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humans are fragile things (you should know by now)

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Stiles slammed the door to his Jeep and then kicked it for good measure, his frustration spilling over. He’d used the last of his credits today to go Above the Line and it’ll be months before he could save up enough to get back up there. And for what? So he could waste his time and credits once more? He kicked the door again. 

“I think she’s got enough dents in her with you adding to them, kid.”

Whirling around, he threw his hands up in the air. “It’s not fair!”

“C’mon, get inside.” His dad gestured to the front door with his head. “You can tell me all about it.”

Sighing, Stiles followed him indoors, sinking into the arm his dad threw over his shoulders. “They just don’t care.” He toed his shoes off, one of them bouncing off the wall with how hard he kicked it off. “No one cares. If Scott was a ‘were they’d be all over this shit, but whoop, no, just another human from Below the Line who’s gone missing, no biggie.”

“I put his picture up today, who knows, maybe that’ll help.” 

Stiles snorted and his dad, who hadn’t sounded even remotely confident, didn’t say anything. The board down at the station was filled with pictures of human teenagers who’d just gone missing and hadn’t been heard from again and whenever Stiles went there to drop off some lunch for his dad, he’d always see someone pinning another photo up, or hear them tearfully asking an officer if they’d heard or found anything. He didn’t drop off his lunch often. 

The whole system made Stiles impossibly angry but his dad and everyone else around him seemed to be completely fine with the status-quo and unwilling — “Jesus Stiles, how many times, we’re not unwilling, we’re unable!” — to do anything to try and change things. ‘Were’s ruled the world, with packs occupying set areas of territories, living their fancy schmancy lives Above the Line where they didn’t have to worry where the next meal was coming from, or how many credits they’ve got in their checking accounts; they had houses spanning multiple floors, streets that were cleaned (humans weren’t good for much, except menial jobs Above the Line) and water that didn’t need to be filtered three times before it was safe to drink. 

There were some humans who’d made it through the barrier, but not in any capacity that Stiles would dream of pursuing; live-in concubines is what his dad called them whenever he’d had too much to drink as he watched the flickering ‘set where some tiny looking human was curled up against a ‘were. Mates, is what the wolves referred to them as. “That would’ve been called imprisonment and rape twenty years ago.” His dad would say, tipping his beer bottle at the television. “Now they’re told it’s an honor.” And yet even those who made it across the Line were still barred from certain areas, the places signposted and guarded, Werewolves Only! Do Not Enter.

“They spoke to me like I was some fucking kid!” Stiles fummed, ignoring his dad’s sharp ‘Language!’. That was perhaps the worst part of dealing with werewolves, being spoken down to. Genetically they were bigger than humans, faster and stronger too; Stiles at his average 5’10” looked tragically small next to a ‘were of average height, which hit more into the 6’7” range. They seemed to think that humans from Below the Line were all simple and it aggravated him to no end; just because they were taller and faster and stronger didn’t mean Stiles, or any other human, was stupid. “Like I didn’t understand anything they were saying. I hate them,” he snarled, “I hate them, I hate them, I hate them. I’m glad the Argents burned down the Hale house.”

“Stiles!”

“I don’t care if there’s listening devices! I hate them, dad! First Lydia gets snatched up as someone’s Mate,” his hands waved in the air as he did quotes around the word, “no one’s heard from Allison in the last, what, twelve years? And now Scott’s gone missing and we’re meant to do what, dad? What? You’re the Sheriff and no matter how many times you go to them about another missing person, they don’t care because they’re all ‘weres and we’ve just got to accept it. It’s not right.”

“C’mere, kiddo.” When his dad pulled him in for a tight hug, Stiles could feel his eyes welling up. “I know you miss Scott and you’ve no idea how sorry I am that I can’t do more. I’m trying.” 

“It’s not your fault.” 

His dad held him tight, one hand on the back of Stiles’ head to keep his face smushed up against his chest. “Maybe I shouldn’t’ve told you stories about how things used to be, hm? Your old man has a hard time of letting go of the past.”

Stiles sniffed and they both pretended his eyes weren’t red rimmed when he pulled away. “It might not have been a total waste today.”

“Yeah?”

“Hmm. I got speaking to one of the cleaners when I got a coffee.” Gotta love mandatory purchases for anyone visiting from BtL. “Human, he lives over in District 8. There’s this group of werewolf lawyers that help you trace and find missing humans for free. They helped him find his sister a few months ago.” 

“I think I’ve heard of them.” 

“Rescue Resource. They’ve got an office down in District 11, I’m gunna go see them tomorrow.”

His dad’s mouth pulled to one side, a worried furrow appearing between his eyes. “I know you want to find Scott and I commend that, I really do Stiles. But please. Be careful.” His dad cupped his face in his hands, fingers smoothing over the sharp jut of his cheekbones. “I don’t know what I’d do if I lost you.”

“I’ll be fine, dad. I promise.”

~~

Rescue Resource was off on a side street, in a small run down building that shared its walls with a tattoo parlor and a food bank. He was handed a leaflet when he got there, filled with success stories of people being reunited with their loved ones, of conviction rates and small bios of the ‘were lawyers they had on their books as well as their specialities. Stiles’ case was accepted by a ‘were who treated him with kiddie gloves but he could put up with that for the sake of finding Scott, even if it made him want to hiss like a wet cat. It’d been two and some months since he’d first walked into the office and now it finally seemed like he might have some payoff, if the call asking him to come over right away was any indication. 

His dad was at the station on shift and so Stiles left him a sticky note on the fridge with where he was going, with the promise he’d be back soon and a scrawled love heart sitting in the corner. 

He threw himself into the Jeep, jabbed his key into the ignition and was about to turn it when there was a sharp jab to the side of his neck; his hand slapped against his throat with a shout of pain as he spun around in his seat and the world didn’t stop moving when he did. The only thing he saw was darkness before he passed out. 

He woke up slowly in increments and it felt like he laid there for a long time with his eyes closed, trying to get his bearings, whilst the low hum of several conversations floated around him. He could hear people walking around, a soft tinkering of thin glass knocking together alongside the shuffle of wheels. He was warm, wrapped tightly, and his stomach felt full; he couldn’t move anything below his neck. He tried to open his mouth to scream but something had been stuffed in it and he couldn’t. 

When he managed to open his eyes, crust pulled at his eyelashes as he tried to blink the world into focus. 

There was some sort of plastic dome over him, and the woman peering down at him looked warped. Just from the size of her he could tell she was a werewolf and that fact alone had him panicking. He could hear the smile in her voice as she spoke, her tone pitched high and friendly. “Hi there sweetheart. Oh I know,” she cooed when Stiles jumped; something rubbery had poked him and it took a while of him looking at it to figure out that it was her hand in a rubber glove. “Everything’s so scary right now. Don’t worry, you’ll be out of this icky incubator as soon as you’ve had all your vaccinations. We don’t want you getting sick.”

Something pierced the side of his neck and he whimpered, terrified out of his mind. 

“Shh, shh darling. Everything's okay, you’re fine, all done. You were such a brave little boy.” One rubbery finger stroked his cheek before she withdrew her hand. “Go to sleep now, honey. You’ve got such a big day ahead of you tomorrow.”

Stiles didn’t want to go to sleep, but he felt his eyes slip close regardless. 

~~

He woke hours later to something rubbing against his lips; nose wrinkling, he turned his head away but whatever it was followed him. That’s when he realised that whatever had been in his mouth last time was gone, but his heart sank when he tried to speak and all he managed was a gurgle. Nothing was making sense; where was he? Where was his dad? What the hell was going on? He licked his lips and tasted milk. Squinting his eyes open revealed another nurse peering down at him, her hand in the gloves holding a bottle she was trying to get him to drink from. He clamped his lips closed and ignored the gurgling of his stomach. 

He’d starve to death before he drank anything they offered him, he thought with a snarl. 

“Are you not hungry, sweet boy? I can hear your tummy rumbling from here. It tastes yummy, I promise.”

Stiles resolutely kept his mouth closed tight, his heart pounding, and twisted his head away whenever she tried to poke the teat in between his lips. 

The bottle disappeared for a moment and Stiles watched her warily as she picked up a tablet that had been fixed onto the side of the incubator and began to smoothly swipe her finger across the screen. “Oh, it looks like your daddy will be here soon. I’ll bet you’ll nurse for him, hm?” His daddy? He hadn’t called his dad daddy since he was four and as much as he wanted to believe she was on about his actual dad, something heavy and sour in his stomach told him that’s not who she meant. “Okay, sweatpea. We’ll wait for your daddy. That just means we need to get you ready now,” she added, looking up from the screen and smiling, lightly drumming her fingers on top of the plastic cage he was in. “Your daddy wanted you out of everybody else,” she said, followed by a hollow thunk before she started to push him out of the room. “He put in a special request for you, which means you’re a special little boy, doesn’t it?”

To Stiles’ sluggish mind it sounded more like some werewolf creep had got him kidnapped, but potato patato he thought hysterically as they came to a stop in another room. There was another hollow thunk; breaks, he thought, his heart tripping over itself as the dome above him was removed with several clicks. 

The nurse tutted as she peeled back the swaddled blanket, the tips of her fingers warm as they brushed over his ribs. He would’ve reared back from the contact if he’d been able. “You’ll never have to worry about being hungry again.” Her hand moved down to cup his groin, something plush and soft cradling his dick, and he whimpered long and high in fear. “Shh darling, I’m just checking if you’re wet. Everything is fine.”

She took her time in giving him a sponge bath, the washcloth warm and sudsy as she dragged it up and down his arms and legs, between the creases at the top of his thighs and behind the backs of his knees whilst he lay there wide eyed in confused fear. When she lifted his arms, cooing at him as she washed, the lack of hair was jarring. The fact that he couldn’t move, sucker punch her across the jaw and flee, had him trembling; the raspberry that she blew across his stomach made him flinch. “Cold, darling? Okay, it’s time to get you all snuggly and warm.”

The onesie she tugged his arms into, gentle and slow, was soft and fleece-lined and when she’d finished clicking him into his new clothes, she booped him on the nose with her finger; he glared up at her mutinously. “Just one more thing, grumpy boy.” She worked off on the side for a moment and when she turned back around she was holding a needle, her lips curling up into a smile when Stiles furiously shook his head no. “You won’t feel a thing, I promise.” 

Stiles was asleep before she’d even pulled the needle out of his neck and lovingly placed a band-aid over the injection site.

 

Chapter Text

By the time he came to, he was moving. It was a gentle swaying motion, a rumbling underneath him; he had something snug over his shoulders and between his legs. When he opened his eyes, it was to the view of a car ceiling, colorful toys bopping above him. Whoever was driving seemed to be happy to leave him to his own devices for the moment even though Stiles was sure they knew he was awake, and it felt like the first time he could think without someone watching him. The trees outside the window blurred into one. 

So is this what happened to people who were taken? And what even was this? The only upside that he could tell as of right now, was that he could at least wiggle his fingers and toes, so whatever he’d been given was steadily wearing off and his mind, though still muggy, felt clearer for the first time since he’d been taken. 

The sun slanted through the trees and was blocked by the shade protector on the window and Stiles was struck by the thought of his dad. When he was taken, the day was just turning into night and the streetlamps had been struggling to turn on. It was easily late afternoon now and he wondered how long he’d been gone for. He had to get home to his dad, he had to be going out of his mind with worry. His dad needed him, who else cared about his diet, who else would make sure the fridge was stocked and the house clean; who would be there to tease him out of love and make sure he wasn’t lonely. 

He was all he dad had. His dad was all he had too. 

It took a moment to realise he was sucking anxiously on whatever was in his mouth, and it was only by going cross eyed that he could figure out it was a pacifier; horrified, he tried to push it out with his tongue, but it seemed like there was a strap around his head keeping it in place. What kind of bullshit kidnapping was this?

The sound of a phone ringing replaced the low sound of music coming through the speakers and whoever was driving picked it up with a sharp, “What?” 

“Do you have him?” said the voice, the sound slightly tinny. 

“We’re in the car now.” 

The woman squealed. “Is he awake?”

The man snorted. “Well if he hadn’t been, he would be now.”

“When can we see him?” 

“Not for a few days, Cora. You already know this. He needs to settle in first.”

She huffed, clearly not happy with that answer. “Ugh fine. How is he?”

“Besides being underweight and malnourished?” The woman, Cora, made a sympathetic sound and Stiles found himself getting angry; if he was underweight and malnourished it was because the ‘weres had them all living in poverty. His dad did the best he could on his meager wages. “Mostly scared and confused. This is all very new to him.” The car was slowing down. “I’m at the checkpoint, I’ve got to go.” 

“Post lots of pictures!” Cora demanded. 

Bye , Cora.” Music followed the sound of a beep, the call disconnected. “You okay back there, button?” Fingers suddenly danced above him and Stiles pressed his head back against the cushion. “I know, I know. We’ll be home soon, Stiles.” The car started again, whatever check they’d come to obviously done with, and through the window Stiles saw a guard holding a gun; the checkpoint. They were entering the werewolf only zone, Stiles realized, fear snaking down his spine. Well, fuck. 

Trees soon gave way to houses blanketed in the forest, each house sitting at the end of long driveways and spaced far enough apart that you couldn’t see into your neighbor's house, which was quite different to the cramped housing Below the Line, where single story houses were crammed together down each street and nook. The house they pulled up to after they’d gone down the driveway was a huge sprawling place, three floors high from what Stiles could see, with a wrap around porch, the hint of a swingset in the back garden. 

“Here we are. Home sweet home.”

If he could speak, he’d let this werewolf know exactly what he thought about that, but for now he had to settle on a look of pure loathing as the car door opened and he finally got the chance to see who he was dealing with. He was tall, with wide shoulders, his arms thick with muscles; his eyes were crinkled with his smile, his jaw lined with scruff, and if the dude hadn’t just kidnapped him Stiles would admit that he was good looking. As it was, he hoped the dude burned in hell.

“Hi, baby.” The werewolf cooed as he leaned over and unclicked him before hoisting the carrier up and out of the car with one hand. Stiles squeaked and was rewarded with a soft look. “Welcome home. You have no idea how happy daddy is now that you’re finally here.” They walked up the porch steps and a moment later they were in the house; it was all wooden floors, with thick lush rugs covering areas near the couch and down the length of the hall. An archway led into a kitchen, that even from his vantage point Stiles could tell was gleaming, and off to the side were carpeted stairs secured with a baby gate of all things.

There was a play mat on the rug and a toy chest near the flat screen. There was a folded down stroller propped up against the side of the hall.

Stiles wheezed.

“You’re okay.” The carrier was placed on the floor and soon he was unlatched, being lifted into the air and snuggled up against the werewolf’s chest, his legs bunched up to his stomach, one hand on his ass and the other rubbing circles on his back. “You don’t have to be scared, darling. Daddy would never hurt you.” He stood swaying until Stiles was no longer panting in fear, his hand never stopping rubbing his back. “Let’s get something yummy in your tummy, hm? Daddy knows you’ve not had anything to eat today, so I know you’re hungry, little boy.”

Yeah good luck, Stiles thought to himself, clamping his jaw shut tight, his heart hammering against his chest. 

The bottle was made in silence, and Stiles tried to take in as much of the kitchen as possible, clocking a block of knives on the countertop and a heavy looking wooden chopping board, but that was about it. If he had to stab this son of a bitch to escape, he would. He was expecting them to go to the couch, so he felt pretty justified in his confusion when he was taken over to the rug and laid down. The wolf smiled down at him. “Daddy already knows that you’re not food motivated and you’ve been hungry for a long time, huh, button? What’s one more day to you.” 

Fuck off, Stiles wanted to snarl, sucking furiously on his pacifier despite himself. His dad gave him everything. This guy could go fuck himself.

“You don’t remember me, do you, baby?” The words pulled Stiles up short, and his confused expression had the other laughing at him. “We met, a long time ago now.” He took his time in popping open Stiles’ onesie, easing out his arms and legs as he spoke. “The moment I saw you, I knew. I’m sorry it took so long to get you here.” He shifted Stiles so he was lying, immobile, on his front, head turned to the side, his pacifier bobbing in his mouth. “Daddy had to take a lot of classes to be able to look after you, to make sure I’d be able to care for you in the very best way.” Warm, oily hands touched his back and Stiles flinched. “You were so sweet.” Broad hands smoothed over the expanse of his back. “You said you were sorry.”

It was like a jolt of electricity through his brain and all at once he knew who this man was — he might be twelve or so years older, but now he could see this man in the cut of Derek Hale’s teenaged jaw and the slope of his nose. He’d met him just after the Hale fire, when the Argent family from Devenford were being extradited and brought over to Beacon Hills, and Derek and his family were burying Council Were Talia and David Hale. The funeral was mandatory for all service members, Above and Below the Line, and his dad had carted Stiles along, unable to find anyone to look after him. 

Derek was digging his fingers into his shoulders, loosening the tight knot of tension there with a few circular motions of his thumbs. “You were the only human there who smelt sad.”

His mom had only died three weeks prior to the Hale funeral. Stiles had stared at the big bouquets of flowers that framed the grave, all in wonderful pinks and blues, making the air smell like jasmine, and he considered stealing one for his mom. He thought about the wild flowers they’d placed on his mom’s grave, how sad they’d look next to this display. They wouldn’t miss one, right? His dad tugged him away from the flowers, as if sensing where his thoughts were wandering to. He remembered empathising with Derek, with all of the Hale ‘weres to be fair, because he knew what it felt like to lose your mom. The idea of losing his dad, as well as his mom, had him clutching his dad’s hand tightly the whole time they were there.

“And even when you were told not to look, you did.” Derek breathed out a laugh, his hands moving down his back, heat blossoming out from his spine to his hips as Derek’s hands moved. He felt his eyes droop. “Such a curious little boy.”

He’d caught Derek’s eye before he was tugged away from the flowers. He’d been sat at a long table covered in yet more flowers, dressed in black, looking shell-shocked. In that moment, before Stiles grew up bitter and jaded from the human's mistreatment, he hadn’t seen one of his oppressors, just a fifteen year old boy who’d lost his parents. He’d mouthed the words ‘I’m sorry’ before his dad caught him looking and instantly made him turn his head down and to the side, baring his neck, as he shuffled him off. “Never look a werewolf in the eye,” his dad whispered, his voice tight with fear. “Never do anything to bring attention to yourself but especially never challenge them. They’re animals at heart,” his hand had been tight on Stiles’ arm as he shook him a little, “I don’t care what clothes they wear, I’ve seen their other skin. You look an apex predator in the eye and they’ll take that as a challenge and they will kill you. Do you understand me?”

Even though Stiles had said yes, he still caught Derek’s eyes briefly as his dad was leading them away.

“Such a curious, curious little boy,” Derek repeated, his voice a soft lull, his hands now working on one of his arms as Stiles found himself sinking into the rug, giving a lazy suck of his pacifier. “Does that feel good, button?” He asked rhetorically, now working each finger over individually, and then moving onto his other arm. “All daddy wants to do is make his little boy feel good. Do you feel good?”

His thoughts were swimming. Did he feel good? He hummed, letting his eyes fall closed. He felt drugged more than anything, loose-limbed and lax; he rubbed his cheek against the rug.

Derek laughed, not unkindly, giving his back one more quick go over before starting on his legs. “I think my baby feels very good right about now.” Stiles felt his thoughts get stuck in taffy even as Derek made him feel like a wet noodle. It was almost like an out of body experience, the way he felt so floaty, disconnected from himself with each sweep of Derek’s large hands. They felt like they were everywhere, even when he moved onto the other leg, he could still feel phantom touches and warmth all over. Before he knew it he was being shifted and moved, pulled up into Derek’s arms so he could cradle Stiles against his chest, the sound of his heartbeat loud through his tee. His pacifier was poked back into his mouth and he sucked on reflex; warm, honey-sweet milk hit his tongue and he sucked again, his eyes feeling heavy. “There we go,” Derek whispered, brushing some sweaty hair off his forehead. “Doesn’t that taste yummy?”

They’d slaughtered the Argents, Stiles remembered fuzzily, sucking and swallowing. Publicly. It had been mandatory to attend and Peter Hale, the new Alpha, had slit their throats. Kate had taken the longest to die, gurgling around the gash in her throat, twitching on the podium. He overheard his dad talking about it weeks later, how Peter had pulled her head back so he purposefully had the wrong angle, so she’d die slower, drowning and bleeding out all at once. 

Derek’s hand was rubbing his stomach now, his pinky finger dipping into his belly button, his movements slow and feather light, the slightest bit of pressure being applied. “I know you’re scared and you think that you hate me right now,” Derek said, his voice low like he was sharing a secret; Stiles blinked up at him muzzily. “But I promise you won’t always feel that way.” He bent down to press a kiss to Stiles’ forehead, his lips lingering. “You’re going to be so loved here, with more aunts and uncles than you’ll know what to do with; all the toys you could dream of; a full tummy every night and all the kisses and hugs that you want.” 

Stiles frowned a little, sure he already had that back at his real home, but Derek shushed him, patting his ass with the hand that was cradling him close whilst the other continued to rub his stomach, a little bit more pressure being added. “All you need to do is relax; relax and let daddy take care of you.” 

It felt like they were there for a long time, Stiles mindlessly sucking and swallowing, with Derek watching every moment, never once taking either his eyes or hands off of him. As horrifying as the thought was, he couldn't remember the last time he was this relaxed, like his limbs were no longer apart of him and it was only because Derek had hold of him that he wasn't flying off into the ether. As it was, at first Stiles didn’t realise what was happening, just that something warm was enveloping his dick, sneaking down to cradle his balls and continuing down. When the fact that he was pissing himself actually occurred to him, and was still doing so to Derek’s proud little “you’re such a clever boy”, the thought was slow; the fact that it didn’t alarm him, alarmed him. But it was like he couldn’t hold onto the thought and between one blink and the next he couldn’t fathom why he thought he’d been upset.

One teat was removed from his mouth and swiftly exchanged for another, though this one didn't give out warm milk. He might've whined. “Okay button, up we go.” When Derek stood up, Stiles found himself burrowing in close as everything tilted and swayed, and Derek’s hand on the back of his head kept him pressed against his chest. “Let’s get you into a nice fresh diaper for nap time,” the baby gate clanged as it was unlatched and swung open, “and then afterwards we’ll play. Doesn’t that sound like fun?”

Derek, not expecting an answer, kissed him on the crown of his head and carried him upstairs.

Chapter Text

Stiles was getting really fucking annoyed at falling asleep and waking up somewhere completely different. It left him feeling unmoored, more than a little scared and overwhelmingly angry to have his autonmany stripped from him so easily. Blinking up blearily at the ceiling, where a mobile was spinning in slow circles, he took stock of himself; he could move his legs now, as well as his arms, though it took a lot of effort and he could feel himself shaking. He still had that stupid pacifier in — he wanted it out but he couldn’t help but to suck on it anxiously nor could he deny the level of comfort it brought him and somewhere at the back of his head danger, danger Will Robbinson! screamed out at him. 

Thinking back to how he got here, he doesn’t remember much. A lot of it was a blur, except for Derek’s voice and the taste of milk which, shit. Had he really been that out of it that he’d drank the stupid bottle? He remembered it, but it felt more like a dream than anything else, and his heart pounded against his rib cage, cheeks flushing hot; time had got slippery the moment the massage started and whilst he hadn’t been concerned at the time, thinking back on it makes his palms sweat. Looking out of the bars that Stiles assumed was a crib, sucking furiously on his pacifier, he took in the room; there was one elaborate wall, painted with a sunny forest, with wolves in the foreground and background, the rest of the walls a soft blue. There was a toy chest, a bookcase filled with brightly colored spines and the odd toy, as well as empty photo frames that had flowery text at the bottom proclaiming Baby’s First Steps and Baby’s First Christmas and such like. The window looked baby proofed, as did the door and the sockets in the wall, there was even baby changing station, adorned with straps, that looked big enough to fit Stiles on it. 

Which is when the memory of pissing himself decides to rear its ugly head. 

Freezing in his sucking, he moaned in embarrassment as tears of humiliated and frustration started to gather at the memory because that was going to happen again, wasn’t it? And what about when he didn’t need to piss, was he gunna shit himself too? He tried to suck more air in, feeling lightheaded. He was completely at this psycho’s mercy, he could do whatever he wanted to Stiles — he was already doing whatever he wanted, it just included diapers and bottles. He knew Stiles — how much was still up in the air — and had decided Stiles was his because he’d shown him some fucking compassion when he was a kid. Twelve years this man had been fixated on Stiles for, twelve years. That was insane. That was actually categorically insane. 

“Hey sleepy boy. You ready to join the world again?” 

He was never going to get away from him, was he? He was going to spend the rest of life being humiliated and a prisoner all because he’d empathised with Derek. That was it. That was the great crime he’d committed that meant he now deserved this for the rest of his life. He just wanted to go home. He just wanted his dad.

Stiles started sobbing, surprising both himself and Derek who was quick to coo down at him and haul him out of the crib, pulling him close to his chest. “Hey, hey, shhhh. It’s okay.” Stiles arched away and hoped Derek would drop him with all his squirming; he was high enough to maybe break his neck if he landed at a weird angle, probably. “It’s okay, shhh. Did you have a bad dream, button? It’s alright, Daddy’s here.” Stiles fought as much as he was able, screaming around the pacifier, weakly kicking out and squirming enough to the point that Derek ended up shifting him, pushing his head into the crook of his neck and bounce-walking him around the room. “Calm down, shhhh. Shhh, darling. You’re okay, daddy’s got you, everything’s fine, button. C’mon now…”

He didn’t stop. He screamed until he started to choke, his face red and tear stained, and fought back when Derek pulled him away from his neck in a panic to yank the pacifier off and over his head. “No!” The word felt heavy on his tongue, like it couldn’t roll around the word properly, slurred. But it had been the first thing he’d be able to say since he got there, so he didn’t stop. “No, no, no, no, no!”

“You need to calm down, shhh, Stiles. Shhh, come on now,” he dodged a failing arm and bounced Stiles a little more, panic starting to creep into his voice. “What on earth’s the matter?”

He screamed it until his throat was raw, biting and kicking until his arms and legs were too tired to move and then he used his head. Literally. One solid headbutt had Derek’s nose busting open and he was nearly dropped in all of the commotion, until Derek got one thick arm back under his ass and hitched back up into place. “Lemmeh go!”

He couldn’t even get out of Derek’s arms, what hope did he have of ever getting out of the room, the house, past the guards at the checkpoint? And where was his ID? He’d never even be able to get back Below the Line without it. He’d never see his dad again. Was this what Scott was going through, is this what they’d done to him, had Rescue Resource even found him? What about the other people they’d found, why had none of them said this is what those who were taken had to look forward to? 

God, this went right up to the top, didn’t it? All the baby things he’d seen so far had been manufactured to his bigger body, far bigger than what an actual child could get any use out of, and hadn’t Derek mentioned needing to be trained last night, before he could have Stiles? 

He couldn’t breathe. 

He wheezed as his windpipe narrowed down and closed, and Stiles gasped for air. This was sanctioned, this was a thing that werewolves did, hidden away in their ivory fucking towers as the humans starved and were plucked off the streets to be demeened and held hostage. 

“Stiles? Stiles, honey, I need you to breathe.” 

Every inhale got caught in his throat, sweat breaking out behind the backs of his knees and across the arch of his lips. Holy shit, he couldn’t breathe. Holy fucking shit.

Derek blew in his face, jiggling him. “Stiles?” He blew in his face again before transferring him to his other side, digging his cellphone out of his pocket as Stiles hung limply in his hold, desperately trying to get air in. “It’s okay, c’mon darling,” Derek spoke to him over the ring of the phone, never taking his eyes off him. “Deaton? He’s not breathing. No he’s not swallowed anything— yes I’ll check but, shit, Stiles open your mouth for daddy, baby.” 

Derek put the phone on speaker and then moved it to the bookcase, all so he could pry Stiles’ mouth open and tip his head back to see if anything was lodged in his throat. Stiles would much rather choke to death than live his life like this and so when he tried to clamp his mouth shut, all it took was two fingertips on either side of his jaw to keep it open; he tried to bite Derek’s fingers in between his gasps when he stuck them in his mouth to try and fish out something that wasn’t there.

“There’s nothing there!” 

“Derek, I need you to calm down,” came the voice from the phone.

“His lips are turning blue and you want me to calm down?”

Oh, that would explain why everything was narrowing down, his vision turning black at the edges.

“I think I know what the problem is but you need to tell me what he was doing before hand.”

“He woke up cranky,” Derek snapped, a direct contrast to how gently he was currently handling Stiles, worry clear in his eyes as he pushed some hair off his forehead. “Had a tantrum and then started to struggle to breathe. How do I fix him?” His voice had raised as he spoke, but now it lowered to that soft lyrical tone that he used with Stiles. “C’mon button, you need to breathe for daddy.” 

“He’s having a panic attack,” Deaton said cooly, “so you can either leave him until he passes out,” Derek growled and the sound rumbled through Stiles’ bones, enough that Stiles started to weakly struggle to get away from him, even though it felt like he was breathing out of a straw. “He’d be perfectly fine, but if you don’t want to do that, then use your claws.”

Stiles’ heart nearly tripped over itself in fear.

“It’s safe?” 

“Perfectly safe. A lot of babies need this method to calm down.”

“Okay, okay, Daddy’s got you.” He pushed Stiles’ head back into the crook of his neck and kept him there with one hand as Stiles whined, gasping against his throat. The slick sound of his claws unsheathing actually had Stiles pissing himself and when they sank into his neck the pain of it had him screaming. 

And then the pain was gone, his chest no longer tight; he was left breathing heavily, limp against Derek’s chest as he sucked air in. The claws were removed but Derek pressed his hand over the wound that Stiles wasn’t even curious about not hurting. “There we go, sweet boy. That’s it.” The hand that had pressed Stiles’ head down moved to rub up and down his back, the relief palpable in the air. 

Deaton’s amused voice came through the speaker. “Better now?” 

“Much.” He pressed a kiss to Stiles’ head. “Thank you.” 

“Keep using the claws up until our checkup and we’ll see where we can go from there.” There was some noise in the background, a woman’s voice letting him know his next appointment was here. “I’ll see you in two weeks, Derek. Don’t let him get worked up.”

Stiles shuddered, the last of his tears coming out on a shaky exhale and Derek all but melted at the noise. “That was super scary, huh? But you’re alright now, darling. Let’s get you all cleaned up, yeah?” With one last kiss, he placed Stiles down onto the changer. 

He was feeling pretty good right now, not bothering to move as Derek manipulated his arms and legs out of the onesie, a soothing babble of words raining down on him about what a good boy he was being and how sweet he looked with his eyelashes starred with tears. He was thinking back to the last time he’d lost his breath like that, the memory having hit him the moment Derek’s claws pierced the skin; it had been a few weeks after his mom’s death and he and Scott had been playing in an abandoned building that had once been a nightclub, when Scott had an asthma attack. 

Inhalers were expensive and few and far between; they were kept at the nearest clinic so people could pay per puff. 

“Look at this cute little tummy.” Derek bent down and blew a raspberry against his stomach, his stubble tickling at the skin. 

He’d nearly not got Scott to the clinic in time and it was Melissa who’d been there, holding his hand as she cradled a sobbing Scott close. The fact that he’d nearly lost his best friend was slow to sink in but once it had, it stole his breath away. He’d freaked Melissa out, he remembers, flinching at the feel of cold wet wipes running over his genitals, and then at the one that wiped the backs of his legs and underneath his chin. They’d thought he had asthma too and they’d wasted a hundred credits on the inhaler before they’d figured out it wasn’t helping. 

“Don’t you feel much better now with a nice, fresh diaper on? All snug as a bug.” Blinking out of the memory and looking up at Derek, he was met with a laugh. “There’s my sweet boy. Did you get lost in your head for a minute there?” 

What the hell had Derek done to him? 

He lay there, feeling drained, as Derek dressed him in clean clothes — another onesie, this one red with a little hood — and twitched his fingers. Whenever he tried to think back to whatever had got him so worked up, it was like hitting a glass wall in his mind and soon enough his thoughts skittered off in another direction until he was being brought back to the real world as Derek picked him up and cuddled him close. 

“Daddy just needs to put a bandaid on your owie, okay button? I promise you won’t feel a thing.” Not feeling anything sounded pretty good. “Here’s your paci, there we go,” Derek hummed as he slipped the nub past Stiles’ slack mouth, only to smile when Stiles closed his lips around it and started to suck. 

They left the bedroom and ended up in the bathroom, with Derek jiggling him to get his attention. “Look what daddy got for you.” He wiggled a box of Batman bandaids at him. It should worry him more that he seemed to know Stiles’ favorite superhero — did he know about the comics he obsessively collected, even though comics were one of the hardest commodities to come by? — but that part of him seemed to be muted. Instead he just stared blearily at the box, self-soothing with the pacifier as he sucked. 

Derek had already picked out one of the bigger ones and was now fixing it to the back of his neck, the veins in his arms black. As though he was in a dream, he managed to move his hand and place it on top of Derek’s arm, his thumb brushing over one of the bulging veins, idly wondering what that was. 

“There’s my curious boy.” The vein grew lighter until it had disappeared altogether, like it hadn’t ever been different. “Daddy promised it wouldn’t hurt, didn’t I? So the next time daddy does it, you don’t need to be scared, do you?”

Stiles yawned and Derek laughed. 

“Okay, we were gunna play after nap time, but I think some quiet time would be better, don’t you? I think you’ve had enough excitement for one day. Daddy knows you like books, so how about storytime, hm?”

Stiles figured Derek didn’t want an answer because it didn’t matter either way what Stiles wanted to do. He wanted his crappy life Below the Line, with his dad and Scott, but that had been taken away from him; he wanted to feel angry and scared at what was being done to him, but Derek had taken that away from him too. He kept taking it away from him. He felt nothing but floaty right now with only the echo of pain in his chest and at his neck to remind him what had happened.

 

Chapter Text

The afternoon floated by in a haze for Stiles and a lot of it was spent cradled in Derek’s arms as he went about his day. They read the promised book, with Stiles curled up against his chest and Derek doing the voices, bopping his nose against Stiles’ cheek whenever he thought his attention was waning. There was another bottle, with Derek cooing about how adorable he looked and another diaper change that happened between one blink and the next; the urge to scream simmered at the back of Stiles’ throat, trapped, and so he cried instead. 

Derek cuddled him through his tears.

The days ended up blurring into one. He drank his bottles, he used his diaper — the claws made a reappearance the moment Derek heard his stomach churning and Stiles hated the fact that he was glad he did — he had stories read to him, spent afternoons laying on the floor on a baby gym and napped. Rinse, wash, repeat. He fantasized about ripping off his mittens, stabbing Derek in throat and somehow making his way back to Below the Line; he thought about it during his daily massages before his brains turned to mush, day dreamed during bottle feeds about finishing the job Kate Argent started and setting Derek alight and any time a comment was made about being a “grumpy boy”, Stiles envisioned himself jamming his fist right in his stupid smiling face.

Today, Derek was pushing a stuffed fox in his arms after he’d zipped up a coat over today’s onesie that proclaimed ‘the snuggle is real’. He glowered out at Derek as he strapped him into the car seat and got a kiss to his forehead and a pacifier popped into his mouth for his troubles. “I know, I know, daddy’s the worst, wanting to make sure you’re safe. We’ll play when we get home, I promise.” 

He ended up falling asleep during the drive, his indignation and anger melting away as the car thrummed underneath him. 

He’d been doing that a lot, napping. He was convinced there was something in the bottles Derek kept giving him but no matter how hard he fought drinking them, Derek always won and six bottles a day found their way down his throat whether he liked it or not.

“Ups-a-daisy,” Derek muttered, his voice soft as he lifted Stiles out of the carseat and propped him on his hip. Stiles yawned wide enough for his pacifier to slip out of his mouth and with a short laugh, Derek pushed it back in. “Here we go, button. You ready?” 

With his head on Derek’s shoulder, his eyes a little crusty with sleep, it took him a hot second to make out the sign on the building they were heading towards: Beacon Hills Children's Medical Center (H) and once he had, his stomach swooped. “Nu,” he garbled around his paci, wiggling in Derek’s arms. “No!” 

“Shh, it’s just a check up, button.” A big hand ran up and down his back, and Stiles felt himself relaxing a little despite how fast his heart was beating. “Do you need daddy’s help calming down?” 

That was something Derek had started doing too. Making Stiles an accomplice in his own drugging. ‘Daddy’s help’ were his claws to the back of neck, so that everything went fuzzy and soft around the edges, and time turned to water. He wasn’t ashamed to say that more than once he’d nodded, needing to get away more than he needed his pride but right now he figured he needed his wits about him. Swallowing heavily, he shook his head no and chewed on the nipple in his mouth, his fingers twisting the fox’s fur between his fingers. 

“Hey Kira,” a little bell tinkered over the door and an Asian woman, who didn’t look much older than Stiles, beamed at the pair of them from behind the reception desk. Stiles pushed his face against Derek’s neck, ignoring his chuckle, figuring he was the lesser of two evils. “We’re a little early, I know.” 

“Oh he’s shy, ” the woman cooed. “Am I the first one to see him?” 

“Mmhm.”

“He’s adorable,” she gushed over the clacking of keys as she typed. “I can’t wait to tell Cora, she’ll be furious.” She sounded ridiculously smug. “How’s he settling in?” 

“Textbook, mostly. You’re daddy’s little boy, aren’t you?” Derek jiggled him, trying to get him to stop hiding and join the conversation. Stiles would’ve bit him if he could. “You don’t want to say hi to Aunty Kira?” He felt Derek shrug and heard the smile in his voice when Stiles refused to budge. “First time out of the house.” 

“Oh! I didn’t know you were doing his regression that way.” She sounded pleased. “I think if I ever got a human, that’s how I’d do it too. They’re always the sweetest babies that come in that hav—” a loud buzz cut her off. “Ah, Deaton’s ready for you now. I’ll see you soon, Derek! Bye Stiles, see you tonight!”

He really, really hoped he didn’t. What was tonight? 

“Derek,” Stiles peeked out from Derek’s neck at the familiar voice and then immediately hid again when he was addressed, his heart thudding, “and you must be Stiles. How’s he been?” 

“A little panicky.” Stiles was pressed flush against Derek’s front, the fox stuffed between them, as Derek sat, one hand on Stiles’ ass and the other on his back, rubbing up and down in long, smooth strokes. “He’s starting to smell less hateful.”

What? 

No, really, what the fuck? 

“They usually do at this point. Have you had to use your claws often?”

“A few times,” Derek admitted, bouncing his knee. Stiles yawned, even though the phrase ‘he’s starting to smell less hateful’ pinged around his head. If he could make his tongue curl around the words, he’d tell Derek exactly how much he hated him. 

“I pulled his records, if you can even call them that.” There was a sound of a folder being opened. “They only came through a couple of days ago, so they’ve not be digitalized yet. But it looks like he’s suffered from panic attacks previously, notably after his mother died.” Stiles stiffened and Derek hushed him, jiggling his knee a bit more. “It’s also noted that he’s got ADHD, but his father couldn’t afford the medication, so he’ll be a little more of a handful than you were expecting.” 

“He’s been fine so far.” 

“Hmm.” There was a moment’s silence as Deaton flicked through the file. “You’re still going the Co-D route over the Traditional, yes?”

“Absolutely.” 

“Okay then. Let’s take a look at the little guy. If you could turn him around? He’ll be more comfortable on your lap, I just need to get at his chest right now.”

Even though Stiles was clutching onto Derek’s shirt, it took him mere seconds to manoeuvre him around, take his coat off and unpop the first couple of clickers on his onesie. Before Stiles knew it, he was facing Deaton, one of Derek’s thick arms around his waist to keep him in place, chest pebbling with goosebumps and that stupid fox toy clutched in one of his hands. 

Deaton came at him with a stethoscope and a smile, ignoring Stiles’ wide eyes and furious, anxious, sucking of his pacifier. 

He jumped when the cool metal touched his skin and Derek pressed a kiss to the top of his head, calling him a brave boy.  

“Is he talking?” Deaton asked, tapping on Stiles’ chest and moving the stethoscope around after listening for a moment. Stiles pressed himself back against Derek, as though he could get away from him. 

“Not much. His favorite word is no, isn’t it button?”

It was childish, but Stiles found himself burying his face into the belly of his new toy. He heard Deaton laugh and he could feel the tops of his ears getting hot with his embarrassment. It was stupid, he knew it was stupid, he knew they could both still see him, but the urge to hide his face, to try and get away somehow, had been too strong. 

“Everything sounds good. Pop him on the table and let’s weigh him.” He kept his face pressed against the toy as he was lifted and then sat on a table that crinkled when he shifted. “One thirty two, he’s up twenty pounds, which is excellent. I’d like him to put a bit more on before I’m happy, but he’s looking much healthier than when he was first brought in. You can pick him up now.” 

As soon as he was back in Derek’s arms, he hid his face in the crook of his neck, his toy pushed up to block his face from Deaton’s gaze. He stayed there as they spoke about him and his bowl moments, their frequency and consistency, as though he was an actual baby who couldn’t understand them. It was disgusting and mortifying and Stiles wanted nothing more than for the pair of them to just drop dead. Or for the ground to open up and swallow him whole. He wasn’t fussy at this point. 

“Well he’s a very healthy little boy, keep doing what you’re doing Derek and he’ll be fine. I’ve just got a couple of top up shots I need to give him, as well as something for his anxiety, and then you’re free to go.”

“Hear that, baby?” Derek murmured, his nose bumping up against the shell of Stiles’ ear as he ducked down to speak to him. “Nearly done.”

At the mention of shots, Stiles had tensed. More drugs. He shook his head, pressing his face harder into the crook of Derek’s neck. “No.” Not that Derek ever listened to him. “No!”

“Don’t you want to be big and strong?” Derek replied with, already shifting Stiles so he could wiggle his arm out of his coat and onesie, whilst still keeping him pressed up against his chest. The words gave him pause. He did want to be strong enough, so he could get away, but that’s not what these would do, right? 

He yelped at the prick in his arm and snatched his head out of its hiding place to glare at Deaton, who only smiled back at him and lifted up another needle; Stiles hid his face again, feeling sick just at the sight of it. The pain from the jabs soon melted, and a quick peak showed black lines crawling up Derek’s hand from where he had it pressed against Stiles’. He didn’t want to feel grateful but… 

“All done. That wasn’t so bad, was it Stiles?” Deaton said, placing a band-aid on his arm, before snapping his gloves off. Derek redressed him, peppering his face in kisses and cuddling him close. He could push his paci out now that it was no longer strapped around his head to spit at him, but what was the point? He tiredly rested his head against Derek’s shoulder instead and opted to glare at Deaton in reply. “He might get a bit of a fever, that’s completely normal. It’s just his body reacting to the shots. And this is for you, for being such a brave boy.” He produced a sparkly sticker that said ‘I was brave today!’ with a picture of a cartoon monkey that had a bandage around its head, and pressed it onto his coat. 

“Oh wow, would you look at that! Say thank you, Stiles.” 

He absolutely would not. 

In defiance, he closed his eyes and brought his teddy back up to block his view of them both. They could fuck off.

~~

When they got home — no, back to Derek’s — Stiles was put down for a nap, which he was quite happy about because he was exhausted from doing nothing. When he woke up, Derek was there with a smile and a diaper change.

He didn’t have to use the straps anymore because Stiles had learnt there was no point in trying to squirm away.

“We’re going to have to think of a name for him,” Derek said, plucking up a wet wipe, gesturing to the fox toy that Stiles was currently clutching. He did it often, just passed off toys to Stiles, but this was the first one he hadn’t tossed away in temper — its fur was soft between his fingers and it was both big enough to hide behind and small enough that he could hold onto it comfortably. It had nothing to do with the fact that he’d had a far shabbier, less soft and older version of a fox teddy growing up. “How about Foxy?” Derek snorted at the look Stiles gave him. “Or maybe not.” 

Mischief , Stiles thought to himself. It was what his mom had called him, when he was too young to pronounce his name and any memory of his mom always brought thoughts of his dad. If he had to be stuck here, until he eventually found a way home — how? How was he gunna get home? — then he wanted something at least that made him think of his mom and dad. His real dad. 

“We’re going to have some guests tonight.” Stiles looked up at Derek, confused. They’d never had guests, not in the whole time that he’d been here. “That’s right, we are!” The straps to his diaper were pressed down against his hips, his onesie rebuttoned. “My pack’s going to be coming around to say hi, they can’t wait to meet you. Don’t look so scared, sweetheart.” Derek scooped him up and cuddled him close. “They’ll absolutely love you.”

When the first person arrived, not bothering to knock, Stiles was lay on his stomach on the floor, the baby mat underneath him crinkling every time he moved to lifelessly poke at his toys, Mischief clamped underneath his arm. 

“Derek?” 

Stiles jumped at the noise, but Derek had clearly heard them coming long before, because he didn’t even twitch, just pushed himself to his feet and effortlessly picked Stiles up off the floor. “Through here.” 

“What’s this I hear,” Cora demanded, striding through the doorway and making a beeline to Derek, only to poke him sharply in the chest, “about Kira meeting him first. I wanted to be the first one to see him.”

“He had his first check up, I couldn’t not take him. She saw him for three minutes, tops.” Stiles was bumped up a little more on Derek’s hip and he reared back in surprise when Cora squealed, ducked down and completely smashed his personal bubble.

“Shut up, whatever, you’re still a butt. Hi cutie.” Like the woman from earlier, she couldn’t be much older than Stiles, and he felt himself getting hot with mortification. She sniffed him and then cooed. “Aww, he’s embarrassed. Why’re you embarrassed?” He got hotter and promptly curled himself closer to Derek’s chest, hiding behind Mischief; he could feel Derek’s chest rumbling with laughter. “You are a cutie. Look at all those freckles, you’re just precious.”

“Stop scaring him.”

“I’m not scaring him, Uncle Peter. He’s just shy.”

“Poor thing.” Mischief was suddenly gone and Stiles was greeted by Peter’s calculating blue eyes. He kept very, very still. He still remembered how Kate Argent’s blood had arched away from her throat when the man before him had sliced it open. Peter smiled, a slow calculated thing. “Well hello there little one.”

He wanted his toy back but he didn’t dare to move. He may have not been scared before, but he was now. 

“Gosh Derek, does his heart always beat that fast?” Cora asked.

“Don’t be nervous. I only go after the bad little humans.” He smiled, but it was all teeth. “Like ones who want set us on fire.”

He knew. That’s all that Stiles could think. That smile, and the look in his eye, told Stiles that he knew what he’d said to his dad; it was a threat if he’d ever heard one. Holy shit, the wolves really were listening in on them. 

“Enough of that,” Derek snapped, snatching the fox out of Peter’s hand and bashing him on the head with it before he gave it back to Stiles, who clutched it tightly to his chest, his heart hammering in his chest hard enough to hurt. “You’re frightening him.”

Peter moved away with a smirk and Cora’s face came back into view. “Ignore Uncle Peter, Stiles. Every now and then he’s just got to prove that he’s the big bad alpha.” 

“Can’t have people forgetting that,” Peter sang over his shoulder, throwing himself down onto the nearest armchair. “Nothing wrong with a friendly reminder.”

Cora rolled her eyes and then perked up at the sound of the front door opening and closing, turning to Derek with a grin. “Did you tell him?” 

“No, I thought it’d be a nice surprise. Guess who’s here, button? A friend for you to play with, isn’t that great?” 

Fantastic, another human captive. Just what he’d always wanted. Unless… unless they were like him, they still had all their faculties — he’d never seen another captive, hell this was his first time around a werewolf that wasn’t Derek — maybe they could work together, escape somehow, get home. He chewed on his pacifier, cautiously optimistic for the first time since he got here. 

“We late?” came a voice, just before they rounded the door. “We couldn’t find his blankey and we’ve learnt our lesson from the last time we left the house without it. Sorry about that.”

The boy holding onto his hand had said blankey clutched in his other, a pacifier in his mouth and was wearing dungarees. But that wasn’t what had caught Stiles’ attention. 

It was Scott.

Chapter Text

Scott.

He was all arms and legs, struggling to get out of Derek’s hold, needing to actually touch Scott to believe it. He was here, he was here, right in front of him and for the moment, he didn’t care that Scott had been suffering the same humiliation as Stiles for the last three months, because he was alive. He was alive and currently beaming up at Stiles as he whined behind his pacifier, desperately trying to get to him. Did Scott remember him or had they taken that away from him too?

“Oh this is so cute, I need to record this.” 

“Okay baby,” Derek soothed, keeping hold of him before then moving away from Scott. Stiles lost his mind and tried to jackhammer his way out of Derek’s hold. “Hey, hey now. It’s alright.”

He spat his pacifier out. “No!” Words still felt heavy in his mouth, like his tongue still couldn’t remember how to curl around the letters properly. He threw himself backwards in Derek’s arms, trying to get free. “ ‘ott!”

“Daddy,” Scott gasped, sounding young to even Stiles’ ears. “He knows my name!”

Stiles was just readying himself up for a tantrum like Derek hadn’t seen since he first brought him hom here when he was clicked into his bouncer, and Derek was pulling away with an indulgent, “There we go, button. Now you can play with your friend.”

Unable to move, he had to settle for straining against the straps keeping him in place and holding out both arms, his hands imploringly grasping for Scott as tears gathered in his eyes. “ ‘ott!” He didn’t care if Scott didn’t remember him, he remembered Scott and he just wanted— he needed to touch him, just to make sure he was real. 

Scott looked up at the werewolf he’d come in with and it was only when they nodded, and nudged him to move, that Scott toddled over. As soon as he was in range, Stiles weakly grabbed hold of him and pulled him down on top of him, wrapping his arms around his neck. Scott giggled and hugged him back.

There were various coos around the room, and Stiles was sure he heard more than one click of a camera, but he didn’t care. Scott was here and he was real and Stiles was never letting him go. “ ‘ottie.” He rubbed his cheek against Scott’s, like Derek did to him when he was trying to calm him down, hiccupping.

Scott took out his pacifier and pushed it gently into Stiles’ mouth and someone awwed in the background. “Don’t cry, baby,” a soggy kiss was pressed to his cheek followed by a pat. “My daddy said we’re gunna be best friends! I even brunged some of my toys. D’ya wanna see?”

He whined when Scott pulled away, more tears threatening to come, but Scott just plonked down onto his diapered butt, and pulled over the bag that his ‘daddy’ had placed next to him with a sweet, “Fanks, daddy.” He looked up and gave Stiles a big grin before turning the bag upside down and emptying it on the floor. “See! I gots lots we can play with. Here,” he added, pressing his blanket into Stiles’ hands that were reaching out for him, “you can hold my blankey. My blankey always makes me feel betterer.”

“Hey Scott,” Derek was suddenly there, bending down to pass him Stiles’ teddy, “maybe he’ll feel better with his stuffie.” 

“You can has both,” Scott decided, pressing the toy into Stiles’ hands.

Stiles cuddled both the blanket and toy close, sniffling and refusing to take his eyes off of Scott for a moment. 

“Okay! I gots trains, I gots cars and,” he wiggled, unearthing the last toy buried under the others, “I gots superheroes!” He held up a both a Captain America and Iron Man action figure and waved them in the air, clearly excited. 

Stiles couldn't help but to give him a watery smile. By Scott’s answering grin you’d think he’d just cured cancer. 

“I missed the reunion?” Stiles didn’t need to look up to recognise the woman’s voice, Kira, from the doctors. She sounded upset. 

Scott looked up though, his cheeks going pink as he said hi to her. 

“Aw, he’s still got a crush on you.” 

“Shut up, Cora. Hi Scott.” She bent down and pressed a kiss to his cheek and Scott went pinker. “Hi Stiles.” She gave him a little wave but Stiles ignored her in favor of watching Scott. 

He used to go pink when Allison would hold his hand, Stiles remembered. He went pink when he told Stiles about his first kiss with her and when he’d wax lyrical about everything from her dimples to the way she’d handled the feral dog that tried to take a chunk out of his leg that one time. “She’s just amazing,” he’d gushed. “I think I might love her, dude.”

He went white when he found out she was missing. 

Stiles sucked on his borrowed paci, fingers playing with the tassels on Scott’s blanket, feeling numb. It was his best friend but it wasn’t. This person who was handing him an Iron Man toy wasn’t the same boy who stayed up all night with him, reading comic books under the covers with a flashlight, trying to not get caught by his mom during sleepovers. 

It didn’t stop him from taking the toy and it didn’t stop him from getting sucked into this new fantasy world that Scott built. He set up the cars and trains, and told Stiles that if he pointed Iron Man’s hands at one of them they’d explode; dubious, he did and Scott picked up the car, made the sound of an explosion, and tossed it a little ways away. He positively preened at Stiles’ giggle. 

As they played, with Mischief being roped in to be the big baddie that they had to defeat, the werewolves spoke around them. 

“I don’t have the patience,” Scott’s kidnapper said, “I don’t know how you do, Derek. It’s the Traditional way all the way for me.” 

“I dunno,” Kira said. “I see both at the clinic, it depends what kinda human you want.” 

“One that does at it’s told, preferably.” 

“And that’s why you have a slave and not a baby, Uncle Peter.” 

“Quite.” Stiles could hear the smirk, even if he couldn’t see it.

“Boom!” Scott pretended that Cap’s shield had just smashed a train in half. “We’re gunna stop you, Foxitron!”

“Seriously though, Derek. It’s a couple of injections, a little bit of neurological rewiring and tah dah, you have a regressed human. Scott,” Scott looked up at the sound of his name, but soon went back to his game when he figured they were talking about him, not to him, “was running around as a happy toddler within the week.”

“The Traditional method makes it harder for them to regress to a younger age. It makes them too independent.” Derek shrugged. “I don’t want an independent baby.” 

It made something cold and shivery settle in his stomach that they were talking about all of this in front of Stiles without a care for the fact that he could understand them. Happily discussing the various means they systematically went about kidnapping teenagers and turned them into mindless, drooling versions of themselves that shit their pants.

“Co-D babies are too, well,” he laughed, “co-dependent. Don’t get me wrong, I love Scott, but I’m not cut out for the constant attention Co-D babies need.” 

“There’s been studies though that suggest Co-D babies are happier and more settled, because they came about it naturally. If I ever settled down and got a human,” Kira added, “that’s how I’d do it.” 

“Look at him, does he look like an unhappy baby?”

“Quick, Iron Man, we need t’hurry!” He made Cap stand on Iron Man’s shoulders and then jump off to land on Foxitron. “Help!”

“That’s not what she meant, Theo and you know it. Can we talk about something else? Like how about Laura not being here because she’s too loved up with her latest beau?”

Peter snorted. “Oh we all know the real reason Laura isn’t here. She doesn’t want to meet the newest addition to the family,” Stiles is pretty sure that part was sneered, “because she doesn’t agree with all of this. I knew we shouldn’t’ve let her go to college in New York. East coast wolves are the worst.”

Stiles paused in aiming the gauntlet at Foxitron, breathless at the thought of a wolf out there who didn’t agree with all of this, at the idea that there might be someone who could help him and Scott get out of here. For the first time he felt a flicker of hope.

“Arugh, he’s squishing me. Help, help, I need help Iron Man!” 

I’m gunna try, buddy, Stiles thought to himself, lifting up the gauntlet to fire at Mischief. I’m gunna try.

~~

“Did you have fun today, button?” The words were whispered against Stiles’ ear as he lay on the floor, Derek’s big hands skimming up the arch of his spine. Everyone had left a little while ago and Stiles had sobbed when Scott packed his toys away, slipped his hand into his werewolf kidnappers hand and left. Derek promised he’d see him again soon. “You were such a good boy and good boys deserve good things, don’t they, sweetheart?” 

His eyes felt sore and gritty, his body loose as Derek kneaded out every ache and knot. He blinked slowly, rolling his tongue around the teat in his mouth and hummed. He had been good today. He’d had plenty of opportunities to be a brat, plenty of justifiable opportunities at that, but he’d decided the effort wasn’t worth the lack of results he’d knew he’d get. He deserved all the good things, like going home or, if he had to settle, having Scott here. 

Being turned into mush was an okay second option too, he guessed. 

“You’re daddy’s good boy,” Derek crooned, “and I love you so much.” Derek must’ve seen him frown, because he pressed his thumbs into the base of his neck with a little more pressure than normal, causing Stiles to moan softly in pleasure around his pacifier. “Oh baby, you weren’t very loved before if you can’t see how much I love you.”

Usually, at the mention or suggestion that any part of his life before he was taken had been less than perfect, Stiles would get angry and attempt to bite or punch Derek but it was very hard to feel anything other than relaxed when Derek was massaging him like this. Instead, the words confused him. His dad had loved him. Of course he did.

“No one’s ever done this for you before me, have they button? No one else cared enough if you were achy, but daddy does. That’s why I always do this,” those big hands of his swept down his back again, his fingers brushing against the top of his diaper, and Stiles shivered, “just to make sure you’re as comfortable as possible. But no one else cared.” No one else had done this for Stiles and part of him couldn’t help but to think he’d been missing out. He felt really, really good right about now. 

The massage continued, with Derek moving on to his arms and then his hands, working over his fingers one at a time, softly whispering to him how cherished he was, how much he loved looking after him, how happy he was to be Stiles’ daddy. It was only when Derek’s fingers brushed against his inner thigh that Stiles realized he was hard and slowly rolling his hips, his dick pressing against the plush lining of his diaper. When he tensed in realisation, Derek shushed him.

“It’s okay, you’re allowed to feel good, baby. Just enjoy it, you’re still my good boy.”

As much as Stiles wanted to drop back into the dreamy, floaty feeling, he couldn’t get there completely after his realization, not that Derek made any further comment on it, continuing on with the massage as though nothing was amiss. But now that Stiles was aware that he was hard, he couldn’t shake the thought and yet it still took more effort than it should’ve to keep his hips from twitching. Everything just felt so good, like the way his diaper cradled his dick in a way he hadn’t been conscious of before, to the feel of Derek’s magic hands making him tingle.

It was only after he’d finished his night time bottle that his erection went down, but when Derek changed his diaper it threatened to make a reappearance; he ended up hiding his burning face behind Mischief, his arms shaking with the effort after being turned into jello. 

Derek sounded amused when he spoke, and it felt like he was taking extra time and care as he lifted up his dick to clean around it with a wet wipe. “Are you shy because your pee-pee is getting excited?” He used the same wipe to brush the length of his dick and Stiles whimpered. “It’s completely normal, daddy isn’t mad. It just means you feel good, button and that’s all daddy wants for his special little boy. But no touching, only daddy can; you don’t want to get icky germs, isn’t that right?” A diaper was slipped under his ass and fastened snugly around his hips. “If daddy catches you ever touching your pee-pee…” he trailed off, moving Mischief and fixing Stiles with a stern look. 

The pacifier squeaked as he sucked, feeling pinned down with the look and wanting his shield back.

Once he was dressed, his hands in mittens and fluffy socks on his feet, he was swaddled in a blanket and cuddled close to Derek’s chest, where he slowly started to calm down, his nose brushing against Derek’s collarbone. “Okay sleepy boy. What should we read tonight? Hmmm… here, how about this?” 

Stiles fell asleep to the sound of Derek’s voice, warm and comfortable, his brain holding onto barely there memory of Laura Hale and her apparent dislike for the system. He was too out of it right now to think of how to use it to his advantage, but he wouldn’t always be. He just had to remember.

Chapter Text

Stiles was busy warily eyeing Derek up as the werewolf slipped his arms into a jacket, his pacifier bobbing in his mouth and Mischief clutched in one hand. It had been a few days since the last time they left the house and Stiles wasn’t in the mood to go back to the doctor’s, not that he had the ability to say as much other than by scowling. 

“Now now, no sulking.” Derek bopped him on the nose, scooping him up into his arms before he started to fuss with Stiles’ hair, trying to get it to lay flat. “Daddy’s got some things he needs to do today, so you’re going to Uncle Peter’s.” He licked his hand and then smoothed it over his head; Stiles wrinkled his nose in disgust, but Derek was too busy looking pleased with himself. “It won’t be for long and you’ll have so much fun. Daddy’s bringing your favorite toys,” he patted the bag that was slung over his shoulder, “so you won’t be bored.”

He hoped his incredulous expression got across that being bored at Peter’s house was the least of his concerns. He hated himself a little bit for it, but he whined at the back of his throat and snuggled closer. He didn’t want to go to Peter’s. Peter freaked him out. He didn’t want to be here, not really, but he’d got used to the routine that had been forced onto him, he was used to Derek and whilst he didn’t like the man, he could admit the werewolf had no intentions of hurting him. Peter? 

Peter scared him. 

“Oh I know, sweetheart. Daddy’s gunna miss you too. So so much.” He peppered kisses all over his face and despite himself, Stiles found himself fighting back a small smile. “There’s my beautiful boy, I see him, right here,” he pressed another kiss right against the curve of his mouth, “oh yes I do. If you’re a good boy for Uncle Peter, daddy will bring you back a special treat. How does ice cream sound?”

Ice cream sounded better than the unsweetened porridge Derek had been trying to foster off on him as ‘solid food’ for the last week. A lot better, in fact. His mouth was already watering at the thought of something sweet. 

“Sounds good, huh?” Derek hitched him up higher on his hip as he closed the front door behind them and made their way across the street. 

Peter apparently only lived a short walk away, two houses down, and the promise of ice cream only managed to temper his anxiety up until Derek was knocking on the front door; he was shushed and bounced. It wasn’t Peter that opened the door, but a man with dead blue eyes and a monotone voice. “Alpha Hale is in the living room.” 

Stiles merkatted over Derek’s shoulder as they walked through the front door, his heart pounding. He knew that man. He was an Argent, one who hadn’t been at the public slaughtering; he remembered thinking the man had probably died in custody. In the news reels, it hadn’t looked like any of them were being treated well, so it hadn’t been that far of a leap. But apparently not. 

“Ah, here’s my nephew,” Peter grinned, but it didn’t quite reach his eyes, “and his spawn. Hello little one, come to Uncle Peter.” 

Derek had to prise Stiles’ hands off his jacket in order to pass him over and into Peter’s waiting arms. He all but melted when he started to cry. 

“Pwease, no no no,” he tried to reach out for Derek, but Peter’s grip on him was firm. His bottom lip was wobbling. “Don’t wanna!”

“I know sweet boy, I know. Daddy won’t be long.” Stiles got more kisses, and Derek was quick with them too, not giving Stiles a chance to latch onto him. “I’ll be back soon, I promise! Have fun with Uncle Peter!” He pulled back and levelled Peter with a look. “You know what I’m going to say.” 

“So don’t say it,” Peter shot back with, his tone smug. “Off you pop, dear nephew. He’s in safe hands.” 

With one last look at Peter, Derek turned and smiled at Stiles, giving him a little wave. “I’ll see you soon.” 

And that was it. He just walked out. 

It felt a little like he’d taken all the air in the room with him. 

Ever since he’d been taken, he’d pretty much just been with Derek. Derek was the one who did everything for him. He couldn’t really move on his own — walking was out of the question, but he’d just about mastered rolling over and army crawling, much to Derek’s proud delight — he couldn’t feed himself, or go to the bathroom or do anything on his own. Derek did it all. Derek was the only one who did it. He’d gotten used to the diaper changes and the baths, and they no longer made him want to curl up and die of embarrassment if only because Derek didn’t make a big deal about it. 

He didn’t want Peter anywhere near his junk. 

He didn’t want Peter anywhere near him full stop. 

“All those tears for a man you don’t even love,” Peter mocked, pretending to pout. “Am I really that bad of an alternative?” 

With a huff, Stiles snubbed him, feeling a hot mix of shamed confusion curdling in his stomach. Who the hell was this prick to be judging him about being upset that Derek had abandoned him? He didn’t have to like Derek to feel upset about him leaving him here. Anyone would be upset about being left with Peter. 

“Don’t be like that,” Peter tsked, the amusement heavy in his tone. He jiggled Stiles and tried to force him to look at him. “Any baby would be upset about their daddy leaving them.” 

For the first time in a long time, anger bubbled up inside him; it left him feeling hot and a little shaky, as though his body was no longer used to the rush of adrenaline. He wanted to hurt him; wanted to be able to jam his thumbs right into his eyes and push until they popped like grapes. He wanted to punch him in the dick and wrap his hands around his throat and just squeeze until that stupid little half-smirk of his slipped off his face. 

He couldn’t do any of those things and before the rush of helplessness flooded him, he held onto his indignation and spat his pacifier out with enough force that it bounced off Peter’s forehead, followed with a very mangled, “Fuh ‘ou!”

Rather than getting angry, like Stiles expected, Peter just looked delighted. His voice was oily as he leant in close, his mouth brushing against Stiles’ ear as he whispered. “We’re going to break you.” Stiles froze, his anger freezing as goosebumps broke out over his arms. “One day you’re going to come willingly into my arms, little boy, and you won’t even know that we’ve won. All this fight that you’ve got now? Oh, darling, we’ll snuff it out. We always do. Just look at that hapless friend of yours. And the best part, little fox? You won’t even remember this conversation.” He pressed a lingering kiss to Stiles’ cheek. “We won’t tell your daddy about your little temper tantrum, I may as well stake my claim as the ‘Cool Uncle’ early on, hm?” He pulled away, satisfied, before looking over his shoulder to shout down the hall. “Christopher!”

Not a minute later, the man from the door came in, with a deadpan, “Yes sir?” before he was gestured to stand in front of them both. 

“Look at him, Stiles.” With his claws extended, Peter gripped Christopher’s face, each finger finding the promident notches in his cheeks where he’d clearly done this often enough for it to scar. “His sister set my sister and brother-in-law on fire. His wife had the bright idea to try and hide their daughter under my nose and thought they’d get away with it.” He forced Chris’ head up, so Stiles was looking right into his eyes. Nothing stared back at him. “Now his sister, dad and wife are all dead. His daughter belongs to the wolves and he belongs to me.” He tightened his grip enough that pinpricks of blood welled up underneath his claws. “There’s not a single thought in that head of his that I didn’t put there.” Chris neither blinked nor flinched; he simply stood stoically, awaiting his next order. “Watch. Christopher? Hurt yourself.” 

Stiles watched in horror as Chris punched himself hard enough in the face that he staggered at the force. And then when Peter didn’t say it was good enough, he did it again and again and again.

“Stop!” The tears were different now; they were big and fat, and heavy enough to cause his breaths to stutter. He got it, he wanted to say, I understand. And he did. ‘That’s why you have a slave and not a baby, Uncle Peter.’ He’d gotten lucky, and it was hard to think that but easy enough to admit with the fear running through his veins; he’d gotten lucky, being plucked up by Derek. This could’ve awaited him instead. He didn't need to see a broken man punching himself anymore for the point to be made any clearer. 

Peter must’ve done or said something, because Chris stopped. Blood was oozing out of his nose and at some point he’d split his cheek open. “And to think,” Peter said, running his hand up and down Stiles’ back, soothing him as he hiccuped. “All he did was think about setting my family alight.”

~~

After Peter’s show with Chris, Stiles was dumped into a travel playpen that was void of anything other than Stiles and Mischief. He didn’t care. He didn’t care about the wet diaper on his ass, he didn’t care that his stomach was grumbling because it’d missed it’s usual feeding time and he didn’t care that Peter was sat not five foot away on the couch listening to him sob his heart out until he cried himself to sleep. 

He still didn’t care when he woke up, but the dry diaper was quite disconcerting. 

All he cared about was the fact that Derek still wasn’t back and that meant he was still here. 

He sniffled and pulled Mischief closer, burying his nose in the soft white fur of his belly; if he closed his eyes, he could easily pretend it was Derek he was cuddled up to, even if the sound of the television in the background bellied that thought, seeing how Derek didn’t ever seem to watch anything that wasn’t aimed at babies.

“...Weapons of Mass Destruction, primarily wolfsbane-infused pipe bombs and mistletoe, have been reportedly used during the altercations…”

“Fucking humans,” Peter muttered lowly. 

But it was okay, because Derek said he’d be back soon. There’s no way he’d leave him here with Peter, not after how long it took him to snatch Stiles up. Right?

“...Council ‘weres across California will be conveening for an Emergency Meeting set to begin this evening…”

“Yes, thanks for that.” He wished Peter would shut up; it was much harder to pretend he wasn’t here when he kept talking to the news anchor. “That was exactly how I wanted to spend my night.”

“...given the civil unrest in District 10,” wait, that was his District, “all ‘weres are to avoid Districts 8 through to 12…”

He’d barely rolled over onto his stomach before the ‘set was flicked off. His heart was pounding. 

“Look Christopher,” from his new angle, he could see that Peter was using Chris as a footstool. “Our little guest has decided to rejoin the land of the living. Do you feel better after your nap? No more tantrums, I hope?” Peter hadn’t given him his pacifier back after he’d spat it at him, so Stiles found himself sucking anxiously on his thumb in silence, his teddy pulled as close to his chest as he could get it. He sucked harder when Peter stood and made his way towards him. “No, I think you’ve learnt your lesson, haven’t you?” Effortlessly, Peter picked him up and Stiles stayed remarkably still, barely even breathed. “I can’t imagine you’ll be proclaiming again that we should’ve all died any time soon, hm?”

His stomach let out a large gurgle and for a solid five seconds that seemed to last forever, Peter left him to stare in wide eyed terror. 

“Fetch his bottle, Chris. I can’t let the little whelp go hungry on my watch, can I?” They were back on the couch when Chris reappeared, a warmed bottle in his hands; Peter took it without thanks. “You’re going to drink this,” the words themselves weren’t a threat, but the intent behind them was, “without fuss. Do you understand? Say ‘yes Uncle Peter’ if you do.”

The sound of his frantic heartbeat was deafening to Stiles, so god knows what it sounded like to the ‘were. He looked from the bottle to Peter’s face and back again as his stomach twisted in hunger. What if he refused? Surely the worst that would happen is that Stiles would go hungry which, no big deal honestly. But… he glanced at Peter’s face again and felt his gorge rise when a single eyebrow was raised at him in challenge to his silence. “... ‘es, Unkel Petah.”

“What a good, clever little boy you are,” Peter cooed, satisfaction curled around each syllable as he popped the nipple into Stiles’ mouth. “Such a clever baby, yes you are.”

His cheeks might’ve been burning from mortification, but that didn’t stop him from trying to gulp the bottle down as fast as he could. The sooner this was over with, the better as far as he was concerned. But try was the operative word. Peter kept pulling the bottle away, only for a few seconds at a time, so Stiles could catch his breath before easing it back in with the warning to not choke himself. Afterwards, he was burped and then dumped back into the playpen; he couldn’t help but to look longingly at the bag of toys he knew Derek had brought with him. Even the stupid baby toys would beat being stuck in here without anything to do until Derek got back.

“Here’s your paci,” Peter dropped it over the side of pen, “and if you’re quiet, maybe you can have some toys to play with.”

By the time he got his promised toys, he was ready for another nap out of pure boredom. Jesus Christ, what was Derek doing? Jumping from being horrified and terrified, tears to boredom, with a little ribbon of constant low grade anxiety was just… it was exhausting. He wanted to be at home, and sure yeah, not being smothered to death in attention was kind of nice, but it wasn’t like he could plot an escape attempt here with Peter not letting him out of his sight for even a second. At least back there he knew the routine and at least he’d never been so bored to tears before. Hell, he’d kill for one of those stupid baby books right now. Derek always gave him plenty of time to look at the pictures and the storylines weren’t actually all that bad. 

He paused in the middle of stacking his blocks, frowning. His tongue bumped up against his paci. That… that had been a scary thought. The storylines weren’t that bad? He shook his head and forced himself to focus on the blocks before him. He’d only thought that because of how bored he was, that was all. The books were dumb. He knew that.

He ignored the little voice in his head asking him if he really knew that.

At the sound of a door opening, Stiles nearly sprained something as he whipped around to see if it was Derek and later on he’d be ashamed at the grin that stole across his mouth and the way he lifted his arms up, begging to be picked up when it turned out that it was. But right now he honestly didn’t fucking care, this man was his ticket out of here. 

“Hi sweetheart,” Derek crooned, bending down so he could scoop Stiles up into his arms, “did you miss me? Daddy missed you so much.” He did, but he wasn’t about to admit it. “Did you have fun at Uncle Peter’s, playing with your blocks?” Stiles ignored the question and instead luxuated in the feeling of being safe; Peter wouldn’t fuck with him now, not with Derek here. For once, Stiles didn’t hate being held by Derek; he nuzzled in close and just breathed him in.

“How’d it go?” Derek asked, one hand on his ass whilst the other cradled Stiles’ head to his chest. His heartbeat through his jacket was steady, soothing. 

Horrible, Stiles wanted to say. Don’t ever leave me alone with him again.  

“Exactly like planned.”

“Thank you for this, Peter.”

“The pleasure’s all mine. I do like playing the big, bad wolf and we had fun, didn’t we, little one?” Clearly their definitions of fun were miles apart. “He even called me Uncle Peter, didn’t you, bug?”

“You did?” With little effort, Derek gently moved Stiles’ head back so he could look into his eyes. “Can you show daddy?”

He didn’t need to see the smirk to hear it. “Oh yes, show daddy why don’t you.”

Tired and beaten down from the day, Stiles mumbled around his pacifier, “Unkel Petah,” and blinked tiredly at Derek. 

With Derek’s reaction, you’d think he’d just shit rainbows. “You are so smart!” he praised before lavishing kisses all over his face. “Can you say daddy?” 

He only had to glance at Peter — those blue, blue eyes of his fixed on his face — to know if he didn’t now, he’d only have to do it further down the line. And who knew under what circumstances. It was fine, it was just a name. It was fine. He’d still call him Derek in his head, he’d let the wolves think they’d won for now. “Daddy,” he sighed, closing his eyes, his nose in the hollow of Derek’s throat, even as his heart ached from the word, “‘ome.”

“My tired, clever little boy. Of course we’ll go home. You’ve had such a long day, huh, button?” He got some more kisses and an extra squeeze as a cuddle. “Say bye-bye to Uncle Peter.” He didn’t bother, just kept his eyes closed and let the day sweep him slowly away to sleep. 

“Bye-bye, Stiles. Remember, I’ve got ears everywhere, so be a good boy now. Otherwise, I’ll know.”

He shivered. Yeah, he’d got that memo, thanks.