As Shen Yuan waits patiently for Luo Binghe to rescue him from whatever godawful trap he fell into...more like ruthlessly dragged by his tails by a band of shark-headed demons, he reminisces about the good old days when he was the one saving Luo Binghe from such traps. Secretly, of course. The protagonist should appear mighty and indomitable at all times, needing no help whatsoever.
How did their positions change so suddenly?
Quite frankly, Shen Yuan thinks Luo Binghe is cursed. He has no proof for this hypothesis, merely going by his knowledge of Airplane Shooting Towards the Sky's harebrained-plot devices.
This "curse" was simple. Anything that could go wrong will go wrong in Luo Binghe's presence, but the one who would be endangered was a lovely maiden. A contrived damsel in distress plot to force Luo Binghe into action. Luo Binghe saves the damsel, the damsel would feel such great affection for her saviour and then they'd fuck for the next ten or so chapters until Luo Binghe moved on to the next girl and repeat the process until he collected his six hundred or so wives and concubines.
So why did the curse apply to him?! Shen Yuan was neither lovely nor a maiden. He was just a fox demon NPC stuck into the knowledgeable older brother role (please note that such a role never existed in the original Proud Immortal Demon’s Way). Where were the hordes of women just waiting to be rescued as if they'd lost all sense of self-preservation the moment Luo Binghe came within a hundred li of them? Can they please fulfill their roles properly?! Shen Yuan isn't getting paid to do two roles at once, okay?!
Shen Yuan squirms around, his ire building up as the Immortal Binding Cables bite into his bare flesh. At least the shark men had the decency not to hogtie him like an animal, though their way of binding was a little too similar to the decorative knotwork of shibari. Shen Yuan tried not to think too hard why that was.
What was the point of stripping him down to his trousers? It's not like his robes had protective talismans sewn in or any other special qualities. They were just robes that the System spawned in. Who wants to see a man's bare chest? He's cold and his fingers feel more like ice cubes than appendages because they left him on the unforgiving, rocky cave floor half-naked and he can’t even use his foxflames to warm himself because the Immortal Binding Cables were blocking his demonic energy.
What's more, they even blindfolded and gagged him too, afraid that he would use his fox demon powers to charm them. As if Shen Yuan had a neat ability like that. Charming was a skill locked behind 10000 points. Shen Yuan still hasn't farmed out enough points to buy it from the System's shop.
The entrance to the shark men's hideout explodes without warning, rocks smashing against the floor. The shark men yell at each other in their burbling language, weapons clanking as they prepare themselves for the invader.
Shen Yuan tries to push himself up into a sitting position, but only manages to roll himself on his side, feeling like a blind fish on a cutting board.
He hears Luo Binghe's furious voice above the screeching of metal and sounds of fighting. "Treating Yuan-ge with such disrespect, you really are looking to die!"
Shen Yuan doesn’t know how Luo Binghe grew so attached to him that he was willing to come and save him time after time, even getting angry on his behalf for being kidnapped to be sold off to highborn demons. He’s just glad that Luo Binghe didn’t immediately try to kill him upon their meeting, his face apparently similar enough to Shen Qingqiu’s that he was initially mistaken as him.
The air soon reeks of blood and singed flesh, punctuated by anguished screams and the screeching of steel as Luo Binghe crosses weapons with the shark men. It's a shame Shen Yuan couldn't watch Luo Binghe in action with this stupid blindfold.
Not much time passes before the cavern falls eerily silent. Shen Yuan feels Luo Binghe's presence as he moves closer, eventually coming to kneel beside him. Shen Yuan's lifted up into a sitting position, his blindfold untied. He blinks a few times, his blurry vision sharpening into focus.
Luo Binghe looks at him as if he were about to cry, his hands shaking as he removes the gag. He crushes Shen Yuan to his chest, trembling with guilt. "Yuan-ge...this lowly one apologizes for being so inept…"
Shen Yuan sighs and bumps his head into Luo Binghe's chest since he couldn’t pat him. "Get us out of here before you start crying. The scent of blood and fish guts is nauseating."
Luo Binghe nods, sniffling. He shrugs his outer robe off and wraps it around Shen Yuan before picking him up in a bridal carry. He leaves the shark men's hideout, strewn with carnage like a pack of Black Abyss Wolves had gotten in and mauled everyone.
Shen Yuan bites back his indignities, sinking into Luo Binghe's arms with a dark look on his face.
As for Luo Binghe, a certain image brands itself into his hormone-addled mind now that Shen Yuan was safe in his arms. While the situation of how Shen Yuan came to be bound like that was extremely hateful and would never come to pass again so long as he lived, he couldn't deny that it was alluring.
Blood red Immortal Binding Cables crisscrossing over Shen Yuan's lily-white skin, his arms tightly bound at his back in such a way that forced his chest to stick out, drawing attention to two pale pink buds. Oh, how Luo Binghe would love to take each bud into his mouth and suckle until they bloomed into bright red flowers, or to pepper that delectable skin with his marks, staking his claim upon the other demon.
Shen Yuan groans in his arms, Luo Binghe's thoughts grinding to a complete halt. His legs stop moving, rooting him into place. He looks down, immediately regretting it as he catches another flash of pale skin and Shen Yuan's face pinched with discomfort.
"Binghe, it hurts. Cut the ropes, will you? I don’t think anyone will chase us even if there were any survivors back there."
Luo Binghe ducks behind a cluster of large rocks, setting Shen Yuan down on one of the flatter ones.
"Pardon my rudeness." Luo Binghe removes the robe preserving Shen Yuan's modesty, his desires ignited anew. He pulls a knife out of Shen Yuan's ever-useful qiankun bag. He places two fingers underneath a section of rope and tugs.
"Binghe, n-not so hard…" Shen Yuan cries out, Luo Binghe freezing up with his eyes wide as saucers.
"Forgive me…" Luo Binghe's filthy, opportunistic mind tucks that cry away for later. He places the knife under the rope, cutting up and away from Shen Yuan. Unfortunately, the Cables remain tightly bound, only cutting one portion loose.
Luo Binghe tugs on a different section of rope, Shen Yuan groaning again. If Luo Binghe wasn't well-acquainted with his mentor/travelling companion, he'd think this sort of play was intentional, made to drive him insane with lust. But no, Shen Yuan really was this oblivious of his devastating beauty and natural talents for seduction. It was no wonder why the shark men decided to try and capture him, thinking he’d fetch a nice price.
"Yuan-ge, I'll cut your arms free now." Luo Binghe gently turns him over, glaring down at the thick coils binding his forearms together, a length of rope looped around his neck. He lifts Shen Yuan's hair out of the way, slipping the knife under the ropes with the sharp edge facing up. Again, he cuts upwards, biting his lip when Shen Yuan lets out another noise. "I'm almost done, Yuan-ge."
Shen Yuan huffs, his four fox tails thrashing in agitation, furry ears pinned flat against his head. "It's okay if you nick me a little, Binghe. Just get it off."
Luo Binghe ignores him, finding the loosest section of rope and cutting into it. Thankfully, the ropes grow slack and he was able to unwind the Immortal Binding Cables easily after that, the bright red dulled into brown now that it’s been cut up so thoroughly.
He rubs his hands all over Shen Yuan’s arms, trying to help return his circulation. There were deep marks from the Immortal Binding Cables, Luo Binghe feeling the urge to go back and set the shark men's hideout aflame to sate his murderous rage.
Shen Yuan's demonic energy begins to flow sluggishly, Luo Binghe transferring a little of his own to boost his recovery.
Luo Binghe wraps Shen Yuan back in his clothes, jealously covering him up. Whoever saw Shen Yuan in less than proper clothes deserves to have their eyes plucked out. (Of course, this doesn't include Luo Binghe himself.)
Shen Yuan squirms against his embrace, pushing against his chest. "Binghe, there's no need to hold me like this!" This pose was way too similar to a maiden being comforted after a traumatic event, and Luo Binghe had no business trying it on Shen Yuan, no matter how fond Shen Yuan was of him! This was basically the start of the papapa scenes!
Luo Binghe hugs him even tighter, even pulling Shen Yuan into his lap to pull him flush against his body. "Yuan-ge, my blood's still boiling, knowing how those beasts treated you. I'll kill whoever dares debase you like that ever again."
Shen Yuan wants to hold his head in his hands as he listens to Luo Binghe's increasingly morbid descriptions of what he'd like to do to anyone who even looks at Shen Yuan funny. Binghe, even your PIDW counterpart wasn't this passionate when it came to defending his women. Was it Shen Yuan's fault this version turned out stickier than honey?
Shen Yuan wriggles his hands out from where they'd been pinned against Luo Binghe's chest. He cups his face with both hands, Luo Binghe falling silent, staring at him with a faint dusting of pink across his cheeks. "Binghe--"
Luo Binghe leans in, placing the gentlest of kisses on Shen Yuan's lips. It barely passed for a kiss, for it felt like a butterfly alighting on a flower, almost weightless.
Whatever Shen Yuan meant to say vanishes from his mind, wiped completely blank. He stares at Luo Binghe with wide eyes, his voice ripped from him.
"...my apologies, Yuan-ge. I've been wanting to do that for a while now." Luo Binghe looks down, shoulders slumping with guilt. His voice was so, so fragile, his body curling up as if he was bracing himself to be slapped.
Wait. Wait, wait, wait! How did the plot turn out like this?! Why was Shen Yuan in the female lead role now?! Why was Luo Binghe acting so unlike the dashing stallion protagonist he was meant to be?! Had Shen Yuan's transmigration caused this stallion novel plot (or lack thereof) to go completely sideways?
[Host's mental faculties are unfortunately too damaged by this unexpected blow from the Protagonist, so this System will temporarily take over the narration until he recovers.]
[In order to understand this situation, let's go back a few years, shall we? Back to Shen Yuan's initial death, caused by his idiocy and inattentiveness. I mean, dying from expired yogurt is such a lame way to go. The so-called "Truck-kun" cannot be held complicit for Mr. Shen Yuan's death. Nope. Shen Yuan was killed by an evil yogurt cup.]
[Dear readers, please allow this System to regale you with the adventures of my idiotic Host in the Endless Abyss and how we came to be in this situation.]