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Stiles Stilinski wakes up to the sound of his alarm going off rather loudly. He groans and slams his hand around his bedside table in a lame attempt to find his alarm clock. After a solid two minutes of flailing his arm around, he finds the source of the sound and hits the snooze button. By the time he did this, he was already wide awake. Stiles cursed under his breathe and sat up. He rubbed the sleep out of his eyes and stepped out of bed. It was 6:30 am on a wednesday morning. He walked to his bathroom and stepped on the scale. Something he did every morning.

213

Stiles sighed. He should be lower than that. He closed his eyes for a second and focused on his breathing.

Its okay, he thought to himself. I can fix this. It's an easy fix. Don't worry.

Stiles stepped off the scale and started to get ready for school. This was his routine. Wake up, step on the scale, and then get ready. Not too complicated. He pulls a maroon sweatshirt over his head and slips on a pair of shoes and walks out the door while popping a piece of peppermint gum into his mouth.

Breakfast of champions, he thought to himself. 

*

When he walks into school, he's greeted by his best friend Scott McCall. Scott smiles and punches Stiles lightly on the arm. Stiles smiles back and they walk to class together. They had been friends for as long as Stiles could remember. His earliest memories were all with Scott. They went everywhere and did everything together. He was lucky to have a good friend like Scott. He had a decent friend group. Lydia, the freakishly smart strawberry blonde and her raven haired girlfriend, Allison Argent. Then there was Isaac Lahey and Kira, both total pranksters. They never missed an oppertunity to joke around or mess with Stiles. Or anyone. They were a dynamic duo. FInally, there was Derek Hale. He was the oldest and was no longer in school, but a close friend to all of them. Surprisingly, when they all first met the older man, he was nice. They had all heard about Derek. His family died in a fire. They had all heard horror stories about him and how mean he was and how he would beat the living daylights out of anyone who crosses him. But in reality, he's a big softie. They all learned that fairly quickly. Derek could be terrifying when he needed to be, though. 

"I was talking to Allison on the phone last night and she said that she bought her dress for homecoming! She sent me a picture of her in it, and it's really pretty. I'm surprised that you didn't go with her to buy it. You always go shopping with her," Scott says as he grabs his Chemistry book from his locker. Stiles shrugs. He knows why he didn't go with her. If he had gone with her, she would have made him try on a bunch of stuff and she would have totally noticed that he had lost some weight. Allison would worry, and Stiles doesn't want that. He doesn't want anyone to worry about him. He can do that himself.

"I was just tired. I didn't really feel like going out. There's always next time, though," Stiles says while fiddling with the strings on his sweatshirt. Scott opened his mouth to say something else when Lydia Martin walked up to Scott and started rambling about Homecoming.

Stiles sighed. Homecoming. That's all anyone was talking about lately. Stiles doesn't have a date, but he doesn't really care. He wasn't really planning on going anyway. But he wasn't about to tell anyone that. If he even mentioned thinking about not going, Lydia would jump on his back about it and insist that he go. She would say something about getting the full highschool experience and how he would regret not going. That was Lydia, though. She wanted to go to everything. And she wanted everyone to be included. 

"Stiles! There you are. I've been meaning to talk to you about Homecoming! Who are you taking? I figured we could all go together as a group, unless you planned on asking someone. Oh, shoot. I gotta go, I have to be at a student council meeting in five. I'll see you all later, " Lydia said. She waved and walked away.

Scott and Stiles looked at each other.

Lydia talked so fast sometimes and she gets so worked up about things that she doesn't realize that she isn't getting any answers. 

Scott laughed and punched Stiles in the arm once more as they walked to their classes. Stiles felt great. He was dizzy, but felt good. 

Chapter Text

Stiles made it through another day. Lunch was difficult, but when is it not? Lydia brought her famous banana bread to lunch to share with everyone. They all sat outside for lunch and Derek would come and meet them. He didn't go to school anymore, but he wouldn't miss spending time with them for anything. Stiles loved her banana bread. He couldn't help himself. He ate at least two pieces and felt terrible about it. He felt gross.

Stiles unlocked his front door and went up to his room. His dad was probably going to have another late night, so he didn't have to worry about dinner or making a big show of making something for his dad. He kicked off his shoes and flopped down onto his bed. He was tired. He had stayed after school so he could go to the library and get Lydia to help him with his homework. He was never able to pay attention in class, so he got Lydia to help him. 

He wanted to take a nap. 

But he had to work out.

Stiles wasn't really one to work out. He mostly restricted his food intake and fasted occasionally. But sometimes when he felt he couldn't get control of his weight fast enough, he would run. He liked to go to the woods to run. He wouldn't run into anyone he knew. He liked it because it was quiet. No noises other than the leaves crunching under his feet and the music blaring through his ear buds. It was relaxing for him. He didn't have to put on a show for people when he was alone running in the woods. Stiles spent a good amount of time covering up how he really felt when he was around his friends. It sucked, but he knew this was for the best. He sighed, grabbed a bottle of water and walked back out to his car. 

He drove out to the woods and hopped out, putting his ear buds in. He clicked on his music and started running. 

The sun was setting and the sky slowly turned purple and pink. Stiles always loved sunsets. He thought they were one of the best parts of being alive. Especially when you're slowly starving to death. Stiles knows he shouldn't joke about it, but he couldn't help but find it funny. He didn't used to be like this. He wasn't exactly sure when this all started. He thinks that it was when he was diagnosed with ADHD. He felt like he couldn't control anything. His weight was the one thing in his life that he could control. 

Stiles was running faster than before now. He could hear his heart pounding. He knew he would have to stop soon. He was seeing double and he needed to drive home. He had a protein bar in the glove box of his car and his water bottle. He slowed to a stop and took a minute to breathe. He turned the corner and started to jog back to his car. He sighed once he got back to his baby blue jeep and closed the door. He put his head on his steering wheel and took a minute. He opened his glove box and felt around for the protein bar. He pulled the wrapper back and took a bite. After he finished it, he drank some water and put his keys into the ignition. It was almost eight now. Stiles wasn't ready to go home. He never really did anything anymore. He hung out with his friends at school, but avoided seeing them out in public. It wasn't because he didn't want to see them, it was because he didn't want them to see him. Under the florecent lights of their highschool, he looked fine. You couldn't tell that his eyes were slightly suken in and that he had dark rings under them. You couldn't really tell that his hands shook while he carried his books from class to class. It was easier that way. Seeing Scott out of school was a given, but he didn't see the others unless he could help it.

Stiles turned on the radio and cranked up the volume.

Don't look ahead, there's stormy weather

He gripped the steering wheel and sighed. He was tired. He knew that he should go home. He had school in the morning and he didn't want to be late. On the other hand, he didn't want to go home. He knew he could just drive around for a while longer. 

Another road block in our way

He sighed once more and just decided to go home. He would just watch a movie or something. Stiles rubbed at his eyes and finally went home. He parked his car and went inside. He went up to his room, brushed his teeth and then collapsed into bed. He felt weak. He grabbed his laptop from his desk and pulled up Netflix. He felt so terrible. Maybe he had ran for too long. He clicked on The Office. It never failed to make him feel better. Whenever Lydia would have a sick day and would convince Stiles and Allison to come take care of her, Stiles would always try to get her to watch it. She never caved, though. She likes Parks and Recreation more. In a way, Lydia reminded Stiles of Leslie. 

He pulled the covers over his head and his laptop. Sometimes, he just wanted the world to go away. He gets dizzier and dizzier every day. Stiles wondered if anyone noticed that he sways when he walks now. Hopefully they didn't. Deep down, Stiles did want someone to notice. He couldn't make himself get help. He couldn't make himself stop. He knows he could die. But he knows that its a risk.

Just a risk he's willing to take.

Chapter Text

Stiles wakes up to his alarm. He's been meaning to change his alarm sound to something calmer. It's just loud, obnoxious ringing. He really needs to change it. He presses the stop button and grabs his phone to check his messages.

Lyds - Hey, have you gotten your suit for hoco?

He groaned. He was so sick of hearing about homecoming. He wasn't planning on going. Stiles decided that he was just going to avoid talking about it for as long as possible. He rubbed his eyes and swung his legs out from under the covers and walked over to his bathroom. He stepped on the scale and held his breath.

211

He sighed. He had lost a little. Two pounds overnight. Not bad. He stepped off of the scale and looked into the mirror. He still had dark rings under his eyes. Stiles wasn't one to wear makeup, but seeing his reflection made him want to invest in some concealer.

God, Lydia would love that, he thought with a smile. Sometimes, Stiles would let Lydia put makeup on him. She thought he looked so pretty with it on. It wasn't for him, but if it made her smile, he would let her. He brushed his hair and teeth and changed into some clean clothes. He pulled his maroon sweatshirt over his head, slipped on his shoes, and started to leave the house. He grabbed his keys before locking the front door behind him and popped a piece of strawberry gum into his mouth. He liked to change it up.

*

He arrived at school and was greeted by Derek this morning instead of Scott. That was different.

"Hey, Stiles! How are you? I haven't seen you in a while," Derek says while bumping into Stiles. Derek was wearing a blue shirt with his leather jacket. He had a coffee in one hand and his phone in the other. Derek was taller than Stiles and significantly bigger than him as well.

"I'm fine. Are you coming inside?"

"Uh, no. I wasn't planning on it. I was going to meet Lydia for a few minutes. I guess I'll see you around," Derek replied. 

Stiles kept walking. Normally, he would have been nicer to Derek and insisted that he come inside for at least a few minutes and say hello to Scott. Today, though, he was tired. He was dizzy and didn't want to be at school. His chest was hurting and he could really use a nap. He pushed open the doors to his school and went straight to the bathroom. He threw his backpack down and put both hands on one of the sinks to steady himself. He could feel himself slowly fading. He splashed some cold water on his face. He wasn't about to pass out. No. He wouldn't let himself. If he did, that would make him weak. 

He took four deep breaths before picking up his backpack and leaving the bathroom. He needed to go to homeroom. He would get his books later. If he went all the way back to his locker, he would for sure pass out. He didn't want to faint and have people see. He didn't want that at all. He especially didn't want word getting back to his friends about that. So he decided to just go to homeroom first. It was better that way.

He walked into the classroom and sat at an empty desk in the back. He pulled his water bottle out of his bag and drank some. He needed to stay awake. He sighed and put his head down. Maybe he could just have a nap. Just five minutes. He knew he wouldn't be able to get away with it, though. 

"Stiles! I texted you this morning," Lydia exclaimed. Stiles' head snapped up and saw the strawberry blonde looking at him. She frowned and slid into the desk next to him and put her books on the desktop. She reached into her pocket to pull out her phone and show Stiles the text that she had shot him.

"Yeah, I saw. I had just woken up. I guess I forgot to reply. I'm sorry," Stiles replied slowly. He rubbed at his eyes and started to fiddle with the strings on his hoodie. Lydia looked at him long and hard. She could tell something was up.

"Are you okay? Derek told me you were acting a bit off. Anything you want to tell me?"

Stiles groaned. As much as he loved the girl, he could not stand it when she tried to get him to talk about his feelings. He wasn't into talking about how he felt. It just wasn't his thing.

"No," Stiles said flatly. He wasn't really in the mood for one of Lydia's therapy sessions.

"Is this because you don't have a date to homecoming?"

Stiles groaned even louder. So loud that a few heads turned.

"No!"

Lydia smiled and put her hand on his. 

"Stiles, sweetheart. I can get you a date. It's no problem. All you have to do is ask. Have you even gone shopping for a suit yet? You need new shoes. You know what? Let's go to the mall after school today! It'll be fun. I'll even let you play your music in the car. It'll be my treat," she said with a sweet smile. Stiles had a hard time saying no, especially to Lydia. She was one of his best friends. And her paying for everything? That sounded even better. He smiled. He missed hanging out with her out of school. He couldn't deny that. He loved shopping with Lydia. But with the mall comes the food court. One whiff of a pretzel and Stiles would freak.

"Please?"

Stiles shut his eyes. He didn't want to say no.

"Fine."

Lydia clapped her hands together and grinned. She told him that she would pick him up from his house at 3.

Stiles had really gone and done it this time. As soon as class started, he couldn't help but think of how he was going to get through a trip to the mall. He was going to be by the food court and he was going to be seeing a lot of people eat. He hated it more than anything. Even worse, what would Lydia do when she saw how Stiles looked now? He looked sick. His eyes dark and hands constantly shaking. How was he supposed to walk around for that long without passing out? He sighed and put his head in his hands. He was giving himself a headache just thinking about it. His head was buzzing. Before he knew it, class was over. That's kind of how every class went now. He would get so caught up in his own thoughts that he would completely miss everything. 

He figured that it wouldn't matter in the end. Not eating makes him not be able to think.

At least he felt lighter when he walked.

Chapter Text

As soon as the final bell rung, Stiles jogged to his car and drove home. He was really sleepy and wanted to go home and take a nap before Lydia came and got him and made him walk around the mall for hours. Stiles parked his baby blue jeep in the driveway and walked up to his front door. He unlocked it with shaking hands and collapsed onto the couch. He was asleep within minutes. Stiles valued his sleep more than anything. After about 20 minutes, he was woken up by three loud knocks. His eyes flew open and he was so startled that he rolled off of the couch onto the floor with a grunt.

"Stiles! Let's go! I brought your favorite," Lydia said as she knocked once more.

Stiles picked himself up off of the ground and winced. He was for sure gonna have a bruise on his leg. He groaned and rubbed his eyes. He walked slowly over to the door and let himself out. He didn't understand why she didn't just open the door herself. He had made her a copy of his house key ages ago for stuff like this. The skinny boy locked his door behind him and looked at Lydia. She was wearing a grey sweater and white jeans. Her go to outfit. In her hands she held two bright red Starbucks cups and a smile plastered on her face. Gingerbread latte. His favorite. He would hate to just not drink it. He knew he would regret it later, but maybe just one is okay.

Stiles smiled back. He took the cup from her and they started to walk back to her car. He noticed that his hands were shaking again, and was afraid that he would spill the hot liquid all over himself. He really didn't want to end up with third degree burns today.

"I can't believe I haven't bought my dress for homecoming yet. Who do I think I am?"

Stiles raised his eyebrows at this. Lydia had been stressing about what kind of dress she was going to wear for months. She took what she wore to public events very seriously. This wasn't like her.

"Well, we'll find a dress today. I'm sure you'll look great in whatever you decide to wear," he replied. Lydia smiled and unlocked the doors to her SUV. They both climbed in and started to drive to the mall. It was a short drive. Most of it was spent on deciding who actually got to play the music. Even though Lydia had said that Stiles could choose. It was a never ending battle with those two. But, in reality, they wouldn't have it any other way. Stiles used to have a huge crush on Lydia, back when they were freshmen. But that all changed when Stiles realized that Lydia had a big thing for Allison who had just arrived in Beacon Hills. Stiles also realized early on that he liked boys and girls. In their friend group, it was never something that was discussed. If you were, it was cool. If you weren't, whatever? Who cares? They all accepted each other either way.

"So, guess who's gonna come to homecoming this year?"

Stiles shrugged. He was only half listening. He preferred to look out the window.

"Derek! He's gonna help decorate the gym with me, so he gets an automatic invite! Aren't you excited? This is his first school dance. He told me that when he was in school, he never attended any school dances or events. I think he might be kind of nervous. I got him a suit and everything!"
Lydia was very enthusiastic about Derek attending their dance.

"Huh. I never really thought of Derek as the kind of guy that would want to go to homecoming. I mean, I know he's a big softie, but I just never guessed that I would see him in a suit," Stiles said as he took a sip of his drink. If he was being honest, he wouldn't mind seeing the older man in a suit. He always thought Derek was kind of attractive.

"Well, he's coming. And we're here!"

*

After four hours of walking around the mall, Lydia finally found a dress. The whole trip to the mall was a whirlwind of poofy dresses, dress shoes and neck ties. It was tiring. Stiles was ready to sleep for seven years. By the time they left, the sun was setting and it was getting even colder than it was when they had arrived. Stiles pulled his hood over his head and carried Lydia's dress. She walked quickly to her car as she zipped up her jacket.

"I'd say that this was productive, wouldn't you? We got a lot done. I got a dress, you got a new shirt. Everything is good. I'm so excited for Saturday," Lydia said with a smile. Stiles could never figure out how she was always so positive. She was constantly smiling and always looked at the bright side of things. The silver lining. He admired her for it. He wish he could bring himself to at least attempt to be positive.

*

Lydia dropped Stiles off at his house around eight. Stiles was swaying and extremely dizzy. He was going to have to eat a protein bar when he got inside. He knew he would have to end his fast at some point. He had already ruined some of his progress by drinking the latte. He was angry with himself for that. He walked up to his door and unlocked it. He grabbed a blueberry bliss bar and walked up to his room. By the time he got up to his room, he was already thinking about skipping school. He was tired. He needed a day to sleep. He also needed a day away from the homecoming chaos. That's all anyone was going to be talking about anyway. It was two days away. He sighed and flopped down onto his bed.

Some days, he just felt like the weight of the world was breaking his bones.

Chapter Text

Stiles decided to skip school. He couldn't bring himself to get out of bed. He couldn't even bring himself to step on the scale. He was afraid of what the number might be. The scale was his worst enemy. He slept all day and ate five protein bars. He was angry with himself. But for the most part, he just slept. The next time he woke up, it was saturday morning. Homecoming.

Stiles opened his eyes slowly. Warm light was streaming through his window and his phone was buzzing. Who would be calling him at 9:32 on a Saturday morning. He sighed and grabbed his phone off of his bedside table. It was Lydia.

"Stiles! Good morning! How'd you sleep?"

"I'm still sleeping. Don't call again," Stiles replied in a monotone voice. He knew that he wouldn't hang up on Lydia, though.

"Do you want a latte? I'm picking up drinks for all of us to drop off. I figure everyone needs a little boost this morning. Everyone is already busy getting ready. It's chaos at my house right now. Kira's dress tore as she was bringing it over and I have to buy a new curling iron. Do you want a drink or not? I'm on a schedule," Lydia said. She was speaking really fast. Stiles could tell that she was stressed. 

"Nah, Lyd. I'm alright. Thanks though. Say hi to Kira and Ali for me. I'll see you tonight," he replied. He hung up the phone and stared off into space, lost in his thoughts. He wasn't planning on going at all. He had at least four excuses already made up in his mind. He hated to let his friends down, but he wasn't in the mood for dancing. He never was. He didn't want to risk passing out. He figued that they would understand. He did this all the time. He was the world's biggest flake.

He was home alone, once again. Stiles would never say it out loud, but he kind of missed his father. Or maybe he just missed the company. He had a lot of late nights.

Stiles swung his leg off of his bed and walked over to his bathroom. He brushed his teeth and then stood in front of the scale. He took a deep breath and stepped on, hearing it creak underneath him. He winced and looked at the number.

105

He sighed in relief. He had lost weight. A lot of it. He wasn't complaining. He was beyond happy. He had worked hard and felt lighter. Maybe he would go to the dance after all. He wasn't going to let anyone down tonight.


 

As soon as the clock hit 6:30, Stiles was out the door. He adjusted his tie and jumped into his baby blue jeep. He plugged his phone in and spent a few minutes searching for the perfect song.

 

Another house party, round two.

Stiles started his car and drove to Beacon Hills High. He felt light as a feather. As soon as he got there, he could hear the music blaring from the gym. Lydia was waiting out front with Allison, Kira, Isaac, Scott and Derek. Her fingers were interlocked with Allison's and Kira and Isaac were desperatly trying to mess up Scott's perfect hair. Stiles parked and walked towards the group. They all looked fantastic. 

"Oh, Stiles! You look fantastic. Come on, let's go in," Lydia said as she pulled Allison along. Kira and Isaac followed, all giggles. Scott ran up and pushed Isaac. Derek and Stiles trailed behind. They walked into the gym and were covered in purple and blue lights. There was a disco ball and a punch station. Allison and Lydia went straight to the dance floor and Kira, Isaac and Scott went to go get some drinks. So, it was just Derek and Stiles. 

"Do you want to dance?"

Stiles looked at the older man. He was easy on the eyes. Stiles was standing close enough, so they might as well dance. Stiles nodded and they started to dance. Awkwardly. This was a painful experience for him. He didn't know how to dance. He was all long legs and arms. Derek was a lot bigger than him. It didn't work out very well. Stiles danced for about fifteen minutes before he started to see double. 

"Hey, are you alright? Come on, let's go outside. I think you need some air," Derek said. Stiles could barely understand what he was saying. His voice was fading in and out. Before the younger boy knew it, Derek was wrapping his arms around his frame and helping him walk out the door. Once they got out, Derek sat him down on the curb. He could hear the muffled dance music fading in and out as people entered the dance. His vision was blurry and he wasn't sure if he was even awake. He tried to focus on his breathing. He inhaled for a few seconds and then exhaled. He stared at the ground and tried to think. He was afraid of something like this happening. He had stuck a blueberry bliss bar in the pocket of his jacket. He felt around until he found it. Stiles tore open the wrapper with shaking hands and bit into it like his life depended on it. 

"You've lost weight," Derek observed. Stiles shrugged. 

"I guess so. Not on purpose, though," Stiles lied. He was good at this. Lying about it. He could hide it from everyone. He was lying to everyone. Maybe even to himself. The older man seemed to buy it. It always worked out this way. 

"I think I'm gonna go home. I'm tired," Stiles said. He stood up and started to walk to his car. He hated to leave as almost as soon as he showed up. Before he could get to his car, he started to see double again. His vision blurring and seeing black around the edges, the last thing he remembers is hearing the muffled music and thinking about how he was going to explain to Lydia why he had left so early.

Chapter Text

Stiles woke up in Derek's bedroom the next morning. His eyes flew open and he sat straight up. How did he get there? His head was killing him and he was still wearing his suit. He jumped out of the bed and walked out into the front room. He was beyond confused. He saw Derek sitting on the couch wearing a red flannel and holding a coffee cup in one hand and a book in the other. Despite the fact that Stiles' head was buzzing with so many thoughts and questions, he was able to notice that Derek looked really good in flannel. He just stood there for a second before saying anything.

"What happened?"

Derek looked up from his book and closed it. He set down his coffee mug and stood up.
"How are you feeling? You had a pretty bad fall last night. I wasn't sure what your address was and I couldn't pull anyone away from the dance long enough to get an answer, so I took you here. You were practically swaying while you walked to your car," Derek explained with a concerned look on his face. Stiles blinked. He was still confused, but then put the pieces together in his mind. He had passed out. He hadn't eaten enough. He wondered if Lydia knew what had happened. He reached into his jacket pocket and fished out his phone. He had about a dozen missed calls from Lydia and about a dozen more text messages wondering if he had made it home okay. He didn't bother telling her the whole Derek situation. That would just raise more questions. He shot her back a text saying that he was okay and then set his phone down on the coffee table. Derek padded over to the kitchen and filled his cup up with the dark liquid.

"Do you know why you fell? Were you drinking?"

Stiles scoffed. He never drank. He hated the way it made him feel. It made him feel out of control. He shook his head and sighed. He still couldn't believe that he had passed out. It had only happened once before. Stiles shifted uncomfortably in his suit. He had slept in it and felt all weird. Derek left the kitchen and went to his room. He came back with a maroon colored shirt and sweatpants. He handed them to the younger boy. Stiles guessed that he had noticed that he was uncomfortable. He smiled and took the clothes and went back to the room to change. Stiles looked at the sizes on the clothes and guessed that they were some of Derek's old clothes considering that they were all a size small. He changed quickly and then went back out and sat on the couch.

Stiles looked around the older man's living room. He had only been in his house a handful of times. Maybe even less. And all of the times had been less than twenty minutes. The group never hung around Derek's house. He looked at the walls and noticed that there wasn't a lot of art. There was a map of the whole world, but that was it. He looked over to the window and saw a black piano. He had never noticed that before.

"Do you play?"

Stiles blurted it out before he could even think about what he was saying. Derek looked up from his book once more. He smiled and nodded.

"Yeah. My mom taught me when I was a kid. I don't play much anymore but I really love playing. It's one of the only things that relaxes me," Derek said as he stood up and walked over to it. He sat down and began to touch the ivories. Stiles just sat there. He would have never expected Derek to know how to play. He was really good. He looked over to Derek and watched his face as he played. He looked peaceful. Stiles couldn't help but notice how pretty he looked. Stiles felt weird for calling one of his closest friends pretty, but he didn't know what other word to use to describe him. He was snapped back to reality when Derek stopped playing out of nowhere.

"Why aren't you eating?"

Stiles' eyes widened. He wasn't expecting that. He tried to ignore the fact that his heart was pounding and answered the question.

"I do eat. Have you met me? Eating is my favorite past time!" He knew that his hands were shaking slightly. He willed himself to stop, but couldn't. Derek stood up from the piano and walked towards the younger boy.

"It used to be. Something's changed. A few weeks ago, Kira brought her famous snickerdoodles and you didn't even have one. Stiles, you love those cookies. I know for a fact that you love them because she makes them every year for your birthday. I don't know what's going on with you," he said. Stiles' hands were balled up into fists now. He felt angry and he wasn't sure why. Why did Derek have to notice? He was doing fine without anyone knowing. Of course he had to notice. Stiles felt like he was trapped in a nightmare and he couldn't wake up. He felt empty. He felt as if his whole world was crashing down around him. Everything was falling apart. Crumbling.

"I eat."

"That shirt is hanging off of you. It should fit you, Stiles. I don't know what's going on with you. I'm worried," Derek said as he took a step closer to Stiles. Derek was close enough for Stiles to smell. He smelled like sandlewood and vanilla. He took it in and exhaled. His heart fluttered at the fact that Derek said he was worried about him. No one was ever worried about him. Stiles knew that he would have to throw Derek off of the fact that something was clearly wrong with him. He would only try to stop him. Slow him down. It wasn't any of his business anyway. Why did Derek think he had the right to nose around in his business. He had enough to worry about.

"Please, tell me what's wrong," Derek said. It was almost like he was begging. In their friend group, everyone had one person they were closest with. For Lydia, it was Allison. For Kira, it was Isaac. For Scott, it was Isaac. Stiles used to be closest with Lydia until Allison changed all of that. Derek wasn't close with anyone either. They were all close to each other in a way, but Stiles and Derek were the outsiders. He hated it, but it was true. Stiles thought about all of this. He was losing it. He knew in the end, he wouldn't have anyone.

"I have to go," Stiles said quickly before rushing out. He spotted his car keys on the counter and grabbed them before running out to his car. He jumped in his jeep and sped off. His head was spinning. Derek cared. He did. Stiles knew this. But what he also knew was that he couldn't let anyone in. He couldn't accept help. He couldn't let anyone know about this. He didn't need anyone worrying about him. He wasn't worth the effort or the trouble. He couldn't let Derek in because he would only get hurt. That was the last thing that he wanted. He didn't want any of his friends getting hurt.

Sometimes, Stiles thought that he would be doing his friends a favor if he just disappeared forever.

Chapter Text

When Stiles got home, he ran up to his bedroom and slammed the door behind him. Derek knew something was up. That was an issue. He sat on the edge of his bed with his hands in his head. What would Derek do? Would he tell the others? His head was spinning. He couldn’t believe this. He was stressing. Stiles paced around his bedroom a few times. Derek had noticed. He had noticed. Before anyone else did. Deep down, he was glad that someone had noticed. Every time he wanted to tell someone or ask for help, his throat closed up and the words got stuck. Stiles was officially in full on panic mode. His phone buzzed and he saw that it was Derek texting him. He was apologizing.

Stiles yelled out in frustration. He couldn’t take this. He was constantly stuck in between wanting to eat and convincing himself that if he did, bad things would happen. It was all about control. He didn’t want his friends to think that he was crazy.

 

Stiles flopped face down onto his bed and screamed into his pillow. He couldn’t figure out what he should do. He would have to keep up appearances for Derek. That means he would have to start eating in front of them. This upset Stiles a great deal. Sobs slipped out of his mouth before he could stop them. He was frustrated and angry. Not with Derek, just with himself. He didn’t want it to go this far. It wasn’t even about how he wanted to look.

He got up and searched for his sweatshirt. Everything was his fault. After 20 minutes of searching and crying, he gave up and crawled under the covers. He just wanted to hide away forever. He just hoped that Derek wouldn’t say anything to the others when they all hung out.

 

_____________

 

On Monday morning, Stiles didn’t bother popping a piece of gum into his mouth for breakfast. He decided to eat a breakfast bar in front of Kira and Lydia, just in case. He could practically feel himself gagging as he ate it, but he managed somehow. When lunch came around, he even ate half a sandwich. Just for show. Stiles hated throwing up more than anything, so making himself throw it all up wasn’t an option. Even though it was just for a day, Stiles could feel the control slipping from his fingers. He felt like everything was going to go wrong. Kira, Isaac and Stiles met up with Derek after school. Stiles never once met the older man’s gaze. He could feel him staring. Kira and Isaac were plotting with Derek for a prank they were going to pull on Allison. Stiles tuned out early on and stared at his shoes and fiddled with the strings of his maroon sweatshirt which he found in his car. He hated feeling out of control. Kira had brought spring rolls along with her and Stiles forced himself to eat one. As he was eating it, he remembered how good they were. Soon, Isaac left and Kira went after, it was just the two boys.

 

“I’m sorry about the other day. I was out of line. I shouldn’t have assumed anything,” Derek said. Stiles just sat there. He didn’t have the energy to respond. They shouldn’t even be having this conversation in the first place.

“I hope this doesn’t change our friendship in any way because I love hanging out with you. I think you’re so funny and some of my best memories are of us and the others hanging out together.”

Stiles just nodded. He understood. He wasn’t going to make it weird. Before all of this started, people actually liked being around him. He didn’t think that his friends hated him. He knew that they didn’t. He just never really hung around them as much. Him and Derek used to joke about how Scott kind of had a crush on Isaac and stuff like that. Derek had a hard exterior, but once you really got to know him, he was a good friend. Stiles cared about his friends more than anything. He would never want them to worry.

 

“Derek, it’s fine. Can we just not talk about it? You were out of line, you apologized, and it’s done. Okay?”

Derek nodded.

 

Stiles could tell that he wanted to protest, but he didn’t. In a way, Stiles felt kind of flattered that Derek cared so much for him. No one did. He worried and seemed genuinely concerned when he noticed that he had lost such a large amount of weight in a short amount of time. It also meant that Derek paid attention to him. It meant that he paid more attention to him than the others. No one else had noticed that he hadn’t eaten any of Kira’s cookies, let alone not eating at all. Stiles wondered if he should open up to Derek about all of this. He was probably the best person for it.

 

“Do you want to come hang out at my house?”

Stiles realized he was asking before he could even think about what he was saying. He wasn’t sure why he was asking Derek to come back to his place. But all he knew was that he did. His brain was clearly not working properly. Derek looked at him, smiled, and nodded. The pair jumped into the baby blue jeep and drove to his house. When they got in, Stiles realized he was kind of nervous.

 

“Um, do you like The Office?”

Stiles cursed under his breath. Why was he just now being awkward? Was this how things were going to be now that Derek thought something was wrong? His palms were sweaty. Why did he feel so nervous? It didn’t make sense. Before, things weren’t like this.

 

“Yeah, do you?”

 

This was painfully awkward. Stiles couldn’t handle it.

 

“Yeah. It’s my favorite show. I think it’s really funny. I’ve seen the series over a dozen times. It never fails to crack me up,” Stiles said. He reached for the remote on the living room table and switched it onto Netflix and put it on. Maybe it would make things less awkward? About fifteen minutes into an episode, Stiles looks over to the older man. He was wearing a grey shirt this time. He couldn’t help but notice that the same feeling he had when he watched Derek play piano came back. Kind of a warm and fuzzy feeling in his stomach.

 

Did he like Derek?

Well of course he liked Derek. But did he like Derek like that? Stiles could never tell. It had been a while since he had had a crush. He always knew that he liked Derek to some extent, but never really noticed it until recently.

 

“You know, we used to be kind of close, but even then I didn’t really know much about you,” Stiles said out of nowhere. He realized that when he was with Derek, he felt like he didn’t have to tip toe around things. Maybe he was just feeling impulsive. Maybe it was the food.

“That’s true. What do you wanna know?”

 

Stiles fiddled with the strings of his hoodie again. He wasn’t really sure what was happening. What was this, twenty questions? He decided to start off simple.

“What’s your favorite color?”

 

Derek laughed a little. “Blue. What’s yours?”

 

“Maroon. What’s your favorite drink?”

 

“Coffee.”

 

Stiles wrinkled his nose. He hated coffee. Gingerbread latte was the ONLY exception. He felt like coffee was such an old person drink. He never understood why people liked it, let alone drank it just black.

“Derek, that’s so gross. The worst part is, you drink it black. Why would you do that to yourself? I feel bad for your tastebuds. They need some serious therapy,” Stiles said as he rolled his eyes. Derek laughed out loud. Stiles smiled. He had always liked making people laugh. He hadn’t done it in a while though.

 

The two stayed like that, talking for hours. By the time Derek got a ride home, it was nearly ten. Stiles found himself smiling the whole night. He was glad to have one of his closest friends be more involved in his life and to be finally hanging out.

 

Stiles felt lighter when Derek left, but not because he wasn’t eating.

Chapter Text

Even though Stiles had a great time with Derek, he could feel himself slipping. The color had come back to his face and he looked healthier. He couldn't deny that he felt better. But he knew that it couldn't go on like this. He was only eating to keep up appearances. He was eating so Derek wouldn't ask questions. He knew he was gaining. He just wasn't sure how much. Since Stiles couldn't restrict his food intake as much, he ran a lot more. He would drive out to the woods, park his car, and run down the street and then turn around. He wanted to feel like he had some sort of control. He was running almost every day after school. 

Stiles had gone to school and eaten with his friends at lunch. Kira and Scott were making heart eyes at each other the entire time, and everyone noticed. After they both left, it was all anyone could talk about. Isaac was not amused. They had stayed like that for a while, convincing Lydia to skip with them which was nearly impossible. Stiles left school happy. He had gotten to hang out with his friends and he saw Derek. It was a good day. When Stiles went home, he changed into a pair of shorts and a shirt and hopped back into his car, driving straight to the woods. One of his favorite parts about running was that he usually got to see the best sunsets. He always ran around the time when the sun would set. He loved it when the sky would transform into streaks of purple and dashes of pink and orange. He considered it to be one of the best parts of being alive. He parked his car on the side of the road and closed his door. He put his earbuds in and started to run. After a few minutes, he could feel his heart pounding as his feet hit the pavement. When he ran, he didn't have to hide. It made him feel good about himself, which was rare. He liked it mostly because it gave him a feeling of control which was what he was constantly craving. Stiles picked up his speed and closed his eyes for a few seconds, feeling the wind rush past him. He could feel the air slowly getting colder which meant it was getting late. He slowed to a stop and turned around. He jogged back to his car, noticing how far he had actually run. 

When he got back to his jeep, he felt like he was going to collapse. Not from being dizzy, but from just being tired. He hopped in and started to search for a song to play. Once he found one, he started to drive home.

You'll never get anything better than this

Stiles' hands tightened around his steering wheel. He loved having control. He knew he couldn't keep eating. 

He finally made it home. He parked his car, hopped out, and went to unlock his front door. He walked inside and went upstairs straight into the bathroom. He was sticky and gross. He hated sweating. He jumped in the shower and sighed. He turned the water as cold as it would go. He stood under the steady stream of water and closed his eyes. He found himself thinking of Derek. He thought of how he played piano. He liked that. Stiles had always wanted to learn how to play an instrument, but could never focus long enough to actually do it. Even when he took his ADHD medicine, he couldn't. Stiles' eyes flew open. He realized that he hadn't been taking his medication. He laughed a little at the thought. That's where all of this started, and he wasn't even trying to fix it. He got out of the shower, wrapped a towel around his waist and looked into the mirror. He did look better. His ribs weren't showing. Maybe that was a good thing. His eyes drifted down to the scale in the corner of his bathroom. He hadn't stepped on it in a while. It couldn't hurt to just check, would it?

Stiles walked over to it and stepped on it. It creaked underneath him. He winced. He glanced down at the number and his heart dropped. 

He had gained four pounds. 

It was only four pounds. Just four. Stiles felt like his world was ending. His head was reeling. Even though it was only four pounds, Stiles felt like throwing up. He had lost control for too long. He knew that he would have to do something about it. He couldn't let it go on like this. He was in panic mode. He searched his brain for excuses as to why he wouldn't be eating. Then, as if a lightbulb had turned on in his head, he thought of one.

His ADHD medicine. It usually made him lose his appetite, so if he started taking it, he would have an excuse. It wouldn't be lying, either. A small smile appeared on his voice. He wasn't sure why he hadn't thought of it before. This was perfect. Derek would buy it. He dried himself off and pulled on some clothes. He flipped his light off and crawled into his bed. He dozed off, dreaming of numbers going down on the scale.