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Because I'm human

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Stiles stumbled into the dark alley, clutching at his bleeding shoulder. He could hear the wolves growling behind him, their angry snarls and howls of pain were almost deafening. Stiles needed to get back to Scott’s pack, he had to help them, they were outnumbered three to one and without his help…he didn’t want to think about it, but the deep claw marks on his left shoulder throbbed, the pain was indescribable. His blue Captain America t-shirt was soaked through with coppery blood and the side of his neck and hands were stained with the red liquid, still warm and sticky to the touch. Stiles rested his hand against the cool surface of the brick wall. His body ached with a deep pain he hasn’t felt in so long.

 

Stiles knew he needed to get back to the pack, knew he needed to help but he also knew that he would do more harm than good. The wolves would be too busy trying to keep him safe and not enough time watching their own furry behinds.

 

He cast one last long glance over his shoulder at the mouth of the alley, he could still make out Derek’s hulking form slashing at the rogue wolves that had invaded Beacon Hills territory. Before Stiles could change his mind and rush back to the pack a rough hand grabbed his arm. He instinctively tried to pry his arm from the tight grip. Stiles thrashed around, throwing his arms out, trying to attack the dark figure looming over him but he didn’t have the strength left in him to do any damage. Right now he was about as threatening as a five-year-old throwing a tantrum.

 

Another pair of arms grabbed him from behind, pinning his arms to his sides. Stiles tried to struggle, tried to throw his head back and headbutt the asshole who had grabbed him but his wild movements sent waves of pain through his shoulder and side- he was sure there was another set of claw marks across his ribs but until now he hadn’t noticed the pain. The man behind him tightened his grip. His thick, beefy arms felt like they were pressing down on his chest, forcing the breath out of his abused lungs.

 

The first man roughly pushed Stiles head to the side, exposing the pale expanse of his neck. “Stop,” he managed to croak out but was rewarded with a breathless laugh and a rough tug to his hair. He knew what was coming even before the cold tip of the needle pressed against his heated flesh. The cold liquid zapped what little strength he had left. His body felt like jelly and even with the voice in his head screaming at him to get up and fight, he couldn’t, even keeping his eyes open was a task he couldn’t quite manage. The last thing he saw through the bleak darkness was a familiar pair of glowing golden eyes-Isaac.

 

3 days prior.

 

Scott and the rest of his little rag tag group of fur balls have been acting strange, well stranger than usual. Over the past week, it feels like they’ve been freezing him out. Whenever Stiles walks into a room all conversation stops and they just stare at him like how dare this puny human approach us in such a civilized manner and if that wasn’t bad enough last week he and Scott were meant to have a guys night, play Halo and eat enough pizza to re-sink the Titanic but he was left sitting in Scott’s room for three hours, at first he thought maybe his little werewolf buddy was running late or Deaton was making him work late, but when Melissa got home from her shift she looked surprised to see him and asked why he wasn’t at the pack meeting at Derek’s. That right there hit home. Stiles didn’t care that he was the pack human or that he was often the 8th wheel to their little supernatural party but it just plain hurt that his best friend ‘forgot’ to invite him to pack night, which might he add was his idea! Getting together as a pack and bonding had been his idea and now he’s not even invited to that.

 

Stiles stopped, his fork which was piled high with curly fries stopped halfway to his mouth. He just realized something- They’re kicking him out, sure it was a thought before but now that he really thinks about it, it makes sense. They really have gone above and beyond to make sure he knows that he’s no longer welcome in the pack. Did all those sleepless nights Stiles spent researching the newest big bad while he was as high as a kite on Adderall mean nothing? Or all the times he’s saved their lives? Maybe holding up an Alpha werewolf for 2 hours in several feet of freezing water while a half lizard man hisses and claws at you from the edge of the pool means absolutely nothing, and maybe coaching your best friend through his first full moon (which neither of you knew anything about) is somehow meaningless and unimportant.

 

But whatever, it’s not like they completely ditched him to eat lunch alone at their table while they eat somewhere else laughing like a bunch of idiots. Oh, wait they did! They’re sitting two tables over with the lacrosse team, laughing obnoxiously about some stunt Greenberg pulled that pissed Coach off. All the while little Stiles is sitting at the same table that he and Scott claimed as theirs on their first day of Sophomore year. “Stiles?” His head snapped up. He had been so lost in thought he hadn’t noticed Danny was trying to get his attention.
”Hey Dano, Danny boy-”
”Why are you sitting here by yourself? I thought you’d be celebrating with Scott.”

“Celebrating what? Scott’s rise to fame or the fact that he got rid of the pathetic, spastic kid who can’t sit still.” He spat. Stiles didn’t mean to snap at the other teen but he was just so frustrated and angry and Danny just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

 

Danny placed his empty lunch tray down opposite Stiles and regarded him with a look he could only explain as the same look he gets when he presents his dad with a Tofu burger- disbelief and thinly veiled horror. “Wha-I-I wouldn’t call you pathetic or a spastic,” he frowned, his forehead scrunching in a very un-Danny like manner, it wasn’t like him to stutter either. “But-I…was talking about Scott becoming captain?” Of course, Scott made captain, is it too hard for him not to use his freaky little werewolf shit and give us lowly humans a chance? It wasn’t fair. Stiles doesn’t use his abilities to further himself in school and life and yet the wolves do- granted they don’t know that he isn’t exactly human but still, it’s the principle of the matter! “I didn’t know he was,” Stiles started, much calmer this time, “I’m not on the team, remember Danny boy.”

 

Stiles turned his attention back to his food. He pushed around the few curly fries that he hadn’t mercilessly destroyed and smeared a dollop of ketchup through the leafy greens nestled on the edge of his plate, which he's has been trying to avoid since sitting down. “You’re not the only one who didn’t make it onto the team.” That had Stiles head snapping to attention. Danny, the Danny, nice guy extraordinaire, guy who has never said a mean thing in his entire life and goalie since Sophomore year didn’t make it onto the team? God, it didn’t even cross his mind that he wasn’t the only one who got cut. “But you’re Danny!” he exclaimed, like it explained everything, “How could you-I don’t-That’s like-” he was grasping at straws. For once in his life, Stiles just didn’t know what to say. His arms were flapping around like he could just pull words out of the air.

 

“It doesn’t really matter,” Danny shrugged, “I’ll make the team again next year. You still didn’t answer my question though, why aren’t you sitting with Scott?”
”I’d rather not sit with a bunch of assholes who look at me like I’m not even worthy of being a smear of shit on the bottom of their shoes. I’ve been through enough crap these past few months to last me a lifetime,” he gestured to the still healing bruises marrying his red blotched face, “and it’s all because of him, because Scott can’t keep his nose out of everyone else' business and instead of him paying the price for it poor Stiles gets the shit beaten out of him and perfect Scotty over there walks away like nothing happened and the worlds all sunshine and fucking rainbows! Yeah, well everything’s not alright you ass hole!” Stiles could feel his hands violently shaking where they were resting against the top of the cafeteria table. The tips of his fingers tingled with energy and his heart fluttered at the idea of making Scott pay. Deep down he knew he would get in trouble later but right now he didn’t care. With a small flick of his wrist, the lacrosse stick which had been leaning against the side of the table by Scott shifted and with enough force to crack open a humans skull, smacked against the back of the werewolves head.

 

Stiles couldn’t suppress his smirk as a loud bang echoed through out the busy cafeteria. Everyone stopped to stare at Scott, watching as he clutched the back of his head in agony. “What the hell was that?” Danny asked but Stiles ignored him in favor of stuffing his remaining curly fries into his mouth, his appetite suddenly returned.

 

His phone vibrated in his back pocket, probably a warning not to use his powers again. The stupid chip in his arm sends off a signal to his ‘case manager’ (or as Stiles calls him- secret government dude) every time he uses his powers. It’s to ensure he doesn’t do something like rob a bank or murder someone- although right now it was awfully tempting. Stiles ignored his phone and kept shoveling food into his mouth, even after Danny excused himself to check on Scott- cause he’s just that nice of a guy.

 

If the pack wants to kick him out and pretend that he hasn’t on more than one occasion nearly given his life for them well then so be it but they better be prepared to get kicked back because Stiles may be small and not as physically strong as the wolves but he’s not human and he’s not weak.

 

Stiles slowly stood from his seat and slung his backpack over his shoulder, suppressing a winch when it knocked against the still healing bruises that took up the majority of his back. He looked up, meeting Scott’s gaze across the cafeteria and smirked.

 

Bring it on Scotty.

Chapter Text

The cold water felt like heaven against Stiles heated skin. He stared straight ahead at the white tiles, unblinking as cold droplets of water cascaded down his pale back, marking his skin with tiny droplets of freezing water, but despite the cold and the intense shivers raking through his body, Stiles couldn’t pull himself from his thoughts.He still couldn’t believe what he had done, using his powers to seek some sort of emotional revenge against Scott, it wasn’t right and at the time he knew it but he was just so angry and upset and angry about the fact that he was upset and before Stiles could talk himself out of it the damage was already done, he had already hurt Scott. He’s nothing but a monster. A freak.

Stiles slammed his fist against the hard tiles. “Shit-Fuck!” he shook his throbbing hand around as if it could take away the sudden burst of pain. Tiny droplets of blood collected at the surface of his skin and a deep red tinge spread over the surface of his knuckles. Knowing his luck there would be a deep purple bruise come morning.

 

“Stiles?” The sudden sound of his father's deep voice sent his heart into overdrive. He whipped his head around, his eyes as big as saucers. Right there, just passed the glass doors of the shower was his dad, standing in the doorway, one hand on the door handle and the other resting on his hip just above his holster. “Dad!” he most defiantly did not squeal. Stiles scrambled to cover his privates. Both on his hands cupped himself as he tried to angle his body so that his dad wouldn’t cop and eye full of his…stuff but realized too late that the shower doors were glass and thereby see through from all angles. “What are you doing? I’m in the shower!” Naked.
”Oh, relax, it’s nothing I haven’t seen before.”
”oh my god please leave!”
”OK, OK, I’m leaving. I was just making sure you were still alive, you’ve been in here for nearly forty-five minutes.” With one last chuckle, his dad turned and closed the door behind him. Stiles quickly shut off the water and jumped out of the glass box before his dad could get any more ideas about striking up a conversation with him while he’s still naked.

 

Even once he was fully dressed his body still quivered from the long cold shower he had endured. Time had eluded him, Stiles hadn’t realized he had been in the shower for so long, standing there, lost in his own thoughts.

 

He just felt so…Vulnerable and angry at the fact that he feels so vulnerable. The past couple of months he’s faced a crazy Alpha hell bent on killing them all, a jerk turned Kanima, a resurrected psycho wolf and a crazy old man with a wicked right hook and after all that he’s never felt like this, but after one small incident in the cafeteria and now all he wants to do is curl up on the couch with a cup of hot chocolate and cry into his dad’s shoulder. His dad has too much on his shoulders as is, what with the increase in ‘animal attacks’ and being understaffed at the station, no thanks to Jackson. Stiles doesn’t want to add his own drama to the mix, his dad doesn’t deserve that.

 

The Sheriff was rustling through the fridge when Stiles entered the kitchen. He leaned back against the door frame, knowing full well that his dad would only find half a carton of milk, 2 slices of cheese and an old tube of yogurt that dated back at least three years- if the smell coming from it was anything to go off. “Hey-o Daddy-o!”
His dad jumped back, his hand instinctively going to his empty holster. ”Jesus Christ, Stiles!”
”What’s wrong, don’t like being scared to death?” he asked, “At least you weren’t in the shower, Naked.” The refrigerator door slammed shut with an audible click.
”Oh for the- It’s nothing I haven’t seen before kid. Who do you think cleaned your backside and chased you around the house when you refused to wear pants?”
Stiles bristled as he walked across the small kitchen. ”I was a kid then!” He grabbed a clean glass from beside the sink and filled it with water before sculling it down in a few short gulps. No matter what his dad says, having your parents see you naked is horrifying. He’ll need therapy after this.
”You’re still a kid, kid.”
”Nah uh! I am a mature adult thank you very much!” The sheriff snorted, the sound was magnified thanks to the silence of the kitchen. He quickly turned his back to Stiles and opened the refrigerator door, but Stiles could clearly see his dad's hand clamp down over his mouth to stifle the sound of his laughter. “Thanks a lot, dad, way to make your only child feel loved.” The glass clinked noisily against the bench top.

 

It has been far too long since he’s been able to act like this with his dad, being able to joke around and smile without feeling like the weight of the world is pressing down on his shoulders. “Oh please,” his dad snorted. He closed the refrigerator once again and turned to face Stiles, the corners of his mouth was upturned in a rare smile. “You and maturity do not go together kid, not at all.”
”I could be mature If I wanted to.”
The sheriff wrapped his arms around Stiles' shoulders and mumbled against his hair. ”No, no you could not.” Stiles instinctively lent into the warmth of his dad's embrace. They stood there for a few moments in silence before his dad pressed a gentle kiss to his forehead. The Sheriff pulled away, keeping Stiles held at arm's length. “Come on, go put your shoes on. I’ll take us out for burgers.”
”Ok, but you’re driving, it’s the least you can do after scaring me for life. I’ll probably need therapy because of this.”

 

***

 

The diner was busy at this time of night. People of all ages were crammed into the red ‘leather’ booths and hoarding along the counter. The noise was on a whole other level though, it was like everyone was talking at once, their voices getting louder and louder just so that they could be heard by the person sitting right beside them. Stiles glanced up from his milkshake. His dad didn’t seem to have a problem with the noise. He was at ease, leaning back against the booth and sipping leisurely at his diet coke. (It took nearly 20 minutes for Stiles to convince him to get Diet instead of regular coke)

 

John leaned forward, bringing his hands to rest on the table in front of him. “So, how’s school?” Oh great, small talk.
”School’s OK I suppose. Harris is still a jerk, he gave me detention last week because I asked to go to the bathroom, like sorry my bodily functions annoy you- and Coach is busting my balls in gym, he’s making us do rocking climbing until the end of year. I nearly fell to my death yesterday and died. Dead, gone, no more Stiles-”

 

”Here you are boys.” Sandy, their waitress said. She was a kind older woman with graying hair, gentle blue eyes, and a kind smile. Her whole persona reminds Stiles of his own grandmother- which reminds him, he needs to call her soon. Sandy placed Stiles plate down in front of him with a wink.“One double bacon and cheese, extra cheese and no tomato and a side of curly fries and for you handsome, one bland tofu burger with a miserable side salad.” Sandy offered the Sheriff a pitying look and mumbled what sounded like ‘you poor thing’ before she left to attend to other customers. The smell of the bacon alone made Stiles mouth water and the large serving of salted curly fries was like heaven, a salty, deep-fried heaven.

 

Stiles grabbed the ketchup, fully intending to drown his food in sauce but from the corner of his eye he caught John dragging his plate across the table.“What are you doing?” he all but screeched.
John smirked. He lifted the plate off the table and held it away from Stiles grabby hands. ”I’m confiscating this as part of an ongoing investigation.”
”investigation into what?”
”The murder of one Mieczyslaw Stilinski.”
”Oh, haha very funny dad.” Stiles reached for the plate again but his dad moved it further out of his reach. “Real mature dad.” The last time he ate was at least six hours ago and it was only a measly portion of curly fries, he’s starving and his dad is holding his food hostage, this has to be some form of child abuse. The noise in the diner was slowly dying down, several of the surrounding booths were now empty and Sandy and one of the other waitresses were walking around collecting plates and empty glasses while they made small talk with the regulars. John tapped his free hand against his chin in thought for a few moments before he placed the food back down on the table. Stiles instinctively reached for it but his dad was quicker and slapped his hands away with a quiet ‘tsk’. ”This,” he said removing a handful of curly fries from Stiles plate and placing them on his own. “Is compensation for making me eat this crap and this.” John used a fork to shovel some of his salad, tomato's included onto Stiles plate. “Is because there is not a single bit of greenery on your plate.”
”Don’t pretend you care about me eating vegetables.”

 

* Φ *

 

Dinner went by smoothly after that, well as smoothly as can be expected when it comes to the two Stilinski men. “You ready to go kid?”
”Yea, I just gotta hit the can first.”
”OK, I’ll meet you by the car.” John slowly rose from the booth, cringing as his knee gave an audible pop. “Say anything and your walking home.” Stiles held his hands up in surrender even though there were at least a dozen sarcastic comments sitting on the tip of his tongue. Sometimes his dad made it way too easy.

 

The diner was mostly empty now, there was only the odd person scattered around. Stiles stopped in his tracks, his hand raised halfway to the bathroom door. The hair on the back of his neck was standing on end and there was a strange prickling sensation trickling down his spine like he was being watched. He glanced over his shoulders and sure enough sitting in one of the bar stools was Derek ‘Sourwolf’ Hale. His eyes were bleeding red and his upper lip was pulled back in a snarl, revealing pointed canines.

 

Stiles swallowed thickly. Something about the Alpha always manages to make Stiles fear for his life, he doesn’t even have to do anything, just looking at his face is like seeing his own life flash before his eyes.

 

With shaking limbs Stiles pushed open the bathroom door and all but ran inside. He steadied himself against the chipped, white sink and managed to drag in a few wheezed breaths before the door burst open and a pair of rough hands grabbed him by the back of the neck and shoved him face first into the bathroom wall. Pain exploded along his jaw, igniting his old injuries. “Dude, what the hell?”

 

A deep roar rumbled from behind him, too close for comfort. Stiles clenched his eyes shut against the sudden prick of tears. He tried to shy away from the sharp claws pressing against his already bruised flesh but he was stuck between a wall and a hard place. “Shut up.” A warm voice growled against his ear. Against his will, a whimper bubbled up in his throat. “You are going to relay a little message to Scott for me.”
”Scott?” he asked, “Look, dude, Scott hasn’t spoken to me since the whole Gerard thing went down.” Even the name sent a tingle through him and not the good kind of tingle either. The sharp claws retracted but the feeling of human fingers on his neck brought back images of lying under Gerard while the older man beat him down, all the while whispering horrible things into his ear. He can almost feel his warm breath against the side of his face. The smell of his cologne- the mix of earth and wolfsbane still burns his nostrils.

 

Stiles was jerked back to reality. The hand on the back of his neck forced him back, he stumbled over his own feet but quickly regained his footing. Red eyes glared at him from beneath dark eyelashes. Derek growled, low and rough. “Don’t call me dude.”

“OK, OK. Just let go.” The hand on the back of his neck only clamped down harder. He winched. Why is it that every wolf thinks it’s OK to use him, beat him up and push him into walls, he might not be like them but that’s no excuse. “I’ve already told you, you’re going to have to find another messenger cause Scott ain’t talking to me anymore. He hasn’t said two words to me since Gerard beat the crap out of me and frankly I’ve had enough of your werewolf bullshit to last me a fucking lifetime! So find someone else Derek, I’m over this shit! Or better yet, why don’t you get one of your little puppies to do your dirty work, everyone knows they’ve been hanging off Scott like a bad fur coat!”

“He’s not lying.” The new voice caused Stiles to jump. For some stupid reason he thought he was alone with Derek, but of course one of his little puppies had to follow after the big bad Alpha. “Scott doesn’t talk to him anymore. He’s too busy off in his own little world with Allison.” Derek’s grip on his neck prevented him from turning but if Stiles had to guess which of the Betas had followed them in he would say, Isaac, it defiantly wasn’t Erica and Boyd was more of the brooding silent type.

Stiles should really stop talking, unfortunately, he seems to have an unsavory habit of making Derek mad, however, for the second time today his own anger won out over reason. ”Listen to your puppy Derek.” The Alpha’s eyes seemed to burn a darker shade of red.“What, hmm, what are you going to do? You gonna throw me into another wall, maybe threaten me a little more, add to the already agonizing amount of bruises I already have? What Derek, What are you going to do? Because I have had it up to here with being a supernatural punching bag for you and the rest of the wolves in this godforsaken town!”
”No one said you are a punching bag.” His voice sounded oddly sincere if Stiles didn’t know him he would take his sincerity at face value, but he did know Derek and knew without a doubt that he is full of shit.
”This,” he gestured wildly to the still healing marks on his face. “Says otherwise!” The hand on the back of his neck fell away. Stiles took the chance to step away from the Alpha. “I may not be a werewolf or a Kanima or a bloody Banshee, but just because I can’t defend myself against you doesn’t give you or any other supernatural ass hole the right to shove me around and threaten me into doing your bidding. I might be weak on the outside, fragile even but mark my words, Derek, if you or any other wolf in this town tries to threaten me again you’ll find yourself on the wrong end of a stick of wolfsbane.” After a beat of silence, he continued, somewhat calmer this time. “You can take your message for Scott and shove it.”

 

Stiles didn’t want to stick around and listen to whatever else Derek has to say. He stormed passed the Alpha, their shoulders bumping-almost painfully.

 

Isaac pushed himself off the bathroom door and straightened quickly. His blonde hair was disheveled, standing out at odd angles, his usual smug grin was nowhere in sight, he looked more like a kicked puppy than a scary Beta. “Stiles-I…I-I’m…”
”You’re what Isaac?” he asked, “You know, you have become a real ass hole since Derek bit you.” Isaac’s hand shot out, grabbing Stiles already outstretched arm. The pressure around his wrist wasn’t enough to bruise but tight enough that he wouldn’t be able to pull away. The blonde kept speaking, words spewing forth from his mouth but Stiles couldn’t hear anything, there was a loud buzzing in his ears- like a swarm of bees have taken refuge inside his head. Stiles tried to yank his hand away as a familiar sensation washed over his body, however, Isaac continued to hold tightly to his wrist.

 

Distantly Stiles could feel his phone vibrate in his back pocket but it was like the sensation was coming to him through layers of cotton. He blinked. When his heavy eyes opened Stiles was no longer standing in the boy's bathroom- instead, he was crouched behind an old set of metal bleachers. He recognized the blue buildings in the distance, the basketball hoop by the office-still missing the backboard, the bright yellow bus parked by the side of the road, this is his old elementary school. He hasn’t thought about this place in years.

 

The grass beneath his hands felt like water, trailing between his fingers. He could see the wind rustling the leaves of the nearby trees but it seemed to pass right through him, his body remained untouched by the winds.

 

Stiles gazed down at his hands. His breath hitched. He was see-through, his entire body looked like rice paper. Through his hands, he could see the grass swaying in the wind beneath him. “What the hell?” Stiles didn’t even recognize his own voice. It was like hearing his voice from a distance, soft and almost ghost-like. A momentary spike of fear rose up before he quickly realized what this was. He’s not really here, well not in the normal sense at least. The only thing he could think to describe what is happening is that it’s a sort of empathy link- at least that’s what his mother used to call it.

 

Sometimes his mind takes him places, it usually only happens with contact to a certain item or person- in this case, Isaac. It’s almost like going back in time, except he can’t influence or hold sway over anything he sees or hears.

 

The first time this happened he was seven years old. Mrs. McCall had taken him and Scott to the precinct to visit his dad while he was on duty. He had been the first to reach the doors and tried to open them but his body had suddenly gone ridged and images began to move before his eyes like time was moving backward, suddenly he found himself standing at the front desk, invisible to everyone around him. He watched, unable to do anything as a woman strode inside- no older than his own mother. She reached inside her jacket and pulled out a gun. Stiles could do nothing but watch in horror as she shot down two deputies before a well-placed bullet hit her between the eyes. When he had finally come back to himself he was lying face down on the cement outside the precinct with Mrs. McCall and his father standing over him. His parents tried to tell him that it was a gift, that he could see past events, past crimes, and memories- both good and bad. They kept telling him that he was special and he should be proud of who he was but to Stiles his empathy link is just another reason to hate himself. Whatever he is-he’s not special.

 

Stiles looked up. A small boy with a mop of blonde curls was crouched beside him. He was wearing a pair of blue jeans and a gray hoodie that was at least two sizes too big. His shaky hands were clutching a bouquet of purple Lillie's, the tissue paper around the flowers was crinkled and ripped in small places where the boy's hand fiddled needlessly with the paper. “You can do this,” the boy repeated to himself again and again.

 

Stiles crept forward to get a better look at him. One of his blue eyes were swollen with dark purple and black bruises, his bottom lip was split and if you looked close enough you could make out deep indentations around his neck, like finger marks. There was no mistaking that this beaten and bruised boy was Isaac Lahey.

 

Isaac stood suddenly. Stiles followed suit. The younger version of the wolf he knows so little of sped across the field, his hands were shaking and more than once he had to stop to rub his sweaty palms across his thighs. Isaac shoved the bouquet behind his back as he approached a tiny figure. The other boy was sitting a few yards from the busy playground, his head was down and he was absentmindedly fiddling with the strings of his red jacket. “S-Stiles?” young Isaac stuttered. Stiles' eyes widened as the younger version of himself looked up. The younger him looked like hell warmed over, his eyes were bloodshot and wet like he had been crying for hours, his lip was split from where his teeth had bit down trying to stifle his sobs.

 

There’s no doubting that this is him and no doubt that the cut across his younger self's forehead is the same wound his mum gave him during one of her fits (where she forgot who he was) but Stiles can’t remember this- this whole scene, Isaac, the flowers, he doesn’t remember any of this ever happening but yet Isaac remembers.

 

Mini Stiles straightened and quickly wiped a tiny fist across his eyes. “What do you want Isaac?” he asked. “If you have come to laugh at me like everyone else then just go. I don’t need it from you too.” Mini Isaac’s fingers curled tightly around the flower stems.
”That’s not why I’m here,” he took a deep breath and slowly let it out. “I actually…I um…I brought you something.” Isaac shoved the bouquet at Mini Stiles.
”Whats this for?”
”My brother says flowers make people feel better and you were sad so I thought maybe they might make you feel better…” Stiles could see that he was losing his nerve. His hand that was holding the flowers was shaking and he constantly rubbed his sweaty palm on his trousers. “If-If you don’t want them I can-”
”I want them!” Mini Stiles screamed. His tiny hands shot out and snatched the bouquet from Isaac. He pressed the flowers close to his chest and dipped his head ever so slightly to breathe in the smell of freshly cut lilies. “They’re pretty, thank you.” Tiny fingers straitened the purple petals. “You can sit down if you want.” Mini Isaac all but fell onto the bench beside his younger self. Neither spoke for a long moment. It was like watching a car crash, painful to watch but you find yourself unable to look away.

 

Isaac’s hand slowly inched along the bench, his fingers twitched beside mini Stiles little hand. Their eyes met briefly, a red blush flared up on both boys faces. Mini Stiles cleared his throat, “You can hold my hand…if you want.”
”O-OK.” Stiles couldn’t help but smile as the younger version of himself and Isaac held tightly onto each other, their fingers entwined in a white-knuckle grip, neither seeming to want to let go of the other. It was almost adorable (as long as he didn’t think about the beta wolf and his stupid smug grin.) He was so busy mulling over all the ways he hates the blonde haired wolf that he nearly missed when Isaac leaned over and kissed mini Stiles flaming red cheek. His younger self-broke out into a fit of giggles, he gripped Isaac’s hand tighter and turned to smile at the blonde. That look in his younger self’s eyes- it’s the same glint he reserved just for Lydia Martin. It makes Stiles sick to think that he had once used to look at Isaac that way- even though he doesn’t remember this.

 

Blackness crept through the corners of Stiles vision until all he could see was inky blackness. A tingling sensation settled through his body- like pins and needles on steroids but the feeling was a comfort from the bone-crushing numbness he had encountered in the empathy link. Stiles jolted up suddenly, dragging in a gasp of air. Isaac’s face was the first he saw as his vision returned. His brow frowned in concern and his eyes were wide with unshed tears. Isaac seemed to visibly deflate, his shoulders sagged and he released a deep breath. “Thank god,” he mumbled. He ran a shaky hand through his tuft of blonde curls. “What the hell happened? I thought you had a heart attack or something.” It was just then that Stiles realized he was laying on the bathroom floor, his head was propped up on a leather jacket which felt oddly soft against his skin and smelt of a weird combination of cinnamon and pizza sauce.

 

Slowly Stiles pushed himself up onto his elbows, he immediately noticed that the Alpha was missing and felt oddly…happy that Isaac had bothered to stay with him.“Why am I on the floor?”
”You collapsed, Stiles. Your eyes rolled back and you just…dro-” The blonde was cut when the bathroom door was thrown open, narrowly avoiding Isaac who jumped out of the way at the last second. John barreled into the small room, closely followed by a flustered Derek. His dad dropped to the floor by his side, his hands instinctively going to Stiles' face and cupping his cheeks in a way that has always made him feel safe. John twisted his head this way and that checking Stiles over for any visible injuries. “Dad, Dad, I’m OK.”
”Your O-What the hell happened?” his gaze flickered from Stiles to the two wolves crowding around them.
”I slipped.” The lie rolled easily off his tongue. “Might have hit my head on the sink and blacked out a little.” John’s fingers pressed firmly into his cheeks. His dad's brows frowned in concern, a look he has become all too familiar with lately.
”Jesus kid…Do you think you can stand?”
Stiles replied, “Yea.”

 

With the help of his dad, Stiles managed to get back on his feet, although a bit wobbly at first. He regained his footing quickly, silently thanking the heavens that he wouldn’t need to use his dad as a human crutch while they walked through the diner.

 

It wasn’t until he was sliding into the passenger seat of his dad’s cruiser that he felt a tugging at his shirt sleeve. He glanced down at the long fingers entwined with the sleeve of his plaid over shirt. Slowly his eyes traced up, over long lithe arms and across a slender chest until Stiles' eyes met a pair of deep blue orbs. Absentmindedly his tongue darted out to wet his suddenly dry lips. “Are you OK? I mean, really, after everything?…I mean, what you were saying before…and, I’m really sorry” Isaac stuttered out. Stiles mind was a bit preoccupied with the tingling sensation running up his arm from where Isaac’s knuckles were gently resting against the tender skin of his wrist. God, what the hell is wrong with him. Stiles quickly snatched his arm back. “I’m fine, Isaac.” There was no hiding the obvious disdain he felt for the werewolf.

Chapter Text

Stiles sniffled as he felt tears well in the corner of his eyes. He blinked rapidly, trying to dispel the moisture but a few stray tears managed to escape, Stiles briskly wiped them away with the sleeve of his hoodie. He couldn’t believe that he was a blubbering mess right now, all because his dad said he was disappointed in him. Of course, John found out about the use of his powers. The man knew as soon as he had seen Stiles on the floor in the bathroom that he hadn’t passed out and of course when the man asked him what happened, Stiles lied, the lie just came so easily that he couldn’t help but tell it, but the worst part was that his dad wasn’t even angry, he didn’t yell or scream and in all honesty Stiles would have preferred it if he had because his angry words would have hurt far less then the look of disappointment that is still stuck in Stiles mind. Every time he pictures that look on his dad’s face it feels like a knife is plunging through his heart. It cuts deeper then any words could.

 

He settled back further into the cold tiles of the roof and stares blankly up at the night sky. The sky was clear, not a cloud in sight. It feels like so long ago when he would climb up to the roof with his mum and watch the stars, she would point out the constellations and make up stories about how the stars came to be. She liked to theorize that the stars were the souls of people we love and that they would stay up there, shining brightly so that those who were left behind would always see them and know that they are not alone. Stiles has no doubt that his mum is one of those bright stars, watching over them.

 

Would she be disappointed in him too?

 

The tips of his fingers gently trailed across the jagged edges of the worn, red tiles. It felt like sandpaper beneath his skin but the rough surface was a welcome distraction to the overwhelming sensation of guilt coiling in his gut. The past twenty minutes Stiles has been contemplating the pros and cons of coming clean to his dad about all of the supernatural crap and so far the cons outweigh the pros. Stiles sighed. He scrubbed his hands over his eyes, trying to dispel every thought from his brain before he drives himself insane.

 

A thump echoed off the roof tiles a few feet from where he was laying. Stiles jumped forward into a sitting position, his bare feet pulled underneath him, ready to run. A pair of gold eyes cut through the blanket of darkness, like a knife through butter. The dull light of the street lamp below provided just enough light for Stiles to make out the hunched figure crouching at the edge of the roof. They brushed aside a stray curl and preceded to shuffle closer until Stiles could make out the familiar features of the wolf.“...Hi.” They whispered shyly.

Stiles is having a bad night as it is, he doesn’t need the wolf popping up out of nowhere unannounced and making things worse. “What the hell do you want, Isaac?” Stiles all but growled.
”I don’t want anything.” He answered, “I thought I’d come check up on you, see if you were OK. You scared the crap out of me when you passed out.” Stiles sneered. He doesn’t need the wolf’s faked sympathy. ”Oh, boo hoo, The poor puppy is upset, why don’t you go crawling back to your Alpha, I’m sure he’ll lick your wounds clean.” The wolf nodded, giving no outward sign that the comment had affected him, instead Isaac said,

“I deserve that.” Stiles glanced at the teen from the corner of his eye, he hadn’t expected that, however, those three words don’t change anything. He pushed his legs out in front of him and turned slightly to the left so that he had a better view of the other man. If the werewolf was going to lie to him then Stiles would rather see his face while he did. ”You deserve a whole worse than that, Isaac.”


”I agree,” He replied. The wolf shuffled closer until they were sitting side by side, both staring out into the dark expanse of the preserve which ran behind the Stilinski house. They were so close now that their arms brushed together with every small movement. It almost felt comforting; almost. Isaac continued speaking after a breath of silence,“ And if you want to hit me or throw wolfsbane in my face then go right ahead. I’m not going to stop you.” Stiles sighed, there Isaac goes again, pretending like he understands how he feels. Stiles doesn’t need his false pity. Although, a small voice in the back of his mind urged him to shut up and hear the wolf out, reminding him about the warm feeling in his chest whenever the other teen's arm brushes against his. Damn you teenage hormones.”Don’t play with me-” Isaac quickly cut him off before he could finish.
”I’m not playing. You deserve a proper apology, Stiles, not just from the pack but Scott too. We’ve been horrible lately and there is no excusing that. You deserve so much better than that-” The ‘human’ interrupted with a scoff.
”Damn right I do-”
”So let me be the first to apologize for the part I played. I never wanted to hurt you.” Stiles scoffed again, “After Gerard happened,” He couldn’t help but flinch at the name, “Derek was so pissed but for some stupid reason he still wanted Scott to join the pack and when he asked us to do everything we possibly could to make sure Scott joined we didn’t fight it, even when he suggested that you be excluded from pack business because you were too weak to handle it all. I knew he was wrong but I didn’t question it. I deluded myself into thinking that if you weren’t around us then you would be safe from all of this supernatural bullshit.” It’s just another bullshit excuse. The pack wouldn’t do anything without their dear Alpha’s consent and even then it doesn’t excuse everything that’s happened.

 

Stiles cleared his throat before asking, ”So instead of standing up for me you decided to bully me and make me feel worthless and disgusting?” Tears prickled at the corners of his eyes. The words hurt to say, it’s one thing to feel a certain way about yourself but it’s something else entirely to tell someone that you view yourself as worthless. Stiles shuffled across the rough tiles, putting some distance between himself and the wolf. Isaac reached out a tentative hand, seeming to smell the sadness radiating off him but Stiles flinched away from the touch. The wolf dropped his hand with a sigh. ”I can not begin to say how sorry I am for that. Things with the pack started escalating and Scott was only adding fuel to the fire. I didn’t know how else to protect you without completely pushing you away.” At the mention of Scott’s name Stiles turned to face the other teen. Isaac had caught his attention. “What do you mean by Scott adding fuel?” Stiles asked. However, the wolf didn’t answer, instead, he silently swore under his breath, “Isaac, tell me. Now.” His voice left no room for argument and the other teen seemed to sense the finality of his words because Isaac sighed and hung his head in defeat. His words were muffled at first, barely audible even with the defining silence from the street below. ”It was just small things at first, he’d mock you when you left the table, make jokes about the way you dressed but then Scott started to place little seeds of doubt in Erica’s mind. He kept asking her what happened with Gerard, how you knew where they were and how you managed to escape when they didn’t. Scott did everything he could without openly saying that you were involved in Argent’s plan.” Stiles felt like he was going to be sick.

 

Involved? He barely escaped that basement alive and with his sanity intact. Why would anyone voluntarily put themselves in that situation? Scott was the one that made that ridiculous deal with Gerard Argent, not him, and now to find out that his so-called best friend is trying to shift the blame onto his shoulders, it’s a sickening feeling. Stiles feels dirty. Disgusting. Wrong. ”Are you fucking-What the-I would never!” Stiles couldn’t even form a cohesive sentence, he didn’t know what to think anymore. Isaac reached his hand out again. When Stiles didn’t flinch away the Beta took his hand between his and squeezed gently, almost comforting.

”I know that. Scott was just so convincing though.” Stiles ripped his hand away from the wolf before he could finish speaking. His words were like a slap in the face.

”So is a telemarketer,” Stiles screamed. By now he was sure that his dad had heard the commotion and was silently listening in but right now he couldn’t find the strength to care, “but you don’t buy everything they’re trying to sell you!”
”I know…” Isaac whispered brokenly. “But Derek said he’d fix it. When you left the diner with your dad, he demanded to know what was going on and so I told him everything. Dude, I’ve never seen him so angry before. He could barely control the shift, I’ve never seen him like, but by tomorrow morning everything will be back to normal.”
”Normal? Isaac, there is nothing normal about any of this and to be honest I don’t give a shit whether or not the pack ever speaks to me again. An apology from you and Derek’s idea of ‘fixing’ it isn’t going to change anything, tomorrow Erica will still be pissed, Scott will still be an ass hole and Boyd will still be…Boyd. Nothing will change.” Stiles paused to take a deep breath. He suddenly felt so tired, he just wanted to curl up into a ball and sleep. “…I can’t do this right now, can you just leave?”

 

Stiles stood and slowly shuffled along the ruff tiles of the roof. He crouched down at the edge, one hand stretched behind him, his fingers tightly wound around the edge of a broken tile while his free hand reached down below him and grabbed a hold of the wooden runs that ran up the side of the house. He swung himself down with what little upper body strength he still possessed. Stiles' feet landed against the pane of his window with a soft thud. He steadied himself with a hand against the side of the house before quickly ducking inside. Surprisingly his bedroom door was still closed. Stiles had been so sure that his dad would have at least checked up on him but his room was untouched, even the piece of paper he had taken to sliding between his closed door was still stuck in its place, undisturbed.

 

The teen sighed. He paced across the room to his small bed and flopped down against the warm covers. He was about to roll over and close his eyes when he heard a thump from his window. Stiles sat up quickly, a growl rumbling from his throat. “Damn it-”
”Tell me what to do.” The beta interrupted, “I’ll do whatever it takes to prove to you that I’m truly sorry. I will get down on all fours and follow you around like a dog for the rest of my life it that’s what it takes, Or I…I’ll insult Derek to his face and let you watch while he beats the crap out of me. Whatever you want I’ll do it.” The wolfs movements were erratic, his fingers twitched by his side and he paced back and forth in front of the window but his clear blue eyes remained locked to Stiles, never wavering.“Why are you doing this?” Stiles sighed. His fingers tangled in the soft blue comforter. “Apologizing, following me around like a lost puppy, trying to make things better. Why the hell are you doing all this?” Isaac’s apology had taken him by surprise at first, it was unexpected and even though he still doesn’t believe what the other teen is saying, his words still seemed to lift a weight off his shoulders. Stiles felt lighter in a sense. However, there is still a tiny voice in the back of his mind that keeps laughing at him, whispering that this is all a joke, the pack wouldn’t apologize or admit their wrong, his life is a joke to them.

 

Isaac crossed the room in two large strides. He stood before Stiles, rubbing his sweaty palms against his thighs and blurted out in a single breath, ”Because you were right before, at the diner. I’ve been a complete jerk lately, I didn’t realize exactly how bad I’ve been treating people, especially you until you were yelling at Derek and it got me thinking about everything. This guy, I don’t recognize who he is anymore. I don’t want to be this person, Stiles, I don’t want to have to lie about how I’m feeling or pretend that I’m some emotionless asshole. I’m so sick of being afraid of how I feel about you and so I thought that if I apologized and tried to make up for all the bad I’ve done then it would be the first step in making things better!”

Stiles whispered so softly that he barely heard his own voice, “You like me?” Isaac’s wide, fearful eyes were the only answer he got before the beta wolf turned and jumped out of Stiles bedroom window.

 

Liar.

Chapter Text

By now sleep was a foreign concept. Stiles spent the night tossing and turning, he couldn’t seem to shut his mind off, he tried counting sheep, meditation, even listening to a recording of crashing waves but all that did was make him want to pee. No matter what Stiles tried he couldn’t get the image of Isaac’s terrified face out of his mind. He keeps replaying that moment over and over again, looking for something, anything that would indicate if Isaac was lying. Stiles isn’t sure what he wants more, to find out if the wolf is lying about his feelings…or telling the truth. Would it really be such a bad thing to have someone care about him, To hold him, make him feel special and loved?

The sound of heavy footsteps jostled Stiles from his thoughts. He glanced up from his folded hands on the tabletop just as his Dad rounded the corner into the kitchen. John startled at the sight of his son. Neither man expected to see each other up this early. “What are you doing up?” The Sheriff sighed. He ran a tired hand through his short hair.
”Couldn’t sleep,” Stiles answered softly. The airy silence of the house made his voice seem louder. “Brain won’t turn off.” Thankfully John hadn’t heard the commotion from the roof last night. He had been watching a heated game of football while Stiles and Isaac were busy yelling at each other, small miracles he supposes. Stiles paused to examine his Dad. The man was on edge, his shoulder were pulled taunt and he carried himself stiffly like he expected something to jump out at him at any moment, but it was the fact that he was wearing him uniform that caught Stiles by surprise. “Is everything OK?”
”No. I just got a call from the station, a hiker found a mass of bodies out in the preserve.”
”Animal attack?” Stiles found himself asking, but for the first time in months he wasn’t asking for any reason other than curiosity. There is no pack to run to if the bodies were supernatural related; no reason to get involved. “Not sure,” John grabbed his keys from the hook above the counter top and shoved them into his jacket pocket. “I don’t want to catch you and Scott running around the preserve-”
”You won’t,” Stiles cut in, “I need to finish my history project so Danny and I were going to stay late at the library. Can’t promise Scott wont though, dude can do whatever the hell he wants, I don’t care.” His voice dripped with venom, so much so that John paused in his task to finish readying himself. He arched an eyebrow, an uncertain ‘humm’ leaving his lips. “He’s being an ass,” Stiles answered, “worse then an ass. I’ll tell you about it later.” He didn’t want his dad to walk out the door and face down an unknown threat but seeing John nod and affirm that he would be home by dinner and that they would talk, it went a long way to ease his heckled nerves. “Be safe.” He whispered to the now empty room.

***

Rain fell like waves around the Jeep, pelting down against the glass like gun shots , the sound echoing through the small compartment. Stiles sighed. He tugged his jacket closer to his chest, trying to chase away the lingering cold that wafted through the car. He couldn’t bring himself to slid out of the Jeep and make a mad dash for the school entrance. His body ached with a numbing cold already, adding soaked clothes from the pelting rain would only make the shivers worse.

A sudden knock at his window caused Stiles to jump. He flung himself against the side of the passenger seat, a jagged scream leaving his lips. He could feel his heart thud against his rib cage like a marching band had taken refuge in his chest.

A familiar face stared back at him through the blurry window. Chiseled jaw gave way to a row of perfect white teeth and a pair of murky eyes seemed to silently laugh at him. “Stiles!” he could barley hear their voice over the pelting rain and the roaring wind. Stiles contemplated ignoring them and high tailing it out of the school parking lot but before he could reach for his keys the door was yanked open and Danny reached inside yanking his keys out of the ignition. “Hey!” The Hawaiian ignored his protests and slid the keys into the front of his red skinny jeans.
”Get out or I’m keeping your keys. There is no way you are leaving me here to work on our assessment alone. Get out.”
Stiles mumbled under his breath, “So aggressive.” He grabbed his bag and quickly followed after Danny. Fat droplets of rain fell heavy against his face and neck.
”Someone has to be,” Danny chuckled.
”Is that sarcasm I hear? Are we gonna have a sarcasm off, cause Dude you are so going down!” He turned to get a better look at Danny and nearly tripped over the sidewalk. If it wasn’t for the Hawaiian’s sudden grip on his elbow his face would have met the pavement. Stiles quickly thanked him, his cheeks burned with embarrassment as he ducked through the double doors leading into the school. No one paid him any attention, not even a glance was spared his way, although Stiles was used to it by now. He’s not important of impressive enough to warrant any sideways looks. “I’m glad your feeling better,” Danny’s sudden voice startled him. “You seemed really upset yesterday,” he elaborated. Stiles had almost forgotten about his bad mood at lunch the day before; almost.
”Yea,” Stiles mumbled, “I mean, I’m still not like…happy but I suppose I’m not as pissed off as I was Yesterday,”
”I knew you and Scott couldn’t stay mad at each other for long, you guys are inseparable.” Stiles stopped at his locker. He opened the door quickly and shoved his backpack into the cramped space, pulling out his chemistry books in the process. He couldn’t help but sigh. A month ago Stiles would have agreed with Danny; Scott and he were like brothers, they were inseparable but now Stiles doesn’t even recognize the man he’s known his entire life. “I’m still pissed,” Stiles replied curtly, “Scott’s turned into a…monster,” which is kind of ironic really, “he deserves to be hit by a bus and a few other things.”
”Stiles that’s not-”
”This,” he gestured wildly to the still healing bruises on his face, “is his fault, because of him I had the shit beaten out of me and then he has the audacity to play victim and start spreading bullshit around about how I-” he quickly cut himself off before he started to babble about werewolves and creepy old men. “You know what,” Stiles sighed, “never mind.”
”No,” Danny practically growled, “not never mind. Stiles, it’s not good to keep all this bottled up and if Scott had something to do with what happened to you, you should tell someone.” His grip was like iron on his bicep. Stiles hadn’t noticed that his hand was there.
”It doesn’t matter anymore Danny, just drop it, please.” Today had started out as such a good day and Stiles wants to keep it that way, he doesn’t want to think about Scott or werewolves or any other supernatural bullshit, he just wants to have one normal day.

“Fine,” Danny gritted out, “I’ll drop it…for now.” Stiles couldn’t help but grin- it’s the same answer he would have given.

***

True to his word Stiles tried not to think about the pack or Scott but it was proving difficult with Isaac lurking around every corner, his cheeks flushed pink, stuttering out a greeting. Danny thought it was cute and every chance he got he would tease Stiles about the ‘sweet puppy’ following him around. “He’s staring again,” Danny elbowed him just below the ribs. Stiles head wiped around just in time to see Isaac’s blushing face turn away. “He likes you,” Danny whispered just as Coach’s shrill whistle pierced his eardrums.
”Shh,” he hissed. Stiles eyes darted around the group crowded around them. They were in the middle of gym class, people crowded around them from all sides. Although Stiles wasn’t exactly in the closet, he hasn’t been overly open with his sexuality and the last thing he needs is for everyone in his gym class to start another batch of rumors. Danny elbowed him again with a snicker, “He’s looking again.” Stiles glanced up again and sure enough Isaac was staring at him again, this time the beta didn’t turn away, instead his face broke out in a smile, his cheeks still tinted red.

A warm breath tickled the shell of his ear, “Defiantly likes you.” Stiles swatted at the hard chest behind him.
”Shut up,” he mumbled, “you sound like a twelve year old girl.”
“Stilinski,” Coach’s voice boomed. All eyes turned to him, including the packs, their feral glares set his nerves on edge but he was determined not to let it show. “You want to tell the class about your little discussion.” His cheeks flushed with embarrassment. Stiles slung his arm over Danny’s shoulder and grinned.
”Danny and I were just saying how much we love coming to class and being in the presence of our favorite teacher,” He gave Danny’s shoulder a squeeze when the other teen snorted, “you are truly an inspiration to us, Coach.” Some of the class laughed while others rolled their eyes, even the corners of Erica’s lips turned up.
”No one likes a suck up Stilinski.”
“I know someone who does,” Danny mumbled. Stiles could feel his entire body heat up. Several people around them seemed to have heard but said nothing about it as they turned back to face Coach who had already started off on another tangent.

 

Stiles rubbed his sweaty palms against his thighs. Now that he was standing at the bottom of the rock climbing wall it suddenly seemed a whole lot bigger. “Listen up ladies!” Coach blew his shrill whistle, “whoever reaches the top the fastest will be excused from picking up rubbish at lunch.” The class collectively groaned. Stiles had almost forgotten, as part of the schools new ‘no litter policy’ everyone was required to pick up at least ten pieces of litter before next period. “Who wants to go first?” Silence settled over the class. Some looked away trying to avoid Coach’s gaze, like it would somehow make them invisible. After a moment Stiles stepped forward ready to volunteer. He’d rather get it over and done with. Just as Stiles stepped forward something hard smacked into his shoulder, he stumbled forward, pain flaring through his arm. He looked up, meeting Scott’s glowing eyes. The wolf smirked at him, more canines then teeth. “I’ll go first Coach.”
”McCall! Good initiative.” What a fucking asshole.

Rage coiled in his gut. Vicious like fire ripping through a dense forest. Stiles sneered. He could feel his hands shaking at his sides as Scott approached the wall. He placed one hand on the colored step in the wall and at the sound of Coach’s whistle he heaved himself up onto the wall. His limbs moved faster than any humans could. He looked like predator, rushing towards his prey, ready to strike with sharpened teeth and claws. Stiles hand twitched by his side again. His fingers tingled with a surge of energy he didn’t know he had. He held his breath, watching, waiting for Scott to reach the top of the wall. It didn’t take long before the wolf reached up and slapped the red buzzer. The click of Coach Finstocks stop watch followed two shrill rings from the buzzer. “Congratulations McCall, now get your ass back down here.”

Scott turned back around to smirk at Stiles, his sharpened teeth made him look more feral then teenage boy. He could feel himself becoming angrier by the second and it only seemed to fuel the wolf. Scott climbed down quickly, his teeth still sharp like razor blades. He made his way through the crowd, ignoring those who patted his back and congratulated him on his time but Scott’s eyes remained locked to Stiles. The wolf swerved at the last second, slamming their shoulders together as he passed. Stiles bit down on his bottom lip to stop himself from screaming. The force behind it was enough to cause pain to flare up through his old injuries. “Watch it omega.” Scott hissed so quietly that he seemed to be the only one to hear it. Omega, he’ll show Scott who the lone wolf is. He curled his wrist up, his fingers curled towards his palm and with a quick flick of his wrist the tingling in his fingers subsided. A roar of laughter erupted from around them. Stiles glanced over his shoulder. Scott’s face was scarlet red, his gym shorts down around his ankles. He quickly snatched them up and smiled awkwardly at the crowd. Stiles could hear Coach sigh and blow his whistle but his attention was solely on Scott. The tingling in his fingers returned and with another flick of his wrist he sent the wolf’s shorts sailing to the floor. The gym echoed with laughter, even Coach couldn’t hide his smile, however a sharp shriek of his whistle drew the attention of the class.

The feeling of having Scott at his mercy was amazing, it was like letting go of a piece of his anger. He curled his hand up again, ready to unleash the power tingling through his fingers but a firm hand latched onto his wrist and squeezed- hard. Stiles flinched and whirled around to glare at Danny. He faulted as the glare was returned. “Enough,” Danny hissed between clenched teeth, “I get that your angry and rightfully so,” his eyes flickered to the prominent bruises on his face, “but whatever it is he did, it doesn’t justify stooping to his level.” Danny twisted his wrist sharply so that both of their forearms were visible. Just before the crook of their elbows was an identical scar, jagged but white in color. In order to see it you would have to know what you were looking for.

Stiles let out a long breath. He was given that scar when he entered the program- when he discovered his powers and there was no doubt that it was the same for Danny. Buried beneath the scar is a small microchip that relays information to the agency. It alerts them every time he uses his powers, when his heart rate spikes, even his blood sugar level is recorded. The agency knows everything that happens, Everything.

It never crossed his mind that there would be others like him in Beacon Hills, let alone at his school. Stiles has never met anyone like him before. “How did you…” he couldn’t finish, he was still in shook.
Danny sighed, “Because I’m not an idiot…and I saw what you did Yesterday.” The reminder of what he did made his stomach drop. He hasn’t used his powers since he got them, too afraid to even think about it but in the past two days Stiles has gone against everything he knows and used them with the sole purpose to hurt someone. Monster. Danny squeezed his wrist as a comforting gesture, his hands were no longer harsh like they had been before. “You said he was responsible for that,” his eyes trailed to his bruised face again, “so I get the need for payback but you need to stop, before it goes too far.” The desire for revenge is like a drug and Stiles is an addict but he nodded anyway, to appease his friend.

“Stilinski!” Coach called, “get your ass up that wall.” Stiles groaned.

Chapter Text

Class had finished nearly fifteen minutes ago but Stiles couldn’t find it in himself to leave the locker room. After finding out that Danny was like him, an inhuman, he was in shock. Never in all his life had he knowingly met someone like him. Of course, there were bound to be others out there who had powers of their own but the thought had never crossed his mind that those others might be here in Beacon Hills, let alone his school and the weeks he spends at the institute isn’t exactly a social gathering for people like him.

 

There were so many questions Stiles had, so many things he wanted answers to, like what does it feel like to not be afraid of yourself. But Stiles doubted that Danny would have any more answers then he did.

 

God, everything is such a mess.

 

“Stiles?” A gentle voice called to him. Stiles' head shot up at the sudden voice sending a jolt of pain through his neck. He cursed under his breath, his hand coming up to massage the side of his aching neck. The sound of a loud thud echoed through the locker room before a heavy hand settled over his own, gentle fingers brushing against the side of his neck. “What are you doing?” Stiles breathed. He could feel his heart pick up speed, thumping against this chest like a snare drum.

“Taking your pain?” The uncertainty was clear in Isaac’s eyes. He looked like someone just kicked his puppy but he didn’t pull away, instead, his thumb softly stroked along the underside of Stiles jaw, it was an oddly intimate gesture. But the gentle rhythm sent tingles down Stiles' spine.

 

He wanted to say something, the words were on the tip of his tongue but no sound came out, the words were stuck in his throat and all Stiles could do was gaze into Isaac’s eyes. They were an unnatural shade of blue he realized; the area around his Irises was gray with flecks of yellow and green but the blue got darker towards the edge of his eyes. They were beautiful. Stiles quickly pulled away from Isaac’s hold and diverted his eyes. There is no way in hell he will let himself feel anything but disdain towards the werewolf, not after everything that’s happened.

 

Stiles cleared his throat but he didn’t dare turn back to meet the wolves’ eyes, “What are you doing here?” Isaac seemed to heisted for a moment before he slowly withdrew his hand from Stiles neck. He stood and straightened his gray Henley, a hand-me-down from Derek no doubt. 
”I forgot my phone. Why are you still here? I thought you’d be the first one in the cafeteria, it’s curly fries day.”
”Not hungry,” he mumbled. It wasn’t a lie but it wasn’t the truth either. Stiles just couldn’t bring himself to eat anything; his mind was abuzz with too many thoughts to concentrate on something as simple as eating. Now with Isaac here it’s even harder not to get lost in his own thoughts. His confession last night is still fresh in Stiles mind. No one has ever liked him before, well not that he knows of anyway. It’s insane to think that anyone would like him. Stiles knows that he’s weird, he talks too much and he can’t seem to sit still so the idea that someone thinks he’s attractive is bizarre. There are a hundred other guys at this school who are taller, stronger and far more attractive then he will ever be, there is no way Isaac actually likes him.

 

“Last night,” Stiles started but Isaac was quick to intervene. 
”Yeah…Do you maybe wanna talk about this over lunch?” Stiles' head snapped up, his eyebrows were drawn together and his heart gave a loud thud against this chest. Was Isaac seriously asking him out? “I-I meant lunch, now, the cafeteria. I’m kind of hungry.” His mouth fell open in a silent ‘o’. Of course, Isaac wasn’t asking him out, that was a stupid thought. For some reason, though he felt disappointed.

 

Stiles nodded. He grabbed his things and quickly left through the double doors of the locker room, not bothering to check if Isaac was following him. He was too embarrassed by his own stupidity,

 

***

 

They waited in silence in the short cue in the cafeteria. Isaac grabbed a serve of curly fries, a ham sandwich, and three chocolate chip cookies but was quick to grab a second serve of fries and an extra cookie when Stiles' stomach rumbled with a hunger he hadn’t realized he had and to add insult to injury Isaac refused to let him pay for it.

 

Stiles grumbled under his breath about stupid werewolves and their inability to let people pay for things as he shoveled another handful of curly fries into his mouth. He sat opposite Isaac in the back of the cafeteria away from prying eyes, well all except for one pair of prying eyes. Since they sat down Danny has not stopped glancing over and smiling, he even went as far as to give him thumbs up and a very suggestive wink, can a wink be suggestive? “You smell embarrassed.” Isaac was watching him closely. His food lay abandoned, curly fries now soggy from the ungodly amount of tomato sauce he used to drown them in. “It’s Danny,” he mumbled. Stiles glanced towards the front of the cafeteria where Danny was seated and instantly regretted it when he caught the other teen giving him a knowing smirk. Heat flooded his cheeks. Even though Danny seemed mad at him before he defiantly wasn’t letting that stop him from making silent innuendos across the cafeteria.

 

Isaac swiveled around in his chair, his eyes following Stiles line of sight to where Danny sat, still smirking. “Does he uh…like you or something?”
”What? No!” The wolf seemed to sink in on himself, he looked so unsure of himself, like he was about to be rejected. A part of Stiles wanted to reach out and comfort him but there was still that voice screaming at him to keep the wolf at arms length. “Danny doesn’t like me like that, he’s just a friend. Besides, he’s been teasing me about your smile fest all through gym.” The wolf ducked his head, suddenly finding his lunch incredibly fascinating but Stiles could have sworn he saw Isaac’s face turned a deep shade of red, even the tips of his ears seemed to glow. “It was pretty obvious huh?” Isaac didn’t look up as he spoke, just continued to push the food around his plate.
”Just a little.” The way Isaac blushes almost makes Stiles believe that this whole crush thing is true. “Although, you jumping out my window kind of ruins the whole facade.” Isaac looked up, meeting his gaze head-on. Stiles didn’t have the strength or the will to look away.
”I could have handled that better.” Stiles nodded. “To be honest I hadn’t planned to ever tell you how I feel.” Something dark coiled in his gut. It seems that Stiles isn’t the only one who thinks he’s worthless. He picked at the edges of the wrapping on his chocolate chip cookie. His own emotions are really starting to get on his last nerve.

 

Neither said anything and for a moment silence passed between them before Isaac sat down his fork and continued to speak in a voice so soft Stiles could barley hear him at first over the loud chatter in the room. “When Derek first bit me I started to notice things, things I shouldn’t have been able to notice. Everything was so different. For the first time in my life I felt powerful and I had all this excess energy running through my body, I felt like I could do anything. My senses were the biggest change though, not just my hearing and sight but also my sense of smell. At first I didn’t realize it but once it was explained to me I realized that some of the strange things I was suddenly able to smell were emotions and people. Everyone has a natural scent, it differs from person to person but yours immediately caught my attention. You smell like cinnamon and chocolate, salt and freshly cut grass, like home and safety. The first time I caught a whiff of your scent I couldn't get enough, it’s intoxicating. Your scent is so different that it should be unbearable but it’s not, you smell so good.” He emphasized this by taking a deep breath through his nose. The area around his Irises flashed Beta gold before settling back to his natural shade of blue. If Stiles didn’t know any better he’d say that the wolf was losing control but he’s seen enough wolves lose control to know that Isaac was in perfect control of his wolf. “At first your scent drove me insane. I wanted to be close to you yet I wanted nothing to do with you. You’re human and I’m a werewolf. I was arrogant in thinking that humans were beneath me, that I was now suddenly a god that deserved to be worshiped.” Isaac chuckled, his whole face seemed to light up. “And every time I said something nasty or cruel you were always there, reminding me that I’m not so big and mighty. You never let me believe that I was better then anyone, even when the claws came out you always stood your ground and over time I started to not only respect you but I fell for you and hard. Your scent isn’t the only thing I find infectious, your smile lights up the room and every time you laugh it’s-”
”I swear,” Stiles said cutting him off, “if you say that my laugh sounds like angels singing I will jump over this table and smack you upside the head.” Isaac’s confession was dare he say it sweet. No one has ever said anything like that to him before, if anything people like to make fun of the way he laughs not compliment him on it. Isaac chuckled. ”No nothing like that, but you do have an amazing laugh.” What’s he supposed to say to that? Maybe there is a handbook he can read about how to take a compliments from a guy who has a crush on you.
”I uh, I don’t know what to say to all that.”
”You don’t have to say anything.” Yea right, after all that Isaac must want him to say something, maybe confess to some feeling he has of his own but Stiles can’t, he doesn’t feel that way about Isaac. Well not yet, maybe one day he might feel something for the other teen. But there is one question he really wants answered. ”I do have one question though…what changed between now and last week that made you want to tell me all this?” There is no way that months of hate can turn into attraction over night.
”Derek.” Isaac answered simply. “Before you I have never felt anything towards a guy before and I was scared so I lashed out, my fear turned to anger. Last night when we were talking I didn’t notice but Derek had followed me to your house. He heard everything we said and after I ran away he cornered me and in simple Derek terms told me to get over my human barriers and embrace every part of myself. Except with more growling and that weird thing he does with his eyebrows.” That doesn’t sound like Derek Sourwolf Hale at all. The guy gives off a killer beast vibe that’s hard to miss
”Wait, so Derek gave you actual advise?”
”Yeah, he’s actually a really good Alpha, well once you get past the murder eyes and the growling.”Derek and good Alpha, those are three words that have never been uttered in the same sentence before.

It wouldn’t be so hard to believe if Derek didn’t have an affinity for pushing him into hard surfaces and growling at him like a wild animal. “Speaking of Derek, why exactly did he corner me in the boy's bathroom last night?”
Isaac raised his eyebrow but didn’t comment on the sudden change of subject. ”It was about Scott, he’s missed the last couple of pack meetings and refuses to answer his phone whenever we call. It’s grating on Derek’s last nerve. He’s stressed out as it is with this new threat in town and now with Scott being difficult it’s only adding to his stress level. I suppose he thought that you guys were still friends and that maybe you could talk some sense into him. I’m really sorry about that by the way.” Everything always seems to lead back to Scott. Scott this, Scott that, why does this town seem to revolve around him?

 

And this new threat, did no one think to tell him? Is he really that insignificant that the pack didn’t think to even give him a heads up. He can’t protect his dad from everything that goes bump in the night if he doesn’t know whats going bump. ”So…new threat. Why didn’t anyone tell me about this?”
”It’s nothing to worry about, really, it’s just a couple of rouge wolves that crossed over into our territory. Derek’s taking care of it.” Isaac didn’t so much as flinch when he spoke. He seems to believe and trust in Derek wholeheartedly. It’s weird because Stiles only knows him as the growly douche bag who growls and yet Isaac spends several weeks living with the Alpha and suddenly they trust in each other. However, Stiles still reserves the right to distrust him. ”Well he can’t be doing too good of a job if my dad’s out in the preserve right now putting together dismembered bodies.” He shoved his unopened cookie into his backpack and quickly stood. He needs to get to the bottom of this rouge wolf situation. ”Where are you going?” Isaac asked.
”The preserve, where else?”
”You’re not going alone, wait for me!” He shoved his own unopened cookies into his ratty backpack and jogged to catch up to Stiles who was already halfway across the cafeteria.

 

***

 

With Stiles sporadic driving it didn’t take long before they reached the edge of the preserve. As soon as Stiles put the Jeep into park Isaac was out of the car. He lay spread egal amongst the dirt and leaves, breathing heavily. Stiles raised an eyebrow as he closed the passenger side door and lent back against the side of his Jeep. “Is this a werewolf thing?”
”No,” Isaac breathed, “this is an ‘I’m thankful to still be alive because you’re a psychotic driver’ thing.”

“I resent that. I’m a great driver and if you want to be in my presence you will continue to tell me that I am a great driver.”
Isaac pushed himself up onto his elbows and raised one of his judgey eyebrows. ”How many speeding tickets do you have?”
”None,” Stiles said, ignoring the slight blip in his heartbeat as he lied but Isaac wasn’t willing to ignore it so easily. He got to his feet and closed the small space between them. He leaned in close to Stiles side, one hand resting on his hip and the other plastered against the side of the Jeep. ”How many would you have if your dad wasn’t the Sheriff?” Stiles could almost hear his heart thud against his chest. The feeling of Isaac’s warm body pressed against his side felt so strange especially since they’re not very close. Before last night they were almost like enemies and now they have an odd sort of ‘friendship’ Not that Stiles has fully forgiven him but it is nice to have someone to talk to who isn’t his dad. ”That’s beside the point.”
”No, it’s not-“
”Shut up Isaac.” They shared an easy smile between them. It’s like falling into an old routine with Isaac, even though he doesn’t trust the wolf as far as he can throw him (which isn’t very far) they just seem to fit together with such ease like they have known each other forever.

 

They set off into the preserve with only the sound of leaves crunching under foot to cut through the silence. Stiles could feel Isaac’s eyes boring into his back as they walked and every so often he could distinctly make out the sound of Isaac leaning forward and sniffing

 

He was so lost in though that Stiles didn’t notice when Isaac suddenly stopped mid-stride, his nose turned up in the air like a dog trying to sniff out his next treat. If he was paying attention Stiles would have made some sort of dog joke and had he been paying attention he would have noticed when the beta’s eyes turned gold and his claws lengthened but he wasn’t paying attention and that was how Stiles ended up face down in the dirt, a hard body pressed against his back and one arm tightly wrapped around his chest while the other, claws included pressed against his parted lips. Stiles tried to scream and wiggle his way out of Isaac’s hold but the beta only tightened his grip, crushing Stiles further against the cold floor of the preserve. “Shh,” Isaac hissed against the shell of Stiles' ear. The sound came out muffled around his sharpened canines.

 

Stiles immediately went still, his breath coming in heavy pants against Isaac’s sweaty palm. He tried to listen over the erratic beating of his heart which seemed to echo around in his head. It took a moment but eventually Stiles' heart calmed down enough that he was able to hear what had spooked Isaac. The shuffling of leaves was the first thing that caught his attention. It sounded close but not close enough to warrant panic but just as Stiles was beginning to think that they had stumbled upon his dad’s deputies he heard a low growl, almost like a whine. Isaac tensed behind him. His arm tightened further around Stiles before he released him entirely. “Stay,” Isaac whispered when Stiles opened his mouth to speak. He clicked his mouth shut and continued to lay there in silence, his eyes wide as Isaac lent over him. The wolf seemed torn like his head was pulling him in a different direction than his body. Isaac’s eyes suddenly flashed gold and he let out a growl before throwing himself over the small embankment.

 

It was silent for a second. Only the sound of the rustling leaves high up in the trees reached his ears. Stiles was just about to jump up and yell at the wolf for leaving him alone with his cryptic message to stay, maybe throw in a few insults about his wolfiness but he didn’t get the chance. As soon as the silence began it ended. The air became filled with growls and the sound of claws clashing and ripping through flesh. Stiles breath hitched as Isaac let out a roar of pain. “Shit,” he hissed. When Stiles had planned to go looking for the remains of the dismembered bodies he hadn’t planned to actually run into the thing responsible and now Isaac’s hurt because of him.

 

He crawled towards the edge of the embankment and peered over the edge, fisting the earth beneath him with shaky hands. Down below two wolves fought, their claws clashing in what Stiles could only describe as a pure primal need to kill.

 

The other wolf threw a bloody, clawed hand towards Isaac’s face. The beta ducked just in time, he swung his leg out kicking the other wolfs legs out from under him. He went down with a thud, roaring as his head connected with an exposed tree root. Isaac didn’t wait for him to regain his bearings, he threw his leg over the wolf and crouched down until he was sitting on the wolf’s chest. Isaac raised one clawed hand and swiped down, aiming for his neck but the other wolf was faster, he swung his claws up and into Isaac’ stomach. The sound is something that will forever haunt Stiles. The beta stopped, seeming to be in shock as he looked down at his bloodied stomach. The other wolf chuckled and with a quick flick of his wrist raked his claws up, the tearing of flesh was indescribable. More blood gushed from Isaac’s stomach, it ran down his front and soaked into the fabric of his jeans. All the fight seemed to drain out of his body and the other wolf seemed to notice this as well. He raised his hand, intending to copy Isaac’s previous attack and aimed for his exposed neck.

 

Stiles looked around him wildly trying to find some sort of weapon he could use but found nothing but sticks. That’s it sticks! He grabbed the biggest and thickest branch he could find and ran back to the edge of the embankment. With no time to think or aim Stiles threw the heavy branch with all his might. It landed a few feet from him and rolled the rest of the way down the embankment. “Oi ugly!” he screamed when the wolf still didn’t turn to acknowledge him.

The nameless wolf turned his head towards Stiles, one arm still raised ready to deliver the killing blow. His glowing blue eyes held no trace of anything human, it was just pure animal. He let out a purely animalistic roar and threw Isaac off of his chest. Stiles couldn’t help but watch as Isaac sailed through the air like he weighed nothing; he didn’t fight, not even when he landed against a nearby tree with a sickening crack. The limp body of the beta flopped against the earth, unmoving, his eyes still wide open and glassed over. Stiles' heart gave an unusually loud thud against his chest. Is he dead?

The wolf growled again. He lunged up the side of the embankment, just a few feet from where Stiles was standing. Up close Stiles could almost make out every feature of the feral wolf. He looked the same age as his dad, late forties with a full beard and platinum hair that was so long it reached down past his shoulders. The man looks like he hasn’t seen a decent meal in months; he’s all skin and bone, sharp edges and sunken eyes. He looked like a mess but a mess with claws and fangs that’s coming right for him. Stiles turned around and ran in the direction he hoped lead further into the preserve. He knows he can’t outrun a werewolf, not even in his wildest dreams but at least he can lead the thing-man further away from town.

Stiles barely managed to make it a few feet before the wolf was upon him. Sharp claws dug into his back, piercing his pale flesh. It felt like a hot poker was stripping away layers of his skin.

An involuntary scream was ripped from Stiles' throat. He fell forward against the hard earth, scraping his hands against exposed roots and rocks as his arms shot out, trying to protect his face from the fall but it had little effect as the wolf landed on top of him. His weight wasn’t warm or comforting like Isaac’s had been, instead, the feeling of the wolf pressing down on him made Stiles want to be sick. The wolfs prominent ribs dug roughly into Stiles back and his breath smelt of rotting flesh and moldy bread. Stiles could feel him flex his fingers where they were still stuck in his back, just below his shoulders. He screamed, tears prickling at the edges of his eyes. The wolf growled in satisfaction. He dug his claws in deeper with what sounded like a chuckled. Could feral wolves even laugh?

Suddenly he pulled back, ripping his claws free from Stiles back in the process. His body rocked back above him, seemingly getting ready to strike the final blow. ‘This is it,’ Stiles thought, ‘I’m going to die a virgin.’ He threw his arms up trying to protect his face. The last thing he wanted was for his dad to find his body lying in the preserve but at least he can stop his face from becoming horribly disfigured.

A loud roar ripped through the trees, louder then the feral wolf atop him had managed thus far, it seemed to shake the very earth beneath him. The nameless wolf went still, his body rigid but then his body shook and he unleashed a roar of his own. The trees roared back in answer, closer this time than the last.

Despite Stiles better judgment he slowly lowered his arms and peered up from where his face was smashed into the earth. At first, he saw nothing but the fog drifting between trees but then from the corner of his eye he noticed a black blur streak towards them faster then his eyes could track and then all of a sudden the weight pressing down on his back was gone and his ears were filled with the sound of snarling. It reminded Stiles of when the neighbor's dogs used to fight.

Stiles quickly scrambled to his feet despite the pain flaring through his back. He almost choked out a sob when he noticed the black wolf. A black wolf, a legitimate wolf with fur and paws and…glowing red eyes was standing over the now motionless body of the feral man. His throat was a bloody mess as was the wolf’s muzzle. That could have been him; he could have just as easily been the one lying there with his throat slashed and blood gushing from a wound that would not heal. The wolf jumped off the man's chest and stalked towards him. It seemed to roll its eyes and chuffed out a sound that almost seemed like a chuckle.

“Derek?” Stiles asked. If it were any other Alpha they would have killed him by now and besides Derek is the only wolf that can manage to both look terrifying and like a father trying to scowl his pups. “Nice timing and all that but since when can you do...well that.” With shaky hands, he gestured to the whole of Derek’s fury body. He was huge even for a wolf. While standing his head came up just past his waist. No one told him that Derek could shift into an actual wolf, he would defiantly remember if someone did. Derek huffed and none too gently butted his head against Stiles side. He pushed wolf Derek’s head away. The dude can’t stand him and yet wolfy him wants to get all up in his business, it’s weird. Oh, shit Isaac. “Dude,” growl, “Derek! Whatever. Isaac’s hurt, I don’t know if he’s….” dead.

Derek seemed to get his message anyway because he took off in the direction Stiles had come running from moments ago. Stile hesitated. He glanced over at the still form of the bloody man just to make sure that he was still dead before he followed Derek but at a much slower pace. By the time he reached the edge of the embankment Derek’s naked human form was climbing back up, he had one arm wrapped around Isaac’s waist, supporting his mostly dead weight. The beta was breathing heavily and his skin was pale and sweaty. He looked like death warmed over. “Isaac!” Stiles screamed. He’s never been so relieved to see the curly haired wolf. When Isaac noticed him his mouth curved into a smile that looked more like a grimace. One of his hands was pressed against his stomach but even from this far away Stiles could see that the wound was still bleeding heavily. “Dude I thought you were dead!”
”That makes two of us,” he chuckled breathlessly.

Chapter Text

“Enough with this dribble,” Derek growled. He lowered Isaac down until he was sitting on an exposed root from a nearby oak tree. Stiles wanted to run over and make sure that he was ok, check over his wounds to make sure that they were healing properly but he didn’t particularly want to get closer to Derek who is still very much naked and besides, the Alpha was already doing a good job of checking Isaac’s wounds. The claws marks on his stomach and chest were nearly healed already but he still looked pale and sickly.

Derek’s hand came up and cuffed Isaac in the back of the head. It didn’t seem to cause the werewolf any pain but Stiles still cringed when Isaac’s head jolted forward. “What the hell were you thinking, you may be a werewolf but you’re not invincible Isaac. You could have gotten yourself killed.” Isaac whined like a wounded animal (pun defiantly intended.) He ducked his head and hunched his shoulders like he was trying to appear smaller. “He had already picked up our scents,” he mumbled, “It was only a matter of time before he found out where we were hiding, so I figured that I’d get the drop on him first. How did you know where we were anyway?” Stiles felt very uncomfortable watching the exchange between Alpha and Beta; it felt more like watching a father scowled his son then the dynamics of a wolf pack. “Boyd,” Derek answered, “He called me as soon as you two idiots left school. I followed you here, good thing I did otherwise you’d both be dead.” Derek glared at both teens, his eyes flashing crimson red. “What did you two think would happen, that you’d just stumble upon the omegas and somehow kill them by yourselves?” Isaac opened his mouth, no doubt to give a sheepish response but Stiles was quicker to the punch.
”What do you mean omegas, as in plural, more than one. How many omegas are out here exactly!” Stiles' eyes trailed over the surrounding trees. He couldn’t help but wonder if they were being watched right now.

 

Derek growled, the sound shook through Stiles, but after being attacked by an omega he is a little too hyped up on adrenaline to properly register the look of murderous intent of Derek’s face. ”That’s none of your business, I’m handling it-“

“It is my business. I might not be part of your pack but my dad is the one out here risking his fragile human body trying to track down pieces of dismembered bodies that he thinks were put here by a serial killer. I have a right to know what the hell is going on in this town. How else am I supposed to protect my dad when you won’t tell me when something new goes bump in the night!” Stiles sighed, “He’s all I have left Derek and I refuse to lose him just because you and your mismatched band of assholes refuse to text me and give me a heads up when something like this happens.”

It was a low blow using his dad like that but Derek knows what it’s like to lose the people he cares about and if using that to Stiles advantage will get him a simple text message that says to watch out for the new big bad then so be it. Stiles already worries about his dad, his job puts him in danger every time he leaves the house and now with the supernatural, the risk of his dad getting hurt has gone up exponentially.

A full belly laugh made the tiny hairs on the back of Stiles neck rise. His head wiped around so fast that it sent a spike of pain up his pale neck. Behind him, huddled together like a bad version of Greece was Scott, Jackson and Erica and Boyd, let's not forget the tag along girlfriends either. ”God Stilinski,” Jackson said, “we could hear your whiny voice all the way from the high way.” Stiles turned back towards Derek and Isaac with a glare that could rival even that of Mr. Sourwoulf himself.
”Who invited Jackass and his hair crew?" He directed the question towards the Alpha but he didn’t even seem to acknowledge the fact that Stiles had spoken, instead picking out a stray leaf from his hair. “It’s not my fault you always mess everything up Stilinski.” Jackson sneered. No one seemed concerned by Whittmore’s comment, nor did they seem ready to defend him. It's not like Stiles has feelings or anything and it’s not like he lays awake at night contemplating his worth. “That’s rich coming from you lizard boy.”
Jackson pushed himself away from the tree he was leaning against and growled, eyes flashing beta blue. ”Why don’t you come over here and say that to my face.” Stiles took a step towards the wolf and sneered, ”Lizard boy.” Stiles didn’t see Jackson lunge for him. It all happened in the blink of an eye. One second they were standing across from one another and then the next thing Stiles knows Isaac is between him and the angry beta, his claws digging into Jackson’s shoulders as he struggled to hold him back, still too weak from healing himself.

Stiles swallowed thickly against the vomit threatening to rise. First, he nearly gets Isaac killed and now the beta is putting himself between Stiles and an angry pack mate to try and protect him because Stiles can’t keep his big mouth shut.

Isaac finally managed to push Jackson away. He landed on his ass with a thud. Jackson growled through his mouth full of fangs. He pushed himself back onto his feet and jolted forward, ready to charge at Isaac but Lydia stepped between the two. She flickered her loose curls over her shoulder and said, ”That’s enough, both of you. Grow up, what are your children?” but she wasn’t looking at either of the wolves, instead she was glaring daggers at Stiles, because apparently, this whole thing is his fault, like usual.

Both of the wolves seemed to visibly deflate but they continued to glare at each other. If looks could kill they’d both be dead a hundred times over.

He hadn’t been paying attention before but now that the fighting was over Stiles realized that Scott and Allison were now standing behind Jackson, their feet spread apart, a stance that screamed ‘ready to fight’. Allison’s hand was resting on her hip where no doubt one of her hunting knives was hiding beneath her cardigan. Boyd and Erica were standing on the outskirts of the fight, having moved closer to their Alpha. Neither of them seemed interested in picking sides in the battle between pack mates. A small part of Stiles was grateful but another part of him wished they had picked their side, after everything they went through together at the hands of Gerard Stiles had at least thought they had become closer.

Derek exhaled loudly through his nose, it sounded more like a growl than anything else. He stalked between the two groups, still very much naked. “Now that we’ve finished being idiots, you two can go and bury the body,” He gestured towards Scott and Jackson, both of who groaned loudly. They stormed off, grumbling to themselves and shooting daggers towards Derek until they were out of sight. Derek had already moved on, ignoring the two betas as he turned towards Boyd and Erica who were still standing on the outskirts of the group. “Take Isaac home and make sure he doesn’t bleed to death on the way there.” He didn’t wait for either of them to respond before turning to face the girls. “Little girls go home and you,” Derek said pointing to Stiles, “come here.”
”No,” Stiles said. “You’re going to hit me.”
Derek rolled his eyes. ”I’m not going to hit you.” He wasn’t very convincing though, his eyes were dark and his hands were clenched at his sides, like a wolf ready to pounce.

“Yes you are, you’ve got that look going on that says you want to punch me in the face.”
”I promise I won’t punch you in the face.” Derek sighed. Stiles contemplated his choices, either go over there and get punched in the face or stay standing here like an idiot and have an angry wolf stalk over and punch him in the face. Stiles shuffled over, ignoring the grimace Isaac sent his way. He stopped a few feet in front of Derek, not wanting to get any closer to his nakedness.

Stiles saw it coming this time when Derek’s hand came up and smacked him across the back of the head with a little werewolf strength added to the mix. Stiles hissed as he brought his hands up to cradle the back of his aching skull. ”Ow! You said you weren’t going to hit me!”
”I lied.” The Alpha’s face remained blank but Stiles swore he saw the corners of his lips turn up. “Next time you have the desire to hunt down dangerous creatures in the preserve. Don’t.”
”So I can hunt them anywhere else but the preserve good to know.”
”No, you-“ Stiles cut him off before he could finish. The pack needed him and he is going to make damn well sure they know it.
”Right see ya guys I’ve got stuff to do like listening to my dad’s phone calls and find out about those dismembered bodies he found this morning.” He dropped his hands and smirked at Derek before he turned around and stalked off. He only made it a few feet before Derek called after him.
”Wait.”
Slowly Stiles turned around. He propped his hands against his hips and tilted his head to the side. ”Yes oh, mighty Alpha?”
”You will call me,” he replied between gritted teeth. “When you find something like you should have done this morning.”

“Can’t sorry, don’t have your number.”
”Isaac.” Derek growled, “Give him my number.”
”Why can’t you?”
”Because I’m not wearing pants, Stiles.”
He couldn’t help but grin, sometimes Derek made it too easy. ”I know, we can all see that your wing wong is hanging out, your sausage, willy wonka, your little friend, the dominator, ya disco stick, eggs with a side of bacon, your floppy disk, little Derek-“ Erica snorted, the sound was so loud that it made everyone stop and stare. Her back was to the group but it was clear to see that her shoulders were shaking in a half-hearted attempt to keep her laughing at bay. Stiles couldn’t help his own smile from appearing. Things between Erica and himself have been rocky lately so it’s nice to know that despite everything he can still make her laugh.

His happiness was short lived though. Derek growled. His face was scrunched up like he had just sucked on a lemon and his eyes burned a deep crimson. “You’re thinking about hitting me right now, aren’t you?” Derek nodded. “Now that, that has been established I’m gonna go.” Stiles backed away from the group. Jackson and Scott were the only ones missing, much to Derek’s annoyance, if his obvious murder eyes towards Allison and Lydia were anything to go by.

Once Stiles was far enough away from the group he let his smile fall. His back ached like hell and being in the same vicinity as some members of the pack made his skin crawl especially after certain events. Stiles had nearly made it to his Jeep when he heard soft voices up ahead. “He’s so annoying. Did you hear him before; he was talking about Derek’s dick, like who the hell does that?” There was no mistaking that that was Jackson. Stiles dismissed the comment and continued in the direction he hoped would lead back to his Jeep. It wouldn’t be the first time Jackson has insulted him and it defiantly won't be the last. “I can’t believe I was actually friends with him. He never shuts up, words keep coming out of his mouth but none of it makes any sense.” A cold feeling settled over Stiles, it felt like someone had thrown a bucket of iced water over his head. That couldn’t be Scott; it has to be some sort of evil doppelganger or something. “I don’t get why Stiles is still hanging around us, he’s human, he’s not pack. The only reason he was originally included in all this is because he’s the reason I was turned. If it weren’t for him none of this would have happened, I wouldn’t have been turned, Lydia wouldn’t have been attacked and Gerard wouldn’t have come to town with the sole purpose of killing us.”
”Exactly!” Jackson exclaimed. They grew silent for a moment as the sound of digging continued. Stiles tried to stay as still as possible, he didn’t want to alert the wolves to the fact that he was ease dropping. “Although did you see the way Derek was looking at Stilinski? It’s obvious they’re fucking. Derek probably bends him over like a slut, no wonder he’s still around he’s Derek’s cock sleeve.” They both dissolved into manic laughter. So much for best friends forever.

He felt numb. Not even the warm blood seeping through his shirt from the finger holes in his back was a distraction from the numbness that had settled over him. Stiles didn’t even feel mad, just numb.

“Stiles?” A soft voice asked. He turned quickly, not expecting anyone to have followed him, let alone Erica. She stood less than a foot from him, her face crumbled in pity. Stiles swiped at his wet eyes. He wouldn’t let himself cry in front of them. “What do you want?”
”Isaac asked me to walk you to your car, he said you smelt like blood but you smell more like pain to me.”
”What else is new?” he asked bitterly, “And I don’t need you to walk me to my car, I’m more than capable of doing it myself.” Stiles turned and quickly left before Erica could get in another word. He doesn’t need to listen to this shit. After everything he has done for Scott, after every full moon, after every time he let Scott crawl through his window when his parents were fighting, after every time he stuck up for his furry ass, this is how he repays Stiles for over a decade of friendship, having a bitch fit about him when Scott damn well knows he’s within hearing distance.

He wants to storm over there so badly and use his powers to hurt Scott and Jackson, make them feel as weak as they make him feel but Danny was right earlier they aren’t worth it. So Stiles got into his Jeep and tore off just as the first tears began their track down his cheeks.

By the time Stiles pulled into the driveway it was growing dark outside and his dad’s cruiser was parked in the driveway beside a black SUV. The windows were so dark that they almost looked as black as the car. Stiles shivered. He knew whom the car belonged to. He quickly shot of a text to Danny, apologizing for missing their study session and then despite every instinct in his body telling him to get back in his car and drive away, Stiles opened the front door and stepping inside. His dad was leaning against the kitchen counter with his arms crossed firmly in front of his chest. He glanced up when Stiles entered the house. John’s face was set in stone, emotionless but Stiles knew him well enough to know that his dad was disappointed and angry with him. “Hello, Mieczyslaw.” A tall woman stepped out of the shadows. She was dressed in a dark pants suit with a white button-up shirt. Not a hair was out of place atop her head and not a speck of dust lined her suit. Her eyes raked over his body before settling on his face. “We have much to discuss.”
Stiles swallowed thickly, “Am I in trouble?” She didn’t answer.

Chapter Text

Isaac couldn’t help the feeling of dread that twists in his stomach as he watches Stiles walk away. He feels utterly worthless. What was the point of all this power if he couldn't protect the person he cared about? Instead, it was Stiles who had to come to his rescue, getting himself injured in the process. He should have been able to protect Stiles, should have been able to protect him. Why wasn't he strong enough?
Boyd and Erica each grabbed one of his arms and hoisted him to his feet. He hissed as a feeling like liquid fire ripped across his chest. It felt as though his skin was being pulled away from his chest piece by agonizing piece.

"Maybe this will teach you not to be such an idiot," Erica said from his side. Isaac looked down at her slightly smaller frame. Her eyebrows frowned, and a look of worry overtook her usual confident smirk. "Never," he replied with a teasing smile, "you know me. I'm always an idiot." Erica did not look impressed as she turned to glare up at him. The look reminded him of Stiles and immediately his mind was overcome with images of the boy he cared deeply for. "Stiles-"
Boyd cut him off before he could finish speaking, "He's fine."
"No, he's not," Isaac groaned, "He smelt like blood." Neither answered as they roughly shoved him into the passenger seat of Erica's tiny red convertible. Boyd raced around the other side of the car with Erica's fuzzy pink keychain dangling between his fingers. Isaac caught Erica's wrist in his shaking hands before she could turn to walk away. "Please," he begged, "can you make sure he's all right, please?" She stared at him, unblinking for what felt like hours before she turned away with a huff. Her eyes were softer when Erica turned back to face him. "Fine, but if he annoys me I can't promise he'll be in one piece."
"I expect nothing less from you," he smiled.
Something akin to relief settled over Isaac, but he knew he would not be able to rest until he knew that Stiles was ok. He settled back into the seat just as Erica slammed the car door shut. He could faintly hear Erica and Boyd conversing over the roof of the car, but he was too tired to ease drop on their conversation.

The car jostled as Boyd climbed into the tight space behind the steering wheel. He jammed the key into the ignition and revved the engine to life. "What about Erica?" He asked, voice barely about a whisper. Boyd pushed the car into drive as he replied.
"Said she would catch a ride with Stilinski." Isaac nodded. He leaned back in the seat and closed his eyes, no longer able to keep them open on his own accord.
*Ω*
When Isaac opened his eyes sometime later he found himself laying on a lumpy mattress with a thin woollen blanket pulled up around his chin. He groaned, the skin across his chest pulling tight as he tried to push himself up onto his elbows. "Stay down," a gruff voice spoke. Through the dark train car, Isaac could barely make out the stiff form of his Alpha, sitting hunched over one of the rusted seats.

Isaac fell back against the mattress, sighing. Having his Alpha near calmed his racing mind but there was something itching under his skin, begging to be freed. The need to know where Stiles was and how he was doing, it left his hands shaking and his heart thudding against his ribcage. “Is Stiles-”
“He’s fine,” Derek growled. His eyes flashed in the dark, two red beacons that called to something primal inside Isaac, a baser need to please his Alpha at whatever means possible. “You, however.” Derek stood from his seat and cross the small space in two long strides. “Are a complete and utter moron. What were you thinking running off with him like that, without a plan or any backup? You both could have been killed.” Isaac jumped as Derek kicked a nearby crate sending it into the wall of the train car. “You are part of a pack, Isaac, not a lone wolf. You should have called and told me that Stilinski was going after the omega. You should have waited for instructions.”
“I just wanted to-”
Derek growled, cutting him off, “You what? Wanted to listen to his dying screams, to hold his dead body in your arms, because that is what would have happened if Boyd hadn’t seen you sneak out of school and called me!”

Derek loomed over him, his eyes still bleeding red. Isaac whimpered as an image flashed before his eyes, of his father standing over him, fists raised and a sneer across his withered face. It was gone as quickly as it came but the damage was already done.

Derek crouched down beside him and rest a gentle hand on his shoulder. “Listen, Isaac. I know you care about Stilinski but if you want to protect him you need to start acting in his best interest and that means keeping him out of situations like today.” The Alpha’s eyes drained of their colour until they resembled something more human. Isaac swallowed deeply. He knows that Stiles will never stay out of the supernatural world, even if it gets him killed and Isaac doesn’t know what he would do if Stiles died because of him. And so, he nodded, a small part of him preening at the satisfied upturn of his Alpha’s lips. However, his mind was still abuzz, trying to determine how best to keep his human crush safe.

*Ω*

By morning Isaac was feeling much better but his chest still stung with a phantom pain when he stretched too far. The pack was gathered in the centre of the train depot in what had come to be called the den. They were sitting on whatever flat surface they could find, most of them on their phones, except for Erica who was standing away from the group, leaning against the side of a train car as she glared daggers towards Scott and Jackson.

Just the sight of the two betas set Isaac’s own nerves on edge. Isaac wanted nothing more than to run over there and rake his claws along their faces for the horrible things they have done to Stiles, but he also knew that he would be outnumbered and likely taken down before he could reach either one of them.

Instead of listening to his bodies desires Isaac leaned back against the train car by Erica’s side, hands clenched into fists where they were held across his chest. “You’re looking better,” She spoke softly.
“I feel better.” Isaac glanced over at his friend, noticing the clench of her jaw and the unmistakable claws peeking out from the tips of her fingers. “What’s wrong?” She didn’t answer. Erica stood, unmoving, her eyes never leaving the group of gathered wolves and human.

A high-pitched laugh echoed through the train depot. The Beta looked over just in time to see Scott tackle Allison to the floor, peppering kisses to her flustered face. Beside him, Erica growled. Her claws lengthened, drawing strips of blood along the crease of her elbows. “Train with me,” Isaac said. He knew that look in her eyes, the deep and primal need to draw blood and slash your claws until you hit bone. “What?” Her brown eyes are softer as she looks up at him.
He repeated, “Train with me. I need to get out of here before these idiots drive me insane and you obviously need to blow off some steam.” Erica grinned around her sharpened canines.
“Deal, but don’t complain too much when I wipe the floor with you.”
“In your dreams blondie.”
“I have better things to dream about than you,” her eyes trailed over to Boyd, who was lounging on a dusty bean bag, flipping through pages of an old leather-bound book. Isaac gagged as the fruity scent of womanly need wafted past him. “Shut up, Isaac.”

He grinned. This was the first time in weeks that he has been able to joke around with Erica and act like friends instead of two people on opposite sides of a feud.

They trained for hours, kicking and clawing their way through training dummies and each other until they both lay on the dirty floor, panting as their sweat began to cool, clinging to their clothes and body like a second skin. Somewhere off to the side, Isaac’s phone buzzed. He groaned loudly, throwing an arm over his eyes. Just as his phone stopped ringing it started up again. Isaac groaned again, louder this time. He dragged himself off the floor, ignoring Erica’s undignified snort.
Isaac grabbed his phone from his jacket pocket, pausing at the name on the screen. He took a deep breath before bringing the phone to his ear. “Hey,” he said, cringing at how lame he sounded.
“Hey,” a gentle voice answered. “I was, uh, just calling to see how you are. You weren’t in first period, so I thought maybe you died or something.” Isaac could almost hear Stiles cringing through the phone line.
“No, Not dead, very much still alive. I uh, I was just training. I lost track of time is all.”
“That’s good, good that you’re not dead I mean,” Stiles replied. They both fell silent, an uncomfortable silence that made Isaac’s skin crawl. He loved hearing Stiles voice, but their conversation felt forced and awkward. Isaac wanted to say so many things to Stiles but was afraid of how he would react if his feelings came spewing out like last time. Stiles wanted a friend, so Isaac was going to be that friend, even if it made him feel like he was dying on the inside.

Stiles cleared his throat. “So, um, the bell is about to ring. I should go to class, don’t wanna be late for Harris.”
“Yea, of course. I might uh, might see you later?”
Stiles laughed, the sound was music to his ears. “That would be cool, yea...um, see ya.”
“Bye.” Isaac groaned as he hung up. Why was he such an idiot? He was tempted to bash his head against a wall until he was dizzy and ready to vomit.

“That was pitiful. It’s like watching a car crash, brutal, yet I couldn’t look away.” Erica’s voice did little to quench his desire to bury himself alive in a shallow grave and wallow in self-pity.
He groaned, “I know.”
“You know what would have made that conversation less traumatic, is if I shot you in the face.”
“Please shut up,” Isaac said. He slid down the wall until he was seated, legs stretched out before him. He kept his phone tightly held in hand as he watched Erica throw her long curls into a loose ponytail. The other beta watched him the entire time like she was trying to see deep into his soul. “You really like him, don’t you?”
“Yea.” Isaac whispered, “God, I’m so pathetic.”
“Yea, yea you are.”
With a shake of his head, he replied, “Thank you for the vote of confidence.” Erica sprang to her feet, wiping away the dust from the back of her pants.
“Get up,” she said.
“Why?” She placed her hands on her hips and in what has been come to be known as ‘typical Erica’ fashion smirked down at the other Beta. “I’m going to give you a makeover and when I’m done I’ll teach you how to properly talk to guys.” Isaac was surprised, surprised by her sudden interest in helping him get closer to Stiles and by the sincerity in her voice, which wasn’t there three days prior.
“I don’t need a makeover and I know how to talk to guys.” Isaac slowly stood, dusting off his own pants. He grabbed his jacket, throwing it over his shoulder.
“Yea, no you don’t.” Isaac opened his mouth to reply but the she-wolf merely raised her eyebrows.
“No, I don’t.” He sighed.

Erica squealed excitedly. She reached out from his arm with a smile. He was defiantly regretting this already.