Stiles stared at Scott. Specifically, Stiles stared at the tiny little boy in Scott’s arms, wriggling to free himself from Scott’s grip. When the little boy scratched at Scott’s face, Scott held him as far away as possible. Even Stiles’ worst kids he babysat were nothing compared to this. Most of them stopped fighting like that after a few minutes. This boy’s yelling and crying were going on now for a solid twenty minutes, and that’s only how long Stiles had been there to keep count.
“Let go of me! I’m going to tell my mama on you!” The little boy paused, only to aim and begin kicking Scott in the stomach. “My pack is going to rip you up!”
Stiles didn’t know what to make of the situation. A frantic call from Scott thirty minutes ago had Stiles speeding down the road straight toward the burnt down Hale house. Apparently Derek had been hit by a curse from some witch, shifting him back into his four year old self. However, he seemed pretty much the same if the growl the mini version of Derek just emitted was anything to go by. Derek may not be a full on alpha werewolf, but the little boy bit Scott’s hands, leading to Scott dropping Derek onto the forest floor. That broke Stiles out of his trance.
“Dude! You can’t just go dropping kids like they’re hot potatoes! Does he even have werewolf abilities right now? Like how does that work? What if he broke his leg and then do you have insurance for that? No, because we are teenagers! Teenagers! And how would we explain why we have a little kid at the ER? We would have to take him to the vet, and as I already said, he’s a little kid, not a super fast healing alpha werewolf!”
Stiles was flailing his arms, still freaked out that Scott couldn’t manage to hold onto a little kid, even if the little kid was Derek. Stiles was about to hit Scott over the head when a cough distracted him. Boyd and Isaac were staring at their miniaturized alpha sitting in front of the Hale house. While Derek had refused to let Scott hold him, this was the first time in twenty minutes he was completely quiet.
Scott and Stiles cautiously walked toward the little boy, but when they finally crouched next to him, Derek jumped up, rushing away from Scott and clinging onto Stiles’ arm.
“Derek, come on, it’s me, Scott.”
Derek clung tighter onto Stiles’ arm. “No! Mama said not to trust werewolves unless they’re pack.”
“I am pack! I’ve been in your pack for two years!”
Derek shook his head. “No, you’re not in mama’s pack.”
Stiles didn’t want to press his luck, but Scott beat him to the question. “Why are you holding onto Stiles then?”
Derek’s grip tightened. “He’s human. Have to protect humans.”
Stiles rolled his eyes. “Seeing as I’m the adult in this situation, I’m pretty sure I can protect myself,” Stiles replied. Derek glared at Stiles, which was very reminiscent of the older version.
“You’re dumb. Mama said humans need to be protected,” Derek informed him.
“Did mama also say not to use bad words or call people mean names?”
Derek huffed and proceeded to stick his tongue out at Stiles. As much as Stiles enjoyed this very mature and intellectually stimulating conversation, it was late, and he didn’t have time to contradict the words of a little kid. He had been half asleep when Scott called and yelled for him to get here. It was four in the morning now, and he was not ready to go find out how this would be fixed. Well…Stiles had a handful of ideas to try, but no amount of Adderall at this time of night was going to make him uncover the reasoning behind how Beacon Hill’s resident alpha got turned into a tiny toddler and still managed to pull off the art of scowling in a miniaturized leather jacket.
“Okay, come on then.” Stiles lifted Derek, placing the toddler on his hip. “Here.” Stiles tried giving Derek to Boyd, but Derek clung onto Stiles tighter.
“No! I want my mama!” Derek whined. “Where is she? Where’s papa? And Laura? I want my pack!” Derek started crying, staring up at Stiles. Stiles didn’t know how to respond to any of that. If Derek could tell the difference between humans and werewolves, he probably could tell the difference between the truth and a lie.
“I don’t know. I don’t know where she is.” It wasn’t exactly a lie. Stiles had no idea where Derek’s mother was. She died in the house along with the others during the fire, but her ashes could really be anywhere by now, and spiritually, Stiles didn’t know where she would end up. Heaven, Limbo, or maybe a nice afterlife where werewolves can run and play for all of eternity. “But we’ll take care of you for now. Until we can find where your pack went, okay?”
Derek stared up at Stiles before nodding his head. “Okay.” Stiles maneuvered Derek so that he could better hold him with one arm. With his free hand, he gripped the sleeve of his jacket and used it to wipe away the tears and snot from Derek’s face. It probably wasn’t the most hygienic way to clean Derek’s face up, but it worked.
Stiles looked over at Boyd. “Can you take him with you until we can find Deaton? I can’t really hide a little kid over at my house.”
Boyd laughed, placing his hands over his hips. “And you think an abandoned train station is better than a house?”
“Plus it’s not like Derek is going to let us go anywhere near him if he doesn’t even think we’re pack,” Isaac interjected.
Stiles wanted to argue that yes, taking the kid to a train station was much better than having his father thinking he kidnapped some little kid and felt like keeping him inside his room. Yeah, because that didn’t scream pedophile whatsoever. The werewolves could just deal with teaching Derek that they are all in one happy pack soon enough. Little kids are impressionable people. Derek has got to believe that Scott, Jackson Isaac, Erica, and Boyd are pack eventually.
“ ‘Tiles, mama said not to go with other werewolves if they’re not pack. It’s not safe,” Derek stated sleepily.
Derek rubbed his hands over his face. He was worn out from all the crying and struggling to get away from Scott. The fact that Derek didn’t understand that he was in fact the alpha of all these werewolves wasn’t even the most disturbing part. Derek fully believed his mother’s pack was still around somewhere. “Okay, okay, okay. You can go with me, but you’re not allowed to tell anyone your last name. In fact, don’t say anything to anybody. Just watch. My dad will put two and two together if that happens, and I have no idea how I’m supposed to explain any of this,” Stiles groaned, turning around to face Scott. “You owe me so much for this.”