Misha sighs so hard he can feel his chest ache from the effort. Rolling his eyes, he polishes off his can of Coke and without glancing up from the table, through a round of rubbing at the bridge of his nose, he rattles off the same old speech. The one he's spit out variations of since he was seventeen:
"Yes, I'm an Omega. No, I've never been knotted. No, I did not ask you to be my roommate as part of some convoluted scheme to get you into bed and get your knot in my ass. Nothing personal, Jensen. I'm sure your knot is lovely, for people who are into it. But I'm not into that, and even if I were, I'm not like that. No other Omega I know is desperate or manipulative enough to pull something as underhanded as that. If it's an issue for you on any kind of level, does it help to know that I take my pills like clockwork? So at least the biological side of things won't be a problem?"
The worst part here is Misha can't even blame Jensen for putting him in this situation. Six months and six heat cycles now—three for each of them. They've lived together through that much without this getting close to being an issue. Jensen's never even noticed when Misha's been in heat… but Misha got stupid and left his pills out on the coffee-table. And now he has to deal with all of Jensen's questions.
He's blushing, all hot and sick and pink, as he forces himself to look Jensen in the eye, and something cold drops into Misha's stomach. Makes him shiver with the sole thought, Dammit, I thought we were past all of this bullshit. Not even on the bigger, societal level of everything. Society can hardly get past the ridiculous ideas that all male Omegas are gay and that all Omegas are the spineless, sniveling sort of submissives. Society has a hard enough time accepting that some Betas are asexual, and they don't have the same biological stupidity as Alphas and Omegas, or the preconceptions that goes along with them.
When it comes to expecting that, someday, people will comprehend the idea that not all Omegas have taken a knot by the time they're twenty, much less by the time they're nearing thirty? That not all Omegas even want to do that, and not just because they're straight guys or lesbians? Yeah, no. Misha would sooner put his money through a paper shredder than bet on that ever happening. Cut out the middleman and get everything over with.
No. Right now, Misha's disappointment rests entirely on his work friend-turned-roommate. On how Jensen has this expression like he's just found the last unicorn or some invaluable historical treasure buried in their building's backyard. On how, as he finally pulls his chair back and sits down opposite Misha, Jensen's blinking and scrunching up his whole face like Misha just proposed spending a holiday hunting vampires at a nudist colony. On how he's seeing That Look for the umpteenth time in his life because, once again and right when he was getting comfortable, Misha's the bright, shiny freak, sticking out from the rest of the world at a sore-thumb angle all over again.
Misha knows That Look too well. Jensen doesn't even need to speak. He might as well have PT Barnum in his head, shrieking, Come one, come all and see the magical asexual Omega!
After too much silence from Jensen and too many moments filled up with bemused staring, Misha wants to run for the hills. Instead, he stands up, sets the kettle on the stove, and gets busying himself with dinner, with heating up last night's leftover lasagna to go with his tea. He can't sit here and handle how Jensen's looking at him, and he can't run because maybe Jensen's going to turn his upstairs brain back on and decide to participate in the conversation, but at least Misha can redirect the nervous energy. At least he doesn't need to just sit there and let Jensen observe him.
He's crumpling up the aluminium foil when Jensen finally remembers that he can't communicate with Misha telepathically: "But, like… how do you have a boyfriend—how do you have an Alpha boyfriend—if you're straight?" he says, and were he anybody else (except for maybe Jared—maybe), Misha would hear sarcasm where there isn't any. "Unless he's like… Richard's not trans, is he? Because it's cool if he is. Like, 'some girls have dicks and dudes have vaginas, get over it,' and all, but… is he?"
It takes an incredible amount of restraint to just put the lasagna pan into the oven. Misha wants to bang his forehead into the wall until he can't feel anything. But since the clean-up would be atrocious and this would probably just exacerbate everything, he takes a moment and a few deep breaths. Tries to clear his head of all his cheerful morbid fantasies because Jensen's just curious and he's not trying to be hurtful and of course he assumed that Misha meant to come out as a straight male Omega, because part of being an Omega is wanting to get fucked into the mattress, so every Omega must be a sex-starved mess.
Which isn't Jensen's fault, if he's even thinking that, because it's society's fault, because society is fucked up and stupid and sometimes, people don't mean things that are the verbal equivalent of stomping on Misha's windpipe. They don't know any better. They need to have the flaws in their thinking pointed out in a calm, reasonable fashion so they can wake up and stop unwittingly perpetuating designationism. Misha will just be down here underneath their boots, waiting for that to happen.
"Well, if he were, it wouldn't be my place to tell you," Misha finally starts, leaning against the counter and crossing his arms over his chest. Trying to keep his voice even while he struggles to shake off the desire to pick a fight with some behemoth Alpha twice Jensen's size, just so he'd actually have to work at taking the jackass down. "And if he were, it'd still make me bi or otherwise not-straight, because he'd still be a man. It just so happens that he's not trans, and I'm sure his knot is great too, but… I wouldn't know, because I've never taken it."
"Yeah, no, I kind of guessed that from earlier?" Jensen says, with a shrug like, what? I pay attention when you talk… most of the time. "You just didn't really strike me as the, 'saving it for marriage' kind of guy?"
"I'm not saving jack for squat—especially not for some outdated social contract that legally and considering how rarely I've been in relationships with women? I probably can't enter into in most states anyway. I've never taken a knot because I've never wanted to, and I've never wanted to because I'm just not into that. The whole… sticky, complicated, business… thing. It's like avocados for me, okay? It's great for other people, but I don't want any—"
"Because knots make you break out in hives and then your throat closes up unless we grab the epi-pen?"
"Not in my experience, but I also don't really want to risk it just to find out?"
"I'm pretty sure you can't be allergic to knots, though?" Jensen furrows his brow and actually closes his eyes to think this over. Like the extra effort spent processing information from his eyes is too much for his brain. "Not even if a guy eats a lot of guacamole and then there's, like… can there even be residual avocado in some guy's jizz?"
And the results make Misha wish punching a window wouldn't land him in the emergency room.
"Okay," he huffs. "This isn't working, new food analogy time… You know how some people are raised vegan, or their parents are hardcore Jewish so they keep kosher really strictly? And then they grow up, and they could make their own choices about whether or not they want to eat a bacon cheeseburger, but they just don't want to? Like, they could, and they wouldn't take enjoying bacon cheeseburgers, or steak, or shellfish or whatever away from other people… but it's not something they want for themselves?"
He pauses, but only waits long enough for Jensen to nod before bringing it all home: "That sort of feeling, Jenny? …That's how I feel about all of this stuff. About the knotting, and the taking it, and what the Hell does going into heat even mean on an objective level, because I'm pretty sure the mainstream definitions out there don't include any heat cycle I've ever had to go through… None of that is really me? I'm not interested in it. I've never felt drawn to any of it. And I've never really felt like the dominant ideas of anything going around about the stuff include me anyway, so it kind of works out for everyone?"
Misha sighs and combs his fingers back through his hair, and waits a moment before figuring that it's never come to his rescue before, so the earth probably isn't going to save him by swallowing him whole. Stupid bastard planet. "D'you understand what I'm trying to say, Jensen?" he says and hugs himself tighter.
Jensen thinks about all this for a moment, then guesses: "So… you're not straight? Or you're straight but you like dick, just not dicks with knots on them? Because you're scared that they'll make you break out in hives and need to reach for the epi-pen? And then something to do with vegans who keep kosher, and knots are like your bacon cheeseburgers, and you feel excluded from something?"
If he doesn't break down crying in the next ten minutes, Misha's going to rip into his chest and tear out his own heart. Just to get rid of the slowly mounting frustration with fucking everything. He'll try his best to keep it on the linoleum instead of spilling on the next room's carpet.
"Well. You're right," Misha sighs and digs his fingers at the headache kicking up against his temples. "I'm not straight—at least we're on the same page, there. But I'm not gay, either, and it's not about whether or not dicks have knots, Jensen, it's just… It's not about dicks or vaginas, either because—"
"Because you're bisexual? Because that's not really a secret or anything—I mean, you're open enough that Jared's figured it out and he's kind of the King of Obliviousness? And I don't get what it has to do with you being an Omega or not into knotting or—"
"It's relevant because I'm not bisexual, Jensen! I'm not sexual at fucking all—I'm not into that. I'm just not interested. How many times do I have to find some different way of saying that I'm fucking asexual before it sinks in for you?"
Jensen blinks at Misha, and shrugs. "Well, you could've just tried that?" And because he's decided to be an overgrown twelve-year-old, he adds through an impish smirk and far too much snickering: "And, uh… is it just me, or, like… does being a, erm… fucking asexual, like… kinda defeat the whole, uhm… point of being asexual, or whatever?"
And thank the noodly appendages of the Flying Spaghetti Monster for having the kettle start screeching, for giving Misha an easy way out of this evidence in favor of the assertion that Hell is other people. Sighing, he busies himself with the tea instead of with indulging Jensen, and just to make sure he has the last word, Misha says:
"I'm not actually a virgin, and it's really… It's all a good deal more complicated than that, but I don't really feel like getting into it right now, if that's not too much to ask. So, on another note entirely: Jared mentioned something about kidnapping you to Paris sometime in the near future? Any truth to that statement?"
For Paris's sake, Misha hopes not. Two oversized, ridiculous Alphas in love, tromping up the boulevards and speaking broken French with Texas drawls? It sounds fun, but only from an outsider's perspective.