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what rushes into my heart

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The moment the door clicked open under Yibo's hand, Xiao Zhan sensed that something was wrong.

They had wrapped shooting on A-Ling only a few weeks before and were still in the process of consolidating their lives and flats, all while juggling the various engagements that each of them had already scheduled. Xiao Zhan was staying over at Yibo's place more often than his own until they had the time to pick a new, secure condo together. Yibo was having his management draw up a list to help them narrow down their choices.

Xiao Zhan was thinking of firing his management. Or suing them.

His agent had flat out refused to work with Yuehua on the P.R. plan to coordinate the reveal of their bond to the public. Between that, his management's opposition to him trying out for Wei Wuxian, some missed opportunities over the year, and a couple of shitty contracts they had locked him into, he was done. He'd texted Wang Han for advice on a reputable lawyer. Denying him his right to reveal his relationship status with Yibo was the last straw. Like he had already promised the man, he was putting Yibo and their bond first even if it was at the risk of his career.

He had to cut Wajijiwa loose if they weren't going to support something so fundamental.

Xiao Zhan looked up from his phone. He'd been browsing Weibo, staying away from his own super topic as Yibo himself had recommended, idly amusing himself in between terse updates from Yibo as he went from studio to the airport, baggage claim to the car. He frowned and got up as there was a shuffle of shoes at the door followed by silence.

"Yibo?" he called out as he went past the couch and rounded the corner to the hallway that led to the front door. He gave a quiet gasp as Yibo turned his face up, expression dull but eyes somewhat shiny. "Baby, what's wrong?" He crossed the distance between them so swiftly he might as well have teleported. One hand went to Yibo's shoulder and the other cupped the side of his face.

Yibo focused in on him, a few emotions crossing his face in quick succession. He stepped forward into Xiao Zhan’s arms, burying his face against his neck.

"Baby, what happened?" Xiao Zhan demanded, aghast. He'd sent a happy, well-adjusted, smug omega off to his flight for Changsha three days ago and now Yibo was shaking in his arms, rubbing his cheek against Xiao Zhan's scent gland with a sub-vocal whine that put his hairs on edge. "Come with me. Yibo, walk with me."

Yibo rubbed his lips against Xiao Zhan's gland and shuffled along with him further into the flat.

Xiao Zhan got an arm around his waist and walked backward, drawing Yibo along with him, navigating the corner, and pulling him down to the couch with him. Yibo made a soft noise of distress. Xiao Zhan adjusted their positions, settling Yibo against a cushion and the armrest. He draped himself on Yibo, letting him keep his face pressed against his neck, and stroked a hand up and down his side in a slow, soothing gesture.

His pulse was speeding up but he was afraid to ask what had set Yibo off so badly.

“You didn’t say anything in WeChat,” Xiao Zhan chided, putting his full weight on Yibo and reaching up with his other hand to caress his jaw, which was all he could reach of his face with it buried against him.

Yibo inhaled deeply before beginning to huff short breaths against Xiao Zhan’s scent gland, taking him in. Xiao Zhan stroked his hair and let him scent him without further prompting, settling atop Yibo more comfortably for both of them in the hopes that his sharp hip wasn’t poking Yibo’s waist as much. Yibo’s arm squeezed around him tighter for a second before he relaxed and went pliant under him, taking a long breath. His head lolled back against the cushion underneath him.

Xiao Zhan lifted up enough to get a good look at him. They were chest to chest, and he’d keep his full weight on Yibo as long as he needed the comfort of that pressure and contact. “What’s wrong, love?”

A small shudder flicked across Yibo’s skin, there and gone.

“It…it wasn’t the kind of thing I wanted to share over WeChat,” Yibo said, low and hoarse. His eyes met Xiao Zhan’s and slid away. “I…I know I’m overreacting. I’m sure I am. It’s just, I never knew.”

“Knew what?” Xiao Zhan kept his voice mellow. He didn’t want to risk spooking Yibo when he was already worked up over something. He stroked soothing fingers over Yibo’s neck, seeking out the claim mark and rubbing it with a gentle thumb.

“I’ve never really done much omega ‘shop talk,’ you know,” Yibo began. “My co-stars and colleagues always thought I was an alpha, until…until I started to tell people. Just those close to me so far.”

Xiao Zhan nodded and kept up the gentle movement of his fingers along Yibo’s neck.

“Today, after filming, Cheng Xiao—” Yibo choked and hitched up, pressing his forehead against Xiao Zhan’s.

“Shh, it’s okay,” Xiao Zhan soothed, settling more firmly atop Yibo and rubbing his wrist along his neck. “Take your time.”

Yibo nodded and his hands found Xiao Zhan’s waist, easing up and down in a brief caress before settling there, his large hands holding him tight. “Cheng Xiao and I were hanging out, talking. I’d told her about being omega, being bonded with you.” He smiled a little and Xiao Zhan made another low, soothing noise, sweeping his cheek along Yibo’s jaw, rubbing his wrist along the line of his shoulder and upper arm.

“Then she asked…she asked if I was on a contraceptive or if I’d had…the surgery.” Yibo shuddered underneath him and buried his face against Xiao Zhan’s throat.

Xiao Zhan went cold from the top of his scalp to the depths of his gut. “What surgery?” he asked hoarsely. Whatever it was, he hadn’t heard of it either, and given Yibo’s reaction, he wasn’t going to like what he heard.

“There’s a surgery to…to take out an omega’s…organs,” Yibo said miserably. “So that they won’t have kids. And won’t have a heat. She heard about it from a former manager.”

Xiao Zhan lifted himself up, eyes rounding in horror. “Who would do such a thing?”

Yibo whined and tried to bury his face in Xiao Zhan’s neck again, clinging to him. “Even thinking about it made me throw up,” he said. “Some of us were going to hang out and have drinks. I couldn’t do it, I had to come straight home.”

“I’m glad you did,” Xiao Zhan said, settling his weight back on Yibo’s torso again and rubbing his wrist into the crook of Yibo’s neck. “It’s okay, Yibo. That’s unthinkable to me. I can’t believe she asked you that.”

“She said some guys like me don’t want to have kids at all, so…so that’s how they make sure of it.” Yibo shuddered again. “If it was just not having kids, I dunno, maybe I would consider it but not ever having a heat again?” He cinched a leg over Xiao Zhan’s and clung to him.

“Not happening,” Xiao Zhan said adamantly. A heat was more than simple reproduction for an omega and their partner—it was about closeness and bonding even if they didn’t seek children. “Yibo. I love you just as you are.”

“I know, Zhan-ge,” Yibo asserted. He nosed at Xiao Zhan’s jawline. “I know that. It was a shock, though. And sickening.”

“Okay. I get it now.” Xiao Zhan continued to pet him until he sensed Yibo calming beneath him again, tense muscles easing. His hands relaxed from their tight grip on his waist and moved over his lower back, caressing. “Better?”

“Mn,” Yibo said, sounding more like himself. “You’re making me feel better.” He wriggled a little underneath him and his hands went up and down Xiao Zhan’s back.

“What can I do for you, love?” Xiao Zhan asked, turning his head to kiss Yibo’s cheek. “Do you want dinner? Bed? To sleep.” For a change, he wasn’t detecting any hint of arousal in Yibo’s scent. It was a horrifying thing to learn of; he was going to remain as soothing and low-key as possible until Yibo bounced back. Which, given he was young and resilient, would probably be overnight.

“Mm,” Yibo murmured, shifting under him. “Both. Small amount of dinner, then bed.”

“Noodles with Zhenjiang vinegar?” Xiao Zhan guessed.

Yibo pulled his face out of his neck to look at him, giving a sleepy blink. He looked sweet, his face completely bare after makeup remover, a little younger than he normally appeared. He nodded and pursed his lips.

Xiao Zhan smiled and pressed a slow, closed-mouth kiss on him. Yibo’s arms tightened.

“With fresh garlic,” Yibo added. He stretched up for another kiss. “If we have some.”

Xiao Zhan nodded. He patted Yibo’s hip and extricated himself, putting a pillow from the other end of the couch into Yibo’s arms to snuggle with after rubbing it liberally with his wrists. He almost didn’t want to get up, Yibo looked so beautiful, like a new veneer of contentment had settled over him.

He grimaced as he made his way to the kitchen, allowing himself to process the news of that horrible surgery. He’d known about suppressants, of course; they were considered a modern convenience, in order to prevent or delay a heat or a rut. Xiao Zhan had never used them personally, because they were associated with certain health risks like lowered blood pressure or even clotting. They weren’t typically used to completely suppress secondary gender like Yibo had been forced to do, though Xiao Zhan was more aware now that it was something that omegas like Yibo had been made to do in order to have a career.

He wondered how many of the betas and alphas that he knew in the entertainment industry might actually be omegas forced to disguise their presentation. It was more than a little suspect there were so few omegas, actually; most of the open ones being women.

Xiao Zhan clung to the fridge door for a moment before opening it, lowering his head briefly. He understood why Yibo was so devastated to be caught off-guard by learning of such a surgery. Even thinking about some doctor cutting Yibo open, of taking out the parts of him that made him omega and gave him that irreplaceable orange blossom and petrichor scent, made Xiao Zhan sick to his stomach.

He breathed in and out, steadying himself. He had to put that thought aside and take care of his mate.

He pulled out the fresh garlic first. This was Yibo’s place, but Xiao Zhan had been doing the shopping and he took care to keep that in stock. Besides being a cooking staple, Yibo liked to have a peeled clove with any meal involving noodles.

When he was almost done making up two bowls, Yibo approached him in the kitchen, hands fitting to his hips. He nuzzled at his nape and inhaled. “You smell good,” he purred. Xiao Zhan’s eyes fluttered. He gave a small laugh and pressed back against Yibo, who molded to his backside and hugged his waist. Xiao Zhan smiled as Yibo kissed his neck, lips skimming along his gland before brushing lightly back and forth over the claim mark he’d placed there.

“Still hungry?” Xiao Zhan teased.

“Ravenous,” Yibo replied, nipping with his lips and making him shudder.

Xiao Zhan grinned, but as he put the finishing touches on their food, he started counting back in his head. How long had it been since Yibo’s heat?

His own rut was just about due, so he’d piled the bedrooms at both their places with plenty of non-perishables: energy bars and bottled water. During Yibo’s heat, he’d retained enough sense to take care of them both, but once he went into rut, he’d be able to think of nothing but sinking himself into his willing mate as often and for as long as possible.

He shuddered lightly and reached back to take hold of Yibo’s hip, pulling their bodies taut together.

Yibo breathed in at his neck, setting his nose there, drawing it back and forth.

Xiao Zhan lost himself for a moment in sheer sensation, reaching back to touch the mate draped along his backside, inhaling the scent of him that came to his nose more strongly than the savory food. He turned around in Yibo’s arms and took his face between his hands, a smile tugging at his lips as Yibo avoided his eyes, nuzzling at one palm as his lips twitched, kissing the heel beside his thumb.

“Food first,” Xiao Zhan murmured. “Then bed.”

“Maybe I don’t just want to sleep,” Yibo muttered. He kissed Xiao Zhan’s palm.

“That’s fine, too,” Xiao Zhan replied. Yibo seemed very affectionate in the moment, but he had a strong feeling he would wilt after he got some food into him and the comfort of a warm shower.

They sat side by side at the kitchen counter on the other side of the sink on barstools tall enough even for Xiao Zhan’s legs. Yibo glanced sidelong at him and twined an ankle around his. Xiao Zhan could only grin as hopeless fondness took hold of him, swelling his chest. Yibo had chased him hard, he could admit it now. He’d almost talked himself out of it, but the presentation of Yibo’s first heat had sealed the deal for both of them.

Xiao Zhan was only happy it had taken place after they’d confessed their feelings. Even thinking Yibo was an alpha, he’d been willing to give it a try. It wasn’t unheard of, after all, merely uncommon; and they had been so weirdly compatible in every other respect that Xiao Zhan was really just attracted to Yibo, the person.

What he’d learned since meant that he was Yibo’s first for virtually everything, though. Even sitting side by side as they were, cozy and domestic.

“I want to take you out on a date,” Xiao Zhan said impulsively, nudging Yibo’s ankle with his bare toe.

Yibo’s eyes rounded. “Can we…do that?” he asked, but didn’t seem dubious, merely curious.

“Yes, we just need space on our schedules and the facilitation of our management teams,” Xiao Zhan replied. He smiled at Yibo and picked up his chopsticks. The pungent vinegar drifted to his nose as he stirred the dish.

Yibo nodded and dug in, seeming thoughtful.

“There’s plenty of places in Beijing that cater to celebrities and idols. Back entrances, private rooms,” Xiao Zhan continued.

Yibo squinted at him. “And you know this because…”

Xiao Zhan laughed and gestured his chopsticks at Yibo’s dish. “Come on, now, the only vinegar you need is what’s on your plate,” he teased. “I know from word of mouth.” Inwardly he was warmed by Yibo’s possessiveness.

Yibo bit his lip and dug into his noodles. He made an appreciative noise and tucked in.

After dinner, he set Yibo in front of CCTV5 while he cleaned up, letting him begin to drowse off after the busy day and the horrible shock he’d carried home with him. The soft clink of dishes in the sink was soothing to Xiao Zhan somehow, part of the routine, and he hoped it was that way for Yibo too as he dried the dishes off and set them in the rack. When he returned to Yibo on the couch, he bent over the back of it and hugged him from behind. Yibo’s breathing was deep and regular but he stirred in the loose embrace.

“Mm…you really do smell so good,” Yibo told him, inhaling deeply.

“Hmm,” Xiao Zhan responded, but didn’t ask Yibo if he felt like he was going into heat. For one, Xiao Zhan was pretty sure he’d know. For another, Yibo wouldn’t be dozing in front of the television; he would have been humping Xiao Zhan’s backside as he did the dishes. Possibly presenting himself right beside the rack.

Xiao Zhan had to clamp down on his impulses at the imagery and what it stirred in him. He was not going to rile his mate up when he’d gotten settled after being so upset.

“Let’s go to bed, love,” he said into Yibo’s ear and Yibo made a sleepy noise of agreement. Looked like it would be solely to sleep, after all.

“Zhan-ge,” Yibo said, gaze sharpening briefly as Xiao Zhan shepherded him from the couch to the bedroom. He appraised him, eyes moving from his face on down.

“What is it?” Xiao Zhan asked.

A little frown appeared between Yibo’s brows but he shook his head. “I’m tired, gonna shower.”

Xiao Zhan nodded. “You can have first shower.”

Yibo made a complaining noise. “You’re not going to come with me?”

“Next time,” Xiao Zhan promised. Yibo was acting a little odd, probably from the shock. He wondered if he should text Yibo’s manager and let him know he needed the next day off. No, that would be overbearing of him.

Yibo pouted. By way of compensation, Xiao Zhan stripped him down, kissed him, and patted his ass to send him on his way.

He didn’t personally have any engagements over the next few days—he’d been planning on following up with any lawyers Wang Han might recommend—but Yibo had a packed schedule for the next couple of weeks. Xiao Zhan rubbed at his nape, then inhaled. It made him take a second sniff, testing the air. His own scent seemed a little stronger than usual; he didn’t even typically notice his scent above Yibo’s.

He was probably just feeling possessive over Yibo.

Xiao Zhan opened his messages and his eye fell on his mother’s name at the bottom of the text message page. He grimaced. He had been putting off telling his parents because they would demand an immediate visit to meet the mate he’d bonded to without even so much as a head’s up in advance…it was unlike him, he knew his mother would scold: he was so considerate, they hadn’t raised him like this.

He could already hear the recriminations in his head. He knew he wasn’t going to be able to put it off much longer, but he especially hated failing his parents and this was a big thing for him to stumble on.

Yibo came out of the bathroom in a cloud of steam and a towel, looking even sleepier than before. Xiao Zhan put his phone down with a smile.

No matter how he got wound up in thoughts of how he could have done better by Yibo, and his upbringing, he couldn’t bring himself to regret it in the end. Yibo wanted him, needed him, and if he couldn’t deny him, it was simply Xiao Zhan putting someone ahead of his own wellbeing. That was ingrained in his very nature, but it seemed natural to him with Yibo in particular.

“Shower’s free, ge,” Yibo said, padding over to the bed and doing a belly flop.

“Mm-hmm. Thanks.”

Xiao Zhan was quick about it, eager to get back into bed with his mate. When he emerged from the bathroom, evening routine complete, he wasn’t surprised to find Yibo still wrapped in his towel, dozing face-down on the bed.

“Hey,” Xiao Zhan murmured, settling beside him and patting his cheek. “Time to get into bed. Did you do your face routine?”

“Mmm,” Yibo responded, in a way that wasn’t a no, but it wasn’t a yes, either.

“Come on. Up,” Xiao Zhan said fondly. “We have to put some serum and some lotion on that beautiful skin of yours.” He ran his hands under Yibo, making it clear he’d lift him up if he didn’t cooperate.

Yibo made a disgruntled noise but he rolled over and sat up, gravitating toward Xiao Zhan and leaning against his shoulder. His hair stuck up on one side and Xiao Zhan reached up to ruffle it before flattening it down.

“You’re cute,” Xiao Zhan told him.

Yibo pursed his lips and scowled at him.

Xiao Zhan lifted a brow. “If you don’t want to be called cute, you’ll have to stop being so adorable.”

Yibo sighed and got up, tugging on Xiao Zhan to pull him along.

Xiao Zhan grinned at him again and let himself be towed. When they stood side by side at the low, wide sink, Yibo leaned against him. He paused in the act of reaching for his nighttime serum and pressed his nose against Xiao Zhan’s neck.

After a moment, Xiao Zhan prompted, “Yibo?”

He only shook his head and resumed his routine, eyes hazing almost shut. “Sleepy,” Yibo said after a moment, patting lotion onto his face with a yawn.

“Then finish up and we’ll slip into bed.”

He checked Yibo’s phone when they got back to bed to make sure he’d set his alarm, because the next day his management had another endorsement scheduled, and Xiao Zhan settled in behind Yibo with a contented sigh. Usually Yibo fought him for the honor of being the big spoon; tonight was not one of those times.

He planted his nose in Yibo’s nape, tucked an arm securely around him, and fell asleep simply breathing him in, pleased that Yibo had calmed enough to feel safe and relaxed again.

Xiao Zhan woke up in the middle of the night hot and stifled.

At some point, Yibo had rolled away from him, starfishing his way across their emperor-size bed. Staying at Yibo’s was the first time Xiao Zhan had ever been in a bed so large and he loved it; that bed was definitely going everywhere with them.

He got up, fumbling beside the bed for the tumbler of water that he usually kept there. His hand swiped through the space a couple of times before he realized it wasn’t there. With a groan, Xiao Zhan peeled the sheets back and padded naked through their flat. He drank a glass down, poured another, and returned to the bedroom.

He’d been sweaty enough when he got up that he wondered if he should shower before he returned to bed, but it had cooled as he moved around the place. When he got back into bed, Yibo had shifted onto his side again and Xiao Zhan settled in next to him, pulling Yibo’s arm around him and snuggling in.

He felt too warm, almost feverish hot, but he dropped off to sleep right away.

The next time Xiao Zhan woke up it was still dark out and he had to pee something fierce. Yibo mumbled something wordless as Xiao Zhan gently extricated himself from his embrace.

He emptied his bladder, flushed, and returned to bed to drink half of his tumbler of water before slipping under the sheets with Yibo again. He still felt too warm and he picked up Yibo’s wrist to press against his own forehead. He bit his lip. He was definitely warm and wondered if he should get up and take the couch to make sure he wasn’t sick with something Yibo might catch.

Yibo curled around his knees even in the middle of his slumber, laying his cheek against Xiao Zhan’s thigh.

Xiao Zhan’s heart melted.

“Okay, don’t make me regret this in the morning,” he told Yibo’s sleeping face and shifted down into bed until they were entwined comfortably. “If you get sick because I have a fever, I’m the one who’s going to feel bad.”

Yibo’s cool forehead pressed against his and Xiao Zhan nestled close to him. Within moments, he fell asleep again.

They slept tangled in a loose embrace and at last Xiao Zhan was able to sleep for more than a couple of hours. It was deep and dreamless.

When Xiao Zhan woke next, the sunlight was prickling at the seam of his eyelids, Yibo was somehow still in his arms and every nerve in his body was alight with need.

With a low groan, Xiao Zhan buried his nose in Yibo’s neck, inhaling deeply. His hips moved of their own volition in several lazy revolutions against Yibo, who stirred and made sleepy, pleased noises against him.

“Do we have time?” Yibo murmured in a low voice, eyes slitting open. He blinked at him from close range and frowned.

Xiao Zhan nuzzled right back into his neck, a possessive arm going around Yibo and holding him close. Their legs were tangled and he used one to try and haul their lower bodies close, too. He rubbed his groin against Yibo’s and began to rub his wrist across every part of him that he could reach.

“Zhan-ge,” Yibo began. He moaned as Xiao Zhan latched onto his neck, biting down with just enough pressure to let him know he wasn’t going to release him to go anywhere.

When Yibo wriggled against him, Xiao Zhan growled, pricking into the soft flesh of the gland with his canines. He was hard and his entire being was centered around the imminent prospect of getting his mate ready for mounting, but first he had to make sure he wasn’t going anywhere.

“Hold on,” Yibo said with a soft huff of breath. He made a quiet noise that got Xiao Zhan crowding up against him, rubbing the slick exposed head of his hard-on against Yibo’s belly. “Zhan-ge! I need to call my manager.”

Xiao Zhan bit down softly and growled. Yibo was his, damn it; he wasn’t going to share him with anyone.

“Zhan-ge,” Yibo chided, making a sudden move and rolling on top of him.

Xiao Zhan was taken off guard by that and released his mouthful of Yibo’s sensitive gland. While he was inspecting it to make sure he hadn’t hurt his mate, ready to soothe the flesh with his tongue, Yibo reached for his phone and grabbed it from the nightstand.

That made Xiao Zhan give a low rumbling growl again, possessive of Yibo’s attention.

Yibo kissed him once, twice, and put his wrist in Xiao Zhan’s mouth as he unlocked his phone and started texting one-handed.

That startled Xiao Zhan enough that his eyes opened wide. He swiped his tongue over the scent gland in Yibo’s wrist, taking in the strength of it from the source. He wanted to gnaw on Yibo’s wrist but he laved his tongue over it gently, lapping at the tendons, pressing his tongue straight across the scent gland there.

“You’re in rut,” Yibo said, sounding amused. “I think I started to realize it last night, but I second-guessed myself because I’ve never seen you go into rut before. I’m letting my manager know she needs to push everything out four days.”

Xiao Zhan tried to focus on the words, attempting to string them together for meaning, but they slipped past him like pearls from a broken string, slippery and rolling out of reach. He licked Yibo’s wrist and rolled his hips up against him with a wordless noise of satisfaction.

Yibo tossed his phone aside, settling atop him with a pleased-with-himself look. “I’m all yours, Zhan-ge,” he said. “What do you plan to do with me?”

That was easy. Xiao Zhan released his wrist with a small smack and rolled them in bed, reversing their positions. He straddled Yibo, rubbing his cock against his stomach with a needy gasp before bending to join their mouths. They kissed long enough for Xiao Zhan to become desperately horny. His cock was hard and leaking and he needed to join their bodies as soon as possible, with no further delay. He lifted up and reached down below Yibo’s balls, finding his entrance and testing it with his fingers.

As always, Yibo was wet for him.

“Do it,” Yibo urged, legs drawing up to either side of his waist. “Zhan-ge, do it, put it in me. I need you.”

Xiao Zhan’s brain was aflame. That was all he’d needed to hear. He shifted, taking his cock in hand and guiding the tip to Yibo’s entrance. He looked down at Yibo’s face, pulled in another breath of that heady, intoxicating scent, and pushed into him, joining their bodies. He wasn’t thinking about foreplay or even particularly thinking as he usually did, which was Yibo’s pleasure first, his own second. He was overridden by instinct and pure, driving need to get inside of Yibo, get those lovely legs lifted up and wrapped around him, wring the exquisite noises out of him that tumbled from Yibo’s lips as he moved over him and thrust hard and fast.

If he could think, he would have held back. Even when Yibo had been in heat, Xiao Zhan had never been so rough or gotten into him so quickly.

Underneath him, Yibo was moaning, and he smelled incredible, and that was all Xiao Zhan cared about as he worked his cock into him in tight claiming thrusts. He reached down for Yibo’s ass, spreading him open a little more. Yibo arched up, eyes fluttering as he lifted his legs higher, wrapping them over Xiao Zhan’s lower back.


His own name barely made sense to him. The only thing that mattered was Yibo’s body opening up under him, rocking into him fast and hard, and stuffing him full with as much of his cock as possible. And Yibo was shifting under him in a welcoming posture, each and every noise only urging him onward.

“Do it, put your knot in me, ge,” Yibo told him, rolling up against him. He hooked an arm around his neck and gave a low, frantic noise.

Xiao Zhan gave a deep shudder. He wanted that, he wanted to work his knot into Yibo’s tight heat and fill him up, but he wasn’t quite there yet. His knot was only starting to perk up. He drove in faster, harder, chasing his climax with an urgency he’d never revealed to Yibo before. If he hadn’t been in rut, he could never have lowered his defenses enough to give into his desires so openly. He had to have restraint; he had to take care of his partner.

All of that was swept aside with the force of his overriding need.

Yibo gasped underneath him, body going taut like a bow. He fumbled for his cock and jacked it between them until the heat of his come splashed against Xiao Zhan’s stomach.

Xiao Zhan responded with a pleased growl and worked his hips, using both hands to prop himself up and pump his cock into Yibo until he came too, shuddering. But he wasn’t done. He reached down again and grabbed Yibo’s ass, holding him as he began to rock his knot into him with tight, forceful thrusts. Yibo moaned, legs splaying out to either side of him. He was pliant and wet and the hot clasp of his body yielded to Xiao Zhan, taking all of him in without any trouble.

He got his knot all the way inside and felt it swell to fullness, locking them together. Only then could he shift up and dot frantic kisses all over Yibo’s chin, his cheeks, nuzzling him and swiping his face alongside Yibo’s jawbone, uttering soft wordless croons to check in, to make sure Yibo was satisfied.

Yibo petted his back from nape to shoulder blade, eyes heavy lidded. “It’s good,” he assured him. His eyes widened as Xiao Zhan shifted atop him and he took a harsh breath.

Xiao Zhan released a noise of discontent. It was no good if their position was hurting Yibo. With the knot inside of him in missionary, every movement was going to tug on Yibo’s sensitive inner walls. With slow care, he eased them onto their sides, pulling only one pained whimper out of Yibo that he tried to soothe by licking at his mouth, which made Yibo laugh.

“Kiss me,” Yibo invited once they were settled on their sides, entangled and joined for the duration.

That made Xiao Zhan give him a pleased, happy grin and Yibo caught his breath. He looked at him with such love in his eyes, all Xiao Zhan could do was surge forward and take his mouth. They kissed and Xiao Zhan lost himself in the draw of his mate’s mouth. He cupped the side of his face and their tongues worked softly between them, chasing back and forth. Every so often he shifted his hips and Yibo made a soft sound and Xiao Zhan kissed him harder, pushing his tongue against Yibo’s. He enjoyed moving enough to feel the stretch and press of his knot inside of Yibo, pulling a sound out of him with that movement and settling him again with a kiss.

“Zhan-ge, you’re so feral,” Yibo teased, when Xiao Zhan lifted up from the kiss and dropped his head into the curve of Yibo’s neck. He inhaled the scent of him and pressed his lips to the mark that bound them.

Xiao Zhan pulled up from his neck, eyes dilated, examining Yibo’s face for distress.

“It’s fine,” Yibo assured him. “I’m fine, baobao. Everything feels great. Want you in me like this.” His eyes fluttered as Xiao Zhan eased against him again, even that subtle shift moving the swell of his knot within him.

Reassured, Xiao Zhan settled in for more kisses, but they hadn’t made out for long when he shuddered and went stiff, one hand going down to Yibo’s ass as though to hold him in place though the knot still locked them together. He was coming again, the orgasm taking him by surprise. He held onto Yibo and shivered through it, his hips bucking a few times, making Yibo cry out and cling to him.

When it was done, he panted, blinking. He wrapped his arms tight around Yibo as the last shudder swept through him.

“Zhan-ge, you okay?” Yibo’s hand smoothed over his face and cupped the side of his neck.

Xiao Zhan blinked again and gave vent to a small whine, throat working. He didn’t remember that happening when he’d used toys for his rut; but then, no toy could make him react like the sweet clasp of his mate’s body taking his knot or Yibo’s scent wrapping him in a heady aura of desire and comfort and the need for closeness.

Yibo was smiling; it was the small, knowing smile that presaged a full-on smug grin. “Zhan-ge, am I your first rut with a partner?”

Xiao Zhan wrinkled his nose and grumbled, burying his nose in Yibo’s neck. How had that self-assured kid guessed it right away? He could have had his pick of partners, of course, but to him, raised more traditionally by his parents, a rut was something deeply personal to share with someone that shared strong feelings with him. He’d dated and had sex before Yibo, of course; it was something they hadn’t seen a need to talk about because he knew it would only make his younger mate jealous. But he hadn’t taken a partner for a rut.

“Zhan-ge,” Yibo drawled. Xiao Zhan could fucking hear the smug grin in his tone. He continued, all sweetness, “I’m your first?”

Xiao Zhan swiped his tongue over sweaty skin and delivered a small, vengeful bite below the perfect fragrance of the gland under his nose. He couldn’t deny it, though, because it was true.

“I’m your first rut,” Yibo said happily, sliding an arm over his waist and hugging him tight. He gave a low, pleased laugh that made Xiao Zhan flex into him involuntarily, making Yibo gasp but he only tightened down on him where they were joined. He said into Xiao Zhan’s ear, “That’s something of Zhan-ge’s that’s only for me.”

Xiao Zhan sucked on his neck a little harder, licking the salty skin. He released it and brought their faces in alignment for another kiss, deep and slow. Of course Yibo had him in ways that no one else did. They were mates, after all. His hips moved on their own as they kissed. Xiao Zhan was a little more braced for the sensation, his hips pushing Yibo around on his knot in small but defined revolutions as he came again.

Yibo kissed him through it and stroked his hip with firm, gentle fingers. “I can’t believe it,” he murmured when Xiao Zhan lay panting, head on their pillow. “You could have had anyone, you know. Any man or woman would have rolled over and offered themselves up for the chance to spend a rut with you. But you toughed it out this whole time on your own? Why?”

That made Xiao Zhan angle his head to give Yibo an unamused look. Yibo was really going to make him say it, wasn’t he?

With each orgasm he was a little more clear-headed, his words coming back to him that much more, though his overriding sensation was to fuck, keep Yibo on his knot, and push him down into the bed so that he could watch his cock disappear into his body. Okay, so maybe he wasn’t that much more clear-headed yet. But he could probably spare a few brain cells on reassurance.

His voice cracked a little and he tried to clear it. “I waited until I was in love.”

Yibo’s whole face lit up bright as dawn. “Zhan-ge,” he said, choking up.

Xiao Zhan surged forward. The knot pulled a little painfully between them and it had to be just as painful for Yibo, if not more, but their lips met hard and his bottom teeth pressed into the plush lower lip. He eased off before he could break skin. They made out again and each eager nudge of Yibo’s mouth against his, each possessive flex of the big hand on his hip, only made Xiao Zhan more convinced he’d waited for the right reasons.

He got through two more orgasms and pressed in against Yibo, reaching between them to tug him to another climax as well, before his knot finally softened and he slid out. He rolled onto his back and laid there panting while Yibo retrieved water from the bedside cooler he had brought in specifically for Xiao Zhan’s upcoming rut. Xiao Zhan managed to loll his head around to see Yibo bent over the side of the bed, come sliding out of his entrance and down his thighs, and a weird, loud noise emerged from him that he’d never heard from himself before.

Yibo came back up with the water bottle and looked at him curiously. “Zhan-ge?”

Xiao Zhan’s lips stretched in a wolfish grin.

“Oh,” Yibo said in an entirely different tone and the bottle of water went spinning to the far side of the bed as Xiao Zhan pounced.

He pinned Yibo on his back, kissing and licking his way down his body before burying his head between his legs, holding Yibo’s ballsack up and away from his own forehead as he went down on him. He lapped and sucked and dug his tongue in until the only thing welling up into his mouth was Yibo’s fresh scent, his wetness dripping out like honey.

“Zhan-ge…Gege, please…” Yibo’s voice broke and he pushed his hips up against his face. “Baobao…I need…”

“What do you need?” Xiao Zhan rasped, finding his voice enough to demand. He wanted to hear it, wanted explicit direction. He lifted up to look at Yibo over the flat plane of his belly and stuck two fingers into his copiously-leaking hole.

Yibo was flushed, his eyes fever-bright. “Need your cock,” he said. “Put it in me. Want you to fill me with your knot.”

Xiao Zhan nodded, rubbing his cheek against Yibo’s inner thigh. He brought his wrist up and passed it across one thigh, then the other; it was completely redundant, because Yibo’s entire body was drenched in his scent by now, but entirely satisfying. He pulled his fingers out of Yibo, ignoring his whine and licking his fingers off, got a good grip on Yibo, and flipped him over.

That earned him a yowl in response; Yibo preferred face to face, but Xiao Zhan was going to mount him, rut into him for real, and he knew at a basic level that it would be easier on Yibo’s body to take him like this as he rutted into him hard. He ignored the protests—because Yibo didn’t stop at just one complaint—bent and bit him on the nearest ass-cheek until he moaned, and held him in place with a hand on his hip while he used the other to guide his cock back to that inviting, slick hole.

Yibo moaned as Xiao Zhan pushed in. Once he got the head past the initial entry, Xiao Zhan gripped his hips with both hands and bore down until he pressed flush against Yibo’s ass. He eased back and forth enough to assure himself Yibo was wet and ready and drew out enough to slam home, which made Yibo’s back arch as he cried out.

The thread of Xiao Zhan’s already weak self-restraint snapped. He fucked into Yibo hard and fast, keeping a tight grip on his hips to hold him in place. Yibo moaned and cried out beneath him, each and every sound that tumbled from his lips only urging him on. Xiao Zhan slammed their bodies together and Yibo pushed back into it, meeting him thrust for thrust even when Xiao Zhan pounded into him so hard it had to hurt. The slap of skin as Yibo accepted him into his body was intoxicating; it spurred him faster, deeper. He dissolved into shallow, quick thrusts, groaning and shifting his grip on Yibo to hold his thighs. He pushed deeper in, nudging the base of his knot against that sweet rim.


Xiao Zhan bared his teeth, at one with his instincts again. He drove into the welcoming clench of Yibo’s body, so slippery and hot for him, and wished he could bend over him far enough to bite down on his nape. Once they were knotted again, it was his first priority. He loved the way it made Yibo shudder and go limp in his arms.

That recalled him to something else he desperately needed to see and he drew back, looking down. He brought his hands up to frame Yibo’s ass and slowed his strokes, watching his cock disappear into Yibo then reappear glistening with Yibo’s own slickness. Xiao Zhan gave a helpless little groan, pushing in again, eyes locked onto the place where Yibo was taking him so beautifully. His entrance was flushed a dusky red, stretched to accept him. He pressed deep and pulled almost all the way out, mesmerized as he watched the slide of his cock in and out; it definitely looked as good as it felt.

“Zhan-ge,” Yibo complained, drawing out the final syllable. He arched his back and that pushed him onto Xiao Zhan’s dick so prettily that he had to reach for those hips and rut back into him, returning to that fast, insistent pace. It earned him more greedy moans from Yibo.

Before he half realized it, he was coming with a low groan, hips jerking helplessly against Yibo's ass. He hung onto Yibo's waist and thrust hard for a couple of strokes before holding himself there, finishing his release, breath slowing down. His knot was starting to swell and he pushed in all the way, getting it past the resistance of Yibo's body, which wasn’t much at all. He was open, his body taking the fullness without even a whimper from Yibo.

Xiao Zhan got him seated on his knot. He pulled Yibo up and into his arms, getting him draped open across his lap and thighs. Yibo moaned at that, head lolling back against his shoulder. Xiao Zhan glanced down to see Yibo's cock hard and red in his hand. "Let me," he murmured, sending his hand down Yibo's washboard front and the smooth firmness of his belly to grasp his cock.

Yibo was big; before being with his mate, Xiao Zhan didn't know an omega could get so big. He could get his hand around the place just underneath the head of it, but further down, it was more difficult to enclose fully in one hand when Yibo was this erect. It was still wet with both come and precome and his hand glided up and down with ease as Yibo twitched in his lap, ass tensing down.

"So good, so pretty," Xiao Zhan crooned, nuzzling down into Yibo's neck to huff on his scent as he worked his cock in hand. Yibo was close; his head roamed restlessly from one side to the other. Xiao Zhan got his lips on Yibo's neck and bit with precision.

With a strangled cry, Yibo came, his come dribbling down over Xiao Zhan's knuckles. He kept moving his hand until Yibo's come stopped flowing and smoothed his hand down over Yibo's to twine their fingers together.

Normally Yibo would say something saucy or vaguely sarcastic but loving at that point, but all he did was slump back against him, panting. Xiao Zhan bit down with firmer pressure and sucked, tongue laving away at the tendon and gland until Yibo whined, shivering in his arms.

Xiao Zhan nosed along his jaw insistently until Yibo turned his head and their mouths met. Once Yibo's tongue slid in against his, everything was bliss. They made out as Xiao Zhan kneaded his thighs and Yibo sat comfortably through a couple more orgasms as they remained knotted. His cock was red and hard again by the time Xiao Zhan's knot began to go down, so he was able to pull out, roll a very pliant Yibo onto his back, and suck him off until he came again.

He grabbed the water before he laid down beside Yibo again and they split it between them. When it was down to the dregs, Xiao Zhan splashed it over his open mouth and throat as though he were Wei Wuxian carelessly aiming Emperor's Smile at his open mouth and Yibo laughed, lifted up on one elbow to lap at the water pooled in the hollow of his throat.

They wrestled playfully for a moment and Yibo bit his lip when they kissed as they gussied. Yibo ended up pinning him to the bed with his strength and gazing down at him with happy-crinkled eyes.

Xiao Zhan breathed in deep, savoring this happiness.

“Love you,” Yibo told him, pressing a kiss to his mouth. “Stay here.” That made Xiao Zhan growl a little, because he wasn’t going to put up with being told to ‘stay,’ but it shifted into an inquiring noise as Yibo got up from the bed. He reached into the nightstand and tossed a protein bar at him before heading to the bathroom.

That diverted Xiao Zhan enough to tear at the wrapper and get his protein bar out. The flushing sound a moment later reminded him that he had other bodily needs. He set his protein bar aside and headed for the bathroom. The last time he’d peed was probably four hours ago and he’d had a glass of water since then.

Their bathroom—Yibo’s bathroom—had an open floor plan and Yibo was at the sink when he headed in. He was putting down a glass of water and his pill container. Xiao Zhan patted his ass in passing, experiencing a trace of relief that Yibo had remembered and that he personally didn’t have to worry about condoms.

After Xiao Zhan finished his turn at the toilet and returned to the sink to wash his hands, he kissed Yibo’s shoulder and put his arms around him to access the sink. Yibo smirked at him in the mirror.

“I’m thinking about switching from the pill to the shot,” Yibo told him. “My doctor’s in favor. It’s good for three months and I wouldn’t need to worry about taking a pill every day—so way better for my schedule and, well.” He reached back to pat Xiao Zhan’s hip.

Xiao Zhan made an affirmative noise and skimmed his lips alongside Yibo’s neck.

Yibo laughed easily. “You’re so agreeable like this, Zhan-ge.”

Their eyes met in the mirror and Xiao Zhan finished washing his hands, drying them off fast in order to put them in a possessive hold on Yibo’s stomach, pulling their bodies together.

“Back to bed,” Xiao Zhan said, reaching one hand to caress Yibo’s ass, feeling him up to see if he’d used the bidet after relieving himself. He had. He gave a low growl and Yibo raised an eyebrow at him in the mirror, giving him a challenging look.

“Fill me up again, then, Zhan-ge,” Yibo said with a lift of his chin.

He was tempted to try and sweep Yibo up in a bridal carry, but even in the midst of his rut, he recognized that naked plus tiled floor could end up in an unfortunate combination, and he wasn’t the most confident of his arm strength. He’d have to start working out for an upcoming role, but at the moment he was pretty weedy and he was sure he’d lost muscle weight from long hours playing Wei Wuxian in the heat of summer.

Yibo’s eyes widened. “Do not pick me up,” he warned.

Xiao Zhan moved forward, pinning him to the counter. “Could do it here,” he suggested, settling his leg between Yibo’s thighs, widening his stance. He pressed his cock up against the cleft of his ass.

Yibo blinked and tongued his lip. “Please, no,” he said plaintively. “The granite countertop would be really hard on my hips.”

After giving it due consideration, Xiao Zhan nodded. He put his arm around Yibo and tugged him away from the bathroom. “Done?” he asked belatedly. The driving portion of his brain was fixated on getting back into Yibo as soon as possible.

“I was going to brush my teeth, but I don’t think Zhan-ge cares.”

Zhan-ge definitely did not care.

Xiao Zhan hustled him back into bed and pinned him to it, kneading his hands on Yibo’s shoulders and lowering his face to breathe his scent in deep. “You smell good,” he was able to verbalize, before dipping his head into Yibo’s neck and settling his body weight atop him. The orange blossom was a little sweeter, the petrichor a little sharper. He smelled…

Hands stroked his hips. “I feel good,” Yibo sighed, shifting under him and pressing his swelling hard-on against Xiao Zhan’s belly. “Mm. Sexy.”

…he smelled exactly how he had when he’d first gone into heat. Xiao Zhan growled and rubbed his mouth up and down Yibo’s gland, kissed his way across the claim mark, and brought his lips up to Yibo’s ear. “You’re going into heat,” his voice squeezed out, raw and eager.

“Oh, good,” Yibo murmured, arms going around his back and squeezing him tight. He rolled his hips up from beneath Xiao Zhan before going still. “Did you eat something?”

Xiao Zhan growled. “Later,” he said, shifting so that he could rub his hardening cock all around Yibo’s groin.

“Eat now,” Yibo insisted. “I might not remember to remind you later.”

Xiao Zhan groaned, pulling his scent in again, heady and sweet with a zing to it. He did remember the last time Yibo was in heat; he hadn’t lost his words, but all he’d been interested in was getting Xiao Zhan in him and if they were about to spend twenty-four hours mindless with need for each other, he supposed he ought to eat.

He managed to shift partially off Yibo, keeping an arm and a leg around him, located his protein bar, and tore into it. Yibo made a needy noise in his throat and wrapped around him, rubbing his cock against Xiao Zhan’s flank.

“I wanted this,” he panted, sticking his face in Xiao Zhan’s neck and rubbing his cheek there. “I wanted to go into heat when you went into rut, I was hoping…”

Xiao Zhan crammed the last bite of protein bar into his mouth and pounced, rolling Yibo under him and rubbing their bodies together as he finished chewing. He rocked a few times, their skin still slippery enough that they slid together in a pleasing way. He dug his toes into the bed and jerked his hips, finished swallowing his food, and dropped his head down to breathe Yibo’s scent in.

“Did I trigger your heat?” he had enough coherence left to wonder.

Yibo arched up against him, hooking a leg over his waist like he needed to drag him closer. “Nn…think so,” he mumbled. “I wasn’t due for another two weeks.”

A wave of possessive lust swept through him, fueled by the scent that wrapped around him. He felt tender, though, too, and wanted to offer Yibo a choice before either of them stopped thinking much at all.

“How do you want to?” Xiao Zhan murmured, pushing himself up to hover over him fondly.

Yibo’s eyes glinted up at him. “Zhan-ge. You know.” He drew one hand up his body, the pads of his fingers teasing at one pink nipple with its faint little circle of hair.

Xiao Zhan nodded. He did know—Yibo wanted face to face, as always. “Like this or on our sides?”

Yibo’s whole face screwed up as he considered it and Xiao Zhan bent over with a chuckle, kissing the tip of his nose. He tracked downward to capture his mouth, kissing him deep and slow for a moment, taking his time. He reached down to wrap his hand around the head of Yibo’s cock and push his foreskin up and down in a few deliberate movements.

“Like this, then shift us onto our sides before you knot me,” Yibo decided. Xiao Zhan nodded. It was good Yibo was asking for that before he lost conscious control.

Because they were mated, and apparently synched up, their complementary heat and rut would only go for around twenty-four hours, maybe a little longer. They would both need a full day of recovery after that and would settle into the bed, which Yibo would transform into a nest by dragging in every pillow and used piece of clothing in the apartment that he could find. They would eat to replenish their bodies and cuddle to nourish their bond. Probably have sex a few more times as well, though Xiao Zhan had never had a rut with a partner, so he wasn’t sure what recovery pattern he and Yibo would fall into. The day after that would probably be a lot of sleeping and then Yibo would be fit to return to work.

Xiao Zhan’s schedule was clear for the week, but he might bother his manager to track someone down to bring food for them.

He growled softly. He couldn’t even contemplate the prospect of someone being near his sweetly heat-scent drenched mate.

“Xiao Zhan!” Yibo said with insistence, cupping his ass with both hands.

That brought his priorities into sharp focus. Xiao Zhan nodded, lifting Yibo’s legs up—he was so flexible they bent easily up to his chest every time—and nestled his cock down into the slick trembling entrance that was waiting for him. Yibo made a very demanding noise and Xiao Zhan nodded, rocking into him in one smooth thrust.

He didn’t need to keep Yibo’s legs up with his arms; they stayed up just fine as he moved over Yibo, thrusting short and shallow at first, speeding up as Yibo licked his lips and gazed at him through heavy-lidded eyes. Xiao Zhan captured both his big hands and held them against Yibo’s own chest, leaning into him hard as he pumped his hips in a constant, steady piston action that had Yibo squirming and moaning beneath him in no time.

Xiao Zhan sat back on his heels and held onto the tops of Yibo’s thighs and began lion-fucking into him, hard and fast smacks of his hips that thrust him halfway in and out. Yibo yelled and arched up into it, his legs kicking out a little, making Xiao Zhan grab him more tightly. He rolled his hips, loving the lewd smack of his body against Yibo’s, eyes dwelling on the way his chest went up and down in quick panting breaths and how his body bowed as he tried to rise up against him.

Yibo gave him a pained grimace, baring his teeth, but Xiao Zhan knew he was feeling anything but. He kept screwing into him with relentless, fast strokes of cock, shifting his grip to hold him in such a way he could rock up into it but not try to control the pace.

“Zhan-ge,” Yibo tried, reaching for him.

Xiao Zhan ignored him, sitting easily on his heels as he kept pumping away. Like an afterthought he reached for Yibo’s huge, hard cock, taking it in hand and jacking it in his fist even faster than the pace he’d set.

Yibo half sobbed and tried to sit up, reaching for his own cock, hand closing around Xiao Zhan’s wrist. He was weaker than usual due to lust, though, and Xiao Zhan broke his hold easily, pushing him down with a hand on his chest. He pushed both of Yibo’s legs higher and leaned up from his seated position, eyes fluttering at the slower drag of his cock in Yibo’s body as he changed positions.

“I need…I need…” Yibo’s words came in between high, panting breaths, almost a keen.

Xiao Zhan nodded, burying his cock deep as he moved over him, changing the angle. He settled atop Yibo, stretching for a kiss and grinning when Yibo pouted at him after he’d released his mouth. Yibo could have all the kisses he wanted when they were tied together with his knot.

The angle with him over Yibo was less suited for rapid-paced fucking so he pressed in and out, watching the shifting emotions of desire, satiation, and yearning play over Yibo’s expressive face. Xiao Zhan was close. Part of him wanted to sit back and switch to fast and hard again; the rest of him was ready to fulfill the lure of that sweet scent pouring from Yibo in waves.

He rolled them onto their sides and Yibo brightened, nestling in close. Xiao Zhan huffed and pulled his leg up, giving them easier access. He guided it bent up over his waist; Yibo did him one better, as usual, and raised it even higher, smirking at him when Xiao Zhan growled.

The interplay dissolved into pleased noises from both of them as Xiao Zhan palmed Yibo’s ass and fucked in a few more times, fast subtle thrusts, before his knot began to swell. He made sure it was all in and claimed Yibo’s mouth as he began to come.

He didn’t even need to reach between them; either Yibo had gotten a hand on his own cock or the swell of Xiao Zhan against his prostate had tipped him over the edge.

Xiao Zhan bent his head to his mate’s neck and began licking his claim mark, setting his teeth ever so gently into its still-livid imprint as Yibo released a pleased-sounding hiss.

There, Xiao Zhan thought with a wave of possessive tenderness, as well as mine. He lifted his head and Yibo caught him off guard, kissing him hard on the mouth.

The kiss was much softer than the bout of lovemaking had been. Xiao Zhan kept cupping Yibo’s ass with a possessive hand as they made out. He was almost drowsy, but also still incredibly horny.

Yibo endured three orgasms while they were knotted with a stoic expression, arching a brow when Xiao Zhan tried to jerk him off and whined to find him soft for the first two. By the third, Yibo was back in action, though. Xiao Zhan didn’t shift his hips, knowing that moving the knot around inside him would hurt, but he did stroke Yibo to another climax as his own swelled and crested inside Yibo again.

Once they’d both come and his knot deflated, Xiao Zhan pulled out, ignoring Yibo’s whine, and flipped him over. He smacked his flank at the louder complaint. He thumbed his cheeks apart and inspected him, running a finger down into the crack as his own come began spilling out.

“Zhan-ge,” Yibo gasped. “Put it back in. Don’t just—”

Xiao Zhan was truly not sure whether he meant the come or Xiao Zhan’s dick.

He was tempted to push his face down in there and just start lapping. He stuck his fingers in there instead, fascinated by the slick feel of their combined fluids contrasting with the silken inner walls.

Yibo made a disgruntled noise and flexed down around him. “That was not what I meant, gege.”

Xiao Zhan wanted to tease him that he couldn’t properly verbalize what he wanted, not now; but then again, neither could he. He reached for the water bottle that Yibo had tossed onto the bed earlier. It took the effort of a foot to bring it into the range of his hand. He uncapped it and crawled up Yibo’s body, keeping his fingers buried inside of him.

When he settled down face to face, Yibo was pretending to sleep. Xiao Zhan grinned and dripped water onto his cheek, making him squawk, eyes flying open.

“You…you…!” Yibo started, but had nothing more eloquent in store for him.

“Me,” Xiao Zhan agreed. He took a sip of water, leaned over, and let it dribble from his mouth into Yibo’s.

Yibo made a disgusted noise in his throat but he took it and his eyes slid shut as Xiao Zhan kissed him afterward.

He shared the rest of the bottle back and forth between them afterward, no weird tricks. Yibo had been brilliant installing a bedside cooler. Xiao Zhan had no intention of getting up from the bed for anything less than a desperate piss so long as Yibo was curled up against him warm and willing.

And oh, he was so willing.

He rolled onto his back when he started to get hard again and Yibo took eager advantage, straddling him and sitting on his cock, guiding it inside him with a low, trembling sigh.

Xiao Zhan propped his hands behind his head and was more than happy to let Yibo ride to his heart’s content. He even worked the knot inside himself, groaning as Xiao Zhan came, and collapsed in a careful sprawl across his chest, careful not to let it tug where they were joined.

“Zhan-ge,” Yibo murmured, working his cock between them. He lipped at Xiao Zhan’s chin, biting down softly as his come began to dribble over his knuckles onto Xiao Zhan’s belly.

“Mm,” Xiao Zhan responded, stroking his hand over Yibo’s back as Yibo nestled against his front. He hoped their rut/heat pattern would hold to the same time frame as Yibo’s initial heat, because he wasn’t sure he could survive this many orgasms if it was going to be much longer than a day’s worth.

They fell asleep after the second time he came, still locked together with Xiao Zhan holding Yibo’s ass in a possessive grip.

As he’d expected, the rest of the day became somewhat of a blur. They never really slept for long blocks of time; after waking, they fucked with frantic desperation as if it had been days since they’d seen each other, let alone gotten off. They drank a little bit, shared snacks between them, and Xiao Zhan peeled some fruit for both of them. They went to the bathroom long enough to rinse off and relieve themselves and tumbled back into bed for another round before settling down for another nap.

Naps became the order of their shared rut and heat. They began to have very energetic rounds of sex followed by immediate naps. One time, Yibo seemed to fall asleep in the middle of Xiao Zhan seating a knot in him since his orgasm was already spent. Xiao Zhan just grumbled and gathered him into his arms and pushed his face against Yibo’s neck, remaining awake for one more compulsive orgasm before he dropped off, too.

They woke and repeated the cycle.

Xiao Zhan had always thought before that a rut with a partner would end up being just as arduous and dull as the ones he’d spent alone, hence his reason for not wanting to inflict one on any of the casual relationships he’d had. He was surprised to find his rut wasn’t only about sex, though getting his cock into Yibo as much as possible was a vital component.

He was utterly fixated on Yibo. He wanted to touch him, kiss him, unwrap his snacks for him, curl up around him and protect him. He wanted to do everything for Yibo—at one point Yibo laughed and batted his hand away when they went to the toilet and Xiao Zhan made a play at aiming his dick into the bowl for him. He wanted to have shower sex with him, but they didn’t have the kind of set-up that would allow that to be comfortable.

Rinsing their mingled scent off was anathema, but at some basic level he recognized they had to stay at least somewhat hygienic after bathing one another in their bodily fluids.

“Some day I want to get a bigger shower with some kind of padded bench in it,” Yibo mumbled when they were in the middle of a brief shower. “Can we put that on the list for our shared place?”

“Mn, we can put that on the list,” Xiao Zhan replied, hugging Yibo around the middle with one arm and guiding him gently under the shower spray to rinse off his soaped-up body. “So I can fuck you in the shower when we have one?”

“You’d better,” Yibo replied.

Yibo’s heat deepened in the second half of the day and the napping became more sporadic. They were fucking almost constantly, pausing to snag bottled waters from the cooler and down them in thirsty chugs in between rounds. Yibo was on him in the next instant almost before Xiao Zhan would finish a bottle, spilling it out of his hands, pouring the remainder into his mouth as he climbed on him and rubbed his big, hard dick against Xiao Zhan’s stomach.

“Do you want to…” Xiao Zhan asked at one point, curious, when they were ready for another round and Yibo was slowly and insistently grinding his cock against Xiao Zhan’s hip.

“Hmm?” Yibo gazed down at him with unfocused eyes. “Want to, what?”

“Do you want to try it the other way, ever?” Xiao Zhan wondered. He eyed Yibo’s largesse with a bit of trepidation but no small amount of lust.

Yibo’s expression shifted into confusion. “What do you mean? On my back again? We’ve done that.”

“No, you inside me, baobei,” Xiao Zhan said, petting his hip.

Yibo blinked and put his head to one side. He still looked confused, but maybe a little intrigued as well. Not put off.

“Maybe?” he said, but the single word transmitted doubt. “Not right now; I only need you in me. A lot.” His hand took hold of Xiao Zhan’s thigh, fingers digging in.

Xiao Zhan grinned up at him. “Then how do you want it?”

Yibo scrambled off him and did an about face on the bed, presenting his ass.

Xiao Zhan’s mouth dropped open and he stared for all of a hot second at the pink, slick wink of entrance being waved in front of him. Yibo never voluntarily went bottoms up. He always wanted it in a position where he could see Xiao Zhan’s face. For him to offer meant he was very horny and he wanted the good, hard railing that being braced on his hands and knees could allow.

“Zhan-ge,” Yibo’s testy voice reached him and as Xiao Zhan scrambled up onto his knees, cock in hand, he was treated to a very cranky over-the-shoulder pout. He was disgruntled it was taking so long to get filled, no doubt.

“Shh, I’m helping myself,” Xiao Zhan soothed, running a hand up the curve of Yibo’s ass, cupping the place where ass met thigh. He was all lean muscle and any place where he was a little softer still seemed toned somehow.

“Help yourself faster,” Yibo griped.

Xiao Zhan did.

After he’d given him a good, hard deep dicking on his knees, knotting him and getting them to collapse with care on their sides, Xiao Zhan couldn’t keep his hands off Yibo, petting him and caressing him. A weird thrill of energy went through him, like he could go all night. They’d put the lights on at some point because the bedroom had been getting darker. They’d established early on that they preferred to see one another, no dim lighting during sex. Xiao Zhan put his mouth on Yibo’s neck and swept one wrist up and down every part of his side and front that he could reach, his other hand fixed on his hip kneading at the iliac crest.

Yibo nestled in his arms like it was his due, making soft noises as Xiao Zhan’s wrist rubbed over a sensitive place.

Normally they chatted together, whether drowsy or alert, through the remainder of a tie but there was something about the combined intensity of their heat and rut that kept them wordless. It wasn’t an awkward silence. Xiao Zhan was filled with contentment like a bowl overflowing with water. He was still deeply inside his mate, they were together, and once he pulled out and they shared more food and water, he’d roll him onto his back and fuck him again. He could already picture it, Yibo would raise his legs up and give him a half-sleepy, half-challenging stare.

Xiao Zhan nuzzled over the claim mark on Yibo’s neck and lipped at it. He wanted to nibble on it, but he knew it would be way too sensitive for that. He was surprised Yibo was tolerating being licked. He supposed Yibo appreciated the reminder of their bonding, too.

That thought made him sigh and do his best to hold still as another wave of come spilled out of him. Yibo shuddered, but when Xiao Zhan put a hand over his hip, he was still mostly soft.

“Feels good,” Yibo said, sounding drowsy. “Zhan-ge. You’re so good.”

Xiao Zhan nodded, hunching over Yibo’s neck and rubbing his lips there again. “Always want it to be good for Yibo,” he replied.

Yibo put a hand over his. “You are,” he said.

A tiny corner of his mind reminded Xiao Zhan he could have been better. He should have put off their bonding. He should have waited a year, at least—until after the debut of Chen Qing Ling. They could have met one another’s’ parents and done everything formal, proper and in the right order.

Then again, he could picture Yibo’s reaction to that.

“Wanted you now, Zhan-ge. Without any barriers or delays or anything else in between us.”

Xiao Zhan was helpless, it seemed, to deny anything to the man in his arms.

Yibo was playing with his hand, comparing sizes. He brought it up to his face and nipped at his fingers, a soft playful bite. Xiao Zhan tried to poke him in the cheek. Yibo laughed, a free and joyous sound, and brought his wrist to his plush lips to kiss.

That made Xiao Zhan do his best not to squirm as another orgasm rolled through him. He gasped against Yibo’s neck. It was too much; he couldn’t possibly keep this pace up. At the same time, he knew his body was going to rise to the occasion for exactly how long Yibo kept smelling so sexy.

After that coupling, Yibo turned in his arms and pounced on him, kissing him. They kissed for what seemed like hours, stroking over sweaty skin, holding one another’s faces, making out like teenagers. Yibo would pull away with a smack and just look at him, expression wondering. It made Xiao Zhan giggle. He dipped in for another kiss, that kicked off another round and when they came up for air, Xiao Zhan ran trembling fingertips over Yibo’s claim mark, gripped with wonder that this beautiful, difficult, energetic, amazing young man had chosen him. That made Yibo dissolve into the most angelic grin he’d ever seen before he reached down and took hold of Xiao Zhan’s cock.

“You want me to suck it or you want to put it right in?”

“Wang Yibo, you’re going to be the death of me, ah,” Xiao Zhan complained.

“But what a way to go,” Yibo parried, looking smug.

“Yeah,” Xiao Zhan said, caressing his nape with gentle fingers. “Yeah, I wouldn’t have it any other way.”

Yibo leaned in and kissed his throat. “Time’s up, I’m sucking your cock.”

“Oh,” Xiao Zhan said and continued dryly, “I wasn’t aware the offer had a timed expiration.”

Yibo scoffed. “Of course it does. I’m horny and I want this in me.” He palmed it and began to kiss his way down Xiao Zhan’s stomach. “First, I want to get my mouth on it, though. Even for a little while. Wanna taste you, Zhan-ge.”

Xiao Zhan was too dazed to resist. Not that he would have, anyhow. He put a hand behind his head, made himself comfortable, and watched Yibo settle between his legs and take his cock into his mouth with no further delay.

He wasn’t expecting a prolonged blow job and his expectations weren’t exceeded. Yibo gave him some sloppy mouthing over the head, let his cock inside far enough to poke the inner lining of his soft cheek a few times, sucked him down enough for Xiao Zhan to start to get into it, and pulled off.

“Yibo,” Xiao Zhan complained. Yibo didn’t even smirk at him, he just climbed into his lap, lined him up, and sat back.

That session he ended up rolling Yibo over again and they fell asleep trading kisses that were more lipping at one another than anything else.

A few times Xiao Zhan kept Yibo on his side, both of them half dozing, and he stayed in him until his cock thickened again and they moved together lazily until his knot swelled, locking them together. Xiao Zhan rubbed his mouth over Yibo’s neck and breathed nonsense words into his ear. He hugged his midsection and caressed him until they came.

Overnight they repeated the pattern, though the nap cycle grew longer. They were able to disengage in the morning long enough to have another shower session together, and Yibo remembered his pill on their way back to the bed. Out of prescience, he had left it on the counter in plain sight, probably anticipating being at least somewhat foggy from their repeated rounds of sex.

“Zhan-ge,” Yibo mumbled, stepping into his arms before they even left the bathroom. He had another erection, but Xiao Zhan could tell his whole heart wasn’t in it. He smirked.

“Had about enough?” Xiao Zhan asked, caressing his ass.

“No,” Yibo said, sounding sulky about it. He laid his head on Xiao Zhan’s shoulder. “Soon, though. Do we still have a bag of your used laundry somewhere?”

Xiao Zhan chuckled. He had already anticipated the need. “Yeah, it’s bundled in the closet, I can get it for you as soon as you’re willing to let me move more than a meter away from you.”

Yibo’s arms tightened around him.

“Ah,” Xiao Zhan said. He kissed the nearest part of Yibo he could reach—his ear. “Back to bed, baobei.”

“I feel like I’m ready for the cuddling part,” Yibo said. “You know…the part we didn’t get leave for last time. But my body wants to get you in me at least a few more times.”

Xiao Zhan rubbed his lower back. “Then we’ll do that,” he murmured, kissing Yibo’s ear again. “Come on. It’s okay.”

They were definitely winding down and it was a relief for both of them. It was past twenty-four hours since Yibo’s heat had risen to the provocation of Xiao Zhan’s rut. They returned to the bed for another round. This one was on the order of leisurely lovemaking—Yibo was still plenty wet for him, but they’d been going at it so long Xiao Zhan was getting concerned about chafing. He took his time. They took their time together. He stayed in him afterward and they traded kisses until Yibo pulled back, nuzzled his nose, made a face at him, and they both laughed.

After doing it in just about every way from their repertoire, Xiao Zhan left the next one up to Yibo’s preference. He wasn’t terribly surprised when Yibo asked to be eaten out, then have Xiao Zhan take him while they were on their sides so they could spoon, kiss, and probably fall asleep while coupled again.

They did, in fact, fall asleep before he even pulled out.

His rut was definitely over by the last time Yibo flashed his ass for him with an anxious whine, but he got hard at the sight and smell of Yibo’s wet hole with his long dexterous fingers rubbing beside it and exposing himself for Xiao Zhan as he urged him to get on him, gege, please, sounding hungry and desperate. There was an anxious little hitch to his voice like he thought Xiao Zhan actually wouldn’t and that propelled him up onto his knees, crowding behind him so fast he pushed Yibo’s face into the pillow. He mounted him rough and fast as Yibo’s breathless, happy laughter reassured him he was getting exactly what he’d egged him into doing.

The past few had been slow and lingering, but their final coupling was hard and urgent. Xiao Zhan kept a tight grip on his waist, hard enough to leave finger-shaped bruises, as he plowed into him with jagged, fast thrusts and Yibo arched back against him, whining and butting his ass back against him every time Xiao Zhan tried to slow down. He forced his knot in so fast that Yibo shouted, but when he brought him upright to turn his head toward him with a hand, Yibo looked blissed out and tried to shove his tongue into Xiao Zhan’s mouth when his face was close enough.

Xiao Zhan laughed, nipped his tongue between his lips, and reached down to fist his cock until he came all over himself.

They collapsed—carefully—into an exhausted pair of spoons after that. Xiao Zhan vaguely remembered coming again, remembered his mate pulling his hand around Yibo’s dick and fucking lazily into their combined grip; and everything hazed out before he knew whether Yibo came or not.

A small rustling noise woke him an undetermined time later. Xiao Zhan was sprawled on his side, temples throbbing in a way that told him he was in dire need of water. His body was sore but sated and he passed a hand down his front. The worst of the come had been wiped up so that he wouldn’t have to scrub it off his skin later, so Yibo must have gotten up and taken care of that. He sat up, rubbing one eye.

Yibo was sitting at the foot of the bed, pulling clothes out of Xiao Zhan’s laundry bag. He’d stolen the couch cushions right off the couch and used them at the foot and corners of the bed to build up some bulk to drape the clothes onto, like constructing a fort.

“Having fun?” Xiao Zhan asked, amused.

Yibo glanced over his shoulder and smirked at him. “Just as much fun as building legos,” he replied.

Xiao Zhan chuckled. He lazed back against a pillow and watched him, content to do only that and nothing more until his bladder got him up and moving.

When he returned to the bed-turned-nest, Yibo had left him a gap for him to climb into bed through. He placed a sweater onto the remaining portion of mattress with a satisfied air before pouncing him and pressing a snack packet into his hand.

“Cuddle time?” Xiao Zhan asked hopefully.

Yibo nodded against his shoulder, looping an arm over his waist.

Xiao Zhan sighed. “Ah, that was wonderful, but I’m thankful. It was time to give my poor cock a break.”

Yibo made a noise that was mingled outrage and amusement. “Your poor cock? My poor little pink—”

Xiao Zhan shut him up with the direct application of his mouth.

“I can kiss it better,” Xiao Zhan offered.

“Maybe later,” Yibo said, bending his head and biting his shoulder. “I really do just want to cuddle right now.”

They settled down together and Yibo drew the sheet up over them; it was unwashed and still reeked of their mingled scent from the past day and a half. He sighed happily and buried his nose in Xiao Zhan’s neck. He was so contented and boneless, he’d even left his phone over on the nightstand rather than checking through any messages he might have missed while they were absorbed in one another.

“After we’re ready to leave your nest, I think it’s time to call my parents,” Xiao Zhan said, stroking over Yibo’s back.

Yibo’s eyes reappeared, bright and interested. “Yeah? I thought you were worried your mother was going to kill you.”

“Oh, I’m still worried about that,” Xiao Zhan said wryly. He teased his hand down over the knobs of Yibo’s spine, tracing them one by one with a fingertip. “But I can’t put it off anymore. And I want you to meet them.”

“I want to meet Zhan-ge’s parents,” Yibo said, putting his head back on Xiao Zhan’s shoulder with a small, contented sound.

Xiao Zhan smiled at him. He knew no matter what happened next, his parents would love Yibo. They’d scold him, dote over Yibo, and everything would be all right.

As for the two of them—he’d take each hurdle as it came, whether it was Wajijiwa or their crazy schedules, and they would make it work together.