiles said. Peter raised an eyebrow. “I wasn’t gonna stick pins in you or anything,” Stiles blurted. 

“I can see that,” Peter said, looking back down at the doll amazed and curious. “Why was he leaning up against the window?”

Stiles fidgeted for a moment before answering. 

“Your left side hurt,” he said quietly. Peter stilled. “It looked different from a normal injury, so I thought- well. I thought the window would help.”

Peter stood quietly for a moment. 

“It did,” he finally said, and sat his doll back on the windowsill. He turned bright eyes on Stiles. “You’re truly amazing, you know that?”

Stiles tried to fight down a blush, but it found its way to his face anyway. Peter took a step closer to the bed, bringing himself within touching distance. 

“Incredible. Wonderful. Brilliant. Stunning-”

“Oh my God,” Stiles groaned, face getting pinker with every word. “Why are you doing this?”

Peter leaned down closer.

“I just want you to know all the reasons I’m about to do this.”

And then he kissed him. 

Stiles let out a startled little gasp, allowing Peter to slip his tongue in, bringing his hands up to cradle Stiles’ head. Stiles moaned into the kiss, tilting to deepen it and grabbing on to Peter’s wrists with his own hands. The press of their lips seemed to last an eternity while also only lasting a second, the licks and bites in between marking movement of something other than time. 

When they finally parted, Peter pressed his cheek to Stiles and whispered into his ear, “It’s not because of gratitude. It’s because of you.”

Stiles shuddered, gripping onto to Peter more tightly before moving to gently pet down Peter’s side. They stayed that way for a while, but eventually Stiles’ bruises needed attention. 

As he rubbed an arnica mixture into them, he showed Peter the rest of the dolls. 

“Amazing. Truly exceptional- except where’s yours?” Peter asked. 

Stiles stalled out at that. 

“I… don’t have one?” He shrugged. “I dunno. Seems weird to take care of my own voodoo doll.” 

“Hm,” Peter said, the wheels already turning in his head. 

Scott stopped by later to check on both of them and bemoan the lack of honesty in blood witches. 

If Stiles noticed that he couldn’t sit still for itching, then he said nothing. 

Peter eventually convinced Stiles to make a doll for himself, and then swiftly took it into his own care. He kept the doll tucked away safe most of the time, although on days Stiles couldn’t be there, it came out at least twice a day for a kiss good morning and kiss good night.

And when the others saw, they said nothing, because Stiles was sure to inform them that dolls as a creative outlet and comfort item are appropriate for anyone at any age. 

Chapter Text

Peter held his newborn nephew for the first time, marveling at his tiny nose. His mouth grew into a perfect little “O” as he yawned, chin quivering as he used his brand new muscles. 

Peter stroked a finger down his cheek, a light scenting for their newest pack member. Derek’s tiny little face scrunched up in response, and Peter smiled. The two fuzzy little eyebrows above his unfocused eyes drew together, and Peter’s smile grew. 

Then the brows scrunched up a tiny bit further, and Peter stopped smiling. 

“Here you go,” he quickly handed Derek back to Talia and high tailed it out of the room, Talia staring after him. 

“What on earth-”

Then she smelled it. 

A newborn diaper and some wipes came sliding across the floor from the doorway, Peter back disappearing from view. 

Talia rolled her eyes and got to work cleaning up her son. 


Derek stood silently in the kitchen after preschool, looking up at the adults around him, but no one looked back at him. He walked over to stand next to a cupboard, still waiting. 

His dad finally noticed and asked, “What do you need, champ?”

Everyone suddenly paused and looked at Derek, waiting for him to respond. 

His teacher had been making noises about speech therapy, but no one really wanted to send him to a stranger. They were all worried, and gave him as many opportunities to speak as possible. 

However, instead of answering, he simply pointed to the upper shelf of a cupboard, where they kept the cups. 

“You gotta say it, Derek,” Laura insisted with her hands on her little hips. 

Derek just pointed to the fridge too. 

“Do you want something, sweetie?” Talia prompted. Derek nodded. “Great! I would love to help you with it, if you’ll tell me what you want.”

Derek pointed to the upper shelf and the fridge again. 

“Yes, but what exactly do you want?” Talia coaxed. 

Derek let out an exasperated little sigh and stomped off to the office by the kitchen. A moment later he dragged in Peter by the finger before turning around to face him. 

Peter took one look, and said, “Chocolate milk? Sure, I think that’s probably fine.” He looked up to Talia for confirmation, only to find everyone staring at them. “What?”

“You can’t possibly have gotten something as specific as chocolate milk from one look,” Talia protested. Peter raised an eyebrow in challenge and looked down at his nephew.

“Derek,” he said. “Do you want chocolate milk?”

Derek nodded. 

“Not juice, or water, or something else?”

Derek shook his head. Peter looked back up at Talia, satisfied. Talia just tossed up her hands and made her son a glass of chocolate milk. 

Later, as Peter and Derek sat alone in the kitchen, drinking their chocolate milk, Peter wrapped an arm around him and said, “I know we understand each other perfectly, but the others can be a little dense, darling. Sometimes you need to help them with words.” 

Derek considered that thoughtfully before nodding. 

“Okay.”


No one, no one, could read Derek as well as Peter could. 

Which is why Peter was the only one to notice how truly broken Derek was after Paige. 

He did his best to fix it. To throw Derek distractions, to be there to listen, to make sure Derek knew how loved he was (and oh, how he was loved, so much and so completely that it terrified Peter), but nothing seemed to be working. Derek was still crumbling.

But even Peter didn’t realize just how poorly he’d read Derek until the pack was burning around him. His last thought before succumbing to the flames was that maybe he’d never understood Derek at all. 


Derek stopped talking again in New York. Laura seemed to prefer it that way anyway. The stress of Alphahood being thrust on her was so heavy that she needed a quiet, obedient pack member to follow her rather than speak up and push against her decisions. 

He would grunt yes or no when needed, minimal words to indicate specifics when necessary. But he didn’t really talk. There was no one who understood anyway. 

Then Laura died, and Derek had to go back, and without really making a conscious choice to do so, he found himself in Peter’s hospital room. 

He distantly noticed the scars and the way his uncle’s hair grew differently, but nothing could compete with the horror that Derek felt at his blank face. 

Peter’s face had always been expressive. He was a master of controlling his facial tics and microexpressions.

That had never really mattered to Derek. He could read the face Peter wore underneath all of that. It was like combining two different languages to create a third- one that only he could understand. 

Now there was nothing. No trace of the man he knew or the language they shared. Derek allowed a moment for the gulf of grief to overwhelm him, and then he stood up and walked out without a word. 


Killing his uncle barely felt like killing his uncle at all. Not this man who didn’t understand him, and bore nothing to understand in return. 


When Peter returned, the first thing felt was relief for the clarity of his own thoughts. 

The second thing he felt was relief for the clarity of Derek’s thoughts, written all over his face. 

Peter immediately chastised himself. He’d already proven that he didn’t understand Derek the way he thought he did. He wouldn’t do either of them the disservice of pretending otherwise this time. 

However… it’s not actually easy to forget a language you know by heart. You’ll still think the idioms to yourself, and recognize the tonal flow of the regional cadence. 

Understanding doesn’t move backwards. 

“Stop it, I know what I’m doing.”

Derek continued to look into the pan skeptically. 

“I’m telling you, the sweetness of the peppers is exactly what this dish needs.” He glanced away from the pan back to Derek. “No, I’m not adding anymore curry. Go get plates, it’s almost done.”

Derek did as asked with a clear lack of confidence. However, once he took the first bite, his entire face changed. 

Peter smiled smugly. 

“Told you so.”

Derek rolled his eyes, but continued eating. 


The entire pack stood panting after the fight, clutching deep cuts as the healed and trying to set bones before they fused back together crooked. 

Stiles alone had the energy to march up to Peter and Derek and demand, “HEY. You two need to teach the rest of us the hand signals or whatever it is that you’re using to communicate during a fight. I couldn’t tell Erica’s voice from Boyd’s voice out there-”

“Boyd’s the one with the sexy voice, and I’m the one with the even sexier voice,” Erica interjected.

“-but you guys clearly have some kind of nuanced system going on. Lay it out for us,” Stiles insisted. 

Peter and Derek looked at each other. 

“Afraid not, sweet cheeks,” Peter said, looking away from his nephew. “We just happen to be the only two sensible fighters here. It’s easy to predict someone’s moves, when someone isn’t an idiot.”

Stiles narrowed his eyes shrewdly, looking back and forth between the two. 

“No,” he said slowly. “It’s weirder than that. It’s weird. You two are weird.” He looked at them speculatively for another moment before turning around. “Anyone riding the Roscoe-mobile needs to get their ass seated in the next three minutes.”

Boyd, Erica, Scott, and Isaac all scrambled to cram themselves in the Jeep, while Allison and Lydia smoothly slid into Lydia’s car. Derek limped his way over to Peter’s car, wincing as the bones in his toes finished healing. 

When they finally arrived back at the loft, Peter followed Derek inside without a word to make sure everything had healed straight. His hands and eyes were occupied, feeling along the bones as Derek looked at Peter. 

“Why don’t we need hand signals?” he suddenly asked. 

Peter’s hands paused, and he glanced up. 

“Because we read each other well.”

Derek blew out a breath in frustration. 

“Yeah, but why do we read each other well?”

Peter pursed his lips, looking away for a moment and then looking back. 

“It’s always been that way, Derek,” he said softly. “The first time I saw you… I recognized you instantly. I knew you. You knew me.” He paused, taking a deep breath. “We just didn’t need anything else.”

Derek looked at Peter again, feeling the warmth of his hands on his skin, and the truth of his statement struck him like a bell. 

They really didn’t need anything else.

No words. 

Only each other.

Derek leaned forward and kissed Peter softly, Peter hands gripping him tighter for a moment as their lips moved together. Derek brought his hands up to Peter’s hips, pulling him closer and drawing a small sound out of Peter’s throat. Peter cut off his whimper quickly, pulling their mouths apart to rest their foreheads together.

When Peter leaned back, they looked at each other. 

A thousand words could have poured into the small space between them. Instead, Peter leaned forward and kissed Derek again. 

Chapter Text

Stiles waved to the other Lyft driver for the third time that day, a crooked grin on his face. They were both dropping off yet another car full of people at the library polling location.

As three college girls piled out of the back of Stiles’ car, the other driver gestured to an elderly man shutting his own back passenger door, and then made a yapping motion with his hand while rolling his eyes.

Stiles snorted. He never particularly minded the talkative riders, but most other drivers didn’t share that opinion. He shook his head with an exaggerated pitying look on his face, putting a hand over his heart and mouthing you poor thing.

Stiles could practically hear the indignant sound he was sure was coming from the other driver, but it was chased by a reluctant smile so he didn’t worry too much. A second later they were both startled by the sound of a horn from behind Stiles.

He immediately turned around to look out his back window, scowling and flipping up a careless middle finger. However, he did shift his car into drive as soon as turned around, foot on the break. He looked back up at the other driver and saw him waving back once more.

Stiles’ gaze lingered on the other man’s blue eyes and sharp jaw for a moment before waving himself and pulling away from the curb to go pick up another ride.

Maybe, just maybe, he’d be able to catch the blue eyed Lyft man and ask him on a date tonight.

Impatient drivers aside, Stiles really was having a good day. He liked his job. As a Lyft driver he got to meet a lot of interesting people, and most of them were pretty generous with tips. His hours were flexible, which he needed as a grad student, and there were always plenty of people who needed a ride.

His next one was a little further out of town, and the only one requesting a ride in the area. The new man climbed into the back seat, saying, “This is free, right?”

“That’s right!” Stiles answered. “Lyft is offering free rides to the polls for underserved communities, including-”

“Yeah, yeah, all the people who want something for nothing,” the new rider interrupted. “Might as well get mine.”

Stiles paused for a moment, and then pulled away from the house.

The automatic child locks clicked in a silent car.

“Which poll place are you taking me to?” the man grunted after a few minutes.

“The library on 8th.”

“Ugh. No. Take me to the one at the Woodview Elementary school.”

Stiles glanced in his rearview mirror.

“The lines at the library are a lot shorter that the ones at Woodview.”

“Do I look like the kinda person who votes on 8th street?” the man sneered.

“If you’re a registered voter, then yes, you look exactly like the kind of person who votes on 8th street,” Stiles said blandly, facing forward and continuing toward the library. Music played low in the background.

A disgusted huff came from the backseat.

“No one but a load of illegals goes to vote on 8th-”

“Aside from the obvious lie that non-registered voters can get anywhere near a polling booth, what makes you think that immigrants are less deserving of the choices on a ballot? Do you think they’re less affected by the decisions?” Stiles asked, voice idly curious.

The man was slowly getting more and more red in the face.

“Take me to Woodview!” he demanded, ignoring the question.

“Sorry,” Stiles said serenely, “the Lyft offer is only for the nearest polling place. I’ll have to charge you full fare if we go all the way to Woodview.”

“Like hell you will! This is a scam! All you liberal elites-”

Stiles snorted. 

“-are in it together, I bet you’ve got little friends working in the library, changing all the votes to Democrat. Buncha deviants. In my day you woulda been taken out back and had sense beaten into you!”

“Brain damage usually limits cognitive function, not the other way around.”

“If you take me to the library on 8th, I’ll have you arrested!!” He smacked the back of Stiles’ headrest. “My brother’s on the force!!”

Stiles glanced in his rearview mirror again and checked off a mental list.

Red in the face.

A MAGA shirt.

And lastly, a Proud Boys lapel pin.

Stiles sighed. So much for trying to get a date with the blue eyed Lyft man tonight. He wasn’t going to have time for anything fun.


The polls closed at 8 p.m. that night. Stiles drove the entire day, but he felt good. A lot of the people he’d given a ride to would have had to take three or more busses to get to the polls, or wouldn’t have been able to get there at all.

He parked beside a densely wooded patch that he’d passed at least a dozen times today, and set off for a stroll.

Night had fallen completely, of course, but the moon was bright and Stiles knew the woods pretty well. He’d spent a lot of time in there as a teenager, doing stupid things. He liked to think the frequency of stupid actions was less now that he was an adult, but he still spent nearly the same amount of time wandering the forest.

Whistling, he kept walking until a flash of color caught his eye in the dark.

A red MAGA shirt. Proud Boys lapel pin. And a body with a bullet through the brain.

Stiles sighed to himself. There were four this year. Four! Sometimes he really despaired for the future of this country.

But negative thoughts were no help. The only way out of this mess was to get to work. So, Stiles rolled up his sleeves and started dragging the first one toward the riverbank.

It took hours, but he was finally down the last one. His muscles ached as he dragged the KKK member to a cliff overlooking the river. He liked to vary his dumping points. Too much consistent evidence points to a serial killer, and no one wanted that, least of all the police.

Just as he was about to push the woman into the water, he heard a rustling. More silent than a shadow, he shrank back into the brush, leaving the body where it was.

A huff of heavy, working breath was coming up the deer path Stiles had followed. A little longer, and Stiles started to hear muttering.

“-really just going to tell a complete stranger that you think Hitler had some ‘pretty compelling ideas.’ You just had to look at your Lyft driver and say ‘Hey! I bet this man would love to hear about my genocidal leanings before he drops me off to vote.’ For fucks sake-”

The sounds suddenly stopped completely, and Stiles realized he must have gotten close enough to see the body he’d abandoned.

With a heavy dose of hope, Stiles stepped out of the brush, finally getting a good look at the other person.

It was the blue eyed Lyft driver, just as stunning as he’d been earlier that day. Standing tall and steady, with a dead body draped over his shoulder.

“Happy election day,” Stiles blurted. “I, uh.” He jerked his thumb over his shoulder at the body behind him. “Was just… cleaning up from one of my rides earlier.”

The blue eyed man stared at him warily for a moment.

“Me too,” he said eventually. “There was an unbelievable amount of trash from some of them.”

“Hah, yeah,” Stiles laughed, relaxing a little. “You want help? I’ll take the arms, you take the legs?”

The man nodded, and before long there were only two bodies up on the cliff, and both of them were breathing.

“I’m Stiles, by the way.”

“Peter.”

Stiles looked over to see Peter glancing up from under his eyelashes, and the butterflies in his stomach nearly broke loose.

“I was going to ask you to dinner,” he said, “but I ended up with a little more after-work clean up than I expected,” he finished in an apologetic tone.

Peter looked delighted.

“I would have said yes.”

“Well, then how do you feel about a late night snack?” Stiles suggested, coming a little closer.

“I think that sounds lovely,” Peter purred out, taking his own step forward. “We can talk about ballot initiative 8.”

“Mm, I’ve always wanted a date who can talk dirty,” Stiles said, taking one final step into Peter’s space as he laughed. Daringly, he swooped in for a light kiss, pressing his lips to Peter’s smiling ones. Peter kissed back sweetly, his smile turning into something softer.

Shyly holding each other’s hands, they walked through the woods, only having to hurry back to the river once after finding a pro-life pin that must have fallen out of someone’s pocket.

As Stiles watched the pin disappear in the crashing waters, he sighed and said to Peter, “It’s such a good feeling to take care of my civic duty.”

Chapter Text

“So he’s stuck like this?” Derek asked, rubbing a tension line in his forehead.

“Likely for a few days, yes,” Deaton answered, ignoring the growls coming from the wolf on the examination table in front of him. 

“Shut up,” Derek growled back at wolf, glaring. 

The wolf barked, snapping his teeth, but Derek’s no doubt scathing response was interrupted by Stiles running full tilt into the room, skidding to a stop next to the cabinets. 

Expression frantic, he swiftly asked, “Is he okay? Is he-” He stopped, finally noticing the huge black wolf in the room. His expression suddenly flipped a 180 into sheer delight. “Oh my GOD is that him?? Peter is that you? Holy shit you’re adorable!!”

Peter immediately sat up straighter and preened. 

Derek rolled his eyes. 

“Take your idiot boyfriend home, Stiles. I’m not going to let him pee on all my furniture.”

Stiles wanted to protest in Peter’s defense, but knew that Peter would, in fact, do something exactly like that if Derek tried to take him home. However-

“I don’t even know what’s going on though. I thought you guys were just going to go talk to the witch?” he asked, moving over to the examination to sink his fingers into Peter’s new thick fur, grinning when Peter rumbled happily. 

“That’s all we did,” Derek said grudgingly. “She… didn’t like what we had to say.”

Stiles rolled his eyes this time. 

“I told you not to be rude to her.”

Derek scowled back at him. 

“She walks around on literal chicken legs, it’s not like we were afraidof her-”

“You should have been,” he said bluntly. “Can you imagine what kind of power you’d have to get in order to be willing to live with chicken legs in return? You’re probably lucky this is all she did.” He looked disapprovingly at Peter, who looked indignant and started yowling and shaking a paw at Derek. 

Stiles raised an eyebrow, looking back at Derek. 

“What did you do?” he demanded accusingly. 

Derek’s mouth dropped open. 

“I didn’t do anything!” 

Stiles gestured at Peter behind him, who was looking smugly at Derek over Stiles’ shoulder. 

“Peter says differently,” Stiles said staunchly. 

Derek opened his mouth to argue back, but Deaton interrupted. 

“You didn’t tell me she had chicken legs,” he said slowly, brow furrowed. “If she was a Baba Yaga, then this might be an even more archaic curse than I thought.” He frowned contemplatively, and then looked at Stiles. “How long have you and Peter been dating?”

“A few months,” Stiles answered, confused at the abrupt change of subject. 

Deaton nodded thoughtfully. 

“Do you love him?”

Stiles startled.

“Uh, that’s kind of personal-”

“It’s important, Stiles, have you told him that you love him?” Deaton asked in that infuriatingly placid way of his. 

Stiles shifted on his feet a little.

“Yeah-”

“Kiss him.” 

Stiles’ and Derek’s mouths fell open. 

“I’m sorry, what?” 

“Give him a kiss.”

Stiles waved a hand in the air expansively, trying to indicate the sheer amount of absurdity he felt the request deserved.

“Do you honestly think I can undo this with a true love’s kiss??”

Deaton shrugged. 

“It can’t hurt to try.”

“It sure fucking could!” Stiles argued back. “Aside from you being severely unsympathetic to the possible emotional ramifications if this doesn’t work, exactly what kind of kiss are you talking about here? Because in the earliest versions of Sleeping Beauty-”

“Just a kiss, Stiles,” Deaton cut in, taking his own turn for an eye roll. “Like you would kiss the top of a pet’s head. And if it doesn’t work, that means nothing about the state of your relationship, it simply means it’s not the solution for whatever type of curse is on him. It’s best to start with the simplest answer.” 

Derek and Deaton looked at Stiles expectantly. 

Stiles sighed and looked at Peter, who was holding completely still aside from the occasional twitch of his furry little snout. 

“You’re coming with me to therapy next week, and we’re gonna talk about this no matter how it turns out,” he said sternly. Then he leaned forward and dropped a smooch on Peter’s head. 

Nothing happened. 

Deaton nodded. 

“Alright, at least we have the answer to that-”

While Deaton spoke, Stiles couldn’t help but be disappointed. The whole idea was absurd, of course, but… 

Peter snuffled into his space, whining a little as he took in Stiles’ expression. He leaned forward and gave a little lick to Stiles’ cheek- 

POP

Peter sat naked on the examination table, hair askew and looking just as surprised as everyone else. 

“Ah,” Deaton said. Everyone was quiet for a beat. 

“What the fuck does that mean?” Stiles blurted out. Did Peter love Stiles more than Stiles loved Peter? Was he Peter’s soulmate, but Peter wasn’t his? Was slobber a necessary component of the spell??

“It means she was a crafty old witch, Stiles,” Deaton assured him calmly as he fetched a spare set of scrubs. “She inverted the spell. Rather than receiving a true love’s kiss, he had to give one. It means nothing specific about your relationship. I’m sure you and Peter both…” He furrowed his brow just the tiniest amount. “Love each other very much.”

“Oh my God, please never go into relationship counseling. You’re the worst,” Stiles groaned out, leaning on Peter and scrubbing his face with his hands. 

Derek quickly excused himself after that, clearly eager to get home and away from the love discussions. Peter pulled on the scrubs and allowed Deaton to check his heartbeat and lungs only because Stiles refused to take him home until he was cleared. 

Stiles drove them both back to Peter’s apartment afterwards, and after a quick shower they rolled into bed together. 

Peter immediately pulled Stiles back into his body as the little spoon, and whispered into his neck, “True love’s lick.”

Stiles snorted a laugh and brought Peter’s hand up to his mouth to kiss his palm gently. 

“Personally I liked the kiss better,” he said. “What a dumb curse.”

Peter smiled against Stiles’ skin, peppering him with kisses. 

“Very dumb.” He pulled at Stiles to flip him over so they were face to face. “I can think of a lot of uses for true love’s lick, though,” he said suggestively. 

A slow smile spread across Stiles’ face. 

“I’m not sure I can believe that without evidence,” he said, grinning. 

Peter was more than happy to provide data. 

Chapter Text

Stiles’ situational awareness had, somehow, not improved in the slightest in the years since the introduction of werewolves as Things That Are Real.

So when he wandered naked into the kitchen of his apartment without looking up from his phone, still damp from the shower and mumble singing “Good Old Fashioned Lover Boy,” Peter wasn’t terribly surprised.

He also didn’t feel too guilty letting his eyes do a once over (possibly thrice over). Peter had gotten enough silent but appreciative looks over from Stiles over the years to know that his attention wasn’t entirely unwanted.

He watched, thoroughly entertained as Stiles continued to look at his phone while standing in front of a closed cupboard, absently scratching his ribs and forgetting half the lyrics to the song he was singing.

“It’s ‘I learned my passion in the good old fashioned school of loverboys,’” Peter interrupted eventually.

Stiles’ phone went flying as he startled badly, clacking against the opposite wall of the kitchen. He yelled a little, but Peter was impressed with how fast he got the butcher knife out of the block.

There were two wild-eyed seconds that Peter waited out patiently before Stiles realized who was in his kitchen.

“Oh, fuck you,” Stiles griped. “I didn’t give you that key so you could give me a heart attack, asshole.” Aggrieved, Stiles turned around to put the knife away when his back suddenly went ramrod straight, a blush growing from his cheeks down. He spun back around, yelling, “Dude, I’m naked!”

Peter shrugged.

“So what?”

“You can see my penis!”

“And it’s a nice penis, but-“

“You think I have a nice penis?” Stiles asked, surprised.

“I’d give it an 8.7 out of 10. I actually came over to-“

“What!! 8.7?? That’s barely a B plus!”

“It’s a perfectly good rating, Stiles. Besides, I can hardly give you a higher score when I haven’t seen it in action, can I?” Peter reasoned.

Stiles’ cheeks pinked even further. Peter tried to keep his delight to himself, but judging by the stink eye he was getting, he wasn’t very successful.

“Go ask Lydia, I bet she would rate me higher than eight point seven.” Stiles said the score scathingly, as if it had personally knocked over his mailbox and keyed his car.

“You haven’t been with Lydia in over a year, which makes it stale information,” Peter pointed out, “and I never take second hand opinions anyway.”

“Oh, so you’re the One True Judge of dick rates?”

“Yes, exactly. If you’d like to appeal your score, I’d be more than happy to conduct further evaluation.”

“Further eval- more than hap-“ Stiles sputtered for a moment before gathering his righteous indignation. “Alright fucker, get in the bedroom right now, 8.7 my ass-“

“I judge asses on an entirely different rubric, that will have to be done during a separate session,” Peter said, turning around with a grin to head into Stiles’ bedroom.

He wasn’t entirely surprised to be tackled into the bed from behind.

Two hours later, they lay in an exhausted, delightful mess, and Peter pronounced, “9.5 out of 10.”

Stiles lazily flipped him off, but Peter could smell the pleased satisfaction rolling off of him.

“Something to work toward I guess,” Stiles said with a yawn. There was a beat of relaxed silence, and then-

“When are you coming back for the ass evaluation?”

Chapter Text

Werewolves are expected to lie. From the moment they’re born, they’re taught how to hide their exceptionality, how to control their natural mannerisms, how to pretend to be something they’re not. 

If you pulled a random werewolf off of the street to ask, “Hey, isn’t that damaging to your mind? Doesn’t that hurt you mentally, to be raised like that?” then that werewolf would probably choke you until you told them how you knew they were a werewolf. 

After that, though, the werewolf might say something like, “Yes, we’re expected to lie to the outside world, but inside the pack there is nothing but honesty. Between our noses and ears, there’s no lie that can go undetected. Everyone in the world lives in a balance of truth and lies, werewolves simply have a more starkly drawn line between the two.”

Which, of course, is all to say that the rationalization for the lie is also a lie. 

Peter Hale knew this better than most. 

He was good at lying. One of the best. As a child his parents never had to chastise him for popping a claw at the swingset, or trying to scent classmates, or winning too many races on the playground. He was very, very good at pretending to be human. He just told himself he was human, and believed himself until he didn’t have to anymore.

That didn’t mean he liked it, though. It was exhausting, constantly having to be the right thing so he wouldn’t get caught. Home was his solace, the only place he could relax and just be Peter. 

Until he was 8. Then home became something else entirely. 

Peter wasn’t a big brother, but he was an uncle, and he was a good one. He liked playing with Laura, even though she was 4 and mostly wanted to play with dolls. He was fine with that. He even thought dolls could be fun, although he’d never say that out loud. It was very clear which toys were for boys and which toys were for girls, and the only reason no one yelled at him for being around the dolls was because he was helping to watch Laura. 

But Laura was still 4, so sometimes she pulled the heads off of dolls, or lost them under the couch, or bit so many fang marks into a doll that no one could be sure whether it had been a doll in the first place or not. Currently, her collection was limited to one baby doll, a Ken doll, and a G.I. Joe Paratrooper. 

This was a problem, because Laura wanted to have a wedding. She’d even wrapped her closet door in toilet paper to make it a suitable wedding venue, but Peter wasn’t sure they could make a wedding with just a baby, Ken, and Joe. The baby was obviously going to be the ring bearer, but could Ken and Joe get married? 

Peter thought about it seriously. If they got married, they’d have to kiss. Did boys kiss each other? He’d never seen it, but… Peter thought it might be alright. He wouldn’t mind kissing Mikey from his reading group. Boys could probably get married. 

The wedding was a go.

They were halfway through the wedding ceremony, the baby doll having given up its role as ring bearer to become Laura’s chew toy again, when Peter’s dad barged in, looking for the two of them. 

Peter’s memory became a little confused after that. He was yanked out of the closet by his arm, and there was some yelling. His mom came in, and then Talia, and Peter was being shaken every few words, but no one was talking directly to him yet. He heard words like “fag” and “homo” and “omega”, and then words like “confused” and “therapy”. 

The part that Peter remembered absolutely clearly was when his dad crouched down, gripping his arms tightly, and demanded to know where Peter had heard about two men being able to get married. 

“No-nowhere? Laura lost her la-her last Barbie?” he said, voice quivering a little in the face of his Alpha’s anger. 

His dad eyed him suspiciously. 

“You didn’t do this on purpose? This isn’t about that Mikey kid?”

Peter froze. 

He was wrong. 

He was the wrong thing

He couldn’t get caught. 

He automatically switched over to pretending, and with every inch of belief he could muster, said, “No.” 

His heart didn’t trip. 

“See, Bill? This is just a silly little mistake,” Peter’s mom said. “He’s fine.”

His dad finally let go of Peter’s arms, and Peter could feel the unfamiliar ache of bruises left behind by an alpha. 

“Yeah, he better be. I will absolutely not have any fags in this pack,” he said sternly. “A gay wolf is a useless wolf is an omega wolf.” 

Peter shivered. 

Bill turned to Talia. “And get your daughter some more goddamned Barbies so this doesn’t happen again.” 

Peter kept pretending. 

As he got older, he realized that there were certain parts of himself that were right for certain venues: the wolf part of him was allowed at home, but not the gay part of him or the argumentative part of him. The gay part was allowed in the club, along with a few very select parts of the wolf, like intensity and aggression, but not the intellectually combative parts. At school he was allowed to snark and argue, but his sexuality was not particularly welcome and allowing openness from the wolf would have been outright suicide. 

Bits and pieces, cut off here and there, rearranged to make the right thing for every situation. 

Suave and unfailingly chivalrous when bringing dates to meet the family; the hopeless romantic seeking his one true den mate when meeting other packs; oblivious bro for boys’ night out. 

He was constantly internally exhausted, the clamor for survival preventing him from ever allowing the pretense to drop completely, a tailored persona always ready at hand. 

So his life continued, until he was laying on a hospital bed, trapped in his own body, putting together the burnt, leftover pieces of himself that would make him the perfect person to murder Kate Argent. 


The years after that are a story anyone in the Beacon Hills pack could tell you, with varyingly reliable narration. 

But eventually, just like any storm, things began to settle. From the ashes of the old Hale family rose the new pack, who turned out to be quite… different. 

“He is, by far, the hottest Chris,” Lydia announced as they passed the popcorn around. 

“I don’t know,” Kira said. “Something about his chin bothers me.” She gestured vaguely to the chiseled face taking up most of the screen. 

“Are you kidding?” Malia yelled from the floor. “His chin is perfect. I would kill up to 6 people to get with that chin.”

“Stiles, what do you think? Hottest Chris or not?” Lydia called over to where Stiles sat next to Peter, absorbed in his phone. 

“Comparing the Chrises is like comparing the the sea to the sky or the rolling plains,” he said without looking up. “They’re each magnificent in their own pure way.” His eyes finally flicked up to the screen for an appreciative moment. “I’d definitely toss his salad though.”

“Who cares about Stiles’ opinion,” Malia dismissed. “He used to have a thing for Benedict Cumberbatch.”

An indignant noise came from Stiles. 

“You just don’t understand Malia! There was a time when we were all into Benedict Cumberbatch. Like some kind of drug fueled hive mind-”

“Whatever,” she interrupted, bringing up the remote to restart the movie. “He still looks like a snake had a baby with an eggplant.”

Stiles shrugged, glancing over at Peter who was staring at him. 

“She’s not wrong.”

And then he went back to his phone. 

No one else said anything, except for the normal petty banter about snacks and unasked for judgements on the plotline. 

Peter paid particular attention to his nephew, but aside from his usual scowl and threats about finding skittles in the couch, he didn’t react to Stiles’ words at all. 

It happened again a week later when Stiles was in the kitchen of the loft making lunch and telling Derek about some movie that was coming out. 

“It has Chris Hemsworth AND Tessa Thompson AND Emma Thompson. The script could be absolute shit and I would still go see it. I’m just saying, they know who their audience is, and their audience is thirsty biseuxals who will bend over for any 90′s nostalgia. Me. I’m their audience.” He took a bite of his sandwich and raised his eyebrows at Peter in greeting. 

Briefly distracted by the mental image of Stiles bending over, Peter said, “Bisexual?” He glanced at Derek only to find him watching Peter warily. 

“Yep. Bi Guy with the Rye,” Stiles said, holding up his sandwich.  

“Aren’t you… a little young to be giving yourself that label?” Peter asked. 

“Peter-” Derek growled, but Stiles shushed him. 

“It’s fine dude. A lot of people think that.” He looked at Peter, his stance a little more tense, but it was obvious that he was prepared to answer him. “I’m 18. If I’m old enough to decide to enlist in the army, I think I’m old enough to know who I want to fuck. Besides, I’ve never exactly been in the closet, and if I haven’t wanted to change that label in the last 5 years, then I’m probably good to continue with it.” 

Peter was stunned. 5 years. That would make him 13 when he first-

“You father let you call yourself that when you were 13?” he blurted out. 

Stiles shrugged. 

“It’s not like he was gonna make that call for me. You just are what you are, dude.” Stiles finished off his sandwich in a few more bites before grabbing his books and taking off for his Criminology 101 class. 

As soon as he was gone, Derek got into Peter’s face with folded arms. 

“Look, I know Grandpa had his views on gay stuff, but my pack isn’t going to be like that. If you-”

“Don’t get your tail in a trap, nephew,” Peter drawled with an eye roll. “I have no intention of shaming anyone.”

Derek had clearly been well prepared for a fight, because he nearly deflated. 

“Well. Good.” There was an awkward moment of silence, and then Derek turned around to leave. 

Before he could get to the door, and before Peter could think too hard about it, Peter quickly said, “I’m gay.”

He cursed himself as his heart started to race with memories of his last Alpha- a gay wolf is a useless wolf is an omega wolf- and employed every trick he knew to slow it down. 

Derek turned around, surprised. 

“You said your pack isn’t going to be like that,” Peter said. “But Stiles is human. Here’s your chance to prove you mean it.”

And with that, heart still racing, Peter left.


Late that night, there was a knock on Peter’s door. 

He recognized the heartbeat on the other side before he opened it, and slipped into one of his more comfortable expressions. 

“Stiles. What a pleasure to see you here, in this place that I’ve never given you the address of.”

Stiles rolled his eyes and ducked past his arm into the apartment. 

“Whatever dude, I’ve known where you live for the last year. Not only that, but I know that you know that I know, because I also got a copy of your key made, but you changed the locks before I could use it.”

“You have to be quicker than the locksmith,” Peter said with a slight smile. 

Peter closed the door and Stiles immediately plopped down on the couch, legs sprawled and hands clasped across his stomach. 

“So. I got a visit from our esteemed Alpha, who is suddenly very concerned with knowing how to make a gay pack member feel accepted.”

Peter, who had been about to sit down, paused before settling stiffly. 

“Now I know it’s not me he’s worried about, otherwise he wouldn’t have come to me for advice. It’s not Scott, because Scott is tragically hetereosexual. It’s not Lydia or Kira, because they’re mostly straight, and while I’m pretty sure Malia’s not, I also know she doesn’t give a rats ass if she’s accepted by the pack.” Stiles looked at him consideringly. “Are you finally old enough to be giving yourself a label, Peter?”

“An age joke, very cute,” Peter scoffed, knowing full well that hadn’t been Stiles’ intention. 

Stiles’ gaze remained sharp. 

“I never had to wonder whether it was okay for me to be bi,” he said after a beat. “I was really, really lucky. I’m one of the few who’s never been pushed into a closet, never had my identity refused by the people I trust the most- I’ve never had to cut off pieces of myself.”

Peter nearly couldn’t breathe. 

“When’s the last time you got to be your whole self, Peter?”

Peter looked at Stiles, so comfortable in his identity. So unwilling, possibly even unable to change himself to convenience others. 

Peter wondered if he would do it for survival. 

“Werewolves have large families,” he said. “We’re a hidden population because we’re a small population, and for some of the old school, the ultimate goal was to make a population large enough that we could protect ourselves if we became public. My father held on to those ideas. Creation of new werewolves was his guiding light through life. Never through biting, though. Bitten wolves couldn’t be trusted. Born wolves only. If we couldn’t create new born wolves, then we were usele-”

“Yeah, okay, he used his shit to fingerpaint a story and called it art,” Stiles interrupted him. “Drop the ‘we’. ‘We’ aren’t useless. ‘We’ don’t exist purely to create offspring, we exist to live our own lives according to our own ideas. No offense, but your dad’s story sounds just like every other bullshit justification for homophobia that I’ve heard. Let yourself be whole, man.”

“I can’t-” Peter gritted his teeth. “You don’t understand. I can’t just drop it like that. You’ve never had that fight, Stiles. To let just one part of yourself survive, even if everything else has to be cut out. I can’t just drop that immediately. His story might have been bullshit, the effects of it were very real.”

Stiles pursed his lips and looked away for a moment. 

“I didn’t mean- God. This isn’t even why I came over.” He rubbed a hand over his face and looked back at Peter. “I just wanted to offer you… support, I guess. Understanding, but I’ve pretty much failed that.” He huffed a humorless laugh. “I’ve seen so many versions of you, Peter. So many pieces and parts, and- I want to see the whole thing. I want to get to know all of you.”

Peter sat silent as Stiles shifted uncomfortably in his seat. 

The whole thing. 

“In third grade, I wanted to kiss a boy in my school. Mikey. We would fight each other during reading group. I always stole his book, partly to tease him, but mostly so I could mark it and mix our scents together.” 

There. The three biggest parts of himself that he kept hidden, all out at once.

A tiny step, but a complete step. 

Stiles smiled. 

“Sounds like you were an asshole in third grade. I probably would have loved you.”

For the first time in a very long time, Peter thought that perhaps be was the right thing to begin with.