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I Can't Explain This Feeling (But I think I Love It)

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Connor straightens his tie for the fifth time in ten minutes. He’s not nervous. Not at all. Not in the slightest.  

 

So why can’t he get his feet to move?  

 

The woman at the reception desk eyes him warily, which is probably fair, given the situation. Unknown alpha walks into a police station and just stands awkwardly in the doorway for ten minutes? 

 

That’s going to raise some questions.  

 

“Can I help you?” The receptionist finally calls, and Connor snaps to attention, shuffling forward with a sheepish smile.  

 

“I’m sorry,” Connor says, flashing her a slightly more confident smile. “I’m Detective Connor Stern, I’m supposed to be starting here today.” 

 

The receptionist nods in understanding. “The new transfer, right?” 

 

“Yes.” 

 

“May I see your ID, please?” 

 

Connor hands it over, waiting while she runs it through the system. Her name tag reads “Lucy” and from the scent of her, she’s a beta. Which makes sense. Calming presence in a highly stressful environment.  

 

“You can go through,” Lucy says, smiling and handing back his ID. “Welcome to the DPD, Detective Stern.” 

 

Connor’s chest swells with pride. “Thank you, Lucy.” He slips his ID back into his jacket pocket and steps through the gate, excitement and nervous energy making him twitchy.  

 

This is what he’s worked for. College, the academy, those draining years as a beat cop. This is what he’s been working towards since he was sixteen. Finally a detective, on his way to making Captain. 

 

Speaking of, he needs to find Captain Fowler and get to work.  

 

Fowler… Is not a hard man to find.  

 

Namely because his office is a huge glass box in the centre of the precinct.  

 

Also, because he shouts very loudly.  

 

Connor hovers awkwardly, not wanting to make it obvious that he’s waiting to speak to him, but also not entirely sure where to go from here. It’s every new employee’s worst nightmare, having to stand around in an unfamiliar environment waiting to be told where to go and what to do.  

 

Blessedly, the officer Fowler is disciplining storms out of the office, past Connor without even seeing him. He’s middle-aged, white-haired, but somewhat handsome beneath the furious expression he’s wearing as he storms off through the precinct. Connor frowns at the bitter scent that fills his nose.  

 

Blockers. He doesn’t want anyone to know what he is. 

 

Connor can’t deny he’s curious now, but it’s none of his business and he has a job to do. He turns to Fowler’s office and knocks gently on the glass. The captain barks at him to come in and Connor slips inside.  

 

“Good morning, Captain,” Connor says politely.  

 

“Stern, right?” 

 

“Yes, sir.” 

 

Fowler looks through Connor’s file. “Top of your class in the academy. Made detective at twenty-five. That’s very impressive.” 

 

“I worked hard,” Connor says. He’s not here to impress anyone. “I want to be Captain some day. Transferring here was my best option.” 

 

Fowler considers him carefully. “You actually couldn’t have come at a better time. I’ll be partnering you with Lieutenant Anderson. You’ll be working homicide with him.” 

 

Connor balks. “Lieutenant Anderson? Lieutenant Hank Anderson? The officer who brought down the red ice ring in twenty-eight?” 

 

“The very same,” Fowler confirms.  

 

Connor tries very hard not to squeal like an overexcited child. “I’ll be honoured to work beside him. He’s one of my inspirations.” 

 

For some reason Fowler doesn’t look too pleased about that. “Yeah, well. Good luck, kid. Your desk is all set up, induction files are on your terminal. Finish those and send them to HR, then get Hank to fill you in on the case he’s working.” 

 

“Yes, sir. Thank you, sir.” 

 

“Dismissed,” Fowler says, not unkindly, and Connor wonders how a beta can command such authority to make even alphas obey. It’s impressive.  

 

Connor slips out of the office and heads over to the desk Fowler had directed him to. His name plate sits proudly on the edge and he settles down, already thinking of how best to decorate his new space. He loads up the terminal and logs in with his new credentials, starting on the forms for HR.  

 

“The fuck’re you?” The harsh question makes Connor look up from his terminal. The silver-haired man from before is standing at the opposite desk, glaring at Connor like he’s somehow insulted his entire ancestry line.  

 

“Oh, uh, my name is Connor,” Connor says, smiling politely. “I’m the detective who transferred from—“ 

 

“Don’t care where you’re from,” the man interrupts. “Why are you here?” 

 

“The Captain assigned me as Lieutenant Anderson’s new partner on homicide,” Connor explains, a little taken aback by the sheer rudeness.  

 

The man’s eyes narrow. “He did, did he?” 

 

“Y…Yes?” 

 

“And you’re okay with that?” 

 

Connor blinks. “Why wouldn’t I be? He’s one of my idols. Took down an entire red ice ring in twenty-twenty-eight, the youngest Lieutenant in Detroit history? He’s an inspiration.” 

 

The man laughs, a harsh, bitter sound. “You think so, huh?” 

 

“Yeah, I do.” 

 

There’s an awkward silence where the man flops down in the chair of the desk opposite and loads up the terminal. Connor is about to politely mention that that particular desk belongs to Lieutenant Anderson, when the whole entire universe tilts on an axis and Connor realises what in the hell he’s just done.  

 

“You’re Lieutenant Anderson,” Connor squeaks, face heating up beyond safe temperatures.  

 

“Yup.” 

 

“Hhhh,” says Connor.  

 

Lieutenant Anderson, who looks nothing like his newspaper photos, offers Connor a smug grin. “Just spilled your guts to one of your heroes, huh.” 

 

“Please,” Connor moans, lowering his head to the desk. “Don’t torment me.” 

 

“Oh, too late, kid. I’m gonna.” 

 

“Great. Thanks.” 

 

“No problem.” 

 

Connor sighs and lifts his head. “Alright, so, could you forward me the details of the case you’re working at the moment?” 

 

The Lieutenant snorts. “Oh, no. That’s not how this is gonna work. I don’t need a partner. Especially not some baby-faced, goofy-looking newbie fresh off the beat with some kind of weird hero complex.” 

 

Connor opens his mouth to respond. Nothing comes out.  

 

“So find some other dick to ride because I work alone.” 

 

Connor still words make work can’t.  

 

Looks like the adage “don’t meet your heroes” is incredibly apt.  

 

Because apparently they’ll turn out to be assholes who will torpedo your chance at a promotion.  

 

Great.   

 

 

 

Lieutenant Anderson continues to be… difficult. He refuses to let Connor anywhere near his cases, despite Fowler’s insistence and threats to add more pages to his disciplinary file. But Connor is nothing if not persistent, and fully able to charm a copy of the case file off of one of the CSI team without Hank finding out.  

 

It’s a grisly file and Connor’s interest spikes as he reads through the notes on the scene, pouring avidly over the pictures. It’s the kind of thing he dreamed of seeing in the academy, and it sets off that morbid curiosity where you can’t look away.  

 

Double homicide of Mrs Lila Fields and her husband Matthew Fields. From Hank’s notes on the case, the Lieutenant seems to think it was a murder suicide. Connor can see how the preliminary evidence would suggest that, but something doesn’t sit right with him.  

 

He glances over the photos again.  

 

The homicide was reported to the police by a neighbour, a Mr Thomas Yates, who said he was a close friend of the couple and had let himself in when he heard gunshots.  

 

Connor looks at the record of the keycard. CSI took fingerprints and confirmed the neighbour did let himself in on the day of the murder. The security system in the house noted authorised card entry at seven fifteen PM, fifteen minutes before the police were notified.  

 

Bit of a suspicious gap between discovering your friends bodies and calling the police. Even if he was in shock like he claimed.  

 

He continues reading, that nagging sensation that he’s missing something drumming in the back of his head. The neighbour said he had a key so he could check on the place whenever the couple went away. Connor kneads his forehead.  

  

He’s missing something 

 

Shit!” He sits up so suddenly he nearly falls out of his chair. He lunges for the phone on his desk, frantically leafing through the file for the security system number. He dials and bounces his leg impatiently while he waits for them to answer.  

 

“Good afternoon,  SecuRite , Amelia speaking, how may I help you?”  

 

“Yes, hi, this is Detective Stern from the Detroit Police Department. I was wondering if you could confirm something for me regarding the property you installed a system for on Farmer Street?” 

 

“Could I have some identification, please?”  

 

Connor taps his badge number and ID number into the keypad. There’s a moment of silence before the receptionist speaks again.  

 

“Thank you, that’s great. What do you need to know?”  

 

“How many keycards have been programmed for access into the property?” 

 

“Two, sir. One registered under Lila Fields and one under Matthew Fields.”  

 

“No more?” 

 

“None, sir.”  

 

“Amelia, that’s great. You’ve literally saved my career. Have a great day!” Connor hangs up and gets to his feet, grabbing his coat off the back of his chair. He heads to the break room, leaning round the door. “Lieutenant?” 

 

Hank looks away from the tv screen to scowl at him. “What, rookie?” 

 

“I’m just letting you know I’m on my way to arrest mister Yates for the murder of Lila Fields and her husband.” 

 

Hank snorts coffee out through his nose. “The fuck did you manage to get your damn paws on my case files?” 

 

“Determination,” Connor says with a smile. “Anyway, I’ll let you know when he confesses.” 

 

“Ohhh no,” Hank says tossing his coffee cup into the trash and wiping his mouth. “No, you’re gonna tell me how you came up with that dumb theory first.” 

 

“I’d rather arrest the suspect first, Lieutenant.” Connor isn’t above using his alpha status to get what he wants. He doesn’t know if Hank is an alpha or a beta, but when Connor throws a little more dominance into his scent something shifts in Hank’s eyes.  

 

“Alright, rookie,” Hank huffs. “But I’m coming with you.” 

 

“As you wish, Lieutenant.” 

 

Hank grumbles something about damn alphas, but Connor is too excited to pay much attention.  

 

“I can’t wait to see this blow up in your face,” Hank says as Connor leads out to his car. “And why aren’t we taking a squad car?” 

 

“Don’t like how they handle,” Connor says, unlocking his car with the key. Hank’s eyebrows raise.  

 

“You drive a Mustang?” 

 

Connor nods, smiling faintly. “It was my dad’s car. He was always tinkering on it when I was a kid. He left it to me when he passed.” 

 

Hank seems to be admiring it. “You don’t like  the self-driving schtick? This car’s a bit before your time.” 

 

“I like to be in control when I drive.” Connor shrugs. “And it’s a nice looking car.” 

 

“Sure is,” Hank says, surprising Connor. “1970, Boss 302?” 

 

“Yeah,” says Connor. “My dad put a lot of effort into keeping her running. Most of her engine has been replaced, but the body is the same.” 

 

“Alright,” Hank says, nodding in what seems to be approval. “Maybe you’re not a complete greenhorn after all.” 

 

“Lieutenant?” 

 

“What?” 

 

“Nobody under the age of seventy says ‘greenhorn’ anymore.” 

 

“Don’t sass me, you little shit.” 

 

Connor hides his smile as he gets into the car. Maybe his career isn’t completely screwed 

   

Chapter Text

Connor knocks loudly on Thomas Yates’ door while Hank loiters behind him. He’s not perturbed by the Lieutenant’s presence. If anything, he’s excited to see the look on his face when he realises Connor is right. It’s petty, but Connor has something to prove. Even if his idol is... Not what he expected. 

 

Connor knocks again. “Anybody home?” He calls. 

 

Silence. 

 

Then the door opens just a crack, and a pair of beady eyes peer out through the gap, gazing at him suspiciously.  

 

“Thomas Yates?” Connor asks. The scent of overwhelmingly nervous beta seeps through the gap in the door. Even if Connor didn’t have all the evidence, that would’ve been enough for him to go on. 

 

“Who are you?” Yates demands. 

 

“I’m Detective Stern from the DPD,” Connor says politely. “Would you mind opening the door So we can talk properly?” 

 

“I already spoke to the police,” Yates says quickly. “Don’t have anything else to say.” 

 

“Yes, I understand you’ve already given your statement,” Connor says mildly. “But I do need you to open the door.” 

 

“Why?” 

 

Connor smiles, and if he lets his dominant scent creep up a bit more to get his way, who’s going to stop him? “You’re under arrest for the murder of Lila and Matthew Fields.” 

 

Yates’ eyes widen and the door slams shut. Hank barks a rough laugh behind him. 

 

“Nice work.” 

 

Connor ignores him and knocks on the door again. He doesn’t expect an answer. He ignores Hank’s teasing and closes his eyes, focusing his hearing. There’s the sound of frantic shuffling and then- 

 

The sound of a back door slamming shut. 

 

“Oh, shit,” Hank swears, but before he can move, Connor is off like a shot, skidding down the side alley of the house and easily vaulting the back yard fence. He’s built for this, endurance and speed, naturally faster, more agile than any omega or beta. Yates is fast, has the benefit of a few seconds head start, but Connor is hot on his heels like a predator. 

 

He lunges and tackles Yates to the ground, pinning him easily and wrenching his hands behind his back to cuff him. “Thomas Yates, I’m arresting you for the murder of Lila and Matthew Fields. You have the right to remain silent.” Yates struggles and Connor yanks him up and slams him down a little harder against the ground to make him go still. “Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be provided for you. Do you understand the rights I have just read to you? With these rights in mind, do you wish to speak to me?” 

 

“Get off of me, you asshole!” Yates spits into the dirt. Connor obliges and hauls the man to his feet just as Hank catches up to them, red-faced and panting. 

 

“I’ve never-” He gasps, bending over, hands braced on his knees. “Seen anybody move that fast.” 

 

Connor hums modestly. “I did a lot of endurance training in the academy. And alphas are naturally fast.” 

 

Hank mutters but he’s so out of breath Connor can’t catch what he says, so he hauls Yates away back towards the car, hand wrapped around his arm like a vice. 

 

But because Yates seems to have a sincere desire to be proven guilty before he’s even been set a trial date, he attempts to make a break for it, wrenching his arms violently to break Connor's grip and get away.  

 

It doesn’t quite happen like that. Because Connor’s grip doesn’t loosen in the slightest, and he feels Yates’ muscles tense before he even attempts to move. Yates gives a violent wrench of his arm and, because Connor doesn’t let go, effectively manages to dislocate his shoulder. He crumbles like a sack of bricks, giving a loud shriek of pain.  

 

“Wow,” Hank says. “He actually thought that would work.” 

 

“Seems like it,” Connor says with a sigh. “Help me, would you?” 

 

“What do you need?” 

 

“Hold his other shoulder?” 

 

“Sure.” Hank crouches down, gripping Yates’ uninjured shoulder tightly while Connor kneels down in front of him. He gives Yates’ face a sharp tap.  

 

“Look at me,” Connor says. “We’re going to get you back to the station and have a doctor look at your arm. But for now, look at the bunny.” He holds two fingers up in a piece sign, wiggling them like bunny ears.  

 

“What—“ Yates starts and then screams as Connor wrenches his shoulder back into place.  

 

“All set!” Connor chirps brightly while Hank snorts a laugh.  

 

“You’re okay, kid,” Hank says, helping to haul Yates to his feet. “You’re okay.”  

 

Connor is inordinately pleased by the rush of pride that gives him. As much as the Lieutenant is different from how Connor had imagined him, he’d still devoted a significant amount of time dedicated to idolising the man. Despite his prickly demeanour, Connor is still pleased by the admission. 

 

“Let’s get this asshole back to the precinct,” Hank says, shoving Yates into the back of Connor’s car. “I have a feeling a confession’s still gonna be hard to get out of him.” 

 

“Well, we have resisting arrest at least.” 

 

Hank snorts. “Yeah, at least.” He gets into the passenger seat, reaching over to fiddle with the radio while Connor straps in and pulls away, heading back towards the precinct. 

 

He’s proud, practically glowing with pleasure at how things have turned out. Under the circumstances, with Hank’s unexpectedly prickly personality, Connor is consent with the outcome. Perhaps now that they’ve reached some form of mutual accord of tenuous respect. 

 

Unequipped as Connor’s car is with proper containment installations, he makes do with letting his scent permeate the small space to dissuade Yates from making any more stupid decisions. It’s a little superfluous with how pale the guy has gone, most likely from the pain of his shoulders, but Connor’s not taking any chances with this. Not when he’s gotten a shred of approval from the officer he idolises. 

 

The officer he idolises who may or may not be responding to the increased scent of heady alpha pheromones Connor is throwing off to keep Yates somewhat cowed in the back seat. 

 

Except Hank absolutely is responding. His cheeks are lightly flushed, his mouth is open, and the softest, sweetest scent Connor has ever encountered in his life is hanging thickly in his nose and on his tongue like honey. Connor stiffens and Hank quickly moves to lower the window, turning his body as far away from Connor as he can without making too much of a big deal about it. 

 

It’s Hank. 

 

He’s an omega. 

 

 

Chapter Text

Yates confesses with little interference on Connor’s part. Not physically, anyway. Confessions are something he’s always been able to work out of people. He likes to think he has an open face that inspires honesty. It’s probably more to do with his alpha biology than anything else, but he likes to think the former anyway.  

 

Once Yates is locked away for processing Connor leaves the interrogation room with the intention of getting some lunch before finishing his report and sending it over to Fowler.  

 

It doesn’t quite happen like that.  

 

Halfway down the hall, Anderson appears quite literally from nowhere, hands fisting in the lapels of Connor’s suit jacket and shoving him up against the wall hard enough to knock the breath out of him. Connor fights down the initial primal instinct to fight back, partly because he prides himself on his self-control, and partly because the man pinning him to the wall is an omega, and Connor absolutely refuses to harm him.  

 

“Listen up, asshole,” Hank growls, low and dangerous. He’s breathing shallowly through his mouth, pupils dilated. Connor can detect the faintest hint of alcohol on his breath. He’s furious, absolutely livid, but under the muted chemical tang of what Connor now definitely knows is the scent of strong suppressants and inhibitors, he can also smell the barest intoxicating aroma of an omega dangerously close to heat.  

 

Hank’s aroused. And very emphatically does not want to be.  

 

“I know what you smelled in the car,” Hank hisses, giving Connor another firm slam against the wall. “And if you tell anyone, and I mean anyone, I’ll fucking end you. Got it? No one’ll ever fuckin’ find your body.” 

 

Connor isn’t entirely convinced that a police officer with no criminal record and a history of decorates achievements would actually kill him. But the fury in Hank’s eyes is hard to ignore. Still, that part of Connor’s brain that doesn’t quite understand the concept of “wrong place, wrong time” is quick to pipe up with something Connor is almost certain he shouldn’t say.  

 

“Your alcohol consumption is affecting your medications,” Connor murmurs. “You’re very close to a heat cycle. I would suggest—“ 

 

“I don’t need your fuckin’ advice,” Hank snarls, shoving away from Connor. “We’re not friends, we’re barely even coworkers. Stay the fuck out of my business, alright?” 

 

He doesn’t give Connor a chance to respond, just turns on his heel and marches down the hall and out of sight. Connor takes a moment to gather himself and straighten his jacket and tie. The messy puzzle that is Lieutenant Anderson is slowly starting to piece together. With a little more digging, maybe Connor can form a clearer picture of what’s driven the once-proud officer down the path of alcoholism and self-loathing.  

 

Connor is a detective, after all. It shouldn’t be too difficult.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

It isn’t.  

 

With a few carefully chosen comments and well-timed questions, Connor is able to glean a little more insight into Hank’s life through their coworkers. Ben has known Hank since he was a beat cop, watched him rise through to detective and into homicide as a Lieutenant. Nobody seems to have any idea that Hank is an omega, or if they do, perhaps they received the same threat that Connor did to keep them silent.  

 

Either way, Hank’s assumed downfall seems to have occurred shorty after his promotion to Lieutenant. Connor is leaning towards personal tragedy. It would explain the attitude and the alcoholism. Especially if it’s bleeding into his work life which, judging by the chronic tardiness and lingering scent of alcohol, has been the case for far too long.  

 

Connor gets his answer roughly three months after joining the precinct.  

 

Working with Hank becomes a battle that Connor loses far often than he wins. They’re back to negative square one because Hank seems absolutely determined to ignore Connor unless it’s absolutely necessary that they interact. Coupled with his tense animosity, he’s also getting careless with his medication, which means he’s starting to very faintly smell of distressed omega which is really not great for Connor’s concentration.  

 

And Connor really doesn’t want to start having to take inhibitors himself because he relies on his heightened senses too much.  

 

So it’s a strained partnership to say the least. Connor attempts to patch things up for a whole month before he gives up and just decides to let Hank be Hank.  

 

Until he doesn’t show up to work for three days straight and no one can get a hold of him.  

 

Connor overhears a conversation he shouldn’t where the words “suicidal” and “risk” are spoken in Fowler’s deep, hushed voice.  

 

Fuck professionalism. Connor has to do something.  

 

Something probably shouldn’t entail finding out Hank’s address and turning up there at gone ten PM, but Connor’s running out of options and, antisocial attitude aside, Hank is still his idol.  

 

There’s no answer when he knocks, nor does he expect one, so he ducks down the side of the house to peer through windows until he catches sight of something, anything, that’ll put his fears to rest.  

 

Instead, he’s treated to the sight of the Lieutenant shuddering on his kitchen floor, curled up into a tight ball next to an old revolver and a mostly empty bottle of whiskey.  

 

Connor doesn’t exactly vault through the window. But it’s a near enough thing.  

 

(It would’ve absolutely been a vault if his foot hadn’t gotten stuck on the window frame as he jumped through.) 

 

Hank doesn’t react as Connor picks himself up off the floor and treads glass everywhere. He doesn’t react as Connor leans over him to check him over for injuries or any form of fitting or seizing. He doesn’t even react when the biggest Saint Bernard Connor has ever seen comes thundering over with hackles raised and teeth bared.  

 

Connor stiffens and growls back at the advancing dog, lower, calmer, hand held up placatingly.  

 

“Good dog,” Connor murmurs gently. “I’m not here to harm your owner. I’m here to help him.” 

 

The dog huffs, sniffs the air, and slinks off back into the living room. Connor sighs in relief and turns back to the shuddering Lieutenant.   

 

This close Connor can smell what had moments ago been overpowered by the acidic scent of spilled whiskey. Hank’s medications have failed, and he’s gone into heat, suddenly, overpoweringly, and without warning. Connor takes a moment to steel himself as the heady scent socks him hard in the gut, wrestles with instincts as he reaches out to scoop Hank as upright as he can. The omega’s eyelids flutter and he turns his head weakly to muzzle against Connor’s chest with a low whine, unconsciously seeking out the scent of alpha.  

 

Why me??? Is Connor’s single prevailing thought as he hauls Hank to his feet and towards what he assumes is his bedroom.  

 

He doesn’t do much else other than manoeuvre Hank into a more comfortable position that half-resembles recovery in case he overheats and vomits. He places a small trash can beside the bed just for safety measures, and hunts down a thinner blanket to drape over him. Placing a glass of water down on the side, Connor quietly slips out of the room, closing the door behind him.  

 

He has two options.  

 

One: Go home. Forget about this, tell no one, continue on with his career like a good officer, if one complicit in standing quietly by while a coworker clearly suffers with mental health trauma.  

 

Two: Stay. Notify Fowler of Hank’s condition and advise him that he’s safe for now, while offering what comfort he can through scent alone.  

 

It’s not a difficult decision. He calls Fowler’s work cell and paces Hank’s kitchen anxiously while he waits for him to answer.  

 

“Stern,” Fowler barks. “You better have a good fuckin’ reason for calling this late.” 

 

“It’s Lieutenant Anderson, sir,” Connor says. “I came by his place to check on him and he’s… sick. Very sick. I was concerned.” 

 

Fowler is quiet for a long moment. “He’s okay?” He asks quietly.  

 

“I’ve made him as comfortable as I can and… removed certain immediate dangers from the area.” Connor’s eyes drift to the revolver.  

 

“Shit,” Fowler curses. “Goddamn it, Hank… I’m guessing you know what’s wrongs with him, then.” 

 

It’s not a question. Connor cannot lie. “He’s in heat, yes.” 

 

“You’re gonna get the fuck out of there, right?” 

 

Connor doesn’t let the implication offend him. Alpha’s have a reputation, after all. “Actually, sir, I was hoping to stay with him for the duration. He’s in a very bad way and I think having be nearby will calm him.” Connor’s tone hardens. “Only nearby. No unwanted contact.” 

 

Alright, maybe he’s a little offended.  

 

Fowler snorts down the line. “You’re a fuckin’ rare one, Stern, I’ll give you that. Alright, I’ll allow it. God knows Hank could put you down if he wanted, even in that state. Keep me updated.” 

 

“Will do, sir. Thank you.” 

 

Fowler disconnects the call without another word.  

 

Connor sighs heavily and helps himself to a beer from Hank’s fridge. He’ll repair the window later, and if he’s gonna stay here, he needs to be as relaxed as possible while the scent of needy omega is stinking out the whole house.  

 

“What’s your name?” He asks the dog, uncapping the beer.  

 

Boof,” is the answer. Connor snorts.  

 

“Great. Just great. Does your owner at least have Netflix?"

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

Connor makes a good few discoveries poking around Hank’s house while he’s sleeping off his heat-induced exhaustion. Mainly that he’s a big jazz fan, his dog’s name is Sumo, he has a debilitating addiction to alcoholism, never cooks for himself, and has a deceased son.  

 

The last detail shocks Connor something awful when he finds the overturned photo of a young boy on the kitchen table and does a bit of underhanded googling on Hank’s laptop. It’s connected to the DPD database so it’s not too difficult for Connor to access the information he’s looking for, and what he finds saddens him greatly. 

 

Hank had been married previously to a young woman he’d met in his early twenties. They’d had a son together, but drifted apart as they’d never been bonded. Hank had raised the boy alone, but he’d died in a car accident a few days after his sixth birthday.  

 

Connor has to swallow past the lump in his throat at the punch of grief that lodges in his stomach. Suddenly, he understands Hank a lot more. Can even forgive his behaviour. Connor has no idea how he would deal with the loss of a child. He can’t even imagine what Hank must have gone through.  

 

Perhaps that’s what prompted the complete denial of his biology? Refusing to acknowledge himself as a person able to be a parent in any capacity after such a loss. Connor can understand that.  

 

He tries to make himself useful while he’s here, cleaning up a little, tidying things away and clearing up all the empty takeaway boxes. He makes sure Sumo is fed and watered and let out when he needs to be. He doesn’t risk taking him out for a walk, because as soon as he’s too far away from Hank’s room, his scent weakens and Hank’s distress rises.  

 

Connor ends up sitting propped up against Hank’s bedroom door with a book and his headphones in to be as close as he can and offer whatever comfort he’s able with his presence. He is absolutely aware of how very creepy it is that he’s broken into his coworker’s home, but the alternative would have been so much worse.  

 

Or that’s what Connor tells himself when he wakes up to the furious and exhausted eyes of Hank glaring down at him the next afternoon.  

 

“Uhhh…” Connor says.  

 

“What. The fuck. Are you doing in my house?”  

 

“I can absolutely explain,” Connor blurts, scrambling inelegantly to his feet, backing away with his palms raised. His step falters a little and he stumbles as the full barrage of Hank’s unhindered scent hits him like a punch in the gut. He smells so good.  

 

Connor swallows, shaking his head quickly.  

 

“I came to check on you,” Connor says. “No one could get hold of you, Fowler was worried. I was… I was worried. You were passed out on the kitchen floor. Your, uh, medication stopped working with your increase in alcohol consumption. I… was trying to help.” 

 

Hank is still scowling. “You broke into my house so you could, what? Get a fucking leg over the poor, vulnerable omega?” 

 

No!” The word bursts out of Connor, tinged with insulted anger. “I would never. I was worried! I thought you’d— Fowler said— there was a gun on the floor, Hank! One bullet, and an empty bottle of whiskey. You were shivering. I wanted to help.” 

 

Hank looks round when Sumo pads over to headbutt his legs with a low whine. Hank scratches his ears distractedly. “Did… Did you clean?” 

 

“I…” Connor wrings his hands together. “Might have? I asked Fowler if I could stay with you. My scent seemed to calm you. I’m an alpha— Obviously you knew that. I just… I only wanted to help. That’s all.” 

 

Hank’s expression slowly relaxes out of anger into something a bit more passive. He looks utterly exhausted. His legs are a little shaky. He’s still right in the middle of his heat, after all. He’ll only have a few hours or so before it returns with a vengeance.  

 

“Let me make you something to eat,” Connor offers. “You must be hungry.” 

 

“I don’t need some overbearing alpha asshole fussing over me,” Hank snaps. “Get the fuck out of my—“ He cuts himself off with a low groan, sagging against the wall. Connor is there in an instant, tugging Hank’s arm around his shoulder and guiding him over to the couch.  

 

When he tries to move away, Hank’s hand fists momentarily in his shirt. Connor disentangles from his grip wordlessly. He’s not thinking clearly. Connor smells like comfort and alpha and that’s what Hank needs right now. He’d cling to any alpha close enough.  

 

The thought twinges a little but Connor pushes it down.  

 

“You need to eat something,” Connor says again. “I’ll make you a sandwich, you have enough food for that, at least. Would you like some water?” 

 

Hank sprawls across the back of the sofa, eyes closed and brows pinched. “Please,” he says reluctantly, and Connor heads into the kitchen, satisfied by the accord they’ve reached.  

 

“Why aren’t you all buck-wild and ruttin’ me already, then?” Hank asks in a lazy drawl. Connor doesn’t turn around when he answers, just moves through the kitchen on autopilot to prepare Hank some food.  

 

“I have a little more self control than that.” 

 

“Not a lot of you do.” There’s a strong hint of bitterness in Hank’s words. Connor doesn’t press for clarification.  

 

“I know,” is all he says, spreading butter over a few slices of bread. “Crusts or not?” 

 

“I’m fifty-fucking-three, what kind of grown man cuts the crust of a sandwich?” 

 

“I do,” Connor says, allowing himself a private smile at Hank’s quiet snort of amusement.  

 

“You’re a weird one,” Hank says. “I can’t believe you broke in just to care for me. You’re a shitty alpha.” 

 

Connor pauses, knife halfway through cutting a sandwich on the diagonal. His shoulders tense. He can see it so clearly, hear it; the memory playing out like a video in front of his eyes. 

 

“This is so disappointing. Why haven’t you settled down yet? Found yourself a nice little omega? You could already have a family, but you’re determined to waste your life.” 

 

“I already had a kid when I was your age. Is there something wrong with you?” 

 

“Just get it over with and fuck an omega already. Or are you defective?” 

 

“You’re a shitty alpha, you know that? You’re basically an omega. You’re a freak.” 

 

“Connor? Connor?” Hank’s voice snaps him out of the memory. The blade of the knife is flattering against the plate he’s holding it so tightly.  

 

“I’m okay,” Connor says hoarsely, putting the knife down. “I’m okay.” 

 

“Doesn’t look like it.” 

 

“I just.” Connor shrugs. “I’ve heard that before. My parents… They wanted different things for me.” 

 

“I hear that,” Hank mutters.  

 

Connor shakes himself and brings the sandwiches over to Hank. The Lieutenant takes the plate with a grunt of thanks and Connor removes himself back to the kitchen, intent on making himself a cup of coffee. Even if he doesn’t actually live here. He doesn’t think Hank will mind too much, given the circumstance.  

 

“Hey, Connor?”  

 

“Yes, Lieutenant?” 

 

“Thanks. You, uh, probably saved my life there, actually.” 

 

Connor smiles. “It was a pleasure, Lieutenant. I’d advise a shower before you return to bed. Judging by your scent, you’re nearing the worst of your cycle.” 

 

“Greaaaat,” Hank says flatly. “Yeah, shower sounds good, actually. Are you… I mean, you can stay if you want. You can… I don’t know, watch tv or whatever.” 

 

Connor inclines his head. “I appreciate that. Though I will leave if it makes you uncomfortable.” 

 

Can you leave?” Hank challenges. It’s more playful than malicious, Connor is pleased to note.  

 

“Easily,” Connor tells him. “Trust me, you’re not in any danger of me losing control and mounting you.” 

 

Hank chokes on his mouthful. “Jesus,” he splutters, covering his mouth with a hand and coughing hard. “You can’t— You can’t just say shit like that?” 

 

“Why not?” Connor grins. “It’s true.” 

 

Hank rolls his eyes. “You’re a nightmare.” 

 

“I’ve been told.” 

 

 

— 

 

 

Showered and considerably less grumpy, Hank takes himself back to bed before the next bought of his heat starts up. Connor settles down on the couch with Sumo, aimlessly flicking through channel after channel. The large dog is very affectionate, though he paces up and down the hallway a few times to whine at Hank’s door. He’s a loyal creature. It’s nice that Hank has him.  

 

But about two hours later, it all goes wrong.  

 

Honestly? Connor had expected it to go south a lot sooner.  

 

The first cry Connor hears is so faint he has to mute the television to listen for it again. The second is a muffled, pained sound and Connor is up like a shot, padding over to press his ear to Hank’s door, waiting for a sign that he’s injured or in severe pain.  

 

He reels away from the wood when Hank’s low, rough voice groans out a heavy “Connor…” 

 

“Oh, this was a bad idea,” Connor hisses to no one. “Oh, I should leave. I should really leave.” 

 

“Connor…!” 

 

Connor does an awkward shuffle in place, torn between hurrying back to the couch and breaking down Hank’s bedroom door. There’s a huge risk of he goes inside. There’s always a chance he could be overcome. And he can’t do that to Hank. He can’t do it to anyone. But Hank he… He’s always had him on a pedestal. A hopeless crush from his younger days when he avidly followed everything the older officer did. If Connor lost control… 

 

“Connor!” 

 

Fuck it. Fuck it! 

 

Connor forces himself to turn the door handle slowly, to push the door open inch by inch until he has to squint into the darkness. There’s a dark shape huddled on the centre of the bed, rocking slowly and panting. A wall of desperation hits Connor hard in the face, coating his tongue with that intoxicating scent.  

 

“Hank,” Connor chokes. “Are you alright?” 

 

Stupid question, if the pained moan Hank gives into the pillow is anything to go by. The sound of it tugs something in Connor’s chest, pulling him into the room and over to the bed before he can stop himself.  

 

“Hank, I can’t… What do you—“ He cuts himself off. He can’t ask that question. The answer will absolutely break him.  

 

“Connor, please,” 

 

It takes a monumental effort, but Connor settles down on the bed gently, sat up against the headboard.  

 

“Come here,” Connor says softly, holding an arm out. “It’s not much, but it’s all I can do.” 

 

Hank manages to drag himself into Connor’s arms and, with a bit of manoeuvring, Connor has Hank’s face wedges against his neck, nose pressed right against his scent glands. With one hand he rubs the glands in his wrist against the side of Hank’s throat, covering as much of him as he can with the heavy scent of alpha.  

 

Slowly Hank’s shivering begins to slow and his breaths come easier, more even, as he drifts back into sleep, more peaceful than before.  

 

Connor, by contrast, has never been more awake or tense in his life.  

 

Fuck, he thinks as the desire to protect rolls thick through his veins. I’m fucked.  

 

Shitty alpha indeed.  

 

God, his parents were right.  

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

When Hank finally stirs, the overwhelming scent of his heat has abated into a low haze in the room, and Connor has been awake for fourteen hours. Fourteen hours spent staring at nothing and fantasising about opening a window. Anything so he can take a breath of fresh air unclouded by the heavy smell of desperate omega. His muscles ache and burn from being locked in place for so long, but he’s satisfied that his presence has offered Hank some small comfort.  

 

The officer makes a soft sound, a groan that rumbles faintly against Connor’s throat before he sits up, eyes bleary with sleep and thick brows drawn into a frown.  

 

“The fuck’re you doing in here?” His voice is low and gravelly and Connor might be a little bit in love with it.  

 

No. It’s just the pheromones. You know that. Some fresh air and you’ll be fine.   

 

“You were significantly distressed last night,” Connor says. His voice is faint and scratchy. “I came in to try and calm you.” 

 

“Calm me?” Hank gives himself a discreet sniff. “Jesus Christ, you’re all over me.” 

 

“Scent glands,” Connor croaks. “Nothing more.” 

 

Hank gives him a look Connor is too tired to decipher. “You spent the whole night in here. Just holding me.” 

 

“Yep,” Connor says. He’s terrified to move. His muscles are going to give him hell the moment he does.  

 

“Fucking hell,” Hank mutters. “You’re really something else, you know that?” 

 

“If you say so.” 

 

“Go take a fucking shower. And Jesus, nap on the sofa or something. You look like shit. Did you not sleep?” 

 

“Couldn’t.” Gritting his teeth, Connor sits up, slowly bending his knees and arms and fuck if that doesn’t hurt. His muscles are stiff and tense and shriek with pain when moved but fuck it’s good to stretch a little.  

 

“I’ve never met anyone like you,” Hank says. “An alpha who cares. Fuckin’ weird.” 

 

“Yeah, you said.” Slowly Connor gets to his feet. He staggers a little but other than that he’s okay. “I’m going to take up that offer of a shower.” 

 

“Yeah, go ahead. There’s towels in there. I’m sure I can dig out something clean for you to wear. Might not be the best fit, but it’ll do.” 

 

Connor would be touched by the gesture if he wasn’t exhausted and slightly delirious from prolonged exposure to Hank’s intoxicating scent. Instead he mumbles a thank you and hobbles into the bathroom, all but collapsing into the porcelain tub as soon as he wrestles his clothes off. He starts the water as cold as he can stand before slowly inching the heat up, until the constant stream of hot water is soaking the ache from his muscles.  

 

Refreshed and feeling slightly more human, Connor dries off and pokes his head round the bathroom door. “Hank?” 

 

“Clothes are on the bed. Best I can do,” is the answer from the kitchen.  

 

Connor darts from the bathroom to the bedroom with a towel round his waist, tugging on a pair of sweats and an old hoodie. They fit well enough, even if the sweats droop a little on his hips, and the softer scent of Hank in the fabric is comforting.  

 

Connor pads into the kitchen barefoot, pushing damp hair out of his face. “Thank you, Hank. I feel better now.” 

 

“Yeah, well. Same to you I— Uhhhhhhh.” Hank turns, coffee mug in his hands that he very nearly drops. He fumbles for it, swallowing hard and quickly looking away from Connor. “You want some fucking coffee?” 

 

The question is a little on the aggressive side, but Connor chalks it up to the stress of the past few days.  

 

“That would be lovely. Milk, four sugars, thank you.” Connor takes a seat at the table, chirping to Sumo who trots over to rest his head on Connor’s knees, begging for pets.  

 

Hank puts a cup down in front of Connor a little harder than necessary, but again Connor chalks it up to lasting tension.  

 

“I’ll not mention anything,” Connor says, sipping his coffee. “Of course. I just hope maybe we could be slightly more civil towards each other. You obviously know I don’t think less of you.” 

 

“I gave you a hard time,” Hank admits, not looking at Connor. “I’m defensive. And something of an asshole. But… Yeah. You didn’t deserve that.” 

 

“I appreciate you saying that. Does this mean you’ll try and be on time now?” 

 

“Don’t push your luck.” Hank’s lips twitch against a smile. Connor grins into his coffee.  

 

 

 

 

And that’s that. 

 

At least for a little while.  

 

Fowler gives them hell for it after the fact, but it’s not really a discipline, more anger at Hank’s disappearance and Connor’s less that stellar handling of the situation. Hank drags his heels through the entire meeting, huffing and rolling his eyes while Connor tries to look appropriately contrite.  

 

When Fowler dismisses them it’s with a new case dropped into their laps and Connor is once again, thrumming with excitement at the opportunity of working with Hank when he’s not out to injure him should he overstep a hidden boundary line.  

 

They actually rub along pretty well, which is a relief. Hank is, of course, a fantastic officer. And Connor is hardworking and determined so they make an exceptional team. Banter comes easier now that Hank trusts Connor not to blurt out Hank’s omega nature or rut him against a wall without so much as a “lemme smash.” 

 

Now if Connor could get over his stupid infatuation, everything would be golden.  

 

And he tries really hard. He really does. But four weeks down the line and Hank still smells ever so faintly of Connor, barely there and only noticeable if they’re in close quarters. But it’s there, along with the muted scent of Hank that Connor can only pick out through the inhibitors because of the fourteen torturous hours he spent drowning it it.  

 

So things are good, if ever so slightly stressful.  

 

“Come on,” Hank says, swatting Connor with a file. “Watching you type that report is physically paining me. It’s lunch time.” 

 

Connor rolls his shoulders with a faint groan, leaning back and unbuttoning his sleeves to roll them up his forearms. It’s incredibly hot today, he has to loosen his tie a little. “Good plan. I’m actually starving, I didn’t realise.” 

 

“Hhhhhh,” Hank says, quickly looking away when Connor looks up with a frown. His cheeks are flushed dark. Must be the weather. “Let’s go, then.” 

 

Connor gets up and follows, digging his wallet out of his jacket but leaving it draped over his chair. It’s far too hot for it anyway.  

 

“Any particular reason you’re typing like Reed’s grandma today?” Hank asks, elbowing him.  

 

I keep looking at you when you’re not paying attention  

 

“I think it’s the heat,” Connor lies. “It’s making me somewhat sluggish.” 

 

“I hear that.” Hank nods, commiserating. “Fuckin’ impossible to work like this. Where d’you wanna eat?” 

 

“Preferably inside a freezer,” Connor grumbles, enjoying Hank’s quiet laugh. They turn down a busy side street at just the wrong moment and a man collides heavily with Hank’s shoulder. Connor reaches out instinctively to steady him, one hand on his arm, the other against his back.  

 

All of Connor’s senses kick up into high alert as the stranger glowers at Hank furiously.  

 

Alpha.   

 

“Watch where you’re going,” the alpha snaps, giving Hank’s shoulder another rough shove. Connor feels his lips pull back unconsciously, slowly baring his teeth. But it’s not his place. Not his place.  

 

Hank staggers slightly, more caught off guard by  the shove than anything else. The alpha sneers at him, looking him up and down with a lascivious edge to his gaze that prickles along Connor’s skin.  

 

“Little bitch,” he jeers. “Why don’t you run along home before I decide I want—“ 

 

He falls silent. Hank doesn’t even take the opportunity to retaliate.  

 

It takes a very long moment for Connor to realise that the low, furious growl is coming from him, rumbling through his chest, spitting through ferally bared teeth. The other alpha takes a step back as Connor squares up to him, shoulders tense, chest swelling. He’s surprised by the sheer rage that’s surging through him.  

 

The raw desire to tear this alpha limb from limb for even looking in Hank’s direction.  

 

“Touch him again,” Connor seethes, voice rippling around the growl, “and I’ll fucking destroy you.” 

 

The alpha stumbles back a step, mouth working around words he can’t force out. Choosing the smart option, he turns on his heel and scurries off, Connor’s growl quietening the further he gets away from them.  

 

“I’m so sorry,” Connor rushes when he has control over his instincts again. “I- I just… I couldn’t let him speak to you like that.” 

 

Hank doesn’t answer immediately. He seems to be struggling with something internally. Connor really hopes it’s not the urge to punch him in the face for overstepping his boundaries.  

 

“Thanks,” Hank finally says. “I… No, I appreciate it. Guy was a dick.” 

 

Connor’s shoulders relax and he gives a soft sigh of relief. He opens his mouth to, no doubt, offer another apology, but before his brain can even form the words he wants to say out loud, his nose and his tongue catch that achingly familiar scent that Connor hasn’t stopped thinking about for weeks.  

 

Warm and honeyed like hot tea and cinnamon, but somehow resinous like mint and herbs. It’s mouthwatering and addictive and hangs so thickly on Connor’s tongue he can actually taste it.  

 

It’s unhindered, he realises with no small amount of shock. This is the pure scent of Hank’s arousal, unaffected by chemicals, full and heady and driving Connor insane. He hasn’t been taking his suppressants. Inhibitors, yes, he’s still a private man, but this. This is something else.  

 

“I, uh.” Connor stutters, taking a quick step back. “I need to— I should head back in there’s. Something I want to check.” 

 

“Oh— Sure, yeah.” Hank nods quickly, face flushed like he knows exactly why Connor is backing away. “Yeah, I’ll catch you later.” 

 

“Sure,” Connor says and tries not to book it back into the station.  

 

Fuck, he thinks wildly. This wasn’t supposed to happen.  

 

Not once over the past weeks has Connor ever considered that maybe, just maybe, Hank might like him back.  

 

God fucking damn it.   

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

Message Received  20:36  

Lt. Anderson Work 

 

stop avoiding me u brat 

 

 

Message received 20:36  

Lt. Anderson Work 

 

i need 2 talk 2 u 

 

 

Missed Call 20:37  

Lt. Anderson Work 

1 Voicemail(s) 

 

 

Missed Call 20:3 8  

Lt. Anderson Work 

2  Voicemail(s) 

 

 

Message Received 20:39  

Lt. Anderson Work 

 

PICK UP UR DAMN FONE 

 

 

Message Received 20:39  

Lt. Anderson Work 

 

connor  

 

 

Message Received 20: 40  

Lt. Anderson Work 

 

connor  

 

 

Message Received 20: 40  

Lt. Anderson Work 

 

connor  

 

 

Missed Call 20: 41  

Lt. Anderson Work 

3  Voicemail(s) 

 

 

Message Received 20: 41  

Lt. Anderson Work 

 

connor  

 

 

Message Received 20: 41  

Lt. Anderson Work 

 

CONNOR   

 

 

Missed Call 20: 42  

Lt. Anderson Work 

4  Voicemail(s) 

 

 

Message Received 20:43  

Lt. Anderson Work 

 

ALRIGHT THATS IT 

 

 

Connor starts awake to a horrific pounding at his front door, jumping so badly he topples off the couch with a yelp, hitting the floor hard. He groans loudly and rolls into his back, blinking rapidly to try and clear the fuzziness from his vision. He sits up and reaches for the remote on the coffee table to switch off the tv and hauls himself to his feet, heading towards the door and switching the light on with a yawn so wide his jaw cracks.  

 

“I know you’re in there!” Hank’s voice slams Connor into full awareness and he freezes, hand halfway to the door handle. “Open the goddamn door before your neighbours call the police!” 

 

Connor swallows hard and forces himself to reach for the handle, slowly turning it and cracking the door open, peering out with his shoulder blocking it from being pushed open further.  

 

“Evening, Lieutenant,” Connor says with a falsely cheery tone. “To what do I owe the pleasure?” 

 

Hank scowls at him. “Fuck right off with that. I’ve been trying to get hold of you all fuckin’ day.” 

 

“Oh, I’m sorry. Do we have a new case?” 

 

“No, we don’t have a new fuckin’ case. Will you let me in? I need to talk to you.” 

 

“I… Don’t think that’s the best idea, Lieutenant.” 

 

“Yeah, and that’s exactly my point,” Hank says, giving the door a sharp shove. Connor winces as it collides with his shoulder. “You’re avoiding me.” 

 

“I’m not—“ 

 

“Yeah, you fuckin’ are.” Hank shoves the door again. “And I know because I did the exact same thing to you. So will you please let me in so we can talk like adults? Look, see? I even asked nicely.” 

 

Connor grits his teeth tightly and steps back to open the door fully. “By all means,” he forces out through a gritted smile. “Do come in.” 

 

“Much obliged,” Hank snaps back and steps inside.  

 

“Can I get you a drink?” 

 

“What do you got?” 

 

“Coffee, tea, soda. Beer, I think.” 

 

“Yeah, I’ll take a beer.” 

 

“Of course,” Connor mutters and ignores the pissy glare Hank levels at him. “Make yourself at home.” He heads into the kitchen and opens the fridge, taking out the last two bottles of beer he has left. He uncaps them and takes them into the living room where Hank has already sprawled out on the sofa, jacket tossed over the arm.  

 

“Nice place,” he says, nodding in thanks as Connor hands him the beer.  

 

“Not to be rude,” Connor says, sitting in the armchair. “But can we skip the pleasantries and get to why you wanted to kick my door in at nine in the evening on a Saturday?” 

 

Hank takes a swig of his beer before answering. “Because. I was a shit to you from the start. And you put up with it. And then things were fine, and now they aren’t. And I wanna know why.” 

 

Connor rolls his bottle between his hands for something to focus on. “I’d actually rather not discuss it.” 

 

“Tough shit, kid.” 

 

Connor bristles. “Please don’t call me that.” 

 

“Alright, whatever. And you broke into my house, so I think you owe me an explanation.” 

 

Connor narrows his eyes. “How long are you going to keep using that against me for?” 

 

“Well, considering I didn’t book you for breaking and entering, a pretty fuckin’ long time.” 

 

“Noted,” Connor says stiffly. “And I thought you were dead on the floor, so excuse me for giving a shit.” 

 

Hank snorts. “Yeah, I believe you. At first I didn’t, I figured you were just tryna get a leg over like they all do.” 

 

“I didn’t know,” Connor snaps. “I didn’t know you were an omega, alright? I heard Fowler say something about you being a suicide risk and I panicked. I’ve looked up to you since I was in the academy and I… I had to do something. That’s why I was there. It wasn’t because I found out you were an omega and I wanted to try my luck, it was because I cared.” 

 

Hank tilts his head slightly as he regards Connor with a neutral expression. Connor fights to keep himself from scowling back and takes a long drink of his beer instead.  

 

“Not a lot of people care about a grumpy asshole who’s been nothing but rude to them.” 

 

“I knew there was a reason.” 

 

Hank’s brows punch together in a deep frown. “You knew?” 

 

“Know,” Connor admits, staring down at the bottle in his hands. “I mean, I— I know about… About your son.” 

 

Hank doesn’t reply so Connor forces himself to look up. The Lieutenant is nodding slowly, a thoughtful expression on his face shuttered by something dark that Connor knows is grief.  

 

“How’d you find out?” 

 

“The photo on the table. When I came to your house. I saw it and… Yeah. It made sense. I’m sorry, for what it’s worth.” 

 

“He wasn’t planned,” Hank says after an uncomfortably long pause. “My ex, she didn’t really want him, so I raised him alone. After he… After that, I didn’t want any reminders, you know? Started on the suppressants and the blockers and never looked back.” 

 

Connor nods slowly. He’d thought as much.  

 

“I’m sorry,” Hank says gruffly, scratching the back of his neck. “You’re a good detective and a good guy and I treated you like shit just because you were an alpha. Doesn’t excuse it, but… You know. Being an asshole is a hard habit to break.” 

 

Connor smiles faintly, the side of his mouth quirking up. “I get it. It’s fine.” 

 

“So why were you avoiding me.” 

 

“Okay, can we go back to you apologising? I don’t think I basked enough—“ Connor breaks off with a laugh as Hank throws a cushion at him.  

 

“Spit it out,” Hank says. “I’m baring my fuckin’ soul over here, gimme a fuckin’ break. Even the playing field a little, Jesus Christ.” 

 

Connor sets the cushion down in his lap, scratching his thumbnail absently over the ridged fabric. “I… I want you,” he murmurs, staring so hard at the cushion his vision blurs. “I always had a… a crush. But then… after everything, I… I wanted to care for you. Not because I thought you couldn’t, but because I wanted to. I wanted to see you smile more and… When it was me you were smiling because of, I just… I couldn’t get enough of it.” He sighs unsteadily. “Working with you was like a dream of mine. I was avoiding you because things were fine. And I was so afraid I was gonna ruin it. And I did, I guess.” 

 

“Yeah, you threatened another alpha for me and then ran for the hills. I was getting some mixed messages.” 

 

Connor’s lips curl back from his teeth in a snarl at the memory. He forces down the growl that threatens to slip out. “I crossed the line. I shouldn’t have done that. You’re perfectly capable of taking care of idiots like that. You’re not…” 

 

Mine. 

 

“…My boyfriend.” 

 

Hank leans forward in his seat, catching Connor’s attention. “Okay, so here’s where we’re at.” He holds a hand up, ticking things off on his fingers as he speaks. “You broke into my house to make sure I was safe. You held me, just held me, for twelve hours throughout the worst of my heat just to give me some comfort and nothing else. You looked after my dog. You’re a damn good partner. You didn’t tell anyone about me being an omega. And then you stepped up to make an alpha back down when I was threatened. Connor, in what fucked up universe would I not want you back?” 

 

Connor opens his mouth to reply. Nothing comes out. He clears his throat, swallows, tries again. “Fourteen,” he says weakly.  

 

“What?” 

 

“It was fourteen hours. Not twelve.” 

 

Hank stares at him, eyebrows raised. Then his face splits into a grin and he laughs, a deep rich sound that sends Connor’s heart thudding against his ribs. “You fucking dork,” Hank splutters though his laughter. “You are absolutely the worst alpha in the world, it’s no fucking wonder that I want you to be mine.” 

 

Connor’s brain does a rather interesting series of things following that statement. Simultaneously it forgets how to make his lungs draw breath, how to make him speak, and how to process auditory input. So instead of laughing with Hank or offering some kind of suave reply, he makes a sound similar to that of a dying walrus.  

 

“Fucking Christ, you good, Connor?” 

 

“I’m— Fine,” Connor chokes, flushing. “I’m great, don’t worry about it. Um. You said…” 

 

Hank grins at him. “Shut up, get over here, and kiss me, you dork.” 

 

Connor’s across the room like a shot, pinning Hank down on the couch and finally, finally, giving in and claiming his mouth like he’s wanted to for months. Hank’s hands fist in his shirt, pulling him closer and Connor gives a low moan into his mouth as the intoxicating scent of him fills his senses. He feels drunk on it, that rich scent and the warm heat of Hank’s mouth, and he can’t get enough.  

 

Neither can Hank if the impatient tugging at the hem of his shirt as anything to go by.  

 

Connor rears up, hauling Hank with him easily. “I’m not fucking you here,” he says, voice low and rough. “Come on.” He takes Hank’s hands and leads him quickly through to his bedroom, stopping to press Hank up against the wall and mouth at his neck, licking eagerly over the glands there. Hank shudders under his mouth with a low moan, tilting his head back to bare more of it to Connor’s mouth.  

 

The urge to bite into the glands makes Connor’s teeth itch, but he pulls away, shoving Hank’s shirt off his shoulders and tugging at his t-shirt until it’s off, sending his untidy hair into further disarray. Hank surges forwards, determined to get Connor naked as quickly as possible and Connor allows him to, almost literally, tear his clothes off, assisting where he can. He doesn’t have much work to do once the t-shirt is off, shoving at Connor’s sweats with impatient hands.  

 

And Connor may very well be a terrible alpha consciously, but this is instinctual, primal. So when he stops Hank with a tight grip on his wrists and a low, warning growl, the omega stills immediately, eyes wide. Connor gives a low purr in response, releasing Hank’s wrists and moving his hands to his belt.  

 

“Let’s even things out a little first,” Connor murmurs, flicking the fly of Hank’s jeans open. Hank swallows, throat clicking, and Connor shoves him down onto the bed, following him down to catch his mouth again. Hank groans softly against his lips as Connor’s hips slot neatly between Hank’s spread legs. His skin is hot against Connor’s, flushed and glazed with a light sheen of sweat. He pulls back to wriggle out of his sweats and shove Hank’s jeans off before sweeping down to lave his tongue firmly over a nipple, tugging lightly with his teeth.  

 

Hank arches up with a tight cry and Connor wants to drown in the taste and scent of him. He slips his hand between Hank’s spread thighs, past his already hard cock, to slip two fingers into the slick heat of his ass. Hank’s breathing halts on a sharp gasp, teeth clamping down on his lower lip.  

 

“Easy,” he gasps, hands clutching Connor’s shoulders. “It’s been—“ 

 

“A while?” Connor purrs, brushing his lips over Hank’s nipples while he flutters his fingers. “I think that might be a lie, Lieutenant.”Hank stutters out a moan. “I think you’ve been thinking about this, am I right? Fantasising while grinding down on your own fingers, wishing it was me?” 

 

Hank moans, hips rolling down against Connor’s fingers. “Fuck, don’t… You can’t…” 

 

“Am I wrong, Lieutenant?” 

 

Fuck. N-No.” 

 

Satisfaction and pride thrum through Connor’s veins. He presses his fingers deeper and Hank cries out, flushed and panting.  

 

“Will you fuck me?” His fingers dig harder into Connor’s shoulders. “C’mon, I’m ready.” 

 

Ever the proud man, it’s as close to Hank is going to come to begging and Connor doesn’t want him any other way. Still, his demands prompt a visceral reaction from Connor and he shifts up, nudging Hank’s thighs further apart so he can line their hips up. He leans in close, their chests flush together, and Hank throws an arm round his shoulders, panting hot breaths against the skin of Connor’s throat. Shoving down the desire to bury himself deep, Connor pushes in slowly, inch by inch, delighting in the gasped moans Hank lets out as Connor presses deep inside.  

 

“C-C’mon,” Hank stutters, nuzzling into Connor’s scent glands. “I can take it.” 

 

That same urge creeps up again, to sink his teeth into the ruddy skin of Hank’s throat and Connor swallows hard, digging his fingers into the mattress. He won’t do it. He won’t claim him like this. It has to be on Hank’s terms, all of it. Connor will die before he gives Hank anything he doesn’t want. So instead he turns his head to take Hank’s mouth again, giving his hips a sharp jerk forward and sheathing himself fully in Hank’s body.  

 

He can’t stop the growl that rips out of him, the shudder that claws up his spine at the tight clench of Hank’s body around him. Hank responds beautifully, arching against him, mouth slack and hands clutching at Connor’s back, straining to be closer. It’s enough and Connor rolls his hips, slow and deep, groaning low in his chest. Hank cries out, nails scratching down Connor’s back and it’s perfect.  

 

“Tell me,” Connor grits out, panting as he grinds his cock deep into Hank’s body. “Tell me how it feels.” 

 

“S-so f-fucking—“ Hank breaks off with a shuddered moan. “I want…” 

 

“Anything, Hank. I’ll give you anything.” 

 

Be mine. Please. I need you.  

 

Harder-!” 

 

Connor growls and pins Hank’s hands to the mattress above his head. That’s all he needs, that single, choked word and he’s unhinged, thrusting for all he’s worth, pounding into the willing heat of Hank’s body like he’ll die if he doesn’t. Hank writhes beneath him, rocking his hips up desperately to meet the brutal thrusts, one leg hitched over Connor’s hip to give him a better angle. His eyes are half-lidded and unfocused, jaw slack, head thrown back. He looks wrecked, utterly perfect and Connor wants.  

 

He feels it long before his mind wraps around what’s happening and there’s a momentary surge of panic before he can stutter the words out, a warning, that catches in his throat. The intense heat in his gut, the desperate drop of pleasure that forces the breath from his lungs. He’s never felt it before, but he knows.  

 

“Hank, I’m— I need to—“ 

 

“Do it,” Hank gasps, legs tight around Connor’s waist.  

 

“No, I—“ He has to get the words out. Has to. “I’m going to knot, I c-can’t—“ 

 

Hank’s eyes snap open wide, clear and so very, very blue. “I want— I want you to.” He turns his head to the side, baring the delicate skin of his throat in such an explicit display it makes Connor dizzy.  

 

“Hank, I—“ 

 

“Connor, please.” 

 

One word. One single word from the right lips and the walls of Connor’s carefully cultivated self-control come tumbling down like he’s a machine breaking through the walls of his coding. Stuttering, breathless, he buries himself to the hilt with a low roar as he spills into Hank’s body, shuddering near-uncontrollably as his knot swells, tearing the most intensely pleasured cry from Hank’s lips. Connor watches through slitted eyes as Hank unravels beneath him, shaking apart with pleasure and spilling between their stomachs. Connor watches as long as he can before he surges down and sinks his teeth into Hank’s neck, right into his scent glands.  

 

Time slows until all Connor knows is pleasure, the deep scent of Hank filling every single one of his senses, and the burning, thick flood of rightness that rushes through his blood as he claims, driven purely by instinct. He feels it in every part of his body. Hank is his. Irrevocable. Fact. Written in stone and stars.  

 

When he comes back to himself, it’s like two souls have settled into one body. Hank is gazing up at him, red-faced and heavy-lidded, with the most contended expression Connor has ever had the pleasure of seeing grace his handsome face.  

 

“I,” Connor starts, voice raw.  

 

“Yeah,” Hank breathes. “Me too.” 

 

“Let me—“ Connor eases Hank’s legs down from round his waist, shifting them carefully into a more comfortable position. “I didn’t know… I didn’t expect to…” 

 

Hank gives a faint sound, part discomfort, part pleasure, as Connor’s knot tugs against his rim. “It’s fine, I wanted it. It’s… Fuck, it’s good.” He lifts a hand, fingers tracing the crescent marks of Connor’s teeth in his neck. “It’s good,” he murmurs again.  

 

Connor relaxes, bone-deep tired and soul-deep satisfied. “It… I don’t know how long, I’ve never…” 

 

Hank huffs a faint laugh and the movement has them both groaning at the sensation. “You’re a dork,” he says, for the third time that evening. “Shitty alpha and shitty omega. We make a good team.” 

 

“Yeah,” Connor agrees, cheeks sore from the size of his smile. “We really do.”