The four o’clock afternoon sunlight streamed through the French windows, pouring onto the ceramic tiles in the dark bedroom. The room temperature showed 27.5 degrees Celsius, good humidity level. The air circulation system carried a bit of the cold and raw scent of snow, warming the cold air a little and transporting it in. The thin layers of linen curtains beside the window slowly shook in the flowing air.
This bedroom was located at the end of the second-floor corridor. It was a guest room, ordinarily rarely used. At this time, Tong Yan was sleeping on the bed. It was only a twin sized bed, a bit bigger than the bed he napped on during school lunch breaks, but still not as big as an average double bed. Zhuo Xiang Ming had gathered him up in his arms. The posture was a bit awkward in comparison, with two feet stretched outside of the bed.
As for why here of all places? The reason was that that morning, Zhuo Xiang Ming wanted to go downstairs to cook for Tong Yan, but the two were inseparable, he had no choice but to carry Tong Yan with him. The result was that they were also all over each other in the kitchen, and it took more than an hour for the fried rice to be cooked and eaten.
After eating, Tong Yan felt exhausted, he couldn’t even open his eyes. Zhuo Xiang Ming carried him up the staircase near the kitchen, but unexpectedly, just a few steps into their journey, the estrus fever started up again, and the omega wrapped himself around him, groaning. In between coaxing, Zhuo Xiang Ming pushed the door to the nearest room open.
The bed wasn’t big enough, and Tong Yan wasn’t physically strong enough. The alpha could only try his best to restrain his strength — he thought that he had already restrained everything, but in reality, he found a complete mess at the end:
The floor lamp had fallen over, the single bed had shifted out of its original position, and the two nightstands that had been bumped into were leaning at crazy angles —but this was tolerable, somehow, the duck down quilt was torn, the stuffing fluttering chaotically, causing immediate sneezing when it floated to the tip of the nose.
When he snapped out of it, Zhuo Xiang Ming felt that he was unlikely to have been troubled by a quilt, suspecting that Tong Yan had bitten or scratched it open.
He hugged Tong Yan’s shoulder, lightly kissing Tong Yan’s forehead across his hair.
Tong Yan was deeply sunk into the soft mattress, facing Zhuo Xiang Ming, the big quilt covering his shoulders, face buried in a soft pillow. Only his soft black hair and a bit of profile was exposed, sleeping deeply, naturally unable to respond to his baseless accusation.
But the fact was that he couldn’t bear to bully Tong Yan, he was even jealous of the quilt Tong Yan was clutching in his embrace. He tugged it away and occupied the omega’s arms, real childishness was unreasonable.
The intervals were getting longer, and Tong Yan was getting more and more sober. This should be the last wave of estrus fever. It stopped on the 25th of the 12th lunar month, ending two days later than Zhuo Xiang Ming had planned.
Along with the omega’s soberness, the alpha would also break out from the estrus state, returning to a normal state, rational, restrained, and also beginning to reflect … Zhuo Xiang Ming held his breath.
Tong Yan’s sleep quality had skyrocketed during estrus. In his limited sober time, besides Zhuo Xiang Ming’s incredible possessiveness, this was one of the few things he had pondered over.
Just close your eyes, no dreams or sweat, sleeping for several hours.
What he was amazed at was actually a normal physiological phenomenon. Under the condition that the alpha operated properly, inciting the estrus to steadily start, the bodily functions naturally prepared for the estrus. For sex and conception, the body’s state was ready to adjust.
He didn’t know if he was pregnant, but sex… Tong Yan’s first experience was followed by marking, he could only say that plants wither when they get no water, and drown when they get too much.
From the moment he opened his eyes, he only had various indescribable scenes playing out in his head, rotating like a horse lantern, cutting from the bed to against the wall, from the bedroom to the bathroom, from the vanity counter to the bathtub …
”Tong Tong?” Zhuo Xiang Ming hugged him tightly, “Are you up?”
Tong Yan absent-mindedly brushed aside his messy hair: “Hmm.”
Zhuo Xiang Ming wanted to look at him clearly, pulling back a little, but he quickly hugged him again, as if he was unwilling to part. He finally decided to hold Tong Yan’s waist, hugging him up higher, when the two were face to face, he finally watched Tong Yan with a serious expression.
Tong Yan also stared at him. The two men stared at each other helplessly, then Tong Yan smiled.
No one told him that after marking, the alpha was also very fragile—not physically, but psychology, which was probably equivalent to the scene of a fierce tiger crying, or a strong bear sobbing. But maybe because Tong Yan loved him, this only left behind an impression of cuteness, ignoring the comical contrast.
The fiercest time with Zhuo Xiang Ming was probably in Tong Yan’s bedroom.
At that time, he’d carried Tong Yan to find a fresh pair of underwear. His movements were very hurried, impatient, then he saw some “tools” in the drawer that he had carelessly pulled out —-
It was almost an essential item for single omegas who were of age to experience estrus, it was at such a level of humanitarian necessity that it was written into the Guardians Precautions Handbook. Its universality was equivalent to a bottle of mosquito repellent or a paper clip, the difference was that Tong Yan had never used it. Plus, logically speaking, Zhuo Xiang Ming should also know about the existence of these massage sticks, he most likely even bought it himself.
But at that time, these arguments had no appeasing effect on the alpha. A glass of water that was held too long by Tong Yan could trigger his jealousy, the massage stick was practically directly challenging his ownership, its existence was even more like an extreme threat.
Tong Yan, who had been put down on the edge of the bed to wait, immediately noticed that his atmosphere was different. When he turned around, Tong Yan was frightened by his sunken eyes and bulging upper back muscles. He looked furious, but he also looked extremely hurt, even Tong Yan quickly felt apologetic to Zhuo Xiang Ming for having these things.
Tong Yan had just recovered from a bout of passion—it shouldn’t be called recovery, after all, his legs were still shaking, and his waist was soft. After taking a bath but finding no clothes to wear, he’d solicited Zhuo Xiang Ming with great difficultly, he didn’t expect that he would provoke this kind of trouble.
He tried calling out to Zhuo Xiang Ming: “Brother, come here.”
Zhuo Xiang Ming stood still, looking at him, then looking at the contents of the drawer. Tong Yan knew that it would be no good, so he could only show weakness: “It hurts, come look at it …”
Zhuo Xiang Ming immediately walked over: “Where does it hurt?”
Tong Yan randomly pointed him to a place, and Zhuo Xiang Ming hugged and massaged him, but after the massage, he didn’t forget to take revenge.
Tong Yan hadn’t lived in his bedroom for a while, but his pheromones were still very rich. The two were entangled in the quilt, Zhuo Xiang Ming was stimulated by the scent of his partner being heavier here than everywhere else, his eyes turned red, pressing Tong Yan down without leeway.
The thrill was intimidating, occasionally, Tong Yan let out some faint sounds, but most of the time, his pleas and moans were blocked by Zhuo Xiang Ming’s lips.
The alpha didn’t even have time to change his position, in a frequency too fast for Tong Yan to bear, he repeatedly asked Tong Yan which one he preferred, fierce and persistent, but didn’t give him a chance to answer. Tong Yan held him, weak limbed, only to be rewarded with his increasingly excessive behavior.
There seemed to be no end to this episode, afterwards, Tong Yan really had no strength, none at all. He buried his face in the quilt and shed tears, but when Zhuo Xiang Ming moved closer and called out baby in a low voice, Tong Yan still hurriedly coaxed him: “Don’t be angry.”
A very quiet and nasally voice, Zhuo Xiang Ming finally agreed to act lighter, but only lighter.
He cuddled with Tong Yan, dragging the blanket to wrap around him, when they finally left the bedroom, he still hadn’t separated. Because of this embarrassing state, Tong Yan shed a lot of tears again while they were walking back, but Zhuo Xiang Ming’s hand was firmly pressed there, so he couldn’t escape. He could only stretch his waist to breathe, but before reaching the master bedroom, a new round of estrus fever broke out.
”Is it over?” The two looked at each other for a while, then Tong Yan asked.
Zhuo Xiang Ming: “It’s over.”
Tong Yan looked at him, finding that he was still a little tensed: “What are you tense about?”
Zhuo Xiang Ming denied: “I’m not tense.”
”Okay.” Tong Yan moved, wanting to sit up, only to find that he couldn’t do it.
Zhuo Xiang Ming immediately asked: “Are you uncomfortable?”
This should be a normal outcome, after all, no one had muscles of steel, especially not Tong Yan, who had that kind of constitution.
He shook his head, carefully stretching out, Zhuo Xiang Ming’s gaze was attracted to Tong Yan’s exposed arm and shoulders. After staring for a brief moment, his expression changed slightly, and his jaw tightened.
Tong Yan felt like he had been run over by a car, after stretching his body, he bent his arms, only then noticing the marks on top. Especially on his wrists and forearms, which were the hardest hit areas. Some blue areas were yellowing at the edges, already a few days old, and there were some red marks, which were relatively fresh.
Tong Yan didn’t have much of an impression of these marks.
”It actually doesn’t hurt much.” Tong Yan pressed down on an obvious hand print and said to Zhuo Xiang Ming, but Zhuo Xiang Ming obviously didn’t believe it.
His calm didn’t last long, he pulled Tong Yan into an embrace, apologizing several times.
Just now, when Tong Yan saw Zhuo Xiang Ming’s expression, he knew that he was definitely thinking about this. He let Zhuo Xiang Ming hug him for a while, finding Zhuo Xiang Ming’s hand inside the quilt and squeezing, his legs also resting on top of Zhuo Xiang Ming’s lap.
”I don’t remember it.” Tong Yan said in a low voice.
He looked up and kissed Zhuo Xiang Ming’s chin, moving upward to kiss his dry lips.
The scent of cedarwood wasn’t richer than before the marking, but he could now easily distinguish it from the many diverse scents in the air.
Bonding didn’t make your partner stand out from the environment, it just made your partner understand and be more intimate with you like never before. You would never not know yourself, but after bonding, your partner became an existence as familiar as yourself, and even, to a very large extent, retained a greater sense of security than you brought.
During the marking process, love didn’t arise out of nothing. They had many restrictions and dependencies, and therefore had an extremely vulnerable weakness under their armor, but these were dependent on the fact that love itself existed.
During this time, they exchanged countless kisses, but it never seemed to be enough.
Zhuo Xiang Ming’s vexation and self-blame couldn’t stop him from responding to Tong Yan’s kisses. In fact, he was much more energetic than Tong Yan, and within a few seconds, he was unable to restrain himself, turning over and pressing Tong Yan down, kissing him deeply.
”Are you listening to me?” Tong Yan asked vaguely.
Zhuo Xiang Ming: “I’m listening.”
Tong Yan covered his wet lips, his face a bit red because of the kiss. He breathed a while to calm down, then said: “I can’t remember when I got these things.” He shook his arm towards Zhuo Xiang Ming, “My skin is very white, haven’t you noticed? Of course it’s very easy to leave marks, even you said so.”
He blushed deeper, now Zhuo Xiang Ming was sure that it wasn’t because of the kiss: “I really enjoyed everything we did. I never thought it would be like this … Zhuo Xiang Ming, you didn’t scare me for a second.”
Tong Yan could only remember the tide-like pleasure and the concern of his lover beside his ear, the arm around his waist, the solid embrace. Sometimes, Zhuo Xiang Ming behaved very fiercely, but that fierceness brought the same sense of security.
During the two-week marking and estrus, he hardly ever woke up with an unclean body, and Zhuo Xiang Ming was always at his side. When his gland was bitten open, his psychological defenses could’ve easily collapsed without an attack, but there was never a moment when he felt that he was in danger.
There would always be a tight embrace, and a hot kiss. He was wholeheartedly needed, there wasn’t any need to worry about being abandoned.
Tong Yan pressed Zhuo Xiang Ming’s head lower, the two’s ears were next to each other, preventing him from looking at him: “Oh right, why did you lie about not giving me water to drink? And you said it would be very painful, but it obviously wasn’t.”
”I’m only telling you this once, and I definitely won’t coax you anymore. If you do that again, then get all caught up in self-blame, I’ll call you Missy from then on, hear me?”
The arms Zhuo Xiang Ming had wrapped around his waist tightened, he kissed Tong Yan’s cheek and the corner of his mouth like he couldn’t get enough. It was clear that only the last vestiges of estrus remained, but he acted so tensed, saying in a very constrained voice: “I hear.”
Tong Yan laughed, pinching his face. Zhuo Xiang Ming didn’t dodge it, and after a moment, he also laughed. Relieved, Tong Yan then prompted him: “My waist and thighs are very sore, I feel like I was beaten up, here, look.”
”Is it snowing outside?”
Zhuo Xiang Ming: “It has been for several days, but it stopped a few moments before you woke up.”
‘Oh’ Tong Yan said thoughtfully.
After a while, Zhuo Xiang Ming said in a low voice while massaging his waist: “You’re remembering it correctly.”
It had snowed one morning, Tong Yan’s body still felt very hot. In a daze, he said that he wanted to see the snow, so Zhuo Xiang Ming played with him by the window until he’d looked enough. Until just now, Tong Yan thought that he had been dreaming.
”You’re not a good person at all.” Tong Yan said furiously.
Zhuo Xiang Ming kissed his nape: “I never was.”
They lazed around until noon. Tong Yan needed to eat something, but Zhuo Xiang Ming didn’t want the robot to do it, so he had no choice but to bring Tong Yan along.
Tong Yan could walk by himself, but he insisted on carrying him. They first had to leave the guest bedroom that had experienced a terrible storm. The moment Tong Yan was lifted up, he finally saw the tragic condition of the room, and the outcome of the lovely duck down quilt that had warmed him for several hours of sleep in bed —
“What’s this?” Tong Yan asked, picking up a feather from the foot of the bed.
Zhuo Xiang Ming awkwardly looked away.
plants wither when they get no water, and drown when they get too much- crude translation/paraphrase of 旱的时候旱死，涝的时候涝死. It’s a phrase used to describe the disparity between people who have so much sex they get tired of it, and people who desperately want the touch of another human being but can’t get it.
horse lantern- 走馬燈, lantern adorned with paper horses which revolve in a circle
stared at each other helplessly- or literally, big eyes stared into small eyes
massage sticks- Chinese for vibrator. But since it’s for a boy, I guess prostate massager?
separated- I think the implication is that ZXM is still ‘inside’ TongTong, and that’s why he’s crying in embarrassment. But since I can’t be sure, I’m leaving it how it is
Missy-大小姐, da xiaojie, eldest daughter of an affluential family, now used as slang to refer to a pampered/bossy girl (from a rich family). I guess he’s calling him a drama queen.