Actions

Work Header

Where Giants Fall

Work Text:

 

’’There’s a problem,’’ Kyungsoo says, distressed, conveying as much emotion as a deadpan voice can express.

These problems are usually stuff like not knowing what the red, yellow and green dots on a traffic light mean when people jaywalk anyway, or why some people do a tight-lipped smile to each other when your eyes meet on the street.

Baekhyun cracks an eye open, ‘’yeah?’’

Kyungsoo settles on the spot next to him on the porch, planks creaking.

Usually, regardless of the degree of the problem, ranging from sociocultural questions to what hemorrhoids are, he goes for it without reluctance.

Today is the day he hesitates, for once.

‘’What is it?’’ Baekhyun fishes restlessly, turning his head Kyungsoo’s way to indicate he’s giving him his whole attention.

Kyungsoo smoothes his hand over the fold of his own sleeve. Baekhyun’s come to know Kyungsoo’s hypersensitivity about the type of fabric he wears, and knows that he likes cotton. He wears the blue one almost every day, as much as Baekhyun allows it.

‘’I’m in my prime age,’’ Kyungsoo says. He gazes at the forest ahead, sunrays dipping between the crowns of the trees and glossing the top of his head, like a halo encircling his riveting black hair. It’s gotten longer, reaching past his shoulders now and down his back; a change from when it was cropped when they first met.

‘’Prime age,’’ Baekhyun repeats, still trying to turn the cogs in his head to actually listen.

He had to stand for nine hours straight on his feet at work today and there was that drunkard who always smells of spiced rum who came in and spat in his face, blaming him for not having stocked up the Red Prince cigs. Good times.

Kyungsoo turns his head too. ‘’By now, I should’ve already found a compatible mate and bred them.’’

It takes at least half a minute for Baekhyun’s ears to digest that, fingers fidgeting.  Fuck – he forgot his stim toy in his locker at work.

He shrugs, though his lower lip worries. ‘’I mean, I’m twenty-one, I’m pretty sure if we wound time back fifty decades ago I should’ve had four kids right now and a crooked spine from physical labor. That don’t mean I need to do it now just cause some people say I should’ve or ‘cause it was natural for people in my position in the past, y’know.’’

Kyungsoo continues, unrelenting – ‘’I’m riled up with unused energy,’’ he says firmly, ‘’it distracts me. It’s an instinctual-‘’

‘’Ok, so you’re horny?’’ Baekhyun snaps. ‘’Well shit, me too! You’re not the only one, bro.’’

‘’I’ll be going into a rut soon.’’

‘’A what-now?’’

‘’A rut.’’

‘’The fuck is that?’

‘’Mating season.’’

Baekhyun stares. Kyungsoo stares back.

‘’What are you. Some kinda animal?’’

‘’Humans are mammals-‘’

‘’Yes, I know tha-‘’

‘’And I’m an –‘’

‘’Yes, you’re whatever-you-said-it-was. Some sorta… throat-singing, a name I can’t pronounce even when I’m gurgling toothpaste. You’re an alien. I get it, ‘’ Baekhyun tears his gaze away and fixates it resolutely on his sneakers, face heating up.

‘’I arouse you,‘’ Kyungsoo starts, and Baekhyun groans and slips his elbow out under himself instead of using it as leverage, flopping onto the porch.

‘’We talked about that- and no, you don’t! Stop – doing that. Stop reading my body or. Shit. Some shit! Whatever alien stuff you’re doing, stop it. I’m not- like that.’’

Kyungsoo simply doesn’t give a fuck.

He ponders aloud, ‘’it seems you humans are in a constant state of being able to mate. You don’t synchronize your ruts or have seasons? For your body to be able to do that, it’s wasted energy-‘’

‘’It’s not like we’re a wanton breed of nymphomaniacs, dude. Or, I mean, I can’t talk for all… but sex for humans is like – I mean, not so many years ago people literally thought you’d go to hell for masturbating. Isn’t that telling?’’ Baekhyun defends.

– ‘’also, people with uteruses have fertility days. So there’s a timeline of where, y’know, they’re more fertile. And rather than it coming in seasons, humans should usually mate when they’re, uh, young and their bodies are still regenerating their cells – before we shrink into ourselves and die as raisins. I think.’’

‘’Raisins,’’ Kyungsoo parrots, a thoughtful expression crossing his face.

Baekhyun holds a hand over his face to shield out the sun, edging further up to get under the roof stretching over the porch, what’s left of it, at least.

‘’Long story short: human sexuality is a can of worms you don’t want to open, ‘kay?’’ he says. ‘’We’re animals but at the same time we’re socially apt creatures too with lotsa grey-areas. Sex can be a crucial part of people’s lives and their identities. It’s many things. But it carries lotsa stigma even if it’s fluid and not inherently bad.’’

‘’Tell me more.’’

‘’Can we do it another time? I could really go for a nap right now, or some fuckin' skirmishing or quick-play.’’

Kyungsoo ignores him, ‘’human norms gainsay themselves oftentimes. I don’t care for these contradictions.’’

‘’Good for you. But I do. For humans, they create systems so that we don’t all just go around butt-naked and act on impulses. And if we didn’t have rules, we’d just be like any other animals.’’

‘’Do you think I’m mindless?’’

‘’That’s not- no. No, I don’t.’’

‘’Can I breed you, then?’’

Baekhyun closes his eyes and sighs. ‘’I think we might have a communication problem.’’

‘’I deem our conversation fluent. You’re avoiding my inquiries though.’’

‘’I’m rejecting them.’’

‘’Your heart-rate is increasing, blood is flooding to your pelvis-‘’

‘’My body doesn’t speak for my mind! Is that so hard to understand?’’ Baekhyun scrambles up and glares at Kyungsoo for real.

Kyungsoo’s brows furrow, and his hair falls over half of his face with the way he tilts his head.

‘’When you’re with your acquaintances, you make correlations to mating many times. Is that not a sign of desire?’’

‘’That’s different. I don’t have to pretend when I’m with you, or be happy-go-lucky and perverted to fill a role all the time,’’ Baekhyun replies.

‘’But Baekhyun,’’ Kyungsoo says, voice mellower than usual, but deep as always, ‘’you return my infatuation, don’t you?’’

There’s a beat of silence, broken only by a pigeon cooing in one of the trees.

Baekhyun mushes his feet into the earth and dusts off his pants, taking his jacket and bag with him, key bundle with the astronaut charm clinking in his hand.

‘’I’m going home,’’ he says.

Just then, he feels a pressure on the back of his neck.

Kyungsoo keeps his palm there, gentle.

An electrifying warmth sizzles on the patch, and the tension eases out of Baekhyun’s shoulders in nanoseconds.

‘’I’ve upset you,’’ Kyungsoo states, rather than says, like he’s already searching for a thousand angles of approach to find a solution.

‘’It’s not you,’’ Baekhyun says, honest.

The hand squeezes his neck so that he looks to the side, and into the eyes whose irises have turned a light amethyst, the pupils white, waves roaming through in surging ringlets. There’s a crease to Kyungsoo’s brows, a look of concern.

And Baekhyun grins, the uneasiness dissipating as quick as it came. Forgotten the reason why he got so riled up in the first place, probably because of embarrassment. Because Kyungsoo’s got those x-ray eyes that see through everything. They’re like the rinnegan from Naruto, that crazy shit. Like holes of void, except they’re pretty – but still portals to hell, regardless.

‘’Have you taken your Adderall today?’’ Kyungsoo asks.

Baekhyun blinks. ‘’I think… wait, uh. No. It’s past midday now. Can’t take it in the evening, then I won’t be sleeping.’’

‘’Remember it tomorrow, then.’’

‘’What are you, my mother?’’

Kyungsoo stares.

Baekhyun rolls his eyes.

He leans in and pushes his mouth to Kyungsoo’s, and doesn’t look back before running.

 

Kyungsoo hasn't always been here, residing in a haunted-looking cottage in the woods.

Looming in one of those creepy forests that stretch out endlessly, where bikes disappear and sporty people jog with their dogs that shit everywhere. Where kids don't return before midnight after scout meetings, so their parents get worried and the adult guiding the troop gets scolded.

Baekhyun doesn't know how long Kyungsoo had been around before their paths crossed. There's nothing thrilling in how they met; Baekhyun was using the forgotten cottage for a while, after he'd moved to the district close by to work part-time jobs and study computer engineering.

He needed to find a hideout where he could smoke pot in peace by himself. Sharing with others meant people scrounging from him because he's too easy. Being easy is expensive, and you can't be like that when you need to save money, and still keep your mental well-being intact – and your wallet fat. Or stack enough cash to buy loot boxes in Overwatch when a new event pops up and you’re too shitty at competitive play, or playing multiplayer games in general, to get them yourself.

Like in a formulaic movie, it was on an unsuspecting day that Baekhyun, who’d nicked the key to the cottage earlier (by prying one of the crooked backyard windows up with a crowbar), wrenched the door open to find a man there. A man in his birthday suit, no less, whose gaze bore solemnly into Baekhyun’s as he said, ‘’hello, human.’’

It wasn’t extravagant or flashy. No gun shows, no blood on the panes or Baekhyun getting mangled and left for one of the girl scouts to find, strewn in pieces on the grass the next morning. Just a naked guy with a serious attitude who looked like he’d either escaped a hospital mid-surgery or decided to practice hedonism in its full glory.

Baekhyun left.

He screamed like a banshee at first, but stopped and gathered himself; power-walked all the way to his bike, drove to the city and bought a bottle of Grey Goose at the corner store, and some pepsi.

The same man from before stood by the end of Baekhyun's bed at sunrise while the latter was nursing a skull-splitting headache.

''There's a problem,'' the man had said, which has become Kyungsoo's catchphrase ever since.

''The problem,'' Baekhyun said, barely able to climb out of bed nor see straight, wobbling on the legs of a newborn foal, ''is that there's a stranger in my apartment, uninvited and fucking butt-naked.''

While he'd intended to get rid of the guy, he ended up pouring Kyungsoo cereal with milk (who knew, aliens don’t need food but they like breakfast) and watched him gawk at a commercial for an upcoming hero-movie on the TV, an addition to the already expansive collection.

Everything was simultaneously complicated and simple at the same time. On one hand, Baekhyun went through the five stages of grief before giving up on calling the cops, and they've been friends ever since. He wouldn't call Kyungsoo his pet alien, and yet he’s the one who’s named him. Kyungsoo’s basically a guy with no registered ID anywhere, no driving license, no clothes, nothing – his only link to planet Earth and its devices and human abnormalities is through Baekhyun.

He's friends with Baekhyun's friends, he partially lives in Baekhyun's apartment and Baekhyun likewise in Kyungsoo's cottage (which isn't Kyungsoo's, but never mind that), and they do everything together ranging from napping - with Kyungsoo staring creepily at Baekhyun (‘’Ok please don’t do that?’’ – ‘’Have I done something wrong?’’ – ‘’Uhhh aside from standing there like the fucking exorcist, I suppose not? Why’re you watching me sleep?’’ – ‘’I’m merely observing you.’’ – ‘’Can you stick to doing it while I’m awake, maybe?’’ – ‘’I will, then.’’ – ‘’That was not an invitation.’’), to shopping groceries for dinner.

Plus, Kyungsoo could be a pro gamer. When playing Overwatch with Baekhyun's friends for the first time at a Lan party, all Sehun had to do was tell him the basic introductions of the playable characters, their advantages and disadvantages, and the structure of the different team compositions. Within a quarter, Kyungsoo was commandeering roles to Sehun, Jackson and other players over the microphone, and Baekhyun’s account rose tremendously in rank during that day, far higher than what he'd achieve by himself in a month.

So Kyungsoo's like a matryoshka doll with smaller dolls inside; inhuman reflexes, intelligence and physical skills, you name it and he can probably do it – but a limited awareness of other people’s privacy in terms of interpersonal skills, intruding one’s home and the difference between shaking hands and punching one’s kidney. He’s the secret superman we never knew we needed, like when he lifted a car to pet a cat. Baekhyun stood in the background during that incident, scratched his ass and thought, yeah.

Kyungsoo’s also charming to older women; he's got a fascination for those stray cats and birds and spends most of his free time feeding the majority of the city's pets, buying food with money he can materialize from his hands. No cops are on his ass – yet.

People ask where he’s from, but they accept a white lie from Baekhyun since Kyungsoo’s too genuine or unsuspiciously suspicious for anyone to want to get blackmail on him, or dig further.

They think he lives with Baekhyun, so they don’t know about the condition of his (not) home, which is, as the word haunted promises; from another timeline. It's gotten better over time with Baekhyun coming along – not that he’s ever been a sweet homemaker, though. Vintage furniture occupies every room and the kitchen is in decent condition, albeit useless nonetheless. The toilet is probably a door to another dimension, but he’s never cared to check.

There’s no electricity and water available, but it’s no longer got mold or dust anywhere, as if Kyungsoo’s purified it and brought along warmth to keep it intact with the course of his own existence. Another card pulled from extraterrestrial ass.

One could almost call it homely from the inside, aside from the lack of housekeeping and laundry facilities. Baekhyun’s bought a mini-freezer that Kyungsoo keeps running with his homemade electricity, because unlike Kyungsoo, Baekhyun’s trapped in a demanding flesh prison and needs normal food to survive. Whenever he’s sleeping over, he has to piss in the bushes and even do number two like the cavemen that roamed the landscapes before Jesus was born.

He stocks toilet paper in one of the cabinets and mourns when he forgets to restock; the time he wiped his ass with a stinging-nettle by accident left as a warning.

However, the crucial feature Kyungsoo owns is the goodies these conditions come from. Energy, he calls it. His life source and nutrition. Baekhyun’s named it lightning-joint.

Considering that it’s too high voltage and intense for a human’s vessel to contain, the effect can either grill you and fry your brain, or have you loose and cozy like pot initially does to Baekhyun. Except it supposedly, according to Kyungsoo, doesn’t have the same long-term neurological and psychological effects as overuse of cannabis can cause, or the paranoia effect to people susceptible to schizophrenia. Well, as long as the usage of the energy follows Kyungsoo’s policy.

In other words, ever since Baekhyun’s met Kyungsoo, he hasn’t needed to waste money on drugs or alcohol. For an afterthought, it leaves a pleasant number on his bank account. In general, he’s not allowed to drink or smoke, since it causes health problems in itself – the latter’s even more of a shit-fest when mixed with the Adderall, like scary hallucinations and near-seizure experiences.

So it’s a fifty-fifty case.

You either choose to function like a somewhat average human being in periods and live with the terrible damnation of consciousness with no access to drugs while still being a walnut in any social circumstances and scheduling, or you drink and smoke yourself starry-eyed, barely hanging on, but at least you get stimulated when you need to and you sleep like a brick on your pillow when you don’t. Ah, and talking to people gets easier, as long as they don’t physically scrape you off the asphalt after you’ve talked the ears off those who don’t have time for that kind of thing.

Varied months of both degrees have never stopped Baekhyun, or his antipathy that’s made it a goal in itself for him to live fast and die young and let whatever that needs to happen, happen.

This energy comes from collecting (in Kyungsoo’s own words: harvesting) rocks that turn into magenta crystal-looking balls that Kyungsoo feeds on and that make purple sparks simmer and surge over his skin. It’s unsettling, but Baekhyun isn’t complaining. They look tasty, although he’s not inclined to ever want to consume it, and Kyungsoo’s explained in a very explicit and descriptive way with foreign and bombastic words how he’d likely die if he did.

Funny to think the most intimate relationship he’s ever had to another person is with someone who’s not even a human being, at that.

 

It’s something so profound it makes Baekhyun stub his toe on the doorstep on his way to the living room after a shower.

‘’I’ve told you a million times: use the doorbell! Like a normal human would,’’ he admonishes, ‘’instead of popping out of fucking nowhere in my apartment first thing in the morning.’’ He fetches the robe he’d lost on the floor to cover himself again, begrudgingly avoiding Kyungsoo’s all-seeing eyes.

‘’May I have some cereal, please,’’ Kyungsoo asks. It’s by normal standards overly polite, yet casual coming from him.

Baekhyun doesn’t think twice. He waddles to the kitchenette, grabs the box off the counter and shakes the content to hear it rustle, meanwhile opening one of the drawers to get a spoon, ‘’you really like those frosties, huh.’’

‘’They’re delectable,’’ Kyungsoo says. He’s already sat himself at the dinner table, still wearing the blue shirt he was wearing yesterday and a pair of skinny jeans.

He doesn’t particularly like the jeans, but Baekhyun’s told him they’ll make him blend in more easily. Actually, they just make his ass look great, and Baekhyun has no shame.

‘’Medicine?’’ Kyungsoo asks.

‘’Took a pill this morning,’’ Baekhyun assures. ‘’Anyway, where does the cereal go when you’ve digested it? Do you poop or something? Does it simply poof into thin air?’’ He asks as he pours milk over the flakes.

‘’My excrements-‘’

‘’Never mind. I need to eat too.’’

He picks the spot opposite to Kyungsoo, sliding the bowls onto the table recklessly, knowing Kyungsoo will catch them anyway.

They eat in silence, morning traffic churning in the distance from the open window in the bedroom.

‘’Sorry about yesterday,’’ Baekhyun mumbles with his mouth full of crunch, half of it inaudible.

‘’I exceeded your limits,’’ Kyungsoo reasons, ‘’that was inconsiderate of me.’’

‘’No, it’s just…,’’ Baekhyun lets the spoon clatter on the table, breathing in deeply. ‘’I guess sex is easy to joke about in public, but when it’s private like this, it’s something…’’

He shrugs and adjusts the towel around his waist to sit straighter.

‘’It’s different,’’ he says and rubs the sleep out of his eyes because the shower wasn’t enough, smiling lopsidedly, ‘’I’m a virgin, you see?’’

‘’Is that a creature of lore?’’ Kyungsoo asks, brows low.

‘’Some say they are. Naw, I’m kidding. Means you haven’t dipped the stick yet.’’

‘’What stick?’’

‘’It means you’ve never... done the do.’’

‘‘The do.’’

‘’Fine, it means you haven’t been bred before, or done it to someone else.’’

‘’I haven’t either,’’ Kyungsoo says.

His hair falls into his eyes, so Baekhyun gets up from his chair to fetch an elastic from the bathroom. He only buys the cheapest elastics because they go missing like needles in a haystack.

’’Why not?’’ he asks upon returning with a brush in his hand. Bought it not so long ago along with the elastics when he finally got fed up with Kyungsoo’s hair being untended with that length.

He stands behind Kyungsoo, assembling the strands on the back, and Kyungsoo lets him.

‘’Before I matured, my race went extinct, aside from me.’’

Baekhyun stops mid-brush.

Despite having known each other for long at this point, he’s never asked much to Kyungsoo’s origin. There are just some things as a human you don’t want to know, or simply shouldn’t.

So far, Baekhyun’s been fine and dandy living in his own little bubble where global warming is a myth and Big Foot thrives under his couch. At least he tells himself that.

‘’Why’d you come to planet Earth, man? Of all places.’’ He asks, mouth like cotton.

‘’I was deserted,’’ Kyungsoo replies. His voice is as even as always, but there’s a softness bleeding into the pace of his wording.

‘’Why? What about your home planet and shit?’’

‘’Destroyed by the collapse of our stratosphere. Furthermore, all of the planets in the solar system became inhabitable.’’

‘’That’s… heavy.’’

‘’It’s natural. We brought it upon ourselves by harvesting more nutrition than the planets produced.’’

Baekhyun starts brushing again, the sound of each stroke soothing, the texture of Kyungsoo’s hair nice against his fingertips. ‘’Well, I’d fist my own ass if that doesn’t sound familiar,’’ he murmurs. ‘’Humans and your race have that in common – the sucking the living shit out of our own planets. Beautiful to know we’re not the only fuck-ups here, though.’’

‘’It’s the cycle of existence. Creation that leads to destruction, and destruction that leads to creation.’’

‘’But do you like it here? On earth?’’

‘’Earth isn’t as nutritional. It’s not an attractive place, but I find it worthwhile. I’ve found myself becoming more… human in my behavior and perception.’’

‘’Does that mean you’re weaker than you used to be?’’

‘’Yes.’’

‘’In other words, this isn’t even your final form? Like no memeing, but for real?’’

‘’I suppose.’’

Baekhyun stops brushing again – ‘’this isn’t your real form?’’

‘’No,’’ Kyungsoo looks over his shoulder, ‘’I shifted to imitate the dominant race here.’’

‘’Does that mean you plagiarized a random human you saw when you came here, or have you created your own skin?’’

‘’I observed any entries on sight and meshed them.’’

‘’You didn’t eat them, did you?’’

‘’I’m not a carnivore. If I were, humans would not be nutritional enough anyhow. They would be, by your terms, junkfood.’’

‘’That makes me feel so good about myself.’’

‘’You shouldn’t. You’re merely-‘’

‘’I was being sarcastic, okay. Eat your fucking cereal, vegan alien.’’

They go back to silence, Kyungsoo eating in peace and Baekhyun continuing to brush Kyungsoo’s hair and filtering past the knots. Not that Baekhyun’s an expert, but maybe this guy could do with a haircut.

‘’Seriously though, what do you really look like?’’ Baekhyun finally asks.

Kyungsoo finishes chewing before replying.

‘’I wouldn’t be able to show you – I’m not strong enough in this condition to shift back, unless I want to use redundant energy and that’d make me too weak to extract nutrition onward.’’

‘’So that’d be suicide, basically?’’

‘’It would kill me.’’

‘’But is your- are your organs human, too? Is your blood red?’’

Kyungsoo’s suspiciously silent for a while.

Then, a devastatingly loud and wet crunch makes itself known as he grips his right elbow and pulls till it comes apart, skin detaching like strings and a spur like ketchup getting pumped out of a bottle splattering onto his lap, but instead of red it’s a dark purple.

From the open flesh wound, tiny snake-looking things start worming out, gripping onto the detached limb to bring it back.

‘’Oh- oh shit,’’ Baekhyun loses the brush on the floor, ‘’Oh holy- holy moly- what the fuck, Kyungsoo. That’s not okay! Oh god, that’s gross. Holy shit that’s fucking disgusting. Holy-‘’

‘’You said you could handle horror movies with excessive gore, like the one you showed me. Alien, the covenant.’’

‘’Yeah, when it’s fiction. That doesn’t mean it’s a turn on when a guy I’m dating rips his fucking arm off to prove a point. I’m gonna be traumatized from this, thank you, man. And you’re staining the carpet! The landlady’s gonna kill me!’’

‘’Dating?’’ Kyungsoo repeats, still holding his arm in his left hand, calm and collected. ‘’Are we dating? You’ve told me it’s the act of two compatible mates –‘’

Baekhyun howls.

 

For some people, there's a time in their life where they realize that not everything's going as planned. That occupations, events and friends don't come in a chronological order and in fact, everything's kind of not going the way the commercials and unwritten norms in society like one to pursue.

In fact, one might realize they're in for a hard time with a condition that takes its toll later on, when adult responsibilities start nagging for real and there's things one's supposed to do that one finds they simply can't do. It’s later on that the symptoms that've always been there finally start to show, where bad habits protrude in public and going out of bed every morning becomes a wall to climb in itself.

For Baekhyun, that realization came on a Wednesday in his second year of high school, as Sehun rang him on the phone with, rather than a scowl, concern evident in his voice when he asked ''are you okay?’’ because Baekhyun had skipped an entire week of school again, on the brink of dropping out from absence.

He lay sprawled along his bed with the doctor’s prescription in his hand and words that made sense but shouldn’t imprinted on his brain.

Are you okay?

Baekhyun wondered, and there was no answer other than he’d no clue what the state of being okay was supposed to feel like anymore. He’d probably never known in the first place, being different and all.

Wondering if it was normal to hyper-focus, neglect and piss himself when he’d do assignments on any kind of deadline. If it was normal to forget every cup of tea that he ever made and finally find it when it’d be cold. If it was normal to somehow manage to always say the wrong things at the wrong time.

If it was normal to sometimes be able to follow four conversations in the classroom simultaneously but other times struggle to focus on one. If it was normal to get attached to a single stuffed animal to the point he carried it with him everywhere or at least in the bottom of his backpack till he turned thirteen.

In the end, he passed high school anyway. He got an apartment anyway. He became an adult anyway, and the world expected him to fulfill that role anyway.

And jokes about weed became smoking actual weed and occasionally stronger stuff than that, and a thousand yellow sticky-notes everywhere with to-do lists that never were fulfilled.

And jokes about drinking became cheap alcohol downed with soda in the evenings in attempts to stimulate himself and hours in front of the computer in the weekends.

And jokes about loneliness became staring at the ceiling with no one to scold him for not cleaning the ever-piling plates in the kitchen, or the stains of the week-old pizza leftovers on the floor.

And jokes about not knowing what to do after high school became part-time jobs at the supermarket and in kiosks that he got on and off, plus a random course in college because it was the only thing he felt he was good at.

And jokes about the long showers being wanking sessions were just breathing problems and claustrophobia from thoughts, fears and his parents´ words in the back of his brain.

The jokes about being okay were the real jokes.

Many wanted to understand – claimed to understand, but they still measured him to the average adult’s standards, they still chastised him for forgetting agreements and anniversaries, they still got angry when he didn’t hear the volume of his own voice, they still didn’t speak clearly and either looked at him weird or got tired when he misunderstood and made big deals out of small issues, or missed the underlying request by a mile through webbed implications.

It didn’t make it any better that he wasn’t into women only, either.

From time to time, Baekhyun wondered if it was because he was lazy and incompetent that things went that way.

The solution to a dreadful cycle of ashes covering the ground preventing crops from growing – turned out to be an alien.

Not that it’s a shining knight rode in and saved the day cliché. It’s just that while everyone else couldn’t comprehend Baekhyun’s diagnoses, it turned out someone inhuman was the only one who could. And the one who understood that with executive dysfunctions, Baekhyun needed tools to get through chores, or a person to remind him of his obligations. Someone to pull the curtains aside and offer neutral opinions for someone who swallowed all information available or nothing at all. Someone to remind him to take his medication and quit the junk, to maintain friendships, to go outside and feel the ground, to study and work.

To function. To structure his day, because for him, one thing in the gutter meant the whole plan for the day went in the trashcan too.

Kyungsoo’s the type who says what he means, and means what he says. He understands, and when he doesn’t, he finds out why and solves the problem with the person involved. There’s no beating around the bush. There’s no side-expectations that go unsaid, that Baekhyun needs to decipher by himself. If Kyungsoo has expectations, he voices them aloud.

If he likes something, he says it, and if he doesn’t, he does the same. While Baekhyun’s had many slips of the tongue, Kyungsoo doesn’t have what resembles an outward filter in the first place, but is selective for what he notices, takes interest in or spends his time on.

Even with its repercussions, there’s no doubt what a relief it can be, especially for someone like Baekhyun who’s trained himself starting from an early age to learn to synchronize with those around him (and failed as many times he’s tried), as the best method not to get differenced from.

Throughout it all, many things have gone wrong, but at least he’s never jerked it to the My Little Pony franchise.

 

With summertime fast arriving, the sky’s overcast but the temperature’s rising, the air smelling of humid earth along with the rest of the forest life.

Knocking on the door leaves a remnant of dirt on Baekhyun’s knuckles, as if the cottage has returned to the state it originally was in when he found it.

Kyungsoo’s power should make dirt literally evaporate, in the same way he doesn’t need to shower because he doesn’t sweat and when he gets dirty it waxes off his form and the terrain surrounding him.

‘’Kyungsoo?’’ Baekhyun calls out, opening the door and bodily cringing at the shrill sound it makes.

A hush voice and a warm presence enters behind him – planks budging on the porch, ‘’Baekhyun.’’

‘’Motherfuck-‘’ Baekhyun’s body tries to become one with the door hinge, whirling around in an instant.

‘’Oh,’’ he says. ‘’You scared the living shit out of me.’’

He continues, ‘’and your hair’s all fine today, what’s up with that?’’

‘’Yes. I groomed it for you,’’ Kyungsoo says, strangely flatter than what he usually sounds like. He’s wearing a white tee and jeans. The hair makes up for it, pulled back in a ponytail, promoting his features. Baekhyun might have a thing for it.

‘’For me?’’

‘’Yes. Do you like it?’’

‘’I- yeah. Looks good.’’

They stare at each other.

‘’Do you want to do it next time?’’ Kyungsoo senses the mood.

‘’…yeah.’’

‘’I like it when you brush my hair too.’’

‘’You have to do it yourself though, that’s the goal. So I’ll do it on occasions only.’’

‘’Naturally.’’

It’s been almost two weeks since the topic of mating came up. Kyungsoo hasn’t spoken about it since. Baekhyun hasn’t either.

‘’Were you out feeding cats again?’’ Baekhyun asks.

‘’No. I was repressing my energy,’’ Kyungsoo says, walking into the cottage without taking his shoes off, speckles of moss making a trail wherever he steps.

Now that Baekhyun thinks of it, there’s smudges of dirt on Kyungsoo’s shirt as well, visibly sticking out – and his left pant leg’s soaked through as if he’s stepped in a puddle of water on the way.

‘’Why were you outside to do that?’’ Baekhyun checks the state of the place.

Everything looks the same except there’s footprints on the wooden floor and there’s a spider web in one of the windows, which couldn’t have been there prior. It’s warm in the cottage but only from the degrees outside, a musty warmth.

Kyungsoo takes a seat on the sofa.

‘’The closed rooms here smother me if I stay for too long, due to the waves I transmit.’’

‘’Uh, wait a minute,’’ Baekhyun’s nose scrunches, ‘’ – why’re you even repressing your energy? Am I missing out on something here?’’ He drops his bag on the floor and sits opposite to Kyungsoo in the other sofa, fingers wrapped in a tangle toy to keep them occupied.

Kyungsoo’s eyes flicker like a television losing momentary wire connection, irises lighter and faint grey when the focus returns.

‘’I’m stocking resources for my rut,’’ he explains, gaze darting down. ‘’Before the season, I’ll overproduce pheromones and energy until it commences and I’ve picked a mate.’’

‘’So you’re… your body’s preparing itself and simultaneously calling out for a partner or something? And you’re trying to keep it down?’’

‘’Additionally, I’ll be keeping my territory safe from others with same intentions as me.’’

‘’Fighting off other contestants for the lucky one, huh? Sexy.’’

That’s when Baekhyun spots it.

Streaks of purple in the form of lightning-shapes streaking out on Kyungsoo’s skin beneath the tee and up the start of his nape and throat.

‘’You’ve got something. There,’’ he points.

Instead of looking down, Kyungsoo looks directly at Baekhyun. ‘’It’s the visible drawback of repressing myself in this state. Especially in a fragile human vessel.’’

‘’What about the- the dirt, y’know, and air-conditioning. The place’s looking a lil’ sad. That a sign of keeping it low too?’’ Baekhyun asks, floored from the heavy feeling anchoring his stomach.

He’s never seen Kyungsoo this tense. Maybe when they watched a movie where a cartoon cat died, but not like this. This distant.

Hands fisted, shoulders pressed and gaze tight.

‘’Anyway, would some of the energy get soothed if I,’’ Baekhyun mumbles, a nervous talker, ‘’uh, if we do a little?’’ suddenly focusing on his stim toy as if it’s the most interesting thing in the world.

‘’What does a little consists of?’’ Kyungsoo asks.

‘’Like kissing.’’

‘’Kissing?’’

‘’Yeah, kissing.’’

‘’Kissing.’’

‘’The thing- the thing I do, sometimes, y’know. To you, before I leave, and stuff.’’

Kyungsoo’s face smoothens out to stone, thinking, until his eyes narrow. ‘’Is it when you establish contact by pressing your mouth to mine?’’

‘’Way to make it sound like a fucking burden,’’ Baekhyun runs a distressed hand through his hair. ‘’So, what? You guys don’t kiss or what?’’

‘’Is this kissing an important ritual to you?’’

‘’You didn’t feel… anything when we kissed?’’

‘’Should I?’’

‘’I mean, it’s very intimate. In a way. Or it can be, depending on what it’s for – what’s in the gesture, and who you do it with.’’

Something crosses Kyungsoo’s face, briefly. ‘’I didn’t know.’’

‘’No, it’s… I forgot you’d probably see it differently.’’

‘’Let’s kiss,’’ Kyungsoo outright states then.

Baekhyun blinks. ‘’What? Right now?’’

‘’Yes.’’

‘’But you don’t-‘’

‘’If it’s important to you, then it is to me as well.’’

‘’I’m not saying we should kiss ‘cause it’s important to me. I’m saying we should kiss ‘cause it’d be good for you, maybe. It’s a hypothesis.’’

Kyungsoo tilts his torso sideways, making space.

‘’Come here,’’ he says evenly, and Baekhyun drops the toy on the ground and scrambles to get it.

‘’Where? On the couch? Next to you?’’

Instead of waiting, Kyungsoo gets up and takes Baekhyun by the scruff of his hoodie. From one moment to another, Baekhyun’s propped on the sofa with his hand fisted in Kyungsoo’s shirt in order to hold on, face blank.

‘’Okay, Hercules. The hell,’’ he rasps, throat bobbing.

‘’Kiss me,’’ Kyungsoo doesn’t say; he demands.

Baekhyun grimaces, ‘’you okay with that? I haven’t showered in 3 days ‘cause I forgot again today and you’ve been MIA and such so-‘’

Kyungsoo’s eyes flash again, far brighter, so Baekhyun gives in and shuts the distance, panic-stricken so that their noses squash and there’s no impact other than dry lips on even dryer lips.

‘’Shit, that hurt,’’ Baekhyun withdraws to cup his nose, cheeks growing hot.

Before him, Kyungsoo’s staring him down like he’s a puzzle that can’t be solved, brows furrowed.

‘’I haven’t kissed anyone before, okay?’’ Baekhyun lashes out, the words muffled, ‘’only when I’ve been drunk, I think.’’

He sags against the backrest.

‘’I told you this wasn’t a good idea.’’

Kyungsoo opens his mouth to speak; Baekhyun silences him by holding a flat hand up, a stop signal they’ve established.

‘’Just- just gimme a moment, okay,’’ he drags his knees up to his chest and hides his face there, breathing in deep. ‘’I don’t need your lightning-joint or whatever.’’

Without the toy, he picks idly at his pant legs and keeps following a distinct breathing pattern.

After five minutes of silence, he groans and turns to Kyungsoo – ‘’your staring’s too loud – I can’t hear my thoughts, man!’’

‘’Pardon,’’ Kyungsoo turns his head and stares out of the window instead.

Outside, the birds chirp in a choir, distant but soothing, the pigeon is back again to coo on the roof of the cottage close to its nest. Kyungsoo’s soundless, making no movement.

‘’It’s ridiculous,’’ Baekhyun starts, speaking with his face between his knees, voice mushy.

‘’ – arguing as a human with all my nagging prejudices and fears about sex and there you are, looking at me like I’m the alien, ‘cause you’re like why don’t we just do it like they do on Discovery Channel.’’

‘’How do they do it on Discovery Channel?’’ Kyungsoo’s still staring in the other direction, but Baekhyun knows his attention’s fully on the conversation.

‘’Mating dances, first of all.’’

‘’Should I court you with a dance?’’

‘’I’d rather you didn’t.’’ Baekhyun sighs, continuing – ‘’but like, Kyungsoo. The thing is; the only reason you want to have sex with me is probably ‘cause I’m the only one available,’’ he reasons.

‘’ – I get the- I just get the feeling it’s not real, y’know? And I don’t… I’m not the kinda guy who goes around having sex like that. I mean, you might get that impression. Now I’ve said it, though.’’

He gets no immediate reply, and that’s to be expected.

But then –

‘’I’m in love with you,’’ Kyungsoo says, like it’s the easiest thing in the world. Detached from the past subject, entering a new.

Baekhyun tears his gaze up so fast his brain might get whiplash.

‘’What?’’

‘’I want you to carry our child.’’

‘’What?’’

Mouth feeling like cotton, Baekhyun jumps from the sofa and stands before Kyungsoo, leaning over.

‘’Hold up,’’ he says, voice breaking halfway, ‘’do you know what love is? You sure you’re not just mimicking a rom-com right now?’’

Kyungsoo stares at him the way he did on the porch two weeks ago, when he was afraid he’d upset Baekhyun. He keeps silent.

Baekhyun straightens his back and runs a hand over his face, turning around, contemplating the span of reality.

‘’Y’know,’’ he says, followed by a weak snort.

‘’ – I’m used to people liking me ‘cause I’m the class clown, but I’ve never had people like-like me. And I’ve attempted at dating before and they’re always surprised ‘cause like, oh wow Baekhyun you have so many emotions and oh, you actually get hurt when people make jokes about you or hit you or borrow money from you ‘cause you can’t say no,’’ he gesticulates with big, emphasizing hand movements.

‘’Like of fucking course, you fucking imbecile, I’m a bundle of emotions, impulses and no self-restraint! I can’t help that I can’t always fucking read the mood or know how people are gonna react or act properly so you’ll treat me decently like I’m an actual human being.’’

He swallows hard and picks up the toy on the floor, fidgeting with it, turning it.

Murmuring to the room, ‘’do you think it’s fun having some sorta cocktail mix of ADHD and aspergers? Like being both a wild card and a control freak at the same time?’’

‘’ – nobody fucking knows what the fuck’s going on in my head and I don’t either, man.’’

His eyes sting, and the stone in his stomach becomes a boulder.

‘’But I’ve finally met someone who’s got even less of a filter than me and who knows how to cut off half of the things I say, who still listens to what I’ve got on my mind and doesn’t care ‘bout my rituals and my obsessions. Someone who don’t say I’m lazy when I can’t get out of bed.’’

‘’ – you don’t chastise me for favoring substance abuse over medicine and methodical work after the psychologists diagnosed me and went you need help and then my parents kicked me out and the whole world said do it yourself, like a normal adult’s supposed to. Cause that makes so much fucking sense.’’

Finally, he turns to Kyungsoo.

‘’So I’m asking, do you know what I’m in love with you means? Do you really? Like I know there’s some culture clashing here, but do you know what loving someone means? In the way you imply?’’

He closes in and takes Kyungsoo by the arm, staring at him, hoping the pain in his eyes reflects the urgency he’s feeling, ‘’cause I’m not talking about loving someone so we can reproduce, I’m talking about loving someone like the way frosties is your favorite regardless of the other cereals available out there, y’know. I’m talking about loving someone like they make those chemicals in your brain go spark, I’m talking about the philosophic and bubbly way, the romantic way, y’know?’’

‘’ – like we’re gonna go through thick and thin together and it’s not always gonna be rainbows and sunshine, but we’re gonna fight for it and shit? Do you know what romance is? I know I’ve got attention and developmental disorders, but I also know I’m neurologically capable of loving someone and processing emotions, so are you? Are you sure this isn’t just the equivalent of you craving McDonalds at midnight or something, or any kind of stimulation in your reward center – are we on the same page?’’ the volume of his voice raises gradually, mouth going dry from rambling.

‘’Do you understand, Kyungsoo?’’ his grip tightens, ‘’do you underst-‘’

‘’I would neglect my ruts if it wasn’t proceeded with you,’’ Kyungsoo cuts him off clean, voice just as firm. ‘’There’s no other human I desire to mount.’’

‘’That’s just sexual-‘’

‘’I would remove any threats imposed on you – and exterminate your enemies and their offspring as well.’’

‘’That’s… uh…’’

Kyungsoo raises himself so that they’re standing nose to nose, his irises burning a deep burgundy purple in waves, and pupils an icy white, the lightning on his skin spreading faster and the cottage creaking as if a current’s coming through.

‘’I would nurture you and keep you safe to my last breath, Baekhyun. When you die, I’ll remember you till I cease to exist as well.’’

From the corner of his eye, Baekhyun picks up the blur of leaves scattering across the place outside the windows, grass playing in the wind and the sun hiding behind darker clouds that weren’t there before.

Thunder rumbles in the distance, slicing through the sky.

Legs feeling weak, he sits down again; Kyungsoo’s eyes on him the whole while.

‘’Sometimes,’’ Baekhyun laughs faintly, ‘’you’re just so autistic, Kyungsoo. We might even be of the same kind.’’

‘’Thank you.’’

‘’Thank you?’’

‘’It’s a compliment, isn’t it?’’

‘’Most people wouldn’t want to be compared to people with autism…’’

‘’You like me the way I am,’’ Kyungsoo interrupts.

‘’I…,’’ Baekhyun pauses. ‘’I do.’’

‘’Then that’s good. That’s all I need.’’

‘’Yeah,’’ Baekhyun cups his kneecaps, chest tightening. ‘’Yeah…’’

Kyungsoo sits down next to him, the sides of their thighs touching.

Without a word, he slides a palm over Baekhyun’s nape and pinches, warmth spreading in Baekhyun’s limbs.

And the dam bursts; Baekhyun takes a hasty inhale before he folds in half and cradles his face, a dry-heave coming through and then a wrenched sob.

Nothing pretty, nothing like in the movies.

A runny nose, drool and fat tears, it’s there – his shoulders shaking violently till Kyungsoo takes a hold of him and brings him to his lap, transferring energy until Baekhyun’s curled up against him with bloodshot eyes.

‘’You made me cry,’’ he sniffs, sounding like he’s talking underwater. ‘’You motherfucker.’’

‘’You seem pleased,’’ Kyungsoo comments.

‘’I am,’’ Baekhyun shakes from another sob heaving through, uncaring he’s staining Kyungsoo’s tee with a waterfall of snot – ’’fuck,’’ he hiccups, ‘’you!’’

Kyungsoo caresses his back and holds him tighter.

‘’When the fuck did I fall in love with an alien,’’ Baekhyun murmurs. He buries his face in Kyungsoo’s throat and says, ‘’I love you so fucking much, Soo. If you’re lying about returning it, your race’s gonna be extinct for sure.’’

The corners of Kyungsoo’s mouth twitch.

‘’I would never be dishonest with you.’’

Baekhyun withdraws to dry his eyes and nose with his sleeves.

He leans in and kisses Kyungsoo, softly, with a more natural approach compared to what he did before.

‘’I felt something,’’ Kyungsoo says.

‘’What? Where?’’

‘’Here,’’ he flattens his hand on his chest that doesn’t rise or fall, right above the spot where a human’s heart should be.

Baekhyun grunts his distaste. ‘’What movie did you watch this time?’’

 

The smell of seared pork wafts to every corner of the apartment, meat sizzling on the pan as Kyungsoo rocks it back and forth to make the pieces scatter.

Baekhyun sits by the kitchen table filtering through different soundtracks on Spotify on his laptop to find one that fits, occasionally bemoaning the weather.

The city churns outside, accompanied by the whirring from two electric fans set on their highest speed setting. There’s no air-conditioning and Kyungsoo’s still immobilizing the most of his powers, though he’s all right with the lack of space as long as all the windows are open.

While he doesn’t eat, he takes a liking to, and seems to find relaxation and familiarity in, cooking and baking. He prepares random picks of the dishes he’s seen online or on the TV.

Despite being a champion at that too, he’s not a hobbyist – he follows the recipe to its tiniest detail and even wrote ‘’Happy birthday Margaret – 47 years old and a cougar’’ with chocolate buttons on a cake he’d baked that he saw from an American program.

The dude’s recently found out he likes cleaning and doing house-chores too. Baekhyun’s never been more terrified of him than he is now.

‘’Hey Soo,’’ Baekhyun says, lowering the volume of the music to soft crooning in the background, ‘’don’t you think Tony the Tiger is kinda hot?’’

Kyungsoo pours the meat cubes into a bowl, saying ‘’I don’t find Tony arousing.’’

‘’Your loss.’’

‘’His scarf displeases me.’’

Baekhyun laughs – ‘’and you say that like you have an ounce of a fashion sense yourself.’’

At this, Kyungsoo looks over his shoulder in the middle of unwrapping a bundle of spring onions.

‘’Do you like Tony better than me?’’

‘’Dude. Tony doesn’t exist.’’

‘’Do you like Tony better than me?’’ Kyungsoo repeats.

He’s still tense because of the impeding rut. Compared to how passive and indifferent he is to many things outside that season, he’s been far more temperamental lately.

‘’Nah. You’d probably look better with a scarf too, if you weren’t so sensitive about the texture of your clothes.’’

‘’I agree.’’

‘’This is the first time you’ve shown any kind of jealousy, and it’s over an anthropomorphic tiger on a breakfast box. On your favorite cereal, I might add. What kind of love triangle? I’m sensing this relationship’s gonna need some work,’’ Baekhyun picks a new song, something slow and rhythmic.

‘’I’ll give it to you,’’ Kyungsoo says, ‘’when I breed you and fill you with my seed.’’

Baekhyun takes a moment to process that, wearing the expression of a sunfish.

‘’I was wondering; why can’t I be the one mounting you?’’ he asks.

‘’Do you desire to?

‘’What?’’

‘’Do you desire to mount me?’’

‘’Do you even have an asshole, Kyungsoo – that’s the important question here. And no, don’t tell me about your excrements.’’

Kyungsoo stops his doings and turns around. His hair’s still wet from showering. ‘’I… don’t know,’’ he says.

Baekhyun realizes the guy’s being entirely serious.

‘’Uh,’’ he says. ‘’I’ll check, ‘kay?’’ he approaches Kyungsoo and unbuttons his pants.

Kyungsoo’s quiet the entire time.

Baekhyun steps around him and pulls down.

‘’Well, that sure is an asshole.’’ He nods to himself, ‘’which means you actually don’t shit from that rear, if you didn’t know you had it to begin with.’’

‘’You can mount me then, but it would feel incomplete since humans don’t have knots,’’ Kyungsoo says.

Baekhyun blinks.

‘’Uh… my dick might be a little crooked to the left, but it’s definitely straight? There’s no bumps – I mean, you’ve seen it countless of times from your ninja attacks.’’

‘’When you mount your mate, you don’t tie them,’’ Kyungsoo clarifies.

‘’What part of the animal kingdom do you come from? Knotting? The fuck, man. This is stressing me out. Just fucking fuck me already, I don’t want to have to think more about it than I already do.’’

– ‘’ok, you know what? Here’s the plan: we take turns. I’m not saying I’m totally into the idea of having something in my ass, but I’ve also got performance anxiety and I’m not gonna be humping you like a crippled dog.’’

‘’You have tools to stimulate the erogenous zone of your anal cavity in your bedroom,’’ Kyungsoo says.

Baekhyun pulls Kyungsoo’s underwear up harder than necessary. ‘’Anyway,’’ he says, loudly, ‘’I’m hungry.’’

He returns to his laptop, feigning interest while scrolling through and clicking new lists.

‘’Baekhyun,’’ Kyungsoo hasn’t moved.

‘’Mm?’’

‘’Will you teach me how to kiss?’’

Their eyes meet.

‘’I’m tired since I had class today,’’ Baekhyun says, covering a voice crack.

‘’Will you?’’

There’s a sigh, ‘’all right,’’ he scratches the back of his head. ‘’Tonight, then. After we’ve had dinner and watched that new talent show.’’

Kyungsoo nods and returns his attention to the cutting board again.

 

‘’Not to brag, but in eighth grade I could fit my entire fist in my mouth.’’

‘’Is that relevant to kissing?’’

‘’No, I’m just saying.’’

Kyungsoo contemplates this, and seems to decide it really is redundant, for he turns the TV off and moves closer to Baekhyun with purpose.

In response, Baekhyun crabs backwards and nearly off the armrest, flabbergasted.

Some say communication is key, but it sure isn’t easy.

‘’Uh,’’ Baekhyun says, ‘’why so formal? Turn the TV on again, I need-‘’

‘’Your focus will be all over the place.’’

‘’But background noise is good, so, y’know…’’

‘’Focus on me.’’

‘’You’re too intense, Kyungsoo! Ah, I can’t take this,’’ he taps his forehead, trying to rationalize. He’s at least less nervous than when he had a meltdown in the cottage three days ago. ‘’I should’ve gotten high for this.’’

‘’Okay, one thing,’’ he says. ‘’Close your eyes while we kiss. The other thing is even more upsetting than you watching me sleep.’’

It’s almost ten, the summer sky turning dark with pink hues telling as much, throwing a glow across the room. There’s less of a jumble outside, and there’s no noises otherwise to drown out his speeding heart.

He’s been fed an ass-kicking meal, he’s laughed at contestants who can’t sing and he’s been snuggling with Kyungsoo on the couch for hours. The timing should be perfect.

And Kyungsoo complies; he closes his eyes and leans forward, facing Baekhyun. His hair’s pulled back in a ponytail so that it can’t get in the way.

‘’Just remember that I’m not an expert,’’ Baekhyun warns, ‘’but follow what I do and let’s see how it goes, I guess…’’

Eventually, he goes for it.

He holds his breath and mimics the chaste kisses he’s done before – pulls back an inch and forces, through the thudding of his temples, himself to go back and press again.

When he’s done, he withdraws to observe Kyungsoo’s face.

Kyungsoo doesn’t open his eyes.

‘’Again,’’ he says, voice low, sensing Baekhyun’s mixed feelings.

So Baekhyun swallows the jolt up his spine and repeats it with an added force.

It tickles; it’s daunting how different it feels when the intentions differ, with the quick warmth gathering in his limbs along with the buzz of exhaustion from the day making him feel heavier than what he is and lighter at the same time.

He remembers – knows what actual kissing contains, because he’s seen it. Sehun and his girlfriend when they can’t keep their fingers from each other, Jackson and his one-night stands, Taehyung and his boyfriend.

In the corner of a night club, Baekhyun roused by drugs and alcohol to the point he couldn’t hear or feel anything anymore. It was all numbing sensations and a crowded feeling from the surrounding people, and a mouth on his he didn’t know whose was, just that they kissed for a long time.

But when he’s sober, when he’s sweating bullets and proposing this to a person he likes –

A person he loves and whose scent hangs in his nostrils, it’s authentic. He knows it’s his own shampoo, but Kyungsoo normally doesn’t smell of anything. Now that he does, now that he smells of the stew he made too and deodorant and cologne because Baekhyun sprayed it on him, it feels very real and nice.

Regardless, Baekhyun flinches at the wet sensation flickering across his lower lip. Kyungsoo who mouths at him, the shock giving him easy access to slip his tongue inside and align their mouths from a deeper angle.

The noises are embarrassing – they’re wet and loud in Baekhyun’s ears and make his stomach grow hot as if someone’s put firecrackers in there.

He jams his hands into Kyungsoo’s shoulders to remove himself, breathing heavily –

‘’Hold up,’’ he says, ‘’wasn’t I supposed to teach you how to kiss? What’s this? Since when did you-‘’

‘’I’ve looked up tutorials on how to improve the experience,’’ Kyungsoo says.

His lips have turned redder and thicker with a sheen of spit glossing them, his upper lip’s curvy and there’s a mole on the lower –

Baekhyun’s noticing all sorts of details he hasn’t put thoughts into before. It’s overwhelming.

‘’You studied? Like taking biology notes before an exam?’’ he asks, on the verge of yelling into Kyungsoo’s face.

As usual, Kyungsoo excels at everything on his first try – without trying. Sometimes he’s like a gullible kid who imitates the things that intrigue him, though he’s still selective as for what’ll catch his interest. Like this winter when he came home and swung Baekhyun around like a sack of potatoes in an impromptu Cha-Cha-Cha dance-off because he’d seen it on YouTube.

Baekhyun, on the other hand, once spent an entire week learning how to do a single trick with a fidget spinner.

Kyungsoo studies Baekhyun’s face closely.

‘’Do you want to stop?’’ He asks. Somehow, he’s got an arm wrapped around Baekhyun’s waist, and a palm that’s crept underneath his hoodie, caressing his lower back.

Baekhyun shudders at how good it feels; how easy it is to get riled up with simple touches like that. Contrary to what one’d think, Kyungsoo’s usually not a touchy person unless it’s for the sake of comforting Baekhyun or transferring energy to soothe him.

Kyungsoo doesn’t like it when strangers touch him despite being okay with entering random houses if the doors are unlocked. Baekhyun can’t always read other people’s elbow-room well but has a strict set of rules as for what’s his and what’s other people’s belongings. So it’s in reverse how Kyungsoo’s been all over Baekhyun the past weeks while Baekhyun’s been the one scared of intimacy.

‘’We’re already at it,’’ Baekhyun reasons, mostly to himself, ‘’so I don’t see why we shouldn’t continue.’’

If he chickens out, they’ll go through the shame shenanigans over and over again until Kyungsoo’s rut starts for real.

‘’Do you want to?’’ Kyungsoo punctuates. ‘’I read consent is an important factor when humans engage in these activates. Both mentally and physically.’’

His face changes, barely, but with an expression Baekhyun’s never seen there. His cheeks look rounder, his eyes bigger, containing a burden that’s haunting on someone young.

‘’I’ve been pressuring you,’’ Kyungsoo says, ‘’I’ve been hurting you, and now I realize why. But I can’t control myself, and it scares me. I don’t remember how my elders interacted with one another. I’ve been by myself for as long as I can remember, though I recall my home planet, origin and nature. I might be the last of my kind. So I can only live as I do with no knowledge of how others were before me.’’

He hesitates.

‘’I feel… to put it humanly, lost.’’

They sit like that, illuminated by the lamp next to the TV now that the sun’s gone down.

‘’Did you forget what I told you?’’ Baekhyun snorts.

Kyungsoo’s the one confused then. ‘’What did you tell me?’’

Baekhyun cups Kyungsoo’s cheeks, stroking a thumb over his left eyebrow.

‘’We’re of the same kind.’’ He grins obnoxiously. ‘’I just diagnosed you with autism. Feels good, huh?’’

‘’ – and if you’re not the one taking actions, I won’t. Especially when things matter, like this. So I’m okay with you being a little pushy. Otherwise shit won’t get done, y’know? You haven’t made me do anything I haven’t wanted to do, just so you know.’’

He gives Kyungsoo a noisy smooch. ‘’I don’t know how any of this works either,’’ he says. ‘’It’s like I was born without a manual, while others have cheat codes and shit. But we’ve got each other and we can cover each other’s weak spots, yeah? So we’ll be okay.’’

Kyungsoo’s alarmingly quiet for a minute, eyes unblinking like a statue.

Baekhyun clears his throat, ‘’Kyungsohmpf-‘’ –

Kyungsoo kisses him hard, hands set in motion and the one on Baekhyun’s back skirting higher to touch.

Those obscenities return, and Baekhyun’s too caught up in it to notice his own outbursts in-between, trying his best to figure what to do with his tongue. Kyungsoo handles it as if he’s the one with experience, tilting his head and releasing a groan into Baekhyun’s mouth.

Kyungsoo doesn’t need to breathe – he’s told he does it through his skin, but he puffs something resembling a sigh, and Baekhyun has to turn his head as not to get into another round until he’s caught his breath.

In the meantime, Kyungsoo presses the side of his face against Baekhyun’s throat and inhales. What comes next is the thrum of a predator; an inhuman growl that makes Baekhyun’s neck hair stand on end and – okay, his dick definitely jumped in his pants.

‘’This is foreign,’’ Kyungsoo says, voice guttural.

‘’Kih- kissing?’’ Baekhyun’s lips are sizzling.

‘’Yes. I understand what you meant now. It’s stimulating in a way I hadn’t imagined.’’

Up Kyungsoo’s throat, the lightning-marks have expanded in pattern, coursing like tattoos up to the underside of his jaw. In fact, his eyes are glowing too, both irises and pupils white; they’re blank holes in his face.

Baekhyun could get used to this level of intimacy.

An impulse strikes him, ideas fogging his head and arousal simmering up his legs. Wondering what’s going to happen if Kyungsoo is pushed further than this. What’s it like having sex with an alien? Nobody knows, and Baekhyun could be the first to figure it out.

‘’How about we go a little further?’’ he suggests.

‘’Further?’’

‘’Yeah, I mean… try this – lie down. Then I’ll sit on top of you. Like this.’’

Baekhyun positions himself above Kyungsoo, sitting on his lap with his thighs on either side. There’s just enough space for Kyungsoo to lie down flat on the couch and for Baekhyun to sit on him.

‘’Um, if I just… here. Stay still, don’t move, ‘kay?’’ Baekhyun says, unable to keep out an excited tremor.

‘’Okay.’’

Kyungsoo’s face should be covered in shadows from this angle with Baekhyun shading the light with his torso, but Kyungsoo’s eyes glow enough to illuminate his forehead, nose and lips.

Reveling in the eerie silence, Baekhyun finally moves. He starts rocking back and forth with miniscule motions, testing the waters, holding himself up by putting his hands on Kyungsoo’s chest. There’s not enough friction for it to do anything yet; it’s the concept itself that has Baekhyun’s breath picking up and his gut growing hot.

Especially when he slides lower and angles himself so that his confined dick rubs against the denim on Kyungsoo’s pants.

‘’Oh-‘’ Baekhyun flinches –

In an instant, Kyungsoo’s left hand grabs Baekhyun’s hip, the grip strong enough to have the latter jostled.

Kyungsoo’s eyes scrunch, limiting the light, and he presses Baekhyun down towards himself and rocks his hips up to meet.

‘’Dude, my-‘’ Baekhyun touches the side of his own face, picking at his hair, ‘’my hair’s getting all electric,’’ and sure enough, there’s the fuzzy feeling in his fingertips, roaming over his skin like when you rub a balloon on yourself to get it to stick to you.

‘’If I have to die tonight, I hope it’s ‘cause you gave me an orgasm so good it electrocuted me to death,’’ he murmurs, cheeks flush with pink.

Kyungsoo’s range of facial expressions are normally limited. This is a rare moment in which his emotions are plainly visible where a gaze that’s always been intense turns even more so, teeth gritted and veins visible along his arms aside from the marks that’re spreading there too.

He reverses the positions so that Baekhyun’s the one on his back, fitting his crotch over Baekhyun’s upper-thigh and starts rutting against it, face buried in the side of Baekhyun’s throat, kissing it, licking it –

And Baekhyun does his best to hang on from there, because as he opens his eyes, it’s like he’s staring through a kaleidoscope where colors and wavy symbols dance on the ceiling.

Additionally, it’s like Kyungsoo’s pissing down his leg, except it’s thicker and warmer and smells suddenly of musk and spices. It has his head pounding and his stomach contrasting, ass cheeks flexing from a surge of want.

‘’I’m starting… to feel a little lightheaded,’’ he rasps.

It’s not a bad light-headed, it’s a good light-headed. In fact, it’s better than when he’s high. His body’s burning with tiny bursts of pleasure that tickle him and have him euphoric at the same time, though he doesn’t feel as tired and confused as when he’s smoked.

He can hear items rattle in the background. In fact, it’s like the apartment’s vibrating with every thrust Kyungsoo makes.

‘’Baekhyun,’’ Kyungsoo whispers against the shell of his ear, ‘’I mustn’t…’’

‘’Mustn’t what?’’

‘’Destroy you.’’

Baekhyun turns his head to look at Kyungsoo, and is met by eyes where the sclera change hues, a mix between silver, white and purple in the irises with a hypnotizing and indistinct design in the middle where the waves crash, a shadowed multi-colored hue that, rather than pupils, look like bright holes, sucking everything up on their way.

‘’That sounds kinda hot,’’ Baekhyun admits, grinning at the glare he gets for an answer.

‘’I don’t want to annihilate you.’’

‘’I wouldn’t mind, though.’’

‘’Baekhyun.’’ Kyungsoo growls.

‘’Okay, okay. I have a… have another plan then,’’ he raises himself. Kyungsoo does the same.

They’re back to sitting on the couch next to each other.

‘’I know bits about your powers, but this is… have you hypnotized me or something? Is this like some- fucking sex pollen or what, my head’s spinning and it feels fucking… amazing.’’

Kyungsoo’s looking at the floor, the tension back in his posture.

‘’It’s the waves I transmit. I told you about it in the cottage.’’

‘’Man, that is some good stuff. Wow,’’ Baekhyun throws himself back against the backrest, smiling dopily at nothing in particular.

He’s quick to get up, ‘’wait,’’ he slurs, face contorting to an outwitted expression.

‘’Did you piss your pants or something?’’ he points at Kyungsoo’s crotch area. There’s a visible soaked-through patch on the denim.

‘’ – did I piss myself too?’’ he pulls in his sweatpants, except it’s at the thigh where Kyungsoo grinded.

‘’No. It’s from my sex organ.’’

‘’Sex organ. That must be a serious thing you’ve got there. I’ve seen your dick before, I mean.’’

He waves a hand to waft the banter away, ‘’anyway, may I digest your sex organ? Or some other fancy wording for suck your brain out of your dick, huh.’’

‘’Why would you?’’ Kyungsoo asks.

‘’Never heard of blowjobs?’’ Baekhyun settles on his knees on the floor, spreading Kyungsoo’s legs apart.

‘’Stimulating your mate’s genitals orally.’’

‘’Oh, you’ve really done your homework.’’

‘’But why?’’ Kyungsoo seems genuinely puzzled.

‘’It’ll feel good. Just like kissing – trust me. I think, at least. Never tried it, but, y’know. Besides, it’s an alternative idea if dry-humping upsets you.’’

‘’It doesn’t upset me. It-‘’

‘’Yeah, makes you want to kill me. That’s kinda upsetting.’’

‘’I don’t want to hurt you.’’

‘’And a little bump’n’grind was gonna do that?’’

‘’You don’t know what I’m capable of.’’

Their eyes meet.

Kyungsoo’s are still doing that supernatural light-show, though subdued from coming down from the rush. Some of his hair’s escaped the elastic, fuzzy.  

‘’Fine,’’ Baekhyun rolls his eyes, moody. ‘’But you were the one droning on and on for weeks about wanting to mount me. Now that I’m semi-offering it, you’re backing out, even when your mating season hasn’t started. I don’t get it.’’

‘’I’ve been reckless,’’ Kyungsoo replies. ‘’I realize that now as well. Maturing is a stage I’m bound to pass. How it’ll occur is merely a hypothesis for me, since I only know core details of the process. What I don’t know is how it’ll affect you, a human, if I force myself on you, even in my human vessel.’’

Baekhyun’s far too buzzed to be thinking about that possibility, so he hums in response.

His fingers struggle to unbutton Kyungsoo’s pants, so Kyungsoo comes to his aid. Kyungsoo turns hauntingly quiet, watching Baekhyun’s every move.

Baekhyun grows quiet too, his next breath trapped in his chest.

Several appendages slide forth from what looks like a hidden sheath where Kyungsoo’s cock should’ve been, twirling up his lower abdomen and staining his blouse with amethyst fluid.

It should be hard to see them properly in the semi-darkness, but these monstrosities are glowing too; their ends are not flat but bulbous and thick; they’re writhing and spitting more of that fluid as if startled by the contrast of hitting the air in the room.

Their glow is fainter than their owner’s eyes, but suction cups can be outlined down the underside of them as well as a pulse where a lighter color surges through the translucent, burgundy purple skin.

Baekhyun smacks his lips. ‘’Why am I not surprised?’’

‘’ – did your dick morph, ‘cause I don’t think it looked like that last time I saw it. More importantly, if you ejaculate acid on me and ruin my face, how the hell do I tell that to the hospital?’’

His eyes skate in his head to keep a track on all of them. Three, four –

Five. There’s five tentacles.

‘’When you imitated the race here or whatever, you’re sure you didn’t flip through hentai magazines or some shit?’’ He wants to look Kyungsoo in the eyes, though it’s hard when there’s five squishies with their own lives moving down there and keeping him entertained.

‘’It’s my sex organ,’’ Kyungsoo says, simply.

‘’With my dick in comparison, you win this contest in the most overwhelming entry,’’ Baekhyun comments.

‘’Does it scare you?’’

‘’I mean,’’ he fidgets, caught between wanting to reach out and touch or cringe at the slick noises they make as they move, ‘’the thing is, I don’t have any other dicks I’ve been intimate with to compare this with, y’know? So this is pretty extreme for a first time’s roll in the hay.’’

He enters a staring contest with the tentacle in the middle, the one with the biggest girth. The four others are like grappling hooks; they’re smaller in size, slimmer, longer and more fretful.

‘’Now that I think of it, I don’t even know if it’s a dick to be exact, ‘cause I don’t know if you have sexes or genders.’’

Leaning in, he takes a whiff and has to gather himself for a moment from the scent wafting over him. It doesn’t smell bad – it’s strange, but intense, and has his vision playing temporary tricks on him again.

Kyungsoo notices this. ‘’I’ll try to restrain myself,’’ he says, voice uneven.

And if Baekhyun’s guessing right, Kyungsoo actually looks nervous, for once.

‘’That shouldn’t turn me on as much as it does,’’ Baekhyun clears his throat.

His curiosity gets the better of him, another impulse having him poking one of the smaller tentacles, yelping when it, contrary to thought, seeks his touch and –

‘’Your dick just licked me, Kyungsoo. That thing’s alive.’’

He observes the purple goo it’s left on his fingertip, rubbing it with his thumb. Licks the pad to taste it, and takes his time to process the flavor, because its taste is equally as bewildering and addictive as its smell.

He mutters to himself, ‘’the dick that licks back.’’

Kyungsoo’s silent, watching.

His impatience shows, the appendages wringing and the curious one that licked Baekhyun doing a flick, like it’s waving to him.

So Baekhyun swallows the lump in his throat and pushes the heels of his hands into the cushion of the sofa that Kyungsoo sits on, leaning in to catch that tentacle in particular –

Only to have it move away when he sticks his tongue out and reaches for it.

‘’Wait- shit, come back here, you little-‘’

Stops halfway from the wet feeling on a patch next to his mouth, one of the other sub-tentacles pressing a testing kiss to his skin and moving up.

He’s still eyeing the first sub-tentacle vehemently for tricking him, though he’s quick to direct his attention to the one appreciatively sliding in between his lips.

Its texture is soft and slimy, yet solid as it doesn’t yield and has a voluminous presence in Baekhyun’s mouth.

There’s an abrupt change in the tentacles when he presses his tongue to the underside of it to round up one of the suction cups – the surrounding sub-tentacles are slim and long at first, then pump twice their past size, as well as the tentacle in his mouth.

Baekhyun holds himself from gagging, even when it slides along the inside of his mouth as if to map the space it’s given, so he breathes steadily through his nose and lets it get time to adjust.

Not even minutes into it, his entire lower face’s covered in the substance it emits, dripping down his adam’s apple and onto his clothes and probably onto the floor and couch too.

Kyungsoo’s staring him down, and his eyes have started changing colors again in that peculiar, hypnotizing manner that has Baekhyun spell-bound when he looks up and their eyes meet.

Subconsciously, his hands reach out to be a part of it too, flinching when his right wrist is grabbed by one of the remaining sub-tentacles, as if monitoring a stranger, before he’s allowed to grab it back and stroke a palm down its back and to the lower girth where it’s thickest.

There’s the buzzing in his vision and under his skin, a euphoric sensation washing over him like huge waves at the beach, barely noticing his eyelashes are clumping from his eyes getting wet since the sub-tentacle presses too hard in his mouth and makes him gag at least once, slurping as not to spill too much of the fluid.

The core-tentacle extends itself and slides across his cheek, touching him there, with the same effect as when Kyungsoo touches him and uses his powers, so Baekhyun leans into it like it’s of a second nature. He’s making these noises – small draws of breath and whimpers to get to the core tentacle, turning his head to lick the side of it and have it notice what he’s offering.

It returns to do the same as the first did, pressing its tip to his lips, this one’s tip flared with fluid trickling down that’s thicker than the stuff the others emit. Baekhyun wraps his lips around it and sucks on the underside where there’s a bundle gathered, like nerve endings, and revels in the deep, inhuman growl he draws from Kyungsoo above, Kyungsoo’s hips leaving the cushion to thrust forward.

A thrum commences in Kyungsoo’s throat, emanating from his chest or an unknown force, and the lightning marks have reached up to his face now, and down his arms and halfway across his stomach where the shirt’s drawn up. They make him look alien, a predator, especially with the sneer on his mouth that could be mistaken for distaste, but Baekhyun knows it’s because he has to restrain himself.

Baekhyun pops his mouth off the core-tentacle before it can slide all the way inside, and he laughs gaudily at how offended it looks, curling in on itself and away, embarrassed –

‘’I don’t like your third tentacle,’’ he slurs, ‘’it was raised in a barn.’’

Kyungsoo doesn’t laugh, that’s to be expected. He’s ripped off handfuls of the couch’s plush in both hands, fingers digging into new material to hold on. Baekhyun’s feeling too good to care.

‘’Baekhyun…,’’ Kyungsoo says. He doesn’t sound human when he talks at this point.

‘’Feels good, right?’’ Baekhyun asks. He gets up momentarily to kiss Kyungsoo. Belatedly, he realizes his jaw’s gone slack and while he’s in control of his doings, he can’t feel his face or hands or anywhere the lubrication’s been smeared and seeped into his skin, though he still gets vague and enthralling stimulations.

It must have a numbing effect.

‘’I can’t feel my face and it’s not ‘cause I’ve smoked. Fucking awesome, dude,’’ he says.

Kyungsoo doesn’t respond. His tentacles talk for themselves to convey what he wants.

With enough persistence, Baekhyun persuades him into joining the kiss. He breaks apart shortly after to pull his hoodie over his head and drop his sweatpants so that he’s left in his boxers as he climbs onto Kyungsoo’s lap.

He’s got one hand on the backrest to support himself and the other skirting between their torsos to grab the first tentacle that meets his palm, stroking and squeezing it and watching as Kyungsoo releases something reminding of a cross between a moan and a growl. His hair elastic has slid down and his hair falls free, cascading over his shoulders.

As if knowing what’s beneath, Kyungsoo’s appendages creep beneath Baekhyun’s boxers and wiggle them off deftly, and Baekhyun barely registers it from trying to multitask by kissing Kyungsoo and jerking him off at the same time.

He feels it when that slimy sensation rides between his ass cheeks, and over his sack and rim. One of the tentacles encircles his cock, licking the underside. It makes him wonder in the back of his head if getting a blowjob feels just as amazing, or if he’s going to think about tentacles for the rest of his life from now on.

The tentacle he’s stroking must be the core-tentacle, for it’s the thickest when he manages to look down, and while slower, it’s got the most power.

‘’Ah- ow,’’ he jolts at the two sub-tentacles wrapping around his thighs, extending themselves by far and putting him in place so that he’s locked there, unable to move, underwear strung beneath his crotch, snapping shortly after when Kyungsoo removes it with a hand. The pain’s dull; doesn’t hurt, actually, it’s an instinctive response.

The last sub-tentacle left to itself is still rubbing against Baekhyun’s rim, as if it’s prepping him with the goo he can feel dripping down the back of his thighs and onto his calves.

He struggles to keep his focus intact as the thought hits him, ‘’are you-‘’ he asks, ‘’are you gonna do it?’’

‘’ – don’t go- don’t go scavenging too far up there… c-can’t have you shoveling my shit out like it’s play-doh in a sandbox,’’ he’s distracted by the tentacle on his dick. Its hold’s tight and the tension in his lower abdomen’s about to reach its peak already, exhaustion getting to him faster than he’d imagine despite the euphoric drive keeping him going.

The kaleidoscope comes back, and everything feels overwhelming, like eating junk food when you’re starry-eyed drunk four in the morning with no care in the world and living’s worth it.

In the background, the rumble of thunder makes its presence known, and subsequently lightning where a flash has him seeing white spots dancing. It’s pouring outside, water like grids falling and a cold breeze entering the apartment from the windows that’re still ajar, knocking over a bundle of papers, and the lid of a kettle off the kitchen counter.

Kyungsoo’s making a low throat-singing noise, one that can’t be described with human words. His core tentacle shrinks out of Baekhyun’s grasp to take the place of the sub-tentacle between his legs. Baekhyun concedes by wrapping his arms around Kyungsoo’s neck and burying his face in his throat.

The rain keeps getting louder, drumming on the windows. The weather report said the night was estimated to be warm and quiet. They clearly didn’t take into account a horny alien getting it on with a human.

Baekhyun can’t feel the appendage entering him immediately. His shoulders rise and he cries out against the juncture of Kyungsoo’s neck when he can, and it reaches the spot where the lubrication hasn’t been, hyper-sensitive, the girth bigger than before, squelching inside but not moving much, pumping ropes of thick goo as the sub-tentacles on Baekhyun’s thighs strengthen their grip.

Sagging against Kyungsoo, Baekhyun’s gaze darts down to see his own cum staining Kyungsoo’s shirt, all spent. Purple sparks of electricity crackle over his skin and in the air around them.

He can’t hear the rain anymore, just his own breathing fading. He turns his head.

‘’Kyungsoo…’’ he chokes, mouth dry.

The last thing he sees is Kyungsoo’s glowing eyes before losing consciousness.

 

Waking up equals returning to another reality; limbs immovable and vision blurry. The first five minutes of wakefulness are an attempt to locate himself and figure if he’s actually alive or not.

His throat’s as dry as a desert. He doesn’t flinch, though his heart skips a beat from the glass of water put in front of his face when he sits up.

‘’Drink,’’ Kyungsoo says. He hands over a pill too.

He’s back to looking normal. There’s no marks to be seen, and his eyes are dark and bottomless with soft creases around them while looking at Baekhyun.

Baekhyun attempts speaking – what leaves is a miserable croak. The pill makes him nauseous, but the water’s so amazing he groans and splashes the remaining liquid in his face, uncaring that it’ll wet the covers of his bed, and he lies down for ten minutes.

‘’Feels like I’ve run a marathon…” he laughs, the sound raspy. “My legs are all jelly-y,’’ he says.

His eyes snap open.

‘’My legs. Holy shit, my legs,’’ he removes the duvet.

Each thigh has purpling marks coursing around in the shape of rings, as if he’s tied two ropes to gnaw into the skin and leave him bruised.

Up his stomach and around his crotch there’s marks too, some shaped like suction cups and others the imprint of a hand.

Furthermore –

‘’I’m… clean?’’

‘’I washed you,’’ Kyungsoo says.

‘’While I was unconscious?’’

‘’Yes.’’

‘’Fuck that’s hot.’’

‘’Hot?’’

‘’Someone caring about you like that- it’s… nice.’’

‘’It was the most practical option.’’

‘’Don’t ruin it now,’’ he warns.

The door’s open to the kitchen and living room. From here, the place looks squeaky clean and tidy. The windows are shut. Sunshine’s peeking through the blindfolds and the temperature’s regulated without the electric fans.

Kyungsoo’s standing awkwardly next to the bed, at ease and simultaneously concerned.

Baekhyun slides to the side to give space on his three quarters bed. ‘’Come cuddle with me,’’ he says. ‘’If you wanna.’’

‘’I made you breakfast,’’ Kyungsoo turns to the kitchen.

Is that— guilt?

‘’Cuddle me now or I’ll cut your cooking programs from the TV channels.’’

Kyungsoo climbs into the bed without further ado.

Baekhyun snuggles up to his side, and Kyungsoo lets him, hand caressing his back.

‘’What time is it?’’ Baekhyun asks.

‘’Late midday.’’

‘’Wow. Did you watch me sleep again tonight?’’

‘’Yes. You looked peaceful.’’

‘’I slept like a stone. That was some good sleep.’’

Kyungsoo turns quiet. Hesitant.

‘’Did I… hurt you?’’ He asks.

‘’Yesterday?’’ Baekhyun clarifies.

‘’Yes.’’

‘’A little sore, nothing bad. Got the most mind-blowing orgasm of my life, though.’’

‘’Is that good?’’

‘’Yeah, it is. It’s very good. Was it good for you too?’’

‘’My pheromones have calmed down. My energy’s less radiant.’’

‘’Which is good, yeah?’’

‘’… yes.’’

‘’Until it hits you again or what?’’

‘’Yes.’’

‘’Well,’’ Baekhyun shrugs. ‘’We’ll take it at that time. You didn’t knot me, did you?’’

‘’I can only proceed such during the rut.’’

‘’Ah, makes sense. Good thing the rest of you is human, ‘cause I don’t think I’d be able to contain more than that.’’

‘’I used to be bigger. Stronger.’’

‘’A giant?’’

‘’You could say that.’’

‘’Oh, an angel with clipped wings.’’

‘’Angel?’’

‘’Some bullshit. Don’t worry about it.’’

Baekhyun turns his head and sniffs Kyungsoo’s hair. It doesn’t smell of anything.

‘’You’re like a fallen giant,’’ he says. ‘’In twenty years I’ll write a long tragic story about you and it’ll sell out on the market and I’d earn enough to never have to work again.’’

Kyungsoo’s mouth twitches.

Baekhyun continues – ‘’sometimes, though, I wonder if I can trust what you’re saying. What if you were the reason your race went extinct, since you’re the only one alive? What if you aren’t – what if there’s more of you out there, or what if you’re an outcast in exile?” He’s babbling, but he can’t stop. “Or what if you’ve lost your memory and some other alien has brainwashed you, so at some point here they’ll trigger you and you go terminator-mode and kill us all? Maybe you are a carnivore.’’

‘’I would eat you first,’’ Kyungsoo says, warmly.

‘’Gee, I’m honored.’’

Baekhyun stares at the floating dust particles in the air, dancing in the ray of sunlight.

‘’You’re making me more human as the days go by,’’ Kyungsoo interrupts.

‘’ – I yearn to reunite with my home-planet, and I always will. But something on planet Earth has me satisfied with what I’ve settled with.’’

‘’What could that possibly be?’’

He turns his head and stares for long, like only he can without blinking, and something in Baekhyun’s chest clenches, short on breath.

‘’Frosted flakes with milk.’’

Baekhyun closes his eyes. ‘’I hate you,’’ he whispers.

‘’Was it not entertaining?’’ Kyungsoo asks.

Baekhyun opens his eyes again in favor of looking at Kyungsoo like he’s sprouted a second head.

‘’Did you just make a joke?’’

‘’My execution of it failed, it seems.’’ He adjusts his position under the covers.

‘’You need a lesson in human courting customs.’’

‘’And you’re an expert?’’

‘’Hah, autism jokes. Now you know sarcasm too? This is too much in one day – I’m out.’’

Kyungsoo grabs him by the arm and brings him back.

Their nose tips touch, and this time Kyungsoo’s the one who initiates a kiss.