A/N: Okay just to clarify to everyone I don't have an eating disorder, but I tried to write this accurately for the character. I want to say I did a fairly good job writing for it, but sometimes I'm bad at gauging my writing haha. Let me know if you think it's bad because I want to improve my writing skills so feedback is important to me. Enjoy everyone!
Disclaimer: I do not own Teen Wolf or any associated characters. This is a work of pure fiction.
Summary: Isaac doesn't want to tell his alpha about this - he doesn't want to tell him his magic bite hasn't cured him entirely. The young beta continues on unnoticed for so long, it almost surprises him when a pack-mate finally shows an interest in his condition. WARNING: this story deals with ANOREXIA, please be safe children.
Special thanks to AwesomeActress1001 and Sass-Bot for Betaing this story :)
Unnoticed Hunger by FlyingNymphLady
Derek's not dull; he just doesn't have time for teenage werewolves, which is why Isaac isn't surprised when he misses the signs. In fact, part of him is relieved; he doesn't want to tell his alpha about this - he doesn't want to tell him his magic bite hasn't cured Isaac entirely. The young beta continues on unnoticed for so long, it almost surprises him when a pack-mate finally shows an interest in his condition.
Peter notices; he's not in charge of a pack of newly bitten wolves. He notices the lighter look in Isaac's build, the hollowing of his cheeks, the blander look in his eyes. The older beta doesn't confront Isaac about it, but he does shuffle more food onto the boy's plate at meal times, prodding him with an elbow until he's eaten more than he wants.
Isaac doesn't know how to feel about Peter's concern, but he knows he hates the look Peter gives him when he exits the bathroom, his stomach much lighter than when he went in. He tries to avoid Peter for a short while, cutting classes at the end of the day so he won't see Peter waiting for him in the parking lot. He opts to run home on the preserve trails, telling Derek he's working on his form. Derek doesn't have time to listen to Isaac's petty troubles; Isaac knows because he remembers how his father used to get when he told him about his problem.
Things are better now for sure; Isaac is an unbound kid, no longer oppressed by an abusive father, but he isn't free. No, he's chained to his old life still, unable to move forward past the memories of his father's torture. Late at night, Isaac will start awake, his stomach rolling onto itself, the empty feeling in the pit of it, its growls resonating like his father's angered bellows.
Isaac knows what his body wants from him, but he can never meet its demands. It scares Isaac, but his stomach doesn't demand food from him like it used to. Now, it's quiet most of the time, only coming to life when he's under times of extreme duress. Knowing what's happening to him terrifies him, but he can't bring himself to ask for help; he just can't admit his failure. Shrinking, fading away, it's easier. It's what he's been doing almost his whole life. He can't bring himself to stop now.
One night, when the nightmares rack into him, Isaac is startled awake to find someone lurking in his room. He freezes, watching the shadowed figure approach the bed, but he doesn't move, his wolf telling him the mysterious person is part of the pack; they are safe. The bed dips as the other wolf enters it. Isaac smells his scent now and recognizes the other wolf's aroma. Peter?
He doesn't say anything when Peter wraps him up in his arms; it helps regulate his shaking. Isaac can feel Peter's hands roaming over his ribs, but the gesture doesn't seem sexual, nor does the hiss of pain when Peter finally finds his chest hidden amongst several layers of clothing. Over the past few months it's been harder to stay warm, so Isaac's taken to wearing multiple layers of clothing to bed, both to keep warm but also to hide his showing ribs from the pack. Peter's fingers press down almost painfully as he hugs the pup to him, and Isaac would be afraid of bruising if he wasn't a wolf.
That night, though, Isaac actually manages to get back to sleep fairly well, warm for possibly the first time in weeks.
The next morning Peter's not in his bed, and Isaac wonders for a moment if it was just one of his crazy dreams again, but Peter's scent radiates from beside him and Isaac knows last night was real. Coming down the stairs, Isaac's senses are assaulted by the smell of various breakfast items. None of the pack notices his lack of appetite - or so he thinks.
A plate drops down in front of him, and he hears Peter's low, throaty growl vibrate seemingly next to his neck when he tries to push the dish away. Derek gives them an odd look but doesn't comment, and the rest of the pack is too immersed in their hunger frenzy to take note of the passing interaction. Isaac eats a quarter of the pancake and a few bites of the bacon strips next to it, but he can't manage anymore after that. He glances over to Peter, and the older beta's face is hidden, but Isaac thinks he can see a small amount of satisfaction brimming on his lips.
Isaac stops running home on the preserve trails shortly after the encounter, finally accepting the car rides from school. Boyd and Erica are always the first ones to pile in the car, but Isaac doesn't mind, as he starts climbing into the empty passenger seat in the front. Sometimes Derek picks them up, but more often than not, it's Peter. Isaac isn't really sure why Peter shows any interest in him, but if he's being honest with himself, he thinks he secretly enjoys the attention, even if it's coming from a resurrected, half-psycho beta. Any interest is better than none, right?
Training sessions with Derek are becoming increasingly difficult for Isaac. It's taking his body longer to heal, and he can't handle the rough treatment Derek gives him during training. One day, Peter comes out to watch the newer betas practice, but Isaac feels his eyes intently trained on him the entire time.
Peter walks over to him after the lesson ends and offers him an energy bar. Isaac would try and refuse it, but he knows from prior experience how futile the attempt would be. He scarfs down the whole thing, much to his surprise, and his stomach seems overly full to him, but he doesn't exactly feel sick over it and Peter's proud expression brings a shy smile to his lips. Peter leaves him briefly, walking over to Derek, and they share a passing of words. Isaac's too caught up in in Boyd and Erica's play fight to notice. He doesn't join them, though, his fractured rib still mending.
"You'll be training with me from now on." Isaac jumps at Peter's voice, but he nods and follows him back to the house. He's still not sure why Peter's showing any interest in him, but he continues to enjoy the attention, following the older beta like a puppy. Isaac would have felt silly if the other man hadn't given him reassuring touches every so often, his gazes making Isaac feel wanted, like someone cared about what was happening to him.
At dinner that night, Peter forces more food on top of Isaac's tiny portions; the boy doesn't finish it all, but he eats more than he has in weeks. Peter gives him a small smile, and Isaac can't help but feel pleased with the older beta's reaction. Looking down at his plate, he sees there's still over half of his meal left. He tries to force more down his throat, but he feels himself gagging against the food, choking it down with every bite.
After two more bites Peter gently places a hand on Isaac's thigh, puts down the fork, and looks over to Isaac silently. "If you're full, don't push it. You did good today."
Isaac smiles timidly. "I'm not sure if I'm full or not, but my stomach doesn't want anymore," he replies.
Peter doesn't inquire any further and Isaac feels grateful. Their voices have been so hushed the rest of the pack hasn't heard them, though they are getting a few peculiar looks from their pack-mates. Pulling his hand away, Peter leans back to his own plate, finishing his meal with ease. Isaac shudders as he watches him, the thought of eating that much revolting him, and he's disgusted with himself.
Isaac's starting to get used to Peter's arms around him when he goes to sleep. He's come to rely on Peter's warmth to keep him from shaking. No one talks about their mixed scents in the morning, but the pack glares fiercely at Peter. It's not his fault, Isaac wants to tell them, but he can't - not without telling them why they share his bed at night, why Peter's always shoving food toward him. He's only trying to help.
A week passes and Isaac feels as if a rock is living in his stomach. Logically, he knows his body hardly looks any heavier, but inside his mind Isaac sees a huge bulge in his abdomen; he feels fat and ugly.
Just like your dad always said you were.
Peter watches him like a hawk, and whenever Isaac makes any movement that could even be considered unsatisfied, Peter is there to rest a hand gently against him, bumping his shoulder lightly as they walk together. It's an odd relationship, but it's the only one Isaac feels comfortable with right now.
During a training session, Boyd and Erica - well, mostly the latter - complain about Isaac's "special" training, but Derek promptly cuts them off, rewarding them with an hour more of training. The two younger betas grumble, but they comply with their alpha's command. Isaac feels sick about the whole thing; he's nothing "special". He knows Peter's only trying to help him, but it's causing his pack-mates to bicker with one another and he's not worth it.
Peter leads him off for their usual session, keeping almost constant contact with Isaac as much as possible. They set away from each other when they reach the training grounds, each walking off to their respective starting points. Peter comes at Isaac first; his blows aren't ones placed out of pity, but they certainly don't have the same force one of his old training sessions would have, and he's grateful. Seeing a chance, Isaac slashes upward with his claws, surprised by the bending of the nails, none of them hitting their mark properly. Isaac wonders if it really happened, but he sees Peter's worried expression and he knows it did. He feels weak, fat, pitied upon, and fought over. He hates it. He hates himself. He's angry with Boyd and Erica for mocking him, he's mad at Derek for treating him differently, and he's mad at Peter for giving a damn. No one ever has before, not even himself.
Launching another attack, Peter is forced to throw him onto the ground a bit harsher than usual because Isaac had surprised him with the attempted fight. Isaac winces as he feels his bones clatter against the earth, nothing cushioning his fall. He breathes in a pained gasp, but Peter is soon beside him and holding his hand, black veins draining upward into his arm. The older beta places his hand underneath Isaac's back, pulling the pain out of him while he helps Isaac sit up. The younger beta feels foolish; Peter had done nothing but help him to get better and Isaac had just tried to attack him. He wasn't mad at Peter; Isaac was mad at himself for letting himself become like this in the first place. He was supposed to be a superwolf these days, but his claws were so soft they couldn't even pierce flesh.
A few nights later, Isaac overeats and doesn't have time to excuse himself before he's rushing to the bathroom, expelling his stomach's contents in the porcelain container. Erica rubs his back as he finishes vomiting into the toilet. He feels her flinch slightly when she touches his bony spine, which is sticking out unnaturally from his back. All of the pack helps him to bed after Erica insists he rinse the lingering smell out of his mouth. Isaac's not sure how comfortable he is with all the pack in his bed, but Peter's the first one to curl up around him and Isaac doesn't hesitate to fall asleep to the sound of steady heartbeats.
It's the most nerve wracking thing to know that everyone knows his problem, but they all try and help him in their own special way and Isaac doesn't feel quite as distraught as he thought he'd be. Peter's still the one he leans on the most, but Erica's playful chatter and Boyd's careful play is beginning to affect Isaac in the right ways. He doesn't feel like skipping meals the way he used to; in fact, he almost looks forward to them. He's nearly finishing them now. He's not sure if it's because he's a werewolf or not, but this new side of himself seems to shine with the rest of the pack. He feels like the bite is finally starting to heal him properly. Derek's surprise hugs do exactly as they say, but they don't make Isaac jump like they first did. In fact, he thinks he might be starting to like them.
Isaac's gained almost twelve pounds and he's feeling better than he ever thought he could. He knows it's not as much as it could be, but Isaac feels pretty damn proud of himself. Part of him knows his pride has been rubbed off from Peter. The older beta hasn't stopped doing any of the things that he has been, but the pack doesn't glare at him like they did before. Now they know the truth: he's only helping Isaac.
Isaac sleeps contently that night, not needing Peter's warmth but enjoying the companionship nonetheless. Peter smiles as he runs his hand along Isaac's stomach, feeling the less defined rib bones on his sides. Before he drifts off to sleep, Peter hears Isaac whisper into his pillow, "Thank you for everything."
- End -