Hello, all! Actually venturing on a multi-chapter fic. I'm not sure how long it'll be, but I hope to write consistently and have it finished soon. Written as a request from a user on tumblr, so I hope it's what you wanted and that you enjoy!
WARNING: This story begins after the death of Sheriff Stilinski. I'm so sorry about that. The funeral is discussed for the first couple of chapters, so if you're triggered by any of that then skip ahead to the third paragraph and start there or skip this fic altogether.
This fic is un-beta'd, so if you're interested in being my beta reader, shoot me a message here or on tumblr at .com!
Disclaimer: I do not own Teen Wolf or its characters, storylines, etc. I do, however own the Season One DVD and a can-do attitude. So there's that.
After the funeral, Stiles couldn't bring himself to do anything but sit on the floor of his father's room, staring at the wall across from him. Or what used to be his father's room. Stiles ran a hand along the carpet absentmindedly, letting the tears fall. It had been a well-attended service, distant friends and relatives patting his back sympathetically and handing him casseroles in the parking lot as he left the viewing. The eulogies had been given by his father's coworkers and a far-off cousin. They all sounded sincere, but with the air of exaggeration beneath them. No one had really known him like Stiles. Stiles was all he had left. And now Stiles had no one. He let go of his control and felt himself shift. All the fangs and claws in the world couldn't have saved his father from something as mundane as a heart attack. Stiles had tried every day to protect him, patrolling the forest surrounding their home and making sure the hunters stayed far away. No one bothered them, after all this time. Not since a rogue gunsmen by the name of Gordon Walker put a wolfsbane bullet in his mother and Stiles had run him out of town. He had never felt so out-of-control as that day. It took all of his willpower not to kill the hunter. He learned years later that someone else had done that for him. He tried not to feel guilty about the satisfaction that news had given him. But none of Stiles' efforts had mattered. A heart attack was something he wasn't able to protect his father from.
Three days later, Stiles' careful mask broke. He got dozens of calls from neighbors to check on him. Constant emails from the school guidance counselor asking him to meet her in her office to talk. A visit from the social service to put him in foster care. And that was when it was too much. He hadn't answered the door; there was no need. Stiles could hear their somber conversation from halfway down the street over the roar of the van's engine, and he knew exactly what it meant. And there was no way in hell that he was going with them. What foster parent would understand that their foster child was a werewolf with concentration problems and a guilt complex the size of Texas?
He quickly pulled a handful of clothes out of his dresser and put it into his backpack, along with all of the money in his mattress and a photograph of his parents. Slinging it over his back, Stiles jumped out of the window and landed nimbly on the ground below. He took off into the trees, careful not to shift until the forest was thick enough to shadow him. Where he was heading to, he didn't know. He just needed to get away.
He stopped in motels along the way whenever the need to sleep overtook him, curling up in the scratchy sheets and trying not to let the loneliness swallow him. His sleep was plagued with nightmares of hunters killing his parents, of being discovered as a werewolf, of spending the remainder of his life in isolation. He would often awake with tears streaming down his face and the pillows ripped to shreds.
Weeks later Stiles stumbled through a small town in California called Beacon Hills. It had the crisp smell of the forest and Stiles was drawn to it immediately. A walk through the trees was no crime, and he didn't smell anything threatening within his range. As he reached the heavily wooded area, however, he smelled someone. But not just someone. The scent was too familiar. It had a musk that he could only identify as belonging to his kind. Stiles knew he was smelling a werewolf. Before his instincts could get the better of him, he took off in a rush to follow the fading scent. As he grew nearer, a house came into view. A delapidated mansion, torn apart by time and tragedy. It smelled heavily of ash, but also fresh paint and lumber. Which meant that someone was renovating it. Stiles grew closer, the scent of the strange wolf growing stronger as well. He could tell there was more than one person living there, perhaps a whole pack. Many individual scents intertwined and branched off, and Stiles was taken aback. He could be intruding upon a family, and he didn't want to go where he was not welcome. But Stiles was never one to listen to his own conscience, not stopping in his approach. It smelled too comfortable here to turn back. It smelled like home, which was something Stiles didn't think was possible anymore.
He got as far as the edge of the property when a growl sounded behind him. He whipped around and nearly tripped over an exposed branch. Whoever said that werewolves were naturally graceful was a lying bastard. Stiles quickly regained his balance and finally looked at the source of the growl. He was a few inches taller than Stiles, but at least twice as massive. Muscles rippled in his exposed arms and a vein in his neck looked dangerously close to popping. Stiles had to admit, he was pretty damn hot. Even if he did look close to ripping his throat out. "What are you doing in my territory?" he roared, teeth pulled back in a vicious snarl. He had already shifted, nails elongated into threatening claws.
Stiles tried for an easy smile despite hearing the obvious threat in the other werewolf's voice. "Calm down, dude. Just passing through. Didn't mean to encroach on your domain or whatever," he replied with a wave of his hand. He then held it out and stood up straight. "I'm Stiles," he added. He was met with a sneer and the other werewolf didn't move to return his gesture. "Geez, don't be such a sour wolf. I'm just trying to be friendly here."
The other wolf growled again, rumbling deep in his chest. "If you were just passing through-" he spit out the words like they were acid on his tongue, "-then why were you deliberately moving toward my house?" He stepped closer and his eyes were a deep red as they stared into Stiles'.
"I was curious, there's no need to tear me apart." He quirked an eyebrow, but the other wolf didn't back down. He sighed audibly and added, "You're a werewolf. You can hear that I'm not lying."
Stiles could hear the wolf's heartbeat slow a little, and he knew he was a bit more at ease. "Derek Hale," he grumbled, though he didn't back up. Stiles steeled himself and patted his- Derek's- shoulder with a smile. Derek froze and then took a tentative step backwards. Stiles could hear the heartbeat rise again and he wondered what was wrong with a friendly pat. Clearly someone had some issues that needed working out.
"So am I required to leave now or are you gonna be a good host and introduce me to your pack?" Stiles asked Derek bravely. He was tired of being alone, and he could tell that there was something special about this house, these people.
Derek didn't answer for a long moment, eyes raking over Stiles' slight frame. He sighed again and said, "You touch any of them and I will not hesitate to take you down."
"Trust me. I'm a lover, not a fighter," he replied with a smirk. He then gestured for Derek to lead the way and he took off across the yard. Stiles grinned and stayed close behind him. They quickly reached the front door and Derek strode in first. Stiles followed quickly and could smell that there were only two more wolves in the house. Both were sitting in the partially-renovated living room, whispering quietly to one another. It was quiet enough that Stiles couldn't hear even with his enhanced senses, and that was enough to make him nervous.
Derek cleared his throat pointedly and said, "Isaac, Erica. This is Stiles." Stiles smiled and waved in greeting as two pairs of eyes shot up to his sharply. Well, that didn't look very friendly.