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The Boy in Red

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It’s hard for Stiles to believe that a year has gone by since the fateful night his father got a radio call about a body being found in the woods. A year since Laura Hale’s murder, a year since Scott was turned into a werewolf, a year since they met Allison and Derek. School is starting again, and the world seems so different from how it was at the beginning of their last school year that he could be on a different planet.

A lot of awful shit has happened, but a lot of good stuff has happened too, and he wouldn’t trade it. He’s happy with his life, and he had a great summer. There were beach trips, hiking in the mountains, endless video games, and tons of pool parties at Lydia’s. Then in July, they had brought Boyd into the pack, and now they’re stronger than ever. The next school year is sure to be interesting. They’re juniors now, so somewhat elevated in status. He and Scott have a plan to seize the captaincy of the lacrosse team and unseat Jackson, which will cause him to go into a frothing rage.

They sat around and compared their schedules the previous day. Stiles has English literature, which he shares with Lydia and Isaac, physics, which he shares with Lydia, Allison, and Boyd, modern American history, which he shares with everyone except Lydia, who’s taking some world culture class. The daunting ‘AMF’, which stands for ‘advanced mathematical functions’ and is typically just called pre-calc, which only Lydia shares with him. Lastly, third-year Spanish, because being fluent in Spanish comes in handy in California, so that’s what he chose at the beginning of high school and he may as well stick with it. That’s it for his academics.

Then he has home economics, because screw the fact that tradition dictates that guys take shop and girls take home ec. He’d rather make a pie than a cabinet. If he wants a cabinet, he’ll get Derek to make it for him. Gym, of course, because everybody has to take gym, except Erica, who’s gotten out of it on the principle of her epilepsy even though she’s been seizure-free for six months now.

The others have an eclectic smattering of classes like art or music, varying levels of math and science. Scott’s opted to take anatomy instead of physics, because it will look good on his record when he applies to veterinary school. Erica decided to take economics instead of a math class because she’s pretty sure if she wears low-cut shirts, Finstock will give her an A regardless of whether or not she does any work.

Stiles feels like they should be having some sort of anniversary party, to celebrate the day that his life got turned upside down. But he can’t really suggest it. For Derek, this is the anniversary of the day his sister died. Everything else is secondary to that.

But in the end, they have a celebration of sorts anyway, because the weekend before school starts is when they break ground on the new house. By ‘they’ he means ‘the contractors’; Stiles knows nothing about house-building. Derek’s been working on the plans all summer. It’s being built on the Hale family property, as far away from the previous house as the landscape would allow. The ruins still stand there, but Derek has at least started talking about maybe putting a memorial tree or something there instead. He won’t be ready for a while, but he’s getting there.

In the original design, the house was a modest, two-bed one-bath that Derek had obviously built with only himself in mind. Stiles was the one who pointed out that the place is likely to become pack central (since as much as they love Papa Stilinski, it’s more fun to hang out without adults around) and maybe he should make the bedroom a little bigger? Derek grudgingly agreed that it wouldn’t be a bad idea to do that, and maybe add another bathroom (or two). Then Stiles suggested maybe he should add on a studio so he wouldn’t have to drive into town when he wanted to work, which seemed like a pretty good idea. Isaac said something about maybe having a green house for plants, and Lydia wanted a separate study room or else they’ll never get their homework done, and Scott pointed out that the living room in the design was nowhere near big enough for a Mortal Kombat tournament and Stiles said, “you don’t seriously expect me to manage in a kitchen that small, right?”

So the house grew and grew until eventually everyone was satisfied with the plans and it was nearly the size of the original Hale house. Derek grumbled and complained about his house being hijacked, but he clearly enjoyed every minute of it, particularly after Stiles got him some architectural software that let him design in 3D.

While they were doing all this, Derek was calling for permits and talking to contractors and doing all that adult stuff that Stiles didn’t have a clue about. The night before school starts, the entire pack gathers on the Hale land and watches the contractors break ground to lay the foundation. It’s a nice moment.

He wakes up the morning that school starts to the beeping of his alarm, which is a strangely nice feeling to wake up to. Most people hate waking to their alarm, but for Stiles, that means that he slept the night through without nightmares, without having to get up and start baking to hold the panic at bay. Derek is curled up in his wolf form beside him, but other than that, he’s alone.

Stiles had expected the need for ‘wolf slumber parties’ to last their whole lives, but as the pack grew stronger, it had passed. Strangely, the fact that they were closer together meant that being physically close wasn’t as important anymore. This isn’t to say that they don’t all sleep in a wolf pile at least two or three times a week, usually at Derek’s, where they have the most room. But as he lies there and swats at his alarm clock, he can feel all the others’ presence without needing them in the room. Allison’s excitement about a new school year; Lydia’s careful precision as she plans her back-to-school outfit and makes sure her earrings match her shoes. Scott’s grumbling about how early in the morning it is; Isaac’s anxiety about the classes he’s going to be taking and how different this year will be. Erica’s flash and fire as she argues with her mother about how short her skirt is; Boyd’s endless patience as he makes school lunches for each of his four younger siblings. They’re all there.

Isaac usually sleeps either at Scott’s, or wherever Stiles and Derek happens to be, since he doesn’t have a home to go to anymore. Erica and Allison are both required by their parents to spend at least three nights at home per week, although Erica often has one or more pack members crash on her floor when this happens. Boyd is largely responsible for his siblings, since his parents work so much, so even on pack nights, he’ll need to get up early and get home now that the school year has started.

“Rise and shine, sleepy wolf,” Stiles says, yawning and stretching. Derek makes a grumbling noise and doesn’t move. This is typical. He’s been complaining incessantly for the past week about how early they’re going to have to start getting up now that school will be back in session. Stiles just laughs and leaves him there, getting out of bed and heading to the shower.

In a way, it’s nice to have his own morning routine back, and not have to rush because six other people are waiting to use the bathroom. Scott and Isaac have always been the sort to crawl out of bed at the very last minute, so he was always nominated to get up early (unless he hadn’t been sleeping well, in which case nobody bothered him lest Derek snarl). So he takes his time in the shower, singing bad renditions of Elvis while he cleans up, then climbs out and wraps a towel around his waist. He rubs his hair dry and gives it a skeptical look. All the girls are adamant about the fact that the longer hair, standing up in loose spikes, looks a lot better on him than the buzz cut. He personally has no opinion on the matter, beyond wondering why it’s so important to them.

He gets dressed in a Captain America T-shirt and jeans, then jogs downstairs. His father has started the coffee maker and is sitting at the kitchen table, reading the paper. Stiles grins. His father is so old-fashioned sometimes; it always makes him laugh. “Morning,” he says, his front half disappearing into the refrigerator. “What happened to that turkey bacon I bought?”

“I put it in the freezer,” Stilinski says. “We needed the space.”

“Dad, you knew I was going to cook that for you . . .”

“Mm hm,” Stilinski says. “It was a safety issue. Your safety.”

Stiles makes a face at his father and pulls out a carton of eggs instead. Just to annoy his father, he carefully separates out the yolks and cooks an egg-white omelet with broccoli and spinach for both of them. His father sighs but eats it regardless, with his whole wheat toast. “You know, my total cholesterol was very good on my last check,” he says.

“Good,” Stiles says. “Let’s keep it that way.”

He finishes eating his breakfast, and then it occurs to him that he still hasn’t seen hide nor hair of Derek, which is unusual. Typically, the wolf will notice within minutes of Stiles’ departure, and get out of bed if only to make sure everything’s okay. Once he’s up, the coffee will keep him up, at least until Stiles has left for school.

“Better hurry or you’ll be late,” Stilinski calls after him, as he jogs up the stairs.

“Yeah, yeah,” Stiles shouts back. He goes into his bedroom to find that Derek has shifted to his human form, but not gotten out of bed. “There’s coffee downstairs,” he says. “I’ve gotta head to school. See you later?”

“Yeah,” Derek says, and then coughs. “Okay,” he says, and then coughs again. It’s not a healthy sounding cough, or a ‘food went down the wrong way’ cough. It’s a heavy, wet, phlegmy cough.

Stiles blinks. “Are you sick?” he asks.

“No,” Derek says. “Werewolves don’t get sick.” This sentences leads to another spate of coughing, this one prolonged and painful sounding. “Ugh.”

Stiles sits down on the edge of the bed. “You sure as hell sound sick,” he says, and presses his hand against the back of Derek’s neck. It’s a little warm, but Derek is always a little warm. “You don’t really feel feverish,” he adds, and gives a little shrug. “Well, stay in bed, I guess. Think of me suffering through class while you lie here in bed like a slug.”

Derek flips him off and pulls the blankets back over his head.

Stiles just laughs at him and jogs back down the stairs. “I’m outta here!” he shouts to his father, and bounces out the front door. He’s promised Erica and Boyd that he’ll pick them up, since neither of them has a car. Allison is going to pick up Scott and Isaac. He pulls up outside Boyd’s house first and gives the horn a light honk. Boyd appears only seconds later. He carefully locks up the front door and then gets in the Jeep.

“I appreciate you picking me up,” he says, because Boyd is that kind of person.

“No problem,” Stiles says cheerfully. “How’d the kids like those lemon cookies?”

“Oh, man, they devoured them,” Boyd says, laughing. “I didn’t get to eat any at all, so I hope you kept some for the rest of us.”

“Scott and Derek would rake me over the coals if I hadn’t,” Stiles says. The two of them chat about whether or not Boyd will try out for lacrosse – he’s athletic enough but not really a fan of organized sports – until they get to Erica’s house. She comes out wearing a form-hugging pink tank top and a little black skirt. Both Boyd and Stiles take a minute to admire her legs as she gets into the car and leans over to greet them.

“At least one teacher is going to try to send you home for wearing that outfit,” Boyd predicts.

Erica smirks at them. “I read the dress code. I have three quarters of an inch to spare on the skirt before it’s too short.”

“Of course you do,” Stiles says, amused.

School is loud and exciting and the day actually goes by pretty quickly. His literature teacher is hilarious, the physics class looks like it’s going to be insanely difficult, the pre-calc teacher is a hard-ass. He knows the Spanish teacher from the previous year, and the history professor gets ridiculously excited about being able to teach something besides the American Revolution. Home economics will be an easy A, at least until they get to sewing. He signs up for the lacrosse try-outs the following day.

Jackson is parading around with some floozy on his arm, and Stiles catches Lydia glaring at him once or twice. He knows that her basic opinion on Jackson these days is, ‘ugh, what did I ever see in him’, but it can’t be easy to see him with another girl. Erica, of course, has all the male attention she can stand. Stiles is astonished to find out that he’s now got something of a reputation as a player, since he’s frequently seen with Lydia and Erica, the two most attractive girls in school. Erica thinks this is hilarious and spends the lunch period in his lap, playing with his hair.

Since it’s the first day, they don’t have much homework, so they decide to each get their after-school stuff done and then convene at Derek’s to compare notes on their first day. Stiles comes home with his stack of books and dumps his backpack on the floor. When he jogs into his bedroom to get his laptop, he finds Derek still in bed. He laughs, startled. “Have you been in here all day?”

Derek lifts his head and starts to reply, but then is caught in another harsh, wracking coughing fit. It takes a minute to settle down. Then he croaks, “Yeah. Shit. Is school over already?”

“Yeah,” Stiles says. “Wow, you must actually be sick. Have you taken anything?”

“Like . . . what?” Derek asks.

“I guess you wouldn’t know, huh,” Stiles says. “Here, I’ll make you some tea with honey.”

He jogs downstairs and this time brings his bag of school stuff back up with him, along with some other stuff. Derek makes ridiculous gagging noises just at the smell of cough syrup, but Stiles forces him to choke a tablespoon down. He takes his temperature and finds it elevated at 101.6. “Shit, you have a fever,” he says. “Here, drink this,” he adds, handing over the mug of tea.

“It’s not that bad,” Derek says. “Werewolves normally run a little warmer than people.”

“Right, I know,” Stiles says. “Scott told me that once. Around a hundred, right? You’ve still got a fever.”

Derek grumbles and sips the tea. “Werewolves don’t get sick,” he reiterates.

“All evidence to the contrary,” Stiles replies. He makes Derek take some Tylenol and sits down with his homework, trying to ignore the sound of Derek coughing and the vague emotional sense he feels of a wolf in his pack in distress. Eventually, Derek drifts off to sleep and the feeling quiets. Stiles doesn’t want to make him get up, so he shoots a quick text to the others to let them know to come to the Stilinski house instead of Derek’s.

“He’s sick?” Scott asks, startled, when he arrives. “I thought wolves couldn’t get sick. I mean, wasn’t that the whole point of turning Erica to begin with? And why my asthma doesn’t give me trouble anymore?”

Stiles lifts his hands in surrender. “Look, if you’ve got a better explanation for why he’s got a fever and a cough and looks like death warmed over . . .” He shrugs. “There must be some viruses potent enough to give even a werewolf trouble. He’s probably got some nasty strain of influenza. Give the wolf healing a day to fight it off and he’ll be good as new.”

In the meantime, everyone agrees that sick Derek is hilarious. All of them have had their turns with chicken pox, mononucleosis, the flu, and of course the usual assortment of viruses that come with being human. Erica in particular teases Derek about being a wimp when he finally shuffles out of bed, wearing one of Stiles’ bathrobes and groaning.

“You want some more tea?” Stiles asks, trying not to snicker.

Derek just groans and flops onto the sofa.

“You look like shit,” Isaac says to him. “Are you okay?”

“I feel terrible,” Derek says, and stifles another coughing fit.

Stiles checks his temperature again. He still has a fever, but it’s stable. So he gives him some more tea, this time with ginger and lemon in it. Derek curls up on the sofa and sips it slowly. “Ginger’s a natural anti-inflammatory,” Stiles tells him. Derek gives him a look that clearly conveys how little he cares. “Just trying to help,” Stiles says, and goes back to bitching about how difficult physics is going to be.

But he’s bothered by one thing, which is that if this virus is really that virulent, he would think at least one of the other pack members would have gotten it. He and Allison are still human, with human immune systems; even if the other werewolves could fight it off, it’s surprising that neither of them are sick. He drinks two glasses of orange juice for the vitamin C and shepherds Derek back to bed. He doesn’t even want dinner, but Stiles pesters him until he eats some soup.

It’s difficult to sleep while he can hear Derek shifting and coughing next to him, and from the feel of the others, they’re not thrilled with it either. But they put up with it, and eventually Derek drifts into a sleep deep enough that the coughing stops. Relieved, Stiles dozes, but he doesn’t sleep very well.

The next morning, he’s awake when the alarm clock goes off. Derek stirs but doesn’t wake as the others rise to get ready for school. Stiles is going to let him sleep, but when he puts a hand on Derek’s forehead, it’s hot to the touch. “Damn,” he says underneath his breath. Derek opens his eyes and looks up at him somewhat pitifully. “Hey, how are you feeling?”

“Awful,” Derek says, rolling onto his side. “I’m still exhausted. Why am I so tired? I got plenty of sleep.”

“Being sick will do that to you,” Stiles says. He checks Derek’s temperature. It’s gone up a degree, to 102.5. Stiles makes him more tea with honey, but he’s distracted while he does it. Could it be just a virus? Could that happen to a werewolf?

“I hurt all over,” Derek says, drinking the tea. “My head hurts and my back hurts and . . .”

“Your itty bitty pinkies hurt?” Erica suggests, and there’s a spate of giggling from the wolves.

“Fuck you,” Derek retorts, with none of his usual vigor.

“It definitely sounds like the flu,” Scott says, when Stiles gives him a questioning look. “Severe exhaustion, head and body ache, fever, cough. That’s the flu all over.”

“Great,” Stiles says.

Scott gives a little shrug. “I guess being a werewolf can’t fix everything. Just make sure he gets plenty of fluids and keep him in bed.”

“Not a problem,” Derek croaks, pulling the blankets over his head.

Stiles wants to stay home from school, but his father doesn’t agree with that plan. “It’s only your second day, son,” he says, when Stiles brings this up. “And in terms of academics, the second day is really the first day. Let’s not start the year off by missing a bunch of classes.” He sees Stiles hesitate and says, “Tell you what, I’ll come check on him during my lunch hour. And if he’s not feeling better when you get home, why don’t we call Melissa to come check him over?”

“Okay,” Stiles says, but he’s not sure he likes this plan. He looks over at Derek and says, “You’ll be okay without me?”

Derek mumbles something incoherent.

Stiles heads off to school with sincere misgivings. Everyone else seems to think that this is moderately hilarious, but something about it just doesn’t seem right to him. All of them are so close that if one of them was going to get a contagious disease, they should all have it. He does a little quick research while he waits for his first class to start, to make sure he’s correct about how the flu is transmitted. He is. It seems odd that Derek is the only one who’s sick. Besides that, it’s not flu season.

He texts Derek between every class to remind him to stay well-hydrated and ask if he needs anything. Half the time, these texts get no response, and he assumes that Derek is sleeping. Rest is the best thing for him, but he still has to resist the urge to run home and make sure that’s the reason the wolf isn’t responding.

When he gets home, Derek is curled up in his wolf form underneath every spare blanket in the house. Chills are another common symptom of the flu, but Derek is actually shivering. Stiles curls around him instinctively, but Derek is radiating heat like an oven. His fever has gone up again. Stiles mutters curses underneath his breath and wonders what to do.

“Well, shit, do I bring you to a doctor or to a vet?” he asks, and Derek gives him the dirtiest of dirty looks. “I’m serious, asshole, you’re the one who’s a wolf right now.”

Derek slumps. He doesn’t seem to want to change forms, and to be fair, Stiles is thinking that Dr. Deaton might be a better bet than Melissa anyway. If it’s the flu, they’ll both know. If it’s something else, something weird, Dr. Deaton will know more than she will. “C’mon,” he says to Derek. “We’re off to see the wizard.”

His phone rings just as he’s standing up, and he sees that it’s Scott. “Just the person I wanted to talk to,” he says, picking it up. “Do you work today?”

“Uh, no.” Scott sounds a little funny. “Where are you?”

“Home, duh,” Stiles says. “I came to check on Derek. He’s still feeling pretty awful and I was thinking I might swing by the clinic. Where else would I be?”

“Nothing, never mind,” Scott says hastily. “No, I don’t work today. But I’m sure Dr. Deaton won’t mind if you stop by. You want me to call him?”

“Yeah, thanks,” Stiles says. “I’ll see you later.”

He hangs up and tucks his phone away in his pocket, wondering what all that was about but quickly dismissing the thought. Knowing Scott, it could be anything that had him distracted, up to and including the shirt Allison was wearing. He has more important things to worry about. He puts the hated collar and leash on Derek and gets him out into the car. The wolf shuffles along with his head down.

Dr. Deaton greets them with his usual pleasant smile and says, “Well, what do we have here?”

“Derek’s feeling a little under the weather,” Stiles says. “Since he seems to be more comfortable as a wolf right now, I decided to bring him here.”

“Okay,” Deaton says. Since Derek isn’t about to hop up onto the table, he kneels down on the floor. “What sort of symptoms?”

“Fever, chills, cough, aches, general ickiness,” Stiles says. He gives a little shrug and says, “Honestly, if he weren’t a wolf, I wouldn’t have worried about it. But it seems kind of weird that he would suddenly get the flu. He’s never been sick in his life. None of the rest of us have any symptoms at all, so it doesn’t seem to be infectious, whatever it is.”

Deaton nods a little while Stiles talks about this, then takes out his stethoscope and presses it against Derek’s chest. Derek allows this, although he certainly doesn’t look thrilled with it. He looks in Derek’s ears and down his throat, shines a little pen flashlight in his eyes, which makes Derek growl at him.

“You may want to shift back so I can take your temperature,” he tells Derek. “You wouldn’t like where the thermometer goes for dogs.”

Stiles chokes back a laugh. Derek huffs and shifts back, but immediately starts shivering. Stiles was prepared for this eventuality, and wraps him in a blanket. Deaton puts the thermometer in his ear and it beeps. “103.3,” he says.

“That’s higher than it was yesterday,” Stiles says, unable to curb the anxiety in his voice.

“Mm,” Deaton says. He sits back, obviously comfortable seated on the floor with both of them. “The lack of contagion is odd, but there’s actually an easy explanation. Werewolves can get sick, but as Derek says, it’s extremely rare. I’ve seen wolves who’ve gotten bad infections. Typically speaking, the more virulent it is, the more likely a wolf will get it. The most likely reason that he’s sick but the rest of you are not is that he has something that you’ve been vaccinated against.”

“Oh!” Stiles feels a well of relief at this explanation. “I guess that would make sense. I mean, we’ve all had our MMR and our TDaP. The school system requires it. I mean, you can get an exemption but I don’t think any of us have. But the Hale family probably didn’t bother, right? Being werewolves and all.”

Deaton nods. “There are also illnesses that born wolves are susceptible to that humans and made wolves are not,” he says. “Like, well, you’ll laugh, but kennel cough and distemper have been seen in born wolves. Dogs are routinely vaccinated against such things, but werewolves aren’t.”

Stiles stifles another laugh. “Okay. So what’s your best guess, doc?”

“It could be pertussis, although he’s not really making the whooping noise that should go with it,” Deaton says. “Diptheria is less common but still a possibility. He’s got swollen glands, so he could also have mononucleosis. That’s not highly contagious, and once you’ve had it, you don’t usually get it a second time. Do you know if you or any of the others have had mono?”

“Scott and I definitely have; we got it at the same time when we were eleven,” Stiles says. He vividly remembers that fun summer. “I don’t know about any of the others.”

“My real concern would be meningitis,” Deaton says. “That’s a common one for wolves to get because of how virulent it is. Wolves who have been healthy all their lives, when they get sick for the first time, you always want to check for meningitis. He doesn’t really have the neck stiffness, but sometimes wolves won’t get all the classic symptoms; it depends on what their healing chooses to focus on. So if you don’t mind me doing a few tests . . .”

“No, no, whatever you think is appropriate,” Stiles says. He’s nearly drowning in relief that there’s a logical explanation for all this. That he can relax a little. He stays with Derek while Dr. Deaton takes a few samples – some blood and a throat swab, and then does the lumbar puncture to check for meningitis. That apparently hurts like a bitch, because Derek growls the whole time, although he doesn’t move.

“I’ll run these overnight,” Dr. Deaton says, “and call you guys in the morning. Until then, just keep doing what you’re doing. Plenty of fluids, plenty of rest. Tylenol or ibuprofen to bring the fever down. Double the recommended dose – wolves metabolize things more quickly. I’ll write you a prescription for cough syrup with codeine – that ought to help him get some sleep.”

“Thank you, thank you so much,” Stiles says.

“Thanks,” Derek adds grudgingly, when Stiles elbows him. He shifts back and they head for home, making a quick stop at the pharmacy to get the prescription filled. Once they’re home, Stiles doses him with cough syrup and Tylenol and tea, and steers him onto the sofa. By the time he’s finished the tea, the codeine is taking effect, and he falls into a dead sleep. Stiles watches him for a little while and sees that his breathing is easier, his body more relaxed.

He’s so relieved that all he can do is just curl up with Derek and nap for a little while, even though he knows he should be doing his homework. The night’s uneasy sleep and the stress of the day have taken their toll on him.

He jolts awake about an hour later when the front door bangs open and half the pack troops in. Boyd has gone home to make sure his younger siblings do their homework and get dinner, and Allison has gone home to appease her parents, but everyone else is there.

“He looks a lot better,” Lydia says, and Stiles sums up what Dr. Deaton told him.

“I think doubling the dose of the Tylenol really helped,” he says, pressing his hand against Derek’s cheek. “He’s a lot cooler. And he’s definitely sleeping better.”

“Poor baby,” Erica says, laughing. “He has no idea what’s happened to him, does he.”

“Nope,” Stiles says. Now he can afford to be amused and laugh with them at Derek’s misery. “Hey, Scott, what was up earlier? I didn’t even think to ask why you were calling me.”

Scott squirms a little uncomfortably, but says, “Uh, well, I was calling to see where you were. Because you were supposed to be at lacrosse try-outs.”

“Fuck!” Stiles slaps his palm against his forehead. “I forgot all about it.”

“Well, don’t worry too much,” Scott says. “You know Finstock. Just show up for practice tomorrow, I’ll tell him you made first line, point to some illegible scribble on his roster, and he’ll claim he remembers doing it so he doesn’t look like an idiot.”

“Thanks,” Stiles says, and laughs again. “I’ll owe you one for that.”

“It wouldn’t be as much fun without you,” Isaac says.

Stiles waves this off, embarrassed, and sets down to do his homework with the others. He’s fidgety, so in between bouts of physics and math, he gets up and works in the kitchen, making chicken noodle soup. Home remedies are the best remedies a lot of the time. They finish up their homework just as Boyd arrives from his house. Allison is staying home, so Lydia and Erica decide to go keep her company. It’s only the boys, so they sit down to watch The Fast and the Furious. Derek snoozes on, never once disturbed.

Stiles wakes him long enough to make him eat some of the soup. He’s a little hoarse, but says he feels better, less achy. His temperature is back down to the low hundreds, and Stiles breathes a sigh of relief. Just before bed, he gives Derek another dose of the Tylenol and cough syrup, and they all sleep in a pile in Stiles’ room.

 

~ ~ ~ ~