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The Importance of Cleaning Your Canines

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“Dr. Stilinski, your 1 o'clock appointment is ready for you in room two.” Joan was in her fifties, had worked for the practice for over twenty years, and refused to call him Stiles. She clearly disapproved of the more relaxed atmosphere he was going for and it was as if she had found her true purpose in life giving Stiles disapproving glares, but she was a damn good dental assistant.

Stiles stuffed the last of his egg salad sandwich into his mouth and set the file he’d been updating onto his To Do pile.

The one o'clock slot was usually reserved for emergencies. Stiles grabbed the file for today’s last minute client and quickly read through the notes his receptionist had made. There wasn’t a whole lot to see. The patient was HALE, DEREK, they’d never been to the practice before, and they were here for a possible emergency tooth extraction. It wasn’t too unusual, people who didn’t come in regularly often ended up needing emergency procedures done. The only surprising thing about the chart was the large blue W at the bottom corner of the front page. Thanks to their supernatural healing, werewolves didn’t usually visit the dentist, even for emergencies.

He closed the file and headed out of his office and into the exam room, going straight for his rolly stool, “Hey there, I’m Dr. Stilinski but you can call me--whoa.” He overshot his momentum and nearly fell of the chair when he got a look at his client.

HALE, DEREK was as tall as Stiles but much broader, in that well muscled way that tied his tongue in knots. Derek’s bad boy look was completed with tight dark jeans, a leather jacket and tightly reined-in aggression. He glared at Stiles from where he was standing, arms crossed in the far corner of the room.

“Call you what?” Stiles hadn’t noticed the woman leaning against the counter, tapping away at her phone. She had similar colouring, long hair pulled up into a high ponytail and clothes that matched Derek's in the sense that they were tight, dark and badass, not to mention heavy on the leather. She flicked her eyes up from her phone and raised an eyebrow when Stiles didn’t answer right away.

“Stiles!” He burst out. “You can just call me Stiles.” He flipped open the chart in his hands, “I have down that I’m seeing Derek Hale?”

The hottie in the corner grunted and the woman rolled her eyes before looking back down at her phone. “Derek has a tooth issue. Did your file mention that we’re werewolves?”

“Yes, it says that right here, and also that he might need a tooth extraction?” Stiles looked back and forth between the two people, unsure which of them he should be talking to.

Derek continued to glare and the woman still tapped away at her phone while responding, “Yep. I’m his sister, Laura, and his alpha, so I’m staying in the room. Is that going to be a problem?”

Stiles was a bit taken aback by the confrontational manner in which she spoke, and was distracted by the knowledge that they were related, not an item. “Umm, no, that's fine, as long as Derek wants you here. How about I take a look and we can see if the extraction is necessary?”

Though he had addressed the question to Derek, Laura once again responded. “It is. The issue is magically induced, and his healing won’t kick in on the affected tooth. Our emissary is confident that if the tooth is removed, the magic will be gone and a new tooth will form. However, he refused to do the extraction himself. As did four other dentists.”

“Ah.” That explained why they had come to him. While Stiles considered himself to be a good dentist, he was only 28 and many people equated years of experience with skill. Many residents of Beacon Hills were not comfortable putting their teeth in the hands of the “wet behind the ears, hyperactive Sheriff's kid.” Most of Stiles’ clients were young children, since Stiles’ more relaxed approach put them at ease. It was hardly surprising that the Hales had tried more experienced dentists before coming to him. “Could I ask the nature of the magic?”

“We had an altercation with a fairy who recently entered this territory. She’s been going around stealing people's teeth. She hit Derek before we could subdue her, and now the tooth is...I don’t know what’s wrong with it, but it's not healing,” Laura explained.

Stiles tried very hard to be professional, honestly, he did, but, “You got hit by a...tooth fairy?” He bit his lip and looked at Derek glowering in the corner.

Laura snorted. “Go ahead and laugh. I sure as hell did. But that was four days ago, and we’re still trying to get this mess sorted out.”

Stiles snickered and turned his attention back to his patient. “Derek, why don’t you have a seat in the chair, and we can see exactly what's going on.”

Derek shifted in place a bit, looking at the dental chair like it was a torture device. Stiles was about to start with the techniques he used on reluctant children when Laura growled, “Get in the damn chair, Derek, I swear to god.”

There was a fair amount of growling, but Derek complied, sitting down and lying back as Stiles directed. “Any pain in the tooth or surrounding area?” Stiles grabbed some gloves from the dispenser, and snapped them on. Derek nodded, but didn’t elaborate, so Stiles decided to stick to yes or no questions. “Pain during specific events?” A shake of Derek’s head. “So, just all the time?” A nod. “And it’s been four days? What area are we looking at?” He got another yes and a tap on Derek’s right lower jaw. “Pain when speaking?”

Laura snorted, “Nah, he’s just a really shy asshole.” Derek narrowed his eyes at Laura but didn’t correct her.

“Fair enough,” Stiles said with a decisive nod. “Okay, let’s take a look here.” He reached for Derek’s mouth to investigate with just his gloved fingers, but before he could get too close, Derek grabbed his wrist and growled, then flicked a glance at Laura.

“Oh right,” she said. “It's not his human teeth.”

Stiles blinked. “Would you care to elaborate?”

“It happened during a fight, so he was in his beta form. Meaning, he had his fangs out. He could shift back for the most part obviously, except for the area she hit. He said it felt weird to only have a couple fangs, so he’s got the full set right now.” Laura looked up from her phone, “Is that going to be a problem for you, too?”

“Nope. Thanks for the heads up.” Derek looked at him suspiciously for a moment, then finally let go of his wrist. He let his mouth fall open and Stiles did a gentle exploration with his fingers and then his tools. “Wow, dude, you must be in a lot of pain. This is a really severe cavity. We usually have to do a root canal, then a crown for something like this. The whole tooth is a lost cause and the ones on either side seem to have decayed where they’re touching it. If you’re absolutely certain that they will grow back, I can take out all three.”

“Excellent. We checked, and we’re confident it won’t be an issue.” Laura confirmed. “Go right ahead.”

Stiles pulled off his gloves to make notes in his chart. “Alrighty, I’ll call my assistant in and we’ll start the freezing process--”

“Nope,” Laura interrupted.

“Umm, no?” Stiles looked up from the chart in surprise.

“Werewolf metabolism. The freezing won’t stick around long enough to help, it’ll just skip straight to the weird tingling, then disappear. That was why the fourth dentist refused. The first didn’t want to work with werewolves, the second wouldn’t let me stay in the room, the third balked at the fangs--left the room crying actually--and the fourth refused to pull the damn teeth without the freezing.” Laura put the phone in her pocket and braced her hands on her hips. “Look, we have a lot going on and we’ve wasted more than enough time on this. He’s dealt with a lot worse pain than this. Just pull the teeth and we’ll be out of your hair. I'll pay whatever it takes, and I promise he won’t bite you, and neither will I, but the longer that tooth stays in there, the more pain he’ll be in.”

Stiles nodded. “Derek, are you sure you’re up for this? If not, we can look into more werewolf friendly dental surgery options.”

“It's fine,” Derek mumbled. Those were the first actual words Stiles had heard Derek speak.

Stiles finished off his chart notes, and gave the siblings a reassuring smile and called Joan into the office. “We’re doing an excision of the mandibular right 1st and 2nd bicuspids and the first molar. Unmedicated.”

“Unmedicated,” Joan said with a raised brow.

“Yes.” Stiles smiled at her.

“You want to pull out three teeth unmedicated,” she said, flatly.

“I sure do, and would very much like your assistance, please. Shall we get started? Great.” They assembled the requisite tools for the extraction and set to work. Stiles kept up a running commentary of what they were doing and whatever else came to mind. For the most part, that was a summary of an article he’d read about the rise in peanut butter allergies, and the tragedy that so many kids today couldn’t appreciate a good PB and J sandwich.

When they got to the actual pulling of the teeth, Derek’s eyes flashed, but he didn’t bite down. Joan pursed her lips with disapproval and Laura came over and put a firm hand on Derek’s shoulder. He flexed his claws in and out, much to Joan’s dismay, but Stiles didn’t mind, as long as he didn’t pierce the chair arms. If it was Stiles in his place, he was willing to bet he’d want to claw something apart too.

After the third tooth was out, and his mouth had been rinsed out, Derek sat up and shook his head a few times, like a dog shaking water out of it’s ears. After the third shake, he smiled, “Better.” His teeth were all human, and accounted for. His smile was sweet and white with the most adorable front macrodontia. (Bunny teeth.)

Stiles fist-pumped and offered Derek a high five before realizing he spent way too much time working with kids. He quickly pulled his hand back before Derek could leave him hanging. Derek cleared his throat and got out of the chair. Joan left the room to go sanitize their equipment, and Laura grabbed her purse off the counter.

She rummaged through it and pulled out a package of gummy worms. “Congrats, you lived without absurdly sugary food for four whole days.” Derek took the candy with a sheepish look at Stiles.

“I guess that werewolf healing comes in handy. Your fangs are in great condition.” Stiles said, then laughed when Derek used his fangs to bite into the worm with relish.

“Do you want one?” Derek held out the package.

“Sure, why not?” Stiles took a worm and nibbled on the end. When Laura cleared her throat, he startled. He had forgotten that he was at work, and that he was supposed to be presenting a professional persona. “Well, glad you're all sorted out.”

Laura smiled sharply. “Thanks, Doc. Don’t take this the wrong way, but I hope we never need your services again.” Stiles laughed, good naturedly. “I know a few wolves who like to get regular check ups, but it can be challenging to find someone who’s alright with the whole fang aspect. Any objections to me sending them your way?”

“Not at all. In fact, I’d appreciate it.” Derek ducked his head and he and Laura went for the door.

At the threshold, Laura turned and stopped her brother with a hand on his chest. “Der, don’t be a pussy.” She gave him a little shove back and swept out of the room.

Derek glared after his sister, then looked back at Stiles. His eyebrows did a strange dance before he gave a short nod and braced himself for something. In a rush he ground out, “Would you like to go out sometime? With me?”

Stiles jaw dropped. Since when did guys as hot as Derek ask him out? “Wow, I...umm.”

Derek stared at the wall over Stiles shoulder. “It’s fine if you don't. This is probably unprofessional, I’ll just--”

“No!” Stiles broke from his stupor as Derek stepped back to leave. “I mean, yeah, it's probably not exactly professional, but it’s not like you're going to be a permanent client so. Umm. Do you want my number?” Derek nodded, so Stiles grabbed a pen and a post-it off the counter. “You could call or text or, you know, whichever.”

“Derek! Move it!” Laura called. Derek rolled his eyes, and took the post-it.

“Thanks again, I’ll...uh...talk to you later.” Derek tucked the number into his jacket pocket. Stiles gave an awkward wave and watched him leave. Damn, that ass was fine.

He did a happy dance in the middle of the exam room. He stayed in the room updating Derek’s chart until the murmur of their voices moved away from the front desk and toward the exit. Stiles went into the hallway with a goofy grin. Joan gave him a disapproving glare, and Stiles flapped a hand at her in exasperation. “Oh, come on, Joan. Don’t tell me you wouldn't climb that like a tree in a hot minute.”

A cackle erupted from the waiting room. Laura and Derek were still standing by the open door. Stiles felt his face turn bright red as Derek raised an eyebrow at him, then pushed Laura out the door.

Stiles was a bit worried he had messed the whole thing up, but after he finished with his next patient, he checked his phone and found a text from an unknown number that said, Now that my teeth are back in order I could really use a steak. Dinner?

The subsequent happy dance earned yet another judgemental look from Joan.