Sheriff Stilinski was not happy. Getting called away in the middle of his family dinner for something as trivial as teenage trespassing was not how he wanted to spend his evening. Admittedly, family dinner had been John and Stiles eating Korean takeout in the Sheriff's office down at the station, but family time was family time.
Tonight, someone living near the high school had spotted a suspicious figure walking around the lacrosse field. That by itself wasn’t cause for concern—delinquents chucking lacrosse balls at each other was better than delinquents spray painting the side of a building. But then the station got a second report of a figure with the same description—twenty minutes later, by himself, and still at the high school—and John had ended up having to take the call himself, once again letting his work pull him away from dinner. Stiles, on the other hand—
“ — are you there yet? Who is it? Is it a code five? What about a 10-56? Or 499-b? Or—”
“Nobody uses 10 codes anymore, son.” John sighed. “If they did, I’d be calling in a 10-30 for your unnecessary radio use.”
“Ugghhh.” Stiles gave a long, dramatic groan from the other end of the dispatch, currently bored out of his mind while waiting back at the station with the remains of their takeout. “ Excuse me for wanting to participate in a valuable educational experience with my father.”
“Get off this channel, Stiles.”
“Wait, okay, I’ll shut up. I hear you pulling in. Just don’t turn the car off, I wanna know what—”
Stiles cut out as John turned the radio off with a satisfying click . Pulling into the high school parking lot, John shut off the car just in time to see a teenage boy in a leather jacket hopping artfully over the fence. The boy looked old enough to be a senior at least , and was shouldering a large backpack as he scanned the dark parking lot. John pulled his flashlight from his belt and stepped out of the car, approaching the kid while he was busy tightening his backpack straps.
“Little late for lacrosse practice, isn’t it?” The Sheriff called out, turning on his light. Hopefully this would be quick. He had bulgogi to get back to.
The boy froze immediately, reflexively closing his eyes as the flashlight beam hit his face. John’s eyes widened in surprise, and he lowered his light with a sigh when he finally got a good look at the kids’ face. Aw, hell .
“Derek?” John called out. “Is that you?”
“ Shit .”
John held back a laugh. “You’re not in real trouble yet, kid. None unless you’re planning on evading an officer of the law.”
“I...I wasn’t even doing anything illegal. Who called you?” He managed, irritated. The Sheriff clipped his flashlight back into his belt. Hopefully Derek hadn’t been doing anything stupid. John really didn’t want to arrest someone tonight, let alone Mayor Hale’s only son. Beacon Hills was a small town, and news traveled fast.
The Hales were an old, respected family who’d lived in Beacon Hills for generations. The three Hale children currently at Beacon Hills High School were all honor roll athletes. Their mother was the mayor , for Christ’s sake. As for Derek specifically, Stiles practically wrote sonnets about the boy’s lacrosse skills...among other things. John himself had heard quite a few tales in his monthly meetings with Mayor Hale and he knew Derek was a good kid. A good kid that had a less-than-subtle crush on Stiles, according to Derek’s mother, and if the Sheriff was lucky then the two of them would sort it out sooner rather than later. First and foremost, because John cared deeply about the happiness of his son. But John also didn’t want to lose his wager with Talia.
Unfortunately, Derek wasn’t just an honor roll athlete. Right now, he was also a kid alone on an empty lacrosse field with a giant backpack.
“Alright, let me see the bag.” The Sheriff told him.
Derek sighed and handed it over. John blinked. It was a bright, sparkly purple and covered in black Sharpie drawings. He shot a glance at Derek, who gave him a tight, forced smile far more off putting than any scowl. Warily, John unzipped the bag to find a green laptop case, two notebooks, and a pair of tangled purple earbuds. No spray cans, no drugs, nothing illegal in sight. John checked the rest of the pockets. Pencils, a half-eaten granola bar, and...a handful of tampons. John closed the last pocket quickly.
“This yours?” He eyed Derek, who had thankfully dropped his chilling grin and returned to a more neutral expression. A markedly less angry neutral expression, which was good.
“No.” Derek shook his head. “It’s Cora’s.”
“Your sister?” John confirmed. Cora, Laura—he could never fully remember which was which.
“Yeah. She left it in the bleachers after track and used her stupid puppy eyes to sucker me into picking it up. She’s also been pissed at me for a week, so she probably called the cops just to be a little...jerk.”
“Jerk? Ease up on the language there, son.” John returned the bag to Derek, who regarded it with a look of contempt. When he looked back at the Sheriff, his mood had shifted again. There was a sharp glint in his eyes now. Mischievous, almost.
“Are you gonna call my mom?” He asked. “Cause I’d really love to see Cora‘s face when she realizes she screwed herself.”
“What makes you so sure your sister called you in?”
John leaned against his patrol car. The first call had been from Mrs.Ramirez, a seventy year old retiree who lived across the street from the lacrosse field. The second call, however—
“Look, Derek.” John moved on. “You’re not in trouble this time. Just stay off school grounds after hours and make sure I don’t get anymore prank calls like this. Understood?” Derek nodded. “Good. So, you got a ride home?”
Derek blinked. “A ride?”
“Well what did you do, run here?” The Sheriff joked. Derek stiffened.
“No. It...It’s too far. My sister drove me. My other sister. Laura. She, um, I guess she left when she saw your patrol car.” He managed. John’s eyes narrowed, suspicious. He had a teenage son of his own, after all. But there was no other car in the parking lot and John had been over to the Hale house before. The Hales lived all the way out on the Preserve. Derek couldn’t have gotten up here without a car, it would be humanly impossible. A bike, maybe . But John didn’t see one of those either.
“Tell you what. I’d invite you to come finish dinner with me and Stiles back at the station, but I don’t want anybody seeing the Mayor’s kid getting in or out of a cop car. I also don’t want to make your mother drive all the way down there. So I’m gonna go ahead and take you straight home before I turn in and we’re gonna call that a night. Sound good?”
“I...yes. Thank you.” Derek nodded and walked forward.
“There we go.” The Sheriff gave him a nod in return and side stepped, opening the door to the back of his patrol car. Derek paused.
“Really?” He raised an eyebrow.
“Considering I could still have you arrested, I think you should drop the attitude and get in the car.” John suggested. He might have semi-regular dinners with the boy’s mother, but that didn’t mean he couldn’t have a little fun. He raised an eyebrow as well, returning Derek’s expression. Derek took the hint.
“Yes, Sir.” Derek quickly ducked into the backseat, unceremoniously tossing his sister's bag onto the floor. John shut the door for him, then walked around and stepped into the driver’s seat. His police radio crackled to life as he turned the engine on, the car immediately filling with the sound of Stiles’ voice.
“—then on the other hand, Firefly has Summer Glau as River Tam, but while we’re on the subject of Summers let’s loop back because Buffy’s slayer skills cannot be denied, let’s be real here—“
“Stiles!” John grabbed the radio, shouting into it. An undignified yelp came from the other end of the crackly radio. John sighed. He had a passenger for Christ’s sake. Derek’s eyes widened at the voice, his hands immediately quitting his fumbling with the seat belt to stare at the radio.
“ Daddy-O! My man! You’re back! What’s the haps? ”
The Sheriff grudgingly responded. “What the hell are you doing?”
“Um....talking with my super cool dad?”
“Not through my dispatch, you’re not. This is unprofessional, son. Sign off.”
“But dinner got cut short when we were talking about TV shows! I was in the middle of a Firefly rant, Dad! Seriously, what were they thinking cancelling that show because—”
“Stiles, I have a teenage boy in the back of the cruiser. Now is not an appropriate time.”
“Son?” The Sheriff frowned, suspicious. Stiles had given up uncharacteristically fast. “Stiles?”
“Is he cute?”
“Excuse me?” John managed, thrown.
“The teenage boy, is he cute?”
“He was called in for trespassing!”
“ But… .”
John sighed and turned around to give a resigned look at the boy in the back of his cruiser. Derek’s gaze was focused down into his lap, his ears tinged pink.
“Yes, Sir?” Hale said warily.
“My son wants to know if you’re cute.” John told him.
Derek looked like he was trying not to smile. “I’d like to think so, Sir.”
“Wait, Hale? Derek Hale? Lacrosse Captain Derek Hale? Oh my god, you arrested—Dad! Wait, Dad, tell him you’ll let him go if he gives me his phone number. It’s—oh! Oh, a police emergency! Tell him it’s a police emergency and that you’ll wipe his record if he goes out with me! Dad! You have to—”
“I believe my son agrees.”
“—no wait! Tell him he’s been arrested for possession of dope...dope ass lacrosse skills! Ayyyy!”
“I hope you realize you’re speaking to me through a police radio and not a private phone call.” John reminded him. Derek’s ears burned red, either overly pleased or thoroughly embarrassed.
“Meaning you’re also speaking to Derek, who’s currently in my patrol car.”
“Okay, what does—“
Stiles stopped talking, seemingly cut off in the middle of his sentence. Dead silence followed. John frowned, tapping the side of the radio. Dead silence followed.
“Stiles, you there?”
On the other end of the dispatch, Stiles gave a quiet, strangled squeak and left the channel with an abrupt click .
John shook his head at his son, fondly amused. He’d recover. Stiles was a sweet kid, but this level of embarrassment paled in comparison to the last time Stiles had been rejected by Lydia Martin. Considering three hours after that rejection, Stiles had been happily playing video games with Scott, John wasn’t too worried.
In the backseat of the car, Derek’s eyebrows knitted together with concern. “Is he—”
“He’ll be fine.” John told him. “Though I certainly hope you plan on asking him out soon. If it doesn’t happen before Thanksgiving, I’ll lose the bet I made with your mother.”
Derek went rigid instantly, utterly mortified. “You...you made a bet with my mom?”
“You mean, is the Mayor about to lose fifty bucks to the Sheriff? Yes she is and yes I did.” John snorted, shifting the gear of the car to reverse out and leave the parking lot. Derek didn’t speak again until they reached the stop sign at the edge of the school grounds.
“How did...I’ve...are you gonna shoot me?”
“Not unless you hurt my son.”
“Never.” Derek answered reflexively then quickly looked down at the floor of the car, embarrassed. “But I...was thinking of maybe...asking him out.”
John nodded. “Remember—before Thanksgiving. I could still arrest you. And don’t tell your mother.”
“Glad to hear it.” John said firmly. “Now….what’s this I hear about Cora and Lydia Martin?” Derek blinked, stunned.
“You alright back there, Derek?”
“....that’s the scariest thing you’ve ever said to me.”