"Do you like Minseok?"
The question strikes unexpectedly, like the sudden gush of wind that blows past him, sending a chill down his neck and shoulders and up his cheeks as he turns to Lu Han, slightly taken off-guard. "What?"
"I don't know," Lu Han says, shrugging noncommittally. Baekhyun searches the expression on his face, but can't quite place what it means, so he turns back to face the river, eyes on the Hangang that seems to always flow so peacefully, its surface shimmering under the sundown sky. "Your pheromones are always so," a halt as he seems to ponder, "heightened, when he's around."
As the wind slows to a light breeze, Baekhyun can smell the freshness of dirt and grasses that grow around the basketball court. His butt hurts from where he's perched on the hard wooden bench. Baekhyun frowns. "I don't like Minseok."
Minseok has left just five minutes ago, along with Yixing because they were heading for the same bus stop. Baekhyun decided to stay, because there wasn't really anything to do at home—that was why he decided to go out and watch the three alphas play basketball in the first place, anyway. Besides, the skyline of Seoul backdropped with the bright hues of the sunset has always been something Baekhyun finds pleasure in watching. Lu Han told them he was staying, too. He didn't say why, but now, Baekhyun knows exactly why.
Lu Han makes a small, shocked sound at the back of his throat, like he wasn't expecting Baekhyun to not have a crush on Minseok—whatever that's supposed to mean—but he quickly recovers. "Yixing, then?" he guesses, less carefully this time, like he's only asking for the thrill of it.
The look on his face when Baekhyun turns to check speaks otherwise, though, like genuine curiosity, and something else that Baekhyun can't quite place. "No," Baekhyun answers curtly, thumbing at the drawstring of his sweatpants. The questions are making him feel a little agitated.
"Then why," Lu Han wonders aloud, voice laden with confusion, "but who..."
The sky is getting darker, the shades of orange and red now replaced with a darker shade of blue, fading into a darker navy. Lu Han smells of sweat, but he also reeks deliciously of his distinct alpha scent and Baekhyun wants so much to smother the oblivious as hell human beside him in smooches forever.
Maybe Baekhyun should have fallen for a more straightforward alpha, like Minseok, or one who actually has a handsome smile, like Yixing. Lu Han's jaw looks dislocated whenever he laughs and it makes him look a little silly sometimes, and, gosh, why does he have to be so freaking blind to Baekhyun's (albeit discreet and very rare) shows of affection every single time?
Baekhyun brings his legs up and hugs his arms around his knees to keep himself warm as the wind gets stronger and ruthless, freezing his exposed ankles.
"Oh," Lu Han says, brows knitted like he doesn't really get it still, and can't entirely believe it yet, has a hard time wrapping his mind around the very simple person that is Byun Baekhyun. (Well, okay, maybe Baekhyun isn't the most uncomplicated person ever, but still.) "You mean, I'm," a pause as he frowns in thought, "You..." Baekhyun watches the fiery battle that is a thousand of facial expressions trying to fight over Lu Han's face, waits patiently for Lu Han to continue. "But you've never..."
"Dunno," says Baekhyun, shrugging. "You never asked. What is there to tell?"
Baekhyun isn't—has never been—blind to Lu Han's intentions whenever he openly flirts with Baekhyun. Even Minseok and Yixing and the rest of them know how much Lu Han adores Baekhyun, and they know that Baekhyun feels the same way toward Lu Han. The omega in him wants to submit to the alpha in Lu Han as per instinct, but more than that, the human heart in Baekhyun yearns for Lu Han to be his, would spend a lifetime with Lu Han if he could.
And he can. Except Lu Han is too much persistence and never enough heed, and Baekhyun is playful and open when he wants to be, not when he needs to be.
"Then," Lu Han says, a determined edge to his voice, always sounding so undeterred and strong. It's a huge contrast to his pretty countenance, the delicate features that make up the beauty that is his face. And Baekhyun finds it, as with all that is Lu Han, charming as hell. "What about me?" Another pause, not as hesitant as it is cautious. "Do you like me?"
Fine, maybe Baekhyun has been playing a little (read: a lot) hard to get, and it's not completely right to blame it all on Lu Han if Baekhyun hasn't been playing it fair himself. He doesn't even need to stop and think for an answer, or some witty remark. "If you weren't so bad at distinguishing scents maybe you would've realised it sooner."
Baekhyun isn't looking at the view before him anymore now, legs still bent and arms still enveloping his knees but his face turned to face Lu Han. He watches as realisation dawns in him, the shift shown clearly on his face as his eyes widen almost comically and he gasps.
"For real?" Lu Han exclaims, mouth ajar in some kind of disbelief as he reaches out to take Baekhyun's hand in his, but instead starts at the sheer smoothness of it, looking down at it and caressing the palm and fingers. Baekhyun gulps down a whimper and holds back the urge to guide Lu Han's hand somewhere else, or maybe reach out with his own hand to touch Lu Han... somewhere else. "You have pretty fingers," says Lu Han, breathing out softly.
"See, this is why you're terrible at picking people up," Baekhyun says even as his heart pounds maddeningly hard in his chest at the roughness of Lu Han's palm against the back of his hand, the pads of Lu Han's calloused fingers pressing onto his own daintier ones.
If Baekhyun isn't already in love with Lu Han, he would certainly be by now.
"But you always smells so good around Minseok, or Yixing," Lu Han says, pouting. And it's almost adorable, even if alphas aren't supposed to pout. Baekhyun retracts his hand from Lu Han's grip and reaches out to smooth the wrinkles between his brows. He didn't mean anything by it, only doing it as some tiny, sweet gesture, but Lu Han's response catches him absolutely off-guard. He takes Baekhyun's hand in his and pushes his face into the palm, arranges it until he's nosing at the inside of Baekhyun's wrist, breathing in his scent.
Baekhyun's breath hitches in his throat. He doesn't bother correcting Lu Han anymore. He can tell him that later—that Lu Han is the one who can make Baekhyun's pheromone level skyrocket, definitely not Minseok or Yixing or anybody else, just Lu Han. "You smell nice, too," Baekhyun manages to say, the omega in him preening contentedly at the alpha's undivided attention.
Lu Han hums, pressing a kiss to Baekhyun's wrist before bringing their hands down. He doesn't let go of Baekhyun's hand, and Baekhyun quite likes it, having Lu Han's fingers around his wrist in a fond, warm grip.
Lu Han frowns, then, like he's realised something. "You never quite noticed my attempts to flirt with you. It's not exactly my fault," he says thoughtfully, looking up to raise a pointed brow at Baekhyun.
Baekhyun has to resist the urge to sigh in built-up exasperation. "Of course I do," he splutters. "You're just horrible at noticing me noticing you, and—" he halts to a stop as Lu Han's brow continue to arch, the telltale of a smirk forming on his deceivingly delicate face. It's Baekhyun's turn to frown now, and he has a brief moment of consideration before he thinks, fuck it, and yanks Lu Han by the collar of his shirt down for a kiss.
Baekhyun might have forgotten the fact that kissing Lu Han affects the alpha as much as it affects Baekhyun himself. Lu Han's mouth is eager and a little chapped but no less amazing, sucking Baekhyun's upper lip into his mouth and pulling Baekhyun closer with a firm grip on his arm once he grasps the situation. Baekhyun feels a little like he's fallen into Lu Han's trap instead of made Lu Han trip over his ploy, but Lu Han's pulling him forward and growling in pleasure as he kisses Baekhyun intently, and Baekhyun can't be bothered to think of or do anything other than nip at Lu Han's lower lip as he bites his lower teeth into the scar beneath.
At some point, Baekhyun swings one leg over Lu Han's thighs and kicks his other leg against something that rolls away—decidedly the basketball Lu Han has placed between his feet on the concrete after the game—to hoist himself up until he can claim his place on Lu Han's lap. His hands find purchase in Lu Han's windswept hair, thick and soft to the touch as he runs his fingers on the scalp. Lu Han pulls Baekhyun closer with his arms wind tight around Baekhyun's middle, presses their chests flush against one another as he kisses Baekhyun shallowly, and then deeply, like he could do this all day.
Baekhyun lets Lu Han take him, one step at a time before devouring him whole and then all over again. The feeling is overwhelming, his heart filled to the brim with warmth and a whole new sensation of want and need as Lu Han's delicious scent overtakes his nose, a certain fondness that Baekhyun gladly drinks up and a show of assertion that he readily bathes in.
Baekhyun has a feeling that he's the loser and Lu Han's the winner here in this one-to-one game, but... is Baekhyun really losing, if he gets to have Lu Han all to himself, at the end of the day?
They pull away only for Lu Han to dive back in and bury his face in Baekhyun's neck. His nose is pressed to the crook of Baekhyun's neck, and Baekhyun can feel the idiotic smile that spreads against his skin.
"All this perfection, only to be wasted in your arms," Baekhyun remarks, clearly not meaning the second half of the sentence as he plays with the soft hairs on Lu Han's nape and curls further into his warm embrace.
"Hey!" barks Lu Han, pulling away to pout at Baekhyun. "I'm pretty amazing myself."
Pretty and amazing, Baekhyun thinks. He'll be damned if he says it out loud, though. "Maybe," Baekhyun says instead, pressing a brief kiss on one of Lu Han's cheekbones, and then the corner of his mouth.
"You're a hard case," Lu Han says, flicking his thumb underneath the hem of Baekhyun's shirt before letting his hands slip inside and up Baekhyun's back. Lu Han's palms are cold against his skin. Baekhyun likes it nonetheless.
"The tougher the case, the larger the reward."
Lu Han retracts one of his hands and reaches up to fold a lose strand of hair behind Baekhyun's ear. Despite his high level of self-confidence, Baekhyun has always thought that his ears are ugly because they're large and stick out awkwardly, but with Lu Han treating him like this, caressing Baekhyun's ear as he watches Baekhyun fondly, he feels the entire opposite.
"But you're priceless," quickly destroys the moment, though, and Baekhyun pinches at Lu Han's nape in retaliation for the cheesy reply.
Baekhyun is in nothing more than a pair of sweatpants and an old t-shirt, and the night is falling quite quickly. The occasional wind that blows past acts as a constant reminder that they're very much in public, and the position they're currently in isn't the most decent behaviour. "I'm cold." It's a simple statement, but Baekhyun knows Lu Han knows what he's trying to say.
The huge grin that spreads over Lu Han's face is brighter than a million fireflies. "Well, Yifan is staying over at Chanyeol's," Lu Han says, easily playing along and falling in step with Baekhyun's rhythm.
Baekhyun is reluctant, but he pulls away anyway so they can both get up and head to Lu Han's. "I can't believe the love deities don't think I deserve better." They cross the court as they head to the sidewalk that leads away from the river, and Lu Han bends down to pick the basketball up on the way, all the while keeping his other arm around Baekhyun's hip like it belongs there.
"I must be really lucky, then," Lu Han teases, even as he smiles in satisfaction like he knows fully that Baekhyun wouldn't have any other alpha, even if given the chance. Baekhyun can't say he's wrong.