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My Greatest Wish Is Now My Worst Nightmare.

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                Branches lash their faces as they pass, stinging their skin.  The crunch of leaves and twigs is nearly muffled by the sound of their hectic breathing and the stamping of feet.

                “Run faster Stiles!”  Derek screams, panting.

                “I’m not a wolf, you know I can’t!”  Stiles yells back, gripping his sides.

                “This is why you never get to start in Lacrosse,” Scott says, catching up to them.

                “Well excuse me for being a fragile human, devoid of sinewy, werewolf muscles better suited to running for my life,”  Stiles snarks.

                “Scott, you’re the Alpha now, just stop and fight it,” Derek shouts, nearly regretting becoming a Beta again.

                “That thing will eat me alive, are you crazy?”  Scott replies, nervously laughing.

                “Whatever,” Derek concedes, looking for other options

                How did I get myself into this mess?  We finally get things worked out with the Alpha Pack and kill the Darach, and now all this?  If Scott gets us killed I am going to be so pissed.  I might even come back and haunt Scott If he survives and I don’t.  Oh God I’ve been spending too much time with Stiles, I’m starting to even think like him.  Not that it’s that surprising; they say dogs and their owners begin to look alike after a while.  Wait; did I just call Stiles my owner?  I really need to rethink this relationship if we get out of this… when we get out of this.

                “Turn!”  Scott shrieks, veering off to the right and breaking Derek from his thoughts.

                “Where are we going Mr. True Alpha?”  Derek questions as they switch directions.

                “Aww, Derek, you’re starting to sound like me,” Stiles says, a hint of sarcasm and affection barely noticeable under the fear and exhaustion.

                Derek just grunts and ignores Stiles, even If he has a point.  A point that Derek was just stabbing himself with mentally.

                “I think there’s a clearing over here, if we have to stand and fight, that’s our best bet,” Scott shouts from in front of the others.

                 Stiles can barely keep up.  He’s lanky and uncoordinated and I can hear his heart straining to burst from his chest.  I should have just given him the bite myself.  Stiles is, if anything, a survivor.  It would have taken.  Now I can’t even do it, would have to rely on McCall, who would never let Stiles take it, no matter how much he wanted it.

                “We’re here!”  Scott exclaims, jumping through a few bushes and landing in a small clearing.

                “How are we going to fight this thing when we’ve been running from it this long?”  Derek questions.  “We’re all exhausted and the fight hasn’t even begun.”

                “I can help with that,” Stiles says, a smirk forming on his face.

                That was it.  That smirk was what drew me in.  Ok, there were a few other things that made me choose Stiles, but that was the last straw.  I almost can’t believe it ever happened.  I didn’t even know I could be attracted to another guy, especially someone like Stiles.  I guess I should have realized something was up when I consistently picked horrible, horrible women to try to start relationships with.  Maybe it was a form of self-sabotage?  If so, I wish I could have come to terms with it sooner, maybe things would have been different…  Of course, maybe then I wouldn’t have ever met Stiles.  I almost can’t remember what it was like when I hated him, found him to be the most annoying thing in the world.  Now I don’t know what I’d do without him. 

                “I have a plan” Stiles pants, pulling something from his jacket pocket.

                “What is that?!”  Scott asks, looking shocked.

                “Marin taught me a trick before she left,” Stiles answers, flicking the cap off the bottle he was holding.  “Now get close to me!”

                With that last warning, Stiles dumped the contents of the container into his hands and threw it in the air.  The purple powder seemed to have its own mind, flying straight up, then suffusing out into a circle around the three.

                “What was that?”  Derek whispered.

                “Cool huh?”  was Stiles’ only response.

                “How does this help us?”  Scott questioned, worry in his voice.

                “This should protect us for a few minutes, not very strong, but strong enough to buy us time to regroup, catch our breath,” Stiles responded.

                When it caught up to them, it seemed to sense Stiles’ machinations.  It skulked around the barrier, waiting for them to make a move.

                “Got any other tricks Stiles?”  Derek asked, not sure where even this one had come from.

                “Well…  Deaton’s been teaching me more about druid magic, so I can become Scott’s emissary,” Stiles adds nonchalantly.  “So I might be able to pull something off, just gimme’ a minute.”

                “You’re gonna' be MY emissary?!”  Scott says, surprised.  “Awesome bro!”

               As Stiles fumbles with the contents of his pockets, it gets closer, seemingly sensing the dwindling of the magical fortifications. 

                “Well hurry up Stiles!”  Derek insists, not wanting to rush his, well whatever Stiles was to him, but also rather not wanting to die before they figured out that last thing.

                “I’m coming, if I’ve got this right I just need a little blood,” Stiles blathers, getting irritated with Derek.

                “Here, I got cut on the way, use some of mine,” Derek offers, shoving his yet to heal arm into Stiles’ hands.

                “Thanks babe,” Stiles adds, to which Derek almost blushes. 

               It’s not that I’m ashamed of what’s going on between us, but we haven’t officially told Scott, even though I suspect Scott knows.  Then again, why would we tell Scott, even we aren’t quite sure what is going on between us, aside from acting like fumbling, love-struck teenagers when we’re alone.  That was fine for Stiles, considering he still was one, but I seriously needed to get myself in check.

               Stiles does a little chant in some weird language while spreading Derek’s blood around on the ground.  Nothing seems to happen though.

               “I thought you were doing something Stiles?!”  Scott yells, getting more nervous with the approach of their possible, untimely demise.

               “I don’t know what’s wrong,” Stiles yells, starting to panic.  “I thought I did everything correct, we should have like, teleported out of here!”

               Of course you’d mess up the spell Stiles.  You should not be an emissary; you should just take the bite and join us.  Druidic magic is dangerous and can lead to really dangerous results and…  What is that weird feeling I have right now?  It’s like, a gnawing, pulling sensation in the pit of my stomach.  This is really wei-

               And that’s the last thought Derek has before being pulled away, flying backwards in a quick burst.  The wind from this sudden movement brushes the powder away, enfeebling the circle of protection. 

               “Derek!”  Stiles screams.  “What’s happening where are yo-“

               And then there’s nothing.  Derek’s ears pop, his eyes see nothing.  His stomach feels like its being ripped out through his back.  And he’s spinning.  Spinning in midair, even though he can’t see anything, he knows that motion.

               What in the world have you done now Stiles!?  Stiles?  Stiles!  Shit where did you go?  What is happening, that circle was fading, are we dead? 

               Before Derek has time to ask himself any more questions, something shifts.  It’s like the whole world is flooding back in around him, and Derek is just trapped, unable to move or do anything, completely disoriented.  When it stops, he feels like he’s going to throw up or pass out or maybe both.

               Please don’t let me die like Jimi Hendrix!  Where did that information come from?  Probably stiles.  What is going on?  Where am I and why is it so bright?  It was just the middle of the night. 

               As he looks up, his eyes slowly adjusting to the change in light.  From total blackness, any light is a radical difference.  His eyes coming back into focus he pans up, noticing someone standing in front of him.   He smells something familiar, but long forgotten, as he struggles to figure out what it is, he looks into the figure's face.

               “M-Mom?”  Derek stammers, before passing out.

Chapter Text

                “Stiles…?”  Derek moans, waking back up.

                “Honey, are you alright?” a voice from above him says.

                Someone is rubbing my forehead.  Why am I on the ground?  What’s going on?

                “Stiles!”  Derek shouts, bolting upright and looking around for the younger man.

                “Dear, who are you talking about?” the voice says again, this time a bit more testily.  “And what are you wearing?  Did you just roll around in the forest today?”

                “Huh?  What?”  Derek asks, confused.  As he looks into that face, one he hasn’t seen in so long, he loses it.  Jumping up he grabs hold of her tight, nearly crushing the air out of her lungs.  “Mom!  Mom you’re alive, it’s been so long!  Oh God mom, oh God…”

                I don’t care if this is a dream, or heaven or what.  My mom!  My mom, alive!  No, no, wait.  This can’t be, I’ve died, or went insane, or something…

                “Dear…?”  Talia Hale says, muffled by her son’s abnormally tight embrace.  “Did you hit your head in the woods too?  What nonsense are you spouting?”

                “How can this be?  You died in the fire, all of you did…”  Derek says, his enthusiasm wilting as logic returns to him.

                “Died in a fire?  What fire?  Oh…”  Talia says, recognition dawning on her.  “Derek, dear, you’re just having a flashback, you’re disoriented.”

                “What?”  Derek asks.

                “Honey, it’s alright, you’re just upset,” Talia reassures him.  “Everyone got out of the fire fine Derbear.  You forgot your lunch, came back and saw the smoke outside, remember?  You broke the mountain ash circle and ran in to warn us.  No one was even injured, except that Bitch Kate.”

                “No…  No that’s not what happened,” Derek counters, fumbling over his words.  “You died!  You all died.  And you left me alone!  Only Laura and I escaped!  And Cora and Peter, but Peter was so damaged and I didn’t even know about Cora for the longest time and then Laura got killed and… and…”

                Derek broke down crying at his mother’s feet.  Everything he’d had pent up for so many years, his resentment that his parents hadn’t been there for him, that his family had died when he was so young, leaving him all alone.  And his survivor’s guilt.  Knowing he was the least competent member of his family, and yet was one of the select few who had made it out.  He hadn’t let this kind of emotion out in so long, even with Stiles.

                Stiles, where is Stiles?  And where am I, because this obviously can’t be real, no matter how much I wish it could be.  Maybe, maybe I can just stay here a bit though, I’ve never had this vivid of a dream or whatever it is before.  I’ll just, I’ll enjoy this for a little bit, I must have just been knocked out in the fight, or maybe Stiles’ spell drugged me.  Whatever it is, I, I can’t pass up an opportunity to see my mom, even if I know it isn’t real.

                “Come now Derek; let’s get you to your room, alright?”  His mother says calmly.  “As long as you haven’t hit your head, you can lie down and I’m sure you’ll feel much better. “

                We’re in the living room.  It’s been so many years since I’ve seen this place, so long since it’s been anything more than ash and blackened furniture.  If this is some drug, I really need Stiles to get me more.  Or never, ever let me near it again.  I haven’t decided how emotionally traumatizing this will be when it wears off, or whatever.

                Talia walks Derek out of the living room and up the stairs, heading for his room.  As they reach the landing, something catches Derek’s attention out of the corner of his eye.

                “Laura?”  Derek breathes, before breaking into a run.  “Laura!  You’re here too!”

                “Yeah…  I was just about to do some laundry, what’s wrong with you baby bro?” she asks, giving an odd look to their mother while squirming in Derek’s grasp.

                “This just keeps getting better and better!  Is Cora here too?  What about the others…”  Derek says, absentmindedly searching for more family members. 

                “Cora is at school Derek, you know that,” Laura mumbles, finally freeing herself from Derek’s crushing hug.

                “Erik and Dora are at work.  Now Derek, are you sure you’re ok?  You seem to be very… odd, today,” Talia says, worried. 

                “I’m fine, I’m great actually!”  Derek says, his chipper attitude slowly draining despite his assurance.

                I honestly do not even care what is going on right now.  Although I am getting incredibly tired.  Like, dead tired.  Of course, because we were just running from that, thing.  Maybe if I go to sleep, that’ll wake me up, back to the real world?  I hate leaving this place, but I really do need to get back, make sure Stiles is ok.  Then slap him in the back of the head for whatever he did to me.  And maybe keep Scott from being eaten, but that’s like, third on my list right now.

                “You know, I think I am tired, maybe I’ll just lie down for a minute,” Derek says, looking at his mother.

                “Ok dear, you just yell if you need anything.  I’m going to pick up your father, but Laura is here,” Talia replies.

                “I’m not getting you anything you baby, no matter how weird you act!”  Laura shouts from the steps, arms filled with laundry. 

                “Now Laura, be nice to your brother!  He isn’t feeling well,” Talia yells as she walks towards Laura, then whispers “He’s having flashbacks to the fire, thinks we died in it or something.  Poor boy, it scarred him so bad, and he was the one who saved us.”

                Do they think I can’t hear them?  I mean really, they could at least try to be quieter.  Of course, they’re just figments of my imagination or hallucinations, so they probably don’t know better.  I really need to stop rationalizing things and just go to sleep.  I mean wake up.  Either way, time to leave.

                Derek lies on his old bed, in his old room and, for the first time in years, feels safe, and loved and home.  He’s asleep within seconds.

**********          

                “Stiles, whatever you did, it was really weird.  But maybe you can do it again sometime when we aren’t about to be maimed and devoured,” Derek says as he wakes up. 

                Blinking the sleep from his eyes, Derek realizes he’s still in his room, his house.  Not his house now, his loft, but the Hale family mansion.

                What?  I thought when I went to sleep or woke up, whichever it was, this would be over.  This certainly isn’t how dreams work, unless it’s a dream within a dream.  And it doesn’t really feel like I’m on drugs, even if that seems to be my only other logical option.

                Derek sits up in his bed, scooting to the edge and looking at his room.  There is a mahogany desk, a small bookshelf, a dresser and his bed. 

                It’s weird, I’m in my house, my room, but it’s different.  I vaguely remember having some stupid band posters up in here.  What’s that on the wall?  Oh, it’s a corkboard… a corkboard with pictures of me and other mementos.  Who is this person?  I’ve never seen this guy before.  Why am I in all these pictures with him, smiling and standing really close and… KISSING?!  No way, I don’t even know who this Latin Lothario is but Stiles is the only guy I ever, I mean what is this?!

                As Derek has a mini-crisis over his corkboard, Laura walks by and stops in his doorway.

                “Please Derek, stop mooning over Miguel,” She says blandly.  “It’s kind of pathetic.  You moved back here, he stayed in LA, you’ll find someone else.”

                “I- wait, what?”  Derek stammers, unsure what his sister, or his hallucination of his sister, just said.

                “I know you thought he was the one, but it wasn’t like he was your mate or anything.  Not that they exist anyway, but I mean…” she trails off, seeing the look on his face.  “Come on baby bro, you’ll find someone else.  Besides, you never even told Miguel about being a werewolf, so you must have not trusted him that much.”

                With one last, sad look, Laura walks back to her room, leaving Derek to deal with what she’s just said.

                How could there be this whole other life that I’ve had in this dream?  I can understand wanting Laura and my mom to know I liked, well, that I was batting for a new team.  But if so, why would my subconscious choose this guy I’ve never seen?  Why wouldn’t it be Stiles?  Everything here seems so real, but here I have a different history, different room, different… different life…  Did, did he?  No, he couldn’t, that’s absurd.  There’s no way stiles could have, could he?  He doesn’t have that kind of power.  But if anyone could do it, it’d be Stiles.  Trust him to royally screw something like a teleportation spell up that bad.  But could it really be?  Could Stiles, instead of teleporting me away from danger, have instead transported me to a different dimension, a different reality?  One where…  One where my family is alive?  Actually alive, living, breathing Hales?

                Derek fell back on his bed shocked, staring at his ceiling.  Then, a smile slowly started to part his lips.  A smile the likes of which he didn’t think he’d ever felt.  Certainly not since the fire. 

                Stiles sent me to a world where my family is alive.  I am going to kick his ass so hard when I get home.  And then thank him for the rest of my life.  Probably in that order.

               

Chapter Text

               Ok, so alternate reality huh?  That’s what I’m going with, because I’m out of other, remotely logical, possibilities.  So if I’m here, and my family is alive, that means a whole lot about this world, and my life, is different.  Great. I’ve already made them think I’m going crazy, not that I can be blamed.  Who suspects to be sent to an alternate universe of what basically amounts to wish fulfillment?  So let’s try to get the facts down, because if I’m going to be here for a while, time that Stiles will hopefully be spending trying to get me back, I need to act accordingly.  So first off, my family is alive.  Wow, not sure how to deal with that beyond my already odd breakdowns.  I’ll have to try to keep that in check.  Next, the fire didn’t happen, apparently I stopped it?  Or at least got everyone out based on what Mom said.  And they know about me…  Because apparently I dated someone named Miguel.  We were in LA, is that what Laura said?  Why would I, or this version of me, be in LA?

                As Derek pondered his predicament, he walked back to the corkboard, examining the rest of the contents.  Aside from the pictures of him and Miguel, there were copious movie tickets stubs, a few playbills and some other pictures.  One was of a beaming Derek standing in front of a sign for UCLA, the one next to it had him in the same spot, only wearing a graduation gown and holding a diploma.

                I went to college here?  I went to UCLA?  Great, now I’m going to have to pretend to be really intelligent and pretentious aren’t I?  I better try to figure out what I studied then.  What is the best way to go about learning about your life, when you should have already lived it?  Maybe I’ll just tell them I did hit my head and I’m a bit off.  That might buy me some time to figure things out.  Ok Derek, time to man up, let’s go out there and figure out what’s going on.

                Derek leaves his room, looking around curiously.  As he approaches the steps, a little girl comes running down the hall towards him.

                “Derek, Derek!” she squeals, rushing to hug his leg.  “Airplane, airplane!”

                Who is this?  What does she mean by airplane?

                Before Derek can figure out the girl’s pleas, Peter comes scrambling down the hall after her.  Derek can’t help but letting out a low growl.  He and Peter still aren’t on good terms in his world.  Peter, for his part, seems to completely ignore the growl, focused solely on the little girl.

                “Now Samantha, what have I told you about bothering Derek?”  Peter says, not nearly as stern as Derek figures he meant to be.  “You feeling better Derek?  Talia said you were, you know, flashing back to the fire.”

                Peter gives him a serious look, one filled with empathy and compassion Derek isn’t sure he’s ever seen on Peter’s face.  Then he does the weirdest thing yet.  He hugs Derek.  And not just one of those little half hugs either, a real, honest to goodness bear hug, enveloping Derek.

                “If you need to talk, remember I’m just down the hall.  I always have time for my favorite nephew,” Peter adds with a wink, picking up Samantha.  She’s still chanting about airplanes as Peter says “Derek will give you an airplane ride later sweetie, right now he’s tired.  You want daddy to give you one?

                “Yay daddy!”  Samantha shrieks, Peter picking her up and swinging her around.  Then he bundles her in his arms and carries her downstairs.

                Are Peter and I friends in this universe?  How is that possible?  He even called me his favorite nephew…  This world may be more difficult to navigate than I thought, especially if I can’t learn to separate the people and actions from my world, with the ones here.  Ok, what would Stiles do?  He’d investigate, right?  So more investigation, where can I start?  Aha!  Photo albums!  Mom always kept photo albums of everything we did, maybe that will hold some answers.  Until then, I just need to stay composed and act like nothing’s wrong.

                Derek’s resolve to act normal lasts all of five minutes, for when he walks into the kitchen, his father is standing there cooking supper.

                “Dad!”  Derek yells, abandoning all sense of restraint.  He engulfs his father in the tightest hug, nearly making him drop his giant wooden spoon.

                “Well it’s nice to see you too son,” his dad chuckles, attempting to free himself as Laura had before.  “But if you don’t mind, I’m kind of in the middle of cooking dinner, so…”

                “Oh, oh yeah.  Sorry,” Derek says sheepishly.

                I can’t believe I did it again.  Is this just going to be what I do every time I see one of them?  Screw it, they’ve been dead for years, I’ll be happy if I want.  I probably won’t be here long enough to make things too weird anyway.  I’m sure Stiles has already realized I’m gone and is working on a way to get me back home… as long as they weren’t killed by that thing.  Shit!  I forgot about that.  Wait!

                “Hey Mom!”  Derek yells the words weird coming out of his mouth.  “Are you still friends with Doctor Deaton?”

                “Of course dear, why do you ask?” she answers, taking a sip of water from her glass and laying it back on the counter.

                “Umm, no reason, just a random question,” Derek says, trying to force a nonchalant smile.

                Yep, still not any better at smiling in this universe than the other one.  Except when I see a resurrected family member, and lose all sense of bodily control that is. 

                “Well, I’m going to head out, get some air,” Derek announces, exiting the kitchen.

                “Dinner will be ready in about an hour Derek!” his father calls, just like old times.  “And if you aren’t back we’re eating without you!”

                The floorboards creek as Derek makes his way to their front door.  Right as he reaches the stairs though, the door swings open.  In runs Cora, dressed like a cheerleader.

                What?

                “Derek!”  Cora shouts, running up to give him a hug.  “Just the man I wanted to see!”

                Well, this is the first family member whose ran up to me.  Wait, wait.  Cora and I were really close as children so…  Maybe in this world, that never changed?

                “H-hi Cora,” Derek stutters, shocked by the sudden excitement, among other things.

                “You will never believe what happened today!” she squees, staring up at him in anxious glee.

                “What?  What happened,” Derek questions, turning serious.  “If anyone hurt you, I’ll rip out their throat with my teeth!”

                “What?!  No, Derek!  Stop being weird, what’s wrong with you,” Cora answers.  “It’s funny when you pretend to be all serious, you big softy.  Anyway, he asked me out!  Can you believe it?!”

                “Who?  Who asked you out” Derek inquires.

                “Scott!  Scott McCall!”  Cora says, as if Derek should know all this.  “He’s only the dreamiest boy on the Lacrosse team!  I mean, he’s kind of a klutz and rarely gets to play, but still…  Besides, he’s cute.”

                Cora and Scott?  Cora and Scott!  Oh, Scott is soooo dead if he thinks he can date my little sister.  Shit, no!  This is a different Scott.  He’s probably not even a werewolf, is he?  How do I ask that without sounding weird?

                “Is Scott a werewolf?” Derek blurts out.

                Real smooth Derek.  I really have no skill at talking to people.  Even my own siblings.

                Cora nearly falls on the floor laughing.  “Scott?  A werewolf?  More like a little puppy,” she replies.  “Besides, how would he have even gotten the Bite?  Pack/Hunter treaty on not turning humans remember?”

                “Treaty?”  Derek asks, confused.

                “Oh, is this one of your little tests Derek?  I assure you I am studying my werewolf lore, I’m not just some vapid cheerleader,” Cora bites back.  “Fine.  About ten years ago, there was a big debacle; a local Alpha had killed a hunter.  The hunters were mad.  The Alpha was mad too, because he only did it because one of his pack had been killed.  Anyway, Mom and the other Alphas met and decided to send uncle Duke to meet with the hunters.  He met with… um…  Shoot I know this!  Chris!  That’s it, Chris Argent!  They met and negotiated terms of a truce.  In exchange for not taking Ennis, I think that was the Alpha's name, the packs agreed not to turn any more humans until their numbers had shrank or some of the packs moved out of the area.  Then that little bi- I mean, that crazy hunter Kate Argent tried to burn our house down, but you happened to come back and save everybody.  After that most of the Argents and hunters moved away, too embarrassed after their name was tarnished.  Good enough for your pop quiz?”

                Uncle Duke?  No war between the hunters and wolves?  Seriously Stiles, what kind of crazy rainbows and fairytales world did you send me too?

                “Um...Good job Cora, you passed?”  Derek says, unsure how to respond.

                “Well good!” his younger sister harumphs.  “Oh, were you going somewhere?”

                “Yeah, yeah.  Just out to get some air, feeling a bit weird today,” Derek replies, mostly telling the truth.

                “Ok, but you better be back soon, I have gossip besides Scott!  And you need to help me pick out something cute to wear tomorrow,” she says, and then glances at his clothes.  “Or maybe I’ll pick it out and you can just watch my fashion show.  You don’t look like you’re having a very fashionable day.”

                This Derek knows about fashion?  Great, another thing to worry about.  At least Cora seems to be just as excited to see me.  Of course, I have no idea what’s going on with the history here.  Maybe Deaton will have some answers; he’s the one that taught Stiles the spell in the first place.

                “Don’t worry, I’ll be back soon,” Derek answers, forcing a smile onto his face. 

                Derek sets out at a run the moment he gets off the porch.  Hopefully Deaton will know how to get him home, or back to Stiles, or just help him figure out what’s going on.

Chapter Text

                Derek arrives at the veterinary clinic sooner than he expected.

                That seems…  Much shorter than usual?  It’s in the same place, so it can’t be that it’s actually any closer.  Is it the pack?  I may not be an Alpha, but here my pack, my family, is so large.  Even as a Beta I might be faster than I was as an Alpha, with my ragtag pack as Stiles put it.  Stiles.

                With a sigh, Derek pushes his way through the door to Deaton’s clinic, unsure what he’ll even say to him.

                “Hello, are you here to drop off a pe-,” Scott says, pausing when he notices who it is.  “Oh, hello Derek…  I mean Mr. Hale, wait no, that would be your father.”

                Scott is acting really strange…  He doesn’t seem to know me, but he knows of me.  Probably Cora mentioned me to him.  He looks really flustered, even though this Derek seems to be, as Cora put it, “a big softy.”  Wait, he doesn’t look too well.

                “Scott?”  Derek asks, as Scott begins to wheeze, clutching his throat. 

                Shit!  Shit!  Where did Stiles say it was, I know he told me about this before, crap!

                Derek rushes around the counter, searching for Scott’s backpack.  He finds it under the reception desk, rummaging through it as fast as he can.

                “Aha!  Found it!”  Derek barks triumphantly, raising the inhaler up like a trophy.  He hurries back around the counter, pushing the device into Scott’s hands.

                Scott puts the inhaler to his mouth shakily, before puffing it.  In a few seconds he starts to return to normal, slowly beginning to breathe more regularly.

                “Thanks,” Scott pants, barely having caught his breath.  “I could have died.  How, how did you know?”

                Oh great, how do I explain that your best friend, who I’m sort of intimate with, told me about you having asthma attacks before my uncle bit you and turned you into a werewolf?

                “Cora mentioned it,” Derek says, surprising himself.

                Scott’s eyes light up, he really does look like a puppy.

                “She did?”  Scott questions, regaining his composure.  “So…  So she’s mentioned me before?”

                “Ummm…  Yes?”  Derek manages, again at a loss for words.

                “Man, I’ll have to thank her.  Never thought her brother would happen to save my life,” Scott says, letting out a small laugh.

                You have no idea how many times I’ve saved your ass.  Probably as many as you’ve saved mine.  Or endangered mine.  Or yours.

                “Is Dr. Deaton here?”  Derek asks, remembering why he came.

                “Oh yeah, he’s with a patient, but he should be done in a few minutes,” Scott responds.  “You can take a seat If you like.”

**********             

                “Scott, I was able to remove the lesion, but she’ll have to stay overnight, can you make sure you alert Mrs. Richardson?”  Deaton orders, coming out of the examination room.  He spots Derek waiting and scrunches up his face.  “And after you do that, could you maybe run and grab me a sandwich or something Scott?”

                “Sure!”  Scott replies, standing up to leave.  “I’ll call Mrs. Richardson on my way.”

                Once the door closes behind Scott, Deaton approaches Derek.

                “Is something wrong?  Your mother usually comes on her own,” Deaton inquires.

                “This isn’t about my mother, well, not exactly,” Derek says, struggling to figure out how to explain.  “What do you know about interdimensional travel?”

********** 

                “So what you’re telling me is that you came from an alternate reality, one in which your whole family died in a fire?”  Deaton asks, incredulous.

                “Yes,” Derek answers.  “Everyone except for me and Laura.  And Peter survived, but he went crazy.  And Cora survived too.”

                “Ok…”  Deaton starts, trying to understand.  “And in this world, there was a young emissary in training, under me correct?  Who tried to help you get away from danger, and you think he accidentally transported you here, to another universe, rather than just teleporting you away?”

                “Yes, that’s correct,” Derek says, glad to be with someone he can talk to, but also scowl at.  He misses getting to scowl, all that smiling was hurting his face.

                “The thing is Derek,” Deaton continues.  “That kind of magic, well it would take an incredible amount of energy and control to do.  Way beyond anything I or any other emissary I know is capable of.  Even together, I’m not sure Marin, Julia and I could swing it.  And you say a young boy did it on accident?  It seems highly unlikely.  You haven’t come into contact with any Wolfsbane have you?  That could be causing these hallucinations…”

                “I’M NOT CRAZY!”  Derek snarls, his eyes flashing a steely blue.

                “Derek…”  Deaton whispers, stepping back.  “Your eyes.”

                “What!?  What about my eyes?”  Derek growls, getting angrier by the second.

                “They’re, they’re blue Derek,” Deaton says, sadness filling his voice.

                “They’ve always been blue, you know that.  Ever since, well ever since I was a teenager,” Derek mutters, calming down at this change in topic.

                “No they haven’t Derek, they’re gold,” Deaton assures, stepping closer.  “I just saw you a few weeks ago, your eyes were the same gold they’ve always been Derek.”

                “This Derek…  This Derek’s eyes are still gold,” Derek asks, shocked.

                “You really aren’t our Derek are you?”  Deaton says more a statement than a question.

                “No, I’m not,” Derek confides.

                “But how, how could a young emissary have enough power to send you here?”  Deaton questions, his hand coming to rest on his chin as he thinks.

                “The Nemeton!”  Derek shouts, remembering.  “In my world, well in my world the Nemeton still has power.  And then the boy, along with two of his friends, they temporarily sacrificed themselves, with your help, to power it even more.  He told me that you said doing so would leave a mark around him, connect him to it forever.  Maybe he was drawing off its energy?”

                “That’s certainly a possibility.  Either way it would take an incredibly strong druid, or one with great potential, to unconsciously tap into the Nemeton like that, even with the connection,” Deaton theorizes.  “Can you tell me who this person is?  Maybe I can find some way to bridge the gap with his and the other’s help.”

                “No,” Derek commands.

                “What?”  Deaton asks, confused.

                “I said no, this S- this version of him doesn’t know anything about the supernatural.  I’ve seen what it did to him, how it wrecked so much of his life.  I can’t do that to him again, I can’t,” Derek pleads.  “You’ll have to make do without him.”

                “Ok then, well I’ll look into it.  Do you mind if I discuss this with the other emissaries?  I’ll need their help if we’re to even begin to figure out how to get you back”  Deaton answers.

                “That’s fine, whatever you can do to help.  Just, please don’t mention it to my family,” Derek asks.  “I mean, his family.  I don’t want them to worry.”

                “Sure thing Derek, I won’t say a thing,” Deaton promises.  “Now I need to get work, and you need to get home.  Try to stay calm and not create too much disturbance.  Act normal, well, as normal as you can be around family members that you’ve been mourning for years.  I’m sorry this happened; it must be very hard for you.  We’ll try to get you home Derek.”

                “Thanks Deaton,” Derek says, relieved.

                I’m glad that Deaton is going to help, but I can’t help feeling a bit strange.  As much as I miss Stiles and my pack, this is my home too, in a way.  I’ve missed my family for so long, and now, here, I can be with them again…  No, I can’t let myself think that way.  This isn’t my life; this isn’t my family, no matter how it feels.  I have to get back, back to my own world.

Chapter Text

                “Derek!  Derek are you here!?”  Stiles screams frantically as they run into the loft.

                “Don’t you think if he was here he’d have met back up with us by now?”  Scott asks, weary.

                “We don’t know what happened, I don’t think my spell went as planned,” Stiles admits.

                “Uuugghhh…”  Derek groans, swimming back towards consciousness.

                “Where did that come from” Scott wonders.

                “I think it came from the other room,” Stiles yells, running to the bedroom.

                There, lying on the bed is Derek, sprawled out among the dirty sheets.  He’s wearing a yellow button up, a loosened repp bowtie and khakis.  Stiles scans his friend with confusion, even his perma-stubble is gone.

                “Derek you asshole, you teleported home and decided to have a shave and go to, what, Banana Republic?”  Stiles asks, laughing as he smacks Derek in the chest.

                “Huh?  What…?”  Derek moans, sitting up.

                “Have you ever seen Derek wearing this many colors…?”  Scott asks, weirded out by the sudden wardrobe change.

                “No, I thought he was allergic to pastels to be honest,” Stiles adds with a smirk.  “Come on buddy, get up,” Stiles says, hitting Derek again.

                Derek’s eyes open, slowly adjusting to the dank room.  When he sees Stiles and Scott hovering over him he freaks out, jumping up and away.

                “Who?  Who are you?” he yells, trying to sound menacing, but hitting terrified puppy dog instead.  “Wh-where am I?”

                “Derek, what are you talking about, it’s us…  Stiles and Scott?”  Stiles answers, unsure what’s going on.

                “Style?  You don’t have any style that I can see,” Derek quips, trying to calm himself.

                “Did…  Did Derek just insult my fashion sense?”  Stiles asks Scott, bewildered.  “What in the world happened to you when I cast that spell?”

                Where am I?  And who are these kids?  God, this place smells like wet dog and mold.  What happened, I was just in my room at home…

                “Listen, I-I can defend myself,” Derek stammers, unsure how true that statement really is. 

                “We know Derek, that’s why you came with us for the fight, you’re the best fighter in the pack,” Scott replies, sincerity ringing in his voice.

                “What?”  Is all Derek says in response.

                “Ok, can someone please tell me what happened to Derek, because I’m starting to freak out a little bit,”  Stiles worries.  “He doesn’t even remember us, he looks nothing like Derek, well, clothes and grooming wise, and he seems to think we’re about to murder him.”

                I need to get out of here, get away from these kids and run to the house.  I need to find my pack, my family.  They’ll know what’s going on.

                Derek dashes towards the exit, but is stopped by Scott. 

                “Hold it!”  Scott commands, his eyes flashing red.

                “Get away!”  Derek shouts, his eyes turning a golden yellow.

                Surprised, Scott allows himself to be pushed aside as Derek runs out of the loft.

                “What just happened?” the boys ask in unison.

********** 

                I have to get away, have to run.  Why am I so slow?  I can usually run much faster than this.  It figures the one time my body chooses to not be at peak performance, it’s when I’m being chased by a crazed, teenage Alpha and his child emissary.  Who were they anyway?  Newcomers to Beacon Hills?  Surely Mom would have heard about them and warned us if a new pack was coming through, especially one led by a kid.  Just a little further until I get home then everything will be fine.  Everything will be....just… fine.

                Derek stops in front of the burned out remains of his family home.  The smoke and flames are long gone, this isn’t his home, this is a wreck, a twisted memorial to what it once was.

                What, what is this?  What happened to the house?  It looks; it looks like it’s been this way for, for ages.  How, I was just here?  I was just up in my room, how could it be like this?

                Derek falls to his knees in front of his childhood home, tears streaming down his face as his eyes shift back to their normal hue.  Racked with sobs, he doesn’t hear them coming up behind him.

                “Told you he’d come here,” one of the boys says behind him.  “You owe me ten bucks Scott.”

                “We were not actually betting on where Derek would run during his breakdown,” the one called Scott answers, as Derek turns around.

                “Did you do this?!”  Derek demands, getting to his feet.  “Did you burn down my house?  Where is my family?  Where is my pack?!  My parents, my siblings, my cousins and aunt and uncle?!”

                “Derek…” the other boy steps forward, sadness filling his eyes.  “They’ve been dead for years Derek, you know that.  I mean, except for Peter and Cora, although I think we don’t really count Peter most days.”

                “What?”  Derek splutters, tears forming in his eyes again as they shift once again.  “No, that’s not true.  I just was with them.  No one died, they’re all fine.  I just saw Laura and my Mom fifteen minutes ago!”

                “Derek, Laura’s dead too…  Peter killed her to become the Alpha, remember?”  Scott adds. 

                “Peter…  Peter would never hurt Laura,” Derek recoils, offended at their accusations.  “He’s my best friend and my uncle.  He would never hurt his niece.  And my mother, his sister, is our Alpha!”

                “What is going on with y-“ Stiles begins, before looking into Derek’s eyes.  “You- You’re not Derek.”

                “Yes I am!  I’m Derek Hale, you’re the two psychos who don’t know anything about me,” he screams, clearly losing his grip.

                “No, no, you’re not Derek Hale.  At least, you aren’t our Derek Hale…  My Derek Hale,” Stiles says with a heavy heart.

                “What are you talking about Stiles, how can he be Derek but not be Derek?”  Scott questions his friend.

                “Look at his eyes Scott; didn’t you say there was something weird about them, that shocked you when you were at the loft?”  Stiles answers.

                “Well yeah, but I wasn’t sure what it was, I still don’t get what you m-“ Scott stops, finally taking a good look at Derek’s eyes.  “His eyes are gold.  They’re golden, not blue.”

                “Yep, not our Derek, but a Derek nonetheless,” Stiles retorts.

                “What are you both talking about?”  Derek questions panicked.

                “I might have…  I might have really effed that spell up, like really effed it up,” Stiles admits, lowering his head.

Chapter Text

                Derek can smell beef stew and other delicacies wafting through the air as he closes in on the Hale house.  Jumping straight over the railing, he nearly runs into his older siblings.

                “Jeez Derek!  Try using the stairs why don’t you?” Erik says, annoyed.

                “You’re acting a bit strange…” Dora adds, looking Derek over.

                “Erik… Dora…” Derek says, before running to embrace them.  “I’ve missed you guys so much!”

                The elder Hale children exchange looks over Derek’s shoulder.

                “We were just at work kiddo,” Dora replies.

                “I’m sorry, I’ll send you a postcard next time I work late,” Erik jokes, patting Derek on the back.

                “I forgot how bad your jokes were Erik, that’s probably why…” and then Derek cuts off, remembering who he’s talking about.  “Sorry, I’m just having an off day, forgive my weirdness.”

                “We’ll forgive your weirdness, but Mom won’t forgive you for being late for dinner,” Dora reminds him.

                “Or for looking like you tumbled down a mountain,” Erik adds, laughing.

                “Oh, yeah… Tell her I’ll be right there!” Derek says, running in the house, bounding up the steps in twos and threes. 

                Ok, so clothes…  Let’s see what the other me has in his closet.  Certainly not himself, that’s for sure.  Heh. 

                Derek crosses to the closet, pulling off his shirt and tattered jeans.

                So we’ve got… lots of colors.  A lot of colors.  Did he just dump a Crayola box into his closet, I don’t understand?  Fine, if this is how he dresses, I’ll have to make do. 

                Derek peeks at a few of the pictures of the other Derek as he picks out an outfit.  Finally he settles on a tight pair of designer jeans, a white belt and a purple polo.

                I feel like I should be golfing at a gay bar or something, I don’t even know what this is.  Hopefully it isn’t too bad.  Tomorrow I’ll just ask Cora to help me pick something out, or maybe later after her fashion show.

                Derek hurries downstairs to meet his family for dinner, wholly unprepared for whatever is coming.

                You can do this Derek, it’s just dinner.  You did it thousands of times as a kid.  They’re your family, or his family, oh whatever.

                Of course, when Derek walks in, he’s struck by the sheer emotional magnitude of the moment.  Even in his wildest dreams he hadn’t imagined eating dinner with his entire family ever again.   He freezes in the doorway, just staring at them.  Finally, Cora pats a seat next to her, and time unfreezes, his legs can move again, and he takes his place at the table.

                After a while, he’s back.  Back to the way it was before the fire, gathered with his family to eat and share their days.  The topics of discussion may be different, his siblings older, but alive, and there.  He has to stop himself from crying quite a few times and notices Cora and his mother giving him looks, obviously smelling the roiling emotional mess he is inside.  Overall, dinner is a success though, and Cora pulls him off to her room as soon as they finish.

                “Fashion show time!” She announces, jumping up and down.  “At least you put on something a little bit better, glad you got the memo about the dress code for my fashion show.”

                “Memo?” Derek asks, tilting his head to the side.

                “Forget it dumb-dumb,” she says, waving the question away.  “Now we shall see what I will wear to make Scott McCall fall helplessly in love with me.”

                I really shouldn’t be doing this.  I would never let Scott date Cora.  Ok, Cora would never be interested in Scott, so that’s not an issue, but still.  I guess in this world, if this is what makes her happy, and her Derek was fine with it, then I should try to be ok with it too.

                So Derek sucks it up and suggests something similar to what he felt Allison usually wore.  A skirt, some leggings, boots and a nice top.

                “Derek,” Cora smirks, “Your fashion sense is back!”

                Giggling happily, she hangs up her outfit and plops down on her bed. 

                “Oh, by the way, when I was out for a run I saw Scott,” Derek says, hoping Cora won’t find that suspicious.

                “You what?!” She shrieks.  “Were you checking up on him Derek?  You’re not usually into the whole overprotective older brother thing.  I thought you trusted me?”

                She seems hurt, crap, I didn’t mean to upset her.  Quick, what can I say that isn’t a total lie?

                “I just ran into him, he was going to get dinner for Dr. Deaton, his boss,” Derek shrugs.

                “Oh,” Cora says, surprised.  “Well that’s ok then.  I thought you were stalking him or something.”

                Not in this reality I’m not.  Boy, that was a real low for me.  I really needed my family to be able to make good life decisions it seems.

                “We actually have a group project due for class, so even though our date isn’t until Saturday, Scott and a couple others will be coming over tomorrow after school,” his sister adds.

                “Well that’s good, I hope you have a good time,” Derek says, trying to muster as much enthusiasm as he can.  “Hey, do you think you could help me pick out something to wear for tomorrow, since I helped you?”

                Cora’s eyes practically fall out of her head in shock, before she flies off the bed, dragging Derek behind her by the arm.

                “You NEVER let me help you pick out clothes!” she yells, excitement overflowing.  “This is going to be so much fun!”

                What have I just gotten myself into?

**********              

                You need to look normal Derek, this is all worth looking normal and not alerting anyone. 

                Derek attempts to hold a smile on his face, while miserable, as Cora forces him to try on nearly his entire closet.  Eventually she settles on a pair of yellow shorts, a white, short sleeve button up, a tank top, and an odd straw fedora.

                I look ridiculous.  I’m going to look ridiculous.  Does this Derek even own anything black?  Grey, charcoal, anything that isn’t pastel?  Oh well. 

                Satisfied with her work, Cora heads off to bed early.  Derek sits in his room, comtemplating his next move.

                Well, I guess if I’m going to pretend to be this Derek for a while, I need to fully look the part.  I notice everyone staring at my beard, so this Derek must be clean shaven.  I’ll have to get that off, and I need a shower desperately.  I’m quite glad no one has mentioned it, considering the werewolf sense of smell, but I’m pretty sure I reek.

                Derek rifles through this Derek’s drawers, trying to find underwear.

                Socks. More socks.  Undershirts.  Where does he keep his underwear?  Does he just go commando every day?  I hope not, I’m not dealing with that kind of chafing.  Ok, one last drawer… and?  Bingo!  So let’s see, these are black, I’ll just… Is this… Is this a jockstrap?  Are they all jockstraps?   I am going to have a serious discussion with this Derek about the kinds of things he puts on my body.  Our bodies.  His body?  Whatever.

                Unsatisfied with, but resigned to his only choice, Derek makes his way to the upstairs bathroom.  After a shower and a quick shave, he looks into the mirror.

                Ok Derek, you can do this.  No one besides Deaton will have to know that you’re not their Derek.  I’ve shaved, showered, had Cora pick out an outfit that hopefully looks like something this Derek would wear, now I look the part.  All I have to do is act it.  I can do this.  Who am I kidding?  I’ll be lucky if I make it through the day.  In fact, I don’t even know what I’m supposed to do.  Do I have a job?  Hobbies?  Apparently, not a boyfriend anymore, that Laura made clear enough.  Come one, focus, you can do this.  Oh great, I forgot, the jockstrap.  This Derek is really high on my shitlist right now.  Can I hate myself?  I mean, I already have a lot of self-loathing, but can I literally just hate this version of me?  At the very least, Stiles is going to get a kick out of all this when I tell him.  Stiles… You better be looking for a way to get me back, because I’m not sure this Deaton, not having any drama the last few years, is as skilled as ours.  And I miss you.

Chapter Text

                 Derek wakes up to the savory smell of bacon and eggs, a very unusual, but pleasant, aroma.  It takes him a moment to remember where he is and what’s happened in the last 24 hours.

                Well, time to see if I can pull this off.  

                Walking through the dining room, Derek sees his family assembled for breakfast.  After yesterday’s shock, he’s better prepared and doesn’t freak out at the idea of a meal with his family.

                “Good morning Mom, Dad, wonderful family” he nearly sing-songs.

                “Sounds like someone’s feeling better,” his mother says, heaping bacon and eggs onto her plate.  “Oh honey, you’ve got some batter on your face,” she says, wiping her husband’s cheek.

                I could really get used to having an actual meal for breakfast.  I had forgotten how great of a cook Dad was.  Maybe I can get him to show me how to make something before I go back.  That would show Stiles, telling me I’d burn soup.  Ha!  My father could cook circles around you. 

                “So what are your plans for the day Derek?” Laura asks innocently.

                Shit!  The one question I was hoping to avoid.  I swear, in any reality Laura can be a pain.  Not that I’m not thrilled to have her back.

                “I hadn’t really thought about it,” Derek responds. 

                Living the life of a wealthy, werewolf playboy apparently.

                “I thought you had that big painting you said you wanted to finish?” Cora says, joining their conversation.

                “Yeah, that’s right!,” Derek replies, feigning recognition.  “Thank for reminding me sis!”

                He claps an arm around her, pulling her in for a big hug.

                “Derek!” Cora laughs, weaseling out of his grasp.

                “You know Derek, you seem like a different person almost,” Erik says, eyeing him up.  “You usually never eat Dad’s cooking, and I haven’t seen you this family-oriented in a long time.”

                “I just thought, why worry?  Why not enjoy every day I have with you all, every last bit of dad’s cooking, even all your terrible jokes, to the fullest,” Derek responds, surprising himself with his complete honesty.

                “That’s a very admirable way to live life Derek,” His dad says proudly.

                He’s proud of me.  Dad is proud of me!  Suck it up Derek, get your emotions under control.

                “Thanks Dad,” Derek sighs, contented.

 **********              

                “Well, I guess I’m gonna’ go work on that painting,” Derek yawns, working his way out of the dining room.

                “Aren’t you going to your studio?” Cora asks, heading for the door.

                “Yeah,” Derek responds.  “Why?”

                “Then shouldn’t you be going the other way?” his sister teases as she slams the door.

                “Don’t slam the door Cora!” Derek, Erik and their dad chorus.

**********               

                The rest of the morning is spent fiddling around in this Derek’s studio.  As he gets more and more into the act of creation, Derek slowly realizes how relaxing and enjoyable it is.

                Ok, I have to admit, I thought this would be really boring.  Actually it’s pretty nice though, get to work with your hands, quiet, peaceful.  Some nice alone time to clear my head because, as much as I want to enjoy every minute I can with my family, I’ve gotten quite used to being alone.  I almost crave some me time now.

 **********

                When Derek emerges from the studio for lunch, he’s covered in paint and starving.

                It’s a good thing I changed into some work clothes before painting, or Cora’s outfit would be ruined.  Normally I wouldn’t care, but she put a lot of effort into it.  Now for some food.

                Laughter floats in from the kitchen as Derek gets closer.  He peeks in to see Peter, Samantha, and Mara, Peter’s wife, covered in flour.

                “What’s up?” Derek asks, carefully avoiding the flour puddles on the floor.

                “Samantha wanted to make cookies, but things… well they got out of hand,” Peter replies, his hearty laugh throwing more flour everywhere.

                “You want some help?” Derek offers.

                “I didn’t think you knew how to Bake, Derek?” Mara comments.

                “I don’t.  Not really,” Derek concedes.  “But I do kind of know how to make cookies.”

                “Cookies!” Samantha yells.

                While Mara prepares some sandwiches for the boys and a grilled cheese for Samantha, Peter and Derek help Samantha bake cookies.  It’s messy and pointless and fun.

                I honestly can’t remember ever having this much fun with Peter.  Peter certainly doesn’t seem surprised though, which I guess makes sense if this Derek is his favorite nephew.  I guess I do remember a time when Peter and I were closer, but after Paige, well, there wasn’t much love there anymore.  Considering this Derek’s eyes are still gold, according to Deaton, Paige must not have happened, or it went differently.  I’d love to know what happened there.  Maybe I can trick someone into telling me.  If Stiles were here, he could do it with no problem. 

                “What do you tell your cousin Derek, Samantha?” Peter coos.

                “Thank you Derek!” Samantha giggles.

                It breaks my heart that Peter missed out on this.  Didn’t get to be the husband and loving father that he apparently could have been.  It really is like looking at a completely different person.  They’re such a happy little family, within our larger family, and it’s amazing.  Maybe, when I get back, I’ll try to forgive Peter.  He’s done so many awful things, but I guess I never really stopped to consider how terrible his life was, since my and Laura’s lives had been ruined too.

                “Thanks for the sandwich Mara” Derek says, grateful.

                By now Derek’s body is a mess of coagulated paint and flour.  He heads upstairs to take a quick shower and puts Cora’s selected outfit back on. 

                I’m really tempted to just go out and buy some normal underwear, but I have more pressing concerns so…  Ok, now where would mom keep the photo albums?

                Derek doesn’t have time to look though, as Cora arrives home from school, right as he begins looking in the living room.

                “Good afternoon sis, how was school?” Derek inquires.

                “It was fine,” Cora answers, biting her nail as she stares at Scott, who has just walked in.

                “Hey Derek!” Scott says, walking towards Derek.  Derek puts out a hand to shake, but Scott completely bypasses it and goes straight for a hug.

                Why is he hugging me?  Scott never hugs me.  Is it because I saved his life?  I’ll have to tell Scott how thankful this Scott is.  Maybe he’ll think about all I’ve done for him for once. 

                Cora laughs at Derek’s awkward embrace with Scott, before finally pulling him away to sit on the couch.

                “Where did you guys go?” a voice calls from the hallway.

                I know that voice?  That’s…

                “In here boys,” Cora shouts, not getting up from her spot next to Scott.

                “There you are,” Danny says, entering the room, leading Stiles by the hand.

                Danny and Stiles?!

                “Derek, are you ok?” Cora asks, smelling the sudden spike of anger on him.

                “Yeah, I just, I forgot something in my studio and now… now it’ll be ruined,” Derek answers, trying to sound sincere.

                “Well, I’m sorry,” Cora replies, not sounding convinced.

                “I-I better go,” Derek says, escorting himself out of the room.

                She didn’t tell me she’d be bringing Stiles here!  I mean, I know it isn’t my Stiles, but still…  Seeing him with Danny, knowing that’s how things could turn out.  I need to clear my head, ignore this non-Stiles Stiles and continue my quest for the photo albums.  But it’s so hard to do when he’s right there.  I can smell him, hear his heartbeat, the way he’s fidgeting around.  And holding hands with Danny.  I can hear him kissing Danny.  I, I can’t do this, I need to get away. 

                So Derek goes and hides in the attic.  He doesn’t find any of the photo albums, because he doesn’t really look.  Mostly he just broods, and pines for Stiles.  And tries desperately not to eavesdrop on this world’s Stiles, with no success.

                I’m in so much trouble.  I need help, I really do.

Chapter Text

                 When Derek hears Stiles and the others leave, he relaxes.  Finally able to begin looking for the albums, he starts shoving boxes around.

                Old Christmas decorations.  Wolfsbane, better stay away from that.  Books, baby clothes.  No wonder the fire spread so easy, we really need to get rid of this junk. 

                “Derek?” He hears Cora yell from somewhere downstairs.

                Shit!  Why does she want to see me?  Is it about Stiles?  It’s definitely about Stiles, I know it.  Maybe I’ll be too far away for her to hear? 

                Unluckily for Derek, Cora has excellent control of her wolf powers and susses him out in the attic easily.

                “What are you doing up here Derek?” she begins, worry in her voice.  “I wanted to talk to you about earlier.”

                “Hey Cora!” Derek says, trying his best to sound upbeat and unaffected.  “Could you help me look for these photo albums first?”

                “Uh… sure, I guess?” Cora replies, slightly confused.

********** 

                With Cora’s help, Derek is able to find some of the old albums.  Arms filled to the brim, they trudge down from the attic, plopping the dusty binders in the middle of Derek’s room.

                “Well thanks for your help Cora!” Derek says.  “I’m gonna’ look through these for a while, can you remind me when it’s time for dinner?”

                “I can Derek,” his sister snaps back.  “But that doesn’t mean I’ve forgotten about earlier, I wanted to talk with you about what happened.”

                “Oh yeah, why don’t you start by telling me more about your friends, what were their names?  Stiles and Danny?” Derek asks, feigning lack of knowledge.

                “What?  No that’s not exactly what I wanted to discuss,” Cora responds.

                “Oh come on, just tell me.  How’d they get together, how long have they been dating,” Derek wheedles, trying to sound nosy instead of jealous.

                “Why do you care Derek, you don’t even know them.”  Cora says.

                “You always tell me gossip, so spill, how did Stiles and this Danny kid get together?”  Derek says, hoping he doesn’t sound as intense as he really is.

                “Ok, well apparently, Stiles always asked Danny about whether he, Stiles, was attractive to gay guys,” Cora begins.  “But Danny never thought much of it, because Stiles seemed to be enamored with his friend Lydia.  Even so, Danny was getting annoyed by Stiles asking him questions like that all the time.  So one day, he resolved to do something about it.  Sure enough, a few days later Stiles asked him again, and Danny planted a kiss on Stiles in response.  Stiles said he was really shocked at first, but then he got into it and they were practically making out in the library.  And the rest is history, they’ve been together ever since.”

                “Really?” Derek says through gritted teeth, trying to hide his anger.

                “I still don’t see why you care?”  Cora asks, suspicious.

                “I-I don’t,” Derek stammers. 

                I really hope she’s not good enough to smell the anger and jealousy on me right now.

                “Derek, I-I can tell you’re lying,” Cora whispers, becoming worried.  “But why would you lie about something like that?  Why would you even care about who some random kid you’ve only met like once is dating…”

                Oh shit, oh shit, she knows.  She can hear it in my voice.  I can’t believe they taught her so well already.  Or I’m just shit at covering up my emotions.  Either way, she’s ripping the wool from her eyes.

                “You, you like him” She says, less a question than an affirmation.

                “No- no I don’t!”  Derek almost yells.

                “I can smell the jealousy coming off you, and your heart is telling me you’re lying,” Cora rebuts.  “Derek!  He’s in the same grade as me, he’s underage!”

                “No, Cora, you don’t understand,” Derek says, the conversation spiraling out of his control.

                “Do you know how pissed Mom will be when she finds out?  And Laura will never let you live this down,” Cora rambles.  “I can’t believe you’re attracted to a kid my age.  One little break-up and you have a quarter life crisis.”

                “That’s not what it is Cora, you can’t understand, there are things you don’t know about me,” Derek squirms.

                “Like what Derek?  That you’re secretly crushing on more of my friends?  Maybe you like Scott too?  God,” she says getting up.

                This is so bad.  What do I do?  Do I tell her?  I have to, there’s no getting around it.  If the rest of the family hasn’t already heard, telling her is the only way to stop them finding out.

                Derek reaches up to grab Cora’s arm, not hard, but enough to keep her there.

                “Cora, there are… there are things you don’t know about me.  Things I didn’t think I’d have to tell you,” He starts, unsure of how to continue.  “The reason I like Stiles, I’ll admit it, I do, is because I’m not from here.  I’m not your Derek.”

                “What are you talking about Derek?  I never said you were mine, you’re just my dumb older brother.  My dumb older brother who is really worrying me right now,” She replies, scared.

                I can smell it, the fear and anxiety is rolling off her.  She really loves me, or her Derek at least.  I have to tell her.

                “No, no.  I’m not your Derek, I’m, well, this is going to sound crazy.  I’m from an alternate universe,” Derek whispers, barely able to say it.  “In my universe, there, Stiles was my, well I’m not sure what he was, but there was a connection between us.  We had gotten into some trouble, something was chasing us, and he tried to do some druid magic, because in my world he’s an emissary in training.  And instead of teleporting us to safety, he sent me here, to this world.”

                “Derek, you need help…” his little sister replies, her face falling.  “This isn’t normal; you’re having a psychotic break or something.”

                “I’m not crazy, I- I can prove it,” he says, ashamed at what he’s about to show her.

                She won’t love me after this.  It’ll change everything.  Not that she ever really loved me; she loves her Derek, her real brother.  My Cora is back at home, probably about to kill Stiles for losing me.

                Derek partially wolfs out, focusing on just his eyes, making sure to maintain eye-contact with Cora so she can see.

                “Derek…” she gasps, on the verge of tears.  “What have you done?”

                “In my world, something bad happened when I was your age.  Younger really,” He says, now almost tearing up himself.  “Someone I loved was in great pain, and dying.  She wanted, she wanted it to end, and so I helped her.  That’s when, that’s when my eyes changed.”

                “Derek,” she sighs, beginning to cry in earnest.

                She knows now, she can hear it in my heart.  It was all true; she just has to process it. 

               After a few shocked moments of Cora simply staring into Derek’s icy blue eyes, she starts weeping.  Her sobs are heartbreaking and Derek is sure the rest of his family will be up here any minute, because even their apparently partially soundproofed rooms won’t hold this much noise in.

                “Cora…” Derek begins, reaching out to her.

                “Don’t!  Don’t touch me, whatever, whoever, you are!” She shrieks before jumping up and running out out the room. 

                Derek doesn’t even need his heightened sense to hear the slamming of her door, and while Erik and his father yell at her, Derek sits there, quiet.

                I’ve destroyed my little sister.  She believes me, I think, but she probably has no idea how to handle this.  Heck, I don’t know how to handle it.  Actually, I wonder what happened to her Derek?  I hadn’t really given it much thought, but did he just disappear?  Did he get transported back to my world?  Oh God, this Derek will not last a day in my world unless Scott and Stiles find him first.  And even then, those two bumblers are likely to think it’s just me and that I’ve finally snapped, like Peter.  That’ll be fun for Stiles, and the other Derek.

                With a sigh Derek goes to shut his door and begin his examination of the albums, preferring to let Cora come back to him in her own time.  Right before he shuts his door though, he hears his mother shout up to them.

                “Dears, Uncle Duke and the boys are here!” Talia shouts from downstairs.

                Derek tries to calm down, remind himself that this is a different Deucalion, but he can’t.

                Please do not say he’s staying for dinner, there is no way I can handle that.  I don’t even think I can stand seeing him after everything.

                Opening his eyes only when he reaches the bottom stair, Derek looks up to see Deucalion and the twins.  Deucalion removes his glasses, that same sickening smile on his face.  But something’s different.

                His eyes?   They look normal, he hasn’t been blinded in this universe… Then why does he have the twins?  Is he just now starting the Alpha pack?

                “Ah, hello Derek, good to see you again,” Deucalion says, approaching Derek with his arms out.

                Derek growls and nearly wolfs out, shocking everyone. 

                Why did I do that?  I’m pretty sure he was coming to hug me.  That’s beyond strange, but no reason to react that way.  I guess old habits die hard.

                “Oh Derek, stop messing around,” a clearly shaken up, but laughing Cora says, slapping him on the back quite a bit harder than he was expecting.  “Sorry Uncle Duke, I was just teasing Derek about him being a big softy and I guess he wanted to prove he could scare someone just by growling.”

                “The only way little Derek could scare anyone is them worrying about him,” Erik jokes, and the whole family starts laughing.

                Erik, you have no idea how terrifying I can be.  Do you see this glower?  This is my angry glower, and I am turning it on high, directed at you all night.  If you don’t watch it, I might bust out my scowl, or even a mild brood, that’d show you who’s scary.

                Tension dissipated, the family and Deucalion and the twins head towards the dining room.  As she passes Derek, Cora gives him a look that says “we are going to be having a very long discussion about what you just told me, later, and you better be thankful I just saved your ass dumb-dumb.”

                Thank God for Cora, saving my ass in multiple universes.

Chapter Text

                Deucalion is sitting across from me eating mashed potatoes... and laughing.  Seriously Stiles, you couldn’t even make one of our archnemeses a little evil?  This is like, the most happy Beacon Hills ever.  I guess I shouldn’t complain though.  Everyone is pretty happy here, and so am I.  I can’t even bring myself to glower at Erik, or even Deucalion, like I had planned.  They’re all just so cheerful and nice.  Ugh, I’ll take cryptic, melodramatic Deucalion any day.  This may legitimately be creepier than his normal behavior. 

                The entire family, as well as Deucalion and the twins are eating a leisurely dinner.  Conversation and laughter flies fast and free.  Cora elects to sit by the twins instead of with Derek, something that hasn’t happened since he’d got to this universe.  Instead, Derek is seated between Laura and Peter.

                I’m actually glad that Cora knows.  I mean, I hated having to do that to her, and hurt her.  But really, I needed someone in the family to help me cover up much longer.  She may be young, but she’ll be able to help me blend in until Deaton and the other emissaries find a way to send me home.  Maybe after she grills me about my world, which knowing Cora, she definitely will, I’ll be able to get some more information out of her about this world.  Like why Deucalion keeps giving my Mom googley eyes.  Buddy, you better plant your gaze somewhere else or my Deucalion won’t be the only one without eyes.  At least Dad seems to be adequately unimpressed with him.  Wait, is that?  Is Dad brooding?  That is, that is definitely a high-quality brood going on right there.  Maybe even some scowl mixed in.  Well, I guess I know where that comes from then. 

                “So how are the boys doing?” Talia asks politely.

                “Duke- I mean, Deucalion says that we’ll be able to start school next week!” one of the twins replies happily.

                “Yeah, we’ve apparently curbed our baser instincts,” the other twin says, slicing through a steak vigorously.

                “Yes, now that they’ve had adequate training, I felt it best they get back to their education,” Deucalion says, smiling at the twins, and then at Talia.

                “So do you know what grade you’ll be in?” Cora asks, finally averting her gaze from Derek to talk to the twins.

                “Ms. Morell says she expects I’ll be able to test into sophomore or junior classes,” the cheery twin states.

                “That’s great Ethan!  You’ll probably be with me!” Cora squeals.

                “What about you Aiden?” Laura asks, piping up.

                “I don’t really care,” Aiden replies, swirling the juices on his plate around.

                Deucalion smacks him on the back of the head, not very hard, but hard enough that Aiden jerks to look at him.

                “Education is of the utmost importance young one.  Without education, intelligence, morality, culture, we would be naught but savage animals fighting to the death.  Survival of the fittest is so very Hobbesian, don’t you think James?” Deucalion speaks, his gaze shifting from Ethan to Derek’s father. 

                “Correct as always Duke, although I’d hesitate to say we are, at our base, living in a world so prone to violence and foment as you may think.  I’ve always been a fan of Rousseau myself,”  James replies, sipping his wine.

                “But surely you must agree that it is in the best interest of the many that we teach discipline and control at an early age?  And is not the eudaimonic entelechy of our modern man one which has been hewn from the jagged stone that is our primal instincts; are we not yet slaves to our desires, only freed from them through the radical reconstruction of the self?” Deucalion counters, becoming more intense.

                “Yet who is it that tells us we need suppress our innate desires for this artifice, these meretricious pleasantries so coveted by the Last Man?  Society urges us towards a Utilitarianism that sets us against ourselves and our instincts.  The mind is no stranger to the body, nor to the heart.  We have no need for an insurrection when the marriage of the two would suffice,” James says, prodding his steak.

                “Now boys, settle.  What have I said about debates at the dinner table?” Talia reminds them, cutting off their ramping argument.

                If it wasn’t for the fact that everyone but Peter and my Mom look like they also have no idea what was just going on, I’d feel pretty stupid right now.  Wait, shit, should I have understood that?  This Derek went to UCLA, he might have gotten the gist of it at least.  

                Peter leans in and nudges Derek, making a face and eyeing Deucalion and James.

                Is this some kind of in-joke?  How do I respond?  What does Peter expect from me?!

                Derek answers with a light chuckle, this seems to appease Peter, who leans back over to help Samantha with her food.

**********               

               The rest of dinner is less tense, filled with contented stomachs and sleepy eyes.  Mara leaves to get Samantha ready for bed, Talia, Decualion, James and Peter retire to the living room while the others go their separate ways, save Cora, who is waiting for Derek with doom in her eyes.

               “I’ll get the scorecards!” Peter laughs as he trails behind the other adults.

               “We will not be doing this again, no matter how poorly Deucalion understands Modern Philosophy…” Derek’s father says blithely as they depart.

               “So… looks like its time for our little talk?” Cora asks, back Derek up against the stairs.

               “Fine, let’s go upstairs, but I have a few questions first,” Derek says, resigning.

               “Oh no, I’m doing the questioning first,” Cora demands.

               “Come on, it’s just a couple quick ones and then I’ll tell you whatever you want,” Derek pleads.

               “Everything?” Cora asks.

               “Everything,” Derek concedes.

 **********              

                “Ok, so my first question is, what’s up with Deucalion and the Alpha twins?  Why are they all here and arguing with Dad and, ugh,” Derek blurts once they reach his room.

                “What do you mean? Uncle Duke has known us for years… And the twins have been around for months,” Cora questions.

                “I mean, he isn’t evil in any way and that’s odd for me, it’ll make more sense later, trust me,” Derek says, noticing Cora’s face.  “Anyway, is he building a pack of Alphas or something like, is that why the twins were here and he seems to dislike Dad?”

                “Uncle Duke is not evil,” Cora states plainly.  “Remember, he helped write and negotiate the werewolf and hunter treaty.  I have no idea about him and Dad, I couldn't keep up with that conversation.  And what is an Alpha pack, you mean a pack of all Alphas?  That’s like, impossible.  Besides, the twins are barely better than Omegas.  Maybe Betas soon.”

                “They aren’t Alphas?” Derek wonders.  “Makes sense if Deucalion hasn’t convinced them to kill their pack… yet.”

                “They don’t have a pack, at least not yet,” Cora explains.  “Deucalion found out they were being abused by their Alpha, after Mom and Kali had noticed their pack causing trouble on the outskirts of town.  Mom, Kali and Uncle Duke chased the pack off, but Ethan and Aiden stayed behind, they’ve pretty much been adopted by Uncle Duke and his pack.”

                “This is all just so weird, nothing in this world is like mine so far…” Derek says, heaving a weary sigh.

                “So are we done with the history lesson again?” Cora asks brusquely.

                “For now, but later I’m going to have to know more about this world, and the, well, the other version of me,” Derek says seriously.

                “Fine, but now it’s my turn for questions,” Cora starts, staring Derek straight in the eyes.

                “Ok, where should we begin?” Derek asks, unsure.

                “Let’s start with the obvious,” Cora replies.  “Who are you, and where is my real brother?”

Chapter Text

                 Figures she’d start with the hardest question first.

                “Well first, I’m not sure what happened to your Derek,” he says.

                “What?!” Cora nearly shouts.

                “Hold on, hold on,” Derek soothes, noticing Cora’s outburst and impending meltdown.  “I imagine that he simply got sent back to my world.  I think we just switched places.”

                “Oh, well, that shouldn’t be that bad then,” Cora replies, a little relieved.  “Will he be safe there?”

                “I hope so,” Derek sighs, unable to hide his worry.  “I have no idea what’s going on back there, but when I left Scott, Stile and I were-“ Derek stops, noticing the look on Cora’s face.

                “You know Scott in your universe?” She asks, now more interested than inquisitive.

                “Yes, actually, well I’ll get to it later, but Scott’s sort of, well Scott’s an Alpha in my world,” Derek concedes.

                “Scott?  An Alpha?” his younger sister asks, before breaking out in a fit of giggles.  “But he’s just a puppy?  How would he even get the bite?”

                “Peter,” Derek replies, monotone.  “Peter bit him in the woods.”

                “Why would Peter do that?  Peter knows about the treaty, and he has no desire to make a wolf when he has a family,” Cora says incredulous.

                “Look, just let me start from like, the beginning, and then it’ll make more sense,” Derek replies, steeling himself for the big reveals.  “The world I come from, it’s not as nice as this one alright?  First off, my eyes.”

                “Derek, or, well, do I call you Derek?” she asks, confused.  “I’ll just call you Derek anyway, until my Derek is back.  You, you don’t have to tell me this, I know it must be, it must be hard.”

                “No, you need to understand, and I promised you everything,” he says, taking a deep breath.  “When I was younger, I liked this girl, Paige.  Peter convinced me that the only way we could be together was if she got the Bite.  Anyway, it didn’t take, and I took her to the Nemeton to try to help her.  She, she wasn’t going to make it.  I tried to take away her pain as much as I could, but she couldn’t stand it.  She, she begged me to take the pain away, and I loved her so much, I couldn’t refuse.  So I ended it.  That’s, that’s when my eyes changed.”

                “Oh Derek,” Cora says, letting out a few tears as she comes to hug him.  “It wasn’t your fault, not really.  But why would Peter do that?  And why would you be after a girl?”

                “Peter in my world is a lot different.  I don’t remember how he was when we were younger, but things happen to us later, and they destroy Peter,” Derek answers.  “And I didn’t realize until just recently that I could be attracted to guys, although obviously coming to that realization sooner would have been incredibly helpful it seems.”  Derek shifts on the bed, not far enough to leave Cora’s embrace, but enough to look at her again.  “The treaty never happened either, up until recently we were still at war with the hunters.  In fact Kate, um, Kate…”

                “Derek, you stopped Kate, what’s wro-“ but Cora halts, realizes before he even says it.  “You didn’t stop her did you?”

                “No…” Derek whispers, on the verge of tears.  “I was just a kid… Laura and I went to school, and when we got back… When we got back, everyone was gone.”

                “All of us?” Cora whimpers.  “The whole family, gone?”

                “Almost,” he responds, shivering.   “Laura and I weren’t there.  Peter survived, but he was badly scarred and mentally broken.  Watching them all burn, being so damaged.  He never really recovered.  Well, a little bit after we killed him and he came back, but that’s another story.”

                “You… You killed Uncle Peter?” Cora asks, a note of disgust and fear in her voice.

                “Yes, but only because he had went insane, killed all these people in the town,” Derek replies, looking down.  “He killed Laura… He killed her so he could become the Alpha.  But then, well, I killed him and I became the Alpha.  Then later on, well, it’s complicated but he came back from the dead as a Beta and wasn’t quite as crazy then.”

                “This is unreal,” Cora exclaims.

                “Oh!” Derek starts, remembering.  “And you’re alive too, but I didn’t know that until this last year.”

                “Well that’s, reassuring?” Cora states, both relieved and weirded out by her other self’s fate.

                “And you’re also our Alpha now…” Derek says sheepishly.

                “I’m what!?” she gasps, shocked.

                “You were dying, really sick,” Derek continues, rushing through.  “And so I gave my Alpha spark to you, so that you could heal.”

                “You did that, for me?” Cora asks.

                “Of course, I thought you, I mean, she, was dead for years.  Now that I’d found her, I wasn’t going to let her die if there was a way to save her,” Derek says, confident.

                “Ok, what else is different?” Cora questions, starting to get more interested and relaxed.

                “Well let’s see, Scott got bit by Peter, like I said, so I tried to recruit him to my pack,” Derek begins, knowing this will be awkward.  “I didn’t, I didn’t do the greatest job of that.  You have to understand, I was completely alone at this point, almost our whole family had died in the fire, and then Laura had died too, and this was before we found you.  So I was kind of, ok, I was stalking Scott, and I’ll admit it was weird, but I had a shit life and I was lonely.  Anyway, we eventually found Kate and Peter killed her, along with her accomplices, and then Scott and Stiles set Peter on fire and I slashed his throat.  Ok, what else, what else?  Oh yeah, Jackson!”

                “Jackson?  Danny’s friend?” Cora asks.

                “Yes,” Derek replies.

                “Do you only hang around teenagers in your world?” Cora says, stifling a laugh.

                “I, what I… yes.” Is all Derek can muster.  “In case you haven’t noticed, I’m a bit emotionally stunted.  Besides, Scott is a wolf, the rest of my pack were teens too so…”

                “Wait, so who was the rest of your pack, because you just mentioned Scott, and much later me so…?” she wonders.

                “I may have, I may have bitten three lonely teens to make my own pack because I was lonely and I thought they were too,” Derek confesses, ashamed.  “It didn’t work out very well though.  Erica was killed by the Alpha Pack, and they forced me to kill Boyd by holding my claws and throwing him onto them.  And Isaac abandoned me for Scott when he became the True Alpha.  Whoop-dee-doo.”

                Cora snorts, whether out of laughter at his poorly timed joke or nervousness, he doesn’t know.

                “Wait, I know them, well, not directly, but I know of them,” Cora muses, her hand to her chin.  “The mousy blond with seizures is Erica, right?  And the nice, but quiet, tall guy is Boyd?  I don’t know Isaac though.”

                “Yeah that’s them… wait, you don’t know Isaac?” Derek says, becoming concerned.

                “No, I don’t think so,” She responds, staring off into space as she contemplates.

                “Tall, gangly, like Stiles, but with blond, curly hair.  Ring any bells?” Derek asks, his worry growing.  “His father, his father was abusing him, that’s why he accepted the bite in the first place.  Later, he joined Scott’s pack.  I hope nothing happened to him…”

                “Wait, his father was abusing him…” Cora inquires, something coming to her mind.  “I think, I might have heard of him.  There was a boy last year, sounds like the same guy.  He moved away though.”

                “His father moved him out of Beacon Hills?” Derek questions, grabbing Cora’s shoulders.  “Are you sure?  I, I have to find him.  I might not be able to make him a wolf, but I can at least get him help.”

                “Calm down!” Cora says, pushing Derek off.  “You didn’t let me finish.  The reason he moved was because his brother came home, a soldier I think.  He found out their dad was abusing his little brother and reported him.  Actually, the dad was a real jerk.  This Matt kid claimed that he had been letting kids drink underage and nearly let him drown.  It all ended up being true and the boy and his brother moved away.  And the Matt kid, last I heard, was getting counseling.”

                “Oh that’s good,” Derek sighs, finally exhaling.  “About both of them.  Matt was controlling the Kanima in my world.  Of course, without me trying to turn Jackson, the Kanima wouldn’t exist here anyway…”

                “You made Jackson a wolf too?” Cora questions, getting ticked off.  “Did you just turn all the high schoolers into wolves?”

                “No! Just, just like, four,” Derek admits meekly.  “But Jackson’s didn’t take anyway, he turned into this lizard monster, the Kanima.  The one I mentioned Matt controlled.  Later we killed him, me and Peter, and then He came back to life, but as a wolf.  And moved to like, England or something, I wasn’t really interested.”

                “Ok, so that almost covers it, except, what about you and Stiles?” Cora says,her question lingering in the air between them.

                “Stiles…”Derek begins.  “Where do I begin with Stiles?  I guess, we met because of Scott.  Stiles is his best friend there to, so they’re always together.  Anyway, Ihated him, he’s annoying, and thinks he’s insanely intelligent and always wants to join the fray, even if he’ll get his throat ripped out.  And after a while, even though we fought and bickered and hurled insults at each other all the time, something happened.  Slowly, we began to grow closer.  He realized there was more than me than what I showed everyone else, saw beyond my ‘sourwolf exterior’ he says.  And I noticed that slowly he had begun to be important to me.  I started finding him more funny and endearing than infuriating.   He grew into a storng, confident young man befopre my eyes, and the attraction just built from there.  I haven’t really thought a whole lot aobut it, the constant danger in my world making that hard.  We had kind of just fell together, two pieces finding each other and clicking, without really knowing why or how.  IN the end, I think, I might love him.  I don’t know though…  He’s young, I know, it shouldn’t be happening.  But we haven’t even done anything, serious, you know?  I wouldn’t go that far until he was legal at least and… Wow, I shouldn’t be having this conversation with any version of you, should I?”

                “Maybe not, but that’s ok,” Cora answers, not complaining.  “Now I get it, I think.  Why you reacted that way to Stiles.  So then how exactly did you get here again?  I know you said it before, but I didn’t really believe you and therefore, didn’t pay that much attention.”

                “Ok well, Deaton had taken Stile’s under his wing as a trainee Emissary,” Derek continues.  “He apparently has a ton of potential as a druid.  And since they did this ritual where they re-powered the Nemeton, he has a connection to it, which the deaton here, in your world, believes he might have accidentally drawn power form when he sent me here.  So we were in the woods being chased, and Stiles had the bright idea to use some druidic magic to teleport us out of danger.  I may have egged him on, as did Scott, but that’s not entirely relevant.  Anyway, he used some of my blood to finish the spell, but nothing seemed to happen.  Then, well I got thrown back by… something, and ended up here.”

                “Ok, so you’ve already talked to our Deaton about going home?” Cora asks.

                “Yes, I have,” Derek assures her.  “He said he would try to get the other Emissaries to help, but wouldn’t alert any of the Alphas or packs.  Nice to have a less cryptic Deaton around.  Although, I have to admit, I don’t think he’s as powerful here as my Deaton is there.  So, does that fill you in enough?”

                “Yes, I don’t think you’re crazy anymore,” Cora states, a look of pity and sincerity in her eyes.

                “So then you’ll help me pretend to be your Derek until I can find a way to get back?” he asks, unsure of her response.

                “Of course, what are little sisters for,” Cora replies, wrapping him in a hug.  “Besides, I would do anything to get my Derek back.  The same as I’m sure the other me will do anything to get you back.”

Chapter Text

                 “STILES!!!” Cora screams, chasing the young boy around the loft.  “Get back here so I can rip your throat out with my teeth!”

                “Scott!!! Help me, poor defenseless human here!” Stiles yelps, trying desperately to evade Cora’s grasp.

                “Cora, don’t kill Stiles, even if he is a complete idiot,” Scott scoffs.

                “Oh you, you are so not getting me to be your Emissary now Mr.!” Stiles screams as he reaches Scott and whirls around to hide behind him.

                “Let me at him!” Cora shrieks, clawing at either side of Scott to try to get to Stiles.

                “Look, you can’t kill Stiles, how do you expect to get Derek back without him?” Scott asks, nonplussed.

                They are all insane.  What is this place?  These children are telling me that I’ve landed in some alternate reality or something.  “Their Derek” as they say, must have been transported to mine.  Yeah, well from the looks of the place here, they’ll notice it isn’t me within minutes.  I mean really?  All these charcoal henleys and leather jackets?  Is he going to a hipster funeral every day or what?  Also, Cora is an Alpha apparently, which just makes no sense.  The little one won’t let them tell me much about this place, aside from the fact that almost all of the Hales are dead in this reality.  I guess that Beeyotch Kate succeeded.  Thank goodness I stopped her in my universe.  I can’t even imagine what it would be like if I hadn’t.  Or, more accurately, I can, it’s right in front of me.  And it’s awful.  And tacky.

                As the Alphas argue over Stiles, Derek sits, mentally cataloguing all the poor design choices this Derek has made in decorating his loft.  After a few moments, the door slides open to reveal Peter.

                “Uncle Peter!” Derek shouts, jumping to his feet and running to his uncle.  “Oh, it’s so good to see a friendly face!”

                Peter stands there, awestruck at what is happening.  He stills, looking over at the others behind Derek’s back.

                “What fresh hell is this?” he groans, squirming out of Derek’s grasp.

                “Come on Petey, you’ll tell me about this crazy world, won’t you?” Derek begs, dragging Peter by the arm back to the couch.

                “No, seriously, what hellish nightmare am I in right now?” Peter quips, looking to the others for conformation that this is, in fact, happening.

                “Ok, I may have accidentally transported our Derek to an alternate universe, and brought the Derek from that reality here,” Stiles says by way of explanation.  “blah blah blah, druid magic, blah blah screw up, blah blah, that isn’t our Derek.”

                “Oh thank God,” Peter sighs.

                “Petey, what’s going on, why is everyone so crazy here?  Did the rest of our family really die in this universe?” Derek says, his excitement turning serious.

                “Wait, you mean they didn’t die where you came from?” Peter asks, curious.

                “Noooo, no. no no no.” Derek answers, relaxing.  “All of the Hales are safe and sound.  Me, Cora, Laura, Mom, Dad, you, Mara, Samantha…” Derek trails off.

                “Samantha?” Peter says, not knowing the name.

                “Samantha, your daught-“ Derek starts to say, before stopping himself.

                “I- I have a daughter in your universe?” Peter questions, shock coming over him.

                “Yeah, yeah you do,” Derek replies.  “You and Mara had Samantha 7 years ago.  She’s amazing.  Always wanting you and me to give her airplane rides and play dress up and…” Derek tries to continue, but Peter gets up from the couch.

                “I have to, I have to go, somewhere, anywhere. Goodbye,” Peter mutters, his voice high and tight.

                “Peter? Are you ok, did I say something to upset you?” Derek asks innocently.

                “I- no, no it isn’t you.  I just, I didn’t think Mara would ever want children.  I comforted myself with the fact that, had she lived, we would have been childless anyway…” Peter responds coolly, clearly trying to hold it together.

                “Yeah, I remember you coming to me worried about it,” Derek remembers.  “She had just told you, and you were devastated.  Then, about a year later, she changed her mind.  The day you pulled me into your room to tell me she was pregnant was the second happiest I’ve ever seen you, after the day she was born of course.  I was quite proud to be the first to know beside you and Mara.”

                “I told you before Talia or the others?” Peter asks, intrigued.

                “Of course, I am your favorite nephew” Derek laughs, hitting Peter on the back.  “You and your Derek aren’t best friends?”

                “His teens over there set me on fire and then he slashed my throat,” Peter deadpans.

                Derek recoils in shock, looking at Scott and Stiles with wide eyes.

                “You monsters!  How could you do that? How could this Derek do that?  To his own uncle no less,” Derek wonders aloud, indignant.

                “Hey!” Stiles shouts, rounding on him as he leaves the safety of Scott’s protection.  “Peter was killing people!  We had to stop him.  He’s the one that bit Scott!  He even killed Laura!”

                That.  That stops Derek.

                “You… killed Laura, Peter?” Derek says, turning back towards Peter.

                “I was, in a bad place.  Here, I burned along with the rest of the family in the fire.  I watched them all die Derek.  It changes a person.  I wasn’t well and I regret what I did to my niece, I do,” Peter admits, ashamed.

                I hate this world.  Even my two closest relatives, Cora and Peter, aren’t anything like mine.  Cora a bloodthirsty Alpha, Peter a psychotic killer?  This is not a reality I want to be in.

                “How long will it take to get me home?” Derek asks, abruptly changing topics.

                “Yes Stiles, how long until my brother is back here, in his own world.  With his pack?”  Cora demands, her eyes flaring red.

                “I’m, I’m working on it,” Stiles stammers.  “I talked with Deaton and he says it shouldn’t have even been possible to do what I did.  He had no explanation.  He’s trying to get in contact with Marin, hopes she might have an idea about it.  I’ve been searching all through the night in the lore, but I haven’t seen anything like this before.”

                “So I’m stuck here?” Derek asks, timidly.

                “Just for a while, sorry,” Stiles utters, before turning back to Scott to talk.

                I do not want to be here any longer than I have to.  I wish I would have studied magical lore with Peter and Deaton.  They both knew quite a bit about it.  At least the boy seems sincere in wanting to get me home.  Although he reeks of desire and lust.  I’ve noticed his heart jumps whenever I look at him.  I assume this Derek has attracted his attention.  As if either of us would deign to date a child.

                A knock at the door announces yet another visitor.  Peter crosses to open it, glad to put some space between himself and this Derek.  When he opens the door, Danny and Ethan greet him from out in the hall.

                Oh…

                Scott, Cora, Peter and Ethan all turn to Derek, whose scent has just changed to a very strong smell of attraction.

                “Hey!” Ethan yells, marching up to Derek.  “You already have a boyfriend, what are you doing leering at mine like that!?”

                Danny and Stiles both cough dramatically, as Scott fails to hold in his fit of laughter at this new development.

                “What?  What are you talking about?  I didn’t do anything” Derek argues, backing away from Ethan. 

                “I can smell your lust from there, don’t lie,” Ethan demands.  “You already have Stiles, you stay away from Danny!”

                “Is that, is that what that smell was?” Danny asks, having not known the difference.  He rubs his neck, embarrassed, before going to try to calm his boyfriend.

                “If you’ll excuse me, I do not have anyone, and I was merely admiring a strapping young wolf,” Derek counters, puffing out his chest.  “Had I known you two were mates, I would not have acted in such a manner.

                “He, he’s not my.  I mean, we’re, I…” Ethan stumbles over his words.  Flustered, he allows Danny to lead him away.

                “So what did Ethan mean that Derek 'already has you?'” Scott says, smirking at Stiles.

                “Shut up, before I send you to another dimension too,” Stiles jokes, heading out with Danny and Ethan to research more.

                With their distractions gone, the other wolves come sit with Derek.

                “So, do you want to tell us a little more about your universe, then after, we can tell you about ours?” Scott asks politely.

                “We just want to make sure our Derek is going to be ok,” Cora continues, worried and angry at the same time.

                “Well it certainly isn’t that dangerous there,” Derek replies nonchalantly.  “I mean, I live at home with my family.  I sell paintings occasionally, not that my art degree from UCLA is doing that much for me.  Then again, being a Hale, it’s not like we’re wanting for money.  At least, not in my world.  I recently broke up with my boyfriend Miguel, so he won’t have to worry about that.  As long as the packs don’t think he’s some weird monster, they’ll certainly help him.  We have three Emissaries thankfully.”

                “That was a lot of things to absorb,” Scott answers.  “So let’s start with the last one.  You have three Emissaries?”

                “Of course, three packs, three druids,” Derek replies.  “Deaton is ours, Uncle Duke has Marin, and Kali has, oh, what’s her name?  Ah, I remember, Julia.”

                “Uncle Duke?” Cora replies, disgusted.

                “Julia? As in Julia Bacarri?” Scott asks.

                “Yes to both,” Derek responds.  “You aren’t close to Duke or Kali’s pack here?

                “Deucalion killed his entire pack, and convinced Kali to do the same,” Peter says.  “Kali left Julia for dead, but since Derek had killed Paige at the Nemeton, she drew off its strength and then came back years later and tried to kill us all while Deucalion was picking off Derek’s pack.”

                “I don’t believe you!” Derek gasps.  “Uncle Duke wouldn’t do something like that.  I mean, maybe Kali, I’ve never cared for her.  But never Duke.  He even signed the treaty for us.”

                “What treaty?” Scott asks.

                “The treaty between the wolves and the hunters…” Derek replies, as if Scott is slow.  “The one that let Ennis leave, and set up a truce between the packs and the hunters.  Why we’ve lived in peace for years?”

                “That… didn’t happen here,” Peter exclaims.   “Deucalion was blinded by Gerard Argent and went crazy.  The hunters were killing us until just recently when Romeo over there seduced their next leader and won over her father.”

                “I did not seduce anyone,” Scott yells, before blushing.  “Maybe a little.”

                “Wait, Derek killed someone?” Derek asks, finally realizing what they had said.

                “Yes, Paige, your, I mean his, girlfriend and first love, you don’t remember her?” Peter asks, confused.

                “Girlfriend?” Derek laughs.  “What would I do with one of those?  My first love was Hector, from the basketball team.”

                “Well this Derek is apparently completely gay, so that changes things I guess,” Scott adds.  “in addition to all the other things that are different.  So wait, do you know any of us?  Me, Stiles, Danny, Ethan?”

                “I know Ethan, one of Uncle Duke’s adopted sons.  Never met Stiles or the hottie,” Derek replies with a lascivious grin.   “You said your name was Scott?  Do you play lacrosse?”

                “Yeah, I was co-captain,” Scott beams, proud of his accomplishments. 

                “Oh then I guess I’m mistaken,” Derek continues.  “The Scott I’m thinking of is my little sister Cora’s crush.  But he’s not the captain, he barely even gets to play, because of his asthma she says.”

                “Hey! That is me, I used to have asthma before I got bitten,” Scott says, then, noticing what that means, avoiding eye contact with Cora.

                “I would never have a crush on Scott,” Cora spits.

                “Oh, you are quite enamored with him in my world,” Derek retorts.  “You tell me about him all the time after cheerleading practice.”

                “Cheerleading practice?” Cora questions.

                “Yes, you’re on the varsity cheerleading squad,” Derek says without a hint of mirth.

                “Cora… a cheerleader?” Scott and Peter chorus, turning to her and giggling.

                “Shut up or so help me,” Cora shouts at the two.

 **********              

                Well, I’m still in this hovel.  Maybe today they will find a way to send me back.

                Derek pauses, panticulating, before traipsing through the messy loft towards the kitchen

                “Oh, God, what are you doing?” Stiles yells, covering his eyes.

                Derek is clad only in a tight, red jockstrap as he pulls a glass out of a cabinet to get some juice.

                “Sorry, didn’t think anyone was still here,” Derek says, his face splitting from his huge smile.

                He is so easy.  The way he looks at me like I’m a piece of meat he wants to devour.  I guess I can understand why this Derek might be into that.  Nothing wrong with wanting someone who worships you, heh.  Seems like if he was going for a young one, he could at least have went for the smoking babe of a wolf.  That one is even out of the closet, unlike this one.  Of course, I’m only here for a bit, might as well have some fun…

                Stiles is frozen, seeing a nearly nude Derek doing things to his body that he can barely even comprehend, while the image of him smiling at him melts his brain to mush.  By the time Stiles regains any kind of composure, Derek is sitting at the counter with a bowl of cereal.

                “Derek really needs to redecorate, this place is so drab,” Derek says, staring at the bare walls and poor lighting.

                “I tell him that, but does he listen?  Noooo,” Stiles replies, satisfied that at least some version of Derek agrees with him.

                “So I take it you still haven’t found a way to return me from whence I came?” Derek asks, sure of the answer.

                “Um, no, not yet.  But we’re working on it,” Stiles responds brightly.

                “Well isn’t that reassuring,” Derek says standing up and walking towards the couch where Stiles is perched.   “I’m so thankful to have someone like you in my corner Stiles,” Derek says, leaning in close, cupping Stiles’ chin in his hands.

                Stiles’ legs are about to buckle.  Derek can feel the air rush out of him at his touch.  It amuses him to no end.     

                “I-I-I-I” Stiles splutters, unable to form a coherent thought.

                “I’m sorry, am I distracting you from your work?” Derek asks, a devious glint in his eye as he brushes his fingertips past Stiles’ lips before sitting down.

                “Oh God!” Stiles moans before running off down the hall.

                Derek listens for the tell-tale signs of his triumph before shouting, “I can hear you!”

                “Please stop!” Stiles shouts, on the verge of more than just tears.

Chapter Text

                “Do I have to wear this?” Derek groans.

                Today, Derek is clad in an Indian green deep v, an assortment of bracelets, khaki capris and loafers.

                “It is not that bad Derek,” Cora reprimands, fixing her hair into a ponytail.  “Please, you’re pouting worse than Samantha.”

                “I am not pouting!” Derek rebuts, embarrassed.  “If anything I’m brooding, nothing wrong with a healthy brood once in a while.”

                “You are so weird Odie,” Cora laughs.

                “Odie?” Derek repeats, raising an eyebrow.

                “I decided, just now, that’s what I’m calling you until you leave.  Odie, as in O and D, for Other Derek?” she replies, giggling.

                “Little sisters, ugh,” Derek says as they walk out of his room.

                “Little brothers, ugh,” Laura mimics as she walks past,

                “Go ahead, yuck it up sis,” Derek retorts, pulling out the keys to this Derek’s car, Cora found them in his room.

                “And where are you going so early in the morning?” Laura asks, curious.  “Normally you don’t even get out of bed until almost noon.”

                Derek and Cora give each other a look, having forgotten to collude on a cover story.  Cora is the first to speak though.

                “Derek has graciously offered to drive me to school so I don’t have to take the bus,” Cora offers, smiling at him.

                “Yeah, I did,” Derek says, pretend grumbling.

                “How very sweet of you baby bro,” Laura says before striding off.

                Going down the stairs, Derek is struck by a thought.

                “Do I have the Camaro here?” he asks, hopeful.

                “Don’t get me started on the Camaro,” Cora begs, pleasing Derek.

                Well at least one thing this Derek has good taste in is cars.  I wish I wouldn’t have gotten rid of the Camaro, but oh well.

                Walking to the garage, Derek stops in his tracks at the sight of this Derek’s car.

                “What?” Cora asks, moving to the passenger’s side.

                “It’s purple,” Derek responds, dumbfounded.

                “Honestly, did you really expect anything else?” his sister answers.

                “No, no I guess I shouldn’t have,” he replies, crestfallen.  “Well, at least I definitely know where the high school is,” Derek offers, wringing a fit of laughter out of Cora.

********** 

                “No!” Cora shouts playfully.  “You can’t change all of his presets Odie!”

                “Please, just a few?” Derek begs. “I can’t stand all this pop and dance crap.”

                “Then you’ll just have to tune it to something else manually,” she snaps, as she mouths the words to the latest Lady Gaga song.

                “Thank goodness we’re here,” Derek sighs, relieved to be on his way.

                “Well anyway, thanks for dropping me off,” Cora says as she exits the car, along with Derek.

                While she gets her bag from the back seat, Derek looks around at the school.

                Same old school as far as I can tell.  Of course, Blake won’t be here, and Harris is probably still alive.  I bet the Argent’s never took it over temporarily either. 

                “Derek!” Scott shouts walking up behind him and wrapping him in a brotherly hug.  “Good morning!  Oh, and you drove Cora today, hey Cora!”

                “Hi Scott!” Cora replies, coming over to hug Scott.

                While Derek endures their mushy morning meeting, he observes a beige sedan pulling up.

                I know that smell, it’s Stiles.  But, who’s with him?  That's not the sheriff.

                “That’s Stiles’ mom, Claudia,” Cora says, guessing Derek’s question before it was asked.

                “How did you?” Derek mumbles.

                “I’m a genius at deductions,” she giggles, grabbing Scott’s arm as they walk towards the school.  “You’re picking me up right?”

                “Uh yeah, sure,” Derek yells, entranced by the other Stiles.

                “Have a great day darl-“ Claudia says, before tripping over herself and falling to the ground. 

                “Mom!” Stiles shrieks, flailing and rushing to his mother; himself nearly falling in his haste. 

                I’ve never met Stiles’ mom before… She died in our universe when he was quite young.  He doesn’t even talk about her…  At least this Stiles has someone extra looking out for him.  Also, this is apparently where he got his grace, or lack thereof, from.

                Danny arrives and runs over to help the Stilinskis.

                Danny!  Be calm, it isn’t your Stiles Derek, this Stiles is with Danny, happy, safe.

                “Oh thank you dear,” Claudia laughs, brushing herself off.  “My son is lucky to have such a chivalrous boyfriend. “

                Danny flushes as Stiles turns a bright Scarlet.  Derek gets red in the face too, but for a different reason. 

                This is too much, I need to leave. 

                The car door slams shut, putting another protective layer between Derek and this Stiles.  Derek pauses as he watches Cora and Scott walk over to Danny and the Stilinskis.  For one brief moment, Stiles turns and looks him square in the eye.  He panics.  The Camaro nearly runs over three students in Derek’s mad rush to get as far away as possible.

                Gotta get the kid out of my head.  Isn’t even my Stiles.  Maybe Deaton will have found something by now.  Of course, I’m not even sure the clinic is open yet so, we’ll just have to see.

**********              

                Pulling into the parking lot, Derek notices two cars besides Deaton’s. 

                Guess he already has patients.  That means I’m going to have to wait while some old lady’s poodle gets neutered or something.  Great.  Perfect way to start the morning.

                The bell rings as Derek enters, but no one is in the waiting room.  Empty chairs was not what Derek expected to find.

                “Hello?  Anyone here?  Deaton?” Derek calls, wandering towards the counter.

                “Step back or die wolf,” a brunette woman says, ice in her voice.

                “Excuse me?” Derek snarls, letting his eyes flash blue.

                “Calm down everyone, calm down,” Deaton says, waltzing in from the exam room.  “Julia, Derek, Derek, Julia.”

                “Julia Baccari?” Derek asks, sniffing the air for her familiar scent.

                “Yes,” she states, turning on her heal and heading back where Deaton came from.

                “She isn’t any more pleasant here,” Derek laughs, giving Deaton a half smile before following him.

                “This is Derek, the one from the alternate reality,” Deaton says, introducing him to the other Emissaries.  “This is-“ he starts to say before Derek cuts him off.

                “Marin Morell, your sister and Emissary to Deucalion, and Julia Baccari, crazed psychopath, dark druid,” Derek interrupts.

                “Excuse me?” Julia snaps, rounding on Derek.

                “Sorry, thinking of my world.  You might not be a serial killing bitch, I don’t know,” Derek shrugs.

                “What kind of world do you come from?  As if I would kill anyone, much less be a serial killer,” Julia scoffs.

                “Oh trust me you are,” Derek counters.  “Kali tried to kill you when Deucalion ordered her to eliminate her pack.  You only barely survived by drawing power from the Nemeton.  Then, years later, you came back as a dark druid, the Darach, and started sacrificing all these people to give you enough power to kill the Alpha Pack and any other weres in the area during the lunar eclipse.”

                “Deucalion and Kali would never do such a thing!” Marin says, offended. 

                “Remember, Derek is from an alternate reality,” Deaton assures, trying to calm everyone.  “His world is very different from ours, even the people are different.”

                “Whatever,” Julia replies, turning to look over some ingredients. 

                “So what’s going on here, you three trying to find a way back for me?” Derek asks, hopeful.

                “We’re attempting to find a way, but it’s not going too well,” Deaton answers honestly.  “Without the power of the Nemeton, the knowledge of the exact spell your young druid used, or access to his counterpart to at least act as a nexus for the spell’s power, we can’t be sure how to reverse it.”

                “If you would just tell us who the boy is, we could figure the rest out much quicker,” Marin argues.

                “No!” Derek commands, voice like iron. “I will not put him through this again.  His life here is simpler, safer.  I don’t want this for him, not again.”

                “Then you’ll need to leave us be as we work on the spell Derek,” Deaton says, ushering him outside.  “If you change your mind about the boy, tell us.  It would be a great help.  I know you’re reticent about it, but if you ever hope to return to your world, he may be your only hope.”

                Hah.  Stiles would be making some lame Star Wars joke right about now.   I’d scowl and turn away, even though inside I’d be laughing.  Or wondering what it meant.  How many hours have I spent secretly watching movies and looking up different references he makes so I can better understand him?  I’ve lost count.  For a while it was my only hobby when we weren’t being hunted down.

                “I’ll think about it, but don’t expect me to change my mind,” Derek yells as he heads back to the car. 

********** 

               The rest of Derek’s day is spent driving around town, looking for anything else different from his world.  Most things seem the same, a few different businesses here and there.  He stops the car when he sees a storefront with a  marquee advertising “Hale’s Antiques.”

                Now what is this?

                Before he even steps foot in the shop he’s accosted by Peter.

                “Derek!,” Peter says, giving Derek a warm hug.  “I didn’t expect you to drop by today.”

                “Oh, I was just driving around after dropping Cora off at school, thought I’d stop in, say hi,” he lies, unsure if Peter will notice.

                Peter seems to look odd for a moment, before returning to his cheery demeanor.

                Whoo.  Guess that was true enough to pass my uncle’s werewolf senses.  Not that this Peter has any reason to suspect me.

                “Well I’m glad to see you!” Peter remarks, dragging Derek to the back of the store.  “I was wondering if you could put your art degree to use and help me identify a painting?”

                Shiiiit!  Shit shit shit!  Ok, ok, you can do this.  Just, just make something up.  You’ve seen art before, as a child, years ago… I’m screwed.

                “It’s just back here, I’m pretty sure it’s just a reproduction, but I’d still like to know what it is,” Peter continues.   “Lemme’ see, ah, here it is.”

                Wait, I think I do know what this is.  Stiles showed it to me once.  Shit, what is it called?  Be calm, remember, remember. 

                “This is by Ingres,” Derek stammers, trying to sound confident and failing.  “its called the Grand Obelisk, if I remember correctly.”

                “Thanks Derek, that’ll really help me in determining if it’s worth anything,” his uncle says, and Derek notices something flash across his face.

**********               

                Derek helps around the shop, having nothing better to do, and they eventually close up for lunch.  Peter and Derek walk to a small café and order some pastries and coffee.

                “So Derek, how do you like this world?” Peter asks nonchalantly.

                “Well it’s pretty weird, but I’m star-“ Derek halts, realizing what he’s saying. 

                “Really?  Did you not expect me to notice a difference,” Peter grins, looking disturbingly like the Peter he is more accustomed to.  “I don’t know who you are, but you certainly aren’t the Derek I know and love, my favorite nephew.”

                “How could you have known?  Did you overhear me and Cora?” Derek asks, nervous.

                “So Cora knows too, hmm?” Peter replies, thinking.  “No, it was sickeningly easy, really.  You’ve been off the past few days.  Strange clothes, odd behavior.  The way you growled at me and Duke the other day… So, when you walked in today, I decided to test you.  I pulled out a print from the backroom to have you identify it.  You were so close, it was actually Le Grande Odalisque, a simple mistake.  But one that my Derek would never make, no matter how much he disliked the work.  Of course, the final nail was you just confirming my suspicions when I simply asked you nicely.”

                Even in this world Peter is a freaky genius.  Well, I guess I’m out to him now too.

                “Look, I’m from another universe alright?  I don’t really want to go through it all again right now, but basically, I’m Derek Hale, but not your Derek Hale, as you’ve already guessed,” Derek rambles.  “Deaton and Cora are trying to help me get back home.”

                “Well that certainly explains the stench of magic you’re drenched in,” Peter supplies.

                “You can smell magic?” Derek questions, intrigued.

                “Yes, but only if your nose is attuned to it,” Peter responds.  “It took me many years of studying magic and lore to be able to do it at even a small scale.  At first I thought I had just spent too much time in the basement, studying, but slowly I realized the smell was emanating from you.”

                “So are you going to tell the others?” Derek wonders.

                “No, I shouldn’t think so,” Peter replies brusquely.  “It will only worry them.  Not as if I myself am not worried for my nephew.  However, my sister is ferociously protective of her children, as you well know, so this should be kept under wraps.”

                “Thanks Peter,” Derek says, then adds, “Never thought I’d hear myself say that.”

                “You and I are not friends in your world?” Peter asks, sincerely.

                “Let’s just say my claws are friends with your throat,” Derek says, hiding an odd grin.  “But you really deserved it if I’m being honest.”

                “Yes, I imagine I must have, you don’t seem innately evil, if not as carefree as my actual nephew,” Peter replies. 

                Peter and Derek sit and discuss his world, the predicament he’s in and many other things, lasting into the afternoon.

                “As I said before, I will keep your secret,” Peter states firmly.  “In fact, after I close up shop, I will go to Deaton and see if there is any way I can be of service.”

                “Thank you,” Derek says feebly. 

                “No offense, but I’m not doing it for you, even if, in some way, you are my nephew,” Peter says blithely.  “I’m doing it for my best friend, my Derek.”

**********               

                Cora, what are they doing here?

                “Hey Derek,” Cora starts meekly.  “So I know you’re probably wondering what my friends are doing with me… Well, you see, we realized we forgot some things in our project, so would it be ok if we got a ride with you back to the house?”

                She has got to be kidding.

                “All of you?” Derek asks, afraid of the answer.

                “Yeah,” she replies, half-heartedly. 

                With a glare that says they will be discussing this later, Derek replies “fine, get in.”

                “Thanks Derek!” Scott cheers, sliding in behind Cora. 

                “Um, yeah, thanks, Derek, is it?” Stiles says, taking a seat behind Derek.

                The only thing I can smell is him.  We are never going to make it home in one piece.

                Whiteknuckles on the wheel, Derek pulls out, hoping he can control himself until they get home.

Chapter Text

 

                Derek nearly hits a little, old lady, three squirrels and a fire hydrant, but they get home in one piece.

                “That was awesome!” Stiles and Scott shout in unison from the backseat.

                “Yeah, it was really great,” Cora says, shooting Derek a death glare.

                Stiles. Stiles. Stiiiles. Stiles Stiles Stiles Stiles Stiles Stiles Stiles Stiles Stiles Stiles.

                “No. Problem,” Derek grunts through gritted teeth, before nearly wrenching the car door from its hinges as he storms out of the Camaro.

                When I was around my Stiles I never felt this strong.  Why do I feel like this here?  Is it because I can’t have him, can’t touch him?  I’m not even able to talk to him, he doesn’t know me.  When I get home, I’m gonna grab Stiles, carry him to my room and-

                Derek is shaken from his thoughts by the boys clapping him on the back.

                “Derek, dude!” Stiles yells in his ear.  “You are like my new favorite guy!”

                Derek can’t help but feel a bit of perverse glee at Stiles’ statement.  He works hard to quash the humongous smile threatening to mar his face.

                “Didn’t I tell you he was awesome!” Scott says, then realizing Stiles’ comment “hey!  I’m supposed to be your favorite bro!”

                “My real, absolute favorite is actually Danny,” Stiles shrieks as he runs off.

                “Not cool bro!” Scott screams as he chases after his friend.  “I’m totally offended right now!”

                “Whoa boy, cool your engines,” Cora says, smacking Derek in the back of the head.  “I thought you were going to jump him in the car.”

                “I almost did,” Derek admits sheepishly.  “I had no idea how strongly attracted to Stiles I was, until I came here and couldn’t hold him, kiss him, be with him.”

                “Well Odie, keep it in your tight, tight pants until you get home,” she laughs, running after the boys.

********** 

                “Hello Cora,” Peter says, irritation dripping from his voice.

                “Hey uncle Peter…” Cora responds hesitantly.

                “So Cora,” Peter begins, scanning the faces of their guests.  “Why did you not tell me about my favorite… sweater, yes, my sweater.  Why didn’t you tell me it had been, switched, at the dry cleaners.”

                “I don’t kn- ooooohh,” she replies, understanding in her eyes.  “Well, they asked me not to say anything, because they, um, they thought you would be upset.  And I thought, well maybe I could get it back before anyone noticed…”

                “Well I did notice,” Peter states.  “I trust you’ll be more forthcoming in the future?  Especially when it concerns my favorite sweater?”

                “Yes uncle Peter, sorry,” Cora apologizes.

                Peter turns and leaves, heading upstairs.  The boys fidget uncomfortably until they think he is gone before turning to Cora.

                “Boy, your uncle sure is serious about his sweaters,” Scott says, quirking an eyebrow.

                “Maybe you should have just told him about the sweater…?” Stiles adds.

                “Well I really didn’t want to get anyone in trouble and… wait, why am I telling you bozos,” she retorts, throwing a cushion at them.

                “The children are fighting with pillows,” Peter deadpans, walking in on Derek with his face stuffed in a pillow.  “Derek! No!  We’ll find you a way home don’t kill yourself!”

                “What?!” Derek replies, sitting up.  “I was trying to block out Stiles’ smell, not off myself.”

                “Oh… Oh thank God,” Peter sighs, relieved.  “I was worried you had already given up hope.”

                “So, should I have more hope?  Did you talk to Deaton?” Derek questions.

                “Yes, I did,” Peter responds.  “He asked me to look into our lorebooks and whatever else we have in the library.  That’s where I’m going to head now.”

                “Would you mind if I came with?” Derek asks.  “I wasn;t really old enough to appreciate the library before it burned down.”

                “Sure, come along if you like,” Peter says, his joviality returning. 

                Howls of laughter sing through the house, winding their way down to Derek and Peter in the library. 

                “Are they actually doing any work up there?” Derek asks, bewildered.

                “Knowing those knuckleheads, probably not,” Peter replies laughing.  “What I’d like to know is why we soundproofed the bedrooms, but neglected to follow through with the library?”

                “That would seem to be the next logical step,” Derek agrees, flipping through the pages of his book.

                “Of course, when has Talia ever been logical?” Peter chuckles to himself.

                “I’m not sure, considering, well, you know,” Derek says, becoming upset.

                “I’m sorry, I wasn’t thinking,” Peter says, admonishing himself. 

                “No, it’s fine, don’t worry,” Derek replies.

                Slowly Derek and Peter become more absorbed in their work, gradually tuning out the the raucous sounds from upstairs.  Back in the living room, the teen’s hijinks are still going, with no other adults there to reign them in.

                “You know what we could really use?” Scott wonders aloud.  “Some badass celtic art or something.”

                “Celtic you say?” Cora asks, remembering some books she had seen while Studying with Peter.  “I think we have some old books in our library with Irish and Celtic art in them.”

                “That would be amazing!” Scott yells, as Stiles hits him with a pillow.

                “How about you two love birds get us a snack, and I’ll go grab a book, it’s in the basement right?” Stiles says, standing up to leave.

                “Yeah, just down the hall and in the basement.  My uncle can probably help you find something,” Cora says as her and Scott trek towards the kitchen for sustenance.

                Stiles walks towards the basement, careful not to trip over anything.  His mother had been keen on him not injuring himself as much if she was going to continue to allow him to play Lacrosse.  Just as he gets to the stairs and prepares to yell for Peter, he stops, hearing a heated discussion.

                “Deaton tells me you have information that could help them, why won’t you tell him?” Peter hisses.

                “I told him I’m thinking about it, I just don’t want to ruin his life.  Not again,” Derek replies, sadness in his tone.

                “Him?  Who is it?  Someone from the family?” Peter asks, trying to put together the pieces in his mind.

                “No it’s, it’s someone I know from there, and Cora knows here,” Derek says, calming down.

                “So it’s someone who might even be willing to help?  A friend of the pack?” Peter asks, getting irritated again.

                “I’ll tell you, but I’m not bringing him into it.  At least not unless it’s the only way,’ Derek finally concedes.  “It's Stiles, Cora’s friend.”

                Stiles nearly falls over, realizing their whole conversation had been about him.  He wasn’t sure what they were talking about, or what they could possibly need him for, but it both intrigued and scared him. 

                “This Stiles, he is the one that cast the spell?”  Peter questions.  “The one who sent you to this world from your own, the young Emissary?”

                “Yes, in my world, he’s a very powerful druid-in-training.  He messed up the spell and now Deaton wants to use this Stiles as a nexus to focus their energy to send me back,” Derek admits.  “I just don’t want that to happen though.  I’ve seen what it did to my Stiles.  His life here is much better off, not being involved in the supernatural.  I care about him, any version of him, too much to take away his innocence like that.”

                “Don’t you think it’s my decision who takes my innocence?” Stiles says, then blushes.  “I mean, not that kind of innocence, you know.  I, that wasn't what I meant.  Ugh.    Like, innocence as in my decision what I do?”

                Derek and Peter stare at Stiles, shocked that their conversation had distracted them enough that neither had heard Stiles' footsteps or heartbeat.  Or even his smell which Derek had been so enamored of.

                Shit.  Werewolf senses fail me again.  Is there no world where I can protect Stiles?

Chapter Text

                 “What did you hear?” Derek asks, hoping it wasn’t much.

                “A bunch of mumbo-jumbo about another version of me, who cast a spell and how Scott’s boss wants to use me as some kind of magical conduit,” Stiles replies, his forthrightness overtaking his confusion and fear.

                There is no way out of this now.  How am I so bad at hiding things?  I barely even talk, yet everyone seems to find out anything I’m trying to hide.

                “So what  is this?  What are you two talking about really?” Stiles asks, more determined now.

                “I think we should tell him, if it helps you get back, it’s worth the risk,” Peter chimes in, looking expectantly at Derek.

                “You couldn’t, you couldn’t just forget this and pretend we’re just weird or crazy could you?” Derek questions.

                “I have a knack for reading people, and whatever you two were talking about, you both believed it,” Stiles responds calmly.

                “Fine, fine,” Derek concedes, knowing Stiles won’t give in.  “I’m not the Derek from this world.  I come from a different reality.  There, I know you and you’re training to be an emissary, a type of Druid.”

                “Like the guys in the cloaks who made Stonehenge?” Stiles asks.

                “Not exactly…” Peter laughs, before adding “but close enough.”

                “So anyway, you can do simple magic.  You, or the other Stiles, did a spell that was supposed to transport us all to safety, but instead, it sent me here, to an alternate reality.  And now Deaton, who is also an Emissary, is trying to get me home, but he thinks the only way is to have you, a version of the person who cast the spell, there.  Are you getting any of this?”

                “I can do magic?” is all Stiles says in response.

                “Umm. Well, my version of you can, he’s been trained by Deaton though so…” Derek answers, only slightly surprised by Stiles’ question.

                “I knew it! I told Scott I would have gotten a Hogwarts letter if it was real! Suck it, I’m not a muggle like you Scott!” Stiles yells as he pumps his fist in the air.  “Whooo!!  Stiles the badass wizard, I like the sound of that.”

                “In my world Scott is a true Alpha werewolf though…” Derek adds, not wanting to offend Stiles, but also wanting to put things in perspective.

                “Just had to ruin my fun didn’t y-“ Stiles stops, his brain obviously trying to comprehend what Derek just said.  “SCOTT’S A WEREWOLF?!”

                At this incredibly loud outburst, the wolves hear a commotion upstairs.

                “Scott and Cora are coming now, great,” Peter says, rolling his eyes.

                “Now there’s the Peter I know,” Derek replies, smirking.

                Scott barely has time to walk through the library door before Stiles is bounding up the stairs towards him.

                “Scott!  Derek is from an alternate reality!  And I’m a freakin’ wizard there! Isn’t that awesome!  And you’re some kind of werewolf too!” Stiles shrieks dragging Scott by the arm down to where Peter and Derek are standing.

                “Stiles, calm down.  Did you forget to take your Adderall today… or take way too much of it?” Scott questions, concern showing on his face.

                “Derek!” Cora whines, sliding down the bannister and marching towards him.  “You already told Peter and now you tell Stiles too?!  I thought this was our secret Odie!”

                “It’s Stiles, he always has his nose in everything!” Derek retorts, quickly letting himself get drawn into this family squabble.

                “I found out on my own my darling niece,” Peter corrects, moving to look at her.  “Besides, Deaton says we need Stiles, so him finding out accidentally was a blessing I’d say.  He certainly doesn’t seem to be upset by it.”

                “But he doesn’t know anything about the supernatural!” Derek protests, now completely ignoring the teen boys.  “I don’t want him to put himself in danger because of me!  He doesn’t even know we’re werewolves for pete’s sake!”

                “You’re werewolves?!” Stiles and Scott chorus, their mouths falling open.

                “Odie!” Cora screams, smacking Derek in the arm.

                “I can’t help it!  You know how I am around Stiles!” Derek barks back, before realizing again what he’d said.

                “What do you mean how you are around me?” Stiles inquires, a small smile parting his lips.

                “I-I-I, I mean, uhh…” Derek splutters.

                “Derek is secretly dating your alternate reality version Stiles,” Cora explains, fed up with Derek’s inability to properly articulate anything.

                “Wow dude, you scored big in that world,” Scott says, clapping his buddy on the back.

                “How?” Stiles asks, stunned by the least shocking of the announcements he’s heard this afternoon.

                “That’s really not a conversation for right now,” Derek answers, rubbing his neck.

                “No, what we need to know right now is if Stiles is up to helping us with Deaton,” Peter adds, trying to get the conversation back on topic.

                “My boss Deaton?” Scott questions, confused.

                “Yeah, Deaton’s some kind of druid wizard like me, but more powerful I guess?” Stiles asks for confirmation.

                “Yes, and no,” Derek replies.  “Deaton is older and trained.  But because of you sacrificing yourself to the Nemeton with Scott and Allison, you have a magical connection to it, allowing you to possibly draw from its power.  Or so Deaton and I believe.”

                “When you say sacrificing…?” Stiles asks, waiting for them to assure him of what they mean.

                “You killed yourselves,” Derek says plainly.  “But only for like, half a day.  Then you came back and we found your parents and stopped the Darach.”

                “Darach?  Found our parents?  Where were they?” now it was Scott’s turn to ask questions.

                “The Darach was a dark druid and she stole each of your remaining parents to use as a sacrifice to gain enough power to kill these other werewolves,” Derek runs through quickly.

                “Our remaining parents?” Stiles says, looking at Scott.  “What happened to our other parents?”

                This knocks the wind out of Derek.  He hadn’t expected to have to have this conversation with Stiles.  And Scott seemed dismayed as well.

                “Well, in my world, Stiles, your mother died when you were younger.  And Scott, I’m not sure about your situation here, but my Scott’s father left them so I meant his mother was abducted,” Derek answers somberly.

                “My mom… died?” Stiles asks, grabbing a chair to steady himself.

                “I knew my parents had fights sometimes, but there they got divorced?” Scott says to himself.

                “Yes, I’m sorry.  I didn’t think I’d have to tell you that.  Your universe is so happy and vibrant.  Just be glad you still have parents there.  Cora and Peter here are the only Hales left besides me in my universe.  The others all died in a fire,” Derek states, before sinking into a chair exhausted from all the revelations and emotions.

                “This is a lot to process,” Stiles says, before sitting down in a chair himself.

                “Cora, can I, do you mind if I just pretend this all didn’t happen?  I’m kind of, not feeling well,” Scott implores, turning to Cora.

                “I will be glad to not discuss the fact that I’m a werewolf with you before our first date,” Cora jokes, to the amusement of no one.

                “So Stiles, will you help Derek here get back to his world?” Peter repeats.

                “Yeah, yeah I’ll help him,” Stiles answers after a few moments.  “But I have to tell my parents first.  If something happens to me during the spell, ro ritual or whatever, I want them to know it was to help someone get home.  Not just me doing something stupid again and hurting myself.” 

                And Stiles starts to cry.  Not much, just a few stray tears streaming down his cheek.  But it’s enough.  Derek sweeps him up into a hug before anyone can stop him.  He refrains from doing what he truly wants, to kiss the sadness from him.  So he just holds him close, letting the sobs reverberate through his chest from Stiles’ mouth. 

                After they all calm down, they make plans to meet at Stiles’ parent’s house the next evening.

                I should be happy that Stiles has agreed to help, provided his parents will allow it, but I’m not.  All I can think of is all the things my Stiles has been through and how I don’t want that for this Stiles.  Especially since none of his friends, except this Cora, are even supernatural and therefore able to protect him.  Hopefully allwill go well.  Then again, when has that ever been the case for me?

Chapter Text

                 “Stupid, jockstrap gaywolf,” Stiles mutters as he sits down next to Danny to continue his research.

                “What?” Danny laughs, taking a break from his own search to listen to what sounds like an interesting story.

                “Nothing, just this other Derek is a complete asshole.  A sexy, teasing, little asshole,” Stiles replies.

                “So… all those times you asked if gay guys found you attractive, you actually did have an ulterior motive?” Danny questions, smirking, highlighting his dimples.

                “I, what, no!?” Stiles splutters.  “I mean, maybe, just a little.  I didn’t really know for sure until Derek though.  And even then, I thought I hated him for the longest time, and then… well I guess things changed at some point.”

                “Well I don’t think you’ll have any problem with your friends or family.  I mean, everyone accepts me and Ethan,” Danny states.  “Although I’m sure you’re going to get teased pretty bad about going out with Derek.  Wait, does Lydia know yet?”

                “No!  And she does not need to know, nor does anyone else need to know.  Yet…” Stiles responds, grabbing the phone Danny had been slipping out of his pocket surreptitiously.  “We haven’t even, like, defined what we are yet, you know?  I mean, we make out and grope around and all that when we’re alone.  But Derek has never said anything about us dating, or being anything more than some weird hook up without the sex.”

                “Derek doesn’t seem the type for casual relationships,” Danny admits.  “Then again, from what you guys have told me, his past experience with relationships has been pretty terrible, so I could see why he’d hesitate to call whatever it is you two have a relationship.”

                “That is true.  I just wish we would have gotten to talk about it before he left,” Stiles shares, biting at his fingernail.  “Or at least gotten to have sex.”

                “Did someone mention sex?” Derek says, waltzing in through the front door carrying an armful of shopping bags.

                Stiles and Danny both stare in awe at Derek’s ensemble.  He’s wearing a mesh tank top, incredibly tight, skinny jeans and what appears to be a neon green jockstrap poking out.

                “Uwughl,” Stiles mumbles, incoherent.

                “I, I think you need to wipe up your drool Stiles,” Danny mutters, blindly waving his hand in front of Stiles as his eyes are fixated on Derek.

                Stiles continues to slur and fumble words, making no sense as Derek drops his bags in the other room.  Danny attempts to focus back on his computer, shaking the awful thoughts out of his head.  Unfortunately for both boys Derek emerges from his room wearing even less clothes.  His bare chest glimmers in the afternoon sun shining through the loft windows. 

                Now I have two members in my captive audience.  Hmmm?  How can I rile them up even more?   Haha, I know.

                Crossing to the icebox, Derek grabs a bottle of water and cracks it open.  Lifting the bottle to his lips, he takes the entire top portion in his mouth, then slowly gulps down the liquid.  Afterwords, he brings it above his head and douses himself in the remaining contents of the bottle.  Noticing they’re both entranced once again, Derek sidles over to them, taking a seat right between them on the couch. 

                “Now boys, you’ve worked hard all day haven’t you?” Derek asks, placing a hand on each of their shoulders.  When neither answers, he moves his hand to their chins, like before, and pulls, making them nod their heads.  They both give an affirmitive grunt, neither capable of speech at the moment.  “Good, that’s what I thought.  You know… we could have some fun while I’m here.  Would you both like that?”

                “Please…” the boys both moan, the words slipping past their lips before their brains can stop it.

                At that moment, Ethan’s phone rings in Stiles’ hand, shaking them both from their lust-enduced haze.

                “Huh?  What?” Danny says, then grabs for his phone.

                “I told you!” Stiles shouts, pointing to Derek while looking pleadingly at Danny.

                “I, wow, yeah.  You were right.  Uh, that was Ethan, I better go,” Danny starts, then whipping his head around as his boyfriend walks in.

                “Hey Danny!” Ethan begins, then notices a soaking wet Derek.  “What the eff is he doing again?!”

                “Oh me?  I was just discussing the progress the boys were making on my travel arrangements,” Derek drawls, standing up to walk towards the couple.

                “Look Derek, I don’t like you messing around with Danny.  And honestly, it’s kinda creepy how you’re toying with Stiles too, he doesn’t deserve that,” Ethan barks.

                “I didn’t mean to toy, not really,” Derek says, inching closer.  “But I was a young wolf like you once.  I remember what it’s like, hormones raging, senses strung out.  How that one smell, it can drown out everything else, make your brain misfire.  You see, I’m not the one at fault here, Stiles and your friend here, well they just reek of that odor.  And once it’s on you, it’s hard to ignore it."

                Derek is right in front of Ethan now.  Slowly, very slowly, he closes in to Ethan’s ear and whispers, his breath a caressing touch.

                “All I asked was if they wanted to have a little fun,” Derek sighs, his breath hot and heady.

                When he pulls back, he notices Ethan’s eyes are now blown, laden with the same, euphoric expression as the other two.

                “Yeah,” Ethan exhales airily. 

                Derek rakes one hand up Ethan’s shirt, while the other slides up Danny’s arm.  When he reaches their necks, he grabs the lovers and turn them towards each other.  Both are completely lost at this point, shaking and burning and pounce on each other, lips and bodies entwined.  They fall to the floor with a loud thud.  Stiles, watching silently all the while, finally comes back to earth at the jarring sound.

                “Wait!” he yells, exasperated.  “Stop screwing with our heads!”

                Stiles stomps towards the wolves, tearing them apart, just barely.

                “Look at yourselves!  Look at what he’s doing!” Stiles chastises.

                “Shit!” Ethan shouts, standing up.  “I can’t believe I let him get me too!”

                “It’s ok, I’m sorry,” Danny says, pulling his boyfriend closer.

                Oh well, I guess playtime’s over.  It was fun while it lasted.

                “Took you long enough,” Derek laughs, strolling towards the couch and laying down.

                “What?” Stiles asks, irritated.

                “I wanted to see how long it would take one of you to break through your hormonal teenage dreams and see what I was doing,” Derek chides.  “I hoped it would be the wolves, but I guess the other me chose well.”

                “So this was all some stupid test?!” Ethan shrieks, his eyes flaring crimson.

                “No, it was mostly just for fun,” Derek admits.  “But then, when the boyfriend showed up, I thought I’d see how far I could take it before one of you came to your senses.  And boys, I can still smell it, so you two should probably leave before you get caught again.”

                At this, Danny and Ethan both blush almost as bright as Ethan’s eyes before running out of the loft.

                “Great!  Now I’ve lost my research partner,” Stiles gripes, snatching his computer off the table.

                “No time anyway, we’re all meant to be going to Deaton’s in a bit,” Derek says, as if it wasn’t remotely important.

                “What?!  And you wasted our time with that stunt, instead of telling us to get ready?” Stiles asks, offended.

                “Maybe, but wasn’t it fun?  You all looked like you were having fun,” Derek smirks, before juping up and padding towards his room.  “I’ll change and then we can head out.”

                “Whatever, stupid, jockstrap gaywolf,” Stiles murmurs.

                “Who told you my stripper name from college?” Derek asks from the other room.

                “Hnng!” Stiles vocalizes, before heading out to the jeep, simultaneously incredibly aroused and pissed off.  It’s not lost on him how often this is how his Derek makes him feel.  “I really need to look at why these are the things that do this to me.”

**********               

                “So did you find anything out yet?” Scott asks Deaton.

                “I’m afraid not much, although I was able to contact Marin,” Deaton replies.

                “What did she say?” Stiles interrupts, walking in late with Derek trailing behind him.

                Ethan and Danny both let out a low growl at Derek’s arrival, but no one comments on it.

                “She says she’ll head back, immediately, but she hasn’t heard of anything like this before,” Deaton answers.  “We’ve already discussed possibilities, and we think we may be able to replicate the spell through trial and error, but it will be dangerous.”

                “How dangerous?” Scott inquires.  “We’ll do whatever it takes to get Derek back.”

                “The danger won’t be to you Scott, it’ll be to Stiles,” Deaton admits sadly.

                “I’ll be in danger?” Stiles responds meekly.

                “We’ll have to do and redo the spell multiple times until we find the right combination, that will require you drawing on a tremendous amount of energy from both yourself and the Nemeton,” Deaton says.

                “Can it kill me?” Stiles asks, his voice breaking.

                “I hope not, but we aren’t sure.  Most likely it will simply leave you incredibly drained and tired,” comes Deaton’s answer.  “And there’s one more thing.”

                “What else?” Scott asks, when his friend remains silent.

                “Your connection to the Nemeton, it might become stronger,” Deaton adds.  “Where before it was just a darkness around your heart, a sliver of the true Nemeton, it could become more.  And if you aren’t careful, it could consume you.”

                No one speaks for a while.  The silence is pregnant.  Cora speaks first.

                “Stiles, I love Derek and I want him back more than anyone, but there must be another way,” Cora pleads.

                “We can’t do something that could kill Stiles, or permanently scar him,” Isaac chimes in.

                “There has to be another way!” Scott demands of the doctor.

                “I’ll do it,” Stiles says, calmly, detached.

                “You would do that, for me?  Risk your life to get me home?” Derek asks, stunned.

                “No… But I’d do it for him.  I’d do anything for him,” Stiles answers with conviction.

Chapter Text

                 The sunset paints everything a deep red, a reminder for Derek of all the bloodshed he’s seen.  Each step up to the Stilinski home pulls at his courage and conviction.  When he reaches the top step, he stops, taking one last deep breath before continuing.

                I’m about to ruin this Stiles’ life.  Well, maybe that’s a tad overdramatic as Peter would say.  This world is much better than mine, being involved with the supernatural here may not hurt him as much.  At least, I certainly hope not.

                “You ready?” Peter asks, noticing Derek’s stalling.

                “Yeah, I think I am,” Derek replies, stepping towards the door.

                They knock, and after a few moments, are greeted by Stiles. 

                “Hey…” Stiles says, not looking very pleased.  “Come on in, I’ll go get my parents.”

                “Stiles,” Derek says, catching him by the arm.  “You don’t have to do this, we can leave right now, find another way.”

                “No, I want to do it.  I do.  I just worry about my family, you know?” Stiles says, hesitating.  “You said in your world, my mother died.  I can’t imagine either me or my father getting over that.  The same is true here, I don’t think my parents could get over losing me.  Alas, I am a stupidly brave and kind child, and I want to help you get home.  And if nothing else, at least I’d die in a spectacularly magical way…”

                With a glimmer of sadness in his eye, Stiles turns and heads for the kitchen to gather his parents.  The Hales take a seat on the far side of the room.

                “What is so important dear?” Claudia says, entering the room.  When she sees the two men, her eyes widen, but she says nothing else.

                “Now kid, what is it this time,” the sheriff says, walking in with Stiles.

                “Mom, dad, you should sit down for this,” Stiles says, indicating the couch.

                Claudia takes a seat demurely, quite unlike her behavior earlier.  The sherrif however remains standing.

                “What is going on Stiles?  Who are they?” he says, pointing to the Hales.

               “Dad, well, these are the Hales,” Stiles begins.  “The blond one is Peter and the rugged one is Derek.”

               “Ok…” Stiles dad says, finally taking a seat next to his wife.

               “Long story short, Derek here is from an alternate universe, just like our own, but darker and grittier I guess,” Stiles continues, building up steam.  “In his universe, we’re friends, and when we were all running away from… something, the other me cast some kind of spell to teleport them away.  Unfortunately, instead of sending them to safety, it brought Derek here, and sent the Derek from our world, this world, to their universe.”

               “What are you talking about boy?  Magic?” the sheriff says, getting annoyed with his son’s antics.

               “No, it’s for real!  In their world I’m some kind of wizard… What was the word, like a druid, yeah an Emissary,” Stiles adds.  Derek notices that while the sheriff has no reaction to Stiles’ rambling, Claudia’s heart skips a beat, just once, faintly, when she hears Stiles say Emissary.

               Why would she react like that?  It seems odd.  Well, Stiles wasn’t that shocked by Werewolves, so maybe it’s just a family thing…

               “Stiles, I think you took too much Adderall again…” his father says sadly.

               “No I didn’t!  Fine, Derek, can you show them?” Stiles asks, figuring it’s the only way to make his parents understand.

               Derek stands up and walks a little closer.  Not close enough to seem any more menacing, but close enough they’ll be able to easily discern the change.  His eyes flare blue and his fur and fangs appear.  Sheriff Stilinski jumps out of his seat, his eyes surely searching for his discarded gun holster. 

               He smells of fear.  But her, she smells of nothing, maybe a faint trace of shock, but no fear at all.  The Stilinski’s are a strange bunch, no matter the universe.

               Derek shifts back, hoping it will calm the elder Stilinski.

               “I’m sorry to shock you like this, but it was the best way to make you believe Stiles,” Derek offers in a calm tone.

               “S-St-Stiles, what is this?!” the sheriff asks, angry, scared and confused.

               “Dad, it’s like I said, Derek and Peter come from a family of werewolves.  They need my help to get Derek back to his universe and get their Derek back.  Since their version of me did the spell, the other Emissaries believe that I can help to focus the spiritual nexus or something,” Stiles explains.

               “The doctor is here,” Peter says, walking to the door to allow Deaton in.

               “Hello, have you tol-“ Deaton begins, before looking to the woman on the couch.  “Claudia?”

               “Hello Alan, it’s been quite a while,” Claudia says, standing up from the couch.  Almost quicker than Derek can see, Claudia twirls her hands in a deft motion, one long mastered and now second nature.  Derek and Peter fly back against the wall, pinioned by an unseen force.

               “I can’t believe you would send wolves to get me Alan, and bringing my son into it?  Have you no shame?” Claudia says, rounding on the doctor.

               “Claudia, I had no idea it was you!” Deaton pleads, surprised.  “Stiles never mentioned his mother and the Hales didn’t tell me your name.  Not that I would have guessed it on my own.  You’ve obviously been concealing yourself.”

               At this, Deaton flicks his hands, fingers whirling in odd motions.  When he finishes, large runes light up around the room, including one on both of the Stilinski men.

               “Whoa!  What is this?” Stiles exclaims, looking down at the blue glow emanating from the runic symbol emblazoned on his chest.

               “Just a simple concealing rune dear, nothing to worry about,” Claudia says nonchalantly, never taking her eyes off Deaton.

               “Will someone please tell me what on earth is happening?!” Claudia’s husband screams.  “Claudia!”

               “I’m sorry dear, I’d hoped my protections would erase us, leave no trace of my former life.  Somehow these wolves and my old friend Alan have found me though,” Claudia says, stepping back towards her family.  “Now, I, Claudia Czarownica-Stilinski, will deal with my past.”

               “Wait!” Derek barks, still restrained save his mouth.  “He’s telling the truth, we have no idea who you are!  In my world you aren’t even alive, how were we to know you were a druid?!  I just want to go home, and your son might be my only way to do so.”

               “Hmm…” Claudia says, staring at Derek, contemplating his words.  “If you are telling the truth, then our family will be more than willing to help, but if not, you will be very sorry.”

               “My mom is a badass sorceress,” Stiles whispers, audible only to the wolves.

               “They are Claudia, we stopped looking for you long ago, you were never in trouble, we had only wanted your help,” Deaton adds.  “It’s unbelievable the level of power you can still wield, even after all these years.”

               “When one has little else to do, one can stack the deck in their favor, especially in their own house,” Claudia retorts.  With a wave of her hands, the runes darken, dissipating, and the force holding Derek and Peter falters, dropping them unceremoniously to the ground.

               “I-I am so confused,” the sheriff states blankly.

               “I know dear, I’m so terribly sorry.  I will explain it all later, but for now, could you go fetch us some tea from the kitchen, dear?” Claudia replies to her husband.

               “S-sure, sure,” Stiles’ father mumbles, walking off in a daze.

               “Now boys, what were you saying about alternate realities?” Claudia asks, sitting down.  “Now that, that sounds very interesting.”

Chapter Text

                 The smell of tea brewing fills the air as everyone sits down again, the tension slowly fading.

                “I’m sorry about before, but you must admit; two werewolves and a druid showing up to your house when you’ve spent years hiding from the supernatural is quite upsetting,” Claudia states, calming down.

                “We’re very sorry to have disturbed you Mrs. Stilinski,” Derek says, unsure how to continue.  “We had only wanted to get your permission for Stiles to help, Deaton and the other Emissaries think he may be the key to unlocking the spell to send me back.”

                “Yes.  Since Derek’s Stiles was the one that cast the original spell, we’re hoping that having this Stiles will act as a sort of tether, binding the two worlds together long enough for us transfer their Derek back and allow our Derek to come home,” Deaton adds.

                “Well, as long as Stiles is in no danger, I suppose we can allow it,” Claudia says, then, hearing a commotion in the kitchen adds, “I assume we’ll need to ask his father as well though.”

                “Now just wait one minute!” the elder Stilinski fumes, marching into the room.  His shirt is soaked and he holds his hand gingerly, as if he had spilled boiling water all over it.  “I am not letting my son perform some possibly life-threatening magic spell for some, God I can’t believe I’m gonna say this, werewolves that I don’t even know.”

                “Dear, I will be there to supervise, if anything goes wrong I will protect our son at all costs,” Claudia reassures him, then looks toward Deaton.  “I will of course be there for this, right Alan?  Now that you know who I am?”

                “Yes, of course Claudia,” Deaton replies.  “As long as you don’t mind the other Emissaries finding out about you.”

                “I suppose that’s out of the question now,” Claudia breathes, seemingly unconcerned.  “Might as well have them all know now.

                “Please,” sheriff Stilinski says, on the verge of tears as he bends down to kneel by his wife.  “Can you please explain to me what is happening?  I’ve got a pain in my chest and a blaring headache and I’m so confused.”

                “You should be careful about that,  My Stiles told me your family has a history of heart problems, that’s why Stiles is always forcing you to eat healthy.” Derek says.

                “Why would Stiles control what I eat?” the sheriff asks.

                “Oh… well, as I said before, in my world, Claudia isn’t around anymore,” Derek replies sheepishly.  “So you know, Stiles kind of takes care of you sir, does the cooking and cleaning, since you’re always at work.

                Oh no, why did I tell him that?  It looks like that nearly killed him.  And I’m the one telling him to mind his heart.  If I go and give him a heart attack neither Stiles will ever forgive me.

                “I… what?  In your world Claudia… died?” Mr. Stilinski asks, shocked.

                “Um… yeah.  She had a disease.  Stiles won’t talk about it much, even with me.  But it happened when he was pretty young,” Derek responds.

                “Why would our son, or that version of our son, be more likely to talk with you?” Claudia questions.

                Why am I such an idiot?

                “Ooh, this should be good,” Peter says, smiling.

                “Uh, well… In my world, Stiles and I, we’re sorta, uhm, together?” Derek answers.  “I mean, we haven’t done anything you know, serious, but we’re, I think, kind of dating.”

                Mr and Mrs. Stilinski give him dual stern looks.

                “Well, we’ll be having a talk about you dating an alternate reality version of our son later, especially since I am not in that reality to watch out for him.  For now though, there are more important matters to discuss,” Claudia replies, turning to her husband.  “I need to explain some things, don’t I?”

                “Yes, yes you do dear,” sheriff Stilinski answers.

                “Ok, where to begin?  I was born into a family of druids, not unlike Alan here,” Claudia starts.  “I was trained since I was a child to be an Emissary, which is sort of a mediator between the werewolves and the hunters.  Most druids learn some simple magic, but even at a young age I showed a high aptitude, as had many of the other druids in my family.  When I was older I met Alan and some of the other Emissaries, but eventually I realized I wanted a family, a quiet life.  I knew I could never do that as an Emissary, so I disappeared myself.  I tried to erase every instance of myself from the lore and records, but those who had met me knew and I couldn’t get rid of that.  Then I moved here, met you and the rest is history.  Oh, except for the protection ruins.  I hoped those would hide us from the Emissaries and wolves that I knew were in Beacon Hills.”

                “Now that we’ve caught everyone up, can we move on to more pressing concerns?  Like bringing my nephew back from an alternate reality?” Peter chimes in.

                “Speak for yourself, it’s not every day you find out your mother is the Celtic Dumbledore,” Stiles scoffs.

                “Oh honey, no.  I’m much stronger than him,” Claudia says, her face barely hiding a smile.

                Stiles goes into a kind of reverently catatonic state, mumbling about his mother and Harry Potter at that point.

                “So, do you know what spell was used?  What went wrong with it?” Claudia inquires.

                “We aren’t entirely sure.  We do know it was a teleportation spell, and one that the other me taught Stiles, so that helps limit our search somewhat,” Deaton responds.

                “Ok then, Stiles, after dinner you’ll go straight to bed, we’re going to have an early morning,” Claudia states, rounding on Stiles.

                “What?  Why” Stiles asks.

                “You don’t think I’m sending you off to do this without any training do you?” his mother replies, indignant.  “You’ll have to have a crash course in druid training.”

                “Wait… I get to learn how to be a druid?  From my own mom?” Stiles questions, incredulous and excited.

                “Claudia, I doubt he’ll have time to learn much and it’ll only delay our plans,” Deaton pleads.

                “Please, he has my blood in his veins.  He’ll take to it in no time with the proper instruction,” Claudia huffs.  “Now unless you plan on staying for dinner, we really must get back to our night.”

                “Yeah, that’s fine.  Thank you Mrs. Stilinski, sheriff,” Derek answers gratefully.

                “Please, call me Claudia,” Mrs. Stilinski says before ushering them out the door.

                The door closes right as they hear Stiles screaming something about a “badass training montage.”

                “Well that was certainly surprising,” Deaton exclaims.  “I can’t believe the other me is getting to train Claudia’s son.  What an honor.”

                “I’ll make sure to tell him that, provided I ever get back,” Derek snorts.

                “Oh, you’ll get back alright, I’ll make sure of it,” Peter promises.

Chapter Text

                 “Stiles mom is some badass druid?” Scott asks, in awe.

                “Yeah, that’s the way it seems,” Derek replies, shaking his head and smiling despite himself.

                Derek, Cora, Peter and Scott are all sitting in the library, having a meeting about Derek’s impending departure from their reality.

                “I hate that my Stiles didn’t get to have his mom, she seems like a really great woman,” Derek admits, leaning on his armrest.

                “Aww, I know Odie.  But at least he has you and the other Scott and the rest of them,” Cora says, patting Derek’s arms before giving him a half-hug.

                “Yeah, he does have quite a few people there for him…” Derek says, going somber.

                “Did we say something to upset you?” Scott questions, looking from Peter to Cora.

                “No, it’s just,” Derek begins, not sure how to express what he’s thinking.  “It just kind of hit me that soon, barring any misfires, I’ll be home.  As in, back to where my entire family is dead.  And I know it’s selfish and I’m not saying I want to stay here or anything.  But I’m going to miss having my family, the pack, around.  I spent so many years trying to get over their deaths and now… now i’ll be losing them all over again.  Even Peter, who’s still alive in my world, is still his old normal self here.”

                “But you have me, and Stiles and the others, right?” Scott asked, genuinely worried for Derek.

                “That’s true.  And I miss my Stiles more than I thought I ever would.  Still, it’s going to be difficult,” Derek answers honestly.  “I’ve missed Erik’s terrible jokes, and the way Dora eggs him on and always smells of lavender.  How Peter and Mara were the perfect pair.  Laura’s digs on me, even when they’re mean, she always loved me.  Dad’s cooking in the morning and at night.  And Mom.  I really really missed Mom.  I always felt like I knew who I was when she was there, sometimes I think her death was the worst on me.  She kept me sane, kept me safe, kept me whole.  Without her I was adrift, Laura barely held us together, but she did her best and managed to make a semblance of a life for us before our Peter, no offense, messed it all up again.  And we don’t even need to discuss the fact that all the members of my old pack were either killed or switched to Scott’s pack, traitor.”

                “Wait, I have my own pack?” Scott asks, his eyes lighting up.

                “Yes, remember?  You’re the True Alpha, one in every hundred or so years, stole my only remaining pack member, Isaac,” Derek says, as if this Scott should just know the other Scott’s life story.

                “So… if I’m this true Alpha there…” Scott begins, turning to Cora and Derek.  “Does that mean that if Cora bites me I’ll be a True Alpha here?”

                “First off, Cora is biting no one, even though she couldn’t turn you anyway,” Peter answers, his voice stern but kind.  “Only an Alpha, such as my sister, can turn someone.  Also, the bite doesn’t always take, and when it doesn’t, you die.  Even though we know a version of you survived it, that doesn’t mean you would.”

                “To be fair, if I was still an Alpha, I would turn you Scott, if you wanted it that is.  I’ve learned my lesson about getting shaky consent from teens when it comes to this.  The bite should be a gift,” Derek adds.  “Actually, if I was an Alpha I’d give you the bite and then hopefully you’d eventually grow into your powers like my Scott, and you could turn Erica and Boyd here.  They were fantastic werewolves before they were killed.  And the Bite really helped Erica get over her epilepsy, as it did you get over asthma.”

                “And Scott would be pack until he became an Alpha,” Cora continues, now caught on their thought train.  “Which would mean we could spend more time together.  Oooh and I could teach you about being a wolf!  That would be so much fun, wouldn’t it?!”

                “I think, as Alpha of the Hale pack, I still make the decisions about who we give the Bite to,” comes a voice from the stairs.  “Especially given the treaty we have with the Hunters.”

                Mom…

                “Darling sister, it seems you have found us out,” Peter says coolly, meeting his sister’s red-tinted eyes.

                “Yes, it seems I have.  Although from how little any of you bothered to be quiet or choose a room that was soundproofed, it doesn’t seem you were too worried about that,” Talia states flatly.

                “So how much did you hear?” Cora inquires.

                “Enough to know that something very interesting is going on, since my son is talking about having his own pack, my daughter is divulging pack secrets to her boyfriend and my dear brother is sitting idly by, indulging them,” Talia almost growls, her anger slowly rising.

                “Look, we can explain,” Derek begins.

                “Oh, you better,” Talia commands, taking a seat.

 **********

                Talia sits, surrounded by the others, having heard the most amazing story of her life.

                “So it’s all true?  You really aren’t my little Der-bear?” she asks, tears welling in her eyes.

                “No Mom, I mean, Talia, I mean, shit I don’t know,” Derek fumbles over his words.

                “Watch your language son,” Talia snaps, on instinct.

                “Sorry,” Derek apologizes.  “This is really weird for me too, so don’t feel too awkward.  Is it ok if I stay here, just until the Emissaries get me back to my world?”

                “Of course!” his mother exclaims, coming to wrap him in her arms.  “I’m so sorry for all that has happened to you, my dear.  No matter what, you are still my son, even if you’re only an alternate universe version of the son I know.  You’re still my son.  And I love you, just as much as your version of me loved you.  Ok?  Remember that always;   your family loved you, loves you, will always love you.  No matter where we are, in this universe or another.”

                Derek falls apart at this, sinking to his knees and openly weeping, much like he had on his first day.

                This is it.  This is what I’ve wanted for so long and finally I have it.  It feels like, it feels like closure.  Like maybe I can move on from all this, all the terrible things in my life.  And maybe finally.  Finally, I could be happy.  Could let myself be happy.  Because maybe I do deserve it, even with all that I’ve done.

               "Thank you!  Thank you Mom!," Derek cries out, a mixture of jubilation and melancholy flooding his voice.  "I love you, I love you so much.  Thank you."

Chapter Text

            “Can we stop?  Are we done yet?” Stiles pants, about to keel over.

           The aspiring Emissary is drenched in sweat, a long day of druidic training nearly finished.

           “We just have a few more spells to practice and we’ll be done,” Claudia replies, walking around to the far end of their backyard and signaling her son to begin anew.

           Who knew being a freakin’ wizard would be so physically exhausting?  How did Hermione become so good without having like, humongous wand-thickened biceps?

           Stiles practices the movements, going through them until Claudia says he’s close enough.  What stops him though is the arrival of Lydia and his boyfriend, Danny.

           “Danny!” Stiles wheezes excitedly, nearly collapsing from exhaustion as Danny catches him.

           “What have you been doing?” Danny asks, slightly worried.

           “I don’t think I’ve ever seen Stilinski sweat.  Even in lacrosse games,” Lydia remarks, her usual cool demeanor present.  “Of course, he rarely ever gets off the bench, so that could be biasing my observations.”

           “Har. Har,” Stiles gasps out, now slung around Danny’s shoulders to stand up.

           “Daniel, we were just doing some light exercise,” Claudia states, looking him over, as if for the first time.  “You know, I don’t think we’ve ever really sat down and talked, have we?”

           “Um, I guess not Mrs. Stilinski?” Danny answers, still upset about the state his boyfriend is in.  “If it’s about Stiles, I assure you we haven’t gotten into any, uhm, funny business.  I don’t want the sheriff arresting me.  Again.”

           “No, that wasn’t what I meant,” Claudia says, now closing in on Danny.  “Daniel, have you been trained as a Kahuna?

           “Yeah… But how do you know that?” Danny responds, feeling weirder than he normally does around his boyfriend’s family.  “I mean, my parents got really into it after I got arrested in middle school.  They even made us go through a traditional Hoʻoponopono ceremony at the time.  It was part of my promise to do better to train as one, even though the family doesn’t really even believe in it.  Seriously though, I’ve never told Stiles any of that, so how do you know?”

           “Why, I can feel it radiating off you Daniel.  Very faintly of course, but there nonetheless,” Claudia says dismissively before turning to Stiles.  “Have your boyfriend take off his shirt and place your hand on his chest Stiles.”

           “Ok, I can’t be the only one who finds this all a tad emotionally disturbing, right?” Lydia asks, staring from Stiles to his mother.

           “Ugh, just do it Danny, I’m sure my mom has some very good reason for this.  Right mom?” Stiles asks.

           Seriously, she better have a good reason for risking my first real relationship with a guy.  And how did she know that stuff about Danny?

           “Okay, place your hand right here,” Claudia instructs, arranging Stiles’ hand.  “And then repeat after me.”

           Stiles does as he’s told, and nothing happens at first.  Then a low hum seems to break out in his body, vibrating him from the inside.

           What in the world is this?  Why is mom performing a spell on me and Danny?

           The tingling continues, until it builds in stiles’ chest.  From there it coagulates, moving into his arm, traveling down to his fingertips and his palm.

           “Stiles, why does it feel like your hand and my chest are vibrating?  What, what is this spreading through me, what are you doing!?” Danny shrieks, panicking and trying to pull away but realizing he can’t.

           “Mom, what did you have me do?!” Stiles yells, frantic.

           “He needed a jumpstart, so I had you transfer some of your spark to him, now his powers have been awakened,” she states calmly, looking over at Lydia.

           “Jumpstart?  What are you talking about?” Danny whines, power suddenly coursing through him, an unfamiliar feeling.  “Whoa, what’s, what’s going on?”

           “I told you, I sensed you had been trained as a Kahuna.  I’m training Stiles now to be a druid, so I thought it only natural he should reignite his boyfriend’s spark.  Wholly supernatural couples are such a great thing, especially across mixed disciplines,” Claudia informs with a laugh.  “Does Lydia know yet?  No, from her shocked expression I’d imagine she doesn’t.  This is quite a sleepy town for a Banshee though, not much to make her realize her gift yet.  Alas, we don’t have time to go through that now.  But you’re a smart girl Lydia, I’m sure you can figure it out.  For now, Stiles is going to be very drained from my training and helping Danny, so if you two could come back later that would be great.  Bye!”

           With that, Claudia ushers the two out of the yard, ignoring their confused protests.

           My boyfriend is a Kahuna and Lydia is a Banshee?  This other Derek has caused so much weird shit to happen.  Wait… my boyfriend’s magic now too, isn’t that what mom just told me?  That’s actually pretty cool now that I think about it.  Although I don’t think Lydia was happy with the implications being a Banshee might bring.  I’ll have to do more research on that though.  Maybe once my arms don’t feel like they’re going to fall off.

 **********

           “Well I have to say I knew there was something off about Derek,” Erik says, turning to Dora.

           “Yeah, I’m sure you did,” Dora says, giving him a condescending pat on the head.

           “So you don’t all hate me for deceiving you?” Derek asks, terrified of their reaction.

           “Derek, er, I mean, uh,” Erik starts, flustered.

           “I’ve been calling him Odie, as in O and D for other Derek,” Cora chimes in helpfully.

           “Makes about as much sense as anything else,” Dora laughs.

           “Anyway, Odie, why would we be mad?  I think it’s safe to say if any of us were in your situation we’d indulge in a family we’d been mourning for years as well,” Erik adds.

           “Son, and I will call you son because that’s what you are, we love you and it’s fine.  None of us blame you, although I do wish you’d have trusted us enough to tell us the truth from the beginning,” James says, in full supportive father mode.

           “I didn’t even think it was real at first, like I said.  I figured I’d been killed, or drugged or finally went crazy,” Derek admits, suppressing a nervous laugh.

           “Well, I for one think we should spend the next couple days, while the Emissaries prepare the ritual, as a family.  I think Derek could use some more memories to hold on to, don’t you all?” James says, earning approving nods from Talia and the other family members.

           “Family hug?” Cora suggests.

           The Hales join together, engulfing Derek in their loving embrace.

           What did I ever do right to deserve this second chance?  Thank you Stiles, thank you so much for being a terrible screw up with magic.

           “How about we go out for ice cream?” Laura polls the group, receiving enthusiastic support for her proposal.  “You still like Chocolate Chip Derek?”

           “I think I’ll have peanut butter cup if they have it,” Derek answers, a smile stretching his lips, revealing for once not his fangs, but his toothy grin.

Chapter Text

                 The McCall house is fairly quiet considering four teenage boys are currently lounging in the living room.  Stiles is hanging upside down off the couch, his head dangling next to Isaac who is sitting cross-legged on the floor.  Ethan and Danny are snuggled up in the loveseat, giggling and totally blissed out.

                “Ugh, could you two be any more annoying?” Stiles asks, faking retching noises.

                The couple ignores him, lost in their own world.

                “Forget it Stiles, they’re in full couple mode,” Isaac gestures, pointing to their complete disengagement from Stiles and himself.  “And I think they might be post-coital if you know what I mean.”

                “Eww! Gross,” Stiles exclaims, rolling over and sitting normally on the couch.  “I’m so glad I don’t have werewolf senses!  These are the kinds of things I don’t need to know about my friends.”

                “What don’t you need to know about your friends?” Scott inquires, walking through the door.  “Aiden should be in shortly, I asked him to help me carry the groceries.”

                “Putting your betas, or Alphas, Alpha Betas?  To work I see,” Stiles remarks, giving Scott a shit-eating grin.

                “Aiden offered, and anyway, what didn’t you want to know?” Scott asks, then he turns to the couple nestled in the loveseat.  “Oh man, you two reek of sex… And of Derek?”

                This jostles them out of their reverie, both nervously fidgeting.

                “What, what do you mean, why would we smell like Derek?” Danny questions, his voice quavering.

                “I don’t know, but you do.  Did you have sex in his loft?” Scott asks innocently.

                “No, we don’t really need to talk about this right?  Alpha’s aren’t entitled to know the sex lives of their betas,” Ethan says, hoping to shoot down any more discussion.

                “Other Alphas maybe not, but we have that whole pain transference thing, remember?” Aiden snaps, entering through the door, his arms laden with groceries.  He walks towards his twin jerking his head toward the kitchen.

                “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Ethan replies, coyly.

                “Oh come off it, you know what I mean.  I though you said with you and Danny you were the, you know?  So I didn’t have to worry about that,” Aiden interrogates, blushing.

                “Oh, oooohhhhh,” Stiles laughs, falling off the couch and rolling around.

                “What, I don’t get it?” Scott asks, looking like a sad, confused puppy.

                “Well, what I think Aiden means i-“ Isaac begins, before being cut off.

                “No!  Shut up, this is between me and my brother,” Aiden fumes, turning back to Ethan.

                “Ok, you know what, screw it!  I’m just gonna’ tell them,” Ethan barks, turning to Danny for reassurance.

                “Fine, if it’ll stop all the weirdness,” Danny resigns.

                “We might have, kinda’ had sex with the other Derek.  It wasn’t planned or anything, like he was teasing us the other day and we got pretty, um, worked up.  So when we saw him earlier we kinda’ did the same back to him, as vengeance right?” Ethan says, his mouth forming a lascivious grin with a mysterious twinkle in his eye.  “Then things may have, escalated.  He’s just so… experienced.”

                “He taught us a lot, like tons,” Danny adds, absentmindedly.  “I didn’t know some of the things two wolves could do when they were going at it.  Or three.”

                “Is that, is that when you had that really weird look on your face and kept squirming around in your seat?” Scott asks Aiden, aghast.

                “Yes!” Aiden grumbles, turning a brighter red than his eyes.

                “This is the best thing ever!” Stiles snorts, him and Isaac laughing their heads off.

                “Look, it’s not like it hasn’t happened before,” Ethan states plainly.  “Besides Aiden, I felt whatever that was you and Lydia were doing that one time.”

                Aiden’s face somehow goes even brighter scarlet than before, and he is visibly shaking with anger and embarrassment.

                “That was one time!” he shouts, nearly wolfing out.  “And she begged me to do it and since I already almost knew what it was like I agreed, but we didn’t do it again!”

                “Huh?” Scott shrugs, now completely lost.

                Isaac continues laughing, but Stiles has stopped, not knowing what’s going on.

                “Oh my God!” Isaac laughs, his hands clasping his heaving chest.  “I remember when Allison mentioned that once.  It was the most awkward five minutes of my life.”

                “Did you do it?” Aiden asks, calming down a little.

                “Dude, no!” Isaac rebuts.  “Although I mean, I guess if she had been serious about it I would have considered it, but no, we did not do that.”

                “I’m going to leave and pretend I didn’t hear any of this,” Scott says, motioning towards the kitchen.  “I don’t need to know the sex lives of my pack, and if I ever forget and ask again, just punch me in the head.

                “Can do Senor Alpha,” Stiles replies, saluting his friend as he leaves the room.

                Aiden sits down with Isaac, discussing their very forward and aggressive girlfriends, while Danny and Ethan return to their love bubble.  Noting his isolation, Stiles makes a beeline for the kitchen to talk with Scott while the others are occupied.

                “Hey Scott,” Stiles begins.

                “Hey bro,” Scott answers, putting some cereal in the cabinet while he speaks.

                “So, we haven’t really gotten to talk about, well, a lot lately,” Stiles starts, nerves rolling off him.

                “Yeah, I guess we haven’t,” Scott replies, looking back at his best friend.

                “So you know we would have told you right?  Once we knew for ourselves what was actually going on?” Stiles asks, rubbing his hand over his face awkwardly.

                “Yeah, not that I didn’t see the signs already any way,” Scott chuckles, pointing to his nose and ears.

                “No fair!” Stiles hisses.  “You can’t use your super werewolf senses to spy on me!”

                “I wasn’t spying, but when your scent suddenly was mixed with Derek’s all the time, it wasn’t hard ot figure out what was going on.  I can’t just turn off my nose Stiles,” Scott jokes, seeing the worry in his friend’s eyes.

                “Ok, fine,” Stiles allows, not wanting to argue.  “So then, you understand why I’m doing this?  Why I’m willing to risk it?”

                “I can’t say I fully understand it in your case,” Scott admits, stepping forward.  “But then I think about if it had been Allison in this situation, or even you.  And heck, I’d do whatever it takes.  I think we all know that after what we did for our parents.”

                Scott has a sad smile on his face, the happy memory of saving their parents tinged with regret for what they’d had to do in order to ensure their safety.

                “I’m glad you understand then,” Stiles sighs, letting out a breathe he hadn’t known he was holding.  “So, you wanna play a game or something?  I’m sure we can kick the twins and Danny out.”

                “Sure, but later we have to meet up with Deaton,” Scott reminds Stiles.  “He says you need some more training before we go through with this."

                “Yeah, yeah, whatever,” Stiles shoos away the comment, confident in his skills.

                “Hey, I sent a guy to another reality, I think I can handle some training.

 **********

                “Oh dear lord I was so wrong!” Stiles grunts, his body straining with every muscle.

                “About what?” Derek sneers, patting Stiles on the back.

                “None of your business, gaywolf,” Stiles pants, seeing the signal from Deaton and relaxing.

                “That’s enough for today I think Stiles,” Deaton says, a small, proud smile playing on his lips.

                Stiles collapses on the floor, mumbling about how happy he is to be through with his druidic torture.

                This Stiles is really determined to get the other Derek back.  I wonder if Miguel, or anyone else I’ve ever dated, would work this hard to find me?  Doubt it.  But I’m sure Peter and Cora and the rest of my family will be working diligently to find me.

                “So Alan, how are things looking?” Derek inquires.

                “Well Marin should be here tomorrow or the next day, and then we can begin the final phase of our plans,” Deaton answers thoughtfully.  “Stiles here just needs another day or so of quick training to try to get the best possible control over the power when he uses it.”

                “I’m glad,” Derek states.  “Not just for me to go home, but for all that you are all doing.  Even if it is just to help your Derek and not me.”

                “We’d be more apt to help you,” Stles begins, stopping to take a breath.  “If you weren’t such a teasing jerk all the time.  I mean really, did you have to fool around with Danny and Ethan?”

                “I didn’t think they’d mention that,” Derek admits sheepishly.  “No matter, it doesn’t bother me.  I wanted to have some fun, release some stress.  They obliged, no big deal.”

                “Whatever,” Stiles mutters, rolling over and standing up.

                I hope I haven’t screwed anything up here.  Well, beyond the screwing I meant to do haha.  Now that I’ve gotten to know them, they do seem like nice kids.  Guess we’ll just have to wait and see if Stiles is up to it.  I certainly hope so; I’m starting to really miss my family.  I think when I get back I want to go get some ice cream with them…

Chapter Text

                 A pounding wakes Stiles from his deeply needed slumber.

                “Whu-?” he moans groggily.

                The banging continues, but this time interspersed by yells of his name.  When he hears it, a jolt courses through him, as if he himself was calling his own name.  A part of him separated from the whole, demanding to be reunified.

                “Get your ass out here now Stiles!” Danny shrieks, terrified and bellicose.  “I couldn’t sleep all night and weird things are happening!”

                Stiles rushes to the door, getting there only moments before his parents.  When he yanks it open, his boyfriend falls forward into the house, sobbing.

                “Please, please!” he groans.  “Take it away!  Whatever you did to me take it back.  I can hear the spirit of the trees in my backyard.  My dead uncle came to me in my sleep.  Make it stop!”

                Oh God, what have I done?  What has she done?

                Stiles whirls in anger towards his mother, but finds she’s gone.  He glances back to see she is at Danny’s side, pulling him towards the couch.  Once he’s set down, she leans over him and speaks.

                “There there Daniel, you’ll be alright,” she coos, rubbing his forehead.  “I’m sorry I did that, I thought your training would kick in and focus you, allow it to all come naturally.  I was wrong.  Stiles, come here.”

                When she beckons, he answers, moving towards his mother and his boyfriend.

                “What can I do?” Stiles asks, near cowering at the horrified expression on Danny’s face.

                “I need you to sit with him for a moment,” Claudia commands, compelling them to switch places.  “Your connection should anchor him, bring him back from the edge.  You’ll know what to do. I may have been wrong about him, but not about you.  I’m going to make something to calm his nerves.”

                “Danny!  Danny, it’s me, Stiles.  I’m here, I’m sorry for whatever I did, I am,” Stiles pleads, carding his hand through Danny’s hair.  He tenses for a moment before relaxing, Stiles’ touch swathing him in warmth and comfort.  Calming his agitated nerves.

                “St-Stiles?” Danny ekes out, looking on the verge of collapse.

                “Yeah, I’m right here,” Stiles replies, grabbing a hold of his hand.

                “I was so scared,” Danny admits, tears forming in his eyes.  “I felt all this power surging through me, like my whole body was a live wire.  Then, then I could feel it.”

                “Feel what?” Stiles asks, rubbing circles into Danny’s hand.

                “Everything,” Danny breathes, his chest shuddering.  “It was like I was connected to everything at once, the trees, the sky, spirits of my ancestors… and you.  I could feel you from my house, knew exactly where you were.”

                “I may have underestimated the bond you two share,” Claudia remarks, re-entering the room, flanked by the sheriff who is carrying a tray with cups.  “I figured the spark would invigorate you, allow your natural talents to manifest.  However, it seems Stiles’ and your connection was too strong.  Instead he infused you with part of his spark permanently, part of his soul.”

                “I gave him part of my soul?!” Stiles blurts.

                “Just a tiny portion, enough to permanently bond you both,” she responds, not a trace of emotion in her voice.  “That amplified his powers beyond what I expected, until they flared out of control.  His description is one I’ve heard before.  An acquaintance who had went too deep, used a spell to absorb power and amplify it.  Daniel should be fine though, your connection will ground him.  After he gets used to the influx of power, maybe a day or so, he’ll be fine.”

                “A… day?  That’s all?” Danny asks, his breathing ragged and sharp.

                “I would think so.  You can stay here until then,” Claudia states, pouring some liquid in a cup.  “Now drink this, both of you.  It’ll help.

                “No…” Danny whines, trying feebly to push the cup away.  “Stiles, don’t make me.  Not after what happened last time.”

                “He’s not drinking that.  We’re not drinking that,” Stiles demands, his voice strong and powerful.

                “If he doesn’t, his powers might go out of control again; if he drinks this, then he’ll be calm enough to control it,” she insists, pushing the cup into Stiles’ hands.

                “Are you, are you sure?  He has to do it, for his own good?” Stiles questions, even though he knows he will do what she says, if only to help Danny.

                With a curt nod of approval, she stands up and leads her husband out of the room.  Stiles nervously holds the cup up, bringing it level with Danny’s face.

                “Come on, drink up,” he begs.

                “No, don’t make me, please,” Danny pleads, barely parting his lips to speak.

                “You have to, it’s for your own good, my mom said so,” Stiles replies.

                “She’s the one who did this, I don’t trust it,” Danny mutters, still keeping his mouth closed to prevent the concoction from entering his mouth.

                “Then don’t trust her, trust me,” Stiles tries, his last idea.

                Danny blinks at him through bleary eyes.  Eventually, he wordlessly acquiesces, sipping the drink.  Stiles takes a drink as well, a show of solidarity.  After a few moments, Danny's body stops shaking and he lay still. 

                “Danny.  Danny!  Are you ok!?” Stiles almost yells, his voice cracking.

                With a small smile, Danny turns to him, opening his eyes.

                “Hey.  I’m ok,” he whispers.

                “Thank goodness,” Stiles sighs.  “I was worried about you. Do you feel better?”

                “Yeah, I do actually,” Danny says, pulling himself up into a sitting position.  “In fact, I feel really good.  Really, really good.  Oh wow, headrush.”

                “Is it starting again?  Do you need me to get my mom again?” Stiles asks.

                “No, I’ve got it under control now.  Whatever was in that cup stilled me, grounded the livewire I guess,” Danny responds, his color improving.  He stretches, then pulls Stiles in for a hug.

                “I’m so glad you’re ok,” Stiles sobs, nuzzling into Danny’s shoulder.

                At this, Danny pulls back, raising his head to see Stiles’.  He pushes forward, his lips meeting Stiles in first a chaste kiss, then a stronger one. 

                “Whoa,” Danny pants after the second kiss.  He dives in again, meeting a pliant and very willing recipient.

                As their lips meet again and again, energy builds between them.  Danny’s livewire becomes a closed circuit, channeling the energy back and forth between the boys.  It races to and fro, surging with the vigor of creation and the force of destruction.  When both are brimming with unbridled vitality, bodies aching and sparking with it, they feel the magic collide.  Burning away first the world, then themselves, ‘til only their souls remain.  Locked together in an endless sea of nothingness, the world is remade around them, their bodies, once destroyed, now re-created; stronger, magical, whole.  When naught is amiss, all things set right, they part.  The corporeal link is severed, yet the mystical is eternal.  Gasping for air the boys stair at each other, eyes filled with countless worlds, the infinite expanse of possibility.

                “That was just a freaking kiss,” Stiles gasps, his body aching for air it doesn’t really need.  Reacting out of instinct rather than necessity.

                “If, if that was a kiss.  Oh God, what would anything else be?” Danny asks, both mortified and lustful.

                “Boys!” Claudia’s voice rings from somewhere in the house.

                “Yeah,” Stiles shouts, his voice still trembling from his experience.

                “Ah, I see young Daniel is feeling better,” she says, broad smile parting her lips.  “You look out of breath, is something the matter?”

                “No.  No, we just,” Stiles falters, not sure how much he wants to reveal.  “We kissed, and there was this, this power.”

                “Yes, yes.  I remember hearing about that.  Like I said, two magic users together is a powerful thing, not just to others, but to themselves,” Claudia replies, beaming.  “I didn’t think you’d be up to romance after what happened, but I guess I was mistaken.  I wouldn’t go much further than that until you’ve both mastered you powers.  And I’m not saying that just because your father will run Daniel out of the house.  Your bodies, your minds, aren’t ready for that much energy sharing, even if the spark flowing between you is mostly from Stiles.  As you both grow, your shared spark will remain, but Daniel will grow in power as well, his own power.  I sense you’ll soon be equals, if not in control, at least in raw energy.”

                “So he’s like, a horcrux right?  Part of my soul in him.  Does that mean I can’t die if he’s alive?” Stiles deadpans.

                “Not exactly,” Claudia answers.  “Right now he’s drawing off your power, while he grows into his own.  When he no longer needs to do that, the remaining spark will simply be a magical tie between you two.  Many magical couples, when they are older, choose to bind themselves like that, share their power.  It is the deepest of bonds.”

                “So we’re like, married?” Danny inquires, not seeming mad or happy about the development, just interested.

                “No, of course not.  Right?” Stiles responds.

                “Neither yes or no.  For many, that is indeed what it means, but since it was an accident that it even happened, there is no obligation for either of you.  Of course, in the future if you both so wished, I could instruct you how to repeat the process, for Danny to reciprocate the ritual,” Claudia explains, looking fondly upon them.

                A loud crashing noise comes from the kitchen, Stiles’ father having heard this news and not taking it as well as Claudia.

                “Let’s just, um, stay boyfriends for now, ok?” Danny suggests, slinging an arm around Stiles’ shoulder.  The current begins again, but not as intense, a low hum of potential energy vibrating in the background.

                “You still want to be with me, even after what we did?  Making you magical?” Stiles asks, bewildered.

                “Of course, I love you, you know that.  Besides, I have you, er, I mean, a piece of your soul, inside me.  Can’t get much closer than that,” Danny smiles, letting out a little laugh.

                “I love you too,” Stiles answers, engulfing his boyfriend in a loving embrace.

Chapter Text

                 Derek is… well he isn’t sure what he is.  He sits there contemplating the last few days.

                Now that everyone knows, they’ve been showering me with affection.  I feel like when I was a kid and I was sick.  How the pack gathered around you and just loved you until you were well.  Except this time I understand why they are doing it.  They know I need this, these memories.  Because, for the second time in my life, I’m going to lose almost my entire family.

                Derek breaks from his reverie, eyes focusing back to their usual level.  He looks about, taking in the grandeur of the Hale mansion.  He knows he won’t be seeing it much longer, so he soaks all of it in while he can.

                “Hey Odie!” Cora calls, rocketing out of the house and tackling him to the ground in a hug.  “So the Emissaries called, they’re ready for you.  At least, I think they are.”

                “Oh, great!” Derek answers, forcing a smile he knows will never fool the girl.

                “Listen Odie,” Cora begins, clearly wanting to get something off her chest.  “If you… if you wanted to stay here, with us.  The family would let you.  We discussed it.”

                “I, what?” Derek splutters, shocked by her words.  “What do you mean stay here?  You have to get your Derek back and, you know, no matter how much I like it here, I don’t belong.”

                “Odie… Derek,” Cora begins, her smile faltering.  “You are family, and that means you always belong here.  We would get my brother back.  That doesn’t mean you’d have to leave or anything.  We even talked about how we could just say you were his long lost twin.  Peter thought of that actually.”

                “I… I don’t know what to say,” Derek admitted, his defenses crumbling.   “You don’t know how touched I am.  Well, I guess you probably do, but you know what I mean.  It’s tempting.  Oh God, you can’t even imagine how tempting.  But I need to get home.  Even if it’s not as great as here, that’s my world.  My Cora is still there.  And my Stiles.  I miss Stiles, and even if it was possible I wouldn’t want the Stiles here, so don’t start.”

                “Fine!” Cora shouts, stamping her foot in defiance.   “I’ll respect your decision.  For now.”

                The young girl ran off, hair flouncing around her shoulders.  Derek was left in the front yard, once again staring at his family home.

                I better get to Deaton’s.  They’ll be expecting me.

 **********

                “Thank you for showing up,” Julia drawls, barely even glancing at Derek as he walks in.

                “Oh, how could I resist an opportunity to see your smiling face?” Derek asks in faux friendliness.  “Deaton, I’m here now, so what are we doing?  Is it ready?”

                “Not quite, but we’re going to start our first tests,” Deaton answers, carrying an armful of ingredients to a table.  “At least, once the others show up.”

                “Others?  What others?” Marin inquires, intrigue replacing her usual icy annoyance.  “You didn’t tell us there would be anyone else coming?  Did you invite outside Emmisaries?”

                “Ahh yes, I meant to warn you, but I ran into an old fri-“ Deaton starts, before being cut off by all the wards in the building shattering.

                “What was that?!” Julia shrieks, her eyes filled with anger and fear.

                “Why hello, Alan,” Claudia says, waltzing into the room.  Stiles and Danny trail behind her, looking thoroughly embarrassed and awed at the same time.

                “Claudia!?” Marin nearly spits in disgust and surprise.  “I thought you were dead?”

                “Yes, well it would seem my alternate universe counterpart is, but I, fortunately for you all, am not,” Claudia quips, side-eyeing the other Emissaries.  “This is my son, Stiles.  He will be assisting us.  Oh, and this is Daniel, his boyfriend.  Daniel is a Kahuna and may also help us if it is required.”

                “A child can’t perform these rituals Claudia!” Marin growls. 

                “Ah, you underestimate my progeny, see?” Claudia responds, motioning to Stiles.

                The boy flushes in embarrassment before beginning a practiced motion with his hands. When he finishes, the wards in the office glow, their multifarious hues lighting up the sterile room.

                “See?  A natural, just like I was,” Claudia brags, taking her son by the shoulders and moving towards Dr. Deaton.  Danny follows along behind, like a lost puppy.

                Stiles has really gotten powerful in just these last few days.  His mother must be incredibly skilled.  She’s managed to train him better in under a week than Deaton trained my Stiles in months.  I wish Stiles could train here, with this version of his mother, and become just as strong.  Then maybe I wouldn’t worry so much about him and the life he leads.   

                “So, what do I need to do?  Give some blood for the ritual or…” Derek trailed off, having not been briefed on what was expected of him.

                “There’ll be time for that soon, right now we need to get all the Emissaries accustomed to each other and attuned,” Deaton replied, handing Claudia a stack of old tomes.

                “That shouldn’t take too long…” Claudia said drolly.

                Marin and Julia make mumbled protests, but they soon relent.  The Emissaries begin to do their work; chanting, reading, concocting potions and mixing ingredients.

********** 

                “Derek…?” Laura asks, uncertainty causing a lilt in her voice.  “Is that you?”

                “Nope, still Odie,” Cora explains, looking dejected.

                “So the ritual didn’t work?” Talia questions, her nonchalant demeanor barely hiding her concern.

                “We didn’t even get to the ritual,” Derek answers.  “Claudia and Julia got into an argument over the difference between using wolfsbane and ginseng root for the spell.  After that, things kind of stalled out.”

                “But they will still be able to do the spell eventually, correct?” James surmises.

                “Yes, possibly tomorrow at the earliest,” Derek assures them.  “By the way, was I the only one freaked out that Stiles was so powerful already?  Peter, Cora?”

                “He has an excellent teacher, so it isn’t that surprising,” Peter replies, as if it was the most obvious thing.  “What really piqued my interest was that his boyfriend was a Kahuna.  I haven’t ever met one in person.”

                “So the boy will be an incredibly powerful druid?  Hmm…” Talia trails off, lost in though for a moment.

                “Isn’t that the boy you’re dating in your world?” James asks Derek, seeing the wheels in his wife’s head spinning.

                “Um, yeah.  Why?” Derek wonders.

                “No reason, just curious,” James responds, but Derek knows it’s a lie. 

                I don’t know why they’d be interested in that.  They have Deaton, I can’t see them needing another Emmisary.

                “So, Mom,” Cora begins innocently.  “Have you considered my ques-“

                “No!” Talia cuts her off, eyes faintly red.  “We are not risking the treaty just so you can turn your boyfriend!”

                “But he already knows!  And in Odie’s world he’s a werewolf so it’d take,” Cora whines, giving her best puppy dog eyes.

                “I don’t care if he’s a banshee in their world my answer is no,” Talia barks.

                “Lydia is the Banshee, actually,” Derek pipes in, not wanting to get in between them, just trying to clarify.  “And not only is Scott a wolf, but he’s a True Alpha, so, I don’t know, maybe it would be a good idea?”

                “I will continue to consider it,” Talia begrudgingly states, “If you both stop pestering me about it.”

                Cora and Derek both agree, shaking their heads in tandem.  This receives a slight chuckle from the rest of the family.

                “So can Scott come to the ceremony tomorrow?  Everyone else is gonna’ be there,” Cora inquires.

                “Cora!” Talia yells, sending her daughter scurrying off to her room.

Chapter Text

                “Stop doing that!” Claudia screeches, marching towards Julia.

                “Oh shut it Claudia!” Julia spits back, getting in the other woman’s face.  “I was doing fine, it was your son who screwed up.”

                “How dare you!”

                “Please you’re just mad because you didn’t train him well eno-“

                “Actually it was my fault,” Deaton interrupts, placing a hand on both their shoulders and gently separating them.   “I did a strengthening motion instead of a stabilizing one, it broke the flow and let the energy run out.”

                “Let’s just do it again people, we don’t have all day,” Marin chimes in, desperately trying to stop the bickering and bring things back on track.

                Derek sits, amused, watching the squawks and shouts erupting from the druids as they continue to fail at getting the ritual to work.  His shoulders slide back against the chilled tile walls of the clinic, sending slight shivers down his spine.  Eyes scan nervously over the assembled faces, each one filled with anxious excitement or frustration.  All save for one that is.

                Peter looks as if he might fall asleep.  Is this really that mundane to him?  I mean, with how close he and his Derek are, I’d expect him to be more anxious.

                As if reading his mind, Peter breaks from the group, loping over to where Derek sits and sliding down the wall to sit next to him.  His brilliant golden eyes fall upon Derek, sizing him up and noticing his tension.

                “Don’t worry, they’re professionals,” Peter assures, before adding with a smile, “even if they don’t look like it right now.”  He shifts, bringing one knee to his chest and clasping his hand tight over it.  “We’re going to get you home Derek.  I have to say, I’m not going to be happy to see you go.  Especially knowing you won’t have us over there.  Cora told me you rejected our offer, but I want you to know it still stands.  I’d even offer you a job at my store, you could start a new life here…”

                Staring back into his uncle’s eyes, Derek pulls him in for an uncharacteristic, for him anyway, hug.

                “As I told Cora, thanks, but I need to get home,” Derek admits, pain and remorse evident in his tone.   “It would be so easy to give in, but I can’t.  I need to get back and help them fight off whatever it was that attacked us.  I need to see my Stiles, and my Cora.  Maybe even try to reconcile with my Peter, if I can.  I missed this though, being able to talk to you.  This time here has been so memorable for me, and all you’ve done for me, it really means a lot.”

                Before Peter can answer, Claudia yells for Danny to come and assist.  After a few moments of instruction, they begin again, the young men stationed together at one end of the ritual space.   They start over and this time, Danny seems to be pulling at something in front of Stiles, struggling to contain it.  Suddenly, the room is bathed in crackling green and yellow light. 

                “We’ve got it!  We’ve got the reality!”  Claudia shouts triumphantly.  “All we need to do is anchor it, Derek, hurry!”

                Werewolf instincts taking over, Derek swiftly takes his place in the middle, finger pricked by a claw and blood trickling down slowly.

                It’s really happening.  I’m going home.

                “Goodbye!  I love you all!” Derek screams over the booming noises of realities tearing themselves apart around them.

                “I can see into another reality!” Stiles yells out, a manic laugh breaking out within him.  “This is the coolest thing ever.”

                “We just need to tear a larger hole now.  This isn’t big enough to fit Derek yet,” Deaton screams, rallying their efforts.

                This is it.

                That’s when everything goes wrong.  Stiles’ concentration falters, causing Danny to lose his grasp on the energy.  The boys are blasted backwards, heads making loud cracks as they smash into the wall.

                “Stiles!!!” Claudia shrieks, leaving the circle and flinging the druids around the room with the energy backlash.

********** 

                When Derek awakes, he looks into his father’s eyes and realizes thay have failed, again.

                “Whu happ’n?” he mumbles, slowly regaining consciousness.

                “We’re not sure, Stiles hasn’t woken up yet to give an account,” James musters, unsure of what exactly transpired.

                Without even thinking Derek jumps up and runs to Stiles, momentarily forgetting that this is a different one than his own.

                “Is he ok?” Derek asks, crouching above the boy along with Claudia. 

                Danny, lying beside Stiles, stirs first.  Immediately he reaches out a hand to grasp for Stiles.

                “St-Stiles?” he moans, groggy.  As he comes to, he crawls closer, cradling his boyfriend in his arms.  Stiles eyes flutter open as Danny caresses his face and Danny’s smile engulfs his face.  “Oh God, I’m glad you’re ok babe!”

                “I’m sorry,” Stiles chokes out, tears streaming down his face.

                “What happened?” Claudia inquires, wringing her hands and staring intently at her son.  “Everything was going normal.”

                “I- I couldn’t, I, I’m so sorry,” Stiles bawls, fists burrowing into Danny’s shirt. 

                “It’s ok Stiles, just tell us what happened,” Deaton breaks in, having returned from where he had been thrown across the room.

                Stiles lay there, body slowly coiling more tightly into his boyfriend. Trembling, he tries to calm himself, head nuzzling into the crook of Danny’s neck.

                “I can’t do it, I’m sorry Derek,” Stiles finally whimpers, hiding his eyes.  “It was too much, I can’t handle the power, even with Danny anchoring me.  I can’t do it.  I felt like it was ripping a hole in me, each time I tried to make the hole bigger to get you through it just… it felt like I was dying.”

                A collective hush falls on the assembled druids and wolves before bickering and chatter start up, louder than ever.  After a few minutes of roiling chaos, Deaton stands up and silences the crowd.

                “Look, this isn’t the end, we just hit a snag,” he tries, wanting to appease and settle the group.

                “What do you mean brother?  We can’t do it without Stiles and the boy clearly can’t handle it,” Marin pronounces, smug and satisfied.

                “How dare-“ Claudia starts, only silenced by Deaton again hushing them.

                “There is one other way, but it’s incredibly unpredictable and relies strictly on timing…” Deaton relays to them, uncertainty coloring his voice.

                “And what is that?” Talia questions, a glimmer of hope in her eye.

                “We wait for a call from the other side…”

Chapter Text

          Stiles lounges on his bed, arms still sore from practice, but feeling confident.  He hears a knock at the door, hushed whispers and, finally, the door closing.  Boots clang loudly with each step, the Stilinski home needs some renovation on their stairs.  A knock sounds at the door, alerting Stiles to his father’s presence.  He shifts, propped up on his elbows, supine and ready for whatever he says. 

         Instead of saying anything, his father simply walks towards him, enveloping the young man in a fatherly hug.

         It’s time then.

 **********

         The air is brisk and chilly, whipping at Stiles’ exposed ears as they walk towards the door.  The cruiser sits idle, father and son marching towards the fateful event at the clinic.

         “You know, you don’t have to do this…” the sheriff says in a plaintive voice, stopping to squeeze Stiles’ shoulder.

         “I know dad, but I…” Stiles looks him in the eyes, willing his determination to be reflected there.

         “I know I just… I wanted you to know I wouldn’t think less of you if you changed your mind.”

         “You might not, but I would.”

         “Ugh, why did I raise you to be so honorable?” his father laughs weakly, patting him on the back as they cross the threshold.

         The clinic has more people in it than Stiles has ever seen.  Marin and Deaton are there, both looking at him warily as he enters.  Cora is with Derek, the Other Derek, standing by the wall.  She looks broody and nervous, he looks bored.  Scott and Isaac are there too, as is the rest of the pack.  Each of them waves or gives them a small smile as the Stilinski men enter.

         “You know, you don-“ Lydia says, coming up to him, concern marring her usually stoic face.

         “It’s fine Lydia, my dad already tried.  I’m doing this,” Stiles answers, firm but caring.

         “Whatever, but if you die, I’m totally having Jackson do your eulogy out of spite.”

         “I will haunt you as a ghost for eternity if you do.”

         “Then you better not die, Stiles,” she answers, seeming to choke back tears.

         She heads back over to Allison and Aiden, both attempting to calm her down.  Stiles moves towards Scott, who, as usual, is putting on a strong face for the pack… his pack.

********** 

         After everyone has mentally prepared themselves, Deaton and Marin come and get him.  Walking back, as if to the gallows, he shudders, wondering what he’ll have to do.  They take him back, asking him to lightly bathe, just his upper body, in a special mixture, followed by the drawing of ritual lines and markings all over him. 

         “If we had more Emmisaries, or stronger ones, this wouldn’t need to be done,” Deaton comments, finishing a runic symbol on Stiles’ back.

         “Well we don’t, so we’ll make do,” Marin replies, giving Stiles a weak smile.  He realizes that's a rare thing for her, and tries to return it.

 **********

         Once done they all head out to the forest, finding the Nemeton.  Stiles’ heart beats fast in his chest, knowing the consequences of his actions and hoping for the best.  Lydia and his father have already said goodbye, both now moved far away, presumably so he doesn’t have to see them crying and get distracted.  The others wish him luck as they walk to the edge of the clearing, one by one his friends leave him, until only he, the Emmisaries and Scott, remain.

         Scott, my best friend.

         Now that everyone is gone, Scott shifts.  Not into wolf mode, but back to himself, the scared young man, watching as his best friend is about to risk his life.  As he approaches, Stiles’ breath hitches, and, for the first time, he rethinks what he’s about to do.

         “Hey,” Scott begins, a solitary tear trailing down his cheek.

         “Hey,” Stiles responds, feeling his own eyes welling up.

         “Be careful.  I need my best friend… and my future Emmisary.”

         “I will be, thanks buddy.”

         “You’re my brother Stiles, I can’t lose you.  I love you man.”

         “Love you too bro,” Stiles answers, before hugging him goodbye. 

         This is it.  I hope you’re ok Derek, I’m coming.

         “Ok Stiles, we’re ready, just do as we say, alright?” Deaton confirms, patting him on the back.

         “Don’t screw this up, we likely only have one chance,” Marin tells him, receiving a disapproving look from Deaton.

         “I understand, don’t worry, I’ll give it my all,” Stiles assures, face determined and stoic.

         “Just remember, don’t lose control Stiles.  You have to control it, no matter how much energy seeps in, no matter what you think you feel or see, whether you think it isn’t going to work.  You have to know your limits,” Deaton reminds him, concern evident in his face.

         Stiles just nods, shrugging off his jacket, then his flannel, and, finally, his shirt.  The two druids move farther away, equidistant from Stiles, and begin chanting.  He faces away from his friends, choosing not to look back once more at their concerned faces.  The time comes, and he starts his own part, hands moving fluidly and with purpose, mouth uttering arcane languages and incantations.  He startles, but only for a moment, as one of the runes on his arm glows, followed by another.  Soon his body is alight with all manner of runic inscriptions and markings.

         Biting back the pain from the marks, all of which have begun to shine brighter, burning the skin where they reside, Stiles continues on, feeling the power begin welling up inside him.  A bright green line, glowing and snakelike, reaches out from Marin to Deaton, encircling him and completing their main part. 

         Now it’s all up to me.  Come on Stilinski, you can do this.

         The familiar tug is there, right above his heart, but this time, instead of ignoring it, he tugs back.  As he leeches power from the Nemeton, he feels the darkness in him, seeping in through the door he’s creating, but knows it’s the only way.  As deaton has instructed him, he shields his mind, his heart, from the darkness, couching it in the love he feels for his family, his friends, Derek.

         Derek…

         Reaching out, he calls through the multiverse, scouring for the right place, the one world out of balance, just like his own, and grasps at the link.

         “Derek!”

 &&&&&&&&&&

         Jostling, Derek awakes in a cold sweat, heart beating fast and strong, with one word ringing in his ears over and over.

         “Derek!” he hears clearly, Stiles’ voice familiar and sounding like home.

         “Stiles!” he calls out, jumping up and spinning around the room, looking for the voice.  No one is there though, yet still, he hears it.

         Talia barges in, panicked and happy at the same time. 

         “Derek!”  she screams, pulling him by the arm.  “Deaton is on the phone, it’s here! It’s time!”

         They rush through the house, alerting the family members and swarming towards the garage.  At this late hour, running will be slower than just driving to the clinic. 

         I hear you Stiles.  Just hold on, I’m coming.  I’m coming home to you Stiles.

Chapter Text

          “Deaton!” Derek shrieks, rushing through the doors to the clinic.

         “Right here,” he answers, exiting the exam room, trailed by Marin and Julia.

         “Are we ready to begin?” James asks, rubbing Derek’s back and looking from his wife, his Alpha, to the Emmisaries.

         “We’re just waiting on Claudia and her son… typical,” Julia spits, bile in her voice.

         “They said they were on their way,” Marin adds, looking at the wolves, who are all staring off, faces blank.

         “They’re here,” Talia states calmy, right as the blaring police siren becomes audible to the Emmisaries in the room.

         A few moments later, Claudia barges in, looking perfectly put together and rested even at this hour of the night.  Behind her drags a very groggy Stiles, blanket wrapped around his pajama clad frame, led by his father.  Finally, bringing up the rear, walks in Danny, tired, but much more alert than Stiles. 

         “Well, we’re here, let’s get started!” Claudia pronounces.

         They work quickly, arranging themselves in the proper alignments.  Peter has been dragged in to help as a tertiary anchor for Stiles, so that if they fail, they won’t all go blasting about the room again.  Everyone begins their work, and the green and yellow crackling starts again.

         “Stiles, you have to hold it steady, don’t try to open it, just hold whatever opens open, ok?” Claudia shouts over the loud pops of the fabric of reality ripping.

         “YEAH!” Stiles screams back, blanket flying off him from the power flowing around them all.

         I hope this works.  Stiles, just get it open, we can take it from there.

         In the middle stands Derek, hand being repeatedly cut open to bleed into the center before healing and needing to be done all over again.  The others stand near the doorway, worried and excited all at once.

&&&&&&&&&&

         “Stiles!” Deaton screams as the boy continues his ministrations.

         “Don’t distract him brother!” Marin shouts back, holding on to the power, containing it in their circle.

         “I can feel it, he’s drawing in too much power!”

         Their words begin to be drowned out, he knows they are talking about him, but it begins to seem less important.  Stiles works, hands fast as lightening, mouth filling with words before he can even think them.  The Nemeton is giving him full access to its power, and as he tries to open the portal, he realizes he needs it more and more.

         “Stiles! Stop!” Deaton shouts again, but he barely hears it.

         With each moment their words become harder to hear, less important.  As if they are no longer speaking to him.  As if Stiles Stilinski no longer exists…

         No!

         Shaking his head, he breaks free from the Nemeton, stifling it’s voice in his head, forcing back up the walls and focusing in controlling the power he’s already drawn.  It’s not enough, he knows it, can feel it through the magical links.  He tries everything though, each word and spell, each bit of magical knowledge he’s scraped together into his threadbare grimoire.  But it’s still not enough.

         “I need more!” he screams, to no one in particular, and voices shout back to him, muffled and indistinct.

         “No!”

         “Stop!”

         I’m here, use me!

          “Stiles!”

         “Don’t do this!”

         “Maintain control!”

         Use me!

         “Listen to us!”

         “You won’t be able to control this!”

         USE ME!!!

         And so he does.  The barricades fall, the power washes over him. 

         This is enough, this is more than enough.

         But he can’t control it, Deaton was right, it flows freely, engulfing his heart, then his mind, until he can hear only screaming, his own screaming, ringing through the night air.  The marks stop glowing, one by one turning black and shriveling off, inks melting and evaporating in pools of black goo or dark clouds.   Slowly, one by one, they are replaced by new markings, stranger and more intricate, older, more powerful. 

         “Help me!  HELP ME!” he shrieks, calls out until his voice is broken and useless, but they can do nothing.  The magical barrier is keeping the power in, preventing anyone from rushing forward to aid him.  He is alone.  Well, almost.

         Get out, get out GET OUT!

         No…

         The runes glow a dark black, somehow emitting and absorbing light at the same time.  He feels himself slipping, losing himself in the void.  His hands thrust forward, grasping at something he can’t see, and holding on.  Eyes begin to strain, whites filling up with blackness, inky tendrils enveloping all light in them as tears stream out.

         I’m sorry, I’m going to die… but not before saving you Derek!

         Hands thrash about, ripping at air, catching on the invisible threads, tearing and sundering, until a hole begins to appear.  Fingers clench and scrabble, finally finding ourchase and pulling.

         “He’s doing it, it’s opening!”  some one shouts from behind him.  He no longer knows who.

         It’s no one.  Don’t listen, just use.  More, you need more.

         Yes, more…

         Eyes black and lifeless, a wicked, inhuman smile parts his lips.  Fingernails yellow and crack, black gunk oozing from open wounds appearing all over his body.  The runes scab and pucker, searing his flesh. 

         Help me… Please, someone help me…

         No one can help you.  There is no you, there is only power.  Power you asked for and which was willingly given

         His hands move robotically now, parting the magical hole, pulling through the multiverse; seeking, searching, finding, grasping.

         Dad… Mom, I love you.  Derek…

         Love does not exist, only power, more power!

         Eyes begin to glow, black sparks and aura trailing them, flowing outward.  The aura flows out, black smoke from his mouth, his lungs, seeping forward, mixing, swirling, until his entire body is coated, ready.

         The change is nearly complete.

         H-h-help me…

         Willing forward, he makes one last effort before all that he is disappears, and the rip opens, bright light seeping through.  The darkness recoils, startled, but still strong, much too strong.  A vision appears, stirring something inside him.  And for the first time in what seems like ages he speaks, voice raspy and dark.

         “Mom…?”

Chapter Text

          Nooooo!

          Mom!

          The face is so strange, distorted by his darkened vision, but he’d recognize it anywhere.  So long, so much time, but still, he remembers.  He.  Stiles Stilinski exists, and he fights with every fiber of his being.

          It is not enough.

          The portal closes, hole maintained, but power to open it failing, will becoming weak and malleable.

          No, please, I want to see her, need to see her.

          No!  We are power, we are magic.  You are nothing, she is nothing!

          You’re wrong!

          We are never wrong.

          Wisps begin to appear, fuzzy and formless, a roiling mist headed straight for him.  The darkness lashes out at it, but its goes right through, formless mass heedless of the assault.  Approaching closer now, it separates, still shapeless, but separate, three clouds.  Closer and closer they come, until he’s surrounded. 

          Who are you!?

          They do not answer, not in words.  But then, they begin to morph, features and form becoming known, settling and surfacing.  Tall and stoic is the first, smile wide and truthful.  The next is smaller, feisty and free-spirited, eyes sparkling with vitality.  The final form takes longest, but he recognizes it first, the unmistakable likeness.

          "Mom!” Stiles shouts, hand struggling to reach out, but not strong enough to fight back against the darkness.

          “I’m here my child,” she speaks, words like knives through his skin.  “Do not be afraid, we are here to help.  You shall survive.”

          “Don’t go down without a fight Stiles, you’re better than that,” Erica jibes, smirk comfortable and familiar.

          “It can’t beat you unless you let it, so don’t,” Boyd chimes in, terse and to the point.

          “Where?  H-how?” Stiles babbles, hand slowly inching forward.

          “You called to us from beyond, you are stronger than you think, and we are closer,” Claudia says, stepping closer.  Where she walks, the darkness recedes, shrinks and dies in her light.  “You can do great things, will do great things, but first you must overcome.  You can never let the darkness win, though it shall be inside you always, until you move on from here.”

          “Are you, are you ok?”

          “Yes, there is no more suffering or sickness. Only the longing for when we shall all be reunited, but alas, that is not today, nor soon.”

          “We are together, happy, at peace,” Erica says, her light joining with that of Boyd’s, shining brighter and brighter, the darkness backing away from it.

          “Now fight,” Boyd says, strong but happy.

          Then they move, swirling about him, the light bright and dazzling.  All at once his whole body feels like it’s on fire, skin peeling, organs failing, mind crumbling.

          “Do not give in”

          “Be at peace”

          “Passion is power, as is love”

          “You have all that you need”

          “It is time”

          The voices swirl around, echoing in his mind, driving the darkness back.  Repelled, he can focus again, and so he blares one thought, one message, through his mind, body and soul.

          FIGHT!

          With everything he has, was, is, will be, he struggles, beats back the darkness, watching as the lights burn it away, feels the power ebbing from his body as a new one takes its place.  Slowly, but surely, he regains control, can feel the darkness shrinking back, caged and walled away over his heart.  Still present, but under control.

          The spirits, or lights, whatever they may be, begin to drift away,

          “Wait!  Don’t leave” Stiles calls, hands reaching out to try to pull them back.

          “Our work here is done, we must depart,” Claudia says, smiling down at him.

          “Please, don’t leave me, I miss you mom!”

          “I know, as do I miss you.  I love you so much, but we shall meet again one day.  Tell your father I miss him, and that he shall always have my love, as will you, Goodbye my sweet boy,” and with that Claudia flickers and fades.

          “No!”

          “We must be going as well,” Boyd states, hand entwined with Erica’s.

          “I’m so sorry for what happened, to both of you.  We tried to save you!” Stiles calls out, tears stinging his eyes.

          “We know, it wasn’t your fault.  We’re ok now,” Erica answers, smiling brightly.  “Don’t worry Batman, just keep them safe for us.”

          “And tell Derek it isn’t his fault, he needs to stop beating himself up about it,” Boyd assures, as they too begin dissipating.  “And tell the twins, I understand.  Punch them for me, but tell them I understand.”  Laughing, they give him one last smile before their images disappear.

          Derek

          “Derek!” Stiles shouts, forcing his power back, throwing himself fully into it. 

          The rip begins to open again as new markings appear on his body.  Different runes, symbols and other markings.  Wolves and arrows, trees and checks, badges and crosses, fish and fangs, all manner of images spring forth, glowing in multifarious hues.  With one last wrenching pull, the fabric rips, and the hole opens.

&&&&&&&&&

          “Everyone!  Get ready, I feel something!” Marin yells to the others.

          “It’s strong, incredibly strong,” Claudia remarks, sensing the presence ripping through to their universe.

          Stiles cries out, doubling over but maintaining his spot in the circle.  Everyone swivels to him as best they can, Peter holding him aloft as Danny frets over him.

          “Stiles, what’s wrong?” Danny asks, close by his side.

          “I… Something is pulling at me,” Stiles says, looking up into Danny’s eyes.

          “Stiles!” Danny shrieks, seeing what is going on.

          “What?”

          “Your eyes, they’re turning black!”

          “What?!”

          After that, Stiles screams out again, the other’s barely noticing the hole slowly ripping open in front of them.  Inside it, Stiles stands, staring at himself.

&&&&&&&&&&

          “Other me!  I mean, Stiles, stay calm, it’s just my connection to the Nemeton, it’s trying to latch onto you, fight it!” Stiles screams through the portal.

&&&&&&&&&&

          “Oh no, that isn’t getting anywhere near my son!” Claudia shouts, turning to Danny.  “Daniel, come over here and take my spot for a moment dear.”

          “Wh-what?  I, I can’t take your spot, I’m not strong enough!” Danny replies, still tending to his boyfriend.

          “Yes you are, you just don’t have the control yet.  Just focus on your link to my son, focus on your shared power and everything will be fine.”

          “Oh, Ok…” Danny answers, unsure, but willing to try if it’ll help.

          Reluctantly, he leaves Stiles and heads over to switch places with Claudia.  The energy surges, but doesn’t break anything as they switch.  Danny begins falling to one knee, body unable to hold the power. 

          “Mrs. Stilinski!  I can’t do this!” he screams out, barely holding on.

          “Yes you can, just hang in there, do what I said!” Claudia shouts back, focusing on some spell.

&&&&&&&&&&

          I can’t believe my mom is some kind of badass druidic Dumbledore or something over there…

&&&&&&&&&&

          As Danny fights through it, he does as Claudia suggests, focusing on the link, the piece of soul and spark, that he and Stiles share.  In doing so, his powers re-manifest, flaring up, but stabilizing. 

          “Spirits, help me, I need to control this, please,” Danny implores, as the spirits of his ancestors come to his aid.

          “Told you!” Claudia says, smirking, before finishing her spell.

          Stiles relaxes, the darkness draining out of him, as she tends to her son.

&&&&&&&&&&

          “Did you just destroy the darkness from the Nemeton mom?” Stiles asks, not thinking about that not being his mother technically.

&&&&&&&&&&

          “No, I just banished it from this plan temporarily.” Claudia replies.  “Derek!  You need to go, none of us can hold this much longer!”

          Oh shit, I got so distracted I didn’t even realize.

          Turning quickly, Derek looks back at everyone there, his family, everyone.

          “Thank you guys!  I love you all!” Derek shouts over the whirling storm of magical energy.

&&&&&&&&&&

          “Break the seal!  Let their Derek through!” Stiles shouts, hearing the magical explosion around him and then the sprinting sound of Derek running up behind him.

          “Bye!” Their Derek says, jumping into the portal.

&&&&&&&&&&

          At that moment, seeing his counterpart coming, Derek jumps through as well, just barely missing himself as he passes.

          A chorus of byes and we’ll miss you’s and we love you’s follow him out, he spins, taking one last look at his family as the portal closes. 

&&&&&&&&&&

          He lands in a heap, trying to stand back up.  When he does, he notices Stiles on the ground and rushes to his aide.

          “Stiles!” he yells, landing next to him and cradling him in his arms.

          Oh God, please don’t be dead Stiles.

          “Stiles!  Stiles, you did it.  I’m back, Stiles,” Derek says, frantic.

          The others rush over to them, all trying to see what has happened.  Relief washes over their faces when they see Derek, but then each, in turn, begins to panic as Stiles continues to be unresponsive. 

          “Is he…?” Lydia asks, tears streaming down her face.

          “I hear a heartbeat,” Cora offers, trying to soothe the crowd.

          “Stiles!” the sheriff and Scott yell, both kneeling down to check on him.

          “Stiles, please be ok, I’m home, please,” Derek pleads.

          “Honey, you’re home…” Stiles finally says, barely opening his eyes, voice weak.

          “You idiot, you could have died!” Derek admonishes, still holding Stiles.

          “Didn’t though.  Thought I would, was worth it, ‘t save ya’.”

          “You stupid, crazy idiot!” Derek says, hands taking Stiles face between them and kissing him passionately.

          “Guess I should nearly die more often sourwolf,” Stiles says behind a small laugh.

          “Idiot.  Why do I even love you?”

          “Because I’m amazing,” Stiles answers, smiling.  “Love you too Derek…”

Chapter Text

          The bright afternoon sun streams through the windows in the loft, illuminating the faces of all its occupants.  A paint can glints in the light, shining straight into Derek’s eyes.  He walks back into the room anyway, pinching his nose and obscuring his eyes. 

          “Why did we have to do this again?” he whines, staring at the mess of paint staining his clothes.

          “Because,” Stiles says, brandishing a paintbrush at him, “if I’m going to be your boyfriend, your loft can’t look like Spike’s crypt anymore.”

          “I’m so ashamed that I get that stupid reference now…”

          “You better after my enforced marathons,” Stiles retorts, swiping a bit of paint on Derek’s nose, then kissing him before he can complain.  “Next up is Supernatural!”

          “Ugh, gag me,” Cora sighs, rolling her eyes as she dips her brush in the verdant paint. 

          “Don’t be jealous future sis,” Stiles smirks, wrapping an arm around his boyfriend.  Derek’s eyes light up at the touch, any trace of annoyance vanishing instantaneously.

          "You two aren’t even married yet and I already hate you.”

          “Oh trust me, you’ll learn to love me.  I mean, if I can make this sourwolf love me, I can make any Hale love me.”

          At that moment Peter strolls into the room, clothes immaculate.  “Please, some of us aren’t as easily swayed as my hormonal nephew over there.”  Rolling his eyes, he skulks over to his niece, making his allegiance well known.  Hale, not Stilinski.

          Derek blushes, knowing full well they can smell the arousal he’s been giving off since the moment Stiles put his arm around him.  “I liked the other you so much better,” Derek jokes, throwing paint at his uncle.

          The eldest Hale deftly avoids it, the bright blue splattering on Cora instead.  “Oh yes, well, it was my understanding that the other version of myself has a much better life, so…”

          Instantly Derek feels awful for mentioning it, it certainly wasn’t his fault his family had been killed in the same fire that turned him crazy.  He opens his mouth to apologize then, but Cora cuts him off.

          “Guys!” Cora screams, flinging the whole paint bucket at Stiles and Derek.

          Peter jumps out of the way, whirling can headed straight for Derek and Stiles.  And then it swerves.  In midair.  The can flies up, tilting right above Peter’s head, contents spilling out in a ridiculous stream all over him.

          “What?!” he snarls, eyes flashing their icy blue.  Nicely coiffed blond hair now a ferocious shade of indigo, not quite matching his eyes.

          “Whoops,” Stiles says, grinning from ear to ear.  “Guess that redirection spell got away from me…”

          All the Hales glare at him, noticing his obvious lie. 

          “Oh come on!  You can’t even pretend that I can lie to you?”

          “No, idiot,” Cora huffs, turning back around and continuing to paint the wall. 

          Peter hurries upstairs, swiftly showering before stomping out of the house, muttering about going to see his hairdresser.  By the time Cora has finished painting the wall, Stiles and Derek have already retreated to their room. 

          “I can hear you!  You’re both gross!” She shouts, dropping her brush in disgust.

          “We don’t care!” Stiles shrieks from upstairs, laughing as he does.

          “Sorry Cora!” Derek yells back, only a hint of actual regret in his voice.

         "Whatever.  I’m going to Lydia’s,” she says, grabbing some spare clothes and slamming the door for emphasis.

          Upstairs, rolling around on the old mattress, lay Stiles and Derek.  Their limbs entwined, flung about each other haphazardly as they kiss.  Lips are red and swollen from kisses and nibbling, werewolf fangs flicking out and nearly breaking skin.  Stiles’ tongue licks over one as it recedes.

          “I’m so glad you’re back,” Stiles pants, breathless.

          Derek grunts in acknowledgement, busy sucking a hickey into his boyfriend’s neck.  Stiles swats him on the head, prompting him to look up with dazed, lusting eyes.

          “Huh?” he murmurs, mouth open and smiling lightly.

          “I said I’m glad you’re back you jerk!  This is where you say you’re glad to be back too.  Because of me?”

          “Stiles,” Derek says, warmth and fondness swelling in his tone.  “Why would I need to say it, I show it every moment, every chance I get… Like now.”  With that, his mouth moves lower, all thoughts of argument slipping from Stiles’ head.

 

****************************************************************************************************************************************

 

“Now Stiles, remember to be very careful when mixing this concoction, even the tiniest-“ Deaton explains before being interrupted.

                “Yeah yeah, I know.  I think I know better than anyone about being careful with spells now,” Stiles retorts.  As if he hadn’t learned anything from the harrowing experience in the woods.  Nemeton nearly killing him.  Or whatever it planned on doing with his lifeless body afterwards.

                He continues mixing the potion, adding different herbs and other ingredients as Deaton tells him to.  Until Derek shows up.  As Derek walks in, Stiles’ becomes hyperaware of the older man, momentarily forgetting what he is doing.  Staring at this beautiful man, one who is now his just as much as Stiles is Derek’s, distracts him enough that he drops one of the ingredients in too soon.

                “Oh shit!”  Stiles shrieks, exiting his reverie and realizing what he’d done.

                “Stiles!” Deaton barks angrily.

                “I’m sorry, I can fix it!  Just let me add a bit of this and-“ Stiles begins, throwing things in before a puff of smoke stops him from speaking.

                “No Stiles!” Derek yells, rushing to his boyfriend.  He is too late though, Stiles has already disappeared.

                Deaton groans, a pitiful sound drowned out by the anguished howl Derek is letting off.

                “Stiles… What have you done this time,” Derek bemoans, turning to Deaton.

                “I’m not sure what he did, but my guess would be another reality hop, as he’s apparently got a knack for doing them on accident,” Deaton answers, already beginning to look over the ingredients.

                “So what do we do to get him back?” Derek asks, forlorn.

                “I’m not sure we can do anything,” Deaton admits.  “We only got him back last time through his, Claudia’s and the other Stiles and Emissaries combined power.  Without that, I imagine Stiles will have to find his own way home.”

 &&&&&&&&&&

                “Mother, I am not going to date a child, even if he is in line to be the strongest Emissary in the country,” Derek says, contemptuous, but not disrespectful.

                “I’m just saying, the other you was quite enamored with him, you don’t think you could have any feelings for him?” Talia inquires, looking softly upon her son.

                “No!  Hello, have you not seen my past boyfriends?  Even if he wasn’t jailbait, I sort of have a type,” Derek reminds.  “Hector, Luis, Miguel… See the pattern?  Heck, I’d be more likely to go for Scott than Stiles.”

                “You keep your ephebophilic hands off my man,” Cora warns jocularly.  “We’re finally together now and just because he’s weirded out by me being able to use my wolf powers on him, doesn’t mean we’re breaking up anytime soon.”

                “Relax little sis, I don’t want Scott, I was just using him as an example,” Derek replies, trying to calm a growing anger within Cora.  “I don’t want Stiles; it’s as simple as that.  In fact, I wouldn’t care if I never saw him again.”

                At that moment the kitchen filled with an acrid smell, followed by a small cloud of smoke.  The combined sensory overload impaired the wolves, such that they could not tell who or what was lying on their floor.  Finally a minute groan cast out from the plumes of smoke, and Derek stepped forward.

                “I know that grown…” Derek said, annoyance showing on his face.

                “Well who is it?” Cora asks, giddy and nervous.

                “Hullo…?” a voice says, from the floor.

                “Stiles,” Derek states, staring down at his acquaintance.  “Or should I say, the Stiles from the other universe.”

                Stiles blinks his eyes, adjusting to his new surroundings.  He can’t hear any voices, even though he thinks there are muffled people sounds and a familiar smell invades his nostrils.  Finally he looks up, shocked at what he sees.

                “Oh no.  Not you again!” he croaks, before passing out.