Actions

Work Header

Sisterwives

Chapter Text


 

 

This was it, the moment Louis had been waiting for his entire life.  Giddy excitement bubbled up as he held hands and stared up at his soon-to-be alpha and husband and grinned.  The ceremony was small and simple, but Louis didn’t mind. Fresh flowers pinned into his hair and a brand new outfit was all he needed to feel special in front of their few witnesses.  It was just some members of his family and a few of the church elders in attendance as was customary for any marriage beyond the first wife within the faith.

First wives were the ones to have elaborate weddings with the whole community involved.  An alpha’s first wedding was a celebration of an their coming of age, his first steps into fulfilling God’s prophecy.  There were many glories for an omega that came with being a first wife but also many responsibilities. Louis had never aspired to be a first wife or even a second.  He wasn’t experienced enough to be the leader of an alpha’s many wives and children and he didn’t think he’d be up to the task.

Louis was just fine in the position he was stepping into as the seventh.  After their bonding ceremony was complete, Louis would be joining the alpha’s family which already included what would be his six other sisterwives and sixteen children.  His alpha was much older than him– by thirteen years to be exact– which meant Louis was closer in age to his alpha’s oldest daughter than to the alpha himself. Louis kept reminding himself that it wasn’t abnormal for that to happen.  His own mother was actually younger than Louis’ own eldest sibling from his father’s first wife.

He knew it would be okay.  If it was God’s will then of course it would be okay.

Still, it was a little nerve wracking to know that immediately after consummating their marriage, Louis would load up his suitcases that were waiting in the family van parked outside and move in with a family of strangers he had never met.  Louis grew up attending one of the three churches within their faith but, while his hometown was less than an hour from where he would be living, he’d never met many members of the other congregations. At least not up close. He’d only met his alpha once before their ceremony.  It had been on the day the elders had declared they would be matched. That had only been a few days ago, just enough time to finish sewing his new clothes.

Louis was still excited for his placement, though, and eager to fulfill his omega duties.  Once he surrendered his nerves to God, he knew he would feel nothing but joy. He couldn’t believe he had already been blessed so soon after re-committing himself to God’s divine plan, to the path of the chosen people.  

They listened to the words of the preacher, said their simple vows of faith, sealed them with a kiss, and then Louis was an omega no longer under his parent’s control.  He was his alpha’s now. He felt liberated and ready to start his own journey for God. His alpha would bless him with children and secure him a place in the afterlife. His soul would be saved.  

He grinned up at his new alpha and let himself be led into the back rooms.  

It was a little awkward to know that his parents were waiting outside the room while he was knotted for the first time, but he knew it was part of the ritual.  If God willed it not to be, the alpha wouldn’t be able to form a tie and the omega would be reassigned to a more suitable mate. God didn’t make mistakes though he sometimes tested their loyalty.  

Louis prayed that he wouldn’t bring that shame and humiliation to his family.

He bit his lip to keep himself quiet and gripped the sides of the cot while his alpha went through the motions of bonding them together.  The bite to his shoulder hurt more than he expected it to and the knot locked inside his body was uncomfortable at best. He squirmed against the feeling.  Movement only made it worse so he stilled and waited while his alpha breathed heavily over him and made their bond official.

It was done.  He was finally a claimed omega.  The circle of broken skin tingled and warmth spread through his body.  God had answered his prayers. His purity had been rewarded.

It may not have been the romantic experience he had longed for, but those thoughts were selfish.  God’s plan was the only thing that mattered and Louis was ready to give himself over for the greater good of the chosen people.  

The bite on Louis’ neck was shown to the elders and his parents as proof of their union.  His name was officially recorded in the Book of Sisterwives under his alpha’s household, a sacred title to hold in his divine journey.  He would remain with his alpha and sisterwives for all eternity.

The goodbyes were quick and formal while Louis’ alpha lifted his bags into the back of his pickup.  One last look back and then Louis was on his way to his new home.

 

-

 

Alpha Marcus Edward’s household consisted of three houses all spaced within a mile of each other surrounding a small, isolated town.

The main house was the largest.  It housed his alpha’s first three wives and ten of the children along with work and living spaces for their alpha himself.  It stood out on the corner of the oil road with a large garden and three mini vans parked in the gravel drive. Louis craned his neck as they drove by, trying to get a good look as his alpha pointed it out to him.   

The second was a moderate two story house where his alpha’s fourth and fifth wives lived with their five children.  It had a the largest yard where the smaller children could play with a rope swing hanging down from a large oak tree. The property appeared to be well kept as Louis got a quick glimpse.  It was along the gravel road adjacent to the one his alpha’s main house was on and not far away.

The third house was where Louis was to live.  It was the smallest by far and the furthest from the other two.  It was a three bedroom cottage he would be sharing with his alpha’s sixth wife.  Those had been the only details he’d been given on their drive from the ceremony and Louis watched out the window for it as they kept driving until they were on the edge of the town’s short main street.

As they pulled up in front of his new home, Louis could immediately see that the house needed some work and that cottage was a generous term.  The blue paint was peeling off the wood siding and the front door had definitely seen better days. Some of the decorative shutters were missing from the windows and the lines of the roof sat crooked on the structure.  The short chain length fence around the small, baren yard was twisted and bent at odd angles in places. The gate over the cracked narrow sidewalk that led to the door was rusting off the hinges and scratched against the concrete when his alpha pushed it open.  The arch worn into the rough surface suggested it hadn’t been fixed in some time.

Louis tried not to show his first impressions of the place on his face or seem ungrateful for the home his alpha had provided for him.  After all, his alpha was the breadwinner and protector and surely wouldn’t let one of his omegas live in subpar conditions. It had to be a temporary home or in the process of being remodeled.  Maybe the exterior was deceiving.

He mustered up a smile as his alpha unloaded his suitcases and then carried them towards the house.  Louis wheeled his smaller bag behind him. They were second hand and stained and Louis hoped his alpha hadn’t judged him for them.    

The screen door creaked as it was pulled open and the front door was no different.  The hinges needed a good dose of WD-40 at the very least. His father would have never allowed such a squeak to go unmended.  

He followed his alpha inside where he set the suitcases down just beyond the door with a huff.  The linoleum square just inside was mustard yellow in a brick pattern that was scuffed up and in need of being replaced.  The tear in the middle that was worn smooth spoke to the age of the flooring.

Louis stood by his bags shyly once he noticed the tall omega standing at the doorway into the kitchen with a small toddler on his popped hip.  His messy long hair was coming loose from the bun on top of his head and his white shirt had several fresh stains down the front. The shorts that he wore showed off long legs and Louis couldn’t stop himself from staring for a moment at the shock of so much displayed skin.  His alpha didn’t seem to notice or maybe didn’t care. Either way he didn’t say a word about it. Louis’ own father had scolded him just a few weeks before for darting across the hallway with a towel wrapped around his waist that fell past his knees. The outfit wasn’t very modest.  

His new sisterwife seemed young, most likely not much older than Louis’ eighteen years, and he wondered if the baby in his arms was his or if he was just looking after the child of one of their other sisterwives.  Louis had yet to meet any of the children so he wasn’t sure. The expression on the omega’s face was unreadable but did not seem welcoming. It suddenly occurred to Louis that maybe this omega was actually one of his alpha’s oldest children.  It often took the older children some time to warm up to a new mother joining the family, especially if they were close in age. He thought he’d heard his alpha’s oldest was only twelve, though, so that didn’t add up unless his memory failed him.    

His alpha took a few steps across the room to ruffle the baby’s thin hair roughly and give the omega a quick peck on the cheek.  The omega’s lips pursed and his eyes never left Louis.

“I’ll let you get settled in,” his alpha said on his way back to the door.  He paused only to give Louis a half peck on his cheek, and then he was gone.  

Louis stared after him in surprise. He had not expected to be left on his own in a strange house on their wedding day.  Shock froze him in place as he watched his alpha climb back into his truck and drive off without a second thought of his new wife.  

There had been no introduction to the rest of his sisterwives or children.  There had been no celebration. Not that Louis had expected much, but there hadn’t even been a mention of a honeymoon.  At the very least he thought that maybe his alpha would indulge in the rare luxury of a hotel room to spend their first bonded night.  

A voice cut through his astonishment and he spun around.  

“I have the master bedroom and the nursery is already set up in the other room.  You can take the back room or sleep in the basement. I don’t care.”

The omega turned back into the kitchen with his baby.  Louis stared after him barely managing to keep his mouth from dropping open.  It certainly seemed that the baby belonged to the young omega now. Louis wondered how old the baby was and when his alpha had married his sixth wife.  The basics of baby making weren’t unknown to Louis, but he wasn’t expecting to have his own children so soon after joining the family. There were already sixteen other children and six wives he had to meet and learn the names of first before he could even think about bearing his own.  If this omega didn’t just look young, it meant they must have been blessed right away.

He didn’t even know the name of his omega sisterwife that he was going to be living with.  As a fellow wife, he could have at least introduced himself to Louis even if he was holding something against him.  

He followed the omega into the kitchen.  

“I’m Louis,” he started once he’d entered the room where his sisterwife was strapping the toddler into what looked like a second hand and heavily used high chair.  The tray was off-white with age and the plastic marred with cracks and scratches. One of the legs was circled with a thick layer of fraying duct tape.

“I know who you are,” the omega snapped and locked the high chair tray into place with a little more force than was needed.  Louis flinched.

“Oh, okay.  Sorry I—”

“Look,” the omega cut him off, “We don’t have to fake all these pleasantries.  We both know why you’re here and the last thing I want to do is share my house with the new wife.  So stay out of my space and I’ll stay out of yours. Got it?”

Louis swallowed hard and nodded.  There was so much anger and energy behind the omega’s voice that Louis reacted almost like he would to a controlling alpha timbre.  Louis didn’t think he had a reason to fear his sisterwife, but it still made him cower. So much for the welcoming family he was to be a part of.  

Without even a name to go along with his new sisterwife roommate, Louis turned and started the process of dragging his bags down the narrow hallway.  The carpet was worn and matted though it appeared to be fairly clean.

The first door in the hall was closed and Louis figured that must be the master bedroom his sisterwife had mentioned.  He passed an open door next and peeked inside to see that it was set up as a basic nursery. Apart from a rocking chair, crib and changing table, the rest of the room was open and void of any clutter or decoration.  Louis paused for just a moment to look again and wondered if his new sisterwife just hadn’t gotten around to decorating yet. It certainly didn’t look like the nurseries he was used to seeing with baby toys and clothes and everything else filling every space.  Maybe the house really was about to go through a renovation.

The door at the end of the hallway was open as well and he stopped when he reached it.  It was even more stripped down than the nursery was with just a metal bed frame under a bare mattress set.  There was a small dresser pushed against the wall and an unplugged lamp with a bent shade resting on top with the cord wrapped around the base.  He flipped on the overhead light and looked up to two naked bulbs in their sockets. The cover was missing though the ring that would hold it in place was still there attached to the warped ceiling.  

Louis wasn’t used to living a life of luxury, but he also hadn’t expected the rundown hostel vibes either.  

With a small sigh he pulled the rest of his suitcases into his new room and started the inevitable task of unpacking.  The drawers of the dresser were dusty with dried up dead bugs on their backs staring up at him and he had to wipe each one out before placing his socks and underwear inside.  The closet was tiny with one sole hanger hooked over the bar so he gave up on his nice clothes and set out the few pictures he had brought with him from home.

There hadn’t been many things he’d been allowed to take with him.  Coming from a large family with twenty-seven siblings of his own, he only had as much as he needed and not more.  Plus, he assumed he would be entering an established family without need for much else. Surely that would be the case once he was settled in and knew where everything was.  

His oldest siblings and some of his friends had hope chests they’d been adding to over the years.  Pots and pans, blankets, baby items– anything they could collect that would be necessary once they were placed with their alpha to contribute to a household.  With so many older omega siblings, when it came to be Louis’ turn to start one, the funds hadn’t been available. Anything he could have used from his bedroom back home was still needed for his younger siblings and he wouldn’t want them to go without.  He already felt guilty that he would no longer be there to brush and braid their long hair each morning before school.

He touched his own short fluff and smiled when he thought about his own hair growing long.  Male omegas were required to keep their hair cropped short before they were mated and then not allowed to cut it again once they were.  Since they were not as common as female omegas, it served as a status symbol. The long hair of a male omega was a sign of an alpha’s claim at first sight.  Louis was excited to feel owned once his locks grew past his ears.

 

It was late evening when a quick search for bed sheets came up short.  He gathered up his courage and went to seek out his sisterwife even though it was the last thing he wanted to do.  Luckily he didn’t have to look far. He found him singing softly to the baby in the nursery that was laid out on the changing table for a new diaper.  The image was soft and the exact opposite of what had greeted him in the kitchen earlier.

“Um, sorry to bother you,” Louis knocked lightly on the doorframe and winced when he saw the other tense and freeze.  “I couldn’t find any sheets for the bed?”

“I’m not required to provide for you,” his sisterwife snapped.  He returned to his task without even turning around to answer.

“I know.  I’m just asking where they are.”  

The omega spun around with anger and hatred painted on his face.  “I said I don’t have to provide anything for you! Buy your own sheets!”

The baby started crying at the outburst and the omega immediately turned and murmured soothing words to the child as he scooped them up.  The two sides of his sisterwife were so different that it gave him whiplash to witness.

“I told you to stay out of my space,” the omega whispered menacingly as he brushed past, leaving Louis gaping after him.  

It was late, late enough that all the shops in the small town would no doubt already be closed.  He thought to call his alpha over the situation until he realized not only did he not have a phone, but he didn’t even know his alpha’s number.  He had been given no way of communicating with anyone in his new family. Louis had never felt so alone.

On the verge of tears, Louis retreated to his room and sat on the edge of the obviously worn out mattress.  The surface carried questionable stains and the stitching around the edges was coming loose in a few spots. He could feel the outline of every spring against his thigh.  

It was all just temporary, he told himself while taking long, deep breaths.  There was always an adjustment period, his mother had told him that much. It was just until they prepared a space for him in the big house, just until they all got to know each other.  He pulled one of his oversized hoodies on and curled up on the center of the mattress. It wasn’t very cold in the house so he was sure he would survive without proper bedding for at least one night.  He would get it straightened out in the morning.

He let himself have a good cry so he’d be prepared to face his sisterwife for supper.  

 

-


Louis awoke to the loud squeaks and creaks of the front door and then muted voices.  It wasn’t morning and the lights from down the hall were still glowing so Louis figured he hadn’t been out long.  He hadn’t even meant to doze off to begin with.

The deep voice sounded like his alpha so he popped up and attempted to make himself look presentable before emerging from his room.  

“It’s not in your budget, Harry,” his alpha was saying, Louis only catching the tail end.  Harry. His sisterwife’s name was Harry.

“What am I supposed to do?  He’s already outgrown—” Harry cut himself off when he saw Louis standing there, his lips pressed into a hard line as he glared across the room.  

“Go talk to Abby or Beth.  I’m sure they can find you something.”  

Louis wasn’t sure what he had just witnessed but the flash of hurt over Harry’s face wasn’t lost to Louis though he pretended not to notice as Harry pushed around them down the hallway.  

“Wife!  It’s our wedding night!” his alpha addressed him.  

Of course!  Louis knew he wouldn’t be abandoned on their special day!  His alpha surely just had some things to take care of before returning to his side.    

Louis let himself be herded back into his new bedroom and his alpha closed the door behind them.  It felt different to be alone with him without an audience waiting just outside. Louis blushed and felt bashful under his alpha’s attention and looked down at his sock covered feet.  

“Come on, I don’t have all night.”  

Louis frowned a little at the comment but still allowed himself to be led towards the bed.  He yanked Louis’ sweats down to his knees and took a moment to look at the omega’s exposed parts as he stood there in just his hoodie.  

“You and Harry, all those extra parts,” the alpha shook his head and then turned Louis around and bent him over the bare mattress.  

His face rested dangerously close to one of the stains but a firm hand between his shoulder blades held him in place.  Louis had been a virgin until earlier that same day– his virtue saved for his bonded alpha– and his body still felt sore from being knotting for the first time.  It had been a pleasant ache earlier in the day, a reminder of what had happened. Now it burned when his alpha started to press his cock in without warning. He was barely wet and the friction made him cry out.  

His alpha grunted his annoyance and the pressure against his back grew.  The circles of the springs pressed against Louis’ cheek and ached where they jabbed into his shoulders.  

It took a few tries, but eventually there was enough slick for him to slide in, stretching Louis’ sore hole out.  It was his duty as a wife and omega to take what his alpha gave him, but it didn’t made it any better. He knew he’d become used to the feeling after a few times so he closed his eyes and tried to imagine what it might feel like when his cycle brought up the most sinful fantasies.  He hadn’t yet experienced a full heat but knew the wicked rush of slick that came with impure thoughts.

It did make it a little easier while his alpha grunted above him, the glide smoother as more slick gathered.  

“Haven’t had something so tight since Harry,” his alpha mumbled while pounding into Louis from behind.  The position felt so dirty and not the way God intended for them to join together. He was still standing on his feet after all and his alpha hadn’t yet even kissed him.  

His alpha grunted when he came, his knot swelling and locking them together in a solid tie.  It was hard for Louis to breathe with the weight of the alpha compressing his chest against the mattress when he fell forward to pin him down.  

Louis had always imagined his wedding day with a bit more finesse than he had been given so far, but that was okay.  He’d always wanted an alpha and the fresh mark on his neck was proof that he now did. The few things he had wished for had come from a book that had been smuggled onto the playground when they were younger.  There had been a picture of an alpha kissing the skin of a naked omega and one of the alpha cuddling the omega close with such a fond expression. The images had been seared into Louis’ brain before he’d looked away in shame.  From that moment on, he’d hoped those acts were accepted by God and part of mating.

He tucked away the shameful disappointment that they weren’t.  He’d never seen marital relations before and realized he had some parts of it wrong now that he’d experienced it.  It was nothing like the few times he had committed sin and touched himself while he thought about what it would be like.  It had been selfish of him to hope he would enjoy it.

Louis started getting restless where he was held in place by the bulk of his alpha and their tie.  It was a weird feeling to share something so deeply intimate with an essential stranger. His alpha was inside his body and they hadn’t even known each other for a week.  He had to squeeze his eyes close and think of God’s plan for him and prayed for patience while his alpha finished.  

It was over as abruptly as it began.  Louis had assumed the first time had been so brief and clinical on account of the elders waiting in the next room.  This time there was no one waiting for them to be finished yet there was the same detachment.

Louis could feel his alpha’s seed leaking out of him once he had pulled out.  It made him blush deeply and attempt to cover himself, shamed that he might not be performing his duties as an omega causing him to withdraw and curl into himself.  

His alpha didn’t seem bothered.  His pants were already hiked back into place and his shirt neatly tucked.  Louis pulled his sweats back up and sat on the edge of the mattress. The wetness of their fluids was sticky between his cheeks.  He didn’t like the feeling.

His alpha fished his wallet out of his back pocket, pulled out a few bills and tossed them onto the bed.  

“Buy some sheets before next time,” he said gruffly before leaving the room without a second glance.  

Louis rushed after him once he realized his alpha was on his way out of the house.  He made it to the main room just as the front door clicked shut and stood there in stunned silence.  His alpha wasn’t even going to spend the night with him on their wedding day. It wasn’t his fault he didn’t have bed sheets.  It wasn’t one of the few things his mother had given him to pack. It wasn’t fair.

Finally, he accepted the fact that his alpha wouldn’t be coming back in and turned to retreat to his bedroom.  Harry was peering out of his own bedroom when Louis took a step, startled that Louis had caught him. The omega disappeared into the room but not before Louis caught a glimpse of the red rimmed eyes and splotchy cheeks.  

There was twenty dollars waiting for him in folded and crumpled bills on the mattress when he returned and it made him feel like a common whore, the devil posed as a prostitute like the ones they warned about in teachings.  He folded the bills carefully and tucked them into his sock drawer with the other money he had brought with him. It wasn’t much, but at least he’d be able to buy some cheap bedding in the morning.

He tried not to cry once he returned to his room.  Instead, he just curled up on top of the naked bed and had faith that the next day would be better.  Surely his expectations had just been too high. His modesty had slipped with the excitement of his big day.  Tomorrow, he would have the perspective he needed.

 

-

 

Louis woke with a growling stomach and a stiff neck.  He starfished out on his bed and it took him a few moments to realize he wasn’t in his old bedroom he had shared with his sisters.  It was too bright and far too quiet to be his home.

In the light of morning, Louis realized the windows didn’t even have curtains or shades to draw to filter the intense sunrise.  

The abnormal silence was broken a few minutes later when the screaming cry of the baby in the next room pierced the air.  Louis was used to the sound even though it was usually mixed in with the rest of the commotion of a large houseful of people.  There wasn’t any use lying around on a filthy mattress all day so Louis started his morning. He’d already slept later than he had in years.  

The bathroom was small but matched the rest of the house.  A large crack ran down the side of the mirror above the sink as he looked at himself while he brushed his teeth and he porcelain was stained with rust.  Everything in the house was clean but dated and worn out and Louis wondered how Harry had ended up living in such a place with two nice houses just up the road.  There hadn’t been any mention of renovations and, now that he looked around, there weren’t any signs of it either.

He headed to the kitchen and searched through the cupboards until he found a glass to pour himself some milk.  None of the glasses or plates matched, but they were all clean and neatly placed on each shelf. The fridge door squeaked when it closed and Louis wondered what else in the house was in need of repair.  

“What are you doing??” Harry’s voice startled Louis enough that he nearly spilled milk all over the counter.  

“Uh…”  

Louis turned to find the omega standing with a splotchy faced baby again resting on his popped hip.  He looked exhausted and disheveled, anger and stress mixed on his face while his eyes looked tired puffy.  

“The milk is for Abraham.”  

Louis looked down at the jug thinking he had missed something on the label to make it a special variety for a toddler he assumed was Abraham.  He only found the two percent description next to the off-brand.

“I told you that I’m not required to provide for you and I won’t.”  

Harry looked on the verge of tears and Louis was lost.  Food and household items had always been communal back home.  The house he grew up in had been shared with his mother, three of her sisterwives and a varying number of his siblings.  The fridge and cupboards were always stocked and the wives took turns doing the shopping and cooking. It fed the whole house.    

He looked from Harry to the milk and then back again.  His response must have taken too long since Harry hefted the child higher on his hip and stalked over to take Louis’ nearly filled glass from the counter.  With surprising coordination, Harry was able to pour the milk into a chewed up sippy cup with handles and set it onto the high chair tray. Louis watched as he returned the jug to the fridge before he pulled a baby cereal box out of the cupboard and started to prepare breakfast.  

It was only a glimpse, but Louis was able to see just how bare the cupboard shelves had looked.  There was only Harry and the baby– Abraham, he assumed– living at the house so he figured the packed cupboards of his own home weren’t necessary.  He realized he wasn’t sure what just one person would go through in a week. He was used to bulk.

There was a loud knock at the door but Harry didn’t seem surprised.

“Can you get that?” he asked Louis as he pulled down a box of Cheerios and went back to mixing together a bowl of the mushy cereal.

It turned out he didn’t need to get it since the front door was already being pushed open by the time he reached it.  A small child burst into the house and ran towards the kitchen while Louis stood there startled.

“Oh!  You must be the new wife!” a woman struggling with a large tote greeted him as she pushed her way through the door.  He rushed to help her set the tote safely on the floor and then nodded.

“I’m Louis, yes,” he offered a hand that the woman shook while she evaluated him with careful eyes.  

“I’m in quite a hurry but I’m sure I’ll see you around.  Harry? I brought you some of William’s old stuff!”

Harry emerged from the kitchen to give the woman a one-armed hug with Abraham still on his hip and a kiss on her cheek.  “Thank you, Marlene, you’re a lifesaver.”

“See you this afternoon!  Bye William!”

And with that, the lady was gone and Harry disappeared back to the kitchen.  William was a whirlwind running circles around the small kitchen table and Louis caught and scooped him up into his arms on the next pass.  

“And who do we have here??” he asked the child who wiggled in his arms and wanted down immediately.  He probably wasn’t older than three.

“I watch the neighbor’s kids sometimes for some extra cash,” Harry answered him as he finished snapping Abraham into the high chair and then poured some of the Cheerios onto the tray.  “I won’t split it just because you happen to be here.”

Louis let the toddler wiggle himself back on to his feet and stood there trying to figure out why Harry disliked him so much without reason.  Harry seemed good with kids, at least. He lit up and grew soft when his attention was focused on one of the children. Louis sighed and wandered back to his room.  He would have to go out grocery shopping just to get himself some breakfast to settle his rumbling stomach.

He dressed modestly and arranged his hair in the mirror before he set foot outside the house.  

The town itself didn’t seem so bad.  Louis had driven through for various church events during his childhood, but there had never been a reason to spend much time there.  There was an ice cream shop, a small diner and a grocery store. There was also a second hand shop along the small two-block downtown stretch.  That seemed like the best place for Louis to start once he’d stopped to buy a granola bar from the gas station on the edge of town on his way.

He didn’t have a car– not that it mattered since Louis had never learned to drive– so he walked his way through town.  It was a nice day out, sunny but not too warm, and it felt nice on his skin. Everyone he passed on his journey seemed friendly enough and he began to think that maybe his married life would start looking like what he had for himself imagined given some time.  Everyone in the area also appeared to be from the faith which made him feel comfortable to be out on his own. Even now that he was bonded, he’d always been warned of evil alphas from the outside ready to abduct omegas of God. It was a constant fear.

The second hand shop was packed from floor to ceiling like a garage sale explosion when he stepped inside.  There were young omegas like himself, pregnant or with children on their hips, digging through bins of baby clothes and others looking through racks for themselves.  Hand-me-downs and used clothing were the way of life in their communities with so many growing children so the sight really didn’t surprise him. The scene was easily one he’d see in the town he grew up in.  They made many of their own clothes but fabric was also expensive.

The organization could have been much better, but he eventually found himself a thin set of used floral bedsheets and a few blankets that didn’t clash too much when placed all together.  He knew he wasn’t exactly in a place to be picky and to be greedy was sinful. The blankets were warm and practical. That was enough.

Grabbing a set of tan towels for himself as well, he headed towards the check out, weaving around the other omegas and children in the narrow walkways.  

Pausing at a table full of baby items, Louis picked up a blue and green sippy cup almost identical in style to the one Harry had filled up earlier.  This one, however, looked brand new without teeth marks twisting the plastic. He put it with his pile and hoped it may be a small peace offering for the milk incident that morning.  

He stood patiently in line behind an omega with two small children.  One stood at her side while the smaller one sat on the edge of the counter.  She was obviously pregnant with another.

“I hear you have a new sisterwife!” the clerk commented while she went through the motions at the register.  

“The ceremony was yesterday, none of us have met him yet,” the omega nodded, leaning in as if it were the gossip of the century, “He’s from Douglasville and I hear he’s as young as Harry was.”  

Louis immediately paid more attention at that.  

“I bet Melanie’s not happy about that,” the clerk shook her head.  

“Definitely not.  They put him in that house with Harry over on Baker Street.”  

“He’s still living in that place?”

“Alpha doesn’t want to buy another house.  It’s bad enough he’s not getting rent from that one anymore.”  

“He’ll have to do something soon.  Is Harry pregnant again yet?”

“Not that I’ve heard, but he will be if alpha starts spending more time over there with the new one.”

“Is the new one another toy?”

“No, another arrangement, a placement from the elders.  Damage control, I think, after all the gossip over Harry.”  

“At least he behaved himself after the marriage.  The new one’s from a church family, I assume?”

“I would assume so, we don’t know much about—”

Louis cleared his throat loudly enough that both women paused to look at him.  

“I think you’re talking about me so I could just tell you?” Louis offered, trying not to show his annoyance at being the town’s gossip.  He knew he would be the talk of the town, but he hadn’t expected to hear it for himself. “I’m Louis and just moved in with Harry yesterday.”  

They both gaped at him for a moment and then the pregnant omega’s face warmed.  

“I’m Abby, fifth wife,” she said and held her hand out to shake.  Louis had to set his pile down first but then returned the gesture.  “And these two are Nathaniel and Elijah.”

Louis nodded as he looked at each child and tried to commit their names to memory.  Three down, thirteen more to go.

“Didn’t expect to see you out and about so soon!”

“Just needed a few things to get settled in,” Louis offered a smile.  She seemed nice enough.

“Harry let you borrow the car then?” she asked as she lifted the smaller child back onto her hip and went to grab her shopping bags.  

“I can grab those for you if you wait a minute,” Louis offered, “And no, I don’t drive.  I walked over.”

“I can give you a ride if you don’t mind a quick stop off for a few groceries first?”  

“That would be great, actually.”  

Louis paid for his items and then gathered all their bags in his hands.  Abby’s car was a beat up old minivan filled with car seats. Thankfully the front passenger seat was open and he climbed in while she strapped the two toddlers in behind him.  

“So how are you liking it so far?” Abby asked once they were in the grocery store with the two children confined to the shopping cart.  

“It’s alright so far but it’s barely been a day yet.  I don’t really think Harry likes me, though.”

“Oh don’t mind him.  He’s just sore over not being the new wife anymore.  He’s still new to all this. He’ll come around.” She brushed it off with a wave of her hand.  

“I’m new to this too,” he frowned a little.  That shouldn’t matter. Louis had never been married before either.  

“No, he’s from someplace out west of the city or something.  I don’t remember where. He wasn’t raised in the faith so he doesn’t always know how things work.  He’ll catch on.”

“Oh.”  That might explain some things a little better.  He wondered if he just needed a lesson on communal living and sharing.  That might make a difference.

Louis grabbed a few boxes of cereal and his own jug of milk so he could feed himself for a few days while he settled in.  It wasn’t a long shopping trip– just a few extra things for dinner she’d said. They settled back into the van and she drove him back towards home.  He was glad he had an escort as he wasn’t quite sure he would have remembered the way back on his own even with the limited number of streets. It would have seemed a longer journey with his grocery bags in hand as well.  

He waved a goodbye and struggled his bags into the house that was oddly quiet.  With the milk and cereal tucked away in their places, he wondered if perhaps Harry had left the house.  The front door hadn’t been locked so he hoped that wasn’t a habit if he had.

On his way to the back room he noticed that the bedroom door that was usually closed stood open.  He peered in and caught a glimpse of his sisterwife’s life when he found them asleep together on the bed.  Abraham was sprawled out across his chest with little William snuggled against his side. He looked young and peaceful as he slept, probably the way he always looked when he wasn’t glaring at Louis.  

There were navy blue sheets on the bed that was pushed up against the wall in the far corner of the room and another sheet of the same colour draped over a curtain rod as a makeshift curtain.  Dim light filtered through it just enough so Louis could see that Harry’s room was almost as empty as his own. Apart from the large rug on the floor and every day items lined up along the dresser that made the space look lived in, it wasn’t what Louis had been expecting.  His own mothers had taken the time to make their bedrooms their own with decorations and pictures, hoarding away precious splurges from the rest of the family. With the door kept shut, Louis had imagined the same of Harry’s room with all the luxuries of the house hidden out of his sight.  

It made him feel a little better to know that the state of the room he was given wasn’t out of spite.  

Leaving them to their nap, Louis set about making his bed and hanging his towel over the empty space on the towel rack in the bathroom.  He laid down on his freshly made bed and stared up at the ceiling as he thought about his new position in life. Abby seemed nice enough and young enough to be considered in Louis’ age group.  He could see them getting along well if given the chance to spend time together. Maybe the two of them could live in a house together instead of being paired up with Harry. It seemed obvious the omega would rather live on his own.  

Louis was bored without all his siblings to look after and other household chores and listened to the sounds of the house around him.  Harry eventually got up with the kids and William’s mother arrived to pick him up. Harry’s conversations with her were pleasant, even what he would describe as bubbly.  His sisterwife turned into a different omega around everyone else and Louis wanted to know why. Was it really just because he wasn’t the new wife anymore? That was hardly Louis’ fault.  

Abraham was in a Sit and Step when Louis finally emerged from his room.  Harry was sitting on the floor beside him going through the contents of the tote that had been dropped off earlier.  His voice was soft as he spoke to the boy while he checked the tags and held up various baby clothes before folding them into piles.  It was then that he remembered the sippy cup and went back to grab it.

“I saw this while I was out earlier and thought of you– as an apology for this morning.  I didn’t know about the milk.”

Harry stared at the cup and then back up at Louis with a set expression.  

“What, my cups aren’t good enough or something?” Harry asked with an edge that took Louis by surprise.  

“What?? No!  I just thought you’d appreciate a new one since kids chew them up so fast?”  

Louis was sinking quickly with the back fired gesture.  He had no clue Harry would warp his motives so much.

Harry appeared to be having an internal struggle over the the whole thing, but in the end, reached out to take the cup.  

“Okay.  Thank you,” he mumbled out, biting at his bottom lip as he went back to sorting through the clothes.  

It was more than Louis had received from him so far so he took it as a win.  He poured himself a bowl of cereal and then took a long, hot shower.

Things continued on in much the same way until Sunday morning.  Louis found a rhythm to stay out of Harry’s way and life moved on.  Harry would wake early with Abraham for breakfast, Louis finding his way to the kitchen once William or one of the other neighbor’s babies had been dropped off for the day.  The rest of the day passed by slowly and Louis knew he would have to find a job for himself before he went stir crazy. With Harry not allowing him to help with the children and his sisterwives living a decent distance away, there wasn’t much else for him to do.  

Early Sunday morning Louis followed Harry’s lead and dressed for church.  He permitted Louis to ride along in the beat up Ford Taurus though they both stayed silent the entire way.  

His alpha was waiting for them when they arrived with a ring of omegas and children standing behind him.  He was finally introduced to the rest of the wives– Melanie, Christine, Mary, Beth and Abby who offered him a warm smile.  It was enough to even remember their names let alone the gaggle of children that were rattled off next. It was overwhelming and Louis’ palms were clammy with nerves.  

They didn’t have time to talk before they filed in to occupy several rows of pews, the children all grouped with their mothers and their alpha stayed at Melanie’s side.  Louis ended up between Harry and Abby with their children on their laps which made Louis feel out of place as the only childless wife in the family. It didn’t cause him to be in a rush to have one but it made the divisions in the family clear.  

Running over the names and faces of his sisterwives, Louis wouldn’t have been able to recall even one word of the sermon if asked.  His mind was elsewhere, wrapping his head around his new position and where he would fit in. Other than Abby, the other wives had shown little interest in him.  Melanie had even turned up her nose and left the group as soon as she had been introduced. Louis didn’t want to be the hated wife.

After the service the congregation scattered in the impromptu social hour Louis was used to at his own church.  It was the time when extended families were able to see each other, when news was shared, when pregnancies and births were announced.  He stood awkwardly to the side observing with only a few approaching him to introduce themselves. Louis didn’t mind. He already had too many names to commit to memory already.  

As the crowd began to thin, Louis caught sight of Harry with Abraham on his hip talking to one of their sisterwives.  If his memory was correct, he thought it was Beth. The two of them spoke with scowls on their faces, their glances in Louis’ direction making it obvious they were discussing him.  Harry was no doubt painting a horrible picture of their new sisterwife for having no respect for his child’s precious milk and expecting Harry to buy him bed sheets. Louis rolled his eyes and had to walk away.  

He turned only to smack right into the chest of his alpha, glancing up before averting his eyes submissively.  

“I expect you to be home this afternoon,” he told Louis with a hand on his shoulder and then went to corral his wives to their vehicles.  Louis wasn’t sure where else his alpha expected he might be.

“I’m not waiting if you aren’t ready,” Harry said as he pushed his way past.  

Louis’ shoulders slumped and he sighed and followed.  

He had changed out of his Sunday best and finished a bowl of cereal at the kitchen table when the front door opened.  Harry jumped up in surprise and ran his fingers through his loose hair quickly.

“Alpha,” Harry said and rushed to his side.  He gave Harry a kiss on the cheek and then leaned in to scent the omega.  

“You’ll be in season soon,” he commented.  Harry grew flustered and blushed.

“Come wife,” his alpha addressed Louis and started down the hallway expecting him to follow.  

Louis passed Harry on the way who seemed embarrassed that something so private had been called out in front of his sisterwife.  His cheeks were still red and his arms folded protectively around himself.

Louis wondered why it mattered.  Harry knew exactly what they were going into his bedroom for so their alpha announcing his approaching heat seemed to pale in comparison.  

His alpha was naked and crawling onto the bed when he entered the room.  He closed the door behind himself and took a deep breath while he took a moment to really look at his alpha.  He was a typical broad, muscular alpha but nothing about the man on his bed filled Louis with want. He was old compared to Louis and it felt weird when he thought about it.  His sister had been married to someone the age of their grandfather. Louis was Lucky his alpha was still in his prime.

He shook the thoughts out of his head.  It wasn’t an omega’s place to critique their alpha or anyone else’s for that matter.  God had blessed him with an alpha and his alpha had received the calling to give him a baby.  That was why he was here. All Louis had to do was let that happen as he had the other times. Louis was glad that he hadn’t gone into heat yet.  He wanted to wait for a baby but wasn’t about to deny his alpha’s calling. As far as he knew, alpha didn’t know he hadn’t been through a full heat yet.  He had time before it actually happened.

His alpha took him from behind again, this time on his hands and knees in the center of the bed.  He bit and slobbered over their bond mark which made Louis feel a little gross. The pull of their bond was weak at best and the attention to it did little more than cause his body to produce slick.  The stories about bonds had to be myths with how underwhelming it felt now that he had been given one.

His alpha pulled him back to sit on his cock once they were tied and Louis stared at the wall while he felt his alpha’s knot twitch deep inside.  His own cock had wilted with disinterest once spit had covered his shoulder and stayed that way when his alpha wrapped his arms around Louis’ middle to keep their tie close.  

“Alpha, I think I would like to get a job.”  

Louis’ voice sounded loud in the empty room but he did not hesitate.  

“You will approve any job with me before accepting any position,” his alpha said firmly, “And you will contribute to the family expenses.”

Louis had expected that and gave a single nod in response.  He would gladly contribute to the family if it meant having something to occupy his time.  Being stuck in the silence and awkward interactions with Harry were enough to drive him mad and it had only been a week.

 

-

 

The next day Louis left after breakfast to scout out all of the businesses within walking distance as potential employers.  The gas station was out. His alpha would never let him work where so many unholy, unbonded alphas passed through from the highway.  There was the diner, but that didn’t really seem up his alley. The choices were limited.

He returned home just before lunch not feeling very hopeful.  He poured himself another bowl of cereal and knew that he wouldn’t be able to live on cereal alone for much longer.  He needed to go grocery shopping and start cooking like the good omega he strived to be.

Harry was in the living room with Abraham when the front door opened with a creak.  They both looked up to watch their alpha enter.

“Alpha,” Harry jumped to his feet in surprise.

“Come on, I’ve only got my lunch break.”  

Their alpha took Harry by the arm and started off towards the bedrooms.  

“Wait!  Let me just—  I need to put Abraham in his crib first—”

“He’ll be fine.”  

“I can’t just leave him—”

“I’m on my lunch break, Harry.”  

Their alpha’s voice was firm and annoyed with Harry’s protests.  Louis’ sisterwife stumbled over his own feet, his mouth open to find words as he looked back at his baby standing with his chubby hands gripping the edge of the coffee table.  Harry’s eyes frantically met Louis’ across the room where he had come to stand at the entrance of the kitchen. The moment was brief but the pleading look in Harry’s expression for Louis’ help was unmistakable.  

They disappeared into Harry’s bedroom and Louis went to sit down next to Abraham and his slobbery baby hands.  Louis pulled a funny face and Abraham laughed before letting go of the edge and plopping down onto his butt after a few wobbly seconds.  Louis waited for the cry but the baby just laughed and kicked his little feet.

Louis continued to entertain the little boy, even when he could hear the squeaking mattress just on the other side of the wall.

After their alpha left, Harry emerged with sad eyes.  He gave Louis a small nod of thanks before he scooped Abraham up and headed to the kitchen like nothing had happened.  Louis remained seated on the floor for a while wondering if all their alpha’s visits to the house were so brief. If so, had Harry just been left on his own in the house with Abraham before he moved in?

It made Louis consider reevaluating his first impression of Harry even though his cold behaviour was inexcusable in Louis’ mind.  It left some doors of hope open that maybe they could learn to coexist.

 

-

 

Louis found an approved job helping out the second hand store where he first met Abby a few days a week.  It wasn’t a set schedule with required hours but, by the end of his second week, the store already looked better.  As it turned out, the lack of organization was largely due to it being a family run business with not enough extra hands or time for the details.  Louis filled that gap and quickly came to love it.

With his first few paychecks, Louis brought home groceries and made it clear that Harry could help himself to anything he wanted.  It felt like a huge triumph when he would find evidence of Harry breaking in to some of the things he brought home.

Their alpha took most of his check to put into the family pot but left him enough to keep their cupboards and fridge reasonably full.  

Harry still made it point to keep to himself but the glares and not-so-subtle huffs of annoyance had become less frequent.  Louis took that as another win.

It was on the third day of Louis calling into work with the flu when something finally started to shift.  He had been feeling nauseated in the few days leading up to his illness and then it had hit him hard. He pulled his blankets in to make a nest in front of the toilet each time a wave hit him and spent the rest of the time feeling exhausted.  

Louis had almost fallen asleep on the bathroom floor when Harry appeared and squatted next to him.  

“Drink this.  It will help.”  He offered over a pink smoothie in a glass, a straw stuck right in the middle.  “It always helped me.”

He wasn’t sure how he was supposed to drink a smoothie when he wasn’t able to keep anything else down, but he was willing to try anything.  Wrapping one of his blankets around himself like a cape, he dragged his feet to the kitchen and sat down in one of the chairs to sip at the drink.  Harry was feeding Abraham a bowl of something that smelled awful and his stomach rolled enough to make him gag.

“What are you feeding that child?” Louis moaned, the side of his face smooshed against the table in agony.  

“Squash?” Harry gave him a strange look and turned back to Abraham with another spoonful.  

“It smells like rotting pumpkin.”

“Drink your smoothie,” Harry said with a small laugh that seemed very out of character.  

“Be nice to me, I have the flu.”

Louis pouted but lifted his head and took a few sips of the smoothie.  He wouldn’t admit it right away, but it did cool his throat and settled nicely in his stomach.  

“You’re not sick,” Harry shook his head with a laughing grin on his face and fed Abraham’s open mouth another bite.  

Louis opened his mouth to argue his illness when he stopped short.    

“Oh no,” he groaned and hid his face in his arms on the table top and thought of all the times his moms had been sick during their pregnancies.  His alpha had been knotting him regularly since their bond so it shouldn’t have come as a surprise but he also still was yet to have a heat.

“There’s a test under the sink,” Harry said softly, his tone void of any laughter that had been present before.

Louis sat at the table and slowly sipped at his smoothie knowing that if he got up to take a test that it would make it real and he wasn’t ready for that yet.  Harry stayed quiet as Abraham finished the rest of the bowl of squash. Louis tried not to breathe through his nose until the bowl had been rinsed out in the sink.  The smoothie had helped to calm his gag reflex but his stomach still swam uneasily.

Pulling the blanket more securely around himself, he thought back to all the teaching from the faith.  God’s purpose for him as an omega was to go forth and populate the earth with babies born to God’s chosen people.  Alphas held the connection with God to know when it was the right time to bring a baby into the world. His alpha had a calling from God to bless him with a baby and now Louis had received a wonderful gift.  They were saving innocent souls.

If it was so wonderful then why was he terrified to pee on a stick?  

Living in a tiny house in need of updating and repairs alone with one of his sisterwives was not how he had imagined receiving his gift.  Looking over at Harry, he was pretty certain it wasn’t how Harry had imagined it either. Apart from Sundays, they only saw their alpha briefly a few days a week and then he was gone after blessing one of them with his knot.  He wasn’t the protector or loving head of the family Louis had always dreamed about and expected.

He bowed his head and prayed in request for forgiveness over his ungrateful reaction to his gift.  His mother would be so ashamed of his thoughts. His father had received the calling and blessed his mother with eleven children and a twelfth on the way.  Louis could hardly summon up the enthusiasm to be thankful for even one now that it was real.

Louis tried to hold it in but his breath hitched and unleashed the tears that poured down his face.  He could see the outline of Harry approaching through his warbly vision and he wished there wasn’t a witness to his reaction.  

He wasn’t ready to be a parent, his body wasn’t ready to be a parent.  He hadn’t even been through a full heat cycle yet. It had been too easy to pretend it was what he wanted while he waited for an alpha but it had all been an act he didn’t know he was putting on.  He was supposed to spend at least the first year of his bond learning from his sisterwives.

Abraham started crying and the whole atmosphere of the house shattered in an instant.  Louis’ sobs caused Abraham to wail and Harry seemed to be panicking over what to do. Normally he found the moments of Harry’s inexperience as a young parent amusing.  Now it felt much too close to home. He wouldn’t even know what to do himself in the same situation and now he knew it was going to be on him soon.

It wasn’t supposed to be like this.  Together with his alpha they were supposed to create their first baby with purpose.  His sisterwives would join together and congratulate him and the whole family would be excited for the new addition.  They would praise God for the blessing and live a happy life. Louis wasn’t happy.

He wound up in the bathroom emptying his stomach– this time from stress.  He couldn’t bring himself to take the test he knew was calling to him from under the sink.  He couldn’t even open the cabinet to get it.

Once there was nothing left in his stomach and his sobs had dwindled to hiccups, Louis curled in on himself on his bed.  The house had grown quiet but the energy still lingering was anything but calm. He felt numb and his thoughts blurred together until he existed in a zombie-like blob.  

The mattress shifted and he didn’t even care enough to turn his head.  He could tell it was Harry, anyway. He was familiar enough with his sisterwife’s scent by now.  The omega sat next to him for a few minutes before stretching out on his side taking the place of the big spoon around Louis’ body.  Louis didn’t have the energy to push him away but also didn’t want to. The arms that wrapped around him kept him grounded and the warmth of another body was comforting.  Louis hadn’t even experienced that with his own alpha yet.

They didn’t speak, but they didn’t have to.  Their lives were parallels and Louis felt no need to explain or defend his reaction.  

Too exhausted to stay awake, Louis dozed off, only walking slightly when Harry left to get Abraham up from his nap.  When he woke again Harry had left him a plate of toast and a glass of water. He nibbled at it and attempted to keep his thoughts neutral.  Another emotional breakdown was the last thing he needed and he hated that he had reduced himself to such weak omega behaviour. All he’d wanted was to be a good omega to his alpha and live God’s chosen path.    

He still wasn’t ready to deal with it and forced himself into another nap.  Maybe if he waited long enough, it would all turn out to be a dream.

 

sisterwives by tomlinshaw

 

-

 

The announcement was made to the family on a Sunday with no more pomp and circumstance than a passing comment.  It was met with general disinterest and only a few rude looks that were quickly masked.

A midwife was called to pray over him and receive confirmation from God that he was healthy and then life moved on as normal.  His alpha’s visits came to a halt and some of the tension between Harry and himself dissipated to a more tolerable level. There wasn’t much conversation or camaraderie, but they were able to share some meals at the kitchen table and Louis received fewer scowls when he interacted with Abraham.  

“What days does alpha spend here?” Louis asked one day while Harry was standing at the stove.  

“He stops by every couple weeks,” Harry shrugged without looking up from the stirfry.  

“He doesn’t have set days at each house?”

Louis’ family only lived a town away yet Louis continued to be shocked by the differences in their culture or maybe it was just his alpha.  Louis’ family knew which days their father would be with them even if it was only a few days a month. Louis wasn’t even sure he knew where his own alpha worked every day let alone which house he would be in.  

“No?” Harry glanced over with a look of confusion.  “He lives at the big house with Mel.”

“He doesn’t stay here on your days?”  

The concept was hard for Louis to wrap his head around.  Alphas in his own congregation always split their time between wives.  It was an alpha’s duty.

“I don’t have any “days”,” Harry raised his fingers in quotes.  

“When do you and Abraham spend time with him?”

“We don’t?  Sometimes he stops over, more when you first came, obviously.  We see him on Sundays.” Harry shrugged again.

Louis just stared at him in shock over the table, jaw slack.  

Harry glanced over and shrugged yet again with the spatula held out while he spoke.  “He used to come over to my apartment a lot before we got married. I moved in here when my lease was up.  I was already a few months pregnant by then so I guess there wasn’t much reason for him to be over here.”

“Who helps you with the baby?”

“I stayed at the big house for a couple weeks after Abraham was born so alpha could name him and bless him into the family.  Elijah and Simon aren’t much older than Abraham so sometimes we go over to the other house but not much. It gets pretty chaotic around there and I don’t think all our sisterwives like me much.  Since I wasn’t born into the faith they think I’m a bad influence or tainted or something. There was a lot of gossip around town about me at first so that’s what I’ve heard. But we’re fine.”

“Were you baptized?”

Louis started to worry that the marriage of his sisterwife wasn’t recognized in the eyes of God and he had would be dragged down by associating with such a sinner.  Maybe there were reasons his sisterwives kept their distance.

“Yes, I went through all of that.” Harry turned back to the stove.  “I thought the lifestyle sounded so great, a huge family with so much love and it would be like raising kids with best friends.  I wanted that so I joined the church the right way. Alpha spent a lot of time teaching me about the lifestyle and the purpose of the chosen people.  I gave up everything to move up here for him.”

There was a layer of sadness in his words that made Louis pause.  

“Were you not happy to be blessed by our alpha??”

“No more than you were, I guess.”  

They hadn’t spoken of Louis’ breakdown and it angered him that Harry would throw it in his face in such a way.  He had already asked for God’s forgiveness.

“I am honored to be blessed in such a way.  I did not have to work for God to allow me to be part of his plan.  I did not have to ask .  I was born pure to the chosen people, a sacred omega to bear the children of my alpha if he receives the calling to bless me with a life.  I was placed in this family to fulfill God’s plan and I am honored to do it. If you don’t understand what it means to be blessed by our alpha then you don’t deserve to be blessed with another.”  

Louis was seething by the time he was done.  How dare Harry imply he wasn’t happy about his pregnancy.  If Harry even hinted that Louis wasn’t happy to anyone in their family or congregation, Louis would be shipped off, reassigned, his bond severed for life.  He refused to be a disgrace to his family with lies spread by a sinner born outside the faith.

He stomped out of the kitchen and slammed the door to his room behind him.  He paced the floor in anger, his fists clenched at his sides. His moment of weakness meant nothing in God’s master plan.  Being chosen for his alpha had been what every moment of his life had prepared him for. He was born to give his alpha children.  

It took him a long time to calm down, and when he did, he was exhausted.  He sighed and sat on the edge of his bed, massaging his temples in circles.  His mother had always told him his anger ran too hot for a sweet omega and his body seemed to agree.  It had to be the hormones since he was usually better at masking his emotions or keeping them down in the first place.  

He refused to take it back, though.  If Harry wasn’t dedicated to the church, all of it was what he needed to hear.  

It was late when Louis finally calmed enough to venture out of his room.  The door to the nursery was open just a crack which meant Abraham was already in bed.  He hoped Harry had retired as well so he wouldn’t have to deal with the tension.

He slipped into the bathroom first and splashed some cold water onto his face.  It helped to ground him back to the good omega he was supposed to be. He leaned forward and took a long look at himself in the mirror and told himself again that this rough spot he found himself in was only temporary.  

Something clattered into the sink and on reflex his hand shot out to save it.  He picked up the clear pink plastic cap and glanced around for what it might belong to.  Setting it again on the edge of the sink, he moved to the toilet and then his eyes caught sight of what he had been searching for.  

He reached into the trash and pulled out the uncapped pregnancy test and stared at the lines that had started to fade and blur into the white background.  Unless someone else had been in the house, there were only two people it could have belonged to and Louis had long since discarded his own.

With the test in hand, he went to find Harry only to find the rest of the house already dark and quiet.  The light was not on next to the couch and Harry wasn’t sitting under the lamp reading as he often did after Abraham had been put to bed.  He approached Harry’s bedroom door and paused when he heard the unmistakable hiccup before a muffled sob.

Louis couldn’t walk away after hearing that.  Even without his guilt seeping through his pores, he couldn’t leave without at least making sure Harry was okay.  There were some things he just couldn’t ignore no matter who it was.

Louis knocked softly and pushed the door open a crack.  Harry was curled up facing the wall, the muted light from the neighbors porch light filtering in around the window just enough to see his shape on the bed.

“I’m fine,” Harry said unevenly but Louis knew it was obviously a lie.  

He stepped carefully across the room as if loud footsteps would be too harsh and sat on the edge of the bed.  

“Was that test yours?” Louis whispered through the darkness.  

Another sob from Harry was his answer.  He turned and laid down, molding himself around Harry’s body as Harry had done to him.  He was surprised when his sisterwife snuggled into his space.

“I didn’t mean that you don’t deserve another,” Louis said into Harry’s hair and gave him a little squeeze.  

Harry sobbed again and then his breathing wavered in an attempt to control it.  

“You were right, though.  I don’t want another.”

Louis could do nothing but hold him as another wave of sobs took over.  His heart ached over Harry’s distress. Eventually they tapered off and the sisterwives laid together in the silence only interrupted by Harry’s hitching breath.  

“I didn’t think it would be like this,” Harry spoke when his breathing was almost under control.  There was still a small hiccup that made him pause, but he continued. “I was working at a diner when alpha came in and sat at one of my tables.  He stayed there ordering coffee until my shift was over and then convinced me to sit down with him. And he was handsome and charming and so sweet… So we started to spend a lot of time together and he told me about his wives and his kids and about the church and the lifestyle.  He really sold it to me. I really thought ‘wow, that sounds so amazing!’”

Harry had to pause as his breathing hitched again.  He swallowed hard a few times before he was able to continue and Louis let him.  

“We got married and bonded and then I found out I was pregnant and then moved in here…  He never came over here, Louis, never. He wouldn’t touch me anymore, he barely looked at me.  Our bond was so faint because it was shared with five other omegas that he never even felt how lonely and unhappy I was through it.  I was stuck here pregnant and on my own with almost no money. My family doesn’t believe in the faith so I couldn’t even call them after everything that had happened.  I gave up so much. I sacrificed everything I knew and everyone I loved.

“Abraham came and things seemed better for a few weeks and then I was at home with a newborn and no idea how to take care of him.  I secretly signed up for government assistance because my part of the family budget was barely enough to live on. I had to start watching the neighbor’s kids just so I wouldn’t run out of diapers and I can barely keep clothes on him with how fast he’s been growing.

“The first time alpha touched me since I told him I was pregnant with Abraham was only because he scented my heat cycle and it was so awful.  Every time was fast and he wouldn’t even kiss me and now this. I can’t go through all of that with two babies, I can’t.”

Louis held him and could feel the despair and helplessness rolling off his body.  It made him wonder if his alpha intended to do the same to him. He hadn’t been to the house since their announcement and he wasn’t even sure if he was included in the budget since he hadn’t seen any money past what he saved back from his own small paychecks.  

Still, there were things in Harry’s story that Louis didn’t quite understand.  

“Why would you want alpha to touch you if you were already pregnant?”

Harry turned his head a bit to see if Louis was serious and then frowned.  “Because it feels good? Because I want that bonding time with my alpha?”

“Knotting is for making babies, though.  What’s the point of doing it if you’re already pregnant?”

“There’s more to sex than just knotting.”  Harry rested his head down again and snuggled back to get comfortable.  “Like all the other stuff leading up to knotting.”

“What do you mean?” Louis asked in confusion.  There had only been Louis’ bonding ceremony that came before their first time in his bedroom and Louis didn’t consider that sex.  

“I can’t tell if you’re being serious or not.”  

“Do you mean your bonding ceremony?”

Harry paused and then found Louis’ hand to link their fingers together.  “I forgot you grew up in the faith. I mean blow jobs and fingering and kissing and all that.”  

“I know what kissing is, but what’s that other stuff?”

“You know, using your mouths on each other and using fingers inside before he knots you and stuff.”  

“That sounds gross,” Louis wrinkled his nose in disgust.  

“You didn’t like it?” Harry asked curiously as he started to stroke Louis’ thumb gently with his own.  

“I don’t know if I would or not.”  

“You don’t remember?” Harry seemed a little shocked.  

“Alpha just took himself and pushed it into me.  He didn’t use his mouth or his fingers. Except for the bonding bite, I guess, if that’s what you meant.”  

“Wow.” Harry took a moment before he responded, “I don’t know if I’m supposed to tell you this, but Alpha took me to bed a lot before we were married– before I even knew about his other wives, actually.”  

“What?” Louis gasped.  Omegas who made themselves impure by an alpha before marriage were always sent away in the faith.  None of them were ever allowed to bond or even return to the church after such transgressions.

“The real world doesn’t care about any of that.  I know the faith forbids things like sex before marriage, but I’m pretty sure I was pregnant before our ceremony even happened.”

“You knotted before marriage??”  What a scandal. No wonder there had been so much gossip.  

“Yeah,” Harry said softly, “I was in love with him so I let him.”  

Louis wasn’t sure what to think about that either.  When Harry posed it like that, it didn’t seem like such a sin.  He wasn’t sure why that made any difference.

He rested his forehead onto Harry’s shoulder and thought about what a situation like that might be like.  He also wondered why his alpha had courted Harry in such an unconventional way when all his other wives were in the faith.  It made him yearn for something he hadn’t known existed even moments before. Alpha had chosen Harry for himself.

“Did alpha ever spend the night with you?” he asked softly, wondering if Harry had experienced any of the small things Louis had wished for from his alpha.  

“Sometimes, yeah.  If it was late or I asked him to.”  

“What’s it like?”

Louis wasn’t sure why the words were coming out but he didn’t want to stop them.  He wanted to hear about the things that hadn’t happened to him, that he’d never heard of.  

“I thought it was inappropriate for sisterwives to talk about their sex lives with the others.”  

“Please tell me.  I want to know what it’s like.  Alpha’s never stayed with me. I won’t tell anyone you told.”

“It wasn’t really unlike this,” Harry said and pulled Louis’ arms more securely around his middle.  “We usually ended up with his arm around me and his face against the back of my neck. He snores, though, so I didn’t always sleep very well, but I liked having him close.  If we were tied, I liked to tease him a little like this before we fell asleep.”

Harry rotated his hips back, his bum grinding against Louis’ crotch.  Louis’ reflex was to push forward against it and the friction made breath hitch.  It felt good but Louis knew it was a sinful pleasure. He should have pulled away.

“You fell asleep tied?” Louis voice sounded higher than it normally did and he cleared his throat against it.  

“A few times, yeah.  Mostly it was just after, when we were both tired.”

“But what about your purity?”  

Louis’ mind just couldn’t wrap around that.  He couldn’t believe that any omega would sacrifice their purity or image in the eye of God, that any omega would risk their chance of being allowed to bond and marry and fulfill their purpose on earth.  The few times Louis had even touched himself he’d been overcome with guilt and worry right after.

“I don’t believe sex is a sin,” Harry shrugged, “Sex isn’t a bad thing outside the faith and it isn’t just for baby making either.  Orgasms feel good and I don’t feel impure for enjoying them with another person, even before marriage. To have a hand that’s not your own touching you?  It’s so good. I miss it.”

“Alpha did that for you?” Louis asked softly, “Maybe I’m not doing something right.  Am I not being a good omega?”

“Alpha was so different to me before I got pregnant.  Now he just sticks it in, but before… He used to spend so long getting me so hard and so wet.  His mouth felt so good everywhere and his hands– oh man, his hands and his fingers…”

“Where?” Louis breathed out, hanging on every word.  His mouth felt dry and his body too warm but he wanted to know.

“Everywhere,” Harry’s answer was close to a moan.  Louis bit down on his lip. “He knew how to pull on my nipples just right and suck on them, too.  Felt sooo good.”

Harry wasn’t lying completely still anymore, his body writhed just enough for Louis to feel it.  Harry’s hand also left Louis’ to slide up his chest and made Louis wonder what was so special about nipples.  His fingers followed Harry’s up to find hard nubs over the softness of his chest. Harry let out a small whimper as Louis explored with the tip of his finger through Harry’s tshirt and wondered if his own were supposed to feel good when touched.  He’d never thought about it before.

“Yeah, like that.  They’re more sensitive since Abraham.”

Harry squirmed around and Louis felt him reach down to adjust himself in his pants.  A strange buzz started in the center of Louis’ stomach and slowly spread out through his body.  The only other time he had experienced such a feeling was when he had allowed himself to fantasize about what his bonding night might be like and given into the urge to touch.  That had only happened a few times.

“Show me what alpha would do,” Louis whispered near Harry’s ear.  

Harry barely paused before taking Louis’ hand and guiding it down past his hips.  Long fingers curled around Louis’ and then led them to wrap around Harry’s erection through his thin pants.  Harry moaned and Louis thought his heart might beat out of his chest it was thudding so hard.

Anxious fear pulsed through him yet he didn’t yank his hand away.  It was a sin. This was definitely a sin. Male omegas were born with anatomy so similar to alphas that it was disrespectful to draw attention do their likeness.  Even if done in private, God would see the impersonation of an alpha as an omega defying their role. If it was such a sin to even touch himself in such a way, he couldn’t imagine the judgement that would be passed on his soul by touching his sisterwife as he would his alpha.  

Still, he didn’t pull away.  He tightened his grip and squeezed gently, the warmth of his sisterwife through the thin sleepwear made him want to explore.  He’d never even touched his alpha like this.

Harry moaned and moved their hands, the back of his pants damp with slick where they pressed back against Louis’ crotch.  He was hard himself but trying not to think about it, his other sins already too much to commit another.

After a few strokes Louis touched bare skin as Harry slipped out of the slit in his pajama pants.  It was a thrill to be doing something so naughty and he let Harry guide him until he shuddered and both their hands became wet with his release.  

“Like that,” Harry eventually whispered and let Louis’ hand slip from his.  

Louis shuffled his hips away and focused on willing the situation in his own pants to go away.  He was very skilled at doing that, but tonight, by the time it was no longer noticeable, Harry was already snoring softly in his arms.  


-

 

Louis first became aware of motion and then of warmth.  A solid body was pressed against his front and he squeezed his arms around the pleasant feeling of not being alone.  They were snuggling into each other with small movements and Louis let himself nuzzle his nose further into the sweet and familiar scent.  

He realized it was Harry at the same moment he realized he was not only hard but also grinding it against his sisterwife’s behind.  He froze, and a second later, so did Harry.

The attempted movement to pull away only gave him more friction and he wasn’t fully awake enough to stop the moan that poured out of it in response to the feeling.  

“No, stay,” Harry’s grip became more solid on the arms encircling him.  “Feels good.”

Harry rolled his hips back and they both reacted with a breathy moan.  Linking their fingers, Harry led one of Louis’ hands slowly down his stomach and then over Harry’s own arousal.

Harry swallowed audibly.  “Feels good,” he repeated on a whisper.  

Darkness still cloaked the room and his whispered voice made it all feel safe and exciting.  

Louis’ long nightshirt had ridden up above his hips at some point during the night and he was naked where he pressed against the thin fabric separating him from Harry’s warmth.   

Not really pregnant enough to be truly showing yet didn’t mean that Louis hadn’t noticed the changes already happening with his body.  His clothes were already becoming snug and uncomfortable and the tight cut against his stomach of the elastic waist in his underwear was one of the first things he ripped off when he had the chance.  It hadn’t put him in an awkward situation until now.

“I’m wet,” Harry whispered when Louis’ hips continued a slow movement against him.  Louis could feel it against his dick.

Harry wiggled out of his pants a moment later and his breath caught in his throat when he realized Louis was naked against him.  

“Louis,” he breathed when Louis’ hand gripped tightly around where he had been guided and started to explore every inch of it.  It wasn’t much different than his own other than being just a bit longer. They were both omegas and that usually didn’t come with much to boast about.  

Harry’s slick was gathering and Louis easily settled into the moisture.  The underside of his cock became coated and made an easy glide every time either of them moved.  The haziness of sleep kept him from thinking about how sinful this was and blocked out the guilt and shame that would undoubtedly consume him come morning.  

It felt good.  Harry felt good.  

“Put it in,” Harry begged breathlessly with his hips pushing back.  

The words broke through his consciousness.  Surely Louis hadn’t heard him correctly.

“What?”  

“Put it in.  Please.”

“You want me to perform an act of an alpha?”  Of all the sins, that was one of the most shameful ones and here was Harry asking him to do it when they were already in a questionable situation.  

“I promise it’s normal,” Harry breathed out quickly, “It feels good.  I’ve done it.”

Louis let his mind wander to what it would feel like to be wrapped in wet warmth for the first time and his mouth went dry.  He wanted it. It already felt good sliding in Harry’s slick alone. He needed it.

For some reason, Louis trusted Harry in that dark whispered space.  Harry was from a different place and knew things that made Louis curious and eager to know more.  He wanted Harry to show him things he’d never experienced before, especially when it felt so good.  He nodded against Harry’s shoulder.

“Show me how alpha would do it,” he whispered softly as if the volume would keep him sheltered, like maybe if no one could hear then wouldn’t be wrong.    

Harry started slow but charged with an energy Louis could feel.  A light hand trailed over his hip and then down between them. Gentle fingers guided Louis’ dick and slid it down until the tip was caught on his entrance.  

“I need it,” Harry whined softly and writhed against him enough for the head to press inside.  

They both moaned together again and Louis thought he might black out.  It was a consuming sensation and he pushed towards it. He slid in easily with the gush of slick and bottomed out before he could focus on anything else.  

“Oh fuck,” Harry moaned and a thrill buzzed through Louis hearing such a forbidden word.  

Harry’s hands tightened where they were grasping Louis’ arms and breathy sounds poured from his mouth.  Neither of them could stay still, a rhythm developing in their motions. It didn’t last for long, Louis’ becoming erratic before freezing and seizing up a short time later.  

For a moment, Louis felt like he was falling.  The surge of pleasure rocked him hard enough that it felt like he had been kicked out of an airplane.  

He snapped back into his body just as fast when Harry’s hand wrapped around his and then cried out in his own pleasure.  Louis panted against Harry’s shoulder while he became aware of his own slick making a mess between his legs with Harry’s that already covered his hips.  

Harry shifted around just far enough to get his fingers into Louis hair and pull their lips together in a sloppy kiss.  Overwhelmed by everything that had just happened, Louis took as much as he could from the kiss, feeding off the charged energy that still buzzed between them.  

“That was so good,” Harry was murmuring into his mouth and Louis couldn’t agree more.  At some point sleep pulled them under again and the next time Louis woke, the sun had as well.  


--


Morning came and they didn’t talk about it.  Louis kept his eyes on his bowl of cereal bashfully at breakfast and Harry kept himself occupied with Abraham.  Soon William was running around the house and Louis was leaving for his shift. It still had not been addressed.  

It was just as well.  Louis wasn’t sure what he would have said, anyway.  His dreams had been filled with questionable content and he’d woken up hard enough that he almost gave in to touching himself.  Maybe he would have, too, had he not still been in his sisterwife’s bed.

All day he couldn’t stop thinking about it, no matter how hard he tried.  As soon as he’d successfully pushed away one image from the night before– of their bodies warm and close, of how Harry felt tight and wet around him– another would pop right up.  It made it difficult to keep himself focused on organizing the onesies by size instead of colour and, by the end, he’d given up and thrown them into a pile.

Louis had more questions.  He wanted to know why his body had been able to perform like an alpha’s when he’d always been told it wasn’t what he was made for.  He wanted to know why it had felt so good to slide into his sisterwife’s body and, most importantly, he wanted to know why it hadn’t felt like the sin he knew it to be.  

Throughout his life, Louis had always been told that he would be struck down to the depths of hell if he ever let the devil convince him to act in such a way.  A day later and Louis was still standing and life moved on as it always had. There were no lightning bolts to strike him down, no fires from below licking at his heels.  The sun shone down on him happily like any other day.

No one else seemed to know what he had done either.  Everyone moved around him as normal, still chatted at the register.  No one even gave him a second glance. Maybe there was a loophole to sin since they were both already pregnant and sisterwives in the same family.  Maybe it wasn’t considered to be an act of an alpha when his intention wasn’t to procreate.

He rested a hand low on his stomach where his bump barely showed and hoped their actions hadn’t affected their babies.  It had felt so good but pleasure was the candy of the devil and his baby would absorb everything he consumed. He didn’t want his first child to be born to a sinner.  

Later that evening while he sat on the opposite end of the couch from Harry watching some show on PBS – one of the only channels they could get – he kept catching side glances from his sisterwife.  Each time their eyes would just barely meet and Louis was sure he saw a hint of a grin. He knew because his own lips struggled not to mirror the expression at each stolen glance.

Louis couldn’t even recall what was on the screen.  His eyes were unseeing when they focused forward, too wrapped up in the energy that had built in the room and between them.  He didn’t even know what it was, but he also didn’t want it to dissipate.

“I’m sorry about what happened last night.”  

Harry was suddenly so close that Louis could feel the warmth of his body just inches away.  It radiated from him like standing close to an open oven and he felt his heart thud in reaction.  

“It’s okay,” Louis responded automatically because what else could he say?  He hadn’t even fully processed what they had done or how he felt about it. He’d never been faced with something so complicated.  

It seemed his body had decided, though, and his fingers twitched at his sides to reach out, to search out that connection they’d shared.  The thought made his pulse quicken.

“I took advantage of you,” Harry said softly, his voice against Louis’ ear.  His warm breath tickled Louis skin and a shiver ran through him.

The dim light of the small table lamp and the flicker of the television was almost as safe as the dark of night had felt in Harry’s bed.  Louis swallowed hard and fought to keep his face forward. He tried to ignore how his heart skipped another beat and his stomach fluttered.

Louis’ voice didn’t sound like his own when he opened his mouth.  “You didn’t. I asked you to tell me.”

“I can show you what I like about it instead of just telling you if you want.  You might understand better if you feel it for yourself.”

Harry’s lips moved against his skin just below Louis’ ear with each word and goosebumps spread over his arms.  Yes, he wanted Harry to show him. He wanted to feel what Harry described, wanted to know what it was like to be touched, but he couldn’t ask for it.  If he didn’t ask for it, maybe he could still be saved when it was his time to be judged. Maybe it wouldn’t be considered a sin if he wasn’t the instigator.   

In only his long nightshirt that fell below his knees when he stood, Harry’s fingers trailed easily up the bare skin of Louis’ inner thighs beneath it.  They parted on instinct and he could sense Harry’s smile against his neck when they did.

Louis closed his eyes and tried to shut down his thoughts in favour of the experience he didn’t want to pass up.  He needed to know if the night before had been a fluke or maybe some kind of crazy hallucination. He needed to know if his memories were playing tricks on him.  But Harry’s touch made him feel sensitive and special. It made him want more.

“Just pretend I’m alpha.  I’ll make you feel good like you made me feel last night.”  

The words were whispered against Louis’ jaw with the best of intentions but Louis didn’t want them.  Harry’s skin was soft against his own, his fingers delicate and gentle. He didn’t want to imagine the rough calloused hands that gripped his hips or the scratch of harsh stubble.  He didn’t want to think about the weight over him that made it hard to breathe. He didn’t want to think about alpha’s strong smelling breath he had to turn away from when Harry’s fell so perfectly against his skin.  

His eyes squeezed tightly closed while he tried to push away the thoughts Harry had almost ruined the moment with and also what the implications of that might mean.  He was supposed to want his alpha’s attention, not his sisterwife’s.

With a gasp, his mind suddenly blanked out and reset the moment Harry’s warm hand wrapped around him under the thin veil of his nightshirt.  He hadn’t even realized he was hard. It felt so good to have someone else grasp him that his eyes flew open and he nearly came on the spot. Harry didn’t linger there, though.  His fingers traveled between Louis’ legs until they met slick and then slid through it with no hesitation.

Louis’ heart was pumping so hard that he thought he might have a heart attack or maybe a stroke but he didn’t want to stop it no matter what the risk.  His eyes were glued to the place where Harry’s fingers disappeared beneath him and his fists clenched tightly at his sides.

Harry started circling a finger around Louis’ wet hole without yet pushing in.  A need was building with each rotation but Louis wasn’t sure what to ask for or what he even wanted.  The feeling was foreign.

Louis’ breath was laboured like he’d just run up a flight of stairs and nothing his body was doing made sense to him.  The tip of his cock was wet and created a spot on his nightshirt where it was still tented over his erection. There was enough slick collecting around Harry’s finger that it had to be soaking into the couch beneath him.  A logical thought floated through his brain that he should probably grab a towel to protect the cushions.

It didn’t matter.  There was nothing that could force Louis to pause whatever was happening for something so trivial.  

“You’re so wet for me,” Harry murmured where he was mouthing over Louis’ neck.  It made Louis whimper while his whole body shivered in response.

“You don’t have to have a knot to feel good,” Harry muttered as his finger finally slid inside.  

The buildup had been so much that Louis came on the spot, crying out and thrusting up into the air as he did.  The wet fabric of his nightshirt quickly became cold against his skin and his chest rapidly rose and fell with each breath.  

“Feels good, doesn’t it?” Harry’s voice was like a sweet song against Louis’ ear.  He wanted it to whisper more secrets to him while they were exposed to each other in the most intimate way.  He wanted to look forward to the soft intensity Harry had brought out the past two nights and he wanted it all to be directed at him.  

“Let’s get you cleaned up,” Harry said as he turned off the tv and then flipped off the light.  

Louis allowed himself to be led down the hallway and didn’t protest when they ended up in Harry’s room or when it was Harry’s worn tshirt being slid over his head.  He let himself be tucked into bed with the sweet scent of his sisterwife wrapping around him and snuggled into it when he was no longer alone in the bed.

 

--

 

The sun rose with a round of morning sickness for both of them which made things a bit interesting with only one bathroom but also gave them an excuse not to talk.  Louis took to sulking while sprawled out on the couch while Harry’s solution was to power through. He went through Abraham’s morning routine looking just a tad green and rallied much faster than Louis could hope for.  

It was one of the days Louis wasn’t expected at the shop and took the excuse to laze around the house and moan about his condition each time he tried to move.  Harry would roll his eyes each time it happened but the suppressed smirk Louis could see behind it made him play it up that much more after a while.

Louis also didn’t want to admit that the smoothies Harry made him actually did help to settle his stomach.  It didn’t cure him but did make it easier to swallow away the feeling when it rose and it seemed to rise quite often.  Why did they call it morning sickness again? It was on and off all day for Louis.

“What do you even do all day?” Louis whined once he’d had his fill of the daytime children’s shows playing at a low volume on PBS.  

Back home his family rarely watched tv so it had never been something that held his interest.  Even Abraham turned his attention away after only a few minutes of watching the screen.

Harry shrugged and went back to stacking towers of blocks for Abraham to immediately knock down while the room filled with his bright laughter.  

“Keep track of the kids if any of them are here, laundry, cleaning, cooking.  Sometimes we go for walks if it’s nice outside.”

All of those tasks were massive with Louis’ many siblings back home and it took all his moms in the house to keep things in order.  In such a small house with just Harry, Louis couldn’t calculate how all those things could fill Harry’s days.

“You don’t want to get a job or volunteer with the church?  They were always looking for teachers for the school back home.”

“I don’t have anyone to watch Abraham.”  

Harry shrugged one shoulder but it didn’t sound like a solid excuse.  

“Why couldn’t you drop him off with one of our sisterwives?”  

“That…” Harry hesitated and Louis didn’t understand why that wasn’t an obvious solution.  He’d often been left with his other mothers as a child. It was normal and expected. “That isn’t a good idea.”  

“That’s one of the positives of having sisterwives!” Louis argued.  Harry hadn’t grown up in the faith. Maybe he was still adjusting to the lifestyle and didn’t know family dynamics as well as Louis did.  

Harry paused and kept his eyes on the blocks as he stacked them up yet again.  

“I just can’t leave him to be abandoned in a playpen all day in a dirty diaper or just turned loose with the other kids.  He isn’t old enough to take care of himself yet and he’ll get lost in the mix if I leave him there.”

“Abraham is alpha’s child just like all the others.  I’m sure alpha would lov—”

“Alpha has fifteen other children– all of them homeschooled,” Harry spoke over Louis’ defense.  “They never wanted me to join the family and by extension the same goes for Abraham. Leaving him there alone would just be an excuse for Melanie to treat him like shit like the fucking bitch she is.”

Louis gasped at the heated use of such foul and impure language, especially around such a young spiritual sponge.  He looked at Abraham. He didn’t seem to even notice Harry’s heated tone.

“Sorry,” Harry sighed and smoothed back the flyaway curls that always came loose from his bun, “Sorry, sometimes I forget.  I feel so stifled here with so many rules and restrictions that it gets to me sometimes.”

“What do you mean?” Louis asked with a frown.

“Swearing, what I can wear, how I can wear my hair, no drinking, no friends outside the faith, what I can watch on tv, no computer so no internet, had to take out my piercing, can’t get more tattoos…”

“But God’s divine path is only open for those who— wait, you have a tattoo?”

“I do.  Got it on my eighteenth birthday not long before I met alpha.  He said I couldn’t show anyone but then everyone saw it when Abraham was born anyway,” Harry shrugged and leaned back to pull up his shirt and down the waist of his pants.  Louis’ eyes zeroed in on the soft plain of his stomach and the glimpse of hair he exposed. His memory flashed back to what it had felt like to spread his hand over that very spot and his mouth went dry.  He couldn’t even focus on the omega symbol in black low on his hip, but he suddenly had the urge to kiss it.

“It’s silly, really,” Harry shrugged and let his pants move back into place.  “I just wanted something small first as a test then alpha put his foot down once we were together when I wanted to get more.”  

Louis found himself crawling across the floor to have a closer look, pulling down the band of Harry’s pants enough to see the symbol.  He traced a light fingertip over the horseshoe shape and watched as goosebumps spread over his sisterwife’s hip.

“Tickles,” Harry breathed out, his voice no more than a shaky whisper.  

“I like it,” Louis responded and slowly leaned forward to press his lips to the spot for a fleeting moment—

They flew apart at the loud squeak of the screen door seconds before the main door was pushed in and their alpha appeared before them.  

“You both look like you don’t recognize me,” their alpha scoffed and shut the door behind him.  

“The door just startled us,” Harry recovered quickly to answer, adjusting his shirt down over his stomach.  

“Just thought I’d stop by and see you,” their alpha stepped around the blocks and offered a hand to help Harry to his feet.  

Harry could do no more than follow as alpha led him towards the hall, a quick glance thrown back in Louis’ direction to keep an eye on Abraham.  They both knew what was about to happen in the bedroom. Louis was happy for Harry to finally get some of the attention he was craving from their alpha and tried not to acknowledge the tinge of jealousy and dull ache that crept into his chest.  They were sisterwives. He was alpha to both of them. There was nothing for Louis to be jealous about.

He distracted himself with Abraham and tried his best to ignore the sounds coming through the wall.  The baby didn’t seem to mind that it was Louis now stacking the blocks in front of him as long as it was still happening.  Louis envied his simple life.

Alpha was still adjusting his pants when he emerged a short time later.  He left Louis and Abraham on the floor without even a proper goodbye and pulled the car away from the curb as suddenly as he had arrived.  

When a few minutes had passed and Harry still hadn’t emerged, Louis began to worry.  He lifted Abraham into the playpen set up in the living room and hesitantly headed down the hall.  

Alpha had left Harry’s bedroom door open so Louis knocked lightly on the door jam out of courtesy before peeking around the corner.  

“Harry?” he called softly when his eyes met his sisterwife’s form sitting naked on the bed with his knees drawn up tightly to his chest and his face hidden against them.  Louis rushed forward when he heard the sound of a sob and crawled onto the bed beside him.

“Are you okay?  Did he hurt you?”

Harry sniffed and shook his head, slowly raising his red eyes and tear-stained face to meet Louis’.

“He—”

Another sob interrupted him and Louis immediately wrapped his arms around his sisterwife to comfort him.  It was a new development to their relationship, but Louis could never walk away from such a scene. He waited patiently until Harry could speak and attempted to comfort him as best he could.  

“Alpha’s mad I’m pregnant,” Harry sniffed, his breath hitching.  “He said he could smell it on me and thought I was hiding it from him.  I told him I only just found out and hadn’t had a chance to tell him yet, but he didn’t believe me.  Said I would be a waste of his knot in this condition and I didn’t deserve it.”

Harry let out another sob and Louis held him closer.  

“And the worst part about it?” Harry forced a laugh through his tears, “I still wanted it.”  

Harry slid his feet further from his body and let his thighs fall open, “I’m still hard for it.”  

Louis looked down at his sisterwife’s body in the dim light from the shaded window and saw the evidence standing out from his body though it had flagged a bit.  It was the first time really seeing the other’s body and Louis’ hand was drawn to it like a magnet. His fingers wrapped around it before he even thought it through.  

The noise Harry let out was laced with anguish but held enough encouragement that Louis didn’t pull away.  He was fully hard again after only a few tugs and Louis watched the whole thing happen under his power. He was fascinated by watching what his hand could do and it went straight to the space between his own legs.  

Harry’s thighs spread wider, one propped against Louis’ as he let his head fall back with a moan.  Louis could see slick gathering and slid his fingers down to see if it felt like his own. Imagining how alpha probably plowed through it without finesse, Louis’ kept his touch gentle in contrast until he came to the source.  

Harry sniffed through a hiccup but brought his hand down to guide Louis’.  His fingers curled to push Louis’ towards his hole and they both gasped when his middle finger slipped inside.

“More,” Harry whimpered and Louis pushed his finger in all the way.  It felt weird but he remembered exactly what it felt like for his dick to be inside his sisterwife and what it felt like when Harry had done this to him.  He felt himself twitch.

He looked up at Harry and found him staring back with watery eyes.  They locked eyes for a moment before Harry’s gaze flicked down to Louis’ lips and then back up.  They gravitated towards each other until their lips met and they were kissing. Harry reclined and pulled Louis with him.  Having to twist his body around, Louis ended up half on top of his sisterwife. With just a movement of Harry’s thigh and a few wiggled motions Louis came to rest between Harry’s legs with his arm smashed between them.   

Harry moaned and moved against the friction where their bodies were pressed together, his dick hard along Louis’ arm.  

“More,” Harry moaned as he ground himself into Louis’ finger.  “Feels so good.”

Louis let out a squeak when Harry’s fingers threaded through his hair to pull him back into their kiss and it took a moment for him to find enough space to slide a second finger in.  Harry moaned when he finally did. His whole palm was now wet with Harry’s slick but it just made everything feel better, even to him. He straddled Harry’s thigh and rutted against it on instinct.  The soft material of the sweatpants Louis was still wearing felt good against him.

“Curl your fingers up,” Harry mumbled against his lips and Louis did as he was told, his fingers held deep.  

Harry moved his hand down again to guide Louis, riding his fingers with a circular motion of his hips which made his thigh grind more firmly between Louis’ legs.  It felt so good.

“Take these off, want to touch you,” Harry gasped against Louis’ lips and tugged at his sweats.  Louis couldn’t find a reason to resist so he didn’t.

The soft press of skin on skin once they were both naked made Louis’ whole body buzz.  He gasped when Harry’s hand wrapped around him and he bucked into it. His own slick was gathering and he could feel it wet between his thighs.  

“I want you inside me again,” Harry’s fist squeezed him which made him moan.  “Give me what alpha wouldn’t.”

“I don’t have a knot,” Louis answered, unable to stop himself from bucking into Harry’s grip.  

“Wasn’t talking about his knot, just want to feel good.”

He let Harry maneuver him into position, surrendering to Harry’s guidance in this new world of pleasure.  Even in his sleepy haze, it had felt amazing to push into his sisterwife’s body. Harry wanted that from him again, but Louis realized he wanted it too.  He wanted anything Harry was willing to give, anything Harry was willing to teach him.

It was Harry who guided Louis into him and Harry who hooked his hands under his knees and pulled them wide towards his chest.  It made Louis fall forward and his dick plunged in deep. They both moaned.

From there, Louis’ hips had a mind of their own and thrust into his sisterwife with a sloppy rhythm.  He squeezed his eyes shut to the overwhelming sensation and only opened them again when he felt Harry’s hands settle behind him on each cheek.  It grounded him when he met Harry’s eyes and rolled his hips while Harry controlled his movements. Louis whimpered involuntarily when he saw the twitches of pleasure on Harry’s face and had to admit that it felt much better than it had moments before now that Harry was showing him how.  He’d never thought about there being a right or wrong way before Harry, but then again, he’d never let himself think about any of this in the first place.

It all became too much on one deep thrust and he came hard without much warning.  Harry was working himself between their stomachs and finished not far behind with a long moan.  

Each time they had done things together, a shame had washed over Louis about what God may have seen.  It didn’t happen this time when Harry pulled him down into a kiss that kept his mind occupied long after the high began to fade.  

“I really like being with you, Louis,” Harry said as soft fingertips touched Louis’ cheek.  It made him blush and hide his face against Harry’s shoulder. He’d never had anyone compliment him so directly before.  He wasn’t sure how to handle it.

“Shit, Abraham.”  

Harry leaned in to give Louis another kiss before he slid off the bed and grabbed his robe from the hook on the back of the door.  Louis watched him go and then stared towards the open door.

Eventually he redressed and they continued the evening like nothing had happened.  Once Abraham was in bed and Louis started yawning, Harry took his hand and led him down the hallway.  When they ended up in Harry’s bed together, Louis didn’t even question it.

 

-

 

Harry was an interesting person to watch.  With the sun shining down on him, he looked so natural with Abraham resting easily on his popped hip as he laughed and joked with the other omegas of the church.  They had been treated with a beautiful Sunday afternoon for their church picnic and Harry was absolutely thriving in the natural light and warm air. His skin was glowing and the expected attire of the wives of the church accented his thin body where everyone else just looked frumpy.  

He gestured with his hands as he spoke and had every single one of them hanging on his every world.  He was charismatic and people were drawn to him like a magnet. Even with the scandal of Harry’s mere presence in alpha’s family, it still didn’t deter most of the congregation from flocking to him when they had the chance.  He was from a different world and everyone wanted his attention. He lit up around other people.

As the newest wife, Louis had been parked next to his alpha and was expected to remain at his side to be shown off like a newly acquired possession.  It made his skin crawl as the elders of the congregation made comments about him and his pregnancy like he wasn’t there, like he was a pet.

“Always a good sign when they catch right away,” one of the alphas said seriously. “Shows ‘em their place right away.  Settles ‘em down, subdues ‘em. Except for that wild one you’ve got over there, he’s been a spitfire since he followed you home.”  

Louis followed their gesture to Harry again and bit his tongue to keep himself from commenting.  Seen, not heard, he repeated to himself in his head. They expected him to not be listening or, at the very least, to not understand their conversation.  Omegas were simple minded which was why they were expected to turn to their alphas or elders for all important decisions.

“This new one should settle him down some.  He’s obedient and knows what’s good for him.  I’ve put them up together so maybe some modesty and manners will rub off.  He’s a good bearer though, another one on the way already,” alpha said with a laugh.  

“You just had another one the other day, right?”

Louis’ head snapped towards his alpha as he nodded.  Louis hadn’t even known one of the other three expected babies amongst the sisterwives had been born.

“Abby, yeah.  Another girl. Fifteen now, I think.  I can’t keep track of them.”

Seventeen , Louis corrected in his head.  He’d spent days trying to memorize all their names and ages when he joined the family.  It was his first real confirmation that what Harry said was true. The kids really did get lost in everything.  He’d refused to believe it but there it was. Proof with his own two ears.

He moved a hand to rest on his stomach and turned to look at Harry’s beaming smile and doting nature.  Even as he chatted Abraham had his attention. He held his chubby hand or tickled his tummy or pressed kisses onto the top of his head.  It made something ache in Louis’ chest, something that made him yearn to be closer to his sisterwife.

Harry would never forget any of the babies.  Harry could speak hours on end about alpha’s other children and their personalities even with how infrequently they spent time together.  Louis could already imagine holding his own newborn with Harry at his side. Harry who had already gone through it all and learned to navigate parenthood on his own.  Harry who still somehow made it work without the help of his sisterwives even though he was always there for them.

The two of them would be having their babies together.  

It made him wonder what alpha would think if he knew what they’d been doing together under the veil of darkness each night.   

For the first time in his life, Louis didn’t think he cared what his alpha would think.  Having an alpha had been just an idea for so long, a set of rules and behaviours he would be expected to follow in return for a place in heaven.  They were drilled into him from the moment he presented, the guidelines to live God’s chosen way. They’d been laid out for him in a way that made him excited for the time he would be chosen and matched.  Even his anxiety and fear over the thought of displeasing his alpha seemed worth it to be blessed by God.

Now that he had an alpha for himself, he wasn’t sure why those things had been so important.  He could count on his fingers the number of times alpha had been to the house and he had just made it clear that his children weren’t his priority.  Louis wasn’t even sure alpha knew anything about him past his first name and that he’d put a baby inside him.

None of it was what Louis had expected.  He hadn’t been prepared for anything like this.  

How was he supposed to serve an alpha that kept him hidden away?  How was he to fulfill his purpose with his sisterwives if he only saw them maybe once a week?  How was alpha going to secure their place in heaven if he didn’t even remember how many of them there were?

The family had welcomed a new baby and they hadn’t even called for him to join the blessing or the naming prayers.  

Louis had kept himself pure, had lived the faith, had strived to be the best omega he could be.  What mistakes had he made along the way to bring him here? Where had everything gone so wrong?

Harry hadn’t been pure– hadn’t even been in the faith– yet still seemed like a good person.  That alone went against everything Louis had been taught and yet Harry was in the same position as him.  They were in the same standing with their alpha. Louis had been the perfect omega and Harry had not. How could God place them as equals when Harry had committed such sinful acts before his bond with alpha?

A thought struck him just as a plate of food was set on the table in front of him.  It made his stomach churn and the familiar pressure rise in the back of his throat. He was going to be sick.  

He jumped up and ran towards the little church building with his thoughts racing.  Barely making it, he heaved over the toilet and then sat back with tears pressing at his eyes.  

Maybe God had seen his future before Louis had even had the chance to act on it.  

I’ve done it before , Louis’ memory reminded him of Harry’s words before Louis had given in to Harry’s sinful influence that night.  

Harry had been with other omegas, had committed the acts of an alpha.  God had seen how easily swayed Louis would be away from the ways of the faith, how easily misled.  He’d failed his test in the name of physical pleasure. He’d been too weak to resist temptation. He’d been placed with this alpha as punishment.  

His sob echoed in the small room and ricocheted back to punch him in the gut.  It wasn’t just that he’d done those things, it was that he had enjoyed them. Flashes of memories came back to slap him in the face one by one as he cried.  Harry’s soft skin and his gentle touch, his pillowed lips and his breathy moans, his slick and his warmth.

Even as he told himself how wrong every single one of those things were to him, he couldn’t stop thinking about how much he still loved them, how much he still wanted them.  He preferred the way Harry touched him and encouraged him, even preferred his attention.

Sins were supposed to feel good, that was why it was so hard to resist them and Louis was failing miserably at that.  God knew how hard he would fall.

He emerged from the bathroom once he’d collected himself though he didn’t feel much better.  The picnic had gone on as if he had been there the whole time, not even alpha noticing his extended absence.  Of course he didn’t. Louis didn’t deserve his alpha’s attention.

He was headed back towards his spot next to alpha when a gentle hand on his arm made him pause.  

“Hey, you okay?” Harry’s eyes were filled with concern and his voice was soft.  It was all Louis could do not to burst into tears all over again and beg for Harry to wrap him up in a comforting hug.  But that longing was exactly what had caused his crisis to begin with.

Why was it that every time his alpha should have been there, it was Harry instead?  Why was Harry always there to shift his view?

Louis nodded and bit his bottom lip to keep his from wavering.

Harry’s warm hand burned through Louis’ thin shirt while he searched Louis’ face for a long moment.  Reluctantly, Harry finally let his hand fall away but stayed close as they returned to their seats. Everyone was already finishing up and someone had taken his plate but Louis didn’t care.  He didn’t have the stomach for lukewarm potato salad and soggy chips anyway.

 

-

 

Louis could tell that Harry was struggling to keep his mouth shut from the moment they returned home.  Once Abraham was in bed, Harry pulled Louis to the couch and sat sideways with his legs crossed on the cushion.  

“What’s wrong,” Harry stated and then sat patiently as he waited for an answer.  

Louis shook his head and cursed the pressure of tears that built behind his eyes immediately with the reminder.  He’d only just started to feel normal after his emotionally exhausting afternoon and suddenly, he was snapped back into it.  

Harry was at his side in an instant, warm comforting arms circling his body and holding him close.  The fact that he wanted those arms to stay around him instead of pushing them away like he knew he should caused the floodgates to open.  Ugly sobs ripped out of him as he pressed his face into his sisterwife’s neck. He couldn’t stop them. Harry had the patience of a saint and gently rubbed Louis’ back until his sobs dwindled to hiccups and then to nearly normal breaths.  

“Have we been sinful?” Louis asked in a whisper when he was finally brave enough to break the silence.  He kept his face hidden against Harry, afraid of the confirmation he knew he was going to hear. He already knew they were sinners, it would just be worse to have someone agree with him, for someone to confirm it.  It would stab him right through his chest and yet he needed Harry to say it so he wouldn’t have to be anxious about it anymore. If he knew for sure, then he could start to repent.

“Louis…” Harry’s voice was soft and gentle, soothing as if he were trying to calm Abraham but in no way condescending.  “I think that’s up for interpretation.”

Louis could tell his sisterwife was choosing his words carefully.  He could feel Harry’s fingers move to comb through his hair and he liked it more than he was willing to admit.  It was hard not to push into the touch like a cat seeking attention. It felt nice.

“Most of the world isn’t like how it is here,” Harry said softly.  Louis already knew that. They were the chosen people, the ones instructed to lead the divine path.  They didn’t give in to the influences and evils of the outside world. “I’ve come to believe sin is being a bad person.  Murder, rape, abuse, theft... I don’t think sin should be used to control or guilt anyone for their own benefit.”

Louis lifted his head and sat back just enough so he could see Harry’s face.  “What do you mean?”

He watched as Harry bit his lip and his eyes focused on the corner of their second hand coffee table.  He could tell there was hesitation there, but he couldn’t grasp why.

“I, um… I told you how I came into the family, into the faith.  Alpha made it sound really great and I got really excited to be a part of the family and community… But the faith tells me I’m a bad person for having sex before bonding and for getting a tattoo and wearing shorts that show my legs in public.  I don’t feel like a bad person for that. I know I’m not a bad person.”

“Don’t you worry about your divine path?  You’ve already done all of those things...”

“My divine path is to be a good parent and to raise Abraham to treat everyone with kindness and respect.  Everything in the faith is the way it is to give alphas power and to keep omegas down, to keep them quiet and obedient.  But us omegas? We’re just the same as alphas. We don’t need them to guide us like the faith tries to say. We just have different anatomy and God made us this way for a reason.”  

“Yes, to bear alpha’s children,” Louis parroted his teaching with a nod.

“If we choose to,” Harry said carefully, “I chose to join the family.  Even if it isn’t how I thought it would be, I chose to bond with alpha.  Did you?”

“Of course I did!” Louis felt something strange twisting his insides with the question.  

“You did?” Harry pressed.  

“When I turned eighteen I told the elders that I was ready to be placed,” Louis nodded.  

“What about love and attraction and free will?”

Louis faltered.  “I was lucky that the elders had a calling to place me with alpha so soon.  I’ve always wanted an alpha.”

Harry took Louis’ hand and linked their fingers with a little squeeze.  His eyes were sad and his smile was weak when Louis looked up.

“Lou, is that what you really wanted?  To be bonded with a stranger a decade older than you?”

“Yes, I… I—  I never wanted to be a first wife with someone my age,” he said weakly.  He’d just been glad his alpha hadn’t been in his seventies or older. One of his sisters had been placed with one of the elders well past the age he could have been her grandfather.  He’d only seen her once since then, but she didn’t look happy even though her alpha had blessed her with three children.

“Are you attracted to alpha?” Harry asked gently.  

“Yes?” was his immediate response, but he couldn’t put any conviction behind it once the question had been raised.  Was he attracted to alpha?

“If you could have any alpha in the world, would he be on the top of your list?”

“Yes, alpha was chosen for me by a calling from God.”  

“If alpha hadn’t been chosen for you.  If God said that you could pick anyone in the world, would you choose alpha?”

“No?” he stuttered in surprise and quickly tried to cover up his answer, “Yes? I don’t know??”

Having a choice had never been an option Louis had ever considered.  All placements were dictated by God. There was no choice.

“What would be the reasons you wouldn’t choose him.”

Louis’ heart was racing.  There were so many holes opening up around him and sucking him in.  He couldn’t not think about the things Harry was bringing up now. They were flooding his mind and overwhelming him with new ideas and possibilities.     

“He’s rough,” Louis answered, barely above a whisper.  

“And what would you want instead?”

“Soft.”

Louis couldn’t help but remember how perfect Harry’s skin had felt against his own, how soft and smooth and tender.  His fingers rose to his lips at the memory of those exquisite kisses. That was what he wanted.

Or was that just the devil trying to sway him yet again?

He snapped his wide, terrified eyes to Harry’s.  

“It’s okay,” Harry squeezed his hand, “We’re just talking.”

Louis nodded and grasped Harry’s hand with all his strength so he wouldn’t sink, so he wouldn’t get dragged under.

“Do you think we’ve been sinful?” Harry asked once Louis had started to calm again.  

“I committed the act of an alpha,” Louis nodded, his voice weak.  

“Did you enjoy it?”

Louis nodded and bit his bottom lip.  

“Did it feel good?”

Louis nodded again as a few tears welled and then slid slowly down his cheek.  

“Louis, I’m going to say this and it’s okay if it takes you some time to accept it.”  Harry’s thumb slid back and forth over Louis’ and it felt so calming. He looked down to watch the movement while Harry spoke.  

“There is nothing wrong with you for liking what we did.  All those rules the faith has about touching yourself and feeling good are bullshit.  Your body was made to experience those things. I still touch myself and it doesn’t make me a bad person.  God hasn’t punished me for it.”

“Isn’t he punishing you with how alpha treats you?”

Harry paused and looked off across the room blankly before he shook his head and spoke with confidence.  “Alpha treats me the way he does because he’s not a nice person, not because of anything I did to deserve it.”  

Louis didn’t think he’d done anything to deserve the treatment he’d received himself, either.  Not until he’d done things with Harry, anyway. But alpha didn’t know about that.

“No one has the right to punish you for making yourself feel good.  Not even God. I don’t feel guilty for what I do. I don’t feel guilty for what we did unless it was something that you didn’t want.  I would even really like to do it again, if you were up for it. Having sex isn’t a sin, even if it isn’t AO sex for procreation. I can’t help who I’m attracted to.  God made me this way and God made you the way you are. If you enjoyed it, then there is nothing wrong with it.”

“I enjoyed it,” Louis admitted softly.

“You did?” Harry asked and sounded surprised.  

“I didn’t pretend it was alpha when you told me to.  I didn’t want to.”

“What did you think about?”

Louis finally had the courage to slowly tilt his face to meet Harry’s eyes.  

“You.”  

Harry lifted Louis’ hand and pressed a kiss softly onto his skin.  

His lips lingered there as he spoke.  “I thought about you, too.”

Something bubbled up inside Louis and made him press his lips together to hold off a giddy smile.  It was something he’d never experienced before.

Harry smiled and squeezed his hand and then let them rest between them once again.  

 

-

“You said you had… before…” Louis bit into his bottom lip and watched Harry closely through the darkness.  “That first time that you wanted me to… you know… like an alpha. You said you’d done it before.”

They were facing each other in Harry’s bed, the blankets pulled up to their shoulders, their faces just far enough apart to focus.  Their hushed voices were just a product of the environment yet everything felt like a secret, like forbidden confessions. In Harry’s dark bedroom, Louis’ curiosity was safe.  

He nodded.  “Once, yeah.  With a friend.”

“Why?”

Harry shrugged one shoulder, “Because we were curious and home alone one weekend.”

Louis couldn’t even imagine being home alone after growing up with a house full of so many siblings and adults.  They all shared rooms and were constantly in each other’s hair. They were all homeschooled and only left the house for church functions or if something needed done around the house.  He also would have never thought to something like what Harry had confessed. It was never something that had been an option. Omegas were meant to stay pure and everyone around him knew that as well.   

Louis nodded in response anyway.  

“Omegas aren’t as... restricted… outside the faith,” Harry said, squeezing Louis fingers where they were linked together and resting in the space between them.  “I knew a few omegas that were dating. I wanted to see if I liked it.”

“Did you?”

“I liked it a lot,” Harry admitted softly.  

“What about it?”  

Louis couldn’t stop the questions from rushing off his tongue.  He’d never been able to ask questions before. Curiosity had always been discouraged where Harry welcomed it.  Harry never told him not to think of such wicked, sinful things. Harry was honest.

“It’s a different kind of orgasm from being knotted.  Of course I hadn’t been knotted yet when it happened, but it’s different.  It’s wet and warm and more sensual. And the scents,” Harry said dreamily while he raised Louis’ hand to the tip of his nose, “So sweet.”

Louis felt giddy with the praise even if it wasn’t directly towards him.  He had quickly come to love Harry’s scent as well. It was less intimidating than alpha’s was.  It was calming, floral and light like spring. Louis could feel himself getting wet just thinking about it.  It wasn’t difficult where he was tucked into Harry’s bed where his scent was fresh and strong.

“You’re wet,” Harry whispered while he stared at Louis through the darkness.  

“Yeah.”  

It was all Louis could respond.  He couldn’t deny it and he had no reason to.  He was surprised that Harry could tell, though.  

“Is this turning you on?”

Harry touched Louis’ jaw with light fingertips before placing a soft kiss against his lips.  Louis nodded once.

Harry moved closer until their bodies were pressed together and a confident hand traveled down his back until it reached the elastic band around his waist.  He was wearing a pair of Harry’s shorts that made him feel rebellious. Louis’ heart sped up when fingers crept beneath and then followed his crack.

“God, you’re so wet,” Harry mumbled against Louis’ lips.  His mind couldn’t even focus on the inappropriate use of the Lord’s name when Harry’s fingers were sliding through his slick.  “You like us talking about omegas?”

“About you,” Louis whimpered when Harry’s fingertips found his hole and began to tease him.  

Their clothes slowly came off piece by piece until Harry’s naked body was pressed against his.  

“You smell so good,” Harry murmured from where his face was hidden against Louis’ neck, his nose pressed against his pulse.  

Their hips worked together in a slow grind as they turned until Harry settled between his thighs on top.  His weight was grounding to Louis, just heavy enough to make Louis feel secure.

Harry shifted down just enough so, when he lifted his hips just a bit, his hard cock slid against the slick gathered beneath Louis’ balls.  It felt good and made Louis lift his own hips on instinct to get him closer to where his body wanted him.

“Do you want that?” Harry breathed and Louis nodded.  He wasn’t sure what Harry was referring to, but it didn’t matter.  He wanted anything Harry was willing to give.

After a moment of rearranging, the nudge against his hole was Louis’ answer.  His heartbeat skipped and nervous anticipation swelled in his chest, but he didn’t push it away.  Instead, he let Harry lift his thigh and prepared for the burning stretch.

He waited for it, but it didn’t come.  It felt surprisingly good when Harry slid into him albeit a bit weird.  Nowhere near as thick as alpha, his girth was just enough to make his whole body tingle.  The slide alone was a new experience as he had been nowhere near as wet any of his times with alpha.  He couldn’t help the whimpers that left him as he begged for more.

Harry kissed him when he started to thrust and nothing had ever felt better.  Overwhelmed and incoherent, Louis gripped Harry’s arms and followed his movements until he released between them with a shout.  

Harry followed not long after and they both collapsed together while their breathing calmed.

They were both nearly asleep when Harry, wrapped up around Louis from behind, gently kissed the bond mark alpha had left on his skin.  

“We could be this for each other since alpha doesn’t want us,” Harry said softly.

“Yeah, I want that.”  

Chapter Text

 


 

 

Louis was round.  Very round.

Louis was round, but Harry was even rounder.  

Despite being only a few weeks apart, once Harry had popped, he had really popped.  Harry said he’d read about that happening after the first and his belly had to be proof it was true.  Louis couldn’t help but like it, though. The way it made him stand with Abraham on his hip, the way it rested in his lap on the couch, the way it bumped up against Louis’ when they kissed in bed at night.  Louis also found it cute when Harry would rub his hands over the globe of his belly as he talked or stared at the contents of the fridge in a daze.

When it came to their pregnancies, Harry was without a doubt the most natural of the two of them.  Louis still felt awkward and uncomfortable each time he moved and was reminded that a parasite was stretching his body from the inside out.  He’d been around pregnant omegas his whole life, but none of that prepared him for the real thing. None of them ever spoke about how difficult and exhausting it actually was to grow a human.  They were saving souls with each baby they created. A little discomfort was nothing when it was all for bringing another life into the chosen faith and saving them from being born into evil. Speaking ill of the process would taint them.  

Harry’s ease carrying a child often made Louis wonder if he was cut out to be an omega of God.  Maybe alpha had received a sign from God that Harry was meant for this life and Louis had been mistakenly born into it.  Maybe Harry had been one of the souls born into a sinful family but was pure enough to be saved. He made it seem so natural.  Louis already knew he was weak when it came to influences outside of the faith. It shouldn’t have surprised him that he was weak when it came to God’s chosen path as well.  

But he pushed on and tried his best to be a good omega, carrying the blessing from his alpha dutifully.  

Because of the short window of time between Louis’ bonding ceremony and when he took his pregnancy test, Louis knew himself to be around six months along.  Harry was a bit more certain with his twenty-two weeks, so Louis went off of that to keep track.

Since Harry had signed up for assistance programs on his own long before Louis had joined the family, he’d been able to see a doctor a few times already just to make sure everything was going okay.  Harry had tried to help Louis to do the same, but it hadn’t been the straight forward paperwork it had been for Harry. Louis, in every sense of the word, was undocumented and the same process hadn’t been easy.  With no birth certificate, identification, or any of the other things Harry said he’d need from the government, it would draw too much attention to try much harder. Obtaining those things would mean exposing himself as a member of the faith and would put the chosen people at risk.  None of the omegas born into the faith legally existed to the world. All births happened at home to make sure that was the case.

Even if Louis had qualified, seeing a doctor outside of the faith still made him nervous.  After a whole life of being warned against medical professionals, it was difficult for him to trust Harry’s experiences with them.  Louis had even gone with him to one of the appointments to make Louis more comfortable with the idea.

If anything, it had the opposite effect.  It wasn’t right for Harry to be undressed for a stranger or for them to touch him like they did.  

He was also terrified that alpha might find out where they had been.  Anyone from the outside world jeopardized their freedom. Louis didn’t want to be the cause of alpha being arrested and for their family to be torn apart.  Everyone outside the faith were jealous that they were not of the chosen people and were determined to persecute them. The laws had been made against them for that reason.  They all kept to themselves as much as they could.

The church’s midwife prayed over him and assured Louis everything was fine.  He felt okay apart from the aches of his body changing and the extra weight of a growing baby.  He didn’t have a reason to question the assurance despite Harry’s frown and concerned eyes. It always looked like he had something more to say about it but would eventually just purse his lips and turn.  Louis wasn’t sure it was his place to press it. He already knew Harry’s hesitation in their ways having grown up outside the faith. It was hard for him to forget the ways of the world.

Deep down, Louis secretly didn’t want Harry to forget his life before the faith.  There were times Louis was even thankful for it. There were many things Louis would never have known of without Harry’s influence.  His mouth watered over the food Harry made that Louis had never heard of and he loved the music that Harry smuggled into the house or let him listen to on the radio in the car on the way to church.  He especially embraced the way Harry would grin at him over his round belly before disappearing to sink his mouth down over Louis’ eager cock. Louis didn’t want him to forget anything like that.



The two sisterwives developed a rhythm together that easily fell into place on its own once they’d accepted each other.  Harry kept them well-fed and Louis was able to bring home some maternity clothes to share from the shop when something came in that fit.  They took care of Abraham as co-parents and dutifully attended church with the family each Sunday where the younger of alpha’s wives fawned over their bellies and alpha barely gave them a nod.

Two more babies had joined the family in the past few months and Louis found a toddler or two deemed his responsibility shoved into his arms as soon as he was in sight.  With the number of small children needing a shepherd outnumbering the adults, it was expected. He used to complain when the same thing happened with his siblings, but now Louis welcomed the excuse to slip out during the sermon when one of them was a little too fussy for the crowded sanctuary.

After spending so much time with Harry, being separated from his large family and daily devotions, Louis found himself feeling increasingly out of place next to his alpha in church.  He looked around at the congregation and wondered how many sisterwives were like him. How many were cast off and ignored? How many were left to fend for themselves with young children and expectations from God?  How many of them secretly loved their sisterwives more?

The realization was startling when it hit him.  There in the middle of a long-winded sermon on the omegan duty to bear spirit children for the chosen people and serve their alpha, Louis froze and his heart started to race.  Harry was right beside him. He could scent Harry’s sweet aroma made stronger by the layer of sweat gathering on his skin. He could feel the heat of Harry’s arm pressed against his own in the unairconditioned hall yet he didn’t want to pull away.  He wanted Harry close despite all of those things.

He forced his eyes to turn towards his alpha and felt nothing but heavy anxiety filling his chest.  Alpha’s scent was more potent as well in the conditions, but instead of the calming nature of Harry’s, alpha’s made his stomach churn and threaten to evacuate his breakfast.  There was nothing inviting about it at all. He wasn’t sure how he’d ever tolerated it. He couldn’t fathom plastering himself to alpha’s side the way he currently was with his sisterwife.  

He leaned forward just enough to see all seven wives sitting dutifully along the pews.  Louis barely knew any of them nor their children with the limited amount of time they’d all spent together.   Alpha didn’t even know their children.  Louis had witnessed him calling them generic nicknames as if he hadn’t even put in the effort to learn their names in the first place.  How could any of that be the will of God? The path of the chosen people? The life they were supposed to lead? How could alpha deserve to have them all together in the afterlife without even knowing how many of them were supposed to be there with him for eternity?

He felt a gentle hand on his arm and turned to find Harry looking back at him with concerned eyes.  One glance back at alpha confirmed that he cared so little about their bond that he didn’t even notice that Louis was upset.  Even Louis barely felt a tingle in their bond whenever they were close. It was that weak. It was that untended. It was next to nothing.  It was stretched over too many and thin enough that it wouldn’t take much to sever.

Harry always noticed when Louis was upset and was at his side before he’d even processed what he was upset about.  That was how they had finally broken the tension between them, too. Harry had just known that Louis needed someone and then their roles had been reversed.  They had naturally been that for each other when the alpha assigned to them didn’t even care.

It was too much and Louis couldn’t help the tears that welled up and then spilled down his cheeks.  It didn’t take much to set him off at this stage of his pregnancy, but this felt justified. His alpha didn’t even want him.  The elder’s calling from God for Louis’ placement had to be wrong. If that had been wrong, how many other omegas in the room had been misplaced?  How could Louis trust any of their messages? Any of their testimonies?

Louis was able to hold back the sobs but did reach over to squeeze Harry’s hand.  They hid their linked fingers between their bellies and the toddlers half on their laps until the service had finally come to a close.  

Harry waited until they were back at home to bring it up.  The car ride was quiet and Louis didn’t mind a few moments to collect himself.  His life with Harry during the week was so different from their Sundays as a family with alpha and their sisterwives.  They were two different dimensions that were difficult for Louis to reconcile. One felt like himself and the other felt like a lie.  

Harry disappeared into the nursery to put Abraham down for his nap and returned to Louis in the same spot on the couch some time later.  Abraham usually went down easily but Sundays were always a struggle with the overstimulation of people he wasn’t used to on a daily basis.  

“You okay?” Harry asked and then grunted when he ended up sitting down with more of a flop than a graceful movement.  He rubbed his belly with a bit of a groan and then shifted around to get comfortable. Louis could relate.

“What’s wrong?” Harry asked and Louis could feel the pressure of tears behind his eyes.  He looked down and adjusted his shirt over his belly.

“Do you think God makes mistakes?” Louis sniffed and finally looked up to his sisterwife.  

Harry searched his face for a moment.  “I think that’s complicated but you are who God wants you to be or you wouldn’t be you.”  

“Do you think the elders were wrong in their calling to place me with alpha?”

“Do you think they were wrong?”  

Louis appreciated his gentle tone and looked away as he tried to sort out his thoughts.

“If it was wrong, alpha wouldn’t have been able to tie with me at our bonding ceremony,” Louis said softly.  If Louis’ placement hadn’t been God’s will, they wouldn’t have been able to tie. Thoughts that the elders could be wrong had been silly for Louis to even entertain now that he said that aloud.  The proof was already right there.

“Lou…” Harry’s voice was always so soothing when he wanted it to be.  He could easily calm Abraham down reciting the phonebook if he tried. “I know that’s what the faith teaches, but that’s not how it works.  Any alpha can tie with any omega. That’s just how bodies are, that’s what sex is. It isn’t contingent on God’s approval. Alphas knot when they come no matter who they’re with.”

Harry wrapped his arms around Louis even if it was a little awkward with their bellies.  It still felt nice to be held and Harry’s lips were warm and comforting on his cheek.

“You’re going to have a beautiful baby that alpha gave you and that can’t be wrong,” Harry assured him softly, “And you met me which isn’t wrong.”  

“I don’t think I love alpha,” Louis barely whispered, the confession feeling like acid on his tongue.  He felt ungrateful for even thinking the words but something just didn’t feel right.

Harry held him and pressed a long kiss against his temple.  “I don’t think what happened to you is right,” Harry finally said softly, “You didn’t get to choose who you bonded with and it hurts my heart you had that taken away from you.  It’s okay to feel that way.”

“But–” Louis sniffed as his tears broke free, “What about God’s plan?  I’m not a good omega!”

“You’re so good,” Harry murmured near his ear as Louis sobbed, “So good.  Don’t let anyone tell you you’re not.”

Harry was patient with him as he got it out, calmly stroking his hair and whispering soft words against his cheek.  Slowly his sobs subsided leaving behind only sniffs and hiccups.

“I’m not supposed to love my sisterwife more than my alpha,” Louis’ voice eventually croaked out.  

“I love you, too,” Harry said softly and rocked them both while he pressed another kiss to Louis’ temple.  “You didn’t choose alpha. You weren’t in love with him. It makes me so mad that omegas in the faith are taught to stay quiet and do what they’re told.  You aren’t a bad person, Lou. You weren’t just made to have babies for some alpha you barely know. You’re so young and you’ve never even seen the world outside this place.”  

His words caused another wave of tears to run down Louis’ cheeks.  He was upset with Harry for saying such things against the faith but even more upset that he agreed with them.  There wasn’t much of an age gap between the two sisterwives yet Harry seemed so much wiser than Louis.

“I wasn’t ready for this,” Louis admitted the words he hadn’t spoken that first night Harry had held him while he cried over the news of his pregnancy.  “I didn’t want a baby so soon. I thought I would come into the family and help with the other kids and then maybe in a few years…”

He sniffed and grasped at Harry’s shirt.  “I didn’t know alpha would have a calling so soon.”  

Harry tensed in his arms once those words were out and Louis was afraid he’d said the wrong thing, that he’d gone too far disrespecting their alpha to his sisterwife and fellow member of the faith.  

“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean it!  I know—”

Harry cut him off quickly.  “No. Don’t ever be sorry. The way alphas use that excuse around here is appalling and I don’t know why I didn’t realize it before letting alpha bring me here.  It’s a bullshit excuse! I saw an O at church just as pregnant as us that couldn’t have been more than sixteen! How is that a calling from God? She’s practically a child!”

“If the elders received a message from—”

“No, Louis, that’s bullshit!”  The language made Louis blush along with the tone he rarely heard from Harry.  He curled into himself and away from his sisterwife. “That is never okay! Grown alphas have no right to make a decision like that for a minor!  A decision like that for anyone, really!”

Harry stood up and began to pace back and forth across their living room, his gait shifting with the weight of his belly.  

“It was probably naive of me, but I knew what we were doing and what might happen when I got pregnant with Abraham.  I made that decision to let him knot me without protection because I already knew we were going to get married. But you?  You don’t even– didn’t even–” Harry stopped and sighed and then ran his fingers through his loose hair. “That should have been your decision.”

“I told the elders I was ready to be placed,” Louis said softly.

Another sigh came from Harry and he returned to sit next to Louis.  He took Louis’ hand in both of his and held it gently but with purpose.  “I know you were led to believe it was your choice, but it really wasn’t.”

Louis frowned and kept his eyes down on the creases of his shirt over his bump.  It was the nicest one he had that fit but it was homemade and the cotton fabric never quite smoothed out.  It was made from one of the approved patterns that’d he’d always found nice compared to some of the others until Harry had shown him some of the clothes he’d brought with him from his old life.  But deciding he liked different clothing styles than he was told to like wasn’t the same as marriage. He’d been the one to go to the elders. He’d been the one to say he was ready.

“You were taught to believe that alphas should make your decisions for you, that they have callings from God that you are supposed to follow, that the elders were supposed to choose an alpha for you.  Your happiness and opinions matter, Lou, and they tell you they don’t.”

“If I’d had a vision about who my alpha was supposed to be then they—”

“No.  I bite my tongue about a lot of stuff when it comes to this cult and it was different when it was just me.  But Louis, it is so difficult to watch how brainwashed you are with this bullshit. This whole thing is based on some alpha power trip.  So to answer your question, no, I don’t think God makes mistakes but I think the elders are wrong to control omegas by claiming it’s some type of calling from the lord.”

Louis’ heart felt like it was shaking where it beat quickly in his chest.  He spread his hand out on his belly and fought for air as Harry’s words hit him like sledge hammers.  From the beginning he’d thought of his baby as alpha’s calling, as part of God’s plan. He didn’t know what he was doing it for if that hadn’t been the case.    

It had to be, though.  It was the way God had laid out for the chosen people, the faith they had to hold onto.  Harry just didn’t understand since he had been converted, since he still had evil tendencies.  Harry’s heart wasn’t in it. He’d called the faith a cult.

“How can you say that the messages the elders and alpha’s receive aren’t from God,” Louis said, soft but harsh.  

“Louis.  Louis, please,” Harry held his hand firmly, tears forming in his eyes now as he begged Louis to look up.  “You have to believe me. The way they treat us isn’t right!”

Louis looked away when the desperate tears fell down Harry’s cheeks.  He couldn’t believe it. He couldn’t believe that his entire life revolved around lies.  

He clenched his teeth against a fresh wave of emotion and the overheard conversations of alphas that bounced around in his head, ones an omega was never supposed to understand.  Louis always understood. They talked about their wives like nothing more than incubators for their offspring. They spoke about them like prized possessions to acquire and hoard, like trophies to be shown off.  They barely remembered their wives’ or children's names. Everything was controlled, restricted, but only when it came to omegas.

Alphas were free to do as they pleased from what Louis could tell.  Their own alpha had been out courting Harry outside the faith and knotting him before they had been bonded.  An omega would be cast out for such an act.

Still, God’s expectations were spelled out in the books they studied.  Louis had never even seen Harry with one of the texts yet here he was telling Harry it was all wrong.  

He pulled his hand away from Harry’s grip and angrily wiped at his tears.  Harry wasn’t their alpha. Harry wasn’t an elder. Harry didn’t know what he was talking about.

Louis pushed himself up despite Harry’s pleas and made his way down the hall.  He slept in his own bed that night for the first time in months.



-



The days dragged on and the stubborn defiance in Louis slowly broke down.  Harry tread lightly and stayed quiet as they moved around each other but was still the same sweet sisterwife he had been since they’d learned to lean on each other.  It made guilt blossom in the pit of Louis’ stomach each time he looked up to see Harry’s tentative smile and sad eyes.

The truth was that he did believe Harry when it came down to it.  He saw it with his own eyes, heard it with his own ears, experienced it in his own life.  He just wasn’t ready to give up his chosen path and salvation because of these revelations.  

Still, he missed Harry so much his heart ached.  His bed was cold and uncomfortable on his own and his soul felt lost without Harry’s gentle voice and kisses before he slept.  Harry’s scent was also something he hadn’t realized he’d grown so addicted to until it was absent from his sheets.

It was the middle of the night when Louis finally gave in.  He crept down the hall to find Harry’s door open and smiled at the invitation.  The moonlight was just bright enough for Louis to find his way and slipped under the covers in his usual spot.  

Their bellies touched when Louis moved closer and Harry stirred when Louis pressed a soft kiss to his forehead.

“Hi,” Harry said sleepily as he stretched and pulled Louis closer.  

“Hi,” Louis responded shyly but welcomed the embrace.  

Harry searching for a kiss was so natural and Louis melted into the touch of their lips.  He’d missed Harry so much though it had been less than a full week apart.

“Can you touch me?” Louis asked through the darkness, craving the assurance that Harry was still there and the attention that always made him feel like he was wanted.  Abandoned by the alpha that was supposed to love and take care of him, Louis couldn’t throw away the one person that actually did.

Harry just kissed him again without question and his hand made smooth patterns up and down Louis’ side.  He caught the edge of Louis’ long night shirt and slipped his hand beneath to rub his belly with gentle motions.  

Louis liked to think of their babies as each other’s, the one growing inside of him made by Harry and vice versa.  Harry indulged him in this and never questioned his motives. He took ownership of Louis’ bump with pride.

He laughed softly against Harry’s lips as his baby squirmed and kicked against Harry’s touch no doubt feeling the change in Louis’ pulse and mood and relaxing along with him.  

“Pregnancy is so sexy on you,” Harry responded with a grin that made Louis blush with the use of such a term.  They spoke to each other more freely when they were alone in the dark, but Louis was still prone to be bashful about it.  

“Please,” Louis pushed his sisterwife’s hand down towards his erection that was already rubbing against the underside of his belly.  

Harry had to shift to reach it and Louis moaned when he finally did.  He’d become so greedy for it since they’d started and Harry spoiled him with things he’d never even dreamed of experiencing.  It was getting awkward as their babies grew, but they still made it work whenever the mood struck.

“More,” Louis begged as he tried to writhe closer.  

“You’re wet,” Harry breathed and Louis could scent Harry’s excitement as well.  It became easier for him to detect the longer they were together. He wondered if it was the same for Harry.   

“Please,” Louis moaned again and left Harry’s lips to shuffle onto all fours.  

It wasn’t a graceful movement, but the end result was the same.  Harry’s fingers slid around his hip and teased through his slick where he wanted it most.  Louis moaned again and pressed back into it.

“What do you want?” Harry asked though Louis’ position was already an indication of what he was searching for.  It was the most comfortable way they’d found to have sex since they’d really started to show.

Louis didn’t answer with more than a needy moan and didn’t stop Harry as he shuffled onto his knees between Louis’ parted feet.  It was just like Harry to take his time when Louis was desperate, bending to press long kisses down his spine.

Relief flooded through Louis body when Harry finally pressed inside.  It was the perfect stretch as it always was and satisfied something that ran deeper than the tips of his nerves and carnal needs.  Being with Harry settled his soul.

Hands possessively held Louis’ belly and everything again felt right in the world.  Their babies were meant just for them.

As they cuddled together afterwards, Louis let his calmed mind think over their last conversation.  What they were doing hadn’t been a calling from their alpha or the elders. Even so, it felt right to Louis.  Harry felt like the answer to a question he hadn’t known he’d asked. Sins were supposed to be shameful and he didn’t feel that with Harry.  

If alphas and elders received messages from God, wasn’t it possible that Louis could receive them too?  

He kissed Harry’s shoulder and snuggled into his sisterwife.  Maybe receiving the start of his revelation in the middle of church was the sign that he needed and hadn’t immediately recognized.  Instead of being struck down, Harry had been right there, the silver lining to his suffering. It began to feel that this had been God’s plan all along.   



-



It was a Tuesday afternoon when Louis gave birth with Harry at his side.  Labour had come on so quickly that they hadn’t had the time to make it to alpha’s house as was tradition and expected.  Instead, Adrian was born right there on Harry’s bed with a full head of hair and a healthy wail. She was beautiful and worth the unexpected mess.  Harry told him later that alpha had stopped by briefly after Louis had fallen asleep, but it was little consolation when he hadn’t stayed.

Harry followed not even a full three weeks later bringing another son into the world that their alpha named Micah.  Harry didn’t linger at alpha’s as he had after Abraham was born. He let Louis drive the car back to their house as soon as they were both cleaned up and deemed healthy with all three of their children in the back seat.  Alpha had barely taken a second glance at them once he’d laid the blessing. It felt better to be back home.

It was exhausting with two newborns and a toddler on varying schedules in the house.  Louis decided to take some time off from the shop and the two of them somehow made it work.  

One morning Louis woke up to a cold bed and got up with his eyes puffy from sleep.  Even when he was able to catch a few uninterrupted hours, he still felt tired. He had to blink a few times to make sure his eyes were working properly when he looked into Adrian’s bassinet to find it empty.  It wasn’t exactly unusual for Harry to have her, but that usually didn’t come without Louis being woken up to feed her.

He stumbled out to their living room in stocking covered feet and had to hold back a laugh at the sight.  Harry appeared to be asleep in their worn out recliner with Adrian resting against a pillow up to his bare chest.  She was suckling contently in the arms of his sisterwife and it made his heart swell.

“I think you have the wrong baby,” Louis said in amusement.

Harry cracked open one eye and then glanced down to the baby at his breast.  He gave a one shoulder shrug as he closed his eyes again, resting but not fully asleep.  

“She was fussing.  Didn’t think about it,” he drawled softly

Louis smiled and crawled up into the recliner.  He wedged himself in the small space beside Harry and made him scooch over a few inches to make room.  

“She must like it,” Louis said softly while brushing the infant’s soft hair from her forehead with a gentle finger tip.  

“I don’t think she really cares.  Sorry. I was too tired to really think about it.”  

Louis thought that maybe he should be mad or at least unnerved by Harry breastfeeding his baby, but he really wasn’t even bothered.  He just laid his head down on Harry’s shoulder and snuggled into them both.

After hearing of Harry’s experience doing all of this alone with Abraham, Louis was thankful to have someone around to help him.  Even if that meant having two infants at the same time, Louis knew he’d never be ungrateful. It had been just over a month since Adrian had been born and Louis was only just starting to feel somewhat normal.  It hurt his heart to think of Harry on his own the first time or trying to do it all over again with Micah and Abraham.

Louis also knew that he’d never make it without Harry’s guidance.  Despite always being a babysitter for his many younger siblings, having his own infant made him realize it was usually the slightly older children that were placed as his responsibility.  The details of a newborn were foreign to him and took a while for them to fall into place. Without Harry, it was possible he’d still be struggling.

Adrian felt like Harry’s right from the start.  She rested against the top of Harry’s belly perfectly before Micah was born and Louis thought his heart might burst with love each time he saw them together.  Harry was everything he thought his alpha would be with their first child.

Louis felt the same bond once M was born.  M was a nickname Harry had used within his first hours of life and it had stuck for both of them.  Deep down Louis knew it was because Harry resented the fact that alpha had named both his children without his input, but it was something Harry never vocalized so Louis hadn’t either.  It was the alpha children that would matter if they were the ones chosen to lead the faith so alpha was sure to give them strong names he approved of. He hadn’t shown any interest in naming Adrian.  

M was a tiny thing with deep dimples when he fussed and a little button nose that reminded Louis of his own baby pictures.  Of course they weren’t biologically related, but it was hard for Louis to remember that fact when it had been Louis who had been there from the beginning.  

That notion carried on as they settled into their new routine.  Louis realized it wasn’t as weird as he expected to be to nurse a baby that already felt like his own which allowed them both to get a little more sleep.  It felt much more like having newborn twins than just two sisterwives with their babies.

Louis returned to a few short shifts at the shop and this time, he didn’t hand his paychecks over to their alpha.  He also hadn’t asked which made Louis believe he didn’t know that Louis was working again. It wasn’t much, but they hoarded it all the same.

Harry received a few diaper vouchers from one of his programs when M was first born, but they didn’t last long and they didn’t have the money for more.  There was no way to make it work when one box at the small grocery store cost more than Louis could make in a week. They resorted to cloth diapers which Harry argued were better for the environment anyway but were difficult for Louis to stomach at first.  He did the best he could but never argued when Harry took over his turn.

It was just another way that they fell into sync with each other without even trying.  When they fell asleep together each night, it was harder for Louis to believe this wasn’t how it was supposed to be.  He began to believe that God’s plan didn’t involve his alpha at all.



-



There was one week each year that celebrated the birthday of eight members of alpha’s family.  While singular birthdays passed by with little fanfare, The Birthday Week was one to be celebrated collectively.  

They all gathered at alpha’s house for a large family meal on Sunday afternoon and stayed on for treats and snacks later in the day which were a rare luxury.  

With Harry and Louis living the furthest away and both having newborns, their responsibilities had been assigned to some of the older children this year.  Even with the resentment and retaliation that was sure to come from his sisterwives in the coming weeks, Louis was thankful to be off duty since Adrian had kept him up most of the night with an upset tummy.  Now she slept peacefully in a blanket by his side while Louis suffered the consequences.

With most of the wives looking after the children or cleaning up in the kitchen, Louis sat on the couch beside Harry and their sisterwife Abby who were both feeding their babies.  Abby’s daughter Julia was not yet a full year old and reminded Louis of the short amount of time he’d been part of the family. Looking at her, it seemed like just the week before he’d met Abby in the shop for the first time, pregnant with Julia and shuffling her other two children on the counter.  She was by far the nicest of their sisterwives and Louis enjoyed having her around.

It might have been because Abby had joined the family the same way Louis had.  Though she was from the same congregation as their alpha, Abby had also been matched by the elder’s insight from God.  As he watched her chatter on with Harry, he wondered if she remained so bubbly since she hadn’t been removed from her family and friends when she’d been placed.  

Louis had never been particularly close to any one of his siblings, but thought about how different his outlook might be if they were all close.  He probably wouldn’t have questioned God’s calling or his placement with alpha. He also would have kept his distance from Harry with all of their voices warning him to be cautious.  

Blasphemous as it was, he decided he’d rather have Harry.  

Alpha joined them after a while, flopping down into his old recliner so hard that the springs squeaked.  They halted their conversation for a moment and bowed their heads in submissive respect. Louis just tried to keep a low profile.  Since he had started to doubt aspects of the faith, Louis was in a constant state of anxiety that alpha would be able to read his thoughts the moment they made eye contact.  

His game plan was to stay in the background, to stay quiet and keep the attention away from himself.  So far, his plan had worked out all right. He just needed to keep it up until he figured out what he truly believed.  

“Someone’s in heat,” Alpha suddenly spoke from his chair which startled Louis from his thoughts.  

The omegas glanced between each other but alpha’s eyes kept an unwavering focus on Louis when he looked up on instinct.  The grin on alpha’s face was unnerving.

Louis tried to sink back and disappear against the couch, but he couldn’t make himself invisible with such a direct spotlight on him.  

Alpha unzipped his trousers without looking away and pulled himself out.  It only took a few strokes for him to be fully hard and he sat with his thighs parted to give his wives a proud display.  Louis had never seen such behaviour from any alpha in his life.

“Our first heat together,” alpha said with a grin that made Louis blood feel thick in his veins.  He’d never been through a heat cycle before, not a full one. The sweat collecting on his skin was nothing more than an effect of the temperature in the house, the need nothing more than the lack of the intimacy he’d been used to before the babies were born.  He couldn’t be in heat.

“Alpha,” Harry started with a tone that teetered on the edge of warning and fear.  “It’s hardly been three months since Louis gave birth. He’s not ready—”

“I wasn’t talking to you!” alpha snapped so firmly with his alpha timbre that Harry visibly recoiled.  “How dare you dispute a calling for one of your sisterwives to be blessed.”

Impressively, it didn’t take Harry long to recover, squaring his shoulders as he sat up straight.  Sitting so close, Louis could tell that Harry was nervous but didn’t back down.

“His body isn’t ready yet, give him time—”

“Do not make me throw you out onto the streets,” alpha’s voice was angry and cold, “Melanie would make a better mother to your children anyway so do not tempt me with a reason to do it.”  

Harry’s arms were shaking where he held M protectively to his body.  His lip quivered as he fishmouthed in response but came up with nothing.  Fear spiked in Louis as he struggled to process the exchange. Surely alpha would never do that yet the angry look on his alpha’s face made Louis fear that he might.  

“Get over here, wife.”  

Louis knew the command was directed at him but he felt frozen.  His survival instinct kicked in as alpha snapped at him again and his body moved on its own to carry him in alpha’s direction.  He stared at alpha’s dick strangled in an angry grip. It was the first time he’d ever really got a good look at it. It was intimidating.  

“Such ungrateful Os,” alpha muttered as he reached forward to rip down Louis’ trousers.  It was easy since he was still wearing ones with loose waists to hide that his figure had yet to return.  He wished he would have worn something with more complicated aspects. More buttons, more zippers or anything to delay what was happening.  

The air felt cold to his heated skin as he stood frozen and exposed from the waist down in front of his sisterwives.  Alpha stood and roughly bent Louis over the arm of the recliner. Louis could do nothing against the strength of his alpha’s manhandling didn’t even attempt to even try.  A solid grip held him in place, pinned against the chair and helpless.

Abby had the decency to look away but Harry did not.  Louis could tell that Harry wouldn’t, that he couldn’t as angry tears streamed down his face and dripped from his set jaw.  Louis didn’t want him to be upset. He didn’t want him to be afraid.

Louis wanted to look away, but he couldn’t either.  Even as his cheeks burned with embarrassment when he was made aware that slick had gathered against his wishes.  His body reacted automatically and now admitting that his body was in heat was the only excuse he could cling to.  

The press of alpha’s dick against his hole was much different than that of Harry’s.  It was too thick to easily slide in without a forceful thrust and Louis winced. It was on the border of pain and Louis wished he’d gone back to sex with Harry sooner so maybe he wouldn’t be quite so tight.  Since the babies they’d only managed a few rushed handjobs in the shower and Louis had been okay with that. Sex hadn’t yet been high on his agenda with his body still adjusting and so many new responsibilities occupying his time.  Now he regretted not making time.

Louis had to close his eyes when alpha started to get into it.  He was ashamed at how his body betrayed him, slick building to give alpha a better slide.  The stretch was uncomfortable and the depth sore with each punch. It was so different from the perfect depth of Harry’s motions.  

Alpha’s knot was accompanied by an animalistic growl and one hard shove to pop it into Louis’ body until it swelled to lock them together.  It rubbed on places that felt good and his body eagerly took what alpha gave him all while Louis felt a strange numbness.

God had given alpha a calling to bless him.  He chanted it over and over in his head with his eyes tightly squeezed shut.  He didn’t want to look at Harry.

Alpha all but picked him up still attached at the knot and sat down in the recliner.  The weight of Louis’ own body made alpha sink even deeper and he groaned at the feeling so high in his stomach.  He could feel every spurt, every twitch, every gush and he wanted to flush it all away.

He couldn’t look at Harry as he took it silently.  He knew he wouldn’t be able to handle the emotions on Harry’s face, in his eyes.  His body was already trembling. Trousers still trapped around his knees, it was humiliating for his sisterwives to witness what Louis had always thought of as a private and sacred act to receive a blessing from his alpha.  He wouldn’t let himself think of the other reasons why he didn’t want Harry to be a witness. It would be too much.

Alpha wouldn’t let him up until his knot had completely deflated.  Louis could feel the mixture of slick and come oozing from him with the echoes of alpha’s voice whispering into his ear how good he was being bred.  

He couldn’t run to the bathroom to clean himself like he desperately desired to do.  Alpha would be furious if he acted anything but grateful for the blessing. So Louis pulled his trousers back into place without a word and returned to his place on the coach.  

Abby had slipped from the room at some point but Harry remained.  Louis still couldn’t bear to look at him while he fussed over Adrian so he had an excuse not to.  

Alpha took him once again before they left for the evening.  It took place behind alpha’s closed bedroom door but felt no less dirty.  

More of alpha’s mess pooled beneath him on the silent ride home and he prayed that Adrian would let him shower once they arrived.  

Emerging from a long, hot shower, Louis was confused to find Harry frantically pulling clothing from their drawers and shoving them into bags.  He watched his sisterwife empty another entire drawer into a duffel before finally speaking up.

“What on earth are you doing?” he asked while holding his towel loosely around his waist.  

“We’re leaving,” Harry said simply with a firm and determined tone.  

“What?  What do you mean we’re leaving?”

“I’ve been in contact with my sister for a few months,” Harry said as he moved to the closet to pull down another small suitcase and head for the nursery.  “We can stay with her until we figure something out.”

Louis followed after him in a state of stunned shock.  He watched as Harry started the same process in the nursery while Abraham watched on from where he stood looking over the rail of his crib.  

“I’m not going anywhere!” Louis finally said as a pile of perfectly folded baby socks fell and scattered over the floor.  

Harry stood and turned looking wild with curly flyaways framing his panicked face.  

“I can’t leave you, I don’t want to leave you, but we can’t live like this.”

“Live like what ?”

“Louis, you just had a baby and alpha sat there making up some calling from God just to fuck you in front of us!”

Louis frowned and his brows knit together.  

“He threatened to take my kids because I was concerned about you!”

Louis just stood there as the reality of what had happened started to sink in.  He could do nothing but stare at Harry while his brain shut down and then struggled to start once again.  

“You don’t have to come with us but please come with us.  You don’t have to live like this, Lou. You don’t have to put up with the abuse.  Think of Adrian! Do you want her growing up thinking this is okay? Do you want her to be placed just like you were?”

Louis continued to gape at Harry’s tearful eyes filled with anger and fear.  He had no argument when they both had been present for the day’s events, when Louis had been the victim of them.  There was no way to sugar coat it.

He could do nothing but give one small nod and shuffle off to dress himself with a strange feeling brewing up inside.  He felt like he was out of his body watching himself as he worked alongside Harry to pack up their essentials and gauge what they’d be able to fit in Harry’s car.  Louis hadn’t joined the family with much to his name but now he had the babies to worry about. They didn’t have much money since Louis had only been working a few hours at the shop and wouldn’t be able to replace vital things if they were left behind.  

They waited until the cover of darkness to start loading things up.  The trunk quickly filled to the point where Louis had to jump on top in order to get it to latch.  They filled the back seat area around the outdated car seats and shoved even more in the foot space of the passenger side.  

There was no way for them to disassemble or load Abraham’s crib which felt like the biggest loss.  It was second hand and they likely wouldn’t have a place to set it up for a while so that made it easier to walk away.  

The house had never been much but it was still difficult for Louis to take one more walk through its rooms.  So much had happened since the first day alpha had driven him up to the curb. The kitchen reminded him of Harry’s initial reaction to his presence which he now knew was self preservation, the old couch that held so many memories of the life the sisterwives had started to build together, Harry’s bed where he’d started to discover himself.  

There were many reasons Louis didn’t want to leave yet none of them held a weight strong enough to keep there.  His foundations had crumbled so the structure still standing was free to blow away in the wind. Harry was that wind that promised to carry him towards something better.  Louis knew he had to take that chance.

Harry came back in after carrying the last of the sleeping children out to the car.  

“Ready?” he asked as he wrapped his arms around Louis and looked down to search his face.  

No, he really wasn’t.  But if he wasn’t ready now, when would he ever be?  Harry was right. The thought of Adrian being placed with a man twice her age made him cringe.  With a different perspective, it was hard to imagine how his parents had let him go so easily.

“Let’s do it,” he finally said with as much confidence as he could muster.  

The sky was dark and void of stars as they started out of town past all the sleeping people of the faith who would rat them out if they saw.  The houses were dark and the coast seemed clear though Louis still felt like he was holding his breath.

It wasn’t long before the landmarks were unfamiliar to Louis as he stared out the window and watched them pass.  Neon lights and signs for gas stations and places Harry explained were restaurants held his interest as the minutes turned into hours.  

His whole life had been shoved into a box.  A box of expectations, a box of restrictions, a box of control.  Even the places he had been were confined within the lines that made up the small towns of their faith.  

Through all the anxiety that coursed through his veins, a small bubble of excitement began to grow the further they drove into the night.  A small smile grew on his face and for the first time in his life, Louis finally felt the taste of freedom on the tip of his tongue.

He looked over at Harry behind the wheel who glanced over with a small grin of his own.  

“What?” Harry asked as he looked back to the road.  

“Nothing.  Just happy.”  

“Good,” Harry said with a nod and reached over the bags packed between them to hold his hand.  

Louis linked their fingers together and looked back out into the night sky.  He may not have been an alpha, but there was no question that their path was a calling from God.  

 

Chapter Text


 

Harry’s reunion with his sister had been one that brought tears to even Louis’ eyes.  It had been years since alpha had forced Harry to cut ties with his friends and family outside of the faith and the heartache and joy was palpable.  She welcomed Louis in with just as much enthusiasm which was surprising considering he’d been told his entire life that those outside the faith were evil and cruel.  It was a culture shock to see that there were kind and gentle people outside the faith that weren’t out to harm him. Their way of life was different, but their core was the same.  

They had days before alpha realized they were missing.  Louis figured nothing had raised any alarms until they did not show up for church the following Sunday.  By then they’d already made their way to Harry’s mother’s home far from alpha’s immediate reach. With polygamists hoarding omegas still against the law and no proper birth certificates for the babies indicating their father, there was little alpha could do to bring them back once they were outside the limits of the towns the faith controlled.  

It wasn’t the clean break Louis had hoped it would be, but after a few months he was able to stop looking over his shoulder each time he left the house.  It was around the same time that Harry finally convinced him to visit a real doctor for the first time. He was still apprehensive but, in his new life of new experiences, eventually he trusted Harry’s guidance and gave in.  

At the same appointment, Louis was shocked with the news that he was pregnant once again.  Without the severe symptoms he’d had with his first, the possibility hadn’t even crossed his mind.  He’d pushed the events of that final Sunday so deep into the recesses of his mind that he hadn’t expected it to catch.  

Harry was with him when they learned the news and Louis could see the anger flash over his face before it melted into one of joy.  They would celebrate a new baby despite how it had been made.

Harry started a job as a receptionist at a local dental clinic while Louis registered for his GED.  It was mind blowing how little Louis knew about the outside world once he’d entered it and each day felt like another step backwards in his ability to function outside the faith.  Harry was there to guide him and together they went through the process to apply for all the documentation and things he would need for a job and for anything else in the future.

Studying for his GED also turned out to be a long process once he’d realized his schooling within the faith had been very skewed.  He could read and write and perform basic math, but everything else had been altered in favour of the faith. History soon became his favourite subject and marveled at world events he’d never known of before.  Harry always smiled fondly at him each time he came across another historic event that interested him.

“Harry, did you know?” was frequently heard while Louis had his books out followed by reading the passage aloud.  Harry never once made Louis feel stupid or small for not knowing the things Louis was sure he’d learned long ago.

Soon enough they were moving into their very own apartment and they tried their best to dress it up like a home.  It was small and cramped with the babies but Harry assured him it would be temporary. Either way, Louis relished in the nice finished bathroom that was more luxurious than any he’d ever had before.  In all honesty, Louis would take anything as long as it had a roof over their heads and he could be with Harry and their babies. It was the first time he’d ever had something that was truly his and he took pride in that.   

Louis gave birth to a baby boy just days after celebrating the completion of his GED.  The baby looked so much like M had as a newborn that he cried over his bond with Harry through their children.  Louis would never think of them as anything other than theirs. Together, they named him Adam as a symbol of their new beginning.  

Things were far from perfect, but Louis knew he would never regret their decision to leave.  Together, they were building the life they both deserved. Together, they’d follow their own divine path.