I wish that I had known in
That first minute we met
The unpayable debt
That I owed you
You made me sleep and uneven
And I didn't believe them
When they told me that there
Was no saving you
-The Antlers - Kettering
It seemed in Derek's life everyone left. Whether by choice or by death, no one had stayed with Derek for long; all except Stiles. Stiles bitched and grumbled, he was sarcastic and mean but he always stayed. He stayed even after all of the rest of the pack had abandoned him. Scott went his own way. Jackson went to London. Erica died. Derek drove Isaac away and Boyd was killed by Derek's own unwilling hands. Cora turned her back on the shadow that had once been her older brother and Peter disappeared without a word. But Stiles stayed. He stayed with his hand on Derek's shoulder as Derek wept. Came back every day for two weeks, bringing food and company. His absent chatter an ever present ache when he wasn't there. He stayed even when Kali made her final move against Derek. Stood by his side, while Scott, Alison and Mr. Argent orchestrated a perfect ambush. They had apparently made a temporary truce. Enemies enemy being friends or something like that. The fight left Derek broken and bleeding near his apartment.
Stiles found him and helped him upstairs. Followed him and offered the strength and comfort of his company. Derek felt both prickling and thankful for the solid presence. Stiles kept telling him it was all going to be okay, offered a million different condolences, all in this sweet tone that calmed and overwhelmed. He continued softly soothing as he helped Derek take off his bloody clothes and bandaged his cuts. Derek silently held Stiles' presence to himself as a balm.
Stiles, this big mouthed, bright eyed, beautiful kid who took so much crap for the people he loved but didn't expect anything back. Derek could see how thin the kid had stretched himself. Could see the fractures and the breaks that permeated him. Stiles held so many people together but he was falling apart at the seams. Derek could feel a yearning beginning to eat away at his guts as Stiles stayed at his side and didn't demand a thing from Derek, even as he slowly fell apart.
Derek had broken so much in his life and he just wanted to make this one thing whole. Derek felt so much loss and heartbreak and at the same time he felt so empty. He could see that emptiness echoed in the honey brown eyes that stared back at him and Derek just wanted to fill him back up. Derek wanted to give to Stiles, give to this kid who gave so much of himself to all of the people who needed him, anything and everything he could.
So when Stiles pushed a clean shirt into Derek's hands Derek held onto Stiles', linking their fingers, as he pushed into Stiles' space and kissed him. Derek kissed him through his initial confusion and gentled him through his shock until Stiles began to respond. Derek held him and nuzzled in, sharing breathe and sorrow. Stiles took all that Derek gave him and Derek gave him everything that he had. All of his sorrow and tenderness, his hopelessness and power and he tried to pull back the pieces that had fallen away. He tried to mend the cracks that had broken over Stiles and to fill in every aching gap and puncture. Stiles clung and gasped and pressed forward and upward, as close into Derek as he could and Derek pulled him in. When the closeness that he craved still seemed elusive Derek pressed Stiles down onto the bed and pulled the clothes from their bodies. He held Stiles as they grinded. Stiles, with his rabbit quick heart, keened and demanded more. Always demanding more. Derek pressed himself up and into Stiles' body, first with fingers and then with his cock. Derek kissed and bit at the O of Stiles' wide mouth as he gently moved within him, until Stiles' gasps settled into moans. They rocked together and Derek gave everything he had, his tears, his breath, his voice, all of them he offered and Stiles gathered them all up and still demanded more. And it was almost perfect. They were almost there, almost complete but not quite whole. They were joined as closely as they could be as human and Alpha but Derek still wanted to give more and Stiles still pulled at him. So Derek gave the only thing he had left and sunk his teeth solidly into the meat of Stiles' shoulder. Derek bit and held as both Stiles and himself came. Derek felt the connection of Alpha and Beta trying to solidify as they shook and shuddered coming down together. He pulled and prodded at it with hazy intent until Stiles, still trying to recover, met his eyes and the connection was made. It burst behind his eyelids like lights and filled him to bursting with the intensity that was Stiles. His determination, loyalty and ardor, all tightly binding themselves to Derek and Derek gave everything back in equal measure. Tied himself as intimately with Stiles, as Stiles was with him. And only then, as Stiles looked down away from Derek's eyes to his bleeding shoulder with shock on his face, did Derek realize what he had done.
The content, happy honey brown eyes turned gold in their fury and he pushed Derek from him. He railed and ranted, yelling and near hysterical, screamed at Derek. He started to scratch at himself with his newly formed claws and Derek grabbed him and pinned him down. He held him and apologized over and over, trying to explain. He hadn't meant to bite him, he just wanted to give Stiles everything that he had. He held him as Stiles sobbed and screamed in turn, until he slipped into exhausted unconsciousness. Then Derek carried him to his bed and held him through the night.
In the morning Stiles glared hard until Derek let him go. Then he left without a word. Derek spent the day alone. He withdrew to his old house and let his sorrow and self loathing take form. He expected Stiles to return with Scott and Alison, to pull his heart out and return to human. He expected Stiles to run away from him, to hide and cut him off. He knew he wouldn't deny Stiles anything he wanted. He returned to his loft late that night to find Stiles asleep in his bed. Derek hesitated momentarily before climbing in with him.
A new pattern started up after that. Stiles would come late at night, not speak but allow Derek to hold him and gentle him until they both fell asleep. Stiles would cry or glare, would hit Derek, then pull Derek tight against him. Derek allowed all of it. He continued to try to pour as much as he could into Stiles, through his words and actions, through the bond that sung between them, strong and sure. Stiles would leave well before his father was due home and always refused to speak to Derek but he always came back.
Derek wasn't surprised to find Scott waiting for him in his loft one week later. He had expected Scott much earlier and he hadn't expected him to be alone. He was shocked that instead of yelling or attacking Derek for turning his friend, Scott looked at him seriously and made Derek swear that he would do right by Stiles. That he would protect him and defend him to the best of his ability. He made Derek swear to be a better Alpha, the Alpha that Stiles deserved. Derek swore. He opened his mouth to apologize to Scott as he turned to leave but Scott shocked him once again by thanking Derek. Apparently whatever Derek was doing, Stiles was for once seeming to be himself again. Though not completely gone was the anxiety and fractured psyche, Stiles was better. Calmer, more in control and happier than he'd been in years.
That night when Stiles climbed into Derek's bed, Stiles kissed him for the first time since the bite. The kiss was angry on Stiles' end and penitent and gentle from Derek, as every touch from him had been. Stiles bit and snarled at first, clawing and grinding meanly but soon his anger melted away and was replaced with tears. Derek brushed the tears away and kissed Stiles' eyelids till the dark fan of his eyelashes were dry again. He pulled at the connection they shared and poured himself into Stiles. Shared everything that he had and Stiles clung to him.