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The Apprenticeship

Chapter Text

“Son, are you absolutely sure about this?” his father asked, the tone of his voice lost to bad reception. Stiles’ apartment had the uncanny ability of jamming all signals - wi-fi and otherwise.

God, he hated his apartment.

“It’s cool, dad, it’s only a casting, I’m pretty sure they won’t be choosing me anyway,” Stiles told him as he tried to pick out something even remotely professional to wear. Something that was also easy to get out of - just in case.

“I’m just saying,” his father sighed, “Last time didn’t go too well. If you’re not ready, you don’t have to do it. In fact, you don’t have to do it at all. Ever.”

Stiles rolled his eyes. His dad wasn’t exactly conservative, but he was also… his dad. It was understandable he wasn’t very fond of the idea of his son getting up into all kinds of weird sex-magic stuff.

That’s how most people saw the Emissary apprenticeship; a lot of weird sex-magic stuff, and while his dad was better informed than the general populace, it was his right to worry about his kid. It was sort of sweet, actually.

“Dad, I’m ready. Last time didn’t work out because the guy just wasn’t right, okay? Sure, I shouldn’t have let it go that far when I knew it wasn’t a good match, but… This is an opportunity I can’t pass up.”

Well, okay, he could pass it up. Being a regular Spark wasn’t a bad thing. He could get all kinds of specialized, high-demand jobs… He actually had his eyes on an internship at a supernatural PI firm, but well. Being an Emissary would take his abilities to the next level. If he managed to find the right pack. And more importantly, the right Alpha .

Someone he wouldn’t mind doing all the sex-magic and bonding with.

Okay, yeah, he’d tried once before. Castings for Emissary positions were few and far between and since about seven percent of the human population was a Spark, there was no shortage of volunteers. Last time he got through all the preliminary rounds and eliminations. He got far enough to actually meet the Alpha and he almost - almost - made the terrible mistake of signing on. But. He backed out in the last second, leaving Deucalion and his pack hanging. It wasn’t something he was proud of, but deep down he knew he did the right thing.

“What do you even know of this pack?” his dad asked, sounding resigned. Stiles was happy he didn’t try to change his mind. It wouldn’t have worked anyway.

“You know they don’t disclose much information before casting, dad. I know they are California based. I know they have a current Emissary who wants to retire but is willing to supervise the apprenticeship. That’s about it.”

And of course, he knew the perks. Being an Emissary was something regular humans - and even the vast majority of Sparks - could only dream of. They were the highest ranking members of packs, right below the Alpha of course. Werewolves were… okay, maybe not celebrities, but pretty much the pillars of the community wherever they were. Their territories were huge, they were the holders of traditions and the keepers of the law in the supernatural world.

And yeah, most packs were filthy rich. If Stiles wanted to be honest, that didn’t hurt either.

Have he mentioned how much he hated his apartment?

“Well, at least you would move back closer to home,” his dad said, sounding a bit warmed up to the idea. Stiles knew he didn’t like it that he lived so far away, but New York offered a lot more opportunities than small town California. In Beacon Hills he maybe could have opened a charm shop, or taken over the herb store after Mr. Jennings retired, but yeah. Not much else.

“Sure. But I won’t be chosen anyway… Do you have any idea how many Sparks are in New York? I’m just trying to wet my feet, network a bit, maybe.”

His dad hummed.

“Alright then. If you want to do it, I won't try to stop you. Just… listen to your gut, kid, okay? If it doesn’t feel right, don’t force it.”

Stiles smiled.

“Okay, I promise. I will have to go now, though… love’ya!”

“Love you too, Stiles.”


The truth was, Stiles applied for this position three months ago, and had been going through the elimination rounds for weeks on end now. It was a big casting. Whoever this pack was, they cast a wide net to fish up the perfect person for the job.

When he applied to Deucalion’s pack there were only two rounds of tests and then personal meetings. Nothing fancy. This was in a whole other ballpark.

There had been… Six rounds of tests, and as far as he knew, it was pretty much a nation-wide thing. Heck, Stiles got invited . He wouldn’t have been surprised to find out that everyone who graduated with any sort of magical degree got an invitation to this damned thing.

And to his surprise he passed each and every one of them. By now half of his drive was to a) find out who these guys were with enough wealth and influence to pull this off and b) see if he could live up to the challenge and get to the end of it.

And apparently, he did. He got the last invite, in a creme colored envelope, informing him of the time and place of the interview round a week ago, and well… That’s when he told his dad that he was doing it. There was no sense in worrying the old man, right?

Now he was at a bit of a loss. Usually the interview round would mean meeting the Alpha, seeing if they had chemistry, if they… fit. But with this casting? He wasn’t so sure. Maybe there were multiple rounds of interviews, though Stiles couldn’t fathom what they would be about, considering that the last written test he had to do was about as hard as getting his degree in Applied Magic had been.

Well, whatever it was, he would find out soon.


The interview was held in a huge, impersonal office building downtown. Flashy, but not how Stiles would have liked this going. His magic was always going every-which-way when there were too many people around or when his senses were overloaded. He would have preferred something much more subdued.

But he would make do. Now that he was here, he planned to do his best - after a casting like this just being in the top few percent would look good on his resume.

He took the elevator to the twenty third floor and was greeted by an organizer - she had an actual badge and everything - who checked his name on a list and and then graciously allowed him to sit in one of the chairs lining the hallway. Most of the people there, about twenty of them, were dressed in sharp suits and pencil skirts. Stiles felt a bit out of place in his green blazer - it was one of the nicest piece of clothing he owned, and it helpfully covered up the stain on the sleeve of the checkered shirt under it.

Then they waited. Occasionally someone would come out from the office they appeared to be waiting for, calling the name of the next person. Nobody talked to each-other. It was kind of getting on his nerves.

The organizer lady looked like she would have preferred to be anywhere else, and while Stiles was slowly starting to agree with the sentiment, the way she kept checking her watch only made him twitchier.

“Stilinski!” the guy stepping out of the interview room said. He looked a bit pale. Everyone coming out did and it wasn’t exactly confidence inducing.

Stiles swallowed, his mouth suddenly dry. This was it.

He smoothed out his blazer and walked in.


There were two people waiting for him inside, and just from a glance, he knew neither of them were the Alpha. Oh, the guy was definitely a werewolf, but he didn’t ooze the usual charm and charisma Alphas did - there was something… defensive about him, though Stiles couldn’t put his finger on what.

The woman was a whole different matter. She was something that’s for sure, but not any kind of supernatural he’d ever met. Something exotic maybe? He had no idea.

“Hi,” he said lamely after closing the door behind himself.

There was something uncomfortably familiar about them… But what caught Stiles attention was the desk in front of them; there was an unlit candle, a glass of water, a closed mason jar with a bit of dirt at the bottom and a pot filled with soil.

Elemental magic. Fantastic.

“Something wrong?” the woman asked, probably catching the grimace he wasn’t quick enough to hide. She was gloriously ginger and radiated superiority despite being about Stiles’ age.

“Ugh.” Stiles groaned, very eloquently, if he said so himself. The werewolf lifted a thick eyebrow in question. “I’m more of a reactional magic kind of guy,” he admitted.

He understood - intellectually - why they would make elemental magic their test; it required training, talent and concentration. It also required a technique that was called ‘Quieting of the Mind’. Stiles was… not very good at that.

She huffed out a breath.

“Well, in any case, Mr. Stilinski... I’m Lydia Martin, and this is Derek,” she said. It didn’t skip Stiles’ attention that she left out the guy’s last name. Something of a ‘brand’ then. “Would you like to give it a go, or spare us all the time?”

The way she said it, like she already expected it to fail rubbed him the wrong way. It was the sort of haughty tone that usually sent Stiles spiralling into unfortunate crushes, but not this time. He worked too damned hard to get this far just to be blown off without being given a chance.

“I have ADHD, okay? So it’s a bit harder for me to concentrate, I never said I couldn’t to it,” he bit out, strolling up to the table and taking the empty chair in front. To his surprise, Ms. Martin smirked, and it took him a second to realize that she probably just wanted to rile him up.

The werewolf - Derek - wasn’t saying a word, he just crossed his arms and leaned back in his chair. Stiles had the suspicion that he wasn’t very fond of magic.

“Alright, so I’m guessing; light the candle, get the water to do something, make the air move in the jar and... grow some shit.”

“Grow some shit,” Derek said, deadpan, making Stiles flap with his hands noncommittally.

“Yup. Okay, let’s see how this goes.”


It went as well - or as badly - as he expected. It took him ten minutes to light the candle, and then another few to make the most pathetic ripples in the water he ever saw.

The wind one was easy, at least. For some reason he always did better with that element… He still had to concentrate, but almost immediately the dirt at the bottom of the jar swirled into a litto tornado. He hoped that would save his performance, because let’s be honest, he wasn’t doing very impressively so far.

The last one was the pot.

Stiles glared at it. Earth magic - or green magic - was the hardest. Fire was difficult; it needed a lot of energy to start, but once you managed that, you were good. Water was the easiest to most people, because it mostly needed calmness. Air was a tricky little bitch, but Earth? Earth needed life .

Stiles took a deep breath and concentrated on the pot, doing his best to open his mind and search out the seeds hidden under it, looking for something to grasp and push his Spark into.

He couldn’t sense anything. It didn’t help that he could feel a gigantic headache looming in his near future from all the focusing he was doing. Now that he thought back, he’d been laid up with a migraine for a day after his Elemental Magic exam. Great…

His thoughts kept fluttering away, making it impossible to concentrate, and he could feel his time slowly ticking away. At what point did an attempt turn pathetic? He wasn’t sure, but he knew that the sweat on his forehead probably wasn’t making the impression on his interviewers that he wanted to make.

He didn’t know how long it took him to realize it, but by then he could actually feel his migraine coming on, making spots dance on the edge of his vision.

“Oh, fuck you , lady,” he said, folding in on himself and bumping his head against the edge of the table. “There’s nothing in there!”

Ms. Martin made an appreciative little sound. It wasn’t nearly as apologetic as Stiles thought it should be.

“Correct. You’re only the third person to figure it out,” she said almost cheerfully.

Okay, yeah, this woman was clearly a sadist. They let everyone come in here and try until they popped a blood vessel…

“Rude,” Stiles told her, having even less of a filter when he was exhausted and in pain.

He jerked a little when Derek spoke up - shit, he almost forgot the guy was even there.

“You okay, Mr. Stilinski? You don’t look so good.”

Stiles snorted, finally straightening out. God, his head hurt.

“Peachy,” he said, standing up slowly. He still had to take hold of the back of the chair to stop himself from toppling over.

“Well,” Ms. Martin said, “You passed the test, and that means you will advance to the next level and meet with our Alpha,” she explained, jotting down something. “I mean, your time wasn’t the best, but you passed.”

Stiles rolled his eyes.


He still felt pretty wobbly, even as he made his way towards the door. He was aware that he should make some small talk, chat a bit, try to get in their good graces, but yeah. No. Too much pain.

To his surprise, Derek got  up and hovered by his elbow, like he was afraid he would fall flat on his face. Okay, maybe it wasn’t completely out of the question.

The werewolf opened the door for him, glaring at the dozen people still waiting for their turn when the gaped at them.

And then things started happening incredibly fast.

The elevator at the end of the hall dinged. Stiles didn’t even know why he looked up, he just did, and when the doors opened, there were two men in it, dressed in black suits and ski masks. The organizer lady dropped her clipboard and stepped in, grinning in a way that somehow made her… ugly.

And then one of the men threw a grenade at them.

Time jerked, and Stiles watched in slow motion as the grenade rolled towards them. Nobody was moving, and then Derek lurched into motion, snarling and wolfed out, and instead of doing the sensible thing of getting down, he was trying to jump towards the grenade.

Stiles couldn’t believe that the guy would actually try to pull some Steve Rogers bullshit.

There was no way for a human to hold a werewolf back, so Stiles took the easier road, and simply kicked out and tripped him. Derek landed with a very unheroic ‘umph’ but he didn’t have time to laugh, because he barely had a second left to throw up a shield around them before the explosion rocked the building.


Chapter Text

The first thing Stiles heard - after his dim memory of a deafening explosion - was beeping. He was unfortunately familiar with that particular beeping. And he wasn’t a fan.

“Ugh,” he said, trying to open his eyes. It didn’t work and it took him a second to figure out that he had bandages around his head.

The panic that gripped his insides was instantaneous and unstoppable.

“Easy there, your heart is going to explode, Mr. Stilinski,” said an unfamiliar voice from beside him, making him jump. The shock of it was enough to stave off his oncoming panic attack. For now.

“That’s not very reassuring,” he said, trying to gulp some air into his tightening chest. “I hope you’re not a doctor, because your bedside manner fucking sucks.”

“You are not the first person to tell me that,” the man said with a sigh that somehow sounded sarcastic. “I'm going to take your hand now.”

He did, and Stiles managed not to fall off the bed at the sudden touch.

Almost immediately he could feel the constricting feeling around his ribcage easing up, and the dull, throbbing ache in his skull that he haven’t even noticed ebbing away.

Ah, he knew that feeling. It was almost as good as getting high.

“Ooh, painsuckery ,” he said. Somehow, his body got lighter and sank into the mattress at the same time.

“That… is not the official terminology,” the man said with a smile audible in his voice. Maybe so, still, Stiles wanted to squeeze his hand in thanks, but his fingers were too relaxed to do anything.

He had a really nice voice.

And now, with all that juicy werewolf mojo putting a muffler on his nerves he was finally able to look at the situation without things going horribly wrong.

“I have so many questions…” So, so many questions.

“I’m not sure I will be able to answer everything, but I will do my best,” the werewolf told him.

“Okay, so. What happened? Where am I? Am I blind now? Is that a thing that is happening? Because let me tell you, that isn’t something I ever entertained in any capacity other than my fucking nightmares and…”

“Mr. Stilinski, breathe,” the man reminded him, and this time he was the one who squeezed his fingers. It felt sort of nice, but Stiles was probably too high to be a judge of anything.

Righ. Breathing.

“Yeah… Um. And who the hell are you?”

“I’m Peter, and for the time being I’m… watching over you. You are an important witness in an ongoing investigation,” he said, and Stiles didn’t need supernatural senses to know he was lying. Maybe not completely, but he wasn’t telling the truth either.

That was something that should have alarmed him, but again. Too high.

He probably should tread carefully in any case.

“I’m too high to deal with your shit,” Stiles said anyway, just for good measure.

The man stifled a laugh like he was caught off guard.

“Yes, I think you’re right, so let's just gloss over this part for now. No, you are not blind, at least not permanently… But I should start with what happened. The casting you’ve been on was attacked by a terrorist organization, the Regno Hominum,” he explained, his voice growing dark and cold for the first time. It made Stiles shudder, and the man immediately changed his tone. “Luckily there were only minor injuries, mostly thanks to your intervention. You’re the one who got off the worst, but only because you fainted right after and hit your head on a chair.”

Stiles groaned. Of-fucking-course. For once in his life he pulled off something pretty impressive, and he just had to ruin it by fainting right after.

The man snickered at his reaction, which, unfair .

“And lastly, you are in St. Francis hospital. The doctors said they will take the bandages off later this afternoon and then we shall see if any further treatment is necessary, but they’ve been very optimistic.”

Stiles tried to digest all that. He’d heard of the Regno Hominum before, they were all over the news a few weeks ago when they molotoved a charm shop in the suburbs. Human supremacists. Ugh. What did he get himself into? His dad will not be impressed if he hears about this.

Shit, his dad!

“Shit, my dad!”

The werewolf tutted, planting a firm hand on his chest when he tried to sit up.

“Your father was already notified of what happened. He’s on his way, and will get here in a few hours. He… wasn’t happy.”

It was Stiles’ turn to snort.

“Yeah, I imagine.”

In fact, he could imagine it all too well. He was in for a stern talking too - but hopefully only after a tearful hug. He kind of needed one.

His brain was slowly getting used to the endorphins flooding his body from the werewolf mojo. Time to figure out what was actually going on.

“So, Mr. Big Bad. Why are you so shady again?”

There was a beat of silence, and for a second Stiles was worried that the man would let go of him. He had every right to, Stiles wasn’t in particular pain nor was he on the verge of a panic attack, but truth be told that hand in his felt comforting in the darkness that was his ‘vision’ right now.

“I haven’t yet decided if you’re to be trusted, Mr. Stilinski,” the man told him finally, sounding… blank. Like Stiles just reminded him of why he was actually here.

“Huh? What, why?”

He could hear the werewolf shifting in his seat, but thankfully he didn’t pull his hand back.

“Well, for the casual observer it might seem possible that you were in cohorts with the terrorists; luring Derek out into the hall and then threw in a heroic act to get into the pack’s good graces.”

Despite how he wished for it to stay a second ago, now Stiles was the one to jerk away. As soon as the connection of their skin broke he could feel all the little pains return to his body. He didn’t care, to be honest. This shit was so not on.

“Yeah, okay. First of all, fuck you,” he spat. He quickly pulled the blanket over his body just to make sure that was some form of barrier between them.

“One, I’m a Spak. You think those bastards care about what kind of supernatural they’re killing? Because I don’t fucking think so. Guess who ran that shop they torched? Surprise, surprise! A Spark!”

“Listen, I’m not saying-”

Stiles didn’t let him finish. His voice was too nice, and he didn’t want to get distracted, thank you.

“No. Are you a cop or something? Because this shit doesn’t fly. If you are, you should have said so. Not like I have anything to hide, mind you, but it’s an asshole move.”

“I’m not a cop,” the werewolf said, having the fucking nerve to sound bemused.

“Okay, right. Not like I believe you anymore, considering you’ve just implied I’m a fucking terrorist . But anyway. Why the hell would I do that? Who in their right mind would work with those people? Also, just for the record, if I were working for them, I wouldn’t have tripped that idiot.”

“What? Who?”

Stiles desperately wanted to roll his eyes. Well, he still could, but it wouldn’t be visible, so probably not worth the effort.

“Derek. That dumbass tried to… I don’t even know. Bite the bomb? Growl it into submission? I have no idea. But yeah, that probably wouldn’t have ended well.”

In the second it took him to take a breath he could actually hear the guy laughing silently. Seriously?

What ?”

“Ah… oh, God, nothing. I just realized how desperately I want to see the security camera footage.”

Stiles couldn’t help from grinning a bit, because okay, that was funny. As terrifying as the memory was, that ‘umph’ the mighty werewolf made when he hit the ground was kind of funny.

There was the sound of the door opening.

“Hello, Mr. Stilinski, I’m Detective Jordan Parrish from the NYPD, and I would like to ask you some questions about what happened, if you’re up to it,” the new voice said.

Stiles swallowed, his good mood evaporating.

“Yeah. Yeah, sure, detective.”

There was the sound of a chair scraping against the floor as Peter stood up. Stiles’ ears followed his footsteps around the room with single minded focus.

“Detective, I will be waiting outside,” he said.

Parrish hummed.

“Thank you... Just in case, the officer will escort you out of hearing range, Alpha Hale.”

Alpha Hale?!


Stiles answered the detective’s questions as clearly and concisely as he could manage.

Could he describe what happened? Yes. Could he describe the organizer woman by the elevator? Not really. Did he know the Hales? Not personally. Why did he apply? Why not.  Why did Derek walk him to the door? Beats him...

Parrish had a nice voice too, not as nice as Peter- fucking -Hale, but nice, and Stiles’d heard enough interrogations at his father’s side to know that he wasn’t really a suspect, they just wanted to make sure all loose ends were neatly tied.

Meanwhile, his brain kept running in circles trying to get over the fact that he not only told Peter Hale to fuck off, he also held his hand .

He couldn’t fathom how he didn’t recognize Derek. He was pretty sure he had an issue of GQ magazine under his bed as a teenager with the guy’s face plastered all over it. Then again, Derek was smiling on the pages. Apparently a very prominent difference.

Shit. The Hales might not have been the biggest or strongest pack of the good old US of A, but they were the most prestigious. They were, like, werewolf nobility. And they had the Nemeton on their territory, which was basically the Holy Grail of supernatural energy.


But… this had to mean that the Hales were looking for an Emissary, right? Stiles knew Doctor Deaton, he had been a guest speaker a few times at his college, and if he was remembering right, the guy had been an Emissary since before Peter was Alpha…

Ah. Ah, of course.

An Emissary - to be effective - had to be part of a pack, and yet, could not be bitten. Werewolves and magic didn’t mix well. So to achieve a strong bond - stronger than what regular human packmates had - Sparks went through a year of apprenticeship where they had ample opportunity to get to know the Alpha… uh. Intimately .

Sometimes - not always, but sometimes - when a new Alpha took over the bond weakend, and since the apprenticeship couldn’t be repeated, a new Spark was needed to pick up the mantle. So that’s what this was all about.

Stiles could understand the secrecy. He imagined the Hales weren’t very fond of everybody finding out how vulnerable they were. If the old Emissary’s bond wasn’t strong enough, then the magic he protected the pack with wasn’t strong enough either… And for a pack with the Hales’ history? Yeah, better not even think about it.

But his mind was still gnawing at that thought as he kept answering to the same questions over and over on autopilot.

And then he realized what was bothering him.

“She was wearing a glamour.”

“Excuse me?” Parrish asked, and Stiles could somehow hear that he perked up like a labrador spotting a tennis ball.

That’s why I can’t give you a better description!” Stiles said, the pieces finally fitting together in his head. “She was wearing a glamour.”

The detective shifted on his seat.

“Alright, Mr. Stilinski. Let’s go over everything again with this in mind.”


By the time his dad burst into the room about half an hour later Stiles’ mouth was dry and his head hurt, but he still couldn’t help feeling a small burst of satisfaction at figuring out the mystery. He knew enough about magic to be able to tell what parts of her were real - the things he could definitely remember. She was blond, about 5’8” with hazel eyes. That was for certain. Her features kept slipping away, so that must have been a glamour.

Still, it was something to go on.


“I told you this was a bad idea,” his dad said as soon as they were alone and finished with all the hugging. It hurt a bit, and made Stiles realize that he had pains in places he haven’t even considered before, but yeah. Hugs from his dad? He wasn’t gonna complain.

“No, you didn’t. And it wasn’t like I went there with the intention of getting blown up,” Stiles said.

This time it was his dad who was holding his hand, and despite him not having any supernatural powers, his closeness was almost as good at making Stiles forget about his discomfort.

“I wouldn’t put it past you,” he said, and his voice was somehow both fond and relieved. Stiles grinned in his general direction.

“And anyway, you could say I was in the right place at the right time. From what the detective told me it could have been much worse if I didn’t get that shield up.”

His dad huffed out a breath.

“Maybe, but forgive me for not being a fan of you being around explosives.”


They sat in silence for a bit, just the two of them with his dad holding his hand. Stiles desperately wanted to see him. Or really, see anything at this point.

“So… how did it go, by the way?” he asked, making Stiles snort.

“Mediocre at best. And I’m factoring the bomb into that.”

“Oh, come on! I’m sure you did better than what you give yourself credit for,” his dad said, squeezing his hand. Stiles smiled to himself.

“Yeah, sure. But going by the fact that I haven’t yet been offered the position after I saved a bunch of people, I would say that my chances are pretty slim.”

Before his dad could reply someone cleared his throat in the door, making Stiles jerk despite immediately recognizing it. Or maybe because of that.

“And who the hell are you?” his father asked, sounding… not too nice.

“You must be Sheriff Stilinski, it’s a pleasure to meet you…” Peter Hale said, sounding quite a bit amused. “I’m the Alpha of the Hale pack, and I would like to talk to your son about a certain position.”

Chapter Text

“Don’t you think you’ve gotten my son into enough trouble already?” his dad asked, his voice that special mix of Father on Duty and Sheriff that usually had people second guessing their life choices.

“Well,” Peter said, not sounding even a tiny bit miffed, “I would say that he got himself into trouble without any assistance, actually... If anything, I’m offering him a way to be better equipped to protect himself and others.”

Stiles could hear his dad drawing a breath - he knew the sound of it, it was the sound of a Lecture coming - so he squeezed his hand quickly.

“Heeey, it’s cool, we’re all cool,” he said. He was… feeling a bit anxious to have Peter in the same room again, though he couldn’t explain why. “Remember how you told me to listen to my gut?”

His dad huffed.

“Yes, Stiles, I do. That was before you almost ended up with your guts outside of where they’re supposed to be.”

Stiles smiled at him comfortingly. Or he hoped that’s what it looked like.

“But they are right where they should be, and they are telling me that I should talk to Alpha Hale in private.”

After a pause he could actually hear the way his dad’s knees popped as he stood.

“Alright. But I want it on the record that I don’t like this.”

“Duly noted,” Stiles said with a nod. He listened to his dad leaving the room, closing the door behind himself. There was silence for a few, long seconds.

“Are you still here? Make some noise like a normal person, and stop being a creep,” he ordered before he could think better of it.

Peter Hale snorted, and going by the sounds, he took his father’s vacated chair.

“As you wish… Stiles . Is that your real name?”

It was probably the effect of the temporary blindness, but somehow Stiles felt like the man’s voice was caressing his skin.

“As real as I’m willing to give you,” he said, licking his lips. Okay, yeah, he had to concentrate here. “Also, are you serious? About the job, I mean.”

He wanted to say that he didn’t hold his breath during the pause that followed, but he would have been lying.

“Yes,” Peter said finally.

“You called me a terrorist, like, and hour ago,” Stiles said, just to make sure neither of them were having a sudden case of amnesia, and also because he was a petty fucker.

Somehow, despite not knowing what he looked like, Stiles could actually see the werewolf rolling his eyes in his mind’s eye. It was audible .

“I wasn’t saying you were a terrorist, I... merely implied that the possibility of a collaboration couldn’t be ruled out.”

The guy was good with words, Stiles had to give him that.

“Suuuure, so what changed your opinion?” He was genuinely curious.

“Time spent in your excellent company,” Peter deadpanned, but before Stiles could call bullshit, he added “And also, I watched the security footage.”

When he said that, his voice turned almost dreamy, like it was already a cherished memory.

“You like to see your nephew fall that much?” Stiles asked, a bit baffled to be honest.

Peter sighed, sounding satisfied and completely at peace with the world.

“I don’t think you understand... I will get a copy of that video, edit a loop of your feet shooting out and Derek landing on his face like a moron and make the whole family watch it over Christmas.”

Stiles snorted. So. Peter was an asshole apparently, somehow he wasn’t surprised.

But still, this was a serious issue. This was literally a lifetime commitment.

“No, but seriously, what gives? Because I will not walk into this on a joke,” he said, trying to sound as businesslike as he could.

Peter cleared his throat.

“I’ve talked to Parrish, and I’ve talked to Lydia. He says he thinks you’re clean and she says you solved her riddle.”

“Well, that is a low bar if I’ve ever heard one,” Stiles said. The same could probably be said about another half dozen people on the casting.

He could hear Peter… hesitate. Despite not being able to see him and barely knowing him at all, he could tell that he was feeling a bit out of his depth.

“I’ve been told that beside the objective measures of qualification, I should look for someone I have chemistry with.”

Stiles swallowed, his fingers playing with the hem of the comforter covering him. Before he could come up with a reply Peter touched his hand.

“I would say ‘Correct me if I’m a wrong’ but let’s be honest, I’m not wrong.”

“Wow, you really are an asshole,” Stiles said with a disbelieving little laugh.


Stiles took a deep breath.

“So, let’s wait until these bandages are off, and I can decide if I want to spend the next few decades staring at your face.”


His doctor came around in the afternoon to take the bandages off and assess if there was any permanent damage to his sight.

Which was fine by Stiles because he was a) fed up with not being able to see anything and b) fed up with his dad and Peter being in the same room.

They didn’t speak to each other, just to Stiles, and while he couldn’t see them, he just knew that there were entire silent conversations happening over his head complete with threats and assholery.

“Alright, Mr. Stilinski. I’m going to take these off now, keep your eyes closed for now, the light might hurt at first,” the doctor told him.

Stiles wanted to act like he was absolutely certain everything would be fine, but his stomach was tied into knots and there was a lump in his throat that he had a hard time swallowing around.

Because… what if it wouldn’t be fine?

“You might want to inhale once in a while,” Peter said offhandedly.

“That’s not very helpful,” his dad bit out, before turning to Stiles, his voice going gentle “Son, breathe, it will be okay.”

“Would you both please shut up,” Stiles whined. He had his eyes closed, but he could see light through his lids as the bandage was unwrapped from around his head. “I’m having a crisis over here, and I need to concentrate to experience it properly.”

“No need to have a crisis,” the doctor said, sounding like he was reconsidering his decision to go into medicine.

The air felt cold on Stiles face as the last of the bandages came off, and his fingers twisted in the sheets.

“Alright. I will close the curtains now, don’t open them yet.” Stiles heard the doctor move, heard the screech of the hangers against their rails and the light went dimmer around him. “Good. Now open your eyes, please.”

Stiles stayed still for a second, then took a deep breath and steeled himself.

He blinked his eyes open - even the low light making him squint - and it took two, terrifying seconds until he managed to get the world around him into focus.

He was… he was looking at a man with dark hair, a sharp jawline and an elegant nose. He was dressed immaculately and not wearing a white a coat, so that could only mean one thing.

Peter Hale.

“Hot damn,” Stiles said.


Stiles couldn’t have explained why he ended up saying yes to Peter’s offer. All he knew was that he pretty much made his decision before even seeing the guy, if he wanted to be honest. And well, after seeing him it was somehow no question at all.

Listening to his guts, he was.

His dad - as previously stated - did not like the idea one bit, but thankfully they were both relieved enough that he was cleared by the doctors that Stiles managed to convince him that it would be okay.

He hoped it would be.

By afternoon he was standing in front of the hospital with him, waiting for his dad’s cab to arrive.

“You sure you don’t want to stay at my place for the night?” Stiles asked him for the… fourth time probably. His dad looked tired with both worry and relief and it was showing.

“Yeah, there’s no sense staying without you there,” his father told him, rubbing at his forehead. The motion was familiar, and Stiles wasn’t sure if he picked it up from his dad or vice versa.

“In fact, I should be the one asking you that question. Don’t you want to spend the night at your place? Sleep on it? See if you’re still out of your mind in the morning?”

Stiles kicked the cap of a beer bottle on the pavement.

“Nope. I’m sure, dad. This is the right decision, okay? I’m not having some sort of delayed concussion… I actually want to do this.”

He was almost surprised by how right the words sounded. Yeah. Shit, he wanted to do this.

His dad huffed just as the cab came to a stop.

“Where is he, anyway? Shouldn’t he be whisking you off to his lair?”

Stiles rolled his eyes.

“Peter’s not a supervillain . He doesn’t have a lair. He has a mansion. And an apartment downtown apparently… He is making preparations, whatever that means.”

His dad sighed, pulling him into a bone-crushing hug that Stiles returned with equal ferocity.

“You will have to call me. Often. And tell that bastard that I will shoot him in the ass if he takes a step out of line.”

Stiles chuckled into his shoulder.

“You already told him that exact same thing, but I will remind him, promise.”

“Call me, son, that’s an order,” he said as he let go, climbing into the back of the cab.

Stiles made a sloppy salute.

“Aye-aye, captain.”


His dad’s cab was barely out of sight when a large black car rolled to a slow stop in front of him. Stiles was just about to get out of the way when the backdoor opened, Dr. Alan Deaton himself getting out.

“You’re Stiles, I assume, I’m Alan Deaton,” the man said, holding out his hand.

Stiles didn’t know what to do for a second, and then belatedly shook the offered hand.

“Um. Yeah. Hi. I’m a big fan,” he said, vincing even before he finished the sentence. Big fan? Really? Not only was he an adult - for god’s sake- he was actually about to take the guy’s job. Awkward.

Thankfully Doctor Deaton didn’t seem to mind, he just gave Stiles one of his patented, enigmatic half-smiles, and motioned at the car.

“Thank you. We can talk more on the way.”

Stiles swallowed and got in. The car smelled like it was rented. There was actually a partition between the front and the back, giving an air of privacy.

“Where are we going?” Stiles asked. He probably should have done that before getting in, but it seemed like his brain was still lagging behind a bit.

“Peter… Alpha Hale has an apartment. We thought that it would be easier for you to start the apprenticeship in a more… private setting.”

Stiles bobbed his head, his belly fluttering.

Oh yeah. That.

It was probably a good idea too. Stiles was already pretty fucking nervous, he didn’t need the knowledge that a small army of werewolves was listening to him getting fucked. Among other things.

“So,” Stiles said, looking solemnly at the man’s shirt. “Um. Sorry for taking your job?”

Doctor Deaton laughed.

“I’m not getting fired, Stiles, I’m retiring. I actually plan to open a vet practice, but of course I will be available for counsel whenever needed.”

“Oh,” Stiles finally gathered the courage to look at the man properly. Deaton wasn’t old yet, but he did look tired. Ready for a change. “There’s a practice up for grabs in Beacon Hills. If you would like to stay close to home.”

Deaton raised an eyebrow.

“Thank you for the heads-up, I will check it out. But we should probably talk about tonight.”

Stiles nodded jerkily.

“Um. Sure.”

He tried to rake his brain for any information he might have heard about the start of the apprenticeship, he knew bits and pieces, but the details of it were pretty much a trade secret of the Emissaries. It wasn’t exactly something he could google.

“What we need to get out of the way for now is the consummation.”

That didn’t sound ominous at all.


Peter - unsurprisingly - lived in a penthouse apartment in a part of the city that had doormen in uniforms. It was a tiny bit intimidating.

Thankfully Deaton managed to get them in before any questions were asked, but Stiles could feel people staring at him. He was still dressed in his green blazer, though now it had a hole at one elbow.

Even the elevator music sounded classier than what he was used to.

Peter let them in with a smile. Damn. Stiles couldn’t believe how good he actually looked. And how he never saw him before…

Then again, if memory served, Peter had been Talia’s left hand; a secretive position, and while the Hales were active in the supernatural community, and to an extent even in politics, they weren’t celebs. They maintained a carefully constructed public image that allowed them to be Important without necessarily being subject to too much gossip.

Stiles had no idea how he could fit into that.

“Come on in. I poured some wine,” Peter said, waving them in. In the living room there were glasses prepared and a bottle of red. Stiles was more of a beer guy, but this didn’t seem like the best time to bring that up.

“Thank you, Peter,” Deaton said, sitting down in an armchair and leaving Stiles to sit beside Peter on the couch.

“You don’t need to be so stiff,” Peter said, handing him a glass of wine.

“I’m not,” Stiles promised, taking a sip. The alcohol felt nice, burning down his throat and filling his belly with warmth. He took another sip. Then another.

“You sure about that?” Peter asked about two seconds later as they both looked at Stiles empty glass.

“Um. Yeah… I’m just nervous.”

Deaton sighed.

“That’s understandable. And while you can still change your mind, I would prefer you to be sober if we do move forward.”

“Sure thing,” Stiles said, putting the glass down. No more drinking. Probably for the best.

“You haven’t changed your mind though, right?” Peter asked. He was trying to sound nonchalant, but Stiles could feel the tension behind his voice. Somehow that helped cement his decision.

“Nope,” he said. “Still on board. One hundred percent.”

Peter’s shoulders relaxed a fraction and Deaton nodded over the rim of his glass.

“Wonderful. In that case, why don’t you take a shower while we finish setting things up with Peter?”

Yeah. Okay. He could do that.


Stiles wasn’t proud of how happy he was to find a thick, fluffy bathrobe in the bathroom. It felt nice against his skin, like a hug, and it was long and big enough to shelter him from Doctor Deaton’s gaze when he stepped out into the living room.

“Peter is already waiting,” he said. He still looked tired. Sleepy almost, and strangely enough it helped Stiles relax too.

Nothing to see here, people, no need for nerves.

Deaton led him to the bedroom that was lit with candles and smelling like herbs.

“Wow,” Stiles said, hesitating in the doorway. He haven’t even looked at Peter yet, he was aware that the werewolf was on the bed. He was aware that he was naked. But that’s how far his brain could take him for now. Stiles was worried he would swing over to freak-out territory if he looked at him directly.

Not… Not like he didn’t want it. God knew, his cock was already making itself noticed. It was just… the enormity of the situation.

It was around this part when he walked out on Deucalion the last time.

“Give me your hand, please,” Deaton told him, shocking him out of his memories.

Stiles did, watching avidly as the man untied two pieces of red ribbons from around his wrists. He didn’t even notice they were there before, hidden under the cuff of the man’s shirt.

Doctor Deaton looped them around each of Stiles’ wrists loosely, not even tying the knots properly. Stiles was so enthralled by them for some reason that he almost didn’t notice that the Emissary’s lips were moving, murmuring a spell or an incantation or something.

“Shouldn’t I be taking notes?” Stiles asked, his voice weirdly high. Peter snorted, and he carefully didn’t look as the werewolf got off the bed, striding over in all his naked glory.

Deaton didn’t reply until he was finished.

“I will tell you about it at a later time,” he promised before turning to the Alpha.

“It’s done. He’s all yours now.”

Peter hummed under his breath, the sound of it making the hair stand up along Stiles spine. In a good way.

“Excellent,” he said crowding closer until Stiles had no choice but to look at him. His eyes were incredibly blue. “Now please fuck off, Alan, you’re ruining my game.”

Deaton rolled his eyes, giving Stiles an encouraging smile.

“For tonight all you need to do is relax and let Peter stake his claim.”

Stiles nodded, his Adam’s apple bobbing as he swallowed.

Then they were alone.

Peter was in front of him, reaching up slowly to brush the bathrobe off Stiles’ shoulders. He growled - low and satisfied - when he looked him over, and Stiles could feel himself flush.

“No need to be nervous, darling, I will take care of you,” he said and then he was leaning in, sealing their lips together.

Stiles’ body arched into his, his eyes fluttering closed and his heart beating double.

And in that moment, he knew he made the right choice.

Chapter Text

Peter’s mouth was hot and soft and the wet slide of his tongue against Stiles’ lips made him moan in the back of his throat.

“You’re delicious,” Peter murmured against the corner of his mouth as he walked Stiles back towards the bed.

“It’s the wine,” Stiles said breathlessly, licking his lips. Peter huffed, his breath brushing over Stiles’ cheek and making him shiver.

“I seriously doubt that,” he said, and then he pushed at Stiles’ chest, letting him fall backwards onto the mattress. He bounced twice.

Peter stood above him for a long moment, just looking. His gaze was hot enough to make Stiles start to sweat, his face burning. He wanted to cover up, but held himself back with great effort.

Being an Emissary meant being part of the pack the way no human could, and there was no place for shame in that bond.

“You’re gorgeous,” Peter said finally, climbing onto the bed, and up his body.

“You’re not too shabby yourself,” Stiles said, his throat dry. Not too shabby indeed. Peter looked like an ancient statue. A statue of David. David, as a king.

Except for what was between his legs, because Stiles had a hard time imagining a fig leaf big enough to cover that .

“Damn,” he said, attempting to whistle, but failing pathetically. Peter rolled his eyes.

“You said you weren’t a virgin.”

Stiles raised an eyebrow.

“I’m not. That doesn’t mean I can’t… appretiate things.”

Peter grinned like a shark, reaching to the side and fishing out a big bottle of lube from between the covers.

“Fair enough. Have you been knotted before?” he asked, sitting back on his heels between Stiles thighs.

Stiles took a deep breath.

“Nope. I mean, I read about it and did… research.”

Porn. Porn watching is what he did, but he wasn’t about to spell that out. He didn’t think Peter required that, if his smile was anything to go by.

“Hm… excellent. It might be overwhelming a bit for the first time, but I will make sure to prepare you properly,” he promised, with a satisfied glint in his eyes, his voice low. He kept their gazes locked as he squirted some lube on his fingers. Stiles could feel the muscles in his stomach clenching at the sight.

“Okay. Yeah. Okay.”

“I will,” Peter assured him with a bit more force behind his words. The way his voice dropped did things to Stiles. “Pull up your legs, darling, let me look at you.”

It took him a second to make his body obey. Somehow he felt both like he was made of jelly and wound too tight at the same time.

Peter growled as soon as Stiles’ hole came into view, the sound of it running along his spine and making his skin break out in goosebumps.

At the first touch of Peter’s wet fingers on his rim, he had to squeeze his eyes shut, turning his face into the cool pillow.

“Relax,” Peter said. He didn’t try to push in, just circled his hole slowly, getting him slicked up until his muscles went soft and pliant. “That’s it, just like that, darling.”

Stiles felt his blush deepen. There was really no need for the pet-names, if he wanted to be professional. This was a business arrangement. A very lucrative one at that.

But he didn’t want to be professional, he couldn’t imagine how he could be.

Peter slowly and carefully pushed in a finger, his gaze locked to where Stiles opened up to suck him in, his eyes intent, the red of his Alpha power lurking just under the surface. He looked possessive. Involved.

Maybe, Stiles realized, the whole point of the bond was that this couldn’t be cold and clinical and a business arrangement. It would explain why he failed in the past...

“Stop thinking,” Peter growled softly, twisting his finger to punctuate his words. It worked. It worked a little too well even; making Stiles throw his head back, his body arching as Peter prodded at his prostate, sending shivers down his spine and making electricity pool under his navel.

Peter hummed under his breath, his free hand stroking up and down his inner thigh, gentling the quivering muscles. “Yeah, that’s it. Let me take care of you.”

Stiles swallowed, his throat dry.


“That is the general idea,” Peter said with a little smile as he added another finger. “Eventually.”

Now , Stiles brain demanded. Despite all reason he felt like he could come any second.

“Come on, I’m not a virgin,” he moaned, his hands twisted in the pillow beside his head.

Peter shook his head. Stiles could see his cock - red and hard between his legs, practically straining - and couldn’t imagine how he could be so collected when Stiles was falling apart.

“That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be treated with care, darling,” Peter told him.

Stiles closed his eyes, his chest hurting. What the fuck. He didn’t understand what was happening. This didn’t feel like sex . It felt like something different… more.

Peter scissored his fingers, fucking him gently, loosening him up with painful slowness.

“Please,” Stiles said, desperate, and not even knowing why.

“In a minute,” Peter said absentmindedly, his attention focused on Stiles body, instead of his words. “Just a little more.”

Stiles shook his head. To his horror he felt like he would start crying from sheer frustration any minute now. A part of his brain was urging him to reach for Peter, to pull him close, to make him do what he needed.

Even the mere thought felt sacrilegious, unimaginable.

It was like the man felt his struggle and he pushed in another finger.

That was better. Stiles licked his lips, the burn a welcome distraction from the agonizing wait. He pushed into it, his hips twitching down, searching for more of the stretch, making Peter chuckle.

“Don’t be impatient, darling. You will thank me for it.”

Stiles highly doubted that. He wanted to crawl out of his skin.

Peter twisted his wrist, pushing at that spot inside him that made his toes curl and his cock drool on his belly until Stiles was breathless and on the edge.

“S-shit… fuck .”

The emptiness when Peter pulled out was almost painful, and Stiles was left whining, blind with need.

“Hush, I’m here, darling, just a second,” the man said, his voice gentler than he ever thought him capable of. “I feel it too.”

Stiles didn’t even understand what he was talking about. Maybe if he was just a bit less desperate, just a bit more aware of himself he would have felt the bond slowly starting to form and thicken between them… But it wasn’t what he expected it to be. It wasn’t exactly a bond , it wasn’t a rope or a threat binding them together, it was a pull. Magnetic. Gravitational.

A force of nature.

When Peter finally slid into him, it felt like nothing Stiles ever experienced. His eyes snapped open, his gaze falling on Peter’s face above him, his eyes bright and red and burning into him, almost as hot as the burn of the stretch.

“Are you ready?” Peter asked, voice barely understandable, vibrating like a growl. Stiles nodded. He didn’t understand what he was agreeing to, but he knew he was ready.

Peter leaned down to kiss him, insistent and forceful, nothing like the carefulness of his fingers had been. He let his body drape over Stiles, twining their hands together as his hips slowly started to move, fucking into him.

Stiles moaned into his mouth, all his desperate sounds drank down by Peter, like he was dying of thirst.

His legs moved on their own accord, his ankles locking on the small of Peter’s back, trying to pull him in more, even though there was no more space between them.

Peter fucked him. He started slowly, with long, languid thrusts that made Stiles’ belly flutter and his blood sing, and then he picked up speed.

It burned. It burned so good that Stiles wasn’t sure he would ever recover.

Peter bit on his lips, and then turned his face away, licking at Stiles’ neck, biting at his earlobe. Stiles felt like he was on the edge.

“T-too much… ah… I…”

Peter growled into his ear, this close, Stiles could feel it in his bones.

“Shh, wait for me, darling. You have to be good and wait for me.”

Stiles whined. He didn’t know if he could. Not with the delicious friction lighting his insides on fire and making his heart beat double.

Peter growled again, like he could feel it, like he could smell how close he was, and his hips sped up even more, pushing into Stiles with enough force to knock the breath out of him.

That was not helping. Or at least that’s what he thought until he felt it, it was only a slight… bump at first. A little extra something that dragged on his rim on every push and only stoked his need higher.

It kept growing, popping in and out of his hole until Peter had to put more force behind his thrusts to push it inside. It didn’t hurt, but it made Stiles feel like he was being broken in. Reshaped around the knot, molded to take it.

It was overwhelming, and he wanted to grab at Peter’s shoulders, he needed something to hold onto. Something solid.

Except, he couldn’t move his hands.

Stiles turned his head to the side, the pillow feeling cool under his hot cheek, and what he saw made his breath stuck in his chest.

The red ribbon that Doctor Deaton looped around his wrist had… moved. It was now woven between their fingers, tying their hands together. It wasn’t tight. He didn’t even notice it before, but it was strong enough that he couldn’t untangle their fingers.

“What… what the fuck?” Stiles asked, his voice high and breathless. Peter followed his gaze, his eyes flashing brighter for a second.

“It’s okay, darling, it will let go when we’re done.”

Stiles swallowed, then his eyes rolled back as Peter pushed in once again, and this time… he was stuck. His knot felt huge, straining against his walls, pushing at him from the inside.

He didn’t notice that he was moaning constantly until Peter kissed the corner of his mouth.

“Shh, you are doing so well. All you have to do now is come.”

Stiles shook his head blindly. There was no way. He couldn’t.

He was aware that he’d been on the edge just a few minutes ago, but now it was different. Now all of his senses were taken up by heat and pressure and just feeling Peter’s body inside and around him.

He didn’t have any capacity left for his own pleasure.

“C… can’t, I can’t ,” he said helplessly. It wasn’t even that he wasn’t enjoying it, it was that somehow everything felt like Peter, like Alpha , and he couldn’t tell where the man ended and he began.

Peter circled his hips, making Stiles’ vision burst with stars and his spine heat up.

“You can, and you will ,” he said. There was something behind his voice. Authority. Power. Confidence. Stiles couldn’t decide what it was exactly, but something in him recognized it, and quivered with the need to obey.

His chest hurt as he gasped for air, his legs were shaking, his palms sweaty, and just like that he was on the edge again, but it didn’t feel like it felt when he took himself in his hand. It didn’t feel like when he was with someone else.

It felt like he was balanced on a blade, everything is sharp and dangerous and unknown.

His cock was twitching, so hard it hurt. Stiles was aware of it. He was aware of the demanding, sudden need to come, but still, his reality was narrowed down to Peter. To his eyes burning brighter than the sun. Blinding.

“Come,” Peter commanded, the word dying on a growl.

Stiles had no choice.


He had no notion of the world around him for a while, just comfortable, soft darkness. It wasn’t like any kind of afterglow he ever experienced. Everything was coming back slowly, like waking up in a lazy, sunday afternoon, when the bed was too warm and welcoming to move.

The first thing he was aware of was rumbling. Like the sound of a very, very large cat. A large cat curled up against him, holding him close.

“Didn’t know about the purring,” Stiles murmured into the hot skin of Peter’s chest. He licked at it, lazy and more satisfied than he ever felt in his life.

Peter somehow managed to speak through the purring.

“It’s a secret,” he said into Stiles’ hair. His arms were tight around him, one of his hands slowly playing with Stiles’ hole.

The feeling of those clever, sure fingers prodding at him made him shiver.

“Stop,” he still felt too sensitive. Too loose.

Peter pulled him closer, and pushed his thumb past the rim, dipping it into where Stiles was still wet and soft.

“Just checking to make sure you’re okay,” Peter told him, nuzzling his face against him. Stiles snorted.


Peter hummed under his breath, fucking him slowly with his thumb until it was feeling good again. Almost like he could want more.

Stiles shifted, blinking his eyes open, undecided if he wanted to push into Peter’s hand or pull away.

The red of the ribbons around his wrists were stark and smooth against his pale skin... There was no knot he could see, but he already knew they would not leave him for the rest of his life. If he was lucky -  and he intended to be.