Stiles blinked slowly and reached out to touch the figure before him. Stopping short; unsure if he should touch something so pure, or if what he was seeing was even real.
"Stiles come on, wake up. Let's get out of here," Derek whispered as he tugged on the younger man's outstretched hand.
He pulled back in a panic at the touch. "Mustn't touch."
"Tainted… unclean," he whined.
"Stiles, as real as it seemed, it was all fake; and even if it had been real, you would not be tainted. You would be you and I would still love you," he said earnestly.
"Love?" the younger man whimpered.
"So much love. If I have to, I will spend one hundred years telling you and the world how much I love you. However, right now, we need to leave before the hunters and their pet witch return. Your dad and I have been so worried about you."
Stiles nodded and slowly reached out. He wanted what was being offered, even if it was only a vision. He nearly wept when he was drawn into Derek's strong warm arms. It was real, he was saved, and even though his captors had done their best to destroy everything about him, he was sure he would go on. After all, he had love to help him through the dark.