MY OVARIES DEMAND MORE KID!FIC.
So nic and I were talking about kids. And what would happen if Laura had a baby. And what if that baby somehow ended up with Derek in Beacon Hills. And what a shit-show it would be until Stiles decided that NO, DEREK, YOU CANNOT DRESS YOUR NIECE ALL IN BLACK. ALSO, VEGETABLES ARE A THING THAT EXIST. And her name is Haley but Stiles calls her Hales (just roll with it) and then we worked ourselves into a fever about how Stiles, Derek, and Hales would all exist. So. You have been warned. ~
“Stiles.” On the phone, Derek’s voice is low and urgent, loud crashes coming from down the line. A burst of adrenaline at the noise wakes Stiles completely up.
“You okay?” he asks quickly, flailing, his body still half-asleep even though his mind is awake. A glance at his clock tells him it’s after three in the morning. Another crash comes through the line, but this time Sitles notices the thunder and lightning outside his window, sheets of rain blanketing his lawn. Immediately his heartrate slows.
“We’re fine,” Derek says, in the deliberate way that means he’s trying to ask for something and can’t figure out how. “But Hales is scared.”
“Of the thunderstorm?” Now that Stiles listens, he can hear sobbing on the other side, and he bites his lip, thinking about how her big brown eyes fill with tears when she’s upset.
“Yes.” There’s a pause, a tension filled moment, and Stiles can almost feel Derek trying to tell him something without actually using his words. One day, Stiles promises himself, he’s going to break Derek of that habit.
“Do you need Batman to come over and save her…?” leads Stiles, wondering what Derek could possibly want.
Instead of hanging up on him, Derek grunts. “So you’re coming over?”
Uh, okay. “Sure. Just let me get my stuff and I’ll see you in twenty.”
“Thirty,” corrects Derek, right before Stiles hangs up. “Because you’ll be driving slowly in the rain.”
“Right, dude. Whatever you say.”
When Stiles gets to Derek’s house at last, he stumbles into the main area, water leaking out of places he didn’t even know existed. He’s barely wiped the rain from his face when Hales is running for him, her big, hiccupping sobs announcing her entrance right before she bowls into him, wrapping her tiny hands around his knees and grasping tight.
“Sweetheart,” says Stiles, folding down to her level to pick her up. She buries her warm, wet face into Stiles’ shoulder, heaving breaths going in and out of her. When Stiles looks up, Derek is standing a few feet away with a towel, watching Stiles and Hales with a furrowed brow.
“Stiles,” she finally manages to sob out. “You’re okay?”
“I’m okay,” confirms Stiles, patting her back soothingly. “And it’s okay. I’m here now.”
“Okay,” she whispers in a way that makes it obvious she’s doubting his every word. “But don’t put me down yet.”
“Oh, I won’t.” Stiles looks over to Derek again, who just nods at the stairs. “I think it’s time to put you to bed, though. The storm can’t get in here.”
If anything, his words make it worse. “No!” Hales’s grip on his neck tightens, and Stiles briefly wonders if this is how he’s going to go: suffocated by a toddler. “No. If you leave me, you won’t come back!”
Stiles is still watching Derek, which is the only reason he sees Derek’s face tense and his eyebrows dip.
“I have to sleep, too, Hales,” says Stiles softly into her hair, apologetic.
“Sleep with us,” she replies, almost wailing it. “Uncle Derek said I could sleep in his bed tonight, but I can’t, I can’t without you too.”
Across the room, Derek’s eyes widen. Obviously the little booger hadn’t cleared that question with him, first. But it’s not a big deal, Stiles tells himself. It’s not, and truthfully, he doesn’t want to drive back home tonight. It’s already almost four.
“If your uncle says ‘yes’, then I’ll stay,” he says, staring at Derek. Derek stares back, a little snarl rising on his face. If he declines now, he’ll be the bad guy.
Stiles is awesome
at manipulative parenting.
Without a word, Derek starts climbing the stairs.
“Whee!” Stiles shakes Hales in his arms playfully as he climbs up the steps. “Sleepover!” She’s just giggling when a huge crash of thunder hits the house, seeming to shake the floors and walls. Hales screams and ducks back into Stiles’ neck, hiding her face, all of her weight throwing Stiles off-balance, backwards down the stairs.
Before Stiles’ life even has time to flash in front of his eyes, Derek is there, hands on Stiles’ arms to save his balance. Hales is too scared of the storm to register the real near-death experience, but Derek isn’t, his eyes briefly wide in fear.
Stiles stays quiet as they go upstairs, chagrined. Hales is too precious to joke around with.
Derek hands Stiles a too-big shirt that Stiles doesn’t even complain about wearing, even though it smells too much like Derek and makes Stiles’ shoulders look small. While they wait for Derek to get done changing in the bathroom, he and Hales sit on the bed together, Hales losing coherency bit by bit.
“‘m glad you’re here, Stiles,” she says, hugging him. Warmth blooms in Stiles’ chest and a smile tugs at his lips.
“Me too,” he says. “But if you wanted someone to protect you from the weather, your Uncle Derek is the best.” Like he’s been summoned by his name, Derek walks in, his shirt fitting him much
better than Stiles’ does. “He’s the scariest in all of town,” adds Stiles in a faux-whisper as Derek pads to the other side of the bed and gets in. Derek’s lips twist at Stiles’ words, and Stiles wonders what that’s about.
Hales giggles up at Stiles. “He is not! Uncle Derek is really nice. Even though he always steals bites of my ice cream.” With a raised eyebrow Stiles looks over at Derek, wanting to laugh. Derek eats ice cream? Or, better put, steals it from his cute niece? “An’ I didn’t ask you over to protect me. I asked you over so Uncle Derek could protect you ‘n me together.”
Stiles opens his mouth, then closes it. There’s really nothing he can say to the warmth that’s now tingling all the way down to his toes.
On the other side of the bed under the sheet, Derek shifts, giving Stiles and Hales a Look. “Time for bed.”
“Aww.” Hales pouts even as she lets Stiles push her towards the middle, tucking her in a foot away from Derek. Another roar of thunder, a bit smaller than the last, shakes the house, and Hales tenses up.
“It’s okay,” hushes Stiles from his pillow. “Derek is scarier than any storm, and he loves you best. Storms don’t stand a chance.”
She looks over at Derek, mouth curling up, hopeful and unsure, and Stiles feels his heart break.
It’s a few minutes later, goodnights exchanged and Hales out like a light between them, starfishing a fist into each of their chests, that Stiles leans over her head and hisses at Derek in the dark. “Dude, you don’t tell her?”
“Tell her?” asks Derek, aiming for clueless but coming off constipated.
“That you love her.”
Derek sets his jaw and his face darkens.
“Not that it’s my business—”
“Well that’s obviously never stopped you.”
“— but little girls need to be told they’re loved. Every day.”
Derek doesn’t reply. He looks down at Hales, his mouth softening, his eyes drifting over her face, watching carefully over her.
“She deserves that,” Stiles adds.
“I know.” Derek flicks his eyes, which Stiles can barely see in the dark, up to Stiles’ face. He doesn’t seem angry. If anything, he looks lost.
“Just.” Stiles licks his lips. “Try tomorrow, or something.”
Derek’s answer is to curl up around Hales and ignore Stiles. Mumbling another “good night” to the room, Stiles mimics Derek on the other side. The room is cool but the sheets and blankets keep Stiles the perfect temperature, and it’s not long before he’s drifting off, teetering on the edge of sleep.
Right before he finally falls, he thinks hears an “I love you” from across the bed.
The next morning Derek even lets himself smile when Hales makes him carry her down the stairs like a princess.
When Stiles leaves, he’s treated to Derek’s quirked lip, and he thinks, Progress, progress…