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Cousins and Conventions

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The mixer part of the Pacific Coast Supernatural Convention is something Stiles has both dreaded and anticipated. He’s well aware how awkward he is, but he also is aching to meet other sparks or magic-users. There’s a warlock from Belgium he’s been dying to talk with and a New York witch who can astral project farther than anyone Stiles has ever heard of. What he hadn’t been expecting was a “Mieczyslaw!” from a loud voice as soon as he and most of the pack enter the ballroom of the Beverly Hills Four Seasons.

Stiles turns toward the voice and sees the crowd moving quickly out of the way of a pale woman in a beaded black dress with long, braided black hair and black lipstick. Stiles stares for a moment in surprise, then throws up a shield as his cousin throws an ornate dagger right at him. He can feel the pack tense behind him, ready to strike, but then he’s dropping the shield and hugging her. And dodging another dagger. He can hear Peter’s rumbling growl behind him, but he waves a hand over his shoulder, letting the pack know he’s fine.

“It’s been years since I’ve seen you, and I run into you at a convention?” his cousin says, raising a dark brow in obvious disdain. Stiles just grins.

“Well in all fairness, I didn’t expect to see you here,” Stiles says. “You? The sun and the heat?”

“It’s entirely too cheerful and fun. And sweaty,” she says, lip curling. “Are you going to make introductions?”

“Oh, yeah,” Stiles says, turning to look at the pack, who all are staring with various degrees of alarm and confusion. “Uh, this is my cousin, Wednesday Addams. Wednesday, this is some of my pack. Uh, Alpha Derek Hale, Scott McCall, Lydia Martin, Kira Yukimura, and Peter Hale.”

“You have a kitsune and banshee in your pack? Impressive,” Wednesday says.

“You’re part of the Addams clan? Impressive,” Peter says, raising his chin a little.

Wednesday’s lips twitch into something that might almost be a smirk.

“Yeah, Wednesday’s mom was my mom’s half-sister,” Stiles says. “So, more like, extended family?”

“You’re part of the clan, idiot,” Wednesday says.

Stiles grins. “I knew you liked me,” he says. Wednesday’s eye twitches, making Stiles grin wider. “Is everyone else here?”

“Mother is speaking with a coven from Salem, Father and Uncle Fester are trying to get scotch from a fairie, and Pugsley is trying to convince a siren to drown him,” Wednesday says. Kira gives a little nervous chuckle, like she isn’t sure if she’s kidding, but is really hoping so. “How is the carnivorous begonia we sent?” Wednesday asks.

“Gladys is doing well,” Stiles says. “Eating any rat that makes the mistake of coming too close to her pot.”

That’s what’s growing on our porch that you won’t let me touch?” Peter says, sounding aghast.

“That’s why I told you not to touch it!” Stiles says. “You’d never stop bitching if you lost a hand.”

“Yes, I obviously would be angry if your plant ate my hand!” Peter says.

Before Stiles can say anything back, they’re joined by a woman with brown hair and wearing a light, summer dress. She slips next to Wednesday, threading her arm through Wednesday’s. She has a happy smile and earrings that look like little books. She’s about as opposite of Wednesday as one could be, but Wednesday gives her a look that Stiles has only seen her give a brand new weapon.

“Hi,” the woman says, waving slightly.

“This is Matilda,” Wednesday says. “My girlfriend. Matilda, this is my cousin Mieczyslaw.”

“I go by Stiles,” Stiles says, shaking Matilda’s hand. He has no idea how someone that oozes sunshine ended up with Wednesday but he’s dying to know. “This is my partner, Peter Hale.”

“The Peter Hale you’ve talked about?” Matilda asks Wednesday, who nods. Peter looks between them with his eyebrows raised. “Wednesday was very fascinated with your resurrection. We spent weeks trying to find the book with the right spell. It was very fun!”

It’s so, so rare that Stiles sees Peter at a loss for words, and he would love to savor it, but he can feel his pack’s patience wearing thin.

“We have a few people we’re trying to meet up with, but text me later and I’ll try to see everyone before the conference is over, okay?” Stiles says.

“Fine,” Wednesday says, turning on her heel.

“It was nice to meet you!” Matilda says over her shoulder as Wednesday tugs her away by the hand.

There’s a stunned silence and when Stiles turns around, they’re all staring at him with varying expressions of confusion and alarm. It’s Peter who finally says, “Well, Erica would love her.”

“Yeah, probably,” Stiles says.

“Is that the cousin you spent the summer after 7th grade with?” Scott asks.

“Yeah,” Stiles says.

“Are they the ones that gave you that super creepy doll?” Scott asks.

“Hey, Emily is a family heirloom,” Stiles says. “And she’s not creepy, she’s got multiple protective enchantments on her that detect a whole lot of shady shit.”

“Okay,” Kira says, probably sensing a public disagreement. “Scott, we wanted to talk to that kitsune from Oregon, remember? We should go find her.”

Scott lets himself be pulled away, but he’s still shooting a concerned look over his shoulder. Derek looks a bit constipated, but he’s smart enough not to say anything in a room full of supernatural beings. Lydia looks intrigued (Stiles is assuming because of her connection with death, though he would never say that to her) but also a bit concerned, which...fair, he supposes.

“We’re going to speak with the McClean alpha,” Lydia says, taking Derek by the hand and pulling him away toward a group of werewolves on the other side of the room. It leaves Stiles alone with Peter, who just raises an eyebrow. Stiles knows what he’s asking, why he’s never brought up his connection to the Addams clan before. But like Derek, Peter’s not stupid enough to air laundry where anyone in the community can overhear it.

“Later,” Stiles says quietly. Peter just nods, smoothing out his face into a more mild expression for the other convention attendees, and offers his hand.

“Shall we find the Belgian warlock?” Peter says.

“Yes, let’s,” Stiles says. Peter kisses the back of his hand before they start to make their rounds, letting Stiles know he’s not mad, which actually lessens the little knot in his chest.

The thing is, his reunion with Wednesday seems to have been noticed, because he’s getting a lot more looks than he usually does at these types of events. He sees the alpha talking with Derek and Lydia nodding toward him and Peter. A few magic users Stiles vaguely recognizes are staring, so is a werewolf, even two cats with lamp-like yellow eyes are looking with tilted heads from the floor by the exit.

His shoulders raise a bit as he fights to not shrink into himself. He’s a goddamn spark, with “intense potential” according to his mentor, Marianne. The looks shouldn’t matter, yet here he is, struggling not to let the whispering get to him like he’s still in high school. Peter squeezes his hand, getting his attention, then presses a kiss to his lips. When he pulls back, Peter’s eyes are intense on his, and one thing he’s never had to doubt was Peter’s support. He takes a deep breath and nods, turning his attention back to what they’re doing.

The talk with the Belgian warlock, Matteo, goes well. He agrees to an information exchange (Stiles is trying to learn from as many magical cultures as he can, especially from powerful practitioners like Matteo) and luckily seems more intrigued by Stiles’ Addams relatives than anything else. As the day goes on, he seems to find a pretty even split on people’s opinions on that. Half seems intrigued or impressed (very impressed, like the hellhound Peter actually snarls at when he gets a little too close while asking if the torture dungeon is real [it is, but it’s more like Uncle Gomez and Aunt Morticia’s sex room, which Stiles does not feel like talking about]), and half seem scared or alarmed. Stiles tries not to take it personally.

“I think I understand,” Peter says later that night, when they’re back in their hotel room and Stiles’ privacy wards are up.

“Hmm?” Stiles asks. He’s sitting on the bed, sifting through some of his purchases from earlier in the day (ethically-sourced fairie wings are expensive as fuck). Peter shifts some of the bags aside to sit down next to Stiles.

“I think I understand why you kept that connection to yourself,” Peter says. Stiles pays attention at that, setting the package of wings aside. “I would hope you know I’d never try to take advantage of your familial connections, but I understand your desire for privacy.”

Stiles sighs, leaning back against the headboard, weighing his words. “I honestly never thought to bring it up. I forget that they’re a family of great supernatural significance. To me they’re just extended family,” he says.

“I suppose the Hales are renowned enough on our own without needing the Addams clout,” Peter says haughtily, sending a wink Stiles’ way. Stiles rolls his eyes, kicking at Peter’s leg. Peter just catches his foot before it makes contact and sets it in his lap.

“You know, it’s Morticia I’m blood-related to. I’m more Frump than Addams,” Stiles says.

“We both know that family is not just who you share blood with,” Peter says.

Stiles just hums in agreement, leaning forward to kiss Peter. “Thank you for not trying to make me get rid of the begonia,” he says.

Peter laughs, shaking his head a little. “I know not to get between you and your plants.”

It’s then that Stiles’ phone buzzes with a text from Wednesday. “So, turns out the rest of the Addamses here want to meet my ‘wonderfully undead werewolf partner’,” he says, reading from the phone. “How do you feel about cocktails tomorrow night?”

“Fine with me,” Peter says.

Stiles is pretty sure a night with the Addamses will change his mind.

The next day goes by in a blur of panels and vendors. Stiles buys a real dragon claw from an actual dragon trainer and he’s nearly bouncing from excitement after. Peter had very carefully avoided looking at the burn scars along her forearms. Stiles and Peter meet the McClean alpha Derek had been speaking with yesterday. Luckily, he’s one of the people with the opinion that Stiles being related to the Addamses is a wonderful thing, so their alliance talks don’t break down because of him.

Before Stiles knows it, it’s almost 9:00 and time to meet his family for drinks. He and Peter head to the restaurant bar and immediately see them. They’re in the corner of the bar with two tables pushed together, every other patron giving them a wide berth. Stiles and Peter weave their way through the tables to make it to theirs. Morticia stands, giving Stiles a tight hug.

“Mieczyslaw, how miserable to see you,” Morticia says with a smile.

Gomez is right behind her, yanking Stiles into an even tighter hug. “Truly terrible, young man!”

“Awful to see you, too,” Stiles says. “This is my partner, Peter Hale. Peter, my aunt Morticia and my uncle Gomez. You’ve met Wednesday, and that’s my other cousin, Pugsley.”

“The undead werewolf,” Morticia says, taking Peter’s offered hand. “How truly perfect.”

Peter doesn’t seem to know quite what to say to that, but he doesn’t have the chance anyway because Gomez is yanking him into a hug too, and Stiles tries hard not to snort.

“Utterly perfect,” Gomez says, echoing Morticia.

Stiles and Peter take the offered seats, sitting next to each other across from Gomez, Morticia, and Pugsley, with Peter sitting between Stiles and Wednesday. Morticia pushes a drink toward Stiles and a water toward Peter.

“We ordered your usual. Peter, dear, we weren’t sure what you’d want so we stuck with water until a waiter comes over,” Morticia says.

“That’s perfectly fine,” Peter says, nodding his thanks.

“Thanks,” Stiles says, pulling the Captain Morgan and Sprite toward him. Peter frowns, grabbing his wrist before he can take a sip.

“It doesn’t smell right,” Peter says.

Stiles raises the glass to his nose and sniffs it. “It’s just arsenic,” Stiles says before taking a drink. The vein in Peter’s forehead is really pulsing. Stiles drops a hand to his thigh and squeezes. “It’s fine, I promise.”

Peter looks extremely unsure but Stiles wiggles his fingers, showing the dancing sparks of magic bouncing between them, and that seems to calm him down some.

“How do you like the convention so far?” Pugsley asks.

“It’s been great. Did you meet the guy who had the pet fire demon? Fantastic,” Stiles says. “Did you convince the siren to drown you?”

“No,” Pugsley says, looking very put out. “She said it would be unauthentic and she only does it when it’s least expected.”

“Ah, well that’s too bad,” Stiles says.

“I might rent a boat and see what happens,” Pugsley says.

“Well, I wish you luck,” Stiles says.

Peter grunts next to him and Stiles looks over and sees one of Wednesday’s smaller daggers sticking out of Peter’s thigh. He sighs and glares at Wednesday.

“Was that really necessary?” Peter asks.

“I wanted to see if you were one of the werewolves that’s allergic to silver,” Wednesday says, completely unrepentant.

Peter yanks out the knife and tosses it at her. “You could have asked.”

Stiles reaches over, placing his hand over the wound, sending his magic to mend Peter’s flesh. He glares at Wednesday, the first real sign of displeasure he’s shown.

“How about this. You don’t stab my partner and I don’t stab yours,” he says, voice cold.

Wednesday’s impassive face darkens. They stare at each other for a long moment, the table silent, before Wednesday finally sighs.

“Fine,” she says.

“Good,” Stiles says. Honestly, the nerve.

Morticia smoothly changes the subject, asking about Stiles’ father, and the awkward (and violent) moment passes. Peter manages to flag down a waiter and order three double scotches. They chat a while about their extended family (Cousin Itt and Margaret are on vacation in Europe, touring battlefields, while Fester is using the night to catch up with a Bermuda Triangle friend he ran into at a panel earlier) before the subject turns to Beacon Hills.

“We’ve thought about visiting lately. It seems like such a terrible place,” Morticia says, delight in her voice. “We almost came during that nasty darach business but there was a plague in Eastern Europe and we had already promised Wednesday we’d go.”

“That’s fair, wouldn’t want to miss that,” Stiles says. “You didn’t miss much. Once we didn’t need her to find my dad and Scott’s mom, she was easy to kill.”

“And it was you who did that, wasn’t it?” Gomez asks Peter, leaning forward with an excited smile. “How did you do it?”

“I ripped her throat out,” Peter says, to Gomez’s delight. “Deucalion was foolish enough to not finish the job.”

“He’s always been more arrogant than is wise,” Morticia says, tutting. “Meeting with Gerard Argent for a peace meeting? Foolish.”

“He deserved to have his eyes burned out at that point,” Pugsley says.

“Yeah well the darach wasn’t too bright either,” Stiles says. “Derek tricked her into restoring his sight.”

Gomez lets out a loud, raucous laugh, drawing stares from the rest of the bar. “Simply disastrous!”

Stiles kind of finds a good vein of conversation then. His family is thrilled with the stories of Beacon Hills and its various monsters and threats. They seem especially fond of the stories where hunters are savaged and/or murdered. Stiles stores that away for future situations. They had a bit too much sympathy for a wendigo that had attacked in a surrounding town, though the story of Peter and Erica ripping it apart is a hit.

It’s nearly midnight when Stiles yawns so wide his jaw cracks. Morticia tuts.

“Dear, you need to be well-rested for the lecture on seances tomorrow,” Morticia says. “Off to bed. Have dark dreams.”

Stiles is pretty sure Peter is relieved but his poker face is perfect as always as they bid their goodbyes. They’re almost to the elevator when Stiles realizes he left his phone on the table. He sighs, tells Peter to go up (who rolls his eyes and says he’ll wait), and jogs back to the bar. He’s barely inside the door before nearly crashing into Wednesday, who’s right inside. With a yip, he manages to skid to a stop before hitting her, though she doesn’t move, merely sticking out her (thankfully, knife-free) hand and pushing his chest back.

“Jesus, you scared me,” he says, which just makes her smirk.

“Here,” she says, handing him his phone. “I can’t promise Mother didn’t hex it.”

“I’d be surprised if she didn’t,” Stiles says. “Thanks.”

“Your wolf did well. I like him,” Wednesday says. “He doesn’t scare easily.”

“He was burned alive twice. There’s not much that scares him,” Stiles says.

“It’s why he fits in well with us,” Wednesday says. “I think Mother and Father may try to pressure you into a mausoleum wedding.”

“What, not you and Matilda?” Stiles says.

“We’re doing a tour of cemeteries in the fall,” she says, which is not remotely what Stiles was referring to and he knows she knows it. “Oh,” she adds. “We’ll also be visiting Beacon Hills this winter. Be prepared.”

With that, she walks around him and out of the bar. Stiles debates banging his head against the doorframe before remembering Peter’s still waiting at the elevator bank and hurrying back out, lest his cousin stab his boyfriend. Luckily, he can see Wednesday walking out toward the stairs, and Peter is still standing by the elevators and not freshly bleeding.

“I’m assuming you heard that,” Stiles says when he reaches him.

“Mm,” Peter hums, tugging Stiles closer by the belt loops. “It seems they know I’m a real catch.”

Stiles rolls his eyes. “Of course you’d come out of tonight smug,” Stiles says, though he leans into Peter, hands dropping to his waist. “I meant the part about them visiting?”

Peter shrugs, nudging Stiles’ nose with his own, their lips brushing. “We’ll bring them to the preserve at night, I’m sure we’ll run into a rougarou or a chimera or some nonsense,” he says. “If not, we can send them to the high school at night, I’m sure they’ll find something wonderfully ghastly.”

Stiles shakes his head but leans in, kissing Peter with a pleased hum. “Why do I love you again?” he teases.

“Good taste, darling,” Peter says, kissing his nose. “A case of very uncharacteristic good taste.”