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A small surprise

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Living with the supernatural for a few years lets you build a certain resistance to things that other people, normal people, would usually freak out about. Hence it’s a pretty decent testament to the fucked-upness of their life that nobody’s overly distraught when a lunatic witch de-ages one of their pack members. If one were to ask Isaac, Stiles had it coming. The way he’d mouthed off to the crazy person with the magical powers had been plain stupid. Yet, nobody asks Isaac. Probably because one half of the pack doesn’t want to and the other doesn’t need to.

In any case, toddler Stiles is now drowning in his T-shirt and hoodie, the pants having bid farewell the moment the body shrank, and giving the pack a genuinely surprised look with his big brown eyes. Scott, of course, is crouching down in front of the child with a mostly easy smile.

“Hey buddy! Everything alright? Are you hurt?” The boy shakes his head and Scott’s smile loses its edge. “Great! Do you know who we are?” Stiles nods with a bit of hesitance. It seems good enough for Scott who mirrors the nod enthusiastically. “Alright. Let’s get you to Deaton, then.”

Everything looks calm and nice until Scott tries to pick him up.

“No!” the toddler stumbles over his adult clothes to get out of dodge. “I don’t wanna!” And once Stiles has left the shoes, socks and pants behind, he’s surprisingly quick.

Isaac sees Scotts face fall and feels a pang of commiseration but he’s quickly distracted by Stiles arriving at his apparent destination: The toddler comes to a stop in front of Derek, raising his arms and demanding in the most commanding tone: “You carry me!”

Now that’s a plot twist.

The whole pack waits in anticipation: If Derek acts like he always does around Stiles, the kid will probably cry in under a minute. At first, the alpha in question looks down at this child like it’s some weird alien creature which, knowing Stiles for years, is probably not far off. But then, from one moment to the other, Derek’s features soften - He doesn’t exactly smile or do anything else with his face that may have a placating or calming effect on children, but he frowns less which does a lot to his whole aura – and stoops to roll up Stiles’ hoodie sleeves and pick him up. The boy makes a pleased noise and immediately slings both arms around his neck to cuddle closer.

The look on their alpha’s face is a previously unseen mix of surprise and cautious contentment.

So before Erica ruins the moment and starts to coo, Jackson turns to walk towards their cars. “Let’s go to Deaton’s. I’ve got better things to do with my Saturday than standing in the woods just because Stilinski lost his pants.”

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“… and then m’dad said tomatoes are fruit an’ not veggies!” Stiles babbles excitedly when Allison enters the kitchen. The boy sitting on the counter, diligently pointing out any spot Derek might have missed while cleaning whereas the latter is mostly ensuring that the kid doesn’t hurt himself in his exuberant flailing while sometimes checking in with the food in the oven. It’s awfully adorable.

For a moment, Allison simply stands in the doorway and watches them.

“Ally!” Stiles greets her with a bright grin and a wave. He’s warmed up to the rest of the pack very quickly. Derek’s still his favorite by far – nobody’s really surprised. But the wave is more forceful and uncoordinated than expected and the boy slams the back of his hand into the edge of a cupboard. For a moment, everything and everyone in the room freezes, waiting for the first wail.

Derek is the first to shake off his paralysis. He throws his rag into the sink, dries his hands on his pants and reaches for Stiles who’s still not quite decided on the appropriate reaction, though his lower lip is wobbling precariously.

“Hey. Everything’s going to be fine.” Allison’s never heard such a soothing tone from Derek but there it is and it seems to be working. The Alpha takes the injured hand in his and cups Stiles’ nape with the other so the boy is looking at him. “Let me show you some werewolf magic, okay?” Derek smiles and waits for the boy to nod. He then lifts their joined hands and blows cold air onto the injury in three gentle puffs. The effect seems to be immediate because Stiles’ Bambi eyes grow even larger as he looks from Derek to his hand and back to Derek. The pure adoration in his look feels almost tangible.

Allison can’t help herself: she pulls out her phone to take a picture. By the time she’s done, the hand on Stiles’ neck is already void of dark lines.

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“That one! Pleeeeaaaaase!”

Lydia looks up to what Stiles is excitedly pointing at and she can’t help the twitch of her lips. A mannequin to their left is wearing a well crafted black coat with a cream colored lining that would be nothing out of the ordinary if not for the black ears on the hood. They even have soft cream colored fluff sticking out of them. It’s obviously owed to the trend to make children’s clothes as adorable as possible but she silently agrees with Stiles: the coat is perfect.

Their little shopping trip is almost over and for a child with Stiles’ energy, he has behaved surprisingly well. Therefore she’s very much inclined to buy him a treat and if she is being honest with herself: this she would still get him after a whole morning of temper tantrums.

This is pure gold – and not only because she wants to see Derek’s reaction.


When they get back to the house, Stiles, dressed in his newest acquisition, is running towards the porch as soon as Lydia has opened his door and unbuckled him.

“Derek!” Stiles shouts, brimming with excitement.

Derek, having come to meet them, stops in his tracks.

“Derek look! I’m a wolf now! Jus’ like you!” The boy almost runs into the alpha’s legs when he finally comes to a halt.

“You sure are, buddy.” Derek visibly melts at the sight in front of him, not even trying to keep a straight face.  He crouches down to play with one of the ears. “You look very wolfy.”

The boy practically beams at him and grabs a corner of Derek’s Henley. “Can I run with you now?” he asks eagerly, Bambi eyes in full force.

And sure enough, Derek caves. “After lunch. When you’ve had your nap.”

The following shout of excitement must have Derek’s ears ringing but he doesn’t seem to mind.

Lydia knows Derek will try to give her the stink eye for kidnapping Stiles in the name of fashion later, but she knows him well enough by now to call bullshit.

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The first official pack meeting since Stiles became tiny starts a lot earlier than usual because Derek insists on a strict bedtime that has the little guy sleeping around 8pm – after a decent bedtime story, of course. Opposed to what the rest of the pack is thinking, the blatant favoritism his best friend is showing towards the alpha doesn’t faze him. True, at first it stung a little, but now Scott is simply relishing in the safe knowledge that big Stiles can’t ever deny his feelings for Derek anymore.

Anyway, the pack is actually having a late lunch because they’re waiting for the last stragglers to arrive, namely Boyd and Peter. Boyd is the first to enter the big kitchen and Stiles is quick to abandon his food and chair to greet the beta, but his latest tale – “Awesome hero Derek saves young Stiles from the vicious mushrooms on his pizza” – comes to an abrupt end, when he sees Peter. The scent of fear appears in the air and Derek is out of his chair before Peter can do as much as take another step forward.

“Calm down, nephew.” The zombie wolf rolls his eyes. “I was just saying hi.” This is directed at Stiles who still looks wary and keeps a bit of distance to the newcomers.

Not waiting for Derek’s further reaction, Peter crouches down in front of Stiles and, to Scott’s surprise, considers the boy thoughtfully but without malice. “You don’t like me much, do you?” Stiles’ response is a half-shrug-half-nod kind of thing. “Well, usually I’d say the feeling is mutual since you once set me aflame, but – “

Derek doesn’t let his uncle finish the sentence before he picks Stiles up and protectively cradles him in his arms. “Peter!” he growls and his usually iron grip on his wolf slips and he shifts. “Cut it out.”

The pack watches with rapt attention since Derek hasn’t shifted into another form than his fluffy full shift wolf since Stiles shrank. Scott knows some of them expect Stiles to be scared but he knows better and his knowledge of his best friend is once again confirmed when Stiles’ tension melts away like ice cream under the Californian sun. The boy reverently pats the newly appeared sideburns, giggles while touching the sharp fangs, makes boop sounds when he pats the wrinkly nose and is all in all quite content until his eyes move further up.

“Derek? Where are your eyebrows?”

Chapter Text

It’s the middle of the night when Erica returns from Ladies’ Night with Allison and Lydia. She closes the door slowly, listening for the sound of her most of her pack’s heartbeats and relishing that everyone in the house is safe and sound. That is, until she hears a faint whimper from upstairs.


The thought of past experience lends her the quiet speed she needs to be at the source of the sound within seconds but she is not the first to get to Stiles’ room. Derek is already there, holding the boy in his arms and gently rubbing his back. He acknowledges Erica with a nod which she takes as an invitation to sit down on the bed next to them.

“Hey buddy,” she ruffles his hair and smoothes them again in light strokes. “Bad dreams?”

Stiles turns his head slightly to look at her and makes an affirmative sound. “Scary.” The boy mumbles.

Erica hums while she thinks of a fitting response. Everyone in the pack knows nightmares, most of them have, even before their lives took a turn for the supernatural. It has gotten much better now that they’ve got each other and not so many encounters are life and death situations anymore, which she is immensely grateful for. So she goes for honesty: “I have nightmares too,” she admits and the boy perks up.

“You do?”

She nods. “Yes. I had more when I was younger, but now I have Derek,” she looks up for a moment to give Derek a small, grateful smile. “and you, and Boyd, and Isaac, and all the others. I have a pack and I know that you will always do your best to protect me. And suddenly, things don’t look so scary anymore.”

“And you protect me, too, right?” Big brown eyes look first at Derek and then at her, heartbreakingly hopeful.

“Of course!”, both wolves assure him, Derek a bit quieter but not any less intense. The answering smile, Erica decides, needs to be kissed and so she gives the boy a peck on the cheek. “We will all protect you, but,” she leans in to loud-whisper in his ear, “we both know who’s the best protector in the whole world, right?” She grins when his eyes wander upwards to look at the Alpha, whose face has gone all warm and soft, a stark contrast to the beginning. “Exactly.” She leans back, “And that’s why I will leave you now in his capable paws. Sleep well, buddy.” Stiles’ hair is ruffled once more before she gets up to really leave them alone.

Low talking picks up shortly after she exits the room but it’s all quiet after a quick shower and brushing her teeth. Now, only the nightlight is on but when she peeks into the room, it’s not what she expected: A huge black wolf lies on the bed, protectively curled around the little boy. Stiles is wrapped in his blanket once again but his hands and face are buried in Derek’s fur. It’s too cute not to take a picture with her phone and so she takes ten.

After a whispered “Goodnight.”, she saunters into her room and slips under the covers into Boyd’s waiting arms.

Chapter Text

Being back to his actual age and size again is weird. Remembering every waking minute of it makes it even weirder. The pack (minus Jackson) is pretty nice about it. Erica and Boyd brought normal-sized clothes to Deaton’s and Scott drops him off at home, after making sure he’ll be okay all by himself. His Dad will be home from his conference-slash-getting-fed-and guilt-tripped by aunt Olivia so he’s got enough time to freak out and put himself together again.

Apart from the humiliation to have been even more of a klutz as a child and talking everyone’s ear off without any filter at all, there’s the simple truth, that apparently his massive crush had manifested in him acting like an imprinted duckling. And Derek has been nothing but gentle, protective and all in all perfect for smol Stiles which, compared to their usual interactions, is just mindblowing. Or is it? Stiles lets himself fall on his bed and stares at the ceiling. Sure, Derek and he had started out with wall-shoving, threats and some mutual saving but after the several shitstorms had blown over and everything had calmed down, they had become more amicable. Their banter has become friendlier, more for the sake of it instead of proving a point. Also, Derek does keep Stiles’ favorite soda and some Reeses Cups on hand in the loft and he seems to value Stiles’ opinion. And they hang out without the pack from time to time. And Derek always makes sure to scent him, even before the de-ageing. Maybe… No. That’s impossible, right? The guy’s just finally come to terms with Stiles being proper part of the pack.

He sighs.

This is going nowhere. Did Derek take care of young-him because he was being a good Alpha? Or because he liked interacting with children? Or because he had a vested interested in Stiles’ (well-being)? He will never know without further insight in the matter, which means waiting or… talking to Derek. He’s not sure what’s more menacing.

There is Netflix and Halo and research on mainly girly webpages and staring at the wall some more between this point and the moment he decides that asking would probably be the most reasonable decision. If books have taught him anything, it’s that communication could prevent a lot of harm and heartbreak – maybe not heartbreak but at least harm.

It still is a long way from his room to the Jeep. Does he stay in his usual clothes? Does he change? Flowers? Chocolates? What’s the protocol? But in the end, he takes advice from Kurt Cobain and he comes as he is.

In a burst of self-confidence or maybe just pure stubbornness, he is quick to leave the Jeep and takes two steps walking up the porch of the rebuilt Hale house. Luckily, everyone of the pack has a key or else Stiles doubts he would be able to keep his momentum going. Knocking and waiting unfortunately gives too much time to overthink. But since he can just barrel into the house, he catches Derek in a rare moment of surprise. The Alpha is apparently packing away toddler Stiles’ stuff and he’s currently holding the wolf-eared coat that Stiles should be embarrassed by but isn’t. Derek’s expression before realizing that he’s got company, though, that stops Stiles in his tracks. He’s looking at the children’s coat with a melancholic longing. Then, when he looks up and sees Stiles, it’s replaced with careful neutrality with a nanosecond of regretful embarrassment in between.

Stiles’ mind is racing.

“Hi- Hi, Derek.” He had a whole speech planned but now, he’s questioning the whole thing a little. Maybe Derek really just likes kids, would have acted the same around Jackson or Isaac, because they would be pack and adorable. At least Isaac. He wasn’t so sure about Jackson. Maybe-

“Stiles. Everything alright?” Of course, the werewolf has caught up on Stiles’ nerves and minor distress. It’s almost enough to make him smile fondly at his Alpha. And it’s definitely enough to take a deep breath and just… jump. His last thought is that he’s at least got somewhere to run when this blows up in his face. His relatives in Poland will surely take him in, right?

“I’m in love with you.” He blurts. The shocked silence was to expected but he has rarely been someone who just waits patiently, or more accurately, in silence. “I’m in love with you.” He repeats, “Have been for some time- okay, maybe not from the start, because I’m not that much of a masochist but then you acquired some chill and showed you really care about the pack and stuff and… and then I saw you smile for real and just-,“ He flails with his arms to encompass the amount of feelings he had and still has about this particular moment and Derek smiles in general. “And not just that! The you have to be a giant dork too! One who reads classic literature and rescues kittens from trees and can make Star Wars references. And you do this super cute thing with your nose when you’re genuinely surprised by someone – actually exactly what you’re doing right now – and then-“

And then, Derek is kissing him.

At first, Stiles is a bit starstruck, but he’s quick on the uptake and soon reciprocating like a champ. Derek Hale is kissing him. DEREK HALE is KISSING him! Derek Hale is cradling his cheek with one hand and his hipbone with the other, keeping him close. It’s magic but also over way too soon but Stiles feels like his entire world has been altered significantly.

“If you just did that to shut me up…” he trails off, a little out of breath.

Derek shakes his head. “No. But it’s good to know it works.” He smirks and Stiles is torn between glaring and falling in love all over again.

The choice is taken from him, when Derek pulls him into yet another kiss.


- 7 Years later –

“Daddy! Help! The dress is eating me!” their daughter’s cry carries all the way down to the kitchen but Derek’s already on his way. Stiles snorts and takes an appreciative look at his husband’s behind before grabbing the bowl with veggie mush and sitting down in front of their youngest. He gives his son a serious look. “Now, we talked about this: food goes into you mouth, not on the walls. Got it?” He gets a toothless grin and a happy flail in return. Good enough.

Sixty percent of the food has made it into Noah’s mouth – win! – when Derek returns with a happy babbling Lia on his arm. “Hey, princess! You look stunning!” Stiles grins at his daughter and gets a beaming smile and a giggle in return. “Need help with your hair?” She immediately shakes her hair and puts a decisive hand on her daddy’s collarbone. “No! Daddy can do it better!”

Ah, yes, children do not pull their punches. But Stiles isn’t mad or hurt. Especially when he sees Derek looking adorably proud. He can live with coming in second on the parental scale because he has known for a long time, that Derek is the best dad.