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Future Planning

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The evening sun peers in through the large courtyard window onto the dining room table, where Shen Wei is placing dinner. It's just the two of them in the house for dinner this evening—Da Qing and Ye Zun had decided to stay elsewhere for the night. While Shen Wei knew it was likely out of self preservation that the two of them would find somewhere else to stay, he still rather appreciated it. It had been a busy week, with Shen Wei managing a hectic exam schedule on top of grading final research papers from his grad students, and Zhao Yunlan chasing the tails of a particularly stubborn case, often eating take out in his office for dinner and coming home close to midnight. Shen Wei was very grateful to finally have some time alone with his husband.

"Ah, it smells good! Is dinner ready, baobei?" Zhao Yunlan calls from the living room, and Shen Wei smiles to himself.

"I'm just done setting the table now. You can come over." 

They sit down in pleasant silence, Shen Wei filling Zhao Yunlan's bowl with more cutlets than his own. He still finds Zhao Yunlan's weight a concern, even after being married for just over a year and cooking for him daily far before that. Zhao Yunlan compliments his cooking and thanks him as usual, but his mind seems to be elsewhere—Shen Wei tries to read his face for any indications of what could be causing the distraction, but comes up with nothing. Zhao Yunlan falls back into silence while eating, rather uncharacteristically, and Shen Wei frowns.

"Yunlan, is everything alright?"

Zhao Yunlan's gaze snaps towards him from where it was locked on the bowl, and he shoots Shen Wei a grin. "Of course everything is alright! I finally have an evening with my beautiful spouse all to myself, and he's doting on me so sweetly." Zhao Yunlan flutters his eyelashes at Shen Wei, who huffs, unconvinced. "Aiyo, Xiao Wei, I'm fine, it's fine. You don't have to worry. All week on a case, you know how it wears me out." 

Shen Wei frowns again. He knows very little about the case in question, with Zhao Yunlan brushing off him asking in the evening while they readied for bed as "Xiao Weiiii, I've been focused on the case all day, can't I just focus on my hubby for a minute while I can?" Shen Wei of course obliged him, despite his curiosity. Zhao Yunlan at least assured him later that it wasn't his domain.

"It has been a long week, yes," Shen Wei concedes, "just normally you aren't so… distracted, when it's the two of us."

"I don't know if that's quite true, Baobei… I often find myself distracted by your beauty, after all." Zhao Yunlan grins and winks at him, and Shen Wei flushes around the edges. He levels Zhao Yunlan a stare that says " you know what I meant."

Zhao Yunlan sobers up slightly. He looks a bit bashful for a moment. "Aiyo, fine," he huffs, as always weak to Shen Wei's weighty stares. "You don't have to worry that my thoughts are elsewhere, Xiao Wei. I've just been thinking about our future."

Shen Wei lightens a bit at that, but raises an eyebrow in question. He, of course, has also considered their future in passing, but he doesn't find himself dwelling on it often. He's waited millennia to be with his love again, and would like to enjoy the moment as much as he can.

Zhao Yunlan chews on his lip for a moment, seemingly nervous, and Shen Wei tries to keep his eyes from drifting to it. Later , he tells himself, there is always later. Zhao Yunlan's voice snaps him out of his self-reprimand. 

"Shen Wei. Have you thought about us having a kid?"

The chopsticks Shen Wei was holding clatter loudly onto the table. He can't seem to care at the moment. "What?" he asks, his voice fragile, thoughts of later forgotten.

Yunlan's face is serious, for once. "Have you thought about us having a kid. A baby. You and me," he leans back in his chair, dinner seemingly forgotten, half eaten. Shen Wei will later worry about reheating it and making him finish his meal, but his mind is rather preoccupied at the moment. Zhao Yunlan looks at him from under his eyelashes, and Shen Wei realizes he is waiting for a thoughtful response.

"I…" apparently, Shen Wei's brain cannot manage a spoken response in general, let alone a thoughtful response. A child. Ours. Both from him and me. A product of our love. A proper family. Something neither of us truly had...

He must have started shaking, because Zhao Yunlan leans across the table to grab both of his hands. Shen Wei looks him in the eyes and sees water on the edge of his vision. 

"Shen Wei-ah, Xiao Wei," Zhao Yunlan says, "I knew you would never ask me, because you're so stubborn when it comes to giving yourself what you want. But I've been thinking about it… this house is so big for just the four of us, after all." Shen Wei takes a deep breath that wavers on the inhale. One of Zhao Yunlan's hands leaves his to wipe a tear from his cheek.

"Ah-Lan. You…" Another deep breath. "You would really want a child?" ...with me? goes unspoken. He knows vocalizing this would not bode well, but sometimes Shen Wei cannot believe good things have finally come to him.

"Sure," Zhao Yunlan gives him a coy look. "How hard could it be, really?" Shen Wei sniffs pointedly and gives him a look. "I'm just playing. Hard to do worse than my dad, though, isn't it?" he grumbles, and Shen Wei strokes the hand that's in his.

"It is a very big commitment, Yunlan. We both have busy and dangerous jobs. Who would care for the child while we work?" Shen Wei tries not to panic at the thought of having a child and leaving it unattended by its parents, not given love every minute like it deserves. Neither of them had a solid childhood, let alone supportive parents (or parents at all, in his case). What does Shen Wei know about parenting? Or Zhao Yunlan? What about—

"Shh, Baobei... I can hear you panicking from here. We can read up on it, can't we? Put your learning skill to use once again." Zhao Yunlan leans over the table and gives him a peck on the lips, and Shen Wei looks up over to him. Zhao Yunlan smiles. "I'm pretty sure after us saving both worlds a bit ago, I can convince the bureau to give me a considerable paternity leave. Da Qing can hold down the fort at the SID for a while. He better be able to, at least, that Damn Cat. He's not Deputy Chief for nothing…" He shakes his head and sighs. "We would figure it out, baobei. Maybe your twin can even help."

Shen Wei winces slightly. Ye Zun has indeed improved after everything ended, but Shen Wei is not sure how xe would feel about helping with childcare. He's not sure about how xe would react to the news that they're considering having a child at all, actually… Zhao Yunlan sees his expression and laughs.

"Okay, we'll put that thought away for now. Something to consider later," He pats Shen Wei's hand, who huffs again in response. Zhao Yunlan looks at him with a knowing smile, and Shen Wei ducks his head.

"If we…" Shen Wei trails off, takes a breath, and tries again, feeling Zhao Yunlan's gaze on him. "If we were to have a child… how would you want to... go about this?"

Zhao Yunlan is the one to raise an eyebrow this time. "'Go about this?' Aiyo, Professor Shen, isn't it a little late to be acting like you don't know the process?" He gives Shen Wei a grin and wiggles his eyebrows. "Well, babies are made when two people who love each other very much—"

"Zhao Yunlan!" Shen Wei interrupts, and Zhao Yunlan starts laughing. Shen Wei fights the flush he knows is rising to his ears. "I don't need—I meant who would—where would the baby gestate?" 

Zhao Yunlan scrunches his face. "Normally I find it hot when you talk professor to me, but I don't think 'gestate' is a word that gets me in the mood." He laughs again, and Shen Wei sighs. Zhao Yunlan waves him off. "I've been thinking about it for a while. It feels like there'd be a better connection if I'm the one carrying the baby, don't you think? And I don't think the process would cause me much dysphoria, or anything. My voice won't change back, my lovely beard won't fall off, I won't spontaneously regrow my chest. I've looked into it. I'm sure it will kind of suck sometimes, but I have my beautiful handsome perfect spouse here to pamper me, don't I?" He coos and shoots Shen Wei a grin, who swallows and blushes in response.

"You would… You're sure? And it would be safe for you to do so?" Shen Wei can't help but worry. Despite being a biology professor and knowing the body well, the intricacies of Haixingren gender often confuse him.

"I still have all the working parts, so yes, it would be safe. I'll have to stop taking my T shots for the duration, and probably before that, too, if we want me to get pregnant more easily. We should make sure we have a doctor lined up to monitor the process, but trans men have been pregnant before without any complications," Zhao Yunlan says and looks at Shen Wei, who nods, eyes teary again.

Zhao Yunlan gets up from his position sitting half bent over their unfinished dinner, startling Shen Wei, and rounds the table to push his chair back and straddle Shen Wei's legs. He grabs Shen Wei's face in both hands and starts kissing his eyes where tears are forming, and Shen Wei chuckles, hands coming to his middle to pull Zhao Yunlan closer to him.

"Ah-Lan…" He whispers, squeezing him closer, closer. Zhao Yunlan pulls his face back just a bit to fit their lips together into a sweet kiss, which Shen Wei quickly reciprocates. He pulls back after not very long, accompanied by a sigh, and buries his head in Zhao Yunlan's shoulder.

"What do you think, Xiao Wei?" The words are spoken near his ear, breath disrupting the hairs on the side of his head. Shen Wei's grip tightens around him slightly in response.

"I think you're perfect," he whispers, voice intense. "Everything I've ever wanted, here in my hands. My heart only exists because you're here to make it beat," Shen Wei seals the statement with a kiss to his shoulder, and another to his neck for good measure. And one more won't hurt…

Zhao Yunlan is squirming a bit when he responds, "Xiao Wei… You, ah…" Shen Wei kisses up to the line of his jaw, and Zhao Yunlan chuckles lightly, drawing back just a bit to look Shen Wei in the eyes. "Hei Lao-ge has a way with words indeed," he says alluringly, tongue darting to his lower lip, and Shen Wei's eyes track the movement with interest, "but I was, in fact, talking about what you thought about the baby thing," he suddenly says in a serious tone. Shen Wei flushes slightly. "You never gave me an answer, you know! What am I supposed to think?"

Shen Wei smiles lovingly at his husband's whining. He slips a hand just underneath the bottom of Zhao Yunlan's shirt as he says, "The answer is yes, Yunlan. My desires align with yours wholeheartedly," he says, voice dreadfully fond, and Zhao Yunlan responds with his brightest grin. His face seems to glow with it, and Shen Wei is perpetually in awe of his beauty.

"That's settled then!" Zhao Yunlan cheers. He presses a kiss to Shen Wei's lips and pulls back looking mischievous. "Say, Shen Wei, do you think I could make a good playground for the baby?" Shen Wei makes to interrupt, but Zhao Yunlan continues spiritedly, "I'm thinking a swingset in the middle of the courtyard, maybe a sandbox too. Oh, and a spiral water slide that goes into a jacuzzi. No one said the playground has to be for kids only, after all! And I think—"

Shen Wei leans forward to cut him off with a kiss, and Zhao Yunlan hums happily into it like that was exactly what he wanted. (It probably was.) One of his hands goes to settle behind Shen Wei's neck to play with the hairs there, as Shen Wei's hands lead up farther under his shirt to stroke his back, slightly cold, sending shivers up his spine. Shen Wei's teeth gently catch Zhao Yunlan's lower lip, which makes him gasp lightly, an opening that Shen Wei graciously takes to deepen the kiss.

After a minute, Zhao Yunlan's lungs ache for air, and Shen Wei seems reluctant to let them part. When they do seperate, he's gasping, and Shen Wei has that dark, ravenous look in his eyes that makes Zhao Yunlan's blood boil. 

"Baobei, I know you said you don't need an explanation of the process," He croons between Shen Wei trying to kiss him again, diverted into off-center pecks, "but don't you think we should go through it one more time just to make sure?" He cocks his head down to look at Shen Wei from under his eyelashes for good measure. Shen Wei's lip ticks up at a corner in something like a sneer.

"Just once?" he says back, hands moving down Zhao Yunlan's back to rest lower, lower. "No, it would be more beneficial to go through it multiple times. It is best to learn through repeated practice, isn't it?" His hands find their place under the crease of Zhao Yunlan's thighs, holding firmly as he stands from the kitchen chair in one swift movement. Zhao Yunlan hums in appreciation and clings to him gratefully. 

"I like the way you think, Professor Shen… Best to get an early start."

 

 

They 'practice' once in the corridor against the wall, and two more times on their bed. Zhao Yunlan is left considerably less coordinated and considerably more tired—as well as sore in several places—when they're done. Zhao Yunlan silently praises Dixingren biology as Shen Wei holds him, and he drifts into a contented nap.

 

 

He wakes groggily a couple of hours later, body feeling tender and boneless. Shen Wei is sitting beside him where he's sprawled across the bed and is staring adoringly at him. He's put some clothes back on, much to Zhao Yunlan's chagrin, but at least he's still nearby. He makes grabby hands toward Shen Wei, wanting to cuddle more and go back to sleep, but Shen Wei instead grabs his hands and pulls him up until he's sitting. Zhao Yunlan whines and leans into him as soon as he's sitting up, and Shen Wei pushes a warm bowl into Zhao Yunlan's hands before they can cling to his chest.

"You never finished dinner," he says, pushing Zhao Yunlan's hair back off his forehead. "Eat, Ah-Lan."

"Aiyo, you've worn me out too much…. I think I need my perfect spouse to feed me," he whines, closing his eyes again and opening his mouth. Shen Wei sighs in response, but after a moment picks up a piece of meat and some rice with chopsticks and puts it to Zhao Yunlan's lips. Zhao Yunlan takes the food gratefully, and as he's chewing peeps open one eye to look at him mischievously, failing to suppress a smile pulling at the corner of his lips. 

Shen Wei does not acknowledge his obvious scheming, and indulges Zhao Yunlan by feeding him the rest of the bowl in the same manner. If it will ensure Zhao Yunlan eats his meal, then he has no problem doing so. The gentle clink of the bowl and chopsticks being set upon the bedside table makes Zhao Yunlan open his eyes and looks at Shen Wei with a grin on his face.

"My perfect hubby wubby spousey is so good to his husband…" he coos, and leans in for a kiss that Shen Wei keeps brief. Shen Wei ignores his pout at that.

"We need to bathe," Shen Wei says, drawing him towards the edge of the bed. "I wiped off what I could while you napped, but I didn't want to wake you." Zhao Yunlan, in return for Shen Wei's earlier indulging of him, does not call out how Shen Wei could easily have used one of his powers to remove the less favorable aspects of their couplings. He instead lets himself be tugged along towards the bathroom with a goofy smile on his face. 

He's sat down on the toilet lid as Shen Wei sheds his undershirt and boxer briefs once again, and then turns and leans to get the water from the faucet to an acceptable temperature. Zhao Yunlan leers at the pleasing figure his spouse makes—hard, broad muscle, wide shoulders, faint scratch lines dug across them and down his back. (The last part is courtesy of Zhao Yunlan, of course.) The curve of his ass and the strong line of his legs. He truly caught a real beauty. 

Shen Wei turns around when he deems the water warm enough, and turns red around the edges at Zhao Yunlan's obvious staring. He draws Yunlan back to standing, pulls them into the spray of the shower, and Zhao Yunlan groans and leans into Shen Wei's chest. He pretends to physically melt from the water hitting his back, and Shen Wei obligingly holds him close for a few moments. Zhao Yunlan whines and clings to him when Shen Wei pulls back slightly to reach for the soap. 

"I can't wash you the way you enjoy if we're stuck together, Yunlan," Shen Wei chides, and Zhao Yunlan sighs like separating from him is the greatest hardship he could imagine. He does unravel his arms from Shen Wei after a moment more, and sways slightly as he stands unsupported under the warmth of the shower. 

Shen Wei quickly takes advantage of the free movement, and works the soap into a lather on his hands. His hands press onto Zhao Yunlan's shoulders and neck and rub the soap into the skin there, lingering ever so slightly and pressing gently with his thumbs on any marks left there. Zhao Yunlan's breath hitches with the pressure, and a shiver runs through him despite the steam filling the room. Shen Wei continues spreading the lather, seeming to ignore Zhao Yunlan's returning arousal. He tenderly strokes all over as he ensures every inch of skin is touched by soap—down each arm, along each finger, across the scars on his chest and every scar and mark on his stomach. 

Zhao Yunlan is breathing more heavily by the time Shen Wei kneels to get to his legs, brought eye level with his growing arousal. Shen Wei continues to willfully ignore this in favor of finishing his service, eyes kept trained on his hands as they run down Zhao Yunlan's thighs. Again, he presses lightly into the bruises there as he goes, and Zhao Yunlan swears he can see the ghost of a smirk on Shen Wei's face, but it's hard to tell with the distance and the water and steam. Shen Wei's hands continue their path down his legs, lathering behind his knees and down his calves and making him lift one foot at a time to get his soles.

Shen Wei's hands leave his feet and his attention falls back on Zhao Yunlan's unattended crotch. Zhao Yunlan shimmies his hips to make his dick jiggle slightly from where it's a few inches from Shen Wei's face, which makes Shen Wei laugh. Shen Wei's hands come around to caress his ass, still-soapy fingers dipping into the crack to rub against the hole there, but nothing more.

"Xiaooo Weiiiii…" Zhao Yunlan's whine breaks the steam-filled silence, and Shen Wei's hands squeeze lightly from where they're on his ass. "You're so mean. Just do something already, your husband's not built for teasing like this." 

Shen Wei kisses his thigh lightly as an apology and then pulls Zhao Yunlan forward with his hands, causing him to stumble and put both hands on Shen Wei's shoulders. He's just about to complain again when Shen Wei's mouth slots over his dick, and the complaint dies on his throat in favor of a groan. Shen Wei strokes the length of Zhao Yunlan's dick with his tongue from where it rests in his mouth. His hands come around to rest on Yunlan's thighs, thumbs reaching to spread the man's front for better access. One of Zhao Yunlan's hands grasps Shen Wei's hair to anchor himself as Shen Wei's tongue reaches lower and rubs along his tender entrance.

The air in the room feels thick with it, Zhao Yunlan's whining breaths almost louder than the spray of the shower. Shen Wei's head dips to tongue farther into his entrance, his nose and cheek rubbing against Zhao Yunlan's dick as he presses closer. Zhao Yunlan moans and tightens his grip in Shen Wei's hair, both at the sensation and the alluring sight Shen Wei makes. Shen Wei peers up at him from under his eyelashes as he buries his tongue deep into the lovingly abused entrance, and Zhao Yunlan's thighs tremor harshly as he begins to come onto his spouse's tongue. His groan turns into a whimper when Shen Wei continues to eat him out even after his climax passes, until Zhao Yunlan's hands push Shen Wei back and he falls to his knees to kiss him deeply instead.

They make out for a short while under the spray, until Shen Wei pulls back, noting that they're wasting water and not even done bathing yet. Zhao Yunlan whines at the unfairness, but nonetheless acquiesces and lets Shen Wei wash his hair (with less massaging than usual, much to his chagrin, but he supposes everywhere else got plenty of massaging in its place) and then quickly wash himself. 

Shen Wei turns off the water and grabs a towel for Zhao Yunlan, running it all over his body before drying himself off. He sits Zhao Yunlan on the toilet seat again and turns to ruffle through the medicine cabinet, towel low on his waist. They both realize at the same moment that the ruffling is Shen Wei's body going to start their T night routine on auto pilot. Shen Wei closes the cabinet and looks slightly flustered as he turns around, and Zhao Yunlan smiles knowingly at him.

After Shen Wei changes the sheets and pulls on his boxer briefs once more, the two of them lay cuddled up in bed together, Zhao Yunlan clinging to Shen Wei's side like an octopus. Shen Wei's hand rubs soothing circles on the small of Zhao Yunlan's back, and Zhao Yunlan presses kisses on Shen Wei's shoulder in return. Zhao Yunlan is just beginning to doze off when he hears (well, mostly feels) Shen Wei speak.

"Have you… talked to a doctor about this? Do you have someone lined up?" his voice is low, hesitant, and Zhao Yunlan cuddles closer in response.

"I figured we can talk to Dr. Cheng to start, I'd rather have someone who knows us well," he mumbles, "But I know she doesn't specialize in obstetrics." 

Shen Wei hums in response. "That sounds like a good place to start, regardless," he affirms. "I'm sure she has colleagues in that department. I recall her having a wide array of friends from various medical majors while we were in college."

"Perfect," Zhao Yunlan says, eyes falling closed. "Now we can go to sleep and you can stop worrying tonight." Zhao Yunlan feels Shen Wei's chest rumble in a gentle laugh.

"Yes, my love."

 


 

Dr. Cheng is pleasantly surprised, if not slightly confused, to find that Shen Wei's call is seemingly not related to supernatural artifacts this time, but rather asking for a referral to an obstetrician.

"An obstetrician?" She asks, "Is someone at the SID pregnant?"

"Ah," Shen Wei sounds flustered. She hears rustling, as if someone has taken the phone from him.

"Not yet, but we're going to try to be!" a voice she recognizes as Zhao Yunlan chimes in, and she overhears Shen Wei let out a chiding 'Zhao Yunlan!' faintly through the phone speaker. 

"Oh! Hello, Chief Zhao," She takes a moment to process what he said, then quickly adds, "wait, you and Shen Wei are—"

"—hoping to have a baby?" Zhao Yunlan interrupts, sounding smug. "Excellent deduction, Dr. Cheng! Before you ask, yes, you're invited to the baby shower." Cheng Xinyan hears more rustling as, presumably, Shen Wei wrestles the phone back from Zhao Yunlan.

"My apologies, Dr. Cheng," Shen Wei says, "Zhao Yunlan can get rather overexcited." He clears his throat and sighs. "Yes, we are interested in having a child, and thought you would possibly have some trustworthy colleagues in the obstetrics department." 

"Oh! Yes, of course," she says, resting the phone between her shoulder and ear as she begins searching on her computer. "Dragon City Hospital has a very good obstetrics department, actually. And ever since Dixing has been connected to Haixing, they've gotten much more informed about cross-subspecies pregnancies as well. One of my college classmates has taken classes to specialize in that since the connection, actually. I can get you their name and office number, if you would like?"

"Yes, I would appreciate that. Thank you, Cheng Xinyan," Shen Wei sighs, sounding relieved. She provides the name and number, which Shen Wei writes down on a piece of paper for later reference. Zhao Yunlan peeks over his shoulder to put the info into his cell phone. 

Shen Wei thanks Cheng Xinyan again, and says goodbye. He is very grateful to have a good referral for a doctor to supervise and assist them during this journey. He turns his head to look at Zhao Yunlan, still looming over his shoulder, and gives him a kiss on the lips, which Zhao Yunlan happily reciprocates. 

They're in Shen Wei's office at the university during both of their lunch breaks, Shen Wei sitting in the desk chair with Zhao Yunlan half-sitting on the armrest. Thankfully, with exams wrapped up and all of his grad students' papers reviewed, he's only in his office as a formality more than anything else. The only visitors at all that day have been students coming to thank him for being a great professor. Zhao Yunlan, likewise, is not very busy—the SID has not gotten as many cases ever since the connection, just one or two a month—and is taking the opportunity to accompany his spouse as much as possible during Shen Wei's short post-semester downtime. 

 

The time has proven very useful for them to start planning. Zhao Yunlan already had a conversation with his father regarding the situation; there is, of course, still some tension between them that will likely never completely be resolved, but after everything, Zhao Yunlan feels at least like his father respects him a bit more. Zhao Xinci was quiet in response, leaving Zhang Shi to do most of the speaking.

("I… don't know if you view me as your father alongside Zhao Xinci," he had started, eyes glowing, "but I still see you as my son as well as his."

Zhao Yunlan took a deep breath in response to this, and nodded for him to continue.

"Zhao Xinci is… conflicted, as he is with many opinions on you. But I have seen you grow into a fine young man, one who has connected our worlds, and I feel nothing but happiness to hear this from you. I offer congratulations on behalf of both of us." 

Zhao Yunlan nods again, and turns to leave. His father's voice stops him.

"Zhao Yunlan," Zhao Xinci calls out. His eyes are tense. Zhao Yunlan turns back around and braces himself. "With your… unorthodox choices… I did not expect you to make a decision like this." 

Zhao Yunlan's lips tighten into a thin line in response. "Without those 'unorthodox choices' I wouldn't be here. It's because of, not in spite of, that I would consider doing this. Even now, you're too concerned about your ideals to accept that your son is in a good place finally," he grits out, fists clenched.

Zhao Xinci is quiet again. Zhao Yunlan once again turns to walk away, and tries to ignore how his father's voice saying, "Your mother would have been proud," as he leaves makes him tear up.)

 

Shen Wei, likewise, had a conversation with his twin. Ye Zun took it better than expected.

("You want to have a baby with him ? Gege, he doesn't even eat if you aren't making meals for him. You've spoiled him rotten. I know you like to do that, and your cooking is phenomenal, but do you think he knows how to take care of a baby?"

"Didi—"

"No, and another thing. I can't believe you want me to be an auntcle. What do I know about kids, either? I was trapped in a pillar for 10,000 years. I literally haven't seen a baby in my life. You want me to hold one? What if I hurt it? Oh my god, no, what if I hurt the baby?? Gege, you need to rethink this! Shen Wei!!")

Admittedly, Ye Zun needed to be guided through some breathing exercises before xe acknowledged that it would 'probably be fine' , but Shen Wei had gone into the conversation expecting much worse. 

 

The SID is informed in a single group text sent by Zhao Yunlan, simply reading: "shen wei and i are planning to have a baby and if any one of you causes me trouble while i'm pregnant you're fired on the spot" which receives several immediate responses.

(Da Qing: I find this out through text ? Is this what I get for basically raising you half the time??

Zhu Hong: The snake tribe will provide medicine to help with your morning sickness.

Lin Jing: Congratulations boss and professor Shen! Please don't put me on babysitting duty.

Guo Changcheng: Oh Chief Zhao, that's wonderful!!! I'm so happy for you two! Can I knit for the baby?

Chu Shuzhi: I am sure Hei Pao Daren will be an excellent father, as he is an excellent leader. Congratulations.

Wang Zheng: Boss, congratulations! Oh, Sang Zan and I can babysit whenever you need.

"Shen Wei, remind me to cut Lin Jing's bonus and Da Qing's snacks. And you need to tell Lao Chu to respect my position!")

 

So, the most important people in their lives have been informed already, with varying responses. They will work out leave with their superiors when Zhao Yunlan actually gets pregnant, so that they have an estimate of when the needed periods of time off will be. Zhao Yunlan supposes the next step is to actually get to a point where he can make the baby. He's stopped his birth control and T, and they met with the obstetrician once already for baseline tests, so all that can be done now is wait. Though, they've both enjoyed the excuse to have sex at least once a day.

 


 

"I hate waiting," Zhao Yunlan complains as he drops his head into Shen Wei's lap, sprawling the rest of his body over the couch. Shen Wei's hand comes up to stroke his hair.  "And I don't want to get a period again, either. If it happens I'm blaming you. I expect to get pregnant at my first ovulation or else you're sleeping on the couch." It's all bluff, Shen Wei knows. Zhao Yunlan sleeps much better with Shen Wei in his bed, preferably after one or several sex acts.

"The doctor said your menses should return within 3 months," Shen Wei says, momentarily moving his hand to turn the page of his book. "It's barely been 2 months, Yunlan. There's still time."

Zhao Yunlan groans. "Can't you just speed it up somehow? Use dark energy to supercharge your sperm? Oh, maybe if you fuck me hard enough my body will hurry up." Zhao Yunlan wiggles his eyebrows and turns his head to rub his cheek against Shen Wei's crotch.

Shen Wei turns bright red and pushes his glasses up his face. He fixes Zhao Yunlan with a look. "If it were that simple a matter, I don't think we'd have a problem," he says, and Zhao Yunlan bursts into laughter. "But to answer your questions, no, I refuse to use dark energy on you in this manner. We don't know if that would affect the child."

"Oh, so that means you do have some kind of power like that but are just holding out on me?" Zhao Yunlan grins at him.

"No, I do not have fertility powers in my arsenal," Shen Wei sighs. "I don't know when or how you would have expected me to learn such a thing."

"I don't know, my Xiao Wei is just so smart. It's hard to imagine something he can't do." Zhao Yunlan pauses, and frowns. "Except use electronics."

Shen Wei huffs. "Not so hard then, is it?"

"Oh, you know what I mean," Zhao Yunlan says as he wiggles himself further onto Shen Wei's lap, not caring about the book he's now laying on top of. "Now stop reading. Your hubby needs attention. We can test my earlier theory just in case."

Shen Wei tugs the book out from under Zhao Yunlan's upper back (ignoring his momentary hurt look), sets the bookmark in place, and leans over Zhao Yunlan to put it and his glasses neatly on the coffee table. Zhao Yunlan is grinning when he returns to sitting upright, and Shen Wei bodily tugs him off of his lap and onto the cushion next to him so that he may properly lean to kiss him.

Zhao Yunlan eagerly reciprocates with a pleased hum, tugging Shen Wei closer with a hand on his nape. Shen Wei's hands come to rest at Zhao Yunlan's midsection, stroking at his waist and sides. Their kisses grow deeper and the air grows heavy around them—Shen Wei's tongue delving into Zhao Yunlan's mouth, his hands pushing up the bottom of Zhao Yunlan's shirt to touch skin. Zhao Yunlan's hand clutches at the hair on Shen Wei's neck and tugs him ever closer.

Their lips part with a gasp when the need to breathe is too great, and Shen Wei takes the opportunity to mouth along Zhao Yunlan's jaw and down his throat. Zhao Yunlan stretches his neck out obligingly for Shen Wei to claim, his other hand coming up to pick at the buttons on Shen Wei's shirt. His breath races faster as Shen Wei sucks and bites at the crook of his neck, and he whines when his hand can't manage to undo a single button on its own. Shen Wei takes pity on him and reaches to unbutton his own shirt, which Zhao Yunlan greedily takes advantage of. His hands are warm against Shen Wei's comparatively chilled skin, and Shen Wei nips at the skin on his shoulder in response to the touch. 

Their mouths meet each other once again as Shen Wei's hands lower to tug at Zhao Yunlan's belt and Zhao Yunlan pushes Shen Wei's shirt off of his shoulders. Zhao Yunlan's pants and boxers are tugged down to rest on his thighs, and Shen Wei's hands quickly come to rest on the newly exposed skin. The fingers on one hand wrap around and rub his swollen dick, tugging gently on the sensitive organ. The other hand rubs a thumb alluringly just against the opening to his entrance. Zhao Yunlan breaks their kiss with a moan and pants into Shen Wei's ear, breath hot.

"Shen Wei," he pleads, hands pawing at Shen Wei's chest desperately. His eyes fall to the tent pushing up Shen Wei's slacks, framed by his own lowered pants, and the sight makes him bite his lip and buck his hips closer. He wants both of their pants off, he wants to touch . Shen Wei looks at him with lidded eyes in return, and with a wave of dark energy they're in their bed, Zhao Yunlan sprawled across the sheets. 

They make quick work of the rest of their clothes: Shen Wei shrugging his button up off his arms, undoing his slacks, folding his clothes hurriedly with a quick motion of his hand and abuse of a power, and Zhao Yunlan frantically tugging his shirt off and wriggling out of his pants, leaving them messily piled off to their side. Zhao Yunlan pulls him close again before Shen Wei can think of folding Zhao Yunlan's clothes as well. Shen Wei finds other things more important than keeping Yunlan's clothes wrinkle-free, at that moment in time.

Finally naked, both of them reach once again to grope at the other. Zhao Yunlan drops a hand immediately to grasp Shen Wei's erection, his other coming to Shen Wei's lower back to pull him closer. He gives Shen Wei a grin as his spouse groans at the touch. Shen Wei braces a hand on Zhao Yunlan's lower stomach as he leans over to grab the lube from the bedside table—the motion brings their dicks just in contact, and Zhao Yunlan lifts his hips and moves his hand to rub them together. Shen Wei's hands are shaking slightly when he leans back from the bedside table, lube in hand. He stares at where the two of them are in contact, and Zhao Yunlan takes the opportunity to slide his dick against the side of Shen Wei's cockhead.

Shen Wei's eyes are dark when they snap to make contact with his, and his breathing is labored. Zhao Yunlan grows hotter under his spouse's gaze, and gives Shen Wei's dick a squeeze in his grasp. Shen Wei inhales sharply and opens the bottle of lube with a click—Zhao Yunlan distantly acknowledges that Shen Wei must have used a power to warm the bottle up slightly, since when the lube touches him it's surprisingly warm. Shen Wei coaxes Zhao Yunlan's hand away and moves closer until their hips are flush. His erection slides to rest over Zhao Yunlan's entrance and beside his cock, and the contact causes both of them to moan.

Zhao Yunlan once again tugs Shen Wei's down for a kiss, their lips meeting hotly. Zhao Yunlan's hands clutch at Shen Wei's hair and shoulders as Shen Wei's hips rock against his own. Shen Wei's hands fall to touch Zhao Yunlan again, one hand grasping both Zhao Yunlan's dick and the head of his own to squeeze them together, the other hand sliding further to caress Zhao Yunlan's entrance with lube-slick fingers.

"Shen Wei," Zhao Yunlan groans between kisses, "inside, god damn it. Please."

Shen Wei kisses him sweetly in apology, pushing two fingers into his husband. Zhao Yunlan whimpers and clenches on the intrusion. Shen Wei's fingers slide smoothly inside him, caressing his inner walls, rubbing on his sweet spot skillfully. Zhao Yunlan increasingly breaks their lips apart to moan, and Shen Wei takes the opportunity to kiss along his jaw, as to not hinder his husband's voice. Shen Wei's other hand leaves their dicks to push Zhao Yunlan's thigh farther back. Shen Wei pushes a third finger inside and hooks them to press on his sweet spot directly—Zhao Yunlan jerks in response and groans into his ear.

Shen Wei's fingers spread and twist inside him with precise movements of the wrist, the stimulation causing Zhao Yunlan to twitch beneath his touch. Shen Wei's hand leaves his thigh to rub a thumb firmly over the tip of Zhao Yunlan's cock, and the man quakes and gasps as he comes apart under his spouse's hands. His dick twitches in Shen Wei's hand and his hole squeezes around his fingers, and Shen Wei relishes in the sensation of both; the sight and feeling of his husband coming apart pleases him more than anything else. Zhao Yunlan weakly grabs at Shen Wei's dick and tugs it with a whine.

"Put your cock inside, m'ready," he slurs, tilting his head back to look at Shen Wei pleadingly, "fuck, want you, Xiao Wei, inside, please."

Shen Wei hurries to comply, fingers leaving Zhao Yunlan after a final caress inside, then sliding his wet hand over his own erection to slick it further. As he sets the head against Zhao Yunlan's entrance, the man wriggles impatiently on the bed sheets. Shen Wei braces a hand next to Zhao Yunlan's head and studies his face as he pushes inward—Zhao Yunlan's pupils are wide and his hair is a mess, his lips are red and shiny with saliva, and he is forever the most gorgeous sight Shen Wei has seen in his life. Zhao Yunlan clenches around him purposefully when he bottoms out, hooks a leg over Shen Wei's hip as if to somehow pull him deeper, as if to connect them into one. 

Zhao Yunlan rolls his hips to incite his spouse to move, and Shen Wei obliges, pulling halfway out and sliding back in fully, keeping them as closely connected as possible. The pace is rather slow, Shen Wei taking his time to observe how the caress of his cock inside Zhao Yunlan makes the man's flush spread further. Zhao Yunlan gives him a cheeky grin at the unabashed studying and clenches hard when he's fully buried, startling Shen Wei out of his observations and into a groan. He gives the man a look, and Zhao Yunlan grins wider in response.

"Xiao Wei, weren't we going to test a theory?" he asks coyly. "Fuck me hard, baobei, please. I want it so bad."

Shen Wei's eyes darken. Zhao Yunlan's thigh is pushed back towards his chest, Shen Wei's hand digging into the tender skin on the underside. Shen Wei leans so that he can mouth at Zhao Yunlan's shoulder, sets his teeth against the skin, and bites. Zhao Yunlan moans, and moans louder when Shen Wei picks up the pace of his thrusts. Soon Zhao Yunlan's body is shaking with every collision of their hips, Shen Wei's cock sliding directly over his sweet spot with precision on every inward thrust. Words and sounds fall from Zhao Yunlan's mouth like an open faucet, obscenities and praise and nonsense driving Shen Wei's every movement.

" Please , please Shen Wei, more, I need it, please, fuck—so good, you're so good, fill me so perfect, harder!"

Shen Wei pants against his neck and complies with his husband's every wish, supplies more harder please . Zhao Yunlan's body is trembling around him and below him, his voice escalating—Shen Wei drops a hand to squeeze and tug at his dick, and Zhao Yunlan trembles strongly as he comes. His husband has made it very clear in the past to not stop when he climaxes, so Shen Wei does not. He does not slow his hips, and his hand does not leave its position. Under the intense overstimulation, Zhao Yunlan whines loudly and digs his fingertips into Shen Wei's shoulders to ground himself. Shen Wei pinches the head of his dick between his fingers, and Zhao Yunlan shivers and whimpers with another wave. Shen Wei does slow his hips slightly, then, and raises his head to put their foreheads together.

"What do you want now, Yunlan?" Shen Wei asks him, voice gentle. 

"Want your come," Zhao Yunlan mumbles, "need to make a baby. Need you to come, please," he pleads, and Shen Wei kisses his cheek in an attempt to soothe.

He picks up the pace again, grinds himself deep each time. Zhao Yunlan weakly clenches around him and pleads to try to help him along. Shen Wei starts to work Zhao Yunlan's cock in his hand again, and Zhao Yunlan's walls waver around him enticingly. Shen Wei can feel himself nearing, and he squeezes Zhao Yunlan's thigh in warning. His hand works harder, pinching and tugging at Zhao Yunlan's dick, and the man tenses harshly around him—Shen Wei buries himself deep inside and groans as he comes. Zhao Yunlan falls over the edge once more after him, coaxed by Shen Wei's skillful hand and the fluid sensation inside him. 

"I love you," Zhao Yunlan murmurs as their breathing levels out, "I love you so much."

Shen Wei kisses him and leans forward to embrace him tightly, and Zhao Yunlan wraps both arms around his neck and both legs around his own. The kiss is tired and lazy and full of adoration. They both sigh as their lips separate.

"I have always loved you, Zhao Yunlan," Shen Wei says. "I love you more every day."

Zhao Yunlan grins. "If you love me so much can you stay inside me all night?" 

Shen Wei sighs.

 


 

Zhao Yunlan is insufferable when he starts spotting a couple of weeks later. He pouts and grumbles and lays around on the office couch with a hand thrown against his forehead. He laments loudly to his team the unfairness of it all, that despite all he and Shen Wei did they would still miss his first ovulation. He is met with varying degrees of amusement from several of his subordinates, much to his chagrin.

"I'm sure it will happen next time, Chief," Wang Zheng comforts him, her ghastly hand gently patting him. Zhao Yunlan reaffirms her as his favorite. 

Zhao Yunlan is surprised and grateful when the bleeding stays very light, as well as the cramps. He supposes maybe it's because this is his first one coming back, but he had thought it would at least be a little worse—pre-transition, his periods were never anywhere close to this easy. A couple of days later as they lay down for bed he tells Shen Wei as much, and his spouse frowns.

"It's strange for this one to be so much lighter than you expected, but I'm glad that it is causing you less distress regardless, Ah-Lan," he says. Zhao Yunlan turns his head to give him a kiss. "I could try to look for research regarding this, if you're worried?" Shen Wei implores.

"I kind of doubt you can find much of anything totally offline," Zhao Yunlan says and shakes his head. "It's fine, I'm not worried. Maybe my body is just being nice for once, easing me back into it." 

Shen Wei still looks somewhat worried. Zhao Yunlan kisses between his eyebrows to try to smooth them out.

"Aiyo, Xiao Wei, I feel fine. If something was wrong I would be able to tell," he reassures. "My hubby is so cute when he's worried, though. Come spoon your husband." Shen Wei chuckles lightly in response.

"Yes, Ah-Lan."

 


 

"Boss, are you not gonna eat that?"

Zhao Yunlan grimaces, pushes the food around on his plate. Shen Wei cooked a beautiful dinner for the four of them, but Zhao Yunlan doesn't think he can eat any more. Something about it isn't sitting right in him. The attention of the table is on him. Da Qing is looking appealed by the idea of stealing an extra portion, Ye Zun is squinting at him like not eating xyr twin's cooking is a crime, and Shen Wei looks wholly concerned to see his husband not eating. Zhao Yunlan, of course, ignores the interlopers to reassure his spouse.

"I think my stomach is just acting up, I don't feel like I can eat much more. I had some trouble with lunch earlier, too," he says. Shen Wei looks unhappy at the statement. He hurries to comfort him, "It's not your fault, Baobei, you know your cooking is the best in the world. I think I just need to take my medicine and go to bed early today." 

Shen Wei continues to frown, sets his chopsticks down neatly, and pushes his chair back. "I will get your medicine," he says, and Zhao Yunlan opens his mouth to protest. Shen Wei sends him a glance as he walks towards the kitchen, and Zhao Yunlan closes his mouth.

"So I can have the rest of this, right? If you aren't going to eat it," Da Qing asks. Zhao Yunlan hisses at him.

"Damn cat. My spouse is upset now, you brought this on!" He points a finger in Da Qing's face, and the yashou hisses back.

Ye Zun snorts to his left. "You're the one who didn't finish your meal," xe says. "It's ungrateful of you."

Zhao Yunlan closes his eyes in annoyance and breathes deeply. He gets out of his chair and goes to meet Shen Wei in the kitchen, where his spouse is making ginger tea. Zhao Yunlan hugs him from behind.

"Xiao Wei, it's really okay… You know how my stomach is sometimes," he reassures. Shen Wei opens his bottle of medicine and places two pills on the tray next to the teacup, then sighs.

"I just worry, Yunlan," he says. Zhao Yunlan squeezes him tighter. "This is the second time this week. Your indigestion has not been a problem for a little while, it's concerning me for it to suddenly occur multiple times."

Zhao Yunlan nuzzles into his shoulder. "It's chronic, baobei, it comes and goes. There's times where it's worse than others. I don't think anything out of the ordinary is going on," he says. Shen Wei sighs again and gently disentangles from his grasp. He places the pills in Zhao Yunlan's palm and passes him the teacup. Zhao Yunlan swallows the pills with a sip of the soothing tea.

"Alright," Shen Wei says, looking mildly reassured. Zhao Yunlan smiles at him and places the teacup aside to give him a short kiss. Shen Wei lifts a hand to correct Zhao Yunlan's hair when they part, brushing it away from his forehead where Zhao Yunlan nuzzled against him. "You would tell me if things did feel abnormal?" Shen Wei asks, and Zhao Yunlan nods.

"Of course, baobei."

They look back at the table, where Da Qing has stolen the remains of Zhao Yunlan's meal and is bickering with Ye Zun. Shen Wei decides their housemates can handle putting away the food and washing up, and pulls his husband back into another kiss. Zhao Yunlan grins into it.

 


 

Their obstetrician, a kind person named Liu Xinyi, has them come in for a checkup a little past the 3 month mark of stopping T to see how Zhao Yunlan is doing in terms of his fertility cycle. Shen Wei makes time to come along, worried by his husband's recent ailments, despite Zhao Yunlan's reassurance. 

"Mr. Zhao, Mr. Shen, it's nice to see you both today. I hope all is well?" Doctor Liu asks. Zhao Yunlan smiles in return.

"Ah, yes, all is well. I'm feeling just fine," Zhao Yunlan says, and Shen Wei's brow furrows slightly beside him. Dr. Liu notices the expression on his face, and turns to the Dixingren.

"Is there something you would like to add, Mr. Shen?" they ask. Shen Wei sighs.

"There have been a couple of things that have concerned me," he says, "but I admit I do not know enough about the intricacies of stopping Haixing gender hormone therapy to know if they are normal." Zhao Yunlan squeezes his hand.

"I've told him they're nothing to worry about, but he insisted on bringing it up," Zhao Yunlan tells the doctor, who nods.

"Mr. Shen, what kind of things have concerned you?" Doctor Liu pulls up a notepad and looks to him for input.

"His first returning menstruation, at about two and a half months, was according to him exceptionally light and rather short," Shen Wei starts. Doctor Liu writes this down.

"If there are still traces of testosterone circulating in his system, it's possible for that to be the reason why. Was there anything else?" they ask.

Shen Wei pushes his glasses up. "He began experiencing gastrointestinal distress frequently approximately a week ago, and would not finish his meals."

Doctor Liu hums. "I recall that he has Irritable Bowel Syndrome as a diagnosis—would you describe these specific instances as abnormal for him?"

"He had been fairly free of episodes for a few months prior, but suddenly he had multiple within one week. The food that I have cooked has not changed in any way," Shen Wei elaborates, looking tense. Zhao Yunlan squeezes his hand and sighs.

"It's not your fault, you didn't do anything," he reassures. Shen Wei remains tense.

"I would agree with Mr. Zhao, it's very possible this is just an episode. They can be triggered by many things, not just food. Stress can also be a trigger. Was there anything else, Mr. Shen?"

He pauses for a moment. "His heart rate has increased by a not insignificant amount," Shen Wei states, turning slightly red. Zhao Yunlan squawks next to him.

( "Aiyo, Shen Wei, you monitor my heart rate?" he asks under his breath, and Shen Wei mutters to him "I need something to do other than stare while you sleep" . Zhao Yunlan is, as always, flattered by his spouse's creepiness.)

Doctor Liu ignores their display to write the statement down. "That is a bit unusual. Blood pressure is usually higher while on testosterone, stopping would normally lower it." Their pen clicks as they turn to the computer at their desk. "When you say a 'not insignificant amount', can I get an estimate, Mr. Shen? Or do you just know it's noticeably faster?"

"17 beats faster," Shen Wei responds immediately. Zhao Yunlan frowns.

Doctor Liu types something on the keyboard. "I see... I did notice that his blood pressure seemed elevated when we checked his vitals. Mr. Zhao, would you be opposed to getting some blood drawn today? I'd like to get a couple of labs done, just so we can verify everything is okay."

"That's fine," he says. Doctor Liu puts in the order for a few labs, and a nurse comes in a short while later to get the blood needed for them. Shen Wei has to be coaxed into letting go of the death grip he has on Zhao Yunlan's hand, as to not make the drawing any harder than necessary. After a couple of vials are drawn and labeled, Dr. Liu prints a visit summary and hands it to the couple.

"Alright, you can see here the labs I requested. One to get a look at your general blood cell counts, one to check your testosterone levels, a lipid panel to check your cholesterol, and a test for hCG, the pregnancy hormone," they explain with a smile. Both Shen Wei and Zhao Yunlan freeze in response. After a moment, Zhao Yunlan grins widely, and squeezes his spouse's hand excitedly—Shen Wei looks slightly awed. 

Doctor Liu shakes their head at the couple's reaction, and reminds them, "We don't know for sure yet, but I suspect that's what it could be. I'll be sure to call you in a couple of days when we get the results back, hopefully with good news," they say, and wink.

Zhao Yunlan's cheeks hurt from his grinning. Shen Wei gazes at him with a dreadfully fond look. They both walk to Zhao Yunlan's jeep in a bit of a daze, Zhao Yunlan swinging their connected hands between them and whistling gleefully. As Shen Wei gets settled in the passenger seat, Zhao Yunlan tugs him over the center console for a passionate kiss. Shen Wei, after a moment of surprise, reciprocates, but pulls away before they can get too far. Zhao Yunlan caresses his cheek and pushes their foreheads together.

"You were so worried something was wrong with me," he croons, and pecks Shen Wei's nose. Shen Wei huffs a laugh and runs his hands down Zhao Yunlan's arms.

"I can't help but worry, Ah-Lan," he says, eyes slightly watery. Zhao Yunlan pinches his cheek.

"But you don't have to worry, because everything is perfect and my spouse is the best," he says. Shen Wei sniffs and squeezes his arms. Zhao Yunlan leans to kiss him again, sweetly.