Akihito sighed as he wistfully looked around his bedroom one last time. This had been his home for his entire life and it was sad to be saying goodbye. He didn’t care for how their clan was run but this had always been his sanctuary along with the open blue skies above. He gave one final, lingering glance around before stepping out with his back pack in hand to make his way down to the house entrance.
Akihito’s mother had died when he was young and he had never gotten along with his father, the man was a stickler for the old ways and ruled their clan with an iron fist. He spouted on about maintaining shifter purity and railed at the humans, even though Akihito knew from his look around online just how one-sided that hate was. Every other dragon shifter clan was happily integrated with human society.
But no. They had to maintain their ‘pure blood’ and not let it get watered down. He couldn’t resist rolling his eyes just thinking about it. Shifter blood was so strong that as of yet, there had been no record of a child being born human with a shifter parent. His inner dragon crooned mentally at him and he took comfort in the sound. It was like having a dragon inside him, the beast side was almost like a whole different being, even though he knew it was technically him just as a dragon.
Now his father, pissed off with his rebelliousness and carefree attitude, had arranged a god damn marriage for him. He had mercilessly hunted down all the known pure-blooded dragon shifters in the entirety of Japan until he had found the one he wanted his son to marry. Of course his father, being a clan leader himself, had to pick another clan leader. This one was some massively wealthy businessman who headed the Tokyo pack.
Seriously, the entire city was in one pack. It was the largest cohesive pack of dragon shifters in the world. Interestingly enough, the man himself was an advocate on human-shifter relationships but it seems that Akihito’s father had turned a blind eye to that little fact. Seems like it didn’t matter as long as he gets pureblood grandbabies.
Once upon a time, arranging marriages between alpha dragon shifters and omega dragon shifters had been a thing. But that was so a hundred years ago and Akihito was surprised the alpha had actually agreed. Until he learnt that the man refused until the stipulation that either party could call it off at any point was put in the marriage contract. So it was more like a blind date except that they would be living together. Blind moving in?
So while Akihito was sad that he would be away from the only place he had ever known, he was very excited to get out and see other places. He had never left the little village that their clan had made their own, a tiny exclusive village that refused humans entry and was slow to take up new technology. It was stifling. The only good thing was the large expanses of rolling green fields and forests with plenty of clear sky for Akihito play in in his dragon form.
Moving to the middle of Tokyo was going to a big change but at least he would hopefully not ever be told that he couldn’t do something just because he was an omega again. He wasn’t sure what else the alpha had demanded as part of the marriage contract, his father had been stupidly close lipped about it as though it didn’t effect Akihito at all, but he was hopeful that he wasn’t as backwards as his clan was.
Akihito honestly hadn’t realised just how bad it was until he had finally gotten unrestricted access to the internet. He was certain that if his father knew what the internet was, a proper understanding not his dismissive misunderstanding, then he would have been denied access to this other world. He had understood from a young age that he had a different view of the world and that he was greatly restricted by his omega status. Something that he never understood, after all he could do everything else the others could, often times even better. He certainly had better control over his beast side than most here did.
But now he had been online, he realised how truly old fashioned and just plain wrong a lot of his fathers, and the clans, thinking really was. And finally the day had come. He was escaping his stifling hell-hole once and for all.
He just hoped this alpha would be okay. His dragon picked her head up and mentally rubbed against him in comfort. Akihito mentally leant into the caress even as he hurried down the stairs from his third floor bedroom. The mark of a male omega, a male shifter with a female beast side in his head. He adored her though, this other part of him that enabled him to fly through the endless sky.
He figured if his alpha turned out to be dick then he could just stage an escape. He had joined some dragon shifter forums online and already had multiple offers to bust him out from this clan. It wasn’t the smartest idea to trust unknowns on the internet but he had been starting to get desperate before this deal was arranged. On the plus side, there were multiple people from the Tokyo dragon shifter clan on there and they all spoke highly of their clan.
Akihito had wanted to search online for more information on this Tokyo clan leader, he could have sworn he had seen him mentioned previously, but he hadn’t had a chance. He hadn’t even known his father was planning to arrange this marriage until he had been told to gather his things in a bag a few hours prior. The man had been in talks with the alpha about this for months and Akihito had no idea.
Shows how much his father respected his opinions and feelings really. Selling off his son and then not even bothering to tell him about it. Not that he didn’t know that already, it had been obvious growing up that having such a free spirited son just grated on him.
Jumping down the last of the stairs, Akihito ran through the old fashioned rooms until he burst into the entrance hall, skidding to a stop not far off from where his father was standing with two other men. The squeak as his worn sneakers slid across the polish wood floor bounced around the room, causing all three men to turn their attention to him.
His father narrowed his eyes into a threatening glare but Akihito just glared back, lifting his chin and squaring his shoulders. He had never allowed someone to cow him and he certainly was not about to start now. Fiery defiance burned in his eyes and he could feel his dragon rising up to her full height in his head in challenge.
Stalking forward, Akihito moved to stand beside his father but still clearly apart from him. He lifted his eyes to finally look at the men his father had been speaking with. Golden eyes stared calmly back framed by slicked back dark hair and a handsome face. The barest hint of a smile played about the man’s lips. He was tall, enough that Akihito had to noticeably look up, and well-built from would could be seen through his three piece suit. Overall, his presence of calm power and sense of strength just screamed alpha even without adding in the obvious signs of it in his physical appearance.
The alpha stepped forward and offered Akihito his hand without breaking eye contact.
“Asami Ryuichi.” He said by way of introduction in a smooth, deep voice.
Akihito’s dragon purred in response and he stepped forward to clasp the large hand in his own. It was nice to finally meet an alpha with at least some sense of respect. He was most likely still a controlling, possessive bastard like most alphas were but it was still a good start.
“Takaba Akihito.” He replied as though the man didn’t already know.
The alphas hand was warm and his grip firm around his smaller hand. Akihito could feel his dragon continue to watch silently in keen interest. His father cleared his throat and Akihito rolled his eyes as he dropped his hand, stepping back. He was being married off against his will, the least the man could do was let them introduce themselves.
His father prattled on for a bit about their marriage contract, which was all news to Akihito but he couldn’t bring himself to pay too much attention as he was still busy observing the alpha, who was observing him in return.
“It’s fine.” The alpha – Asami – cut across his father, voice ringing out with authority. “The contract has already been read through and signed, no need to go over it again. Do you have everything you need?” He directed the last to Akihito who nodded in reply, holding back a snicker. It wasn’t often his big clan leader father got put in his place by another alpha and the offended look on his face was priceless.
Asami gestured to the bespectacled man standing slightly behind him that Akihito had completely forgotten about in his appraisal of the alpha, before reaching forward to take the omegas bag. He raised an eyebrow at the lightness but didn’t say anything after Akihito hunched his shoulders defensively. There wasn’t much of his clothing that he actually liked enough to bring with him, his father controlled most of his purchases and had strict rules on what an omega should be wearing.
If this alpha was as rich as his father suggested then surely he could spring for a few comfortable items of clothing. Even better, if he wasn’t too overbearing then maybe Akihito could finally get a job and damn well buy his own. He hoped the man didn’t expect him to do nothing but play housewife because there was no way in hell Akihito would be waiting someone on hand and foot.
“Kirishima will contact you once we have arrived safety back in Tokyo.”
Akihito’s father nodded and his gaze flicked to the omega warningly, it just screamed ‘don’t fuck this up’. Prick. Akihito brushed past the man and followed Asami out into the crisp autumn morning. They must have set out before dawn to arrive at their village so early. He could feel freedom already as they descended towards a limo that was idling at the curb.
Oh, wow. They actually did the trip in a limo? Just how loaded was this guy?
He’s a good alpha. His dragon spoke in his head for the first time that day. Strong, capable and demands respect. We should mate with him and claim him as ours. Young will please him and tie him to us.
Akihito missed a step and stumbled at his dragons thoughts. What the fuck. He thought back as he tried to catch himself from falling face first down the stairs. Thick arms wrapped about his waist and Akihito’s dragon purred at the alphas sudden closeness. Asami carefully righted him before stepping away.
“Are you okay?”
“Yeap! Fine. Just clumsy, sorry.” Akihito rubbed the back of his head in embarrassment. What a great first impression he must be leaving.
Strong. His dragon thought. Good reflexes and instincts. He will make a fine mate.
Asami placed his hand on his back to guide him forward and they continued down towards the waiting vehicle. Stop that. Akihito mentally hissed back to his dragon. This is way too early to decide things like that. He might still turn out to be a complete bastard.
His dragon, of course, decided to ignore him as she continued to purr contentedly at the hand resting on the small of his back as though Asami was worried he would actually trip and fall down the stairs.
The alpha passed Akihito’s bag off to the other man before opening the door for the omega to slide in. The inside of the limo was warm and the leather seats surprisingly comfortable. Asami slid in behind him and settled into the seat across from him. As the vehicle rumbled on and started to move, Akihito was handed a folder with a sheaf of paper inside.
“I didn’t think that you would have gotten to actually read this yet.” The alpha said at his confused expression. Opening up the folder Akihito’s eyes went wide. It was the marriage arrangement. “We’ve got some time before we get back to Tokyo, you should take a look. Long story short, while it stipulates that you must live with me for six months, nothing else is to be decided until after that time and only on agreeance of yourself and I. Regardless of what you father seems to think, I won’t do something against your will.”
Yes, see. He thinks of us. Good alpha. Akihito hushed his dragon before addressing Asami.
“Why did you agree then? It doesn’t sound like you would normally agree to an arranged marriage.” He couldn’t quite hold the suspicion from his tone.
“Technically, regardless of what your father has said, that contract does not stipulate that we must marry.”
“So it’s like a blind date but I’m living with you?”
Asami chuckled and the deep rumble warmed something inside of him. Stupid alphas and his stupid omega reactions.
“Something like that.”
“That doesn’t answer my question.” Akihito peered at the alpha suspiciously.
“I have had some very concerned members of my clan approach me about bringing you to Tokyo after speaking with you online. It was my secretary, Kirishima, which put two and two together and figured out that the person being offered to me was the very same omega that I had been approached about. Should this not work out between us then it will be easier to help you do as you wish if you choose not to return home.”
Claim him. We must keep this good alpha while we have the chance. Akihito flushed at the tone of his dragon’s mental voice. Okay, that’s enough.
“I didn’t think they were really serious when they offered help.”
Asami inclined his head. “Freedom of choice is something that my clan holds above all. All dragon shifters are welcome to join or leave as long as it’s their choice. Some of the things that you spoke about in terms of how your clan treats you were… Archaic to say the least.”
Akihito smiled wryly. “Yeah, I figured. I only found out about this a few hours ago and my father didn’t give me any details other than I was supposed to do what you say.” The omega raised a challenging eyebrow at the other man who smirked in response.
“Already I get the feeling that no one is going to be able to get you to anything that you don’t want to.”
Akihito shot him a grin that was a little too much teeth. Yes, we are strong. His dragon puffed up and preened slightly. Can you match us, Alpha? Come catch us, claim us if you dare.
The omega barely resisted rolling his eyes. You changed your tune quickly, didn’t you?
Entice him, claim him so that he claims us in return. Run so that he chases us down and proves his strength then bear his young to tie him to us.
By this point, Akihito had gone rather red, much to the amusement of the alpha but he didn’t say anything; being a dragon shifter himself, he no doubt knew that he was mentally conversing with his beast side.
“Have a read.” Asami said as he picked up another folder. “We have a long drive ahead of us and I have some work to finish. Let me know if you need anything.”
Akihito nodded as he looked down at the folder in his hands. Taking a deep breath, he flicked over to the first page.
Time to see just what he father threw him into.