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Diligent Note-Taking

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His eyes were on him all afternoon. Two hesitant flickers of interest, barely strong enough to take light, and Rensai allowed himself a smile beneath their warmth. Omare was a delight in these sorts of moods. A viscous churn of conflict, too complicated for a simple thing like him to unpack. Or maybe he could and he just didn't dare to. It didn't matter. Rensai's part in it was the same either way.

He pulled his hair over his shoulder and away from his neck.

The meeting broke while he was grinding more ink, his focus on his notes, and he didn't notice the transition until the other courtiers rose to their feet. Omare was making his requisite excuses - weak ones no doubt, but his sister believed them anyway. Jimaya withdrew amid a throng of valets, leaving Omare and Rensai shut in alone in the low council meeting room. Even Rensai had to acknowledge this wasn't his best work - what was he doing grinding ink for a concluded meeting? But no one would be asking for his explanation.

Omare lingered near the door. Probably shifting on his feet, casting around the room for any reason to leave. Agitated. It took everything in Rensai not to get a better look at it. He added a few more drops of water to his stone and pressed his inkstick into it as Omare drew closer at last.

"My Emperor." Rensai didn't look up from his task. Every time he addressed Omare properly a laugh threatened to choke him, and making eye contact now would surely do him in. "Productive meeting?"

"You wouldn't know. You never pay attention."

"Should I?" Rensai glanced upwards. Color was already suffusing Omare's cheeks. Rensai smiled and didn't wait for an answer. "You look troubled. What can I do for you, Omare?"

"Save the stupid flirting," hed muttered irritably. He was fidgeting in his heavy silken robes. "You know."

"I'm afraid I don't––"

"Shut up. I only ever ask you for one thing. I shouldn't even be asking. Emperors order, not ask."

Rensai raised his eyebrows. The thought heated him from within, low and deep. He'd love to see Omare try it. "That's a bit dark," he said. He abandoned his inkstone and got to his feet. Gaining ground in the battle for Omare's composure was never easier than when he stood too close, looked down on him from too high. "Do you think you could do it convincingly? Doesn't what I want matter?"

Omare's answer was cut off by a sharp intake of breath as Rensai placed a hand over Omare's crotch. He cupped his hand and found Omare halfway to hard already; he gave a low hum of interest and leaned closer.

"Were you thinking of me all meeting long?" he said in his ear. Omare jerked his head away but it only served to bring his hips closer to Rensai's hand. "I was thinking of you."

"I told you to shut up."

"Then save me the trouble," Rensai said, "and order me."

Omare shuddered. "Suck me off." Nearly inaudible.

"What's that?"

"Suck me off," Omare repeated louder, the grit of his teeth threatening to trap the command between his jaws. Rensai feigned sudden understanding and rewarded him by rubbing in light, slow circles.

"Hm. It doesn't suit you. You're much harder to refuse when you ask." But he kept Omare close with a hand at his back, trapping him in the ring of his arms. His escape route cut off, a fraction of the tension left Omare's shoulders: now whatever happened could be Rensai's fault, not his. It freed him.

"Do you remember the rules?" Rensai picked idly at the laces at the front of Omare's pants.


"Recite them."

"Don't touch you," Omare began tightly. "Say your name." He hesitated.

Rensai stilled his hand. "And?"

Omare shifted impatiently. "And thank you."


"When I come."

"Very good," Rensai purred. He dug his fingers into the laces and yanked them loose, taking Omare's cock in his hand. Omare sucked a breath through his teeth - he turned his face away but Rensai guided his gaze back up with two fingers under his chin.

"Don't hide. I want to see that lovely flush in your cheeks."

"I told you to quit flirting!" Omare snapped, burning all the brighter when Rensai squeezed. "Just get on with it!"

"Selfish," Rensai said fondly, and got to his knees.

Slipping his lips around Omare's cock bore no meaningful difference from nearly every other time he'd done it. The first had been pleasantly unexpected – a densely packed meeting room offered a closeness that Rensai couldn't ignore and, to his surprise and vicious delight once the room had cleared, an opportunity Omare couldn't refuse. He'd blushed at the beginning and begged at the end; he'd clearly never been with another man before and Rensai took care to ensure he never forgot the difference. Rensai put their rules in place the second time and began enforcing them during the third, and they'd seen little variation in their dance since then. Poor Omare's life was so dreadfully regimented following the war – it made him excellent at following instructions. Predictable though their routine had become, Rensai still delighted in watching impatient need fight to masquerade as power. Maybe Omare really believed it was. How adorable.

But there was little power to hold onto with his cock so close to Rensai's teeth, and Rensai watched avidly while Omare made his peace with it. His lips parted but he couldn't stand to look for long: he settled for darting glances back and forth, each more reluctant than the last. No. Rensai lifted a hand and snapped for Omare's attention – Omare growled but obeyed. They locked eyes and Rensai rewarded him with a delicate swirl of the head before taking him as deep as he could.

Before long Omare's hands began to shake, clenched tight at his sides, and Rensai had to smile as he pulled back to line Omare's length with kisses. He was panting, looking stunned as though they hadn't done this a dozen times before. What was he fighting so hard against? Was he imagining tangling his fingers in Rensai's hair? It was such an honest expression of self-control, such measured observance of the rules that affection flushed through Rensai at the thought. Omare was an obedient little thing when he wanted to be. He paused to flick his eyes to Omare's again, take his own middle finger into his mouth, then tugged Omare's pants further down and pressed inside him.

Omare's yelp melted into a moan when Rensai took him in again, mouth and finger working in tandem. He wavered on his feet, unsure of what to do with his hands. Rensai's shoulders would offer better balance, but he knew better than to try it – he held them away instead in a gesture that so closely resembled surrender that Rensai growled his approval. He held him deep for a long moment, then sucked back hard and touched a light kiss to the tip.

"I'm going to fuck you one day, Omare."

Shock sharpened the pleasure on Omare's face and he choked on a ragged gasp. "Shut up. What are you talking about?"

"It's true." Rensai dragged his tongue along the length of Omare's cock and eased his finger deeper. "One day you will come to me for more. Hard. Desperate. Perhaps uncertain of how to even articulate what you need. But you'll need it all the same." He crooked a finger inside him and Omare had to clap a hand over his own mouth to keep from crying out, eyes screwed shut. "We could do it here. Lay you out on the cushions, on your back so you can watch."

"Shut the fuck up––"

"No?" He lifted his other hand to tease Omare's balls; Omare's responding whine was nearly animal. "Then bent over your throne. Splatter it with your come so whenever you sit there, you'll think of what you begged me to do to you. What your sister would think if she knew. Or Yujin."

"Stop it, Rensai!"

"Shall I?" He withdrew abruptly and stood. Omare all but collapsed into him, clinging, panting.

"Fuck you, you know what I meant, don't stop, please––"

"I told you not to touch me."

Omare leapt back. He was unstable on his own feet, flushed, mouth open and breath ragged – he moved to grasp his rigid cock but thought better of it, afraid he'd be scolded and left wanting as punishment. Rensai let out a long sigh and regarded him, considering. He wondered if he could talk Omare off – that would be a sight, the young emperor coming untouched and desperate to nothing more than Rensai's voice in his ear. Or he could make Omare get on with it himself. Though the choice between keeping his distance to watch or kissing him through it was impossible to make. Both would be repellant to Omare, and both would prove irresistible to Rensai.

"Please," Omare repeated on a breathless whine, shaking Rensai from his deliberation. He drew close once more and took Omare's face gently in his hands.


"Please." Any hint of hatred or aggravation was long gone by now, bled out by arousal and need. A few moments at another person's mercy made him so pliable, so tractable. "Please, Rensai." It was punctuated by an insistent jerk of his hips, an immature and involuntary impulse. Rensai couldn't suppress his smile.

"Only because you beg so beautifully."

Omare lasted mere minutes longer. Every time they met like this Rensai considered spitting, and every time he changed his mind at the last moment: it was worth it to see Omare stand weak-kneed in front of him for as long as possible, face torn up in mingled relief and pleasure and awe, fists still clenched obediently at his sides as his orgasm subsided. "Thank you Rensai," he murmured over and over. "Thank you, thank you."

Rensai held him in his mouth for a long, thoughtful moment, then stood and guided a boneless Omare into a deep kiss.

Omare choked. He pushed against Rensai's chest, shocked and repulsed by the sudden intimacy, by his own taste on Rensai's tongue. This wasn't in their script. But Rensai held him fast, one hand closed vicelike over his upper arm – he would be an anchor, the only reliable strength left in Omare's body. Rensai took Omare's sound of protest into himself, held it, then swallowed that too. He felt it die alongside Omare's resistance.

Omare relaxed in his grip. His lips parted hesitantly. And Rensai was there to fill him again, steady and huge and deep, smiling through the tentative swipe of Omare's tongue over his. He moved his hand to cup Omare's cheek instead and Omare took the cue: this was different, their usual rules didn't apply. Omare gripped Rensai's shoulder straps and dragged him closer, mouth hungry, brow knitted in whatever tangle of emotions had taken hold of him and made him so desperate and distracted. Distracted enough not to notice the two fingers Rensai had dipped into the well of the inkstone.

Rensai nipped sharply, grinning. Omare jerked back with a hiss of pain, fingers pressed to his bleeding lip, just as Rensai swiped two bold, black lines along the underside of Omare's cock.

"Take that back to Yujin," Rensai breathed in his ear, and shoved Omare away. Omare's outrage was drowned out by his laugh.