You built me from a broken heart, with bricks you made from broken parts.
Paige was the beginning of his agony. Kate was the climax. Tearing his whole family from him at one time was one of the worst things she could’ve done to him. Laura’s death was just under his breaking point. Finding out his uncle went crazy and was the person who killed Laura brought him so close to tipping over. Boyd brought him so close to just turning it all off, all of his emotions. He kind of unintentionally took in Ethan and Aiden, and then Aiden was killed by one of the Oni. Death and trauma has become Derek’s oldest living acquaintance.
Derek’s life might have turned out so very differently, he can almost taste it. If Laura had never gone back to Beacon Hills for that weekend. He can still hear her voice guiding him through his decisions. Telling him about her day. He can see her red eyes and feel the calm he always felt when she was with him, because he knew he always had someone there for him. Maybe he would’ve fallen in love again, in New York. Maybe he wouldn’t have. He’d have his sister that way, though. Possibly an almost normal life, too.
“Derek!” He can hear from the other room. “Hurry up and get your furry butt in here before the movie starts!”
As fate would have it, all of his decisions, all of the outside forces in his life, led him to this moment. It all led him to walking into a room filled with people who make him feel calmer than he’s been since Laura. He might’ve been a lot happier in an alternate universe, but the important part is that without focusing on the ‘what if’s he is happy. As happy as he can be right now, after everything that’s happened.
“Derek!” And by the Gods, that voice has the ability to make Derek feel such strong irritability at times, but it’s also the cause of most of his laughter.
“Yeah, I’m coming, Stiles!’ He yells back as he turns away from the window. He looks back at it momentarily, breathes in the sight of the trees for another second, before he grabs the snacks and walks into his own living room, currently occupied by whiny young adults. When he sees Stiles hanging half out of a chair out of the corner of his eye, he doesn’t hesitate to sling a bag of Sour Patch Kids in his direction. The hit does just what was intended and Stiles flails out of his chair.
“Yeah, yeah,” Stiles grumbles while he picks himself back up. “You’re hilarious, just pick on the Stiles, why don’t you?” And, yeah, maybe Derek looks a little smug when he drops the candies on his coffee table for the pack to grab.
Scott barrels into the room laughing, Liam on his tail looking angry (but smelling like happiness and family). Scott stops at the sight of Derek, causing Liam to crash into his back, and looks like the puppy that Stiles always calls him. “Did you get the-“
“Whoppers? Yes, although I still don’t understand why you love them so much.”
“Please, Scott,” Stiles settles back on a loveseat. “He’s already judging you.”
“Stiles, feet off my coffee table.”
“I’m just waiting for you, love muffin.”
“Why can’t Scott ever warm your feet?” Derek sighs, but truthfully he doesn’t mind.
“He doesn’t cuddle me like you do,” Stiles says in an exasperated tone, as though explaining himself for the millionth time, and maybe he has.
That’s how they end up the same way they do anytime the pack actually gets to watch a movie, between every mess created in Beacon Hills. Derek laying across a couch with Stiles tucked under one arm. Stiles always uses Derek to warm his ice-cold feet, pressing them between Derek’s shins. The Nogitsune left Stiles cold all the time, though his body temperature has gone up a little compared to what it was just after they were separated, so Derek doesn’t mind warming his feet. He also doesn’t mind the cuddling with Stiles, not that he would ever tell Stiles that.
Derek thinks that he knows already, though. He also thinks Stiles might just feel the same way. At least that would explain why Stiles immediately rushed to find Derek after Scott mentioned he could smell wolf’s bane out in the preserve. Derek had been cooking when Stiles slammed the door open and ran inside, panting and smelling of panic.
They look out for each other.
I still have proof in form of scars, the first time always falls so far.
Obviously, Derek is a werewolf. He can’t scar, he always heals perfectly. Physically, at least. When he smells gasoline his first thought is still always to turn and run, even if it doesn’t show on his face. He still wants to take his fill wolf form and never turn back, but that’s the first and most irrational thought he has, caused by fear. It lasts a split second, but it’s still the first thought because that’s one of the bigger mental wounds.
Another scar was caused by Paige, and the way she begged for him to just end it. Before Stiles and the Nogitsune were separated, there was a moment where Scott and Derek had cornered it. It was the first time they tried poisoning the fox, and as soon as they injected him, it was like a light switch. Suddenly the angry lines that had marked Stiles’ face were lines caused by mental exhaustion and Stiles’ eyes had the old light in them. Just before Stiles swayed enough to begin falling to the ground, he said, “Oh God, just kill me now. Please just kill me before it kills someone else.” As soon as Derek heard the words, he froze.
Derek still isn’t sure if Scott actually noticed him freezing or not, but when Stiles said those words, all he could see was Paige in the cellar.
When Derek has just gotten back from his run, he takes off his shirt that’s now covered in sweat, and looks out the window while he lets himself breathe. He knows Stiles is here, he can smell him and he can hear how close he is. Even then, when Stiles’ hand touches the exact point on his back where a pipe was once forced through, he tenses up. He turns his head, just to see Stiles, and he looks like he’s in a trance. He’s looking at Derek’s back like he can see the exact point of impact.
Derek didn’t even know that the pipe through his torso had a long-term effect on him until he tensed up underneath Stiles’ touch. Another mental scar, then.
But now, what’s mine, is ours.
Derek can’t pinpoint when exactly it happened. It’s like slowly, over time, Stiles has basically moved in. His clothes just slowly moved as Stiles left things here, or changed here, it just happened. Stiles textbooks were at Derek’s all the time, Stiles said it was easier to study and work at Derek’s where it was quiet.
“And, it’s a bonus that you’re so good with history!”
“Yeah, whatever. Do you want Greek or Chinese?”
“Is that even a question?”
“Alright, alright. You’re lucky take-out is twenty-four seven at China Town.”
“Thank you, Boo Bear!” Stiles called, not even stopping in his frantic typing.
Derek could only shake his head and grab his keys on the way out. He’s very well used to Stiles’ terms of endearment for him. He became okay with them when he realized they were reserved for only him.
He was also okay with Stiles staying over sometimes, especially when he got really comfortable with being around and started making coffee the way Derek likes it in the morning. Derek became used to either cooking dinner, ordering delivering, or picking up take-out. Chinese was Stiles favorite, and even though Derek preferred Greek some days, he didn’t complain.
We are survivors, we are survivors of the wild.
Derek had been worried. When their routine was broken and Stiles didn’t show up at Derek’s. Usually Stiles would spend a Friday staying the night at Derek’s after Derek cooked them dinner. His first thought is that the thirteen week streak of no mishaps had been broken and Stiles is injured, or worse. Derek is just about to shoot Scott a text and start looking for Stiles, when he hears the Jeep pull up outside.
He doesn’t mean to crowd Stiles against the Jeep, he was worried. He doesn’t mean to melt at the goofy, apologetic smile Stiles gives him. He never meant to end up kissing Stiles, hand in his hair pulling his body closer. He doesn’t know how they end up inside (actually he does, only because he felt when they hit something on the way in). He doesn’t mean to end up on his bed, both of them panting in each other’s mouths. Somehow they’re skin to skin, and Derek never imagined it would be like this.
He never thought of the noises Stiles might make; the whines for more that are muffled by Derek’s neck, the gasp every time Derek touches the places Stiles is most sensitive, and the way Stiles says Derek’s name makes Derek’s body run so much hotter.
The morning after isn’t awkward, Stiles makes their coffee like usual. Once they shower, together obviously, and get dressed they do what they would normally do. Derek reads articles on his laptop while Stiles either watches T.V. or decides to actually do homework. Today Stiles goes with the T.V., and when he wants to be acknowledged, he begins mouthing at Derek’s neck and jaw, until finally, Derek gives in and puts his laptop on the coffee table and turns them over so that he’s over top of Stiles.
The pack isn’t surprised. Melissa’s eyebrows raise momentarily when she comes home and pack night is apparently being hosted at her house, after spotting Stiles and Derek cuddling. The sheriff wasn’t surprised, after all the time Stiles spent at Derek’s.
They fit in a way that no two jigsaw puzzles ever have.
We are Survivors
Derek’s life could’ve turned out entirely different, he’d still be with his big sister and there is a chance they could’ve have lived long and happy lives. If that were the case, he never would’ve met Scott, Lydia, Liam, or Kira. He never would’ve unintentionally taken in Isaac, Aiden and Ethan. He wouldn’t have ever met his counterpart, his other half (better half), Stiles. Derek would have never found or saved Cora.
All in all, he’s glad that he has this happiness, this life.
We are survivors of the wild.