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The Bright Side

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Growing up in the crowded streets of Rio, Lucio could say that he’d had his fair share of good memories associated with the crowd, with the noise, with the pulse of the city pounding despite the crisis that had threatened to destroy everything. Then, there were also moments that within the crowd, he’d seen things that scared him. Things that changed the way he viewed the world, and gave him a different outlook than most. When he was ten he got the talk, something that he already somewhat grasped but now understood much better with the explanation from his mother.

She’d pursed her lips and furrowed her brow before beckoning the small boy towards her. She told him it best she could. It was something he’d never really had the need to know beforehand.

Alphas, strong, powerful, and short tempered. Always dominating, intense, and competitive, yet gentle towards and protective over any they viewed as family, or in the word his mother used ‘pack’. Alphas sired pups and something long ago established was that an alpha would always be attractive in a primitive sense towards one who could best provide them with a way to produce the next generation.

Betas, calm and neutral, always straightforward and logical, they could lean towards either spectrum. Strong and competitive was not unheard of, and yet there were also betas who preferred to be defended then to be the defenders. Of those two, only females could produce children, but they could also sire them.

Omega, loving, open, and supportive. Always letting the alphas and betas take care of business, staying behind to bolster moral, to keep the home, to raise the children they bore for their mates, for both primaries could carry children if they presented as omega. It was facilitated by cruel years following the initial presentation that shifted the dormant insides necessary, allowing for life to grow in a place where it was once barren.

They were valued, she made sure for him to know, all of them were, it was just in different ways. She explained, that’s why his cousin wore pants one week, spent the next in his bedroom, and came out in a sundress mere days later. It was a passage, a right of way, to present a secondary in teenage years, spend the rest of your childhood settling into it, and then move into the world to either seek a mate, attract one, or simply go your own way.

Sounded easy, to Lucio, at the time. He couldn’t see anything wrong with any of the secondaries. He wasn’t one to contribute when his friends during their preteen years talked of growing up to be big strong alphas, or wanting to stay out of trouble as betas. There was even one girl in their group who confessed she associated with omega the most out of them all. They all supported her too. 

Felt normal, back then…to think that alpha, beta, or omega, I’d always be treated just the same.

By certain people, absolutely. His cousin, the omegian one, still played soccer and skated with them, and when he won, no one felt bitter. Some jabs were sent out at his secondary, and the occasional pull of his rapidly lengthening hair, but otherwise, it was no different.

Lucio watched this at eleven years old and figured he wouldn’t mind being an omega, if it meant being treated no worse by the people he cared about. 

He didn’t think about the people outside the safety of home, the comfort of the crowds and the pulsing city.

When he was thirteen everyone around him started presenting, and for the most part, it was as predicted. The girl who’d wanted to be omegian got her wish, along with another boy in their group who’d said he’d be a beta, but he didn’t seem to mind becoming omegian either. Alphas, too, the majority of the rowdy boys with whom he kicked soccer balls through the streets. 

That is, until one day as they were sitting around the scratched up square of concrete they referred to as their field of play, one of the boys who’d been an alpha longer than the rest spoke up.

“What exactly do you want to be?” He’d asked Lucio.

The non-presented boy had merely shrugged.

“I don’t really see any difference with it. Whatever I am, I am, picking something out before it happens don’t really mean much do it?” 

The kid scoffed, kicking at a pebble on the ground. 

“Yeah? Well anything but an omega, am I that right?”

The little gathering all laughed, all except for the one being questioned.

Lucio’s brow furrowed. “No…I wouldn’t mind being an omega.” 

He admitted.

The other few let out barks of laughter. “Yeah, you seem like the type! You’re clingy and love to dance, and you need way to much attention!”

Lucio rolled his eyes. “I don’t think that’s enough basis.” He snapped. 

He didn’t even really like this group, but he’d been bored. However, now he was thinking he’d be better off retreating home for the rest of the day when one of the other kids spoke up.

“You know, omegas are treated worse than anything. They’re basically there to pop kids and clean, right? You’d get mated young, and have no life but the one around your precious mate, and deal with twenty kids all your own. Sounds crappy to me.” 

Lucio’s eye twitched. “You don’t have to be an alpha or a beta to have a life. If I present an omega, I’ll do whatever I want otherwise. If I wanna get mated, I’ll get mated, I don’t, then I won’t!” 

It was now that the girl next to him spoke up, and she’d been quiet otherwise.

“Omegas don’t really get the choice, they listen, and bow their heads, don’t they?” 

Lucio grit his teeth, stood up, and stalked off, heading towards home.

After this, he started looking beyond his pocket of the world at the treatment by secondary, and was disgusted at the sight. 

That girl was right.

Omegas didn’t get a choice. At least, not in this city. 

With his eyes now open, he could see the way omegas were treated. Pushed around, harassed by those without class, and always put on a pedestal while at the same time being thought of as lowest on the food chain. At the same time, he also saw omegas who were treasured, loved and taken care of by their mates.

There were also the ones who denied the norm, pushing themselves to be apart from the rest. Altogether, while he was now scared of the prospect of being an omega, he didn’t exactly despise it. He could deal with a few bullies and pervs, certainly. If anything, it would make any achievements of his all the more awe-inspiring if he beat the odds both against him and within him. 

That is, until he was out walking a few weeks after the conversation, and stumbled into a horrific situation. Something he’d never realized was happening all this time, right under his innocent nose. he’d stumbled across a young man collapsed in a alleyway with fever burning him from the inside out, gasping, trembling, sobbing and trying to make himself curl into nothing. There was a girl with him, she seemed to be smaller then him, though he couldn’t tell with the omegian boy curled into himself as he was. He could tell by her stance, by the way she was glaring down at the people before her. She was an alpha, a small one, but an alpha all the same. 

Then he was her omega, Lucio concluded.

The horrible part was what happened next. There was a group of at least six, three female and three male, alphas all of them. 

Lucio backed up from the opening into the alley slightly. 

Rogue pack…

His mother had always told him to stay away from those people. The ones who walked like a pack but without the kindness that came with packs like his own. Without children or many omegas of their own. 

He felt sick as he watched them easily overpower the poor little alphian girl, pinning her up against the wall as they gathered around her delirious omega, who seemed to come back into the situation to know what was going on.

He managed a decent fight for an omega in heat, at least. 

Lucio felt bile rise up in his throat. 

People will do that to any omega who has bad luck one day…take away any freedom they had…hurt the ones they care about…

He’d screamed for help that day. He run until his lungs burned and found the kind shopkeep on the corner who had a pack of his own. They’d descended upon those rogues in a fury of fists, throwing them out with sheer number, and saved the couple who’d been having such bad luck. The sight of the girl apologizing, holding the boy against her chest in order to help him cover the fact that his shirt had been torn so badly even his undershirt was ripped. The guilt and pain she felt for being too weak to protect him, for forcing others to do her job, was what really convinced him. 

He never wanted anyone he loved to be subjected to something like that because of him

As he all but sleepwalked back home, he made his decision. 

Anything. 

Please.

Make him anything but an omega. 

The very next week, he woke up to cramps knotting at his stomach and fever splitting his skull, he felt like he was being burnt alive, with ants crawling beneath his skin, and yet he couldn’t stop shivering.

I don’t want to be an omega.

And yet, that same week, he had his very first heat all the same.

 

Six years later.

 

He woke up, not with a jolt, or with any sort of aggression, but the memory of the weird dream still left a sour taste in his brain.

His mess of dreadlocks spilled over his face as he sat up, groaning as he raked his fingers through them, pushing back the thick strands all hanging heavy from his head after the night’s sleep.

He flopped back to the pillow and let out a low groan.

I don’t want to go to breakfast…

His days on the Watchpoint were minuscule compared to the veteran members. However, he’d lived here long enough to know that if he didn’t get up soon, then he’d go hungry for the morning. Going to Hanzo’s murderous practice sessions without any food in his stomach was just plain suicidal. Letting out another groan, he dragged himself from bed and started groping around for wherever he’d tossed his lime green scrunchies the day before.

He didn’t really need to put his skates on until practice time, and he didn’t intend on putting on his sonic pulse harness or anything else until then, but he just didn’t feel like walking this morning. So as he more or less rolled without even taking strides down the hallway, he let his mind drift back to his nights sleep.

That dream had dragged back up another issue he’d been wrestling with for quite a while.

To put it simply, he was in the closet as an omega. He’d been on suppressants since his name had become famous worldwide, making sure his secondary didn’t get equal attention. In most situations he would say he was confident, nonchalantly so, even, however, in the midst of becoming a hero for his people, and showing spirit and positivity with his music, something about his secondary just scared him.

Not intimidated, not worried, it downright scared him. 

Which is why when he realized he was about to blow up onto the international scene, he ordered suppressants of dubious origin online and they hadn’t let him down yet. They probably weren’t the healthiest things to be taking, but Lucio knew better than to try and get an appointment off base to get a proper prescription. If he tried that, the chances of him being caught or them somehow showing up on his medical papers were way to high. Under the table was best, in nondescript boxes he received every other month that he always lied and said were care packages from his family in Rio. The actual care packages he got on every major holiday and sometimes just randomly were at least ten times it’s size, but no one seemed to bother were commenting on it. 

“Good morning.” The slight edge of a robotic voice came and he looked to the side to see Genji coming up behind him. Genji was under the impression that they were fellow betas, and Lucio had no intention of correcting that assumption anytime soon.

“Define ‘good’.” He replied, knowing well he probably looked like death after the rough night filled with memories.

Genji chuckled. “I take it you didn’t sleep well?” 

Lucio stifled a yawn as he gave a slight push to turn left at the next corridor, then just kept right on rolling.

“Not the best. Just need a cup of strong coffee and a hearty breakfast, then you’ll have me back to my usual loud optimistic self.” 

Genji hummed, the sound rattling slightly through the vents of his armor.

“I surely hope so, because if not my brothers training from hell really will be hell.”

With this, they entered the mess hall. A few minutes after Lucio had sat himself down at a corner table with a large plate of waffles and an even larger mug of steaming black coffee, Tracer blinked into view at the opposite end of the hall.

She scanned the area and, once she spotted him, she came rocketing in his direction, time blurring as she blinked yet again to his side, blue light quivering from the harness that kept her anchored into the present.

“Did ya hear!?” Her cockney accent bit into the previous quiet, but Lucio didn’t really mind, he really needed something to wake him up.

“Hear what?” The Brazilian questioned, leaning his head on his palm.

Lena clapped her hands excitedly. “We’ve got a new member! A mech pilot from South Korea!” 

Lucio smiled, knowing how much the Brit loved making new friends. 

“Great, can’t wait to meet’em.” He said before he took another draught from his mug.

See, Lena was one of the best reasons that he come clean and give up his secret. She was an omega, and she wasn’t the only one on base either. There was Mei, Pharah, Jamison and Hanzo, yes, the archer, the terrifying yakuza heir himself, was omega. All of them were.

Five omegas on base, and not one of them was ashamed of the fact.

Ok, maybe Hanzo was a little bit, that was was beside the point. 

The point is, here he is. 

Too scared to admit he was an omega. 

Really, by now, he’s not sure why he’s so terrified, but the prospect of just stopping his repetitive order of suppressants was just not something he found within the realm of his ability.

The one thing he regretted was the fact that this meant he’d likely become unattractive for a mate by the time he finally did get up the courage to stop hiding. He’d never fall in love and have that picture perfect courtship and matehood, like Lena had with Emily, or Hanzo and McCree. 

He’d just stay a fake beta with no interest in relationships. 

As Lena chattered on and on about this pilot, honestly all Lucio had been able to gather from the words was that the new recruit was a woman, he knew he’d never do it. He’d never pluck up the strength to be the way he felt inside, and by now, pretending felt so normal that it wasn’t even uncomfortable anymore. 

It just was, and that was that. 

He’d never felt truly attracted to any alphas or betas anyway.

Not in that way he’d read in stories, where the alpha was instantly smitten and suave, and the omega was tripped up with nothing more than wanting to make the alpha happy. 

Too be good for them. 

Lucio cringed inwardly at the thought.

I don’t understand how you can have such an overwhelming need to be ‘good’ for anyone…I mean during heats a long, long time ago, I sort of got that inkling, but only the ‘need’ part. Never that desire to please.

He’d never felt that way about anyone. 

So, Lucio decided, he’d never court, and he’d never get mated.

He made that decision in his mind, cemented in right next to the one about never revealing his secondary to Overwatch or the world at large, and was done with it.

Not even a full minute later, Winston walked in accompanied by a female alpha with long brown hair, lazy full brown eyes, and a pistol at the side of her skintight bodysuit. She blew a large bubble from plump pink lips that matched color of her bubble gum. When it popped her tongue flicked out for but a moment to draw it back into her mouth. 

Winston cleared his throat, the gorilla’s glasses sliding down ever so slightly, gathering everyones attention.

“Everyone, this is our newest agent, Hana Song, in the field you’ll refer to her as D.Va."  

“Nice to meet you all!” She chirped, flashed a peace sign and tilting her hip.

Yes. 

Less than a minute ago Lucio had sworn an oath of celibacy to himself.

Staring at this alphian girl, he could have no idea that she was going to shatter it all to pieces.