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In the August Heat

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Brasch traced home, exhausted and looking forward to a quiet night. Because of his extensive healer powers, and his abilities as a warrior, he was often hired to help treat the wounded from battles, and in this instance, gladiator matches. He had spent the last forty-eight hours working behind the scenes at an annual championship free-for-all in an obscure hell dimension. It had been damn entertaining to watch, but he had been crazy busy after each match; patching up the wounded and signing off on the dead and sending their bodies back to their families. And as good as the pay was, it wasn’t enough to keep him away from his mate for another day. He’d had his fill of severed limbs, spilled guts, heads split open, and lots of screaming from both the wounded, the winners, and the crowd.

Before seeking out his mate he went and showered, scrubbing off days’ worth of blood, sweat, brain matter and bile. He changed into sweatpants and a tank-top that was a bit large for him, which meant it was Maddox’s and smelled heavily of the Inferno demon’s scent.

After leaving his payment in the office, he walked through the villa in search of his mate.

The Inferno demon was stretched out on the sofa in the library, and not alone. August was asleep on the alpha’s chest, wearing only colorful fuzzy socks, shorts, and one of the demon’s hoodies. Maddox was reading an especially large book, but lowered it when he saw his mate.

“You’re home,” he said with a smile.

“Did you two have fun without me?” he whispered.

“No,” Maddox laughed quietly. “He’s only been here for a few hours. Between studying, working, and his impending heat, he was feeling overwhelmed and had a migraine. He just wanted comfort.”

“Well, you’re good at that,” he purred as he walked over to the pair. He frowned thoughtfully before pressing two fingers to the omega’s forehead. The tattoos on his arms started to gently glow, before the light spread over the omega’s skin.

“He should be better now.”

Maddox frowned at his mate’s washed out appearance. “When did you last sleep or eat?”

“Before leaving for the job.”

Maddox’s tail snapped. “Brasch,” he scolded.

“I’ll eat now!” he reassures. “Have you eaten yet?”

“Not since this morning,” he said. “I’m sure August is hungry, too.”

Brasch looked at the sleeping omega with new interest. “Did he...say anything about his heat?”

The Inferno demon’s tail curled. “Yes,” he purred, “he said he wants to stay here and share it with us.”

Brasch’s heart gave an excited leap. He turned, walking through the house to the kitchen to make supper. He looked through the cabinets and refrigerator before deciding that he wanted something warm and hearty, and settled on making a meat stew with lots of vegetables. As he chopped vegetables and roots he thought about what they would need to keep their omega happy and content during his cycle. Contrary to popular belief, an omega’s heat was not twenty-four-hour mating for three to seven days. There was so much more to it, and Brasch thanked the gods he had done so much studying in becoming a healer that he knew almost everything he needed to in order to care for an omega. Otherwise they would have been rather clueless, only relying on instinct which would have absolutely helped them pamper August, but not take proper care of him.

As he was grilling the meat, and the vegetables and broth simmered, he thought back to his younger days when he had spent a week with a friend who had been in heat. She had been in need of comfort and protection over sex, so he had promised to do just that, and they hadn’t touched in any kind of sexual way. This heat cycle with August was going to be completely different, assuming he wanted to mate with them.

The omega could always change his mind, and instead just be interested in just cuddling and scenting.

Maddox, meanwhile, marked his place in his book and set it on the floor before he set about waking August.

After their threesome, August had allowed Brasch to take him home. Then, almost a week later, the omega called them, asking if they wanted to “do something.” So after bringing him back to the villa, the omega admitted that he had wanted to see them again the very next day, but he had been too shy to call. They spent that first night just talking and drinking; getting to know each other, and for August, growing more comfortable around the alphas. So when they had sex again, he wasn’t afraid they were going to turn on him and hurt or kill him.

It had been an interesting experience. The more relaxed the omega grew with them, the more he shared about himself and also inquired into their lives. Both alphas had even visited August at his aunt’s shop in Ironwood City (however, only when the harpy wasn’t working, August still didn’t know how to tell his family about the alphas.)

It didn’t take long for both alphas to grow attached to the omega, and thankfully the feeling appeared to be mutual.

“August,” Maddox said softly as he stroked his hand through the halfbreed’s soft hair and over his small horns.

He was answered with a sleepy, “Hm?”

“We’re going to eat soon. Are you hungry?” he asked as he rested his other hand on the small of the omega’s back.

August yawned, showing his small fangs, as he did. “Yeah,” he answered as he sat up, straddling the lounging demon. “My head feels a lot better. Is Brasch home?”

“Mm-hm,” he hummed as he pet up and down August’s sides. He could smell the subtle change in his scent, signaling his oncoming heat. “If anything else starts to hurt, tell Brasch, okay?”

August laughed. “I’ve had lots of heats,” he explained. “It’s nothing I can’t handle.” August had experienced two heats a year since ascending into immortality thirty years ago, and had grown to pretty much predict when it was going to start. There was always the pre-heat hormone rush, which left him more prone to headaches and muscle cramps, and sometimes left him very horny, but none of that caused an actual issue in his daily life in Ironwood or at his aunt’s shop. Only when the nausea and chills set in did it become an actual problem, and he would have to stay in his apartment and suffer until his heat hit, then he would call his mother to come and take him home.

Not this time, though.

“But you don’t have to handle this alone,” Maddox reminded him with a warm smile. “We want to make sure you’re as comfortable, happy, and safe as possible.”

August blushed. “You don’t have to work so hard just for me.”

“Oh, we’re going to spoil you,” Maddox promised with a husky laugh.

August bit his lip before laughing. He leaned down to kiss the demon before he slid off him and stretched before walking to the kitchen, following his nose. First thing he noticed was how tired Brasch looked, but the alpha’s smile lit up the kitchen when he turned to see him.

“How does your head feel?” Brasch asked as he stirred the thick stew.

“Better, thanks to you,” August said as he hopped up onto the counter and sat. “You didn’t have to do that.”

“I wanted to,” the Rage demon said as he added another pinch of spices and salt.

Maddox leaned next to August. “After we eat, you’re going to get some sleep.”

“Yes, yes, I already heard you once,” Brasch said as he tasted the stew. “August, are you sure you want to stay here during your heat? He’s worse than a mother dragon.”

August laughed softly. “I’m sure I won’t mind.”

He sat back and watched as the two alphas moved around the kitchen, filling bowls with food and grabbing a loaf of hard bread and crackers to go with it. Then the three settled at the small dining nook that was in front of a smaller fireplace. There weren’t too many windows here, The Vale was cold, bleak and always dark, nothing that one wanted to look at for very long.

August took the seat closest to the fire and pulled his feet up. He stirred the heavy stew before taking a bite.

Maddox crushed a handful of crackers into his first. After a bite he said, “I was thinking of going to the market in Bright-town tomorrow.”

“Do you mind if I tag along?” August asked.

“Of course not,” Brasch said. “We can buy whatever you require during your heat.”

August blushed and hummed as he ate. During his heat they would be staying in the house for the entire cycle. He didn't require a lot, mostly he would just need protein-rich foods and lots of water. He especially drank a lot of peppermint tea because he tended to suffer from quite a bit of nausea during the week. But, he had to wonder, would he have as much pain and nausea being with these two alphas? He had heard that the seed from alphas during an omega’s heat would help calm the pain and ease the waves when his body would cramp up while trying to dispel slick and ready his body for breeding. Maybe this time wouldn’t be so bad.

He didn't normally share his heat with anyone, he would just go home for protection from his family and lots of back rubs from his alpha mother. His alpha grandmother would bring him his favorite cookies and make sure he kept his nest clean and fresh. Then she would lecture him for not having a mate. She had even tried to introduce him to females close to his age, hoping he would find one appealing for mating and give her grandchildren (his siblings had yet to give her grandchildren, though his older alpha sister had three step-children with her mate.) August had kindly declined, not ready for children, and he definitely didn't want to meet someone one day, get her pregnant the next, and be expected to stay together for the rest of their very long lives. It took his father pulling his mother-in-law aside and telling her to lay off trying to set him up on blind dates.

She'd been mad, but she still brought him cookies.

The next morning August woke up, tucked between the two alphas. He managed to pry his way out of their arms and made his way to the bathroom. He used the toilet and then showered, and was walking back into the bedroom as Brasch yawned and woke up.

"Morning, sweetheart."

August never thought he would like having a pet-name, but when either alpha called him that, he felt incredibly warm, and it wasn't the kind of warmth that he felt right before sex. It was a fluttery kind of warmth, making his heart skip and his cheeks blush.

"Good morning," he replied as he dressed for the day, pulling clothing from an overnight bag he always made sure to bring along. "Are you feeling better?"

Last night, before going to sleep, Brasch had developed a headache from overworking himself, and August had laid in bed with him, petting his hands through the demon's short hair and over his horns to comfort him. It was strange that the demon could heal so many others, but not himself.

"Yes," he answered with a smile. "You're company was the perfect medicine last night."

Maddox woke with a yawn and a snort. "And what about me?" he grumbled.

"You're a headache."

Maddox whipped at him with his tail as he got up and left the bedroom. August sat back down on the bed, pulling out his phone and going over the list he had made last night for the market.

Brasch sat up and leaned closer to the omega. "What do you need to pick up today?" he asked.

He hummed. "Not much. I'll stock the freezer with protein meat pies, some vitamin water, and peppermint tea. I get nauseous sometimes... I hope that doesn't bother you."

The demon laughed softly. "Nothing will bother us, August. We're both here to do whatever you need us too." He stood and started to dress. "What do you normally do, if I can ask?"

"I go home," he said. "Mother and grandmother usually look after me."

Brasch knew that the two harpies were fierce alpha warriors, and he had no doubt that the omega would be perfectly safe around them. "You don't share it with anyone?"

"No," he said quietly. "I mean, I have. But... I didn't enjoy it. I felt sick. And I didn't trust my partner one-hundred percent, so I ended up calling my sister to stay with me. I know, I know, it's stupid--"

"It absolutely is not," Brasch gently argued. "You need to feel safe, you need to be with someone who will help you in whatever ways you need it, and you need to trust them. I hope that you trust Maddox and me to do everything in our power to keep you happy and safe. If at any time, you want to go home, I will take you without a second thought."

August smiled tearfully, and when the alpha leaned in to scent-mark him, he willingly tilted his head to the side. He closed his eyes at the contact, heart-fluttering. Gods, I really do love them.

After a quick breakfast the trio traced to Bright-town, specifically the massive marketplace in the center of the very medieval city. Brasch said something about buying herbs and dried flowers, and Maddox wanted to visit an armory he was fond of, which left August alone to do his own shopping, which he didn't mind. He checked his coin purse, adjusted his shoulder satchel and set off among the crowd of Otherkin, doing their shopping and having brunches.

His first stop was to a familiar vendor who sold his favorite tea. After paying he tucked the box into his bag and pulled out his phone to check his list as he started to walk. He heard loud, stomping feet and instinctively moved to the side to avoid being rammed into by whoever who was in such a hurry.

However, that someone stopped directly in front of him, wings spread open and tail lashing. August frowned up at the gargoyle, whose skin was a dull, dirty green and had fangs overlapping his lips. It sniffed the air before cocking its head at him.

“Halfbreed,” the gargoyle rumbled, “you smell sweet.”

He smells that, but not the other demons? August thought with a huff. This guy thinks only with his dick.

“I’m not interested,” he said as he started to step around him.

But the gargoyle’s massive wings blocked him. It growled. “Little omega, you should be honored that I am here to court you.”

This guy should carry a giant red flag with him. He growled. “I don’t need your honor, so move your ass.”

A large hand clamped down on his arm, jerking him forward. “Or what, little one?”

Normally August carried a long knife in his belt or boot when he was going to be out and this close to his heat, because this kind of attention was unavoidable, no matter what kind of perfume or cologne he used on himself, but he hadn’t even thought to arm himself before leaving with the alphas. He hissed, showing his fangs, before raking his claws across the gargoyle’s face. The creature howled in surprise, letting him go and taking a step back as it rubbed at it’s damaged eye and smeared blood across its face.

August turned to run the other way, but one wing lashed out and smacked him to the ground. He curled onto his side, wheezing, as a shadow covered him. He was about to call for someone to help him, when he smelled burning flesh and the gargoyle was suddenly shrieking and squealing in pain.

He sat up with a start, and watched as Maddox, his skin smoldering hot and steaming, pulled the gargoyle away from him and positioned himself between them. The Inferno demon’s hand was gripping one of the gargoyle’s wing limbs, having melted the membrane between limbs and was currently burning and charring flesh down to the bone. The scent was sickening and the smoke rolling off the gargoyle was black. August covered his mouth.

“Stop!” The gargoyle howled. “I did nothing wrong!”

“He told you to stop,” Maddox snarled as he stood protectively in front of the omega.

“He’s not mated!” The gargoyle argued as more of the wing skin sizzled and burned. “I looked!”

August jumped to his feet. “Maddox,” he pleaded. A crowd was starting to gather, and by the way they were looking at the Inferno demon, it was clear whose side they were going to take. It didn’t matter if the gargoyle had harassed him, August would be blamed for going out in preheat unescorted, and the alpha was doing what came natural to him. Sometimes the Otherkin world was just as medieval in their sexiest views as humans were.

“Stop,” he pleaded as he reached out to grasp the demon’s wrist, which felt only warm to him. “I’m okay.”

Maddox looked down at him, eyes scanning over the shaken omega. His clothing was dirty from the fall, and there was a scrape on his cheek from the impact from the scaled wing. He wanted to argue, he wanted to reach into the gargoyle’s mouth and rip out his tongue, but the crowd looking at him were starting to hiss and whisper.

He shoved the gargoyle to the ground before turning to the harpy halfbreed.

“Let’s go,” August said as he took his hand. The crowd parted as he lead the large demon away from the scene, and only when they turned a corner and were no longer being watched, did they stop.

“August? Are you hurt?” Maddox asked.

“No,” he said with a reassuring smile, but he did let Maddox quickly inspect him. As he did, his skin cooled and his eyes lost their glow. Once he was sure Maddox was calm, he spoke again. “If I would have had my knife with me, that guy wouldn’t have gotten the upper hand over me.”

Maddox rumbled a worried growl, but relaxed. August was fine. “Let’s not forget it again,” he suggested.

“I won’t,” he said. He held up their hands. “Your skin didn’t burn me again.”

“Isn’t that curious?”

He glared at the demon’s teasing grin. “Someday you’re gonna explain it to me.”

“Someday,” he hummed. Maddox’s tail wagged. “Since I’m here, I’ll shop with you?”

August knew it was the demon being protective, but he didn’t care. He was getting a headache so he was more than happy to let the demon carry his shopping bags. It wasn’t much; frozen protein meat pies to eat and keep him well-nourished, some sweet snacks at Maddox’s insistence, and protein mixes. When they were done they met Brasch at a food stall.

Obviously the Rage demon had heard about the incident from Maddox because he immediately looked him over. “You’re both mother dragons,” he said with a fake sigh of exasperation. “My mother would be scolding me for not cutting that gargoyle’s nuts off.”

Brasch nuzzled his neck, scenting him. It sent a shiver up the omega’s spine. “Well, what kind of alphas would we be if we weren’t a little too overprotective of our omega, hm?”

“Yours, huh?” He teased with a smile.

Brasch tilted his head. Behind them, Maddox returned with three meals from a food vendor. “I’d like to think so.”

“Hmm,” he teased as he went and found a quiet corner for them to sit. After eating, and a bit more shopping, August was feeling sore and stiff. He didn’t want to ask them to take him back to the villa, and he was absolutely going to suffer through it, but it seemed he couldn’t hide things like that from Brasch.

The healer frowned worriedly. “August?”

“I’m okay,” he said as he rubbed his lower back.

“Do you want me to take you back?” The Rage demon asked.

“I don’t want to be any more trouble than I already have been,” he said with a sigh.

“You aren’t any trouble,” Brasch insisted gently. He looked at Maddox. “What else did you need, love?”

“I have anything,” he said as he flicked his tail. “Let’s go home, shall we?”

August still felt guilty that he was forcing them to return home earlier than what they would have normally, but once they traced back to the villa, he did feel better and less stressed. Here he was surrounded by the heavy scent of his alphas (yes, his alphas,) and here he knew he was safe. Here, away from the heavy chaos of the marketplace he could smell the alphas’ heavy pheromones, could smell the lingering smell of sex; when he licked his lips he could almost taste it. He felt something click, and was suddenly overwhelmed.

He excused himself to the bathroom.

“Is he all right?” Maddox asked as he went to the kitchen and started to unpack their burlap shopping bags.

“His heat is going to hit him,” Brasch said with a frown. “I thought he had another couple of days, but it seems not.”

“What’s kick starting it?”

“Us.”