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The Cloud Effect

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Like a flame in a cave, about to extinguish, Donghyuck’s instinct vibrates.

“This is hard to explain,” Jeno says. His eyes inspect Donghyuck’s blank expression across the table, hands interlaced and elbows on the surface to prevent the evident trembling of his own body.  At Donghyuck’s silence, at his unresponsiveness, Jeno sighs. “I’ll begin again.”

Donghyuck doesn’t need him to: he has understood the proposal, such a wild, unconceivable idea that he’s speechless. The most rational part of his mind can’t wrap around that foreign concept. His alpha instinct, on the contrary, burns inside him until his thoughts are hooked on only one boy, on how he’d look under him on a bed, on his smile, on how he lingers around Jeno with adoration in his eyes. On how that’s not enough, after all, because love doesn’t magically fulfill all the needs an omega has.

“Renjun and I-” Jeno starts again. He bites on his lower lip, pink turning white, and he’s incapable of maintaining eye contact. “His heats are worsening. We’ve tried everything. We even went to a sex counselor, he’s taken heat suppressants, but it’s still too painful for him. I-”

Donghyuck feels ashamed, too. Jeno and Renjun have been dating for three years, since their first year of university, and Donghyuck vividly remembers how smitten Jeno was when Jaemin first introduced Renjun to him during a party. Renjun was part of Jaemin’s study group, formed by an association that created groups exclusively made up of omegas – to avoid that alphas and betas joined study groups just to flirt with them, Renjun had explained to Donghyuck on that first meeting. Donghyuck had scoffed at that, had doubted that Renjun received all that attention, but years around him have proven him wrong.

“This is a really big decision,” Donghyuck tells him. Jeno keeps his head low, and Donghyuck takes advantage of that moment to read his semblance without fueling his discomfort. The tension in Jeno’s jaw reveals more than he could ever say, but the look in his eyes is what destroys Donghyuck. “I don’t want to even consider it if you’re not completely sure.”

Donghyuck doesn’t believe at love at first sight, but for Renjun and Jeno was exactly that. Meant for each other, an unquestionable pair, the true constant among their friends. Donghyuck would have never supposed that there were bumps on the road for them, and less that Jeno would resort to him in such heartbreaking conditions.

“Listen to me, Donghyuck,” Jeno continues. He swallows the knot in his throat, the stress so visible on his face that Donghyuck wonders when the last time he slept was. It makes sense that he hasn't been sleeping well if he has been thinking about letting Donghyuck do this, but Jeno needs to care for himself as well. “I wouldn’t ask for this if Renjun wasn't suffering so much, if he could take it. But it's been three years and at this point both of us know that I can’t help him. He's afraid of telling me, you know?” Jeno rapidly blinks, glances at the ceiling of the empty cafe, a place where his words fall even heavier. His latte, Donghyuck realizes, is untouched. “He's afraid of reminding me that my beta status won't ever be enough for his body. And god, this is on me, because I knew this would happen and still I courted him like a fool.”

Donghyuck thinks about consoling him, but it's evident that it'll be useless. Jeno doesn't want to be convinced otherwise. Yes, he was foolish, but so was Renjun. They allowed themselves to fall in love with each other despite their status, and Donghyuck might not know much about love, but he knows that Jeno shouldn't have renounced to happiness just because of his gender.

“So you want me to…?”

“I want you to help him with his heats,” Jeno repeats, dry, concise. It's tough for Donghyuck to hear it, so he can't imagine how hard it's for Jeno to say it out loud. “Right before and during his heat is when he has it the hardest. We're not sure of how much a knot will help, but we're sure that it will help.”

Donghyuck stalls the inevitable. Jeno wants him to fuck Renjun. There's no way to decorate it: it's simple and yet hurtful. Renjun belongs to Jeno, not to Donghyuck – it's not just a mere act of possessiveness, but a silent deal between two people that love each other and only each other. The offer sounds almost like a sin to Donghyuck, as if he's interfering in a sacred, beautiful thing that he won't ever have for himself.

Donghyuck catches his breath, crosses his arms on his lap to hide how his body is reacting, the goosebumps that rise at the thought of touching Jeno's omega. “Did you tell him about this?”

But Jeno is too concerned to notice any of those details, so he focuses on the question instead.

“No,” he confesses, eyes flickering up to Donghyuck’s face. “I wanted to check with you, not to give him hope and then...”

Donghyuck feels horrible. Of course his alpha instinct wants to accept the offer without hesitation, even if he has never imagined sleeping with Renjun before. He's so pretty, it's just natural for Donghyuck to want him, and Jeno is allowing him to betray the silent line of respect towards him and his boyfriend. It’s awfully tempting.

“I have to think about it first,” Donghyuck manages to breathe out at last. Donghyuck met up with Jeno supposing that they'd just hang out, that it’d be another normal day for them, so he isn’t ready to receive all this sudden information, and even less to decide their future in a moment. “I’m sorry, Jeno, it’s just-”

Jeno's semblance contorts into disappointment, but he hurries to wave his hand as to tell him not to apologize.

“It’s fine,” he assures Donghyuck. Hiding his true feelings is another story. “It’s not a decision that should be taken in a split second.”

Donghyuck nods, and then silence takes over their conversation. It's strange, but Jeno is much more nervous and embarrassed than Donghyuck. Donghyuck reckons that it's a form of confessing that he can't satisfy his mate properly, and Donghyuck's ego would be tremendously damaged if he had to go through that too.

Raising his gaze to meet Jeno's eyes, Donghyuck insists, “Why didn’t you discuss this with him first?”

Hesitation strikes across his expression, yet they've gone too far for Jeno to lie to Donghyuck now. It's pointless, and if he wants Donghyuck to bite into the proposal with his whole trust, he can't lie.

“Because he’ll reject the idea just so that I don’t feel less of a mate,” he admits. Jeno's words are harsh, but he can't explain it any differently. Donghyuck is sure that Jeno already feels like a failure as a mate, and that Renjun must want to protect his boyfriend's feelings, but that won't do them any good in the long run. “Seeing him suffer, knowing I can let someone else help him if I just- If I get over my own stupid jealousy, makes me feel like I don't deserve him. My instinct tells me not to let go, but I have to let go for the sake of his well-being.”

Donghyuck studies him, curious, and says, “Your jealousy isn't stupid, Jeno.”

It's not jealousy, however, because Renjun would never look at Donghyuck, would have never paid him any attention even if Jeno hadn't been in the picture. For the first two years, Renjun didn't even like him – Donghyuck was just a jerk to him, someone who couldn't take anything or anyone seriously and who dragged Jeno into bad ideas.

Jeno agrees with a dry, “He's having a hard time not to hurt me, so I should pay it back.”

It's cruel, Donghyuck is conscious. Their nature can be so cruel to them sometimes, starting just by the fact that Renjun needs a knot despite having found his soulmate and loving his boyfriend; and ending with how Donghyuck's instinct screams at him to bury himself between Renjun's legs and forget about Jeno.

“I’ll think about it,” Donghyuck decides then. He reaches out for Jeno's hands over the table, and Jeno turns his palms around to hold him too. If his touch calms Jeno down or not, Donghyuck can’t tell; he can just tell that Jeno took a crazy amount of suppressants before coming to the cafe, for Donghyuck is incapable of detecting his scent at all. “You’re my best friend, Jeno, but for that same reason it’s difficult to accept this deal. Renjun is-”

“Donghyuck,” Jeno cuts him off with a shake of his head. “Don’t think of him as my boyfriend. You won’t even be able to touch him if you do.”

Taken aback by his explicitness, Donghyuck whispers, “But he is your boyfriend.”

Jeno closes his eyes for a second, as though he needs to summon his courage to continue. He squeezes Donghyuck's hands, warm in his grip, and his eyes open and cut through his soul.

“He's the love of my life,” Jeno corrects him. “And that's why I'm asking for your help.”

 

 

 

 

The proposal is a virus that spreads within Donghyuck at an alarming rate.

Jeno gives him space, but Donghyuck needs more than that. They’ve just begun their senior year, so he tries to distract himself with his classes just to find out, much to his dismay, that he can’t stop thinking about Renjun. It’s a innate reaction to the idea of fucking an omega, that’s what Donghyuck tells himself. Even though he has slept with countless omegas, and it’s not out of the norm for him or his sexual life, his instinct is stronger than habit or reason – it’s insatiable, and he wants more and more, again and again, as if he hasn’t tried the taste of an omega yet.

And over all, Donghyuck feels dirty. Renjun is his best friend’s boyfriend, the person he’s probably going to spend his whole life with. For Donghyuck, Renjun has always been untouchable, both of them tiptoeing on opposite sides of a strange abysm. They were the main attractors of Jeno’s time and attention, and it was an incessant push and pull game. Donghyuck has never been decent competition, however, because no one could compete with Renjun.

However, Renjun is incredibly pretty, and though Donghyuck has never afforded seeing him in that light, his thoughts unleash at the opportunity that Jeno offers him. When Donghyuck first met Renjun, he was still a cute kid, more of a boy than man. Yet even back then, he was already the sort of pretty that one couldn’t take their eyes off, the sort of pretty that Donghyuck admired with reticence, knowing that it’d never belong to him. Not because Jeno would hog him, but because omegas like Renjun always had better options, people that would give the whole world for them.

Renjun isn’t a boy anymore, that much is clear. He’s still smaller than Donghyuck, with bright eyes and a smile that can get him anything he wants – Donghyuck has even gotten free rides from strangers just because Renjun asked them to, and once a taxi driver drove them home for a whole hour because Renjun pouted at him, claiming that they didn’t have more money.

Yet it’s just not his pretty face what he carries in his favor. Donghyuck isn’t blind to his scent, to his sharp tongue, or to the way his pants fit around his hips; he’s not blind to how deep Jeno’s fingers sink in Renjun’s shirt when he holds him by the waist.

Donghyuck hates what his alpha instinct demands from him, but since the moment Jeno opened his mouth at the cafe, Donghyuck’s reason wasn’t in the equation anymore.

“You’ve always resented Renjun,” Jaemin unhelpfully reminds him days later, when Donghyuck manages to surpass his own embarrassment and tells him what’s troubling him. “He stole your friend away from you. You spent your freshman year crying about it every time you got drunk, I’d pay to go back in time and not befriend you just to not suffer your whining.”

Donghyuck rolls over on the couch to glare at his flatmate, for Jaemin’s words are far from soothing. Jaemin returns a devilish smile from the other side of the couch, a book resting on his bent knees and his glasses on the tip of his nose.

Jaemin might not be the best adviser in the world, but Donghyuck doesn’t regret renting a flat with him. There were speculations at first nonetheless, because Jaemin is an omega and even their friends thought it was suspicious that they went to live together just one year after meeting each other. The suspicions made sense in their heads, since Renjun and Jeno lived together along with Mark and Yuta, two couples – or they used to be, because Yuta broke up with Mark three months ago and moved out.

“He stole the best of our years,” Donghyuck protests. Because yes, he has always been childish over their relationship, but it’s not true envy. Renjun understands that Donghyuck doesn’t hate him, that it’s the cycle of life: a boyfriend and a best friend can never be too close. “Our perfect time to party every day of the week and definitely not settle down for the rest of our lives.”

“You sound so dramatic,” Jaemin notes, lips contorting to suppress a smile. “Do you want to know what I think about this?”

“Would I have asked you if I didn’t?”

Jaemin sighs in exasperation, disapproving of the retort.

“Don’t play smart with me, Hyuck.” He closes the book with a snap, and instead of setting it aside on the table, he bends over and hits Donghyuck on the knees. Donghyuck hisses and immediately brings his knees to his chest, but Jaemin smiles at him like nothing happened. “How many omegas have you helped because they were in their heat?”

Donghyuck isn’t ashamed to admit that he has to think about it, but after a whole minute the judgmental look on Jaemin’s face intimidates him a bit.

“Around ten?” Donghyuck tries at last, careful, as though he’s afraid of being caught in a lie.

Jaemin must not remember the exact number either, because he moves on. “How many of them already had a mate?”

Frustrated, Donghyuck lets out a groan and throws his head back over the armrest. Jaemin’s intentions are transparent now, and Donghyuck knows that he has all the possibilities to lose against his wit.

“That’s a shitty question,” he laments. Because it is. It’s never pleasant to help a mated omega as a last resort, without being able to check if their mate agrees or not, if they’ll try to break his nose afterwards even if Donghyuck didn’t mean any harm.

Jaemin doesn’t take pity on him. He slaps his calf and insists, “Answer.”

Donghyuck whispers, “Two.” The reaction is immediate: Jaemin gasps a little, perhaps because he supposed that Donghyuck wouldn’t have dared, or perhaps because that’s the perfect argument he needs to use. “But it was a one time thing! I slept with Seongwoo because his mate was out of the country, and with Jaehyun-”

“You’re using excuses,” Jaemin interrupts him. When Donghyuck opens his mouth to protest, Jaemin sets his index finger over his lips, shushing him. “And you have an excuse to sleep with Renjun too. There’s no difference.”

There is a difference. Donghyuck doesn’t have any relationship with Jaehyun and Sicheng’s mates, and their hook-ups weren’t planned. In fact, he can’t even remember the name of Seongwoo’s mate, or what Donghyuck did with him – he was on the edge of his rut too, so his memories are fuzzy.

“How can you say that?” Donghyuck reproaches. “He’s been dating Jeno for three years!”

For a moment, Donghyuck believes that Jaemin is about to drop the topic. That he’ll say you’re right, Donghyuck, you shouldn’t accept the deal because it’ll put your friendship in danger. It’s the most logical advice, and Jaemin has always prioritized logic over feelings.

“Well.” Jaemin crosses his arms over his stomach, unconcerned, and smirks at Donghyuck. “You really want to fuck him, though.”

Donghyuck feels his face burn. Even though Jaemin is on the opposite side of the couch, out of the blue Donghyuck has the strange sensation that Jaemin is too close, that he’s asphyxiating, not enough space to breathe. Their living room contracts around him, smaller every time Donghyuck blinks.

Donghyuck stutters a weak, “That’s a baseless accusation.”

This time, Jaemin’s laughter shoots through the living room, loud and piercing.

“I have plenty of proof,” he claims, lifting his eyebrows at Donghyuck in incredulity. “Last year your eyes were glued to his ass like- All the time. I don’t know what was going on with you. Even Jeno noticed, dude.” With a pause, he tilts his head to the side, eyes losing focus, and mutters to himself, “Huh. I wonder if that’s why he chose you over one of the hyungs.”

Dumbstruck, Donghyuck limits himself to stare at Jaemin in horror. His friend isn’t lying; god, Donghyuck knows who he has checked out before, but he presumes that no one ever catches on unless Donghyuck wants them to. The revelation that he’s not as discreet as he thinks, that Jeno has trapped him admiring someone that belongs to him, destabilizes the last of Donghyuck’s self-confidence.

“So what if I do?” Donghyuck avoids Jaemin’s eyes, the knowing smile directed at him that puts him to shame. “This isn’t about me.”

For the first time today, Jaemin’s amusement shifts to something entirely different. Curiosity, understanding, Donghyuck can’t tell. He slides over the couch, cradles the book in his hands and slams it on the table at last so that there isn’t anything separating them, and hooks his arms around Donghyuck’s calves.

When Jaemin rests his chin on Donghyuck’s knees, Donghyuck winces at him, aware that Jaemin is going to be sensible with him. But with that proximity Donghyuck can’t pretend that he’s not affected. Jaemin doesn’t look at him, he sees through him.

“Listen, I’m an omega too, and you know how bad it gets even with an alpha around,” Jaemin tells him, voice softer than before. Donghyuck does: they’ve been living together for two years, so Donghyuck has had his good share of Jaemin’s heats. Sunwoo has been helping Jaemin since they met in first year, and yet Jaemin still has a hard time – calls for Donghyuck if he smells his scent at home, too, even if Sunwoo is deep inside him. “I can’t imagine the terror Renjun must be going through. Don’t be such a jerk, Donghyuck.”

All in all, both of them are right. Donghyuck’s fears aren’t unjustified, and this issue isn’t indeed about him. Jaemin’s explanations point to another truth: Jeno needs him, for no beta would ask an alpha to fuck his mate for no reason, and Donghyuck can’t just ignore the request. He has to make a decision, and it has to be fast. Both a negative and a positive decision take some bravery, and Donghyuck is too old to consider cowering.

“Renjun could still say no,” he muses at last, looking for agreement in Jaemin’s expression.

Jaemin nods. “I’m sure you can take a rejection.” Pressing his cheek against Donghyuck’s right knee, he adds, “Just be respectful to Jeno, and try to pretend that you’re not dying to fuck him, Donghyuck, because you’re really bad at it.”

 

 

 

 

Donghyuck can’t stop looking at Renjun.

He catches sight of him only ten minutes after entering Chenle’s party, and like a panicked teen, Donghyuck hides in the bathroom for half an hour. Even though it was obvious that he’d have to face Renjun sooner or later, Donghyuck had allowed himself a couple of days to think about how to accept Jeno’s deal. Renjun isn’t supposed to be there, in the big, wild party that Chenle prepared to celebrate the beginning of the university year.

That’s Donghyuck’s habitat, his safe space. Renjun isn’t the sort of boy that is fond of parties, at least not frat parties, but Jeno is with him and Donghyuck supposes that Jeno persuaded him. Mark is nowhere to be seen, because he probably refused to accompany them – Donghyuck has tried to go out with him too, but Mark is still mourning his dead relationship, and that’s how Donghyuck finds himself without a lifesaver.

When Donghyuck leaves the bathroom, reminding himself that he’s a whole twenty-two year old that can’t run away from his own friends, Renjun meets eyes with him. The music is loud, and people are dancing, moving and blocking the view, but Renjun stares at him long enough to be an invitation. He’s perched on Jeno, hugging his boyfriend’s arm and his cheek leaning on his shoulder, and he breaks into a sweet smile upon recognizing Donghyuck.

Donghyuck blanks out for a second. It’s nonsensical that he’s intimidated by this idea. Renjun ignores the little secret Donghyuck and Jeno share, and despite his nervousness, Donghyuck should find funny that Renjun is the unknowing one for once. That Renjun is in the shadows, like he was when they were freshmen and Jeno sneaked out with Donghyuck without telling him.

“Look at you,” Renjun greets him with a scream, making himself be heard over the music. He signals at Donghyuck to walk faster, even though Donghyuck is already striding to them. “Where’s Jaemin?”

Renjun, Donghyuck notices, is very underdressed for a party. He’s drowned in a big purple sweater that reaches his thighs, skinny sport pants underneath, and he’d be mistaken for a lost freshman if he wasn’t next to Jeno. The bitterest part is that, not even looking like he came straight from the gym, does he stop attracting attention around him; in fact, there’s a boy behind Jeno looking at them, staring with a frown on his face as though he’s trying to convince himself that they’re not dating.

“Dishonoring my house with Sunwoo,” Donghyuck laments, shoving his hands in his pockets.

Jeno rolls his eyes at him, for they know that Donghyuck would be here anyhow, house empty or not.

“Poor you,” Renjun mockingly coos at him, and when Donghyuck narrows his eyes at him, he just laughs. “You can stay over at ours, if you want to. Mark will appreciate the company.”

It wouldn’t be the first time Donghyuck took the suggestion, and even though the only available place used to be the couch, sometimes the couch was better than smelling Jaemin’s heat. Donghyuck isn’t immune to him just because they’re friends.

“I’ll pass, but thank you,” Donghyuck turns down. “Senior year hasn’t knocked me down yet.”

Renjun scrunches his nose at him, amused, yet Jeno doesn’t laugh at his joke. Donghyuck glances at his friend, aware that it’s a sign, and as soon as he locks eyes with Jeno, he does a discreet turn of his head to indicate that they should talk elsewhere. Donghyuck responds with a subtle nod of his head, so subtle that Renjun doesn’t even catch it.

“Babe,” Jeno calls him, sweet. Renjun blinks at him, oddly surprised at the petname, and Jeno whispers, “Can you get me another drink?”

Renjun is too smart to overlook that Jeno is trying to get rid of him. He sends Donghyuck a concerned look, and Donghyuck responds with a tight, tense smile, aware of why Renjun is checking on him first: he’s assuming that Donghyuck is in trouble, that it’s personal, and that’s the reason Jeno is asking for privacy. He couldn’t be farther from the truth.

“Sure,” he agrees, and with a pat on Jeno’s arm, he turns around.

Donghyuck watches him mingle with people, tries not to stare at Renjun for too long, but it’s inevitable. His thoughts deviate right away, and only when Jeno steps forward, serious, does Donghyuck come back to reality.

Jeno’s impatience is palpable. He looks at Donghyuck with hopeful eyes, playing with his own hands, and asks, “Did you think about it?”

Donghyuck hasn’t done anything else in the past few days.

“We can try,” Donghyuck answers, tone wavering, but Jeno is close enough to hear him. As soon as the words leave his mouth, Donghyuck feels a big weight fall off his shoulders. “I don’t know if it’ll work out, to be honest, because I’ve never done this before-”

“You haven’t?” Jeno questions him with a hint of shock.

But when Donghyuck inspects his expression, he finds relief and happiness in Jeno’s face. It’s a strange sensation, considering what Donghyuck is jumping into, that Jeno is so content with the deal. It makes Donghyuck wonder just how horrible it is for Renjun, if Jeno is so desperate to get help.

Donghyuck coughs, embarrassed. “I mean, arranging sex, not helping during a heat.”

Jeno understands, gives him a nod, yet the smile on his face doesn’t disappear. “This isn’t a soul bonding deal, okay?” he reminds him. “You can take it back whenever you want.”

Donghyuck sucks his lower lip in, containing the first answer that comes to mind. Jeno looks so happy, so relaxed for the first time in months that Donghyuck would be incapable of taking that away from him – he hasn’t realized how tense Jeno was until now, when his shoulders slump and he squeezes Donghyuk’s arm in gratitude.

“I know,” Donghyuck breathes out. But he’s not going to pull out, not unless it’s because Renjun wants to. Unsure, he looks into Jeno’s sparkling eyes and asks, “So now?”

Jeno whips his head to stare at Renjun across the house. He has engaged with Jisung in what seems to be a very deep conversation, since the boy is scowling as he incessantly speaks, and Renjun is laughing at him without shame.

“I’ll ask him tonight, later when we’re at home,” Jeno concludes, gaze lingering on his boyfriend for too long. “He’s having too much fun now to ruin it with our problems.”

There’s no disagreement. Donghyuck prefers to keep this night intact for Renjun, even if his laughter and his happiness are hiding the mess his relationship is in. He deserves to enjoy that for a while, before discovering that they’ve been talking about his sexual life behind his back without permission.

“Hey,” Donghyuck says then, and under Jeno’s curious eyes, he decides that Jeno is too good for this world. Too good for Renjun, even. “I just want to say- you can take it back, too.”

Jeno doesn’t miss a beat. “I won’t,” he replies, very sure of himself. “But take care of him.”

 

 

 

 

Donghyuck is in his Artificial Intelligence class when he receives a clearly confused text from Renjun. It says: you’re okay with this????

No explanations, no key words that could hint at the proposal, almost like a taboo. Their little dirty secret. Donghyuck stares at the screen for a few minutes, not sure of what the correct answer is, if there is any. After all, Renjun is asking if he’s fine with the idea of fucking him through his heat. Donghyuck could detour around the topic, try to be polite and decent, but the reality is cruder: either Donghyuck wants him or doesn’t, no matter if it’s for personal reasons or for a favor.

And he does.

Focus ruined, Donghyuck resigns and decides to reply, yeah. im in class rn, you wanna talk in person?

It’s not a discussion to have through texts, but Donghyuck asks in case Renjun doesn’t even want to even talk about it. There’s a tiny chance that Renjun is confirming that Donghyuck schemed this with Jeno just to scold both of them equally, and thus Donghyuck fears that he’s about to get rejected through text.

However, five seconds later a new message arrives, and his heart almost leaps out of his heart: come home, im free for the next two hours.

Donghyuck breathes in. He has three lessons ahead, but that’s the last of his worries right now – he’ll worry about them later, when he’s failing his exams. When the lesson ends, he collects his laptop and his notes in a hurry and shoves them into his bag, and then runs out of the classroom without saying goodbye to his classmates. Two hours isn’t a lot of time, since Renjun doesn’t live on campus, but his house is close enough for Donghyuck to arrive in half an hour.

Donghyuck keeps his instinct from unlacing further, otherwise it’ll take the best of him – his prudency, his sensibility, his ability not to hurt a friend. He knows that every single step of this arrangement will be a struggle, and that he has to control himself to not worsen it.

Renjun’s scent is the first sign of him that Donghyuck perceives, but that doesn’t prepare him to see Renjun when he opens the door for him. It’s the effect of an omega, forever impossible to get used to. Even if it’s not early, Renjun is still in his pajamas, loose stripped pants and a buttoned shirt; Donghyuck can’t help but think he looks cute, sort of helpless, but perhaps it’s because Donghyuck now knows more about his personal life than he should.

“Hey,” Donghyuck greets him, forcing a smile onto his face. He peeks over Renjun’s shoulder, concerned, for he hasn’t thought about what going to Renjun’s home implies. “Are you alone?”

Renjun shakes his head, rubs his eyes with the back of his hand. “Mark is in his room,” he says, warns Donghyuck. “Jeno left to meet up his thesis tutor.”

That’s all Donghyuck needs to hear. Renjun ushers him inside, so calm that it unsettles Donghyuck. His stomach is twisting out of nervousness, but Renjun just pulls at his hand and leads him through the house, clearly in the direction of his room. Donghyuck holds his hand harder than he intends, finding comfort in the touch of an omega, and appreciates that Renjun doesn’t point it out.

Donghyuck is aware that they can’t have this discussion in the middle of the living room; however, stepping into Renjun and Jeno’s bedroom isn’t a bright idea either. It’s charged with Jeno’s scent everywhere, mingled with the ghost of Renjun’s perfume – a shade of his scent that Donghyuck hasn’t smelt before, pheromones that belong to the most private part of his life. It’s so intimate, so sticky and lewd that it entices Donghyuck’s most primal instinct.

When Donghyuck spins to sit on the bed, he closes his eyes for a moment and soothes, clawing at his reason. Renjun doesn’t seem to notice his state. It makes sense. After dating a beta for three years, he must be used to not having such a strong effect on his partner. But Donghyuck is an alpha, and he doesn’t play with that advantage: Renjun’s scent is so strong in his nose that he’s going to dream about it tonight. For the next whole week, probably.

Renjun doesn’t sit with him. He climbs on the bed, crosses his legs and sets one of the cushions on his lap. Donghyuck supposes that he needs to grab onto something to release his tension, but he can just think about how small Renjun looks cuddled up in himself on such a big bed.

At first, neither of them speaks a word, and a delicate frown blooms between Renjun’s eyebrows. He doesn’t stop staring at Donghyuck, however, and Donghyuck has to muster all his courage just to mutter, “Are you angry?”

He’d have the right to be. Donghyuck isn’t entitled to know about his sexual needs, for it gives him a humiliating power that Renjun didn’t give him.

“No,” Renjun replies with a sigh. He runs a hand through his hair, his eyes flickering to the bed for a moment. “But I wish Jeno had asked me first, and then you second.”

Donghyuck would have preferred it that way as well. To begin with, it would have saved him a lot of overthinking.

“Fair enough.” Donghyuck shrugs, a nonchalant gesture to conceal that he actually cares too much about this. He has the urge to reach out for Renjun’s hand, but he regrets it midway, and his hand rests between them on the mattress. He receives a strange look from Renjun for it. “I’m going to tell you the same I told Jeno yesterday, you don’t have to.”

Tilting his head to the side, Renjun reminds him, “I should be the one saying that, Donghyuck.” They stare at each other for the first time since Donghyuck arrived, and then out of the blue Renjun crumbles, face on the bed, breaking the tension around them with a childish whine. He claims, “God, this is embarrassing.”

Too surprised to process Renjun’s sudden reaction, Donghyuck lets out a nervous laugh. It’s beyond embarrassing, but just because this is Renjun and Donghyuck, Donghyuck and Renjun, and they’re not meant to share their deepest problems with each other.

Donghyuck eyes him, careful. “So you-”

“I’m in, yes,” Renjun confirms, though his words come out muffled and indistinct against the mattress. When he rises again, there’s a delicate blush on his cheeks, though Donghyuck can’t tell if it’s from the heat or from his own shame. Clearing his throat, eyes wandering not to glance at Donghyuck, Renjun adds, “We have to set a few rules, though.”

Rules. Donghyuck chews on that thought. It’s already shocking enough that Renjun is accepting the deal, that he’s this embarrassed, and Donghyuck wraps his mind around the concept of rules not to look like an idiot. He’s an alpha, he’s the one who is bound to set rules, and yet there Renjun is, setting roles for them. There’s always a first to swap roles.

“Sure.” Donghyuck breathes in. He smells Renjun’s mortification, a feeling so strong that Donghyuck can even taste it on his tongue. “Did you think about them?”

It’s evident that Renjun isn’t using his head anymore, because he spews a sincere, “I spent the whole night thinking about them.”

Donghyuck needs a moment to compose his feelings, his impulses. Renjun needs reassurance, moreover after admitting to that, so Donghyuck decides to humiliate himself a bit.

“Don’t feel ashamed.” Donghyuck shifts on the edge of the bed, restless. “If it helps, I haven’t stopped thinking about it either.”

That confession catches Renjun off guard. There’s no need for Donghyuck to expand on what he means, and so Renjun opens and closes his mouth several times, not knowing how to answer. Donghyuck has been thinking about sleeping with him, the same Donghyuck who spent years teasing him yet building a barrier between them two, voluntary or not.

Renjun lowers his head, ignores his confession, and exhales, “First, we’re not making love, is that clear?”

Donghyuck can’t repress the small laugh that reverberates in his chest, “That’s pretty clear, Renjun.”

However, Renjun finds peace in stating it out loud, so Donghyuck just gestures him to continue. Renjun must have no idea what he’s getting into if he thinks that Donghyuck makes love when he fucks someone.

“If you sleep with other people, you have to use protection.” Renjun straightens on the bed, eyes widening at his own statement, at the possible Donghyuck could have. Donghyuck gets it: he’s requesting Donghyuck to change his personal life for him. It could feel intruding, even, but that rule isn’t unreasonable. “So let’s say, turns out there’s an exception and you don’t use protection, you have to tell me, I’m not putting myself and Jeno at risk. I prefer spending the heat alone.”

Donghyuck lets the silence swallow them. Not because he disagrees with Renjun, because he thinks his demands are irrational, but because he admires Renjun’s bravery to set such a rule. Donghyuck doesn’t sleep around that often and definitely not without protection, anyhow, but he knows that he has the fame.

Overwhelmed, Donghyuck stutters, “So we’re not going to use protection?”

“I-” Renjun’s voice dies down, dissolved into pure shame. “You have to knot me, and it’s not the same if-”

It won’t have the same effect if they use protection, Donghyuck knows that, but he hasn’t realized how intimate it will be until Renjun lays it in front of him.

“It’s okay,” Donghyuck cuts in, for Renjun seems to be having a hard time to explain it. “I always use protection.”

Renjun’s eyes roam over his expression, as to discover if he’s telling the truth. Even though he’s not too convinced, and Donghyuck is too nervous to insist, Renjun lets it go.

And then he dampens his lips, and with a shaky breath, he adds the last rule, “No kissing.”

Donghyuck is certain he has heard wrong. “No kissing?” he repeats, confused. “Renjun-”

Before Donghyuck can finish his protest, Renjun scowls at him and grunts, “Why not?”

His defensiveness leaves Donghyuck unarmed, and the only weapon he possesses is honesty. They have to kiss. It’s almost natural for Donghyuck in bed, even out of bed, and he understands why Renjun thinks that it’s too personal, but fucking him during his heat is much more physical than a mere kiss.

“There’s no way I can get into the mood if I can’t even kiss you,” Donghyuck tells him, so clearly that Renjun backs away, shocked. It’s sort of hilarious to Donghyuck, he can’t deny that. Renjun is so anxious that even a few explicit words can embarrass him, and Donghyuck won’t pass that chance. “What am I supposed to do, get hard with my imagination?”

Renjun sinks his fingers in the cushion, slightly gaping at his choice of words. There’s a shift in the atmosphere, a new pheromone that Donghyuck recognizes. It’s humid, sweet, and it whips through him like venom.

It’s arousal.

Renjun’s eyelashes flutter when he looks down, knuckles white on the cushion.

“Let me think,” he whispers, and though he pretends that Donghyuck can’t smell him, both know what’s happening. Renjun takes his time, for it must not be easy to think in such condition, but at last he says, “You can’t kiss me when you’re coming. Or when I’m coming. And definitely not when you’re knotting me.”

Donghyuck doesn’t realize he’s been holding his breath until Renjun speaks. Renjun’s idea isn’t so unreasonable. Though Donghyuck would love to lick into his mouth while he’s coming, he understands what makes Renjun so afraid of it.  

“No kissing during moments of vulnerability,” Donghyuck translates for him.

A spark of astonishment crosses Renjun’s eyes as his gaze locks with Donghyuck’s. He’s not expecting Donghyuck to read the situation so well, to intuit his feelings so fast, perhaps because Donghyuck isn’t supposed to understand his omega nature to the last detail. But Donghyuck does. They’re not so different; he feels vulnerable too when he’s inside someone, but it’s the other person’s vulnerability what provokes him to be strong.

Renjun sends him a demure smile, if out of gratitude or of politeness, it’s impossible to tell. And then he’s climbing down the bed, his thigh brushing against Donghyuck, as though the conversation is over.

Donghyuck stops him. He could use his words, but he has a more entertaining option, an option that will return the power to him. He doesn't vacillate to set a hand on Renjun's thigh, just for fun, just to see how he reacts, and revels in how Renjun freezes at the contact.

“I have rules, too,” Donhyuck tells him, sweet, a devilish smirk to compensate his tone. Renjun's eyes travel from Donghyuck's hand on his leg to his face, and his befuddlement just makes him look like a lost lamb among wolves. Except it’s just one big wolf, and that big wolf is enough to eat him whole. “Remember it’s me who’s doing you a favor.”

Donghyuck isn't going to let him forget.

Renjun croaks out, “I'm not liking that smile of yours, Donghyuck.”

Truth to be told, Donghyuck didn't prepare any rules, but there are conditions he wasn't going to overlook in any case. It's for the better, for both of them, since Donghyuck’s intention isn’t protecting himself only. He wants to protect Renjun and Jeno too, because he's aware of what's going to happen once he starts sleeping with Renjun. Instinct is stronger than reason, always.

Donghyuck wipes his smirk away and says, “The first time should be outside your heat.”

The glare Renjun sends him is anything but surprising. Donghyuck has predicted that, however, and it's the evidence that Renjun doesn't know better, that Donghyuck can't trust him with his own decisions.

“That’s-”

“Renjun,” Donghyuck cuts him off. Hearing Renjun's excuses won't change his mind. “You don't know if you'll be comfortable with me, so you need to have a clear mind the first time. If you’re in your heat you won’t have any capacity to decide.”

Judging the silence that follows, Renjun hasn't even given that any importance. It's natural that he hasn't, because he's been in a serious relationship for so long that Jeno's limits are an unconscious extension of Renjun's acquired habits. Being with Donghyuck will be a learning process, and while Donghyuck is used to learning, Renjun isn’t.

“Listen, Renjun,” Donghyuck continues, aware that Renjun has no retort for him, but still holds many doubts. “I’ve slept with a lot of people, a lot of omegas, actually. And I know that it’s better to stop than to have awkward sex that you might regret, and I don’t want you to do something you’ll regret.”

Renjun mulls over that for a few seconds, but he must believe Donghyuck, must trust him, because he sounds much more sure when he says, “Okay. We can try outside my heat first.”

Donghyuck flashes him a smile.

“During your heat, I want you to stay at my flat,” Donghyuck continues. The rules are the perfect excuse to bring this issue up, because it's one of the problems that has been eating Donghyuck up from the inside. “This isn’t negotiable. I’m not going to run to your house every time you need me, and I don’t like the idea of sleeping with you if Jeno is around.”

Renjun pales a bit, either at the mention of his boyfriend or at the mere idea of sharing his heat with Donghyuck in a place that isn't safe for him. He'd be more comfortable at home, of course, but their house is impregnated with Jeno's scent everywhere. If Donghyuck fucks Renjun here, his scent is going to take over Jeno's, and that's an invasion of intimacy that he can't afford nor can he allow.

“You don't want to upset Jeno,” Renjun points out, looking straight into his eyes. For the first time since Donghyuck has arrived, Renjun's gaze results intimidating, strong, and Donghyuck returns it with equal force. “I’m fine with that, then.”

Relief invades Donghyuck. This is important for him. Only by sitting on this bed, he's certain that he wouldn't be able to touch Renjun here. It feels terribly wrong.

When Donghyuck is about to get up, Renjun holds him back by his wrist. It's a soft touch, but his pheromones are so intense that Donghyuck's mind is hazy for a split second. He finds Renjun staring at him with a desperate glint in his eyes, but he doesn't process what that implies in time.

“Can I ask for something else?” Renjun whispers, catious. “The first time we sleep together, can we be completely alone? I mean, I know Jaemin could be at home and-”

Renjun doesn't finish his request, but Donghyuck is on the same wavelength. He doesn't want anyone to hear how he fucks his best friend's boyfriend either. God, not even his alpha instinct to show off is capable of erasing the bad feeling of letting someone know that he's going to enjoy this, that he's going to enjoy it so much that it should be reproachable. Renjun and he aren't together, but they deserve privacy and security too. Renjun deserves to be alleviated without worrying about the morality of it all.

Donghyuck softly cups Renjun's chin with one hand. It's almost automatic: Renjun is showing him weakness, and Donghyuck has the urge to protect him, to do anything and everything to make him feel safe.

“We’ll be alone,” Donghyuck whispers back, serious. He might joke around all the time, but he doesn't want Renjunt to doubt his word, and so not a single shade of a smile paints his face. “I promise.”

In the silence of the room, with Renjun's dark, innocent eyes on him, that's the only promise Donghyuck can keep for sure.

 

 

 

 

After that, Donghyuck’s life remains the same.

Even though he didn’t think that it’d be immediate, it’s almost anticlimactic that Renjun barely speaks to him. They act as though they haven’t just sealed a deal that is going to change their relationships, their whole lives. Donghyuck hangs out with Jeno like nothing happened; they eat together, they play games, and one night Donghyuck manages to get him drunk during a party and drops him off at his apartment, amused at the face Renjun pulls when he sees the state his boyfriend is in. Renjun doesn’t chide them, but his evident annoyance is enough to fuel Donghyuck’s ego for days.

Donghyuck tries not worry about it. He has classes to take care of, his thesis – and he got Taeyong assigned as a tutor, which is a nightmare itself because he’s hot and Donghyuck is weak, and he might have Taeyong two years ago when he was still a TA – and his volleyball practices.

It’s in fact after one of his Tuesday volleyball practices that Donghyuck has an epiphany. Jaemin is in the locker room, sitting under the lockers, but no one bats an eyelash at the intrusion, and neither does Donghyuck. Sunwoo is in the volleyball team as well, which is the reason Jaemin met him at all, for Donghyuck introduced them to each other. Donghyuck assumes that he’s there for Sunwoo as usual, but when he crosses paths with Jaemin, Jaemin stretches his leg out to block him.

Donghyuck is too used to Jaemin to be affected by the evil smirk he throws at him. “You came for me?” he asks, a bit surprised.

“Isn’t your alpha pleased, having an omega wait in the locker room just for you?” Jaemin teases him, completely ignoring the question. His voice is too loud, and half of the team laughs at the joke, as if they’re not mostly alphas themselves and Jaemin isn’t humiliating them too. Maybe because of that, they understand Jaemin’s humor. Donghyuck can even hear Sunwoo cackle all across the room. “We have to talk.”

Donghyuck studies his friend’s face, curious. Jaemin could have waited for him to arrive home, so it must be urgent. That, or Jaemin was extremely bored.

Throwing his towel over his shoulders, Donghyuck reaches for his locker. “Did anything happen?”

The answer petrifies Donghyuck from head to toe, his fingers hovering over the lock.

“Renjun happened.”

Before Donghyuck can panic, Sunwoo slips next to Jaemin, passing an arm around his waist despite Jaemin protesting that he’s too sweaty, and plants a sonorous, gross kiss on his lips. Donghyuck groans at them, looks away, not fast enough to miss how Sunwoo flips him off.

“What is this about?” Sunwoo pries, standing again.

His curiosity is explainable, since he’s used to being the one Jaemin looks for. Donghyuck suspects that there might a bit of alpha pride in his question, but it’s that sort of gesture that is so subtle that an omega would never notice, so Donghyuck decides not to give Jaemin more power.

“Nosy,” Donghyuck accuses him.

“He’s going to help a friend’s boyfriend during his heat,” Jaemin shamelessly supplies, as if it’s not Donghyuck’s private story. “It’s new.”

“Oh.” Sunwoo lifts his eyebrows at Donghyuck, impressed. “Good luck with that.”

Donghyuck pauses to understand Sunwoo’s nonchalant reaction, but no matter how much he spins it in his head, he can’t. He takes his volleyball t-shirt off to gain some time, and then he turns to Sunwoo, who is in the middle of stripping down as well, and breathes out.

“You don’t think it’s a big deal?”

Sunwoo shrugs. “We help them all the time, don’t we?” he reminds him. Jaemin slaps his thigh to punish him for insinuating that he’s just helping Jaemin, that he doesn’t get anything back, but Sunwoo’s smile merely widens at the whining. “It has the meaning you want to give it, only.”

Whether because he’s offended or because he notices Donghyuck’s discomfort, Jaemin pushes Sunwoo away from them and orders, “Go shower before I stab you in the eye with my keys.”

Donghyuck snickers at Jaemin patting his pocket, tingling with his keys, but he sighs in relief once Sunwoo walks away to the showers.  Jaemin doesn’t give him much time to breathe, however, because he spins his head to look at him with a judging glint in his eyes.

“That might be the problem,” Jaemin recognizes. “Renjun can’t be just a hook-up, right? Because you know him. Because you can’t afford hurting him.”

From the moment Donghyuck considered the deal, he was aware that he couldn’t treat Renjun like one of his one night stands. He can’t even treat him like a fling, because Renjun doesn’t like him. He’s trusting Donghyuck with a very important part of his relationship, and he deserves better than being Donghyuck’s new playtoy.

Feeling insulted, Donghyuck retorts, “I won’t hurt him. I don’t hurt people just for sleeping with them.”

“Not on purpose.” Jaemin scans him from head to toe. Donghyuck cowers at the inspection, because he still has a big purple hickey on his hips from the last time he slept with a guy from his Algorithms class. “But you tend to get all smug about this sort of stuff, you know? And this is a topic too sensitive for them, so please be considerate.”

“I’m offended,” Donghyuck fights back.

He pulls up his pants a bit to hide the hickey, though he should be pulling them off instead, and then thinks about the reason Jaemin is here. Renjun and Jaemin are close, close in a way the rest of them can’t be to them – because both of them are omegas, and just like they can’t understand some alpha and beta problems, they only have each other to share certain details. “If Renjun has told you I’ve already done something wrong and he doesn’t dare tell me directly, just share it.”

A flash of fear invades him when Jaemin, instead of assuring him that he hasn’t done anything wrong, takes a deep breath. He looks around the locker room to check that none of Donghyuck’s teammates can hear them, and his attentions drifts to Donghyuck again in resignation.

“He’s scared,” Jaemin reveals at last. Scared, Donghyuck thinks, why? “His heat starts in three weeks.”

“In three weeks?” Donghyuck sputters. He swears that the world tilts under his feet. “Why didn’t he-?”

“He doesn’t know how to ask for it,” Jaemin continues, not letting Donghyuck express his confusion. It’s not that Renjun doesn’t want Donghyuck to help him, or that he’s repenting for accepting the deal in the first place, but he’s never had to ask for sex. “You’ll have to spend the week before his heat with him too, so that means you only have two weeks to meet up before that. But you’re always so busy, Donghyuck, he doesn’t want to bother you.”

Donghyuck deadpans at that.

“And he’s embarrassed.”

“And he’s embarrassed,” Jaemin confirms.

Donghyuck is torn between whining and laughing, because Renjun is ridiculous, but Donghyuck can’t help finding it endearing. The chase is always a fun game, but god, Renjun has never had to chase after anyone, thus he can’t even take the first step.

On the contrary, Donghyuck has had his fair share of chasing. He doesn’t mind having to do that for Renjun, if that’s what he needs from him. The outcome is the same: he’s going to get into his pants.

“Thank you for telling me,” he says, patting Jaemin on the head.

Jaemin squints at him, an air of suspicion around him. “What are you going to do?”

“Fuck him, obviously.” Donghyuck pulls the clean towels out of his locker, smiling at how dirty those words sound on his mouth – how talking about Renjun makes them even more vulgar.  Jaemin pressures him with a glower, but Donghyuck just says, “A wizard never tells his tricks.”

“You’re disgusting.”

Donghyuck disagrees. He’s a gentleman. But Renjun has had enough of a gentleman for three years.

 

 

 

 

That night, as Donghyuck presses send on his phone, he prepares himself for the tsunami that is about to hit him. It’s a simple, innocent movie night on saturday? but Renjun reads his text and doesn’t answer for the next two hours.

Rather than troubling him, the lack of response amuses Donghyuck. He knows matter of fact that Renjun is free on Saturday, so he doesn’t have any excuse to reject him except fear. And though Donghyuck doesn’t thrive off on power, it’s quite thrilling to imagine the turmoil Renjun must be going through. A direct invitation feels too real, and it does for Donghyuck as well, but the necessity of accepting it should win over Renjun’s pride, his reticence and his shame.

That’s why at midnight, when his phone illuminates with a new message from Renjun, Donghyuck doesn’t even have to check it to know the answer.

And then, day by day, Donghyuck is incapable of thinking about anyone else but Renjun.

Despite refusing to acknowledge that he’s nervous, he prepares more than he’d ever prepare for someone he’s going to sleep with. He has to bribe Jaemin with free food so that he promises to be absent all night, crams up all his assignments not to worry about them while he’s with Renjun, and most important, he chooses a movie for him. It’s easy to pick, because Donghyuck knows so many details about his preferences that he surprises himself: Renjun loves dumb parody movies, but he hates romantic comedies; he claims to despise horror but watches it with wide, fascinated eyes, and he sobs like a baby at the smallest hint of tragedy in a sad movie.

On Saturday, however, Donghyuck doesn’t have more room to deny the truth. Jaemin laughs at his nervousness the whole day, stays with him until the bell rings and, when Donghyuck glances at the door as though there’s a ghost behind, Jaemin takes the lead.

Donghyuck is tremendously glad Jaemin saves him from that, because his heart races as he peeks at Renjun standing under the door frame. He looks even smaller tonight, his dark hair over his forehead and a loose blue shirt that swallows him whole, but his smile is sincere upon recognizing Jaemin.

“I was about to leave!” Jaemin announces, taking Renjun by his hand and pulling him inside.

Renjun stops laughing when Donghyuck greets him, yet the sweet look in his eyes survives. Donghyuck observes him, admires how pretty he looks tonight and wonders if he prepared for this somehow, like him. He stares for too long, but he doesn’t realize until Renjun dedicates him a questioning stare.

“Have fun,” Jaemin tells Donghyuck before leaving, leaning into his ear to whisper. Donghyuck fears that Renjun can hear it, but judging how he looks away from them, uncomfortable at their proximity, he can’t. “Don’t be a jerk, fuck him good, don’t mention Jeno, etcetera, etcetera.”

Donghyuck nearly pushes Jaemin out of the house, not caring how that looks in Renjun’s perspective.

When he shuts the door close, Renjun is examining him with an unreadable expression. Donghyuck doesn’t bother to put up an excuse for his behavior, but he approaches him and kneels in front of him. Renjun still has his shoes on, and Donghyuck smiles at how confused Renjun seems to be at the fact that Donghyuck is untying his shoes for him.

“So,” Donghyuck says, looking up as he pries the first shoe loose. “Did you have dinner?”

The blush in Renjun’s face tells him that he has never had an alpha take his shoes off for him as if he’s a prince, and Donghyuck makes an effort not to burst into laughter.

“I did.”

Donghyuck hums. “Good, because I’m a shit cook.”

“Jaemin says so too,” Renjun teases him, but he lets out a small noise of surprise at the second shoe falling off, and his voice softens while he watches Donghyuck put his house shoes for him.

With a feigned frown, Donghyuck jokes, “That boy talks too much, won’t let me even lie to impress.”

“It’s too late to impress me,” Renjun retorts. Much to Donghyuck’s surprise, he hooks his fingers in Donghyuck’s hair, as to caress him, and Donghyuck stares up at him just to find a fond smile on Renjun’s smile. “I’ve seen you do too many stupid things.”

Donghyuck doesn’t doubt that. Renjun might have even more stories about Donghyuck than Donghyuck himself, if he takes into account all the nights he got so drunk that he couldn’t remember a single thing the next day.

For once, Donghyuck appreciates pheromones. Renjun’s expression and posture don’t reveal his feelings, but his pheromones do. It’s an exchange that bares Donghyuck’s sensations as well, his agitation, the pressure of making Renjun feel comfortable. Renjun is more anxious than him. All in all, it’s a relief to know that Renjun isn’t the most mature half in this, that in fact he’s the least experienced between the two.

Minutes later, Renjun sits on the other side of the couch, eyes already fixed on the movie, and Donghyuck can’t repress his laughter. Renjun sends him a confused look before understanding that Donghyuck wants him closer, and he sheepishly crawls over the couch towards him. It’s helpless that he avoids Donghyuck’s eyes as he hugs him on his lap, but Donghyuck is amused at the small gasp he lets out when Donghyuck lays him on his side and spoons him from behind.

Renjun is so small that he fits perfectly fits against Donghyuck, and Donghyuck throws his arm around his hips, presses against him without shame. Renjun relaxes in his embrace in a matter of seconds, since Donghyuck’s pheromones soothe his anxiety, but a shaky breath escapes his lips. Donghyuck doesn’t draw attention to it, because Renjun is already uneasy, and it’s on his hands to fix it.

“It’s better this way, see?” Donghyuck whispers. It’s better if they touch each other. There’s nothing like having an alpha cuddling him, and Donghyuck is aware of that. Renjun attempts to glance back at him, but Donghyuck noses up his nape, and that makes Renjun stop. Donghyuck doesn’t want Renjun to look into his eyes, not right now, so he adds, “Just watch the movie. If it happens, then it happened, yeah?”

Renjun gives him a little nod, shrinking further into his embrace.

Disobeying his own advice, Donghyuck doesn’t follow the movie. He stares at Renjun instead, torn between curiosity and fondness. Renjun looks tremendously innocent tonight, yet Donghyuck knows that he’s not; he’s too innocent for this in a way, because he doesn’t understand how Donghyuck’s life works. Renjun doesn’t hook up, doesn’t understand the mechanism of what they’re doing. Perhaps he believes that they’re indeed going to watch the movie, that Donghyuck won’t make a move on him unless Renjun asks for it.

Distracted, Donghyuck draws circles in Renjun’s hips with his fingertips. Renjun watches the movie with big, attentive eyes, laughing every time a bad joke comes up and gasping when the jokes are so ill-natured that they’re borderline immoral. Donghyuck watches Renjun’s profile, his delicate jaw and the child-like smiles his lips expand into. His eyes roam over his neck, his collarbones, and then travel back to his face as though there’s a magnet pulling him.

He’s so pretty, Donghyuck thinks. An unfairly amount of pretty. And when Donghyuck moves closer to his neck, drawn by his scent, he catches sight of the mark under his jaw. The spell breaks. It feels like a kick in his stomach, and for a second the most visceral part of Donghyuck twists in frustration.

There’s a clear mating mark on Renjun’s neck, and that shouldn’t be surprising, because he has a mate. But it’s recent, too recent, red and purple and tender, perhaps from yesterday. Jeno has left it on purpose, to mark Renjun, to send Donghyuck a message.

It might have not been a conscious act, because Jeno’s instinct could have driven him to do that and realize, only later, why he did it. But it makes Donghyuck so fucking mad that his best friend would do this to Renjun to mark territory, that his alpha twirls at the thought of not being able to have Renjun like he belongs to him for a few hours. The mark clearly says he’s mine, and Donghyuck hates to be reminded of it.

Frustration builds in his stomach until Donghyuck loses control of his own pheromones, and Renjun distinguishes the shift in the air, turns his head to him, confused. It’s then that Donghyuck catches his own thick scent in the living room. His senses are too clouded to restrain his reaction, and despite Renjun’s wariness, his stare stays on the mark, burning every nerve of his body.

Renjun brings a hand to his neck, slightly surprised, “Are you looking at my-?

“Yeah,” Donghyuck groans, almost growls. He takes a deep breath, remembering that he shouldn’t be so inconsiderate to Renjun, but the harm is already done.

This isn’t Renjun’s fault. He’s not responsible of his mate’s possessiveness, and he’s not at fault for needing to sleep with an alpha during his heat, yet the stare they exchange tells Donghyuck that Renjun feels, indeed, accountable for it.

There’s an emotion akin to pity in Renjun’s eyes as he mutters, “I’m sorry if that makes you uncomfortable.”

Before Donghyuck can explain that the reason is very different, Renjun is twirling over the couch to face him. They’re too close, and Renjun’s shirt rides up at the movement; Donghyuck feels it over his ribs, the warmth, the pheromones on Renjun’s skin trespassing Donghyuck’s clothes.

“Don’t worry,” Donghyuck manages to utter. With Renjun looking straight into his eyes, he’s not capable of expressing how that mark affects him. It’s not ethical. Donghyuck lowers his stare towards his own abdomen and jokes, “In fact I have a very recent mark too, down there.”

It takes Renjun a second to comprehend what he’s talking about.

“Donghyuck,” Renjun whines, making a disgusted face, but then he laughs.

Donghyuck laughs with him, threads his fingers on the back of Renjun’s head. When Donghyuck strokes his hair, Renjun’s laugh dissipates to give space to a sweet, calm smile, and then silence devours their conversation. The movie sounds far away, perhaps because all of Donghyuck’s attention is on Renjun, on how beautiful he looks with that irremediable grin on his lips and the sweet slant of his eyes in happiness.

“I don’t care, I mean it,” Donghyuck lies. His heart stops as Renjun bites into his lower lip, as to repress another laugh. And that must be what makes him lose the last cell of decency in his body, because his mouth decides to be sincere for him, and he whispers a breathy, “But I want to lick it so fucking bad.”

His own wish catches him off guard, and he finds that same shock in Renjun’s expression. It’s more than that: Donghyuck wants to overlay his own taste over Jeno’s. He wants to make that mark bigger, send a message back, though he doesn’t know what sort of message yet.

“You want to lick my mark?” Renjun repeats, voice tinted with both fascination and confusion.

It’s not a rejection, Donghyuck realizes. Overwhelmed by his own excitement, Donghyuck slides his hand from Renjun’s hair to his jaw. Judging the spark in Renjun’s eyes, he’s not aware of how he rubs his own face against Donghyuck’s palm, looking for his affection.

Donghyuck melts, growls and burns within, all at the same time.

“Can I?” he hears himself ask.

Renjun doesn’t respond with words. It’s a subtle movement:  Renjun lifts his chin a few inches, bares his throat for him, pliant, willing. Donghyuck stops breathing, the room spinning around him, and the next thing he knows is that Renjun is gasping under the touch of his lips. Donghyuck kisses around the mark, small pecks to make sure that it’s not too much for Renjun at first. Renjun’s pheromones tickle his lips, calling for him to lick, but Donghyuck needs time for that: even though Renjun smells like himself, he also has a trace of Jeno on him.

Donghyuck passes an arm around his waist, brings Renjun close until he’s feeling all of him against him. He needs it that way, to know what Renjun is feeling, to read through him. His other hand remains on Renjun’s neck, his thumb pressing up on his jaw so that he doesn’t close access.

And then, Donghyuck licks over the mark.

He feels it through Renjun first: he shivers under him, and the sensation hits Donghyuck too. The taste of Renjun on his tongue sends an electric feel all over his body, but once Donghyuck has tasted him, he can’t stop. By the time Renjun lets out a weak noise, Donghyuck is already throwing a leg over him and changing positions, setting Renjun on his back and pulling at his hair so that Renjun keeps his head back.

Donghyuck isn’t sure of what he’s doing; he kisses Renjun all over his mark, but also on other spots of his neck. He kisses, sucks, licks and leaves a couple of faint hickeys, battling against the urge of actually sinking his teeth and leaving a print of him. Renjun encircles his head with his hands, but he doesn’t have any strength to either push Donghyuck down or away. He merely caresses Donghyuck’s hair, trembling underneath him, and does his best to repress the sounds that threaten to leave his mouth.

Afraid that it’ll be too much for Renjun to handle, Donghyuck progresses into soft pecks on his jaw. Renjun sighs at that, eyes fluttering close, and Donghyuck has a few seconds to gain all the oxygen he lost.

He wants to kiss Renjun. His lips are parted for it, and it’s the first time Donghyuck realizes how delicate they look, how perfectly they’ll fit in his mouth. Donghyuck hovers over him, brushes Renjun’s cheek with his thumb, and Renjun opens his eyes to stare at him. There’s a shift in the shade of his pupils, eyes darker than before, innocence gone and temptation growing.

They don’t say anything. Donghyuck teases him, leans down to kiss him and stops right before touching his lips. Renjun breathes against his mouth, and Donghyuck pulls away with the ghost of a smile, just enough to frustrate Renjun.

And that, indeed, breaks Renjun’s barriers.

“Kiss me,” he demands, fingers sinking in the back of Donghyuck’s head.

Serious, Donghyuck muses, “Thought you didn’t want to.”

Kissing Renjun is like the sea touching the shore. First Donghyuck brushes against his lips, a small wave, a small taste that dissolves as fast as it came. There’s only foam and a trace left behind. But the next wave is unstoppable, high and strong, and they meet each other in an open mouthed kiss, Renjun licking into his mouth and melting inside him. Donghyuck feels his whole body burst, Renjun’s warmth heating every inch of his skin, and yet it’s not enough, it’s never enough.

Renjun doesn’t tremble under him anymore. He kisses Donghyuck like he’s always wanted him, and Donghyuck consumes him with only one thought in mind: he wants Renjun so, so much too, that he’ll give anything to have him.

Fighting against his impatience, he takes his time to strip Renjun. He unbuttons Renjun’s shirt, slips it down Renjun’s dainty shoulders, and kisses down his collarbones. Renjun doesn’t wait for him: by the time Donghyuck has undone all buttons, Renjun’s hands are exploring underneath Donghyuck’s shirt too, tugging at it so that Donghyuck gets rid of it.

Donghyuck obeys, sits up for a moment to strip off, and smirks down at Renjun when his eyes immediately go to the hickey on his hips.

“I warned you,” Donghyuck reminds him.

Renjun seems to understand him, but much to Donghyuck’s surprise, instead of protesting, he sits up too. His lips look for Donghyuck’s mouth, but one of his hands shoots up to press on the hickey, and the other hooks on the waistband of Donghyuck’s pants. Donghyuck gasps, tongue entwined with Renjun’s, and helps with his sweats. In a matter of seconds both of them are naked down to their underwear, and Donghyuck can only think about how good it’ll feel to be skin on skin with Renjun. For Renjun, too.

“Should I lick that too?” Renjun asks, fingers still pressing over the hickey.

The question prickles at Donghyuck’s instinct. It proves Renjun knows what Donghyuck was trying to do by sucking on his mating mark; and now he’s playing with him, asking if he should try to own Donghyuck as well.

Aware that Renjun doesn’t expect Donghyuck to let him mark his territory, because Renjun is just a little, needy omega, and he shouldn’t have power over an alpha. Donghyuck threads his fingers in Renjun’s hair and propels him down, looking into his eyes. Donghyuck, on his knees, observes how Renjun slides down his torso, how Renjun stares up at him, hands tracing the path to his underwear.

And when Renjun reaches his hipbone, he opens his mouth and laps his tongue over the red hickey on Donghyuck’s skin. It’s not his tongue what sends a shiver down his spine, but Renjun’s eyes examining his expression, expectant and knowing, waiting for a reaction.

For the first time tonight, Donghyuck has to close his eyes, a pant caught in his throat.

He feels Renjun’s touch over his crotch, just slightly, and doesn’t hesitate to wrap his arms around him. Renjun lets him manhandle him, but there’s not much he can do anyway when Donghyuck places his hands on his ass at last and, dazed, realizes how wet Renjun’s underwear is.

It takes all the strength in the world not to rip his underwear apart, but Donghyuck remembers that he shouldn’t scare Renjun, that this is new for him. He guides Renjun’s head over his shoulder, and then brings his underwear down, lifting first one leg and then the other.

Then, Renjun is completely naked for him.

Donghyuck doesn’t bother to admire him. He frees his own dick from his underwear, and nearly laughs when Renjun’s eyes are drawn to it, like he can’t help it. Donghyuck doesn’t mind, doesn’t care if Renjun wants to suck him off, because he doesn’t have the patience for it now. He grabs Renjun’s waist – and god, he can encircle his whole waist only with his hands – and maneuvers him onto his lap.

Renjun seems to panic a bit, to assume that Donghyuck is going to fuck him without preparations, but Donghyuck merely brings him closer until their noses are touching, until Renjun is comfortable on his lap.

“Come here,” Donghyuck teases him, despite the proximity. “You’re always too far away.”

He tilts his head, plants a peck on Renjun’s mouth, and smiles as he caresses over his ass. Renjun has a small ass, Donghyuck isn’t surprised at that because all of Renjun is small; but it’s a nice ass, round and firm, and it fits in his hands. Donghyuck knows that he’s going to get obsessed over it in no time.

Renjun tenses up, yet he holds onto Donghyuck’s shoulders when Donghyuck strokes between his cheeks. Donghyuck can’t smell anything but that: Renjun’s arousal, how wet he’s gotten just with a few kisses, how much he needs an alpha. It leaves him no room for him to think.

“You’re so wet,” Donghyuck grunts, and Renjun makes an unrecognizable noise.

Pushing one finger in is so easy that Donghyuck doesn’t even have to check if Renjun is fine. That minimal touch drives Renjun forward, however, because he crumbles down on Donghyuck’s shoulder and moans a weak, “Shut up.”

He doesn’t have to prepare Renjun. He’s already open and slick enough for his dick, but Donghyuck wants to drag this little torture out a bit longer.

“That embarrasses you?” Donghyuck whispers into his ear, a mocking tone that he can’t conceal. Donghyuck could tease him endlessly and never get tired of him, and Renjun would have to hear it every time: that he’s wet for him, only for him, and that he can lie, but his body won’t. “Don’t be. I love it.”

Donghyuck holds him in place, Renjun straddling him on his knees, and fingers him until Renjun’s breathing becomes erratic. It’s evident that he’s holding back, yet Donghyuck lets him be; a few fingers might not break him, but Renjun hasn’t tasted an alpha in so long that he’s going to fall apart anyhow.

When Renjun’s legs start shaking, Donghyuck decides that it’s enough. He passes his hand over Renjun’s ass and then, with his slick, Donghyuck fists his own dick and lubes himself. Donghyuck isn’t sure if it’s because of Renjun’s wetness or because he’s so riled up that his own hand drives him mad, but he hasn’t let out such a honest, uncontrollable groan in months.

And then Renjun is looking at him with his pupils blown, leering at the way Donghyuck jerks himself off, and Donghyuck decides that he doesn’t care about the immorality of all this. He can’t even believe that he considered rejecting this. He grabs Renjun, lines up his dick with his ass, and licks into his mouth to give him a distraction. Renjun responds almost desperately, aware of the size of Donghyuck’s dick, aware that he’s going to need that kiss.

“Slow?” Donghyuck asks him, the head of his dick pressed up against Renjun’s entrance.

Donghyuck is expecting a yes, a nod, or any other sign to treat Renjun carefully. He doesn’t know Renjun’s limits, he can just assume, and he’s not going to play with fire the first time.

But then Renjun bites his lower lip, pulls at it until Donghyuck has his mouth completely open for him, and grunts, “Fuck me however you want.”

Donghyuck surrenders to his instinct.

Fucking into Renjun makes him forget who he is, where he is, who he is with. Renjun’s heat swallows him so well, so tight around his dick that Donghyuck can just regret not having fucked him earlier. That’s his first thought, and also the last one.

Renjun gives him full power, but that’s only in the beginning. The feeling of Donghyuck’s dick inside him robs him from words, from consciousness even, and he can’t stay still for Donghyuck. He drowns his forehead in the crook of Donghyuck’s neck and moans there, half overwhelmed, half ashamed. It’s lovely, Donghyuck realizes, to destroy such a pure thing thrust by thrust. It’s lovely to prove that Renjun can give into him, like everyone else, that Donghyuck could make him beg for it if he intended to do so.

But once Renjun adjusts around his length, his moans become little pants, and he manages to raise his head again. Donghyuck doesn’t hesitate to bring him into a kiss, and for a second, both of them smile into the kiss. It’s a shared smile that brings much more pleasure than being inside Renjun: it means Renjun likes this, that he trusts him, that he won’t regret it, and it adds fire to Donghyuck’s confidence.

When Renjun starts meeting his thrusts, Donghyuck has to grip his hips to control him. Renjun takes his whole length, crashes on him until he’s sitting on his knot, and Donghyuck isn’t used to omegas going so down on him. It’s almost painful, but a sort of painful that is delicious. It becomes harder, all of it: their kisses, their hands, the tension in Donghyuck’s lower abdomen. He fucks Renjun however how he wants to, rough, as desperate as Renjun himself, forgetting about everything else.

And Renjun forgets too. Donghyuck knows because his moans become shakier, because he holds onto Donghyuck like he’s the only rock keeping him conscious, and because when Renjun is about to come, his lips are still melted into Donghyuck’s mouth.

Donghyuck fists his hair and pulls Renjun away, and Renjun throws his head back, following the direction of his strength. He admires Renjun now, how pretty he is when he’s all submission and no sarcasm, when he’s enjoying, offering himself for him. Renjun glances at him, mouth parted, and waits for Donghyuck as though he has forgotten why Donghyuck had to do that, as though they have no rules.

“Look at me,” Donghyuck says. Renjun does, a sinful glint in his eyes. And just like that, Donghyuck bites out, “Come for me.”

It’s beyond satisfying to discover that Renjun wanted that order, and Donghyuck’s instinct purrs as Renjun comes untouched, his dick throbbing inside him. Donghyuck’s knot grows against Renjun’s entrance, and Renjun tries to engulf it, and despite how off guard, sensitive and willing that catches Donghyuck, he doesn’t let Renjun go lower.

Renjun collapses on him, and Donghyuck has to grab his ass harder to keep the pace, chasing his own orgasm. It’s even better with Renjun clenching around him, tender, his orgasm ripping through him in waves. Donghyuck is shameless enough to bite Renjun’s neck, just enough to make him groan, just enough to feel Renjun’s pleasure through his pheromones. Renjun’s scent whips down Donghyuck’s spine, and the last thing he remembers before coming is mouthing you’re so good, so, so good against Renjun’s mark.

And then, Donghyuck can’t feel anything, just his blood beating in his ears. He loses all his strength, incredibly wet and warm inside Renjun, and when he returns to reality, the first thing he feels Renjun press a kiss on his cheek before sliding off him. It feels like such an innocent gesture, a sweet kiss that tells him that it’s over, that thanks him, and Donghyuck closes his eyes in defeat.

 

 

 

 

It’s a strange night.

Renjun has to sleep over, for it’d be too emotionally straining to go back home after sleeping with his boyfriend’s best friend. Donghyuck doesn’t mind. He’s let dozens of guys stay the night – sometimes for the worst, because once a guy stole money from his drawer – and though Renjun is not just any guy, it’s not awkward to share a bed with him.

However, they don’t touch. After taking a shower, Renjun curls up on his side on the opposite edge of the bed. He forgot to bring his own clothes, so Donghyuck lends him a pajama and laughs at how ridiculously big they look on him – their heights aren’t that different, but their frames are, and it shows in how Renjun gets lost in his clothes. Donghyuck leaves him to clean himself up as well, and when he comes back, Renjun is already fast asleep.

Donghyuck has the urge to roll over the bed and cuddle him, because he looks so small in his bed, hugging the pillow, a lonely mess of a boy that is used to clinging onto his boyfriend at night. But Donghyuck represses that impulse, and certain that Renjun is comfortable, or too exhausted to care, he drifts off to sleep.

It’s Renjun’s groan what stirs him up.

Donghyuck has no idea what time it is, but on a Sunday that’s the last of his problems. His main problem is Renjun, standing in front of the mirror, pulling at his top and scrunching his nose at what he finds there. The light of the morning paints him different, Donghyuck thinks, but he’s not sure how.

“What are you doing?” Donghyuck moans, barely able to open his eyes. “For god’s sake, come back to bed.”

Renjun glances at him, surprised, maybe because he didn’t expect Donghyuck to wake up. His messy hair amuses Donghyuck, and he sends Renjun a stupid smirk, ruffling his own hair to point it out. All of he’s seen of Renjun before is his carefully crafted image, always looking perfect and clean, but overnight Donghyuck has discovered other sides of him that he never imagined.

Ignoring the mocking, Renjun glowers and says, “You scented me all over.” He runs a hand down his Adam’s apple, there where Donghyuck’s smell must be the strongest. “I reek of you.”

Donghyuck might not be the smartest when it comes to Renjun, yet he can tell that Renjun is bothered, so he decides not to jump into joking right away.

“Reek is a harsh word,” he scolds Renjun, as though he’s going to buy that it could hurt Donghyuck’s feelings. “You didn’t set any rule about scenting.”

At that defense, Renjun spins around to pin him with a serious glare. Donghyuck dares to smile, for he’s right: Renjun didn’t think that scenting would be an issue, and Donghyuck wasn’t a fool that would pass on the opportunity of pleasing his own instinct.

“I have to forbid you everything or you’ll just take the chance and do it, won’t you?” Renjun catches on, bringing his hands to his hips.

Donghyuck cheekily smirks at him, and Renjun falters at that exhibition of confidence. Taking advantage of that moment of weakness, Donghyuck offers, “If you don’t want me to scent you, just tell me.”

Renjun’s hesitation is the most pleasing scene Donghyuck has ever witnessed. Renjun blinks down at him, confused, as though he can’t believe Donghyuck is letting him renounce to that. Donghyuck knows that being scented feels good, that he made Renjun feel good last night for many reasons, and that one of them was unarguably the scenting.

And he knows that Renjun can’t resist the temptation.

“Just- just don’t scent me so much, okay?” he stutters, avoiding his eyes.

Donghyuck doesn’t let go of the cord so easily. He sits up on the bed, covers falling and revealing his bare chest, and smiles when Renjun’s first response is to check him out.

“What’s so much?” Donghyuck whispers, feigning confusion. Renjun is smarter than that, but he’s too flustered for getting caught red-handed looking at him, so he just stares at Donghyuck without understanding. “On a scale from smelling like baby powder to people thinking I knocked you up.”

Turning pale, Renjun gasps a threatening, “Donghyuck.”

Donghyuck raises his hands in defense. “Fine, I’ll try,” he promises, but his laughter doesn’t convince Renjun. He pats the spot next to him and, softer, he calls Renjun. “Now come back.”

Whether it’s because an alpha is ordering him or because he’s dying for an invitation, Renjun climbs on the bed with him. Unlike last night, he doesn’t set an enormous distance between them. He lies next to Donghyuck, close enough for Donghyuck to grab him if he wants to, and Donghyuck doesn’t hesitate to lie back again and do exactly that.

He hauls Renjun towards him with one arm, all of a sudden a bit intimidated by how comfortable Renjun seems to be with this.

“Can I ask you something?” Donghyuck asks then, and Renjun gives him a conceding nod. “Had you ever slept with an alpha before me?

Donghyuck already knows the answer. During a first time, omegas usually beg to be knotted. And even though Renjun lowered in an attempt to take his knot in the last moment, it wasn’t the spotlight for him. Donghyuck swears that his question isn’t a matter of pride, of his alpha refusing to acknowledge that perhaps Renjun didn’t want to be knotted so badly, but that Renjun isn’t as inexperienced with alphas as Donghyuck figured him out to be.

Renjun studies him in interest, quiet, as to discover why Donghyuck is intrigued. “Yeah,” he confesses. Donghyuck’s lack of reaction seems to satisfy him, because he arches his eyebrows and adds, “But I haven’t slept with an alpha in years.”

In years, Donghyuck muses to himself.

“How many?”

Renjun’s lips smugly tug up. “Almost two.”

The dates don’t fit, and Donghyuck chokes on his saliva when he tries to answer. Two years ago Renjun was already dating Jeno, so unless they’ve already done this – use an alpha to please Renjun so that they can go on with their relationship – there’s no explanation.

“Excuse me?” Donghyuck croaks out.

It’s evident that Renjun finds his shock very entertaining. He lifts his hand and tucks Donghyuck’s hair behind his ear, a tender gesture that Donghyuck can barely process in this situation.

“Jeno and I took a break back then, remember?” Renjun mutters, so low that it sounds like a secret. Donghyuck remembers. For Jeno, it was messy, he didn’t want it and he regretted their fight with his whole heart. He supposes that Renjun was having fun meanwhile. “It was one of Jaemin’s alpha friends, Hangyul.”

It’s childish, but Donghyuck doesn’t like that. He’s met Hangyul before, for he hangs out with Jaemin often and he’s in the basketball team, so they cross paths in the sports complex almost every day. Hangyul is a good person. Still, he’s an alpha, and Donghyuck knows their mentality too well not to be irked at the fact that he put his hands on Renjun.

“Hangyul,” Donghyuck sighs, hiding his annoyance. “I guess it suits you.”

Renjun laughs, eyes glinting under the light of the morning. “What is that supposed to mean?”

“Gentle, polite, caring,” Donghyuck answers without a doubt. It’s only after speaking that he notices that he’s describing Jeno too, but it’s too late to take it back. “A bit dumb.”

Even though Renjun’s amusement fades away, it’s progressive. His expression doesn’t turn harsh, but analytic, and as he runs his hand from Donghyuck’s hair to his nape, it becomes roguish.

“You know little about what I look for in men, Donghyuck,” Renjun shoots, daring, challenging to contradict him.

Donghyuck ponders about it for a moment, but with Renjun’s attention on him, his reason is in pieces. He wonders if Jeno is rough in bed, too, if Renjun doesn’t like gentle and caring.

“Right,” Donghyuck breathes out. Renjun’s touch on his skin vibrates, and Donghyuck knows for a fact that if he pushed Renjun on his back now, Renjun would open his legs for him without a protest. But his power relies on that certainty, and so he doesn’t need to prove it. “What would I know?”

 

 

 

 

Like Jaemin reminds him on a daily basis, Donghyuck has never had a talent for subtlety.

Taeyong stares at him across the table, a frown on his face. It’s not a good look on him, because Taeyong might have the features of an angel, but his character is beyond intimidating. It should mean something, Donghyuck is sure, that today not even Taeyong’s glare can make him focus.

Donghyuck understands his frustration, however. It was Donghyuck who scheduled this meeting, who needed help with his research, and he has already made Taeyong waste two hours. Taeyong is too nice to kick him out of his office, so he proposes moving out to the halls so that Donghyuck can breathe some air, and that’s when Taeyong loses his patience.

“What’s going on with you?” he pointedly asks, tapping his pen on Donghyuck’s notes. Most classes are over, and the silence within the faculty grows by the moment, just a few students making noise from the cafeteria and two students revising in the hall. “If you don’t have a good understanding of the topic yet, you should read on it before coming to see me.”

Donghyuck doesn’t intend to blow this meeting, but he admits to himself that his head is elsewhere. It’s in the image of Renjun crossing under the doorframe on his way out days ago, on Donghyuck lying alone at night, praying that Jeno’s protective instinct can adapt to the intrusion, on Jaemin cooking for him because he could smell his anxiety all over the house, on the lack of contact from his other friends.

(“Don’t worry about it,” Jaemin had told him hours ago, once Donghyuck revealed that he hadn’t seen Jeno in days, that he hadn’t messaged him either. Jaemin had scoffed at him, slinging his bag over his shoulders as he pushed his finished breakfast towards Donghyuck. “He’s not ghosting you, I promise. He’s just sunk in his internship, but he’ll be at the party tonight. You can kiss and annoy the fuck out of him later.”)

But Donghyuck flickers his eyes up to Taeyong and realizes that no matter how much he tries, he’s going to suffer through this whole ordeal. It’s funny that having fucked his current tutor in the past is a tiny, insignificant problem compared to the worries that sleeping with Renjun brings him.

“I’m fine,” he sighs, conscious that his lie will fall to deaf ears. “Sorry, I’ve just not been sleeping well and I-”

Donghyuck doesn’t manage to finish that excuse, because when he bends forward on the table, he catches sight of a familiar figure standing in the end of the hall. And so does Taeyong.

Renjun is leaning against the wall, a folder pressed against his chest and his small bag too low on his back. Donghyuck’s heart skips a beat, it’s unavoidable, and once he has set his eyes on Renjun, he understands why the strategy of working in the hall, with cleaner air, wasn’t working: Donghyuck’s senses have become more sensitive to Renjun’s scent, and that’s what is distracting him so much.

All Renjun needs to disarm him is a smile across a bad illuminated hall, and it scares Donghyuck.

“He’s waiting for you,” Taeyong remarks. He tilts his head down, looking for Donghyuck’s attention, as though he can read his thoughts. “Has been for a while.”

Taeyong’s subtle permission drives Donghyuck to signal Renjun to approach them. They don’t have many options, to be honest, because he doesn’t want to make Renjun wait for no reason, but also because he can’t concentrate if he’s there. He prefers to avoid the upcoming scolding from Taeyong.

It’s hard to be mad as Renjun flashes an enchanting smile at them, and Donghyuck witnesses Taeyong soften on his bench, looking at Renjun with an adoration that should be reserved only for puppies and children. Donghyuck would be lying if he said he can’t relate.

“Sorry, I didn’t want to interrupt,” Renjun sheepishly apologizes to Taeyong, bow included. He rummages through his bag in a rush, and to Donghyuck’s surprise, he pulls out his keys – Donghyuck recognizes the heart key ring that Jeno brought him from Bolivia. “Jaemin told me you forgot your keys, and I was on the way so-”

Of course it was Jaemin’s antics, sending Renjun to him just to confirm that they wouldn’t be awkward with each other. Judging how Renjun doesn’t seem to be embarrassed even in front of Taeyong, Donghyuck shouldn’t be so worked up.

“Thank you,” Donghyuck says, feeling strangely coy when he takes the keys from Renjun’s grasp. Renjun accepts the gratitude with a nod and, voice tinted with hope, Donghyuck hears himself ask, “See you later at the party?”

If Renjun notices the inflexion in his tone, he doesn’t mention it. “Sure!” he exclaims. He zips his bag, struggles with the folder in his other hand, and gives Taeyong an adorable wave before turning around. “Bye, Taeyong.”

“Nice to see you, Renjun,” Taeyong shoots back.

And there’s absolute silence while Renjun walks away, neither Taeyong nor Donghyuck bothering to pretend that they’re not waiting for privacy. Donghyuck has a bad hunch, a very justified bad hunch, because as soon as Renjun is out of sight, Taeyong faces him with an incredulous glint in his gaze.

Donghyuck can’t stand the pressure.

“What?”

Taeyong doesn’t cower at his irritation. On the contrary, it fuels his suspicions. “What was that?” he pries.

It’s an accusation. Donghyuck furrows his eyebrows, defensive, either because his desperation was too obvious or because Taeyong is assuming the worst.

“That’s Jeno’s boyfriend,” Donghyuck states, straightening up and looking at his notes like he’s interested in continuing with the meeting.

“I know.” Taeyong bites on his inner cheek, pensive, as to measure Donghyuck’s patience. Donghyuck wishes he knew how to stop this conversation altogether, since he’s not ready to discuss what’s happening, and he doubts he will ever be. “But your scent is all over Jeno’s boyfriend.”

It’s not Donghyuck’s imagination, then. The faint trace of himself in Renjun wasn’t his mind playing tricks on him, attempting to please his alpha. It’s real.

“We’re friends too,” Donghyuck lies. He swallows the knot that is growing in his throat. Renjun shouldn’t smell like him anymore, not after a whole week and spending so much time with Jeno. Donghyuck scented him enough for it to last for a couple of days, but Renjun must not know how to get rid of it. “I guess it just happened.”

It’s awful that, deep inside, Donghyuck is satisfied with this. With Renjun carrying his scent around, with people noticing, even though it’ll raise questions Donghyuck doesn’t want nor can answer.

“Donghyuck,” Taeyong calls him. The shift is almost imperceptible under Taeyong’s reprimanding, but it’s still there: comprehension. When Donghyuck dares to meet Taeyong’s eyes, Taeyong consoles him, “Don’t do anything dumb. I know senior year gets into your heads very easily.”

Donghyuck should laugh at that. It’d be difficult to do anything dumber than fucking Renjun, and it’s too late to fix that. Donghyuck knows there’s going to be a next time, again, dozens of times, and that he’s not going to run away from it even if it’s a mistake.

To ease off the atmosphere, Donghyuck sends him a challenging look and protests, “Don’t treat me like a kid. I’m getting too old for that.”

But Donghyuck knows that, even if he’s old enough not to receive a reprimand, he’ll always be young enough to fall.

 

 

 

 

Beach parties are a mortal trap for his health, but Donghyuck never learns.

Even though he should go home first and then to the party, by the time his meeting with Taeyong ends he’s too tired to commute all the way home. He decides to show up at the party with his bag, praying that he won’t get so drunk that he’ll lost it in the middle of the night. It wouldn’t be the first time.

Donghyuck isn’t surprised to find out that after a couple of hours, people have already grouped with their friends, sitting in circles and drinking among them rather than talking to strangers. Donghyuck loves that, but not tonight: Jaemin is in a circle with Sunwoo, Chenle, Jisung and needless to say, Jeno and Renjun.

A mere glance pushes Donghyuck to reconsider joining them. Renjun is on Jeno’s lap, his head thrown back on his chest, and Jeno’s arms are secured around his belly. Donghyuck knows so many people in this party, he could just spend his night with someone else and avoid the discomfort that watching Jeno and Renjun will grant him. Yet he’s spent most of the week whining about how he fears Jeno will be awkward with him, and Jaemin is for sure going to kill him if he loses the chance of being with his best friend.

“You’ve changed,” Chenle throws at him when Donghyuck sits with them. Regardless of his protest, he pours a drink for Donghyuck, already tipsy enough to spill half of it on the sand. “Coming late to a party because you’re with your tutor.”

Donghyuck accepts the cup, limiting himself to a smile. Chenle reminds Donghyuck of himself in many aspects, except he’s an omega, but that makes quite an extravagant omega out of him.

“I don’t think spending the evening with Taeyong is that much of a torture,” Jisung smartly supplies, wiggling his eyebrows at Donghyuck.

“You’re so basic,” Jaemin protests, laughing.

“So am I,” Donghyuck agrees, and fakes a moan as Jaemin pushes him over the sand.

Being late was a great decision, however. All of them have had enough time to reach different levels of drunkenness, and once Donghyuck decides to mover over the circle and approach Jeno, Jeno dedicates him a dim-witted smile. He’s out of it, so Donghyuck is in.

Renjun crawls off his lap, leaves with Chenle because Chenle insists he’s seen his crush at the other side of the beach and he needs company to maintain his confidence. That’s Donghyuck’s cue to hog Jeno, though, so he shamelessly rests his head on his thigh, face up.

Jeno blinks down at him, as though he can’t recognize his face, and then breaks into a sweet smile. As he pats Donghyuck’s head like he’s a dog, Donghyuck realizes that he should get that drunk too or he’ll have to be responsible for him later on.

“My lovely dumbass,” Jeno purrs, completely enchanted with the situation.

Donghyuck cackles. “Tequila isn’t good for you, Jeno.”

That’s crystal clear, for Jeno is hovering over him in the blink of an eye, in an impressive demonstration of his flexibility, pressing their foreheads together.

“That’s what Renjun has said about you for years,” he whispers. Donghyuck is aware of that; he’s never been a good influence on Jeno, if the amount of failed exams during their second year is proof of it. Jeno giggles, “And look at us now.”

It’s impossible to tell if he’s referring to their friendship or to the fact that Renjun is now taking advantage of Donghyuck, but his chest shrinks at his words anyhow.

“That’s a fallacy,” Donghyuck manages to croak out. Joking is his only card. “I’m the best thing that can ever happen to anyone.”

Fond, Jeno detaches enough to look into his eyes, and hums, “I know.”

Not able to hold his gaze for long, Donghyuck has an idea. He twirls around, stands up with a jump and holds out his hand for a disconcerted Jeno. But Jeno and he have always been on the same wavelength, and there's no reason for Jeno not to follow him.

Jeno's palm is warm against him, and so is his smile, and Donghyuck realizes that this is a party and, despite Jeno's problems, which are his problems now too, he doesn't have to act like this isn't his best friend.

“What are we doing?” Jeno asks him, bursting into laughter as Donghyuck leads him away from their friends.

Donghyuck sends Jaemin a last glance. The desperation that reflects on Jaemin's eyes is hilarious, like a plea for Donghyuck not to abandon him with Sunwoo and Jisung. Donghyuck knows the reason why: he's noticed how Jisung stares at Jaemin, too, how he's been rotating around him for a whole year. Watching Jaemin sandwiched between two alphas humors Donghyuck to no end, and he hopes his intoxicated self doesn't go back to aid him in the entire night.

“Dance,” Donghyuck answers Jeno.

Dance is an overstatement. They stop by the group that brought loudspeakers, and they welcome them as though they've been friends for their whole lives. Donghyuck takes Jeno's sneakers off, since it's already hard enough for him to walk, let alone dance with shoes on, and then pulls him back up from the sand. Both of them whirl and laugh, dance too close to each other, and Donghyuck falls deep in the sand a few times. He can't even hear the music, doesn't know what they're dancing to, but it's been a while since he had so much fun. Standing up every time is a challenge, for Jeno is too drunk to help him and they often end up entangled with each other, hair full of sand and people's feet moving dangerously close around their heads. But they stand again and again, and the last thing he remembers is pushing his head into the crook of Jeno's neck and laughing so hard that his ribs hurt.

And when Donghyuck opens his eyes and finds himself by the shore, lying back as if someone had dropped him from the sky, he has no idea how he got there. He tries to sit up, but the world slants beneath him, the beach, the buildings and the sky at the same time, and he only has time to check that Jeno is curled up around his leg before falling back.

“Oh my god,” Donghyuck hears someone say, though he doesn't know if it has passed one hour or one minute. “I was going crazy looking for you two. Jaemin!”

“There they are,” Jaemin shouts in relief. “Fuck, they're a mess. I'll take Jeno, he's bigger.”

“Are you insinuating I'm not strong enough to carry him?”

“That's exactly what I'm insinuating.”

Donghyuck feels his laughter simmer in his mouth, recognizing Renjun's indignant tone. The weight on his leg disappears one second later, and Donghyuck opens one eye in time to catch sight of Jaemin carrying a half-unconscious Jeno on his back.

Donghyuck makes an effort to lie on his side and look at Renjun who, on his knees, is in the process of evaluating how to drag him up. It's easy to tell that he's not very sober himself, and Donghyuck notices that the blush on his cheeks from the alcohol is the same exact of blush he gets during sex. Not to share that thought, Donghyuck bites his tongue until it burns.

“Come on, let's go home,” Renjun mutters, tucking his hands under Donghyuck's armpits.

That's the issue: Donghyuck doesn't want to. He wants to stay here, either with Jeno or Renjun, he doesn't mind. Just not the two of them at once.

“No,” he protests, and to shake Renjun off him, he wriggles his shoulders. “I'm fine.”

Renjun releases him with a sigh. It's better not to argue with Donghyuck when he's drunk, that's a lesson that Donghyuck has taught him extensively over the years, so Renjun opts for dropping on the sand too. Donghyuck wonders if Renjun would wait for him all night, even if he becomes stubborn on purpose, or if he’d eventually leave him alone on the beach.

When Donghyuck reaches out to touch him, he's not sure on what he holds onto – maybe his leg or his arm – but Renjun responds by caressing his cheek, and Donghyuck couldn't feel more content. It’s all the affection he needs, because Renjun has barely looked at him tonight, and the gap between avoidance and having Renjun naked under him is killing him.

“You know what's not fine but is really, really funny?” Donghyuck breathes out, dumbly smiling to himself.

He doesn't give Renjun the chance to reply, but judging the expectation Renjun is observing him with, he didn't intend to do so either way.

“That you pity me because I have to fuck you,” Donghyuck sputters, no filter to stop him. There’s no room for regret, since he's aware of what he's saying; it's just that he'd have never dared to share it while sober. He has thought about it for days, the stares Renjun has always sent him, the patronization. Renjun with his perfect life, his perfect boyfriend, his perfect grades, always in juxtaposition with Donghyuck's messy life, his solitude, and the need of working three times harder than everyone else to get the same result. “Sex without love, what a terrible thing.”

Renjun's fingers on his cheek stiffen. Donghyuck squints at him, trying to see his expression, but the only conclusion he gets is that Renjun isn't smiling and that his attention is, indeed, on Donghyuck.

Renjun whispers, “I've never said such thing, Donghyuck.”

“I can see it in your eyes, liar,” Donghyuck retorts. He attempts to point at Renjun's face with his index finger, but somehow it gets intertwined with Renjun's arm and he realizes touching his skin is much nicer. Renjun lets out a soft laugh, a laugh that dies as soon as Donghyuck speaks again. “Having to fuck a pretty omega that hasn’t gotten knotted in years. What a terrible thing. It must be a punishment of the universe.”

Alcohol is a curse, Donghyuck grunts to himself. He's surprised that Renjun hasn't slapped him across the face for talking about him this way, but he might be too drunk as well to be offended. Donghyuck should look out for the next days, though.

“You’re ridiculous,” Renjun teases him. But then he's closer, enough for Donghyuck to inhale his pheromones, and Donghyuck knows that he'd be ridiculous for Renjun a thousand times. Renjun's thumb presses over his cheek, and at last Donghyuck manages to make out Renjun's eyes, the faint pity in them. “You talk about love like it’s meaningless.”

Maybe it is, Donghyuck wants to tell him. Maybe it's not worth it, it doesn't make sense, and it's just a social construction.

But what leaves Donghyuck's mouth is a secret, a secret that many suspect but that Donghyuck has never shared. He doesn't know what drives him to disclose it. Perhaps he's weak for cute boys, and Renjun looks incredibly beautiful with the sea behind him; or it could be that Renjun is full of love, and Donghyuck hates him for that, wants to destroy a piece of the hope he lays on everyone, on Donghyuck too.

“I’ve never loved anyone.”

Yet Renjun gazes at him in slight surprise, and Donghyuck's heart beats faster, harder, like it's asphyxiating.

“I don’t believe you,” Renjun utters. And the pity is gone, replaced by an emotion akin to fascination, and to Donghyuck’s interest, indignation. “You just tell yourself that.”

Donghyuck doesn’t contradict him. He still holds onto the belief that he has never been in love, the sort of love that can consume him for better and for worse. It’s always guys coming and going, Donghyuck kicking them out, having fun with them. None of them have made Donghyuck happy, but Donghyuck is already happy, so he guesses it’s not a good strategy to measure it.

He closes his eyes and sees Jeno and Renjun engraved in his eyelids, caring for each other unconditionally, forsaking their pride and instinct, giving into requests that won’t make them happy but that will content the other half. He thinks about Jeno shoving Renjun into his arms, into an alpha’s arms, not fearing that Renjun will leave him.

Love must be that. Wanting to make the other person happy.

Donghyuck caresses down Renjun’s arm until he’s stroking his hand, both of their hands on Donghyuck’s cheek. Renjun doesn’t pull away, but deep within Donghyuck wishes he would, wishes he’d make this much easier than it’s going to be.

Staring into the haze of Renjun’s stare, Donghyuck draws a lazy, very intoxicated smile, and asks, “When are you moving in with me?”

This whole situation is absurd, but lying drunk on a beach with Renjun, not chasing after their friends, ignites a fire within him.

“Moving in with you,” Renjun repeats after him, giggling. “That’s not what I’m doing, Hyuck.”

Donghyuck disagrees.

“You get what I mean.”

Renjun evaluates him with an intelligence that shouldn’t be allowed in someone that has drunk half a bottle of whiskey by himself. He turns his hand around, intertwines fingers with him and their hands drop in the sand.

“I don’t think I’ll spend the whole week before my heat with you,” Renjun confesses. That’s not what they’ve agreed the first time, but Donghyuck would never pressure him. As time goes on, Renjun might be comfortable enough to invade his house for longer, and now is clearly not the time. “Only the two days before, they’re the worst.”

That gives Donghyuck around five or six days of having Renjun around, depends on how much his heat lasts. Long enough to turn him crazy. Donghyuck is ready to embrace madness.

Pretending not to be pleased at the sudden change, Donghyuck clicks his tongue. “At your service, Huang.”

Renjun either doesn’t believe his acting or doesn’t care, given that he just smiles wider at the use of his last name, entertained by Donghyuck’s behavior.

“You’re so cute when you’re not busy being a jerk,” he observes.

There are many complaints that cross Donghyuck’s mind. For starters, that he’s been too good of a boy lately to be called names. Secondly, that he’s not cute. It’s almost an insult too, but somehow in Renjun’s mouth sounds sweet, and Donghyuck doesn’t have the guts to repress Renjun’s thoughts.

Donghyuck scrunches up his nose at him, overly aware of how Renjun’s small hand squeezes his, and claims, “Sad that being a jerk is my main task in life.”

“Your only task in life now is making it home alive,” Renjun retorts.

Instead of playing along, Renjun pushes all his weight back in an attempt to stand up and tow Donghyuck with him. Donghyuck looks up at him, invaded by a fit of laughter, because there’s no way Renjun can lift him if he doesn’t collaborate. And indeed, it only takes a small drag from Donghyuck to make Renjun collapse on top of him like a house of cards.

Donghyuck takes advantage of the moment to hug him, but it’s a mistake: Renjun smells so much of him, still smells of sex and alpha and lust, that Donghyuck thinks he’s hallucinating.

“We have to leave,” Renjun whines.

“Make me.”

Renjun throws his head back to be able to stare at his face. The grin that grows there, at Donghyuck’s challenge, knots all of Donghyuck’s nerves. Renjun taps his nose with his index finger and teases, “Don’t be so full of yourself. I can make you do anything for me.”

Donghyuck doesn’t doubt it.

 

 

 

 

“You missed me?” Mark says, imitating Donghyuck’s tone in surprise. “Who are you and what did you do to Donghyuck?”

To be fair, Donghyuck hasn’t met up with Mark in weeks, and even though it was because Mark didn’t want to, Donghyuck should have been a better friend and tugged him out of the house by his ear.

It turns out to be pretty evident as Donghyuck watches Mark’s face, pale and tired, like a teen that hasn’t seen any light except the one from their computer’s screen in years. Donghyuck had supposed that Mark needed time to cry on his own, but when he sits across him in the restaurant, Donghyuck realizes he was wrong. Mark is thinner and sadder, and Donghyuck would bet his whole life that the moron hasn’t cried a single tear yet.

“Don’t be so cold,” Donghyuck jokingly scolds him. He pats his hands over the table, reaching around the hole of the upcoming barbecue, and asks, “How are you feeling?”

There’s a chance no one has prompted this conversation with Mark yet. Everyone knows that he’s devastated, so it’s either a matter of not wanting to stick the finger into a wound, or just assuming that Mark doesn’t need to share his feelings just because they’re transparent.

Donghyuck suspects otherwise. Mark needs to talk.

“Like shit, to be honest,” he admits, no trace of shame. He’s past the line of being embarrassed of his own pain, and Donghyuck knows how that feels.

Not letting go of his hands, Donghyuck assures him, “It’ll get better, you know that.”

Yuta might not come back, though, that’s what Donghyuck keeps shut in his mouth.

“I know.” Mark’s gaze wanders all over the place, but he seems to be very composed for this conversation. “I think I’m having a harder time because it makes sense that we broke up. He had to leave the city to work, I knew that, but I wasn’t ready.”

Donghyuck understands that. None of them cope with their problems in healthy way, they ignore them until they catch up with them and they get crushed under their weight. Donghyuck is an expert at that, so he comprehends why Mark preferred to be happy with Yuta for a while without worrying, and then face the consequences later.

“Long distance relationships suck, dude. You’re dodging a bullet,” Donghyuck consoles him. He reclines on his chair, detaching from Mark; his friend looks at ease after spilling his thoughts, and Donghyuck can’t help but be proud of that. “You know what I think-”

“Yeah, yeah,” Mark interrupts him, rolling his eyes. “That’s if it’s meant to be, then it will be sooner or later.”

Mark has always remarked that it was an excessively romantic statement for someone like Donghyuck, but Donghyuck is firm in believing so. It’s not just about love, however.

“God, sometimes you listen to me, huh?”

Both laugh at that, and then the silence settles between them as the waitress turns on the barbecue for them. Donghyuck has never been a big fan of this, but for once he wanted to cook for Mark, to show support and care without words.

As soon as the waitress leaves, Mark observes him cook the meat and sends him a judging glance, “So?”

“So?” Donghyuck responds, distracted.

“You don’t have anything to tell me?”

Donghyuck looks up, caught off guard at the question. Mark’s eyebrows have disappeared under his bangs, and Donghyuck swears that even if he can’t read Mark’s thoughts, he can sense the shade of disapproval painted on his semblance.

The math to figure out what he’s talking about isn’t that difficult.

Resigned, Donghyuck sighs. “They told you, didn’t they?”

“It’d be hard to hide it if Renjun was to disappear every time his heat is near,” Mark retorts with a shrug. He’s not wrong. They’d be able to explain it once, twice even, but by the third time Mark would question why Renjun isn’t spending his heat with his mate. Mark racks his gaze over his expression and shoots, “Are you sure of what you’re doing?”

It’s the first time someone takes this issue with the seriousness Donghyuck was giving it in the beginning, and though it pushes Donghyuck out of the comfort zone he’s settled into, he appreciates a sign that he wasn’t being paranoid.

“If I’m completely honest,” Donghyuck starts, unafraid of confessing it to Mark, “No.”

That seems to encourage Mark’s skepticism, his stare fixed on Donghyuck without interrupting him.

Donghyuck clears his throat, and to alleviate the atmosphere, he jokes, “But I couldn’t decline the offer, not if it’s Renjun.”

Mark groans. “You’re a pervert.” But as always, he ends up bursting into laughter, for Donghyuck shouldn’t be so indecent about his best friend’s boyfriend, and yet he is, and that’s so rude that Mark can’t resist laughing. However, he softens as he adds, “Renjun loves you, you’re aware of that, right?”

Rolling his eyes, Donghyuck protests, “I think love is a bit of an overstatement.”

Renjun must have developed some attachment to him, just like Donghyuck feels fondness towards him. But Donghyuck believes that people get hooked even in their enemies, so that’s not a reliable proof of anything.

“It’s been many years,” Mark insists. By the time Mark is drawing a patronizing smile, Donghyuck is resigned to listen to whatever fantasy he’s going to come up with. “He’s not the kind of friend that has joined a thousand parties with you and has enabled your awful antics, but he’s the friend that has taken care of you the most.”

Donghyuck’s brain doesn’t process those words at first. They’re like a knife stuck on his back, and Donghyuck feels his blood drain away from his face, dripping through his wound.

“I don’t like where this is going.” He glances at the counter, hoping that the waitress returns with more food and cuts this conversation in half, but it’s useless. “We’re friends? Yes. But he’s not the first person I’d resort to if-”

Mark clicks his tongue, shakes his head, not disposed to hear his excuses. “You don’t have any idea of who your real friends are,” he guarantees. It’s almost an insult, and yet Donghyuck doesn’t have the heart to deny it; though Mark might be crossing a line, he’s still right. “Because you think you don’t need anyone, but you do.”

Running a hand through his hair, Donghyuck scoffs. He came here to console Mark, and instead Mark is poking at his wounds without shame.

It’s true, anyhow. Renjun has crashed a lot of good moments for Donghyuck, or at least moments he considered happy, but all of them were for his own good. Renjun is the one who has been there when Donghyuck needed to talk, even if Donghyuck didn’t want to open up to him. Renjun is the one who has meddled between Jeno and him every time they argued, the one who has controlled their egos so that they didn’t hurt each other.

Donghyuck is aware of that, but it stings in many levels apart from emotionally. He has never appreciated Renjun. On the contrary, he has stretched the distance between, laughed at his attempts to keep him safe, ignored the need of maturing along everyone else. Perhaps Donghyuck is afraid of that, of accepting that Renjun has influenced more in his life than he’d have ever let him.

 

 

 

 

It’s that same night, when Donghyuck stands in front of the door of his own flat, that he’s certain he has gone crazy.

His instinct might be playing tricks on him, so he sniffs his own clothes first, then his wrists, and makes a pathetic attempt at smelling his own hair. But Renjun’s scent isn’t there, impregnated on him: it’s in the air. Donghyuck stares at the door with reticence, like it’s its fault that he’s having a crisis, that he’s finally spiraled into absolute madness all due to his alpha nature.

But then he puts the key in the lock, and he hears a very familiar laughter spring from inside. His whole body reacts to that in ways Donghyuck should be ashamed of. To swat the torrent of thoughts that crashes on him, he takes a deep breath and pushes the door open.

Jaemin and Renjun turn their heads towards him right away, and oh, how Donghyuck hates the sensation of happiness that explodes in his chest. They’re on the couch, Jaemin already in his pajamas, and Renjun with his knees pressed against his chest, an adorable smile on his face.

“Hey,” Donghyuck greets them, though his attention focuses on Renjun only. All his strength abandons him, and so do words, politeness as Renjun’s lips stretch into a wider grin. “Are you here for me?”

Jaemin lets out an indignant noise. “The lack of tact,” he remarks, displeased. But Renjun, next to him, dissolves into laughter at Donghyuck’s straightforwardness. “The lack of decency.”

Even though it should be the perfect moment for Donghyuck to be ashamed, Renjun shoves Jaemin aside so that he shuts up, and Donghyuck doesn’t have time to read the situation. He knows how it came off: he’s showing interest in fucking Renjun and nothing else, a one track mind. Jaemin would call him basic and primitive if Renjun wasn’t stopping him, but Donghyuck swears that he didn’t intend to give such an impression.

He’s just too tired to control what leaves his mouth.

“I’m sorry I came sooner than we’ve discussed,” Renjun apologizes, clear hope in his eyes not to be kicked out. He waves Jaemin to leave, as if it’s his own house, but luckily Jaemin comprehends that it’s a conversation too private for him, and he sends Renjun a flying kiss before jumping out of the couch. “But I’m already having symptoms and-”

“It’s fine,” Donghyuck cuts him off, alarmed at the fact that Renjun thinks he has to apologize for this. They agreed on this, and Renjun is far from a nuisance when he’s on top of him. He strides to Renjun under the vigilance of his attentive eyes, and sets a hand over his forehead despite Renjun’s taken aback reaction. “You’re kind of hotter, indeed. I mean- hot as in temperature.”

With Donghyuck’s palm on his forehead, Renjun looks up at him and the corners of his mouth curl up in mischief.

Donghyuck doesn’t remember when the last time he blushed was, so he sputters a nervous, “Don’t look at me like that.”

“You really didn’t have to explain that,” Renjun remarks, so composed that it breaks Donghyuck’s façade. He pulls away, not just because Renjun burns, but because he burns in ways that aren’t healthy for his sanity. Renjun laughs and says, “Guys get weird once you’ve let them fuck you, don’t they?”

For a second, Donghyuck can’t believe his ears. Renjun might not be talking about this moment in particular, but also about the night in the beach. Donghyuck isn’t sure of how much Renjun remembers, but he hopes he has forgotten, at least, the way Donghyuck clung onto him in the sand.

“Don’t be mean to me,” Donghyuck whimpers, closing his eyes just not to witness the mockery in Renjun’s face.

The next thing he feels is Renjun patting the side of his thigh, and as Donghyuck dares to peek at him, he discovers that Renjun is back to his sweetness.

“I brought food for you and Jaemin, for the hospitality,” he says. Donghyuck doesn’t realize until he mentions it, for his senses are too hooked in Renjun’s scent, but he completely missed the smell of food all over the apartment. “I’ll take a shower while you eat, yeah?”

Donghyuck nods, for he’s not able to do anything else. Renjun looks calm, too calm to be so close to his heat, but Donghyuck is no one to judge. Renjun told him he’d wait a couple more days, and anticipation was already crawling on Donghyuck like a creeper. He’s secretly glad Renjun didn’t take the risk of waiting longer.

It’s even difficult for him to eat, even though it’s been half a day since he met up with Mark, but the mere thought of Renjun in his bedroom, in his bathroom taking a shower, kills his appetite. He has the bad luck of forcefully stuffing his mouth right when Jaemin walks into the kitchen for his nightly glass of milk, but he supposes that at this point there’s barely any pride left to save.

“Calm down, tiger,” Jaemin jokes, bending over his stomach to laugh.

Donghyuck scowls at him. “Shut the fuck up.”

Jaemin strolls around the kitchen, looking for a clean glass, and spins around to face Donghyuck as he pours himself the milk.

“You’re so rude,” he complains, no trace of annoyance. He’s judging Donghyuck, however, that’s evident. Donghyuck can’t blame him, because even his own nervousness is so transparent for himself that is plainly pathetic. “I’m an omega too, I’m offended that I never got these reactions from you.”

Jaemin is just messing with him, but Donghyuck can only think about how Renjun, for some reason, affects him to this extent. Donghyuck isn’t weak to all omegas, and Jaemin is the living proof of that.

“I seriously don’t know what to answer,” Donghyuck says after swallowing his food, trying not to choke. “Except shut up.”

His flatmate would never allow him that privilege. He puts the milk back into the fridge, and as he walks backwards out of the kitchen, he smirks at Donghyuck. “Please, don’t be too loud. I got an exam tomorrow.”

Donghyuck presses his lips into a line, bothered, but he can hear Jaemin laugh all the way to his bedroom. Uneasiness growing, Donghyuck takes a couple of bites more and decides that there’s no point in eating if it falls wrong in his stomach.

Renjun is still in the shower, so Donghyuck changes into comfortable clothes and plays on his phone until Renjun is ready. He has no idea what to expect from tonight, from Renjun, and that’s what unsettles him the most. Renjun is going to spend a lot of time in his apartment, with him, and Donghyuck isn’t used to having sex with people and letting them stay for so long.

To his relief, Renjun comes out of the bathroom completely dressed, though his hair is slightly wet and he looks maddeningly small. With a towel in his hand, Renjun finishes drying his hair and then hops on the bed with Donghyuck.

It’s scary how Donghyuck’s worries fade away, how Renjun meets his embrace as though it’s a familiar routine for them. And Donghyuck doesn’t feel dirty, because there’s nothing dirty about having Renjun lying with him. It’s natural, a medicine, and Donghyuck forgets his own nervousness as Renjun rests his head on his chest and throws an arm over his body.

Donghyuck caresses Renjun’s hair, smooth through his fingers, and whispers, “Do you want me to kiss you?”

Perhaps because of the shooting of Donghyuck’s caressing, Renjun takes a long time to answer, a time that seems endless to Donghyuck.

“Just being around you alleviates it,” Renjun rejects him at last.

Renjun is comfortable just by being in contact with him. Sometimes Donghyuck forgets about the power of his own pheromones and now, because he’s drowned in Renjun’s pheromones, he realizes that Renjun must feel as complete as he does.

“That’s great.” And Donghyuck discovers that he’s sincere, that he doesn’t need to undress Renjun to enjoy his company. He’s quite breathless as he continues, “What do you want to do? Should we talk?”

“What do you want to talk about?”

Donghyuck traces the path from Renjun’s hair to his cheek, and then to his jaw, admiring how warm his skin feels under his fingertips, how pretty and relaxed Renjun looks against him. Renjun’s analyzing eyes become softer with every inch of skin that gets marked by Donghyuck’s imprint, and Donghyuck wonders why he was never allowed to have someone like him.

And then Donghyuck surprises himself saying, “Tell me about your day.”

That’s what Renjun does, in a small, sweet voice, and Donghyuck soaks in his words like he wishes to suffocate in them. Renjun falls asleep in the middle of his own story, and only when his eyelids flutter close and his hand grabs onto Donghyuck’s shirt, Donghyuck finds his own peace reflected on Renjun’s face.

 

 

 

 

It's not morning when Donghyuck rises from bed, heart beating so fast that he can't breathe.

He wakes up in a hell of pheromones, alone, the air so clogged that Donghyuck doesn't know if it's his own pheromones, Renjun's or even Jaemin's. The bed is painfully empty: there where Renjun was, there are only wrinkled sheets and a faint trace of him. Donghyuck is surprised he hasn't noticed Renjun's absence earlier. The difference is enormous, especially because Renjun's dainty frame was pressed against him, his warmth rocking him, and Donghyuck hasn't slept that well in so long that he can't remember the last time.

In an attempt to stretch out of his haziness, Donghyuck gets up, caressing over the sheets to feel Renjun's trace once more. It's not hard to find him, because as Donghyuck steps out of his bedroom, Renjun's scent becomes more intense, and Donghyuck's will becomes weaker.

Renjun is in the kitchen, slightly curved over the counter, a glass of water in his hands. In his hold, the glass trembles, and Donghyuck observes him from the door for a moment, taking in why Renjun abandoned the bed instead of asking for help.

He isn't in heat yet, otherwise Donghyuck would have turned crazy, but his pheromones are so captivating that he won't last much longer before breaking into heat. Even Donghyuck's skin dampens, pheromones ready to respond to Renjun's needs, and he suddenly thinks that Renjun is too far away, that he should be next to him, that he should be taking care of him.

Donghyuck approaches him, unannounced. His scent is enough for Renjun to detect him. Aware of what his touch will grant him, Donghyuck enfolds Renjun from behind, the fire of Renjun's body igniting his senses as well. Renjun doesn't say a word: he leans back into Donghyuck with a sigh, trembles all over despite Donghyuck's cooling effect.

“You’re warmer,” Donghyuck whispers. It's still night, and it feels wrong to raise his voice both because of Jaemin and because he doesn't want to scare Renjun, not in such a sensitive state. “God, your scent was making me crazy all the way here.”

It shatters Donghyuck even further now, with Renjun so close to him that Donghyuck's senses are enclosed around Renjun only, the rest of the world dimming. If Jaemin walked into them right now, Donghyuck wouldn't be able to hear him; he’d detect a fellow alpha as a danger, however.

“Donghyuck,” Renjun calls him, almost like he intends to check he’s real. That Donghyuck isn’t a fever dream. The back of his head fits over Donghyuck's collarbones, and Donghyuck observes how he closes his eyes, pleased at the contact. “I'm sorry I woke you up.”

He’s sincerely sorry, but Donghyuck wishes Renjun would have bothered him as soon as he suffered the first symptoms.

“You can't even hold the glass, Renjun,” Donghyuck continues, obviating the apology.

Soon Renjun will not remember this, will not remember that they were in the kitchen, that Donghyuck got up to fetch him as if he was a kid that had run away from his bed. Donghyuck places his hand over Renjun's hand, helps him to hold it to his mouth, and Renjun opens his mouth in anticipation. It's fascinating for Donghyuck, too. He's never treated anyone like this; he's never hold a glass to an omega's mouth to alleviate their thirst, because no one has ever needed Donghyuck to look after them. It's gratifying, however, to know that he can make Renjun feel better outside bed too.

When both of them settle the glass on the counter, Donghyuck's hands travel down to Renjun's waist. “Come here,” he says, turning Renjun around for him.

Renjun is pliable, obeys in silence, and lets Donghyuck handle him. He ignores the power he holds, because as Donghyuck looks into his eyes, he gets lost into them. Donghyuck has seen Renjun in many situations, but he has never had the chance to see him so vulnerable.

Vulnerability isn't a bad thing, Donghyuck marvels. It's beautiful on Renjun, the trustful glint in his eyes, the will to depend on Donghyuck, the certainty that he's in good company. It fills Donghyuck from head to toe, from inside out, until a new emotion implodes within him.

Despite Donghyuck’s roughness, his movements feel careful. He lifts Renjun on the counter, soaking in the soft gasp that he lets out, and steps between Renjun's thighs.

“Donghyuck,” Renjun calls him again, breathless.

It's not a conscious decision, but it's shared. Renjun is already entangled around him when Donghyuck meets his lips, the sweet taste of Renjun's pheromones on his tongue. The counter feels so cold compared to Renjun that Donghyuck whines, whines into his mouth and fades, thinking that this shouldn't be allowed. That he shouldn't be allowed to wish Renjun so much.

Yet Renjun holds onto him like it’s only Donghyuck who can keep him afloat, and Donghyuck doesn't dare to doubt. The path to his bedroom is a mess, because Renjun can't walk and Donghyuck has to carry him, but also because every time Renjun kisses him Donghyuck loses his balance, his whole sense of stability, and they hit the wall a dozen times before reaching the bedroom.

Donghyuck needs to breathe, so when he lets go of Renjun inside the bedroom, he pushes him to walk alone to the bed. Renjun doesn't want to part ways, not even to prepare, but so close to his heat he's incapable of disobeying Donghyuck's wishes.

Almost breaking into laughter, Donghyuck grunts, “You can't even walk straight.”

It's true. Instead of climbing on the bed, Renjun collapses on the mattress with a moan. It amazes Donghyuck that he could go to the kitchen alone, but after a few touches and some kisses, Donghyuck has managed to kill the remainders of his strength.

“You're so mean,” Renjun protests, voice muffled.

Donghyuck intends to be anything but mean tonight. He's so weak for Renjun that it's starting to scare him, so he drowns that fear by holding Renjun by the hips and settling him on his back instead. Donghyuck loves what Renjun offers him. He looks adorable in his pajamas, his hair messily scattered over the sheets. It feels strangely familiar, strangely easy to pull Renjun's pants and slide them down over his smooth thighs.

“I want to see you,” Donghyuck muses, most to himself than to Renjun.

Renjun's eyes, half closed, stare at him like he doesn't need permission. “See me,” Renjun answers, only, and then he intertwines his fingers with Donghyuck's and guides his hand to his body.

Donghyuck is led to touch Renjun's crotch, but he swats Renjun's hold away. It's almost funny how, regardless of the subtle scolding, Renjun's erection grows at the mere pressure of Donghyuck's hand over his underwear. It's almost funny how Renjun lets out what seems to be a shy purr, how he blindly brings his own legs farther apart, giving himself over.

It's a lovely sight, and as Donghyuck watches Renjun from head to toe, he decides that he wants Renjun to keep the top of the pajamas on. It’s a stupid pajama shirt with small bears, and somehow it suits Renjun. It's been a while since Donghyuck fucked someone so cute, and tainting Renjun that way feels even lewder.

“Not this,” Donghyuck tells him, stopping Renjun when he grabs at his own t-shirt. “I don't need you to take this off to fuck you.”

There's not surprise on Renjun's face, but there's coyness. He casts a hesitant glance down at his own pajamas, like wondering why that turns Donghyuck on, and Donghyuck takes advantage of that distraction to crook his fingers in Renjun's underwear and get rid of it.

Renjun is already hard, and though Donghyuck feels his own dick harden in his pants, he plans more than just stripping and fucking Renjun until he comes. He'll have enough of that when Renjun is too immersed in his heat to be toyed with, when sex becomes simple and raw, just a necessity.

Swiping his hand over Renjun's ass, Donghyuck plants a kiss on his lips. Renjun blinks at him, already twisting a bit on the bed in case Donghyuck is going to finger him, but Donghyuck doesn't.

“You look so cute,” he mutters, marveled, peppering a few more pecks around Renjun's mouth.

Confused, Renjun asks, “Cute?”

Cute is an understatement. He's so delightful to Donghyuck that it's sinful. All of Renjun is a sin, anyhow, for someone like Donghyuck. He's wet, and his slick drips between Donghyuck's fingers as though they’ve been riling each other up for hours. Donghyuck considers making fun of him for it, but he loves that Renjun is always so responsive; it clears any doubts Donghyuck could have about this, about them.

“The cutest.” Spreading the slick all over his ass and thighs, Donghyuck hums against his mouth, “Cute boys deserve good things, don’t you know?”

The shift in Renjun’s eyes sends a shiver down his spine. Donghyuck’s words break him at once, and then he’s moaning into his mouth, much needier and gone than the first time, and definitely much more impatient than any boy Donghyuck has had on his bed.

As Donghyuck parts from the kiss, Renjun sends him a disoriented look and pleads, “Don’t go.”

“I’m not going anywhere,” Donghyuck reassures him.

But he’s still completely clothed, and he wants to feel skin on skin, too. He strips as fast as he can, never taking his eyes off Renjun spread out on the bed, and grins down at him when he finishes. Renjun immediately tries to tug him closer, for whatever Donghyuck wants to give him. There’s no fun in just stretching Renjun and fucking him, though, which is what Renjun wants from him, and Donghyuck thinks for a moment how to keep Renjun still.

He presses another kiss on his lips, but then travels down Renjun’s neck, so slowly that Renjun can’t even distinguish Donghyuck’s intentions. Renjun’s already burning, so kissing him is much more satisfying than before. Donghyuck’s lips stick to his skin looking for more, like it’s a drug – and it is, somehow, because omegas’ pheromones are addicting for any alpha, and so are they for Donghyuck. Donghyuck’s scent has almost disappeared from Renjun, and as Donghyuck moves down, he scents every inch of him that smells like Jeno. Renjun told him not to scent him so much, but he’s going to belong to Donghyuck for days, and their scents will inevitably mingle anyway.

Renjun bears with the sensations until Donghyuck pulls away and, setting a hand over Renjun’s pajamas, pins him down on the bed so that he doesn’t move. It doesn’t take a genius to know that Donghyuck isn’t going to please him right away, and Renjun moans a complaint.

Donghyuck doesn’t mind. He grabs Renjun’s legs, pushes them up, and then takes a hold of Renjun’s hips.

Flustered, Renjun gasps, “What are you doing?”

He knows what Donghyuck is doing. Donghyuck plants a kiss on the back of his thighs, and just like he moved on Renjun’s neck, he trails the path to Renjun’s ass as carefully as he can. It’s useless: Renjun tenses up at the touch, chest inflating with heavy breaths, and Donghyuck has to draw circles on his hips to calm him down.

But it takes one glance at him to know that Renjun is ashamed, but not uncomfortable. Donghyuck can smell it in his pheromones; the thrill, the excitement, the fear of letting Donghyuck cross this line. It’s more intimate than just fucking, because it means that Donghyuck wants to please him getting nothing in return, and Donghyuck realizes that’s exactly what is driving him.

Donghyuck sinks his face between Renjun’s legs, repressing a laugh as Renjun grumbles before he can even touch him. He’s dying to taste Renjun, but he makes sure to fist his dick first, to jerk him off a few times so that Renjun focuses his attention elsewhere. It’s then when Donghyuck, without previous warning, laps his tongue flat on Renjun’s ass.

The first touch alone is overwhelming for Renjun; he makes a keen noise that Donghyuck has never heard from him, a noise that cuts through Donghyuck until he’s in pieces. On his mouth, Renjun’s slick tastes amazing, and Donghyuck knows that it’s almost a trap, that an omega is supposed to taste this sweet for him to want him, but Donghyuck accepts that trap with all its consequences.

“Stay still,” Donghyuck warns Renjun, noticing how his legs shake.

Renjun tries to obey him, but when Donghyuck begins to lick him, he dissolves into a hopeless mess. Donghyuck doesn’t stop, not even if Renjun’s noises are a mixture of pleasure and complaints, as though he’s not sure if he can take how good it feels. Renjun’s body tells Donghyuck everything he needs to know, anyhow: he arches his back, opens up for Donghyuck, and rides his tongue even though it’s impossible in that position.

Wondering if he can make Renjun come if he goes for long enough, Donghyuck rubs his tongue harder in him, but it’s the biting what destroys Renjun at last. It’s the small bites all over his inner thighs, the mark of Donghyuck’s teeth, the calming kisses before Donghyuck dips his tongue inside him again. It’s also Donghyuck’s arms around his legs, because Renjun’s hands cling on his forearms with a blind, desperate trust, and the deeper his fingers sink, the more Donghyuck wants to please him.

Only when Renjun’s moans die out, when his whines become mute, Donghyuck knows that he has to let go. And as he rises from between his legs, he finds that Renjun is indeed overwhelmed, his eyes closed and his mouth open, unable to utter any other sound. He looks adorable, clearly on edge, and even if Donghyuck would love to make Renjun come with his tongue inside him, he detaches to prevent that.

When Donghyuck hovers over him, Renjun’s eyelids are already opening to look for him. It makes Donghyuck feel so wanted that he wishes he could have Renjun every night on his bed, just a tiny piece of him looking for Donghyuck.

Renjun doesn’t protest because he stopped, instead he hums and grabs onto the back of Donghyuck’s head, and Donghyuck gives him the sweet kiss he’s asking for. His dick twitches more at the kiss than at eating Renjun out, but Donghyuck pushes that thought away and caresses Renjun’s hair out of his face, strand by strand.

Looking into Renjun’s eyes without fear, Donghyuck whispers, “Does no one do this for you, baby?”

The question is different, but Donghyuck promised Jaemin that regardless of how riled up he was, he’d never mention Jeno to Renjun in bed. Curiosity still wins over carefulness, and overall his pride wanting to know if he can give Renjun what his boyfriend can’t.

Renjun responds with a small nod of his head. Donghyuck kisses him once, and again, and again, until Renjun seems to forget what they’re talking about and groans into his mouth, tasting his own slick.

“I’ll do this for you every time you want, yeah?” Donghyuck muses, and Renjun smiles into the next kiss, his dimples deepening under Donghyuck’s thumbs. Donghyuck thinks he’s going to lose his mind. “Do you want to go on?”

It’s evident that he wants to, especially because his gaze lowers down to look at Donghyuck’s dick. Donghyuck feels a bit proud of himself when blatant admiration strikes across Renjun’s face; even if he has already seen Donghyuck naked, Donghyuck knows that it’ll take him some time to get used to his size. He hopes it’s a really long time though, because it strokes his ego like nothing else.

This time, Renjun replies with words, but his voice is almost inaudible, and Donghyuck moves closer to him to hear him.

“What?” he insists, thumbing across Renjun’s cheek with tenderness.

Renjun avoids his eyes, and it’s that shyness what makes Donghyuck suspect that he didn’t speak out loud just out of embarrassment, but because he’s overwhelmed. It makes sense, however, because what leaves his mouth freezes Donghyuck in one millisecond.

“Mount me,” Renjun murmurs, flushing pink as he does.

Donghyuck can’t believe his own ears, so he stares and stares at Renjun, waiting for him to add something. He doesn’t. That’s all there is to it, and the more Donghyuck fixes on him, the shier Renjun becomes.

Gathering all his strength, Donghyuck manages to repeat, “You want me to mount you?”

He could fuck Renjun in many ways, but mounting him implies that Renjun wants to submit to him. It’s part of mating sometimes, of breeding. Renjun wants Donghyuck to put him on four and hook onto him like they’re two dogs, and god, Donghyuck isn’t going to reject that opportunity, but he needs to make sure that Renjun knows what he’s talking about. Mounting Renjun means Donghyuck has to put himself first, and the more he chases his own pleasure, the more he uses Renjun for his advantage, the closer Renjun will be to coming.

To Donghyuck’s surprise, Donghyuck repeating his words doesn’t push Renjun further into his shame. It ignites him, eyes glinting with want, and he clings on Donghyuck with a demanding, yet pliable air around him.

Please,” he says, very low, like the mere idea of Donghyuck mounting him reduces all his strength to ashes.

That flicks off the switch inside Donghyuck.

He flips Renjun around, ignoring how Renjun still can laugh at him for reacting so fast, but both Renjun’s laughter and Donghyuck’s reason subdue once he has Renjun face down on the mattress.

Donghyuck was right. Renjun looks even better like this, the hem of his pajamas over his cute ass, and Donghyuck almost laments having to lift his hips up. Renjun complies, ass up and face between his arms, lying on his forearms. Donghyuck can tell that he feels exposed, it’s normal for an omega to appreciate the exposition to an alpha, as long as Donghyuck doesn’t degrade him.

It’s in his nature, Donghyuck realizes, to give himself to him without doubts. Donghyuck can’t even imagine how his heat will be if Renjun is so willing outside it too, but with that in mind, he takes a deep breath and strokes himself to full hardness.

When Donghyuck thrusts into Renjun, he needs to take a moment to calm down. Renjun is much more relaxed tonight, and he stretches around Donghyuck’s dick without trouble, but he’s much warmer. The sensation makes Donghyuck black out, and he doesn’t remember the last time he felt so good inside someone, not even with an omega. Renjun's tightness clenches so well around his dick that he doesn't bother to pull at Renjun's hair to hear his moans for some satisfaction. Even with his groans muffled on the bed, Renjun sounds like he's melting under him, and Donghyuck has to remember to go slow not to hurt him.

Every thrust sends Donghyuck closer to mounting him, but he knows that if he does, he won’t last, so he tugs a fist of Renjun's pajamas and uses them to anchor Renjun against him, to set the rhythm. Renjun can't follow him: every thrust makes him shiver and collapse against the bed; but Donghyuck thinks it's sweet how he still tries to fuck himself on his dick, as though Donghyuck isn't fucking him rough enough, or fast enough, or simply he can't take enough of it.

Donghyuck can't tell what pulverizes his patience at last. Maybe it's the sound of his hips slapping against Renjun’s ass, maybe it's the way the buttons of his pajamas are being undone by how hard Donghyuck is pulling him back, or maybe it's just Renjun, Renjun on all fours for him, Renjun moaning because of him, Renjun keeping the top of his pajamas on just because Donghyuck wanted to.

Before Donghyuck can be conscious of his own actions, he's arching his back over Renjun, the palms of his hands at both sides of Renjun. The next thrust is in full mounting, in a different angle, and Renjun gasps so loud that Donghyuck fears having caught him off guard. It's better this way, however, because Renjun finds the strength to prop himself up and press his back against Donghyuck's chest, a gesture of submission that Donghyuck appreciates from the deepest part of his alpha.

“Donghyuck,” he whispers, voice trembling, throwing his head back until he can rub his face on Donghyuck's cheek. “Come inside me.”

Donghyuck loses the rhythm for a few seconds, swamped by the permission. He plants a kiss under Renjun's ear, to compliment him, to tell him that he loves that small gift to his alpha – because unlike Renjun, Donghyuck can't use his words anymore, just his force to ram into Renjun.

Renjun wants indeed to breed him, and Donghyuck doesn't know what to do with that, just knows that he's dying to do it too. Renjun's frame so small under him that Donghyuck feels that he's going to wreck him with every time he slams into him. But mounting Renjun makes Donghyuck's dick brush against the most sensitive spots inside Renjun, and if Renjun breaks, he'll break happily.

It's been years since Donghyuck has fucked someone with so much honesty, not controlling his own instinct, just enjoying the little bit of dominance that he allows himself in bed. And with Renjun, his instinct growls inside him, and when Renjun spills all over the sheets with a delighted moan, Donghyuck forgets all his decency. He fucks Renjun until his whole body is tense with the effort, until he feels an orgasm rip through him and Renjun cries out at the overstimulation.

But coming inside Renjun feels like a piece of paradise, and Donghyuck passes an arm under Renjun's abdomen to keep him up until his dick softens inside him, until he's filled Renjun as well as he asked for.

Renjun becomes limp in his arms, and despite how undone Donghyuck feels, he helps Renjun lie down on the bed without hurting himself. Renjun has his eyes closed, but Donghyuck watches him and can't resist the temptation of pressing kisses all over his face. Renjun allows him to turn him around on the bed, and most important, lets Donghyuck leave sweet pecks on his cheeks, on the tip of his nose, on the corners of his mouth.

Donghyuck kisses him until Renjun draws a smile, coming back to reality, until he realizes that Donghyuck has affection to give after sex too.

It gives Donghyuck time to recover as well, and as he pets Renjun's hair, he says the first words after a long silence, “You fine?”

Renjun barely opens his eyes, but he answers a hoarse, “Wonderful.”

It's stupid, especially because Renjun can't see him, but Donghyuck bursts into a satisfied grin.

“Give me a second,” Donghyuck tells him, reminding that he hasn't cleaned Renjun up yet. “And I'll let you sleep.”

But as soon as Donghyuck stops touching Renjun, Renjun seems to find energy elsewhere, because he grips onto his arm and drags him back, closer, looking for warmth.

“No,” he whispers, opening his eyes to stare at Donghyuck with a sincerity that would destroy any man. Then his gaze softens, and so do his hands, and he pleads, “Stay for a while.”

Donghyuck would stay forever, if Renjun just asked.

 

 

 

 

“Don’t be ridiculous,” Donghyuck says. “I won’t attend classes.”

It’s been a whole hour since they woke up when Renjun almost commands him to get up and go to class. There are many reasons why Donghyuck refuses. The proximity of his heat is just an excuse, and Renjun is aware of it. Donghyuck wants to spend the day with him because he appreciates the warmth of their bare bodies linked to each other, the comfort which Renjun clings on him with, the tiny kisses Renjun grants him, deep and slow and entirely out of line.

It’s just his omega’s effect, Donghyuck is sure of it, not how cute Renjun looks in the morning with his eyes half open and the dumb smile that paints his face every time Donghyuck touches where he shouldn’t.

“I’m not in heat yet, okay?” Renjun reminds him. Donghyuck knows, because otherwise they wouldn’t be talking, but Renjun is close enough to need his touch all the time. When Donghyuck withdraws, Renjun comes closer, trying to entangle their legs together and rub his head in Donghyuck’s chest. “You can’t just ignore your responsibilities to stay in bed with me and do nothing.”

Amused, Donghyuck arches his eyebrows at him, “Says who?”

Perhaps because Renjun is expecting him to reason, he vacillates at the question. “Says me,” he concludes, furrowing his eyebrows as Donghyuck breaks into a smile.

Anyhow, Donghyuck’s smile doesn’t make Renjun falter, and Donghyuck groans in frustration. He sneaks an arm around Renjun’s waist, noses up his neck as if that will convince him, and for a moment he’s sure that he’s going to win, because Renjun responds by leaving a kiss on his collarbones.

Renjun smells delicious. Donghyuck would despise walking out of the bedroom, let alone the house for the whole day.

“You’re not in a position to order me around, trust me,” Donghyuck assures him. Because he knows he can convince Renjun if he wants to; he only has to push a few buttons and Renjun will surrender to his instinct, but Donghyuck wishes to get around this without resorting to dirty tricks.

With a sigh, Renjun throws his head back to look into his eyes. “Listen,” he says, serious, though his mouth tugs up under the pleading look Donghyuck sends him. “I wouldn’t say this if it wasn’t true. You can’t even imagine how much better the pre-heat is already feeling because of you, but I promise I’ll text you if I need you.”

Renjun had explained to him that so close to his heat, he usually is writhing in pain, swallowing suppressants that can’t keep the suffering under control. Today, however, Renjun is lying on Donghyuck’s bed in complete calm. He’s lazy, even, because Donghyuck’s pheromones mitigate his own hormones, and because last night’s sex probably soothed his needs until his heat strikes.

Donghyuck knows that he has lost this battle, since he doesn’t have a real excuse other than I want to stay with you. It’s too dangerous.

“Don’t text me when you need me.” Donghyuck ignores the disapproval on Renjun’s face and taps under his chin to let him know that he’s not just dismissing his opinion. “Text me if you feel the most minimal sign so that I can arrive in time.”

Renjun studies him for a second, not hiding his surprise. Donghyuck reckons it’s weird for him too, because Donghyuck has never worried about him this much, if not at all.

“Fine,” he accepts in the end.  And then, without previous warning, he presses a kiss on Donghyuck’s lips.

Despite all the times they’ve kissed this morning, Donghyuck is a bit staggered, but he doesn’t hesitate to lick between Renjun’s lips, to tilt his head for access. He’s getting used to it, too used, and the taste of Renjun’s mouth is terribly familiar. It’s when his hands roam down Renjun’s back and onto his butt that Renjun decides that Donghyuck is going too far.

“Now hurry up,” Renjun tells him with a knowing laugh, pressing on his chest to push him away.

Going to campus is, without exaggerating, a nightmare. Donghyuck takes a long, cold shower beforehand, kisses Renjun goodbye, and forces Jaemin to promise that he’ll call him if Renjun has any problem. Donghyuck doesn’t trust Renjun that much, because he’s stubborn and if he begins to fall into his heat, he’ll probably pretend he’s fine until Donghyuck comes home.

Donghyuck sits through his classes thinking about Renjun, and though he tries to take notes at first, he gives up by the second lesson. The state he’s in is beyond embarrassing. It’s not characteristic of an adult alpha – perhaps of a teen alpha – to be this riled up and obsessed with an omega in heat, and less of Donghyuck. He can’t tell why it’s different with Renjun. Perhaps it’s the abstinence, or that he knows Renjun outside the bedroom, so he really wishes to take care of him as he should.

But there are limits, so when one of his classmates side eyes him with a smirk and asks, having fun at home? Donghyuck is certain that he can’t be around other people today. It also reminds him that he might not be able to help Renjun if Donghyuck’s rut ever coincides with his heat, unless Renjun wants to return the favor, but he knows that in this situation his ruts are going to worsen too.

While he walks to his third lesson, Donghyuck pulls out his phone for the fifteenth time in ten minutes, except that this time he has several messages from Jaemin. No matter how much Donghyuck has imagined this could happen, he’s not prepared to read what’s waiting for him.

RUN home dude, the first message reads, followed by a dozen of exclamations. Donghyuck is already cursing Renjun for kicking him out this morning, but then he moves onto the next message and the whole world freezes around him. Your brother is here, it says. Jaemin doesn’t need to add any explanation.

Donghyuck forgets to breathe. Doyoung is visiting. With Renjun on the brink of his heat, alone in Donghyuck’s bedroom. His head is going to roll off.

 

 

 

 

Donghyuck has enough time to suffer all the phases before he gets home. First it’s fear; he’s inevitably scared, calls Jaemin just to have a conversation in whispers because Jaemin encloses himself in his bathroom. Yes, Doyoung is there, unannounced and very confused, but Jaemin suspects his confusion is going to shift to anger for Donghyuck. Then it’s panic that takes over him, and as he walks up the stairs of his apartment, it’s anger.

And Donghyuck has reasons to be scared, not only for himself but also because he fears this will take a toll on Renjun. It’s already hard enough for him, so if Doyoung shames them that could be the last straw to cut the deal.

Donghyuck should have known this was a bad idea for more reasons than just the obvious ones. His family is conservative, and so is Doyoung. Donghyuck has always been the black sheep, moreover because as an alpha, their parents set higher expectation for him. His brother has never been blind to Donghyuck’s antics, and that meant that they had gotten into a hundred fights since Donghyuck was a teen. All of Doyoung’s control is for his own good, Donghyuck knows that, because he’s worried about Donghyuck fighting with their parents, but he can’t stand it either way. He never stopped fucking whoever he wanted to just because his brother’s views on relationships didn’t fit in his scheme, so it had never been a real problem for Donghyuck.

It is now that Renjun is involved.

It’s a bad premonition that Doyoung hasn’t even bothered to sit down, and even worse that his beta pheromones have managed to muffle Donghyuck’s pheromones in the living room. That just maddens Donghyuck further, because this is his house, because his brother has no right to spread his scent just because he’s mad at Donghyuck.

“What are you doing here?” Donghyuck sputters, dropping his bag by the door. Doyoung has his arms crossed over his chest, and as Donghyuck strides to him, he just inflates his chest, not flinching. “You can’t just show up-”

“Donghyuck, don’t you dare,” Doyoung cuts in, eyes leveling him up and down. Donghyuck might be mad, but so is Doyoung, and as his younger brother he doesn’t have the right to disrespect him for no reason. “I think you have some talking to do.”

Donghyuck looks around the living room, reluctant of making a fight explode with his friends in the house. Jaemin is in his bedroom for sure, since Donghyuck caught sight of him escaping when he crossed the door. And though he can’t smell Renjun, since Doyoung’s scent is overlaying every other perfume, Donghyuck is aware that Renjun will be able to hear every single word. The walls are thin, and his upcoming heat boosts his senses, hearing included.

However, Donghyuck prefers a fight to a justification, so he challenges Doyoung with a, “We haven’t seen each other in months and the first thing you’re going to do is to lecture me?”

That’s what Doyoung is about to do. There’s no way that is the reason he’s here, but it’s not the first time he visits and finds yet another mess surrounding Donghyuck’s life. Donghyuck knows that his reprimanding surges from love, yet he doesn’t appreciate it.

Instead of deflating, Doyoung glowers at him and waves his hand towards the hall, where all the doors to the bedrooms are closed.

“You’re dating someone and you didn’t tell me?”

Donghyuck breathes in. It’s natural that his brother would suppose so, or at least, that he’d hope so. Donghyuck hiding a boyfriend is a much healthier theory than the truth, less disappointing.

“I’m not-”

“You’re not dating him?” Doyoung asks. That’s all he needed to confirm his suspicions, and when Donghyuck stares up at him with a pleading glance, he admits that he’s fallen for that trap. Doyoung isn’t stupid. The likeliness of Donghyuck dating someone is so low that Doyoung would have to be convinced of it instead. “You have an omega in heat in your bedroom, you better be dating him.”

Not backing out, Donghyuck retorts, “Well, I’m not.” And then he takes in Doyoung’s reaction, the disappointed sigh, the discontent. “Now what?”

In retrospective, Donghyuck can enjoy this. He’s always loved irritating Doyoung, whether it was through playing dumb games when they were kids or through fucking some stranger into the mattress. It doesn’t matter: they’re never going to reach harmony, unless Donghyuck settles down with an omega and mates and makes his parents happy.

Doyoung evaluates him, as though he could crack his head open, and spits, “Introduce him to me.”

The request is so absurd that Donhyuck scoffs, regardless of Doyoung’s severe expression.

“You already know him,” Donghyuck says, well aware that his brother isn’t expecting that. There isn’t any escape from this, so Donghyuck’s strongest weapon is to shock him with the pure truth. “It’s Renjun.”

Doyoung’s mouth falls open.

Unlike his parents, Doyoung knows every one of his friends in person, and Renjun isn’t an exception. They’re in silent contact, too, because Donghyuck uploads a ton of pictures with them and it wouldn’t take a genius to suppose that Jeno and Renjun are still together.

Donghyuck admits that it’s satisfying to throw Doyoung off, even if the outcome harms Donghyuck after all.

“Renjun?” he repeats, lowering his voice. He glances at the hall again, alarmed, and Donghyuck wonders what’s running through his head in that moment; if his little brother is betraying his best friend, if Renjun is cheating on his boyfriend,  too many ifs to reach a conclusion. “You’re sleeping with Renjun now?”

“I made a deal with Jeno.” Donghyuck shrugs, and as the horror expands on Doyoung’s face, he has the guts to smile at him. He knows that his brother is wishing he’d have never asked in the first place. “This is none of your business, really. It’s their private life, and whatever role I have in it isn’t for you to judge.”

Doyoung opens and closes his mouth several times, speechless. It’d be comical if Donghyuck wasn’t conscious that he could get this same reaction from almost everyone who he’d share this secret with. That’s why it’s a secret. People won’t understand why Donghyuck accepted, but they won’t understand either why Jeno and Renjun insist in being together if one of them can’t be satisfied.

“You’ve gone crazy,” is what Doyoung concludes, but he doesn’t sound so scandalized nor so disappointed, just too shocked to react properly.

Donghyuck can’t contradict him on that. What he’s doing is crazy, but if sliding between Renjun’s legs is crazy, then he loves embracing his own insanity.

Torn between resignation and just tiredness, Donghyuck grunts, “Why did you even come?”

That question subdues Doyoung’s anger right away. His shoulders slump, and he seems to remember what the purpose of the visit was; whatever it was, Donghyuck can intuit it wasn’t good. Perhaps just slightly better than scolding Donghyuck for fucking his best friend’s mate.

Doyoung ruffles his own hair, stressed, and then he stares at Donghyuck with a new shade of pity and answers, “You’re not a slow replier, Hyuck.” Donghyuck has to bite his own tongue not to retort, for his instinct screams at him not to let his older brother, a beta, worry about him. It stings his pride a little, but that doesn’t stop Doyoung from continuing. “I knew you weren’t feeling okay, or so I thought. It turns out you simply managed to get yourself into another mess.”

It blows Donghyuck with full force, and he’s left helpless in the middle of the living room, aware that his friends are listening to this conversation. Doyoung isn’t wrong, however. When Donghyuck doesn’t feel like talking to people, even if it’s through messaging, it’s a red flag of his emotional state. They’ve grown up together, and Doyoung would never miss it.

But Donghyuck isn’t prepared for this. His own feelings are under many layers of protection, and even with Doyoung pointing it out, he can’t decide what’s troubling him. He’s constantly tense, and perhaps that’s why he doesn’t have time to drown in his other problems to fix them.

Donghyuck lowers his head, casting his gaze to the floor. He wouldn’t mind to sit down with his brother and get psychoanalyzed, because it has helped more than once, just not now.

“I’ll call you when I’m free, fine?” he surrenders, trying to repress the knot growing in his stomach. “It’s not the right moment.”

It’s not necessary to add, for god’s sake, I have an omega in my bedroom. Doyoung understands what he’s talking about, which doesn’t imply that he approves of it, and nods at the rejection.

Donghyuck doesn’t move from his spot when Doyoung steps forward and embraces him in a hug. It’s strange, because Doyoung is hugging him for more than consoling him. It’s to read him, to inhale his pheromones and confirm that his younger brother is indeed close to a breakdown. Yet it works on Donghyuck, and he fuses into the hug like he doesn’t have anyone else in the world, like that will make the uneasiness within go away. Maybe it’s true, however. Maybe he just has Doyoung.

 

 

 

 

Renjun is the first one to step out the bedroom. All in all, Donghyuck isn’t ready to face anyone after that conversation, but he spots Renjun peeking out the room with a frightened look on his face, his hands clasping on the door frame, and he forgets about the fight with Doyoung.

They don’t speak about it. Donghyuck checks Renjun’s temperature, insists on returning to bed with him until Renjun is annoyed at him, and in the end he surrenders to Renjun. It’s evident that Renjun isn’t in heat yet, even if Donghyuck wants to sink his nose in his neck and spend the rest of the day like that, and it’s all thanks to last night. That’s why Donghyuck doesn’t scrunch up his nose at Renjun’s proposal: that they should take a walk, breathe some fresh air, eat out together.

Renjun claims that he’s going to waste too many days at home because of his heat, that it’s the only reason why he wants to go out, but Donghyuck knows that Renjun’s aim is to distract him. And he’s not afraid to admit that Renjun’s plan does soothe his nerves, or maybe it’s just Renjun. They eat in a small restaurant in the outskirts of the city, where no one will bother them, lie on the grass of a park full of children and dogs for the rest of the afternoon, and only when dusk falls upon them, they resign themselves to going back home.

Renjun holds onto him the whole day, however, soaking in his pheromones. It pleases Donghyuck in more ways than physically, but it’s surprising that even when Donghyuck is in a bad mood, Renjun can use his scent to keep his heat under control anyway.

It’s only when they’re back in the city, strolling all the way from the train station to Donghyuck’s apartment, that Renjun brings up the topic. To Donghyuck’s surprise, it doesn’t irritate him. He doesn’t mind talking to Renjun about it, and less when it includes him to some extent, because the way Renjun glances at him isn’t patronizing, or prudent, or blue.

Renjun merely holds tighter on his arm, lifts his chin to look up at him, impregnating Donghyuck’s shoulder with his scent, and whispers, “That was an argument.”

And yet it’s meaningless now, as Donghyuck clutches Renjun’s waist and leads him through the empty streets. He supposes that for an only child like Renjun, family arguments aren’t that common. Having an older brother changes the perspective, the importance of such arguments.

Donghyuck glances down at Renjun, their faces so close that he needs to remind himself that they’re in the middle of a public street.

“I’m sorry you had to hear that,” he laments, and it’s sincere. He wishes Renjun hadn’t been there to witness how his brother treats him, or to know that Donghyuck isn’t feeling that well, for that matter.

“Donghyuck,” Renjun calls him. For the first time today, he sounds troubled, and he stops on his tracks. They naturally detach, but then Renjun holds his hand, tows him back so that Donghyuck halts too. Renjun shakes his head. “I don’t care. I’m serious, I don’t care about your brother’s opinion on this.”

Donghyuck doesn’t quite believe him. He gazes down at their intertwined hands and wonders why Renjun wouldn’t care, aware that most of the world would agree with Donghyuck’s brother, would oppose to what they’re doing. But it’s hard to hurl that at Renjun, since Donghyuck would be hurting him on purpose, so he bites onto his lower lip and keeps his silence.

Renjun is sensitive, though, and can sense Donghyuck’s hesitation.

“You know the amount of shit I’ve had to hear because I’m dating a beta instead of an alpha?” he asks, softly rubbing over Donghyuck’s knuckles with his thumb. “It wasn’t just shit about Jeno, but also about me not being enough of an omega to get an alpha. About being a disgrace, a waste.”

That’s personal. Too personal. Donghyuck’s heart skips a beat, or a thousand of them, because Donghyuck can’t feel anything but his own rage, the frustration, the instinct of protecting Renjun. Looking into Renjun’s eyes is what softens him, his naturalness to share this little embarrassing secret that no omega would ever speak about out loud, in fear that it’s true.

Donghyuck acts without thinking. He drags Renjun closer, almost making him trip over himself, and then slides his hands up his back until they’re entangled in Renjun’s hair. Renjun molds against him without a protest, whether because he’s gotten used to Donghyuck or because he wants him too, and places all his attention on Donghyuck.

“That’s ridiculous,” Donghyuck tells him. His gaze roams over Renjun’s lips for a split second, but then Donghyuck frowns, overwhelmed by the fact that someone has dared to tell Renjun such horrible lies. “You could have anyone in the world.”

Donghyuck’s fingers tremble down his nape. Renjun could have anyone, even Donghyuck, but if Renjun understands the implications of his words, he doesn’t show it.

Instead he lifts his index finger and settles between’s Donghyuck’s eyebrows, making his frown disappear right away. “That’s sweet,” he mutters, an ephemeral smile flashed at Donghyuck. Then he avoids Donghyuck’s intense gaze and adds, “I never told Jeno, though. He has enough problems on his own.”

If it’s on purpose or not, Donghyuck isn’t sure, but the mention of Jeno sucks him back to reality. This is for Jeno. And Donghyuck might have the impulse of protecting Renjun, but Renjun is always going to protect Jeno first, even if he cares about Donghyuck. Jeno is his mate, his boyfriend, the love of his life.

After a pause that becomes too long for Renjun not to suspect, Donghyuck utters, “You should have told me.”

“Oh, yeah?” Renjun’s eyes crinkle at him, amusement invading his expression. He plants his hands on Donghyuck’s chest, but he doesn’t force Donghyuck away; instead, it feels like Renjun intends to close the distance. “What were you going to do about it?”

This isn’t a joke for Donghyuck, however. Renjun must have become immune to the criticism, and that still doesn’t console Donghyuck. Both of them know what Donghyuck would have done if anyone had the nerve to talk down to Renjun in his presence. Even during first year, when they bickered most of the time, Donghyuck wouldn’t have allowed it. Renjun shouldn’t have hidden it, and though he understands why he’d keep it a secret from Jeno, he could have told Donghyuck.

“Renjun,” Donghyuck sighs. He controls his own thoughts, the explicitness of how he would have reacted, because Renjun will make fun of his strong stupid alpha instinct otherwise. “If I had ever heard anyone say any of that to you, I’d have definitely gotten into trouble.”

Donghyuck swears that Renjun is satisfied, but that emotion fades away as fast as it was born, and Donghyuck can’t grasp it.

“And that’s exactly why I couldn’t tell you,” Renjun assures, as if Donghyuck’s answer was predictable from the beginning. There’s a subtle whine in his tone when he speaks again, “Playing hero doesn’t fit you, really.”

Donghyuck could put up a fight, prove that playing hero fits him as it'd fit any other basic alpha, but he doesn't want to ruin Renjun's entertained expression with his pride issues.

Donghyuck tilts his head, a grin taking over, and prompts, “And what does?”

Renjun hums, pretends to think the answer up. His gaze cuts through Donghyuck's one second later, but it's far from strong, aggressive, or scary. The air around them fills with a honeyed scent, and that's what reflects on Renjun's eyes.

“Not being so tough,” Renjun replies, stroking up Donghyuck's chest and over his collarbones. Donghyuck takes a deep breath as Renjun focuses on his mouth and finishes, “Letting me kiss you.”

It's automatic for Donghyuck too to glance down at Renjun's lips. He's wanted to kiss him for the whole day, but it wasn't appropriate then, and it isn't appropriate now either. That doesn't seem to matter anymore for any of them, and if Renjun doesn't care, then less does Donghyuck.

Breathless, Donghyuck hears himself ask, “When have I opposed to that?”

It's scarily easy to drown himself in Renjun's mouth. His lips are warm, soft, and it feels so different from kissing him in bed that Donghyuck feels a new kind of addiction creeping on his skin. It's not passionate or desperate, even if Donghyuck's excitement gets the best of him at first. But Renjun cups his jaw and leads him, draws little circles on his jaw to calm him down, and he kisses Donghyuck with care, as though Donghyuck is a fragile thing that needs to be loved.

Maybe he does, after the stress of the last few weeks and Doyoung's visit. And maybe Renjun knows that, and that's the reason he submits to him and gives him what Donghyuck isn't even asking for. Donghyuck isn't scared of dissolving into Renjun's mouth, his pheromones showing what he always masks. Renjun has already seen through him, because no one would kiss Donghyuck with so much patience, so comfortable. No one would care about him, but Renjun proves him wrong tonight, entangled on his lips in a public street, as if this is their story.

 

 

 

 

They fuck that night at home, as soon as the door of Jaemin's bedroom shuts close.

They don't have an excuse, for Renjun's heat hasn't hit yet and he's feeling well. Nonetheless, Donghyuck doesn't need one. It's too simple for them to go from light touches to sliding their hands underneath their clothes, and all of sudden Donghyuck is kissing all of Renjun, and Renjun is begging Donghyuck to fuck him. The clock runs against them, and because Renjun won't be able to reason in a matter of hours, Donghyuck decides to let him be in control.

Donghyuck lies on his back and watches Renjun ride him, watches him set the pace and fuck himself as he likes. Renjun moves slowly, but with a precision that undoes Donghyuck with every snap of his hips. He has to fist the sheets not to thrust up into Renjun, promises that he'll bear any rhythm Renjun wants for the both of them. It's worth it, because Renjun knows his own body well enough to build up the orgasm he wants, and Donghyuck loves the sight. Donghyuck is used to being in control, to pinning omegas down and fucking them until they can't take it anymore; having Renjun on him is life changing, a spectacle unleashing before him.

When Renjun comes, he does it with Donghyuck's name on his lips and his gaze locked with Donghyuck's. And Donghyuck comes next, such a warm, slow, orgasm that slices through him in waves, a never-ending orgasm that makes Donghyuck want to live in this moment forever.

 

 

 

 

The heat, Donghyuck learns, doesn't slam into Renjun out of the blue.

It's embarrassing to admit that Donghyuck's knowledge on heats doesn't expand beyond how to alleviate them, but it's the first time he's going to spend a heat with an omega from beginning to end. He could have learned from Jaemin if he hadn't been attached to the hip with Sunwoo even before Donghyuck had started living with him. He was used to seeing Jaemin slip into his room when he was perfectly sober, and step out only when his heat was over.

With Renjun, Donghyuck lives through the progress. It's very gradual, yet awing to notice the small changes in Renjun. His temperature is the most obvious one, since it has been rising for days, and it takes Donghyuck a while to grasp onto the rest of the details.

Renjun becomes clingier. He touches Donghyuck at the smallest chance, logic gone and replaced by a demanding need to feel Donghyuck up. The first time catches Donghyuck unprepared, for he's packing his bag, kneeling on the floor, when Renjun latches onto him from behind and lets out a noise of protest. Donghyuck thinks Renjun is joking around, but then he turns around and Renjun nearly crashes into him, not disposed to let go. He doesn't want sex, however. He forbids Donghyuck to leave for classes and forces him to cuddle with him for around two hours until he falls asleep on him like a baby, so deep into his dreams that he doesn't wake up when Donghyuck gets out of bed.

It's hard to get over the shock of that experience, but it helps Donghyuck to understand what Renjun needs from him. For rough sex, Renjun can use any other day of the year, and heat sex isn't merely knotting him to gratify his most basic primal side.

Donghyuck knows that omegas have to be treasured, pampered, and that they're at their weakest point during their heats. Renjun is looking for that in him, in an alpha, because unlike Jeno and Donghyuck believed, it's not just about a knot. Their nature links them in many ways, all of them part of a puzzle that is supposed to complete each other, and Renjun can't fight against that. He wants Donghyuck's affection, attention and desire, and Donghyuck can't help but want all that back too.

Donghyuck decides to toss his lessons away for a while, even if Renjun’s heat hasn’t begun, and Jaemin pulls at his ear for it. He couldn’t care less, however. Even just by talking, Donghyuck has fun with Renjun, and the whinier he gets, the more entertaining it becomes to tease him. Donghyuck knows that it’s Renjun’s hormones that disarms him from his sarcasm, that allows Donghyuck to make fun of him and get a kiss instead of a punch, but he enjoys every bit of it.

Sooner rather than later, the teasing makes the house of cards crumble. Accustomed to Renjun’s perfume, Donghyuck misses the growth in his pheromones, and one afternoon in which Renjun goes to the kitchen to get a snack, Donghyuck follows after him just to mess with him.

He would usually not be this ridiculous outside his bedroom, but since Jaemin is busy with his afternoon classes and they’re alone in the apartment, Donghyuck has little to no shame. While Renjun tip toes to reach for the cupboard, Donghyuck passes by him and slaps his butt, palm completely open, a sound that resonates all over the kitchen.

It’s not the first time Donghyuck smacks his butt, but it’s the first time that Renjun responds him with an absolute silence. It takes Donghyuck a few seconds to realize Renjun isn’t scolding him, chasing after him to take revenge, and then his contentment dies down.

Gripping the counter, Donghyuck turns on his heels to apologize, afraid that Renjun might not be in the mood for his jokes. But then his gaze falls on Renjun, his senses are invaded by his pheromones, and he’s speechless. The blush in Renjun’s face speaks for itself. He’s not even looking in Donghyuck’s direction, petrified on his spot, but he has stroked down his abdomen and onto his own crotch.

Donghyuck can’t breathe. Renjun’s reaction doesn’t make sense unless he has lost control over his own body, unless Donghyuck smacking him has pushed him to the edge and he can’t help but touching himself.

“Renjun?” Donghyuck calls him, carefully approaching from the side. “Are you okay?”

When Donghyuck sets a hand on his back, it hits him. Renjun’s pheromones have changed, and the difference is so stark that Donghyuck blanks out for a few seconds, surrenders to the open invitation Renjun’s body is sending him.

“Hyuck,” Renjun muses, but he doesn’t lift his gaze, either too embarrassed or to dumbstruck by his own reaction.

Donghyuck has the urge to smack his ass again, but he holds it back. Instead he settles behind Renjun, revels in the weak noise Renjun releases as he adjust against his back, his ass, and in how he stops breathing when Donghyuck hugs him. It’s not just a hug; Donghyuck moves his hand over Renjun’s, both on his crotch, and presses down on his dick.

Even through Renjun’s fingers, Donghyuck can feel that he’s half hard. It’s just so, so easy to rile him up in this condition that Donghyuck pities him. Because even if Renjun thinks Donghyuck is doing him a favor, this is a fantasy for him: to do whatever he wants with Renjun, and to have Renjun plead for it. He’s wired to fantasize about this.

“Should I carry you back to bed?” Donghyuck softly asks, craning his neck to look at Renjun’s profile.

It’s evident that Renjun is in heat, at last, because he doesn’t answer the question right away. His attention is on Donghyuck’s hand on his crotch, on rubbing himself against it, just so imperceptibly that Donghyuck can tell that Renjun is ashamed of it.

“I-” Renjun begins. His eyes flutter close, the flush of his cheeks intensifying, “don’t-”

Donghyuck understands him. Renjun can’t think about anything but being fucked, and he doesn’t want to wait, not even if the path to the bedroom will take a few seconds.

“You don’t care?” Donghyuck finishes for him. It’s involuntary: his voice becomes a growl, on the brink of madness, at the realization of how desperate Renjun is. And god, Donghyuck is utterly desperate too now that his pheromones are on full display, but he makes an effort to tease him and whispers, “I can’t fuck you here, baby.”

Renjun protests with a moan, and unable to fight him with words, he grinds back on Donghyuck’s dick without previous warning. Perhaps he’s expecting Donghyuck to stop him, but the moment he feels Renjun’s ass pressing against him, Donghyuck hardens his grip on him, keeps him in place. Even after Renjun has relaxed, Donghyuck strains against him, makes sure that he feels his dick through his pants, so that he learns that he can’t tease and run, tease and demand without giving.

“I said, not here,” Donghyuck repeats, firmer, until he can smell Renjun’s submission through his nose. The scent is charged with impatience and lust, and Renjun finally complies with the order, with a wonderful trace of humiliation.

Donghyuck can’t reason with his dick against Renjun’s ass, but he has enough time to comprehend why Renjun doesn’t want to go to the bedroom.

Realization whips through him, and he sounds completely wild when he says, “You want Jaemin to find you like this?” Renjun tenses up in his embrace, and before Donghyuck can stop him, he’s rubbing harder on his own palm, and then on Donghyuck’s crotch, like he can’t decide how or where to begin. Donghyuck lets him, even loosens his grip on him so that Renjun can feel him up. “To let him know how good I can make you feel, how much I want you?”

Donghyuck catches his breath. He doesn’t know what’s getting him hard, if the friction, if Renjun’s pheromones, or just the idea of subjugating an omega.

But then Renjun speaks, in a small, coy voice, and all of Donghyuck’s questions are erased.

“I want him to know you’re mine,” he admits.

Donghyuck’s ego is a beast that breathes fire, and he has to repress the impulse of grabbing Renjun’s pajamas and rip them apart by force just to fuck him there.

He knows that it’s Renjun’s omega talking, but it doesn’t matter. Renjun can’t resist the need of wanting to hog Donghyuck, to bare his teeth for his alpha or, more accurately, to go on his knees to get his alpha.

It makes so much sense. Donghyuck has two omegas at home, and while he hasn’t touched Jaemin in his whole life, Renjun ignores that. It’s in his blood to compete, to prove that Donghyuck should mark him and not the other omega around them.

Donghyuck’s body boils.

“What a jealous baby,” he manages to reply, though he doesn’t know where he’s getting the composure from. He curls Renjun’s hair around his index finger, bends over him to leave a kiss on Renjun’s jaw. Renjun tastes like paradise, and Donghyuck isn’t afraid of licking his neck a bit; Renjun is so warm on his tongue that Donghyuck unconsciously moans. “You think you’re a prettier omega than him, that you can please me better than Jaemin does?”

The implications of Donghyuck’s words shatter Renjun. It’s intoxicating to witness how his confidence breaks, how he believes that Donghyuck would choose another omega over him, that he might not be the prettiest, that Donghyuck might not take care of him after all.

Donghyuck maneuvers Renjun around, willing to see how he’s processing the teasing, and he’s welcomed by something he’d have never imagined. Renjun looks up at him with the beginning of tears, eyes wet, fists his shirt and pushes his hips forward to meet Donghyuck’s crotch again, to convince him that he should fuck him. It makes Donghyuck soften in many senses, and he has to drown a moan on the back of his throat when he feels Renjun’s hardness brush against his dick.

“Please, I need you,” Renjun whines, rapidly blinking. He’s broken, so broken that Donghyuck has to hold him tighter so that he doesn’t fall over him. His knees have weakened, perhaps just at the sensation of looking into an alpha’s eyes while he’s in heat, and Donghyuck bathes enjoys that moment of power. He’s not even trying, yet Renjun is crumbling down in front of him. “Please, please-”

When Donghyuck strokes a hand over his jaw, Renjun’s begging fades away, and he closes his eyes and tilts his head to rub on Donghyuck’s palm. Before Donghyuck can kiss him, Renjun has already opened his mouth, so red and wet that it looks like Donghyuck has kissed him a hundred times today, and so Donghyuck takes a moment to observe him.

A moan building in Renjun’s throat, Donghyuck shushes him with a soft, “I know, baby.”

He perches his thumb on Renjun’s lower lip, and Renjun parts his lips wider for him, willing to taste Donghyuck's pheromones on his mouth. Donghyuck marvels in how pliant he looks, in how well he obeys, either with words or without them.

And so, as Donghyuck bends down to trap his upper lip, thumb still holding onto the lower lip, Renjun makes a satisfied, cute noise.

Nothing compares to kissing an omega in heat, but even with that in mind, kissing Renjun feels different. It makes Donghyuck feel like the world is spinning around them, moving so fast that he's afraid of detaching from the floor and flying across the room. Renjun tastes like warm cinnamon, and his kisses melt into Donghyuck's mouth like cotton candy, leaving a strange trace of burnt sweetness. Donghyuck wonders, for a moment, how he must taste for Renjun, but all his questions disappear when Renjun slips his tongue into his mouth and a tender moan vibrates between them.

Without thinking twice, Donghyuck lifts Renjun in his embrace. Renjun doesn't hesitate to respond by clinging on his neck, arms fastened behind Donghyuck's nape with so much force that one would think he's not as weak as his heat seems to make him. The walk to Donghyuck's bedroom is oddly calm; it feels like they've done this a million times, like Donghyuck is meant to carry Renjun in his arms across his home as though they were together. Donghyuck feels like he doesn't want to ever let go, but it's just the calm before the storm, and sooner or later he will have to let go.

The storm arrives as soon as Donghyuck drops Renjun on his bed. Donghyuck doesn't know what's happening; Renjun's hands are everywhere, caressing under his clothes, grabbing at his dick without any tenderness. It's hard to reason with Renjun touching him with so much impatience, and Donghyuck tries to breathe little not to get drunk in Renjun's scent and makes does the hard job.

“Fast,” Renjun complains when Donghyuck begins to undress him, piece by piece. His top is difficult to deal with, for Renjun just wants to touch and kiss and not wait a single second to get undressed. “Please, don't tease me.”

Donghyuck breathes out, "It's fine." But it's not. He wants to tease Renjun, now more than ever, because he's at his weakest point. He promised that he'd be good to him, however, and Renjun looks at him with a pair of pleading eyes that could make anyone kneel for him. Connecting his lips to Renjun's jaw, Donghyuck mutters, “I wouldn't do that to you. You trust me?”

Renjun doesn't say anything, too busy with putting his hands on Donghyuck. He raises his hips to let Donghyuck pull his pants off, and Donghyuck grabs at his underwear too, removing everything all at once.

Today, Donghyuck has no option but to give himself a second to admire Renjun. Perhaps it's the pheromones, the heat, but Donghyuck can't take his eyes off him. There's an air of obscenity in every inch of his skin, an obscenity that can only be eclipsed by how beautiful he is. Renjun stares up at him with what resembles both embarrassment and excitement, and as Donghyuck scans him from head to toe, Renjun opens his legs for him.

It's a view to have Renjun on his back, chest inflating with little pants, hard and wet, spreading his thighs apart for him. Donghyuck wishes he could have all of him, slowly, that he could kiss and suck until Renjun's whole body was bruised with Donghyuck's marks.

Before Donghyuck can be aware of his own actions, he's unzipping his pants. Clothes are shed off even faster as Renjun sneaks a hand down his body, completely ignoring his hard dick and lubing his ass and thighs with his own slick.

“Donghyuck,” he whines, throwing his head back on the bed.

That's the invitation Donghyuck needs to break down. Renjun looks so provoking lubed up, a promise of how warm and damp he'll be for Donghyuck, and Donghyuck is guilty of just wanting to stick his dick in him like a simple alpha. When Donghyuck hovers over him, he realizes he's trembling too. It's not a good look on an alpha, but the effect Renjun has on him is so overpowering that Donghyuck doesn't have any room to feel less of an alpha.

Donghyuck sets his grip on Renjun's hip, keeping him still, and jerks himself a few times with his other hand. He's rarely this hard, but it's a good sign because he'll be able to knot Renjun without trouble, perhaps even too soon. His knot only grows when he's very aroused, and though Renjun definitely riles him up enough for it, he was afraid he’d be too nervous to knot him the first time during his heat.

But it all becomes clear with his dick rubbing against Renjun's entrance, only the head of his dick, because the mere sensation of lubing up with Renjun's slick pulls a stuttering noise from Donghyuck. He has to use all his force on Renjun, however, since he begins to move desperately when he feels Donghyuck's touch, when he catches Donghyuck giving signs of weakness. It’s a surprise to find out that Renjun is this sort of omega: submissive, but only if the alpha forces him to be, always looking for a fissure to fight for power, to get what he wants. Despite that, he can't make any noise that isn't a groan, thus he can't rush Donghyuck either.

Donghyuck presses his cock all over his inner thighs, up and down, thrusts forward just to line up with Renjun's entrance, but not enough to thrust in. He does it a few times to test his own endurance, to make sure that he won't go crazy at the pleasure of being inside Renjun, but he turns Renjun crazy instead. Renjun writhes at the teasing, blinks to push away the tears that are stacking in his eyes, and grips onto the hand that Donghyuck has set on his hip, as to ask for mercy.

Donghyuck wishes he could make him cry out of frustration, but his instinct is stronger than that. It’s just another brush over Renjun’s entrance and Donghyuck can’t help but push in, watching how Renjun engulfs the head of his dick. The noise that Renjun lets out shatters the last of Donghyuck’s constraint, and the next thing he knows is that his hips are snapping forward, his hands on Renjun’s waist to fix him on the bed.

It’s much more overwhelming than Donghyuck expected, for the both of them. Renjun gasps, scratches down Donghyuck’s forearms without realizing, and Donghyuck can barely feel the mark of his nails. He just feels the heat within Renjun, so tight and damp around him, the way their pheromones shift and mold against each other, and wants to thrust deeper. His eyes flicker up to Renjun’s face, and he revels in Renjun’s small and big reactions, in how lovely he looks while he tries to take all of Donghyuck without protesting.

“You're so pretty,” Donghyuck praises him, half of his dick inside him. Renjun can’t respond, his mouth falling open at how Donghyuck’s length is stretching him, but his gaze shyly locks with Donghyuck’s. He’s beyond breathless as he bathes in Renjun’s docility. “You're going to look so pretty around my knot.”

Renjun’s whine is muffled by Donghyuck pushing inside him. This time, Donghyuck can thrust in until their hips connect, but he falls over Renjun with a groan. That’s Renjun’s cue to hold onto him and not let go, so when Donghyuck lifts his head to look at him, Renjun brings him into a kiss. It’s messy, but Donghyuck is to blame as well, because he gets lost in Renjun’s touch as much as Renjun does, not remembering that it’s on him to guide Renjun through his heat.

“Please, move,” Renjun pleads between kisses, sounding so subdued and grateful that Donghyuck’s insides twist. “It feels so good.”

It feels good because he’s an alpha, that’s what Renjun can’t tell him. Donghyuck cups Renjun’s face with one hand, stares at him while he pulls his hips back, and then bottoms out at once. It hits Renjun so hard that he closes his eyes and moans, and Donghyuck doesn’t even have the heart to tell him how dirty he looks like that. It feels better than when Jeno fucks him, so much better, Donghyuck knows that.

Renjun falls apart under him with every thrust, and though Donghyuck tries to be soft on him, it’s not enough to please Renjun. In his heat, Renjun wants it rougher, and he wraps his legs around Donghyuck to harden his movements, to push him deeper as Donghyuck slams into him. He keeps Donghyuck there sometimes, his groans dragging, and moves his hips to rub on Donghyuck’s knot. Perhaps he thinks Donghyuck can’t notice, but the mere contact of his knot with Renjun’s skin sends him closer to chaos, and he has to tighten up his whole body not to fuck into Renjun senselessly.

He kisses along Renjun’s jaw, a tender gesture that doesn’t match his thrusts, but Renjun is too overpowered to notice the small details. Donghyuck knows that his body does though, that even if Renjun can’t pinpoint it, his kisses relax him and alleviate the pain. Donghyuck kisses everywhere he can: on his nose, on his lips, on his earlobe. He takes Renjun’s hand and kisses the inner part of his wrist, looking into his eyes, whispers sweet nothings that make Renjun close his eyes with a feverish abashment.

Donghyuck isn’t sure of when his knot starts to swell, but as soon as it does, he presses against Renjun’s ass with a level of desperation that he’s never experienced. Renjun is slick, but the knot doesn’t slip into him, not even if Donghyuck tries to force his way into him.

For a moment, Donghyuck thinks it’s too late to knot him, and Renjun must read his mind, because he mutters, “It hurts.”

Of course it does. The pain won’t fade away until Donghyuck fills him up, and if he comes inside Renjun without knotting him, in a matter of minutes Renjun will be whining for another fuck again. But Renjun is so tight around him that, even after stretching him, Donghyuck doubts his knot will fit.

Slowing his pace, Donghyuck pecks the tip of Renjun’s nose and whispers, “You’re not ready.”

And perhaps he isn’t, but if they wait any longer Donghyuck’s knot will become too big to knot him. Renjun is a mess of neediness and moaning, but he has enough reason left in him to understand what Donghyuck is warning him of.

That’s why he protests, “Please.” He levels up his chin, an unconscious move to bare his throat for Donghyuck, to tempt him. But Donghyuck looks away from that temptation, and Renjun begs, “Please, don’t do this to me.”

Donghyuck hesitates. He just has a few seconds to decide or it’ll be too late, yet he doesn’t want to hurt Renjun by stuffing his knot into him.

“You want my knot?” Donghyuck asks, and to his shock, Renjun pulls at his hair and mouths yes, yes, against his lips. Donghyuck has the impulse to bite all over his lips, to knot him while they kiss, to break one of the most important rules. And with a honest groan, he responds, “Fuck, I want to knot you so damn bad.”

Donghyuck immediately feels Renjun get wetter around his dick. “I-” Renjun begins, pushing his hips up. His movement makes him slip on Donghyuck’s cock all the way to his knot, and Donghyuck snaps downwards, pushing both of them against the mattress again. “Shit, I’ve thought about this for so long.”

Donghyuck keeps their bodies connected, rubs against Renjun’s ass until his knot is completely covered in his slick as well. Renjun unconsciously relaxes for him, despite the pants that fall off his mouth, despite how nervous and impatient he looks.

“About me knotting you?” Donghyuck asks him, and Renjun nods, too sharp to be a lie. Donghyuck manages to slip the beginning of his knot inside Renjun, but the pressure is asphyxiating, and Renjun gasps in pain at the sensation. Donghyuck breathes in,  caresses over Renjun’s cheekbone, and distracts him with a, “Baby, for how long?”

It’s strange how Renjun becomes quiet, how he stares at Donghyuck like he’s seeing him for the first time, like he’s aware of what they’re doing, who he’s with. His eyes penetrate Donghyuck, but rather than cowering, Donghyuck fights that emotion by tensing his thighs and fucking into Renjun again, until his knot is halfway in and Renjun breaks beneath him.

He doesn’t understand where Renjun takes the strength from, but swallows Donghyuck’s knot and confesses, “Since I first met you.”

It could be a lie, but it’s not. Donghyuck thrusts forward, almost by instinct, driven utterly mad by the confession, and his knot pushes past Renjun’s entrance.

Donghyuck feels his own body crumble from pleasure. He doesn’t know if it’s Renjun’s words what does the trick: he’s been thinking about Donghyuck’s knot since first year, during three damn years of dating Jeno. It’s in his nature, because Donghyuck is the alpha who is closest to him, and during a heat Renjun must have resorted to thoughts of him whether he liked it or not.

“My god,” Donghyuck groans. He places his hands on both sides of Renjun, trying to lift himself up not to crush Renjun, but his knot is so constrained inside Renjun that he can’t move. “Oh my god, Renjun.”

It’s their secret, and when Renjun brushes against his lips, Donghyuck allows him to kiss for a few seconds. But it scares Donghyuck. Renjun has always wanted Donghyuck to fuck him, and that strokes Donghyuck’s alpha ego so much that he swears he’s not going to pass another chance to knot him ever again. Not if this is how tight Renjun is, not if Renjun looks at him like he belongs to him, like he doesn’t need anyone else. 

It’s impossible to feel remorse with his knot growing inside Renjun, and Donghyuck thrusts a few times before his knot swells up so much that he can’t move.

Aware of what’s going to happen, he puts enough distance between their faces so that Renjun doesn’t have the impulse of kissing him; he fists Renjun’s dick with one hand, massages up and down right as his knot fixes Renjun in his place. The effect is immediate: Renjun comes, stuffed with knot, his gaze hooked on Donghyuck’s lips. It’s such a beautiful thing to see: an omega coming just because of his knot, spilling white all over himself, every muscle trembling and tensing with an orgasm.

For Donghyuck, coming is both a nightmare and a heaven. Knotting implies that he’s going to be coming inside Renjun for a while, in waves, but the first orgasm mercilessly cuts through him right then. He bites down on Renjun’s neck, mind blank, attempting to drown his moans there. Renjun shudders under him, lazily caresses over Donghyuck’s back as though he’s using him as an anchor to reality, and makes a content noise.

Donghyuck doesn’t come down from his high right away, and his orgasms last longer than ever. It makes him feel so vulnerable that he can just be grateful that they set rules beforehand, because while Renjun relaxes around his knot, satisfied, Donghyuck is still coming, once and once again, filling him up. He loses strength every time, feels so awfully dirty for tainting such a beautiful thing, and Renjun hums in his neck and reminds him what a good alpha he is.

Time blurs, and Donghyuck doesn’t know when he sits up, leaning back on the headboard. Renjun stays on his lap, hooked by his knot, and rests his head on Donghyuck’s collarbones. Donghyuck can’t speak at first, but he pets Renjun up and down, massages his back and his butt until Renjun’s breathing stabilizes.

“Hey,” Donghyuck calls him, stroking his hair.

Renjun’s feline eyes glance at him, a subtle smile on his lips, and Donghyuck doesn’t need to ask to know that Renjun feels safe in his arms.

“You’re so big,” Renjun mutters, indolently shifting on his knot.

Donghyuck chuckles at that, because Renjun might not be wrong, but it’s funny that’s the first comment he has after being knotted. There’s tender indulgence in his tone, and Donghyuck wonders why Renjun would speak to him like Donghyuck is his, like he’s Donghyuck’s too.

“And you’re so small,” Donghyuck teases back. He lifts his hips to prove his point, and Renjun lets out a soft hiss; he immediately draws circles on Renjun’s cheeks to soothe him. “It’ll take a while.”

That’s an understatement, but Donghyuck doesn’t want to alarm Renjun. His knot hasn’t shrunk at all yet, maybe because he’s still too excited, too intoxicated in his scent and pheromones, and Donghyuck hopes to enjoy this moment for as long as his body lets him.

“I don’t mind,” Renjun assures him. He throws his arms around Donghyuck’s neck, nuzzles closer as though they’re not close enough, and utters a coy, “Thank you.”

A different kind of comfort invades Donghyuck, so silence is his best choice. Silence, and immersing in the false pretense that he can stay like this forever, with Renjun’s tiny frame in his embrace and the strange feeling of being loved.

 

 

 

 

The rest of the heat passes in a haze.

It’s three days of bed, of fucking Renjun nonstop, of caressing him, of whispering sweet compliments and praising him. There are just a few moments of lucidity, not only for Renjun, but also for Donghyuck. He feeds Renjun, carries him to the shower and helps him clean up, sometimes in silence because they’re exhausted, but sometimes in unstoppable laughter and a lot of kisses. Renjun always pulls Donghyuck into the shower with him, claims that Donghyuck stinks too, an excuse to rub his back and mock him every time Donghyuck gets shampoo into his eyes.

Donghyuck tries not to give it too many thoughts, but as they lie down with each other, naked and their bodies entangled, he doesn’t want to imagine how empty he’ll feel when Renjun has to leave. He knows that spending a heat with an omega can be quite intimate, but beyond the nature of the process, there’s an addicting factor for Donghyuck. Every thrust inside Renjun is another link to him, another reason he wants to make Renjun happy, and overall to prove that he can indeed make Renjun happy. Every thrust builds Renjun’s trust in him too, erases the little shame that he’s still holding onto.

Renjun is sweet, but once he’s confident that Donghyuck is too into him to get mad at him, he begins to tease. He makes fun of Donghyuck’s willingness in bed, asks if he’s the best omega he’s ever fucked, says do you want me that much, alpha? and then cackles at Donghyuck’s attempts to subdue him. It works sometimes, however, and Renjun ends up on all fours moaning for him.

But then it’s all over, and the fantasy cracks and collapses.

Renjun’s heat pheromones are gone, and Donghyuck wakes up in the morning and observes the boy draped over him who, bathed in his scent, is already far away from Donghyuck’s alpha. Still, Donghyuck holds him close, pulls the covers up to protect Renjun from the cold now that his temperate has lowered. He doesn’t admit it to himself, but he’s a little bit scared. Scared of the moment Renjun stirs up from his sleep and looks at him like he used to, the connection of the heat dissipating.

That’s what drives him to abandon Renjun in bed: an urge of self-protection. It’s pretty early, but Jaemin is having breakfast in the living room and he grins at Donghyuck for the first time in days. They’ve had barely any time to talk during Renjun’s heat, and Jaemin was so concerned that he cooked for them all the time, even banged on their door to make sure that they came out to eat. It’s true that Donghyuck would have passed out otherwise, not accustomed to spend a whole heat with an omega. So as Jaemin smiles at him, he does it with a sincere tranquility, because he knows that if Donghyuck has left the room alone, Renjun’s heat must be over.

“How are you feeling?” Jaemin asks him, patting the spot next to him on the couch.

Donghyuck doesn’t hesitate to sit with him, and Jaemin immediately lifts a toast to his mouth so that Donghyuck takes a bite. It reminds him that he didn’t have dinner last night, and that Renjun must be starving as well.

Donghyuck chews on the toast, content, and under Jaemin’s concerned stare, replies, “Exhausted.”

Exhaustion has hit him at once, because the heat pheromones prevented him from feeling the true exertion of his body, adrenaline always on the highest point. Now that he has climbed down from that high, the level of tiredness is terrifying.

“You forgot to take care of yourself.” Jaemin clicks his tongue in disapproval, but he doesn’t judge Donghyuck further, because he knows that Donghyuck was too busy pleasing Renjun to care about himself. He gives Donghyuck an amicable slap on his thigh and announces, “Wait, I have something for you.”

Before Donghyuck can question him, Jaemin is jumping out of the couch and striding to his room. Donghyuck doesn’t bother to worry and decides to steal more toast from Jaemin until he returns with a bottle in his hands.

Curious, Donghyuck eyes the bottle. “What is it?”

Shoving the bottle in his hands, Jaemin orders him, “Wash Renjun with this.” But then he catches the confusion on Donghyuck’s face, and decides he deserves an explanation. “It’s the best thing to get rid of a scent, I use it when I visit my parents and I can’t show up reeking of Sunwoo.”

That’s the blow that drags Donghyuck back into reality.

Renjun smells of him, and he can’t go back home to his boyfriend in that state. Even if they don’t mean to, even if they’re conscious there’s no real issue, it’s a territorial matter. Jeno and Donghyuck will fight because of it. An alpha’s scent is much stronger than a beta’s scent, so Jeno will be pissed if he’s not able to remove it from Renjun within hours.

Donghyuck glances down at the bottle in his hands. He’ll probably have to pay Jaemin for it, and despite the way his guts twist at the thought of erasing his mark from Renjun, it’s the right choice. It’s about protecting Renjun, after all.

 

 

 

 

“Are you sure of this?”

Renjun’s reticence isn’t good for Donghyuck’s sanity. Renjun is confused when he first explains what he wants to do, but as Donghyuck speaks, his confusion becomes sorrow. Donghyuck hates that Renjun feels a duty towards him, a duty that he shouldn’t have since he isn’t Donghyuck’s omega; he can’t put that into words, however, because Renjun might not be aware of what he’s doing.

They stand in front of each other in the bathroom, the scent remover in Donghyuck’s hold, and it’s impossible for Donghyuck to hide that this makes him miserable for stupid alpha reasons. That’s what prompts Renjun’s question, or so Donghyuck wishes to assume. The other explanation – that Renjun would prefer to carry his scent with him – makes no sense, and Donghyuck doesn’t allow his ego to feed on it.

“Come on,” Donghyuck says, forcing a smile. “I stink. You don’t want to go out smelling so badly.”

The joke doesn’t convince Renjun, but Donghyuck avoids his eyes and steps forward to help him undress. After so many days touching each other’s naked bodies, both are at ease with non-sexual intimacy; so even without his heat, Renjun isn’t ashamed of stripping off and getting into the shower with him. Donghyuck isn’t either, because he’s confident in his body and there are no secrets for Renjun anymore, but his hesitation must be evident in other aspects.

They sit inside the bathtub together, Renjun between Donghyuck’s legs and his back pressed against his chest. They stay in silence while Donghyuck regulates the temperature, but Renjun caresses over Donghyuck’s thighs and plays with the water until Donghyuck scoffs at him.

Composing himself, Donghyuck breathes in. He pours water over Renjun’s head, observing how he throws his head back, and decides to treasure these last moments with him without his own worries. Renjun looks so relaxed that Donghyuck wonders if this is usual for him, to be cleaned up by another person. He keeps his eyes closed as Donghyuck washes his hair, with soft and small movements of his fingertips, and sighs in content from time to time. Donghyuck doesn’t need anything else; his alpha buzzes at the mere fact that Renjun trusts him this much, that he enjoys being babied, unperturbed.

“I’m so tired,” Renjun whispers once Donghyuck has finished washing his hair. They move onto cleaning the rest of his body, Donghyuck’s hands roaming over Renjun to lather him up, and Renjun falls back against his chest with a tiny sound. “I could fall asleep here.”

Donghyuck would love that, if it was just for the excuse that would give them to be together for longer.

“I bet,” Donghyuck agrees with a chuckle. Renjun doesn’t answer, but Donghyuck turns his head and presses a kiss on Renjun’s wet hair, so nonchalant and quick that anyone would think he regrets it. The next words come out before Donghyuck can process what he’s saying, “I don’t want you to go.”

Renjun laughs at his honesty. “I’m sure you have a line of omegas that are waiting to sleep with you.”

It’s not an exaggeration. Donghyuck could have a bunch of contenders within two days if he tried, but that’s far from the point. He’s not trying to replace Renjun, like he seems to suppose. That gives the impression that Donghyuck only wants him around to have easy sex.

“I don’t care about that,” Donghyuck retorts, and it confirms his own suspicions: he doesn’t. He ignores what the magical factor in Renjun is, but sleeping with other omegas is much colder, impersonal, a routine. Perhaps it’s because Donghyuck knows Renjun on a different level.

Renjun doesn’t tense up at that unusual confession, however. He fits the back of his head in the crook of Donghyuck’s neck to look up at him, and in complete seriousness, he whispers, “Was it that satisfying?”

After a few days with Renjun, Donghyuck has learned to distinguish when he’s just playing with him. The solemnity in his expression is a mask, and it breaks as Donghyuck groans in protest.

“Don’t tease me.” Donghyuck rubs down Renjun’s arms. It’s frightening to feel with his own touch how the soap wipes his scent off, how Donghyuck can smell it in the water that travels down Renjun’s body. It bares Renjun, somehow. It’s unnatural. Donghyuck sighs, “You know I lack self-control.”

A grin blooms on Renjun’s face, because yes, he has enough proof of Donghyuck’s weaknesses. He adjusts against Donghyuck again, so calm that Donghyuck believes it’s a silent confession that he wants to stay with him, too, even after his heat is done. It’s not possible, and it’d hurt all of them.

Renjun doesn’t speak for a while. He closes his eyes and rests on him while Donghyuck cleans his whole body, his arms, his abdomen, his legs, his neck, his cheeks, all the places where Donghyuck has peppered so many kisses that the scent has stuck like a hungry animal with its fangs. Donghyuck has to repress his instinct telling him to mark Renjun again, but it’s such a nonsensical thought that he manages to clear it away. And despite how emotionally draining the process is, Donghyuck still appreciates to have Renjun in his embrace, naked and vulnerable.

When they’re almost done, Renjun cradles Donghyuck’s head with his arm, encircling him from his chin to the crown of his head, almost like he wants to console him for renouncing to his scenting. Donghyuck lets him enjoy the moment too, lets Renjun press their cheeks together and feel the last of Donghyuck for months. It’ll be a long while until they can touch each other again, and Donghyuck memorizes the tingling sensation of Renjun’s fingers caressing from his hair to his face, to get a hold of it when he feels lonely.

“You’ve been such a good alpha,” Renjun mutters, admires. Donghyuck catches how his skin is invaded by goosebumps, but he can’t blame Renjun: from inside out, Donghyuck feels the same, all his body vibrating at the compliment. Renjun lovingly rubs over Donghyuck’s face, once and again, and says the words that shatter Donghyuck at last. “My good alpha.”

Donghyuck’s breath catches in his throat. He stares at Renjun, but he doesn’t need to: his pheromones reveal that he’s serious, that he’s not teasing him. Donghyuck is a good alpha, and that’s all he has ever wanted even though he didn’t know that until Renjun praised him. Renjun unconsciously strokes under his earlobe, right where he has bit him a hundred times during his heat, and Donghyuck fuses into his touch in desperation. Renjun is clean of his scent, but Renjun’s mark on him will remain under his earlobe, another little secret that Donghyuck has to cherish.

He’s not a simple good alpha. He’s Renjun’s alpha.