The first thing Stiles felt upon waking up was a flaring headache. He groaned and carefully opened his eyes.
Pitch-black darkness greeted him and that was just — not good. Waking up in dark rooms had become a precursor for Bad Things happening. There was always at least a little light in his room coming from the street lights outside and if there ever was darkness like this, well.
Stiles moved his hands — not cuffed to anything, thank god. He seemed to be lying on the floor of a dark room. It was cold concrete.
Slowly, Stiles sat up, the pain in his head thankfully subsiding. That made it way easier for his brain to collect all the information.
To his right, his hand brushed against a wall. The same cold concrete as the floor.
Panic already rising up his spine, Stiles got up, moving along the concrete wall to map out the room he was trapped in.
The wall was about six or seven feet in length and when he turned to press along the next wall, his knee bumped into something almost immediately.
“Fuckity fuck!”, he exclaimed when his pulse climbed up the fucking Empire State Building at the shock. He moved his hands, trying to feel what was in his way.
“A fucking toilet? Really? You stuffed me in a fucking bathroom?” Stiles kept muttering, telling his kidnapper exactly what he thought of that while he made his way around the toilet and further along the wall. The cursing and bitching definitely helped him to keep calm and think.
“I planned a trip to a hotel and not to be taken hostage by the latest criminal. Is this the best you can do? I would've thought, maybe you had a little class. Whoever ‘you’ are.”
With a sigh, Stiles sank to the floor, finishing his walk around. Approximately forty square feet. They fucking left him in a seven times seven feet room. The door was behind his back, opposite the toilet. It was colder than the concrete, but Stiles was starting to freak out a little.
“Well, at least I have a toilet.” He tried to console himself. It didn’t work.
Shaking his head, he went back to what he knew.
He had been in the tiny kiosk next to the resort. They had arrived about an hour earlier and he had decided to get the pack some treats. He had definitely been inside of the kiosk. But he can’t remember leaving it. According to his head, he must have been knocked out, no drugs — which was really fucking good because he needed to be able to trust his brain. He didn’t know how long he’d been unconscious. Looking through his pockets, he found that his phone and wallet, as well as the key to the suite were gone. Figured.
His watch was still there though. Stiles sighed in relieve. His watch had a light, so he could at least check for the time.
7.09pm. He’d headed to the store almost an hour ago. He really hoped they didn’t take him far away.
An hour meant, the pack had started worrying about 30 minutes ago — maybe earlier, if no-one picked up Stiles’ phone. They probably were already looking for him. Which was great. Stiles let his head sack against the door.
“You fucking morons.” He said to the people who took him. He hoped they weren’t werewolves or whatever the fuck the universe decided to throw at him now. Please, let it be humans. “You have no idea what you got yourselves into.”
In spite of himself, he had to grin, “Oh, this is gonna be hilarious.” — if it where humans. Who didn’t know what hit them. If it was something else — well shit. He probably shouldn’t jinx it, but he couldn’t help himself.
“What, do you want to get ransom for me?” He snorted. “That will work out well. I’m just an only child with a dad that barely manages to feed one of us.” Play dumb, Stiles. If they are werewolves or whatever, play dumb — stupid human they caught here.
The other’s had to arrive soon. He hoped. They must’ve picked up his smell by now. He didn’t think about the rage Derek would be in, the worry and concern, that might possibly make them loose their ability to think. He knew them, it wasn’t out of the realm of possibility.
“Once in my life, I decide to go on vacation with my friends and family and then someone has to kidnap me? Real fucking nice.”
There was a sound at the door, someone unlocking it. Stiles scrambled back until his back hit the wall besides the toilet.
His heartbeat sped up again and his breath hitched in his throat. He wanted to see his friends on the other hand, but he knew better than to expect it, by now — there hadn’t been any signs of a fight outside. Stiles wanted to scream, but he wouldn’t do these asshole the favor of showing fear besides his pounding heart.
There was light filling in the room, when the door opened and the man standing above him was a silhouette in warm yellow light. Stiles couldn’t see his face, until he was yanked up.
He was well dressed and clean enough to be more than just a lackey. He didn’t flash eyes at Stiles, and his grin didn’t reveal any particularly sharp teeth, but that wasn’t a guarantee.
His hands were cuffed together and a cloth was pulled over Stiles head, and everything turned black again.
* * *
He was pressed into a chair.
Someone pulled the cloth off his head and he took in his situation.
Guards stood along the walls. It was a concrete room, light bulbs lining the ceiling. From his point of view, he could observe one guard to his left and two guards on either side of the door to his right. He was pretty sure there were more behind him.
In front of Stiles stood a small table with a small revolver on it and a second chair on the other side. The chair was occupied by—
Stiles groaned and resisted the urge to bang his head on the table.
“Are you for fucking real?” He might have been close to a panic attack before, but now he was pretty sure he was over it. His voice was full of annoyance and he could feel the anger burning in his veins.
“I mean, how are you even still alive?”
Gerard grinned at him, his fingers tracing lazy lines over the revolver.
“I have my ways”, was the answer, which was no fucking answer at all.
“You know, you made a big mistake, by kidnapping me —again. You realize that, right? Scott and the others aren’t stupid, they won’t just charge into any traps you set up. Your wolfsbane won’t help you here.”
“Oh, but I don’t need any wolfsbane.” Gerard answered smiling. “See”, he gestured around the room, “I have other — assets, now.” The guards along the walls wolfed out.
Stiles stared. And then started to laugh hysterically.
“Are you for real?” He stared at Gerard, before he turned around to the guards, because Gerard just made his life so. much. easier.
“You guys, may I introduce you to your boss? Gerard Argent, has been hunting werewolves for decades, his daughter burned down whole packs. Whatever he promised you? He won’t keep his promise. He’s a fucking liar who beats up kids for fun.”
The guard dogs stared at him, without so much as batting an eye.
One of them, turned to Gerard, and asked “Qu’est-ce qu’il a dit de Gerard Argent?”
French. They spoke fucking French. No wonder there was no reaction. Fuck.
Stiles clenched his teeth when Gerard answered with a reassuring smile, “Rien d’importance. Il vous a seulement menacé de lui parler vous. Pas de souci, il ne vivra pas assez longtemps pour le faire.”
Gerard turned back to him and Stiles swallowed.
“Now, Stiles. You know why I am here, right?”
“Revenge?”, Stiles guessed. His tone implied how he would love to roll his eyes at Gerard.
Since Gerard was about to give an Evil Speech, he didn’t take up on any such signals. Stiles didn’t bother to refrain from rolling his eyes when Gerard started talking again.
“Yes, revenge.” He clasped his hands together, and Stiles smiled a serene smile, while imagining all 15 ways he could kill Gerard with cuffed hands. “See, revenge is a complex thing. It involves some fluid variables next to interchangeable constants, but the goal, the goal never changes. It is the one thing you need to focus on, when creating a plan.”
Despite himself, Stiles was caught in Gerard’s words. The problem was, that he was right. Stiles knew well enough to work out plans — not necessarily for revenge, but plans of attack nonetheless. Stiles thought back to the way Gerard had tortured him, to keep from talking. Instead he thought about ways to get out of here ASAP.
“It’s like playing chess. There are some pieces on the chess board, that have to be taken down, in order to reach the king, right? Some of these are easier to take down, some more difficult. But the ones that are more difficult are the ones that are also the most dangerous to you. So, all you have to do, is getting this one piece off the board. Then everything tumbles, everything crashes. You’re a smart kid, Stiles. Which piece is the most dangerous on that everything depends?”
“The queen?” Stiles suggested.
“Exactly.” Gerard said in this approving way one talks to little children when they drew something. “So, there is this one parameter getting in my way. Everything depends on this one parameter. The queen that can destroy my plan. Can you guess who the queen is, Stiles?”
“Me”, Stiles said, his voice cold, his heart rate picking up again. This wasn’t good.
“You”, agreed the hunter. “You see, I can only deal with the problem at hand, when I get you out of the way. It’s a shame, really, you had so much potential-”
“Allison is the tower.” Stiles interrupted.
“Excuse me?” Gerard was irritated about being interrupted but Stiles could see the hesitation in the way Argent stopped stroking the revolver. Stiles planted uncertainty in Gerard — exactly as planned.
“Allison is the tower.” Stiles repeated and smiled. “She’s a safe house, a beacon, she’s beautiful and fierce and will gladly protect what is hers. If I wasn’t the queen in your equation, I’d be the second tower. Allison is as steady as a rock and keeps the walls up of the castle that is our pack. She is the tower, and I bet she’ll do it.”
“Do what?” Gerard growled. The hatred in his eyes grew with every word about Allison. Tough luck.
Stiles raised his eyebrows, like this was obvious, and said in a tone that suggested Gerard was silly, to even ask. “Kill you, of course. I bet she’s the one that’ll kill you.”
Stiles shrugged, and looked at his hands, which he fiddled with, as they lay lightly on the table.
He knew he must look calm to outsiders. He didn’t know if he smelled that calm and relaxed to the werewolves, but he tried to.
Internally he smirked, because Gerard freaked out, judging by the guard dogs getting restless. He probably wasn’t only angry but scared, too.
Gerard’s eyes twitched, but after a few deep breaths he was calm enough to smile at Stiles again.
“Anyway, as I was saying, I only needed to get you out of the way. And here we are.” He took the revolver in both hands and looked it over.
Stiles had been getting more restless. Gerard could’ve shot him right away. Why dragging it on? His Evil Speech was apparently over for now, and still, he wasn’t shot at, yet. Stiles knew the guy well enough to be sure that there was more to it.
“Then why didn’t you shoot me, yet?”
“Oh, Stiles.” Gerard looked disappointed and fiddled with the revolver. “I thought you know me better than this. Why would I just kill you on the spot? Where’s the fun in that?”
He turned around, gesturing to the guard dog on Stiles’ left.
Stiles tracked every move of the guard as he asked, “So what? Annoying me to death with your Evil Speech? I don’t think that’s gonna work.” The guard moved towards a bowl in the corner of the room which Stiles hadn’t noticed before. “I think it’s more likely that I will annoy you to death by talking. I’m good at that-”, the guard had crouched down and pulled out a lighter. “I could tell you all disgusting fun facts about fast food which you apparently ate tonight.” Stiles grimaced, sniffing the air. “Or I could explain all the ways any of us could kill you tonight. Starting with me — under these conditions —” Stiles lifted his hand and rattled with the cuffs. The guard dog set something on fire in the bowl, presumably herbs. Stiles could only guess but he would bet that this was something to inactivate scent — his scent. His heart sank. Because this meant his pack would come here soon. And if they couldn’t smell him before, they must’ve been going crazy. Not good. Crazy pack, crazy Derek and kidnapped Stiles? Worst combination in Stiles’ book. He had to play fast.
“under these conditions, I could name 15 ways I could kill you. Or Lydia. She has presumably 32 ways to die laid out only for people that kidnap and threaten me, in particular. 583 ways of torturing anyone who threaten the pack. And another 437 ways of killing anyone who laid a hand on any member of the pack. My bet is still on Allison, though.” Stiles smirked because Gerard had a little pale. He caught himself way too fast for Stiles’ liking, because he shook his head a little and smiled at Stiles.
“Ah, but I guess you know what my ‘guard dog’ did there, don’t you? Your pack”, Gerard spit the word with such viciousness, Stiles wondered why he didn’t drop dead from it already, “will be here very soon. You are not foolish enough to believe, that I would let them just come here to kill me.”
No, Stiles truly wasn’t. That was what worried him.
Gerard let the bullets fall out of the revolver onto the table. “See, when they get here? I am not stupid, Stiles, neither are you. I have set things up keep them here — and away from us. I didn’t kill you yet, because it’s no fun, if they don’t have to watch you die. It is much more satisfying to torture them with watching you die, don’t you think? Their agony is my pleasure.”
Stiles was hit by a wave of hatred so strong, it knocked the air out of his lungs. He tried to keep calm, but when the door flew open and his pack stumbled through the doorway, his pulse rocketed once again skywards.
“Derek!” Stiles couldn’t help but cry out. He barely managed to get off the chair, when he was pushed back down by a guard dog.
Stiles eyes flew over his pack — seven pairs of concerned and furious eyes on either him or Gerard. The moment they moved closer, the werewolves seemed to be trapped in a circle between the table and the door — mountain ash, almost invisible on the dark floor, which one of the guard dogs hastily closed behind them. “Fuck, are you guys alright?” Stiles asked, momentarily forgetting the situation he was in. The claws of the guard dog digging into his shoulder brought him back though, and Derek growled, lowly and dangerously at the other werewolf.
Stiles saw Allison and Lydia move, red hair and brown, but as soon as they walked were outside the circle, they were both grabbed by guard dogs and held in place.
They were struggling, but another dog threw Allison’s bow to the side before she could react. Before he could pull the knife out of Lydia’s grip, she must have cut his hand, because he whined like a baby. Stiles felt a rush of pride for his girls, because this knife most definitely had wolfsbane on it and these fuckers would suffer, later.
Gerard stood, and made his way over to Allison. He completely ignored the werewolves.
Derek stared at Stiles, and Stiles nodded, that yes, he was alright — for now — while the others tracked Gerard’s movement. All of them were shocked to see him here. Especially Allison.
“Allison, my dear”, his voice was soft but sharp. “I am disappointed to see you here with these-”, he gestured at the pack, “things. I would've thought you were angry at them, for killing me, to be quite honest. I hoped you would see, that they are monsters and not to be trusted”, Gerard chided. He lifted one hand — the one not still holding the revolver — to brush over Allison’s cheek. Her head reared back, as if she was burned and in the same moment Scott yelled, “Don’t touch her!”
“Now, I am willing to let this mistake slide, and you can stay with me. We can work together as a family again and I will show you what we can do. But you will have to show me that you mean it.”
The words hung in the air, and Gerard lifted his hand to Allison’s face once again. She jerked back before he could reach her, but Scott didn’t stay calm. If he was yelling before, he was now roaring. He was a true alpha and this roar let him seem taller, bigger, more dangerous and powerful than he ever had been before. “Don’t you dare touching her!”
The guard dogs whimpered and Stiles would’ve laughed if he hadn’t been in such a rage himself. Nobody touched Allison, or anyone of the pack, really, without their consent.
Gerard turned around to Scott now, not able to ignore him anymore. “Or what, you animal? You’re going to kill me? I’d like to see you try, while you’re trapped in that cage!”
Scott had calmed down enough to at least get back to his human form. He smirked at Gerard. “I won’t kill you, no. But she might.”
And Stiles was gonna buy a whole lot of Doritos and orange soda and have a video game marathon with Scott because he was proud, like, he hadn’t been in a long time because Scott had managed to make Gerard go pale once again. It probably was more the fact that he knew his grand-daughter could full well kill him, than Scott himself but Stiles let it count. Because seeing Gerard like this — fear in his bones and dread in his eyes — was the best thing that happened all night.
“So, are we going to the fun part of the party now?” Gerard’s smile was cruel. He turned back around to Stiles, audience at his back.
“As I was telling Stiles before, he is the queen on the chess board, the one piece everything depends on, and that therefore, he was the one, that had to be destroyed first.”
He took one of the bullets of the table and placed it in the revolver. “And I also explained that this would be much more fun, when you all were watching.” He shut the revolver and Stiles heart sank when Gerard turned around to the trapped werewolves. He opened his arms in an inviting gesture and smiled broadly. “Welcome to the show.”
One bullet, Stiles thought desperately. He knew what that meant. He stared at Gerard in shock, as he made back his way to sit down opposite Stiles.
He lifted the revolver and twisted the bullet chamber.
“I believe you are all familiar with the concept of Russian Roulette.”
Stiles knew he must be turning pale. He felt sick.
“Why would you do that?”, he managed to choke out. There was growling and whining coming from the pack but he tried to ignore it.
“Because it’s fun!” Gerard spit, “because they will have to watch you, and they will be in pain because you will be in pain, and you are scared and it’s glorious to see them whining for you and know that it won’t help them. They will hope for the best every time but you will die, and they will have to watch!” There was a glint in Gerard’s eyes and his voice was almost hysterical.
“You’re insane!” Stiles yelled back, because it was true. Gerard had always been on the verge of crazy but he had leapt over the edge now, “and you could die from this revolver, too! You can die and finally leave us alone!”
“Do you really think I’d just die without insurance? You are not as smart as I thought. I do have insurance. There’s not only these werewolves here,” Gerard moved forwards, his face inches from Stiles’ when he yelled, “there’s a witch! There’s a failsafe and a failsafe for the failsafe! Don’t think even though I might die, all of you wouldn’t die anyway!”
With that, he pulled the hammer back and pressed the revolver into Stiles’ hand.
Suddenly, Gerard’s whole demeanor changed. He was calm and relaxed as he leaned back in his chair. “Your turn, white queen.”
Stiles stared at the revolver. Gerard waited patiently.
This was it — this was the end. And Stiles didn’t even get to enjoy the trip, what a shame.
He couldn’t manage to look at the seven heads. He felt their stares on him when he took a deep breath. He couldn’t bear looking at them. There was no chance left for him now but to pull the trigger. He would die and leave the pack behind. He could only hope they would make it out. He could pray.
“White begins, black wins.” His mom’s voice said in his head. It was something she always said when they were playing chess. He’d alway been playing black, after she said that. He usually didn’t win when he played black, though. But he always win when he played white. He didn’t know if his mom’s voice in his head was a good or bad sign after years of silence. But he’d take it as a sign. With a deep breath, he willed his heart rate down. Either way, it would end now.
* * *
Derek stared at Stiles, listened to his heartbeat and smelled Stiles’ scent.
There was disbelief and just the smell of Stiles there. A minute earlier, there had been fear and anger. Now there was only resignation and determination. Derek still felt scared beyond believe. He had been loosing every member of his family — some of them more than once. And he hadn’t let himself feel anything for anyone for years. Until there was Stiles, fighting against him, fighting alongside of Derek, pushing all his buttons, annoying him, calling him out on his mistakes but still saving his life over and over again. And Derek had to stand here, watching him die. It wasn’t right. Derek knew he made a lot of mistakes over the years, but he was determined, that letting Stiles get under his skin wasn’t one of them. Because Stiles had made him a better human, a better werewolf, a better person. And Stiles didn’t deserve to die because of him or the others, and he didn’t deserve to loose Stiles because of one of the monsters that already killed all of his family.
But Derek couldn’t do anything but stand there and watch, just like the others.
There was a sick fascination in the way he watched Stiles lifting the barrel of the gun against his head. His pulse was weirdly steady and slow — like he was okay with this. He shouldn’t be okay with this.
Derek’s eyes were glued to Stiles’ finger, which slowly closed over the trigger. Stiles had his eyes closed and distantly, Derek realized that his own heartbeat slowed down, adjusting to Stiles’.
Just pull the trigger, he thought, the moment that Stiles did.
There was a collective audible exhale from the pack. Stiles didn’t sigh, didn’t smile, didn’t show any emotion, when he opened his eyes and put the gun in front of Gerard.
Gerard grinned. His eyes had been tracking the pain in the werewolves’ eyes while Stiles had held the revolver. Now, he took it himself, rested it at his temple — and pulled the trigger.
Derek closed his eyes, letting anger and disappointment take over for a moment. Then he carded his eye over to the bullets still lying on the table. There were six. The revolver had seven bullet cases, and they already shot twice. There were five more possibilities. There was a 20% chance that Stiles would get killed by the next shot.
Stiles still didn’t seem to think about anything. He took the revolver with a mechanic motion, put it on his head.
He had pulled the trigger before any of them could react, any of them were able to brace themselves.
Derek blinked, a little panicked, and the revolver already lay in front of Gerard again.
The man picked it up, considered it for a moment before triggering. Click.
Fuck. 33.3% chance that Stiles would inject himself a bullet now. Or was it 16.65%? Was it 33.3 times or maybe plus 50% for the chance that there either might be a bullet inside or not? Then maybe 83.3%?
Derek shook his head. The situation wasn’t about maths and apparently he didn’t know how to calculate anymore, anyway.
This time, Stiles moved very slow, taking his time to lift the gun up to his head. It was agonizing to watch him pull the trigger.
The moment the hammer connected, there was a bang.
* * *
Stiles jerked. There was no pain. Everything felt like in trance and he would've never thought that dying would feel like this. His heart might have not get the memo that he just shot himself because it seemed to spike up a notch? And there might still be adrenaline rushing through his body? He can understand, he was shocked too, by the bang.
He opened his eyes, wondering what heaven (or hell?) might look like — and was greeted with the face of Gerard Argent.
It took Stiles a second until he realized that he didn’t, in fact, blow his own brains out, but that apparently, the cavalry must’ve arrived. Thank god.
He whirled around in his chair, revolver clasped in his hands, and saw how Isaac incapacitated the guard dog closest to the door. The door had been knocked out of it’s hinges and that must have been the bang, Stiles thought. The pack still was trapped, Derek’s eyes were on Stiles, not wavering for a second. For a moment they relish in the fact that they were still alive, before Stiles looked back at Lydia, who lighted the guard dog behind her on fire without so much as blinking. Stiles didn’t know how werewolves that worked for Gerard could be so stupid, but apparently they knew nothing about checking people for weapons. Lydia shook her head, like she thought the same thing. The eyes of Erica, Boyd and Jackson were glued to a point on the ground behind them, and Stiles knew Danny was opening the mountain ash circle. The betas seemed antsy to get into the fight with Isaac. They rushed forwards the moment the line was broken.
“Where did they come from? Tu m'avais dit qu'ils n'étaient que huit dans la meute, you stupid fuck!”
Stiles grinned a little and turned towards Gerard, pointing the gun at his head. “You better stay there.”
Stiles felt Derek’s presence press into his back. It was calming and reassuring. “So, tell us about that witch, Gerard.” Stiles voice was a purr. Derek’s hand pressed into the small of his back and he knew that he must be scary.
“You can shoot me, the bullet would’ve been in your place anyway.”
“You wanna bet?” Stiles raised his eyebrows. “Actually, I didn’t plan on shooting you. No, I think I told you how this would go, remember? The tower will take down the king.” Once again, Gerard went pale.
Danny came to stand on Stiles’ other side. He clapped him on the shoulder and said, “we took care of the witch. She was easy. And it’s me saying that. Lydia told us where to find her before they went in.”
“I smelled Gerard”, Derek added. “He smells like Argent scum.” Stiles raised an eyebrow, his face turned halfway to Derek, but without letting the old Argent out of his sight. “Scum? Can shit talk him some more later? Because it’s totally a turn-on when you use bad words for someone other than me.” He felt rather than saw Derek roll his eyes, and smirked at Danny’s retching noises.
Gerard looked at him funny but he couldn’t care less. The fighting noises behind them subsided and Stiles felt the pack gathering in close behind him. Lydia stood between him and Danny, Jackson at her back. She moved a hand forwards and opened the handcuffs around Stiles hands with skilled fingers. She had gotten so good at it, Stiles didn’t even have to take down the revolver for it.
The cuffs fell the the ground with a metallic sound just when Allison stepped forward, Scott in her wake.
Sometimes, Stiles wasn’t sure whether he should be more scared of Lydia or Allison. Right now, he’d say Allison but Lydia’s fingernails ducked into his arm, as if she knew what he though and chided him for being a fool.
Scott threw the table out of the way — Stiles hadn’t even realized it was still there — and Allison move in front of her grandfather, who sat on his chair. A scared old man. Could’ve fooled anyone. Just not, y’know. Anyone.
She moved in front of Gerard, between him and the gun still pointed at him. Stiles didn’t lower it, even though Allison stood between him and his target. She would either do it herself, or move out of the way. If she wanted the gun, she could reach it easily. Her bow still lay discarded on the floor.
Arms crossed, Allison stood like a beacon, beautiful, bright eyes, pulling the pack closer to her with the force of invisible strings. Her gaze was stony and ruthless, and her voice when she spoke could cut through diamonds.
“Grandpa, my dear.” The smile she gave Gerard let even Stiles’ blood run cold — and he couldn’t even see it, because he stood behind Allison.
“I am disappointed to see you here with these-”, she gestured at the bodies that were dumped somewhere behind them, “things. I though you didn’t like them. I thought you hated them. Didn’t you pretend they killed you? Are those really the monsters that cannot be trusted? What big eyes you have”, Allison sneered. “All the better to show betrayal with?” She shook her head. “What big teeth you have, Grandfather. All the better to show your anger with? What a high pulse you have, Grandfather. All to show me how scared you are?”
Stiles shivered. The pack was silent. Not one of them even dared to breathe. Scott stood in front of Derek and just looked awed. Leave it to him, to dream of Allison’s beauty and talent while some poor bastard literally shits his pants. Stiles wants to snort at Scott but he isn’t actually gonna get in Allison’s way, so that would have to wait for later.
Allison leaned over, bracing her arms on the armrests of Gerard’s chair, her face inches from his. There was coiling anger in his eyes, but he seemed truly too scared of his own grand-daughter to even say a thing.
“I hope you would see, that there are monsters in this world that cannot be trusted. And that — as your grand-daughter — I have learned to distinguish between monsters and innocent people. So, you have to understand, that, as your grand-daughter, I have made my decision not to trust the monsters in this world, but instead, work and live with the caring and loving people in this world. I have been willing before — made then mistake before —, to let the monster go, because I was a fool. I was believing that blood is thicker than water. That family counts. Now, I’ve been made aware that family working together can do a lot. Therefore, I have decided, to take my rightful place in my family, and rid the world of the scum of this world — correct my mistakes.”
Slowly, Allison’s arms moved up towards Gerard’s face. Cradling it in her hands, she spoke again, softly but with finality.
“Not every monster is a creature of the night. Not every human is innocent. There are monsters worse than others. And you are one of the worst kind. You hurt my pack, you and your daughter — not only once, but twice, even before I became a part of it — and now, even though you knew, that I was part of this pack, that this is my family, you chose to attack us. Not them. Us. You hurt your own grand-daughter, almost got me killed, even though you preach that blood is thicker than water. To me, you are the worst kind of monster and no one will miss you when you’re gone. I will be glad and my dad — will be free.”
She could have just snapped his neck. It would’ve been easy, Stiles thought. It would've been personal, but also dirty. Instead, she turned around and gently took the gun out of Stiles hand, all the while looking into his eyes.
He gave her a short nod, and pressed back into Derek.
Allison turned and lifted the revolver.
“Now, shall we see if your sick game would have been your end?” She asked sweetly and pulled the trigger.
The silence after the shot was ringing in Stiles ears, almost as loud as the shot itself. Gerard was slumped in his chair, a trace of blood trailing down his face.
They didn’t talk for a long while, even after they started moving around, cleaning the mess.
Allison stood rooted to the spot. Scott gently pulled the gun from her hands and got a jacket from one of the guard dogs to put over Gerard.
Stiles thanked for Lydia’s and his ability to stay calm in situations like these. Her voice was detached and clinical.
“We should burn this whole compound down.”
Stiles nodded, but gestured at Gerard. “Him, too?” His eyes followed Allison, who was steered out of the room by Scott.
“Yes.” Allison’s voice was hard when she turned around. “He had it coming. It would be an unnecessary risk for us to take.” She smiled softly. “It’s okay, Stiles. I’m okay. Let’s — burn this and get the hell out of here.”
Stiles didn’t have anything left to do but nod and get out of there. Now, that he got off the adrenaline, his headache returned.
Lydia, fire-loving banshee that she is, took care of the actual fire, while Stiles waited in the car.
The guard dog had kept him in a small cabin halfway up the hill. He could see the hotel from here, warm lights and a lot of cars and music in an après ski tent. All he wanted to do now was going back to the suite and sleep.
* * *
When they finally did get back to the hotel room, they were all too jittery to actually sleep. They didn’t initially plan a mattress fort in the living room, but it was what they ended up doing.
All too happy to be alive, they pulled the mattresses in the middle of the room, throwing down all the blankets and pillows they could find and cuddled close together. Nothing screamed ‘pack’ more than a blanket fort and cuddling in the after shock of an attack.
The tv was turned on, but no one really cared about it. They were chatting lowly, Stiles pressed deep into Derek’s embrace, other hands pressed to his back, and feet tangled with his and Derek’s.
The pack tensed, when there the sound of sirens was audible (the werewolves tensed first, of course). After that, they finally relaxed enough to drift over into sleep.
* * *
The trick wasn’t to pretend, nothing had happened the night before, but to remember, that the good things were still there. That they made it through another night, another awful experience. They survived. This time, there weren’t even casualties.
So when the pack got up, they tried to be cheerful about it. It was easier, once normalcy turned back in terms of Stiles and Erica bitching at each other. It was something everyone was fond of, in situations like these. And it made Stiles forget, at least for a while, which was really awesome.
“Erica Reyes! You get your ass back inside, right now!”
A grunt was heard from the hallway, as Erica made there way back inside.
“What?”, she said defiantly.
Stiles didn’t say anything, just held up the helmet.
“But, Stiles! C’mon! You know we won’t hurt ourselves skiing.”
Stiles had been packing helmets for all pack members. He had bought them just for this occasion. And this was what he got in return. Luckily everyone but Erica had just put them on. It would have been so much more painful to yell at Isaac — being angry at Isaac hurt Stiles probably more than Isaac.
“Erica, I know I don’t have to protect you. But I need you to protect the pack.” He paused, for dramatics.
“Can you please do this for the pack? I know you won’t hurt yourself. But people are going to be so weirded out by you guys on the piste anyway — because god knows what you're going to do. No need to make them more suspicious just because you’re not wearing a helmet and get up from a fall like nothing happened. I know I can’t make you stop having fun. I don’t want to, anyway. But we can protect our pack by at least trying to keep off suspicion, alright?”
Erica sticked her finger in his face.
“I am doing this just so you shut up, Stilinski.” She said, and took the helmet.
“I’m not asking for anything else”, Stiles yelled after her retreating back.
When he turned around, only Derek was left in the room. He moved closer, helmet in hand. “Are you ready to have some fun?”
Stiles snorted, and leaned into Derek. Just for a moment.
“Well, I’m ready to try. What about you?”
Derek nodded, “Ready to try.”
“Alright, lets go then, catch up with the puppies.” Stiles smiled and put light kiss on Derek’s lips.
* * *
Stiles and Scott have been snowboarding since they were eight and started to go to winter camps.
Everyone but Isaac was already well-versed in the art of winter sports. Lydia was pretty much the only one skiing. All the others were snowboarding.
Derek took it upon himself to teach Isaac and while the others went down off-piste right away, they stayed near the valley, at the foot of the mountain for training.
The off-piste was fun, and Isaac managed to talk Derek into joining the others after lunch.
He was a quick learner, but off-track wasn’t always easy. Isaac wasn’t the only one tumbling down more often then boarding.
Actually, he was probably better than Stiles himself and when he fell he took it with humor.
They found bumps, at the side of one piste, for jumping. They spend the rest of their day there, jumping higher than should be (humanly) possible or save. Danny was actually pretty good at it (for a human). Allison and Stiles tried, a few times but mostly just watched and crowed at the others.
They went down a few more times than the others did (they just walked up a few yards, to get enough momentum again) together with Lydia.
Lydia was a grace to behold. Stiles didn’t expect anything less, because there wasn’t a thing Lydia did any less than perfect.
There was a T-bar lift, which they took up again. Stiles laughed when he and Lydia got in a little fight.
“No, Ldys, I’m gonna take the lift alone, have you seen how steep it is? Go take the ride with Allison. I’m flailing and falling out of the lift enough as it is.”
Lydia huffed at him and rolled her eyes good-naturedly but actually listened (he didn’t fall out of the lift that time).
* * *
“Hey, watch this!” Jackson yelled from the chairlift ahead and jumped. There was quite some snow beneath him, and it was one of the off-piste tracks they’ve been taking before but this was ridiculous. He just jumped and landed and boarded down the hill.
Erica followed. Then Boyd, and shortly after it was only the humans left on the lift.
“Oh my god, you assholes!” Stiles said with feeling. He didn’t yell, knew they could hear him, as he hissed, “do you want some more fucking hunters to find us? Would you mind, maybe, keeping it a notch down?”
“You’re just jealous, that you can’t do that!” Erica yelled from the ground.
Stiles huffed, but didn’t admit anything.
On the next ride, he saw Scott in front of them, picking up Allison before he jumped. They landed in the snow, like two limp flour bags. Stiles had to snort, and watched Allison trying to get out of the snow, where she lied on top of Scott and — oh, no. Not trying to get off — kissing. “Get a room, you two!” He grimaced.
“Please”, Erica said to his left, gesturing at him and Derek. “Like you two are any better.”
With that she jumped, leaving the two of them behind.
“You wanna go, too?”
Stiles raised an eyebrow. He knew his heart betrayed him, but he still asked, doubtfully, “What, crash like Scott and Allison? No thanks.”
But Derek had already pulled him close, hands tightly around his waist, and leaped off, Stiles laughter echoing after them.