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Echo

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Shen Jiu was not the ‘nurturing’ type. The dozens of disciples he once had could certainly attest to that – yes, the girls were treasured, raised as gold and jade, but that was care, that was worship. Even they, he taught mechanically, never a word of praise or a pat on the head. And the boys, even Ming Fan, had known only the weight of a plank or the bite of a switch, a ruler over the knuckles, a handful of callouses.

 

Their successes were a given. Any failure was unacceptable and deserving of punishment.

 

Shen Jiu was all too aware he had been a harsh teacher, a poor father substitute to the dozens of children entrusted to his care. It had never mattered to him, then, when his world was bitterness and regret, jealousy burning him from within. Why should he care that their days were harsh? Were they as harsh as his had been with his ‘master’, with the Qius? They had food to eat, clothes to wear, a warm place to sleep at night; they were taught the fundamentals of cultivation, were able to build their foundations from such an early age. What luxury! What honour! What need did they have of a parental figure, when they had everything else good in the world?

 

It mattered less, now, in this large, empty room that had become his world. Here, away from the disciples clamouring for his attention. Here, without his guqin, without his flute, his Xiu Ya.

 

Here, where there were no exposed beams, no decorative carvings on the ceiling with which to hang a noose, no cloth to tie to his neck, no pillows to smother himself with. No beauty, no softness, no warmth.

 

There was always a maid in his chambers, now, a different face each day, sometimes human, sometimes demon, always female, always carrying the sweet scent of mated Omega. The braziers were always lit, the room kept at almost sweltering temperatures to stave off the chill of the night air, without the pile of blankets he had once gathered for a nest.

 

His hair hung loose, no jewelry or adornments allowed to him, dressed only in the flimsiest of robes, that would tear with the slightest pressure.

 

Even his food was served to him in stone containers, unbreakable by the force of a weakened, mortal Omega. Only soups and jellies, custards, things that did not require biting or chewing, things that did not require utensils, to save him from trying to stab chopsticks through his grotesque, bulging belly.

 

During daytime, he could sit by the only window in the room, and gaze into the empty garden. The flowers changed from time to time, from roses to lilies, begonias to peonies, the only constant the weeping willow, bowed with time, and a plum tree that had finished flowering for the year. The flowers had shed just as his bleeding had stopped.

 

During the night, he would be alone on his marriage bed, no sheets or pillows or blankets, forced to sleep by the strands of immortal binding cable woven into his collar. Even in the warmth of his chambers, he shivered in his scant robes.

 

The maids only left when their king, the Lord of two realms, deigned to visit, lips wide in a deceptively soft smile, eyes colder than the sheen of Zheng Yang as it shattered. The pieces were probably still scattered in Jue Di gorge, now Shen Jiu thought of it, tarnished and abandoned.

 

Just as he was tarnished and abandoned.

 

Large hands seized Shen Jiu’s too-thin wrists. He snarled, a rare light coming into his eyes, and the monster laughed, bit at his lips until they bled, smudging bruises around his rough woven collar, leaving bite marks across his shoulders, his budding chest, the softness of his upper arms.

 

The monster paused at his too-large belly and crooned, stroking it softly with a single finger. The parasite growing inside seemed to awaken at its father’s voice, kicking viciously at Shen Jiu’s soft insides, clawing to get free. Shen Jiu wanted to curl up and scream, but instead, tears building at the corners of his eyes, he hissed and snapped at the unwanted intruder.

 

Luo Binghe cocked his head and raised a brow, smirking. “Did Shizun have something to say to this unworthy student?” he snickered, his hand leaving Shen Jiu’s belly and diving instead into his mouth, plundering the now empty cavern, running across rows of tombstone teeth, devoid of the poisonous, silver tongue Shen Jiu had once wielded as gracefully as Xiu Ya. Shen Jiu spat at him, growled wordlessly, and Luo Binghe laughed.

 

“Don’t worry, Shizun. Once this child is born, I’ll restore your tongue to you. But in the meantime, don’t think you can escape just by biting off your tongue.”

 

The hand retreated from his mouth and trailed a spit soaked path to his nipples, breasts starting to bud with fat, flicking casually over a nipple then circling the other, before grabbing viciously at the lumps of useless fat. “If Shizun was nicer, this husband may have considered letting these go to some use,” he tutted, kneading them roughly in a calloused palm. “But I think a milk mother may be safer this time.”

 

His last pregnancy, Luo Binghe had attempted to use him as a milk mother for one of his other brats, as the mother had insufficient supply. Bound with his arms straight behind him, pushing out his small breasts, with a sling around his neck to house the nursing babe. Shen Jiu had killed that child, poisoned his blood and milk with ink bled from the paintings adorning his room, laughed as the child foamed at the mouth and shook itself out of the sling, blue before it fell into the arms of a furious Luo Binghe.

 

There are no more ink paintings in his room, and no ink allowed to him for his poetry or calligraphy.

 

There is only the chain around his ankle, skin below long chafed raw, clanging as Luo Binghe forced his legs apart, mouthing at his hardening cock, at the wetness already seeping around his loose, gaping hole, worn by the stretch of too many babes coming from an orifice not meant to be used so often, worn by the stretch of Luo Binghe’s monstrous cock, his too-large hands, the toys he would sometimes bring and force into his hole with childish curiosity, watching as Shen Jiu screamed himself hoarse with each press of a dildo as wide at the tip as Luo Binghe’s knot when full.

 

Shen Jiu didn’t understand Luo Binghe’s obsession with ruining him, for making him so loose so often, when his demon blood would only heal the damage at his whims. Or maybe he did understand, all too well, that Luo Binghe lived off of his humiliation, of the destruction of his once pristine body, of every mark and scar he could leave that overlaid the ones already present.

 

Luo Binghe wanted to devour him, wanted to destroy everything of Shen Jiu’s that wasn’t Luo Binghe.

 

Shen Jiu would not let him.

 

Even as Luo Binghe punched his cock into Shen Jiu’s loosened entrance, forcing a howl from Shen Jiu’s throat, even as his world narrowed and dimmed with Luo Binghe’s hand around his throat, even as his field of vision became only those red, glowing eyes, gasps fucked out of him with each powerful thrust.

 

Even as a rough hand grabbed his leaking cock, smearing precum across the tip, twisting it sharply and pulling it abruptly, staving off Shen Jiu’s building pleasure.

 

Even as he marked Shen Jiu’s nape again, weakening all of Shen Jiu’s already useless limbs, as he became a limp doll for Luo Binghe’s pleasure, drooling and coughing and choking on the hand stuffed into the back of his throat.

 

Shen Jiu would not … he would not …

 

His thoughts fractured as Luo Binghe growled into his skin, wringing an orgasm from his raw, chafed cock, pathetic spurts of cum dribbling into Luo Binghe’s hands just to be fed to him, smeared over his nipples, his face. The beast kept going, as Shen Jiu knew he would, but even years of experience could not prepare him for the pain, the sheer rawness of being pounded into while his body was not ready. He wasn’t allowed to soften, the beast’s hands continuing to milk him, making him seize and shake with sensation, with the too much not enough of it all. He cried out, and sobbed, and found fat droplets of warmth leaking from his eyes, staining his hair more, as cold sweat poured from his oversensitive body.

 

The beast gave no indication he cared, or perhaps he did, as he fucked harder into him, faster, more brutally attacking his prostate, now a painfully throbbing organ too abused to function, a clear stream leaking from the tip of his penis. The beast’s hands roamed again, coming to rest on the large swell of his belly, as Shen Jiu finally went limp again, hitching, shallow breaths harmony to Luo Binghe’s musical sighs.

 

“Shizun, this child will be so beautiful, this husband knows it. The last litter were so sweet, so small and soft, did you know? Haitang has taken a liking to one, and Yingying has the other two in her care. They are like mutton-fat jade, pale and warm.”

 

That this beast, while destroying Shen Jiu’s body, would speak of his spawn-

 

Shen Jiu could only let out a choked off moan, as he felt his body return to attentiveness, his arousal spiking again. Luo Binghe smirked down at him.

 

“How would you like to give birth this time, Shizun? Last time was so lovely, on all fours like a bitch waiting to be bred, your hole opening so sweetly around my hand each time I checked the children’s descent, but that took too long. Maybe standing, this time? I could tie you to a beam, a cushion under your feet, have gravity assist us in the birth of this child; your belly is so large already, this child must be growing very healthily inside, thank you for Shizun’s nurturing.”

 

Shen Jiu screamed as Liu Binghe’s knot inflated, popping in and out of his hole, far too loose from the abuse he had recently taken. Luo Binghe frowned, and Shen Jiu could only scream again as the blood parasites crawled to life within him, healing his broken orifice, until Luo Binghe’s cock felt like a heavy rod inside him, until his knot caught on the rim and refused to exit its warm embrace.

 

Luo Binghe tugged a few more times, pulling bitten off screams from Shen Qingqiu’s parched throat, before turning them gently, cradling Shen Jiu in his vice like arms, as ropes and ropes of semen decorated the inside of Shen Jiu’s passage, flooding his insides with burning heat, a mockery of intimacy.

 

“Yes,” he crooned, stroking over Shen Jiu’s belly, “I think standing would be best. After all, I’m sure this babe will be strong, if its bearer can withstand the pain of labour and remain on his feet. And I would expect no less of Shizun.”

 

Shen Jiu tried to snarl, tried to make any noise at all, except the defeated moan that left his lips as Luo Binghe’s hand closed again around his finally softening dick, rubbing at it gently, coaxing another orgasm from his already spent body.

 

Here, in this room, in Luo Binghe’s palace, Shen Qingqiu did not exist, and Shen Jiu was merely a whore, a cauldron, a convenient incubator and cocksleeve.

 

Outside these walls, Shen Qingqiu had long been reported dead, as having committed suicide while held in the water prison.

 

Shen Jiu was as empty as these chambers, long hollowed out of anything that made him Shen Qingqiu, even Shen Jiu, the bitter beggar street rat, the slave boy who dreamed of more. Here, he was left with only spite, and jealousy, and hatred, burning through the vestiges of his elegance and poise.