It takes Stiles just over an hour to complete the journey. Sure, he speeds more often than not and takes bends too fast and makes risky decisions, but where he’s going, it hardly matters. So what if he dies on his way to his jump spot? His jump spot. The point on the coast that Stiles had specifically chosen because of the high, rocky cliffs; the lack of other people to witness his final failure; and the currents below that would take him back south, back home.
The place he would die.
The place that his miserable, pointless existence would finally end because what was the point of living anymore? Scott doesn’t need him, not with Supervet and his newfound Alpha powers. His dad has Melissa now – their relationship strengthened with the need to understand the supernatural shit going on in Beacon Hills. The pack doesn’t need him, in hindsight he knows they never really did.
Derek doesn’t want him. And somehow, that’s more painful than everything else put together. Derek doesn’t want him. That’s the thought that spurs him to open his car door, hop out and stride towards the edge, settling down on the rocky outcrop with his legs dangling over the edge.
Wind whistles gently past his ears as he sits, his expression deceptively calm as he takes out his phone and opens a new text message, starts typing.
To Scott: Don’t forget your mom’s birthday is on Tuesday. She wanted those drop earrings.
Tears start forming in his eyes as he composes his next text.
To Dad: I love you. Not your fault. Sorry.
A single sob escapes him as he hits send, knowing that he’ll be long dead before the Sheriff sees the text. His limp body will be being tossed around in the sea completely lifeless by the time his dad gets off shift and checks his phone. It makes him feel guilty, worthless, cowardly that he can’t even admit his issues out loud or on paper, that he has to send texts to say goodbye to the people that he loves most.
He contemplates his last text for a long time before throwing caution to the wind and jabbing the send button.
To Derek: I loved you, Sourwolf. I wish you needed me, too. Goodbye.
As soon it’s sent, he flings his phone out of sight behind him, hearing it thud to the ground near his car. He hates himself for sending that final text, for that moment of weakness that allowed him to tell Derek exactly how he felt.
Stiles’ tears flow unchecked, now, dripping down his cheeks as he looks out across the sea. He watches the sun descend further and further until it’s setting, turning the sky a myriad of oranges and yellows and reds as it drops behind the horizon. Only when the sky is dark and the only things Stiles can hear are leaves rustling and waves crashing against the rocks below does he stand and remove his jacket. It’s his favourite, red and soft and warm and it definitely doesn’t deserve to die in the sea with him. He folds it neatly and places it on the floor next to him. He doesn’t even feel the cold.
Next, he takes his keys out of his pocket, kissing them once before tossing them back towards his mother’s old Jeep. And that’s it. That’s everything he cares about most in the world, safe behind him as he takes the final step of his journey. Scott, his dad, Derek. His phone, his hoodie, his Jeep. Safe.
He steps right out to the edge, letting his toes curl over the border between life and death.
A deep breath... and he leans forward.
A strong arm winds around his waist, pulling him flush back against a thickly muscled body, engulfing him in the smell of leather and pine needles. “No,” A soft voice whimpers in his ear, the voice he imagines at night when no one else is around to see his heart break. “Stiles, no. I do, I need you.” Warm, dry lips press against his neck over and over again, whispering unbearably sweet things and Stiles thinks, this is it, this is my heaven, I made it. He tilts his head away to show more skin to be kissed and sighs deeply. This is perfect. This is perfect. That is, until he hears a voice that would never, ever feature in his paradise.
“As adorable as this is,” Peter drawls from somewhere behind him, “We should probably get him in the car.” A low growl vibrates against Stiles’ back and the arms around the torso tighten until he can barely breathe but... If this is really happening... God, this is really happening. “Derek, the kid’s getting frostbite. It’s January and he’s in a T-shirt... Oh for the love of...”
The world tilts and Stiles can’t see anything except someone’s denim-clad legs, marching away from the edge, and the ground, frost kissed and closer than it usually is.
“Derek...” He mumbles, reaching out blindly from where he’s dangling over Peter’s shoulder in a parody of a fireman carry. Derek is there almost instantly, taking his hand and pressing it to his mouth then stroking through Stiles’ hair softly, still murmuring quietly. “How...?”
“Your password was ‘Derek’,” Peter says bluntly, opening the door of Derek’s car with his free hand and slipping Stiles into the backseat with a care that he would never have expected from Peter, of all people. “I thought you were more intelligent,” the older man raises his eyebrows before Derek pushes him away and slides into the seat next to Stiles, pulling the boy into his lap and holding him close.
Stiles squirms a little when a cold nose presses behind his ear but melts just as quickly when it’s followed by a warm tongue and soft lips. “I love you Stiles. So much. I just... Don’t leave me. Please don’t go again. I love you. Stay with me.”
And Stiles... Stiles says yes.