D-Rock: Get home now
D-Rock: This is an emergency
D-Rock: Are you fucking kidding me
D-Rock: I will murder you
D-Rock: Remember? I will rip your throat out with my teeth?????
D-Rock: I need you here now
D-Rock: I needed you here like an hour ago
D-Rock: Please Stiles
Stiles was not ignoring him, okay. Stiles was in class. Because he’s in a PhD program now doing work in archeology and he has about fifty papers to write on top of doing his reading and participating in class and teaching his two night classes. He can’t just show up whenever Derek needs him if he’s going to become the next Indiana Jones. This isn’t high school. He can't just be ready to go when Derek calls. Or texts. Since he does that now too.
But the please is kind of alarming and also makes his chest do this weird flutter thing and then it goes a little lower when he imagines Derek saying “please Stiles” in another context. Not that Derek would ever be okay with that context because of all the threats of murder. But a boy can dream.
“Stiles,” Derek growls when Stiles finally calls about two afters after the first text got sent out.
“Dude. I was in class. I can’t just be on my phone in class.”
“I need you to get back here.”
“I have to get back to my apartment and drive up, dude. It’s going to be a while.”
“I’m at your apartment.”
“Wait by home you literally meant my home? Not Beacon Hills?”
“Are you dying?”
“I’m not dying. Get here.”
Something screams in the background.
“Did you kidnap someone, Derek? Oh god. Are we in a hostage situation? What the fuck, man? I thought that you promised that we wouldn’t do anything until after midterms.”
“It’s not—just get here, Stiles.”
“Okay. I’ll be home in ten. Do you need anything? Should I like pick up a shot gun or like Chinese food on the way home?”
“Just get here.”
Derek hangs up the phone, but Stiles definitely heard someone cry in the background. He speeds back to his apartment which the jeep can barely do because she's so old. He nearly tips her while taking what some might call an illegal left hand turn at a red light and what others might call just opportunistic driving.
He throws the jeep into park, runs into his apartment and sprints up the stairs instead of taking the elevator. He throws open the door.
“I swear to fucking god, Derek, if someone is dead in here I will have my dad arrest you. I don’t care if you did nothing. I will put you away until you fucking—.”
Derek is standing in the middle of his apartment wearing a stupidly tight shirt and jeans and holding a baby in his muscular arms. And god. No one has any right to look that good holding a fucking baby.
“Stiles,” Derek says, looking up at him with wide, pleading eyes. “I just got her to sleep.”
“What the actual fuck is that?” Stiles whispers, understanding that he does not want to wake the little thing in Derek’s arms.
Derek narrows his eyes at him, his eyebrows do that confused drawing together thing they do often. “A baby, Stiles.”
“I know it’s a fucking baby, Derek. Why do you have one? Why do you have it here?”
“Someone left her at my apartment.” Derek looks down at the baby’s face and actually smiles a little. He touches her nose with a finger.
“Derek,” Stiles snaps.
“Sorry.” He looks back up at him and in reality this is probably the sexiest thing Stiles has ever seen. It's like a sexy dudes calendar or something. Every month is Derek in a different tight shirt, holding a baby in his arms. God damn. “There was note that she was to be protected by the alpha of Beacon Hills and I think whoever it was is operating on older information and thought Hales, though obviously Scott is, you know, more of an alpha.”
“You’re both alphas,” Stiles mutters. This has been a point of contention ever since Derek came back from being god knows where. The jury is still out on where he was exactly.
Derek shrugs. And really the way it works is that Derek is an alpha and part of the pack and Scott is the alpha of the pack. It’s not that complicated, but it’s a sore spot for the various weres.
“Whoever had her wants me to protect her,” Derek says. “I don’t know why. She’s a wolf, but I can’t smell a pack on her. Maybe her mother was an omega. But I can’t take care of her alone. I can’t figure this out alone.”
“So you came to me.”
“What about Scott? Or like Kira? Or anyone else who actually lives in Beacon Hills right now?”
“I can’t trust any of them with a baby. Scott is an idiot, Kira has a sword.”
“You have fangs.”
“Liam is a child.”
“Malia doesn’t like kids.”
“Do you like kids?” Stiles asks, but it’s pretty obvious by the way Derek stares down at the baby.
“Yeah,” Derek says. “I had—there were a lot of little kids in my house before the fire.”
Stiles always knew that there were children in the house, but he never really liked to think about it. He shivers. "Okay. But why here? Why me?"
“Malia suggested we leave her out to take care of herself and nature would take its course,” Derek says.
“Did you talk about this with the pack?”
“And they told you to come here.”
“Does that surprise you?”
Stiles shakes his head. “No. Jesus. Okay. Okay. Let’s figure this out.” He sinks onto the couch. “We have to figure out where she came from. Does she have a name?”
“Just Lucy,” Derek says. He sits down on the couch next to Stiles and Stiles can’t help looking over at the little girl bundled up in Derek’s arms. She’s small, her lips set in a pout, with a shock of dark hair on her head. Stiles has never seen anything cuter.
“Just Lucy,” Stiles repeats.
“Do you want to hold her?” Derek asks and Stiles finds that he’s nodding, which is weird because he’s horrified of kids. They’re cute, yeah. But they break. They break so easily.
“Yeah.” Stiles takes her from Derek’s arms and settles her head in the crook of his elbow. She coos and wraps her hand around the zipper of Stiles’ hoodie.
Derek scoots closer to him and leans over Stiles’ shoulder to look at her. “She’s four months old. Her birthday is November first.”
“She’s really beautiful,” Stiles says.
"So what's the plan?" Stiles asks. He does not concentrate on the way Derek feels pressed against his back. He concentrates on Lucy's little pout.
"I don't know," Derek says. "Figure out what pack she belongs to? See why she needs to be protected."
"Is she a beta?" Stiles asks, running a finger over her nose.
Derek nods. "She got angry with me on the way down."
Stiles closes his eyes for a moment and mentally organizes his life around a baby. It's not really easy. But he can't stop schoolwork and he also can't leave Derek alone with a baby. It's like a puzzle. "Okay. Do you have any baby things?"
"Like diapers and a car seat and food and—how did you get her down here?"
Derek mutters something and scoots away from Stiles.
"What was that?"
"I just held her."
"While you drove? Derek! That is dangerous as fuck! What the hell were you thinking?"
"I wasn't really."
"Oh my god and she wolfed out on you?"
"She's a very tiny wolf."
"Oh my god. I can't believe you didn't get arrested. Okay. We need to get things. Like a car seat and food and formula and one of those play pen things and toys and clothes and—okay. Derek. I'm going to give you a list."
"You can't stay here with her. What if she bites you?"
"She doesn't have teeth."
"She has fangs," Derek says. "They're tiny, but they're there."
"Do you think she'll really hurt me?"
Derek shrugs like maybe Stiles would even annoy a baby into biting him.
"Okay fine. I'll go to the store. Because obviously she can't just be held in a car anymore. And I guess you'll set up here. But I've gotta do some grading tonight so you have to let me do that. And then the pack can come down tomorrow and we'll talk."
"We can stay here?"
"I mean, yeah. It probably makes more sense than being at your place if you need to protect her, right?"
Stiles looks down at Lucy, whose eyes are open. She looks up at him curiously and lets out a little coo.
"I don't want to leave her," Stiles says.
Derek's chest rumbles and Stiles can feel it because apparently they're pressed together again and Stiles didn't even notice.
Derek's voice is close to his ear. "We can—I don't know. I don't have a solution."
"Yeah. It's cool. I trust you to keep her alive while I'm gone since I'm already attached to her."
Derek chuckles, his breath warm across Stiles' cheek. And Stiles has no right to be this turned on while holding a baby. And God Derek can probably smell it and he's probably disgusted.
"I've kept her alive this long," Derek says.