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The Rule of Three

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September 5th, 2027

Josephine River Joy Whittemore, born at 11:54 AM on September 5th 2027, was gorgeous, with big blue eyes, long eyelashes, a soft shock of dark hair, and to her father’s – albeit only slight – disappointment completely human.

“Everyone’s thinking it so I’ll just go ahead and say it: did Jackson find religion?” Stiles commented later that evening, when the pack gathered at his and Derek’s house to celebrate the newest member to the family, minus the new parents who were recuperating in the hospital’s most luxurious bedroom.

“Huh?” Derek said absentmindedly, his attention focused on a nursing Noah and Scott chortled.

“I get it – there’s at least five River of Joy ministries in this county alone, Stiles is right, it does have a rather religious touch to it.”

Erica shook her curls enthusiastically. “I’d much rather talk about the fact that her name starts with a J of all things. Jackson, Julia, Josephine … I didn’t think he was going to go there, but oh man did he ever.”

Allison, who had one eye trained on Leonie and Mikey, who were playing in the sandbox, winced.

“From what Julia told me when we went to see them, Josephine River Joy is actually quite decent. They had a deal that Jackson would get to pick three girls name and Julia would have final say on a boys name, you know, before they found out the gender, and then each would have two vetoes. As far as I know, Julia used her vetoes on Jubilee Diamond and Precious Jewel, Jewel for short.”

Stiles threw his head back and started laughing, ignoring the disbelieving grimaces of the pack around him.

“Derek my love, did you hear that? You can never make fun of me for my taste in baby names ever again, I’m merely a young Padawan to Jackson’s Jedi Master of truly atrocious baby names.”

He grinned at Isaac, who had just walked outside and handed him a new drink.

Isaac, who loved the pack children but was usually rather awkward around them and felt a little like the odd ball among his baby-crazy pack mates, shrugged.

“He’s just really excited she’s finally here and wanted that to be reflected in her name. I think it’s endearing. In any case, she looks like a Josie and Jackson can scream bloody murder all he wants, I’m sorry, Josephine is just way too pompous for such a tiny baby, although I’m sure it’ll suit her well once she has grown both into her name and into the Whittemore attitude,” he decided.

“Since we’re on the subject,” Lydia interrupted him, having just arrived with a large gift-basket from the Dior baby collection, which she planned to drop off at the hospital the next day.

“Since I will forever be happy to spoil all of your children and breathe a sigh of relief whenever I can drop them off at your places again, I feel like it’s my duty to start pestering all you childless people for more nieces and nephews. I’m not even going to start with Isaac, who still changes his girlfriends almost as often as he changes his underwear, but how about you Erica? Body?” she grinned, examining her manicured nails in a show of fake disinterest.

Erica laughed.

“Me and Boyd are going to have kids when we feel we’re done having wild, ecstatic, and howl-inducing sex in crazy and adventurous places,” she decided and Boyd nodded, the grin on his face somewhat smug.

“In other words, never,” Lydia sighed, rolling her eyes and looking towards Allison.

“I’m afraid that means it’s your turn again next, Derek just popped out a kid five months ago, he still gets at least another seven months of rest,” she smiled good-naturedly, frowning when both Allison and Scott blushed beet red.

“I knew it!” Lydia exclaimed, her eyes glued to Allison’s midsection. “I knew you guys were having another baby. Really, Allison, I wonder why you even try to hide things from me anymore,” she beamed, getting up and hugging her best friend, while Scott found himself with an armful of his own best friend’s excitedly twitching gangly limbs.

“We weren’t going to say anything yet, it’s still a little early, but if everything goes well, the newest McCall-Argent production is due on March 28th next year,” Scott explained with a proud smile.

“Dude really? Our kids could end up being birthday buddies! That’s awesome,” Stiles exclaimed before leaning over to tickle Noah’s foot.

“Did you hear that Noah-Boa? I know Leo-Pie wants you to marry Ms. Josie-Mosie, but I suggest you go with Baby McCall over there. I don’t care if you get a husband or wife out of the deal, just please don’t marry into the Whittemore family, I couldn’t stand the shame,” he grinned, laughing when Noah giggled around Derek’s nipple.

“Stiles! Three things! First, never ever call our son Noah-Boa again. Second, make sure Jackson never hears you refer to his baby as Josie-Mosie, I just can’t stand any more Whittemore drama in my life. Third, stop making our son laugh while he’s eating, he’ll get air in his stomach and his tummy’s going to start hurting. Oh and fourth, stop making our son laugh while he’s eating, he’s already got three teeth and just because I heal immediately doesn’t mean that doesn’t hurt,” his mate exclaimed exasperatedly.

Stiles had the good grace to look guilty. “I’m sorry Noanek, Daddy is a doofus,” he apologized to the child and Derek growled.

“Don’t call him Noanek either,” he grumbled and Boyd smirked.

“I think you guys should definitely have a third child. You have been arguing about a nickname for Noah ever since he was born, I think you two really miss discussing baby names,” the tall Beta observed and both Derek and Stiles shook their heads emphatically.

“First of, you are so, so wrong and secondly, I just don’t want him to feel less-loved, Leo-Pie has at least three different nicknames, he’ll feel left out.”

“Noah is a gorgeous name, I don’t understand why you don’t just leave it at that. Also, what’s wrong with Mikey why can’t he marry Mikey if they both want to?” Scott defended his first-born and Stiles shook his head, sounding as if he was talking to a toddler.

“Scott, Scott, Scott, how often do I have to tell you this. He can’t marry Mikey because Mikey is already betrothed to Leo-Pie,” Stiles explained patiently, looking at Boyd in confusion when the man started to chuckle.

“Sorry to burst your bubble here, but from the looks of it the intended are already in the process of divorcing,” he observed, nodding towards the sandbox, where Leonie was currently dumping buckets of sand on the 18-months-old’s head.

“I love how he just sits there and smiles at her, with Leonie’s personality these two will be perfect for each other,” Stiles argued, as Scott jumped up to go rescue his son.

“Leonie! We don’t drown babies in sand!” Derek said loudly, the warning clear in his voice.

“But it’s gold Papa, we’re playing Mother Hulda,” Leonie defended herself, looking at her Uncle Scott guiltily, who was trying to de-sand Mikey and sighing heavily.

“Nope little man, you are not getting in the car like this. Derek, can we use your shower really quick, my son has turned into a sand-monster,” he said dramatically as he carried the boy over and Stiles shook his head.

“Can’t you just use the hose next to the shed? We just cleaned yesterday and I’m sure he’s going to enjoy that far more than sitting in a bathtub.”

 

===============

 

“You realize this was inevitable, right?” Derek asked half an hour later when he carried their drenched daughter up to the bathroom and Stiles, who was bouncing Noah on his hip, attempted a display of fake remorse. Derek didn’t believe him for a second.

Stiles only paid half-attention to the squeals and exasperated growls coming from the bathroom while he changed Noah and got him ready for bed and he couldn’t hide the smile on his face when Derek finally emerged from the bathroom, his shirt completely wet.

“No more Disney movies for our daughter, that’s it. Her newest obsession is Ariel and apparently that means flapping her legs in an imitation of swimming like a mermaid,” he explained, his voice muffled by his shirt as he took it off and dumped it in the laundry basket.

There was no reply from Stiles and Derek didn’t even turn around when he muttered “You are ogling me right now, aren’t you?” his tone warm and affectionate.

“You bet your sexy werewolf ass I am,” Stiles confirmed, raking his eyes over his mate’s body affectionately. Derek was still nursing Noah but they had started to add formula to his diet three weeks ago, making it possible for Derek to actually get out of the house and spend one-on-one time with Leonie every now and then and the result was already visibly noticeable in his decreasing chest-size. He was wearing a B-Cup currently and with his chest as broad as it was the difference to the rest of his body was no longer quite as striking as in the first weeks after Noah’s birth.

After he had made sure that Noah was safely tucked in, Stiles walked up behind Derek and wrapped his arms around him, his fingers trailing the droplets of water that were still slithering down his torso.

Derek leaned back with a contented sigh and Stiles nipped at his neck playfully, his hands lightly squeezing his sides. After their son’s birth Stiles had finally admitted to actually having noticed that Derek’s hips had in fact widened a bit and although Derek had threatened bloody dismemberment if anyone ever so much as attempted to joke about his child-bearing hips, Stiles found himself quite enamored with the change.

He was still built like a typical man, his frame still shaped like a V and not like a pear, but the slightly wider hips had added a layer of softness to his midsection that was definitely visible.

He had been back to his ‘God-of-Abs’ ways no less than 8 months after Leonie’s birth and Stiles had no doubt that the abs would eventually make their triumphant return in the near future, but for now he found Derek to be delightfully – snuggly. Not that he would have ever said that out loud.

“Stiles – not in front of the baby,” Derek admonished with a grin and Stiles threw an affectionate glance at the crib.

“He’s out like a light,” he announced gleefully, tugging Derek to their bed and pushing him onto the covers.

Unlike his big sister, who had woken up every two to three hours for the first couple of months of her life – and still wasn’t the greatest of sleepers if Derek and Stiles were completely honest with themselves – Noah had been a quiet baby from the very beginning. He had woken up once or twice during the night because he either wanted to be fed or needed a new diaper for the first six weeks and then started sleeping through the night at two months.

It had freaked Stiles out to the point where had actually gotten up three to four times a night to make sure their son was still doing ok, ignoring Derek’s sleep-grumbly assurances that he had his ear trained on the baby’s heartbeat even when sleeping.

Derek, meanwhile, had had to reconsider his statement that all parents who claimed their children slept through the night were lying through their teeth. Usually, when he or Stiles observed they were one of those parents now, it was attached to something that was either completely embarrassing or absolutely cliché. Being one of those parents who bragged about their children sleeping through the night, however, was something that both fathers embraced gladly.

They also occasionally marveled at how different their children were, not only in looks but in their personalities as well.

Leonie wasn’t a spoiled brat by any means – well, at least not very often – but she was strong-willed and very social, demanding everyone’s attention frequently, just like a princess would, Jackson had observed with a grin one day.

In addition to waking up every two to three hours when she had been an infant, Leonie had always been most content when she had been snuggled in somebody’s arms, crying loudly whenever that person had tried to put her down into her playpen so she could entertain herself with stuffed toys.

All in all, Derek had been glad he had been able to work from home, considering he had spent months editing articles with Leonie tucked against his chest in a baby-carrier. The Sheriff and Melissa had frequently shaken their heads, gently admonishing them for spoiling her completely, but Derek had disagreed, arguing that as a born werewolf it was normal for his daughter to be most content when she could scent a member of her pack and promising Stiles that it would become less and less as she grew up and became more secure in her position in the pack.

He had been right of course, but they had nevertheless run on very little sleep for almost a year.

Noah was completely different; in fact, Derek sometimes called him his Zen-Baby, amazed at how early their son had been able to entertain himself in his crib.

He loved being cuddled of course and, much like his big sister, almost immediately calmed down when Derek draped him over his chest and breathed quietly. He also loved Leonie fiercely, having recently started to squeal in protest if his sister didn’t say hi to him immediately when she came home from school, his chubby little arms waving as he made grabby hands into the air.

However, he was equally happy when left to his own devices, completely satisfied with examining how far he could stick his toes into his mouth or staring at the wolf hanging-mobile Cora had bought for him in rapt fascination.

If he hadn’t looked like a miniature version of Stiles, neither Derek nor the Sheriff would have believed the two were actually related. On that note, Derek sometimes found it hard to believe Leonie and Noah were related either. Leonie had adopted a lot of Stiles’ mannerisms over the years, especially his enthusiastic moving of his limbs when he talked and her grin, which was distinctly like her human daddy’s.

Apart from that, however, she was a Hale through and through and both Cora and Lydia had commented that if they hadn’t come up with the name Leonie, they might just as well have named her Dereka, since she was essentially a female version of her papa.

As Stiles had insisted after his birth, Noah did indeed have Derek’s eyes and his chin. However, that was where the similarities ended and Stiles had lamented that Noah might end up resenting him later, arguing that their son would probably be devastated when he realized that he could have looked like his papa, rather than his awkward daddy. As usual when Stiles said something profoundly stupid, Derek had simply ignored him and chosen to shut him up by pushing him against the wall and capturing his mouth in a searing kiss instead.

For old time’s sake.

Derek’s attention was brought back to the present when Stiles sprawled on top of him, covering him like a tall, lanky blanket. A rather wiggly blanket, Derek decided and he grabbed his mate’s hips to still him, his eyes more amused than aroused.

“I might have two squishy lumps stuck to my chest currently, but I’m not a bouncy castle,” he reminded his mate and Stiles rolled his eyes.

“Your sexy-talk just does it for me Squishy Wolf, do carry on,” he teased and Derek snorted, before quickly rolling them around so he was on top of Stiles, his legs straddling his hips and his muscular arms pinning Stiles’ arms down.

“You were saying?” he asked and Stiles blinked in surprise, before his lips widened into a smile.

“I do love it when you take control, makes me feel all nice and tingly inside. Hey Sexy Wolf? How would you feel about lying on top of me and making out with me for like an hour? Maybe two? I feel like we haven’t done that in forever!” he grinned and Derek obliged him, wondering how long it would take until Stiles would abandon simple making out in favor of some more … demanding physical activities.

Not that he cheated to make it happen, as far as Derek was concerned any guy could have accidentally moved his hips in a way that aligned their dicks perfectly, rubbing them against each other with each slight movement.

“Gaaah, you need to stop doing that or I’ll come in my pants like some horny teenager, not fair,” Stiles gasped after five minutes and Derek felt his own dick twitch, fondly remembering the days when Stiles had still been in school and ready to go 24/7.

“Maybe I want you to,” he grinned devilishly before trailing the tip of his tongue down Stiles’ neck and following his collarbone, shamelessly teasing every one of his erogenous zones that he was aware of.

“Kinky!” Stiles breathed, his eyes shut firmly and flexing his arms under Derek’s strong hands.

Since he had already decided fairness was overrated, Derek decided to move in for the kill, pulling up Stiles’ arms so he could hold onto both wrists with one hand while the other snaked under his shirt, trailing up his stomach and finding a nipple, tweaking it while he kept grinding his erection into Stiles’.

The human’s curse died on his lips as he arched his back and stiffened, panting during his climax.

“That was hot,” Derek grinned, straightening up and observing the wet patch on Stiles’ jeans.

“Embarrassing is what that was. That couldn’t have been more than five minutes, ten tops,” Stiles muttered, but he was grinning when he pushed himself up on his elbows, his eyes trained on the bulge in Derek’s jeans.

“So … you’re still hard,” he observed and Derek laughed breathlessly.

“So I am,” he confirmed, his hands still resting lightly on his mate’s hips but making no move to do something about his own release.

“Are you just going to … sit here?” Stiles asked playfully and Derek shrugged.

“I might. I haven’t decided yet. What do you think?”

“I think I just came in my pants like a horny teenager and it would only be fair if you got reacquainted with that sensation as well,” Stiles suggested, gesturing for Derek to get off of him. Derek did, maneuvering slowly and sitting back on his haunches, his eyes never leaving Stiles, who kneeled on the bed and straightened up until he was towering over Derek.

“Come up here Sexy Wolf, I’m not bending down, I’ve got a stiff, wet spot on my jeans and that would feel very uncomfortable,” he challenged him and Derek mirrored his position, his arms pulling the human into a strong hug and pressing their chests together as they began kissing again.

It was slow and deliberate and Stiles rested one hand on the small of Derek’s back, the other one rubbing against his erection through his jeans.

Stiles chuckled into Derek’s mouth when the older man bucked his hips, demanding more friction, and responded by pushing them closer together, the grip of his hand getting firmer.

They were still kissing and Derek moaned in protest when Stiles pulled away from his lips, only to hiss when his mate gently bit Derek’s earlobe, timing it with a rather firm thrust of his hand against his groin.

It was enough for Derek to come and he did, his head dropping onto his mate’s shoulders and panting.

“Shower?” Stiles asked when his breathing had returned to normal and Derek gently bit into Stiles’ freckled skin.

“Shower,” he confirmed.

After another lazy make-out session and a rather sensual shower massage, Derek and Stiles dropped onto their bed tiredly, satisfied, and thoroughly relaxed.

“I really do miss making out with you for hours,” Stiles said sleepily, smiling when Derek rested his head on his chest and draped his arm over his middle.

“We should write it onto the calendar downstairs,” Derek suggested, his nose nuzzling the soft tuft of chest hair on his mate’s skin.

“We should,” Stiles agreed emphatically, pressing a kiss onto Derek’s still damp hair.

“Speaking of the calendar,” Derek began hesitantly, raising his head slightly so he could make eye contact.

“I was going to mention it this morning but then Jackson called about Josie and I forgot all about it. Do you remember how I went to that conference-retreat thing my employers hosted back when I first joined the company?”

“Yep, wasn’t that the ‘Sorry we can’t give you guys a Christmas bonus this year, but hey, how about a 4-day vacation at a secluded lake for a Friday the 13th-Style’ trip?” he asked and Derek nodded.

“Apparently people liked it so much that they have decided to make it a regular thing every four to five years and I just got an invitation to it in my email yesterday evening. They rented a condo on Martha’s Vineyard this time, apparently the deserted summer campsite they used last time creeped the founder’s wife out or something. It’s in two weeks,” Derek explained.

“And you want to go, right?” Stiles guessed, smiling when Derek gave him a sheepish grin.

“Kind of, yes,” he confirmed and Stiles nodded.

“Sounds great to me. You have been stuck in this house for five months playing milk bar for Noah, it’s about time you get a little vacation as far as I’m concerned,” he said, shaking his head at Derek’s surprised glance.

“You sure? It was always me who stayed home with Leonie when you had to go to meetings and conferences and you’ve never been alone with both of them for longer than a couple of hours. Also, you’d have to take some days off,” Derek thought out loud and Stiles nudged his shoulder playfully.

“Come on Skeptic Wolf, have a little faith in me. I’ve wrestled with some fairies for crying out loud, I can handle our two children for four days. And besides, the company owes me some paternity leave anyways, I felt all kinds of guilty when I couldn’t take off work right after Noah’s birth because we were just about to launch the new big campaign and my boss started shaking every time I even mentioned the possibility of taking time off. We’ll be fine. And besides …” he gently lifted Derek’s chin so he could fully look at him, shaking his head with a soft smile.

“We’re equals in this parenting thing and if you want to go on a little vacation you should never hesitate to say so,” he chided him softly.

“I know, I would have said something if I’d felt I was slaving away in the kitchen all day while you frolicked through the world without the slightest care,” Derek replied with a small grin.

“There is that little matter of nursing though,” Stiles mused, his hand gently stroking Derek’s side.

“Do you think you will have weaned him off by then? You nursed Leonie for almost nine months, isn’t it a little early maybe?” he worried and Derek shook his head.

“I started weaning her almost around the same time and she got formula in addition to breast milk for quite a while. Besides, we still have so much milk stored in the freezer, with the formula in addition he’ll be good to go for at least another two to three months,” he said and Stiles winced in sympathy, neither of them having too fond memories of the weeks when Derek had essentially been leaking all over the place, his body apparently having decided that their human baby boy needed enough werewolf milk to feed three babies.

“It will be cool enough that I can hide the breasts in large sweaters and I’m willing to bet they will all but disappear if I don’t nurse Noah for four consecutive days.”

“Well,” Stiles said, giving his mate an encouraging smile, “it’s decided then. You’ll get a much-deserved little vacation and I’ll hold the fort with the munchkins. It shouldn’t be too hard and in the unlikely case of an emergency there are two grandparents, four overprotective uncles, and five aunts ready to assist me if need be. I don’t see how anything could go wrong.”

Chapter Text

In hindsight, Stiles should have known that his words would come back to bite him in the behind, and not in the fun way either. He had dropped Derek off at the airport with Leonie and Noah and while their daughter had chattered away on the drive back, Noah had dozed off almost immediately.

They had gotten home at 3 PM and Stiles had fixed Leonie a snack before heating up a bottle of formula for Noah, quickly feeding the baby before putting him down for a nap. When he was asleep, Stiles had sat down to play lego with Leonie and at 4:30 Noah had started screaming.

It was now three hours later and he was still screaming. Stiles had changed him, he had tried to feed him, he had sung to him – although, if he was honest, that might have had the opposite effect of what he had been trying to accomplish – and he had walked up and down the stairs with him. Nothing had helped.

Another hour later and Stiles was desperately staring at his phone, holding it out of Noah’s reach, who was thrashing in his arms and howling as if he was in fact a werewolf.

He had read about this: colicky babies, the nightmare of every new parent. He had only briefly skimmed the Wikipedia section on ‘Psychological effects on the family’ before closing the screen quickly.

“Couldn’t you have waited until your papa got back? He could have used some werewolf magic on you baby-boy,” Stiles pleaded with his child, trying to drape him across his chest to imitate Derek’s patented calming technique.

Maybe it was because his heartbeat wasn’t as fast as the werewolf’s, maybe his son just liked Derek better, in any case, it did not work at all.

“Daddy! Why won’t he stop screaming?” a pained little voice rang out and Stiles whipped his head around, feeling a little guilty when he realized that he had pretty much forgotten he had another child in the past two hours.

Leonie was pressing her hands against her ears and Stiles winced in sympathy. Her senses were much better than his and the constant high-pitched screaming was probably literally hurting her ears.

“I don’t know Leo-Pie,” Stiles groaned, helplessly rocking his son, who was bright red and sweaty from the exertion.

He almost missed it when his phone rang and when he saw Derek’s name on the screen he groaned, not wanting his mate to start worrying on the first evening already.

“Can you watch him Leo-Pie?” he asked quickly, placing Noah on his blanket on the living room carpet and walking away a couple of steps so he at least had a chance to hear Derek.

“Hey honey, how is Martha’s Vineyard, is it awesome?” he said upon picking up, hoping that Derek wouldn’t pick up on the fake cheeriness in his voice.

He really should have known better.

“Honey? Stiles? Is everything alright? I can hear Noah screaming,” Derek answered, not even bothering to acknowledge the question about his location.

“Everything’s fine Derek, don’t worry. Noah is just hungry and a bit impatient because his bottle isn’t warm enough yet. We’re doing awesome!” Stiles hurriedly said, wincing when Noah started screaming even louder, as if he wanted his papa to catch his daddy in the lie.

“Hungry? That doesn’t sound like he’s hungry. That sounds like pain,” Derek said, sounding more and more anxious with every word.

“No, no, he’s just really hungry, he refused to have his bottle around snack time and now he’s really starving. Everything’s going great, how are you?” Stiles babbled, thankful that Derek wasn’t able to pick up on a lie over the phone.

“Are you sure everything is alright?” Derek asked again, clearly not convinced and Stiles was about to open his mouth when the crying suddenly stopped. His breath caught in his throat and he turned around hastily, suddenly convinced that Noah had managed to actually choke himself, but when he reached the carpet, the baby was breathing calmly, still very red from all the screaming, but much more relaxed now and Leonie was sitting next to him cross-legged, rubbing his little tummy with a concentrated frown.

Stiles breathed a sigh of relief. “It seems like our daughter has the magic touch to soothe hunger pains,” he exclaimed and he could practically hear Derek’s relief over no longer having to listen to his screaming baby without being able to do anything.

“Just don’t let her try a real werewolf magic touch, remember, she’s not old enough to properly absorb it yet,” Derek reminded him and Stiles rolled his eyes.

“I know Derek, you’ve mentioned it once or twice these past few months,” he said with a sigh.

Unlike his werewolf sister, who, as it turned out had not only inherited an excellent immune system from Derek but also a perfectly functioning baby digestive tract, Noah frequently suffered from gas pains and Derek had gotten into the habit of rubbing his tummy with just a little hint of werewolf magic after feeding him, which meant that it barely got so bad that Noah actually experienced real discomfort.

From the moment she had seen her papa do it, Leonie had wanted to help out as well and so far Derek had had to sit her down three times to explain to her why he did not want her to even try.

She had not asked him about it in almost two months and Stiles was pretty confident that she had gotten the message.

“Stop worrying you overprotective were-hen, we got this. The kids and I love you and we want you to have an awesome vacation!” Stiles continued and Derek sighed.

“I miss you guys, too. But it’s nice out here, the weather is still warm enough to go swimming – not that I’m doing any of that, mind you, that would lead to some really awkwardstaring – and I haven’t seen most of my coworkers in years, so it has been nice to catch up with them. Can I talk to Leo-Pie before I go?” he asked and Stiles smiled fondly.

Derek truly was a big Sappy Wolf.

“Of course Papa-Wolf. Leo-Pie, want to say hi to Papa?”

Leonie jumped up from where she had been sitting and nodded, the frown on her face replaced with excitement.

He took advantage of Noah having calmed down to change him and give him his evening bottle, certain that Noah was probably starving after almost five hours of non-stop crying.

When Leonie handed the phone back to him he told her to go upstairs and change into her PJs and by the time he had laid Noah down to sleep she had already brushed her teeth and was snuggled under her blanket.

Stiles kissed her forehead softly when he wished her goodnight, on the one hand proud of his little girl for being able to do all these things on her own now and also a little sentimental that she was growing up so fast on the other hand.

After making sure that Noah was sleeping peacefully, Stiles kicked off his shoes and collapsed on top of the covers, deeply exhausted from all the screaming and worrying. He was asleep before his head even hit the pillow.

He couldn’t have been asleep for longer than 45 minutes before he opened his eyes again, feeling a little disoriented and not sure why he had woken up in the first place. Noah was still sleeping peacefully and the rest of the house was silent and Stiles was just about to close his eyes again when he heard a small whimper.

A whimper that didn’t come from the crib, which meant that it was his daughter. With a deep sigh Stiles got up, yawning as he walked down the hallway to Leonie’s room, figuring that she had probably had a nightmare.

The scene that greeted him, however, could have been straight out of one of his nightmares. Leonie was curled up on her side, her face red and sweaty and she was pushing her hands into her stomach, silent tears running down her face.

Stiles was wide-awake instantly.

“Leonie baby what’s wrong,” he exclaimed as he rushed to her side, feeling her forehead and checking her over for injuries.

“Hurts Daddy,” she whispered, whimpering when she seemed to be hit by another spasm.

Not seeing any immediate danger to his daughter Stiles tried to calm himself, chanting “She just misses Derek, she just misses Derek, this is some weird freaky werewolf pack abandonment anxiety,” over and over in his head.

“I’m sorry you’re hurting baby, do you want to sleep with Noah and me tonight?” he asked and Leonie nodded, whimpering once again when he picked her up and carried her over to their room.

“Does it still hurt baby-girl?” he asked when they were both in bed and she nodded miserably, pressing her tear-streaked face into his chest and clutching at his shirt.

With the memorable exception of the stomach bug episode, Leonie had never been sick and Stiles was at loss as to what to do, so he decided that maybe a tummy rub was in order, figuring that the soothing motions would lull her back to sleep.

He was really trying hard not to panic when her whimpers became more and more frequent and was just about to break and call Melissa when Noah started crying again. Only crying wasn’t the right word for the sounds his son was making.

Noah, in Stiles’ overtired and increasingly panicked opinion, sounded as if someone had pushed a knife into his belly and was slowly twisting it, accompanied by some worrisome choking sounds and Stiles hastily placed Leonie on the covers before rushing out of the bed and picking up his son, alarmed to see that the choking noises had been caused by vomit. It wasn’t just normal spit-up either, as far as Stiles was concerned this was actual vomit and he just gave up on his efforts to stay calm.

He quickly checked Noah’s mouth to see if anything was obstructing his windpipe, wincing when his son accidentally bit into his finger and helplessly rubbing his back when the baby tensed and spit up some more yellow bile on his shoulder.

He was still trying to decide how to best proceed in trying to calm down his screaming, vomiting baby and his whimpering daughter when Leonie suddenly lurched over the side of the bed and started vomiting as well. Unlike Noah, however, the liquid dripping out of his daughter’s mouth was pitch-black. Wolfsbane-poisoning black.

Stiles didn’t remember laying Noah down into the crib and getting his phone, not even aware he was actually pressing it against his ear with a trembling hand until Deaton answered.

“My baby-boy is vomiting bile and screaming bloody murder and my baby-girl is vomiting black goo, I need help!” Stiles screamed frantically, crouching down next to Leonie and staring at his convulsing child in horror and he could hear loud banging as Deaton immediately jumped into action.

“I’m coming right now, make sure they don’t choke!” Deaton ordered, cutting off the call as he apparently got into his car.

Stiles looked between the crib and the bed helplessly, torn between the pained screams of his son and the terrifying black liquid still trickling down Leonie’s lips.

Old, Pre-Daddy Stiles would have probably had a panic attack, but Daddy Stiles didn’t have time for that, his decision made when he quickly got up to get Noah out of the crib and then rushed back to the bed to maneuver Leonie into a vertical position, pressing both children against his chest tightly as if the contact alone would magically cure them.

Only he wasn’t the one with the magic touch, Derek was; Derek, who was currently on the other side of the country.

Speaking of magic touches … Stiles’ eyes widened in sudden realization when the events of the past hours came back to him, the image of Leonie rubbing her little brother’s tummy with a concentrated frown jumping at him with absolute clarity.

“Leo-Pie,” he whispered, pressing kisses into her sweaty hair and stroking her tummy in soothing motions “did you try Papa’s healing touch on Noah when he wouldn’t stop crying?” he asked, and when his daughter’s whimpers grew louder, Stiles was reasonably sure that he had his answer.

For a moment it actually calmed him down – not wolfsbane poisoning after all – but then he suddenly felt cold inside, Derek’s vehement warnings that Leonie wouldn’t be able to absorb another person’s pain ringing in his ears.

“He wouldn’t stop crying Daddy and I could smell that he was in pain. I only wanted to help,” Leonie sobbed, crying out and doubling over when the pain got more intense and Stiles pulled up her shirt a little, feeling more than a little freaked out when he discovered that he could actually see black lines convulsively running up and down his daughter’s stomach.

“Oh Leo-Pie,” he breathed and she sobbed in response, clearly aware that she had done something she wasn’t supposed to.

He continued rubbing her back with one hand while the other was busy rocking Noah, who was twisting in his arms and clearly also in pain.

He was so focused on his children that he didn’t realize Deaton had arrived and when he looked up he felt like crying in relief when he saw that Melissa was with him.

Scott’s mother immediately took Noah to check him over and Deaton took Leonie, asking Stiles to recount everything that had happened since they had dropped Derek off at the airport and his head snapped to Melissa when she made a hissing sound.

“What!?” he asked frantically and she glanced at Leonie quickly before picking up Noah and beckoning Stiles to come down to the kitchen with her.

Leaving Leonie alone with Deaton felt as if he had just effectively severed off one of his limbs and he stumbled down to the kitchen almost as if in a daze.

“Focus Daddy,” Melissa said when he joined her, rummaging through their cabinets and pulling out the formula bottle.

“Is this a new formula?” she asked and Stiles looked at her uncomprehendingly, before shaking his head and forcing himself to think straight.

“I … yes, yes I think so. Yes, I know so, I actually went and bought that this morning before we dropped off Derek. They were out of our regular one so I grabbed this one,” he rushed out and Melissa nodded, her eyes skimming the label before she resolutely dropped it in the trashcan.

“I think he’s allergic to this brand,” she explained, the look on her face full of compassion when Stiles dragged his fingers through his hair.

“Allergic? But I fed him this twice today. This is my fault?” he moaned, no longer able to hold back tears when Noah let out a pitiful whimper.

“There was no way you could have known so don’t you dare feel guilty,” Melissa responded immediately.

“I’m guessing he was reacting badly to the formula before as well. He cried for a while you said?” she asked and Stiles almost snorted.

“Four hours in a row,” he reported and Melissa winced.

“Definitely allergic to the formula. Colicky-like crying can sometimes be an indicator and since he also vomited, it’s pretty obvious what we’re dealing with here. He’ll be fine. He might scream a while longer I’m afraid, but once he’s calmed down and you no longer feed him that formula he will be ok.”

She rocked the baby gently and stepped over to kiss Stiles’ cheek.

Not, I repeat, not your fault. I will, however, call my son now, who’s old enough to properly do pain leaching and maybe we can spare Noah a few hours of discomfort,” she added, before picking up her phone and calling Scott.

With one crisis solved and Noah safe with his grandmother, Stiles ran back up the stairs, his heart once again constricting painfully in his chest when Leonie looked at him with pain-glazed eyes and held out her arms.

“Where did you go Daddy?” she whimpered and Stiles pulled her into his arms, rocking her just like he had rocked Noah all evening.

“Daddy’s not going anywhere Leo-Pie, Daddy’s right here,” he assured her, his gaze fixed on Deaton who was rummaging in his bag.

“I can give her a light sedative to try and knock her out so she won’t be in so much pain, but I’m afraid this one will have to run its course. She’s not in danger and there won’t be any lasting effects, but from what I overheard from downstairs she seemed to have temporarily leached your son’s stomach pain and his formula allergy from him and her body doesn’t really know what to do with it and is trying to fight it, which is why she is in so much pain,” he explained and Stiles swallowed.

“A sedative? Won’t that be dangerous, she’s only four.”

Deaton shook his head. “She may only be four but she is a werewolf. It’s your call Stiles, but if we don’t try this she’ll probably be in pain for at least another eight to ten hours before this is out of her system. Under normal circumstances I would have suggested Scott try to leach her pain as well, but since this was caused by pain leaching in the first place …” he explained and Stiles closed his eyes briefly before nodding, still not happy about giving Leonie a sedative but also not wanting her to suffer for another eight hours.

The sedative did knock her out but Stiles could tell by the frown on her face and the way her little hands kept clutching at her tummy, that she was not out completely and he settled her in his lap, leaning his back against the pillows and taking calm, even breaths to help calm her down as she slept.

He opened his eyes when Scott tiptoed into the room, a sleeping Noah in his arms and Stiles tried – and failed miserably – to smile at his best friend, wanting to tell him he was grateful but too overwhelmed from the past hours to even know how to begin and Scott nodded in silent understanding, before making himself comfortable on top of the covers, his free hand continuing to rub soothing circles into Noah’s tummy.

Both man didn’t sleep for the rest of the night and although Stiles almost physically ached for Derek’s presence, he wasn’t sure he had ever loved his honorary brother more.

 

==============

 

“To recap the past 24 hours,” Stiles mumbled the next day, staring bleary-eyed into his coffee-mug, mindlessly picking at his breakfast pancakes, and thanking every deity he knew that it was Sunday and Leonie didn’t have to go to school today.

“I managed to almost poison my son with evil baby formula and because I turned my eye away from my overprotective daughter for two minutes she almost got herself hurt badly because of a misuse of her werewolf powers. In your opinion – does Derek love me enough to hear my apology before he rips out my throat with his teeth or should I just write my own eulogy right now?”

Scott rolled his eyes, an impressive feat considering he was barely keeping them open to begin with.

“Don’t be an idiot. Both of this wasn’t your fault and the kiddos are fine, so Derek has no reason to kill you. Maim you a little, yes, but not kill you.”

It was a testament to Scott’s exhaustion that he wasn’t able to duck out of the way fast enough when a half-eaten pancake with maple syrup went flying in his direction.

“Dude seriously? That stuff’s sticky!” Scott complained, his annoyed glare softening when Stiles dropped his head onto the table or, to be more precise, into the rest of his pancake stack.

“I’m a failure as a parent,” he mumbled into the soft breakfast treat and Scott sighed.

“I can’t take you seriously if you’re trying to go to drown your sorrows in a pancake,” he said and Stiles straightened up with a sigh, tugging a piece of pancake away from his forehead.

“I mean it Scottie, I am a total failure. I go to conferences all the time and leave Derek with the kids and he’s just … he’s just so much better at this,” he whined and Scott shook his head.

“He’s not better at this, he’s just more used to it. And besides, I know from reliable sources that the first time he was alone with Leonie for two days when you went to that training session in Phoenix he accidentally dyed her hair purple because he confused the shampoo bottle with some fancy lotion or mask that Lydia had left at your place.”

Stiles raised his head with a frown.

“Is that why I came home to a bald baby and Derek got all defensive when I asked him how it made sense to donate thin, tiny baby-hair to charity?”

Scott grinned. “Pretty much.”

Stiles laughed, relaxing just the tiniest bit.

“Still, that doesn’t really make me feel any better about knowing that I caused both of my babies pain last night. What if they hate me now?” he asked, his voice shaking just the tiniest bit.

Scott was about to answer in exasperation when Leonie, who had been lying on the baby blanket with Noah and dozing a little, walked up to the couch and crawled onto Stiles’ lap, wrapping her arms around his neck and nuzzling into his chest.

“How are you doing Leo-Pie?” Stiles asked and Leonie shrugged.

“Good Daddy. Tired,” she added after a second, rubbing her eyes and yawning.

Stiles gave her a miserable look. There was no wonder she was tired, considering she had whimpered in her sleep for almost seven hours and not had any real rest.

“Tell you what Leo-Pie, Daddy is tired, too. What would you say if we grab Noah and build ourselves a little pillow fort upstairs, like the Lost Boys in Peter Pan?” he asked gently and Leonie nodded seriously.

“I love you Daddy,” she declared solemnly before hopping down from his lap and walking over to Noah, telling him about his immediate future as a pillow-fort holding Lost Boy.

“See?” Scott said gently, reaching over and patting Stiles’ hand when his best friend once again had to swallow down tears.

“Your babies love you. You’re anything but a failure at this, I promise.”

 

================

 

Monday went by without a hitch and while Leonie was in school Stiles researched baby formulas, determined that Saturday night’s events would never repeat themselves again and feeding Noah Derek’s pumped milk from the cooler exclusively.

When he picked Leonie up from school his daughter asked him if they could go see Uncle Jackson and his new baby and since Stiles did not have any plans for the rest of the afternoon and Noah was in a good mood he was happy to oblige her.

Besides, he mused, as they walked up the driveway to the large house Jackson and Julia had moved into a couple of months before the baby had been born, one could never see enough of Jackson going completely bananas over his baby-girl.

Derek had been completely wrapped around their children’s fingers from the second they had been born and Stiles had actually come close to giving in to Leonie’s begging for a pony or a dog far too many times than he cared to count or admit, so he probably shouldn’t make fun of the blonde Beta, but it was just too tempting.

If Scott had overdone it with his constant bragging about Mikey and detailed descriptions of diaper contents, Jackson was taking it to new extremes.

In the two and a half weeks since she had been born, Jackson had already cluttered Stiles’ email folder twice, a testament to his mission of sending the pack hourly photo updates of Josie’s newest accomplishments, all of which were very high resolution and therefore large in size.

It would have made sense if there had actually been any accomplishments to record, but for now Stiles had a collection of “Josie blinking”-pictures, “Josie yawning”-pictures and – the most exciting ones of all – more pictures of Josie sleeping than he and Derek had taken of Leonie in four years.

When Julia opened the door Stiles raised his eyebrows – the new mom looked extremely well rested and relaxed and he commented as such when he hugged her hello.

Julia grinned. “Well, I have gotten a good night of sleep basically every night since she’s been born, so I shouldn’t look anything else but relaxed,” she explained and Stiles frowned.

“Don’t you have to feed her?” he asked, fondly remembering the many nights when he had watched Derek nurse their children, his features soft and glowing in the moonlight that shone into their bedroom.

“Of course, but during the night she gets pumped milk. I think Jackson is a little bit jealous that he gets less bonding time with her during the day because that’s when I nurse her, so he has decided that he will take care of all the nightly feedings – to have an even amount of bonding time spread between the two of us,” she mused and Stiles couldn’t help it – he had to laugh.

“He’s probably jealous of Derek as well then, since Derek was able to nurse our children and … hold on, really? He’s jealous of Derek’s lactation capabilities?” he gasped when Julia winced.

“He might be. It’s kind of …”

“Weird?” Stiles finished for her and Julia smiled brightly.

“I was going to go for cute, but since you aren’t the one married to him I’ll just let you have your own opinion and not correct you,” she grinned before taking Noah from Stiles’ arms and tickling the baby’s tummy.

“I heard you had a bit of a rough night little man,” she cooed at him and now it was Stiles’ turn to wince.

“Did everybody hear about that?” he asked and Julia shrugged guiltily.

“Deaton was way too excited than he should have been in light of Leonie’s pain that he now has irrefutable proof that pain-leaching is dangerous for young werewolves. He decided to spread the warning among the pack-members so that they shall not make the same mistake with their children one day.”

Stiles growled in an almost perfect imitation of Derek.

“There will be a conversation …” he threatened darkly and Julia nodded.

“Perfectly understandable,” she agreed as they walked into the living room, where Leonie was already sitting on Jackson’s lap and watching Josie in rapt fascination.

“She smells really nice Daddy,” she reported when Stiles got closer and Stiles grinned.

“All babies smell nice Leo-Pie. Except when their diaper’s full, then they don’t smell nice at all,” he agreed, smirking when Leonie scrunched up her nose and nodded.

“My baby always smells nice,” Jackson said; a hint of threat in his voice even though his eyes never lifted from Josie, who was pursing her lips in her sleep.

It was, Stiles had to agree, very much adorable.

“Hey Josie,” Stiles said softly, reaching out a hand to stroke the baby’s leg and Jackson actually swatted him away.

“Her name is Josephine and until everyone has realized that no one gets to hold her!” he proclaimed and Stiles shook his head.

“You called my kid Precious in a creepy Gollum sort of way for months and I still let you hold her, I’m entitled, give me the baby!” Stiles responded with a grin, his amusement only growing when Jackson shook his head wildly, looking almost as if he was in a panic.

“Jackson!” Julia chided, looking half-amused and half-irritated.

 “Give Stiles the baby, she might not be able to scent him, but she still has to get to know her pack,” she continued and Jackson shook his head again.

“He might drop her, he’s only used to werewolf babies,” he argued and Stiles’ eyebrows almost flew off his forehead.

“Excuse me? I’ve never dropped a baby of mine – or any baby, really – and as you very well know I’ve got an adorable human son sitting right over there!” he defended himself, jerking his thumb towards Noah, who was currently snuggled against Julia’s chest.

“Girls are more delicate than boys, you might squish her if you hold her too tightly!” Jackson argued and Stiles rolled his eyes.

“Babies are babies! Now give me the munchkin!”

“Jackson!” Julia growled, sounding as if she was the actual werewolf in the family, and Jackson finally handed Josie over, hissing at Stiles to support her head.

“Father of two here, I’ve got this,” Stiles said dismissively, smiling brightly at the tiny baby.

“She’s so tiny. Leonie was a week overdue, so she was a decent-sized baby but I think even Noah wasn’t as tiny,” he mused, ignoring Jackson’s affronted look and focusing on Julia, who grinned.

“I certainly wasn’t complaining when Josie was coming out,” she decided and Stiles was about to answer when the look on Jackson’s face caught his attention.

“Dude, you seriously look like you want to say ‘Et tu Brute’ right now,” he chuckled and Jackson’s expression only darkened.

“If I had wanted to name her Josie, she would have been a Josie!” he said and Julia sighed.

“I had to talk him out of calling an emergency pack meeting about the unsolicited use of a nickname,” she muttered, smiling down at Noah softly when he pressed his tiny fist against her breast and made suckling noises.

“Someone’s hungry,” she observed and Stiles sighed.

“He’s going to eat me out of house and home when he’s in his teenage years,” he decided.

“Leo-Pie, can you go get my bag?” he began but Jackson seized the opportunity, taking Josie back from him and cradling her against his chest protectively.

“You go get it, I’ll watch my baby,” he said and Stiles’ eyes widened.

“You really are Gollum, aren’t you?” he said incredulously and Julia laughed.

“Gollum with much better hair,” she agreed and the look of betrayal on Jackson’s face sent Stiles into a delighted giggling fit.

The giggling came to an abrupt halt, however, when he rummaged in his bag and realized that the thermos with Derek’s milk was still sitting on the kitchen counter, where he had rested it before realizing he was already five minutes late to pick Leonie up from school.

“Dang it!” he hissed under his breath, his irritation growing when he saw the judgmental look Jackson was directing at him.

“Well, I think we have to cut this visit short, in about two minutes my son will start screaming this house down,” Stiles apologized but Julia held up her hand.

“Don’t worry, we’ve got this – if you don’t mind?” she added and Stiles, who was well-versed in Noah’s mannerisms and could tell that his son was about to start screaming bloody murder for his bottle, nodded frantically.

“I don’t mind at all!” he said hastily, turning his head out of respect when Julia began to tug at her blouse.

“Hold on a second,” Jackson spoke up as Julia began to feed Noah.

“What are you doing?!”

“I’m feeding a hungry baby, and it’s a good thing, too, because all these suckling noises were pretty lactation-stimulating as it was,” she muttered absently, stroking Noah’s head.

“You can’t do that! Josephine will starve!” Jackson protested in alarm and before one of the adults could reply, Leonie, who had been snuggled into Jackson’s side silently for a couple of minutes, pushed herself away from her favorite uncle and stood up on the couch, crossing her arms over her chest and glaring at him.

“Do you want my brother to starve?” she asked icily – Stiles had had no idea that a four year old could sound icy, but his four year old was definitely pulling it off – and Jackson froze.

“What? No, of course not, but …”

“No but!” Leonie decided, using a phrase that she had obviously picked up from Derek.

“My brother has to eat, too, and if you want him to starve you are mean!”

Her emphasis on the last word suggested that mean was possibly the most horrible insult she knew and Stiles could barely stop himself from smiling smugly with pride when Jackson gaped at his little girl.

“Josie can have a bottle of Papa’s milk when she comes to visit Noah,” Leonie continued, scrunching her little face up in thought.

“They have to learn to share, because they will get married and when you are married you have to share!” she added and Stiles snorted.

“We’ll see about that,” he muttered, noting happily that Jackson didn’t even correct Leonie in her usage of the baby’s nickname.

“Sharing is important, Daddy,” Leonie admonished her father, before turning towards Jackson and holding out her arms.

“Can I hold my Josie now?” she asked sweetly and both Stiles and Julia had to bite back their laughter when Jackson handed the infant over without hesitation.

Nothing might have equaled his love for his own daughter, but Leonie was definitely still Jackson’s princess.

 

================

 

On Tuesday Stiles decided to buy their regular formula in bulk and after he had picked up Leonie from school, he took both of his children to the supermarket. He was strapping Noah’s car seat into the cart when he realized that he had never actually gone shopping with his two kids on his own. Derek hated shopping and usually Stiles either went grocery shopping if he got off early from work or on the weekend and although he had occasionally taken Leonie with him ever since she had gotten a little older, he had never taken Noah.

“Are you going to be a shopping pro like your daddy, baby-boy?” he asked the baby with a big grin, blowing a raspberry on his tummy and enjoying Noah’s happy laughter. He waved at a group of women his age when he passed them by and he did not need to have Derek’s senses to know he had just caused a couple of ovaries to melt.

His triumph lasted as far as the snack aisle, where Leonie discovered a large glass of wasabi-peanuts. After blue, yellow, pink – much to Derek’s chagrin – and purple, Leonie’s current favorite color was green and when she asked Stiles if she could have them he shook his head with a gentle smile.

“No Leo-Pie, you are definitely not going to like those and neither will the rest of this family.”

He turned around to grab a box of crackers, assuming that the matter was closed and therefore not prepared for the large crash that suddenly rang through the store.

When Stiles whipped around his four year old werewolf daughter was flashing amber eyes at him and growling and for a moment he was stunned, fiercely glad that she was not old enough to fully shift yet, certain that it would have happened that very moment.

His shock quickly turned to anger, when he realized that the crash had been the large glass jar, which was currently smashed on the floor, with peanuts and shards scattered everywhere.

“Leonie!” he exclaimed, his cheeks coloring red both in anger and embarrassment as he saw the store manager approaching with a frown.

“What do you think you are doing?”

“I want them!” his normally behaved daughter screeched and Stiles wondered what deity he had pissed of to have his child skip the terrible twos in favor of the terrible fours. Of course it had to be an adjective starting with f if you wanted to talk about fours, but he would mull over that later.

With a resolute expression on his face Stiles grabbed Leonie’s arm, demanding her to look at him and growing angrier by the second when she flashed her eyes at him again in what was undoubtedly defiance.

“I need you to apologize to that manager right now! What has gotten into you?” he exclaimed, halfway aware that Noah was starting to get fuzzy.

“No! I want peanuts!” Leonie replied, flashing her eyes at her human father again, and now Stiles was furious. He might not be her Alpha, but he was her father and this was absolutely not happening, no matter how much of a pushover he usually was.

“Apologize. Right. Now!” he said through gritted teeth and Leonie shook her head violently.

Red-faced, Stiles turned towards the manager, apologizing while he tried to hoist Leonie into the shopping cart.

She might not have been a fully-grown werewolf yet but she was definitely stronger than the average four year old and he had to concentrate to keep her in his grasp, aware that people were staring and judging his parenting skills.

His patience snapped completely when Noah started to cry in earnest and with a growl that was worthy of Derek Stiles lifted the baby in his car seat out of the cart with one hand, a kicking Leonie tucked under the other arm, and abandoned the half-full shopping cart in the middle of the snack aisle. He felt a little bad about that when he carried his two screaming children out of the supermarket, but the alternative was exposing people to his daughter’s magically flashing eyes, making it no alternative whatsoever.

He had to set Leonie down to strap Noah into the car and when he turned around again his daughter was halfway across the parking lot, having run away while he wasn’t looking.

Stiles might not have been the best Lacrosse player, but he had always been fast and he caught up with her just as she was about to exit the parking lot, grabbing her by her shirt and tucking her under his arm again, too furious to even speak as he carried her back to the car and buckled her into her seat. He slammed the door shut and jumped into the driver’s seat, ignoring Noah’s wails and Leonie’s screams of protest.

Stiles stayed silent until they reached the house and as soon as he had parked the car he was out of his seat and opened the car door. He unbuckled his still screaming daughter and carried her to the house, noticing grimly that she was almost too tired to kick at him because of all the screaming.

He carried her into her room and set her down on her bed and Leonie immediately grabbed a pillow and threw it at him, seemingly completely beside herself.

Stiles didn’t know what had possessed his child but he was still too furious with her to investigate.

His father tried to stay out of his and Derek’s parenting, but the one advice Stiles had taken very much to heart had been “Don’t raise your hand against your children and if you absolutely have to – say for example they are about to glue themselves to a hot stove and you have to slap their hands away because they won’t stop touching it – never do it in anger.”

Neither he nor Derek had ever raised their hands against Leonie and it shook him to the bone that he was so furious with her that he actually had to hold himself back in order not to spank her. She had never made him that angry and Stiles decided he was not going to wait to see how much angrier she could make him.

“Stay … just … stay in here! I don’t want to see you or hear another word right now!” he gritted through his teeth, straightening back up and walking out, barely able to stop himself from slamming the door behind him.

Instead, he ran down the stairs to get Noah out of the car. His son was still crying when he lifted him out of the car seat and he kissed the baby’s forehead, apologizing over and over as he carried him inside the house.

The baby’s bottom was wet and so he walked into the nursery to change him, sighing in relief when Noah finally stopped crying.

Leonie’s door was still closed and even though a part of him was worried that she was currently demolishing her room in a fit of possessed rage, he took the silence as a positive sign.

He carried Noah back downstairs and heated up a bottle of Derek’s milk, concentrating on the lack of sounds coming from upstairs.

He wasn’t sure how to handle the situation. On the one hand, he wanted her to realize that she had been in the wrong and apologize, a task that he trusted her to accomplish at her age.

On the other hand, he was worried that she might actually demolish something, however, he did not want to seem like he was folding because he came back to her first.

He wanted his child to come to him and the more he thought about it, the more determined he became in his conviction that she had to take the first step.

The rest of the evening passed quietly, even though Noah was very fussy, obviously able to sense his father’s tension.

Leonie was still hiding out in her room, which, to Stiles’ relief, still looked normal, at least from what he had seen through they key hole.

When she still hadn’t come down by 10 PM Stiles gave up and called his dad.

The Sheriff listened patiently as Stiles described everything that had happened in the store and afterwards and when he was done the only question he had was, “How long ago was all of that?”

Stiles raised his eyebrows. “Around three-thirty maybe?” he replied and the Sheriff groaned.

“Your child has been holed up in her room for at least six hours under orders to stay in there and she has been waiting for you ever since? Don’t be a dick son, go upstairs and give your daughter a hug! Right now!”

Stiles frowned.

“What? I did not do anything wrong, I want her to come apologize to me. Just because I’m not her Alpha does not mean she can act this way towards me!”

“Stiles!” his father huffed, sounding extremely irritated.

“She’s four! She’s not going to march downstairs after you told her to stay in her room and present you with an apology gift basket and a well-thought out speech. It was six hours ago, she probably calmed down about 5 hours and 45 minutes ago and now she’s up there and all she knows is her daddy told her to stay inside until he was no longer mad at her and you’ve been letting her worry you don’t love her anymore for six hours. Breaking news, son, you are the adult, not her, it’s your job to explain to her – calmly – why she can’t act this way, but before you do that go upstairs and tell your kid you still love her!”

“Of course she knows I love her,” Stiles grunted but he got up nevertheless, taking two steps at a time as he ascended the stairs quickly.

“You can’t put a four-year old in time-out for six hours,” was the Sheriff’s only reply and as much as he didn’t want to feel guilty, Stiles was beginning to really feel guilty.

“I’ll talk to her right now,” he mumbled into the phone, his hand already on the doorknob.

“You better!” his father grunted, before he hung up on him.

When Stiles opened the door it was dark inside and he could barely make out the curled up form of his little girl hidden under her blanket.

With a sigh he walked towards the bed – and stepped into a wet puddle.

He cursed under his breath when he realized what it was and a small whimper came from under the covers.

Stiles quickly moved from Guilty Town into Self-Hatred City as he flicked on Leonie’s Peter Pan Night lamp and gently pulled the covers down until her face became visible.

Her eyes looked puffy and Stiles lifted her out of the bed and unto his lap, cradling her against him and kissing her head, trying not to wince at the wet pants she was still wearing.

“I love you Leo-Pie,” he told her and Leonie sniffled.

“I didn’t mean to go pee-pee in my pants Daddy, but you said I had to stay in here and I really had to go,” she whispered and Stiles held her tighter, wishing he had called his father about this earlier.

“Daddy’s sorry Leo-Pie, I know you didn’t mean to,” he tried to soothe her.

He stood up and carried her to the bathroom, letting some warm water run into the bathtub and helping her into the tub. There was not enough water in there for her to accidentally injure herself so while she sat in the tub he quickly mopped the floor in her room, changed the sheets of the bed and got out her pajamas, which she silently put on when he walked back into the bathroom.

When he carried her back to her room she was clinging to his neck, her face burrowed into his shoulder and Stiles felt like the worst parent of all time, certain that forcing your own child to pee her pants was a prime example of the John Winchester Method of parenting, aka the worst parenting style known to man and television aficionados.

“I’m sorry Leo-Pie, I should have gotten you sooner, I stopped being angry a long time ago,” he said when they sat back down on her bed and Leonie’s grasp on his neck tightened.

“I love you baby girl, but you can’t act like that at a store. I will always love you, no matter what you do, but some things we just aren’t allowed to do,” he said and Leonie lifted her head from his shoulder to look at him, her tiny hands clinging to his shirt.

“I’m sorry Daddy,” she whispered and Stiles smiled at her.

“I know baby. Daddy’s sorry, too.”

Leonie’s lip wobbled.

“I miss Papa!” she exhaled shakily and Stiles’ hold on his daughter tightened.

He had already acted like a petulant child once today; he was not going to feel offended.

“I miss Papa, too,” he agreed instead and when Leonie curled up against his chest his daughter’s behavior suddenly made much more sense.

She had never been separated from Derek, who was not only her father but also her Alpha, even when he had been unconscious after the accident she had always been able to sense his presence and it was no wonder that his absence was difficult for her.

Not to mention the magic-touch disaster from three nights ago, when she had really been in pain and Stiles knew, he knew that his daughter loved him just as much as she loved Derek, but for now Derek was definitely her anchor and being in so much pain without her papa to rescue her – well, Stiles would have probably acted out as well if he had been in her position.

“Papa is coming back tomorrow,” he promised her and on a whim he stood up again and carried her over to their bedroom, allowing her to snuggle into Derek’s pillow while he laid down next to her. Leonie was asleep within minutes; her breathing slow and even and Stiles breathed a sigh of relief, happy that he had made at least one good decision today.

 

===================

 

 “Papa! Papa!” Leonie yelled even before Derek emerged from the revolving doors at the arrival terminal and as soon as he became visible there would not have been a force in the ‘verse to stop their daughter from almost climbing over the railings in her haste to get to Derek.

Derek looked happy and relaxed, clad in his jeans and carrying his leather-jacket over his arm as his maroon shirt showed off his muscular and – much like he had predicted – completely flat chest.

He caught Leonie out of the air as she jumped into his arms and twirled her around before smacking a kiss on her cheek.

“Missed you baby-girl!” he grinned and Leonie squealed happily, before she pressed her nose into the crook of his neck in a proper werewolf-scenting greeting.

Stiles, who was bouncing Noah on his hip observed the reunion with a large grin and when Derek reached him he sat his suitcase down, wrapping the arm that wasn’t balancing Leonie on his hip around Stiles’ waist and pulling him into a deep kiss, careful not to squish Noah, who was also squealing in delight.

For a moment the family of four formed a circle and Stiles breathed in Derek’s familiar scent, fiercely glad that he finally had him back.

Derek pulled back with a soft laugh and took Noah from Stiles, nuzzling the baby’s head and kissing his round cheeks as well, while Stiles grabbed the suitcase.

“You look exhausted,” Derek commented as they walked out into the parking lot and Stiles snorted.

“You have no idea,” he muttered, leaving Derek to put the children into the car while he loaded the suitcase into the trunk.

“Do I even want to know?” Derek asked conversationally as he got onto the passenger seat and Stiles sighed.

“Probably not, but I’ll tell you anyways - after we’ve properly celebrated our reunion that is.”

He flashed a lopsided grin at his mate before concentrating on pulling out of the parking lot, determined to get at least one more night of sexy time with his werewolf before Derek forced him to sleep on the couch for weeks because of horrible parenting failures.

The rest of the afternoon passed quickly and to both Derek and Stiles’ relief Noah seemed to be taking the change in his feeding methods pretty well when Derek gave him his evening bottle.

Leonie, unsurprisingly, was essentially glued to Derek’s side for the rest of the day, but Stiles decided to count it as a win when she demanded that her daddy tuck her into bed for her bedtime story.

Not that he and Derek were competing for their children’s affection, but it was reassuring to note that his werewolf child loved him just as much as her werewolf papa.

Once both children were asleep Stiles finally had the opportunity to become reacquainted with Derek’s muscular and undeniably male chest and the resulting reunion-sex was, as usual, explosively spectacular.

Stiles felt more relaxed than he had in days as he snuggled into the pillow while Derek carefully licked up the remnants of his release from his stomach.

“So,” Derek began, straddling Stiles hips and making himself comfortable on his thighs, his fingers tracing circles along his hipbones.

“You wanted to tell me how the last days really went?” he said and Stiles sighed.

Derek was a little too close to his junk for his comfort, but his mate would probably feel offended if he asked him to get up and move so that he didn’t accidentally destroy all chances of a third child that Stiles could fail at parenting.

“Well … in order from least traumatic to most traumatic, our daughter had the mother of all temper tantrums because of wasabi peanuts, after which I made the genius decision to put her in a six-hour time-out, which then forced her to pee on the floor because she thought she couldn’t leave her room to go to the bathroom. I fed our son formula that he’s allergic to twice and he spent almost all of Saturday evening and night howling in pain because he had a stomachache that I had no idea I had caused by feeding him that formula. Then our daughter, who gets her stupid heroics from you I believe, decided to help out her baby brother by leaching his pain despite her knowledge that she was not allowed to do it and spent the rest of the night writhing in agony and throwing up black goo, at which point Deaton, Melissa, and Scott had to come rescue our kids.”

He winced. “In short, we are really glad you are back and I promise I didn’t do any of this on purpose.”

For a moment Derek looked stunned, before the look on his face changed to anxiety and before Stiles could react he had shot off of him and rushed out of the bedroom.

Stiles got up with a sigh and followed him to Leonie’s bedroom, crossing his arms over his chest as he watched Derek check over their sleeping daughter for any remaining side effects of the pain-leaching episode.

Derek didn’t even look at him as he walked back to their room and bent over the crib so he could sniff at Noah’s belly, muttering words under his breath that Stiles was glad he couldn’t hear.

Finally, Derek straightened up and – almost crushed Stiles in an embrace.

“No wonder you looked so harried when I got off the plane. This is my fault, I should have never left!”

Stiles groaned. Of course.

Deeeeerek,” he complained, tugging at his ears to force him to look at him.

“Everyone needs a vacation every now and then, you are no exception and you could not have prevented any of this.”

“Only I could have,” Derek argued, looking stricken.

“I could have eased Noah’s pain and we would have figured out the formula allergy eventually … hell, he wouldn’t have even needed the new formula, because I would have still been around to nurse him. If he hadn’t been in pain, our daughter would not have felt she needed to try and ease his discomfort despite my warnings for her not to do so and I bet she wouldn’t have acted out at the store either. Her Alpha was gone and that is a really difficult sensation for a young werewolf,” Derek explained and Stiles shook his head.

“You can’t sacrifice every aspect of your life for the kids – I don’t do it either. That’s why there are two of us – you fill in where I’m gone and I’ll fill in for you. And I’ll get better at this, I promise, because so god help me, Derek Hale, if you decide you have to be attached to the kids until they are off to college without any time for yourself we are going to have a very tense discussion.”

Derek sighed. “We’ll see about that,” he mumbled, but there was not much force behind it.

Stiles decided to take it as a cautious win.

“If anything, I should be the one feeling bad here, the past four days were just one catastrophe after the other,” he muttered and Derek stroked his cheek fondly.

“The kids still seem to love you though so I don’t think you scarred them for life,” he chided his human mate and Stiles sighed deeply.

“It’s just – you are so much better at this than I am. It’s frustrating for me, you know?”

Derek shook his head, tugging at Stiles’ hand and leading him back to their bed.

He didn’t speak until they were nestled under the covers and when he did he sounded embarrassed.

“The first time you left me alone with Leonie I accidentally dyed her hair purple,” he admitted and Stiles laughed quietly.

“So I’ve heard. For the record, I never believed that hair donation excuse, you sounded way too defensive.”

“Scott is a traitor,” Derek said flatly, before flashing Stiles a rueful grin.

“What Scott doesn’t know though, is that the second time you were gone for a couple of days I accidentally dropped Leonie’s favorite pacifier into the garbage can without realizing it. I spent almost 4 hours frantically looking for it while our daughter was screaming like somebody was torturing her. By the time I found it she had exhausted herself and was asleep and the pacifier was crawling with germs so I threw it out for good. I felt like I had committed a felony.”

He grabbed Stiles’ hand and kissed his knuckles.

“What I’m trying to say is, I might have some werewolf instincts working in my favor when it comes to certain things like illnesses and sensing moods, but sometimes I get distracted, too. Parenting is exhausting and sometimes it’s difficult and we are both going to make many more mistakes in the future. But at the end of the day we love these children and we’d do anything for them and even if they don’t understand it a hundred percent yet, they know.”

Stiles smiled.

“When did you become such a Wise Wolf?” he asked gently and Derek chuckled.

“A new alliterative theme?” he responded and Stiles shrugged.

“I don’t know, maybe? Wise Wolf certainly does sound very distinguished.”

Derek grinned.

“If it’s all the same to you, I think I’d prefer to be Sexy Wolf right now,” he said, the look in his eyes decidedly interested when he leaned over and kissed Stiles deeply.

It was, in Stiles’ humbled opinion, not only great but also extremely satisfying to have Derek back.

 

Chapter Text

December 2027

“I hope you still have our hand-me-downs because we’ll need them back by the end of March!” Scott announced excitedly as he barged through the door. He waltzed over to Noah’s high chair and picked up the baby, twirling him through the air and blowing a raspberry on his tummy.

“Guess what Noah! If you don’t want to marry Josie you can always have a handsome husband!”

“It’s another boy?!” Stiles exclaimed excitedly from the kitchen, a grin spreading over his face when Allison, who had walked in with Mikey behind Scott nodded with a large smile.

“That’s wonderful, congratulations,” Derek said, his hands currently stuck in a large glob of cookie-dough that Stiles had decided to twist into little wolf shapes.

“Mikey is going to have a little brother, just like Leo-Pie!” Scott gushed and Leonie grinned.

“My brother is better!” she sing-songed at Mikey, who toddled over to Derek and tugged at his leg, demanding to be picked up and obviously not interested in making little brother comparisons with Leonie.

With a grin Derek unstuck one of his hands and – after he had cleaned it off as best as he could – bent down to pick up Mikey, nuzzling the toddler’s cheek and allowing him to scent him back.

“Have I mentioned lately how unfair it is that Mikey is my godson and he likes Derek better?” Stiles complained and Scott shrugged.

“It’s a werewolf thing I guess – don’t worry, he’s got a picture of his uncle Stiles in his room and I’m already telling him all about our adventures when we were kids,” he said and Allison snorted.

“Not that he really understands what Scott’s telling him, but my husband remains oblivious to the fact that he has to use smaller words when talking to a toddler,” she grinned.

“I spent an entire summer learning all these big words, I don’t want Mikey to have to go through that as well,” Scott defended himself and Allison laughed, before walking over to the counter and giving Leonie a hug.

“Where’s the little brother now?” Leonie asked and Allison grinned even wider, taking Leonie’s hand and pressing it against her barely there belly.

“He’s in here right now and he was moving around earlier, if you’re lucky maybe he’ll say hello!” she said and Leonie’s eyes lit up. She pushed herself off the counter and dragged Allison over to the chair before climbing on her lap and pressing both her cheek and her hands against her belly.

“Are you going to stay like that until he moves Leo-Pie?” Stiles asked and Leonie pressed her finger against her lips.

“Shhh Daddy, he’s sleeping!” she whispered and Allison chuckled.

“He might be. He’s probably exhausted from all that lacrosse practice he’s been doing all afternoon.”

She smiled at Derek in gratitude when he placed a steaming mug of herbal tea in front of her and Derek, who was still carrying Mikey, sat down next to her, opposite of Scott, who was letting Noah play with his fingers.

“My daughter has a point though – where are you keeping the baby?” Derek said with a soft smile and Scott laughed.

“I know, right? I mean, Allison carried really small with Mikey, but after you already looked visibly pregnant at seven weeks with Noah, I figured I’d finally get to parade a heavily pregnant looking wife around as well!”

Allison rolled her eyes.

“He’s serious, too. Do you remember how Jackson strutted around town like an overgrown peacock when Julia was seven months pregnant and waddling everywhere? And how Danny finally had enough and gave him a shirt with a big arrow pointing to the side saying I did that to get him to stop it? Of course Jackson didn’t get the subtle criticism at all and actually wore that shirt proudly until Julia threatened she’d leave him for Danny and that she’d rather have a sexless marriage than to be seen in public next to that shirt one more time.”

She grinned.

“Scott is looking forward to imitating Jackson to the best of his abilities, to show him just how hilarious his behavior was for every uninvolved bystander.”

“Of course I can’t really do that until my lovely wife actually looks pregnant,” Scott mock-grumbled and Allison shook her head.

“I certainly feel pregnant,” she muttered and Derek gave her a compassionate smile.

“You know, if it wouldn’t be the pettiest thing in the world I just might hate you a little for carrying so small,” he grinned and Allison shook her head again, about to reply when Leonie suddenly let out a triumphant yell.

“He said hello!” she exclaimed, her hand pushed somewhere below Allison’s navel.

“Papa! Daddy! Come feel!” she demanded and after Allison had nodded consent, Derek carefully placed his hand against her side, while Stiles, who had rushed around the table, mimicked the gesture on the other side.

They were so enraptured with trying to feel the baby’s kicks that no one noticed when Scott sneakily pulled out his cell phone, took a picture, and posted it to Facebook with the caption “Baby McCall #2 – Entertainer Extraordinaire.”

 

===============

 

February-March 2028

Being an Alpha, Derek had found out very quickly in the first weeks with Leonie, was a lot like parenthood. One of the biggest similarities, in his opinion, was the constant worry that came with it. He had made his Betas by giving them the bite and he had made Leonie by giving birth to her – he felt responsible for all of them and wanted to protect them, to shield them from danger and heartache as much as he possibly could.

In February of 2028 his biggest worry-child was Isaac. He had always worried about Isaac, who still hid a lot of hurt under his often snarky and arrogant exterior, but the younger man’s temper only grew worse throughout the entire month, going so far as to him snapping “Can we talk about something besides babies for once in this pack?” and getting up in a huff at the last pack meeting, leaving a hurt looking Allison, who had just revealed the two final choices for their new son’s name and a flabbergasted pack.

That had been on March 3rd and, consequently, by March 4th Derek had had enough. It was a Saturday, which meant Stiles could take care of Leonie and Noah and after breakfast Derek went outside, inhaling the crisp air of early spring before changing into his Alpha form and sprinting through the woods.

It wasn’t something he got to do often these days and as he charged through the still winter-bare landscape Derek felt invigorated and powerful, his instincts only heightened by his determination to find out what was wrong with his Beta.

He was not surprised when Isaac wasn’t at home and his next stop was Melissa’s house, again, not surprised to find Isaac sitting on her couch and sipping a cup of tea with a morose expression on his face. What did surprise him, however, was the scent of the Sheriff, which lingered all around Melissa when he gave her a hug.

If it had been any other occasion Derek might have investigated, but Isaac’s smell was enough to make his worry turn into full-fledged anxiety. The curly-haired man smelled devastated and when Derek looked at Melissa questioningly, he could smell a deep sadness wafting from her as well.

“He doesn’t want to talk but I really, really think he should,” she mouthed, no sound leaving her lips so that Isaac wouldn’t hear.

Derek nodded before walking over to the couch, dropping down next to Isaac and pouring himself a cup of tea as well.

He didn’t really like tea – a coffee drinker through and through – but that wasn’t his most pressing concern.

The silence stretched on for quite a while, but if Derek had learned anything from being mated to Stiles and being the father to his kids, it was patience and so wait he did, forcing his heartbeat to keep calm and steady.

“I love the kiddos, I really do but I’m not – baby crazy,” Isaac finally said, setting down his cup and rubbing his eyes.

“I’m everyone’s last person to ask for babysitting and I’m quite ok with that, it’s … better this way. Better for them, so they don’t have to deal with my awkwardness and better for me so I don’t have to …” he broke off, clearing his throat before continuing.

“Remember how I told you my father was my anchor, that he wasn’t always like he was in the end? He was a lot like you Derek, actually. Quiet and strict but in the end always the first person I would run to if I was scared, or sad or didn’t feel good. And I love that the kids have that, it’s just … sometimes it’s a little hard for me to be around, you know.”

“I know I should probably have gotten some therapy, back when it all happened and my father died, but I had the pack and a new family and it helped so much, I didn’t think I needed it. But every time someone makes a joke about me not settling down I start thinking about having kids and I am absolutely terrified. And I know there is no rule that says I will turn into my father, but I’m nowhere near a point where I’d be willing to take the chance. And women my age start thinking about having families and since I’m not desperate that I’m not in a steady relationship I just figured it’s easier to just – not tie myself down, you know? Enjoy life?”

The bad feeling in Derek’s stomach intensified and he was starting to have an idea about where this was going, but before he could say anything Isaac already continued.

“There was this girl at my favorite club a couple of months back. I had seen her around, she was fun, always there with someone else, laughing all the time, not giving a damn about what people might have thought of her. One night she approached me. Told me she had seen me leave with more than my fair share of girls and she was wondering why it had never been her.”

He smiled sadly. “She had a point – or at least I thought she did at the time, see, I was a little too horny to really think I’m afraid – and we went to her place. She said she was on the pill, took one of them right in front of me actually when I asked if she was safe. I’m a werewolf, I neither catch nor carry diseases and when I told her I was clean she just said ok.”

This time, Derek opened his mouth but Isaac held up a hand to stop him.

“I know. You don’t have to say it; I’ve been beating myself up over it enough as it is. It was stupid, stupid, stupid. And it had consequences. Well. For a little while at least.”

His shoulders slumped and when he spoke next it was so quietly that Derek would have had a hard time understanding if he hadn’t been a werewolf.

“She approached me at the beginning of the month. I hadn’t seen her in a while but of course I hadn’t thought anything of it. She looked really uncomfortable when she saw me and when I asked her if something was wrong she said “Not anymore,” and her heartbeat was rising so I took her hand and pulled her out of the club. I was afraid that maybe there is some sort of freaky supernatural sex disease that can be transmitted by a werewolf after all.”

He smiled bitterly.

“Only it wasn’t a disease that I had transmitted to her. It was a baby – a baby that existed for all of five weeks before she lost it. She hadn’t even known, she was on one of these pills where you don’t get your period for months at a time and she only realized something was wrong when she suddenly started bleeding heavily at work one day.”

“She said she was pretty sure that it was mine and that she had thought about telling me, but that she didn’t save my number. I don’t think I even gave it to her to begin with. She smelled sad when she talked about it, but I think she was also a bit relieved? It was a little conflicting but of course by then I was panicking and no longer really paying attention.”

He sighed. “I haven’t been to the club since. I haven’t been anywhere, really. Instead, I’ve been snapping at everybody I care about and can hardly sleep because I am grieving a baby that I never wanted, can’t even be sure of if it was really mine, and never even knew about until it was gone.”

He rubbed his temples agitatedly. “Does that even make sense Derek? I think about becoming a father and I feel almost ill with anxiety, but then I think of that little baby and I just want to scream. If it makes sense to you please tell me, I certainly don’t understand it!”

Derek had a couple of theories, most of them having to do with childhood trauma and werewolf instincts but he stayed silent, electing to draw Isaac into a hug instead.

When the sobs came they came with a vengeance and suddenly Melissa was there as well and together they held him for a long time.

 

==============

 

Derek was still brooding when he came home in the late afternoon and Stiles waited until the kids were asleep before he broached the topic.

“So … that bad, huh?”

His expression darkened as he listened to the story, able to because Isaac had asked Derek to tell the rest of the pack, minus Scott and Allison, whom he wanted to apologize to himself.

“That’s … really fucking horrible,” Stiles finally said and Derek sighed.

“Yeah, I know.”

“Should we keep the kids away from him for a little while? I don’t want them to be a constant reminder,” Stiles worried and Derek shook his head.

“I asked him and he says that’s not necessary. He just doesn’t want us to be offended if he focuses on his friendship with Boyd and Erica there for a little while.”

Stiles made an upset noise. “As if we would be offended, it’s completely understandable.”

He suddenly slammed his open palm on his leg in frustration, pain evident in his voice.

“God, I never want to go through something like that. To think you are going to lose a child is one thing; to actually know you have lost a child…” he trailed off, his voice sounding a little choked.

Derek didn’t have to ask him what he was referring to and pulled him into a firm embrace.

“Derek?” Stiles finally asked, an embarrassed smile on his face.

“Can Leo-Pie sleep in our room tonight?”

“We just put her to sleep,” Derek protested, but it was a weak protest, already getting up to go get her.

For all the little sleep she needed, Leonie was a heavy sleeper and didn’t make a sound when Derek picked her up and carried her over to the room, smiling fondly at his mate who was already in bed, lying on his back with Noah sleeping soundly on his stomach.

“He’ll have to go back to his crib before you fall asleep though,” Derek said and Stiles nodded.

“Of course. I want to smush my children with love, not with 175 pounds.”

Chapter Text

The downside of having both of your children sleeping in your room, Derek and Stiles discovered the next day, was that just because the baby enjoyed sleeping through the night that did not mean his four year old sister shared the sentiment.

“Papa! Daddy!” Leonie yelled excitedly, her outburst the only warning Derek got before his daughter jumped on his chest.

Not wanting to be left out Noah, who had pulled himself up on the bars of his crib, started squealing and Stiles got up to get him, moving like a zombie and his eyes still halfway closed.

“Good morning my lovely children,” he yawned and was rewarded with an enthusiastic “Good morning Daddy!” from Leonie and a happy “Dada!” from Noah.

Stiles was wide awake instantly.

“Oh my god, did you hear that Derek! He said Daddy!” Stiles exclaimed, grinning so hard his ears were once again in danger of falling off his face.

“Can you say it again Noah-Boa? Daddy! Daddy!”

“Dada!” Noah repeated obediently, grinning his cheeky baby-grin and Derek chuckled when Stiles began to tear up.

“And you call me sappy,” he teased him gently but Stiles only smiled.

“This one said Papa first, I’m entitled to feel triumphant!” he stated, pointing towards Leonie, who grinned.

“Can you say Leonie Noah? Leonie?” she asked her brother and Noah grinned and repeated “Dada!” having obviously figured out that saying it made him the star of the room.

“That’s my boy!” Stiles beamed, grabbing his phone and waving it in front of Noah’s face.

“Say Daddy!” he laughed and Noah dutifully repeated “Dada.”

Derek chuckled when Stiles immediately texted the video to his father, Melissa, and Scott.

“Speaking of your father and Melissa,” Derek suddenly remembered, “would you happen to know why your dad’s scent was all over Melissa yesterday morning?”

Stiles’ head whipped around and he stared at Derek incredulously.

“All over?” he repeated and Leonie, who was busy tickling Noah, shrugged, saying, “That’s because Grandpa gives Grandma kisses,” without even looking up.

“Hold on, what?” Stiles exclaimed and Leonie raised her eyebrows.

“Grandpa gives Grandma kisses, that’s what grandpas do,” she explained before focusing her attention back on her little brother.

“Kisses?” Stiles yelped and Derek grinned.

“It definitely smelled like kisses … and stuff,” he said delicately and when Stiles flailed and fell off the side of the bed it was definitely a sight for sore eyes.

“Silly Daddy,” was Leonie’s only comment.

 

==============

 

“Scott!” Stiles yelled into his phone while Derek attempted to make pancakes in the kitchen, a task hindered by his nervously pacing mate who kept moving the ingredients on the counter in a fit of anxiety.

“Stiles,” Scott yawned, sounding disgruntled over being woken up at 7 in the morning.

“I have about a month of sleeping peacefully left before my baby gets here … why are you doing this to me?” he lamented but Stiles was in no mood to apologize.

“Why is my dad kissing your mom?” he asked and the sharp intake of breath on the other line suggested that this was definitely news to Scott as well.

“He’s doing what? With my mom?” Scott yelled and Derek sighed, deciding that they were having cereal instead of something more complicated.

“Leonie says she saw them kissing and Derek smelled them all over each other. When did this happen? Why don’t we know about this? Why is this happening?” Stiles rushed out and Scott grunted.

“My mom would have told me. Right? Your dad would have told you, wouldn’t he?”

Stiles shrugged.

“I kept so many secrets from him during high school, he owes me like eons of secrecy in retaliation.”

He grabbed the orange juice from the fridge and drank it straight from the carton, ignoring Derek’s glare.

“Scotty my man, we need to find out what’s going on. We are going to investigate!” he declared.

“Definitely!” Scott agreed.

“Meet me at our place in 20, alright?”

“Sure thing!” Stiles agreed and hung up.

“Investigate? Also, how are our children ever going to learn manners if their father doesn’t even know what that is?” Derek asked pointedly and Stiles shrugged.

“Derek my love, I need to go figure out this mystery!” he explained, already grabbing his keys and only stopping because Derek stepped in front of the door with crossed arms.

“Maybe they are not sure about this yet? Maybe they would like to wait and see if this is actually going to be a thing before they tell their sons, who have been rooting for them to get together since middle school, essentially?” Derek suggested and Stiles shook his head.

“Now that I know this I can never unknow it. I’m sorry but there is no way I can ignore this!” he exclaimed and Derek, who knew the expression on his stubborn mate’s face all too well, stepped aside with a sigh, hoping against hope that the whole thing wasn’t going to turn into a disaster.

Scott and Stiles’ investigation strategy, it turned out, was a mixture of sniffing and stalking and throughout the course of the morning Derek got multiple stalking-updates via text message.

9:05 Stiles (to Derek): Subject J spotted at Walgreens

9:15 Stiles (to Derek): Scott freaking out about Subject J possibly buying condoms

9:17 Stiles (to Derek): Subject J on route to Subject M’s house.

9:25 Stiles (to Derek): Scott freaking out again because Isaac isn’t there anymore and they are all alone

9:26 Derek (to Stiles): Based on what I smelled yesterday you two should probably drive out of hearing and sniffing distance – just saying.

10:05 Stiles (to Derek): Scott having a nervous breakdown over incriminating noises

10:06 Allison (to Derek): Remind me to forward you Scott’s texts from this morning some time, I’m laughing so hard I’m about to go into early labor!

10:08 Allison (to Derek): I think my favorite for now is “Sheriff, Mom, Cooties, OH GOD I DON’T WANT TO BE A BIG BROTHER AT 34!”

10:09 Derek (to Allison): I thought he was freaking out about condoms?

10:10 Allison (to Derek): Apparently he thinks the Sheriff has super-sperm or something, since his son managed to knock up a man and all.

10:10 Stiles: I’ll have you know we Stilinski men have super sperm AND excellent breeder prowess! (Accidentally sent as a group text to entire pack)

10:11 Erica (to Pack): Stiles Stilinski, Breeder-Stallion Extraordinaire?

10:11 Lydia (to Pack): Don’t send me this shit when I’m at work. I mean it. Strike One!

10:12 Boyd (to Pack): …

10:12 Jackson (to Pack): It’s not a competition, Stilinski and besides, WTF?!

10:13 Julia (to Pack): Don’t worry honey, if it was you’d be winning!

10:13 Julia (to Jackson): Shit, I just sent that to the group, did I?

10:13 Isaac (to Pack): Uhm? What did I miss?

10:14 Cora (to Pack): Don’t flatter yourself Stilinski, without Derek’s kick-ass fertile uterus your sperm would be a mere drop on the bottom of the evolution-ocean.

10:15 Stiles (to Pack): Shit, didn’t mean to send it to all of you!

10:15 Stiles (to Pack): Also, I take offense to all that trash-talk! My sperm is the shizz!

10:15 Stiles (to Pack): Get it? Shizz – Jizz?

10:16 Lydia (to Pack): Strike TWO!

10:17 Scott (to Pack): My MOM! Stiles’ Dad! NO MORE JIZZ!

10:18 Lydia (to Pack): ALLISON! Call me tonight, I want to hear EVERYTHING.

10:18 Lydia (to Pack): Oh and my boss just saw the word JIZZ pop up on my display in capital letters, so yeah, strike three. Just FYI. Be scared. Very scared.

10:19 Allison (to Derek): Just texted Scott that Melissa went through Menopause three years ago and little brothers and sisters are out of the question

10:19 Allison (to Derek): Also, Derek, wow, you’re a lucky man to have access to all that JIZZ!

10:20 Derek (to Allison): I’m sure he appreciated it. Also, ha ha. I need a drink.

10:21 Allison (to Derek): He says, and I quote, “LA LA LA LA LA” – I married a child.

10:22 Derek (to Allison): Don’t worry, so did I.

10:25 Stiles (to Derek): Scott traumatized for life – sleuthing mission currently on hold to get some cherry-pistachio milk shakes to soothe his nerves … and mine

10:26 John (to Derek): Why did my son just drive his car out of Melissa’s driveway as if he was chased by the mafia?

10:27 John (to Derek): He knows I’m a Sheriff and can tell when I’m being followed, right?

10:28 Derek (to John): Regardless of the question why I’m being dragged into this – I suggest you and Melissa have a heart-to-heart with your sons.

10:28 Derek (to John): Today would be good.

10:29 Derek (to John and Melissa): They are getting milkshakes for Scott’s nervous breakdown, apparently.

10:30 Melissa (to Derek): Oh boy, we’re on our way.

10:31 John (to Derek): Tell that granddaughter of mine it’s unethical to tell on her grandpa after he bribed her with cookies to keep her from spilling a big secret

10:32 Derek (to John): What kind of cookies?

10:33 John (to Derek): Chocolate-Chip

10:33 Derek (to John): Next time, try White Chocolate Macadamia.

10:40 John (to Pack): By the way, kids, you realize Melissa and I are in this group, right?

10:41 Chris (to Pack): Coincidentally, so am I. And – not that I would ever threaten you or anything – but if I ever hear anything about McCall sperm I’ll probably remember that I’m a hunter. Just FYI.

10:41 Scott (to Allison): I’m so dead. Double dead!

10:42 Stiles (to Derek): I’m so dead!

Derek sat the phone down with a low chuckle and looked at the little traitor, who was currently bent over a coloring book and had apparently decided that Princess Aurora should have a green face.

“Hey Leo-Pie?” he asked her, taking a seat across from her and sipping on his coffee.

“Yes Papa?” his daughter asked and Derek did his best to give her a strict face.

“Did you promise your grandpa not to tell and then told us anyways?” he asked her and Leonie looked guilty.

“Maybe?” she said hesitantly and Derek clucked his tongue.

“We don’t do that baby-girl. There are good secrets and bad secrets. We tell the bad secrets, but never the good secrets, if the person with the secret doesn’t want us to,” he explained to her and Leonie scratched her nose in concentration.

“But how can I tell what’s a good secret Papa?” she asked and Derek frowned.

She did have a point there.

“How about this. If your grandpa has a secret that makes him happy, we don’t tell, alright? Because that would be mean.”

Leonie nodded.

“Okay Papa,” she agreed and went back to her coloring book.

She was still coloring two hours later when Stiles arrived, grinning like a madman.

“So I take it John and Melissa finally getting together is not a bad thing after all?” Derek asked and Stiles beamed.

“Dude! It’s the best thing ever!”

Derek snorted.

“You realize I gave birth to your children and calling me ‘Dude’ is a bit rude, right?” he said and Stiles jumped into his arms, muttering “Sorry!” before he kissed him deeply.

“My dad is happy!” he whispered into Derek’s ear and Derek grinned.

“It couldn’t have happened to a better person.”

 

==================

 

00:58 Deaton (to Pack): Just got off the plane to Japan – what in the world did I just miss?

1:20 Deaton (to Pack): Hello?

1:30 Deaton (to Pack): Typical.

==================

 

March 14th 2028

Alexander Sebastian McCall was born on March 14th, almost two weeks before his due date but happy and healthy and very unmistakably a werewolf. Not that Derek had really doubted it, pretty certain that although he was a born werewolf and Scott was bitten, the younger man’s True Alpha status almost made it impossible for him to father human children.

Unlike Derek, who was currently explaining to a frustrated Leonie that they couldn’t just go see baby Alex at the hospital because there were strict rules about toddlers and small children on the delivery ward.

“But I don’t get sick Papa, I am not going to make all the babies sick,” she protested and Derek ruffled her hair affectionately.

“I know Leo-Pie. But you’d want Noah to come too, right, and I’m afraid your little brother has another cold,” he said with a deep sigh, looking over to Stiles who was trying to feed their cranky son.

“Can’t you just …” Leonie began and Derek shook his head.

“I can leach pain, but not the common cold. While we’re on the subject – are you allowed to leach pain?” he asked with a raised eyebrow and Leonie crossed her arms with a small huff.

“No. I know Papa! But it’s still not fair!” she exclaimed, shutting her mouth when Derek raised his eyebrows even further.

“I think she’s got it by now, I really do,” Stiles commented after she had sulked away and Derek took Noah out of his high seat, rubbing the baby’s back in soothing motions to at least try to make him feel better.

“That’s what we thought last time and look how well that went.”

He looked at his watch and sighed.

“Do you want to go see Alexander? Visiting hours start in a little bit and I’m sure Scott would love to see the godfather of his sons,” he said and Stiles grinned.

“I was hoping you’d say that. You sure you’re ok taking care of the little germ-fuzzball?” he asked and Derek rolled his eyes.

“No, after raising a human baby for almost a year I find myself utterly at a loss as to how to deal with snot,” he deadpanned and Stiles grinned ruefully.

“Man, don’t get me wrong, I like that I’m not the only human in the family but if I had known how awesome it is to have a werewolf baby with a tough immune system, I would have definitely savored it more,” he commented while getting dressed and Derek couldn’t have agreed more.

At almost a year old Noah was going through a near constant-sick phase, barely recovered from one cold or ear infection before the next one hit and it made Derek feel downright guilty, feeling almost if he had failed him by not passing on his werewolf genes to their little boy.

He was able to leach acute pain from Noah’s ears, but the crankiness brought on by head colds was something he could do nothing about.

Not for the first time he asked himself if Noah would request the bite once he got old enough to realize he got sick while his older sister didn’t and Derek really hoped he wouldn’t, because gift or not, there was no way he was going to risk Noah’s body rejecting the bite and dying in the process.

 

================

 

April 1st, 2028

The first birthday of a baby was, Derek, decided, definitely a party for the parents rather than the child.

Since Noah was too young to unwrap presents – or realize what they were – Derek had asked the pack to either bring some food for the party or donate something to his college fund if they really wanted to give him a present and, unsurprisingly, everyone had done both.

Boyd and Erica had brought the birthday cake and after the typical pictures of baby with cake all over his face had been taken to everyone’s satisfaction, Derek had whisked the birthday boy away to clean him up while Stiles busied himself as entertainer for Leonie and Mikey, both of whom were slightly bored by the lack of attention everyone was bestowing upon them

To be fair, Derek mused, it was hard to compete with a two weeks old baby, especially one as adorable as little Alex.

Jackson was excitedly swapping stories about diapers rashes with Scott – who really didn’t have any knowledge about that because his werewolf sons did not get diaper rashes and had decided to make something up to placate Jackson – when Leonie suddenly let out a squeal.

“Uncle Peter!” she yelled excitedly and Derek, who was in the process of dressing Noah in a new birthday-boy outfit upstairs, froze.

“Well hello there Princess!” Peter grinned and by the time Derek had hurried downstairs with Noah, Leonie was already sitting on her great-uncle’s lap and interrogating him about where he had been for so long.

The casual atmosphere in the room had grown tense, neither adult really sure what to do and Mikey, who did not remember Peter at all, was shyly hiding behind Scott’s legs.

“And there is the birthday boy!” Peter grinned when he saw Derek, getting up and holding out his hands for Noah expectantly.

Derek took a deep breath, his eyes flickering to Stiles’ wide ones, before he cautiously handed Noah over, not wanting to make a scene.

If Peter could sense his hesitation and state of alert his expression betrayed nothing as he bounced Noah on his hip and wished him a happy birthday, while Noah, being the zen-baby that he was, wasn’t exactly smiling but definitely curious as he regarded this stranger with wide eyes.

“Gosh that boy looks like Stiles!” Peter commented, before he dropped back on the couch and allowed Leonie to climb on his lap again.

Having his big sister with him was apparently all the reason Noah needed to decide that Peter was a friend and Peter beamed at him when he poked his little finger against his cheek with a big grin.

“So – what brings you back Peter?” Derek asked while Stiles added, “You know, after one year without even a postcard?”

“I couldn’t miss this big boy’s first birthday now, could I?” Peter grinned, electing to avoid any information about where he had been for the past twelve months.

Derek decided he probably didn’t even want to know.

“How long are you staying?” Stiles pressed on and Peter rolled his eyes.

“Such a heart-warming welcome, I’m glad that at least your children like me,” he muttered.

“Don’t worry, I won’t stay long. I have a pressing engagement in Peru in a couple of weeks,” he explained without really explaining anything.

He looked around and chuckled when he saw the two newest additions to the pack.

“Well, well, looks like you guys have been busy. That’s good though, a strong pack is better than a weak pack I like to say,” he mused, his attention once again focused on Noah and Leonie.

Since no one really knew what to say, Stiles decided to attract the attention away from his mate’s homicidal uncle and launched into a detailed description of his company’s latest campaign, while Derek kept watching his uncle warily.

Stiles was explaining their – slightly immoral if one asked Derek – marketing approach towards children when Peter suddenly clapped his hands.

“I completely forgot! Noah’s present!” he said, standing up and handing the toddler over to Derek, who had to stop himself from sniffing all over him to check that he was still perfectly fine.

“I bought this during my travels. I was told it is the best gift for little children,” he grinned proudly when he pulled a small, rectangular box out of his bag.

“You were told – you don’t even know what’s in there?” Stiles asked and Derek snorted.

“Yeah, we are not opening that,” he said and Peter rolled his eyes.

“Don’t be such a Drama Wolf. I got this from a lovely little lady with more wrinkles than I’ve ever seen in my life. Old little ladies with wrinkles never mean harm to children,” he argued and Leonie, who had bemoaned the fact that there were no presents to unpack earlier, even though they wouldn’t have been for her anyways, looked at the box curiously.

“Oh please can we open it? Daddy? Papa? I want to see the best gift for little children!” she begged, turning on her puppy dog eyes full force.

Derek shook his head.

“Sorry Leo-Pie, but if Uncle Peter doesn’t know what’s inside I don’t want to open it.”

“Pleeeeeease Papa, pleeeeease,” Leonie whined and Derek sighed deeply.

He gingerly took the box from Peter and took a deep sniff, before shaking it and trying to listen.

There was no sound coming from the box and he couldn’t detect a suspicious smell either, but the box still gave him a feeling of deep unrest.

“I’m sorry Leo-Pie, but unless Uncle Peter can tell us what it is, we are not opening it,” he decided, giving Leonie a raised eyebrow when she started to pout.

“No fun Papa!” she protested and Derek’s other eyebrow rose in warning.

“You really are no fun Derek,” Peter scoffed, rolling his eyes as he grabbed the box back and carelessly placed it next to his bag on the floor.

Stiles glared at his mate’s uncle and Peter held up his hands, his expression charming once again.

The discussion moved back to safer things and Derek had all but forgotten about the package when he suddenly heard a little pop.

And another pop.

And another.

And one more.

“Did you hear that popping-sound?” he asked the other pack members and before anyone could respond Allison suddenly dropped her teacup on the floor, where it shattered into multiple pieces.

“Mikey!” she screeched and when Derek turned towards where she was pointing with horrified eyes he came as close to a heart attack as a werewolf could.

Leonie and Mikey were hanging suspended in the air about a foot above the package, which was lying open on the ground.

Only they weren’t so much as hanging in the air but flying, Derek realized with growing horror, their ears flapping in the air and keeping them floating.

Their big, grey, majestic elephant ears.

Which explained the popping sounds.

“Leonie!” Stiles yelled and shot out of his chair, almost knocked over by Scott in his haste to get to their flying children first.

“What did you do?” Derek barked, his normally calm demeanor completely gone in the face of the little were-elephants fluttering around the living room.

“It was Mikey’s idea!” Leonie defended herself, seemingly completely calm about the fact that she was flying through the air with the help of big elephant ears.

“Mikey’s idea!” Mikey squealed, the 2-year old obviously having the time of his life as well.

Derek didn’t believe them for a second.

Stiles had reached Leonie and was trying to pull her down, but every time her feet touched the floor she would twitch her ears and rise up into the air again.

A choked sound suddenly rang out from the door and when Derek turned towards the entrance hall the Sheriff and Melissa, who had both just gotten off work, were standing completely frozen, mirroring expressions of horrified confusion on their faces.

“Hi Grandpa! Hi Grandma! I’m flying!” Leonie squealed and John dropped the cake-tray he had been carrying.

“Flying!” he gasped, turning towards Derek and Stiles with a thunderous expression.

“What have you done to our granddaughter?!” he exploded and Melissa, who had just spotted Mikey, screeched even louder than Allison.

“And our grandson!” she yelled.

“Where the hell did you buy this?” Derek whirled around towards his uncle but, not surprisingly, Peter and his bag were gone.

“We need to take the kids to Deaton!” Scott babbled frantically and Allison shook her head.

“How?! It’s still daylight, we can’t drive them through town like this!” she yelled and Alex, who had been asleep until now, started crying loudly, obviously scared by the anxiety in the room.

“How about we all take a deep breath and then have Deaton come over,” Lydia’s voice rang out and Stiles started gasping.

“Deep breath? My daughter is turning into an elephant!” he exclaimed and Derek shook his shoulder.

“Don’t you dare have a panic attack on me now!” he gritted through his teeth and Stiles visibly tried to calm himself down, a task that was not aided by Leonie flying over and touching his back with her left ear in an attempt to soothe her daddy.

“Don’t be sad Daddy, this is fun!” she tried to explain and Stiles took in a ragged breath.

“What if she grows a trunk Derek?” he whispered and Derek’s eyes widened almost comically.

Before anyone could say anything else Deaton, whom Isaac had apparently called the minute they had first noticed the flying children, burst into the room, gasping and looking wildly excited.

“How unusual!” he exclaimed and the entire pack whirled towards him with accusatory glares.

Deaton shrugged, completely unfazed by the unspoken criticism directed towards him.

“It is unusual. An extremely rare spell if I’m not mistaken,” he mumbled under his breath, his eyes greedily examining the box on the floor.

“Is it reversible?” Derek barked and Deaton nodded absentmindedly.

“Of course it is; the effects go away within 24 hours. Most remarkable!” he muttered when he got a better look at the children.

“24 hours?” Scott asked shakily and Deaton nodded.

“No more than 24 hours. It’s an old spell designed for children. The idea behind it is to become one with the majestic elephant at a young age and view life from a heightened, wise point of view, hence the ability to fly I would assume,” he explained.

It sounded like total and utter nonsense to Stiles and he said as much, frowning when Deaton rolled his eyes.

“Do not mock the ancient traditions of the old world,” Deaton admonished him and Stiles glared at him.

“My child has elephant ears. Elephant ears!” he said darkly.

“And such pretty ears they are,” Deaton addressed Leonie, who giggled and was obviously pleased with the compliment.

“And you don’t see anything wrong with this?” Derek asked aggressively and Deaton shrugged, as usual the picture of serenity.

“Let me put it this way,” Deaton said while he carefully picked up the box with gloved hands and stowed it in a ziplock bag.

“Where did you think Disney got the idea for Dumbo?”

“Disney was an Emissary?” Erica exclaimed and Deaton shrugged.

“One of our very own most creative and innovative. Of course his politics were a bit problematic so we don’t like to talk about him too much, but he definitely put his supernatural knowledge to profitable use.”

 

=================

 

Putting Leonie in timeout for disobeying her Papa and Alpha about opening the package proved to be impossible since she was literally unable to stay on the ground, and trying to discipline her while constantly being distracted by her floppy elephant ears was also quite challenging, but by the end of the evening Derek was reasonably sure that she understood what she had done wrong.

Stiles had voiced some concerns that the ears would disappear during the night and she would plummet to the floor and so Derek had allowed her to sleep in their room tonight.

They had put her in the middle of the bed and each father had draped an arm over her stomach to secure her and keep her from flying away.

When he was sure that both children were asleep, Stiles turned towards Derek.

“The bunny suit was strike one. His inability to turn down his radio was strike two. This is strike three. I’m done. I’m going to kill your uncle. I swear,” he muttered and Derek shook his head.

“I’m faster and I’ll probably beat you to it,” he grunted.

“Do you think he’ll even dare to show his face here again?” Stiles wondered and Derek snorted.

“He’s a sociopath. He probably doesn’t even realize he did something wrong.”

“Oh I’ll tell him what he did wrong, right after I murder him!”

“You should do that before, otherwise he’ll never learn anything from his mistakes,” Derek grinned and Stiles rolled his eyes.

“As if he ever does.”

Derek sighed, before looking down at Leonie.

“Well, at least she had fun,” he mused and Stiles grunted.

“Doesn’t mean he’s off the hook,” he said and Derek shook his head.

“Of course not. But it could have been worse – she could have turned into a rat.”

“A rat?” Stiles asked and Derek shrugged.

“I’m sure they are considered wise as well,” he said and Stiles laughed quietly.

“Only if they are training mutated ninja turtles,” he remarked.

“No more Disney?” Derek said five minutes later and Stiles nodded emphatically.

“No more Disney. That man was bat-shit crazy.”

Chapter Text

October 2028

“I think Derek isn’t attracted to me anymore!”

To his credit, Stiles hadn’t meant to have an outburst like that in front of his friends but he had had three glasses of wine and he just couldn’t hold it in any longer.

Scott’s response was anything but helpful, consisting mainly of a confused “Huh?”

Stiles sympathized with his friend, he really did. He and Allison might have missed having two under two by one month, but a screaming werewolf baby and a whiny werewolf in his terrible twos were definitely an exhausting and brain-wiping combination.

However, Stiles was having a serious, possibly life-altering crisis and he needed advice that went beyond the unquestionable eloquence of the utterance “huh”.

“What do you mean, Derek is no longer attracted to you?” Lydia asked with a frown. She was currently staying with Scott and Allison for her bi-monthly “Spoil the Godsons and Pack-Babies”-visit and Stiles had essentially invited himself for dinner with his three closest friends that evening.

“Does he – how shall I put this – no longer want to sleep with you every day and only puts out every other day instead? Because that’s completely normal and also still more than average, I promise,” she continued, her tone suggesting that she wasn’t taking Stiles all that seriously.

“I wish it was every other day,” Stiles huffed, rubbing his temples and pouring his fourth glass of wine under Allison’s watchful gaze.

“We haven’t had sex in almost three months! I know because I have started counting the days,” he exclaimed, his worries not soothed in the slightest when three pairs of eyebrows rose in synchrony.

“Almost three months? Damn!” Lydia uttered, her annoyed expression changing to concern.

“I’m not going to say he’s no longer attracted to you just yet, I don’t have enough information, but while a three months dry spell for parents of two young children might be normal, for the two of you it’s definitely not. Okay, what did you do Stiles? Tell us everything!”

Stiles sighed deeply.

“I don’t know what I did! At first he just kept saying he was tired and could we please just snuggle, and then he started sleeping farther and farther away from me until I would have sworn he was about to fall out of the bed. Now every time I try to initiate something he’ll say “Not now Stiles,” and I swear if he wasn’t a werewolf and could pull it off he would constantly have a headache.”

He looked at his friends with a downright miserable expression on his face.

“He hasn’t even touched me lately and that’s just a catastrophe, because we are mates and he’s a werewolf, which means that he has biological urges and should at least want to touch me once a day. Instead – nothing! For weeks! I’m telling you, he’s no longer attracted to me. Maybe he doesn’t even love me anymore. He’s fine when he’s with the kids, but when he’s with me he’s just – distant. All we talk about is the kids and barely anything else. I don’t even want to approach him anymore, I’m done feeling so rejected.”

“Did you … maybe say something insensitive to him three months ago? You do that sometimes, you know?” Scott ventured and Stiles scoffed.

“Please, I may be insensitive but Derek had to essentially be house-trained until he had learned that it’s only fun to slam people into walls if you have sexy times with them afterwards. He can deal with occasional bouts of insensitivity, that should not be the problem!”

“Did you – and I’ll regret asking this, I just know it – try to do something weird during sex again? You know, like that sparkle thing?” Allison asked and Stiles shook his head.

“No! Everything was awesome. At least to me it was awesome, and he didn’t seem to have a problem either.”

He groaned miserably. “Maybe it’s because I’m getting old!”

Lydia almost choked on her wine.

“I’m sorry, you’re getting what now?” she exclaimed and Stiles sighed.

“I’m 33 years old. My hairline is receding; my temples are starting to really become grey now and I haven’t seen the inside of a gym or a lacrosse field in 15 years and it shows,” he uttered, pinching at his midsection in consternation.

“Look at that! That’s a roll. A pretty big roll if I might say so myself. That wasn’t there before, how did I not notice this!” he cried and Lydia snorted.

“First of all, if you are getting old that means I’m getting old and I’m not, so that’s not it. Secondly, it’s not a big roll, it’s just a cute little belly that you can’t even see when you’re dressed and besides, you’ve looked like this ever since you guys had Leo-Pie and if Derek had minded it that much I doubt Noah would be here right now.”

Stiles shook his head. “Maybe if I worked out more again? We have a gym at the company, there is no excuse for me not to use it during my lunch break instead of eating donuts and drinking coffee as if I was a caricature of my dad.”

Allison sighed. “Scott, I’m currently nursing our son and I don’t have my hands free – can you please hit him over the head?” she asked sweetly and Stiles held up his hands in protest.

“I don’t need to be hit, I’m suffering enough as it is. Can you even imagine what it’s like having to sleep next to the hottest person on the planet every night and not getting to touch? I don’t even get to see him anymore; he’s wearing shirts to bed now. Shirts! Derek has never worn shirts to bed. All just so he doesn’t have to deal with me touching him anymore.”

Allison’s eyes widened at the same time Lydia’s did.

“Stiles … maybe Derek’s the one that’s feeling a little … undesirable right now?”

Stiles made a sound that was somewhere between a choke and laughter.

Derek? Undesirable? Ha! There is just so much wrong with that statement. First, have you seen him? Even his pinkie toes are desirable! And second, he is a werewolf, he can smell arousal and I’ve been lying next to him in mounting blue-balled frustration for three months! That’s so not it; it’s totally me. But I’ll fix it. No more donuts and more gym time and I’ll fix it.”

Allison shook her head. “I’ll admit your argument that he could call you out immediately if he didn’t turn you on is valid, but Stiles – you’re mated to Derek, you know what he’s like. Derek might have gotten better at communication, but he’s still Derek. He’s given birth to two children; he’s grown breasts and a birth canal twice and just because that went away again that doesn’t mean he might not feel a little – unsure about himself and your attraction to him. Believe me, I know, by the time I’m done nursing this child I’ll probably have to get a boob job – oh shush Scott, I’m kidding. It’s just – I’m just throwing it out there, you know, don’t completely disregard it.”

By the time Stiles crashed out on Scott and Allison’s couch, too drunk after six glasses of wine to go home and feeling too sorry for himself to deal with Derek’s distance anyways, he had mostly forgotten all the good advice his friends had given him about actually talking to Derek about it.

He did, however, buy new workout clothes on his way to the office the next morning.

 

=================

 

Two weeks after his pity party in his best friends’ kitchen Stiles was not only frustrated, but also getting extremely angry at Derek.

He had been working out for an hour everyday since, his muscles were hurting like crazy, he was having serious sugar-withdrawals and although he did feel like he could actually see the slightest bit of a hint of his former stomach muscles, the situation with Derek had just gotten worse.

At first Derek had not seemed to notice anything – he always showered at the office gym and hadn’t told him about it to begin with, but after one week of his new diet and exercise regimen Derek had apparently noticed that he was no longer snacking on candy. He had shoved a plate with a large slice of lemon pie under his nose while he was working on a presentation one evening and when Stiles had declined he had almost looked – betrayed.

In the past seven days Derek had started to distance himself from him even more – a feat that shouldn’t have been humanly possible but was obviously werewolfy possible – and when he hadn’t looked annoyed he had looked – almost sad.

It had confused Stiles to no end but work had been demanding, Noah had had an ear infection and so he had just tried not to think about it too much. If he was honest, he was also starting to feel really hurt that Derek wasn’t even appreciating his efforts to improve their situation.

As Stiles held the remains of his gym shorts in his hands, however, he felt neither hurt, nor sad, but furious. They were completely ruined, sliced into pieces by werewolf claws and the pool of possible suspects was relatively slim.

He waited in the kitchen while Derek was getting the children ready for bed and when he could no longer hear the chattering of his daughter or Noah’s little squeals, he raised his voice to a level that he knew Derek would hear immediately.

“We need to talk. Now!”

He was fiddling with the shorts when Derek walked back downstairs, his arms crossed over his chest and a defensive expression on his face. His eyes briefly flared red when he saw the shorts and it was enough to set Stiles off.

“Would you like to tell me why the hell you destroyed my gym clothes?” he hissed at his mate and Derek’s expression darkened even further.

“I felt like it,” he huffed and Stiles gaped at him.

“Seriously Derek? Seriously? We haven’t even gotten started and you are already acting like a child? Man, this conversation is going so well already!”

Derek glared. “Well, how about we end this conversation right here then?” he hissed and Stiles shook his head.

“No, just no. I have been fruitlessly busting my ass in the gym for you for two weeks, we are having this conversation now!”

Derek growled quietly.

“For me? Really. I figured as much. Well I’m sorry that it has been – how did you call it – fruitless, but I guess that’s just how it’s going to be.”

“I don’t understand though! Make me understand, please! I don’t know what I did to you, I don’t know why you are shutting me out like this, but I’m trying to fix it and all you do is sabotage my attempts at fixing this clusterfuck of a mess?”

“Oh how wonderful! You tried to fix it. Great idea Stiles! Great idea. Fixing a situation by making the other person feel even worse about themselves should be the oxford definition of the verb “to fix”. Bravo, I’m impressed.”

“Hold on a second, what now? Who’s feeling bad about themselves? I’ll tell you who. Me! For months you have rejected any attempt I have made to sleep with you and that would have been fine, really, I mean, I love having sex with you but maybe if you needed some time off I would have understood – probably – but no, you didn’t just reject having sex with me, you rejected all of me.”

Stiles pushed his chair back and stood up so he was on eye level with Derek, his cheeks reddening in his anger as he continued.

“No cuddling, no touching, and then you even stopped talking to me. As if the touch-starvation hadn’t been bad enough already, you also stopped talking – to me. Oh yes, you talked at me about the kids, but not to me. And I don’t deserve this! I know that I no longer look like the lanky teenager you fell in love with, but I’m trying to get into better shape, even though I shouldn’t really have to do that, should I? And I know I sometimes mess up in this parenting thing, but it’s not like that’s something I aspire to and I’m trying here! You should love me as I am, mistakes, graying temples, and little paunch and all. Instead you made me feel like I’m the least desirable person on the planet, like you completely stopped caring and you know what Derek? That’s just cruel!”

He was panting harshly and at first he wasn’t really able to fully comprehend the emotions struggling on Derek’s face.

“You were the one who stopped touching me. You were the one who cared that I no longer look like … like I used to.”

He sounded so hurt, so betrayed, that Stiles almost forgot how mad he was, his instincts urging him to get up and gather his werewolf in his arms. Well, almost.

“I’m sorry. I was the one who stopped touching you? You are delusional. Abso-fucking-lutely delusional. And I don’t even know what the rest of that sentence was supposed to mean!”

To say Stiles would have been startled when Derek suddenly sliced his own shirt open and threw the remains at him would have been an understatement.

“You know exactly what I mean. It didn’t even take me a year to get my abs back after Leonie’s birth but Noah’s 18 months old now and I still look like … like …”

“A normal human being who has given birth to a baby and should be fucking proud of that?” Stiles exclaimed, staring at his mate as if he had gone insane and furiously trying to remember what Allison had been trying to tell him two weeks ago before he had decided to drink himself into a stupor.

“But I’m not a normal human being! I’m a werewolf. I’m an Alpha. I should be back to my prime fighting condition by now. Instead I have this” he pinched at the little bit of belly pudge on his midsection “and when you realized that I was still not back in shape after Noah’s birthday you started to avoid touching my stomach. Do you have any idea how that made me feel? I thought you would finally realize you were doing it and say something about it – or stop doing it – but you didn’t and finally I just had enough and I decided to refuse your sexual advances for a while to see if you’d notice and then you just stopped altogether. You no longer even tried – you were probably relieved! And then you started working out and flaunting it in my face, no longer eating dessert and coming home smelling like exertion and adrenaline so I would take a fucking hint? You bet I sliced those shorts – they are disrespectful to me to the highest degree!” he panted, seemingly surprised at his own outburst.

Stiles took a deep breath.

“Derek – I realize you had to get all of this out there so I let you do it, but you do realize that after hearing what I had to say your outburst makes no sense whatsoever right? I’m the one who’s being rejected here because he’s no longer attractive to his mate. Not you! Never you!”

Derek looked absolutely devastated.

“So what you’re trying to tell me is that you thought I was no longer attracted to you for some ridiculous physical flaw that you are imagining while I was apparently doing the same thing?”

He gave him a wounded look.

“You thought I didn’t love you anymore because sometimes things with the kids get a bit tough?”

Stiles groaned.

“Bravo Derek. Bravo! 100 cookie points for deductions skills, Sherlock Wolf.”

They stared at each other in silence for a while until Stiles opened his mouth again.

“You would think that after 15 years and two children, we would have this communication thing down by now, but man, we suck at communication sometimes!”

Derek, who had walked over to the armchair, sank into the cushions with a sigh, his face buried in his hands.

Shaking his head Stiles walked over to Derek and pulled him into his arms.

“Before I say anything else Derek Stupid Wolf Hale, let me say this first. I don’t know how you could turn off your nose like that but I want you. I’ll always want you and – more importantly – I’ll always love you. You could weigh a ton and have a Santa Claus beard and I would still believe you are the most amazing thing that has ever happened to me. Furthermore, I’ve told you this before, in this very same chair if I recall correctly – this,” he gently reached over and placed his palm over Derek’s stomach “is a reminder of the fact that you gave me not one but two perfect, beautiful children and I love seeing it, I love touching it. To assume that I was turned off by it just because I was probably more focused on your awesome butt for a couple of weeks there is just plain wrong.”

He considered his statement for a second.

“Yes, I realize that I just accused of doing the same thing to me and I’m a hypocrite, but you should have been able to smell how much I want you, you’ve got no excuse!”

Derek looked at his feet and Stiles sighed.

“I don’t understand you sometimes Derek, I really don’t. Why do you even care about something so extremely insignificant? I mean, sure, if we were talking about something like 100 pounds I’d maybe understand, but this? This is a little bit of extra padding at best. Seriously, I’ve got more pudge than you and I was never pregnant. Why is this so important? Please tell me, I need to understand.”

His eyes narrowed.

“And also, how did you not smell how much I want you?”

Derek shrugged.

“I guess I thought you were thinking about something else. Or maybe you were remembering what I used to look like,” he confessed and Stiles scoffed.

“That you’d even think that is really kind of insulting to me. No scratch that, it is insulting.”

Despite the harsh words he leaned over and kissed Derek’s forehead softly.

“Make me understand – please, I’m begging you.”

Derek rubbed his face.

“It’s … not about the weight. Not really, anyways, I think,” he mumbled and Stiles grabbed his hand in encouragement.

“I … it’s just that … I’m so different now. I feel so different now. I love the children so much and it’s making me soft when I really can’t afford to be. I’m the Alpha, I’m supposed to protect. And I’m not stupid, I know it’s not that bad but I look in the mirror and see that outward softness and I’m terrified that I’m losing my edge, that I’m no longer the protector the children, you, and the pack need me to be. And maybe I got scared when you stopped touching me because … well … maybe I thought that you were no longer attracted to me because I’m no longer the strong-looking Alpha you fell in love with? I thought I’d go back to what I was like before, but everything has changed and I don’t know how to get it back.”

“And what is ‘it’ exactly?” Stiles asked gently, his hand grasping Derek’s.

“Of course you have changed. We’re parents now, you carried them inside of you and when they were born they changed everything. There is no going back. And I guess I can understand why you would see your physical state as an outward reflection of what’s going on inside your head but Derek, do you really want to be all made of steel in raising our children? I don’t think so!”

He kissed Derek’s palm, gently nudging his nose against the older man’s skin.

“Listen to me. You might think you have gone soft, but if anything, you are a better protector for this pack than you ever were. There would be nothing in this world that could stop you if Leonie or Noah were in danger, and we all benefit from that absolutely selfless strength. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not your damn job to save everyone, but Derek, trust me, if you wanted to you could. I can see it in your eyes every time we kiss the kids goodnight, I can see it in your face when we drop Leo-Pie off at school and she walks away. Loving unconditionally hasn’t made you weaker, it has made you stronger. Infinitely stronger, in fact.”

He shook his head.

“I love you Derek. I love you for being honest with me, because this is really the only reason that can make me understand why you would suddenly freak out about something so stupid. And I’m sorry for not talking to you about this sooner, I should have realized there was something deeper going on here.”

Stiles reached over hesitantly and when Derek didn’t make a move to protest, he splayed his hand over Derek’s belly, resting it lightly against the residual softness.

“It makes me unhappy that you are feeling so uncomfortable and if you really have that big of a mental hang-up over this weight and you feel that it would put your mind at ease if you did something about it I’ll support you in whatever you decide to do about it, but Derek – we have two amazing children. And we have them not only because of your courage and strength but also because of the amazing things your body can do and I really wish you would be nicer to yourself, because your body is kick-ass and deserving of all the love it can possibly get.”

He considered his statement for a second. “Even if it is just a metaphor for a more underlying concern. Which, trust me, we will solve. It doesn’t matter if I have to tell you every night for the rest of my life. You are strong, you are fierce, you are capable, and it doesn’t really matter but I’ll say it anyhow, so mega-super-foxy-awesome-hot!”

His grip on Derek’s belly tightened.

“Can I show you? Please? I have missed you,” he breathed and Derek’s breath hitched.

“You have absolutely no idea how much I missed you!”

Derek, it seemed had missed Stiles even more, if the force with which he suddenly attacked Stiles’ mouth was anything to go by.

Stiles had planned to worship Derek’s entire body, kissing and caressing every inch and being all tender and loving, but his mate had very different ideas, ideas that apparently included, in no particular order, biting, sucking, licking, and claws, which Derek used to just slice both of their pants and boxers off in one go.

“Bedroom!” Stiles gasped, but Derek had obviously decided he was done with waiting as he somehow maneuvered them out of the chair and onto the hardwood floors, where he proceeded to push Stiles’ legs apart with an almost iron grip, his fingers digging into his thighs as he started to suck and lick long, wet trails up and down Stiles’ member, making the younger man moan and shiver.

Derek didn’t go all Alpha-wolf on him very often, usually preferring a gentler approach, but tonight he obviously needed it and when his tongue pushed against Stiles’ slit there was no doubt in the younger man’s mind that he needed it, too.

Derek’s goal seemed to be to coax as much pre-come out of him as possible and as the first droplets began to drip down Stiles’ shaft he caught them with his finger, his intent clear as he began to tease Stiles’ rim and although he was finding it hard to focus Stiles decided to help out, having decided that they had wasted too much time already.

He sucked his own index finger into his mouth, wetting it thoroughly before trusting it between his own legs and Derek groaned at the image of their two fingers pushing against Stiles’ entrance at the same time.

It wasn’t smooth by any means – it had been way too long – and Stiles’ other hand wrapped around his erection, stroking furiously and collecting more precome. He coated his left index finger in it and went back to work, continuing to stroke himself with his other hand and when he felt their two fingers slip in with more ease Derek grabbed the hand wrapped around his erection with his free hand, his tongue darting out as he sucked one finger after the other into his mouth to thoroughly lick it clean.

His eyes were clenched shut and he was moaning around Stiles’ digits and Stiles made a sound that sounded almost like a whine, clenching down around both of their fingers.

The sound seemed to snap Derek out of a daze and again, Stiles barely had time to react when his mate suddenly grabbed his thighs, wrapped them around his hips and then, as if Stiles weighed absolutely nothing, thrust his hands behind Stiles’ back and just stood up, lifting Stiles in the process.

“Bed?” Stiles rasped again but Derek shook his head.

“Wall!” he growled, and if he hadn’t currently been blissed out of his mind Stiles probably would have appreciated the small warning he got before his back collided with their living room wall.

He grabbed Derek’s face and pressed their lips together, thrusting his tongue into his mate’s mouth while he felt Derek’s erection push into him.

Sweat was running down the sides of Stiles’ face and Derek licked it off, his thrusts never stopping, while his fingers were digging into the small of Stiles’ back, pushing him down onto his shaft while he was thrusting up at the same time.

The pressure was intense, almost but not quite bordering on too much and Stiles stopped trying to kiss Derek, his ability to focus on anything but the nerves coiling in his groin completely shot to hell.

His fingers were digging into Derek’s shoulder and when Derek bit his collarbone at the same time his shaft hit Stiles’ prostate, Stiles gasped, his toes curling behind Derek’s back as he came all over both of their chests, panting and holding onto Derek’s shoulders for dear life.

He had shot so high his nipples were coated in his come and Derek paused to lick them clean, sucking each hard nub into his mouth and gently biting down.

Stiles was trembling all over and Derek craned his neck to kiss him and he was so gentle and his lips so plush and soft that Stiles would have almost forgotten about the fact that Derek’s fully erect penis was still sheathed inside of him, well … if he hadn’t currently had Derek’s fully erect penis inside of him.

“Derek, I …” he gasped, feeling absolutely boneless and Derek pressed their chests together as he stepped away from the wall, still carrying Stiles, and lowered them onto the ground so that he was lying flat on his back, with Stiles riding him.

“Show me,” Derek whispered and Stiles blinked, his mind still in orgasm-land.

“Huh?” he breathed, hunched forward with his hands resting on Derek’s belly to keep himself from flopping all over his mate.

“Show me,” Derek repeated, a hint of insecurity suddenly tingeing his voice and when his abdominal muscles quivered under Stiles’ hands, Stiles suddenly remembered what had happened before Derek had decided to thrust him against the wall and fuck his brains out.

“I can do that,” he whispered, raking his eyes all over Derek’s upper body.

He tightened his leg-grip on Derek’s slightly shaking thighs and began to explore, his fingers trailing down the dark hair on Derek’s chest and lower belly. When Derek didn’t shy away from his touch he became bolder, alternating between gentle strokes and slight squeezes and all that yoga of the past two weeks had definitely paid off when he bent over and pushed his tongue against Derek’s breastbone, trailing it down as far as he could go without throwing out his back, his hands grasping the little bit of soft flesh padding Derek’s hips.

When he straightened back up he allowed his hands to roam all over Derek’s body, his eyes never leaving Derek’s face, careful to catalogue every twitch of his face and Derek looked – happy, content, and relaxed for the first time in months.

Stiles let out a low moan when he felt his penis harden, slightly impressed with the fact that he seemed to have temporarily regained his teenage years refractory period.

“See,” he gasped, choking back a muffled sob when Derek looked at him with wide eyes.

“I obviously think you’re pretty damn hot,” he said and before Derek could react he began to grind himself onto his mate’s erection in earnest, rolling his hips and eliciting sounds of utter pleasure from his werewolf.

He wrapped one hand around himself and began stroking furiously, while the other grabbed hold of Derek’s stomach and Derek arched his back when he came, the back of his head pressed into the floor in a way that would have probably been painful had he been a human.

Stiles’ second orgasm of the night really didn’t take long but then again, it had been much too long and he grunted when he came, spurting a smaller amount of semen on Derek’s stomach than during the previous orgasm.

All of his muscles hurt when he slowly lifted his hips off of Derek’s groin and when they were separated Stiles unceremoniously dropped down onto Derek’s chest, feeling as if he could go to sleep right then and there.

Derek’s arms wrapped around his back and they regained their breathing together, and when he no longer felt like he was about to pass out Stiles lifted his head slightly and nipped at Derek’s lower lip.

“Derek? Are you going to carry me to bed? I don’t think I can walk anymore.”

“Hmm,” Derek muttered, his eyes firmly shut.

“Derek?” Stiles said again after a few minutes and Derek grunted.

“Yes?”

“Are you comfortable right now?” Stiles wondered and Derek, who was still lying naked on the hard floor, nodded with a soft smile.

“Very.”

Stiles regarded him curiously for a minute and then shrugged, before settling himself down on Derek’s body and closing his eyes.

If his werewolf, on top of what had probably been the roughest and most animalistic sex they had had in years, wanted to forego a soft bed in favor of their hard floors to prove in yet another way that he was not getting soft, well, Stiles wasn’t complaining.

Chapter Text

December 2028

It wasn’t like everything had gone back to normal right after that memorable evening in the living room, but there had been talks, reassurances, and gentle caresses, which turned into something else with a higher frequency these days.

Raising two children – who were so very different in their characters and needs – was a full-time job in itself. Looking out for each other at the same time was a skill that Derek and Stiles were quickly realizing could always be improved.

It was getting better, though, and their children were benefiting from it as well, especially Leonie, who had been short-tempered for months and was much more mellow these days, now that she wasn’t constantly smelling resentment and unhappiness wafting off of her papa and anger and frustration coming from her daddy.

They had decided to have a very relaxed family Christmas this year and when Stiles woke up on Christmas morning he immediately snuggled closer to Derek, who was lying on his side with his back facing him and still sleeping soundly.

Now that he knew how important it was for Derek that he touched his belly to reassure him that it was alright that he actually had one now, Stiles didn’t miss out on any opportunity to do so and when he snuggled against Derek’s back he pushed his face into his mate’s shoulder blades, inhaling his familiar scent while his hand lightly rested just above the tiny curve over his mate’s boxer’s waistband.

He had loved the abs of steel, no question, but he also loved this softness, the way it fit perfectly in the palm of his hand and how Derek could have ever assumed that it would be a deal-breaker for him was just beyond him.

His frequent stroking and caressing had actually caused much confusion among their pack and for weeks the wolves had been trying to covertly sniff Derek for a sign of pregnancy, their confusion mounting when weeks passed and Derek smelled happier and happier, but not pregnant.

Lydia had finally cornered Stiles at the end of a pack meeting, in which he had – at least according to Lydia – spent more than 20 minutes idly stroking Derek’s side with one hand while the other kept sneaking back to his mate’s stomach when he wasn’t wildly gesturing to emphasize their need for constant vigilance at the news that there might be witches two territories over.

“So I don’t know what’s going on with you guys, if this is a new fetish thing or what not, but Scott really doesn’t do subtle well and he is about to push his nose where he has no business pushing it to finally sniff out his answer. It’s painful to watch and kind of awkward for everybody and if Derek isn’t pregnant again, which I don’t think he is, for the record, I just think you’re a horn dog with no impulse control, then please, please, please keep your hands to yourself among us, alright? This pack is baby-crazy enough as it is, you guys are setting everyone on edge,” she had said sweetly and Stiles had blushed crimson red, before he hastily promised her to limit the public touching.

It wasn’t any of their business why he was doing it so frequently, anyways.

Derek began to stir under him and Stiles tighten his grip on his mate’s stomach while pressing kisses into his shoulders and neck.

Derek moaned softly and when his hand dropped onto Stiles’ to steer him further down, Stiles gently nipped at his neck. He was rubbing the growing bulge under his hand with firm pressure and was just about to dip his fingers into the waistband, when their door banged open and Leonie marched inside, her 20 months old brother toddling behind her.

“Presents Daddy!” she yelled excitedly and Derek flopped on his stomach with a soft groan, burrowing his face into the pillow while Stiles dropped his head on Derek’s back in resignation.

“What about Daddy’s present!” he grumbled into Derek’s skin, smiling when he could feel Derek’s back quiver with suppressed laughter.

“No presents yet, remember Leo-Pie, we are going to open the presents at Grandpa’s house,” he mumbled and Leonie crossed her arms in protest.

“Not my presents Daddy! Your present! From me and Noah! Papa’s present, too!” she explained impatiently and Derek twisted his neck to curiously look at their daughter.

“Our present?” he repeated and Leonie nodded proudly.

“Yes!” she squealed and Noah pulled his thumb out of his mouth long enough to confirm “Presents!” before he stuck it back inside.

“Can Daddy take a shower first?” Stiles asked but Leonie shook her head firmly.

“No shower! Presents! Now!” she dictated and Derek chuckled.

“Once upon a time I was the Alpha in this house,” he muttered, before he pushed himself up and swung his legs over the edge of the bed, somehow managing to still have his sheet draped over his crotch.

“Daddy and me are getting a shower, then we are going to get dressed and then we are going to open our presents Leo-Pie,” he said firmly and Leonie frowned.

“Why not now?” she whined and Derek raised his eyebrows.

“Because Werewolf-Santa doesn’t bring presents to little girls and boys who are impatient,” he informed her seriously and Leonie’s eyes widened.

“Really?” she whispered, a hint of fear in her voice and Derek nodded darkly.

“Really,” he confirmed.

“Werewolf-Santa loves little girls who set out milk and cookies for their daddy though,” Stiles added and Leonie’s eyes lit up.

“Come on Noah,” she ordered her brother out of the door and when they were gone Derek turned towards him with a shake of his head.

“You are mopping up the floor if our child ends up spilling milk all over it,” he stated flatly and Stiles shrugged.

“She’s five years old, she’s got this. Also Werewolf-Santa, really?” Stiles teased and it was Derek’s turn to shrug.

“It’s a Pagan concept anyways, might as well go to town on it,” he said and Stiles laughed.

“Speaking of going to town,” he whispered into Derek’s ear, sneaking his hand under the sheets and slipping it into Derek’s boxer shorts, “what are your feelings on a festive blowjob in the shower?”

Judging by the twitching heat under his fingers, Derek’s feelings on the subject were rather warm and festive indeed.

 

================

 

Leonie’s and Noah’s ‘present’, it turned out, was creative vandalism.

Derek couldn’t even imagine how she had possibly been able to reach that high, but he had to swallow a groan when he saw that half of their living room wall was covered in crayon pictures and doodles, the latter clearly the work of Noah.

“Leo-Pie,” Stiles muttered weakly and Leonie beamed at her fathers.

“You said the living room looked boring last night! Noah and I fixed it!” she said proudly.

“Do you love it Papa? Look, that’s you!” Leonie pointed towards a blob that Derek assumed was supposed to be a wolf.

“I drew it just like the pack drew on my wall and on Noah’s wall!” Leonie continued and Stiles and Derek shared an exasperated look.

The proper parental response would have probably been a time-out or at least a stern talking-to, but neither Derek nor Stiles knew how they could justify the fact that the pack was allowed to doodle on the kids’ walls for them while the kids couldn’t draw on the walls for their parents.

Also, it was a gift, albeit misguided, and when Derek looked at both children’s proud faces, he really couldn’t find it in his heart to be angry at them.

“We still have some of that paint we used in here,” Stiles mouthed at him with a resigned smile, before he crouched down and wrapped his arms around both children.

“I love you guys!” he told them and Derek knelt down as well, grinning at Noah when their son cuddled up in his arms.

“Love present?” Noah asked seriously and Derek kissed his head with a soft smile.

“Love you!” he replied fondly.

When the children were dressed and ready to go it occurred to Derek that he hadn’t gotten the mail the other day and while Stiles made sure the children were strapped into their car seats, Derek went out to check their mailbox.

It was empty save for a colorful postcard and Derek grunted when he turned it over and saw a large P scribbled at the bottom of the card.

They hadn’t heard from Peter ever since he had high-tailed it out of Noah’s birthday party and Derek was about to toss the card back into the mailbox to get later, when he realized what Peter had written.

He was still staring at the card when he walked to the car and climbed onto the passenger seat and Stiles gave him a curious look.

“What’s that?” he asked and Derek looked at him with wide eyes.

“It’s a rhyme, …” he said carefully.

“From Peter …”

Stiles groaned.

“Do I want to know?”

Derek shrugged helpless, eyes still blown wide-open and shaking his head.

“Insane. He’s insane,” he muttered under his breath and Stiles was able to contain his curiosity all the way to his father’s house, but as soon as the children had hopped out of the car and into the waiting arms of his dad, he snatched the card away from Derek.

“There was once was a man named Peter

who made friends with a giant Cheetah.

They ran through the desert and howled at the moon

only Cheetah’s can’t howl so Peter was gloom.

This poem is awesome and Africa’s too,

tell the kid’s Peter loves them more than his shoe!

I’ll have to go now, post lady’s glaring daggers,

oh and Stiles, man up and get Derek preggers!*

*Again! Like, seriously we can’t have some puppy-dog eyed True Alpha out-procreate a Hale!”

Stiles shook his head.

“Your uncle can’t rhyme for shit!” he said and Derek shook his head.

“I’m just grateful he loves our children more than his shoe,” he muttered.

Stiles laughed.

“So Derek? Want me to get you preggers?” he asked teasingly and Derek snorted.

“Utter that infernal word in my presence once more and you’ll never touch me again,” he said politely and Stiles smirked.

“Wanna get your eggo preggo then?” he asked and Derek laughed.

“Sexless marriage it is,” he decided, but Stiles only grinned wider.

“We’ll see about that!”

Stiles did not blush, not at all, when an amused looking Scott thrust a glass of Prego tomato sauce into his hands when they entered the house.

 

===============

 

April 2029

“How do you feel about that third baby?” Stiles asked one night shortly after Noah’s second birthday, after the children had already gone to bed.

Derek carefully set down his wine glass – he had grown to like the taste ever since the knotting-fantasy seduction they never spoke of – and regarded him with a contemplative frown.

“Ambivalent,” he finally decided.

“Well, at least it’s not a no,” Stiles said, grabbing his own wine glass and making himself comfortable on the couch across Derek’s armchair.

“It’s not,” Derek confirmed, although he didn’t sound particularly enthusiastic.

“May I ask what brought this on?” he continued and Stiles sighed.

“This is going to come out sounding all wrong but ... you’re turning 40 in two years,” he explained, wincing when Derek glared at him.

“I’m aware. What’s your point?”

“Well … I was just under the impression that we both wanted a third child at some point and I thought maybe it would be safer for you to have it – soon?”

Derek shook his head.

“My mother was friends with an Alpha woman who gave birth to her last child at 50 and everything was fine. Werewolves age a little differently, as you very well know.”

Stiles, who could have written a whole lament about the unfairness of Derek’s smooth, wrinkle-free skin, snorted.

“If we conceive tonight there is already going to be seven year age difference between the baby and Leo-Pie,” he continued.

“I was six and a half when Cora was born, that was never a problem,” Derek replied, picking up his wine glass again and sipping slowly.

“The children really want a sibling,” Stiles said next, pausing when Derek shook his head.

“That’s not how it’s going to work,” Derek explained, sounding soft but determined.

“I’m not going to jump back into conceiving mode because of logical numbers or our children’s demands,” he said, holing up his hand when Stiles looked like he wanted to say something.

“I still want a third child, don’t worry that I’ve changed my mind on that, but right now – I don’t know, it’s just that I finally feel like I’m completely myself again. Noah is going to go to daycare for half of the day starting in August and Leonie is going to be a first grader and I just …” he frowned as if he was unsure of how to word his thoughts.

“I want to experience that for at least a couple of months. Getting work done while the children are gone and not because one of them is asleep or currently occupied with toy blocks or something.”

He rubbed his eyes.

“It’s easier for you. You are not going to be the one throwing up, or feeling tired and achy for months, you won’t be the one breastfeeding for almost half a year. I’m not saying this as an accusation, some things are just the way they are, but … I just want to catch my breath a little before we plunge head-first into the next adventure, you know?”

Stiles nodded. He did understand Derek.

“I don’t really take vacations and I have a ridiculous amount of free time saved up – would you, I mean, when the new baby gets here eventually, would you want me to take some parental leave? I mean real parental leave? For maybe half a year or so?”

Derek frowned. “I’d still be the one nursing, I’d be here anyways,” he said and Stiles grinned.

“Duh! But I would be there, too, to take care of Leonie and Noah, to take care of the baby so you can do non-baby related things that aren’t work.”

He shrugged.

“I had a real heart to heart with Lydia the other day. Well, it was more a knife to the heart than a heart to heart, really and it basically consisted of Lydia ranting at me for being the kind of husband that made her so sure she never wanted to give up her career for kids in the first place. I mean, I know that I’m there, but she pointed out to me – and she’s right – that most of the time when I’m there I get the easy parts. I come home in the late afternoon or evening, when the kids are tired and played out and very mellow and just want to cuddle and be read to. And I’m here on the weekends, when they sleep in and are full of energy and we can play for hours. But you are there for all the times when things are hectic and stressful during the week and when they are sick it’s always you who stays home.”

Derek rolled his eyes. “I work from home. I can still do that when they are sick,” he said and Stiles shook his head.

“Doesn’t change the fact that I don’t want to be known as the daddy who was only there for the shiny parts,” he said and Derek sighed loudly.

“No one thinks that,” he argued and Stiles shook his head.

“Lydia does. And I think my dad does as well.”

“Some things are just the way they are. We just have to make the best of it,” Derek assured him but Stiles shook his head again.

“That’s very true – but I don’t think my best is good enough yet. If it was …” he trailed off, giving Derek a sad little smile.

“If it was you would not be so hesitant over having a third child, even though we both want it.”

“I’m not hesitant,” Derek said and Stiles scoffed.

“I don’t have to be a werewolf to hear that lie,” he replied and Derek frowned.

“I’m not hesitant because I don’t trust you to be there, don’t be an idiot Stiles, I know you love the kids and me more than anything. It’s just … I didn’t know you were thinking about it and so I didn’t think about it and when you just mentioned it I just knew that I … wasn’t ready yet. But now that I know that you are ready for it I’ll start thinking about it. And when I feel ready, I’ll tell you.”

Stiles smiled softly. “Are you sure? You are still a Silent Wolf when it comes to the deep stuff,” he teased gently and Derek smiled back, looking relieved that Stiles wasn’t forcing the issue.

“Believe me I’ll tell you when I’m ready – that will knot be a problem.”

Stiles’ eyes widened.

“You just went there, didn’t you? I can’t be sure, it kind of sounds like ‘not’, but I feel like you just went there, and while every normal person would think that to be really, really lame, all I want to do now is jump you!”

Derek wiggled his eyebrows and sat his wine glass down yet again.

“I’d be bummed out if you didn’t.”

Derek wasn’t ready for a third child yet, but when Stiles all but fell on top of him and tried to kiss him while giggling hysterically, he didn’t think his mate would have to wait all too long to have his wish granted.

Chapter Text

September 2029

“Let me guess,” Cora said when Jackson marched through the door at the beginning of the pack meeting, looking like Christmas and his birthday had come early this year.

“Julia is pregnant?”

Jackson’s proud and ecstatic expression faltered for a bit.

“Thanks for stealing my thunder,” he grumbled, his grin back full force when the rest of the pack started congratulating him at the same time.

“Besides, how did you know?” he asked after everyone, including Cora, had hugged him or clapped his shoulders and Cora grinned.

“The last time you looked so accomplished was when Julia was heavily pregnant and Danny gave you that shirt,” she replied, mouthing “also I totally saw them come from the doctor the other day,” to Derek behind her hand.

“That’s super exciting for you! Maybe Josie will get a little brother, too!” Stiles grinned and Jackson growled.

Josephine doesn’t care one way or the other and besides, it’s totally another girl, my daddy intuition is unmistakable. That’s why Julia isn’t here by the way – morning sickness,” he continued.

Derek smiled at Jackson’s continued fruitless campaign to stop everyone – including Julia – from calling his daughter Josie, his smile turning wistful when he caught the brief flash of sadness in Stiles’ eyes.

It had been five months since he had promised to start thinking about a third child and he still didn’t feel a hundred percent ready. He knew that he was almost there, could feel it whenever he kissed his children goodnight, but for now he was still enjoying his newfound half-day freedom too much.

Stiles wasn’t pressuring him, he was a better mate than that, but Derek knew that he longed for it. However, he knew that they both had to be on the same page and if one wanted to continue the metaphor, Stiles was currently hovering around the book’s climax – no pun intended – while Derek was slowly getting into the main part of the story.

Derek sighed.

He had totally intended that pun, Stiles had been rubbing off on him in more ways than one over the past couple of years – this pun gleefully intended – and he was sometimes terrified of imagining the kids’ teenage years, certain that both children had inherited that particular trait from their daddy.

Before anyone could say anything else, Leonie poked her head inside the living room, apparently having gotten bored with watching Mikey and Noah play trains.

“Uncle Jackson? Where did Josie’s sister come from?” she asked seriously and for one second you could have heard a pin drop in the Hale house, before Jackson, Stiles, and Derek started sputtering.

Stiles was simultaneously clamping a hand over Jackson’s mouth and throwing Derek a begging glance and Derek, who remembered his foolish promise of explaining all these things to their child if she was a girl, sighed deeply.

“It’s in Julia’s belly right now and it’s going to come out of Julia’s belly, you know that,” he explained gently, ignoring Erica, Cora, and Allison, who were trying to muffle snickering and giggles behind their hands.

“I know that Papa,” Leonie rolled her eyes and Derek made a mental note to finally break their daughter off that habit, since it was quite a bit rude.

“I want to know how it got in there!”

She poked at her own stomach. “Did she eat some fruit?”

Erica started laughing loudly and Cora elbowed her, although she herself was trying to fight back a grin.

“Fruit?” Stiles asked, sounding baffled and Leonie frowned.

“Ronnie from school said that babies are made out of seed and seeds are in fruit. Did she eat some fruits with seeds and they grew roots in her belly?” she continued and Jackson shook his head, his eyes going wide.

“It’s not a plant-baby Leonie,” he said and Leonie looked confused.

“Of course not. But maybe there is a baby fruit plant?”

Jackson shook his head. “You see Leonie, when a mommy and daddy love each other very much …”

“Jackson!” growled Derek, while Stiles muttered “When a daddy and papa love each other very much!” and Jackson looked wounded.

“I’m not stupid!” he snapped, before turning back to Leonie.

“Where was I – when a mommy and daddy, or a papa and daddy love each other very much, they go to the magical unicorn in the big forest and ask for a baby and if the unicorn is convinced that the parents love each other enough, it gently pokes his horn in the mommy’s or papa’s belly button and that’s where babies come from,” he continued, looking at the rest of the pack in search for approval of his situation-diffusing skills.

Erica looked like she was about to die of silent laughter and even Boyd’s impassive face twitched.

“She’s never going to believe that,” Stiles muttered, looking after their daughter in surprise when she said “Okay,” and walked back to the little boys.

“Magical unicorns?” Derek said slowly when she was out of sight and Stiles snorted.

“Dude, we are so watching Cabin in the Woods some time, unicorns are not nice!”

Jackson shrugged.

“You’re just jealous because I kept my cool and you just started sputtering,” he said, getting up and walking into the kitchen to get a beer.

Stiles looked at Derek incredulously.

“His cool? His cool?!”

==================

 

November 2029

“We’re going to find out the baby’s gender today!” Jackson informed Derek when the Alpha picked up the phone on a grey November morning.

“That’s great?” Derek replied, genuinely happy for his Beta but confused as to why he felt he needed to call him about that in the early morning hours.

“It is great!” Jackson confirmed, sounding a bit flustered.

“I just – I wanted to ask if Leonie could come? She’s been asking all that stuff about where babies come from and I thought she might enjoy seeing a baby in utero on the ultrasound machine?” he rushed out and Derek smiled widely.

“If she asks the doctor about magical unicorns in the forest, that’s on you,” he commented drily, grinning when Jackson sputtered.

“I have yet to hear someone come up with a more child-appropriate answer!” he defended himself and Derek sighed.

“That is true. I’m sure Leonie would love to come. When do you want me to drop her off at the hospital?” he asked and after writing down the time Jackson excused himself, explaining that he still needed to sufficiently prepare Josephine for this life-changing reveal.

Of course Derek couldn’t be a hundred percent sure, but he was very much convinced that Jackson and Julia would have to deal with a lot of sibling rivalry and jealousy in the next years to come.

Josephine might not have understood the concept of a little sibling completely, but as spoiled as she was Derek was sure there was no way to introduce the baby without any sort of drama.

It was a good thing that they were having another child, really, Jackson was in desperate need of dividing his fatherly love between two kids to avoid spoiling them excessively.

The appointment was at 2 PM and Leonie’s teacher smiled understandingly when Derek picked Leonie up from the school an hour early, commenting that it was wonderful that Leonie was so excited about her new cousin.

Derek tried very hard not to blush when the teacher took him aside while Leonie was tying her shoes and suggested child-appropriate sex-education books, whispering that she didn’t really want to intrude into their parenting, but that she really felt that a smart child like Leonie would no longer be satisfied with half-answers, given the amount of time she had lately spent pondering the issue.

He had picked Noah up from daycare earlier and dropped him off at the Sheriff’s house, figuring that one two-year old who didn’t understand the concept of pregnancy in the room was more than enough and Leonie, excited to get her papa to herself for the afternoon, happily chattered away all the way to the hospital.

When they got to the waiting area Julia was calmly reading a baby-name book and Jackson was entertaining Josephine.

“Are you guys going to drive her back after the exam?” Derek asked and Julia clucked her tongue.

“Don’t be absurd, you can stay as well, after all, you and Stiles are totally in on the betting pool and from what I’ve heard the two of you don’t agree on our baby’s gender either,” she said, looking towards Jackson, who nodded proudly, having temporarily entrusted the entertainment program for his daughter to Leonie.

“Stiles doesn’t know anything anyways,” he said and Derek raised his eyebrows.

“I wouldn’t say that – he was pretty sure that Noah was a boy before Deaton proved to us that a vet can’t determine a human baby’s gender in utero, even if said vet used to be an emissary,” he defended his mate.

Julia laughed loudly. “Well, Stiles is very welcome to join me on Team Boy, we are totally winning this competition,” she grinned and Jackson shook his head.

“It’s a girl, there is no doubt about it,” he proclaimed and Derek silently agreed with him. Of course it wasn’t his child and he had no parental instincts to cite here, but he was the baby’s Alpha and for reasons that he could not shake he was convinced that after Leonie, Mikey, and Alex a new baby-girl werewolf was about to make her grand debut.

Attending the ultrasound examination was – Derek decided – definitely strange, since it was not Deaton or Melissa moving the probe but an actual gynecologist, but he quickly got over it, his attention drawn to the surprisingly clear image of the child’s face, courtesy of 3-D technology.

He had of course picked up on the baby’s heartbeat for weeks, much like the rest of the pack, but ‘seeing’ the baby at the same time somehow made everything more tangible.

“That’s what you looked like,” he whispered to Leonie, who was sitting on his lap and staring at the image in utter fascination.

“I can tell you the gender if you want to know,” Doctor Brown said with an encouraging smile, looking first at the Whittemore family and then at Derek and Leonie, a playful grin on his face.

“Or would you like to place some last-minute guesses first?”

“I say boy!” Julia grinned, smiling at her husband, whose “It’s a girl,” came out sounding a little petulant.

“Girl,” Derek agreed, grinning when Leonie just muttered, “She’s so pretty!”

“And what do you think Miss Josephine, are you getting a brother or a sister?” Doctor Brown asked Josie, who refused to answer, her lips stuck in a rather impressive pout.

“We’re still working on getting her to understand the concept,” Julia explained softly, her eyes never leaving the screen.

“Well, it might help if she knows what to prepare for, because this little one is definitely a little sister,” Doctor Brown revealed, grinning in amusement when Jackson pumped his fist in the air.

“Yes! I knew it!”

He turned to Derek with a smug expression.

“I say you and Erica – I still can’t believe nobody else trusted my instincts – divide the betting pool funds evenly and take me out to celebrate tonight!” he exclaimed and Derek shook his head with a grin.

“I’ve already got plans for that money, sorry,” he shrugged, grin widening when Jackson completely ignored his answer in favor of pressing kiss after kiss on Julia and Josie’s heads.

“My beautiful girls!” he whispered and Derek’s heart swelled with pride. Who would have thought that the former Kanima could have turned his life around like that?

His gaze drifted back to the screen and Baby Girl Whittemore and when he focused on her heartbeat he suddenly longed to be pregnant again, the feeling so intense that it took him completely by surprise.

He was more certain than ever that the baby was a werewolf, convinced that it made perfect sense to have the desire to procreate when faced with an expanding pack.

Stiles would definitely be happy.

He didn’t have much time to dwell on his decision, however, because Leonie – to Julia’s amusement and Jackson’s horror – chose that exact moment to wonder out loud whether the magical unicorn in the forest that her uncle Jackson had told her about had used a pink horn to poke into Julia’s belly to make her pregnant with a girl.

Derek politely excused himself and his daughter before she could ask the grinning doctor any questions about pregnant papas.

 

===============

 

Derek spent the rest of the afternoon pondering when would be a good time to tell Stiles that he was ready to start trying for their third and last child and he still hadn’t come up with a good idea when Stiles got home at almost 11 PM, severely annoyed after a business-dinner gone wrong with a rather arrogant client.

“I swear, the only reason I made it through that grueling dinner was knowing that once it was over I was going to be able to come home and jump you,” Stiles declared when he marched into their bedroom and before Derek could react his mate had already pressed him against the wall and caught his lips in a heated kiss.

Frustration was still seeping out of Stiles and Derek didn’t feel too excited about being used as a stress-relief toy, but then Stiles whispered a broken “Need you so much,” into his ear and his baser instincts took over.

The fact that frustration soon gave way to pleasure as Stiles’ whole body relaxed certainly helped and Derek leaned back against the wall with a contented sigh as Stiles began to kiss his way down his naked chest, dropping to his knees when he reached the waistband of Derek’s boxers.

Stiles gently nipped at the skin there, his nose trailing up and down Derek’s happy trail before he pulled the boxers down and dropped them on Derek’s feet.

Derek was definitely on board with this turn of events and he forced himself to stay still as Stiles began to trail his fingers up Derek’s calves, while his tongue licked along the inside of the werewolf’s muscular thighs, a particularly sensitive spot for Derek.

When he reached his mate’s erection Stiles looked up at Derek, his eyes hooded and his lips parted and Derek nodded, his fingers digging into the wall behind him as Stiles engulfed him fully in one go, having expected a little bit more of foreplay.

Stiles, however, had other ideas and he grabbed Derek’s butt for leverage as he began to thrust Derek inside his mouth.

Stiles hated not being in control at his job, Derek knew, and he was comfortable with giving him the power to move his pelvis in just the way he needed.

Meanwhile, Stiles’ fingers were doing things to his butt, pleasurable things, and when he felt one finger tease his rim Derek’s mind was filled with images of Stiles taking him, coming inside of him and getting him pregnant, breeding him.

It wasn’t his favorite thing to admit but Derek’s breeding kink indeed equaled Stiles’ occasionally, and thinking in these terms, combined with the wet heat around his erection and the tightness it was being thrust into, sent Derek into a toe-curling orgasm.

Semen was trickling down the corners of Stiles’ mouth and Derek wanted to pull out, but Stiles’ grip on his butt tightened, pressing his pelvis against his face and if he hadn’t felt so boneless from the intense orgasm Derek would have been alert enough to react quickly when the knot began to grow around his base.

However, he was still trying to catch his breath and when he looked down and met Stiles’ flushed face and wide eyes, pupils blown, his breath hitched in his throat once again.

It shouldn’t have been possible, but Stiles’ eyes suddenly grew even wider and Derek’s eyes snapped open when he felt the light graze of teeth on the knot.

“Holy crap!” he whispered, taking in the sight in front of him.

“Don’t move, I’ll pull it out slowly,” he warned, however, when he tried to move his pelvis Stiles’ head went with it, and Stiles’ grip on his butt tightened in alarm.

“Can you open your mouth wider?” Derek asked and Stiles shook his head as gingerly as he could.

“Can you breathe?” was Derek’s next question, even though his mate’s relatively steady heartbeat was answer enough and Stiles gave him a barely there nod.

“I think I’m going to hurt you if I try to pull it out by force,” Derek said and the look in Stiles’ eyes indicated that he seemed to agree.

“Are you – halfway comfortable?” Derek asked next and Stiles rolled his eyes dramatically.

Stupid question.

“So,” Derek said, feeling like he desperately needed to fill the silence.

“There’s something I wanted to tell you …” he continued, grinning despite the awkwardness of the situation when Stiles made a noise in the back of his throat that sounded suspiciously like a snort.

“I would like for us to start trying for a baby,” Derek continued, his happy smile when he saw the excitement in his mate’s eyes turning into a moan as his declaration triggered another orgasm.

He tensed, afraid that he was going to end up choking Stiles, but Stiles seemed to have relaxed his throat muscles, his breath coming in even pants out of his nose.

“I’m going to talk about something else now,” Derek decided out loud and he proceeded to inform Stiles about the benefits of flossing your teeth until he saw a small trickle of semen seep out of the corner of Stiles’ mouth, a sign that the knot was finally deflating.

When he gently pulled out, Stiles rubbed his jaw with a pained groan and by the time Derek came back upstairs with an icepack, he had already undressed and was lying on their bed.

Derek waited until the pained grimace on his mate’s face only looked half-pained before bringing up the subject again.

“I’m sorry, I should have told you before, but … you just took me by surprise and I didn’t think,” he explained and Stiles laughed, then winced.

“My fault,” he mumbled.

“Couldn’t wait.”

“Does it hurt badly?” Derek asked concerned and Stiles waved his hands dismissively.

“Nah. I’ll live. I might not be up for baby-making tonight, but tomorrow I’ll be your Stilinski-Stallion,” he declared, causing Derek to snort.

“Please don’t.”

“How long do you think it’ll take?” Stiles wondered and Derek shook his head.

“That kind of talk stressed both of us so much that it took almost one and a half years until I got pregnant with Leonie. I say we don’t think about it and just …”

“Do it?” Stiles finished.

“Very romantic,” Derek deadpanned and Stiles chuckled, then winced.

“Don’t make me laugh, it hurts!”

Derek gave him a contemplative look and then decided to test a theory.

Kissing, it turned out, was also a very effective werewolf pain-leaching-method.

Chapter Text

New Years 2029/30

“Soooo …” Stiles said on the morning of December 31st and Derek, who was trying to finish up a last-minute article for an overworked junior professor who had apparently missed a deadline, blinked.

“Soooo?” he mimicked Stiles and Stiles blushed when he dropped a pregnancy test in front of Derek.

“I just thought you should take a test, you know, since it’s New Year’s tonight and if we conceived already I don’t want our baby to suffer from fetal alcohol syndrome,” he said and Derek sighed.

“I’m not pregnant,” he said with conviction.

“How do you know?” Stiles replied and Derek shrugged.

“I just know. I’ve been through this twice now, I know what it’s like to feel pregnant and trust me, I’m not.”

“It wouldn’t hurt to check though,” Stiles insisted and Derek, who realized he was not going to get any work done until he did, stood with a long-suffering sigh.

The negative sign on the test was expected, but he nevertheless felt a little sting, reminded of the many, many times he and Stiles had stared at the little minus-sign with growing desperation.

Judging by the look on his mate’s face, he was also remembering what that felt like.

“Alright, no more tests until you feel pregnant, ok?” he said and Derek nodded, throwing the test in the trashcan without looking at it.

“No more tests,” he agreed.

A loud screech from Noah’s room interrupted the silence and while Stiles went to play mediator between their two children, Derek continued working on the article.

They had decided to celebrate at the Sheriff and Melissa’s new house, a development that had caused Stiles and Scott to mope around for weeks until the Sheriff had finally snapped and sat them down, explaining to them that he understood that they were attached to their childhood homes, but that between Melissa and him they already had four grandchildren and if their sons wanted all of them to stay over so they could have some alone-time with their spouses there was no way they could accomplish that at either Melissa’s or the Sheriff’s old home.

The moping had stopped almost immediately.

It was a gorgeous house, definitely large enough for doting grandparents and at least six grandchildren and since it was a mild winter night everyone was standing outside to toast to the New Year, the youngest members of the pack bundled up in thick blankets and pressed against their parents’ chests.

“We should try to conceive the baby tonight. It would be very romantic,” Stiles whispered an hour later when they carried Leonie and Noah into their respective bedrooms.

Derek chuckled.

“Way too much pressure. Also, I’m really, really tired,” he apologized and Stiles grinned through a huge yawn.

“I know what you mean,” he mumbled and by the time he had tucked Noah in, Derek was already crashed out on their bed and barely responded when Stiles crawled under the covers and leaned over to kiss Derek’s cheek fondly.

“To a wonderful, exciting new year,” he whispered and Derek smiled tiredly, his eyes already drifting shut.

When he woke up the next morning it was fairly early and since Stiles was still asleep beside him, Derek decided to check on the kids.

Noah was sucking on his thumb, his face pressed against his favorite pillow and Derek softly kissed his forehead.

Leonie had, as usual, kicked all her covers off the bed and was apparently involved in a rather dramatic fight in her dream, if the kicking into thin air was anything to go by. Derek draped the blanket over her again and when he got back to their bedroom, his mate was awake as well, arms stretched out lazily onto Derek’s side of the bed.

“Missed you,” he mumbled and Derek smiled.

“I was gone for a long time,” he agreed with a soft snort and Stiles nodded.

“Too long,” he decided, before draping himself over Derek’s back and playing the big spoon, once Derek had rolled back onto his side.

Derek was pretty much awake at this point and when he felt Stiles beginning to harden against him it became clear that his mate was awake as well.

“Can I?” Stiles whispered into his ear and Derek nodded.

“Yeah. I want you to,” he confirmed, his head resting on his elbow as he felt Stiles reach over to his nightstand to grab the lube.

“Do you want me to …” Derek began, but Stiles pressed a soft kiss between his shoulder blades.

“No. Stay like this,” he murmured and pressed his chest against Derek’s back.

He was peppering Derek’s neck and shoulders with little kisses and licks as his fingers gently stretched his mate’s entrance and Derek relaxed against him, enjoying the sensations.

When he was able to take three fingers comfortable Derek turned his neck to gently nip at Stiles’ lips, drawing the younger man’s lower lip into his mouth and suckling gently, and Stiles grabbed his hip tightly, fingers digging into the soft skin as he moaned into Derek’s mouth.

Derek angled his hips in a way that gave Stiles easier access and then Stiles entered him slowly, his hand splayed flatly on Derek’s stomach for leverage as he began to thrust slightly upwards.

Derek was pressing his left hand onto Stiles’ to secure him further, while his right hand was wrapped around his own erection, timing his strokes with Stiles’ slow, languid thrusts.

Stiles, who had an excellent view of what Derek was up to, was making the most delicious sounds into his ear, his breath hitching in his throat and uttering a series of little moans and sobs and Derek closed his eyes to focus wholly on the sounds and sensations.

He could tell when Stiles was getting close and arched his back against him, which pushed his butt against the human and drove him deeper and Stiles gasped, his teeth sinking into Derek’s shoulder with just the right amount of pressure.

Stiles was still panting and his hot breath gusted out against Derek’s neck, making him curl his toes as he moaned loudly, finally increasing his slow strokes to his usual pace.

They came within two minutes of each other and although Stiles eventually slipped out of him and cleaned them up as best as he could, they stayed spooned against each other, occasionally exchanging soft kisses until the sun was fully up and their children were awake.

 

===============

 

February 13th, 2030

Derek hated shopping with a passion. No matter whether it was clothes or groceries, he couldn’t stand the crowdedness of the store, the indecisive muttering around him and the high-pitched squeals of bratty children not getting their cookies.

However, it was Cora’s birthday tomorrow and his little sister had actually taken the day off from her new job to come down to Beacon Hills and celebrate with him, Stiles, and the children, which meant that it would probably be a decent brotherly thing to do to actually have her favorite food and snacks in the pantry when she arrived.

Not that she had said anything about it, but Derek wasn’t in the mood for dramatic huffing and puffing because they were out of Reeses and Snickers bars.

Stiles was attending a business dinner and wouldn’t make it home in time to go shopping before Cora’s late evening arrival and so Derek had decided to suck it up and do the shopping himself after picking Leonie up from school. His six-year-old daughter was chatting away about dinosaurs and making funny faces at Noah, who, in all his almost-three year old wisdom, was trying to repeat the names of the dinosaurs and giggling whenever he failed to pronounce it correctly.

When they arrived at the store Derek put Noah in the child seat of the shopping cart and, after some puppy-dog eyes from Leonie, helped her climb into the cart as well, figuring that the contents on his shopping list and a six-year old would fit in the rather large cart after all and also make his life easier if he didn’t have to worry about her running off in the crowded store.

As he had expected the store was nearly overcrowded and he didn’t even have to listen in to realize that most of the men in the store were busy shopping for last-minute Valentine’s Day gifts. Derek snorted when he saw one particularly douchetastic looking guy hectically speaking into his phone while he was checking out the prices of beef in the meat section.

Had he not had his six-year old werewolf daughter with him, Derek might have suggested just getting his girlfriend a piece of meat alright, but one of the wonders of first grade was being exposed to children with older siblings who knew certain colloquialisms, and his daughter had been asking enough rather uncomfortable questions lately as it was.

Leonie was tickling Noah as Derek pushed the cart towards the cheese section to pick up some of Cora’s beloved aged French cheeses (how a werewolf could enjoy cheese that smelled like a skunk had died would forever remain a mystery to Derek) and when the smell of the cheese aisle hit his sensitive nose he grabbed the handlebar tighter, startled by the sudden wave of nausea rolling up inside of him.

He forced himself to take deep breaths and regretted it almost immediately, the smell of the cheese becoming even more potent this way.

“Papa?” Leonie asked and Derek shook his head and squeezed his eyes shut, his feet moving automatically to put some distance between him and the offending smell.

“Are you alright Papa?” Leonie repeated, but she sounded far away suddenly and the last thing he heard before the ground rushed up to meet him was Noah’s startled crying.

When he came to about a minute later his son was still crying and his daughter was completely beside herself, shaking his shoulder and repeating “Papa!” over and over.

Derek moaned softly, feeling equally nauseous and guilty for putting his poor baby-girl through yet another episode of unconscious papa, the incident obviously having triggered some flashbacks to the truck accident three years ago. He reached out his arm until he could grab a hold of her in an attempt to calm her down, hoping that he wouldn’t end up being the one responsible for years and years of therapy for his daughter.

His son, too, while he was at it, certain that it couldn’t be healthy for children to see their father faint in the cheese aisle for absolutely no reason whatsoever.

The children’s cries had attracted a store employee and some curious shoppers and Derek waved away the rough hands that tried to help him sit up, groaning “Give me a minute, I’ll be fine,” to indicate he didn’t need help.

“Get the man some water, anyone could faint in this stuffy atmosphere!” a stern voice suddenly rang out and as the feet of the store employee rapidly disappeared from Derek’s eye line, a kind, albeit concerned face of an old woman came into his view.

“You took a nasty fall there Darling, don’t try to overexert yourself just yet,” she admonished him gently when he tried to sit up and gestured at his children.

“The kids,” he began and the old woman nodded in understanding, before she slowly stood up and freed Noah from the shopping cart. When she knelt back down she smiled kindly at Leonie, holding out Noah for her to take.

“Your father is fine little Darlings, sometimes adults just need to lie down and take a quick nap if the air is a little stuffy. Don’t you worry, here …” she looked at the surrounding aisles critically before she grabbed a package of specialty Oreos from a shelf that had no business standing in the cheese section to begin with, opening it and holding the box out to Leonie and Noah.

“Have a little cookie for the shock. Your father will have one too – they are magical cookies, they will make you feel better.”

For a moment Derek was seriously afraid that Leonie was going to protest and inform the old woman about what real magic was, but his daughter took the cookie box silently, staring at the old lady as if she had just seen the eighth world wonder.

Derek would have been seriously impressed at the woman’s baby-whisperer qualities, had his head not started pounding that very moment.

He was also really, really nauseous and suddenly the idea of standing up did not sound too appealing at all.

With the children sufficiently calmed down she focused her attention on Derek again and suddenly Derek wondered if he had seen her before – she seemed weirdly familiar.

“I remember you,” the old lady began, her eyebrows rising up and her kind gaze turning into a still kind but calculating stare.

“I’ve seen you before – it must have been what, seven years ago maybe? I’ve thought about you since,” she mused, her eyes sweeping up and down Derek’s body as if she was looking for something and suddenly widening, when she had apparently found what she was looking for.

“Huh. This is remarkably, most definitely remarkable. You know Darling …” she reached out a hand towards his abdomen hesitantly, hovering over his navel before pulling it back with a soft shake of her head, “you really made me question my instincts there for quite a while, you know, back when I first saw you. You probably don’t remember, it was somewhere downtown and you were walking down the sidewalk with a young man, a very loving and attentive man I might add. I noticed that because you rarely see that these days.”

She shook her head fondly. “But that wasn’t what grabbed my attention, not really. And I told myself, kept telling myself for years afterwards actually, that there was no reason for all my professional instincts to be triggered, but see, I was a midwife for 45 years and I know a pregnant person when I see one. I just wasn’t prepared to see a pregnant man. And such a handsome, manly man at that!”

She smiled when Derek’s eyes widened in alarm and held up one finger to her lips in a shushing gesture.

“Don’t you worry Darling, I am not going to tell. I’ve lived in this town all my life and you know … I’ve seen some really strange things. And by strange I mean really strange. At one time, in fact, I swore I saw a gigantic lizard walking on two legs – this is nothing. I must admit I am relieved though that I was right, I had seriously doubted my instincts, which is a little bit of an issue when this instinct is based on 45 years of professional pride.”

She gazed at Leonie fondly.

“Is she the baby you were carrying that day?” she asked softly and Derek found himself nodding against his will, still too flabbergasted to respond otherwise.

“She’s beautiful. So is your little boy. And I’m sure this little one will be as well,” she added almost as an afterthought and gently placed her hand on Derek’s stomach.

“What?” Derek said, his eyes glued to the hand on his midsection and the old lady chuckled.

“Listen to your instincts Darling – something tells me they might be just as good, if not even better than mine.”

She turned towards the employee who was approaching with a glass of water, clucking her tongue in disapproval.

“That took a long time young man, much longer than it should have, when there’s a customer lying on the floor after fainting in your cheese aisle. I might have to speak to your manager about it,” she informed him coolly and the young man gulped before hastily retreating.

Derek accepted the cool water gratefully, closing his eyes and breathing through his mouth and when he felt like he would be able to get up without vomiting he did, still feeling a little queasy but much better.

Within seconds Leonie was attached to one leg while Noah was hogging the other and he ruffled both children’s hair, whispering, “Papa’s fine, Papa’s feeling much better” under his breath.

When he looked up again the old woman was gone and it wasn’t until he was at the checkout – minus Cora’s cheeses because even the idea still threatened to make him gag – that he noticed the three boxes of bland crackers in his shopping cart, as well as a daintily written sticky-note attached to the first box.

“Congratulations – you’ll need these.”

Beacon Hills and its inhabitants would never cease to surprise Derek – that was for sure.

Chapter Text

February 14th, 2030

Derek was glad that Noah had already been fast asleep when Stiles had gotten off work the night before. Leonie was old enough to understand the meaning of “Don’t tell Daddy I took a little nap on the supermarket floor,” but Noah clearly wasn’t, as evidenced by the fact that it was the first thing he had told Cora when Derek’s younger sister had walked through the door about two hours after they had gotten home from their eventful shopping expedition.

“You took a nap on the supermarket floor? I know he looks like Stiles, but I always thought he was more of a Hale personality-wise and we aren’t really known to come up with strange stories for no reason,” she had commented, her eyes narrowing when she took in the dark patches under Derek’s eyes and his pale complexion.

“You look like shit,” she had informed him sweetly, the words and tone softened by the concern in her eyes. She had stepped up to him to take a closer look and had done a double take, her hands immediately going to his midsection.

“You smell pregnant!” she had whispered excitedly and Derek had nodded, a soft smile on his lips.

“I found out today and Stiles doesn’t know yet, so please don’t tell him when he comes home,” he had explained and Cora had nodded, before her expression had suddenly frozen.

“Hold on, nap on the supermarket floor? Derek – did you faint?” she had exclaimed and Derek had shaken his head in warning, nodding his head towards Leonie, who had obviously interpreted the task of “Please help your little brother with his dinner” to mean that she was allowed to pick out all the good parts of the vegetable lasagna and feed Noah just noodles with cream-sauce.

“It wasn’t all bad, I recovered almost immediately after. I just didn’t buy you those stinky cheeses … I’m afraid the smell wasn’t agreeing with me,” he had shrugged and Cora had looked a little guilty.

“I guess me buying it is out of the question as well?” she had asked and Derek had nodded firmly, grimacing when the mild nausea became stronger again at the mere thought.

“I can’t even think about having that smell in my house,” he had said apologetically and Cora had leaned over to kiss his temple, her eyes full of excitement.

“Best early birthday present ever!” she had grinned and Derek had kissed her forehead in return.

Both Leonie and Noah had been excited to have their aunt tuck them into bed and read them a story for once and by the time Stiles had come home Cora had crashed out in their guest-room and Derek was lying on their bed, feeling extremely tired and also a little nauseous still.

The room was dark and Stiles hadn’t gotten a good look at his face yet and Derek had pretended to be asleep when Stiles snuck under the covers, afraid he would just blurt it out if Stiles started talking to him.

He had fallen asleep fiercely hoping that the nausea and fainting weren’t the beginning of a weeks-long spell of misery starting the next day, because he had plans for Stiles.

When he woke up the next morning Stiles was already downstairs and judging by the sounds coming from the kitchen, so was Leonie. Derek sat up slowly, always ready to jump up and rush to the bathroom, but he felt good, a little tired but mostly normal. He breathed a sigh of relief and got up for good, heading towards Noah’s room to see if his son was awake yet. Noah wasn’t in his room and when he checked the guest room right next to his son’s room he couldn’t help but grin.

Noah and Cora were sprawled on top of the covers, his son sucking on his thumb in his sleep and Cora was snoring lightly. Not that he would have ever told her that. He decided to let them sleep a bit longer and walked down the stairs, where he was greeted with what looked like a flour explosion.

“Stiles?” he asked pointedly and Stiles shot around with a guilty expression on his face.

“Uh … good morning my love?” he tried and Derek raised his eyebrows.

“We’re making birthday pancakes for Cora! I helped!” Leonie said proudly and Derek’s eyebrows rose even further.

“I can see that Leo-Pie,” he answered, mouthing “helped?” at his flour-covered mate.

“It was very enthusiastic help I’m afraid,” Stiles grinned, grimacing when Derek leaned over and dusted some flour out of his hair.

“Do you think you can take over? I’m afraid I have to take another shower and I have a meeting in an hour,” he begged and Derek snickered.

“The birthday girl is still asleep anyway, if you can drive Leo-Pie to school on your way to work I might be talked into taking care of this mess,” he answered and Stiles exhaled in relief.

“I love you Derek,” he said, framing Derek’s face with his hands and kissing him softly and it took all of Derek’s willpower not to tell him right then and there. However, he was able to refrain and while Stiles took a shower he got their daughter ready for school.

“You smell different Papa,” Leonie observed as she hugged him goodbye, frowning before she pressed her nose into his stomach again.

“You smell like … apple pie. Even though we made pancakes,” she said, sounding confused and Derek kissed the top of her head affectionately.

“It’s a surprise for Daddy. Remember, don’t tell him,” Derek said and Leonie nodded.

“Are you going to tell me what it is?” she asked and Derek grinned.

“As soon as I’ve told your Daddy you’ll be the first to know Leo-Pie,” he promised and Leonie grinned, seemingly satisfied with that deal.

Derek was almost done cleaning the kitchen when Cora shuffled downstairs, a sleepy Noah on her hip.

Noah wordlessly held out his hands when he saw Derek and so Derek took him, his eyes wistful as Cora poured a cup of coffee.

“Don’t even think about it Derek,” she grinned when she sat back down, her smile widening when she noticed the huge stack of pancakes in front of her.

“You are spoiling my son,” Derek observed, ignoring her comment about the coffee.

“He was tossing and turning all night and I figured he’d sleep better if he got to stay with his Auntie Cora,” Cora explained, her voice sounding a bit muffled because there was half a pancake stuck in her mouth.

Derek shook his head. “He always tosses and turns, he’s a deep sleeper, but a wild sleeper.”

Cora shrugged. “Apart from you and Stiles I am currently this little boy’s favorite and you bet I’m going to take advantage of that until he changes his mind again,” she grinned and Derek chuckled.

For a reason that he had yet to understand Erica and Cora had recently engaged in a battle for Noah’s affection, claiming that after Leonie’s plain favoritism of Scott and Jackson, it was their turn to be adored by their Alpha’s children. Why they couldn’t just share the title was a mystery Derek had yet to make sense of, but he was not complaining about the extra hours of babysitting Erica volunteered herself – and a long-suffering Boyd – for or the fun activities Cora took the kids on whenever she was in town.

In light of the new baby it was probably not a bad thing that Noah was getting some extra attention, since Derek was a little skeptical about how his youngest would take to not being the baby any longer.

“It’s a good thing probably. Leonie was never jealous of Noah, but who knows how he is going to respond when there’s another baby in the house,” Derek mused and Cora laughed.

“He’s the Zen-Baby, he’ll be fine,” she argued, cutting off a piece of her pancake and offering it to Noah when Derek sat him down into his highchair.

“He’s almost outgrown this one, it’s about time there was a new baby in this house,” Cora observed and Derek rested his hand on his belly, wondering how far along he actually was.

He couldn’t hear the heartbeat yet which meant that it was probably less than eight weeks and apart from the little bit of extra padding that he had grudgingly gotten used to his stomach was still pretty flat, meaning that he was probably no more than six weeks along.

“Speaking of, did you take a test yet to absolutely confirm or did you want to trust this old lady’s instincts and my nose?” Cora asked and Derek shook his head.

“I was going to go see Melissa after breakfast, if you wouldn’t mind keeping Noah-Boa for a bit,” he explained and Cora clapped her hands.

“Noah-Boa? It might be just me but I distinctly remember someone threatening bloody dismemberment if we ever so much as thought about calling him that,” she grinned and Derek sighed.

“I can’t help it, it’s catchy. Will you watch Noah this morning though?”

“More bonding time with my favorite nephew? Count me in! Are you going to tell Stiles after you’ve gotten final confirmation?” she asked and Derek rubbed his temples.

“I will. I’ve been trying to come up with a good way though. The first time I was so overwhelmed that Stiles barged in on me bawling in the bathroom and I just basically told him flat out. With Noah, I first confused him with a stomach bug, which, I might add, led to Stiles calling him Noah-Bug for months, and then I confused him with a belly-bloat and Stiles actually figured it out before I did. I’m not about to record one of these Youtube videos that some people create to announce they are expecting but this is going to be our last and I’m sure Stiles would love it if he got at least one creative baby-announcement,” he mused and Cora laughed.

“Well, it’s Valentine’s Day. Give him a fruit basket and when he asks why tell him it’s a symbol for the growing fruit of love inside of you!”

Derek gave her a pained look.

“No. Just … no.”

“Pee on a stick and present it to him in a gift box?”

“It will have pee on it,” Derek said calmly, shaking his head when his sister flinched.

“Right … forgotten about that. I don’t know? Baby-booties?”

Derek rolled his eyes.

“I’m going to finish breakfast now, then I’ll go find out for sure if we actually have something to celebrate and then I’ll figure out how to surprise him.”

He took a bite out of his cream-cheese bagel and grimaced, his stomach suddenly rolling and he barely made it to the downstairs bathroom before being sick.

“No cheese? At all?” Cora asked compassionately when he emerged from the bathroom, feeling better but still a little shaky.

“No cheese,” Derek confirmed sadly, wondering how he would explain to his children that grilled cheese sandwiches were banned from the house for the next eight to nine months.

It was bound to be a disastrous conversation.

 

==============

 

Derek couldn’t help but be impressed when Melissa took one look at him as he walked up to the nurses’ station, clapped her hands over her mouth and dragged him to an empty exam room that had an ultrasound machine.

“I guess I don’t need to tell you why I’m here?” he asked as he lowered himself onto the exam bed and Melissa grinned.

“I’ve told you before, sometimes people’s eyes just give it away.”

He looked at the screen nervously as Melissa dragged the transducer over his abdomen, sighing in relief when she turned to him with a big grin on her face.

“It’s definitely a baby! Of course I’m not an expert, but after attending quite a few ultrasound exams of my handsome grandsons lately, I’d say it looks to be about six weeks old. Congratulations honey, I’m so happy for you and Stiles!” she beamed and Derek smiled.

“Thank god, I would have hated to be known as the Fainting Alpha for no real reason,” he muttered and Melissa looked at him in concern.

“Fainting? Are you alright?”

Derek nodded. “I’m fine. It’s just – the baby doesn’t like cheese. At all.”

Melissa smiled. “I couldn’t even look at tomatoes for months and then Scott literally ate nothing else for almost a year when he was really little. It was kind of ironic.”

She gently wiped the gel off of Derek’s stomach and when he sat up she enveloped him in a strong hug.

“Take good care of yourself honey, it’s not going to be easy with a 6 year old and an almost 3 year old running around at home.”

Derek nodded. “I know, I’m telling the proud father tonight and then we’ll gently break it to the kids. Leonie didn’t really understand why I fainted yesterday, but she did insist my midsection smelled like apple-pie this morning so I guess she is halfway to figuring it out herself.”

Melissa laughed. “I wonder if there are old werewolves’ tales out there that would tell you the gender based on your pregnancy smell?” she mused and Derek rolled his eyes.

“No old werewolves’ tales and no old wives’ tales either, I have a perfect baby girl and a perfect baby boy and I couldn’t care less what this one is as long as it’s healthy.”

Melissa chuckled.

“I’m wondering what your opinionated daughter will have to say on the subject,” she grinned and Derek groaned.

“As long as she doesn’t want to call it Rainbow Dash again, we’re good.”

 

===============

 

Cora, Derek decided, was definitely getting a bigger Christmas present this year. Not only had she entertained Noah all day, but she had also graciously decided to skip a fancy birthday dinner in favor of Derek being able to break the news of their third child to Stiles “in style” as she had called it.

She was currently at the park with the kids, giving Derek plenty of time to prepare everything for Stiles’ arrival and had offered to bring back take-out after Stiles had recovered from the news.

As promised, Stiles got home just after 5 PM, as per their original plan to prepare Cora’s birthday feast together and he looked a little surprised when he found Derek calmly reading in the kitchen instead of chopping bell peppers and sautéing onions.

“Did we push back the dinner time?” he asked and Derek looked over the rim of his book, shaking his head.

“I was actually just about to get started. Would you mind checking the oven for me really quick?”

Stiles dropped his messenger bag on the kitchen table and squatted in front of the oven, frowning in confusion when he opened the door.

“Derek, you forgot to turn the oven on. There’s just a cold bun sitting in here,” he said, closing the door again and turning the oven on.

“I don’t know how long that needs to bake, it’s one of these Kaiser buns, right?” he asked over his shoulder and Derek cleared his throat.

“I don’t know – another 8 months maybe?” he said pointedly and Stiles laughed.

“If we leave it in there for 8 months it’ll turn into coal, nope, ten minutes should be more than enough!”

He walked over to Derek and kissed his cheek before clapping his hands and putting on his beloved Tardis apron.

“Shall we get started then?” he grinned, completely missing the incredulous and slightly frustrated look on Derek’s face.

“In a minute,” Derek finally said after he had convinced himself that yes, Stiles was indeed that dense, “let me just finish reading this chapter.”

What To Expect When You’re Expecting? Haha, I know what you’re reading, you’re reading Scott’s notes right? The ones he made when Allison was pregnant with Mikey and we lent this copy to him? I love that man, I really do, but his note-taking style is worse than his texting style and I don’t understand how he ever got through college. I sometimes dig this book out and read it myself just so I can remember why I appreciate Scott so much!”

Derek was a little speechless. He had brought down the book as second option, convinced he wouldn’t need it at all because he trusted his pun-loving mate to pick up on the bun in the oven meaning immediately. Apparently he had overestimated Stiles’ pun-skills.

His eyes searched the kitchen, looking for something that would convey the point he was trying to make to Stiles and he groaned inwardly when he noticed the bowl of fruit they usually kept on the kitchen table. Maybe he should have gone and gotten Stiles a fruit basket after all.

It physically hurt him to say the words but he was determined to let Stiles figure it out for himself without actually having to say it, cheesiness be damned.

“So Stiles – which one of these fruits do you think is as big as our fruit of love right now?”

He had changed his mind – instead of getting Cora a big Christmas present he would just go ahead and maim her for putting the thought in his head.

Stiles barely looked at the bowl.

“Did you buy me strawberries for Valentine’s Day? Are they even in season yet? Ah, who cares! Awesome! You, me, the strawberries and some whipped cream have a date after the kiddos have gone to bed and your sister has left to go clubbing or whatever she wants to do after.”

He almost hopped over to Derek and pressed a hungry kiss to his mouth.

“I love you Sexy Wolf! I can’t wait, this is the most awesome Valentine’s Day present ever!”

Stiles was on Planet Oblivion and the last ship to Earth had apparently left without him. There really was no other way to explain his determination to not get what Derek was trying to say.

He sighed deeply and got up from his chair when Stiles went and rummaged in his bag, resigned to just blurt out “I’m pregnant, you Doofus!” when Stiles turned around and beamed, looking mightily proud of himself.

“I got you something, too! I figured we could enjoy this after Cora’s gone out, just you and me, some French music, an excellent French wine and some delicious French cheese. I even went to a specialty store, they had a great selection!”

Before Derek could react, Stiles was already waving the cheese in front of him, the rich smell wafting out of the thin paper it was wrapped in and he was so focused on not throwing up all over his mate again that he didn’t even realize he was falling until his head hit the floor and everything went black.

 

================

 

Fainting, Derek decided, was absolutely and utterly pathetic. It made him feel like a damsel in distress who had just seen a penis for the first time and fainted in shock. It also had the unwelcome side effect of completely freaking out his family, his absolute least-favorite past-time activity.

He was cradled in Stiles’ lap when he came to, his mate’s heart racing right above him and Derek really wanted to comfort him and tell him he was ok, but he could still smell the cheese that Stiles had apparently dropped in his only half-successful attempt to catch Derek and he could still see it. Somehow, that made it even worse. The cheese had to go. Now.

“Cheese,” he croaked out, aware that if he looked as nauseous as he felt he probably looked like a ghost. “No … cheese,” he whispered through clenched teeth, afraid he would throw up if he opened his mouth even a millimeter more.

“Oh my god Derek, are you ok?! Did you hit your head? I thought I heard a crunch. It’s me, Stiles, I’m not a cheese.”

This time Derek actually groaned out loud.

“Take … the cheese … away from me. Please! Or I’ll,” he gagged, pressing one hand against his mouth and this time Stiles reacted immediately, grabbing the cheese with his right hand and throwing it as far away as he could, barely flinching when the subsequent crashing sound signaled the demise of yet another vase in the Hale-Stilinski household.

Derek sighed. He could still smell the cheese, but it was no longer as potent and he felt like he could breath again when he slowly pushed himself up on his elbows. Stiles was there immediately, helping him lean back against the cabinets and pushing a water bottle at him.

“This was not how this was supposed to go,” Derek muttered after he had taken a sip and felt more like himself again.

“Huh? What? Derek, are you alright, you scared the crap out of me!”

“I’m alright, really. But it had to be cheese, had it?”

Stiles looked seriously confused but at least his heart rate was finally slowing down, which Derek counted as a win.

“I know you don’t like the skunk-cheeses Cora eats and I didn’t think I bought one of those but … I’m sorry, I thought you liked cheese?” Stiles asked, looking like he had decided that Derek’s fainting was his fault.

Well, Derek mused, it kind of was if one wanted to be clichéd about it.

“I like cheese. But our baby really, really doesn’t. And it’s not subtle about it.”

Stiles still looked confused.

“What do you mean, Noah loves grilled cheese sandwiches. You did hit your head; I knew it. Derek, I think you are suffering from some sort of memory loss, do you think we have to go see Deaton? It should have healed by now, should it not?”

With an exasperated eye-roll Derek reached over and grabbed Stiles’ hand, placing it palm-down on his belly.

“Yes, Noah loves grilled cheese. But the baby in here seems to really hate it.”

He could see the exact moment when Stiles finally got it.

“You’re pregnant?” he blinked, before his eyes suddenly widened.

“Bun in the oven! You’ve got a bun in the oven. Derek, I love you!” Stiles exclaimed, moving forward to kiss Derek and frowning when his mate held up a hand in protest.

“I love you, too, but I’m not kissing you until the cheese is no longer in this house – better for me and definitely better for you.”

 

================

 

Explaining the news to their children turned out to be surprisingly easy when it came to Leonie.

“Noah thinks I’m awesome, so he wants another sister!” Leonie informed her fathers immediately, looking excited as she crawled onto Derek’s lap and pushed her nose into his belly.

“Smells really sweet,” she decided and Stiles turned towards Noah, grinning at the little boy.

“Is that true Noah? Do you want another sister? Or maybe a little brother?” he asked and Noah shrugged.

“Lassie?” he asked and Derek frowned in confusion before he remembered that Stiles had been watching Lassie with the kids for weeks now.

“It’s not a dog Noah, it’s a baby,” he said and Noah shrugged again.

“I want a Lassie,” he decided and Leonie crossed her arms over her chest with a dramatic eye-roll.

“We can’t name a sister Lassie Noah, that is stuuuuupid,” she dragged out the last word, huffing when her brother looked at her in confusion.

“No Lassie?” he asked with a frown and Stiles laughed quietly.

“No Lassie, Noah-Boa. It’s a little baby. Like you, only tinier.”

Noah’s lips began to quiver.

“I’m not a baby,” he complained and Derek sighed, reaching out to place Noah on his lap.

“Let’s give him a couple of weeks, he’ll understand eventually,” he decided, smiling at Leonie when she bent down to press her nose into his stomach again.

“I like this baby. It smells nice,” she mused, her voice sounding slightly muffled and Stiles grinned at Derek.

“It might not like cheese, but it’s a nice baby nevertheless.”

It took exactly two more minutes for Leonie to decide that the baby wasn’t nice after all, when she learned that it was responsible for the fact that grilled cheese sandwiches were banned from the house until further notice.

Chapter Text

March 14th, 2030 (10 Weeks)

To Derek’s great consternation and Stiles’ horror, their baby not only disliked cheese, but also the smell and taste of meat and it was proving to be a little bit of a problem.

Cheese could have been avoided, but the smell of meat was everywhere, from the many fast food joints in Beacon Hills to nearly every restaurant in the city.

With his sense of smell even more heightened because of the pregnancy, Derek was almost afraid to go anywhere. He had become an expert at recognizing fainting spells and so far he had always been able to either find a place to sit or at least lie flat on the ground when he started to feel dizzy, afraid that he would hurt the baby by falling on the ground.

Except for a lingering exhaustion he felt fine at home, but one whiff of cheese brought him on the verge of fainting and the smell of a juicy burger could make him feel nauseous for hours afterward.  

Luckily for Derek, his pack worked different schedules and someone was always available to take and pick up his children to and from school, and Derek was extremely relieved that he didn’t have to subject himself to the smells of the town when it wasn’t necessary.

While Noah remained pretty much indifferent to his father’s pregnancy, Leonie, who was old enough to have a better understanding of what was going on, was utterly fascinated with his growing belly, which was definitely visible now, pressing her face against it to scent the baby whenever she got a chance.

She was excited about the new sibling and Derek was grateful, certain that the strict ban on cheese and meat in their house would have sparked a rebellion of child-rage otherwise.

Derek was also certain that he was currently the first vegetarian werewolf in the history of his kind and it regularly made his ears heat in embarrassment. He was pretty sure that Stiles snuck out for cheeseburgers and curly fries at least once a week, the smell of it mostly gone when he came home but still potent enough to make Derek slightly nauseous.

He had thought about asking Stiles to stop but then decided against it, figuring that he could take a little bit of nausea once a week if it meant that his mate wasn’t in cheeseburger and curly fries withdrawal.

Nevertheless, he hoped the symptoms would disappear with the end of his first trimester, because he was quickly getting tired of only being able to eat vegetables and fruit.

However, he needed to eat, now more so than ever since his energy was seemingly constantly depleted by the task of growing a baby inside of him and he was nibbling on some carrots one afternoon when Stiles came home from work, huffing and puffing as he dragged a large package into the house.

“What’s that?” Derek asked and Stiles opened his mouth to answer – then started to grin.

“What?” Derek asked, wondering if he had something stuck between his teeth, where Stiles was currently focusing his attention, but Stiles’ grin just got wider.

“Carrots, Derek. Carrots!” he leered and Derek rolled his eyes, knowing very well what his mate was referring to.

“Guess who’s not getting any tonight?” he said with a touch of finality in his voice and Stiles shrugged.

“What happened to always up for hot sex pregnant Derek?” he asked fondly and Derek rested his hand against the gentle curve of his stomach.

“First of all, always up for sex pregnant Derek usually doesn’t show up until his second trimester and secondly, first trimester constantly about to faint pregnant Derek is trying very hard not to be resentful about having to eat carrots while his traitorous mate is going out for curly fries and burgers behind his back,” he said and Stiles winced.

“You can smell that? It was six hours ago!”

Derek shrugged.

“My sense of smell is super-heightened these days, I can’t really help it,” he explained and Stiles had the good grace to look guilty.

“I can totally stop doing that, I don’t want you to feel any sicker than you have to,” he declared and Derek gave him a grateful smile.

“I would appreciate it,” he admitted.

“Communication Sour Wolf. Don’t forget about communication,” Stiles said, wagging his finger at Derek as he fumbled with the package.

“Communication – got it. Care to communicate to me about what’s in that package?” Derek asked and Stiles smiled proudly.

“This, my beloved mate, is the first part of our babies’ tree house.”

Derek blinked.

“You want to put the baby in a tree house?” he asked carefully and Stiles shook his head.

“Not the baby – babies. Babies as in plural. I want to build the kids’ a tree house, just like my father built one for me. Well – he never really did because then my mom got sick and you know … but he always wanted to and I figured I might just as well go ahead and finish it,” he said.

Derek carefully inspected the large wood panel. It seemed to be good quality but when he looked at his mate he frowned skeptically.

“Are you going to break all of your bones while building this tree house? I’m warning you right now though, with the ridiculous rate my belly is growing it won’t be long until I won’t be able to help much.”

Stiles laughed.

“I would hope I’m capable to build my kids a tree house without their papa’s help.”

Derek raised his eyebrows.

“I’m sure you will,” he said, trying to sound encouraging.

Stiles scoffed.

“You are such a Sincere Wolf my love,” he snorted and Derek shrugged.

“Well, I don’t want to raise our children on my own because their father accidentally broke his neck by building a tree house,” he mumbled and Stiles snorted louder, abandoning the package and drawing Derek into an embrace instead.

“Your faith in me is so touching,” he said, before he pushed his nose into Derek’s neck.

“I still don’t want to be a werewolf, so don’t misunderstand me on this, but at times like these I almost wish I was. I bet you smell so good right now, with my baby inside of you,” he muttered and Derek laughed.

“We are not changing the subject,” he admonished his mate and Stiles, whose hands had dropped down to cup Derek’s belly, laughed quietly.

“Dang, I thought I almost had you. No, I’m not turning that into a pun, although it’s tempting. Oh and I was going to say, your belly is not growing ridiculously but gorgeously,” he muttered reproachfully, but he was smiling and Derek chuckled.

“I’m not opposed to the tree house, just – can’t you wait until this child is out of me and I can help? I’d feel much better about that. We don’t really have a good track record with trees you know,” he muttered and Stiles grinned.

“Now whose fault was that? You were the one who made us crash because you decided to have a laughing fit about my misfortune!” he said teasingly and Derek grunted.

“It was your idea in the first place, so it was your fault, as far as I’m concerned.”

Stiles mock-grumbled before he dropped down to his knees and rested his cheek against Derek’s belly.

“Do you hear that baby? This is what I have to listen to every day! I need you to be on my side when you are born, someone in this family has to be!”

Derek smiled.

“I’m sure he or she will do that,” he assured his mate with a grin and Stiles pulled his shirt up to pepper his skin with kisses.

“Speaking of he or she …” he began, standing up and drawing Derek over to the couch, “are we going to find out the gender again?”

Derek shrugged.

“It’s not that I’m not curious, but I think we can agree that we actually don’t know anybody who would be able to tell us – without freaking out about me being a man. Melissa can tell that there is a baby, but that’s about it, and Deaton …”

Stiles laughed. “I think he’s still having nightmares about Noah’s birth,” he said, sounding almost fond.

“So if it is alright with you, I think I’d just go with a delivery surprise again.”

Stiles grinned.

“Fine with me, it doesn’t matter anyhow, all that matters is just that he or she is healthy. Any Papa Wolf instincts to share though?” he asked and Derek placed his hand on top of Stiles’.

“No,” he said and Stiles rolled his eyes.

“You say that every time! You’re almost a politician that way, unwilling to commit to anything! Come on! Share your insights! You knew Leonie was a girl long before you were willing to admit you wanted her to be a girl – oh don’t give me that look, we both know you just wanted the Princess Tea Parties! – and you were just as thrown as I was when Deaton tried to tell us Noah was a girl, meaning that you knew as well. You can’t tell me you don’t at least have an inkling,” he said and Derek shrugged.

“I really don’t,” he repeated and Stiles gently patted the bulge.

“I’m going to go out on a whim here and say we’re having a little girl,” he decided and Derek raised his eyebrows.

“What makes you say that?”

Stiles grinned sheepishly. “The Old Wives’ Tales …”

Derek held up a hand, groaning in annoyance.

“No more Old Wives’ Tales, please, I beg you,” he said but Stiles ignored his protests.

“Let me finish Sour Wolf! I was just going to say that the Old Wives’ Tales say that your morning sickness is much worse with a girl and since you had horrible morning sickness with Leonie and only threw up once with Noah, I’d say the fainting and certain-smells related nausea is a pretty clear indicator for a girl.”

Derek sighed.

“I never fainted with Leonie except that one time towards the end and that was because of overheating and not because she was a girl. Also, I’ve only really thrown up once this time before I realized that even cream cheeses that don’t smell like cheese are a no-go. This proves nothing,” he said and Stiles chuckled.

“I know. Besides, I think you are going to be carrying this baby lower than the other two, which if I remember correctly, says boy. And I don’t want to start complaining about your cold feet again, but …”

Stiles laughed when Derek swung his legs onto the couch and pressed his bare feet against his mate’s thigh.

“You were saying?” he grinned and Stiles laughed again.

“I wasn’t saying anything!” he said as sincerely as he could, his hands dropping down to start kneading at Derek’s feet.

“You know, they don’t actually hurt yet,” Derek mused and Stiles shrugged.

“Might as well get back into practice,” he said and Derek leaned back against the couch cushions, having decided that he wasn’t going to complain.

Five minutes later, the sound of a car drew closer and when the Sheriff, Leonie, and Noah came into the living room, Derek’s eyes were closed in contentment.

“Good son,” John grinned at the sight and Derek opened his eyes lazily, waving to the kids and his father-in-law.

“The best,” he agreed, opening up his arms for his own son when Noah crawled unto the couch and snuggled against Derek’s side.

“Someone’s tired,” Stiles observed and John laughed.

“Yes well, we had quite the eventful grandpa-grandkids day at the park. Your daughter decided to growl a dog into submission so that Noah could pet him and its owner was not very happy when the dog actually wanted to go home with us afterwards.”

“Leonie?” Derek asked warningly and Leonie shrugged.

“Noah just wanted to see the doggie,” she defended her actions and Stiles sighed.

“We don’t use werewolf powers in public, you know that,” he said sternly.

“Lassie!” was Noah’s contribution to the discussion and Derek tussled his hair.

“Not all dogs are named Lassie Noah,” he said fondly but Noah shook his head in disbelief.

“Lassie,” he mumbled, clearly about to fall asleep.

“How is my newest grandchild and its father doing today?” the Sheriff asked and Derek smiled.

“Tired. But I haven’t fainted or felt like I had to in almost a week, this is definitely an improvement,” he said and John winced.

“That’s something I guess. So Leonie tells me that Noah wants a sister?” he continued, only to be interrupted by a rather petulant exclamation of “I want a dog!” from Noah.

“I don’t think Noah fully understands the concept yet, to be honest,” Derek said and Leonie nodded.

“He wants to call the sister Lassie! Who does that?” she said and Stiles winced at his father’s look of disapproval when he mouthed ‘She’s picking up a lot of sassy language young man’ at his son.

“What do you want Leo-Pie?” Stiles asked their daughter and Leonie shrugged.

“Well, Noah wants a sister because he knows sisters are awesome, so I want a brother, because we can’t want the same thing, obviously!”

“Obviously,” Stiles repeated, his tone suggesting that their almost seven-year old’s logic was clearly escaping him.

“A brother named Rainbow Dash?” the Sheriff asked and Leonie huffed.

Silly Grandpa! Rainbow Dash is a pony!” she exclaimed while Stiles mouthed, ‘My Little Pony is no longer hip apparently’ at his father.

“Well, do you have any idea other than Lassie?” Derek asked and Leonie nodded.

“Yes Papa! Spongebob!”

Stiles burst out into laughter and when he looked at Derek his eyes were twinkling.

“So we’re either having a girl named Lassie or a boy named Spongebob? Parents of the Year, nailed it!”

John shook his head.

“And people were calling me and Claudia crazy when we put your first name on the birth certificate.”

 

===============

 

April 1st, 2030 (12 Weeks)

“I can’t believe he’s three years old already!” Stiles commented on the morning of Noah’s birthday, thumbing through old pictures of Noah on his phone and sipping his morning coffee.

“I know,” came Derek’s muffled reply from the bathroom and Stiles, who was lounging on their already made bed and biding his time until the birthday boy woke up, grinned.

“Looking at these old pictures I really can’t believe I ever thought he looked like you though. There is this one picture just after he was born where I swear he is winking at the camera. That’s definitely my kid!” he smiled, unable to hide his pride.

“Hmm,” Derek answered, sounding like his mind was miles away and Stiles frowned.

“Are you alright in there? You don’t sound very enthusiastic.”

There was no reply and Stiles laid his phone down and got up, slowly making his way to the half open bathroom door.

“Can I come in?” he asked hesitantly, even though he wasn’t really sure what he was hesitant about and Derek made an exasperated sound.

“I can’t believe this. Will you look at this?” he grumbled and Stiles pushed the door open, his eyebrows rising when he took in the sight of his mate in the bathroom.

Derek was stark naked and standing in front of the mirror, twisting and turning his head as he apparently examined his backside, one hand resting on his hip and the other pinching at the top of his butt with a look of utter consternation.

“Do you think it would be appropriate for the birthday boy’s father to attend his birthday party naked?” Derek asked and Stiles snorted.

“While the birthday boy’s daddy would very much appreciate that, I don’t think the rest of our guests will be so happy about it. Why?” he asked, taking another sip of his coffee now that he had made sure that Derek wasn’t in danger.

“Look at this,” Derek mumbled and bent over to grab his jeans, which were lying in a heap on the bathroom floor, giving Stiles a perfect view of his ass.

Not the right time!” Derek growled when he straightened back up, Stiles’ slight gasp and his sudden arousal not having gone unnoticed by his werewolf mate.

“Well, if I can’t leer at you, what am I looking at?” Stiles asked, as Derek stepped into the jeans and pulled them up his legs, stopping just below his butt.

“This!” Derek exclaimed, before turning around and fixing Stiles with a thunderous scowl.

Stiles gulped.

“I know you said this wasn’t the right time, but if you don’t want me jump you right now you kind of need to pull those jeans up the rest of the way, this view is a little too … uhm … stimulating for me and I’ve already had my morning coffee, I have lots of extra energy,” Stiles finally managed and Derek’s scowl got even darker.

“I can’t,” he gritted out and when Stiles took a closer look at the jeans he gulped again, only this time not in arousal but in slight fear.

Even if Derek would have been able to pull the jeans up the rest of his thighs which, in Stiles’ opinion he would probably only be able to accomplish if he used some oil – or lube – as a gliding agent, there would have been no way he could have pulled them over his butt.

Stiles sighed. He knew where this was going.

“Derek …” he began, only to be interrupted by his frustrated mate.

“These are my maternity jeans, Stiles! I wore them with Leonie and I wore them with Noah and they always fit! Look at this!” he repeated, pulling the pants down with an angry, jerky movement and turning around again, one hand grabbing the flesh of his thigh and the other grabbing a large handful of his admittedly much more supple butt.

“I don’t understand this, I’m careful about my eating – heck, I could hardly eat anything for weeks – and I’m active, this should not be happening,” he groaned, his second hand moving up to manhandle the other butt cheek and Stiles groaned, squeezing his eyes shut firmly, because this was really not helping.

“Derek …” he pleaded, aware that he probably sounded like a horny teenager.

“I can sense that you are upset and I want to be a comforting and understanding mate, but right now all I see is ass and all I can think is I want to tap that, and holy crap will you stop grabbing your butt like that?”

Derek huffed, turning around with a grim expression, his hands moving to his waist.

“I have love-handles,” he exclaimed, each hand digging into his side and holding onto the extra padding over his hips.

“And will you look at this?” he tucked his chin against his neck, his eyebrows making him look truly and utterly terrifying as he tried to gaze up at Stiles from this position. “It’s a double chin!” he moaned and Stiles shook his head.

“Everyone has a double chin when they tuck their chin against their necks like that,” he sighed, setting his coffee down and approaching Derek cautiously.

“It’s probably just water weight, you’ll be fine,” he tried to reason and Derek snorted.

“In my butt? Not likely.”

Stiles picked up the maternity jeans and looked at the size, frowning when he looked at Derek again.

“Derek – these are a pretty small size for a man to begin with,” he said carefully and Derek crossed his arms over his chest, resting them on the crest of his belly without thinking.

“They always fit me!” he replied, sounding like Noah when he got angry about not getting a third cookie.

“Well …” Stiles said helplessly, hesitantly reaching out his hands to rest them against Derek’s hips lightly.

“Maybe this is kind of … normal for a third pregnancy? You are also seven years older than when you were pregnant with Leo-Pie and maybe werewolf metabolism also slows down with age?”

He was kicking himself internally even while he was saying it, but he also wasn’t really sure how else to explain to Derek that there was no use in making a fuss about something that obviously couldn’t be helped.

He flinched when Derek sat down on the toilet lid and, instead of getting angry at him, buried his head in his hands.

“Derek no, don’t be upset, I’m a stupid mate, I didn’t mean it that way, you aren’t old, you are in your prime and …”

“Oh shut up Stiles!” Derek growled through his hands, sounding alarmingly congested.

Stiles was absolutely not going to allow his mate to have a pity party over gaining pregnancy weight, nope, he wasn’t.

“Derek,” he began firmly, sitting down on the edge of the bathtub and stroking his back with one hand while the other cupped his belly.

“Who cares if you gain more weight this time, you’ll lose it once the baby is born. I know you were already self-conscious about that little bit of pudge after Noah but seriously, 99 percent of the male population would have still gladly traded their body against yours. And even if you don’t lose all of it, you are mated to me, and I’m absolutely oblivious. You could dye your hair purple and get a nose ring and I would still make lovey-dovey eyes at you and sigh Derek, and write you poetry, I really wouldn’t care. And if you really, really want to, I’ll take care of the kids for a month and you can go to Werewolf-Abs-Boot Camp or something like that, but you are absolutely not allowed to freak out about this, do you understand me?”

He felt encouraged when Derek’s tense back relaxed under his ministrations and pushed on, determined to make his Stupid Wolf understand how stupidly he was acting.

“Besides, as you well know your butt is like my third favorite thing about you, and you know me, if I like something I can’t get enough of it, I always want more, so really, as far as I’m concerned if there is more of your butt then I’m deliriously happy.”

Derek shook his head, but Stiles caught the hint of a smile on his face.

“You are very attached to my butt,” he mumbled and Stiles nodded enthusiastically.

“I am! I like to touch it, and squeeze it, and fondle it, and worship it. If your butt was the last thing I saw before I die I would go happily. People could show me pictures of the Grand Canyon or some other national park and I would be like: why would I need to go there to have amazing scenery, I’ve got Derek’s butt and that’s the best view in the whole wide world. I want to rub myself against your butt and I want to watch you squeeze it yourself. In fact, I think I could come just from watching you alone. Coincidentally, after all that butt-talk I really have a boner now and if you are done feeling sorry for yourself, I was wondering if you and your voluptuous butt could maybe help me out here?”

He trailed off, his voice having gotten more breathy with every word and let his hand drop down into his lap, hissing with pleasure when he rubbed the palm of his hand against the beginning of his erection.

Derek fixed him with a curious stare. “You could come from watching me play with my butt alone?” he asked and Stiles nodded, panting as he began to rub himself harder.

“Well then … watch,” Derek said, moving with lightening speed and before Stiles had really registered what was happening, Derek had maneuvered him out of the bathroom and into their bedroom, pushed him down onto the covers, opened his jeans and dragged it and his boxers down to his ankles, grabbed a scarf, and tied his hands against the bedpost.

“You aren’t really allowed to be all super-speed-werewolf right now, you know,” Stiles protested, trying to sound stern but still too aroused to pull it off and Derek chuckled.

“Stop worrying, I’m feeling great,” Derek answered, before he turned around and stood in front of the long bedroom mirror, allowing Stiles to get a good view of his face and allowing Derek to look at Stiles on the bed.

Derek’s gaze was fixed on Stiles’ face as he let his hands trail down his sides, softly gliding over his hips before he cupped his butt cheeks. His gaze never left the human’s as he began to knead the round flesh and Stiles swallowed roughly, his hips bucking up to search friction that was not going to come.

Derek closed his eyes briefly and slapped the skin lightly, his cheeks glowing in slight embarrassment at the spectacle he was making of himself, but Stiles’ moan was definitely encouraging and so he repeated the motion, alternating between light slaps and soothing kneading motions as Stiles’ heartbeat became quicker and quicker.

He didn’t really feel like fingering himself and he wasn’t really sure what else to do, bending over slightly and flexing his butt cheeks as he concentrated and he had to suppress a soft laugh when Stiles cursed behind him and came all over his chest.

He had to give it to his mate; he was definitely impressed at his ability to still turn into a horny teenager on occasion.

“I’m buying you one of these ass-less leather pants for your birthday,” Stiles panted, sinking down into the cushions as if his bones were made of jello.

“Or maybe I’ll buy them for you for my birthday, that sounds even better,” he added, and Derek grinned, turning around and raising one eyebrow.

“Leather pants with pregnancy support bands will be the hottest thing ever,” he agreed with a smirk as he walked over the dresser and pulled out a pair of underwear, before flopping down on the bed next to Stiles and cleaning off his chest with some wet wipes.

“So I had a good morning, but I couldn’t fail to notice that your morning could be improved,” Stiles smiled gently after Derek had freed his hands, one hand stroking the outline of his soft penis through his underwear and Derek shook his head fondly, stretching out flat on his back and moving Stiles’ hand from his crotch to the top of his belly.

“I’m good. I am very happy that I can still make you come untouched, even like this,” he grasped his hips with a resigned smile, “but I’m afraid I’ll have to get used to it before I feel in the mood again,” he apologized and Stiles scoffed lightly before he snuggled into Derek, fingers lightly trailing along his side.

“I’ll gladly volunteer for some more convincing as to how hot you are,” he grinned and Derek smiled.

“I’m looking forward to it.”

He paused, before adding, “I just really hope I won’t get an actual double chin.”

Stiles shrugged. “Your jaw could cut diamonds in its non-pregnant state, to be honest, this is probably safer for me … and also, I could totally bite you there if you have some extra padding,” he grinned and Derek sighed contentedly when he felt his dick twitch just the tiniest bit.

“I could like that,” he admitted and Stiles smirked.

“I can tell Sexy Wolf!”

He was about to add something else when Derek suddenly sat up and draped a sheet over Stiles’ still exposed crotch.

Stiles was about to ask what was up when the door opened and the birthday boy marched in, or rather, was marched in by his big sister, who seemed to be much more awake than Noah.

“It’s Noah’s birthday, where are his presents?” Leonie chirped and Derek shook his head.

“Come here Noah,” he said, holding out his arms for their son and Stiles managed to pull his jeans back up under the sheets while Noah, who was clearly still half-asleep climbed onto the bed and snuggled into Derek’s chest.

“Did you wake him up Leo-Pie?” Derek asked their daughter and Leonie blushed guiltily.

“Maybe? But Papa, it’s his birthday! No one sleeps this long on his birthday!”

Derek shook his head with a tiny frown.

“Are you awake yet Noah-Boa?” Stiles asked gently and Noah yawned loudly and tucked himself into the crook of Derek’s arm with a soft shake of his head.

“Come on Leo-Pie, how about you help me prepare an awesome birthday breakfast for your little brother while Papa gets him dressed?” Stiles suggested and Leonie nodded, eyes sparkling when Stiles got up from the bed, pulled on a shirt and gently steered her out of the door.

“I don’t think you have to rush,” Derek commented and Stiles turned his head, a soft smile spreading over his lips when he took in the sight of his sleeping son snuggled against his pregnant father, thumb in his mouth and breathing softly.

“We’ll make pancakes. By the time I’ve cleaned up the flour explosion, Noah will be up and ready to go,” he decided and Derek shook his head.

“I don’t doubt it,” he whispered and Stiles winced when there was a crash from downstairs.

“Coming Leo-Pie!” he said quickly, almost stumbling over his feet in his haste to rescue their kitchen from their somewhat clumsy daughter.

Derek pressed his nose against his son’s soft, light brown hair and inhaled.

It really was hard to believe that their little boy was already three years old, and it was equally as hard to believe that Leonie was about to turn seven in a little less than three months.

On the outside, they hadn’t made too much progress yet with explaining the difference between a baby and a puppy to Noah, but even though he couldn’t scent the baby like Leonie could, Derek marveled at Noah’s subconscious understanding of the situation, smiling softly when he noticed that Noah’s fingers were stroking his belly as he dozed on Derek’s chest.

His son would understand soon enough – hopefully, before his constant cries for Lassie inspired his sappy daddy to actually go to the local pound and get the kids a dog.

Chapter Text

April 25th (15 Weeks)

Towards the end of April and at the beginning of his second trimester, Derek began to feel better quickly. He was still cautious about what he ate, but cheese and meat were no longer banned from the house and he was ready to slowly introduce them into his diet again.

There were no weird cravings to report yet and for some reason his mate recently seemed to have decided to take over that part of pregnancy. Derek had openly gagged when he had seen Stiles’ after-dinner snack of a sandwich with garlic mayonnaise and pineapple chunks last night, and after brushing off Derek’s concern that he should maybe go easy on the sandwich after having three helpings of dinner in the first place, Stiles had devoured it like a starving man.

Derek was used to tuning out certain sounds around him, but he had been unable to ignore the groaning and gurgling his mate’s stomach had produced in protest against the detestable sandwich afterwards.

Stiles had waved his hands away when he had offered to take some of the pain away, arguing that a) Derek had no business taking anyone’s pain right now because he needed his energy to grow their baby and b) that he wasn’t in pain at all and in fact feeling excellent.

Derek eventually decided to let it go and he had really tried to ignore the increasingly distressed sounds his mate had uttered during his sleep, but he had not been surprised at all, when Stiles had shot up and out of the bed around 4 in the morning and made a mad dash to their bathroom.

He had wanted to be supportive and check on him but the sounds coming from the bathroom had made him a bit nauseous and so he had stayed behind, flashing Stiles a concerned look when his mate had stumbled back into the bedroom and dropped on the mattress, hands pressed against his belly and groaning miserably.

“I’m not going to say I told you so,” Derek said softly as he brushed a strand of sweaty hair out of Stiles’ eyes, “but you do realize that three helpings of dinner, a gag-inducing sandwich combination and an entire bag of sour gummy worms might have been just a tad too much for a human stomach to take, right?”

Stiles response was a pained whine as he curled in on himself and Derek rolled his eyes before pushing up Stiles’ shirt and placing his hand on his mate’s stomach. He managed to dull the sharp pain to a residual throb before Stiles swatted his hands away.

“Derek! You can’t do that right now,” he protested and Derek gave him a critical once-over, relieved to note that the color had come back to Stiles’ face and his entire posture had relaxed.

“Whether I drain my energy in taking some of your pain or being unable to sleep because you are groaning in misery doesn’t really make much of a difference to me now, does it?” he said calmly and Stiles sighed loudly.

“Are you feeling my pain now?” he asked and Derek shook his head. Truth be told he was a tiny bit nauseous now, but he was willing to attribute that to sympathy for having to hear his mate retching miserably.

“Go to sleep Stiles,” he muttered and when Stiles didn’t stop fidgeting he groaned exasperatedly, reaching out his arm and drawing the human closer to try and rub the remaining ache out of his mate’s system.

The look on his face was the one that he normally reserved for Noah when their son had a stomachache and needed a soothing tummy rub – or just plainly couldn’t sleep, since there was nothing more effective to lull him to sleep than Derek’s tummy-rubbing skills apparently – and Stiles blushed, although he closed his eyes in contentment.

“Next time I try to do this, please tear the sandwich out of my greedy hands. Or better, slap my hands when I reach for the third helping,” he muttered and Derek laughed.

“I might be carrying our baby right now, but as far as I’m concerned I only have two children and not three just yet, so I will do no such thing,” he said and Stiles shrugged.

“As long as I get tummy rubs afterwards,” he mumbled sleepily and Derek kissed his temple fondly.

Stiles was out of his mind if he thought that Derek would ever let him suffer, no matter how much idiocy had led to this state of misery.

================

 

Pregnant or not, Derek’s healing magic was still extremely effective – so effective, in fact, that Stiles went through two bowls of breakfast cereal and one banana before he had to go to work the next morning, studiously ignoring Derek’s slightly judgmental glare.

Slightly judgmental became quite judgmental when Stiles walked into the kitchen in the late afternoon, smelling like he had skipped the salad he had taken for lunch in favor of a visit to his favorite burger and curly-fries joint and quite judgmental became extremely judgmental after dinner, when Stiles opened a bag of salt and vinegar flavored chips and a jar of mayonnaise and started munching away happily, dipping chip after chip into the mayonnaise as they watched a rerun of Game of Thrones.

“But Deeeerek, I’m hungry,” Stiles whined when Derek finally snatched the half-empty bag away from him and Derek scowled at him before tersely pointing out that he was not in the mood for more whining and groaning that night.

Stiles stayed up for another episode when Derek went to bed and when he shuffled into their bedroom an hour later, with a glass of alka-seltzer and a slight grimace on his face, Derek had to bite his tongue to stop himself from making a few snide remarks.

This time the obscene amount of food stayed down, but judging by Stiles’ expression the next morning, that was not necessarily a good thing.

With a long-suffering sigh Derek suggested that Stiles stay home, a decision he quickly came to regret when, instead of getting any work done until the early afternoon when his mate finally started feeling better, he had to spend most of the day heating up hot water-bottles, administering tummy rubs, and listening to pitiful whining as Stiles lounged on the couch and watched seven episodes of Supernatural in one go.

While the children got mashed potatoes and vegetables for dinner, Derek placed a bowl of plain chicken broth in front of Stiles without comment, his eyebrows daring his mate to eat anything else and he seemed to have finally gotten through to him, because Stiles didn’t even attempt to sneak some potatos away from Noah’s plate.

He didn’t smell sick anymore and Derek was willing to put that strange episode behind him, although he did scrunch up his nose when Stiles slathered his toast with peanut butter and mayonnaise the next morning. It was only one toast though and so Derek decided to let it go – he had certainly eaten stranger things during his first pregnancy and couldn’t really judge.

Derek did, however, roll his eyes when Stiles came home from work that evening with a large bag full of mayonnaise jars, sheepishly explaining that he was afraid they were going to run out when he stocked their pantry.

Derek, who really wanted to point out that their entire family usually went through a jar of mayonnaise in half a year, just shrugged.

It took Stiles about two days to get through the first jar – which, considering that he was currently slathering it on everything wasn’t exactly a mystery – and when Derek woke up to the sound of running, the clanging lid of a toilet and then violent retching on Saturday morning, he really wasn’t surprised.

“Deeeeeerek,” Stiles croaked from inside the bathroom and with a sigh Derek got up, hand over his nose just in case as he ventured into the room.

Stiles, who had been considerate enough to flush before calling for him, was holding on to the toilet as if it was a life-line and when Derek knelt down next to him he whined pitifully.

“I’m dying Derek. Please tell the children I love them,” he moaned, before lurching over the toilet once more.

Never-Been-Pregnant Derek Hale of 2021 would have been concerned, maybe even frantic. Pregnant-And-Papa-of-Two Derek Hale of 2030, however, thought his melodramatic mate was laying it on a bit thick.

“You are not dying Stiles,“ he said carefully, although he did rub his mate’s back for comfort while he said it and Stiles weakly shook his head.

“Here lies Stiles Stilinski, beloved husband and daddy. He really loved mayonnaise. Please put a jar of mayonnaise on my grave to remember me by,” Stiles whimpered and Derek shook his head.

“We are not putting mayonnaise on your tomb-stone or your grave. Also, you’re not dying,” he said and Stiles dropped back against him with a groan.

“You don’t know that,” he protested weakly and Derek shook his head again.

“I’d be able to smell it, I’m sure,” he offered, gently placing a hand on Stiles’ stomach and rubbing it comfortingly.

“Let’s get you back to bed,” he decided, but Stiles shook his head, groaning when the gesture apparently intensified the nausea.

“Just leave me here to die,” he whined and Derek rolled his eyes.

“I threw up almost every morning for weeks and I didn’t make that much of a fuzz,” he said critically and Stiles closed his eyes theatrically.

“That’s because you are much stronger than me. That’s why you’ll be able to go on without me,” he mumbled and Derek exhaled loudly.

He was indeed stronger than Stiles, a quality that came in very handy when he hoisted his mate from the ground and carried him back to their bed, ignoring Stiles’ startled yelps as he tucked him in.

“The baby, Derek!” Stiles groaned and Derek grunted.

“The baby is fine. You, however, are not and need to be in bed.”

“Bucket ...” Stiles groaned again and Derek unceremoniously put the trashcan next to the side of his bed, although he was pretty certain Stiles wouldn’t need it.

“Just – stay in bed a little while, ok? I’ll go get you a hot water bottle and you’ll feel much better soon,” he promised and Stiles pushed his face against the pillows with a weak sigh.

He didn’t emerge from his pillow fort until the early afternoon and when he came down Derek had to bite back a sigh when Stiles immediately opened a jar of mayonnaise and started dipping bell peppers into the jar.

“Do you think that’s wise?” he asked him and Stiles shrugged.

“Hungry,” he explained and Derek smiled fondly.

“You realize I’m the pregnant one, right?” he asked and Stiles patted his belly with a grin.

“No baby in this belly, just mayonnaise,” he moaned through a full mouth of mayo and Derek shook his head.

“You might want to go a bit easy on the mayo, it’s not really good for you,” he suggested gently, thinking only of the danger to Stiles’ arteries. He was therefore not prepared when Stiles slammed the jar down with a loud thunk.

“What are you trying to say?!” he demanded and Derek turned around in confusion, not really certain why his mate was suddenly looking at him like he had deeply insulted him.

“Uhm – I’m saying that you who monitored his dad’s diet for years should know that that much fat is not good for your body and arteries?” he said and winced when Stiles hugged his belly in defense.

“Are you trying to say I’m fat ?! That I should go on a diet ?! That I am turning into a disgusting blob?!” he yelled and Derek flinched.

“What? No! That’s not what I’m saying at all, you are not fat, what are you talking about?”

“You think I’m fat!” Stiles wailed and Derek, who hadn’t really paid attention until now couldn’t help but note that after more than a week of a mainly-mayonnaise based diet his mate did look a bit – puffier than he normally did.

Stiles seemed to have caught on to the very moment that Derek noticed it and startled his werewolf mate by bursting into tears.

“I couldn’t fasten the button of my jeans yesterday morning, but damn it Derek, I just want mayonnaise!” he bawled and Derek hesitantly put his arm around Stiles’ shoulder, wincing when the human clutched at him with a firm grip and pressed his tear-streaked face into his chest.

“There, there,” he said, mentally face-palming himself but really at a loss as to what to do with his armful of sobbing, mayonnaise-addicted mate.

“Why are you mean to Daddy?” a reproachful voice suddenly rang out and when Derek turned towards the kitchen door, Noah was crossing his arms and looking confused.

“I’m not mean to Daddy, Daddy is just …”

“I just want mayonnaise. And ice-cream. Together! Oh my god Derek, what’s wrong with me?!” Stiles sobbed and Leonie, who had poked her head in as well, disappeared out of sight and returned with a tub of ice-cream from the freezer.

“Don’t be sad Daddy, we have ice-cream,” she said and Stiles sobbed even louder.

He didn’t stop sobbing until Derek, against his better judgment, placed a bowl of ice-cream with a generous dollop of mayonnaise in front of him and Stiles began to shovel the disgusting concoction into his mouth with gusto, oblivious to the confused stares of his family.

“You are going to make yourself sick again,” he warned when Stiles reached for the tub of ice-cream but quickly relented when his mate’s lips began to tremble once again.

Exhausted from all the crying and probably a little on the uncomfortable side of full Stiles crashed out on the couch afterwards and Derek decided to let him sleep as he went upstairs to build some Lego with the children.

He wasn’t really sure what was going on with his mate, but after today’s explosive afternoon he was definitely glad that he was the one who was pregnant – if Stiles could freak out like this without his hormones being out of whack, there was no telling what would have happened if he had actually managed to knock him up all those years ago.

 

==============

 

“I really don’t want to be rude,” Isaac whispered to Derek at the next pack meeting, looking like it pained him to actually have to point it out, “but Stiles does realize that his clothes are not going to magically grow larger if he eats an entire jar of mayonnaise, right?” he continued and Derek rubbed his face in exasperation.

The pack had held their tongues throughout the entire meeting but Derek had been painfully aware of their confused stares when Stiles, oblivious to everything but his family-sized jar of mayonnaise, had dropped down onto the sofa next to Derek and begun spooning it into his mouth as if it was Nutella.

Derek was maybe a day away from putting the whole healing-touch shebang on Stiles, certain that he was doing some serious damage to his arteries at this point.

As for the clothes – in Derek’s estimate his mate had gained roughly 15 pounds in the past two weeks and even though he had a very limited understanding of human biology, he was quite willing to bet that that was not normal in any way, shape or form.

Not that he cared about Stiles’ pudgy little belly, which had started to strain his older shirts a little, but again, the speed with which he had grown it was a cause for concern.

“I honestly don’t know what to do,” he finally confided and as if on cue Scott appeared behind them, his face dark with worry.

“I think he thinks he’s the one who’s pregnant,” Scott whispered and Derek sighed.

“He knows he isn’t,” he replied but Scott shook his head.

“I’ve read about this. It’s got some fancy name – probably French – but there is a syndrome that no one really knows the cause of, but apparently causes men to become sympathy-pregnant when their female partners are pregnant. Symptoms include morning sickness, cravings, and weight gain,” he continued and Derek mentally check-marked all of those, adding explosive hormones to the list.

“Why would he suddenly develop some sympathy-pregnancy symptoms? He never did that with Noah or Leonie?” he asked and Scott shook his head.

“I’m a vet, what do I know. But I think it’s about time we call my mom,” he said urgently and Derek agreed, already pulling out his phone.

The pack had gone by the time Melissa dropped by and she only took one look at Stiles, who had crashed out on the couch in a mayonnaise induced food-coma, the half-empty jar cradled to his chest, before she started snickering.

Only Stiles,” she muttered, before gently taking the jar away from him.

“What can I do?” Derek asked and Melissa shrugged.

“We are going to tell him he is turning into a poster child for Couvade Syndrome and hopefully that will be enough to shock him out of it. If not, then well, you’ll just have to hide the mayonnaise – or I’ll finally allow John to have the “This is hypocritical and unfair” talk with him that he’s been itching to lay on him for days now,” she said and Derek sighed.

“If I hear that word one more time, I swear. At this point I think he’d sell me off to the highest bidder for a house-sized jar of mayonnaise,” he muttered and Melissa laughed quietly, before lightly putting her hand on Derek’s belly and rubbing gently.

“And how is the real baby?” she asked and Derek smiled.

“Good. I’m looking forward to feeling it move soon,” he said and Melissa grinned.

“It? Not them? Since your son and daughter can’t agree on whether they want a brother or sister, John and me figured it would be nice if they got both,” she teased him and Derek shook his head, patting the bulge self-consciously.

“I might be little bigger this time but nope, definitely one baby, I would have been able to hear the second heartbeat for weeks if there was one,” he said and Melissa smiled.

“Well, by the looks of it Stiles is gestating a mayonnaise baby as we speak, so I guess you’ve got that part covered,” she grinned and Derek laughed. 

“Stiles will not be happy I involved the cavalry to stop this mayonnaise madness,” he said and Melissa rolled her eyes.

“He’ll live – if he stops clogging up his arteries with unnecessary fat. Seriously, Derek, I’m glad he’s not the one who’s pregnant, that would have been a disaster just waiting to happen.”

Derek, who – now that he knew what was wrong with his mate – had gotten a taste of ‘pregnant’ Stiles for the past two weeks, wholeheartedly agreed.

When Stiles woke up the next morning the mayonnaise was gone and once Derek had explained the Couvade Syndrome to Stiles, his deeply embarrassed mate had marched over to Deaton and demanded a spell to cure him from the affliction.

He had also taken up jogging in the morning.

Derek, meanwhile, still wasn’t craving anything special during this third pregnancy but he had to give it to Stiles – salt and vinegar chips with a tiny dollop of mayonnaise were not all that bad.

 

===============

 

May 9th 2030 (18 Weeks)

Jackson’s second daughter was born on May 9th of 2030 and when the proud father announced her name, Derek was extremely proud of his pack for keeping their opinions to themselves, aware that it must have been difficult for them, since he himself was about to collapse with laughter.

It wasn’t a bad name by any means – well, at the least the first two parts weren’t –  but together it had a rather unfortunate repetitive effect.

“I cannot believe that he essentially gave her the same name thrice!” Stiles exploded with laughter as soon as Jackson had left and Derek sighed, while Erica, Scott, and Allison chuckled.

“Aurelia Orianna D’Or essentially means Gold Gold of Gold, right?” Boyd asked and Derek groaned.

“It does. Not to mention that she is actually a werewolf,” he commented and Stiles shuddered.

“And can we please talk about the fact that there is an apostrophe in her name? Who does that to a poor innocent child!” he lamented, ignoring Derek’s amused glances in his direction that clearly said, “Don’t get ideas!”

Cora clapped her hands gleefully.

“Well, this child has her nickname spelled out for her already then! Goldie! It almost rhymes with Josie, too, so it will be perfect.”

“I don’t know,” Allison mused, ignoring Scott, who was currently crying tears of laughter into her shoulder. “I think he’s still angry that Josie only answers to Josephine when he calls her that and Aurelia is a really pretty name actually.”

“Of course it is. It is my goddaughter after all,” Lydia commented proudly and Stiles looked at her curiously.

“How is that working out anyways?” he asked and Lydia shrugged.

“Well … she’s ten hours old so I can’t give you an accurate description of our godmother-goddaughter interaction just yet, but I think Julia is good with it now. She was hesitant at first but Josie loves me and that’s never been an issue, I think that settled it in the end.” she said.

“Are you good with it?” Derek asked and Lydia nodded.

“Jackson is still important to me – his babies are important to me. I’m honored that he wants to include me in this way and I know you guys have a hard time wrapping your minds around it, but I really, honestly do not want my own children,” she tried to explain.

Cora, who had walked into the kitchen and decided to help Isaac with mixing celebratory cocktails, shook her head. When Isaac looked at her curiously she shrugged.

“I don’t think it’s healthy,” she muttered under her breath.

“Lydia was the one who brought him back from the whole Kanima-thing. He’ll always love her,” he whispered and Cora nodded.

“Exactly. That’s why I think it’s so unhealthy.”

Derek, who had been listening in to their conversation, couldn’t help but agree, but since he could not smell sadness and regret on Lydia, he had decided to let it go for the moment.

“So Lydia,” Allison said, trying to steer the conversation topic away to safer waters, “what’s this about your mysterious new gentleman-caller you keep alluding to?”

As Lydia launched into a detailed description of the handsome architect she had been seeing for weeks, Derek leaned back in his chair with a soft smile, listening absentmindedly as he nibbled on a piece of mozzarella string-cheese.

To his great relief his baby had apparently decided that depriving his or her father of important sources of calcium and protein was quite counterproductive to its development and for the past weeks Derek had slowly reintroduced meat and mild cheeses to his diet.

Not that the nutritional value of string cheese was particularly overwhelming, but he was too relieved that he could actually eat it now to care much, figuring that the tons of veggies and fruits he was still consuming could balance out the horrors of processed cheese in his system.

He also seemed to be over the fainting now, putting his entire pack’s mind more at ease and he was actually looking forward to the children being out of school so he could be more active with them.

Derek was still worried that his little deep-thinker could possibly react badly to no longer being the baby in the house and he wanted to make sure Noah got enough one-on-one papa-time to tide him over the initial newborn stage.

Stiles had commented that they could probably avoid any sort of sibling drama by just getting Noah the dog he had been talking about ever since Derek had gotten pregnant, but Derek still didn’t feel like potty-training a dog on top of a baby.

Said baby chose to interrupt his train of thought by saying hello that very moment and Derek inhaled sharply before his surprised expression turned into a happy smile.

“Baby kicks?” Cora asked as she handed him his juice-cocktail and Derek nodded.

“Really?” Stiles said softly, his hand already pushed against Derek’s side and Derek moved it to where he had felt the fluttering, knowing full well Stiles would probably not be able to pick up on it.

“Speaking of Baby Hale – guys, we are seriously behind on setting up the betting pool,” Erica lamented and Boyd nodded earnestly.

“Erica has been on a winning streak lately – first Noah and now the Golden Child, I’m voting for whatever she says,” he informed the pack, ignoring Isaac’s muttered “So whipped!” comment.

Erica ginned apologetically. “I’m afraid to say I have no clue at all this time. His belly looked pretty much identical with Leonie and Noah and now it’s all different, so I can’t really use the boy-belly vs. girl-belly-shape indicator,” she said and Derek shrugged.

“Stiles thinks it’s a girl if that helps,” he said and Scott grinned.

“Girl it is then, have to support my bro,” he decided, while Allison shook her head.

“Boy, definitely boy. Your belly is all low like mine was with Alex,” she mused and Derek snorted.

“You mean that tiny little ball under your shirt you kept telling us was a full-term pregnancy belly?” he said good-naturedly and Allison shrugged.

“You know Derek, those who constantly talk about their weight are actually aware that they are completely fine and just fishing for compliments. Those who really do have a weight-issue know better than to draw attention to it,” Lydia said firmly, her hands planted against her hips.

“And besides,” Cora spoke up, grinning devilishly around her straw as she suckled on her Mango-Daiquiri.

“My esteemed brother in law seems to be – uhm – quite enamored with the suppleness of your butt lately. I normally wouldn’t point it out but I do stay at your house sometimes when I’m around and I have werewolf hearing and I’ve been – hearing things. Which, in case you can’t tell, is my subtle way of saying keep it in your pants when I’m around.”

Derek and Stiles blushed.

“What should Daddy and Papa keep in their pants?” Leonie asked from where she had been sitting on the other end of the living room and entertaining Alex in his bouncer and the adults flinched, once again having forgotten there were children with supernatural hearing abilities in the room.

“My phone. So we can always call Auntie Cora if Leo-Pie wants to talk to her,” Stiles said quickly, giving his sister-in-law a dark look.

“Oh,” Leonie said and Stiles turned around in relief, only to close his eyes in resignation when Leonie realized the flaw in his explanation.

“But if Auntie Cora is already around we don’t need to call her?” she frowned and Derek grimaced.

“Keys are in pants,” Mikey added helpfully from where he had been sitting next to Leonie but Leonie dismissed his input with a surprisingly elegant wave of her hand.

“Keys don’t make noise. Auntie Cora wants Papa and Daddy to keep something inside their pants that makes noise.”

She frowned before her eyes lit up with excitement.

“Do you mean the baby? Babies make noise! Daddy! Do you have a baby in your belly, too?” she asked excitedly and Stiles shook his head firmly.

“No Leo-Pie. Daddy can’t have a baby in his belly,” he said, ignoring the snickering around him as the pack apparently relived the magical-ass-baby-pregnancy episode yet again.

“Are you sure?” Leonie asked seriously, getting up and walking over to the couch to crawl on Stiles’ lap. Stiles’ eyes widened in horror when Leonie tucked his shirt up, her eyes flitting back and forth between his and Derek’s stomach.

“Maybe a tinier baby?” she suggested and Stiles groaned in embarrassment when Scott started laughing.

“Is that your way of telling me I’m getting fat daughter?” Stiles moaned through his hands and Derek poked Leonie’s shoulder with a frown.

“That’s not a nice thing to say Leonie. We don’t go around telling other people what they look like if we don’t have something nice to say!” he said sternly and Leonie looked even more confused.

“But having a baby in your belly is nice, right? Auntie Erica says you are sparkling and sparkles are nice, right?” she continued and Derek gave Erica, who was whistling innocently and hiding behind Boyd’s massive back, a very wounded look.

“Having a baby in your belly is nice, but just because someone has a rounder belly, that doesn’t mean there is a baby in there and if you tell them that, they might be sad,” Derek tried to explain, ignoring Stiles’ startled yelp when he tried to pull his shirt back down to hide the little belly he had grown during the Couvade-Disaster.

Leonie still looked like she wasn’t a hundred percent convinced but had apparently decided to let it go, staring at Derek’s pants with renewed interest.

“But if it’s not a baby then why did Daddy say ‘Give it to me baby’ last night? Did he try to steal the baby from your belly because he doesn’t have one?” she asked, looking around in confusion when half of the pack exploded with laughter.

“I told you it was too loud,” Cora gasped between fits of laughter and Derek looked absolutely mortified, while Stiles had apparently decided to play dead possum, having flopped over on the couch and hiding his face in his hands.

“Daddy is silly, don’t your remember?” Derek said helplessly and Leonie shrugged as if that was a given.

“I know! Everyone knows papas can’t give you a baby, the unicorn gives you a baby if you are nice,” she explained, again looking confused when Erica began to wheeze and Cora started crying.

“Unicorn! Did the unicorn give Alex to Mommy?” Mikey asked Scott and Scott blushed.

“Of course it did,” he said helplessly and Leonie looked at him in excitement.

“Was it a blue unicorn? The unicorn that poked Julia was pink! Papa, what color was the unicorn that poked you?” she asked excitedly and Derek wondered if it was possible to actually sink into the floor when Cora muttered, “I’d bet it was nice, red, and shiny” under her breath.

“Jackson has created a monster,” Lydia sighed when Derek resolutely stood up and pulled a gum wrapper out of his pants, thanking every deity he knew for his recent almost obsessive need to chew peppermint gum.

“Gum!” he said desperately, waving the wrapper in front of Leonie’s nose.

“Auntie Cora doesn’t want Daddy and me to chew gum late night at night because she doesn’t like the smacking sounds. Therefore, we have to keep the gum in our pants,” he explained, studiously ignoring his chortling Betas in the background.

“Ah!” Leonie said, understanding dawning in her eyes.

“That makes sense!”

Stiles was still hiding his face inside the couch cushions when his daughter had gone back to tickling Alex in his bouncer and when Derek sat back down he flashed him a pained smile.

“Can we please have another human baby? One child with super hearing is emotionally scarring enough,” he pleaded and Derek, who was still blushing slightly, rested his hand against his belly with an almost apologetic expression.

He really wasn’t a hundred percent sure if he was carrying a boy or a girl – although he was beginning to have his suspicions – but he was confident that it was another little werewolf.

 

===============

 

May 2030 (20 Weeks)

At the end of Derek’s 20th week of pregnancy the baby’s kicks had become strong enough that his mate and his children could feel them from the outside and the baby, apparently a little soccer-player in training, was using every possible opportunity to show off, much to Derek’s chagrin, who didn’t remember either Leonie or Noah being that active this early.

Leonie was excited whenever she could feel the movement under her hands, Noah was more confused than anything, although he finally seemed to understand that Derek’s belly was moving because there was a little baby and not a doggie in there, and Stiles kept giving him teary-eyed smiles, part happy and part wistful.

He had called him out on it the other day and Stiles had flushed red in embarrassment.

“It’s just … I’m already sad that this is going to be the last times that I get to feel our baby move through your skin,” he had admitted and Derek had smiled in understanding.

“I know. I’ll miss it, too, but as you well know, a pregnancy normally leads to a baby, which will then grow up to be a child and we agreed that three children are enough,” he reminded his mate gently.

“I know, I know. Don’t worry. I just love to see you pregnant with my child, I can’t help it,” Stiles had said softly and Derek, who loved being pregnant with Stiles’ child just as much, had kissed him passionately.

Now that he was no longer in danger of fainting all the time he was actually feeling good, almost better than he had had with Leonie or Noah at this point in the pregnancy.

In retrospect Derek was almost certain that a large part of his discomfort with Leonie had been caused by an always-underlying fear of the situation, not knowing what to expect and suddenly feeling like a stranger inside his own body. Of course his attention had also not been occupied by two active children, allowing him to constantly listen to his body’s signals.

His back had begun to bother him again though, not really a surprise given the substantial amount of extra weight he was carrying this time – a fact that continued to baffle him. He had almost no cravings this time around and he was eating normally, but the weight still piled on – well, he was being overdramatic, if it had been that bad Melissa would have already stepped in – but still, after two pregnancies with a perfectly-shaped round belly sticking out to the front and a firm butt Derek was a little miffed about his expanding butt and broadening waistline-situation, no matter how often Stiles started salivating at the sight of it.

His mate, who just couldn’t stay away from Old Wives’ Tale websites it seemed, was more certain than ever that the extra weight was a sign for their third child being a little girl and one night, when Derek was taking a bath, Stiles poked his head inside the bathroom after he had put the children to bed.

“Room for one more?” he asked, wiggling his eyebrows suggestively and Derek laughed.

“If you promise to keep your hands to yourself – anything else is really not going to work in this small space,” he said and Stiles, who was already half-way undressed, chuckled.

“I’m keeping them above the waistline, I promise,” he said, rolling his eyes fondly when Derek asked him which waistline he was talking about exactly.

After Stiles had climbed in behind him Derek relaxed against his mate’s chest, snorting softly when Stiles’ interpretation of keeping his hands above the waistline immediately turned into what Derek could only describe as enthusiastic nipple play.

“Keeping your hands on a body-part that is currently a direct link to below my waistline is off-limits as well,” he moaned softly and Stiles gently bit into his earlobe before he moved his hands further down to rest them against the sides of Derek’s belly under the water, his fingers stroking lazily.

“I hear breast massages are excellent preparation for nursing,” Stiles defended himself and Derek sighed.

“How about you don’t exhaust your breast-massaging skills until they actually make their appearance again,” he suggested and Stiles laughed.

“I did pick you up a beautiful nursing bra the other day – it has Batman on it,” Stiles proclaimed proudly and Derek let his head thump back against Stiles’ shoulder with a groan.

“You didn’t,” he said exasperatedly and he could feel Stiles’ grin against his cheek when his mate chuckled.

“I so did. It’s kick-ass, our baby will become a popular culture expert before it can even talk. Parenting win!” he grinned and Derek sighed.

“You realize you just condemned yourself to going bra-shopping with our daughter when that becomes an issue, right? Since you seem to be so excited about purchasing bras,” he said and Stiles shuddered behind him.

“No way, you promised to take care of the scary parts!” he protested and Derek grinned.

“I promised to talk to her about menstruation – it’s only fair if you take her bra-shopping.”

“But Derek!” Stiles whined, his hands now resting on the crest of Derek’s belly, “I’ll just end up traumatizing her. As a good papa you can’t put her through that!” he said and Derek shook his head.

“I have never bought a bra in my life, it was either you or Melissa, so nope, you’ve got more experience.”

“Then why can’t Melissa do it?” Stiles lamented and Derek snorted.

“Because it would be more traumatizing for our daughter if her daddy loses his shit over her growing up and developing secondary sex organs? If we turn it into a taboo topic she’ll just feel all the more inclined to experiment,” Derek mused and Stiles shuddered again.

“Did I say this little one is a girl? I’ve changed my mind. I’m not even sure I’ll make it through our daughter’s puberty, I can’t handle a second girl,” he said and Derek laughed.

“Our second daughter would have a seven years older sister whom she’d probably be much more comfortable with concerning these topics, so it’s all the more important that we don’t mess up with Leo-Pie,” Derek explained gently and Stiles exhaled in relief.

“That’s right, I forgot about that. Alright baby, you can be a girl again, Daddy’s got it covered,” he grinned, gently pressing his hand below Derek’s navel and rubbing slowly.

“You seem very sure that it’s a girl but you do realize we could be having another boy, right?” Derek asked carefully and Stiles chuckled.

“You sound as if you’re afraid I’m going to have a breakdown if the kid comes out a boy. Don’t worry Papa Wolf, I would love to have another son. Leonie would boss both of them around and they’d grow up to be very respectful and polite young men. Also, I think Noah would be an excellent big brother to go to for girl advice and just any advice in general. To be honest, I think Leo-Pie will end up going to her little brother for advice when they are both older, as well.”

Derek laughed quietly.

“You might be on to something there. She’d definitely be able to handle two little brothers.”

“I would just hope he wouldn’t look like a mini-you. We’d have to set up a security system to protect him from teenage girls gone wild,” Stiles mused and Derek laughed.

“You really, really glorify my teenage years a bit too much,” he teased him gently and Stiles snorted.

“You just have to say that to make me feel better.”

Derek rolled his eyes.

“Moving on,” he decided and Stiles kissed his temple before he resumed his gentle rubbing.

“I would like to know what we’re having though. Still no papa-instinct?” he asked and Derek shook his head.

“Some days I think you are right about it being a girl and some days I’m sure it’s a boy. I have no clue, really,” he confirmed and Stiles laughed.

“You know what that means, right? We have to come up with a boy and a girl name!” he said excitedly and Derek shuddered.

“No Twilight,” he said warningly and Stiles playfully nipped at his neck.

“I got that message, loud and clear. No Jacob John for this daddy,” he said regretfully.

“I do think I should have final say on the name this time though. You essentially chose Leonie all on your own and Leonie chose Noah’s name. It’s about time my input actually carries weight in this house,” he teased and Derek twisted his neck to kiss his mate’s chin affectionately.

“Not Bratumil,” he decided and Stiles laughed.

“He’ll be called Bratwurst for life, come on Derek, I’m not that cruel.”

“We could do it like Jackson and Julia did it,” Derek suggested absentmindedly and Stiles nodded excitedly.

“I think that’s actually a good idea. I can think of girls names and you can veto and you’ll think of boys names and I can veto. Of course you can also think of girls names and if I think of an awesome boy name it’s not like I’m going to be silent on the subject, but I do think it would be good to delegate,” he said and Derek chuckled.

“You’ll think of girls names?” he asked and Stiles nodded.

“Absolutely. First of all, we both know I’ll just keep pushing Jacob John until you’ll tear my head off and secondly, as I keep saying, I totally know it’s a girl so why would I waste my valuable brain power in thinking about boys names?” he grinned and Derek snorted.

“Sophia then?” he asked and Stiles shook his head.

“Nah – it would just feel like I’m rehashing a rejected option. I’ll come up with something good,” he promised and Derek chuckled.

“I don’t doubt it,” he said, closing his eyes and relaxing his shoulders.

“What about you? Any boy names you like? It’s not like we ever actually seriously talked about boy names before,” Stiles said and Derek shrugged.

“I’ve been thinking about that a lot actually,” Derek admitted, gently rubbing his side when their child bumped against it.

“I think I would like something classic, like Nathaniel or maybe Samuel?” Derek continued and Stiles laughed quietly.

“You hypocrite wolf. I vote Samuel, then we can call him Sammy like on Supernatural,” he said and Derek shook his head.

“If we’ll call him Sammy, it’ll be because of him being cute and adorable and not because of some fictional giant with sloppy hair,” he said and Stiles kissed his head.

“Seriously though, I like Samuel. I’m not going to veto that if you were to actually suggest it. Nathaniel … I don’t know, that could easily be shortened to Nate and Nate Hale sounds … weird. Besides, then we’d have Nate and Noah and that just looks unoriginal,” he said.

“Samuel then,” Derek said and Stiles made a surprised noise.

“That easy? We haven’t even really argued yet,” he said skeptically and Derek shrugged.

“I like it, you like it, why should we argue? I’m sure there’ll be plenty of discussions once you start presenting girl name suggestions to me. Also, don’t forget that our son still wants us to call the baby Lassie and I’m certain we haven’t heard the last of Spongebob yet either,” he said and Stiles chuckled.

“Well it’s not going to be a name starting with L or N, we already have those, which, I might add, is also another reason against Nathaniel, apart from the fact of course that Nathaniel sounds like a wise old men with a beard and I think Noah’s got that part covered already.”

He scratched his nose in thought.

“I know I was opposed to Lilly, but there are some pretty flower names for girls,” he mused, gently poking Derek’s arm when his mate started snorting.

“Oh come on, I’m not going to suggest something like Chrysanthemum or Coxcomb, but you have to admit that Dahlia Hale would sound really pretty. I also really like Orchid!”

Derek took a deep breath and then sank down until he could submerge his head in the water, shaking his head in resignation.

“You don’t really have to drown yourself just because you don’t agree with a name, you know?” Stiles said, sounding a little miffed when Derek came up for breath.

“I know. I just thought it was more polite than saying “You are out of your freaking mind”,” Derek muttered.

“You are no fun,” Stiles lamented and Derek shrugged.

“Just put more effort into it next time and don’t suggest something that sounds like “Our Kid”,” he suggested sweetly.

“Oh I’ll show you effort alright,” Stiles grinned against his head and when his mate’s soaped-up hand disappeared under the water, Derek bit back a moan.

Stiles’ baby-naming efforts definitely needed improvement, but his hand job efforts were as flawless as ever.

 

===============

 

June 2030 (25 Weeks)

“How old do you have to be to have a baby?” Leonie asked over dinner one evening and Stiles spat a mouthful of water all over the table, accidentally hitting Derek in the face.

“What?!” he gasped, staring at their daughter in horror while Derek reached for a napkin and wiped off the spit and water with a very annoyed look.

“Lizzie from school is going to be an auntie this winter,” Leonie said as if that explained everything.

It didn’t.

“What does that have to do with how old you have to be to have a baby?” Derek asked her and Leonie shrugged.

“Lizzie says her parents are really mad about becoming grandma and grandpa, because her sister is in high school,” she explained further and Stiles gave Derek and alarmed look.

“You shouldn’t have babies when you are still in high school Leonie,” Derek said firmly and Leonie looked worried.

“But Papa, what if the magical unicorn finds you and tells you that you have to have a baby and you are too scared to say no, even if you are still in high school?”

She looked seriously distraught now.

“Lizzie says her parents kicked her sister out of her house, because they are so mad. What if I meet the unicorn and can’t defend myself? Are you going to be mad?”

Derek inhaled deeply while Stiles continued to gape and when it became clear that his mate was not going to contribute anything else to the discussion other than a mumbled “I’m going to kill Jackson and his stupid stories,” Derek decided to take action and – hopefully – not set himself up as a very young grandfather as a consequence.

“Leonie, baby, we are never going to kick you out of the house. I promise you. But you are not going to have a baby in high school, because we are going to teach you how to …”

“Stay away from the unicorn!” Stiles jumped in when Derek faltered, flashing their daughter an encouraging, albeit shaky smile.

“Don’t be scared Leo-Pie, there are methods to prevent you from having a baby – a chastity belt perhaps? Anyways,” he continued, ignoring the very pained cough coming from Derek’s side of the table, “when you are finished with university and have a job and a house we will be really glad to be grandparents. Right, Derek?” he addressed his mate and Derek, who was still frowning over the chastity belt suggestion, rubbed his belly with a snort, hoping to calm the child, which had been moving restlessly for over half an hour.

“How about I give birth to this baby first before we plan the grandchildren?” he said pointedly and Stiles grinned almost sheepishly.

“Good plan!”

“But when the new baby is all grown up and I’m all grown up I can be pregnant, like Papa?” Leonie pressed on and both of her fathers nodded.

“If you want to, Leo-Pie, only if you really want to,” Stiles said encouragingly.

“Daddy?” Noah suddenly spoke up, looking very serious.

“Yes Noah-Boa?” Stiles said, clearly happy to be able to move away from this conversation topic.

“Can I have a baby in my belly like Papa?” Noah continued and Stiles shook his head with a soft smile.

“No Noah-Boa, you’re human, like Daddy and daddies can’t have babies in their belly. But you can be like Daddy and that’s just as awesome! You can have a wife like little Josie who can be the mommy or a husband, like Alex, and if Alex turns out to be an Alpha, then he can be Papa and you can be Daddy,” he said, reaching out to ruffle their son’s hair and turning back to his dinner.

The baby decided to deliver a sharp kick to Derek’s ribs that very moment and he missed the sniffling coming from Noah’s side of the table.

Leonie, however, was as perceptive as ever.

“What’s wrong Noah? Why are you crying?” she asked and both Derek and Stiles turned to their son, eyes widening in alarm when they took in the large tears running down their three year-old’s cheeks.

“Noah-Boa, what’s the matter? Does your tummy hurt? Did you poke your finger with the fork?” Stiles asked quickly, getting up to check the little boy for injuries but Noah just shook his head before he began to sob in earnest.

Stiles threw a helpless look at Derek, who could only shake his head in confusion when he pushed himself away from the table and stood up slowly, a task that was quickly becoming more and more difficult.

He tried not to think about the fact that he was already waddling when he joined Stiles and Noah at the head of the table and when Noah reached for him he picked him up gingerly, ignoring the twinge in his back.

“What’s wrong Noah?” he asked gently but Noah only cried harder, pressing his cheek against Derek’s face.

Ever since he had been born Noah had always felt comfortable in the armchair Scott had bought all those years ago, whether it was snuggled into his fathers’ arms or curled up with a pillow by himself and so Derek carried him over into the living room and settled himself down, continuously rubbing Noah’s back.

“Can you tell us what’s wrong?” Stiles, who was perched on one armrest asked and Leonie crawled up onto the other armrest, her little face earnest and concerned.

“Un-unfair!” Noah wailed and Derek looked at their son in confusion.

“What’s unfair Noah?” he asked and Noah hiccupped.

“I don’t want to be a Daddy – I want to be a Papa!” he sobbed and Derek didn’t have to look at Stiles to feel his mate tense up beside him.

“Noah – it doesn’t matter whether you are a Daddy or a Papa, both are really great,” Derek tried to explain, but Noah shook his head.

“Why can Leonie have a baby and I can’t?” he sniffled and Stiles stroked his head.

“You can have a baby – just not in your belly,” he explained but Noah shook his head.

“Not fair!” he repeated and Derek sighed.

“Noah-Boa,” he said softly, cupping the child’s face so he had to look at him.

“Do you remember when you had that stomach bug last month and felt sick to your tummy for three days?” he asked and Noah nodded, his eyes puffy and red.

“If you have a baby in your belly you can feel very sick to your tummy for many, many weeks. That is much longer than three days,” Derek continued, trying his best to make pregnancy sound as unappealing as possible to their son.

“And you know how you like to run around and play? When you have a baby in your belly you can’t run around anymore and all you want to do is sleep all day. That’s not very fun, right?” Stiles added and Noah nodded shakily.

“No fun,” he agreed and Derek kissed his temple fondly.

“See? You don’t have to be sad that you won’t have a baby in your belly when you’re older,’ he said gently and Noah nodded again, before pressing his tear-streaked face into Derek’s neck.

“Papa?” a soft voice spoke up and Derek internally cursed himself for temporarily forgetting about Leonie.

“I don’t have to have a baby in my belly, right? If it’s not fun?” she said worriedly and Stiles laughed quietly.

“Don’t worry Leo-Pie. You don’t have to, if you don’t want to.”

“Okay,” Leonie decided before climbing onto the armchair as well and snuggling into Derek’s other side.

The baby apparently felt too crowded and began to kick enthusiastically again, aiming for Derek’s kidneys this time and he groaned, pressing one hand against a sore spot below his navel to soothe the child.

“Hurts, Papa?” Leonie asked and Noah looked up in concern, one small hand pushed into the crest of Derek’s belly.

“Sometimes,” Derek admitted, deciding that Noah still needed some convincing and hoping that he wouldn’t scare Leonie off of having children forever.

“Bad baby!” Noah decided and Derek shook his head.

“It’s not a bad baby. It just wants to say hello,” he explained and suddenly both children were pressing their hands into his belly, determined to say ‘hello’ back.

The crisis, Derek decided, seemed to have been successfully averted, but he would have lied if he had said he wasn’t a bit concerned about how sensitive and deep-thinking Noah already was at age three.

 

===============

 

“Do you think we are ever going to have grandchildren?” Stiles asked later that night, when they were snuggled under the covers and Derek shrugged.

“I would hope so. But not while our children are still in high school,” he remarked and Stiles shuddered.

“Do you think we’ve got Noah convinced that having a baby in your belly is not all it’s cracked up to be sometimes?” he continued and Derek laughed quietly.

“I would estimate that I’m going to be the size of a house by the time this child is ready to be born, if that won’t turn him off of the idea I don’t know what would,” he said and Stiles grinned.

“We could always have them with us for the birth, that would probably take care of it.”

Derek gave him a stern look.

“Yes, and it would traumatize both of our children in the process. I know some women have their young children in the room with them, but as far as I’m concerned seven and three is too young to see your papa scream in pain while blood is gushing out between his legs. Also, Leonie’s already been through it once, she does not need to see that again,” he said and Stiles rolled his eyes.

“I was joking Sarcasm-Resistant Wolf,” he said and Derek snorted.

“I know, just felt like pointing it out.”

They were quiet for a moment before Derek pushed himself up against the headboard and regarded his mate with a serious expression.

“You realize of course that the crying fit was most likely caused by the fact that Noah thinks it’s unfair if he doesn’t get to do something his sister gets to do and not because he was playing favorites, right Stiles?”

“I know. I know. It’s just that in moments like these I almost regret that he wasn’t born a werewolf.”

Derek sighed.

“I know. Especially because I’m almost a hundred percent sure that this baby is going to be a werewolf as well. I’m afraid he might feel left out,” he said, one finger lightly tracing the dark line running up his lower belly.

“You really think so?” Stiles asked and Derek nodded.

“Noah was a pretty good kicker, but Leonie’s kicks were much stronger and this child is definitely on Leonie’s level and not on Noah’s. I’m almost positive my body had to heal a cracked rib the other day. He or she is really active.”

“Why is this the first time I’m hearing about this?” Stiles asked alarmed and Derek shrugged.

“It felt like a broken rib for maybe ten seconds before my body started healing it. I’m actually quite glad that my healing abilities aren’t selective when it comes to broken bones, even if they are pregnancy-related,” he mused, but Stiles still looked concerned.

“If you are so uncomfortable, I want to hear about it,” he said and Derek raised his eyebrow.

“There really is nothing you can do, you know that, right?” he said but Stiles shook his head.

“I can be there for you. I can relax my schedule so I’m here earlier in the afternoon and you won’t have to deal with all three kids acting out on your own for hours before I get there,” he said and Derek smiled.

“Would you do that?” he asked and Stiles gently nudged his shoulder.

“You should have said something earlier you Stupid-Martyr Wolf!” he said gently, blindly reaching for his cell phone on the nightstand and almost knocking over a glass of water.

“We are going to ignore that bout of clumsiness and instead focus on me being competent enough to be able to switch my schedule around,” he muttered as he thumbed through his calendar.

“We don’t have any big new campaigns coming up for a while and I can totally get to work an hour earlier and then maybe delegate some tasks. We’ve got a really promising new intern whom I’ve been wanting to mentor more anyways,” he thought out loud.

“A paid intern?” Derek asked and Stiles huffed.

“Of course, what kind of slave-master do you take me for?”

“Good,” was all Derek said, before he rolled onto his side facing Stiles and closed his eyes.

Stiles rolled onto his side as well and scooted a bit closer, so he could gently stroke Derek’s protruding belly.

“Be nicer to your papa,” he mumbled and Derek’s lips curled into a smile.

They were silent for a while and Stiles’ gentle stroking had almost lulled Derek to sleep when his mate suddenly made an intrigued sound.

“Hey Derek – speaking of master and slave concepts …”

“No.”

“But …”

“No.”

“Wouldn’t it be …”

“No!”

“Can’t we at least …”

“NO!”

The last no was delivered in a threatening growl and Stiles winced when their child kicked against his hand – hard.

“Holy crap, Derek, I think I just bruised my finger!”

“Serves you right!” Derek grunted, his shoulders tense in discomfort when he rubbed the spot that the baby had just kicked against.

“Oh crap I’m sorry, that must have hurt you more than me!”

“You think?” Derek responded and Stiles resumed his gentle stroking.

“I’m sorry little one, don’t be mad at me anymore for getting your papa all worked up – even though I thought that maybe you would finally be on my side and not always on your papa’s, like your big brother and sister,” he grumbled.

“As far as discussions of masters and slaves are concerned, our children aren’t on anyone’s side,” Derek said darkly and Stiles gulped.

“Gah, now I feel like a pervert!”

“Sparkle-Sex honey. Sparkle-sex,” Derek replied and Stiles winced.

“Point taken. Derek? Do you still love me?”

“No,” Derek said, but when he rested his hand over Stiles’ to interlace their fingers on his belly, Stiles wasn’t all that much concerned.

Chapter Text

July 20th 2030 (Week 30)

It was, Derek decided, really quite remarkable how much more in tune he was with the physical changes to his body during this third pregnancy. Having gone through the motions twice before he was able to notice even the slightest difference and when he woke up on the morning of July 20th, a day projected to be the hottest day of the summer, he immediately noticed the slight soreness in his chest.

He wasn’t sure if the breasts were going to be making their appearance today, or even tomorrow, but they were definitely coming. He pushed himself off of the bed and went into the bathroom, his eyes never leaving his chest as he brushed his teeth.

Derek loved the closeness he had felt to his children while he had nursed them and he knew it was best for the baby, but still, growing large breasts overnight still wasn’t his favorite part of being pregnant.

He could hear Stiles and Leonie quietly murmuring in the kitchen downstairs, both of them really light sleepers when it got too warm and when he walked into Noah’s room to wake him up the baby apparently decided to become a somersault acrobat, its valiant attempts visible even through his light t-shirt.

“What is that Papa?” Noah asked with a yawn, staring at the soft rippling under Derek’s shirt in a mixture of confusion and fascination and Derek gently lowered himself down with a soft sigh and pushed his shirt up to show the baby’s movements to his son.

Noah’s eyes were wide as he gently pressed his hand against Derek’s stomach and Derek covered his tiny hand with his, guiding him along the wide expanse of his belly as he pointed out the baby’s head, arms, legs, and butt.

Baby Hale was definitely putting on a show for his or her big brother and Derek smiled at the look of excitement in his son’s eyes, glad that Noah finally understood the difference between a dog and a baby.

The baby was still moving by the time Noah and Derek walked downstairs and when Derek went to pour a glass of orange juice with one hand, his left hand rubbing circles into his belly, Stiles wrapped his arms as far around his midsection as he could from behind, his hands lightly following their child’s movements.

It was a quiet moment and Derek closed his eyes, allowing himself to concentrate on Stiles’ soft breathing and the feeling of contentment wafting off of his mate.

“Do I have to go to work today?” Stiles murmured and Derek chuckled quietly.

“Nah. You could stay here and melt in the heat with me and your offspring,” he suggested.

Stiles laughed.

“As tempting as that sounds, I do have to put the finishing touches on a small project today or else my boss will drown her anxieties in a bag of licorice again. She’s started to blame me for her cavities, which is really unfair, considering where she works,” Stiles grumbled.

Derek laughed.

“Yes well, I’m sure they’ll come out with sugar-free licorice that actually tastes good soon,” he said, shaking his head when his belly began to twitch.

“Maybe you should eat some licorice, I’ve read that it’s a good cure for hiccups,” Stiles grinned apologetically, his hands lightly pushing against Derek’s belly when their baby hiccupped again.

“I’ll never get over how weird that feels,” Derek mused and Stiles kissed his nose.

“Believe it or not Papa Wolf, sometimes I actually envy you just a little for being able to feel that connection to our babies,” he said wistfully, pressing a soft kiss against Derek’s lips before he bent down and kissed Derek’s stomach.

“Bye Baby,” he grinned, before moving to Leonie and Noah, both of whom received big smacking kisses on their cheeks.

“I’m going to bring home some watermelon from the market tonight, alright?” he asked his kids, and both children nodded enthusiastically.

“Some cantaloupe, too, Daddy?” Leonie asked and Stiles nodded.

“I think I can manage that Leo-Pie.”

When he could no longer hear the engine of Stiles’ car Derek sat down at the counter to finish his breakfast, listening to the chatter of the kids and wondering just how hot it was actually going to get.

The answer, in short, was very hot.

As the temperatures rose throughout the morning Derek cranked up the air-conditioning, not really surprised that his children weren’t interested in going outside.

Knowing full well that Leonie was probably going to be up at five the next morning he allowed both of them to take a nap under the ceiling fan of his and Stiles’ bedroom after a very light lunch and when they got up around 3 PM Derek felt a little restless.

He was looking for something to do when his gaze fell upon the half-finished tree house. He wasn’t about to climb up there in this condition, but he could definitely pull out some of the more scratchy looking weeds right under the platform. There was enough shade in the area to avoid a heatstroke and when he stuck his head outside he was surprised to find that it had actually cooled off a little while he and his children had been napping.

The reason why he wanted to pull out the weeds was his fear that Noah was going to have an allergic reaction to them and so he decided to do something that no parental guidebook would have ever advised – and parked his children in front of the television.

“Leonie, can you watch your little brother for me? I want to get rid of some of the weeds outside and I don’t want him to accidentally touch them and get hurt.”

Leonie nodded dutifully.

“Can we watch an episode of Spongebob?” she asked and Derek sighed.

“If you must,” he said slowly, internally cursing Stiles’ love for crappy old cartoons.

“Only one episode though, and I’ll be outside the entire time. If something is wrong call for me, I’ll hear you,” he promised and Leonie, whose gaze was already fixed on the television, nodded absentmindedly.

Not wanting to be a Stupid Wolf Derek filled up a water bottle before he walked outside and when he got to the tree house, he groaned. There was no way he was going to finish the area like he had planned, having clearly underestimated the sheer amount of weeds, but he decided to get started nevertheless, getting down onto his knees and pulling out the offending plants.

The bucket he had brought with him was quickly filling up and he had already emptied it once and was walking towards the dumpster in the shed for the second time when he suddenly heard footsteps.

Derek tensed, his eyes dropping to his belly, which, now that his t-shirt was a little sticky from the moisture in the air and clinging to his skin, was curving out in all its pregnant glory, highlighted by the light shirt.

He was ready to hide away from sight when he started to scent the intruder, relaxing just the tiniest bit.

Between the scent and the light footsteps there was no way the newcomer was older than 10, possibly even younger and therefore not very likely to go call the police – or the media – for having discovered Beacon Hill’s one and only pregnant man.

The closer the child got the more Derek could smell and all of his parental instincts kicked into gear when he sensed the fear and anxiety wafting off of the child. It had obviously gotten lost in the woods.

By the time the child – a scrawny looking little girl that seemed to be no older than 8 – walked into the backyard, Derek had abandoned the bucket, holding up his hands in greeting.

“Hey there. Are you lost?” he asked, careful to keep his voice calm and soothing and the girl looked at him with wide, terrified eyes.

She bit her lip and nodded and Derek quickly focused on the living room, relieved to note that his children were still engrossed with the television program.

“Did you come into the woods with your mommy and daddy?” he asked and the child’s heartbeat picked up, which Derek took as a sign that she had definitely lost her parents somewhere along the way.

“Can you help me?” she whispered and Derek smiled reassuringly, closing the distance between himself and the girl to see if she had injured herself.

He was almost in touching distance when he stopped, a voice in the back of his head suddenly screaming at him to be careful and he cocked his head, staring at the child in confusion.

She was very scared and upset, but there was also a different smell wafting off of her, growing stronger with every step he took towards her.

He almost couldn’t identify it at first, having never felt this emotion from a child before and if he hadn’t already been so close to her he might have been able to react in time when she raised her closed fist to her lips and blew wolfsbane powder right into his face.

He couldn’t breath or scream and when he hit the ground there were only two thoughts in his mind.

First and foremost was the blinding terror that gripped him when he realized that he was being attacked and his children were alone in the house.

Second, he had finally identified the emotion pouring out of the small girl in tidal waves – hate. Desperate, all-consuming hate.

He tried to call out to Leonie, to warn her that something was wrong, but the powder was burning in his mouth and as the pain spread throughout his entire body, Derek lost consciousness.

 

=============

 

Stiles’ day had been rather stressful to say the least. His boss had stormed into his office in a fit of panic around 3 PM and decided to rework the entire campaign, effectively destroying almost a month of hard work.

She had been unwilling to listen to reason and therefore, Stiles had decided to call it an early day, figuring that that there was absolutely nothing he could do now, at 3 PM on a Thursday afternoon.

His team had looked completely devastated, with one of them looking like he was on the verge of crying and on a whim Stiles had decided to give the entire team and himself the next day off.

He had been angry when he had marched into his boss’ office and informed her of his decision, but to his surprise she had been very excited about his innovative approach to use a long weekend to brainstorm.

Not for the first time Stiles was convinced he was working for a lunatic.

He didn’t know if any of them would actually brainstorm about reworking the campaign at home, he certainly intended to spend the weekend playing with his children and maybe their father, if he was up for it.

Stiles really hoped he would be. He had been very touchy-feely lately and Stiles was fully intending to take advantage.

On his way home he picked up the watermelon, a cantaloupe and even a honeydew melon for good measure, relieved that it was finally cooling down when he lugged the groceries into the house.

The television was on and both Leonie and Noah were curled into the armchair, looking – in Stiles’ humbled opinion – like little electronic zombies. In fact, Noah was actually asleep, if Stiles wasn’t completely mistaken.

They normally didn’t let the children watch television unsupervised so Stiles assumed that Derek had just gone to the bathroom as he put the melons on the counter and started to put away the rest of the groceries.

When Derek still hadn’t shown up to kiss him hello when he was done Stiles decided to coax his children into giving him a warmer welcome than a distracted ‘hello’ and resolutely turned the television off.

Leonie stretched like a cat and gave him a sleepy smile.

“Hi Daddy,” she said and Stiles gave her a fond smile in return.

“Hi Leo-Pie. Do you know where Papa went?” he asked and Leonie nodded.

“He went outside for the weeds so that Noah wasn’t going to get hurt,” she remembered and Stiles frowned.

Derek had no business being outside and working in this heat, regardless of the fact that it was actually cooling down and he stepped towards the window, squinting outside but not seeing him anywhere.

The door to the shed was open, however, and he figured that Derek was probably getting some additional tools.

“Can you wake up your brother Leo-Pie? He’s not going to sleep tonight if we let him sleep now, I’ll go get your Papa,” Stiles instructed her and he couldn’t help but grin when Noah started making grumpy little noises as he walked outside.

“Derek?” he called out as he walked towards the shed but there was no response and when he poked his head inside his mate was nowhere in sight.

Maybe he had gone back inside after all, with Leonie entranced by the television and Noah asleep they might not even have noticed, Stiles reasoned.

Noah was awake when he walked back into the living room and Stiles gave him a quick hello-kiss on his tussled hair.

“Derek?” he called up the stairs, only to be met by silence once again.

Derek surely wouldn’t have fallen asleep with the kids watching television downstairs, but pregnancy brain coupled with pregnancy exhaustion was a force not to be underestimated.

Still, Stiles’ heartbeat quickened slightly as he ascended the stairs and began to cheek the rooms upstairs, finding each one empty.

“Papa?” Leonie called out downstairs and Stiles suddenly felt cold. He hurried back downstairs where he was met with a very confused daughter.

“Papa said he’d be outside and he’d hear us if we’d call,” she told Stiles and Stiles took a deep breath.

“He said we were only allowed to watch one episode of Spongebog, but Daddy – we watched four.”

This time, Stiles almost ran back outside, his “Derek?” sounding much more urgent.

“Papa?” Leonie called from the back-porch, her hand tightly grasping Noah’s who was still rubbing sleep out of his eyes.

“Can you smell where Papa is?” Stiles asked his daughter, trying hard to not sound as panicked as he suddenly felt and knowing he had failed miserably when Leonie’s lips began to tremble.

“Daddy – Papa isn’t here!” she exclaimed, her eyes wide as saucers and Stiles pulled out his cell-phone, having speed-dialed Scott before he even realized what was happening.

“Stiles?” Scott’s voice came through the speaker and Stiles inhaled sharply.

“Derek’s gone!” he said, his voice sounding shaky as his eyes frantically swept their garden.

“What do you mean, Derek’s gone?” Scott repeated, sounding confused and also worried when he detected the panic in his best friend’s voice.

“I don’t know Scott. I came home and the kids were alone and he was just gone!”

“Derek would never leave the kids alone, maybe he fell asleep somewhere,” Scott reasoned and Stiles was about to reply when he suddenly felt as if all breath had been punched out of him.

He had walked past the tree house towards the edge of their property and had just been about to turn around when his eyes had caught the purple, shimmery residue on the freshly mowed grass.

“Stiles? Stiles! Talk to me! Stiles!” Scott’s increasingly frantic voice rang through the speaker, but Stiles didn’t answer, couldn’t answer, as he dropped the phone and fell to his knees, reaching out a shaking finger to touch the slightly darker looking grass right next to the powdery wolfsbane.

Someone was making a high-pitched, horrible sound and Stiles barely realized it was he when he pulled back his finger and stared at it in horror.

It was blood. And there was a lot of it on the ground – too much to convince himself that Derek was okay.

Scott was still yelling into the phone and from somewhere far away Stiles could hear Leonie yelling for Derek, but he still couldn’t talk.

How could he, when he felt like he was suffocating?

In that horrible moment, staring at the pool of Derek’s blood and knowing that his mate was gone, Stiles lost his breath. He wouldn’t catch it again for quite some time.

Chapter Text

The first sensation Derek felt when he slowly regained consciousness was pressure.

Unbelievable pressure, and it was everywhere, around his neck, his wrists, his shoulders and arms, his groin, and his belly, seemingly pulling him into multiple directions at once.

His throat felt parched and raw, a side-effect from swallowing a large dose of wolfs bane and he pressed his lips shut firmly, willing himself to fight against the nausea, even though he knew it would probably be better if he got the poison out of his system as quickly as possible.

He tried to move and found that he couldn’t and as his vision began to clear Derek realized why.

It was a situation he had found himself in before. He was hanging from the ceiling, his wrists secured with heavy silver shackles. A larger shackle was wrapped around his neck, the chains seemingly loosely attached to the wall behind him. Well, loosely in the sense that he could actually move his neck a little, unlike his wrists, which were tightly pulled away from his body, forcing him to form a wide v with his arms.

His feet were barely touching the ground, which explained the pressure on his shoulders, caused by gravity and his much heavier than usual body dragging them towards the ground and pulling at his joints.

He could smell blood and tried to look down, ignoring the uncomfortable strain against his neck, but there was no use, his large belly obstructing any view as to where he might possibly be injured.

Derek gasped as his mind was suddenly flooded with memories. He was pregnant; he had children, children, who had been alone inside the house when he had carelessly allowed himself to be fooled by – a little girl.

He concentrated, some of the tension evaporating when he could hear the baby’s steady heartbeat. The child was calm and Derek tried to anchor himself to his baby, trying to draw strength from the fact that it was alive and from what he could tell unharmed and he took a deep breath, tensing once again when he sensed someone approaching.

His vision was still a little blurry from the poison, but he didn’t think it mattered much, since he was certain he did not recognize the man who had stepped into the room. A harried, grim looking woman and the little girl, who still looked terrified, but also full of hate, followed him and Derek tensed even further when the woman disappeared from his line of vision and stepped around him.

Her intentions became clear even before she pulled on the chain securing his neck and his head snapped back as the pull forced him to tilt his neck back, crying out in pain when what felt like a blunt knife was suddenly driven into his thigh.

The pain cleared his vision instantly and he was not surprised to discover he wasn’t healing, the throbbing pain suggesting that the knife had been dipped into wolfsbane.

Derek hissed, desperately pleading with his baby to not be a werewolf after all, even though he knew deep in his heart that it was.

He had been rather ambivalent on the question of whether the child was human or not, but in that moment he desperately wished it was human, certain that the amount of wolfsbane in his bloodstream was reaching dangerous proportions for the unborn werewolf.

“Hello Derek!” his captor suddenly spoke up and the pressure on his neck eased, allowing him to get a good look at the man and the woman, who had stepped around him again and was raking her eyes all over his body in open disgust.

“I thought that was going to get your attention! Delightful! You see, I had originally planned to wake you up with a stab into that impressive gut of yours, but then my lovely lady pointed out that Kate used to mock you for how sensitive you were on the inside of your thighs, how eager to beg and fall apart under her hands whenever she touched you there and I thought well, why not hurt you there instead. I mean, don’t get me wrong, it would be a shame not to plunge my knife into that fat gut at some point, but I have always had a soft spot for poetic justice!” he beamed at Derek and Derek instinctively tried to curl himself around his vulnerable belly, a low whine escaping his throat when it became clear that there was no way he could protect the baby.

“Who … are … you?” he rasped and the man, who seemed to be in his mid-forties and had light blonde hair and a reddish beard, smiled politely.

“Oh, pardon me, my manners. It is as if I had been the one to be raised by wolves. Allow me to introduce ourselves. My name is Brian. Brian Walter Montgomery III, at your service. This beautiful flower is my fiancé Katherine and this cute little bug answers to Jennifer. We don’t know if that’s her real name, she doesn’t speak much, but she looks like a Jennifer, don’t you think?”

He smiled fondly at the girl before directing his attention back to Derek, who was fighting to ignore the pain shooting throughout his leg from where the knife was still stuck inside his muscles.

“You are probably wondering why you are joining us today and I’m sure you have already jumped to some conclusions, so allow me to shed some light on the situation you are currently finding yourself in.”

He still sounded as if he was trying to sell a vacuum cleaner or something similar to Derek and Derek fought the urge to growl, aware that it would only make this situation worse.

“You see, twenty years ago I was just getting into the hunting business and I wasn’t sure if I could stick with it, you know, the constant threat of death and dismemberment was rather off-putting for me, but then I met her. The blonde, blue-eyed goddess of hunting – and she changed my life!” He smiled fondly.

“Ah, I know what you’re thinking and I’m sorry to say that no, I never got it on with Kate Argent, but oh Derek, I wanted to! Believe me, I would have, had she not been so focused on her plan to destroy your family. And she succeeded so beautifully, too. You should have seen her when she came to me that day, eyes glowing like a thousand fires and so beautiful in her triumph! She was a vision and from that moment on all I wanted was to be with her.”

He smiled wistfully.

“She never did make me hers, but Derek, she was going to. There were hints! And they were getting stronger. She all but promised me she would the day I was hurt on a hunt and had to spend time in the hospital. We had been hunting together for years and when she said goodbye to me that evening she told me she had to go back to her hometown for a little while, but that I was in for a surprise when she got back.”

His jovial smile suddenly vanished, replaced with a murderous glare.

“I never got that surprise Derek. Do you know why? Because you killed her! You and the last pitiful member of your fucking family! I wanted to come cut you in half myself but the shock was just too much. I don’t remember anything for a while after that – you see, the shock of losing Kate sent me straight to a mental asylum for almost 15 years. That’s 15 years of my life I will never get back and it is all because of you!”

He glared at Derek, who couldn’t help but shrink back from the manic glint in the man’s eye. Whoever had deemed him fit to leave the hospital had clearly made a big mistake.

“When I felt like I was finally myself again I decided that I had waited this long, I could wait a little longer. I know about that stupid little new code the surviving Argents have introduced into hunter circles. They are a disgrace to all of us! I had to be careful, lay low for a while so as to not give myself away. You wouldn’t believe how many of us they convinced with that new, hippie peace and love-approach!”

He gave the woman next to him a gentle smile.

“Then I met Katherine, beautiful and fierce like my beloved Kate. It was meant to be Derek, I’m sure you understand that. She had no patience for sparkles and rainbows either and we decided to hunt together, to practice our technique until we felt we were strong enough to take you out. And then we found Jennifer,” he grinned, pulling the little girl closer and stroking her head.

“You see, Jennifer here is deeply traumatized because four months ago she saw her family being ripped to shreds by a rogue Omega. We barely got there in time to save her. So what do you think she said when we asked her if she wanted to help us kill the Alpha who had set that Omega on her family? She said ‘Yes please’.”

He laughed quietly and Derek’s insides’ churned, his heart going out to the child despite the fact that she had most likely condemned him and his unborn baby to die.

“We are going to raise her, me and Katherine. Katherine cannot have any children because of a deep slice to her abdomen by a werewolf a couple of years ago and now we can finally have the family she has always wanted. Isn’t that lovely Derek? I know you don’t know what it’s like to be raised as a hunter, but one of the first things Katherine was taught was how to torture a werewolf once you had caught him. It gives you so much incentive to learn how to hunt them down, if you know all the fun you can have with them afterwards, you know?” he grinned at Derek as if Derek was his best friend and Derek felt even more nauseous.

“Katherine,” Brian said pleasantly and Katherine disappeared from his line of vision again, the pressure on his neck once again intensifying as she pulled on the chains.

“A necessary precaution Derek,” Brian explained, as he stepped up and slowly drew the knife out of his thigh, before using it to slice his shirt open, pulling at the scraps until Derek’s torso was completely exposed in front of him.

“I can’t have you snap at me now, can I. Not that I think you could, but you are an Alpha and it’s better to be safe than sorry, although …”

He trailed off, his gaze fixed on Derek’s belly with a mixture of surprise and disgust.

“I must say, I have never seen a werewolf let himself go as you have. I mean, look at yourself! You even have a little man-boob situation going on there! It took both of us to haul you out of that garden and we could barely even lift you onto the back of the truck!”

He shook his head, clucking his tongue in disappointment.

“Derek, Derek, Derek, I know you haven’t had to deal with hunters lately, with the traitorous Argents constantly attached to your plump, not-so-little hips there, but that is really no excuse for this kind of gluttony and laziness!” he exclaimed, sounding almost entertained as he stepped forward and forcefully poked his finger into Derek’s stomach.

“Unbelievable! A werewolf with a beer gut! I have officially seen it all!”

He shook his head, smile turning cruel as he continued to poke and prod Derek’s skin, pinching his sides and raking his nails over the protrusion.

“It’s not even all that squishy, it’s hard and swollen as if you had spent the last fifteen years in a fraternity,” he exclaimed before his right hand slapped the side of Derek’s stomach.

“It doesn’t even jiggle! Goodness gracious man, what in the world did you eat!” he exclaimed and Derek tensed his abdominal muscles as much as he could, trying to shield the child when Brian’s hand formed a fist and he punched into Derek’s stomach, making him groan as the pain bloomed inside of him and the nausea intensified.

“Got awfully pale there, big guy. Feeling a little sore right now? A little stomachache perhaps? I bet you would be, I don’t even want to know what you had for lunch before we got to you. You look as if you literally ate a small child!” Brian continued to taunt him and Derek breathed through his nose, willing himself not to throw up and – most importantly – willing the child to stay calm.

He knew it was a futile effort even before he felt the first movements, having picked up on the child’s mounting anxiety as his pain and discomfort had increased and when the baby began to kick frantically, Derek dropped his head in defeat.

It wouldn’t take the hunters long to put two and two together, the shape of his belly combined with the clearly visible kicks and movement of the baby unmistakable.

“No!” Brian exclaimed, sounding completely thrown off his game.

“Katherine! Look at that!” he breathed out and Katherine joined his side, her eyes widening in surprise before a look of revulsion and deep-seated hatred flitted across her features.

She was staring at Derek’s belly as if she wanted to rip the child right out of it and Derek suddenly realized that Brian was dangerous but she was in fact a mortal danger, both to him and the baby.

Brian seemed to realize it as well when he draped his arm around Katherine’s shoulders and comforted her.

“No, no, no, don’t you go have a breakdown on me my love. This is a good thing! Don’t you see? This way I get revenge for Kate and you get revenge for all the children you could never have!” he said gently, his eyes moving back to Derek as he bid Katherine to once again secure his neck.

Derek wanted to throw up when Brian’s dirty hands began to trail all over his abdomen, the gesture a cruel parody of Stiles’ loving touches that morning.

“Well hello there, little one,” Brian gushed at his belly, pressing his hand against Derek’s skin.

“You’ll be pleased to know that you are a very welcome surprise guest to our little party here!” Brian continued and when he looked at Derek he was genuinely curious.

“How?” he asked and Derek clamped his mouth shut, refusing to answer.

“Now that’s just rude, Derek!” Brian exclaimed, turning towards Jennifer again, who was staring at Derek with wide eyes.

“Did you see that baby-girl? The werewolf is carrying a little monster inside of him! I think it’s an Omega. What do you think we should do to the little monster?” he asked her fondly and Jennifer trembled.

“Kill it! Kill it before it can kill other mommies and daddies!” she screeched and Brian patted her head lovingly.

“That’s right baby-girl. We’ll make a great hunter out of you.”

“Not yet though,” he turned back to Derek, smiling cruelly.

“You see, we had big plans for you tonight, maybe a three to four hour torture session before slicing you in half – Jennifer has to go to bed at some point, you know, and it’s already way past her bedtime, we are responsible parents after all.”

He rested his hand against the crest of Derek’s belly, keeping it there as if he had all the right in the world to touch him.

“I’m sure you would have been a very responsible parent as well, which is why I have just decided on a change of plans. You see Derek, I know how werewolves function. You always protect your young and what would be a better way to torture you than to slowly feel your child die inside of you?”

Derek hissed when a knife was suddenly pushing into his side, groaning as the tip slid deeper into his skin and drawing blood.

“Oh no, don’t worry, that would be too easy,” Brian said conversationally as he began to drag the knife up and down, right and left and all over Derek’s belly, breaking skin as he went but never going deep enough to actually be a danger to the baby.

“I’m sure you need lots of strength to grow that baby of yours so we’ll just – make sure you have less of it. A lot less, if you catch my meaning. You see, humans can go quite a long time without food and werewolves can go even longer, I’d assume, but to go without water? Well, that’s a little different. They say it’s 3 days for a human so I would think ... maybe 6 days for a werewolf? But how long would it take for a pregnant werewolf? How long for an unborn child? Well Derek!” he clapped his hands, sounding excited.

“I guess we’ll find out! But don’t you worry, we’re not going to bore you down here, all by yourself, we’ll be back! After all, we have an eager apprentice here who is dying to see just how much pain you can inflict on a werewolf before he passes out. And we are quite creative, too, you’ll be so surprised!”

He stepped closer to Derek, his hand still ‘caressing’ the werewolf’s belly lightly.

“Until then though, I’ll do you a little favor. Call it an act of kindness, if you will. You see, you swallowed quite a bit of wolfsbane when we caught you and judging by the paleness of your skin you are still feeling a bit nauseous. We don’t want to hasten this process unnecessarily, it would mess up this little experiment, so I’ll help you – expel the poison, if you will.”

Again Derek clenched his abdominal muscles but he needn’t have worried – the first punch Brian delivered into his belly hit right into the actual stomach organ, never even touching the baby.

It took two punches into the sensitive organ, already under pressure from the baby constantly pushing against it, until Derek could feel burning bile rising in his throat and by the fourth punch he was throwing up violently, helplessly jerking against his chain as the foul, black fluid was expelled from his system.

When it was finally over he felt dirty and humiliated, but the nausea was indeed gone, replaced by a dull pain deep inside his stomach.

The child was still kicking but he sought comfort in the movements, relieved that it was still unharmed.

“You’re welcome Derek!” Brian beamed and when Derek looked up all three humans were staring at him with differing expressions of disgust and glee.

“I’m sure you’re exhausted so we’ll let you rest for now. Oh and Derek – don’t even try to howl, this basement is completely soundproof. Then again, for all you know we could be in another state right now, so yes, howling would probably just exhaust you unnecessarily so I wouldn’t do that. You’re already looking a little thirsty as it is,” Brian advised him, chuckling with mirth as he stepped away and out of the door, followed by the little girl and then the woman, who gave Derek one last look before she stepped outside and slammed the heavy door shut.

Derek collapsed into the chains, helpless against the added pull on his shoulders but too exhausted to keep himself on his toes anymore. The look in Katherine’s eyes had scared him deeply. They were dead, empty, as if she had no emotion left but hate.

Hate and revenge, Derek discovered, when he finally felt stable enough to actually look at his belly and realized that Brian had drawn the werewolf sign for revenge onto his skin with the wolfsbane-infused tip of the blade.

Derek closed his eyes, forcing himself to stay calm and almost welcoming the blackness of his mind when it came to sweep him away from consciousness.

His last coherent thought was rational, if devastating. If his mate and pack didn’t find him within the next five to six days, the child inside of him would die – and once it was dead, so would Derek.

 

=================

 

Trying to stop himself from screaming at the sight of his mate’s blood on the ground had possibly been the hardest thing Stiles had ever had to do in his life.

However, as Leonie’s worried cries for Derek had grown increasingly urgent and Noah had started yelling for him as well, Stiles had forcefully snapped himself out of it and grabbed his phone, whispering a frantic “Get here quickly!” into it before hanging up and storming over to his children.

He had even made sure to wipe his bloody finger on the back of his jeans when he had crouched down in front of them.

“Leo-Pie, Noah, don’t worry. Papa had to go away for a bit. We wanted to tell you but it was so hot today that we completely forgot. It’s going to be a surprise when Papa comes back. You like surprises, right?” he smiled at them, much too bright and much too hyper and very thankful that Leonie hadn’t mastered lie-detection yet.

Neither Noah nor Leonie looked particularly convinced and Stiles smiled even wider, wondering if he possibly looked like a madman right now.

“Why did Papa tell us that he would be outside?” Leonie asked and Stiles held her gaze as he told her that that was part of the surprise.

“Baby surprise?” Noah asked skeptically and Stiles nodded jerkily.

“Yes Noah-Boa, it’s a surprise about the baby,” he confirmed and Leonie scrunched up her nose.

“Did he visit the unicorn again?” Leonie asked slowly and Stiles nodded again, his mind suddenly filled with terrifyingly clear visions of Derek not being impaled on a unicorn horn but on a speer, or a sword, anything that could explain the pool of blood in the garden.

His heart sped up again and he could tell that Leonie had picked up on it, but before she could ask him what was wrong Scott and Jackson sprinted into the garden, with Erica, Boyd, and Isaac hot on their heels.

“Mom is coming to get the kids,” Scott yelled and Noah looked at his uncle with big eyes.

“Is it a unicorn-surprise for Grandma, too?” he asked Stiles and Stiles nodded, his face once again frozen in what he could only assume was a truly terrifying smile.

“Yes Noah, Grandma doesn’t know anything either,” he whispered and it was at that point that Jackson took over, crouching down in front of both kids and taking their hands in his.

“Tell you what kids, we are going to go upstairs now and get some clothes for Grandma’s house so Daddy can get everything ready for the surprise, alright?” he said softly, voice completely calm despite the fact that his face was quite pale, and Leonie nodded.

“Maybe we can draw the unicorn a present?” she asked hesitantly and Jackson picked her up with ease while he grabbed Noah with the other hand and situated both children on his hips.

“That’s a perfect idea, let’s go get your crayons,” he said, throwing one last look at Stiles before he carried the children inside the house.

“There’s blood,” Stiles whispered when they were gone, and if Scott’s hands hadn’t shot out to steady him he might have collapsed to the ground that very moment.

“Derek’s gone and there’s blood Scotty!” he repeated and Erica, who had inspected the puddle with Boyd and Isaac, walked back towards them, her face chalk-white and very grim.

“It’s at least two hours old and it’s all Derek’s,” she reported and Stiles made another keening sound at the confirmation of what he had known all along to be the horrible truth.

“We’ll go after him by scent,” Scott decided.

“Jackson’s going to stay with you until my mom and your dad get here and when they do Mom will take the kids and Jackson will direct you and your dad to where we can meet up.”

He grabbed Stiles’ shoulders and gripped them hard, forcing Stiles to concentrate.

“I know this looks bad but how often have we faced situations that looked bad but were really easy to solve? We’ll get Derek and the baby back, I promise!” he said firmly and Stiles gasped, the words hitting him like another punch to the gut.

“The baby … my baby, Scott, they took Derek and my baby!” he whispered, looking like he had just fully grasped the situation, and Erica shook her blonde curls.

“It was all Derek’s blood, the baby should be fine,” she said and Stiles was about to reply that that observation was in no way comforting at all when the screeching of tires sounded out from the other side of the house.

In a flash Scott was gone to explain and when he returned he had brought Stiles’ father, whose eyes were widen open as he stared at the shimmering wolfsbane powder at the corner of the garden.

“We’ll get him back son, I promise!” Stiles’ father said and Stiles began to shake even harder.

Scott suddenly cocked his head and then looked at Stiles with a serious expression on his face.

“Jackson says the kids want to say bye to you. He’s sure they are ok for now, but they really want to say bye to you. You up for it?” he asked and Stiles, who was not at all up for it but knew that he had to be up for it, nodded shakily.

His legs felt like iron as he kneeled down in front of each child and kissed their foreheads, drawing them into his arms and promising them again that Papa would be home soon.

Stiles knew what it felt like to lose a parent, he had actual first-hand knowledge of losing a parent around Leonie’s age, and when he watched his children drive away with a shaken but forcefully cheery Melissa, Stiles prayed that he would never have to see the look on Leonie and Noah’s face that had been part of the reason why his father had drunk for so many years.

Derek had to be ok – anything else just wasn’t an option.

 

=================

 

Derek wasn’t ok. He was anything but ok.

They had left him alone for the first day, hanging from the chains in the semi-dark room with no food or water and Derek had quickly stopped trying to struggle against the chains.

The silver was cutting into his skin and made him feel increasingly lightheaded and he needed all of his energy to keep himself on his toes as much as possible to minimize the strain on his shoulders, neck, and back.

He wasn’t feeling all that dehydrated yet, but he was hungry and the child was restless, obviously sensing his growing distress.

Its kicks got stronger every time Derek allowed himself to think of Stiles and he had had to bite back a cry of pain when the baby had responded to his desperate thoughts of what the hunters could have possibly done to Leonie and Noah with very sharp jab into his kidneys.

He had finally decided that if the hunters had Leonie and Noah, they would have said so already and since they hadn’t known he was pregnant it was reasonable to believe they had no idea that he had two other children.

Derek didn’t plan to enlighten them.

He drifted in and out of consciousness, the hunger more prominent each time he woke up again and on the second day it was actually painful. He was also really, really thirsty and when the door opened and Brian flicked on the lights, Derek flinched against the sudden brightness, a part of him hoping against hope that they had at least brought him water.

As if he had read his thoughts Brian held out a glass with a straw in front of him, smiling pleasantly as he waved it under Derek’s nose.

“Would you like a sip Derek?” he asked and Derek bit back a moan when he smelled the slight hint of wolfsbane.

“Ah – your sense of smell is even more heightened than I thought. An effect of the pregnancy perhaps? Well in this case, there is no sense in hiding it. Yes Derek, I let a few wolfsbane petals marinate in this water over night. It tastes quite refreshing to me, to be honest, but I’m sure you can’t appreciate the sentiment.”

Derek clamped his lips shut when Brian thrust the glass at him and his captor shook his head.

“Don’t be ridiculous now Derek, I’m not going to go and kill you with a wolfsbane overdose, have faith in my skills. You won’t even throw up from this. You’ll be in some pain, yes, and I imagine your child will not be pleased with you either, but it will rehydrate you, I promise. Now, what do you think would be worse for your baby? A tiny dose of wolfsbane to make sure you stay weakened or the continued dehydration of your body?” he asked politely and Derek closed his eyes.

The smell of wolfsbane really wasn’t strong, he would probably absorb most of it before it even entered the baby’s system, but he still couldn’t bring himself to drink something that was essentially poisonous for him and his child.

“More dehydration it is then. A choice I would argue with but well, it’s your call,” Brian decided when Derek continued to clamp his mouth shut and he sat the glass on a small table, out of Derek’s reach but not out of his sense of smell.

“Now don’t be shy sweetie, come on in!” Brian called out softly and Jennifer poked her head in, looking like she wanted to be anywhere but here.

“You have to excuse her, Jennifer is very nervous for her first big lesson in werewolf-torture. Come closer my darling, he won’t bite – anymore that is.”

Jennifer stepped closer and Brian draped his arm around her shoulders, pointing towards the shackles around Derek’s wrists.

“Now do you see that? Those are special shackles, they are electric. Werewolves don’t like electricity very much, so this is probably going to hurt our dear guest here. We are not going to use a lot of it though, we want to be careful that the baby doesn’t die yet,” he grinned and Jennifer nodded dutifully, as Derek’s eyes widened when he craned his neck to look at the shackles.

“Do you see how he’s trying to pull on them right now? It won’t work, because there’s just enough wolfsbane worked into the material to weaken him. Now watch carefully, we always need to make sure we are aware of what the werewolf is feeling, or else we won’t be able to give him more pain if he needs it. Now come here, I’ll let you push up the handle,” Brian grinned and Derek closed his eyes, not wanting to see a little girl torturing him.

When the first jolts of electricity coursed through him he screamed, not because of the pain, which he knew could be worse, but because he had felt the baby jolt violently as well and suddenly Derek was all but certain that there was no way the child could have survived this.

The fear in his scream seemed to have registered with his captors and Brian turned the machine off, looking at him with a calculating glare.

Derek’s entire body was twitching with the aftershocks and he struggled to breathe, desperately trying to find the sound of the baby’s heartbeat.

When he did his knees gave out under him in relief. The child was agitated, its movements maybe a little more sluggish than normal, but the heartbeat was still strong.

“Everything all right there, Derek? You sounded a little scared? I do hope the little one is doing well?” Brian said and Derek wanted to rip out his throat for the false display of concern.

When he refused to respond Brian shrugged.

“Alright then. Level 2,” he instructed Jennifer and this time Derek not only screamed out of fear but because of pain, certain that the veins in his throat were about to burst as he screamed and screamed and when the pain suddenly cut off without warning he started choking against the shackle around his neck, barely registering it when Brian stepped over and pulled him upright.

“Jennifer Darling, I said Level 2, not Level 5,” he admonished the girl, who looked at Derek with an expression of wild horror.

“Well, I’m sorry about that Derek, my young apprentice got a bit carried away. I trust the child is still with us though?” he said and Derek clenched his eyes shut.

The baby’s heartbeat was stuttering and he could feel no movement whatsoever and Derek forced himself to breathe normally, to direct all of his healing powers to his baby, rather than his own body and he barely noticed the sweat running down his back at the effort, barely noticed Brian stepping up to him and roughly tipping his head back before he drained the entire glass of wolfsbane infused water down Derek’s throat.

“That was really unfortunate Derek, I’m very sorry about that. Accept that glass of water as my dearest apologies.”

Because his healing powers were so focused on the child Derek had no reserves left to battle against the wolfsbane in his system and he groaned in pain when the poison twisted his stomach.

“You could think about throwing it all back up Derek, but I really wouldn’t recommend it, you desperately needed the water, especially after our little session. We will let you rest now and maybe next time Katherine and you can have a little chat. Some girl-talk, from one pregnant mom to one that never could have children,” he suggested with a large grin.

Derek, who felt like he was burning up from the inside out, paid no attention to him, desperately listening to the child’s heartbeat, which was getting stronger again.

Unlike yesterday, Derek was suddenly very glad the baby was a werewolf, because there was no doubt in his mind that without natural healing abilities even in utero, his baby would have never survived the second bout of electricity.

The pain in his stomach prevented him from passing out and he didn’t know how much time had passed before the doors opened again – it  could have been hours, it could have been a day – and Katherine came inside, twirling a sharp knife as she approached Derek with a dead look in her eyes.

“I would have come for you sooner but Brian insisted that we give you a couple of hours of rest. He was a little angry at Jennifer for disobeying his orders and felt we had to discipline her with sending her to bed without supper and then making sure she didn’t sneak out of her room to eat behind our backs.”

Katherine smiled a humorless smile.

“Brian is quite taken with the little brat, thinks we are going to be a real family. I’m going to tell you a secret Derek – I can’t stand her. She was never the child I wanted and I don’t want her near me.”

She stepped closer, the point of the knife glittering under the fluorescent light bulb.

“You can understand that, don’t you? How I would much rather have a child that I carried inside of me? Only you and your kind made sure that wouldn’t happen now, would it?”

Her tone became sharper and she pushed the knife into his belly without warning, careful only to break the outer layer of his skin.

“I imagine the protective urges must be overwhelming. I can see them in your eyes right now; how you are following the blade’s every move. You understand what it’s like to lose family, right? You know, it’s really quite interesting, the pain of losing a family you never had in the first place is almost as severe as losing actual, living family members.”

She dipped the knife deeper into his hips, driving it into the soft flesh and Derek groaned in pain.

“I could take my revenge right now. I could plunge my knife into you and cut your baby out of you, just like your kind clawed any chance of ever having a child of my own out of me.”

She looked at his belly with a critical eye.

“I bet it would live, too, as large as you are you must be close to the birth. Would it be a werewolf, I wonder? If it was, I would have to kill it immediately, but maybe it isn’t? Maybe you tricked some poor, unsuspecting human into impregnating you and creating this abomination? Maybe it would even be human. Of course I would still have to kill it, so you can watch with your own eyes, but if it was human I would probably give it a proper burial afterwards.”

She paused, looking at Derek’s belly with disgust before she slashed the knife all the way across his belly and up to his chest.

“Don’t you get me wrong Derek, I would love to do all these things to you, but Brian wants to experiment and so I’ll humor him – for now.”

She stepped away from him, seemingly ready to leave the room before she turned around again, a cruel smile on her face.

“I’ve been known to change my mind though, so don’ be surprised when you wake up tomorrow with a gaping hole in your stomach as I strangle the monster in front of you.”

After she had gone Derek’s head dropped against his arm, his breath coming in pained little gasps as his body struggled to heal the wolfsbane drenched cuts.

He had no doubt in his mind that Katherine was serious.

 

=================

 

Scott and the Betas were able to follow Derek’s scent until they reached the highway that led north, when tracking him became impossible.

Although each of the Betas tracked down every possible direction for half a day’s worth of travel they couldn’t catch a hold of his scent again and although no one wanted to say it out loud, it became more and more evident that Derek probably wasn’t even in the state anymore.

By the time they regrouped at Derek and Stiles’ home it was early in the morning and Scott once again took charge by ordering Jackson, Isaac, Erica, and Boyd to get a couple of hours of sleep, arguing that it was no use to go on a wild goose-chase for Derek while dropping from exhaustion.

While the Sheriff quietly talked to Melissa on the phone to inform her about the night’s search and ask her about tranquilizer drugs, Scott walked outside to join Stiles, who was kneeling in the grass and frantically flipping through some of Deaton’s old books.

“Stiles – buddy … you need to get some rest,” Scott said softly but Stiles shook his head.

“I need Derek to be ok, that’s what I need,” he murmured, not even looking up from the book.

Scott, who knew that he would have acted the same way if Allison had been taken, didn’t press the issue.

“What are you looking at?” he asked instead and Stiles slammed the book shut, carding his hands through his hair in frustration.

“Tracking spells, location spells, anything that we could possibly use to find Derek. It’s obvious at this point that we are not going to get a ransom note and if he’s not even in the state anymore I simply don’t know how else we could find him!” he exclaimed, voice hoarse from the lack of sleep.

Scott gripped his shoulder tightly.

“I called Danny before I came outside – if Derek still has his phone on him we might be able to track him this way,” he said and Stiles shook his head.

“Dad already did that last night – whoever took him must have smashed it, there was no signal.”

Scott sighed.

“Chris says he heard through the grapevine that a couple of hunters had passed through a town about fifty miles from here. A man and a woman with a little girl, possibly their daughter. I hate to say it, but I think it’s a pretty safe bet that he was taken by hunters.”

Stiles made a small, wounded sound.

“What do you think they will do to him if they find out about the baby?” he asked shakily and Scott closed his eyes briefly.

He didn’t even want to think about what a couple of rogue hunters would do with that information.

His eyes were heavy and he was exhausted, but he grabbed one of the books from Stiles’ stack nevertheless.

“Shouldn’t we read these inside?” he asked but Stiles shook his head.

“Chances are we might have to use the … the blood and I don’t want to waste time,” he said, his voice trembling.

Scott nodded.

“Deaton’s researching as well – between the three of us we’ll find something,” he said, trying to sound more optimistic than he actually felt.

They searched through the books until Stiles was no longer able to keep his eyes open but for once Deaton’s impressive collection offered a vastness of nothing.

 

==============

 

Derek was incredibly tired when he opened his eyes on the third day of his captivity. His arms and shoulders were burning and he felt sluggish, both because his system was still drugged up from the wolfsbane and because he was still directing as much of his energy as possible to the baby.

Its heartbeat was still steady but it was quiet, not moving at all and Derek wondered if it was reacting to his growing exhaustion.

Because so much of his energy was taken up by keeping the baby healthy he was feeling the effects of the dehydration, the little glass of wolfsbane infused water having done nothing to help. The hunger pangs had passed, though, although Derek was sure that that wasn’t by any means a good sign.

The door opened and closed again and when Derek looked up Brian was gazing at him with a contemplative expression.

“You seem to be deteriorating quicker than I thought you would. Fascinating. It’s because of the baby, isn’t it? I wonder; are your healing abilities affected yet? Well, where’s the fun in wondering, luckily for me I can find out for sure,” he mused, not even bothering to tug Derek’s head away from him when he pulled out his knife and tore it along Derek’s thigh.

“Oh Derek, I’m sorry, I think these jeans are pretty much useless at this point, all sliced up and torn as they are. Let me remove them for you,” he offered and although Derek tried to squirm away from his touch the rest of the material fell away from his body easily.

“You’re still a man then,” Brian noted, expression morbidly curious.

“Allow me one question though – where was that baby supposed to come out? Were you going to claw it out of your stomach yourself? You were, weren’t you? How – primal of you.”

His curious expression was replaced by determination and Derek did not like the change one bit.

“I would have loved to see that. To see a mighty Alpha clawing out his own insides. How could I drive you to do that I wonder? I assume you wouldn’t do if I just asked politely, would you now?”

Derek clamped his lips shut and Brian chuckled.

“You are so uncooperative, it’s really quite a shame for someone who is just genuinely trying to do some research here. Ah, one more day of no food and water and maybe you’ll agree with me that it would probably be safest for you to deliver the baby rather than having it starve inside of you.”

He crouched down in front of Derek, clucking his tongue when he looked at the gash in the werewolf’s thigh.

“Not healing. That’s a first. What is wrong with your healing powers I wonder? Derek! You aren’t cheating, are you? You wouldn’t be focusing your healing on the baby to purposefully mess up my little experiment here, would you?”

His tone had become threatening and Derek closed his eyes, concentrating on the baby as he allowed his body to heal the gash.

“That’s the spirit, Derek! Can’t have you bleed out just because you think it would be better for the child!”

He walked towards the door, turning once again to grin at Derek.

“Now rest up Mama-Wolf. I’ve changed my mind – you’re giving birth first thing tomorrow morning and it will be such a blessed event, too!”

Derek wasn’t a praying man, he wasn’t really sure which deity answered to a werewolf, if he was honest, but as the door slammed shut behind the hunter he prayed with all of his heart and soul that Stiles and his pack would get there before the next morning.

Werewolf or not, being born almost 10 weeks too early in a dirty basement would most likely kill his baby.

 

================

 

At the end of the third day without knowing whether Derek was still alive or not, Stiles was having a hard time feeling anything at all except total emptiness.

While the Betas and Scott had spent the day searching for scent-trails yet again, he had exhausted all of his energy with his children, using every ounce of strength he had to continue the deception, to act happy when in reality he felt as if the ground had been pulled away from under him.

Noah was enjoying his time at his grandmother’s and apart from a tired “Papa coming back soon?” when Stiles had put him to bed that evening he had not become suspicious yet.

Leonie, however, was another story and only years of experience had allowed Stiles to keep his heartbeat steady enough to fool his daughter, whose lie-detection skills were not fully developed yet.

She was, however, able to smell his distress and Stiles knew she had not really bought his explanation that he was sad because his boss had been mean to him at work.

“Papa should come back soon, then you won’t be sad anymore,” she had decided when Stiles had tucked her in and he had kissed her forehead softly while fighting the urge to scream.

By the time he came back downstairs he all but collapsed into the sofa and when his father sat down next to him and gently rubbed between his shoulder blades, Stiles buried his face in his hands.

“I’m very proud of you,” John said after a long silence and Stiles’ shoulders shook violently.

“What for? For not having a single-clue how to get their papa back to my children? For leaving him alone in the first place and allowing him to get taken? For feeling like I’m about to lose my mind?” he exhaled and John shook his head.

“For keeping it together for your children. Trust me – I know that being strong for your children when your partner has gone is one of the hardest things one could possibly imagine and so far you are keeping it together much better than I did,” he said quietly.

Stiles lifted his head to look at his dad, his eyes bloodshot from lack of sleep and fear.

“That sounds as if you believe Derek is already dead. He can’t be dead, I can’t … I can’t do this without him. They children need him so much more than me, I can’t … he just can’t be dead,” he whispered and John sighed deeply.

“The children need you just as much as him and if he is indeed … gone … then they’ll need you even more. I need you to be prepared for that,” he said gently and Stiles shook his head.

“How can I possibly prepare myself for that? How, Dad? You had months to prepare yourself for mom’s death and look how long it took you to crawl out of the bottle you fell into when she was gone. How am I supposed to prepare myself better with no warning whatsoever!” he exclaimed, wincing when he noticed the devastated look on his father’s face.

“I didn’t mean it like that Dad,” he said quietly and John draped his arm across Stiles’ shoulder.

“I know,” he said softly and for a while neither Stilinski said anything.

“He’s not dead. Not yet, I can feel it. We can still find him – I just don’t know how!” Stiles finally whispered and John raised his eyebrows.

“You can feel it?” he asked and Stiles tugged his collar back to reveal the tiny scar where Derek’s fangs had pierced his skin when they had become mates.

“Mate-bonded to a werewolf, remember? I’d know if he was dead,” he said and John frowned.

“I know I’m not an expert on these sorts of things but - couldn’t you use that bond to locate him, to communicate with him? Shouldn’t that be part of how the bond works?” he asked and Stiles cocked his head.

“I don’t know, honestly. Bond-magic is mostly a conglomerate of mushy soul-mate romance fairy tales,” he said, although John could tell that the wheels in his son’s brain were already turning.

“I should call Cora and Deaton, between a born werewolf and an Emissary they might have an idea if we can actually use the bond,” he said, voice growing stronger at the possibility of maybe being able to do something after all and John allowed a tiny smile to flit across his tired features when his son bounced off the couch to grab his phone, seeming more energetic than he had all day.

Melissa offered to stay with the kids when John ushered Stiles out of the door, not trusting him to drive himself to Deaton’s clinic on his own and when they got there, Scott and Cora were already pacing in front of the door.

Derek’s sister looked like Stiles felt, completely and utterly wrecked.

“I know you weren’t on good terms with him after the elephant-ear fiasco,” Cora said quietly as she ushered Stiles and his dad into the clinic, “but I had to call him, he’s family, he can help.”

Stiles couldn’t find the energy to be mad, surprised or in any way emotionally invested when he walked into the exam room and saw Peter, bent over one of Deaton’s books.

“I’ll get straight to the point,” Peter said when he spotted Stiles, for once not looking like he was on the verge of making a snarky remark.

“There is no thing such as bond-magic or soulmate-vodoo or anything like that. You are two separate people, you don’t know what the other is feeling and you can’t talk telepathically – normally. However, if one of the bond-mates is in mortal danger, it can be possible for the other mate to sense it so he or she can come to the other wolf’s rescue. It’s a very draining process and requires a lot of concentration and because you are human it might not even work at all.”

He looked at Deaton, who nodded.

“As far as I understand it, a werewolf would be able to sense its partner’s distress and then hone on to this distress with all of his or her instincts, which is how they are able to find their mate. You do not have these wolf-instincts and therefore we need to find another way through which you can lead us to Derek.”

Stiles clenched his eyes shut for a moment, his emotions threatening to overwhelm him and when he opened his eyes again his father and Cora recoiled from the wild desperation.

“Scott has to bite me then.”

The Sheriff flinched and Scott’s mouth fell open in shock.

“What? No! I’m not going to bite you.”

Stiles rubbed his face.

“I’m really not asking Scott. If being a wolf means that I will be able to locate Derek then I’ll become a wolf.”

“Stiles,” Peter said calmly, looking at the younger man with a patient expression.

“It would take at least a day for the transformation to be complete and then we’d have a new werewolf on our hands whose mate is most likely near death. You know very well how dangerous a werewolf with no anchor is. Don’t you remember what happened to Jackson? If we turn you now, when you are in such a state of wild desperation, who knows what you will become! I can smell your fear and pain wafting off of you in waves, if I was still the Alpha I would not turn you and I’m certain that neither will Scott.”

Scott nodded, his lips pressed together in a thin line.

“I’m really, really sorry Stiles, but I won’t be able to do this for you.”

Stiles’ lips started shaking.

“How am I supposed to find him then? You heard Peter! I need to become a wolf!”

“You need to think of your children – how do you think such a rash decision would affect them?” John interrupted and Stiles’ shoulders slumped.

“Besides,” Peter continued, striding in front of Stiles and forcing him to look at his face.

“My sister’s esteemed former Emissary might have found a tracking spell that would – I’m explaining this in technical terms – latch on to your bond-connection and allow you to act as a human navigation system. Am I explaining this right Doc?” he asked, turning to Deaton, who rolled his eyes slightly.

“Not really but in essence this is all Stiles has to know. I’m warning you though, if Peter and Cora show you how to make the bond-connection you might not be able to physically feel what Derek is feeling but you will know and we need you to stay focused when that happens. Can you stay focused?” Deaton asked and Stiles nodded shakily.

“I can stay focused. Teach me how to make the connection!” he demanded and Cora grabbed his hand firmly.

“I have seen this happen when I was with the pack in South America. Our Alpha suddenly went into some sort of trance and when he snapped out of it he didn’t know what had happened to his mate, but he was aware that she was in danger. She had been attacked by an Omega and our Alpha barely got to her in time. We need to put you under for a couple of minutes to recreate that trance,” she explained and Peter nodded.

“Luckily for you I have picked up some useful skills during my travels and I can put you under and pull you out of it again within five minutes while the Doc is casting the spell on you.”

Stiles flinched. Having Peter put him under hypnosis was not very high on his bucket list. Then again, neither was losing Derek.

“Fair warning though, this will only work if Derek is in mortal danger. If they’ve just locked him up in a room somewhere I’m not sure we can trigger the bond,” Peter cautioned and Stiles barked a sharp laugh.

“He was taken by hunters and he’s pregnant. You really think they invited him to tea to chat about nursery designs?” he hissed and Peter’s face fell.

Pregnant? Again?! What? Why was I not told about this?!”

Cora rubbed her hands across her face.

“I thought you knew,” she whispered and Peter shook his head, serious expression turning into deep concern.

“Well, what are we waiting for then? We have no time to waste!”

Stiles couldn’t have agreed more.

He took a deep breath and nodded.

“Alright – let’s do it.”

 

Exhaustion

Thirst

Pain

Pressure

So much pressure

Thirst

Anxiety

“The heartbeat is getting weaker”

So thirsty

Poison

Nausea

“It hurts to breathe”

“The children, what will happen to the children?”

So tired

“I can’t give birth tomorrow, it will kill the baby!”

Fear

Mate

Love

Stiles

Stiles?!

 

Stiles’ eyes were almost bulging out of their sockets when Peter brought him out of the hypnosis.

He was shaking, his face was wet with tears and his friends and family were looking at him as if they were expecting the worst.

“We need to go!” he said, turning around briskly and heading towards the door.

“Stiles! Wait! Is he alive?” Cora’s voice rang out and Stiles nodded.

“Yes. But we need to go now, before they kill the baby and them him. Now!”

“The spell I put on him won’t let him rest until he’s found Derek, he’ll be completely focused on getting to him and probably won’t register anything else,” Deaton explained as they hurried after Stiles, who had already left the clinic and was running towards the cruiser.

 “I’m calling Erica, Boyd, and Isaac and I’ll be directing them where to go, you guys can follow the cruiser in Cora’s car,” Scott called over his shoulder as he climbed into John’s car with Stiles and the Sheriff and he had barely closed the door behind him when Stiles already took off, the sound of screeching tires and the smell of burned rubber filling the air.

“What about Jackson?” Cora asked and Peter shook his head.

“Someone needs to stay and guard Melissa and the kids,” he said, before quickly striding over to Cora’s car.

“You coming? We’ve got ourselves a pregnant Alpha to rescue.”

 

================

 

Had he not been driving a Sheriff’s cruiser, Stiles would have probably been stopped for speeding at least five times during the next three hours and by the time they passed the California/Oregon state line it was past midnight and his hands were shaking against the steering wheel.

He wasn’t saying anything but every once in a while he hissed in pain and it pierced John’s heart every time, aware that now that Stiles was experiencing the bond connection the hisses could only mean bad things for Derek.

Scott was in constant communication with Cora and Isaac, who were driving the other two cars and desperately trying to keep up with Stiles as he left the highway and turned sharply onto a narrow road leading towards a forest.

When he jammed on the brakes Scott almost smashed his forehead into the passenger-seat’s headrest and he could barely grab Stiles’ jacket as his best friend attempted to jump out of the car.

“Stiles! Wait! You can’t barge in there all on your own, we need to make a plan!” he called out anxiously and Stiles blinked, his dazed expression finally clearing as the spell began to wear off.

“Derek’s close,” he exclaimed and Scott nodded.

“We’ll be able to scent-track him from here on out. Stiles, I need you to stay calm right now, ok?”

“Calm? I can sense Derek’s pain!” Stiles exclaimed and Scott sighed.

“Calm, Stiles. Chances are Derek can sense your presence as well and if you’re calm it will help him.”

Scott was pretty sure Derek could sense no such thing, but Stiles visibly made an effort to calm himself, breathing almost evenly through his nose when first Cora and then Isaac brought their cars to a stop right next to the cruiser.

“Is he here?!” Cora asked frantically as she tumbled out of the car, followed by an uncharacteristically pale looking Peter.

“He’s not far away,” Scott confirmed, his nose already trying to pick up on Derek’s scent.

“What’s the plan?” Erica asked urgently, her hand gripping Boyd’s tightly.

“I’m not going to stay here while you go rescue my husband, just so you know!” Stiles said firmly and Scott sighed.

“Boyd, Cora, and I are going to go first, Isaac, Erica, you two will stay near Stiles to make sure he isn’t harmed. Peter will go last, to make sure we aren’t attacked from behind. As soon as I can pick up Derek’s scent clearly we are going to try to get to him as quickly as possible and if we run into the hunters we’ll …”

“We’ll kill them,” Stiles finished, ignoring the pained look on his father’s face.

“Not if we can avoid it,” Scott said firmly, his hand gripping Stiles’ shoulder tightly.

“I know you want revenge right now but one of the reasons you never wanted to become a wolf was because you were afraid you were going to kill someone. I’m not letting you do that now,” he said quietly and Stiles’ face twitched.

“If they hurt my mate or my baby I’ll …”

“We won’t let them,” Cora said darkly, stepping next to Stiles and gripping his other shoulder.

“I’m not having another member of my family die a brutal death,” she continued, voice thick with emotion.

John cleared his throat.

“What’s my role?” he asked and Scott blinked.

“You’re staying here to guard the cars,” he said and John snorted humorlessly.

“The hell I will. That’s my son-in-law and grandbaby in there, I’m not sitting here and twiddling my thumbs while my son races off to potentially get himself killed.”

“Dad – I can’t worry about you, too, these people are rogue hunters and you’ve never dealt with that sort of thing before!” Stiles exclaimed.

John fixed him with a stern glare.

“Now listen to me son, I know you all think I’m not equipped for this whole supernatural thing and I’ll admit, it is a little tough to swallow at times, but if you really think that I will sit by idly and wait while you risk your life then you really don’t know me at all.”

He stepped forward and grabbed Stiles’ face with both hands, as if he wanted to shake sense into him.

“When you were eight years old I watched you lose the most important person in your life and I could do nothing to stop it. This time I can and I will help you get Derek and your baby back.”

Stiles clenched his hands into fists.

“I can’t lose you, too, Dad,” he whispered and John shook his head resolutely.

“No one’s losing anyone tonight. Now! We’re wasting valuable time standing here – let’s go!”

“Where are we going?” Isaac asked and Scott, who had walked away from the group, suddenly froze.

“This way!” he exclaimed, pointing towards a small road leading deeper into the forest.

Scott, Boyd, and Cora took off immediately, sprinting through the forest as they chased after Derek’s scent.

Erica walked up to Stiles and knelt in front of him.

“Hop on – I’m not waiting for your lazy ass,” she snarked, her bravado not concealing the nervousness in her tone.

“So Sheriff, whom would you like to ride, curly-haired boy-wonder here or me?” Peter asked with a wiggle of his eyebrows and John walked towards Isaac without a word.

“This whole family is just no fun – let’s hope the little one will have a sense of humor,” Peter sighed, before shifting into his Beta form and sprinting after the younger wolves.

They raced north for about five miles and when Erica, John, Stiles, Isaac, and Peter reached the edge of a hill, Scott, who was lying on his stomach and squinting into the darkness, held up his hand to silence them.

“His scent is really strong here, I think they took him into the clearing,” he whispered and Stiles strained his eyes to see.

“There’s nothing there!” he hissed and Scott shook his head.

“See the large rock near that tree-stump? I think it’s a bunker or hiding place of some sort, the grass looks like the rock was moved recently and I think I also see footprints. Me and Cora are going to go down there and move the rock, I need the rest of you to watch out for possible attacks,” he whispered, before he jolted over the edge, Cora hot on his heels.

Between the two of them they could move the rock easily and, like Scott has suspected, revealed a stone trap door.

“I don’t like this at all,” the Sheriff muttered as the rest of the group joined the True Alpha in front of the door.

“We are going to be utterly defenseless in the dark down there,” he continued and when Scott turned to him his eyes were flashing red.

“It’s not going to be dark,” he said, indicating for Boyd to pull the door up.

There were narrow stairs leading down into the earth and none of the werewolves had the heart to tell Stiles that the dark spots on the steps were undoubtedly Derek’s blood.

Scott went first and Peter went last as they slowly made their way inside the hideout, which turned out to be an intricate cave-system.

“This way,” Scott whispered, Derek’s scent growing stronger and stronger as they neared a heavy iron-door.

“He’s in there!” Stiles suddenly breathed, his voice rising in panic when the bond connection flared up and his vision temporarily whitened out with Derek’s pain.

“I hear two heartbeats, but one is really unsteady,” Cora gritted out between clenched teeth and Scott stepped forward to touch the door, only to hiss in pain when the iron turned out to be silver.

“Shit!” he yelped and Stiles rushed forward, pushing his hands against the locked door as if that could help open it.

“Derek!” he gasped, trembling all over and suddenly Peter’s arm shot out, grabbing his shoulders and steadying him.

“Focus Stiles! You’re a spark, aren’t you? Don’t you think opening a door would be child’s play compared to magically doubling mountain-ash?” he hissed and Stiles looked at him with an almost glazed expression.

“What?”

“Focus – open the door with your mind. I know you haven’t practiced in a while, but that’s Derek and your baby in there. I know you can do it. Focus! Slowly and deliberately!”

Stiles turned back towards the door, staring at it helplessly.

“Quick! I think I heard something!” Erica suddenly hissed and Stiles closed his eyes, breathing in deeply.

Immediately, his senses were overwhelmed with Derek, his pain and his fear swelling inside Stiles’ head like a horrible crescendo.

“Derek!” he yelled and the door blasted out of its hinges, crashing onto the ground with a loud bang.

“That was not slow and deliberate,” Peter mumbled, groaning when a heard a door slam open in the distance.

“Quick! They are coming!” Erica yelled out but Stiles had already run inside the room, a low whine building up in his throat as he caught sight of Derek.

His mate was hanging from the ceiling, arms straining from the angle, covered in dried blood and his skin looking more ashen than Stiles had ever seen it.

Cora had rushed forward, intent on freeing Derek from his shackles; only to hiss in pain when she touched the wolfsbane infused silver.

“Damn it!” she screamed, tears of shock and fury pooling in her eyes and Scott stepped past her, shifting into his Alpha form as he slashed at the iron chains with his claws, severing them from the wall and ceiling, though the shackles remained attached to Derek’s skin.

Stiles moved faster than he had ever moved in his life when Derek crumpled to the floor, catching him just before he could hit the ground.

He was unconscious but alive and Stiles’ uttered a choked sob, pressing his forehead against Derek’s for just the briefest of moments before Cora pulled at his shoulder.

“Give him to me!” she urged him, flashing her eyes when Stiles growled at her.

“Don’t be ridiculous – you can’t carry him!” she hissed and it took all of Stiles’ willpower to surrender his mate to his sister.

“They are coming closer!” Scott yelled suddenly and in a flash he was gone, tearing past the shaking Sheriff and positioning himself in front of his pack as Brian and Katherine burst into the hallway with raised weapons.

The first shot missed Scott by just an inch and the second hit Erica’s arm.

Erica yelped in pain and Boyd howled, charging at Brian when he moved towards Erica.

Katherine was aiming at Scott but before she could shoot Peter charged at her with bared fangs and extended claws.

Another shot rang out and Stiles’ blood ran cold when he identified the hoarse cry echoing through the chamber as his dad’s voice.

More screaming, this time the unmistakable high-pitched voice of a child and Scott roared as Isaac raced past him to intercept the child, who was running towards them with a rifle that looked too heavy for her scrawny arms.

He grabbed her just as she was about to shoot, wrestling the rifle out of her hands and running off towards the entrance with her.

Brian whipped around and he screamed after her, giving Boyd the opportunity to drive his head against the hard stone-wall.

He crumpled to the floor in a heap, the back of his head matted with blood and Katherine let out a blood-curdling scream that turned into a wet gasp when Peter drove his claws into her.

Her eyes bulged out of their sockets and Peter smiled at her grimly.

“You sick, twisted bitch,” he gritted out and Katherine gasped, lips turning into a cruel smirk even as dark blood began to pool at the corner of her mouth.

“Monster!” she gasped, grin widening even as she began to choke.

“Peter! Look out!” Scott, who had been perched over the fallen form of the Sheriff yelled and Peter turned towards him, alarmed look turning into a pained grimace when Katherine buried a knife that she had been hiding in her pants directly into his heart.

“Got you,” she heaved, more blood spilling out of her mouth before her eyes suddenly became vacant and her head dropped onto the floor with a loud clunk.

Peter stared at the knife uncomprehendingly before he pulled it out with shaking fingers and when he did, black blood started to ooze from the wound.

“Wolfsbane,” he gasped, sounding both terrified and surprised and when he fell forward Scott caught him, hoisting the prone werewolf over his shoulder as he raced towards the exit, followed by Boyd, who was carrying the Sheriff, a cursing Erica, who was cradling her injured arm against her chest, Cora, who was carrying Derek, and Stiles.

The first thing Stiles noticed when he shot out of the trap door and almost stumbled onto the grass was the child, who was screaming, crying, and twisting inside Isaac’s arms.

He shot a panicky look towards Boyd, who nodded jerkily, his hand pressed against the bleeding wound on the Sheriff’s thigh.

Black veins were already trailing up his arm and Erica hobbled over to her husband.

“Your dad is going to be fine, the bullet didn’t go in it just grazed him! Go to Derek!” she told him and Stiles whirled around, dropping to his knees next to Derek, who was currently lying on the wet grass.

Cora had finally managed to remove the shackles and her hands were slowly healing from the silver burns as she stared at her older brother in pain and worry.

“The baby’s heartbeat is strong but Derek is very weak,” Cora whispered and Stiles cupped his face with both hands, tears that he had so far managed to hold in spilling down his cheeks.

“Don’t die Derek, please don’t die!” he whispered and Cora pressed her hand against Derek’s chest, black veins cursing all the way up to her elbows as she poured all of her healing energy into her brother.

“He’s almost completely drained – Scott, I need help!” she yelled.

Scott, who was still holding on to Peter, turned around with a fearful expression on his face.

“I need help, too!” he exclaimed, disbelief coloring his voice when more black blood spilled out of Peter’s chest.

“Is Derek ok? The baby?” Peter gasped and Scott nodded.

“He’s going to be fine, we got him. You’re going to be fine,” he said but Peter shook his head.

“Wolfsbane-tainted knife to the heart – I’m not going to be fine,” he whispered, eyes closing when Cora let out a pained whine.

“Tell him I’m … tell him … I’m sorry. For … everything …. All that … I …” Peter’s voice grew weaker as he tried to speak and when he opened his eyes again, they were flashing bright blue.

“Laura!” he gasped, before his head fell back and his blue eyes turned back to their normal color, drained of all life.

Scott stared at the older werewolf in horror and Cora started to howl, tears coursing down her cheeks and the hand on Derek’s chest shaking.

Scott gently lowered Peter to the ground and moved over to Derek and when he pushed his hand against Derek’s stomach Cora bolted towards her uncle, flinging herself over his chest and sobbing loudly.

Stiles felt numb as he stared at Derek, wanting to comfort Cora but unable to tear his gaze away from his mate, to make sure he was still alive.

Scott was sweating as he poured all of his healing energy into Derek and though he still looked deathly pale Stiles exhaled in relief when Derek’s eyes began to flutter.

“Stiles?” he mumbled and Stiles grasped his hand, holding it up to his lips and kissing it.

“I’m here Derek, I’m here,” he choked out and Derek’s free hand twitched as he tried to lift it up to his belly.

“Claws. Wanted me to … use my claws … for the baby …” he rasped and Stiles placed his hand on his mate’s belly, careful to avoid the open wounds that were finally beginning to heal.

“The baby is fine – you are both going to be fine, don’t talk now,” he whispered and Derek strained his neck.

“Cora? What’s wrong?” he breathed and fresh tears threatened to overflow Stiles’ eyes.

“You’re going to be fine Derek,” he repeated and then Cora was at his side, eyes red-rimmed and face ashen, but she was trying to smile as she grasped Derek’s shoulder.

“Nothing’s wrong Derek, you’re fine and the baby is strong,” she whispered shakily and Stiles watched in alarm when Derek’s eyes slipped shut again.

“What’s wrong? Derek!” he yelled and Scott shook his head.

“He’s sleeping now. His body is starting to heal and it will need all the rest it can get,” he explained.

“Do you want to take Derek or do you want to take … Peter?” he asked Cora and Cora closed her eyes.

“I’ll carry Peter,” she whispered and Scott nodded in understanding.

He took off his jacket and wrapped Derek in it as best as he could before he gently picked up the other Alpha.

“He’s going to be fine Stiles,” Scott murmured reassuringly and Stiles inhaled shakily.

Tomorrow he would probably find the energy to mourn Peter, but tonight all he could feel was relief that Derek and the baby were still alive.

 

=================

 

By the time they got back to the cars Erica’s arm had mostly healed and after she had helped Cora place Peter’s body onto the backseat of Cora’s car, she and Boyd hoisted the injured Sheriff, who had passed out from the pain, into the back of Isaac’s car.

“What do we do with the girl?” Isaac asked suddenly; his arms still securely wrapped around the child, who had given up struggling and was now staring into space with a vacant expression on her face.

After he had safely placed Derek on the backseat of the cruiser Scott walked towards the Beta, inhaling deeply before he plunged one claw into the back of the child’s neck, sifting through her memories and recoiling from the horrors she had seen.

“I’m going to wipe her memories,” he decided when he was done.

“Isaac, I’ll need you to drop her off at an orphanage, possibly in another state,” he ordered and Isaac winced.

“I don’t like it,” the Beta said softly and Scott shrugged.

“She’s just a child and she’s seen terrible things, but she was also the one who lured Derek into the trap in the first place. She can’t stay with us, Derek and Stiles might be strong, but they would never trust her to be around the babies,” he explained softly and Isaac sighed.

“I still don’t like it,” he muttered, sounding unhappy but resigned as he watched Scott take the child’s memories of everything supernatural.

“Thank you,” Stiles said quietly from the backseat when Scott climbed into the driver’s seat after Isaac and the girl had taken off towards Seattle.

He was cradling Derek’s head in his lap and Scott turned around with a sad smile, gaze turning concerned when he looked at Derek.

“His heartbeat is much stronger now, but I’ll stop at any time on the drive back if he needs more of my healing powers before we reach Beacon Hills,” he said solemnly and Stiles nodded.

“The baby?” he asked and Scott smiled.

“That baby is one tough little nugget,” he said softly and Stiles placed his right hand on top of Derek’s stomach, while his left hand kept stroking Derek’s hair.

“It’s no wonder – it takes after its papa after all.”

Chapter Text

In the days after Derek’s rescue from the rogue hunters and Peter’s subsequent death Stiles found out what it was like to feel bone-deep exhausted and manically energetic at the same time.

Lydia had come home and offered to take care of Peter’s affairs – few though they were – so that Stiles could focus all of his energy on Derek and the children.

Stiles had never loved her more.

When they had gotten back to Beacon Hills that night Melissa had hooked Derek up to a makeshift IV that she had swiped from the hospital for werewolf-related emergencies and the combination of rehydration and Cora and Scott’s constant healing touches had quickly restored color to Derek’s face.

They had all assured him that the baby’s heartbeat was strong and that Derek would be just fine, but Stiles had been scared, scared of what would happen when Derek woke up and remembered everything about the past four days.

Derek slept almost 16 hours that day and when he finally opened his eyes in the early evening and took in Stiles’ worn but loving face, the baby’s strong heartbeat, and the familiar surroundings of their bedroom, it had taken barely a minute for big, rattling sobs to shake his frame.

Stiles had held him for hours, kissing his face, his hands, his neck, everywhere he could reach, his hands never leaving Derek’s belly.

It was as if all the fears – about the baby, Leonie and Noah, his mate – that Derek had bottled up during the ordeal were rushing out of him all at once, and Stiles had never hated Derek’s ability to pick up on lies with a near 100 percent accuracy more when his heart skipped at Derek’s question if everyone was alright.

Stiles had seen and heard Derek cry for a variety of reasons during their almost 18 years together.

He had seen his eyes fill with tears of happiness at their wedding, he had seen happy tears flowing after their babies’ births and his heart had swelled every time he had caught Derek wiping away secret tears while watching their children.

It did not happen often, but Stiles cherished every single one of these moments.

He had also heard him cry out in pain and fear and it had pierced his heart every single time, regardless of whether it had been during an attack or during the birth of their babies.

He had felt himself being torn in two as he had tried to comfort Derek while he was reliving the past four days, but the sounds of grief tearing themselves out of his mate after he had learned about Peter’s death and his last words didn’t just pierce him – he felt like he was shattering into a million tiny pieces.

No one he loved should ever make sounds like that, especially not Derek, and he held him, long after the distraught werewolf had fallen asleep in exhaustion, trying to convey his love and support through every touch, movement, and heartbeat.

Derek’s cries of grief had not just been for Peter but also for Laura, for his entire family, his mother …

I didn’t seem to matter how long ago it had been, the wound was always there, and sometimes, when the band-aid covering it got ripped away brutally, the pain was gaping and fresh like it had been at the beginning.

Stiles, who sometimes looked at his children and felt like doubling over when he imagined his mother teaching them how to sing and dance, knew how brutal it was.

There was nothing he could do about it except being there, shouldering it with his mate.

He hoped it would be enough.

 

==================

 

Stiles, it turned out, was not the only one shouldering the pain with Derek. Instead, he had enthusiastic help from Leonie and Noah, who despite being completely clueless about the gravity of the situation, managed to instinctively give their father exactly what he needed for his healing process.

Derek had asked for them when he had woken up the next morning and since he seemed to be almost physically recovered – thanks to more werewolf healing jumpstarts from Scott – Stiles hadn’t seen a reason to deny him.

When the Sheriff, who, despite Boyd and Erica’s best efforts at pain-leaching, was still limping and cursing under his breath, had brought the children over, Leonie and Noah had crawled onto the bed with Derek and snuggled into his side immediately, telling him all about the fun they had had at their grandma’s house and smiling at him as if they wanted to power a small reactor.

Stiles had wrapped his arm around his father’s shoulder as he watched them, both to offer him support for the wound in his leg and in silent triumph that they had managed to keep the children away from all the drama that had occurred in the past couple of days.

For Leonie and Noah Derek had indeed been gone on a surprise trip for the baby and even though he was not a werewolf Stiles could see the tension bleeding out of his mate as it became clearer and clearer that all of his worries about his two oldest had been unfounded.

Stiles had tensed up when the children had started asking questions about the baby and how much longer they had to wait for it and Derek had held his gaze steadily when he had assured them that the baby was fine and that they still had two more months to go.

He wanted to believe him, he really did, but Derek’s constant exposure to wolfsbane during his captivity had Stiles deeply afraid for the health of their little werewolf baby.

Derek finally felt strong enough to get out of bed the next day and Stiles did not protest when he insisted on attending Peter’s funeral the following evening.

Scott and Cora had buried Peter the day after the rescue, but they had waited to have a small ceremony at the grave until Derek was physically able to attend.

They had left the children with Melissa, all except Leonie, who actually had memories of Peter and Derek and Stiles had each held on to one of her little hands as she stared at the grave, looking pale and sad.

Derek and Stiles had discussed her presence at the funeral for over an hour the night before and Stiles had finally relented, accepting Derek’s opinion that Leonie would resent them later on when she was old enough to realize that they had robbed her of the chance to say goodbye to an uncle that she had never known to be anything other than fun and loving.

Stiles envied Leonie a little.

She was the only one who did not have conflicted emotions towards the deceased, the only one who didn’t feel guilty about not being able to mourn him without constantly thinking about what he had done.

His apology for his role in Laura’s death had been a long time coming and Stiles was grateful that it had come before it was too late and while his gratitude to the man was almost overwhelming, since he had been essential in uncovering the tracking spell, he was not sure if Derek would ever be able to forgive him for killing Laura.

Derek wanted to, he could see it in his face and especially in his tormented eyes as he stared at the graveside, but wanting and actually being able to do something were two completely different things.

“I’m grateful,” he whispered to Stiles when they were lying in bed that night, spooned together as close as they could.

“Maybe the gratefulness will eventually outweigh the bitterness,” he continued softly and Stiles tightened his hold on his mate, his nose pressed into the crook of Derek’s neck.

“We’ve got a lot of things to be grateful for,” he responded, his hand lightly stroking across Derek’s side and Derek inhaled shakily.

“I love you,” he murmured and when Stiles – whose emotions completely steamrolled him at the thought of what he would have possibly done if he had never heard Derek say those words to him ever again – began to cry silent tears into Derek’s skin, his mate turned around to hold him.

He held him for a long time.

 

==================

 

August 15 (33 Weeks)

Stiles was nervous when he drove home from work that day. He and Derek had decided a while ago that Stiles would take half a year of paternity leave after the baby’s birth, to adjust to life as a family of five, but he wondered how Derek would react to the news that this paternity leave was already starting today.

He had missed almost 8 days of work because of Derek’s kidnapping and when he had finally gone back he had found himself completely unable to concentrate.

For two weeks he had tried every concentration and calming technique he knew to be there for his team and perform his job to his boss’ satisfaction, but it had been a futile attempt.

He hadn’t had a full blown panic attack in years, had been able to keep it in check even throughout the four days when he hadn’t known if he would ever see his mate again, but being separated from him now was almost impossible.

He wondered what his face must have looked like as he had tried to explain to his boss why he had to start the paternity leave earlier than planned – without clueing her in about the supernatural elements of course – because there had not been one word of protest and for once, her stressed, harsh face had been soft and compassionate.

His inability to leave Derek alone, sadly, had also affected his time at home and so far Derek hadn’t said anything about the constant Stiles’ shadow behind his back, but Stiles remembered the intervention during his pregnancy with Leonie very well and he was wondering if another intervention was about to take place.

Admittedly, he had so far been able to stop himself from following Derek into the bathroom to check if there was a hidden danger lurking in the plumbing – he had heard stories of snakes coming out of toilet bowls and in Beacon Hills who knew if those snakes weren’t in fact mythical monsters – but other than that Derek could not go anywhere without him.

If it had been him he would have probably freaked out already – especially if the overprotective mate in question would have taken two additional months off from work to be able to shadow him 24/7.

Stiles knew he smelled nervous when he walked into the house and Derek, who probably thought it was because of him and the baby, did what he had done every single day since Stiles had gone back to work by meeting him at the door and wrapping him up in a tight embrace, allowing Stiles to run his hands all over his torso and feel the strong kicks of the child against his skin, to assure him that he and the baby were still fine, still alive, still there.

Derek was halfway done with preparing dinner and once Stiles had changed into a comfortable pair of shorts and a t-shirt he went to help, even though his main contribution to the meal preparation was making sure Noah didn’t crawl into the oven.

He didn’t know where his son had arrived at his conclusion that it would be a good idea, but based on the devious grin on his daughter’s face he was positive that she had had something to do with Noah’s newfound belief that there was a hidden treasure chest full of cookies hidden behind a secret door in the oven.

Derek had sat her down for a very stern conversation about the differences between little werewolves and little human brothers who weren’t as resilient to injury while Stiles set the table and after the children had gone to bed and Derek had made himself comfortable in the armchair, Stiles finally decided to confess.

“There is something I wanted to talk to you about,” he began hesitantly and Derek sighed, a soft smile playing around his lips.

“The baby is fine,” he replied and Stiles shook his head.

“For once that’s actually not what I mean. I guess I’ll just go right ahead and say it – I’m not going to work tomorrow. Or the day after – or any other day for the next six to eight months, really.”

Derek’s eyebrows rose and he pressed on, determined to avoid the exasperated exclamation of “Don’t be such a worry-mate” for as long as possible.

“I tried to go to work, I really did, but I just – I just can’t be away from you right now and I know you don’t like it when I’m overprotective and I promise I will try my best not to smother you but please understand that I just – I just can’t be gone right now.”

Derek sighed again, deeper this time.

“It wasn’t your fault. That I was taken, I mean. Even if you had been there it could have happened easily,” he said carefully and Stiles laughed humorlessly.

“It’s not just about that, I know this wasn’t my fault, you have all been very clear in pointing that out to me. I just can’t bear the thought of you being alone, I close my eyes and see you hanging in that basement and I just – Derek, I can’t allow you to ever feel alone like that again and I …”

Derek held up one hand, the other lightly rubbing his belly.

“I was not alone in that basement. And I am not alone now – but the children will love having you home and so will I.”

Stiles blinked.

Then he blinked again.

“You don’t mind?”

Derek smiled.

“I love you Stiles. I know you aren’t sleeping well right now and I can smell how afraid you are every time you touch me. I want that to stop and if I can do anything to help you feel less afraid, I will. And besides, having my mate with me is really not as big a hardship as you are making it out to be.”

Stiles stared at him.

“I’m the one who has to comfort you, not the other way around,” he protested softly and Derek rolled his eyes.

“It goes both ways Stiles, that’s what a loving relationship is. I know I objected to your over-protectiveness when I was carrying Leonie and I can’t promise that I won’t snap at you if you don’t stop looking like I’m about to walk to my execution every time I have to go to the bathroom, but if being pampered will help you to stop feeling so afraid then well, I think that’s a sacrifice I can make for a couple of weeks.”

He smiled at Stiles, his hand still lightly rubbing below his navel.

“I’m serious about the bathroom though. Really. I have to go far too often these days and seriously, it makes me feel very self-conscious when you inhale sharply every time your child kicks against my bladder.”

Stiles laughed quietly, relief evident in his face when he joined Derek on the armchair. It was a tight fit but he managed to wrap his arms around Derek’s torso, his feet lightly brushing against Derek’s calves.

“I will try my very best,” he promised and Derek kissed him softly.

They were silent for a minute and when Derek looked at him next, he grinned.

“I know you will – otherwise I’ll just withhold sex.”

Stiles, who hadn’t touched Derek with amorous intentions for weeks for fear of him not being ready yet, gulped.

“What?”

Derek shrugged.

“Still pregnant and horny over here. I know you have been trying to be considerate of my feelings and I wasn’t going to say anything because I know this has been hard for you, but, as it turns out, I also have the strong need to be near you right now. Very near, if you catch my meaning.”

In response, Stiles framed Derek’s face with both hands and kissed him deeply, thoroughly, and with more heat than he had had in almost a month. Derek responded eagerly, his tongue brushing against Stiles’ and his hands roaming all over the human’s back.

Finally he tapped against Stiles’ shoulder and when Stiles, his face flushed and his eyes shining, looked at him questioningly, Derek blushed, smiling sheepishly.

“I love where this is going but we might have to relocate – armchair sex is currently not an option,” he said, gesturing towards his large midsection.

Stiles wiggled his eyebrows.

“Would armchair-blowjobs be acceptable?” he asked and Derek’s moan was really all the answer he needed.

If his mind hadn’t been fully occupied with Derek and the lovely noises he made as Stiles trailed his lips along his straining erection, he might have thought about sending Scott, best friend and chair-giver in the universe, a gift-basket.

There really was nothing the armchair wasn’t good for.

Chapter Text

September 1st (36 Weeks)

“How is my daughter this morning?” Stiles asked as wrapped his arms around Derek and Derek, who had been standing at the sink to wash strawberries for the children’s breakfast cereal as special treat on the first day of school, craned his neck.

“Leo-Pie is, and I quote, ‘not taking her chances on getting out of bed this morning’. Of course then I reminded her that Noah would eat all the strawberries by himself if she didn’t get up and that was apparently incentive enough. She’s in the living room,” he replied and Stiles nuzzled his neck softly.

“I meant this one,” he said, lightly tapping his long fingers against Derek’s belly and Derek laughed quietly.

“Your daughter or son is doing well. Running out of room to kick my organs into submission, but doing well nevertheless,” he answered.

Stiles chuckled.

“She’s a girl, you’ll see,” he said with conviction and Derek turned around halfway, fixing his gaze on Stiles with an amused expression.

“Well, does she have a name yet? You’ve been very secretive about this for weeks.”

Stiles grinned.

“Well, at first I thought we could call her Samantha, because I really like the idea of a little Sammy in the house, but then I thought that would definitely be too easy. You were not very impressed with my endeavors to find a flower-name for her so I have decided to approach this from a whole different angle.”

Derek raised his eyebrows, both curious and a little afraid of what this new angle would be.

“Continue?” he said, although he turned back towards the sink to finish with the strawberries.

Stiles trailed his fingers along his mate’s stomach in an almost pensive manner.

“Well Derek, I was thinking. We honored our moms with Leo-Pie’s name and my dad with Noah’s middle name. Isn’t it about time to do something nice for your dad?”

Derek winced.

“No. Just … no.”

“But why? He’s the only grandparent we haven’t recognized yet,” Stiles protested and Derek shook his head.

“I loved my father, believe me I did, but … no. I wouldn’t name a boy after him and I would definitely not give a feminized version of his name to a daughter. As I said, I loved him but – he had a horrible name, Stiles.”

Stiles laughed.

“Hello, proud victim of grandfather-honoring-naming here. His name is not that bad, at least not compared to my first name.”

Derek shook his head.

“My father hated his name all throughout his childhood. He did, however, love my mother so I think we honored him enough with giving Leonie the name Talia as a middle name.”

“I had a good name picked out,” Stiles grumbled and Derek winced again.

“I’m sure you did my love.”

“You really are strict when it comes to baby-naming. I hope you realize that. I can’t name her after your dad, I can’t name her after a pretty little flower, you don’t want an alliterative theme and no twilight names, even though Isabella would be so precious … joking Derek, jeez, don’t growl at me!”

He hooked his chin onto Derek’s shoulder, watching him cut the stems off the strawberries while he thought.

“No name starting with D, S, L, or N. That narrows it down but still makes it difficult. I’m just going to throw my favorite name at you for every letter in the alphabet and you can veto, ok?” he asked finally and Derek sighed.

“Hit me,” he replied absentmindedly, cursing his poor choice of words when Stiles’ hands on his belly froze for a fraction of a second, poised over one of the spots where the hunter had in fact hit him repeatedly.

“I love you,” he said quietly, turning his neck so he could smear a soft kiss against Stiles’ jaw and he exhaled in relief when the light stroking resumed and Stiles’ tension began to disappear.

“Anabelle.”

“Too close to Isabella.”

“Bethany.”

“I could like that. Keep going.”

“Seriously? You like it? Really, how about …”

“Keep going Stiles.”

“Chloe?”

“Reminds me of chlorine too much.”

“Huh? There are like no similarities there at all?”

“Do I get a veto or do I not get a veto?”

“Stop snapping. Danielle?”

“Stiles. That starts with a D.”

“Oh right, I forgot. Elaine?”

“That’s a grandma name.”

Derek had shot down Freya (“You need to stop watching so much television”), Giselle (“A werewolf with a name that sounds like Gazelle? Not likely”), Hannah (“Hannah Hale is just wrong”), Jorinde (“What even is that?” – “Not my fault you never read the Grimm fairy tales” – “I did and the wolf representation was atrocious”), Kelly (“There’s just too many version of spelling it”) and Melissa (“I love her as much as you do but that’s not our name to give to a child and you know it”) by the time they were ready for breakfast and Leonie and Noah listened with growing curiosity as Stiles pondered various O-names.

“Olivia is too overdone these days and Olive is a little too food-related for Papa’s little rulebook of baby-naming,” Stile explained to Leonie, who was scrunching up her face in concentration.

“How about Ozma, Daddy? Like the princess in Return to Oz?”

Derek set his fork down with a slightly louder than necessary clink.

“Was that the reason our child crawled into our bed in tears two weeks ago, sobbing about chopped off heads in her nightmare, Stiles?” he asked, glaring at his mate accusatorily, who blushed.

“It was based on The Wizard of Oz, how was I supposed to know that witch was so scary?” he mumbled into his cereal and Derek sighed, his eyebrows indicating that this conversation was not over.

“Ophelia?” Stiles tried next and Derek rolled his eyes.

“Yes, Stiles, by all means, we shall name her after one of the most tragic heroines by Shakespeare,” he muttered.

Stiles shrugged.

“It would show how literate and sophisticated we are. How about Pauline?”

Derek considered.

“Maybe-pile, but I’m not promising anything.”

It took Stiles almost all morning to come up with a Q name and they had just snuggled up on the couch after lunch, taking a break before Stiles had to pick the children up from their respective schools, when Stiles made an intrigued noise.

 “Quadira. It means powerful.”

Although he was shaking his head just as powerfully as the meaning of the name suggested, Derek had to admit he was impressed with Stiles’ thoroughness.

“Roxanne,” was his next suggestion after he had picked up the kids and was busy making dinner while Derek rested his aching feet and the werewolf sighed loudly.

“That can easily be shortened to Roxy and that’s a stripper name.”

“Moving on!” Stiles said hastily, ignoring Derek’s amused expression.

“Tessa?” he suggested when they were lying in bed after saying good night to the children and Derek, who was propped up against multiple pillows and enjoying a gentle foot massage, shook his head.

“Sometimes I wonder if you think I have forgotten all the actresses you used to lust over back in the early days,” he said with a smirk and Stiles looked confused for a second before realization dawned in his eyes.

“Tessa wasn’t her name though, that was just her character on Supernatural,” he protested half-heartedly, wincing in sympathy when Derek cradled his stomach and began to rub it with a pained expression.

“Kick?” he asked and Derek’s pained expression intensified.

“Braxton Hicks,” he managed through gritted teeth and although his mate’s feet still looked a little swollen Stiles decided to abandon them for now, trying and failing to keep his heartbeat in check when he began to massage Derek’s lower back instead.

“You sure?” he said, panic clear in his voice and Derek grunted.

“No birth canal yet, so yes, very sure.”

Stiles closed his eyes when his mate let out another pained moan, hating that he could do nothing to help and Derek snapped his fingers in front of him, his expression torn between pain and annoyance.

“Tell me more names, I need to take my mind off this, ok?” he whispered and Stiles made a disbelieving sound in the back of his throat.

“You want me to tackle the most difficult letters in the alphabet and expect me to concentrate while you are in pain?” he asked incredulously and Derek nodded.

“Especially those,” he muttered before he clamped his lips shut to hinder the low whine in the back of his throat from escaping.

“Uhm – Ursula?” Stiles tried and the groan coming from his mate could have been both because of pain and because of the name.

“No.”

“Vivienne?”

“That ... aaargh … could be acceptable. Damn it!” Derek cursed, tensing under Stiles’ ministrations when his back cramped up again.

Stiles took deep, even breaths as he continued to knead into Derek’s muscles, feverishly trying to come up with another name to take his mate’s mind off the pain.

“Wendy?”

“A little old-fashioned, isn’t it?” Derek panted and Stiles kissed the shell of his ear gently.

“Old fashioned names are making a comeback,” he explained, resting one hand on Derek’s belly when the werewolf sunk into his chest.

The worst seemed to be over for now and Stiles exhaled deeply.

“Xiomara?” he asked next and Derek sighed.

“I like that.”

“Yvette? Hold on, what?”

Derek shrugged, though he made no move to sit back up for the moment.

“I said I like that. Xiomara I mean. We probably shouldn’t go with that because it might be a little too unusual, but it’s a pretty name.”

Stiles considered.

“Maybe-Pile?”

“Definitely. Not Yvette though.”

“Zoey?” Stiles mumbled half an hour later when he was spooning Derek from behind, his hands still gently massaging against the residual tension in Derek’s side and Derek grunted.

“Something about how these letters are arranged always looked wrong to me,” he muttered.

Stiles shook his head.

“And you call me weird.”

He thought for a moment.

“So that means we’ve narrowed our choices down to Bethany, Ophelia, Pauline, Vivienne, and Xiomara?”

Derek laughed, although he sounded very tired.

“I never agreed to Ophelia.”

Stiles kissed his neck in apology.

“Fair enough. Bethany, Pauline, Vivienne or Xiomara then?”

Derek nodded, his eyes already falling shut.

“I can live with all four. You choose,” he muttered.

“Way to sound enthusiastic my love,” Stiles teased him gently and since it was the only part of his mate he could reach with only minimal physical effort, Derek lightly swatted at the hand on his belly.

“I already did my part when I came up with Nathaniel or Samuel,” he said sleepily.

Stiles was almost asleep when he suddenly realized the flaw in Derek’s logic.

“Derek! Why do you get a Nathaniel or a Samuel when I can’t have my Sophia? You alliteration-hypocrite wolf!”

Derek didn’t make a sound, although Stiles could tell he was smiling even from behind.

“You are purposefully trying to make this difficult for me, aren’t you? Derek? Derek?!”

 

===============

 

Stiles was a little overprotective these days. Ok, he was a lot overprotective these days but Derek couldn’t really fault him for that.

He didn’t mind the fact that Stiles did almost all of the cooking to keep him off his feet – although the children were starting to complain about the lack of variation in their food, since Stiles had only ever really mastered three dishes, one of which was mac and cheese – and he certainly didn’t mind the gentle caresses and kisses that Stiles rained down on him at any moment of any given day.

He was, after all, a not so secret Snuggle Wolf, it came with the territory.

What he did mind, however, was Stiles’ insistence that Derek had to stay outside with him while he worked on the tree house and although it wasn’t as hot anymore and the lounging chair was comfortable – though impossible to get up from without help these days – Derek had a hard time watching Stiles narrowly avoid falling to his death.

Or hammering his hand into puree.

Or any other injury that could possibly have caused the constant litany of curses and ouch-exclamations.

The tree house was coming together, he couldn’t argue with that, but Derek just really, really wished Stiles would wait to let him help.

Or at least let Boyd help, the only one of the Betas who was actually handy with tools larger than the surgical instruments Scott used at the animal clinic.

Watching Stiles climb around in the tree made Derek extremely nervous, but Stiles had brushed his concerns aside, arguing that being outside in a tree without being able to react quickly if some evil danger was about to befall Derek in the house made him nervous and thus unable to function.

Since he was committed to finishing the tree house before the baby was born, Derek could find no real reason to stop this and so he tried his best to focus on the book he had brought outside, trying valiantly to close off his ears to the pained and exasperated grunts coming out of the tree.

The fact that he simply could not get up on his own from the lounge chair anymore, thus, proved to be the only reason why Derek wasn’t halfway up the tree-house in a heartbeat when Stiles suddenly began to howl, dropping the hammer and jumping up and down on the platform as if he had been stung by a bee.

As it turned out, he had not only been stung by a bee – or possibly a wasp – but also hit his thumb with the hammer because he had been so startled and Derek’s heart pounded in his chest when Stiles started hopping dangerously close to the edge.

“Stiles! Calm down!” he yelled up, grunting in frustration when not even his werewolf strength was able to get him up from the chair.

Meanwhile, Stiles continued to howl, though the howls were muffled by the fact that his injured thumb was currently stuck inside his mouth.

It was a shitty move, Derek was aware of it, but he was not going to have Stiles break his neck because of accidental-falling-out-of-tree-house-while-jumping-around-like-a-mad-man complications.

And he really only saw one option to stop it.

“Stiles! It’s time!” he yelled, feeling both relieved and guilty when Stiles froze mid-jump, one leg stuck out like a ballerina while he was hovering on the other.

“Time?” he croaked and Derek rested his hands on his belly for good-measure.

“Maybe?” he replied, no longer feeling so confident about the lie now that Stiles had stopped endangering himself and luckily the stairs had been the first thing Stiles had worked on and were pretty solid, because his mate took two of them at a time when he raced down the steps.

“Derek, oh my god, are you sure? You’re two weeks away from full-term, is the baby going to be ok, are you in pain, are you bleeding, what’s going on!” he babbled when he reached Derek and Derek grabbed his injured hand without comment, black veins trailing up his arm as he took the pain from what was not a broken bone, thankfully, but would turn into a very nasty bruise.

“You can never scare me like this again. Do you hear me? I thought you were going to plummet to your death with all that jumping!” he ranted at his mate and Stiles tried to tug his hand away from Derek, looking at him with wide eyes.

“Don’t take my pain, pain is like the last thing you need right now!” he exclaimed and Derek was about to confess his cheating tactics when his abdomen cramped up for real.

“Shit!” he cursed, dropping Stiles’ hand and wrapping his arms around his belly and Stiles finally seemed to realize he was almost immobile because he draped his arm around Derek’s shoulder and pulled him upright.

“Holy mother of … argh!” Derek yelped, cursing Karma all the way to Sunday for punishing his scare-tactics with what actually felt like a contraction.

“You aren’t due until another four weeks!” Stiles whispered and Derek groaned.

“Tell me something I don’t know!”

He squeezed his eyes shut against the pain and Stiles hastily pulled his phone out of his pocket before dialing the speed-dial button for Melissa.

“Derek’s in labor!” he yelled into the phone when she picked up and Derek was dimly aware of Melissa’s voice coming through the speaker, telling Stiles to calm down and that everything would be fine.

“Come on baby, you need to stay inside for a while longer, you aren’t ready yet,” Stiles whispered to their child when he helped Derek walk inside the house, the lingering pain from the bee sting completely forgotten as he helped Derek lie down on the couch.

“The birth-canal … you have to check the birth-canal!” Derek gasped and Stiles carefully peeled away Derek’s shorts as best as his 3 times as large swollen thumb would allow him.

“I don’t see any blood,” he reported shakily and Derek whined.

“But it hurts!” he whispered and Stiles, who didn’t know what else to do, stroked his mate’s hair softly.

“I’m so sorry my love,” he said miserably, only to exhale in relief when Scott burst through the door.

“Does Melissa always call you when something is wrong?” Stiles asked shakily and Scott shrugged.

“Deaton and I were able to stop the labor the last time, I figured I’d get a head-start.”

He crouched down next to Derek and clasped his arm, offering support while his other hand examined Derek’s belly.

“Huh … this doesn’t feel like when you were going into labor with Noah,” he muttered and Stiles was about to demand more detail when Melissa marched into their living room.

“What’s the verdict Scott?” she asked and Scott shrugged.

“I don’t think he’s in labor, but of course I can’t be sure.”

Melissa’s cool hand joined Scott’s on Derek’s overheated skin and she smiled gently.

“Is the birth canal open yet?” she asked and when Derek shook his head, she gently stroked his side.

“What were you doing when this started?” she asked and Derek frowned.

“I had just taken Stiles’ pain from his mangled thumb,” he remembered; frown deepening when Scott clucked his tongue.

“For someone who is always so concerned about Leonie doing pain leaching, has it occurred to you that maybe, just maybe, pain leaching is not something you should be doing right now?”

Derek blinked.

“Huh,” he said softly and Scott shook his head.

“Huh, yeah, definitely ‘huh’ I would say.”

He clapped Stiles, who was still looking at Derek with wide eyes, on the shoulder.

“Your mate is a doofus but he’s fine, and your baby smells happy, content, and has a very strong heartbeat. Now, since I’m here already, what kind of pain do you need me to leach?”

Stiles shook his head as if to clear his thoughts, blushing when he looked at Scott’s waiting hand.

“Derek took care of my thumb pretty much, but I was also stung by a bee …” he muttered, blushing even further when Scott tried to see the sting.

“Where?” he asked and Stiles closed his eyes.

“Uhm – my butt?”

Melissa, who was still stroking Derek’s belly with calm, comforting motions, grinned.

“What are you waiting for Scott – get to it!” she teased her son, grin widening when Scott exhaled a long-suffering sigh.

“This never happened. Ever,” he muttered when he plastered his hand on Stiles’ butt and Stiles couldn’t have agreed more.

 

==================

 

At almost 37 weeks pregnant, Derek’s sex-drive had begun to slow down and therefore Stiles was pleasantly surprised when he was woken up by a wandering hand three mornings after his ill-fated attempt to finish the tree house.

The hand was doing very pleasurable things and he dropped his head against the cushions, closing his eyes and moaning softly as Derek jerked him off slowly.

He removed his hand just as Stiles was about to come and Stiles whined, not at all happy with that turn of events.

“Horny pregnancy sex?” Derek asked when he turned towards him, his lips curled up in a grin and Stiles couldn’t hold back the moan at the sight of Derek’s flushed face and the way he was biting his lips seductively.

“Horny pregnancy sex? Ha! If you weren’t pregnant already we’d so be having baby-making sex right now!” he declared and Derek was about to respond when the door creaked open and Leonie poked her head inside.

“Papa? Daddy? What’s baby-making sex?” she asked and Stiles meeped, thankful that he was still under the sheets.

He was also not surprised to discover that the presence of one’s 7 year-old-daughter was the most effective boner-killer in the history of sad boners.

The look of mortification on Derek’s face would have been priceless, had Stiles not felt the exact same way.

“Leo-Pie, it’s 7 in the morning, why aren’t you asleep?” he asked, hoping to take her mind off the question, but Leonie ignored him.

“What’s baby-making sex? Is ‘Sex’ the unicorn’s name?” she asked, sounding confused, and Derek groaned.

It had gone on long enough.

He was also not having his daughter spread the news that she had discovered the unicorn’s name among the pack.

“Leonie baby – there is no unicorn,” he said as gently as he could, struggling to sit up so he could see her properly.

“No unicorn?” Leonie said, sounding as if she didn’t believe a word he was saying.

“No baby,” Stiles sighed, rubbing his eyes as he watched Derek wipe his hands with a wet-wipe from the bedside table.

“But I don’t understand Daddy? How can Papa have a baby in his belly when there is no unicorn?”

Stiles closed his eyes.

“Papa has a baby in his belly because I love him very much,” he explained, and when Leonie still looked confused, he gave up.

“Sometimes when a mommy and daddy or a daddy and werewolf alpha papa love each other very much, they like to hug each other. A special kind of hug that only mommies and daddies or daddies and papas know. And sometimes when they hug really, really well, they make a little baby.”

Leonie looked – for a lack of a better term – scandalized.

“There is no unicorn?” she repeated, her lips trembling and Derek held out his arms with a sigh.

“Come here Leo-Pie,” he said gently and Leonie seemed to be fighting an internal battle about whether or not she wanted to be comforted by one of the people who had lied to her for so long before her misery won out and she flew into Derek’s arms, sobbing loudly.

Stiles patted her hair softly, looking at Derek with a bewildered expression on his face.

“Leo-Pie, baby-girl, why are you crying?” he asked her and Leonie sobbed louder.

“I had a p-p-present for the unicorn Daddy! B-because I wanted to say thank you for the b-baby!” she wailed, sounding so heartbroken that Stiles had to blink back tears himself.

“Baby-girl, don’t cry. You are an awesome big sister, please don’t cry,” Derek murmured into her hair.

“Why did Uncle Jackson lie to me?” Leonie exclaimed suddenly and she lifted her face away from Derek’s chest, her cheeks reddened with the righteous anger of a seven year old and big tears rolling down her face.

“Uncle Jackson is mean!” she decided and Derek stroked her hair, hoping to calm her down.

“Leonie, little children don’t really understand where babies come from, Uncle Jackson just wanted to …”

“Lie to me!” Leonie finished for him and Stiles sighed.

“He didn’t want to lie to you baby,” he assured her but Leonie shook her head.

“I hate Uncle Jackson!” she declared and Derek turned her face to him, softly, but with intent.

“We don’t hate people baby-girl, especially not Uncle Jackson, please don’t ever say that again,” he said calmly, though his irises were shimmering with the slightest hint of red.

“He’s not my favorite uncle anymore!” Leonie amended her statement and Derek sighed.

“Do you want to lay down for a little while baby-girl?” Stiles asked her and held out his arms and Leonie nodded, still looking miserable when she snuggled between her fathers.

“She’ll have forgotten by tomorrow,” Stiles mouthed to Derek when she was asleep again and Derek shook his head.

“People just … shouldn’t lie to their children,” he muttered and though the truth was sometimes a little uncomfortable, Stiles found that he had to agree.

 

===============

 

The next pack meeting took place a day later and Derek had to bite back a sigh when Leonie completely ignored Jackson’s attempts to say hi to her and wouldn’t even look at him.

On the one hand she had a right to be angry, but on the other hand she was also seven years old and allowing her to disrespect an adult like this could only lead to disaster during her high school years.

“What did I do?” Jackson asked after Leonie had left the living room, sounding a little hurt, and Derek raised his eyebrows.

“Leonie is a little upset with you for making up a story about non-existent unicorns,” he explained and Jackson’s eyes widened.

“You gave your seven-year-old the real sex talk?” he exclaimed, sounding decidedly judgmental, and Derek groaned.

“Of course not! But we had to tell her the unicorn was not real – there was no way around it. Now she’s a little mad at you for telling her in the first place so how about you go apologize to my child for lying to her, she’ll apologize for the attitude and then we’ll forget this whole situation ever happened?” he suggested and Jackson nodded.

“I’ll go do that right now!” he decided, jumping up in search of his favorite niece.

“You had to tell her?” Erica asked when he was out of the room, the wiggling of her eyebrows suggesting things Derek did not even want to think about.

He was about to reply when Jackson appeared again, looking dejected.

“She says I’m no longer her favorite uncle,” he informed the pack gravely and Stiles clucked his tongue.

“Yesterday her favorite color was green and today it’s pink, it’s not like you can take that seriously. Just go apologize again.”

When he was gone Scott leaned forward, looking curious and nervous at the same time.

“No really – why did you have to tell her? You need to share your parenting wisdom with me buddy, my kid’s been asking questions, too!” he said and Stiles blushed.

“Scotty – you really, really don’t want to know, trust me on that,” he muttered and Scott was about to reply when Jackson appeared again, this time looking determined.

“Stiles, Derek. I need to bribe your kid. What can I bribe her with?”

Derek blinked.

“Why?” he asked and Jackson blushed.

“She said she’d only forgive me if I gave her a present. Because she spent so much time making a present for the unicorn,” he explained.

Derek exhaled slowly.

“Leonie Talia Claudia!” he said loudly and when their daughter poked her head into the room he gave her a stern look.

“Uncle Jackson is not giving you a present so you’ll be nice to him again. We don’t do things like that. Ever,” he said calmly and Leonie sniffled.

“But Papa!” she whined and Derek held up a hand.

“Enough Leonie. Uncle Jackson didn’t mean anything bad by it when he told you the story about the unicorn and I need you to stop with the attitude right now,” he said and Leonie’s lips trembled.

“I just wanted to meet the unicorn! What about the present!” she exclaimed and Derek shook his head.

“I’m sorry Leo-Pie, I’m really sorry, I’ll buy you a stuffed unicorn toy,” Jackson interjected quickly and Leonie looked intrigued.

“A big one?” she asked and Jackson nodded.

“Bigger than you!” he promised her and Leonie looked at him thoughtfully.

“Okay Uncle Jackson,” she decided and Jackson smiled, studiously ignoring Derek and Stiles’ accusatory looks.

He also ignored their looks when he lugged an enormous stuffed unicorn into their living room two days later.

Derek might have been a Sappy Wolf – but Jackson was completely and utterly whipped.

Chapter Text

Thursday, September 19th 2030 (38 Weeks)

When Derek woke up on the morning of Thursday, September 19th he felt good. Surprisingly good, in fact, considering that he was 38 weeks pregnant, once again the proud owner of a recently opened temporary birth canal, and – as predicted early on in the pregnancy – large as a house. Well, a small house maybe, but Derek stood by his assessment of his waistline-situation.

As he slowly walked downstairs into the kitchen he mused over the fact that he actually felt stronger than he had in weeks, his body obviously having decided to give him a small break to recuperate before he had to give birth to their last child.

He wondered if he would make it to 40 weeks, or even 39 weeks, given the ordeal his body had undergone two months ago, then shook his head firmly to clear his mind of these thoughts.

The baby was healthy and safely nestled inside of him, Leonie and Noah were happy and healthy and there was no use in thinking over things that were over and done with, especially if these things were the stuff of what nightmares were made of.

Stiles still wasn’t sleeping well and sometimes he would only stop tossing and turning if Derek grabbed a hold of him at night and held him close, or as close as his belly would allow. They didn’t speak about it anymore, but sometimes, on these mornings when Stiles would wake up and find Derek’s belly pressed against his back or stomach and the older man’s hands firmly wrapped around his upper arms, Stiles would turn to face him, or just lean over, if he was already facing Derek and just place light feathery kisses all over Derek’s face, as if he had to make sure to properly reacquaint himself with Derek’s features at every possible moment.

Derek hoped Stiles would start sleeping again after the baby had been born – or at least get as much sleep as one could get with an infant in the house. It was maybe unfair of him to expect the baby to act as a wound-healing device, but Derek was convinced that once Stiles held their healthy baby in his arms, he would finally be able to sleep again.

It didn’t matter how much Derek assured him that the baby was fine, that he would be able to feel it if there had been lasting damage to the child because of the repeated wolfsbane poisoning, a large part of Stiles remained convinced that the other shoe had yet to drop and Derek, who knew the child was healthy, was at a loss as to how to convince his terrified mate otherwise.

Stiles was making lunch-boxes for the children when he reached the kitchen, engaged in an animated debate with Noah over who was the best Bob the Builder character and Derek leaned against the doorframe for a second, taking in the most important people in his life and aware that it would be one of their last moments as a family of four.

Leonie was eating her cereal with an air of utmost importance, her eyes sparkling as she listened to Noah and Stiles battling it out over cartoon characters. Her long, dark hair was braided in rather sloppy pigtails – if Stiles’ predictions about their baby’s gender turned out to be true, he’d have to seriously step up his hair-braiding game as far as Derek was concerned – and she was wearing a red t-shirt with a large Mickey Mouse on the front, looking like every happy seven year old little girl should.

Noah, his light-brown hair still sleep-tussled and in desperate need of being combed before he was presentable enough to go to Pre-K, was looking at his daddy with a look of deep contemplation and Derek had to remind himself – again – that their son was only three years old. It still worried him a little that Noah seemed to be unconsciously trying to grow up as quickly as possible and Derek’s hands fell to his belly automatically, rubbing gently circles into it. He hoped that having a new baby in the house would maybe stop Noah’s quest to become a little adult before he was even four and Derek couldn’t suppress his smile when he imagined Noah holding his little brother by the hand as they both went off to explore, led by their proud, big sister.

Or maybe a little sister, it really didn’t matter. Either would be perfect. He wanted Noah to have the experience of having a little brother, since he already had a sister, but he also wanted Leonie to have the experience of having a little sister. For a moment, Derek imagined Leonie with a little sister, dressing her up in pink and inviting her to sparkling Princess Tea Parties while Noah played a rather reluctant butler, and his smile widened.

Yes, it really didn’t matter what their baby turned out to be, it would have two amazing older siblings to grow up with either way.

“Papa!” Leonie suddenly chirped, having finally noticed him standing in the kitchen and she bounced off her chair to come hug him, squealing in happy surprise when Derek picked her up and kissed her nose.

“Derek?” Stiles said from the sink, looking a little alarmed but Derek’s smile only widened and Stiles’ shoulders relaxed, his alarmed expression turning to fond amusement.

“You’re feeling good today?” he half-stated and half-asked and Derek, who had set Leonie back on the ground and was now cuddling with Noah, nodded.

“I feel like I could finish building a tree-house,” he confirmed and Stiles raised his eyebrows.

“But I won’t do it,” Derek added sheepishly and Stiles nodded emphatically.

“I’ll have to tie you to the bed if you do,” he promised, looking to their children to see if they were watching, before he wiggled his eyebrows suggestively.

Derek laughed. Stiles was definitely starting to be his normal self again.

“So what’s the plan for today?” Derek asked when he had sat down at the kitchen table to have breakfast and Stiles checked the calendar quickly.

“Well, after I drop the kiddos off at school I’ll go swing by the store and pick up that bedding we ordered three weeks ago and then I’ll come home, cook you some delicious lunch, cuddle with you and worship at your feet, go back to town to pick up the kids from school, drop Leo-Pie off at home and then me and Noah have an appointment at the pediatrician so he can get some recommended shots”.

Derek was almost relieved to note that at least occasionally Noah acted like the three-year old that he was when their son started whining at the mention of shots.

Leonie looked up with interest.

“Can I have shots, too, Daddy?” she asked and Stiles grinned, his grin the only warning their daughter got before he grabbed her and swung her out of her chair, twirling her around in the air before blowing raspberries on her tummy.

“There are your shots!” he told her and Noah giggled, raising up his arms to get his own treatment of Daddy-shots. Derek laughed alongside his kids and he was still smiling when Stiles and the children were gone.

By the time Stiles came back with the new bedding Derek was dozing on the couch, an open book resting on his chest and Stiles placed the book on the couch table before he carefully lifted Derek’s legs and propped his mate’s legs up on his lap, softly kneading his swollen feet.

Derek sighed contentedly, the firm pressure against his perpetually aching feet feeling almost heavenly and Stiles smiled happily, bending over to press a kiss onto Derek’s calves before he resumed the massage.

Although he had been starving before his nap Derek found himself not at all hungry when Stiles was finished with lunch. He ate one serving anyways, aware that it would only send his mate into another worry frenzy if he didn’t eat enough.

The food gave him another bout of energy and by the time Stiles dropped Leonie off around 3:15 PM Derek felt very awake and alert, restless even.

“We’ll be back in about two hours, maybe three, if I feel our son acted heroically enough for an ice-cream treat,” Stiles called over his shoulder as he wrestled a reluctant Noah out the door and Derek grinned, certain that Noah would either get the ice cream for heroics or as a “I’m So Sorry For Putting You Through This, I Love You My Darling Child, Please Don’t Be Sad Anymore”-treat from his daddy.

At 3:45 PM Derek sat down in their battered old armchair, with Leonie – who was munching on an “Of Course Big Sisters Get Shot-Ice Cream, Too, Even if They Don’t Technically Need It And Will Probably Just End Up Staining the Armchair”-ice cream sandwich – tucked against his side and a book, that she had asked him to read to her.

They were two chapters into Pippi Longstocking, a literary choice Derek assumed had had to do with the fact that Leonie was wearing Pippi Longstocking pigtails today, when pain exploded in his groin without warning, followed by a contraction that was so strong he doubled over and screamed.

From one second to the next he was drenched in sweat and he barely had time to straighten back up, let alone breathe when the next contraction ripped through him, possibly even stronger than the last and feeling as if he was being torn apart by invisible forces.

“Papa!” Leonie yelled and suddenly two surprisingly strong hands for their small size were grabbing his face, anchoring him and preventing him from losing himself in the pain.

“Leo-Pie, I …” Derek gasped, anything else he could have possibly said lost in yet another scream as his abdomen contracted again.

Whatever this was, it was not normal and Derek’s eyes widened, the word precipitate delivery suddenly flashing inside his mind like a big warning sign. Definitely not doctor-recommended, and he groaned when the pressure in his pelvis increased to the point where he thought he would burn up, only to ease up when the contraction deflated, replaced by a decidedly wet sensation between his legs.

This was not supposed to be happening this way, Derek thought as the tried to catch his breath, especially in front of his poor daughter, who had had to witness him almost go into labor with Noah already. They could probably count themselves lucky if she only needed ten years of therapy instead of for the rest of her life to come to terms with all the early childhood traumas inflicted upon her by her parents.

Leonie’s eyes flashed amber as she looked at her papa, no hint of fear visible on her features when she tightened her hold on Derek’s face.

“You wet your pants Papa. That means the baby is coming now,” she informed him, with only the tiniest shake in her voice and Derek nodded, groaning as the pressure inside of him increased again.

“Leo-Pie I need you to call Daddy and Grandma,” he gasped, but Leonie, whose little nose was twitching as if she was trying to sniff for something, shook her head, her eyes widening.

“No time Papa!” she decided and Derek, who knew what it felt like when it was time to push, realized with horror that she was right. The baby wanted to come out and even if they did manage to call Stiles and Melissa, there was no way they would make it in time as both were currently on the other side of town.

A pitiful whine built up inside Derek and he was unable to stop it from escaping his throat, the thought that he had to give birth to their third child without his mate suddenly almost too much to bear.

Leonie patted his cheeks gently, her eyes wide as saucers.

“Don’t be scared Papa! I saw a video at Uncle Jackson’s house, Papa, we can do this, you need to push and then breathe!”

She froze, eyes going wide in alarm.

“Or maybe you need to breathe and then push? I forgot! Papa, I forgot!” she wailed, all calm and composure having flown out of the window and Derek grabbed her face to force her to look at him, trying his best to be her strong, calm papa despite the increasingly strong urge to push.

“You are doing great Leo-Pie. I’m going to breathe and then I’m going to push, just like I did with you when I gave birth to you, okay?” he gritted out and when Leonie’s eyes widened even further he started breathing as if he was the poster-child for Lamaze classes, hoping that Leonie would follow his lead.

To his great relief she did and when he was certain that she was reasonably calm again Derek pushed his sweats down with some difficulty, applauding himself for not bothering with the maternity jeans today.

“You’re bleeding Papa!” Leonie whimpered and Derek nodded.

“That’s normal Leo-Pie. Giving birth to a baby hurts and there is blood, and I’ll scream but that doesn’t mean I’m dying and neither is the baby, I promise you,” he gasped and Leonie, who had apparently been listening to his heartbeat to check for lies, nodded sharply.

“Okay Papa,” she said and Derek grabbed the armrests of the chair, planting his feet on the ottoman on which Leonie was currently kneeling and bore down, screaming as the pressure intensified again.

When the contraction was over he took a deep breath, his chest exploding with love for his daughter when Leonie grabbed his calves and stroked them, obviously wanting to comfort him and clearly unsure how she could do so. He was also extremely proud of her for not even trying her hand at pain-leaching again.

“Are you still okay Papa?” she asked timidly and Derek nodded, uttering a breathless laugh when he realized that he was still wearing his drenched boxers. The boxers had to go, that much was obvious. Unfortunately, baring his bloody, gaping groin to his seven-year-old daughter was not really high on his list of “1000 Things To Torment Your Child With Before You Die”.

As if she had been reading his mind Leonie gazed at him fearfully.

“Can the baby come out when you’re not naked?” she asked and Derek made a mental note to later – much later – ask Jackson what the hell kind of videos he had been showing his daughter.

Derek had about thirty seconds to weigh the pros and cons of societal norms of decency and finally decided to compromise, reaching between his legs with shaking fingers and extending his claws to tear a what he desperately hoped was large enough opening into the seat of his boxers, which was more or less placed over the temporary birth canal.

“Papa!” Leonie whispered, sounding equally freaked out and excited.

“Look!” she exhaled and Derek, who was feeling the next contraction building up inside of him hoped that she wouldn’t take it personally if he had to put the looking on hold for now, again bearing down and pushing with everything he had.

Throughout it all Leonie was holding on to his calves, her eyes not fixed on the bloody mess between his legs but his face and Derek held her gaze, trying to communicate to her that it was going to be fine, that he was still okay and not going anywhere.

This time the pressure didn’t abate when the contraction was over and Derek reached down a shaky hand, feeling the head of the child and he knew that the next contraction would probably be it.

“Leonie,” he panted and Leonie’s eyes widened when she saw the look of determination on Derek’s face.

“I need you to be the best big sister in the universe and catch your new little brother or sister when he or she comes out. It will be quick and you need to be careful, because the baby will be all wet and slippery. Can you do that for me and the baby?” he asked her and despite the severity of the situation his seven-year-old daughter rolled her eyes at him in a way that almost looked like it hurt.

Silly Papa! I’m always the best big sister in the universe!” she huffed, almost indignantly, and Derek’s surprised laugh was cut off by the next contraction, all of his concentration once again focused on the pain and the urge to push.

When the baby slipped out of him it almost felt like it was being catapulted and Derek’s breath caught in his throat for a fraction of a second, sure that Leonie would have never been able to catch the baby, but when he looked between his legs there they were, his oldest and youngest, covered in goo and fluids and – if his nose was to be believed – completely healthy.

Leonie was almost holding the baby in a death grip, her eyes wide as saucers and a little pale around her nose and the baby was moving its little arms and legs, the first cry sounding a little bubbly because of some residual fluid in its mouth but then the strong cry of what was clearly a newborn werewolf filled the room and Derek allowed himself to fall back into the armchair in relief, wincing when his back hit a wet spot.

It had, perhaps, been a little premature of him to accuse his daughter of soiling the armchair with her ice-cream sandwich.

“Papa, look!” Leonie said, sounding as if she had just discovered the 8th world wonder and Derek pushed himself up again, finally able to obey his daughter’s wish.

“Is it a brother or sister?” Derek asked her, since Leonie was holding the baby in a way that made it impossible for him to tell, although he already knew deep down what the answer was going to be, had known it from the very beginning if he was completely honest with himself – not that Stiles would ever find out about it.

Leonie slightly eased her death grip on the baby to check and when she looked back at Derek she was grinning from ear to ear.

“I got another Noah!” she proudly confirmed his papa-instinct and Derek’s eyes welled up with tears when he gently lifted his newborn son out of his big sister’s arms and cradled him against his chest, the tears pouring down his face when the baby opened amber eyes and flashed them at his father, before he turned his head towards Derek’s chest and made suckling motions against his clothed breasts.

“Noah Two is hungry!” Leonie observed and Derek chuckled.

Figuring that the shirt was ruined anyway Derek extended one claw and – after cutting the umbilical cord while he was at it – tore it along the fabric so he could free one arm and breast, gently guiding the boy’s head and surprised when he latched on as if had been born for this.

Well, Derek mused, he kind of had been.

“He’s not Noah Two,” he whispered and Leonie smiled widely, crawling next to Derek’s side and pushing her cheek against his chest as she stared at her new brother in awe.

“What’s his name Papa?” she asked and Derek took a good look.

Stiles had been right all along – he really wasn’t a Nathaniel; that much Derek knew with absolute certainty.

A Samuel then, Derek thought, but somehow that wasn’t right either.

Leonie was looking at him with anticipation and he kissed her tussled hair fondly, overwhelmed by the fact that seven years ago he had given birth to the beautiful, tough little miracle that had just helped him give birth to his handsome little baby.

Fresh tears welled up in his eyes when he looked back and forth between the suckling baby and his daughter.

He was now the father of three children.

A perfect, fierce werewolf daughter, his beautiful first-born, his little girl; a gentle, smart little human son, who looked like his father and adored his big sister; and a miraculous, obviously tough-as-nails newborn werewolf baby-boy, with dark hair and Stiles’ nose, even though Derek could already tell his youngest child would probably grow up to be almost the spitting image of him.

They were absolutely perfect and Derek couldn’t even imagine his children otherwise, couldn’t imagine a single universe in which his Leo-Pie had been a Jonathan or – god forbid – a Jacob John.

Derek’s eyes widened when he looked at the baby again.

He had never stopped loving the name, had only failed to mention it to Stiles because he hadn’t wanted to be accused of rehashing old names, but when he looked at his son again he knew with absolute certainty that it was his name.

It didn’t feel like he was rehashing an old name either, it just – hadn’t been the right point in time for Jonathan to become a member of their little family all those years ago.

Stiles, Derek, Leonie, Noah – and Jonathan.

“Jonathan,” Derek said out loud, testing the feeling of the name on his tongue.

“Jonathan,” Leonie repeated and then she reached over to gently grasp her brother’s fist, moving it slightly in an imitation of a handshake.

“Hey Jonathan. I’m your sister Leonie. I love you very much. Your brother Noah loves you too! And you’ll love our daddy, I promise. He’s not here right now, but when he comes, he’ll make you laugh so much. He’s such a silly daddy! But he’s an awesome daddy, too! And our papa is the best Papa Wolf in the whole universe!” she cooed, and Derek didn’t even blame it on the hormones when new tears spilled out of his eyes.

When the baby was done nursing he gently burped him against his shoulder and then directed Leonie to open her arms so she could cradle her new brother, wrapped up in what had once been Derek’s sweatpants.

He felt deeply exhausted but infinitely relieved as he watched his children get acquainted with each other in his arms, longing for Stiles and Noah to get home soon so their family would finally be complete.

Speaking of his mate – Derek’s eyes widened when thought back over the past hours to try and figure out what could have possibly triggered such a quick labor and the image of Stiles while he was firmly kneading the sore spots on his feet jumped at him with absolute clarity, followed by an almost forgotten memory of a dutiful Jackson armed with a smartphone and trying to help induce labor by administering acupressure to Derek.

Only his mate would have been able to accidentally confuse a simple foot-massage with an acupressure, labor-inducing treatment. Derek might not be as thoroughly a researcher as Stiles was, but he had browsed the message boards when he had looked for ways to induce labor with Leonie, and it had definitely been a unanimous consensus between everyone who had weighed in on the subject that jumpstarting labor with a pedicure or simple foot-massage was almost impossible.

Well – these women had certainly never had their feet expertly kneaded by his Stiles, Stilinski Stallion and Accidental-Labor-Inducer Extraordinaire.

Laughing wasn’t exactly the most pleasurable thing when your groin was still torn and open and your muscles felt as if you had just finished a triathlon, but Derek couldn’t help it.

He was still chuckling when he heard the car pull up in the driveway and he looked up, ready to commit the look on his mate’s face to memory.

Stiles face’, Derek decided when his mate dropped a large tub of ice-cream onto the ground in total and utter shock, would from now until all eternity serve to brighten his mood whenever he felt down.

Not that he could blame him, certain that if it had been him who had walked into a living room faced with a sweaty and manically grinning mate and a completely enraptured daughter whose hands were still covered in goo and holding onto a tiny newborn baby wrapped in sweatpants, he probably would have gaped like a fish as well.

Or maybe fainted, Derek wasn’t ashamed to admit, the act certainly having lost all of its scariness after his first trimester of this pregnancy.

“Derek!” Stiles whispered, shaking like a leaf and Derek extended his free hand to bid him closer, smile widening when Noah marched into the living room and stopped next to his daddy in confusion.

“Papa?” he asked and Derek smiled impossibly wider.

“Do you want to come and meet Jonathan?” he addressed them both and Stiles’ eyes widened almost in disbelief.

“I have another son?” he whispered and Derek nodded.

“He’s been waiting for you Daddy,” he said softly and Stiles all but flew the remaining distance between him and the armchair, his hands tangled in Derek’s hair and shaking fingers stroking his cheeks as he kissed him deeply.

His shoulders were shaking and Derek could taste the salty moisture on Stiles’ smiling lips as his mate’s tears spilled from his eyes.

“Jonathan?” he asked, finally looking at the baby and gently lifting him out of Leonie’s arm to cradle him against his chest.

Even though it was the third time that Derek had the privilege of seeing his mate fall heads over heels in love with their child, it was by no means any less special than the first two times.

“Is that ok?” Derek asked hesitantly.

“We can name him Samuel if you don’t like it, I just saw him and …”

“Jonathan!” Stiles said firmly, laughing in delight when the baby flashed his eyes again.

“He’s in total agreement – and so am I! He’s obviously a Jonathan.”

Stiles’ voice trailed off, choked with emotion and Derek gingerly reached over so he could sit Noah down on his lap, wincing only slightly against the tenderness in his midsection.

“Do you like your little brother Noah?” he asked his son and Stiles placed the baby in Noah’s arms, his own arm helping Noah support the child, while Derek pulled Leonie closer.

“He’s … all red,” Noah finally decided and Derek laughed.

“He had a very exciting day,” he explained softly and Noah nodded.

“Papa?” he said quietly and Derek kissed the back of his head fondly.

“Yes Noah-Boa?”

“I think he’s better than a dog,” was Noah’s final verdict and Stiles pressed his face into Derek’s shoulder to muffle his laughter, his cheeks still wet with tears.

“Of course he is,” Leonie chided her brother softly, reaching out another tentative finger to stroke Jonathan’s cheek.

Derek hated to break up their family circle, but he still had some afterbirth-business to attend to and when he flinched Stiles took the baby without comment, looking at Derek in concern.

Derek nodded his head towards the upstairs bathroom, hoping his mate would understand that he wanted him to clean Jonathan and put him in diapers and some clothes and Stiles nodded, gently instructing the children to come upstairs and help him decide on Jonathan’s first outfit.

Derek breathed a sigh of relief when he felt the birth canal finally knit together for good and he stood up gingerly, his legs feeling as if they were made of rubber.

“Stiles?” he called out softly and when his mate came downstairs he extended his arms, sighing once again in relief when Stiles helped him up the stairs and into the bathroom, cleaning him up almost reverently.

When Derek was dressed in fresh boxers and a roomy shirt Stiles walked him into their bedroom, where Jonathan was lying inside his crib, watched over by his big siblings, who seemed to be unable to look away from the baby.

Stiles and Derek joined their children in front of the crib and while Derek felt just about energized enough to pick up Noah, Stiles picked up Leonie, pressing her against his chest and kissing her head again and again, fresh tears pooling in his eyes when he gazed at Derek, looking impossibly proud and incredibly grateful.

“Papa? Daddy?” Noah asked, holding himself completely still as if he was afraid he could hurt Derek if he moved too much.

“Yes Noah-Boa?” Stiles asked and Noah scrunched up his little face in thought.

“I’m Noah Janek,” he said slowly, frowning for a moment before his eyes lit up.

“I’m Noah Janek and Leonie is Leonie Talia Claudia, right?”

“That’s right Noah,” Derek said, pressing another kiss against the boy’s temple.

“Is Jonathan only a Jonathan? That would be unfair,” Noah continued, sounding concerned, and Leonie looked at both of her fathers, excitement written all over her face.

“Yes! What is his other name?”

“Lassie?” Noah asked hopefully and Stiles laughed.

“Nope! Sorry Noah,” he said gently and Noah shrugged, his expression suggesting that he was aware he was fighting a lost cause.

“Our children pose an excellent question though,” Stiles directed at Derek, eyes lighting up in what was unmistakably mirth.

“You know what today is Derek?” he said playfully, eyes sparkling with laughter and Derek inhaled deeply, before he looked at his mate with deep affection.

He could give Stiles, his pun-loving, popular culture-obsessed, extremely nerdy, and love-of-his-life mate this much, he decided. It wasn’t a bad name after all, it was, in fact, a really pretty name, and when he looked at their little boy again he knew he was making the right decision.

“Castiel. His middle name will be Castiel,” he said gently.

“Today is another Thursday and we could totally get away with … hold on, what?!”

Derek’s smile widened.

“Castiel,” he repeated, reaching his finger into the crib and stroking the baby’s cheek.

“Jonathan Castiel Hale. It has a rather nice ring to it, don’t you think?”

Stiles was opening and closing his mouth in slow motion, once again resembling a fish and Derek shook his head.

“Unless of course you have a better idea?” he asked teasingly and Stiles shut his mouth with an audible plop.

“The fan fictions?” he asked hesitantly and Derek shrugged.

“As far as I’m concerned, we would have never figured all of this out by ourselves without your popular culture obsession jump-starting it – naming our son after an angel who is completely indifferent to sexual orientation is somewhat fitting as an homage, isn’t it?” he said quietly and Stiles swallowed audibly.

“Right,” he said, his voice shaking just the tiniest bit.

“Castiel?” Leonie said skeptically and when Derek nodded she shook her head.

“I don’t think I like that Papa. I think I’ll call him Cas. He looks like a Cas, too. Can I Daddy? Papa?” she asked carefully and Derek didn’t even have to look at his mate’s face to imagine the shit-eating grin that was undoubtedly spreading all the way up to his eyes right now.

“He’s always going to be a Jonathan – but he’s also a Cas,” he confirmed and Leonie clapped her hands.

“And a Lassie!” Noah decided with a big grin.

Derek grimaced – there was only one way to avoid long-lasting trauma for his youngest child, inflicted upon him by being called Lassie in public.

There was no way around it – they were definitely getting a dog.