Derek Hale was thrown against the table in his loft. The Hunters that had caught him and his uncle, Peter, in South America had found his Beacon Hills, California loft, having waited until after dark to break in. Their leader, Severio Calavera, pumped a shotgun and then pointed it at him.
“Now, my friend, do you want to tell us about La Loba?” The Calaveras had wanted him and Peter to tell them where a she-wolf was and they seemed convinced that the two surviving Hales knew where she was. Peter had even briefly lost a finger before they were rescued by Braeden, a woman sent by an Alpha named Deucalion. An Alpha who had actually tried to kill him several weeks before their capture. Derek reached up and wiped away the trickle of blood from the corner of his mouth from the sucker punch.
“Where’s the she-wolf?” In truth, there was only one she-wolf he knew. And there was no way in hell he was revealing her location after having thought her dead for six years and then giving up his own Alpha status to save her life. Derek tasted blood and spit as he walked towards Severio. The other Hunters with him pointed their own guns at him.
“You should just go ahead and kill me,” he said defiantly. “Because you’re never going to find Cora,”
“Cora? Who the hell is Cora?” Severio asked, confused. If they weren’t after his sister, then what she-wolf were they after? A smoke canister flew over their heads. A flash went off, momentarily blinding Derek and he dropped to a crouch and moved to the right, completely clueless on what was going on. The Hunters turned and started looking for the intruder. He knew it wasn’t Chris, he knew the former Hunter’s scent well and he wouldn’t have used a flash bang around him. Derek looked around for the intruder as well as the room filled with smoke. The Hunters were shouting to each other in Spanish. Derek heard an unfamiliar growl. The werewolf searched the room, but the smoke didn’t allow him any more visibility than the Hunters, but caught a vaguely familiar scent. Suddenly, one of the Hunters went down with a cry of surprise.
“Light ‘em up!” Severio shouted. The Hunters started shooting. Derek stayed low to avoid the bullets, he had no doubt they were laced with wolfsbane, all while trying to see who the intruder was. Whoever they were, they were quick. Even Kali, the worst Alpha in the Alpha Pack that had descended on Beacon Hills with the intent of forcing him and Scott into their ranks, wasn’t that fast. One by one, the Hunters were felled. When all quieted, Derek slowly stood. He whipped his head around at the sound of a shotgun being pumped.
“This has to be a dream,” he muttered when he saw who had killed the Hunters. Blond hair. Leather jacket. White shirt. Tight jeans. Shotgun pointed directly at him. She smiled and pulled the trigger. Derek didn’t dodge in time and he took the buckshot to the stomach. He fell to his knees, the pain bringing him somewhat out of his shock. He knew then that this was no dream as he looked down at the wound.
“It’s real,” he whispered. He looked up at her. “You’re real,” Kate Argent walked closer to him, shotgun at her side. How was she alive? Peter had ripped her throat out after discovering that she’d been the one who’d set the fire at the Hale House that had killed all but four of the Hales and put Peter into a six year healing coma. Even her own brother had turned against her because she’d broken the Argents’ honor code of hunting only werewolves that had taken a human life. Many of her victims had been human, not all the Hales had been born werewolves after all.
“That’s right, Derek,” she said. “If seeing me is a surprise, watch this,” Her eyes turned green, almost like a cat’s, her skin turned blue and fangs extended as she growled. Derek’s eyes widened. Peter had been an Alpha at the time of Kate’s death. There were two ways he knew of to turn a human. The Bite and a scratch that went deep enough. Kate had survived because of Peter’s claws. And now she had returned to finish Derek off, like she had been planning to do that night had Chris not stopped her werewolf killing spree. He had a stray wonder if this was who the Hunters had been looking for. Kate extended her claws. Just as she pulled her arm back to slash Derek, a crashing sound brought both their attentions to the skylight as something crashed through it. A bright light blinded Derek and Kate hissed as they turned away from the source. Derek fell to his side, realizing the buckshot had been laced with wolfsbane. He heard what sounded like a body hitting the metal door before something grabbed him from behind.
“Hang in there,” a woman’s voice whispered. “Just hang in there,” Derek’s world started going black as he felt himself being lifted into the air.
“He’ll be fine,” Dr. Alan Deaton said. “I don’t know what happened, but he’s lucky to have survived,”
“How did you know he…?” Scott McCall trailed off.
“I got a call from his phone but when I answered there was only silence, but I could hear the dogs in the background. He was lying next to the back door. Whoever dropped him off here knew to call me,” The two were standing in the lobby of Beacon Hills Animal Clinic. Derek was on the exam table in the next room, recovering from his brush with death. Scott had worked for the veterinarian for years before being bitten by a werewolf nearly two years earlier. The irony was not lost on Scott that Deaton worked on supernatural creatures when he wasn’t working on pets.
“You look disturbed,”
“Who brought him here? And how did they know to bring him here?” Scott shook his head.
“The only other one that I know of in Beacon Hills is my sister, but she would have called me from her own phone, not Derek’s,” Deaton thought for a moment. “Do you know if any other wolves are in the area?”
“She wasn’t a wolf,” Derek looked like death warmed over as he braced himself against the doorframe.
“You shouldn’t be up,”
“I’m healing now that the wolfsbane’s out,”
“Wait,” Scott said. “She?” Derek shook his head.
“I didn’t see her. I just heard her voice,”
“What happened?” Deaton made Derek sit down in the chair behind the front desk.
“When Peter and I took Cora back to South America, we were caught by a family of Hunters, the Calaveras, after we dropped her off. They kept asking for the location of a she-wolf they called La Loba,” Scott looked up at Deaton. He shook his head. “We thought we’d thrown them, but they broke into my loft,” Derek looked up at Scott. “Have you heard from Peter?”
“Because we have a huge problem that goes by the name of Kate,”
“Kate? Kate Argent!?”
“The very same,”
“Peter killed her! He ripped —,”
“Peter was an Alpha, Scott. The Bite isn’t the only way to turn someone,”
“Yeah. She almost killed me. What do you think she’ll do to Peter?”
“We need to find him before Kate does,”
“Kate? As in Chris’ psycho sister that burned Derek’s family alive, tortured him, and then tried to kill both of you before Peter ripped her throat out?” Scott sighed. He and Stiles Stilinski were leaving school. It felt different without the Twins and Isaac Lahey around. A part of Ethan seemed to have died with Aiden and Isaac was looking for a way to keep the nogitsune, Void, from ever escaping again. The two had even left town together. All that was currently left of Scott’s pack was Stiles, a Banshee, a kitsune and a werecoyote. And on most days, Derek and Peter. The rest of the time, the two Hales were their own pack. When they weren’t fighting with each other. There seemed to still be bad blood between the two over the death of Derek’s older sister.
“The same Kate,”
“How in holy hell is that possible?”
“Do you also remember how Derek slashed open Peter’s throat?”
“And then Lydia used Derek to resurrect him. So unless she managed to control another Banshee to use an Alpha to resurrect her, how in the hell is she even alive?”
“I don’t know. She went after Derek, intent on killing him. But something stopped her. Derek never saw her,”
“He said something came through the skylight. He couldn’t see features because she was surrounded by a bright light,”
“Kinda like the flash bangs that Chris and Allison used to use,” Stiles saw the look in Scott’s eyes at the mention of his first love. She’d died protecting Isaac while they were fighting to save Stiles from the nogitsune, finding in the process that the Oni, demon ninjas that Void stole from an older kitsune, could be killed by silver. “I’m sorry, Scott,” Scott shook his head.
“He said she whispered in his ear and then he passed out after that,”
“I guess we had just better be glad it wasn’t the rare wolfsbane,”
“No kidding,” Kira Yukimura, Lydia Martin and Malia Tate joined them.
“What happened at Derek’s loft?” Lydia asked.
“He was attacked by Hunters. Someone dropped him off at the clinic and called Deaton from his phone,” Stiles and Malia looked at Lydia.
“What? It wasn’t me,”
“Whoever it was saved his life,” Scott sat on his dirt bike and retrieved his helmet. “I’m heading to work. Do you know where Derek went?”
“He’s either at your place or mine. He can’t go back to the loft or his house,”
“He has a house?” Malia asked.
“If by house, you mean half burnt, abandoned and taken over by the county afterwards, then yes,” Stiles said. “He has a house,” Scott gave him an exasperated look.
“I’ll see you guys later,” He revved up his bike and drove off.
“We are seriously screwed,” Peter Hale had finally answered his phone and Derek had caught him up to speed with their problem.
“That’s an understatement,” Derek was currently sitting in the Stilinskis’ living room. Stiles’ father, who happened to also be the sheriff of Beacon County, wasn’t home and this and the McCall house were the only two places he felt halfway safe at. “Not only does she have access to weapons that will kill us she now has claws and fangs to go with them,”
“Why now? Why show up now?”
“I don’t know. I don’t even know how she even survived!”
“You know you really should be more selective with your girlfriends. Two out of three have been psychotic,”
“Shut the hell up!”
“I do wonder how Paige—,”
“Don’t you dare talk about Paige!”
“Calm down, Derek. Didn’t think I could rile you like that still,”
“Don’t mention her again,” Derek growled. They were fifteen when Paige died, thanks to Peter’s suggestion that Derek find an Alpha to turn her. It was why his wolf eyes were blue and not yellow.
“So what are you planning on doing?”
“She’ll be looking for the Alpha,” Derek paused. “Oh, crap,”
“Scott’s the Alpha now. She’s going to go after him,”
“Derek!” Derek hung up on Peter and bolted out of the room.
Derek pulled up to the animal clinic. He saw both Deaton’s Subaru Forrester and Scott’s bike outside, along with a midnight blue Mustang he didn’t know and assumed it was a client. He took a deep breath and only smelled Deaton, Scott and someone he was unfamiliar with. He made himself walk into the clinic. Normally, the bell on the door would alert Scott that someone had come into the clinic. But this time, a young woman who looked to be slightly older than Derek was sitting at the front desk. He stopped when she looked up. She had dark hair and green eyes. Their eyes met and she smiled. She reminded him so much of Paige.
“Hi,” she said. The smile made her eyes dance. “How may I help you?” Derek recovered and gave his own smile.
“Actually I’m looking for Scott McCall,”
“And you are?”
“I’m Derek. I’m a friend of his,”
“It’s alright,” Deaton appeared in the doorway leading to the exam room. “He can come on back,” The woman opened the door leading to the back, breaking the Mountain Ash barrier in the process and allowing Derek to pass through. Because of Deaton’s position with the old Hale Pack, he’d made sure to protect himself from rogue supernaturals by remodeling the clinic and putting in wood made from the Mountain Ash tree, a powerful supernatural deterrent, in the walls. It protected Deaton and anyone else from werewolves and other creatures that meant them harm. Scott was genuinely surprised to see him when he walked into the back with Deaton.
“What are you doing here, Derek? Kate—,” Scott started to say in a low voice.
“Kate’s after the Alpha,” Derek explained quickly. “She has to be,”
“You think she’ll come after me?”
“She came after me because she knew that I knew who the Alpha was. That’s why she was torturing me in the tunnel under the house. If she’s one of us now, I’m sure she’ll know an Alpha when she sees one,”
“What do you mean ‘if’?”
“She didn’t look like a wolf when she shifted,”
“The shape you take reflects the person you are,” Derek nodded. He’d said the very same thing to Scott when they were trying to figure out who the kanima, a lizard like creature that was sent on a killing spree, was.
“Exactly,” Deaton rubbed his chin.
“What exactly did she look like when she shifted?”
“Her skin turned blue. Dark blue. And she had green eyes,”
“Was there a pattern?”
“Darker around the edges of her face,”
“It actually sounds like one of the werefelines,” Deaton said.
“But she was scratched by a werewolf, wouldn’t that make her one?”
“I bit Jackson and he became a kanima,”
“We’ll finish this conversation at my house,” A moment later, the woman from the front desk walked into the back.
“Everything is ready for in the morning. I’m going to head home,”
“Thanks, Isabel,” Isabel glanced over at Derek.
“Oh, Isabel. I’m sorry,” Scott said. “This is my friend Derek Hale. Derek, this is Isabel Sullivan,”
“Beacon Hills’ resident bad boy,” Isabel said with a smile. “Nice to finally be able to put a face to the name,” She held her hand out and Derek shook it.
“What exactly have you been saying about me?”
“You earned that one on your own,” Derek gave Scott a look and Isabel laughed. It was a beautiful laugh that matched her smile.
“I’ll know next time to just let you back. Bye, Dr. Deaton, Scott, Derek,” Isabel gave him another smile before turning and leaving the room. Derek turned back to the others to see them both with amused smiles on their faces.
“I think she liked what she saw,” Scott said with a grin.
“Shut up,” He wouldn’t say it out loud, but he was curious about Isabel. About the woman who reminded him of his long dead girlfriend.
Chris Argent slid open the door to Derek’s loft. He’d called him a few hours earlier and told him what happened. Glass, shell casings, a silver canister and Hunters lay about the floor. Chris slid the door shut and noticed the dent. Something hit the heavy metal door hard. Three Hunters were down. He turned one over and recognized him as one of Araya’s, the leader of the Calaveras, a family of Mexican Hunters that also served as enforcers of the Code.
“What the hell were you doing here?” He picked up one of the spent shell casings, the Argent seal stamped into it. The same seal that had been stamped into the casing Derek had shown him after the Twins were attacked in the woods while looking for a missing Lydia. Chris reached into his inside jacket pocket for his phone when he heard the latch being lifted. He drew his gun and spun around, still crouched. An older, Hispanic women with dark hair cut short was standing in the doorway. Chris’ jaw set and he sighed.
“Sending your people into my territory, now, Araya?”
“I told you, Christophe, our families cannot abandon our duties lightly. Now the lobito has killed my men,” Chris knew she was referring to Derek.
“This wasn’t Derek’s doing,”
“You are on a first name basis with the monster,” Chris stood, his .45 still in his hand.
“Derek isn’t the monster you’re looking for. He’s just a tool for you to use to get what you want,”
“So you admit he is a monster,”
“He never was,”
“Why are you defending him? Hunters do not defend werewolves,”
“Nous protégeons ceux qui ne peuvent pas se protéger eux-mêmes,” Araya looked over at him. “We protect those who cannot protect themselves, Araya. That is my Code now,”
“A foolish one. And one that got your daughter killed,” Chris’ nostrils flared.
“The Code you follow got the rest of my family killed,” He stepped close to Araya. “If you go near any of the wolves or do any Hunting here, you will find yourself in my crosshairs,”
“All I want is La Loba,”
“You’re too late. The last she wolf here was murdered by another pack. Now get out,” Araya only smiled before she turned. She stopped at the door and turned and looked at Chris again.
“I will be returning to collect my men,” She then left, sliding the door hard enough for it to slam shut. Chris replaced his gun to its holder before he pulled his phone out and dialed Derek.
“The loft is a mess. You were right about something coming through the skylight. Whatever it was broke all of the glass,”
“Whatever kind of creature she is, I know she’s female,”
“I thought you said you couldn’t see it?”
“I didn’t, but she did speak to me,”
“Where are you right now?”
“I’ll meet you there. There’s something I need to show you,”
“And I have something I’d rather tell you in person,” Chris hung up and sighed before heading up to the roof. He searched for any clues to Derek’s mystery woman. He caught sight of something on the ground and approached it. Chris crouched down and examined it. He reached down with a gloved hand and touched what looked like mostly dried tar. Then he realized who ever rescued Derek had escaped using the roof. He knew wolfbaned werewolf blood when he saw it. But why the roof?
Derek took the casing from Chris.
“This has the same crest as the one I found in the woods after the Twins were ambushed,”
“Precisely. That crest belongs to my family. It doesn’t make sense. The only one that liked using the shotgun was…,”
“Kate,” Derek finished. “Which is what I wanted to tell you in person,” Chris gave Derek a puzzled look.
“Are you saying Kate was in your loft?”
“I’m still having a hard time wrapping my head around it myself. I didn’t think it was real at first. Until she shot me,”
“Impossible,” Derek sighed.
“It should be, but somehow Peter’s claws turned her,”
“Are you saying my psychotic sister is a werewolf!?”
“Not exactly,” Scott said. “Deaton is looking it up but he thinks she’s a werefeline. He’s researching what kind,” The expression on Chris’ face changed.
“I think I know who La Loba is,”
“Wait, you think they’re chasing Kate?” Derek asked.
“They have to be. She was here attacking the Twins before the Hunters broke into your loft. And then she conveniently shows up at your loft,”
“She was going to kill me. I think she came back for revenge,”
“A few nights before she died, she caught me and started torturing me looking for Peter and Scott. She had every intention of killing me, but Scott helped me break free on the night she died,” Chris looked over at Scott and he nodded a confirmation. “She was going to kill both of us that night,”
“Which explains why I didn’t see you until after the fight,”
“By the time I had her bullet pushed out of my chest, you were out cold, Kate was dead and Scott was challenging Peter in order to protect Allison,”
“You think she came back to kill the three of you,”
“I believe so,”
“I’m not going to let her,” He placed a hand on Derek’s shoulder. “She’s not going to kill the only reasons I’m still in Beacon Hills,”
“You weren’t kidding when you said you didn’t have much stuff,” Michelle Montgomery said, sitting on the bed in the second bedroom. Isabel only had a duffle and laptop bag.
“I moved around a lot,” Isabel only offered. “When you move around a lot, you tend to not collect a bunch of stuff,”
“How often did you move?”
“I think the longest I stayed in one place was two months. I’m really hoping to make Beacon Hills my last stop. I’m really tired of relocating all the time,”
“Glad you quit that job. Although I have no idea why they never offered you a position at their headquarters,” Isabel shrugged.
“Their loss,” She pulled out her laptop and set it on the desk. “Thanks for agreeing to let me be your roommate,”
“Living in a hotel sucks. I think you’ve lived in enough hotels,” Isabel smiled. She’d been working at the clinic for a couple of weeks now. Michelle’s father owned Beacon Hills Residency Hotel, where she’d been staying since arriving in the Northern California town and she had met Michelle there. The two hit it off instantly and Michelle offered to let her move in when she found out that Isabel was actually living in one of the long term rooms. “So what do you think about Dr. Deaton?”
“He’s a cool boss. He always has great advice for his clients and so patient. Scott really knows his way around animals. All of them seem to submit to him, like he’s an alpha or something,”
“Scott’s always had a way with animals. Before my dog died, he was always with him. The day he died, Scott sat with me as I said goodbye. Dr. Deaton said that Scott spent a lot of time with him,”
“He really loves his job. That’s for sure,” Isabel started to put away some of her clothes. “I got to meet one of Scott’s friends today. And he was a looker. Those eyes of his…,”
“Sounds like somebody already has a crush. On jailbait,”
“He looked like he was in his twenties,” Isabel thought about those olive colored eyes again and smiled to herself.
“Did you get his number?”
“No,” she paused. “Should I have?” Michelle chuckled.
“Did Scott at least introduce you two?”
“He did. His name is Derek,” Michelle’s grin faded.
“Derek? Derek Hale?” Isabel turned to her friend.
“Yeah. Do you know him?”
“Looker or not, that is one man you should steer clear of,”
“He dated my best friend in high school. Hold on,” Michelle walked out of the room. A moment later she came back with a framed photo of two teenagers. One of the girls was a dark haired, dark eyed girl with a mole under her left eye and a beautiful smile. “Her name was Paige. She had everything going for her. I think she would have become a famous cello player if she hadn’t met Derek,”
“She was in love with him. She didn’t hang out with him at school. Neither one of us liked his friends. They were a bunch of assholes. Derek could have had any girl at school. He was on the basketball team and we were champions. All the girls wanted to date a guy on the basketball team. But Derek chose Paige,”
“So a popular boy dated your best friend,”
“It wasn’t just because he was popular. The Hales were once well respected in Beacon Hills. Everyone loved Talia, Derek’s mom. They had a huge family. They did seem to have a rivalry with the Argents, come to think of it,”
“Back to why you hate Derek for dating your best friend,”
“One day, Derek slips her a note asking her to meet him at the school that night. I didn’t think it was a good idea, but she was so in love with him that she went anyway. A couple hikers found her body in the woods a week later,”
“Derek killed her?” Michelle sighed.
“No. She had an animal bite on her side, scratches from claws and a broken neck. The cops figured that she went through the woods on her way to the school to meet Derek and was attacked by a wild animal,”
“But you blame Derek because that was who she was going to meet,”
“Yes, I do,”
“And you’ve hated him ever since, haven’t you?”
“I did feel sorry for him when he lost almost his entire family in a fire about seven years ago,”
“Last year, his sister was killed by a mountain lion and his last girlfriend disappeared after a series of brutal murders. She’s probably dead too,”
“What makes you think that?”
“Everyone he ever dates, dies. So you steer clear of Derek Hale,”