He couldn't do anything, it wasn't some huge secret, it just wasn't something he wanted to discuss over a simple circumstance such as championship lacrosse game. There were bigger problems, Stiles could taste it in the air, it crackled and ignited and churned though everyone who had the great displeasure to to know. The thought of something terrible happening here, at school, with half the town in the stands, with his dad in the stands, sent a wave of panic and the familiar twitch back through his body. Scott was giving him that look, it was easy for him, Stiles thought grimly, Scott didn't have the same problems that he had. Scott could get shot and heal in a matter of hours. Stiles couldn't even dodge a venomous lizard with emotional tendencies. He had to watch his father in pain, and do nothing. Scott couldn't possibly understand that, not anymore. Too much had happened, so many moments separating the Scott that he was sitting next to on the freezing bench to the one he used to be invisible with. Stiles was too human for this situation. He was a liability. Stiles sighed and watched some teammates practice throwing on the field. Being human is to be vulnerable, to be susceptible, to be weak. Weakness was coursing through his veins, pumping with every beat of his fragile heart, showing its claim on his body in each and every slow healing wound he had generated over the last few weeks. Scott could heal from a bullet in under twenty four hours but Stiles still flashed the scar from where Erica lashed out with a car part, he could still feel the pressure from Matt's sneaker on his throat, choking the air out of him. But he had to continue to hold his breath, like Ms. Morell said, like Matt hadn't done. Stiles swallowed back a nervous laugh, or a stressed sob. He really didn't know the difference, nor did he care much. Either way he was still the weak link in all this.
"Have you seen Allison?"
"No. Have you seen Lydia?"
He had nearly forgotten all about her, hoped she was far away, locked up in her room or at the mall, just anywhere but here. He saw the frown on Scott's face, could practically feel the anguish and worry radiating from his best friend. He hated that things were like this, and that Stiles could only sit on this bench during a pointless lacrosse game and wait for something horrible to happen.
He was in the game. He was actually in the game, as a player, with a stick and a helmet and everything. Stiles' heart was pounding, he was doubting himself more than ever. Sure not being able to fight off supernatural creatures of the night was one thing, but this was lacrosse! This was different, and everyone was here, everyone. Including Lydia, which naturally made Stiles even more nervous and feel inadequate. She was sitting with his dad, who to Stiles looked at least ten years younger, he was smiling, he was proud of him. Something inside Stiles clicked, and he disregarded all the times he had messed up, in this game alone. He forgot about everything else but the ball, his stick, that net. He pretended that he was in a different world, in a different life, where Lydia sitting next to his dad and Scott's mom meant more than it did, where werewolves were non existent, where he could be someone more than himself. Someone stronger, more athletic, maybe a little more brave. Stiles could be anything, he decided as he ran with the ball, down the damp field, towards the opponents goal. He felt as if his heart was going to give out, like he would collapse on the lacrosse field and have to move to a different state because of the sheer embarrassment that was sure to follow.
But none of those things happened. Stiles was standing before the goal and it's large goalie, he was monitoring his surroundings. He had the means and the opportunity. He could do this, he could make a goal, his first goal, ever. He could be every bit as great as Scott, or Jackson, he could do this. But as he looked at the goal getting smaller and smaller in his eyes, any positive thought left him. He was going to screw it up. Everyone was screaming at him, to shoot the ball before he missed his chance, his dad, his coach, Scott's mom, but it was like doubt and fear and worry immobilized him, and Stiles couldn't move. That's when he heard it, her voice, Lydia's. She yelled at him, told him to shoot, told him to score, her voice was filled with excitement and worry, and confidence, but that might have just been Stiles' imagination and with everything he had, he flung the three pound ball into the net, irrupting cheers throughout the stands. And then he did it again, and again until the score board read 11 to 10.
Stiles turned away from the goal, sporting an astonished smile. He couldn't believe it. He had done it. He was happy, truly, truly happy for once in so long. As the clock ran out he basked in the moment, relished it for what it was worth. He wasn't thinking about his best friend risking his life or his father's safety or anything supernatural and complicated. He was thinking of winning his team the championship game, and feeling the yanks, the pulls, hearing the grunts and the yells of pure joy made Stiles feel alive, feel alert, and feel eyes on him. But not just any eyes, not the eyes of his masked teammates, not his batty coach, but her eyes, her bright green eyes that only intensified in the piercing field lights. A smile was stretching her full lips, her body relaxed and clapping, she looked care free and she was looking at him. Stiles stopped jumping, stopped acknowledging his teammates and the cheers and shouts around him, and through the protective bars of his face mask, he looked back at her. Lydia smiled, her hands coming together, resting against her still smiling lips. She was happy, maybe even proud of him. It was a different feeling, being the center of attention. He saved Beacon Hills the championship, he finally got to play, and right now, seeing Lydia staring at him, admiring him, happy for him, the feeling was indescribable. Because Stiles had only dreamed about a look like that on her face, he had only ever imagined Lydia Martin cheering him on, smiling at him, sitting there, next to his dad, like his own personal cheerleader. It was rewarding, it was magical, it was a dream.
So sure, Stiles Stilinski was human, painfully human. He was awkward and always said the wrong thing. But right now he had accomplished something, made the girl of his dreams take notice, and yeah, maybe it was just the high of someone doing something grand, Lydia did enjoy socially acceptable athletic types, but it didn't matter, because she was smiling at him, looking at him, happy, not crying in her car or writing backwards pleas on the chalkboard. She was here, right now, in this moment, and that was enough.
And then the lights went out.