“Derek,” Stiles whispered at the ceiling.
“Hmmm,” Derek hummed softly.
“I’m glad you came home.”
“Me too,” he whispered.
Derek sighed, “Yeah?”
Stiles rolled over to look at him; he knew he was testing his limits, so he tread carefully, “I know I said you don’t have to talk about it, and you still don’t if you don’t want to, but…what happened to her?”
Derek rolled over too. His eyes searched Stiles’s as if he could trust him if he only looked hard enough. “We were hunted.”
“Not by Allison and her dad!” Stiles assured him, “They retired. Well, they haven’t really retired, just from hunting werewolves. They’re kind of like vigilantes now.”
“Stiles,” Derek’s eyes pierced him again, “just let me talk, okay?”
Stiles shut up, he could tell this was hard for Derek. “Yeah, of course, sorry.”
“We were hunted. They picked up our trail shortly after we made it out of Beacon Hills. They followed us wherever we went, tailing us all over the West Coast. That’s why we’ve been gone so long. We were trying to lose them.”
“They’d been hunting you this whole time?” Stiles asked incredulous; he couldn’t help it.
“Yeah,” Derek breathed, “There were a lot of narrow misses, and a few fights, but we mostly made it out okay, always staying just far enough ahead of them. But they were relentless, Stiles. Not brutal like the Alphas, but smart, clever enough to lure us into traps we should have seen coming,” he chuckled a little at that, “Kind of like you.”
“Are you comparing me to some psycho stalker werewolf hunters?” Stiles tried to joke because if he was honest with himself, Derek was scaring him.
“They weren’t hunters; they were witches, witches.”
“Shit,” Stiles swore, “what doesn’t exist, seriously?!”
“They were drawn here by what you, Scott, and Allison did to find your parents. But they veered off course when they caught our trail. They followed us out of town and didn’t stop until they’d run us into the ground.”
Stiles was afraid to ask, “Why?”
Derek took a long time to answer. Stiles felt him tense and realized he was trying not to cry. He shifted closer and put a calming hand on Derek’s forearm. Stiles felt him relax a little at his touch.
“It was because we’re born werewolves. It’s apparently really valuable in the magical community.”
“What did they want from you?” Stiles whispered.
“Fur, saliva,” he shuddered, “our fangs. Our claws.”
“Oh Derek,” Stiles moved closer still, so Derek’s head was resting on his chest.
“They use them in spells, potions, hexes,” his voice shook, “Stiles I watched them pull out her claws and her fangs one by one.”
Stiles looked down and caught the dark look that clouded Derek's eyes, "I killed them. I killed them all. I ripped them apart. Their b-blood, it was ev-everywhere..."
“Hey, hey,” Stiles tried his best to soothe Derek’s shaking form, which wracked with sobs, but he had no idea how to help him, “It’s over. I’m here, you’re safe. You’re safe with me.”
Derek looked up at Stiles, tears streaming down his face, “How could I have let them do that to my baby sister? It should have been m-me, it sh-should, should have b-been-”
“Derek,” Stiles cupped his face in his hands, forcing the werewolf to look at him. “It wasn’t your fault,” he said slowly and clearly, “What they did to her was horrible, but you did everything you could to protect her. This wasn’t your fault.”
Stiles released him and Derek buried his face into the younger boy’s shoulder so that Stiles felt more than heard him whisper, “What am I supposed to do now?”
Stiles lowered Derek’s head onto the pillow and shifted so he and Derek were level, facing one another. Without ever breaking eye contact, Stiles’s hands moved under his shirt to Derek’s stomach, ribs, arms, shoulder blades. His fingers traced where he knew Derek’s tattoo swirled across his back. He moved to his chest, trying to cover every inch, to somehow leech the pain away with his touch. Eventually Derek’s eyes fluttered closed and Stiles took it as his cue. He brought himself closer to Derek so their torsos were touching. With one hand on Derek’s hip and the other arm supporting his weight, Stiles placed a feather-soft kiss to Derek’s forehead. He kissed his eyebrows, his eyelids, down the bridge of his nose. He kissed up his jawline, and the skin beneath his ear. Derek gasped and opened his eyes.
“Is this just because I’m crying in your bed?” he whispered as he pressed their foreheads together.
“This is because I missed you,” Stiles whispered back, “Because I hate that you’re in pain and there’s nothing I can do about it. This is because I know what it’s like to lose someone you love, but while you were gone I realized I could never, never survive losing you. This is because you need something good in your life and I just need you.”
Derek’s breath caught in his throat and Stiles pressed his lips to the werewolf’s, firm, but slow, not demanding, just reassuring.
Derek moaned and deepened the kiss. His hand knotted in Stiles’s hair, bringing him closer, and the gap between their bodies disappeared altogether. Stiles’s lips parted for Derek’s tongue and he thought hazily, this is all I need. Stiles’s hands resumed their previous journey, mapping every part of Derek he could reach, as if to commit him to memory, so he could never lose him again.
Derek drew Stiles underneath him and his weight was warm and safe and perfect pressing down on Stiles’s body. Stiles brought his hands up to Derek’s neck, and kissed him passionately, lips and tongues and groans mingling in the dark room. He reached down to the hem of Derek’s shirt and drew it slowly up over his head, sitting up so he could continue kissing the werewolf. Derek soon rid Stiles of his shirt and the feeling of skin on skin was almost unbearable.
“Mmmm, Derek,” Stiles groaned into the kiss, hating himself a little bit, “we’re going to have to slow down soon.”
Derek broke away, suddenly embarrassed. “Sorry, I…”
“No, no, it’s okay,” Stiles assured him, “I just, well, I’m a virgin and things seemed to be moving pretty quickly.”
“I am too.” Derek said quickly, “I mean - for guys. I mean, I’ve never slept with a guy before.”
“Oh,” said Stiles, still flushed adorably from their efforts, “I guess that makes sense.”
Derek picked up on the disappointment in his voice, and stammered, “But I want to! I, I want to have sex with you. You know, if you want to. W-when you’re ready.”
Stiles face brightened and he attacked Derek’s face with his mouth again. Derek nearly toppled over and he chuckled into Stiles’s kiss. “I take it you want to sleep with me too?”
“Very much. So much,” Stiles glanced at the clock, “but maybe for now we could just, um, sleep? Because Scott and Isaac are coming over in like three hours.”
Derek laughed, a real laugh that reached his eyes and Stiles’s heart soared. “Sure Stiles,” he kissed him softly, “I’d love to ‘just sleep’ with you.”
He lowered himself to the bed behind the younger boy, and pulled Stiles against him. Derek kissed the nape of Stiles’s neck and whispered, “Don’t ever let me go.”