It’s not like Stiles ever expected to be a parent. Stiles should have had his fill of cubs from Lydia and Jackson, three tiny hellions; he has a particular fondness for the littlest one, a mini sour wolf, the combination of all the worst personality disorders of his parents wrapped up in adorably soft puppy fur, and Stiles totally blames Derek for finding that endearing.
But it’s not like Stiles doesn’t want to be a parent, either. It’s a matter of circumstance, really, the fact that neither Derek nor Stiles can carry babies, and Stiles is happy that they don’t have those working parts, for obvious reasons, so he totally can’t be blamed for whatever this is. Foster care, or something.
Derek says, “No,” staring down at them. He says, “They’ll grow up and eat you.”
And Stiles says, “Carol wouldn’t eat me, would you, baby?” and noses Carol’s soft belly as she stretches out on her back, bats at an obviously fiendish clump of onion grass. He says, “I found them,” and, “I’m keeping them,” and makes puppy-eyes at Derek, the ones that never really work on Derek except in all the ways they totally do.
Derek slumps down on the ground, paws cradling his snout, and Carol’s body folds up and rolls; her tiny baby claws clamp down on the side of Derek’s muzzle.
Derek growls and shakes his head, but Carol is determined and climbs up his face to bite his ears.
Stiles licks at the other one, paw pressed to her flank, gives her a good bath while she makes this churring sound, a rumble deep in her chest, like this is exactly where she wants to be. She rubs her cheek under Stiles’ chin and he falls a little bit more in love.
“This one likes me best,” Stiles says, and then she chomps down on Stiles’ face with her sharp, pointy, baby teeth and Stiles lets out a surprised, pained yowl.
“What?” Stiles shakes the cub off him and gets to his feet, ignoring her little whine of, “Mama,” because that totally doesn’t melt Stiles heart into a big pile of goo, only Stiles is lying. Mama, geez, Stiles wants to curl up around her and keep her safe forever, never mind the fact that she’ll grow to nearly twice his size one day.
“If you’re naming them, you’re naming that one Laura,” Derek says, and Stiles would think he was angry, what with that bite in his voice, except Carol is now gnawing on the back of his neck, and Derek looks a little like he wants to kill himself, but not Carol.
No, Carol, Stiles is sure, he wants to keep safe forever and ever.
And then Carol tumbles off his back and yelps, “Mama!” and Stiles is highly amused, because: “I think she means you.”
“No,” Derek says sternly, staring down at a wide-eyed Carol. “Daddy. Dad-dy,” he says, and it’s hysterical, because Carol only cocks her head and says, “Mama?” again.
“We can both be mama,” Stiles says, because Derek’s scowl-face totally doesn’t intimidate him anymore, it kind of just makes Stiles want to rub all over him. He nudges at Laura until she rolls into Derek, merowing. She burrows into Derek’s side and Derek’s eyes get alarmingly wide; Stiles is pretty sure she’s rooting. This just made Stiles entire year, Stiles has the best ideas.
“I’m going to kill you,” Derek says, and Stiles rubs all over his face and says, “You love me, you love our babies.”
“You’re telling your dad about this,” Derek says.
Stiles’ dad will totally be happy. He’ll be ecstatic, Stiles is pretty sure he’s cried himself to sleep before, wanting grandbabies. The only maybe sticking point will be the fact that they’re the wrong species, but whatever. Grandbabies are grandbabies, even if they grow up to be giant cats.
And then across the clearing Lydia yells, “If you think I’m breastfeeding your cougars, Stiles, I’ll rip your face off!” and, really, that’s all the pack acceptance Stiles needs.