THINK TO ME, LIKE LOVERS DO – 3.4k
“Come on, Derek, just let us in, okay? We can’t help you if you don’t let us in!”
Scott banged on the loft door again, the metallic clank echoing around the spacious room, but Derek did not get up to open it. Instead he stayed pressed against the wall of windows, as far away as he could possibly get.
“How would that possibly help, Scott?” he called back. “The closer you are, the worse it gets!”
Even from this distance he could still hear whispers, brushing up against his mind, thankfully indistinct enough to be ignored for the moment. Earlier, in the sorcerer’s lair, the voices had been loud and persistent and completely inescapable at close range. This was better. Obviously it wasn’t a perfect solution, but at least he was no longer hearing things he didn’t want to hear.
Normally, Derek liked to think of himself as a cautious person. Maybe not in all aspects of his life, but on the whole Derek prefered to think before he acted and thereby not act in stupid ways. So what the hell he had been thinking toying with unidentified magical artefacts found in the home of the malicious sorcerer they had spent a week tracking down and eliminating, he couldn’t say. Judging by the suddenly-audible thoughts of everyone around him in the moment the pendant had started glowing and whistling, he hadn’t been thinking at all.
So now here he was, behind the locked door of his loft, hiding from anyone and everyone whose mind he might involuntarily invade. Because that was his luck.
“We need to figure out what exactly is going on,” Scott argued in that annoyingly reasonable tone of his. “If Deaton can determine what curse it is—if it’s even a curse! It might not be! But if he can do that, then he can work on reversing it. But he can’t do that from all the way out here.”
Derek gritted his teeth against a snarl. He didn’t want to be within a mile of anyone else right now. He didn’t want to hear what other people thought of him; he had long had his suspicions on that matter, and the last thing he needed was confirmation of those depressing facts. But Scott had a point. If he didn’t want to live the rest of his miserable life as an unwilling telepath, Deaton was his best shot.
“Fine,” he bit out. “But for the love of all that is holy, Scott, try to keep your mind off Allison. ”
The mental images Derek had from the ten seconds between the onset of the curse and when everyone else had realized what was happening had scarred him for life.
With every step he took toward the door, the voice in Derek’s ear got that much louder, strangely light and insubstantial in a way that was hard to define but made it obvious even without seeing Scott’s closed mouth that the words weren’t being spoken out loud.
I don’t think about Allison that much, do I? Just because her hair smells good and she was wearing that shirt today with the — like the blue one better, it makes her look like — probably stay over at her place tonight if her dad doesn’t try to shoot me again — need to take milk home to mom, though, don’t forget —
Derek yanked open the door and immediately backed away, hoping that even a few feet would make the thoughts less demanding. He was thoroughly caught off guard to see Deaton standing quietly at Scott’s side; he couldn’t hear a single thought from the man. When Derek turned his attention on him, he just got a very strong impression of a brick wall.
Deaton smiled that cryptic little smile of his, like he was the one reading minds now.
“A mental block,” he said. “A technique for shielding the mind, perfected through years of practice and meditation.”
“Like Occlumency?” Derek asked.
“Not unlike it,” Deaton said easily. “Sadly, not something that can be picked up by novices in a few hours.”
Well, there went his last hope.
Derek let himself be tugged down onto his own couch by Deaton and sent up a prayer of thanks when Scott took the hint to not crowd him. That didn’t stop him from catching stray thoughts— really should get some curtains or something, this place is depressing — smells like sad in here, god, I hate chemosignals —but it was better than a constant deluge of them.
There was some poking and prodding, some following the light exercises, and some sort of obscure, extrasensory magical goings-on before Deaton sat back with another almost-reassuring smile.
“It’s not a permanent spell,” he said, “nor a complex one. However, it is one that requires the source to be destroyed.”
“The source?” Derek asked. “The sorcerer is already dead. Why am I still being subjected to this?”
“By source, I mean the artefact in which the curse was contained,” Deaton clarified. “Luckily, we have the artefact on hand. Now it’s only a matter of destroying it.”
“How long should that take?” Scott asked.
“Shouldn’t be long,” Deaton said, standing up and dusting off his lab coat. “A week or two at the most.”
“A week or two?” Derek repeated, horrified.
Don’t know why he’s so upset by that, we go weeks without seeing him anyway — kind of a hermit, honestly — oh god, he can hear me, can’t he, fuck —
“It’ll be fine,” Scott said bracingly, and Derek had a strong urge to punch him in the face. Luckily, Scott seemed to sense it and started hastily backing up toward the door, thumbing over his shoulder. “Deaton will get you fixed up in no time! In the meantime, I’ll just get out of your hair.”
“Please do,” Derek muttered.
The silence, when Scott and Deaton were gone and the door shut firmly behind them, seemed emptier than it usually did, but Derek was grateful for it nonetheless.