Title: The Dark Side of The Moon
Authors: Sxymami0909 and Xtremeroswellia
Fandom: Teen Wolf
Pairing: Stiles/Lydia, Isaac/Allison, Scott/Kira, Derek, Deaton, Sheriff Stilinski,
Timeline: Season 3B
Banner: By Sxymami0909
Summary: The ritual is done, but the consequences aren't over. The door inside Stiles' head is still open and they're running out of time to get it closed. Lydia's powers are growing and Derek might hold the key to a link in her past. With Stiles slowly losing his mind and Lydia being the only person who can help him keep it together, the pack is in a race against time to help their friend. Will they be able to close the door in time or will Stiles be lost to them forever?
Previous Chapters: | One | Two | Three | Four |Five | Six |
Stiles woke up the next morning feeling...rested. Comfortable. Sunlight was filtering into his bedroom through the window but he didn’t open his eyes even as he yawned. It took him a moment to realize that at some point during the night, Lydia had turned onto her side away from him and he’d spooned right up against her, their bodies tangled in a warm pile of arms and legs. His face was buried in her neck, hair tickling his nose. It was basically the best moment of his entire life.
A stupid grin spread across his face as he opened his eyes but didn’t move, not wanting to wake her. He just laid there, listening to the sound of her steady, even breathing. It was easy to forget that the reasons that led them there were pretty terrible ones and if he’d been the type of guy easily deluded by fantasy, he would have just let himself pretend that Lydia was there because she loved him, because they were together, because this was normal and happened all the time.
Stiles wasn’t that kind of guy. He resisted the urge to press a kiss to the back of her head, eyebrows furrowing as he caught sight of something just below his hairline. He blinked a couple of times, puzzled, and then reached up carefully, pulling a yellow post-it note off his forehead. He turned it over and grimaced as he read his dad’s writing there.
Don’t forget to stop in the kitchen for breakfast, Son. Bring Lydia.
Lydia shifted the feel of the mattress moving beside her pulling her from sleep. A soft noise fell from her throat as she shifted pressing herself back into Stiles, not opening her eyes just yet seeking out the warm body behind her. “You move too much,” she said her voice thick with sleep. Lydia’s eyes fluttered open and she spotted the sunlight streaming into the room.
“Morning already?” She asked with a yawn enjoying the feel of his body behind hers. Lydia should feel weird shouldn’t she? Spending the night in bed with Stiles wasn’t exactly an everyday occurrence. But she didn’t. Something about this felt right, but she wasn’t going to overanalyze it at least not first thing in the morning.
He shut his eyes as she pressed back against him. If she shifted much more, the morning was going to become incredibly awkward for more reasons than one. “Sorry,” he told her with a faint smile. “It’s the Adderall. Even in my sleep I tend to be hyper and move a lot.” He held his breath for a long moment, already trying to figure out a way to get them out of trouble with his dad without telling his dad what was really going on.
“You sleep okay?” he murmured, laying his head back down on the pillow for the time being.
Lydia turned so she was facing him, her head lying on the pillow beside Stiles’. “I slept really well.” She said reaching out and casually resting her fingers against his arm. “What about you? Any nightmares?” She asked worry creasing her brow. Lydia had gone over things and she was pretty certain that if she was there he should have slept well, but she wouldn’t believe it until she heard it from Stiles. He was looking at her and she couldn’t quite read the expression on his face. “Well, don’t keep me waiting.” She said finally when he didn’t answer right away.
“Sorry,” he said again, a sheepish smile touching his mouth. “No. No nightmares. I slept like a rock. You know, if rocks actually slept.” His gaze drifted to where her fingers were on his arm and then he lifted his eyes to her face once more. He didn’t know how she managed to look so perfect even first thing in the morning. He was pretty sure his hair was standing up in thirty different directions and that he had those wads of crust in the corners of his eyes from sleep, and oh god, his breath was probably horrible.
His smile was infectious and Lydia couldn’t help her answering one. Stiles was attractive, sure maybe it had taken her a while to see it, but that was her own stupidity for being so blinded by Jackson that no one else mattered. “I’m glad and please stop apologizing. You know ninety percent of the time I’m only joking with you. Though make sure you’re on the lookout for the ten percent I’m not.” She said her gaze drifting to his hair. Who knew Stiles Stilinski had such adorable bed head? Lydia was pretty sure she was the only girl who’d ever seen it...she’d better be the only girl who’d ever seen it.
The possessive thought startled her. Crap, she thought. That was going to be a problem later on. But right now she just wanted to enjoy the moment. It was rare that they got time alone where there wasn’t some kind of disaster, psychotic killer, or Alpha werewolf on the loose. “How’s your arm?” She dropped her gaze to the limb in question switching her fingers to the other arm gently.
A short chuckle escaped him at her words. It was amazing to think about how far they’d come, really. She’d gone from not knowing he was alive to somehow being his closest friend after Scott. He supposed that danger and trauma had a unique way of bringing people together and helping them forge bonds. She wasn’t wrong about that ten percent of the time, though. Lydia Martin could be very scary when she wanted to be, and he personally hoped it was never aimed at him.
He looked down at his arm which she’d helped re-bandage with clean bandages the night before, after dinner. “It doesn’t really hurt much,” he said honestly. But if he never woke from another nightmare with physical injuries, that would be completely fine with him. “Sort of feels like my life is like Nightmare on Elm Street, though.” His voice was light.
“Oh come on, they don’t get to wake up with hot girls in their bed, you do,” Lydia joked with a grin. “So I think you’re a little better off than the people from Nightmare on Elm Street. Remind me to broaden your horizon on movies.” She said as she stretched.
Stiles couldn’t help but grin back at her. She had that right. “Hey, there’s nothing wrong with my horizon when it comes to movies.” Or hot girls for that matter, but he kept that part to himself.
Lydia rolled her eyes. “What time is it? How long do we have to get ready for school?” Lydia had a routine that she went through every day no matter what. Not always because she wanted to, but because being put together was part of her thing, even if she didn’t want to get out of bed at the moment.
“Uh, well.” He glanced at his bedside clock. “It’s almost ten, and it’s Saturday so no school, but…” His voice trailed off and he grimaced, handing her the post-it note silently.
“Oh god it is Saturday, why are we awake?” She asked while taking the note from him. She glanced down at the post-it and pursed her lips. Lydia caught Stiles gaze and she could see he was trying to read her expression. “Your Dad’s going to make us breakfast? I could eat.” Was all she said as she stuck the post-it to his shirt.
But her disregard of the note was short lived. Lydia was silent for a minute as she picked at Stiles’ shirt, her eyes on the fabric. “Am I getting you in trouble again?” She asked quietly. That was the last thing she wanted to do. She was confident in most areas, but she didn’t want the Sheriff to dislike her or yell at Stiles because of her.
“No,” he said immediately, shaking his head. “No, don’t even worry about that, okay? Seriously, Lydia. If I’m in trouble, it’s my own fault for not telling him what’s going on. You being here…” He exhaled slowly. “You’re a life-saver, all right?” He reached up and caught her hand in his, lacing their fingers together. Without really thinking about it, he brought their hands to his mouth and kissed her knuckles in an effort to reassure her. It didn’t dawn on him until after what an intimate gesture that was.
“It’ll be fine.”
Lydia felt her cheeks warm at the gesture and she gnawed on her bottom lip. His mouth was soft against her fingers and she found herself wondering what it would feel like against her lips. Then again she didn’t really have to wonder. She already knew. “Okay,” she said quietly. She was silent after that, perfectly content to stay where she was. But it didn’t last long. “Do you think he’s waiting for us?” Lydia asked while keeping her hand in his.
If he knew his dad, he’d called in to let the department know he wouldn’t be in until later. If nothing was going on, he probably told them he wouldn’t be in at all. “Yeah. Yeah, probably.” He squeezed her hand, drawing in a breath. “We should probably face the music, huh?” He chewed his lower lip for a moment.
Lydia nodded, “Probably.” She watched him for a minute before sitting up and letting the covers fall to her waist. “Well, no dawdling then. Come on.” She released his hand slowly so she could get up. Lydia’s feet hit the carpet and she stood, once again stretching as she ran a hand through her long hair shaking it out. She fixed her shorts and then walked around the bed.
He couldn’t help but watch as she shook her hair out, feeling kind of mesmerized. He shook himself out of his stupor and threw his legs over the edge of the bed, yawning and rubbing a hand over his face.
Lydia stood there and held out a hand to Stiles, “I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty hungry,” and it was the truth. They had slept a long time and she was feeling well rested and slightly more energized than normal, which was probably because she was about to talk to Stiles’ Dad after spending the night in his sons bed.
When she held her hand out to him, he took it without hesitation, wondering at what point in their relationship they’d begun casually holding hands. He didn’t know the answer, but he liked the development. “Yeah. Yeah, I’m starving,” he admitted with a sheepish grin as his stomach growled. He was almost always hungry, though. He chalked it up to being a teenage boy. His dad liked to crack jokes about how Stiles could literally eat them out of house and home if they weren’t careful. He led her toward the door and held his breath as they descended the stairs.
As soon as they hit the stairs, he could smell the familiar scent of bacon and eggs. He frowned. His dad shouldn’t be eating bacon period. It was the most unhealthy thing on the planet. “That better be turkey bacon, Dad,” he said as they walked into the kitchen.
The Sheriff glanced over his shoulder right as his son walked into the kitchen, hand entwined with Lydia Martin. “Ah, there he is, the slumber party king.” His gaze shifted to Lydia. “Good morning Miss Martin.”
Stiles winced at his dad’s title for him as Lydia sent Stiles’ Dad a bright smile, “Morning Sheriff, the eggs smell delicious. Hopefully Stiles is right about the bacon though. Did you know regular bacon is addictive?” She asked as she tugged Stiles toward the kitchen table and kept talking. “It contains six types of umami, which produce an addictive neurochemical response in the body.” She pulled out a chair and sat down. “It’s just not healthy.”
The wince didn't last long on Stiles' face though when Lydia began to help lecture him about how bad bacon was. Stiles’ expression transformed into one of amazement by the time Lydia was done talking. She really was the perfect girl.
The Sheriff pursed his lips still facing the pan and bit back a laugh. Of course Lydia wouldn’t be phased by his presence. “I’ll keep that in mind,” he commented as he added a few more finished pieces to the towel on the plate beside him.
The fact that his dad was trying not to laugh in response made him grin. Maybe this wouldn’t be as bad as he’d thought it might be. He knew his dad wouldn’t do or say anything to hurt Lydia’s feelings in any way, which put him a step above every other dad on the planet in his book. He sat down beside Lydia, picking up the bottle of orange juice there and arching his eyebrows. “Juice or milk?”
“Juice please,” she could see the Sheriff glancing over at them every so often, but she didn’t say anything else for the moment and instead focused her attention on Stiles.
The Sheriff shut off the stove, placed the spatula in the pan and grabbed the plate full of eggs and the other one filled with turkey bacon, because that was all that was in the house thanks to his son. He knew Stiles only watched what he ate because he loved him though, so he cut him slack on replacing all the unhealthy food in the house.
He set the plates on the table and then pulled out the chair across from his son and Lydia. “So, now that we’ve got some food, which one of you wants to tell me what’s going on?” He wasn’t stupid, and for Stiles to have a bunch of people over during the week, things had to be a little off, but to have Lydia Martin sleeping alone in his bed. The world had to be ending or he was just trying to get himself grounded forever.
Stiles shifted in his seat after pouring each of them a glass of juice, pausing when his dad sat down across from them, folding his arms on the table and looking at them intently as he asked what was going on. He drew in a deep breath and let it out slowly. There really weren’t enough words in the English language to describe how much he didn’t want to tell his dad what was going on. But he also hated lying to him. There just wasn’t an easy answer here. He sat back in his chair, chewing his lower lip for a moment.
“Okay, well...it uh, sorta goes back to the whole thing with the darach.” His voice was quiet. He looked at Lydia for a second, then back at his dad. “You know how Isaac and Allison showed up basically just in time to rescue you and Mrs. McCall and Mr. Argent?”
Mr. Stilinski arched an eyebrow at his son, “Yes, Stiles being kidnapped and held hostage by a crazy English teaching Darach tends to leave a mark on one’s memory. Get to the part that involves Lydia sleeping in your bed with you and why I shouldn’t ground you for the rest of your life,” he said his tone stern as he lifted the plate and held it out to them, “Eggs?”
He gave his dad a look, sighing with a hint of exasperation. “You kinda have to have the background before it’ll make sense, Dad. That’s what I’m trying to tell you. Did you ever wonder how they were able to find you out in a root cellar in the middle of the woods?” He leaned back in his chair, shaking his head at the offer of eggs.
Lydia glanced between them and reached for the eggs figuring they shouldn’t go to waste. The Sheriff held the plate for her until she was finished taking some.
He put the plate down and leaned his arms on the table his forehead wrinkling in confusion. “Well, I guess I just assumed someone got the information out of Jennifer or you figured it out,” in all honesty it was probably the one thing he hadn’t obsessed over about that night, but now he realized that was a mistake.
“That’s an incorrect assumption.” Lydia added her two-cents and when both Stilinski’s looked at her she cleared her throat. “Sorry, not helpful.”
Stiles managed a tiny smile at her before looking back at his dad and exhaling. “We had to do a thing. A ritual.” He hesitated, deciding to leave out the biggest detail because he really didn’t want to freak his dad out. “But apparently magic has this whole uh, set of side effects that comes with it.” He took a drink of juice, nervous, and then set it back down on the table once more. “Including Scott not being able to transform, which he figured out how to fix, and Allison was...she was being haunted by her dead aunt.”
He licked his lips, shifting in his chair. “Mine is night terrors.”
The Sheriff froze as he listened to his sons words. So the nightmares had been the result of Stiles saving them. A hint of guilt filled his chest at not having known that. He really wished Stiles would talk to him more. He knew ever since he found out about Scott and the rest of the things that went on in Beacon Hills, Stiles had been more honest. But he’d kept this to himself instead of letting him help.
The Sheriff sighed and rubbed the bridge of his nose before glancing between Stiles and Lydia. But while he was watching them he noticed something about his son. Stiles actually looked better than he had in weeks. There were no more bags under his eyes, he was pale or withdrawn looking. He actually looked well-rested for once.
“Let me guess,” he said his tone light as he pointed at Lydia, “She has something to do with it?” He asked though his tone was merely curious, not judgmental or angry.
Stiles tried to read his dad’s expression, tried to gauge how he was taking the small pieces of information that he was giving him. He didn’t think his dad knowing the whole thing would do either of them any good because what was done was done, and he didn’t like adding to his dad’s stress level any more than was absolutely necessary.
But there was no anger in his dad’s voice, and he wondered if his father was thinking about the night terrors Stiles used to have when he was a kid. He’d had them for about a year when he was five, and the only thing that could calm him down was his mom. They’d returned shortly after she’d passed away. Nightmares and panic attacks and generalized anxiety that lasted around the clock. He’d worried about everything then. Whether his dad would survive each shift at work. Whether their house would burn down. Whether he’d be sent away because his dad just didn’t want him around, couldn’t deal with the constant reminder of his dead wife. He never had, of course, but the fear had been incredibly real nonetheless.
So he nodded slightly, chewing his lower lip. “She was my anchor in the ritual we did, and…” He hesitated, looking down. “We sort of have to do another one to stop the nightmares.”
The Sheriff frowned, “Now hold on a minute,” he leaned forward, “You can’t just go around doing,” he waved his hands searching for the word, “Magic ritual things whenever you feel like it. It could be dangerous Stiles.” He didn’t know what he would do if anything ever happened to his son. Stiles was the most important person in his life. He couldn’t lose him. “How do you know this isn’t going to make it worse?” He asked and before Stiles could answer Lydia butted in.
“Mr. Stilinski we need to do this ritual. The nightmares Stiles has been having,” she paused trying to figure out how to phrase it without telling his Father too much knowing that Stiles didn’t want him to worry, “They’re dangerous. I know how that sounds, believe me, but I’m going to be with him. And Scott too. Neither of us will let anything happen to Stiles. I promise you.”
Lydia reached out and rested a hand on Stiles leg, “I know how important he is to you because you’re just as important to him.” She explained, “And really if you’re going to be angry at someone it should probably be me because not only did I make him invite me over, but I’m the one who made him sleep on the bed.” When the Sheriff’s brows lifted Lydia continued.
“He looked so uncomfortable on the floor I felt bad. But it worked and Stiles was a perfect gentleman so that’s something you should be proud of.” She told him while reaching for her fork.
The Sheriff shook his head. “Is this a banshee thing?” He asked them.
It was Lydia’s turn to look surprised; she sent Stiles a sideways glance, “You told him I was a banshee?”
Stiles grimaced, suddenly feeling distinctly uncomfortable. Both because of the idea of the upcoming ritual, and because of his mentioning the word banshee in front of said banshee. He blew out a breath, shifting in his chair awkwardly. “I was trying to stop him from pulling the police away from the school the other day and I had to tell him why.” Not that it had mattered. At a base level, he still wasn’t sure his dad believed in half the things that happened in Beacon Hills at all. Werewolves had been a hell of a stretch, and he’d actually had to see Scott transform before he did believe.
He looked back at his dad, sighing softly. “I don’t think it’s a banshee thing. I think it’s more a Lydia thing, period.”
The Sheriff opened his mouth, but Lydia cut off his words before he could say anything. “I’m not just a Banshee.” She pointed out.
The Sheriff held up a hand, “I know, relax. Both of you just, just give me a minute to process all of this.” He leaned back in his seat and sighed while rubbing the back of his neck. If it wasn’t one thing it was another. Werewolves, kanimas, Darach’s, alpha’s and now Druid rituals. He still didn’t exactly believe in all of the crazy that his son spouted, but he didn’t not believe either. He’d seen Scott change on several occasions and werewolves definitely explained a lot of what happened in the town.
But this was his son’s life and he knew he needed to trust him. Even if it was hard. Stiles was a smart kid. He blew out a breath. “Okay, so these nightmares are because you helped find us. Now the only way to get rid of them is to do a ritual to make them go away. And Lydia is here because she’s your anchor…and what does that mean?”
Lydia decided to take this once since she wasn’t fond of being talked about like she wasn’t actually there. “When they did the ritual last time Stiles needed someone he had a connection to, to tether him to this world.” She explained, “That was me. And apparently that made the connection stronger because when I’m here with him Stiles doesn’t have nightmares. He’s safe, which is why I’m here.”
The Sheriff did his best not to look amused at the girl sitting in front of him who couldn’t be more than 120 pounds of pure snark, “So you’re protecting my son.”
Lydia nodded and arched a perfectly shaped brow at him when she noticed the humor on his face, “Is that a problem?” Parent or not no one was going to tell her she couldn’t hold her own.
The Sheriff blinked and straightened up, “No, no of course not.” He said as he lifted his juice and took a quick sip.
Lydia was satisfied by his words and took a bite of eggs. “These are good.” She said casually like they hadn’t just been talking about rituals and anchors.
Stiles looked back and forth between them as they talked, blinking a few times and raising his eyebrows. Yep. He was definitely going to have to have Lydia come over more often. Not only did she keep his nightmares away, but his dad apparently liked her and trusted her already. She’d tied up a conversation he hadn’t wanted to have in the first place, put a pretty silver bow on it and smoothed everything over with his dad with expertise that Stiles actually envied.
Lydia Martin was freakin’ amazing.
Scott walked into his room and plopped down on his bed, before holding out a can of ice tea to Stiles. “Here you go man, sorry that took so long, Kira sent me a text and I uh, got a little distracted,” he said sheepishly. “So, what were we studying again?” He glanced at the books lying on the bed in front of him and sighed. It was Sunday afternoon and he and Stiles had been hanging out for the past two hours, but they only recently decided to crack open a book since they both had upcoming tests this week in class.
Stiles arched an eyebrow at the mention of Kira, smirking faintly. “Well, you’re studying for chemistry, which Lydia and I studied for yesterday. And I’m studying for English since I fell way behind in the reading because of the whole...not being able to read a thing.” He sighed, flopping down onto Scott’s bed face first after setting the can down.
Scott chuckled, “Well at least you haven’t lost your sense of humor,” he joked. “I can’t read this chapter again, it’s killing me...slowly,” he said dramatically as he slammed the book shut. He shifted and glanced at his best friend. “You’re looking pretty good today, how’d things go last night? I was worried about you.” He said as he rested on his back with his hands behind his head.
“Well.” He rolled onto his back, too, yawning. “I didn’t have any nightmares.” He looked up at the ceiling. “Which was a first in awhile.” It was a nice feeling, to say the least. Sleeping without nightmares definitely beat his initial plan of staying awake around the clock until the full moon. “Sorry you were worried.” He looked over at his friend.
Scott shrugged, “It’s okay as long as you’re good. So Lydia staying worked?” He asked even though he already knew the answer. It seemed like Lydia being Stiles’ anchor was the answer to a lot of their problems.
He nodded. “Yeah. It’s kinda...I don’t know, it’s kinda unexpected, you know? I mean, I’ve loved her for years.” He’d liked her since the first time he’d seen her in pre-school, but he’d loved her since he was eight. “I never in a million years would’ve thought we’d actually end up friends. Or that she’d end up as my anchor. Or that she’d keep saving my life.” He paused. “Or that my dad would be cool with her spending the night in my actual bed. You know, with me there too.”
Scott perked up, “Dude, Lydia spent the night in your bed?” He asked his grin practically gleeful. “You didn’t mention that. As a matter-of-fact I don’t remember hearing any of this. Why don’t you tell me anything anymore?” He asked with a frown as he sat up and glanced down at Stiles. “So...what’s going on there. With you and Lydia I mean, you guys seem closer.” He said bringing up the topic he’d been meaning to ask about for a while.
“Okay, it wasn’t anything more than sleeping and maybe some platonic snuggling was had.” His own smile slipped at Scott’s question, when he frowned. Because he was right. He used to tell Scott everything and he missed that more than he wanted to admit. He sat up, too, raking a hand through his hair. “I don’t know, dude. There’s been a lot going on, you know? I mean you’re the alpha now.” Plus he had Isaac. “But nothing’s really going on. I mean, we’ve just...gotten to know each other better, I guess. She’s cool. I mean, not like I didn’t think she was cool before, but I feel like I actually know her now.”
Scott sat up and nodded. “You do know her,” he replied as he scratched the back of his neck. “For the record Stiles, no matter how many wolves come into town or crazy things happen in here, you will always be my best friend.” He said, “Any time you need to talk I’m here.” He said, “No one is more important.” He told his friend.
A faint smile touched his mouth and he nodded. If things hadn’t been so crappy lately, he probably would have made a crack about if they were supposed to kiss or something now. He liked getting a rise out of people. But Scott’s words actually calmed his growing insecurities a little, so he decided to save it. “You too, dude.”
Scott grinned and shifted on the bed.
“Is she staying with you tonight?” He asked probably already knowing the answer. Lydia was the only thing keeping Stiles in one piece and they still had four more days until the full moon.
“Yeah. She’s staying over the rest of the week. Until the ritual. Which my dad knows about. Sort of. Bare minimum details, you know?”
Scott inclined his head, “I’ve got to say I’m sort of impressed you told him. My Mom still doesn’t know about what you me and Allison did to find them. But now that things are finally getting back to normal there’s no reason to really tell her.” It wasn’t like with Stiles where the door in his mind wasn’t closed.
“The ritual will be over soon and then things will be back to normal as usual, which actually isn’t really normal.” Scott said with a grin.
“He doesn’t know all of it. He doesn’t know about the whole seventeen hour ice bath part. I just said we had to do a magic ritual in order to find them and that Lydia acted as my anchor, and that we have to do another ritual to stop the nightmares.” It was all the truth, he just left out the harsher details. Like Scott said, there wasn’t a reason to tell him. To tell any of them.
Scott felt a soft vibration in his pocket and he shifted so he could reach in and grab it. He grinned when he saw another text from Kira. Things between them were going slow, which was good since Scott just got out of his relationship with Allison not too long ago.
He arched his eyebrows as Scott pulled his phone out. “Kira?” he asked with a faint smirk.
Scott grinned, “Yeah, is it wrong that with all of this going on I’m really enjoying getting to know her?” He knew he had a bunch of responsibilities especially with forming a pack that suddenly everyone wanted to be a part of. “I was actually thinking of asking if she wanted to go bowling or something tonight.” Scott knew it sounded crazy, but they couldn’t do anything on the ritual front for another four days. Why not keep himself occupied?
“Dude, no. That’s not wrong, okay? That’s normal. You should get to have that once in awhile,” Stiles said honestly. “You guys should definitely go bowling. Or to dinner or something.” It was hard telling how long it would be before the next supernatural problem came along that would demand Scott’s attention. He grinned, reaching out and clapping his hand on Scott’s shoulder. “I say go for it.”
“Yeah?” When Stiles nodded Scott smiled again. “Oh, hey why don’t you come with us?” He asked, “Bring Lydia we can grab some food and bowl or go play pool.” Scott scrolled through the message. “Maybe we can see if everyone else wants to go too. We could all use a night off of being chased by supernatural bad guys.” He joked.
“You sure you don’t want it to be like a two person date thing instead of a whole bunch of people group thing?” His eyebrows rose again. “Or is this your way of beginning to integrate Kira with the rest of us to see how freaked out she may or may not get by all of our insanity?” He smirked. It would, at the very least, be a pretty good test of Kira’s patience around everyone Scott cared about.
Scott sent Stiles a guilty look, “Okay so maybe I want to see how she gets along with everyone thrown into the loop, but there’s nothing wrong with that. You in or out?” He asked his fingers hovering above the phone.
“I’ll text Lydia,” he said with a grin.
Lydia sat at Allison’s desk, her eyes on her notebook even though her head was a million miles away. Her pen moved against the paper in the notebook as she doodled some silly design there. Lately she found her thoughts drifting to Stiles more and more. She couldn’t help it. It was almost as if it was a reflex at this point. There was a bag in her car packed with make-up, hair products, and clothes that she planned on bringing back to his house tonight.
Since the Sheriff had surprisingly okay’ed her staying until the ritual of theirs was done, Lydia figured she might as well be prepared so she didn’t have to keep running back and forth to her house. She hoped Stiles didn’t mind. A sigh left her lips and she pressed down harder on the pen.
He seemed to be doing better. He’d gotten his color and sense of humor back, which she was more relieved about than she let on. And staying in the Stilinski house was actually kind of nice. Prada liked it there too and she’d taken quite a liking to the Sheriff. Lydia found her sleeping on the Sheriff's lap on the reclining chair in the living room that morning. He was sleeping too. It was adorable.
A crumpled piece of paper landed on her book and Lydia jumped, startled. Her pen stopped moving and she blinked. Lydia slowly glanced over her shoulder at Allison and arched an eyebrow. “Have we taken to throwing things at each other?”
Allison grinned at her best friend from where she was laying belly-down on her bed, open history book in front of her. She’d been watching Lydia pretend to study -- or try to study -- for the last half hour but the red head kept getting this distant look on her face. Like she was a million miles away with anything and everything but school on her mind. Lydia was a straight A student, destined to be their class valedictorian -- the only possible competition the guy whose life they were trying to save.
“We have. Because you haven’t turned a page in your book for at least thirty minutes and I’m bored.”
Lydia blinked, surprise coloring her features as she glanced down at her book. Huh, Allison was right. She sighed and shoved the book with disgust. “I’ve already done all the reading for class twice. This was just going to be a refresher read anyway.” She explained as she shifted in the chair, crossed her legs, and glanced at her best friend.
“There are many cures for boredom,” Lydia said while flipped her hair over her shoulder. “How are things going with shooting? Back to being an amazing shot?” She asked realizing she hadn’t checked in on that front in a while, but that was only because she knew Isaac had it covered.
At that question, she ducked her head, still mortified that she’d almost killed Lydia with an arrow not that long ago. “Yeah, it’s under control again. I haven’t had any problems since…” Her voice trailed off and she glanced at Lydia with a faint smile. “Well, you know when.”
“Since you tried to take my head off with an arrow?” She joked, a smile pulling at her lips. “Don’t worry we’re just going to chalk that little debacle up to crazy mystical ritual resonance.” Lydia told her good naturedly. She knew Allison hadn’t meant to almost kill her and come on if she were being honest they had all almost killed each other at some point.
Isaac didn’t seem to mind that Allison had practically filet’ed him. Derek was pretty good about Lydia drugging him and using him to bring back Peter and Stiles didn’t seem to mind that Scott had almost killed him twice. Life and death was practically part of their everyday lives. “I’m glad to hear things are going good though.” She said as she watched Allison. “And Isaac, how’s he?” Lydia asked casually.
Allison’s cheeks colored when Lydia asked about Isaac. “Um, Isaac’s fine. He’s doing fine. Have you noticed that like, weird tension between him and Stiles?” Yes, Allison was changing the subject. She wasn’t sure what the thing between her and Isaac was but they’d decided to try and figure it out, after they figured out how to save Stiles. Because Allison was all about prioritizing. It was an Argent family trait. No. It was a Chris Argent trait. And she’d rather take after her dad than her mom or her grandpa or her aunt, considering.
Lydia arched an eyebrow, “I have noticed it, I’ve also noticed a pretty strange tension between the two of you.” She said with a smirk and a knowing look. “Stiles has his odd moments just like any of us,” she commented flippantly.
Lydia was pretty sure that he was just being loyal to Scott and that’s why he tended to give Isaac a hard time. And it was possible he felt mildly threatened by Scott’s new Alpha status and how it would affect their friendship, but Lydia wasn’t about to share that with Allison best friend or not. It wasn’t her place.
Allison rolled her eyes. “You’re incorrigible, Lydia.” Her voice was teasing and affectionate because she loved the other girl like a sister. “And speaking of strange tension...I’ve noticed there’s a great deal of it between you and Stiles, too.” She arched an eyebrow. “What’s that about?”
“Stiles and me?” Lydia lifted her shoulder and tilted her head to the side. “Nothing. I mean well I’m his anchor obviously,” she said logically. “And I’m helping him because that’s what friends do.” That pretty much summed it up not at all. Things between her and Stiles had been different lately and despite the fact that she promised herself she wasn’t going to overanalyze things. She was definitely over analyzing things.
All this time she’d been ignoring things that were right in front of her because Lydia hadn’t thought she was ready to accept them, but now she was thinking she might be.
“Obviously,” Allison acknowledged, watching her intently. “But maybe it works both ways.” With that innocent comment, she suppressed a smile and looked down at the book she’d been trying to study from, fully knowing she wasn’t going to get anything accomplished.
Lydia rolled her eyes. “Mmm,” she glanced down at her nails, she could really use a manicure. Her phone vibrated on Allison’s desk and she reached for it. Lydia scrolled through the message and arched an eyebrow. “Stiles just invited us to go bowling.” She sent Allison an amused look. The last time Lydia went bowling had been with Allison, Scott, and Jackson.
She arched an eyebrow at Lydia, meeting her knowing look with one of her own, then shaking her head. “Well, we aren’t doing very well with the whole studying thing, so, why not?”
Lydia smiled, “I’ll let him know. This should be fun,” she said under her breath as she sent a message to Stiles letting him know they were in. “Do you want to invite Isaac?” Lydia asked over her shoulder.
“Yeah. We shouldn’t leave him out. He’s part of the group now.” Her voice was soft. She worried about Isaac. Worried that he didn’t feel like he was enough to be around them. That he wasn’t just as integral to the group as everyone else. “I’ll text him.”
Lydia nodded. “Good. I like Isaac. I think the two of you are good for each other.” She commented as she closed her book, uncrossed her legs and stood. She was looking forward to doing something fun. It had been a while since any of them were able to take a breath and relax.
Isaac hadn’t been sure he wanted to see his former alpha when Scott told him Derek was back in town. But Scott seemed to think they all needed to try and get along with Derek. To welcome him back. He knew that he’d said some pretty hurtful things to the older werewolf before Derek had left town, and while he may have regretted them, it didn’t mean they weren’t true. Or at least that they hadn’t been true at the time.
But Scott was the alpha now. And his closest friend, aside from Allison. He respected Scott and knew that if Scott believed getting along with Derek was for the best, then it was for the best. It was with some reservations that had him standing on the eldest Hale’s doorstep that afternoon, a pizza box in one hand.
It wasn’t the best peace offering, he supposed, but it was what he could do. He knocked lightly on the door even though Derek probably already knew he was there, and he waited.
Derek hesitated, standing just inside the loft near the door. Isaac. One of the last times he spoke to Isaac he was horrible to him. It was one of many moments that Derek truly regretted. Isaac had stuck by him, been loyal and he’d yelled at him. Kicked him out, even hit him. Derek’s chest tightened. He’d done it to protect him. Kicking him out of the loft had never been about Cora.
It had been about Cali and the other Alpha’s and not wanting Isaac’s blood on his hands. He’d been safer with Scott, which was where Derek knew Isaac would go. But it didn’t change what he’d done and sooner or later he was going to need to answer for the choices he made. And it looked like one of those times would be today.
Derek breathed in deeply, took a few steps forward, grabbed the handle on the door and yanked it open. The sight in front of him made his brows draw together in confusion. Isaac stood there with a box of pizza in his hand. Derek paused, “Sausage and pepperoni?”
“There any other kind?” He smiled, but it was an uncertain, almost nervous smile. He wasn’t sure that Derek would want him there. He drew in a breath and let it out slowly. “Uh, if this is a bad time, I can go. Scott said you were back and I kinda figured maybe…” His voice trailed off and he shrugged, falling silent as he waited for some kind of reaction.
Derek studied Isaac for a minute and then stepped out of the doorway sliding the door open further. “It’s not a bad time. Everyone has to eat right?” He asked as he took a few steps back. “How are you Isaac?” He slipped his hands into his pocket while watching the younger man.
“I’m fine. Good. You know the usual.” He stepped inside Derek’s loft and glanced around, kind of surprised to see that not only were there curtains up for the first time, but there was fresh paint on the walls. He hadn’t been expecting that. He wondered if that meant that Derek was settling in, and actually planning to stick around. Before, he’d always gotten the impression that Derek didn’t really care about that kind of thing. He wondered what had changed in the last few weeks.
Derek noticed Isaac looking around and he saw the same surprise on Isaac’s face that he’d seen on Scott’s. He reached up and rubbed the back of his neck, “I’m just getting around to fixing up the place.” He explained. He finished the walls yesterday and would probably spend his night working on the trimming. Then came the part he hated. Shopping. He needed to get some furniture and maybe even move the bed upstairs instead of in the middle of his apartment. It was something to think about.
Derek motioned to the only table in the loft. “I can grab some paper plates.” He said, “I don’t have many beverage choices. Just water and beer.” He admitted. Derek hadn’t been expecting a guest, though he supposed if he was going to stick around Beacon Hills and try to make a home here then he should probably start preparing for company, not that there was anyone who actually wanted to visit him.
“I should probably stick with water. I don’t think Mrs. McCall would be very happy if I came back with alcohol on my breath.” He smiled faintly and moved to set the pizza box on the table. Isaac watched as Derek headed into the kitchen for the drinks and the paper plates and he shifted from one foot to the other.
Derek made his way back into the room two water bottle in one hand and the plates in the other. His face held an expression of amusement as he set everything down on the table. “I wasn’t offering beer,” he clarified, “Werewolf or not you're still underage.” Not that Derek was too much of a stickler.
“Oh.” Isaac shrugged, a little sheepish. He kinda figured if he’d wanted beer, Derek probably wouldn’t put up much of a hassle. It wasn’t like the guy was a strict rule-follower. Maybe he really had changed. “So uh, what made you decide to come back to Beacon Hills anyway?” he couldn’t help but ask. Scott had only said that Derek was back, not the reasons behind his return.
Derek pulled out one of the chairs and sat down as he slid a plate and water bottle to Isaac. “As much as I hate to admit it, Beacon Hills is home. I’ve got a few things to look into and then, well I guess it’s finally time to make a life for myself somewhere. Here is good as anywhere else.” He said with a shrug and he pulled open the pizza box.
“What’s up with Cora?” He was kind of disappointed that his sister hadn’t returned with him, if only for the fact that he considered her a friend and he didn’t have a lot of those. He waited for Derek’s answer while pulling a slice of pizza out of the box and taking a large bite of it.
Derek arched an eyebrow. “She needed some time to herself.” He admitted, “Though Peter did come back with me. I don’t know if he’s still in town though, I haven’t spoken to him in a while.” Which of course probably meant he was up to no good. Derek reached for a slice of pizza and after he put it on his plate he glanced up at Isaac who was already almost finished with his first slice. Derek swallowed heavily. “I wanted to apologize for what I said to you the night I kicked you out of the loft.” His voice was quiet and gruff. Derek wasn’t used to apologizing, but part of the reason he’d come back to Beacon Hills was to make amends, start over. And that meant fixing what he’d broken. He owed that to Erica and Boyd and to himself. “It was wrong of me to treat you that way.”
Isaac was silent for a moment, genuinely surprised by the apology. He hadn’t known that kind of thing was in Derek’s repertoire. “Yeah, it was,” he agreed, looking up at Derek. He leaned back in the chair, exhaling. “But I kinda get why you did it. I mean I figured it out. If I was part of Scott’s pack, you wouldn’t have to possibly kill me. Right?”
Derek watched Isaac before inclining his head. “I made you, all of you. And I felt responsible for all of you I still do. Losing a member of your pack,” he paused his chest tightening. “For an Alpha it hurts more than you probably understand.” He said quietly. “As a pack you’re connected to each other to a certain extent, but you’re all connected to your Alpha. When you’re in trouble, pain, when you roar...we can feel that.” He was silent for a minute.
“It’s like a physical manifestation of what you're feeling inside of us. And losing Erica, well I was worried you and Boyd would be next.” He admitted honestly. “The Alpha pack was after me and honestly I would have sent Cora packing with you if I thought she would have went.” Derek shrugged. “You were safer with Scott.”
He listened closely as Derek spoke. He hadn’t been aware that an alpha could actually feel when one of their own was in trouble or in pain. And he wondered if it worked that way for Scott even though Scott hadn’t actually turned him, since Derek wasn’t technically an alpha anymore at all. Perplexed, he leaned his elbows on the table.
“Okay so, how does it work with Scott then? I mean, he’s an alpha, but he hasn’t actually created any werewolves himself and technically I’m the only member of his pack unless…” He arched his eyebrows at Derek. “Are you going to be joining us?”
Derek pursed his lips and let out a breath. His face looked like he was tasting something sour, but he kept his mouth shut for a minute. He wasn’t big on questions. He wasn’t big on talking really, but these were all things he probably should have explained from the beginning when turning them.
“You don’t need to create werewolves to have a pack. When I sacrificed my alpha strength to heal Cora, all the alphas I created became Omegas.” He explained. “Without a leader you can’t have a pack.” He paused his brows drawing together, “Well, you can, but not a traditional pack. Like when we were trying to get Scott to join us,” he explained.
“The reason he was fighting it was because he already had a pack. Allison, Stiles, Lydia...humans, but they followed him. They listened to him. He was their leader despite the fact that he was a Beta. It’s not typical, but it happens and that’s why Scott wouldn’t accept me as his Alpha. He’s always been a true Alpha. It’s rare, but not unheard of.” Derek took a bite of his pizza and chewed.
“Now that Scott’s an Alpha, you’re bound to the pack he already created with the humans. But it will be different with you. You’ve accepted Scott as your Alpha and he probably doesn’t even realize the connection that’s already there. It doesn’t happen with humans so it will be new to him. I’m an Omega...for now.” Derek said not really too worried about it despite the fact that he knew Omega’s didn’t last long on their own.
“Well that answered another one of my questions. If Scott actually feels when the humans are in trouble.” He took another bite of pizza, contemplating everything Derek had told him. “For now. So does that mean you’re looking into another pack? Or that you’re considering joining Scott’s?”
Derek studied Isaac’s expression before speaking. “Scott and I are on good terms. I respect him.” He said hesitating, “He asked for my help with Stiles and the ritual. I told him I would help. But I’m not sure what I’m doing pack wise yet.” He told him honestly. “Regardless, Scott knows if he needs help or any of you do he can always come to me. For now I think that’s enough. We’ll see what happens.” He said before taking another bite of pizza.
Isaac nodded slowly, swallowing his bite of pizza and taking a drink of water. He started to say something else when his phone beeped, letting him know he had a text message. It was either Scott or Allison because no one else ever texted him. He pulled it out of his pocket and looked at it, smiling a little involuntarily when he saw Allison’s name as the sender. He arched his eyebrows and read the message. Bowling. He hadn’t expected that.
Derek watched Isaac’s expression change and curiosity got the better of him even though he knew from experience he’d regret asking. “What’s with that expression…” he motioned to Isaac’s face with his hand, “It looks like you ate a rainbow.”
“Uh.” He hesitated a second, not sure how well Derek would take with the idea of him and Allison possibly being more than friends. “Allison texted. Apparently there’s a big group bowling thing tonight.” He tried to sound nonchalant but his cheeks colored and he ducked his head, quickly taking another bite of pizza.
“Oh no,” Derek chuckled and shook his head. He couldn’t help it. The Argents were going to be the death of them all. Though after Allison found out about what her Mother did to Scott, she’d gotten a little better with things, though he was pretty sure she didn’t hate him any less. He hadn’t meant to bite her Mother, it happened and he didn’t really regret it because her Mother was the reason werewolf hunters were feared. She had been ruthless and hadn’t followed the code. But he knew what losing a parent did to kids. Hell, look at what it had done to him.
Derek shook the thought away, that wasn’t something to get into now. He caught Isaac’s gaze the smirk still on his face. “You’ve been sucked in by the Argent woman charm...I’m starting to think they’re werewolf kryptonite not the weapons they wield.” He mumbled. Derek arched a brow as something occurred to him. “Does Scott know?” Werewolves in general were territorial when it came to what they thought was theirs, but Alphas were worse.
“Yeah, kinda.” He let out a breath, rubbing a hand over his face. So far Scott had thrown him into the wall twice over the situation, but he thought Scott was cooling off about it. “I mean, I don’t think they’re getting back together.” Not if the way Allison kept looking at him was any indication. It didn’t mean Isaac didn’t feel a twinge of guilt over it.
Derek nodded and leaned back in his seat. “Be careful with how you handle things.” He said lightly, “Allison is an...interesting girl. At least she’s not psychotic like her Aunt.” He said before leaning forward and reaching for another slice of pizza. There was still a twinge inside of him every time he or someone else brought up Kate.
There was a very large part of him that still blamed himself for his families death. He trusted Kate, loved her despite his families warnings. He had taken her side over his packs, stuck up for her and then she’d betrayed him and killed everyone he loved with the help of her Father and his hunters. Derek had been stupid; he’d listened to his heart instead of his head. After that he promised himself he’d never fall in love again, that he would never give someone that kind of power over his life again.
And then Jennifer happened. Derek swallowed his bite of pizza. That wound was still too raw especially the memories it brought up of Paige. Derek had only loved three women in his life and he’d lost them all, betrayed by two of them. He was very much starting to think he was attracted to the wrong type of woman.
“No, she’s not.” Although he knew as well as anyone that Allison had gone off the rails for awhile, after her mom had killed herself. Isaac popped a piece of pepperoni into his mouth. “You should come with us. Tonight. For bowling.”
Surprise crossed Derek’s face. “Bowling?” he said dumbfounded. “You want me to...bowl?” He asked confused. The invitation was the last thing he had expected and he wasn’t quite sure what to do with it.
“Yeah, why not? You can hang out with everyone and get caught up on all the teen drama and gossip that you’ve missed while you were gone.” Isaac smirked, arching an eyebrow at him and taking a drink of water.
Derek could almost see the challenge in the teenager’s eyes. His eyes turned to slits. “Alright. I will come...bowling. I will bowl.” He said again trying to make himself believe that he was actually going to join a bunch of teenagers bowling. What had his life come to? This was a disaster in the making; he was secure enough in himself to say that he absolutely had no idea how to act in a crowd of people. It had been too long since he spent time with people in setting where he wasn’t fighting for his life. Tonight was definitely going to be interesting.