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There are drunk and high people everywhere. 

Young rich scions and popular celebrities are either giggling in groups around the massive house or are laying passed out on various expensive surfaces strewn artfully throughout the mansion. Seung-ho resists the urge to brush off the persistent female omegas who have been clinging onto him all night. 

“You’re so tall and strong alphaaa,” one of the omegas purrs as she presses her chest desperately against his arm. 

Perhaps on another night, when he isn’t so focused on his goal, he might have fucked the omega silly just to let off some steam. However, there is no way that he is going to allow himself to become distracted right now. As a rule he always needs to be in control. He can play the part, but there is no chance that an omega is going to be swaying his judgement when he is on the cusp of a major breakthrough tonight.

Suddenly, he notices a hot-headed alpha cheering loudly amidst a throng of other young alphas from the other side of the room.

“Heeeeyyyyyyyy— guesssss whaaat guys. I have a secret!” The alpha man tries and utterly fails at being discrete. His volume is loud enough to be heard from across the room and he slurs his words due to the copious drinks he has undoubtedly consumed. 

“I got a hook up from one of my buddies and he gave me some of this goooood stuff. It’s s’pose to make the omegas real hornyyy— even the b-blockers aren’t gonnaaa work… it alsooo makes alphas feel damn good when you do it...whaaaddya say? Wanna try it out?”

Seung-ho briefly pats one of the omegas beside him absentmindedly, pretending to keep up the farce of being just another party guest. He keeps his ears keenly focused on the conversation amongst the alphas and he smirks when he hears the group all curiously assent to seeing what mysterious substance their friend had been supplied with.

As the instigating alpha reaches for his bag, Seung-ho glances across the room and makes eye contact with Min who is also playing the role of another guest and Jihwa who is tending the bar. As soon as the young alpha pulls out an unlabeled glass bottle filled with a light coral liquid, Seung-ho gives the signal. 

“Apprehend target now!” he orders via the mike hidden under his blazer lapel.

All at once, Min, Jihwa, himself, and a storm of a dozen plain-clothed police officers descend upon the unsuspecting party.

Police! Everyone keep your hands in the air where we can see them!

 


 

Seung-ho stands on the perfectly manicured lawn outside of the large gated mansion as he watches all of the partygoers slowly drift out of the house as they are escorted off of the premises. It is two in the morning and everything would have been dark if not for the red and blue lights of the parked police cars flashing outside the house. 

Seung-ho nods approvingly when one of his colleagues leads the now handcuffed alpha who had been the one to carry the bottled drug into the back of a police car. Undoubtedly the young alpha would be interrogated thoroughly about his drug suppliers once he is taken to the holding cells.

“Impressive work as always Inspector Yoon Seung-ho!” A saccharine sweet voice praises from behind Seung-ho.

The inspector turns to see his long-time colleague, Officer Jihwa, who has apparently already finished dealing with his tasks for the night. 

“Your perception and reflexes are always so fast. It’s like nothing escapes your notice!” The officer is effusive with his compliments. Then in a quieter, more conspiratorial tone, Jihwa whispers, “With a brain like yours and your strong alpha presence, you’d definitely make your way up the ranks faster if only you’d play nice with the higher ups.”

Seung-ho rolls his eyes. “I’m not interested in taking shortcuts.”

Jihwa pouts at that. “What’s wrong with looking out for your own interests anyways? You’re not hurting anybody, and isn’t it good if everyone benefits out of it? Not everything has to be so black and white you know.”

The inspector is about to brush Jihwa off when a curious smell catches his attention. It is faint and floral, maybe jasmine, with a hint of something fresh and citrusy. Seung-ho quickly scans his surroundings trying to understand where the unnerving scent is coming from. Out of the corner of his eyes he sees a shadow dart around the front gates of the mansion a few meters away from where he stands. 

“What are you looking at Seung-ho?” Jihwa asks, irritated at having been ignored. 

The inspector doesn’t allow his own bemusement to show on his face. “Did you smell that?”

Jihwa looks at Seung-ho in confusion. “Smell what?” No, of course Jihwa couldn’t have smelled it, Seung-ho thinks. Not when he is a beta.

Still, it is odd. Nowadays, alphas and omegas rarely release any scents in public. Most people in modern society use scent blockers. 

The jarring scent that had taken him by surprise has all but faded by now. Perhaps it is just a partygoer who had accidentally ingested some of the illegal drug before it had been confiscated. Seung-ho had been quite certain, however, that they had got to the young alpha before he had had the chance to give anyone the potent liquid. 

With an uneasy feeling, Seung-ho decides that he is going to have to let it go. His job is to find out more about the source of the new drug that is wreaking havoc in the city, not chasing down every unsuspecting victim. It bothers him to know that there are so many alphas and omegas who have already succumbed to the mind-altering and disinhibiting effects of the drug, but he knows that he needs to focus on the bigger picture. The only way to solve this problem is to get to the source of it.

 


 

The next morning Seung-ho arrives at the metropolitan police department exactly on time as is usual for him. As he strolls in through the front entrance, the familiar faces of his colleagues pop out from behind doors and cubicles to congratulate him on pulling off last night—or should he say, this morning’s—successful sting operation.

It is well known within the police department that Yoon Seung-ho is a rising star. He is the shining example of the ideal alpha policeman. He is smart, athletic, and word has it that he is related to the powerful politician, Governor Yoon. Seung-ho is even known for his impeccable and stubborn sense of morals. Although he is not the type to bend to senior superintendents just to curry favour, he has gained the respect of many of his juniors who are silently in awe of his unwavering values.

As Seung-ho makes his way to his own desk, he feels the tiredness of having slept only four hours last night settling into his bones. He reminds himself that that is nothing compared to his recruit days. One of the junior police officers hands him a hot black coffee and he nods back in acknowledgement.

“If you keep this up they just might promote you, Inspector Yoon. Then you’ll finally stop having to slum it with us in this dinky little office.” 

Seung-ho glances up from his mountain of paperwork to see Inspector Min standing by his desk. Min wears a sardonic smile that doesn’t quite reach his eyes. Even though Seung-ho and Min have worked together on more than a handful of cases to date with solid results, Seung-ho knows to keep his guard up around his alpha colleague. 

Min had entered the police force a year before Seung-ho had but Seung-ho had advanced to the position of Inspector much faster than Min through his sheer work ethic and record-breaking solved case counts. From a young age, Seung-ho had learned that there is often an undercurrent of competition when two alphas work too closely together. As things stand, Seung-ho knows that Min is weary that Seung-ho might be promoted to senior inspector before he is by their next performance review. 

Seung-ho forces himself to keep his expression stoic and simply replies, “I could care less about a promotion as long as we keep order in the precinct.”

Min’s countenance hardens. “You’re truly an inspiration to us all.”

 


 

About an hour later when Seung-ho is washing his hands in the men’s restroom, Jihwa enters and makes a point of locking the door to the exit behind him.

“You’re quite the big shot around the office today Seung-ho!” The officer’s smile is bright and expectant. “I knew your plan for the operation was going to be carried out immaculately. In fact, as I was passing the superintendent’s office, I heard that they got the lead we captured last night to spill some intel.”

Seung-ho’s interest is piqued once he hears this. “Oh? What did our guy say?”

Jihwa waves his hand around dismissively. “Oh nevermind that Seung-ho. The higher ups will deal with it. For now you gotta relax and enjoy the wins! It’s been a while since we’ve done anything fun together. I can think of a few ways we could celebrate…”

The beta sidles closer to Seung-ho and practically drapes himself over the taller man. He buries his face into Seung-ho’s neck and imitates the way that an omega might nose at the scent glands situated there.

“A big strong alpha like you deserves a good reward,” Jihwa murmurs. 

Seung-ho tolerates Jihwa’s advances for several moments and allows the beta to lick and nuzzle at his collar coquettishly; however, he can’t help but feel a distinct lack of excitement. If he were to ask himself how this relationship—if one could even call it that—had started he supposes it had been due to his baser instincts. As an alpha, his sex drive is unmatched. However, Seung-ho has always hated the thought of not being in complete control of himself.

He does enjoy the unique compatibility of having sex with omegas, although their pheromones always make him weary. Even though most of the omegas he has previously encountered do use scent blockers, he can never completely let his guard down enough to fully enjoy the sex. Seung-ho knows that he has good self-control, he has always held himself to the highest standard, but on the off chance that an omega does go into heat, he does not want to test his restraint. Which is why he has made use of Jihwa’s interest in him. It’s mutually beneficial really. He knows he is good in bed, and around a beta, he knows he can relax. 

It just annoys Seung-ho that a nagging feeling in the back of his mind tells him that fucking Jihwa just isn’t all that satisfying.

Seung-ho senses the irritation swelling inside of his chest, but before he can decide whether to encourage Jihwa or to push the beta away, he feels his phone vibrating in his pocket. Jihwa’s brows furrow in confusion as he too hears the repetitive vibrations. Seung-ho pulls the interrupting device out to glance at the caller ID and grimaces when the name ‘Yoon Seung-won’ appears on the screen. 

“Will you answer that?” Jihwa asks, carefully gaging Seung-ho’s mood. He knows that Seung-ho has a testy relationship with his political family.

Seung-ho stares at the screen with an intense look in his eyes before he presses the button to decline the call. The inspector feels a bitter taste rise in the back of his throat. The call from his younger brother has effectively diminished any remaining libido he might have had just moments before.

He ignores Jihwa’s call of “Yoon Seung-ho!” as he brushes past the beta officer and let’s himself out of the men’s room.

Only a few seconds behind Seung-ho, Jihwa also rushes out of the restroom once he has adjusted himself. His face is red with embarrassment as he glances this way and that down the hallway trying to track down which direction Seung-ho had gone. 

Inspector Min, who has just rounded the corner, raises a condescending eyebrow when he sees Jihwa’s flustered state. “Honestly Jihwa, you’re like a lovesick dog when it comes to Yoon Seung-ho. Anybody who didn’t know better would think you’re an omega with the way you’re so hung up on him.” 

Jihwa glares at Min. “Don’t you dare call me an omega. I’m not one of those sluts who loses their minds and raises their skirts after one glance from an alpha.”

Min laughs and holds his hands up in a mock apology. “Alright, alright, I know as a beta you can’t be swayed by our pheromones anyways. You’re just so enamoured by Seung-ho that it makes me wonder if it’s because he’s a Yoon.”

Jihwa has the decency to look a little sheepish. “Well it just makes sense doesn’t it? My old man is the superintendent general and if Seung-ho would just let my father help him get into the upper ranks, imagine the influence his family and mine would achieve in policy and law!”

Min wears a plastic smile and his grip is so tight that his knuckles nearly turn white, yet Jihwa remains oblivious to it. “Well, you know the obstinate Yoon Seung-ho would sooner mate an omega than succumb to nepotism. God knows why, when he stands to benefit the most from it all.”

Jihwa is so repulsed by the image of Seung-ho paired with a member of the fairest sex that he cannot help blurting out, “But Seung-ho would never mate an omega!”

Min nearly sighs at Jihwa’s simplemindedness. “My point exactly. Why don’t you invest your resources someplace where you’re more likely to get returns, my friend?”

 


 

In the afternoon, Seung-ho is called to a briefing about a new case that he is to be involved with. It is not entirely unfamiliar to him as it has to do with finding out more information about this new liquid aphrodisiac that has begun to overwhelm the city’s drug trade. 

Sergeant Kim provides information to the small room full of a dozen police members.

“...through the new lead which was apprehended early this morning, we have identified the criminal group that is behind the sourcing and distribution of the drug.” Sergeant Kim updates the team.

He reads from the official assignments list provided by the higher ups. The group of Seung-ho’s colleagues, including Jihwa and Min, are all on edge awaiting their roles. It appears as though no one is surprised when it is determined that Seung-ho will be the one to go undercover.

Apparently the apprehended alpha from the house party was a regular client who had bought various drugs from his dealer over the years and was responsible for spreading and popularizing it amongst his rich and famous social circles. Under this morning’s thorough interrogation, the suspect had spilled a few names on his suppliers which were familiar to the police department. 

The briefing documents organized by the superintendents say that this new information has helped the initial investigations to link together people who have already been under their radar for years. The evidence thus far seems to indicate that this is all the work of the largest criminal syndicate operating within the city; the Imoogi. 

Seung-ho had been chosen because of his extensive involvement with the current case and the high ups thought that he would fit the profile of the undercover identity that they have created for him. Being that he is an alpha in prime physical condition and has extensive weapons training, he would perfectly suit the role of an ex-mobster from a now disbanded gang. The rest of the team is appointed as Seung-ho’s support and back up while he takes on the mission from the frontlines.

Right as Sergeant Kim is about to conclude the short case introduction, a knock is heard at the meeting room door. When one of the team members answers it, there is a junior officer from the community response division waiting there and he has a young man in tow with him.

As soon as the door had been opened, Seung-ho’s nose had picked up on a faint but oddly familiar scent. Seung-ho discretely inhales and is confused by the fresh jasmine and lemony perfume that seems to drift towards him. He glances around the room but nobody else seems to have noticed the slight change in the air.

The community response officer appears nervous as he says, “Sorry to interrupt your briefing everyone. I brought Mr. Baek Na-kyum here with me. His work in investigative journalism has allowed him to develop valuable connections on the ground. Although he is a member of the public, Mr. Baek is interested in helping out with the aphrodisiac drug case and my division supervisor wants you to hear him out.”

A wave of murmuring ripples through the team. It seems preposterous that a member of the public could find out about a top secret case that was just introduced. Sergeant Kim’s brows are furrowed in consternation but he trusts that his colleagues from community response must have had a good reason to think that this young man would be relevant to their case.

The young man is dressed in long baggy slacks that don’t fit him properly and a thin trench coat which he is drowning in. He has a worn messenger bag slung over his shoulder which seems to be bursting open with papers.

“I’m Baek Na-kyum, sirs!” The young man says brightly to the room full of cops. Some of the alpha policemen eye his slight physique with disdain. They are certain he is only a beta and therefore hardly worthy of their consideration. Meanwhile, Jihwa rolls his eyes at how naive the young man appears. Even though Jihwa is not an alpha, he knows that with his family connections he is miles above any of the other basic betas out there.

“And what information are you here to report?” Seung-ho cuts right to the chase. He does not want to entertain anybody who is a waste of his time.

The journalist initially falters at the alpha policeman’s curtness, but he pushes on. “I actually want to join your undercover investigation. I’m really invested in finding out more about this new drug as well.”

Jihwa cannot help but laugh. “Why in the world do you think we would let a random beta off the streets help out in an official case—not to mention a journalist? Is this a joke?” He looks around at his colleagues with an expression of mixed hilarity and disbelief. 

Most of the alphas in the room begin to snicker at the naive beta journalist. Na-kyum stares at the leering faces around the room with wide eyes. The only ones not laughing at the newcomer are Sergeant Kim, who looks on grimly, and Yoon Seung-ho, who is standing stiffly amongst the crowd. 

Seung-ho is quite certain at this point that he is not hallucinating. The sweet scent is mild, but definitely layering over the room. He senses his heart rate picking up and his hackles rising as the fragrant smell gives rise to a feeling of euphoria dancing along the edges of his consciousness. The hairs on the back of his neck stand on edge as he desperately tries to dampen the instinct to seek out the source of the intoxicating scent.

With a sickening start, realization dawns on Seung-ho. Despite not seeing a single female omega in the room, he realizes that someone must have allowed their powerful pheromones to permeate the air. He has to bite down on his jaw to prevent a growl from rising past his throat. The inspector is furious with himself. The urge to claim is maddening.

Baek Na-kyum stands his ground and says, “I know my forte is not in physical combat, but I know that’s not what you need in an undercover operation anyways. I can contribute something that will definitely throw the gangsters off guard—“

“Oh, stop it with your exaggerations!” Jihwa interrupts him. Something about the journalist rubs the beta officer the wrong way. Even though they are both betas, Jihwa knows that the man in front of him is inferior to him in both strength and station. “A police case is not child’s play. Missions require rigorous endurance. What could you possibly offer with that weak, untrained beta body of yours?”

Na-kyum takes a deep breath and wills his shaking hands to still. He cannot believe he is doing this, but he reminds himself that this investigation is worth it. 

“It’s exactly as you have said. The gang members would never suspect a weakling to be involved with the police,” Na-kyum retorts. “Yes, I am not as strong as an alpha. In fact not even a beta… but you can throw the gang members off your scent if you include an omega in your team.”

There is a stunned silence that fills the room. Suddenly the jeers and chortles stop. All the cops in the room stare at Na-kyum in disbelief. 

“An omega…” Seung-ho can no longer contain the snarl that he unleashes. Of course. Now he sees it. The soft cheeks, the delicate nape. Undoubtedly there are gentle curves hidden beneath the journalist’s wretchedly oversized, ill-fitting clothes. And god. That maddening scent. 

The other alphas in the room finally begin to take interest. Most of them have never met a male omega before. There might be one in several thousand, and most male omegas know well the need to hide their sex. The world is not kind to those who are different. Especially if they are deemed weak, fragile, and easily objectified.

Even though Na-kyum takes pheromone blockers, it does not stop the alphas in the room from fantasizing about having something rare and delectable in their grasps. There is a reason after all why omegas are often discouraged from pursuing alpha dominated fields. 

“But aside from being an omega, I also know the streets well.” Na-kyum says. “I often brush shoulders with establishments where local crimes take place as part of my work.”

Something vicious stirs inside Seung-ho’s chest. For a moment the inspector almost allows his alpha to take over. His dormant instinct senses the presence of a potential mate and to have other alphas in the same vicinity drives the beast within him crazy. The primal need to compete and show his dominance is making him nearly vibrate beneath his skin. 

“Inspector Yoon.”

It’s Sergeant Kim’s somber voice that snaps Seung-ho back into reality. With great self restraint, he wills his vision to clear. Seung-ho realizes that the entire room is looking at him expectantly and it unnerves him to wonder if they had all sensed his momentary lapse in control. 

“What do you think we should do with him?” Sergeant Kim asks him. 

Seung-ho’s reflex would have been to say absolutely not. There is no way that he would think taking on an omega is going to work. Especially not this omega. Seung-ho appraises the journalist, who to his credit does not shrivel under the inspector’s usually intimidating glare. 

Seung-ho isn’t blind. He has to admit that the omega is pretty. His skin looks luminous and healthy. His mouth, soft and pliant. And those eyes—they seem to draw out Seung-ho’s alpha as easily as nectar draws forth bees. The sane and human side of Seung-ho is beyond irritated with these unbidden feelings.

Before the inspector can firmly refuse however, his inner alpha picks up on the slowly mounting scent of hunger and desperation that the other ravenous alphas are releasing. The adversarial smells are nauseating and Seung-ho can’t help seeing red. 

“Fine,” Seung-ho growls. Aggression seems to rise up from somewhere deep inside of him. His voice is loud and channels his full authority. “The omega will work with me .”

Seung-ho allows his alpha scent to roll off of him in waves and he smirks in satisfaction when he sees the other policemen recoil in obedience to his superior pheromones. The other alphas look at the journalist reproachfully, disappointed that another stronger alpha has already set their gaze upon the deliciously enticing omega.

When Seung-ho’s nature has been calmed with the knowledge of his temporary triumph, he turns his attention fully to Na-kyum. He swallows roughly as he inhales another lungful of the sweet citron perfume. It takes him a moment to clear his head of covetous inclinations. 

“Follow me Mr. Baek,” he orders the journalist. “We’ll debrief in the case room.”

Chapter Text

They exit the small meeting room and enter an empty conference room away from the prying eyes of his fellow officers. He doesn’t know why, but the way they were eyeing up Na-kyum has left a pit in his stomach, heavy and unforgiving. He feels both enraged and disgusted at himself for losing control like that. Is it because the journalist is an omega? He’s never met an omega that has made him feel this way in such a short amount of time. It puts him on edge— he hates it when his instincts take hold of him like this. He has a dreadful feeling that this omega is going to be the root of many annoyances from this moment onward.

Seung-ho watches as Na-kyum rounds the table and takes a seat across from him, looking perfectly comfortable in the quiet, sterile conference room. He sheds his baggy trench coat, revealing a chunky knit sweater, and pulls out a brown leather journal and pen from his overstuffed bag and begins to write. 

“Please, Inspector Yoon, tell me more about the drug we’re investigating.” 

Sighing, Seung-ho pulls out a chair and sits down, placing the files Sergeant Kim gave him on the glass table. The maddening scent from earlier hasn’t faded away quite yet, but he feels more at peace now that they’re away from other alphas.  

“It’s commonly referred to as Aphrodite’s Kiss. It can be in liquid or dissolvable tablet form, usually pink or red in color, depending on how pure it is. It supposedly tastes sweet. It’s highly addictive and just one tablet can lead to withdrawal symptoms. It’s deadly, too. Most people who start taking the drug are dead within the year.”

Na-kyum looks up in horror, hazel eyes wide and cherubic face pale. “I knew it was bad, but I didn’t know it was that bad. People still take it knowing that?”

Seung-ho weighs the question for a moment, before shaking his head. “The drug is still fairly new, so not a lot of people know about the consequences. All they care about is how good they feel in the moment.”

The omega motions him to go on and Seung-ho begins to read off of the informational packet he was given earlier that day.  

“The most frequent symptoms are heightened sensory perception, an increased production in pheromones, spontaneous heats, longer heats, excessive slick production, dilated pupils, loss of inhibition, a sense of euphoria, and of course— arousal.” 

Na-kyum taps his pen against his chin, “Wow. No wonder it’s popular among sex workers. What are some of the withdrawal effects?” 

Seung-ho flips the page and continues to read. “Withdrawal symptoms in the short-term include impaired judgement, anxiety, insomnia, paranoia, muscle tension, and dehydration.” He glances up at Na-kyum who is focused on him in rapt attention.

Seung-ho clears his throat and continues to rattle off. “Withdrawal symptoms for long-term use include psychosis, memory loss, kidney failure, sterilization, brain damage, cardiovascular collapse, seizures, and death.” He puts down the packet and appraises Na-kyum, russet eyes sharp and critical. The omega stares back, unflinching. 

“I’m sure that you can see why it is imperative that we find the source of the aphrodisiac immediately.”

Leaning back in his chair, Na-kyum nods solemnly and seems to take a moment to process the information Seung-ho has given him. 

Seung-ho takes an opportunity to get a good look at the omega whom he is going to be spending quite a bit of time with from now on. Underneath his baggy clothes, Nakyum seems quite slim if his delicate wrists are anything to go by, which is uncommon for an omega. Omegas are built to birth children, so they should have the necessary fat stores and curves to properly incubate a baby and survive birth. 

Though he supposes male omegas do have a significantly harder time getting pregnant and suffer more miscarriages statistically than female omegas. Some male omegas can’t get pregnant at all. 

Briefly, an image flashes in his mind of the journalist heavy with his pups, and it takes more willpower than Seung-ho cares to admit to suppress the growl that follows. No. No. He isn’t going to let his traitorous mind follow through with that terrible train of thought. 

Instead, he focuses on how short the omega is in comparison to himself. He only comes up to his chin, which is slightly concerning. He has doubts as to whether Na-kyum will be able to tolerate the physical strain of the case. Is he eating properly? Surely he earns enough money as a journalist to afford a decent meal. 

That aside, Seungho has to admit that he has quite the pretty face, about as pretty as any female omega— perhaps even prettier. What draws Seung-ho in the most are his eyes; they are big and expressive, and an unusual color he can’t quite pin down. If he looks closely, he can see flecks of gold, green, and brown mixing to create a kaleidoscope. A dark part within him wonders what the omega would look like crying underneath him… 

“So what’s the plan?” Na-kyum’s eager voice cuts through Seung-ho’s wayward thoughts.

Breaking his gaze, Seung-ho shuffles around some papers and pulls out a manila folder labeled ‘confidential’. 

“This is going to be an undercover mission. I will be infiltrating Imoogi, one of the most powerful gangs in the area that is believed to have a monopoly on the production of Aphrodite’s Kiss.”

Na-kyum tilts his head, silently asking for more.

“I’ll be recruited as a gang member, gain their trust, and discover the aphrodisiac’s place of origin. I believe it’s somewhere within their territory.” 

“You make it sound easy.” Na-kyum smiles, mostly to himself. “And an interesting name…what does Imoogi mean?”

“From what I gathered, Imoogi are lesser dragons from Korean folklore. There’s a bit of debate on what Imoogi are and how they can evolve into a true dragon, but they’re described to be benevolent creatures associated with good luck.”

The omega laughs, a pretty twinkling sound, though it sounds a bit hollow to Seung-ho’s ears. “How ironic, a gang naming themselves after a godly creature. I’m guessing their symbol is a dragon?”

Seung-ho snorts, “Creative, I know.”

He opens the folder he is holding onto. “There is a high probability that part of the initiation process will include a ritual killing and branding. I didn’t account for another person in the plan, so we will have to discuss how we’re going to sneak you in without suspicion.”

Na-kyum winces at that, looking both conflicted and uncomfortable. Seung-ho expects as much. Any normal person would be put off by murder, but if that’s what he has to do to stop thousands of people from dying by Aphrodite’s Kiss, then so be it. He has made his peace with ends justifying the means a long time ago.

He watches as Na-kyum brings his pen up to his mouth, plush lips opening slightly to chew on the tip. His eyes narrow, hyperfocused on how the omega’s pink tongue flicks against the cap. It isn’t hard to imagine what that tongue would look like licking his— 

Fuck. He’s doing it again.

This omega is dangerous, he thinks. 

Although… he can use that to his advantage. It’s not uncommon for high-profile gangsters to own omegas. While highly illegal, it’s a display of influence and wealth in the underground community and if he shows up with a rare male omega by his side, that will help to solidify his identity as a previously established gangster.

He smirks, leaning forward in his seat with hands clasped underneath his chin, quickly coming to a decision about Na-kyum’s role. 

“You are going to be my pet.”

Na-kyum’s jaw drops and his pen clatters to the floor.

“E-excuse me?!”

 


 

There’s no way he heard him right. Did this alpha just say that he is going to be his pet?! Na-kyum is both mortified and furious, so much so that he doesn’t know which emotion to feel first. Before he can say anything, the inspector beats him to the punch.

“You’ll be acting as my pet. You could also act as an escort, but then you would have to service other alphas and I doubt you would want that.” 

Na-kyum grits his teeth, shooting an icy glare at the smug alpha in front of him. “Is there any other less demeaning role I can do? Like, I don’t know, a gangster?!” 

Seung-ho shakes his head, dismissing him with a wave of his hand. “You don’t know how to shoot a gun and looking at your figure, you have no experience with fighting either. I doubt you have the stomach to harm—let alone kill—someone. Plus, omega gangsters that aren’t prostitutes or escorts are few and far between. It’s just not going to be convincing.”

Na-kyum seethes silently in his seat. He came here to help, not to be a sex object. God, at times like these he is reminded of why he stays clear of alphas—far too often they think with their knot instead of their head.

“So what am I supposed to call you during the mission then? Master? Sir?” Na-kyum retorts sarcastically as he picks his fallen pen up off the ground. 

“Seung-ho will work just fine—or, on second thought—alpha,” the inspector casually responds, carefully watching for his reaction. Na-kyum wrinkles his nose and gives Seung-ho a dirty look. While ‘alpha’ is better than ‘master’, calling somebody by their secondary gender is usually reserved for intimate couples. Na-kyum is keenly aware that calling a stranger by their gender is rude, degrading, and could easily be considered harassment. 

Itching to change the subject, the journalist brings up something that the alpha had mentioned earlier. “You said something about branding. What do you mean by that?” 

“Initiated gang members are tattooed with the symbol of their organization; for Imoogi, this would be a dragon.”

Na-kyum furrows his brows. Hold on a second, he thinks .

If Na-kyum is correct in his assumption about what Seung-ho is implying… then the inspector is saying that he is willing to get a gang tattoo for the sake of his mission. A permanent gang tattoo. While Na-kyum is no stranger to fully devoting himself to any given task, getting a permanent mark affiliated with a gang for an undercover mission… is a bit much, isn’t it?

“You’re really going to get a dragon tattoo?” Na-kyum says the question like a statement, still not quite believing that the inspector is being serious.

Seung-ho nods, looking unbothered as he flips through his papers. “And a panther tattoo.”

Na-kyum breathes out a laugh, perplexed. “What? What are you talking about?” 

“Part of my backstory is that I’m an ex-member of another gang whose symbol was a panther. I’m planning on getting the tattoo within the next week, probably on my upper back.” 

Rubbing his face in irritation, Na-kyum takes a second to collect himself. This alpha is going to be the death of him. How can someone be so nonchalant yet so aggravating? He came here today giving Yoon Seung-ho the benefit of the doubt despite his reputation as a stone-cold asshole of a cop, but unfortunately, the rumors were right. 

The way Seung-ho had reacted to his secondary gender reveal earlier had also left a bad taste in his mouth. The alpha’s eyes are much too hungry for his liking. Na-kyum is reminded of why he usually tries to hide his omega status.

He refuses to address the little voice in the back of his mind, the omega one that thinks about how easily Seung-ho had dominated every alpha in the room with a single phrase… and how hot that made him feel. 

He sighs, peeking at Seung-ho through his fingers. 

“Well, if you’re adamant about getting a tattoo… would you like for me to do it for you?” 

It’s Seung-ho’s turn to look surprised. “You… do tattoos?”

Na-kyum smiles sheepishly. “I apprenticed at a tattoo parlor during high school and worked in one through college. It was mostly to support my education. I have a lot of experience and I’m pretty good at it if I do say so myself.”

This seems to shock the alpha, who meets Na-kyum’s gaze with a comically bewildered expression. Na-kyum breaks out into a fit of giggles— he’ll never get tired of telling people about his previous part-time job. They always react with the funniest faces.

“...You seriously worked in a tattoo parlor?”

“Yes! I have some pictures of my work if you’re interested.” Na-kyum pulls out his phone and goes to his photos, opening the album full of his favorite pieces. Sliding it across the table, he proudly watches Seung-ho scroll through it picture by picture, expression growing more befuddled with every swipe.

“I would have never taken you as someone who has experience with this. Do you have a tattoo by any chance?” 

Na-kyum shakes his head with a smile and is hit with a wave of fond nostalgia. “No, my sisters wouldn’t let me get one… we grew up in a pretty sketchy neighbourhood and they thought getting something I might regret would tie me down...no matter who I asked, they flat out refused. The downside of living in a small community where everybody knows everybody, I guess.” 

He had grown up in a female-dominated orphanage in a rough part of town, where omegas became prostitutes and alphas became criminals. Although it wasn’t the easiest upbringing, he wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. He loved his sisters, even though they were dead set on making him leave the community so he could find a better life for himself. 

Thinking back, his sisters were more excited than he was when he received a full scholarship to Seoul University. There he met his mentor Jung Inhun and decided to major in journalism. 

Now, he’s sitting in a conference room offering to give an officer of the law a gang tattoo for an undercover mission they are about to embark on. 

Funny how life works out like that. 

“Let’s do it,” Seung-ho decides, setting the phone down on the table. “You’re an excellent artist, I wouldn’t mind you doing my tattoo at all. How much? 1 million won? 2 million? That should be enough for a tattoo of that size.”

Na-kyum hesitates, not knowing what to say. His usual prices were between 250k and 500k won for a medium to large piece and Seung-ho is offering him more than triple that. 

“T-that’s too much—”

“Nonsense. If anything, it’s not enough.” Seung-ho pauses before giving Na-kyum an amused leer. “Look on the bright side; you can use some of the extra money to buy clothes that will actually fit you.”

Without a second thought, Na-kyum hurls his pen at the alpha across from him but, to his disappointment, Seung-ho dodges it easily and bursts out into laughter. Na-kyum is stunned for a moment at the sight, rage quickly giving way to embarrassment, and he slumps back into his chair with an indignant huff. 

“Asshole,” he mutters under his breath, which the alpha catches.

“Now that’s quite a rude thing to say to someone who has the power to arrest you.”

Na-kyum sticks his tongue out in defiance, just like a petulant child. “I can’t do your tattoo if you arrest me, Inspector Yoon.” 

“Fair enough,” Seung-ho chuckles, looking the most comfortable Na-kyum has seen him all day. “Handcuffs are sexy but maybe not the most practical. We’ll just have to make this work, then.” 

 


 

They decide to start the tattoo on Sunday per Seung-ho’s request. 

There are, however, several other practical matters to attend to first. One of these matters being to set up their future residence immediately for the mission. 

Which leads them to where they are now, standing in front of a dilapidated apartment complex in one of Seoul’s worst slums. 

“This is where we’re going to be staying?”

Seung-ho nods, face void of any emotion that could betray his inner thoughts. The higher ups had only approved an absurdly small amount to use during the mission and this was the best place he could find within their budget. The area was well known to the police department as a high crime area chock full of prostitutes, gangsters, and criminals. Murder was common and Seung-ho feared for his less capable partner— if he lets the journalist out of his sight, there’s a chance he might find him dead in an alley.

They enter the building and go up a couple flights of stairs and Seung-ho can’t help but notice the questionable dried splatters on the concrete steps. Finally, they reach room 313. Na-kyum unlocks the ugly vomit green door and walks in first. 

It’s a dingy studio apartment, only 474 square feet, that reeks of musk and mold. There are some dubious stains along the walls and floor that he loathes to consider what or where they came from. The room doesn’t come with any furniture, so until Seung-ho goes out and purchases them a bed, they are going to be sleeping on the floor. 

Speaking of, Seung-ho had neglected to factor in that he actually has a partner in this case. Now that Na-kyum is appraising the room with him, he realizes that the apartment is so small that it’s unlikely to fit more than one bed. His stomach does a strange flip as he realizes that they are going to have to share a bed unless one of them is willing to sleep somewhere else. Maybe if he finds a sofa… 

“On the bright side, I haven’t seen any cockroaches yet! It’s already better than my last apartment,” Na-kyum says cheerfully, placing his suitcase in the middle of the room. Seung-ho gives him an incredulous look, watching him move around the room as he inspects the walls. What kind of background did he come from? 

“When we go out to buy appliances and stuff, we should get some heavy duty cleaning supplies. Maybe some mold killer… this place will look so much better with a deep clean.” 

Seung-ho walks up behind Na-kyum, setting his bags down next to his. He had purchased new clothes for the mission—from the thrift store, he might add—due to Na-kyum’s insistence that his regular designer clothes will give them away. He had made a good point, but that didn’t mean Seung-ho had to be happy about it. 

“You’re awfully spritely for someone living with an unmated alpha in a seedy death trap for the foreseeable future.” 

“I’m living with a cop, do you expect me to be scared? I am probably the safest person in this building. Give yourself more credit, Inspector Yoon.” 

Seung-ho hides a wince. He may be a cop, but he’s not a saint. Is Na-kyum truly this naive as to just how delectable he smells? God, if his self control was any worse, Na-kyum would be face down, ass up on the floor getting fucked out of his mind. But— he’s Yoon Seung-ho. The epitome of self control. He will not be reduced to his most basic, animalistic instincts over one tiny aromatic omega. 

Na-kyum turns to him, slightly bouncing on his heels. “We can get the apartment set up today and do your tattoo tomorrow. Should we do it here or at your real house?” 

He cringes at the thought of getting his tattoo done here in this shit hole. That’s an infection waiting to happen. “My real house. I’ll send you the address, so show up around 2pm.”

“Okay!”

They don’t bother unpacking, opting instead to leave for the store right away. Seung-ho takes one last look around the empty apartment, nose scrunching in distaste, before closing the door behind them.

 


 

The next day, Na-kyum stands outside of Seung-ho’s expensive flat, gazing in wonder at the manicured shrubbery and pristine modern shell of his house. Seung-ho’s actual home is a shocking contrast to the humble studio they had visited the day prior. It’s so swanky that Na-kyum is surprised Seung-ho can afford such a nice place on a cop’s salary. He’s getting the sense that Seung-ho may have grown up wealthy.

He had taken part of the up-front payment Seung-ho had given him after they parted to purchase the necessary materials; the ink, a tattoo gun, sterilized needles, cleaning supplies, razors, distilled water, ointment, bandages, and the tattoo design.

Seung-ho had given him all creative liberties with the tattoo and Na-kyum had run with it. He had forgotten how much fun tattoo designing was, especially when he was given full reign to do whatever he wanted. The only thing that needs to be in the current tattoo is a panther and that is easy enough.

Luckily, a local ink and piercing shop had let him borrow their thermal-fax machine to print out his design onto a transferable stencil for a small fee. 

He’s ready; he just hopes Seung-ho is too. 

He rings the doorbell to Seung-ho’s house and nervously bounces on his heels as he waits. It had taken him half an hour to get here and for the whole ride he had prayed that his dinky little car could handle the journey. His car is an old thing, something he purchased from a shady dealer and he definitely got what he paid for, that’s for sure. Every time he puts the key in the ignition there is a 50/50 chance it will not turn on. The muffler is nonexistent and he’s been told on more than one occasion that he could be heard coming from more than a block away.  

His arms strain holding the heavy box containing all of his supplies and when Seung-ho finally opens the door, clad in loose black sweatpants and a white t-shirt, he lets out a sigh of relief. 

As soon as he steps foot into Seung-ho’s house, he’s hit with the most dizzying and inebriating scent that makes his muscles go lax and mind go blank, and all he wants to do is bury himself in that scent until he’s thoroughly marked inside and out— he gasps, and luckily, Seung-ho catches the box that slips from Na-kyum’s grasp before it has the chance to hit the ground. 

He covers his nose and tries to steady himself, eyes fluttering shut as he wavers in the doorway. He hadn’t had the chance to smell Seung-ho in the precinct department office before. The man must have been using heavy duty blockers then—ones that obviously worked very well—but now… he bites his lips to stop himself from whimpering. 

Nutmeg and sandalwood flood his senses like a dam bursting into a valley. Something else tickles at his nose, an undercurrent of, what is that, tobacco? Does he smoke? And something sweet, like vanilla. He shudders, salivating at the scent. 

His omega instincts, a part of him he does his best to keep locked away, scream at him to drop to his knees and present himself to the virile mate in front of him. Oh, how nice that would be— 

Oh no. 

What is he thinking?

Na-kyum opens his eyes and sees Seung-ho staring at him with an unreadable expression, jaw clenched tight. He flushes, embarrassed at having been caught acting like a needy omega. He’s a professional journalist, damn it! He isn’t going to let his sex get in the way of doing his job.

He stammers out an apology and the alpha shrugs cooly, turning away from him. As he takes a deep breath to steady himself, Na-kyum absentmindedly admires the thick, corded muscles that ripple under Seung-ho’s shirt. Na-kyum’s eyes naturally glide down the inspector’s broad-shouldered back before landing on his firm ass. The journalist can’t help biting his lip. Seung-ho has a really nice body. 

No matter how he might try to ignore his instincts, his mind conjures up images of the inspector pinning him down on the floor, taking him from behind, and Na-kyum has to shake his head to get rid of the arousing thought. He has to remind himself that he’s here to tattoo an officer, not to get dicked down.

Seung-ho leads him into an empty room and carefully places the box next to the futon laid out on the floor. 

“I-is this where we’ll be doing the tattoo?” Na-kyum internally curses himself for stuttering, praying that Seung-ho ignores it. He does, thankfully, and nods once. 

“Um, okay… I’m going to go wash my hands, you can take off your shirt and lay down. I’ll have to clean and shave the area where the tattoo will be, so, um, just be ready for that. I’ll be right back.” He turns to leave, but turns back around to ask where the bathroom is, bashful.

Soon enough, Na-kyum’s hands are clean and his equipment is set up. Seung-ho is laying face-down on the futon and from this angle Na-kyum can see every groove and bulge of muscle making up his back. He swallows, suddenly nervous. He’s so close to the alpha that he can feel the heat radiating off him which contrasts with the coolness of the air. 

Seung-ho’s poignant scent still lingers, but it’s more bearable than before. Perhaps the inspector had taken some pity on him and swallowed a few scent blockers while Na-kyum had been washing up.

It’s silent as he cleans the skin, neither saying a word to each other. Seung-ho’s back isn’t that hairy and seems nearly smooth at a distance, but up close Na-kyum can see the fine down covering his taut skin. Na-kyum tries to keep his hands from shaking as he draws the razor over the broad expanse. He cannot help imagining sliding his bare hands over the sexy ridges of muscle. Everything about the alpha’s physique screams power. It doesn’t take much physical effort to shave it all off, but mentally, Na-kyum feels heady. 

“I’m going to put some lotion on you and then the stencil application. You wanted it on your upper back, correct?”

“Yes. My right shoulder blade would be best.” 

“Alright! It shouldn’t be too painful then, you have enough muscle depth for the needle to inject ink into.” 

He doesn’t reply and Na-kyum just sighs, resigning himself to spending the rest of the tattooing session in silence. He normally prefers it when his clients are chatty so he has something to listen to, but whatever. Seung-ho doesn’t seem like someone who likes aimless chatter anyways.

As Na-kyum rubs the lotion in, he can’t help but appreciate how compact his muscles are, especially his trapezius and deltoids— he would make an excellent model for an anatomy study. Na-kyum mindlessly traces a finger down the crevice in the center of Seung-ho’s back along his spine and Seung-ho flinches, causing the omega to yank his hand away as if burned, face bright red. The room suddenly swells with the alpha’s scent, the smell of nutmeg and sandalwood so strong Na-kyum can almost taste it. 

“S-sorry!” 

He scrambles to get the stencil application ready as his heart beats so fast he’s afraid it’s going to jump out of his chest. Focus, Na-kyum, focus.

Trying not to betray how flustered he is, he places the stencil down steadily and is content with how centered and level it is. He takes a quick picture with his phone and shows Seung-ho, asking him what he thinks. He hopes the alpha doesn’t notice how much his hand is shaking.

“It’s good.” 

Na-kyum waits for him to say anything else and when he’s met with nothing, he takes that as a sign to continue. Na-kyum cannot help feeling something twist in his stomach. He would have thought that Seung-ho would have been at least a little bit more interested in how his tattoo was going to look. Especially if he is going to have it for the rest of his life… 

“Okay, then I’ll start now. It might be a little uncomfortable and if you feel any pain, let me know.”

Once the tattoo gun comes to life, Na-kyum falls into the familiar soothing rhythm of the mechanical whirring and starts the outline, wiping away the excess ink every so often. Throughout the process, Seung-ho doesn’t say a word or make a sound, laying perfectly still. Na-kyum pauses, about halfway done with the outline, and looks at Seung-ho.

“Are you alright?”

“Yes.” 

With that, he continues. 

It doesn’t take long for him to finish the outline. He takes a moment to lean back and admire his work, the outline of a crisp black panther looking back at him. 

“I’m finished with the outline. Would you like to take a break before I start doing the detail work?”

“No, it’s fine. Keep going.” 

From Na-kyum’s experience, usually people want breaks in between the outline and detail work, but Seung-ho clearly isn’t most people. Pursing his lips, he changes the needle of the gun and gets back to work. 

His chosen method of shading is using a stippling technique with varying layers of tiny dots. Luckily for him, Seung-ho had chosen to forgo full ink and instead had opted for a lighter look. To make sure the tattoo would look aged once it is fully healed, Na-kyum uses a dark grey ink. Even to the trained eye, it would be hard to tell between an aged black tattoo and a fresh grey piece.

An hour passes by in the blink of an eye and now, filling out the majority of Seung-ho’s right shoulder blade, is a snarling panther. Na-kyum had chosen to use a traditional korean art style for the tattoo and he is proud of how it turned out, the design fitting Seung-ho quite well. He cleans the area once more and takes a picture to show Seung-ho. 

“You’re all done! I’m going to bandage you up now and explain the aftercare you’ll need to do to keep your tattoo from getting infected.” 

Gently, he dresses the tattoo with a second skin, a waterproof bandage that bears a strangely similar resemblance to saran wrap. “The bandage I’m putting on right now will stay on for three days. You don’t have to worry about getting it wet in the shower, the water will roll right off. You might notice a build up of some fluid beneath the bandage, which is totally normal, so don’t worry about that. When you take it off, you will have to do a thorough washing of the area because of the fluid build up.” 

Na-kyum cracks his knuckles and shakes his hands, trying to get rid of the stiffness that has accumulated over the hours.

“The duration for your care routine will last two weeks, starting today. Once the bandage comes off, you’ll be doing two things twice a day: wash the tattoo with antibacterial soap and when it’s dry, apply a thin layer of the healing ointment I got you. Let the scabs fall off naturally— don’t pick at them. Don’t do any exercises that will make you sweat, avoid wearing tight clothing, and don’t let the tattoo get direct sunlight. And… that’s it. You’re tattooed! How do you like it?”

Seung-ho sits up, cracking his neck and back in the process, and Na-kyum is transfixed by the way his muscles flex and undulate from the movement. 

He holds his breath as Seung-ho appraises the photo. It feels like an eternity as his heart jackrabbits in anticipation.

Finally, the inspector smiles. For once there is no condescension in the curl of his full lips. “It’s nice. I’m glad to have chosen you to do my tattoo.”

Na-kyum blushes at the compliment and quietly thanks the inspector. His inner omega purrs passionately at the validation from the dominant alpha. 

“As for the rest of your payment, just send me your routing and account number and I’ll have the money sent over before dinner.”

At the mention of food, Na-kyum’s stomach rumbles and his face heats up even more. It’s been hours since he had eaten lunch and now that he’s not focusing on something, he can feel just how hungry he is. 

Seung-ho flashes him a lopsided smirk, clearly amused.

“Would you like to stay for dinner?”

Chapter Text

Seung-ho ducks as a fist comes flying at his head. He smirks. Too slow. He’s not worried if this is already the best that the underground has to offer. Seung-ho retaliates with a hook to the jaw and while his opponent is winded, he quickly aims another punch at his nose. The satisfying crack delights the alpha within him. He hears the crowd go ‘ooooooh’.

Seung-ho glances at the audience gathered around the match ring and immediately his eyes find Na-kyum. For once, the journalist is wearing something that conforms more snugly to his figure. Afterall, if Na-kyum is to convince anybody that he is an omega he has to look the part.

The bodycon crop top and high waisted leggings he is wearing is very in vogue among omegas right now and Seung-ho has to admit that it accentuates Na-kyum’s assets splendidly. There is no way anybody would be mistaking him for a beta today.

Na-kyum is staring back at him, but instead of the idolatry that his alpha is used to inspiring, the omega’s expression is tense and displeased.

Seung-ho’s opponent, a big, burly guy, bald and covered in tatts, uses Seung-ho’s moment of distraction to recover. He raises his arms to shield himself from further knocks to his head. 

Despite his hefty stature, baldy is surprisingly agile. He raises a leg and swipes at Seung-ho’s stomach. He makes contact, much to the inspector’s chagrin, and the wind is knocked out of him. Seung-ho allows his alpha to take over— unsurprising, really, since this is the type of situation best suited for his inner beast. Seung-ho senses renewed energy brimming from beneath his muscles. 

His opponent, who is the reigning champion of underground MMA fights, cackles.

“Now you’re getting serious! I wasn’t sure whether a new challenger like yourself would be all talk with no conviction!” His spit flies everywhere and Seung-ho just wants to punch the ever living daylights out of this alpha brute.

Seung-ho is pissed. He knows, however, that his frustration isn’t because of his shit talking opponent. Baldy is just the means of relieving his irritation. 

 


 

“So how exactly did you find out about our investigation into Aphrodite's Kiss?” Seung-ho had asked over dinner.

“Well, people have been nervous about the recent drug related deaths. The media is all over it.” Na-kyum had worn a pensive look. “My boss has lots of eyes and ears on the streets. He knew that the police would be racing to find out the source. It’s just curious that the mobsters have remained elusive for so long, you know?”

Seung-ho had to agree with him. Usually when the best metropolitan police resources were put towards investigating a case, a resolution would be reached sooner rather than later. This particular drug had turned out to be quite the thorny problem for the city. The distributors had constantly evaded them. 

It was why Seung-ho had started indicating his interest in being more active in all cases even remotely related to the city’s drug trafficking. There had been some push back from the higher ups at first, bureaucratic bullshit, but Seung-ho had managed to convince them that he was the man for the job. He had always lived by the principle that if you wanted a job done right, you had to do it yourself.

“So who’s your boss? Maybe I’ve brushed shoulders with them over the years.”

“Jung In-hun! He’s young, just a few years older than me, but he’s already the editor-in-chief.” Na-kyum’s eyes had shone brightly and something about the way that his voice had taken on a reverential tone rubbed Seung-ho the wrong way. No alpha enjoyed hearing another man’s name on their omega’s lips. 

Seung-ho caught himself, shocked that he had briefly considered Na-kyum his omega. What nonsense.

Though, Seung-ho did have reason to be weary. Jung In-hun was indeed a celebrated journalist, but he was ruthless. A few years back, In-hun had almost screwed over one of their big cases by publishing sensitive information to the public that the police had been trying to keep under wraps. 

Na-kyum must have sensed his displeasure because he scrunched his nose as if he could detect something acrid in the air. Seung-ho noticed that they both seemed to be acutely aware of each other, which was odd. He had never really given this much consideration to anybody before, let alone an omega. The thought set him on edge.  

“That man has looser morals than some of the convicts we keep behind bars,” Seung-ho could not help the derision steeping his words.

Na-kyum was quick to defend his superior. “Mr. Jung believes in freedom of speech. If there is danger to the public then people have the right to be informed about it and make their own preparations. Besides, he’s a good man. He inspired me to study journalism and gave me my current job.”

Seung-ho rolled his eyes, something ugly was brewing in his chest. “Do all omegas bend over to the first alpha that sways them?” 

The journalist’s eyes flashed gold with fury. “Do all alphas have to be such raging assholes? Ugh— Mr. Jung isn’t like you. He’s a beta.”

Seung-ho’s alpha should have been satisfied by that. After all, betas were no competition when it came to courting omegas. Yet somehow, the way that Na-kyum’s scent went from soft and soothing to harsh and acidic had made the realization less sweet. 

 


 

“Keep your eyes on me, pretty boy.”

Seung-ho has to side-step a sly elbowing. Muay Thai, huh? Looks like these street fighters have an arsenal of styles up their sleeve. Seung-ho allows his competitive nature to guide him. He unleashes a quick succession of punches. 

Baldy has enough sense to maintain his blocking stance. Although Seung-ho doesn’t land any more blows to his face, he knows the other fighter will have a colourful pattern of bruises on his forearms by tomorrow.

They each retreat several steps after that. Baldy does so to recover his bearings, and Seung-ho to regroup and plan for a more effective route of attack. 

“Boxing, huh?” Baldy has the audacity to laugh, showing off a set of chipped and yellowed teeth. “Are you even a real gangster if you’re just a one-trick pony?”

Seung-ho levels a glare at the cocky bastard. He quickly pulls off his black tank which has been drenched in sweat and tosses it outside of the ring. The crowd seems to collectively gasp, undoubtedly appreciating the unveiling of Seung-ho’s branding. 

The commentator’s voice rings out across the underground warehouse. “Our new competitor, Mr. Kim Seung-ho has just revealed his affiliations! What’s this? The mark of the midnight panther? Isn’t this from the former Pyobeom group of west Seoul? They disbanded about three years ago… it looks like our new face has some history of his own!”

His opponent growls at the revelation, less confident now that he knows Seung-ho isn’t just some inexperienced hot head who had stumbled into the wrong arena.

 


 

“How are we going to infiltrate Imoogi exactly?” 

“These things take time. Often, undercover missions last months, maybe years. First we have to get their attention.” 

“And how do we do that?”

“The police have been aware of underground fighting rings for quite some time now. Mobsters like to go there either to settle small disputes with rival gangs or to take a shot at the reigning champion for prize money.”

“You’re… going to go there to fight?”

“Yes, and Imoogi will watch. When they’re satisfied that I could be useful to them, they’ll come to us.”

 


 

This time his opponent is the one to be on the offensive. All three-hundred pounds of the gangster comes flying at Seung-ho. He sends a few distracting punches, before employing his knees. Luckily, Seung-ho realizes that baldy specializes in close-contact combat and dodges his lethal kicks by a hair. 

Not wanting to be stuck passively defending, Seung-ho fakes a few jabs which his opponent easily parries. He then lowers his centre of gravity, wraps his right leg around the back of baldy’s right knee, and using all his strength to pull forward, upends the hulking giant. 

The gangster topples to the floor, and before he can right himself, Seung-ho pins him down on all four limbs.

“Fuck you, you shitty panther!” Baldy rasps out as he struggles under Seung-ho’s robust hold. 

The audience is cheering so loudly at this point that Seung-ho hardly hears the string of expletives his opponent utters.  

“Would you listen to that!” The commentator’s voice blares via the megaphone. “Our new face is driving the crowd wild! He doesn’t just know boxing, he does wrestling too! This is what an alpha in his prime looks like, isn’t that right ladies and gentlemen?”

 


 

“I seriously can’t believe you got that.” Na-kyum had said after Seung-ho had shown him the shopping bag filled with supplies he had prepared.

“It’s needed for the mission. Stop overreacting to something so trivial. It’s not a big deal.”

“Not a big deal? Not a big deal?!” Na-kyum had barked. He looked so pretty and red that Seung-ho almost wanted to keep embarrassing him just to keep that fetching shade on his face. “You bought me a collar! Of course it’s a big deal! That’s, like, equivalent to a bonding proposal!” 

Seung-ho had sneered at that, dropping the grocery bags on the kitchen counter. Bonding. What a trite custom for stupid alphas and omegas bound by their instincts. 

“Don’t flatter yourself. It means nothing to me and it shouldn’t mean anything to you— it’s just a collar.” 

Na-kyum had slammed the black leather collar down on their new kitchen table, fuming. He couldn’t believe the audacity of Yoon Seung-ho, who had oh-so-casually decided on his own accord to purchase a collar for Na-kyum. 

Collaring had always been a traditional ritual for courting couples and for this man to have ignored the meaning behind such a sacred symbol of trust and devotion infuriated him. What enraged him even further was the little bell attached to the front of the collar, mocking him with every irreverent chime. 

He certainly felt as though he were being treated like a pet, not a person. 

Na-kyum hadn’t realized his eyes had gotten misty until he felt a new scent wafting through the air. No, it wasn’t new per se. It was just a different profile. Seung-ho’s signature musky tobacco seemed to recede into the background, and the gentle caress of vanilla and sandalwood invaded his senses. It was… comforting?

“No need to get your panties in a twist now,” Seung-ho’s words were still dismissive, but his tone was a touch gentler. “Since you can’t shoot a gun and you’ll be at a physical disadvantage in the gang community, having a collar will be the only way to stay safe.”

Na-kyum had wanted to protest, but he had to concede that Seung-ho was right. “So we have to look like we’re a pair?”

“Yes. You’ll act like my omega. This way I can protect you from anyone who might try to hurt you.”

Na-kyum had looked bothered by that. “Your omega? So what… you’ll own me?”

Seung-ho had to quickly clamp down on the way that Na-kyum’s words had seemed to stir forth excitement from deep within him. 

“No,” He bit out. “We’ll only have to act like a couple in front of others. It may be uncomfortable, but it needs to be done for the mission.” 

This is all for the mission, he had reminded himself.

 


 

Seung-ho holds fast onto his grip over the reigning champion. Pressing the massive alpha into the firm mat below gives him a surge of euphoria. There is nothing like putting other alphas in their place. Well— almost nothing like it.

He instinctively peers up into the crowd again, searching for Na-kyum’s reaction. Seung-ho feels a sense of relief when he sees that the stiff expression from earlier has finally left the omega’s face. In fact, just like everyone else, Na-kyum seems to be watching him now with rapt attention. His alpha preens. Seung-ho cannot help but flex his quads and biceps, pressing the gangster further into the floor. 

Seung-ho sees Na-kyum’s expression of interest morph into shock before he feels the impact. The blasted fucker had used his thick skull to knock back Seung-ho’s chin. The inspector curses before falling back and loosening his grasp on his opponent. 

Seung-ho hurriedly rushes to his feet, knowing it would be dangerous to be caught on the ground. He glares at the gangster. This isn’t Muay Thai. He had misjudged him. 

Baldy smirks at Seung-ho. “Ever heard of lethwei? I have 9 limbs, and my head happens to be the strongest of them all. Don’t think you can defeat the reigning champion so easily, newbie.”

Seung-ho mentally kicks himself. This isn't a regulated sport, this is street-fighting. If he is to stand a chance against this veteran thug, he’s going to have to factor in headbutting and other unconventional moves.

The gangster takes his time surveying the crowd and laughs cruelly when he finds Seung-ho’s earlier source of distraction. 

“Pretty thing you got there,” he says to Seung-ho. The inspector snarls as he sees the man openly ogling Na-kyum. Before Seung-ho can say anything, Baldy calls out loudly across the arena. 

“Hey you there, yea you! Omega! ” The crowd around Na-kyum parts to allow all attention to fall onto the journalist. Seung-ho’s eyes are wide with rage as he sees how small and vulnerable Na-kyum looks standing in the middle of all these lecherous gazes.

The gangster leers at Na-kyum. “Hey baby, when I hand your alpha’s ass to him, let’s go have some of our own fun. Lemme show you what a real alpha’s knot looks like.” 

Seung-ho sees red. 

The next few seconds happen so fast he hardly processes it. In a moment he’s launched himself at the tattooed meathead, first feigning two punches at the gangster’s abdomen. When the giant leans forward to shield his stomach, Seung-ho concentrates all of his fury into a roundhouse kick with lethal intent. His sole makes thunderous contact squarely against the gangster’s jaw. Seung-ho had packed so much power into that one kick that he sends the massive brute flying. 

He isn’t done with the idiot however. His alpha is incensed. Seung-ho stalks after the fallen opponent and stomps viciously on him for good measure. He doesn’t even hear the referee count to ten. All he knows is that the fucker deserves to die for daring to covet what belongs to him. 

In the end, it takes two alpha staff to pull him away from the clearly unconscious gangster. Seung-ho shakes them off as his sanity slowly returns to him. As the commentator announces him as the new victor of the underground competition, Seung-ho only has one goal in mind. 

He hops out of the ring and heads straight for Na-kyum. 

The closer he gets, the more acutely his alpha yearns for the sweet scent of jasmine and citron. When he approaches Na-kyum, the journalist stares at him with wide eyes. Yes, look only at me, Seung-ho’s alpha roars.

Na-kyum yelps as Seung-ho easily sweeps him off of the floor and tosses him over his shoulder. The omega is so light in his powerful grasp. It gives Seung-ho immense pleasure to be showing all of these people who the omega will be going home with. 

Just as Seung-ho reaches the exit of the storehouse, a tall man with long hair and a short, full beard steps out from the shadows. Seung-ho bristles as he senses that it’s another alpha. 

The man holds out his hands in front of himself in a placating manner, but there’s a sinister cast to his features. 

“Mr. Kim, your fighting is impressive,” he says, voice deep, but otherwise cryptic. “My name is Mumyeong and I’m with Imoogi. If you are interested in making quick and easy money… well, then I have a proposition for you.” 

Seung-ho maintains a stoic facade despite knowing that it’s their good fortune to be meeting the Imoogi so soon. 

“Make it quick,” he growls, shifting Na-kyum in his arms for emphasis, showing off his prize to the other alpha. Na-kyum for his part, obediently clings to Seung-ho, knowing it’s a crucial moment for them to uphold the act of being an infatuated, lust-drunk pair. 

The bearded man nods curtly. “Follow me and we will talk somewhere more private.”

 


 

Na-kyum walks out of their tiny bathroom after showering to see that Seung-ho had dozed off on one edge of the single bed. He finds himself equal parts surprised and fond that the alpha had let his guard down enough to fall asleep in their shared apartment. Seung-ho must be exhausted from the long evening , he thinks. 

Na-kyum’s thoughts wander back to the fight ring. He knows that he had started off the evening in a testy mood, especially after having dealt with Seung-ho’s insufferable arrogance during their dinner together just days before. However, throughout the match he had come to appreciate the admirable qualities of the alpha policeman. 

Seung-ho had been confident from the start and he had not wavered one bit in the face of an intimidating rival. The journalist had been impressed by Seung-ho’s drive. 

If Na-kyum is being really honest with himself though, he has to admit that that hadn’t been all that had got him excited. As Seung-ho had closed in on his victory, he had looked so feral, so powerful, and so breathtakingly attractive. 

Na-kyum has to shake himself of the reverie. It’s getting harder to differentiate his thoughts from his omegan instincts these days. He wonders where one begins and the other ends.

“Seung-ho,” he calls, gently trying to wake the inspector. Seung-ho had showered before him and currently has nothing on save a thin robe. Na-kyum doesn’t want him to catch a cold like this. The inspector stirs to wake and quickly his eyes snap fully open. Seung-ho wears a severe expression, irritated at himself for having unintentionally fallen asleep. 

As the inspector tries to sit up, he grimaces and lets out a quiet hiss. Na-kyum immediately notices the way that he guards his side. It must be an injury from the match, he surmises. 

“No, no, lie still,” Na-kyum quickly ushers. “I’ll get some ointment and grab you your clothes.” 

Luckily they had had the foresight to pack a first aid kit. It’s a small blessing that Seung-ho doesn’t resist when Na-kyum carefully places some of the pungent salve to the ugly bruise forming under the alpha’s chin. That’s got to hurt. He winces in sympathy. 

Then, Na-kyum carefully looks to Seung-ho for permission when he gently reaches for the edges of the robe. Seung-ho’s deep garnet eyes bore into his own, but the inspector does not deny him. 

Na-kyum’s hands shake slightly as he pries the garment open. He stares intently at Seung-ho’s exposed skin, searching for signs of further scrapes and contusions. His mind feels foggy as his eyes traverse the inspector’s defined torso. No one would be able to contest that Seung-ho is an alpha with his impeccably cut abs and well defined pecs. His whole body is a vessel of power and speaks to a virility that would make any omega’s instincts sing. The longer he stares, the more Na-kyum’s ears feel hot and he dares not meet Seung-ho’s gaze again. 

He gets to work applying more of the soothing balm and wrapping bandages along the way as needed. Seung-ho remains quiet and mostly still as he allows Na-kyum to treat him. The silence reminds the journalist of when he had been creating Seung-ho’s tattoo, except this time the atmosphere between them feels less distant.

The omega doesn’t realize it at first, but as he fusses over Seung-ho, the alpha slowly, unconsciously, begins emitting waves of contented pheromones. 

The calming hint of smoke and sandalwood drifting over Na-kyum encourages him to unveil his own softly floral scent. Even after he has finished applying the last piece of gauze, Na-kyum finds himself letting his hands wander lightly over Seung-ho’s skin. Before either of them is aware of it, the air in the room has become thick with their combined redolence.

It feels so wonderfully warm, and comforting, and right that they naturally gravitate closer together. Seung-ho gradually invades Na-kyum’s space, leaning into Na-kyum’s touch. The omega tilts his head upwards instinctively to bare his neck to the alpha. Seung-ho digs his nose into the sensitive juncture where his scent glands are and inhales. Na-kyum feels his skin flush at their proximity. He can feel Seung-ho’s face just ghosting by his jaw. If he is to just turn his head a fraction—

At the last moment, he has to stop himself. He squeezes his eyes shut and feels a slurry of panicked thoughts suddenly flood his mind. Breathe, just breathe. He tries to remember why it’s important to maintain a distance, a line even. Why it’s imperative—

Seung-ho places a firm and steadying hand over Na-kyum’s waist. The contact is both electrifying and grounding. It’s a lost cause for Na-kyum’s remaining rationality. At Seung-ho’s touch, he cannot help but release a faint purr. It begins as a whisper-soft rumble deep within his chest. His omega is telling him that he is secure, that in the arms of this alpha is a safe space for him. Na-kyum listens.

Little by little, he relaxes his eyelids and feels the edges of contented sleep pulling him in. He absentmindedly flicks off the nightstand lamp and curls further into the space beside Seung-ho. The inspector accommodates his warmth as easily as if it were meant to be. In the back of his mind, Na-kyum’s fuzzy consciousness is surprised, yet pleased that Seung-ho seems to welcome his presence beside him.

He eventually loses track of how long they have been lying in the dark in that twilight zone between wake and sleep.

The sound begins at first as a non-specific vibration. Seung-ho is the first to sense it. He stirs in his position spooning behind Na-kyum. His arms briefly tighten their hold protectively around the omega, before loosening as he is jolted into wakefulness. 

Na-kyum mumbles, “What’s wrong?” He rubs at his eyes in bemusement before his ears pick up the second round of vibrations. Oh!

“Sorry! It’s my phone.” Even though he is oddly loath to pull himself away from the warmth of the sheets—and Seung-ho—he still extricates himself with an apologetic look to the alpha. Seung-ho’s demeanor is difficult to read in the darkness. 

When he locates his phone and sees the caller on his screen he feels his stomach lurch. With one glance he knows that reality has come to chase after him. He turns back to Seung-ho once again and sheepishly says, “Sorry, I should take this.”

He looks around the studio and realizes the only place for privacy is the bathroom. He walks in and shuts the door behind him before pressing ‘answer’.

“Hello, Mr. Jung?”

“How are things going with your investigation? Have you found any information to publish yet?”

Na-kyum bites his lip, a wave of uncertainty washing over him. “I need more time, sir.”

“Na-kyum, you know I don’t pay you to dawdle. A news headline is only as valuable as it is fresh. No one wants to read stale stories.”

“Yes, sir,” Na-kyum replies, anxious to not disappoint. “I just think if I do things right and work with the police, then we can get a bigger story once the full case is complete.”

On the other end of the line, In-hun tuts in displeasure. 

“I gambled a valuable hook up to get you in on this case, Na-kyum. Frankly I don’t care if you find a scandal in the mafia or in the police force itself. These days people are angry that these cops still haven’t solved where the aphrodisiacs are coming from. People want answers. They want to have someone to blame.” 

“But,” Na-kyum cannot help interrupting his boss. “I think the cops are doing their best. In fact, now that I’m working with a cop I’m sure of it.”

In-hun sighs.

“Listen to me Na-kyum, I’m just looking out for you. The sooner you get me a story, the sooner you can get out of there. An omega like you isn’t safe in the backstreets. Sooner or later, a depraved alpha will try to hurt you. Those pompous alpha cops are not an exception. So don’t be gullible, Na-kyum. Alphas will only ever want one thing from an omega like you.”

Na-kyum hears his heart hammering loudly in his chest. What the editor-in-chief had told him wasn’t a revelation. Afterall, it’s what he had been taught all his life. An omega is only good for breeding, for wearing a tight little collar and sitting prettily on an alpha’s cock. 

Yet lately, he finds himself starting to forget these realities. When he is with Seung-ho it’s almost too easy to follow his instincts. 

In-hun’s call is a rude awakening however. It casts doubt that weighs like a heavy cloud in Na-kyum’s mind. Is he just being naive? Is he falling prey to Seung-ho’s pheromones and allowing his omega to drive him to ruin? 

Na-kyum’s head hurts and he isn’t sure of anything anymore.

In-hun’s last words to him resonate like a warning. “I’ll give you a few more days, Na-kyum. You know what you have to do.”

When Na-kyum steps out of the bathroom and tiptoes back to bed where Seung-ho is sitting up and waiting, he feels an awkwardness in the air that wasn’t there before. Na-kyum thinks he sees concern on the inspector’s face. 

“What was that about?” Seung-ho asks. Despite In-hun’s cautionary words, Na-kyum cannot help but feel that Seung-ho isn’t like the evil alphas who would take advantage of and mistreat omegas. He wouldn't, right? Na-kyum knows that Seung-ho cannot find out about what he and In-hun had discussed. He feels a tumultuous war in his chest, a confusing mix of doubt and guilt.

He decides he needs more time to think things over. 

“My boss just wanted an update on the case,” Na-kyum replies, trying to convince himself that he isn’t lying by omission. “I told him we’re still working hard.”

Seung-ho’s expression is guarded and Na-kyum cannot tell if the inspector is suspicious of him. Perhaps he is just projecting his anxieties, the journalist thinks and he tries not to dwell on it. 

He carefully climbs back into the only bed and motions for Seung-ho to also lie down. They’re both on their backs, side to side, but they are no longer holding onto each other. Their intimacy from before now seems to have been a tenuous and fleeting thing. It’s silent between them again. Na-kyum’s thoughts continue to race and he searches for something to say that will keep their earlier connection from disintegrating entirely.

“Are you afraid?” He quietly asks into the still of night. 

“Of what?” 

“That man—Mumyeong—I think he is hard to read.” The journalist says. “What if— what if it’s a trap? What if it’s dangerous? What if they already see through us?” 

Once he starts worrying, it’s hard to stop.

Seung-ho stiffens slightly next to him and the residual warmth in the air recedes a further fraction. “Why do you think they would see through us?”

“...because we’re not real criminals.” Na-kyum’s voice is small and uncertain. It sounds a bit lost and intangible in the dark. “...because we’re not a gangster and his whore... we’re not even—“

“I’m sorry, ” Seung-ho cuts him off suddenly, tone cold. 

“What—?” Na-kyum asks, disoriented as the alpha’s lingering pheromones completely withdraw. The air feels barren and his omega is shaken by the acute loss. 

“I should not have acted like a possessive alpha during the match,” Seung-ho’s words are bitter. Na-kyum feels torn between feeling vindicated by Seung-ho’s admission, yet desperately wanting to contradict him. He is confused as to where Seung-ho’s sudden confession is coming from.

“You’re right,” Seung-ho continues, and a conflicting part of Na-kyum wants to cry out no, no you’re wrong! This feels all wrong!

“I was just caught up in the moment. We aren’t a real pair.” Seung-ho’s words are sharp as glass, yet just as fragile, as if they are on the verge of breaking. “I’m sorry if I made you feel as though I was trying to mate you. This is all just a show for the mission. None of it is real.”

Na-kyum isn’t sure why it’s getting harder to breathe, but he knows that he has to say something— anything, to prevent the painful thing inside his chest from fracturing.

“But we are a pair—,” Na-kyum says the most natural and true thing that comes to his mind. “We are partners. Don’t worry about the stuff that happened during the match. You said you would protect me and keep me safe. I— I trust you.

But Seung-ho won’t even look at him. 

In fact, Na-kyum feels utterly helpless as the bed shifts and the inspector turns his back to him. The small space between them suddenly feels as wide as a chasm.

"Well, maybe you shouldn’t."

Chapter Text

Since last night, the atmosphere between Na-kyum and Seung-ho has been strained, delicate and fragile, like one wrong move could make everything crumble to dust. Seung-ho hasn’t said anything to Na-kyum since his veiled warning and he had gotten ready this morning in silence. Hell, the inspector wouldn’t even look at him. 

However, today they are meeting with Imoogi for the first time and hopefully they would be able to pull themselves together to deliver a convincing act. If they mess up here, everything would be ruined. 

It had been his fault for bringing up useless and uncalled for concerns. Seung-ho hadn’t needed to hear that, especially after having gotten roughed up. He should have kept his mouth shut. Maybe then Seung-ho wouldn’t be acting so cold to him. Na-kyum mourns the loss of the warm, gentle alpha from last night.

Mumyeong had given them an address to meet up and it had taken them almost an hour to find the covert location. From the outside, it’s an unsuspecting yellow house decorated with numerous potted plants, but if you look closer you could see wooden boards blocking the windows and small scattered bullet holes in the painted siding. It’s obviously seen some action.

Seung-ho had made sure they had both taken high quality pheromone blockers that morning to make masking their emotions easier, but he had thoroughly scented Na-kyum’s clothes beforehand as a way to show the gangsters just who the omega belonged to.

Na-kyum hates that he likes it so much. 

The alpha’s rich scent cocoons him in it’s warmth and the black collar with the tiny bell sits snugly around his neck, reminding him that he is no longer Na-kyum, but Kitty — Seung-ho’s pet. 

Seung-ho knocks on the door twice, the definition of composure, and it makes Na-kyum feel better about the situation they are about to get themselves into. If Seung-ho is this calm about meeting some gangsters, then he has nothing to fear.

Na-kyum jumps at the sound of a lock clicking, unintentionally clinging to Seung-ho’s side as the door creaks open. 

An elderly woman greets them, her face kind and welcoming, and she ushers them inside. “Ah, come in, come in. They’ve been expecting you! Would you like some tea? I have chamomile and Earl Grey— Oh my, aren’t you a cutie,” she rambles as she pinches Na-kyum’s cheek. He does his best to smile back, but it must’ve looked forced because she coos at him sympathetically. “Oh, darling, you have nothing to fear. They won’t hurt a lovely boy like you.” 

She escorts them to the kitchen and opens a door that reveals stairs leading down into the basement. “Go on now, they’re waiting.” 

He wavers in the doorway as Seung-ho takes the first step, but Seung-ho is quick to notice and turns around, extending his calloused hand out to Na-kyum. He takes it, grateful for the silent reassurance, and they make their way down hand in hand. 

The first thing Na-kyum notices when they reach the bottom is how cold the room is. He shivers and moves closer to Seung-ho’s side. The basement walls and floor are made up of grey concrete, giving it a prison-like feel. The cage in the corner certainly helps.

Wait, a cage?

His head whips towards the empty steel cage sitting innocently in the back corner, just big enough to fit a person, and freezes when he sees claw marks on the floor and walls surrounding it. Did those come from a person or animal? 

Seung-ho squeezes his hand firmly, reminding him to pay attention and stay alert. They turn the corner and Na-kyum nearly screams in surprise when he sees two brawny and menacing guys—both alphas, from the looks of it—sitting at a metal table in the middle of the room. Save for the table and chairs, the room is barren. 

He recognizes one of the men as Mumyeong, the intimidating guy who had approached them at the fight.

The other one is new. 

Even sitting down, it’s clear that the unfamiliar man is the one in charge. He is an older fellow and while his plain face pales in comparison to Seung-ho’s and Mumyeong’s, he still somehow captivates one's attention. 

“So you're the man Mumyeong told me about, welcome. Please, take a seat,” the older man says, motioning to the two empty chairs across from him. 

They do as they are told and Na-kyum shifts uncomfortably in his seat. The gazes of the two men feel predatory, like they are deciding on how they should devour him. It feels different from when Seung-ho had looked at him. He much prefers Seung-ho’s gaze to theirs. 

When Seung-ho drapes his arm over the back of Na-kyum’s chair, he relaxes, just a little, knowing that the inspector would protect him if anything went wrong. They may not be on good terms anymore, but Seung-ho is an alpha and more importantly, he’s an officer. It’s his duty to make sure Na-kyum stays safe.

“Mr. Kim, is it true that you worked for Pyobeom?” The unnamed alpha asks, shuffling around some papers. Na-kyum catches a glimpse of a portrait shot of Seung-ho on one of them and his heart rate speeds up. They had done their research. 

“Yes. I was an enforcer. I found the people who didn’t pay, roughed ‘em up, and made sure they’d be punctual with payments in the future.”

The older man hums, crossing his arms. “And if they ran away?”

“I hunted ‘em down and killed ‘em.”

“With what?”

“Depends on what I had on me. My preferred choice is my .22 Sicario, but I’ll use a switchblade or bat if I want it to hurt.”

The older man nods approvingly, leaning back in his chair. Na-kyum blinks, his mind trying to catch up to the quick back and forth. Seung-ho must have practiced a lot on his own to make sure his lies would sound smooth and confident. If he didn’t know any better, he would assume Seung-ho is a real gangster.

“How long were you a panther?”

Seung-ho pretends to think for a moment, crimson eyes drifting away from the two men to stare at the grey wall. “I joined when I was 18, so… 7 years?” His act is eerily convincing.

“Why did you join?”

“I needed money,” he responds casually, shrugging his shoulders in mock disinterest. 

“What did you do after Pyobeom disbanded?” 

“I got a part-time job as a bodyguard. I had enough money saved to keep me comfortable for a while, but then I picked him up.” Seung-ho turns to look at Na-kyum with a pointed leer. “Who knew owning an omega was so damn expensive?”

Na-kyum flushes in embarrassment and sinks into his seat, the rowdy chuckles of the gangsters echo in the concrete room. He realizes that he will never get used to this kind of objectifying treatment. 

“Ah, yes, I was wondering where you got that pretty omega of yours. Tell me about him.”

Seung-ho glances at Na-kyum, who instinctively looks away. The awkwardness between them has yet to fade. “I took Kitty in last year after finding him half-dead from starvation in an alleyway. It’s not like I kidnapped him or anything— I mean, he didn’t put up much of a fight. He’s legal, if that’s what you’re worried about.”

The older man raises an eyebrow and asks how old he is and Na-kyum takes the opportunity to speak up for the first time. 

“U-um, I just turned 20, sir.”

Untrue, of course— he’s actually a couple years older. But he’s been told that he could pass for a teenager, so he’s going to use that to his advantage. The gangsters would probably see younger people as more vulnerable and easier to manipulate.

“Do you like living with your alpha?” 

Na-kyum shyly nods, trying to emulate a typical submissive omega. His collar chimes prettily with the movement. “I have a roof over my head, food on the table, and he doesn’t hit me… it’s nice. I’m really lucky to have him as my alpha.” 

It must have worked, because the older alpha’s eyes turn a tad bit softer. 

“You’re such a sweet little thing. Say, Mr. Kim, if you let your omega work nights at our bars, he’d make you a lot of money. A lot of people would pay top dollar to have a taste—”

No,” Seung-ho growls, hitting the metal table with his fist. Na-kyum begins to involuntarily tremble at the ferocity in Seung-ho’s voice, his inner omega shrinking away from the angry alpha. Seung-ho looks absolutely livid, an almost perfect copy of his expression from yesterday during the fight. “He’s my omega. He’s not some cheap whore that peddles his ass out to any pathetic alpha on the street. He’s mine to fuck, mine to claim.”

Oh. Oh. Hearing that inexplicably pleases Na-kyum so much, even though he knows it’s all just empty words… After what had happened last night, he had to admit to himself that he had needed to hear the alpha say that. He needs to hear that he is wanted, that he belongs to Seung-ho and no one else. 

But it’s just instincts, he tells himself. It doesn’t make me less of a person to want to be claimed. We all crave affection and I’m no different. 

Mumyeong and the older man give each other a look before turning back to Seung-ho. 

“You wouldn’t happen to be bonded… would you?”

Seung-ho’s intensity does not die down as he bites out a no. 

“Good. Keep it that way. Bonding complicates things in our line of business. Now,” the man slides a piece of paper towards Seung-ho, “we’ve already run a background check on you and you check out. Today’s meeting was just a way for us to see if you're up to par with our standards. Read the paper and sign if you want to officially become a member of Imoogi.”

Seung-ho furrows his eyebrows at the paper and glares at it as if it personally offends him. “A contract? I didn’t have to sign a contract when I joined Pyobeom.” 

The older man grins, folding his scarred hands in front of his face. He seems pleased at the question. “You see, Mr. Kim, we’re different from your previous group. We’re not just your simple street gang— we’re a business. Consider yourself a contractor. You carry out jobs, we pay you. Simple as that.”

The inspector nods in understanding and takes his time to read through the contract, but the two men don’t seem irritated… in fact, they seem content with his attitude. Maybe they like the careful and thorough types? 

Once Seung-ho signs the contract, the unnamed alpha urges Na-kyum to do the same.

“You’re his omega, so by default you’ll be in Imoogi as well.”

Na-kyum hesitates, the ballpoint pen hovering over the paper. “Um… but I won’t have to… kill anyone, right?”

Both men laugh at the question. Even Seung-ho snorts in amusement.

“No, no, of course not. An omega like you wouldn’t be able to hurt a fly anyways, much less kill somebody. We leave that to guys like Mumyeong.” 

Well, that’s to be expected. Na-kyum turns his attention to Mumyeong, scrutinizing his large frame. A hulking beast of an alpha like Mumyeong is the perfect example of a walking weapon. If he had thought Seung-ho was big, Mumyeong is even bigger. As he stares at Mumyeong, he thinks there’s no way he would be able to go up against the gangster and win… the alpha would crush him. He hopes that he never finds himself on the receiving end of the man’s anger.

Hey— ” Seung-ho snarls, suddenly grabbing Na-kyum’s chin tightly and forcing the omega to look at him. Na-kyum winces at the spark of pain it causes in his neck. “Are you trying to make me mad? Don’t go looking at other alphas. You’re mine .” 

“Yours,” he automatically responds, shoulders going slack. He doesn’t even need to smell Seung-ho’s pheromones to feel the oppressing force of the alpha’s words. Even if this is all part of the act, Na-kyum shamefully feels turned on by Seung-ho’s possessive behaviour.

Seung-ho seems satisfied by Na-kyum’s obedient reply and releases his chin. Na-kyum rubs the area where the inspector’s fingers had dug into his skin and briefly wonders if it’s going to bruise. He hopes not. He didn’t bring a heavy duty concealer to hide bruises, only the basic stuff. 

He glances over the contract and signs at the bottom, handing the pen back to the older alpha.

“Perfect. Now, before you can become an official member, you will have to go through the initiation ceremony. It shouldn’t be that big of a hassle since you’ve done this before,” the man says. Na-kyum looks at Seung-ho, who seems at ease with the implication of his words.

“Can I choose who I take out? I have some unfinished business I’d like to take care of.” 

The man raises an eyebrow, but nods anyways. “After you take care of that, come back here and we will get you branded. Make sure you bring back evidence. Good luck and don’t get caught.”

 


 

Seung-ho is more than content with how the first meeting had gone. If the whole mission goes as smoothly as that did, then he estimates that he could be done within the next month or two. He reminds himself to call Sergeant Kim to thank him for fabricating his background information so thoroughly. 

Na-kyum had played his part really well too. Though, the moment where Na-kyum had practically melted in his hands and had confirmed that he belonged to Seung-ho keeps replaying in his mind. Na-kyum had looked so submissive, like he would roll over and present if Seung-ho had told him to— and God, did he want to.

But he wouldn’t. 

Na-kyum had made it clear that this is all pretend and that he doesn’t see him as his alpha. After his sickeningly possessive act after the fight, he doesn’t blame him. That incident had acted as a reminder to make sure that being around the omega doesn’t get to his head— or worse, his heart.

Seung-ho parks in an empty spot in the lot next to the deteriorating apartment building and turns off the car before stepping out. Na-kyum had been kind enough to loan his rickety car for the mission and it certainly has helped to solidify their image as broke individuals in desperate need of money. The one downside is that the old thing is obnoxiously loud, so they will not be able to do any stealth missions with it.

The quiet omega follows him inside and as soon as they step into their apartment, Na-kyum takes off his collar and places it on the kitchen counter. Seung-ho unconsciously frowns, but gives him space. 

He wouldn’t be surprised if the journalist is upset with him after the proprietorial stunt he had pulled back there, so he takes the opportunity to step into the bathroom to give Jihwa a call.

Jihwa picks up on the second ring. 

“Hello?”

“I need you to get me the address of the child pornography ringleader we attempted to arrest back in July.” 

He’s met with silence for a few moments before Jihwa cautiously asks why. 

“Don’t worry about it.” 

Jihwa sighs and Seung-ho hears some shuffling, some typing, and after a minute or two he finally gets an address. “According to our records, he’s currently staying at 248-6 Jangwi 2(i)-dong, Seongbuk-gu, Seoul. But, Seung-ho… you’re not thinking of doing anything to him, right?”

Seung-ho doesn’t answer. If he did, it could possibly be used against him in a court of law. 

Thankfully, Jihwa changes the subject. “So how is the mission going so far? Is that omega giving you any trouble?” 

The inspector groans aloud before he can stop himself and the beta jumps on it like a rat scrounging around in the dumpster for a scrap of food. 

“See?! I told you that the omega would just be a hindrance! I seriously don’t know why you agreed to let him join the mission, Seung-ho. He’s not even that pretty.” 

Seung-ho bites his lips to hold back the snarl threatening to spill out. His alpha hates the ugly words coming out of the beta’s mouth— fuck, if Jihwa was in front of him, he’s not sure if he would be able to hold himself back from decking him in the face. He is so unbelievably wrong. Na-kyum is the prettiest omega he’s ever seen and if he had to compare, the journalist far outshines the jealous beta cop. 

The omega adds to his credibility as an ex-gangster. No cop in their right mind would allow an omega to tag along with them on an undercover mission. It didn’t take a genius to figure out that having Na-kyum accompany him had been a good decision on his part.

At times like these, Seung-ho questions just why in the hell he had ever slept with the self-absorbed, idiotic beta. 

“Shut up, Jihwa.” 

With that, he hangs up the phone. 

Seung-ho exits the bathroom and sees Na-kyum lounging on the couch, scribbling God knows what down in his journal. Perhaps he is documenting today’s events for future reference? The inspector doesn’t care enough to ask.

Instead, he walks over to his suitcase and pulls out his silenced pistol. He removes the empty magazine and loads it with fresh ammo. If all goes well tonight, he’d only be needing one bullet, but he couldn’t go in carelessly. 

“What are you doing?” Na-kyum’s clear voice rings out in the quiet room.

“Getting ready for tonight.”

The omega makes a noise of confusion, which prompts Seung-ho to turn around and look at him. His heart leaps into his throat when he sees the distressed expression on Na-kyum’s face. His instincts screams at him to comfort the upset omega, but he stays still.

“You’re going to do it tonight?! Seung-ho, you’re still injured, you should heal up before you go out and— and kill somebody. What if you get hurt?” 

Seung-ho sighs and runs a hand through his hair. He wants to get this done as soon as possible. He knows the old man will not be able to hold his own against Seung-ho, so there is no real reason why he shouldn’t do it tonight even if he is still injured.

Na-kyum’s lower lip juts out and his doe eyes widen and Seung-ho can feel the moment his resolve crumbles. 

“Ugh, fine. I’ll do it tomorrow night—” 

Na-kyum’s face brightens and he gives the alpha a dazzling smile. 

“—but, I’m going to do some reconnaissance tonight. It won’t take me long, so you needn’t worry. I will be back before you know it.” 

The journalist doesn’t look happy at that, but at least he’s not upset. Thank God. There is nothing that makes an alpha feel worse than being the cause of an omega’s distress. 

There’s still a couple more hours until sunset, so Seung-ho makes sure the safety is on before he puts the pistol down and walks over to where Na-kyum is sitting. He takes a seat on the opposite end of the couch and turns on the TV, letting himself relax into the faux leather before he has to head out to find the man he plans to kill.

“—just in the last week, twenty five omegas have been hospitalized due to the side effects of the newest drug to hit the streets of Seoul: Aphrodite’s Kiss. When asked to comment on the situation, the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency officially responded that a police report is pending; however, is that enough to keep our community safe? Stay tuned for our more in depth look at Aphrodite’s Kiss after this commercial break—”

Seung-ho’s eyes narrow at the TV and he abruptly turns it off. Na-kyum gives him an odd look, but he pays it no mind. He is more concerned with why Sergeant Kim didn’t tell him about the rising hospitalization cases and public interference. 

Now he has another thing to call Sergeant Kim about.  

 


 

According to his observations last night, the house his target lives in is in a fairly remote area and far removed from nearby residences. That makes it much easier for him to carry out his task. From his research, he knows that the house has two main entrances; a front door and a back door. The front door is an obvious no-go and all the windows are boarded up, so he’s going to have to use the back door. There’s no security cameras to be seen and he’s already disabled the alarm system.

From his records, the pedophile lives alone and doesn’t have any real life acquaintances that would be concerned if he didn’t respond to their calls or text messages. He doesn’t have any registered weapons either. He really is the ideal target.

Seung-ho checks his watch and notes the time— a quarter past midnight. It’s time. He steps out of the shadow he has been hiding in and into the moonlight. The street his target lives on has no light poles, so he must rely on the moon to guide him.

Unseen crickets sing and a crow caws in the distance, but otherwise the night is peaceful. Seung-ho sneaks around the back of the house and kneels at the locked entrance, taking out his lockpicking kit and getting to work opening the door.

It takes only a couple minutes for Seung-ho to hear the telltale click of the bolt sliding free. He waits, and when he hears no other movement on the other side, he slowly opens the door.

The house is dark and eerily silent. It reeks of trash and feces and Seung-ho has to resist covering his nose from the disgusting stench. He already can’t wait to go home and take a scalding hot shower to rid himself of the scent. He pulls out his silenced pistol and clicks the safety off, holding it out in front of him. 

Seung-ho takes a step forward and the floorboards groan with the movement. He pauses, and when no one comes down to check, he continues onward.

Out of the corner of his eye he sees movement and when he whips around to face the direction it had come from, he’s met with a rat scurrying across the ground. He lets out a silent breath of relief and gradually makes his way to the staircase leading to the second floor. Seung-ho is mindful of where he steps, making sure to avoid the path most commonly travelled to minimize the amount of creaking. He gets to the top of the stairs without issue and as he turns the corner, he can see a small ray of light shining through a cracked door. 

There he is.

Carefully, he steps towards the door, staying near the wall. The man does not turn around when Seung-ho slowly pushes the door open with his boot nor when Seung-ho creeps up behind him. He’s wearing noise cancelling headphones and when the inspector gets a brief peek at what he’s watching on his computer, he silently gags. 

Yes, this is why I chose him

A vile creature that gets off on the pain and abusement of children deserves the worst possible death known to mankind. Unfortunately, he does not all have all night, so he is going to have to make this quick. 

Seung-ho raises his gun steadily and stops about an inch away from the man’s head. The pedophile does not react, too absorbed in the video he is watching. 

Without a shred of remorse, Seung-ho pulls the trigger.

 


 

“As expected of a former enforcer— it’s a clean kill.” The unnamed older alpha hands back the phone displaying a photo of the crime scene to Seung-ho and nods in approval. “You got it done sooner than expected as well. You must have been eager to start working,” he jokes.

Seung-ho forces himself to laugh. 

“Well, if you’re ready, we can get you branded today. Oh, and we will have to brand your omega too.” 

Na-kyum looks up at that, and turns to Seung-ho in mock excitement. If Seung-ho looks closely however, he can see the strain in the omega’s smile. “Really? Can I get a tattoo, alpha? Please?” 

He cannot say no. That would look too suspicious. If he is planning on joining Imoogi for the long run, it would only make sense for him to brand his omega too. Na-kyum would not be considered an official member until he also bears Imoogi’s symbol and without one who knows what trouble could occur if other members found out. 

“...fine. But I get to pick where it goes.” Seung-ho demands.

Na-kyum deflates a little at that, but still outwardly seems happy to the untrained eye. Feeling bad that the little omega ultimately had no real choice in the matter, Seung-ho ruffles his hair in sympathy. To his surprise and unexpected pleasure, Na-kyum blushes bright red at his touch.

The alpha’s hand stills for a moment, before falling to rest on the omega’s collared nape. Something tightens inside his chest. He didn’t realize that he had been missing the omega’s honest expressions recently. Seung-ho slowly rubs the black leather beneath his fingertips before slipping his forefinger underneath the protective accessory. He revels in how the omega slackens as his finger gently massages over the sensitive scent gland there.

The inspector freezes when he realizes what he is doing, but cannot find it in himself to pull away. Na-kyum is so pliant and submissive under his touch. So painfully beautiful and vulnerable. If someone had told him a month ago that he would come to crave an omega’s submission so acutely, he would have laughed in their face. 

Now, he is no longer certain, and that uncertainty terrifies him.

Chapter Text

After the initiation rite had been completed, it appears that Imoogi has finally opened its arms to Seung-ho and Na-kyum. They had each received the eponymous dragon tattoos and a few days later, they were also invited to a welcome party.

Seung-ho would be lying if he were to say that he hadn’t been on edge during the wait. He had known that this would be an important event in the development of the case. Over the past few days he had been in close contact with Sergeant Kim to ensure that his and Na-kyum’s coordinates would be known in the event that anything suspicious were to occur at the party as well as to obtain extra protective gear and ammunition. 

He had also asked Kim how the police were handling the situation regarding the group of drugged omegas that he had seen on the news. The sergeant had shared Seung-ho’s concerns about the spread of Aphrodite's Kiss, but all that the senior policeman could tell the inspector was that the investigation was still in its infancy. The sergeant assured Seung-ho that Jihwa and Min had volunteered to lead the investigation and that next to Seung-ho, those two had the most experience with researching the city’s drug trade. He had promised Seung-ho that if he heard further updates from Seung-ho’s colleagues he would be sure to keep the inspector in the loop.

While channeling so much of his energy into advancing the case lately, Seung-ho had intentionally neglected one thing. He had forced his wayward thoughts about his omega partner to the furthest recesses of his mind. He had reminded himself that while he may have had some momentary lapses in judgement, there was no way that Na-kyum has been feeling anything beyond a professional camaraderie with him this whole time. 

The journalist is good at playing the part of the gorgeous and obedient pet of a ruthless alpha thug. Seung-ho tells himself that he should not read anything further into it. He has to focus on their undercover mission especially since the drug problem keeps growing. Luckily, they are one step closer to Imoogi now and on track to finding out more about the aphrodisiac drug. 

 


 

The address that they had been given via an untraceable number leads them to a shady little pub on the outskirts of the city. Their welcome party is in the industrial grounds and Seung-ho understands why the gang would choose such a desolate location for their covert meetup. He and Na-kyum walk up to the pub and proceed past its ramshackle exterior. 

The entryway is small and unremarkable, but there is a beta dressed as a bartender who loiters by a door labeled “employees only”. Seung-ho strides up to him with one hand wrapped possessively over his pet’s waist and confidently says, “I hear good things about your somaek.”

The faux bartender nods in recognition, accepting the code phrase, and holds the back door open for them. 

Once they are on the other side of the unremarkable entrance, the underbelly of the pub opens up to a much larger space than the exterior had belied. The lighting is dim, but they can see a bar and several low tables spaced around the lounge where people sit in pairs or clusters. The music is relaxed and sensual. The air is thick with cigarette and pipe smoke and there is a cloying mix of pheromone scents. 

They try not to stare, but there are certainly couples making out heavily on some of the sofas while others allow their wandering hands to venture to further scandalous places. These patrons must already be drunk on either alcohol or lust. Seung-ho is not surprised that this hidden joint is the kind of place where disinhibition runs rampant.

Seung-ho senses Na-kyum curling closer into his side and he reflexively draws the omega in. He scans the crowd for the Imoogi underling whom they are supposed to be meeting. Eventually, his eyes land on the stocky man who fits the swine-like description that he had been provided with. 

They approach the table nestled in a dark corner of the lounge and slide into the plush loveseat sofa across from the man who they immediately recognize as a beta. 

“Deokjae.” Seung-ho greets tersely.

The beta wears a sneering continence as he attempts to size Seung-ho up while barely sparing Na-kyum anything more than a derisive glance. Seung-ho picks up on how Deokjae makes Na-kyum uncomfortable so he pointedly pulls the omega onto his lap. The inspector has no problem with asserting his confidence in front of the beta henchman by nonchalantly flexing his pecs and intentionally emitting dominant pheromones.

Meanwhile, Na-kyum perfectly plays the part of his master’s simpering omega. He makes himself comfortable sitting on Seung-ho’s thighs and wraps his arms around the alpha’s neck. He hooks his chin over the inspector’s shoulder as he hugs the alpha and molds his body closer. 

Na-kyum glances around the lounge and spies a few curious omegas who have turned their way after having noticed Seung-ho’s uniquely powerful scent. He reacts on instinct to embrace his partner closer and lets out an exaggerated purr to signal both pleasure and intimacy. He isn’t sure what’s gotten into himself but he nuzzles Seung-ho’s neck for good measure until he sees the other omegas withdraw in disappointment.

“Hmmph, so I heard from Mumyeong you defeated the reigning fight king.” Deokjae acknowledges Seung-ho begrudgingly. The alpha maintains a stoic expression as he nods, but in truth he is much more focused on the writhing omega in his lap. It irritates him to think that perhaps he had overdone it with grabbing Na-kyum so possessively. Seung-ho has to really fight to keep his expression neutral however when he feels Na-kyum rub his cheek against his neck, scenting himself with the alpha’s pheromones. 

Seung-ho clears his throat roughly and luckily Deokjae takes it as a cue to move the party along. The beta calls for several bottles of soju and three pints of beer to start. When the drinks arrive, Deokjae proudly flourishes his arms.

“Welcome to Imoogi, Seung-ho. You’ll be working under my orders now as the bosses have assigned you to be my follower.” The beta says smugly. He is obviously the kind of beta who gets off on pushing others beneath him in order to compensate for his colossal insecurities.

As much as Seung-ho would like to drop kick this swine to the floor and show the beta just who is the more powerful of the two, he decides it’s not worth it. All in good time, he thinks. He accepts the pint that Deokjae slides over and pretends to listen as the beta prattles on. Na-kyum also grabs a freshly uncapped soju and sips it while curled in Seung-ho’s lap. 

Deokjae must have had a few too many swigs even before Seung-ho and Na-kyum had arrived because he is unabashedly laying out to air all of his many grievances. He jumps from one topic to the next, complaining about inadequate protection fees to backstabbing loan sharks. He seems to have a particular disdain for the omegas employed by the underground organization as well. 

“...omegas these days, am I right?” Deokjae rants. “Pretending like they’re on the same level as alphas and betas. What a joke. All they do is shake their ass and seduce alphas with their tricks.”

Seung-ho stares sternly at Deokjae, but the Imoogi underling is way too buzzed to feel any shame. Instead, Deokjae narrows his eyes as he glares at Na-kyum. 

“Hey, you! Stop trying to be a proud little bitch, omega. Even your alpha listens to me so if you have any idea where your place is you will bow before me too.”

Seung-ho has had quite enough. There’s only so much of the beta’s idiocy that he can tolerate. Before he can do something to ruin the mood at their welcome party, to his surprise, Na-kyum slides down to the floor of his own accord. 

Seung-ho and Deokjae watch in curiosity as the lithe omega situates himself primly between the alpha’s spread legs. He drapes his arms over Seung-ho’s thighs like a spoiled kitten and pouts at Deokjae balefully. 

“As if I’d get down on my knees for anyone other than my alpha.” Na-kyum hisses.

Then, he snootily turns away from the loathsome beta and goes back to enjoying his beverage while sprawled across Seung-ho’s legs. The inspector has to hide a smug smile as he pets the omega’s soft hair in praise. It’s immensely satisfying to see Deokjae’s face turn three shades of puce following Na-kyum’s retort.

Seung-ho knows that if they don’t want the meeting to head south quite so soon, he should probably redirect Deokjae’s attention. He had noticed since coming into the secret pub that many of the patrons had seemed rather inebriated. Seung-ho is also convinced that he had seen some bottles containing a familiar coral liquid being passed around the groups. 

“You making good money these days, Deokjae?” Seung-ho asks. “People seem keen to receive a kiss from the goddess herself.”

Deokjae finally turns his glare away from Na-kyum and takes a long moment before responding to the alpha’s query. Seung-ho tries not to roll his eyes at the buzzed beta’s excruciatingly slow processing speed. 

Finally, Deokjae laughs. “Hah, you want in on a piece of the pie don’t ya, Seung-ho? Aphrodite's Kiss sure is making our boss a pretty penny lately, and I do get a handsome commission when I deal.”

Seung-ho smiles thinly. He should thank this idiot for bragging so freely about selling illegal drugs. Now that he has this information he can probe deeper. 

“So how do I get involved in the business—” Seung-ho pauses before setting aside his own pride. “—boss?”

The inspector almost flinches when he feels a sudden pressure against his inner thigh. He glances down to his lap and sees Na-kyum rubbing his face against it. The omega’s cheeks appear slightly flushed. Seung-ho wonders if the journalist is already drunk. Na-kyum looks up when he realizes Seung-ho has been distracted from his conversation and he gives the alpha a wide-eyed innocent stare. 

Seung-ho’s heart does a weird jerk and he wonders just what has gotten into the omega. While staring at Seung-ho, Na-kyum deliberately lowers his head into the alpha’s lap again and this time he nuzzles against the alpha’s groin. 

This time Seung-ho’s breath hitches. He is so bewildered yet so turned on.

Deokjae has the audacity to smirk. “Now I get why you’re so eager to make money. I heard about your omega slut from the boss. You probably burn through a lot of cash keeping your own pet.”

Seung-ho both curses and thanks Na-kyum for his impeccable acting. It’s almost torturous trying to focus on what Deokjae is saying. Seung-ho knows that Na-kyum has set him up perfectly to look like the typical brawny alpha who thinks with his dick and who has no ulterior motive other than to spend all his money on his vices— his vice of preference being a rare male omega whore.

“So who’s supplying the drug and when can I start dealing?” Seung-ho asks again. He tries to keep his voice level, but it’s excruciatingly difficult with the way Na-kyum has taken to brushing his lips over the growing hardness in his pants. Seung-ho tries to take away the soju bottle in Na-kyum’s hand, but the omega bats his hand away and holds tightly onto his alcohol.

“Wait, wait, wait. A newbie like you won’t be making any drug money right away.” Deokjae reminds him. “There’s a chain of seniority we follow at Imoogi. If you want a cut of the Kiss cash, you’re going to have to complete more missions until the board assigns you to the drug trade.”

Seung-ho must have looked put out by this, so Deokjae takes some pity on him. “If you want the higher ups to notice you faster, I can think of a few ideas…”

Suddenly, the inspector both hears and feels the opening of a zipper. He looks down in shock as he watches Na-kyum blatantly undoing his fly and reaching into his pants. Seung-ho nearly groans when the omega’s hand grabs the outline of his cock over top of his briefs. 

What the fuck,” Seung-ho breathes out, shocked that Na-kyum would go this far in his act. They had definitely not agreed on this approach. 

Na-kyum pays him no mind and begins to stroke his rapidly hardening member. Seung-ho can see how red the omega’s face is, even his ears are pink from the amount of drink he’s imbibed. Before Seung-ho can curse at the strength of the soju, Deokjae laughs bitterly across from him.

The alpha had almost forgotten the beta was still there. 

“You sure found a salacious one, Seung-ho.” 

Seung-ho ignores the beta and groans as Na-kyum’s grip on his cock tightens and loosens, as if he were simulating the contractions of an orgasming hole. 

“Fuck, kitty,” Seung-ho growls. “We’re in public.”

Na-kyum briefly looks up at him and slowly blinks, lashes fanning coyly over his blushing cheeks. Seung-ho can see how glassy the omega’s eyes are. Na-kyum looks like he’s in a different mindspace, one clouded by lust. 

Not enjoying being ignored while the pair in front of him are engaged in such deplorable acts, Deokjae can’t help inserting himself once more. “Like I said— if you want the higher ups to consider you in the drug business you should give them some incentive.”

Seung-ho finally raises an eyebrow at Deokjae. “Oh?”

Na-kyum decides that now is a good time to pull down Seung-ho’s underwear and fully unveil his aching member. His cock slaps against his abdomen as it’s released from its confines. Immediately, Na-kyum dips his head forward and starts taking enthusiastic licks at the enormous alpha cock. 

Seung-ho breathes out harshly and he isn’t sure whether the buzzed feeling in his head is from the few sips of beer he’s had or whether this is all Na-kyum’s doing. It should be illegal how stimulating Na-kyum’s tongue is as it laves over his swollen penis. He can see his dick getting wet and shiny under the omega’s ministrations. The omega’s pheromones are also starting to fill the air and it makes Seung-ho want to do unspeakable things to him. 

It takes almost every shred of sanity left in Seung-ho to not focus on Na-kyum’s puffy, saliva and precum coated lips. He caresses Na-kyum’s warm cheek and pulls it closer to his cock, pretending like he is still in full control. He tries not to choke when the omega noses his dick and breathes in his musk. In his lap, Na-kyum moans wantonly as he becomes even more turned on by the alpha’s potent scent.

Seung-ho forces himself to ignore Na-kyum to prompt Deokjae. “Spit it out. What can I do to make more money?”

Deokjae smirks as his beady eyes narrow in on Na-kyum. Seung-ho wants to rip out the beta’s throat when he sees a bulge forming in the henchman’s trousers. So even a beta, who can barely smell pheromones, can’t resist Na-kyum, Seung-ho thinks. 

“If you’re willing to share such a rare male omega with the bosses they just might consider promoting you…” 

Before Seung-ho can snarl at Deokjae to fuck off, the wind gets ripped out of him as he feels Na-kyum taking him into his mouth. Na-kyum sucks on his massive cock like it’s a delicious treat and makes the most depraved, wet noises as he swallows around Seung-ho’s length. The alpha can’t help but thread his fingers into Na-kyum’s shiny black locks and pull on them. 

His alpha is ecstatic as he feels Na-kyum nearly choke around his cock. The omega whimpers in between his legs and Seung-ho coos at his teary face. When the inspector eases his hands on Na-kyum’s hair however, the omega continues to suck ravenously on his member. Seung-ho can feel Na-kyum’s naughty tongue, gliding along the underside of his prick while the omega’s throat spasms around his tip. 

Holy shit, Seung-ho thinks. How is Na-kyum so good at giving head? It makes Seung-ho unreasonably angry that the omega is able to give him such maddening pleasure. The omega begins to deepthroat him and does it with vigour. He wonders if Na-kyum has done this before. 

Seung-ho glares at Deokjae and grunts out, “There is. No. Fucking. Way. Anybody else will be touching my omega.” He punctuates each word with a rough thrust down Na-kyum’s warm and velvety throat.

He thinks he is going insane, just hearing the way that the omega is spluttering around his thickness. Seung-ho stares Deokjae down and smiles cruelly at the presumptuous beta. The alpha likes the way that the beta seems to shrink away under the heavy aura of dominant pheromones that he emits. Good. Know your place, he thinks.

Meanwhile, other patrons at the bar are also picking up on the intoxicatingly carnal scents that both Seung-ho and Na-kyum are releasing. By now, the pair are so engrossed in each other that they can’t seem to stop. A group of alphas and omegas sitting at a booth next to theirs are openly staring at the depraved scene in front of them. 

They cannot help salivating as they watch the pretty male omega gagging over his alpha’s cock. Despite his tears, he seems to enjoy pleasuring his alpha immensely. The onlookers can understand why. The tall alpha exudes power and control. His handsome face would make any omega swoon. The voyeurs unconsciously find themselves shifting in their own seats as they feel the heat building in their own loins. 

It’s terribly hard to look away from the licentious view before them. The way that the alpha grips onto his omega’s silky hair with such possessiveness is thrilling to watch. The omega in turn, obediently gulps and drools around his master’s meat. The other alphas wish that they could have such a perfect cocksucking whore of their own, but they can do nothing but stare in envy. It’s utterly indecent the way that the flushed omega reaches down toward his own groin and starts touching himself desperately. He whimpers and writhes between his alpha’s legs like the most enticing sexdoll. 

The scents that the alpha and omega emit are so complex yet compatible. The outsiders have little doubt that the two must be bonded. It’s almost a rapturous moment when the alpha feeds his cock further into his omega’s eager mouth and abuses it with several more demanding thrusts before pulling out and coming generously upon his blissed out face.

It feels like the entire pub is breathing out heavily in time to Seung-ho’s own harsh breaths. The inspector barely feels a trace of guilt as he looks down at the lewd vision before him. The journalist’s face is splattered with ropes of his white spend and Na-kyum stares attentively at him from between his sticky lashes. 

“Fuck,” Seung-ho murmurs. He reaches a hand out to thumb at Na-kyum’s rosy cheeks and he can’t hold back a satisfied smile as he rubs a streak of his cum into his omega’s warm skin. 

The pair almost forget that Deokjae is still there until they hear the groan of the sofa as the beta struggles to get up. Seung-ho and Na-kyum look at the beta with annoyed and surprised expressions respectively.

Deokjae grimaces and awkwardly adjusts his pants. “I’m going to the bathroom,” he huffs. He proceeds to stumble toward the back of the pub, gait unsteady, undoubtedly from all the drinks he had consumed. 

Seung-ho thinks good riddance. Turning his attention back to his immaculately spunk drenched omega, he leers. 

“Where the hell did you learn to suck dick like that?” If he weren’t a little bit tipsy himself, he might have been ashamed at the poorly concealed jealousy in his voice.

Na-kyum hums and wears a dumb smile on his face. “I...may have practiced at home.”

“At home?!” Seung-ho cannot help the sudden wave of anger that washes through him. What the fuck! Did Na-kyum have a boyfriend this whole time?

“Ngh, yeah…” Na-kyum answers, furrowing his brows in confusion at Seung-ho’s agitation. “My heat aids...they make me feel better...they’re so longgg ‘n’ thickkk...they feel really good in my mouth.” 

The more Na-kyum explains, the more turned on he seems to get, reminiscing over his lewd solo activities. Whenever he is in heat, he finds that just having artificial knots is not enough. He thoroughly enjoys sucking on his dildos when he’s trying to get off. He always used to imagine having the real thing, something heavy and hot weighing down his tongue and stuffing his throat full. He thinks he might have an oral fixation.

Seung-ho feels his dick throb at Na-kyum’s confession. Fuck. He had nearly forgotten about heats. He hasn’t been with an omega in so long that the idea of having such an overpowering instinct for sexual gratification feels foreign. He’s always been in control. If he wanted sex he never had a problem getting it on his terms.

Yet the thought of Na-kyum in heat, desperate and pleading, so needy for a knot—his knot, makes him nearly lose his mind. He had just gotten off. He can’t believe he’s already starting to get hard again. He can also smell something overwhelmingly sweet and tangy in the air. He watches Na-kyum trying to discreetly rock back and forth on the floor as his face remains flushed. With a start, Seung-ho remembers that Na-kyum still hasn’t come. 

He feels positively feral at the realization that what he is smelling is Na-kyum’s slick.

Seung-ho feels frantic. His mind is pulling him in all directions. Finally, some practical part wins out. He’s already been given a blowjob in public, so he should at least attempt to preserve what’s left of his and Na-kyum’s decency. Or maybe he just doesn’t feel like sharing anymore. 

“We’re heading home.” Seung-ho states, voice firm. He pulls Na-kyum up from the floor and easily lifts him into his arms, bridal style. 

“W-what about Deokjae?” Na-kyum mumbles, confused and unbearably adorable. 

“Who cares?” Seung-ho mutters. “He’s got my number. He can call when he has a real job for me.”

 


 

The ride home actually helps to cool their heads and their nethers somewhat. 

By the time they arrive back at their quaint little apartment, Seung-ho at least has the sensibility to insist that they both take a shower. Once they had left the sleazy pub, he could distinctly smell the acrid pipe smoke lingering over their clothes. He wants them both to be rid of the pungent scents clouding over their natural pheromones. 

This time, he had let Na-kyum wash first. By the time he steps out from the bathroom, the journalist is already curled up comfortably in their shared bed. In the dim light, Seung-ho finds it hard to tell whether the omega is already asleep. He cautiously slides into bed next to him. 

When Na-kyum doesn’t stir, Seung-ho feels a shade irritated at his own premature expectations. This is probably for the best, the inspector tries to calm himself. Otherwise he might regret what he would do come morning.

All of a sudden, a loud thud shakes their room. Seung-ho immediately pricks his ears in attention, readying himself for a possible threat. The thud repeats itself. Multiple times. 

Na-kyum groans beside him. The omega shifts in the bed and rubs at his eyes as he awakens. 

They both freeze as they continue to hear the rhythmic pounding. They both realize at about the same time that the noise is coming from the wall behind their headboard. 

Then they hear a long, drawn out moan. The sound is muffled by the wall separating them from their apartment neighbours but the words are unmistakable. 

“Ooooooohhh! Fuuuuck! Yes yes yes! Fuck me harder, daddy!”

Na-kyum’s face heats up and Seung-ho stiffens in surprise. Holy shit, these walls are thin.

They both lay in stunned silence for several moments as the undeniable slamming of the bed frame against the wall continues. 

“Ooh daddy, please. Please, I need you, I need your fat cock so bad.”

Something about the depraved words lights a fire within Na-kyum. The omega can’t help releasing a quiet groan. He gasps when he catches the perverse noise escaping past his lips, hoping he hadn’t been too loud. However, Seung-ho’s impeccable hearing catches it. 

The alpha turns in bed to face him and Na-kyum tries to look anywhere except Seung-ho’s face.

“Please daddy, pound my pussy harder! Please, I’m so wet for you!”

This time Na-kyum utterly fails to hold back a desperate whine. 

“Fuck,” Seung-ho groans. He’s certain he smells Na-kyum’s slick again. He can’t help reaching out and pulling the omega closer towards him. The alpha digs his face into Na-kyum’s neck and aggressively scents him. He has such an overwhelming urge to cover the needy omega entirely in his scent. “You want this don’t you?”

Na-kyum keens in Seung-ho’s grasp. He wants it. He wants it so bad. 

“Please,” This time it’s Na-kyum whimpering out the supplication. “Please. I want— I want you.”

“What do you want?” Seung-ho asks, voice hoarse and dangerous.

“I want you to breed me, daddy. ” 

The alpha within Seung-ho is fueled by blinding lust at the omega’s plea. Seung-ho doesn’t wait before pulling down Na-kyum’s soft pajama bottoms. He can’t wait. It’s like there’s an electric spark that shoots through both of them from the moment Seung-ho’s fingers brush against the inside of Na-kyum’s smooth inner thigh. 

Na-kyum shivers in anticipation under Seung-ho’s touch. The alpha glides his finger more insistently against the soft skin, dragging it closer and closer toward the omega’s most sensitive area. 

The soft gasping sounds Na-kyum makes turn Seung-ho on so much. It takes everything within him not to bite down on the omega’s supple neck. He breathes in Na-kyum’s charged pheromones and drinks in the heavenly perfume of lemon and jasmine. He has never felt so obsessed with anyone before. 

“Please,” Na-kyum begs again. His desperation is like a symphony to the alpha’s ears. “Touch me, alpha. I need you to help me cum.”

Seung-ho finally grips onto the omega’s dick and Na-kyum cries out at the sensory overload. He tries to pull his tiny hips away, before buckling into Seung-ho’s fist again. Seung-ho tightens his hold and takes immense pleasure in feeling the slide of the omega’s cute little prick slip in and out of his palm. Na-kyum is leaking from his tiny omega cock and spilling all over Seung-ho’s hand.

“You’re so naughty baby,” Seung-ho purrs as he thumbs teasingly over Na-kyum’s tip. The omega whines as he thrusts wantonly into his alpha’s large fist, trying to chase his release.

Seung-ho tuts in disapproval and loosens his grip on Na-kyum’s member. The omega’s eyes pop open when he loses the addictive pressure that had encapsulated his cock just moments before. 

“W-why did you let go?” His eyes stare beseechingly at his alpha. 

The fire in Seung-ho’s belly is stoked brighter and brighter with every indication that Na-kyum wants him just as much as he wants the omega. He brings his much larger cock next to Na-kyum’s smaller omega prick and grabs for Na-kyum’s hand. 

He makes sure the omega’s smaller fingers are wrapped around both of their lengths. Na-kyum needs to use both his hands because he can’t fully grip Seung-ho’s cock with just one. 

“If you want to come, rub both of ours together.”

Seung-ho guides Na-kyum’s smaller hands as they rub over both of their dicks together. By now, there is so much copious leaking from both of their swollen members that it is more than enough lubrication to allow their hands to glide over their cocks. The feeling of Na-kyum’s tiny, sensitive member pressing against his much larger prick makes Seung-ho feel so powerful. Between the tunnel made by both of their hands, Seung-ho thrusts against Na-kyum. The omega cries out at the drag of the alpha’s heavy cock against his own, the pleasurable pressure sending off fireworks behind his eyelids.

“Ohh fuuuck,” Na-kyum moans. He wants to come so bad. The messy glide of their naked cocks between their abdomens is so hot, but Na-kyum wants more. He ruts his small dick uselessly against his alpha’s swollen cock and he yearns for that fat cock to be inside of him.  

Finally, in a desperate attempt, Na-kyum reaches out to grab one of Seung-ho’s hands. He pulls insistently and guides Seung-ho’s hot fingers further back, behind his tiny prick. He allows the alpha’s hand to drag over his most intimate place. Na-kyum cannot help grinding his hips down until Seung-ho’s index finger brushes right over his twitching hole. 

“God you’re dripping wet!” Seung-ho groans. He thrusts his hips harder and squishes Na-kyum’s small prick between their messy abdomens. “Fuck, you’re leaking your slick all over my hand.”

Both of them are panting hard, incredibly turned on by the immense stimulation. Neither had ever felt such want for anything or anyone before this moment. The urge to be connected and to make each other cum was overwhelming.

“Oh god, alpha, oh god,” Na-kyum blabbers as Seung-ho’s digit grazes over his spasming entrance again. “Please daddy. I want you to fill me up inside so bad. Please finger my tight little pussy.”

Seung-ho nearly tips over the edge at Na-kyum’s filthy begging. He presses his digit against the omega’s twitching rim, before finally pushing in. The constricting heat is unbelievable. Seung-ho gives Na-kyum what he asks for. He fucks open the omega’s soaking hole with his finger while continuing to grind against Na-kyum’s groin. 

“Is this what you want you little slut?” Seung-ho growls, nipping Na-kyum’s ear. “You like making alphas go crazy with this whorish pussy of yours? I bet you want an alpha to fill you up don’t you? Tell me, how many alphas have you let cum inside of you?”

Na-kyum’s crying at the indescribable pleasure of having Seung-ho’s thick finger thrusting into his ass while feeling completely at the mercy of the alpha’s heated words at his ear.

“No— no one,” Na-kyum gasps out. “I-I’ve never h-had sex before.”

“You’re lying!” Seung-ho immediately retorts. There is no way that such an enticing omega has never been had before. His brain won’t allow him to comprehend it.

“I’m telling the truth,” Na-kyum sobs as he struggles between rubbing himself against Seung-ho’s cock or pushing his ass further down onto the alpha’s index. “Daddy please— please believe me. I only want you to be the one to knot me and pump me full of your seed. Don’t you want me too? Don’t you want to breed me full of pups?” 

Na-kyum’s omega is rambling so hard, doing everything he can to convince his alpha to stay with him and to claim him. Na-kyum’s words are like an incantation. They make Seung-ho’s alpha yearn to dominate and impregnate. 

With one more desperate groan, both Seung-ho and Na-kyum cum together. Their climax is blinding. Na-kyum spurts out thick rivulets all over their bellies and Seung-ho’s cum mixes filthily with his. 

Na-kyum’s breaths are initially ragged, but eventually settle as the soothing post-orgasmic bliss washes over him. The omega instinctively nuzzles closer in towards the alpha before starting to doze off. Seung-ho stares in wonder at the pliant omega for a brief second. Then he gently presses a kiss to the omega’s closed eyelid, for once allowing himself to let his guard down and indulge in the moment.

Before he allows sleep to overtake him as well, he reaches a hand between their sticky torsos to scoop up some of the cum. Then he drags his open palm across Na-kyum’s belly and his sides, rubbing the musky fluids into the omega’s soft skin. It gives his alpha intense satisfaction to drench the omega in his essence. He wants the scent of him to linger over the omega for days on end so that there would be no mistaking who Na-kyum belongs to. 

Chapter Text

Seung-ho is gone from the apartment before Na-kyum has the chance to wake up.

The guilt from last night has finally caught up with the alpha. 

The very thought of what the omega will say to him once he is in the right frame of mind and can understand what Seung-ho had done to him makes his stomach churn with trepidation. He dreads to see what expression Na-kyum will make once they inevitably face each other again— will it be full of disgust? Or anger? Perhaps—even hatred. 

Na-kyum had made it very clear that he despises his role as a whore, but Seung-ho had taken advantage of his intoxicated state and… and assaulted him. 

It doesn’t matter that Na-kyum had come onto him first, he should have stopped the omega before he had gone too far. But he hadn’t. And he had enjoyed it. He had enjoyed seeing Na-kyum’s face covered in his cum and the blissed out expression as he had face-fucked him. God, and how he had begged with tears streaming down his pretty face for Seung-ho—no, for his daddy —to breed him full of pups… 

Seung-ho wants to ruin him. 

He wants to pound his tight boy-pussy until the omega begs him to stop, whining that he’s too overstimulated, that he can’t cum anymore— and then he’ll coax another orgasm out of him from sheer force alone. That would be such a pretty sight, his omega cumming on his cock, head thrown back in ecstasy as Seung-ho’s knot swells deep inside of him. He wants to ruin the cute little virgin until he can’t go a day without his alpha’s cock. 

His fangs still ache with the desire to bite, to claim Na-kyum and make sure that the omega forever belongs to him. Oh how he would love to breed him, just like how he’d asked.

Seung-ho stops walking, realizing with horror the lustful turn his mind had taken when he is supposed to be feeling guilty about what had occurred last night. 

What the fuck is wrong with him?

Seung-ho grits his teeth and continues marching onward to the meeting place Deokjae had told him about. In his drunken state, the beta had managed to leave him a colorfully-worded voicemail that his first mission would take place the next morning. He hadn’t told Seung-ho what he would be doing, but that doesn’t matter. 

The inspector tells himself he needs to focus. All he needs to do is to complete any missions that they give him, get approved by the Imoogi board to start selling Aphrodite’s Kiss, find out who the supplier is, take them down, and then he will finally be rid of Na-kyum and this entire gangster business.

Although the thought of having Na-kyum gone makes him feel sick, Seung-ho pushes it aside and blames it on his instincts. I don't actually like the journalist— it’s just because he’s an omega , he tells himself for the umpteenth time. 

Fuck. 

It sounds like bullshit even to him. 

Seung-ho rounds the corner and spots Deokjae leaning against a nearby wall, hunched over. He slows down and warily inspects the hungover beta. The last thing he wants to deal with is a cranky and possibly nauseous gangster. 

Deokjae looks up when he hears Seung-ho approach, his swine-like face contorting in irritation. 

“Took you long enough to, ugh—” he gags, “get here newbie.”

Seung-ho checks his watch— he’s actually ten minutes early, but he decides to not tell the beta that. 

“We’re gonna be doing our rounds, making sure nobody is startin’ up shit with the local shop owners. They rely on us for protection after all, for a cost.” Deokjae straightens and cracks his neck in an attempt to look tough and nonchalant. It doesn’t work. 

“We’re not collecting fees?” Seung-ho asks, genuinely curious. 

Deokjae sneers and shakes his head. “Fees are due at the end of the month. Plus, there should be at least three of us when we go ‘n collect.” 

Seung-ho fights the urge to roll his eyes and nods instead. 

“Alright. Lead the way… boss.” 

 


 

Na-kyum wakes up alone to a cold bed. 

He barely has a moment’s reprieve before the memories hit him like a firetruck.

His head is pounding, his throat is dry, and he feels nauseous. The events of last night flit through his mind like a movie— oh god, I sucked Seung-ho off in public. He came on my face. We jerked each other off. I asked him to breed me— OH MY GOD .  

Mortified, Na-kyum sits up and lets everything sink in.

He had been doing so well at ignoring his instincts screaming at him to make a move on the attractive alpha, but a couple shots of soju had made everything fall apart. Seung-ho must think he’s just another omega whore, desperate for any cock thrown their way… 

Though… where is Seung-ho?  

The alpha hadn’t left him, had he? With dread, Na-kyum thinks he must have gone too far last night. What if Seung-ho is disgusted with him for what he had done? Then again, the alpha hadn’t sounded that disgusted last night… 

He looks around and to his reassurance, there are small traces of Seung-ho littered throughout the room. His jacket is strewn over the arm of the couch, his cologne is on the nightstand, a box of alpha scent blockers are on the dresser, his slippers are by the balcony door… 

Nibbling his lip, Na-kyum slips out of bed and shuffles to the bathroom, pausing to inspect his naked body in the mirror. Dried semen and slick decorates his flaccid cock, stomach, and thighs in disgustingly crusty chunks. 

Gross .

He sniffs his hand and to his pleasant surprise, he still smells of Seung-ho. The scent of an alpha’s cum does last for days even with washing. Na-kyum begins to salivate when recalling how musky and sweet the alpha’s cock had tasted on his tongue. He’s already craving a taste of the alpha’s seed again, but his rational side tells him to ignore his thirst. It’s not like it’s ever going to happen again so he should not even entertain the thought.

After a quick shower, Na-kyum slips on a pair of sweatpants and an oversized tee—on closer inspection, it seems to be one of Seung-ho’s—and makes himself breakfast before taking an Advil. He debates swallowing a scent blocker before deciding against it. It’s not like he’s going to go out today. His toes twiddle as he chews a piece of toast and he checks his phone for any updates from the missing inspector.

Nothing.

No text message, no voicemail, absolutely nothing. He hadn’t seen any handwritten notes either. Where had Seung-ho gone?

The anxiety he’s been so desperately trying to avoid creeps up on him and reminds him of his biggest insecurities— as a male omega you probably can’t give your alpha any pups. You’re useless. You’re unworthy of love. No one will ever want you. Just face it; the only alpha you have ever slept with abandoned you the morning after… 

He feels like crying. 

If anything, he should have expected this. At no point did Seung-ho show signs of liking Na-kyum. If anything, he has always kept him at a distance, like he hadn’t wanted to get too close to Na-kyum in fear of something like this happening. Hell, the inspector hadn’t even cleaned him up afterwards. Seung-ho had left him all alone in their shared bed, dirty and sullied by their finite moment of passion, like a forgettable one-night stand.

Without Seung-ho’s presence to distract him from the small voice in the back of his head whispering these morbid thoughts, his mind begins to slowly slip into a blackhole of self-loathing. 

Na-kyum doesn’t know what to do. He can only set his phone on the table, face up, turn the ringer on, and wait.

 


 

They finish their rounds by noon but before Seung-ho can leave, Deokjae pulls him aside. “You said you’re interested in the Kiss cash, right? Have ya ever sold before?” 

Seung-ho pauses to think. There’s a couple of different answers he could give, but one seems the least likely to raise suspicion or to provoke detailed follow up questions. 

“No, but I’ve bought before.” 

Deokjae nods and pulls out a glass vial filled with a familiar coral liquid from his jacket. He waves it in front of Seung-ho. “This tiny thing cost me 100,000 won and it’s only 2 ounces of liquid. So, naturally, I’m gonna be selling it for double that. Ya gotta be smart when you make your sales. You’re new, so it wouldn’t be surprising if ya got scammed or robbed during your first few deals. Any money lost is on you.” 

A grey, beat up car rounds the corner and pulls up next to the pair. The window rolls down and there sits an older alpha male, probably in his mid-thirties, and Seung-ho’s nose scrunches at the putrid stench wafting out of his foul car. The man’s car is filled to the brim with garbage, empty wrappers and general trash littering the floors and seats. If he looks closely, he can see a couple of used condoms on the dashboard. Disgusting.

The man hands the beta four 50,000 won bills and Deokjae counts them before handing him the vial of Aphrodite’s Kiss. 

And with that, the man drives off. 

Something about this seems extremely ironic to Seung-ho. As an inspector, it goes against all his morals to watch a drug deal happen right in front of him and to do nothing about it. 

But he's not here to stop one drug deal. He’s here to take down a drug empire built on the suffering of unsuspecting omegas. An image of Na-kyum, lust-drunk sucking his cock, flashes in his mind for a brief moment and Seung-ho nearly shudders. He fears to think of the journalist becoming another victim of the infamous aphrodisiac. If Na-kyum had become that lascivious from only alcohol, Seung-ho can’t imagine what the omega would be like if he ever got some of that drug in his system. 

Deokjae turns to Seung-ho, looking smug, and says “See? It’s that easy.”

The inspector nods once, unconvinced. “Easy...” he echoes.

 


 

After an hour of nothing, Na-kyum gets up out of his chair to stretch his stiff legs. He pours himself a glass of orange juice and stares at the entrance. He would unlock it, but Seung-ho had stressed that the door should stay locked at all times. 

He had also said that Na-kyum should have a weapon of some sort nearby in case of an intruder; however, Na-kyum feels like that was unnecessary. The people they have briefly seen in the area had avoided them. He doesn’t blame them— Seung-ho looks threatening and it is no secret that Imoogi had personally scouted the ex-panther to join their gang. Who in their right mind would try to rob a gangster?

He won’t lie and say that he feels safe being alone in the apartment. What comforts him is knowing that Seung-ho will be back soon, even though he doesn’t know exactly when. Na-kyum briefly considers going back to bed, but he knows that with all his worries he will not be able to fall asleep. If only the stupid alpha would just text him already… 

With a dejected sigh, Na-kyum grabs his leather journal and pen from his bag and makes his way to the couch. He takes a sip of his juice once he sits down and flips to the last page he had written. 

His journal is dedicated to documenting any information he learns about the cases he takes on and any theories he might have regarding them. The last couple of pages have all been statistics about Aphrodite’s Kiss and the victims involved. So far, around two thousand people have died from the aphrodisiac due to the side effects or simply overdosing. The number of people currently hospitalized and going through treatment is half that, which is very concerning considering it is a new drug that has only been around for a year or two.

Aside from the data, he has also been recording his experiences interacting with the gang members and what Seung-ho has been doing as well. He still shudders to think that Seung-ho had killed a man in cold blood. The officer had not seemed rattled the night he came back, but he had taken an awfully long shower. Na-kyum didn’t have the heart to ask what had happened.  

The omega wavers on whether to write down the events of last night, however in the end, he decides to do it. He is an investigative journalist afterall, anything and everything could be useful to him in the long run.  

It takes almost an hour for Na-kyum to describe the welcome party in full. He blushes while detailing the raunchy parts but carries on in the name of journalism. Inhun had chosen him to be his pupil despite the backlash and Na-kyum could not let his mentor down. He needs to prove that he is worthy of his occupation despite being an omega. 

He nods to himself as he reads through his past entries, already drafting the manuscript in his head. He has yet to begin writing the comprehensive document Inhun had requested from him but he has a good idea of what he wants to detail. 

Although, the pit in his stomach just won’t go away. 

Seung-ho’s absence feels heavier and heavier with every passing minute. The room feels too empty, too cold, and lacks the warmth the alpha had brought with him whenever he was around. 

Dejectedly, Na-kyum wonders when will Seung-ho come home?

 


 

Seung-ho wavers outside of their apartment door, keys in hand. A million thoughts run through his mind. What is going to be waiting for him on the other side? Will it be an angry omega? What if Na-kyum decides to ignore him? 

...Is Na-kyum even there? What if he left?

A jolt of panic runs through him and he unlocks the door in haste, stepping into the cramped studio apartment.

The first thing he sees is Na-kyum pacing in front of the doorway, wringing his hands nervously. The studio reeks of anxious omega and Seung-ho feels a sudden pang of guilt from having left the omega alone. Na-kyum turns at the noise and freezes when he sees Seung-ho. He stares at the alpha with wide eyes. 

Seung-ho waits for the screaming, for the anger and accusations, but instead he’s met with a meek and unsteady voice. 

“Where were you?”

“...I was out. I had my first mission.” Seung-ho hears his heart pounding in his ears.

Na-kyum bites his bottom lip—judging by how red and raw his lips are, it seems that he’s been chewing away at them all morning—and crosses his arms. It’s only then that Seung-ho recognizes the shirt that the omega is wearing. 

It’s his shirt. 

The omega is wearing his shirt. 

He is so preoccupied with the epiphany that he barely hears the next question.

“Why didn’t you tell me?”

It takes longer than Seung-ho cares to admit to answer. All he can think about is how fucking sexy Na-kyum looks wearing his t-shirt. Why is it always so hard to concentrate when Na-kyum is around?

“You were asleep and I didn't want to wake you.”

Na-kyum frowns and doesn’t meet Seung-ho’s gaze. The anxiousness in the air doesn’t dissipate at his answer— if anything, the omega looks more upset. “You could have left me a text message or something. I was worried.”

The journalist is right, but Seung-ho doesn’t want to admit it. He already knows he’s a shitty alpha; after all, no alpha worth their knot would leave a vulnerable omega alone after sex. Omegas are sensitive to stuff like that. The guilt from before rises up like a tidal wave and crashes down upon him, leaving behind the subsequent anger directed towards himself. 

Before he can stop himself, he bites out, “Would it have a difference?”

“Yes, it would have—“

Seung-ho cuts him off with his hand, frustrated. “Just drop it. I’m back now, aren’t I?”

“That’s not the point! We’re partners, you’re supposed to tell me this stuff—”

“PARTNERS DON’T SEXUALLY ASSAULT EACH OTHER!” 

Na-kyum flinches at Seung-ho’s sudden roar and unconsciously takes a step back to avoid the alpha’s wrath. Seung-ho pants, like he had just run a marathon, and clenches his fists so tightly that his knuckles turn white.

The silence stretches on for what feels like hours. 

“I-I’m sorry,” Na-kyum tearfully says, finally breaking the awful silence. “I was drunk— I know that’s not an excuse, but…” Na-kyum lets out the most heartbreaking sob and begins to pathetically bawl. “I’m so, hic , sorry,” he wails and Seung-ho has never been more confused. 

Why is he apologizing? 

“What? No! Na-kyum, it’s my fault, I should have stopped you. I-I’m the one who assaulted you. You were drunk, I wasn’t, it was my responsibility to not let it get that far.”

Na-kyum just shakes his head, his body trembling violently with the force of his weeping. The air grows dense and almost sickening from the volume of distressed pheromones Na-kyum is exuding. The only thing Seung-ho can do in response is to try and slowly release calming pheromones of his own.

“No, I’m the one who came onto you… you don’t even like me… who would want me anyways, I’m just a—” another sob wracks Na-kyum’s body, effectively cutting him off. The omega’s knees buckle but before he can hit the ground, Seung-ho catches him. 

The inspector’s mind is whirling with astonishment and concern. Where did this come from? Has Na-kyum been this anxious the entire time? He’s the one who doesn’t like me, so why…?  

Seung-ho thinks back to that quiet, hesitant question asked the night after the underground fight. At the time he had thought Na-kyum’s anxiety was because of how uncomfortable he had been with Seung-ho acting like they were a pair and how it had made him feel like a whore. Now Seung-ho wonders if he had been projecting his own insecurities all along. Maybe at that time, Na-kyum had truly only been talking about his anxiety over their mission.

If that is the case, then he feels like the biggest asshole ever. 

Look at me ,” Seung-ho commands. It’s his first command on the journalist, but it works, and Na-kyum looks up obediently with glassy hazel eyes. 

“I like you, Na-kyum. The problem here is me, not you. I’m the one who can’t hold back. You’ve been testing my self-control from the beginning and it certainly isn’t because you’re tiresome to be around.”  

Na-kyum sniffles and the unsettling pheromones recede a little. He looks a little hopeful and Seung-ho’s heart clenches painfully. Even when crying, Na-kyum looks beautiful.

“You like me?” The omega asks in a small voice.

Instead of replying, Seung-ho pulls Na-kyum into a hug. The omega melts in his arms and to Seung-ho’s immense satisfaction, he’s small enough where Seung-ho can completely engulf him with his larger body. They stay like that for a bit and Seung-ho rubs the journalist’s back in what he hopes is a comforting manner. 

Something inside of him clicks and Seung-ho can no longer deny the attraction he feels towards the journalist. He needs Na-kyum, he needs to be able to hold the omega like this to satisfy his alpha instincts that have been screaming at him since the beginning to claim the omega. Sighing, he buries his nose in Na-kyum’s hair which smells of the shampoo they share. Thankfully, the distressed pheromones from earlier are finally gone and are replaced with a more neutral, yet happy scent.

“Yeah,” he murmurs. “I like you.” 

Na-kyum clings onto him tightly and shakily exhales, “Me too.”

“Fuck,” Seung-ho breathes out. “Say it again.”

The omega pulls back, reddened cheeks still shiny from his tears, and whispers “I like you, Seung-ho.”

Seung-ho leans down and captures Na-kyum’s lips with his own, gentle and sweet, which is what his omega deserves. He doesn’t want to rush this. The journalist needs to understand that he wants more than just a quick fuck out of him. Na-kyum’s lips are plush and so, so soft, and Seung-ho would be more than happy to spend the rest of his life kissing the doe-eyed omega. 

Na-kyum’s fragile arms wrap around his neck to pull him down further and the room erupts in a sweet explosion of their combined scents. 

He gently pries Na-kyum’s pliant mouth open and sucks on his tongue. The smaller man lets out the cutest keen at the sensation and Seung-ho pulls back to catch a glimpse of the look of rapture that graces his omega’s face. 

“You taste like orange juice,” the inspector rasps. 

“I drank some earlier,” the journalist breathlessly confesses. 

With a benign smile, Seung-ho picks up the blushing Na-kyum and carries him to the couch. He carefully sits down and makes sure his omega isn’t too jostled by the movement. Na-kyum makes himself comfortable on his lap, tilting his head to nuzzle Seung-ho’s scent gland. The alpha inclines his head to give the omega more access and closes his eyes once he feels the soft touch of Na-kyum’s nose against his neck. The inspector is briefly reminded of when Jihwa had attempted to seduce him in the police department’s restroom and how the beta had utterly failed. He almost laughs at the difference between the two.

A beta does not compare to the comfort an omega can bring. This feels right . Even without having the omega writhing naked underneath him, he’s so immensely satisfied with just holding him in his arms. 

The undeniable aroma of a content omega invades his senses and Seung-ho relaxes against the couch. His chest begins to rumble unprovoked and it takes a second for Seung-ho to realize that he’s purring. 

Purring .

When was the last time he had purred? 

It must have been back when his mother was still alive, which was more than a decade ago. Not wanting to go down that dark path, Seung-ho focuses on the pretty omega in his lap. He drags one of his hands up and down Na-kyum’s thigh and relishes in how he squirms when Seung-ho lightly squeezes it. 

He moves his hand upwards and slips it underneath the omega’s shirt and nearly moans at how soft his pale skin is. Na-kyum squeaks in surprise and bats his chest lightly. 

“I’m ticklish, don’t,” he whines. 

Seung-ho huffs out a laugh but relents, instead choosing to rest his hand on the gentle curve of the omega’s waist. 

“Seung-ho?”

“Yeah?”

“Why did you become a cop?”

Seung-ho squeezes Na-kyum’s waist. He hates talking about his family, but he feels as though Na-kyum should know. “My father wanted me to follow in his footsteps to become a politician like him.” 

The omega listens attentively. “Is your father the governor?”

Seung-ho nods. “When I was a kid, he would take me to all of his fundraisers to listen and learn about politics, but I saw what he did behind closed doors, all the deals he made with corrupt businessmen to further his own agenda. He didn’t care if they laundered money or participated in sex trafficking— as long as he got a good endorsement and handsome money, he would turn a blind eye to the terrible things happening in front of him. He’s a despicable man with the greyest moral code I’ve ever seen.” 

Na-kyum falls silent, shocked by Seung-ho’s unexpected confession. It takes a while for him to soak in the information and he absentmindedly plays with the alpha’s shirt in the meantime. 

“That… sounds awful.” 

Seung-ho’s expression is somber. “Yes, it was. That’s why I became an officer— to take down people like my father.” 

A sweet citron scent gently wafts towards him and Seung-ho closes his eyes, letting his head fall back to rest against the couch. It takes so little to calm him down nowadays. He remembers the days where he would spend hours decimating punching bag after punching bag, but the anger would rarely fade. It’s always there, simmering under the surface, waiting for the moment where Seung-ho loses his cool and inevitably explodes. 

All he hopes is that Na-kyum is never around to see it happen.

“You know…” Na-kyum starts, causing Seung-ho to open his eyes and look down at him. “All my life I’ve been told that I wouldn’t amount to anything. I’m an omega and an orphan, and there’s usually only one line of business people like me find themselves in.”

His bitter tone doesn’t escape Seung-ho. The alpha frowns and begins to slowly rub Na-kyum’s waist. He can’t imagine what it must have been like to experience that kind of blatant sexism from such a young age and to have to endure it for so long. Those attitudes can really fuck up a person’s mental health and perception of self worth. 

“And that’s why I’m so proud to be a journalist. I’m proving all those assholes wrong that told me I’m only good for keeping a knot warm. I’m not defined by my upbringing and neither should you be.”

Seung-ho leans down and kisses his omega softly on his forehead, whispering a reverent thank you. 

Sunlight streams in through the blinds and Na-kyum’s eyes droop. Seung-ho takes it upon himself to maneuver them so that they’re laying down on the couch with the omega resting comfortably on his chest. He fondly watches as his partner drifts off into a nap and before he knows it, he’s falling into a dreamless sleep as well. 

Chapter Text

There is a smile already on Na-kyum’s lips as he rouses from his nap. The afternoon sunlight filters through the blinds in a soft orange glow. He tilts his head and sees Seung-ho’s still sleeping face just inches away from his own. His heart seems to expand inside his chest until it almost feels like there’s barely enough room to contain it. 

Seung-ho’s rare contented expression is so beautiful to observe. Usually, the inspector’s handsome features are sharp and stern. Seung-ho has always had the kind of aura that had inspired admiration and deference. Yet, this side of Seung-ho is one that the cop never shows the outside world and Na-kyum cannot help the fond feelings it evokes inside of him to know that Seung-ho trusts him enough to finally let his guard down.

Na-kyum only hesitates briefly, before he gives in to his own desires. 

He presses a gentle kiss to Seung-ho’s cheek. It is enough to cause the alpha’s full lashes to flutter several times before springing open in surprise. Na-kyum finds himself entranced by the bright garnet eyes that stare intensely back at him. 

Then slowly, Seung-ho blinks and his sensuous mouth subtly curls upwards. 

A rush of air escapes Na-kyum’s lips when he feels a warm hand cupping his cheek. Seung-ho takes his time coaxing Na-kyum to lean closer. Finally their lips meet and Na-kyum’s heart nearly bursts from happiness just from their kiss. There is nothing dramatic or aggressive about it, but somehow kissing Seung-ho feels just right. When they connect like this, Na-kyum feels as though the universe has brought them both together for a reason.

The feeling he has when it comes to Seung-ho seems to transcend the physical. He knows that Seung-ho must feel it too, otherwise they would not keep pulling away before coming together again. In fact, he has a feeling that his omega has known that they were meant to find each other long before his conscious mind had arrived at this conclusion. 

Now both sides of his identity feel at ease. When he and Seung-ho crash into each other, it is as though both of them are splintered into a million indiscrete glittering pieces. Then they build themselves back up, intricately weaving the fabrics of their souls together into something stronger and more radiant. 

 


 

When they have both had their respective afternoon coffee and tea, Seung-ho and Na-kyum receive an update from Sergeant Kim. The senior police officer tells them that they have received preliminary results from the forensic labs detailing some unique properties of Aphrodite's Kiss. 

Interestingly, the active compound seems to be one bearing similarities to oxytocin, the well characterized “love hormone”. There appears to be one amino acid substitution at the eighth position wherein leucine is switched for isoleucine. Evidently, this is enough to both greatly amplify and pervert the qualities of oxytocin into something much more potent and carnal. 

There are not many laboratories in the city that would be able to create Aphrodite’s Kiss. The forensic lab analysis had shown that the high concentration of the active compound found in the drug could only be produced by highly specialized equipment and facilities. 

Na-kyum and Seung-ho discuss this new information as they eat dinner together around the small desk-turned-dining table in their room. Seung-ho had received communications from Deokjae about yet another sales transaction that would take place that evening. Na-kyum decides that that would make tonight a perfect time for both of them to do their part in the investigation. While Seung-ho continues to work at gaining Imoogi’s trust as a member of their ranks, Na-kyum tells Seung-ho that he wants to survey the city for likely drug lab candidates. 

Seung-ho is slightly weary when Na-kyum mentions he will be going out to do some street research, but Na-kyum is adamant. 

“I know you are worried about me Seung-ho,” Na-kyum says while he reaches a hand out to lace his fingers with the alpha’s. “But I’m an investigative journalist. I’m used to gathering information with both accuracy and efficiency.”

“But Imoogi are dangerous,” Seung-ho replies, consternation still heavy on his brow. 

“I know,” Na-kyum agrees, “But as an omega, I will be less suspicious. Nobody would expect an omega to work as a journalist, let alone one that’s teaming up with the cops. You have to trust me.”

Seung-ho closes his eyes and takes a deep breath. He does trust Na-kyum. He realizes that now. But what he doesn’t trust is Imoogi. Still, he knows Na-kyum is right. Na-kyum is not just a weak and helpless omega. He is brilliant, smart, and fastidious. Seung-ho knows that it is precisely because of all those things that he is so besotted with Na-kyum. So he understands that even though it gnaws at him, he has to let Na-kyum be his own independent person. 

Before Na-kyum hops into his beat up car to begin his tour of the city’s industrial facilities, the two of them share one more moment outside of their crumbling apartment. 

“Be safe, Seung-ho,” Na-kyum tells him as he gives another peck to the alpha’s lips.

Seung-ho gazes back at Na-kyum solemnly. “If you return with even a single scratch on you, I will make sure every last one of them will have hell to pay.”

“But you’re a cop, Seung-ho,” Na-kyum smiles to try and cajole the seriousness off of the inspector’s face. “You can’t use excessive force over every small issue. Besides, I’ll be fine. I promise.

 


 

Seung-ho meets up with Deokjae at a sketchy junction in the downtown area. The streets are littered with cigarette butts and dried spit stains. He tries not to breathe in too deeply as the rancid smell of day-old urine rises out from dark alleyways. 

“See here Seung-ho,” Deokjae mutters as he shoves a black plastic bag into the alpha’s hands. “You’ve got about a million won worth of Aphrodite’s Kiss in there.”

Seung-ho takes the opaque bag and hears the clink of about a dozen vials rolling around inside. 

“The higher ups are impressed with how well I’m trainin’ ya, so today I’m gonna give you the opportunity to practice your own sales.” The beta sneers arrogantly. “Don’t even think about reporting back to me if you can’t make two mill.” 

Seung-ho resists the urge to roll his eyes. Patience is key, he reminds himself. He has made progress in this case. It’ll only be a matter of time before he finds out more about the drug’s source and then the police can finally take down this scourge on society. 

The inspector and the beta split ways. Deokjae ambles off to harangue his various debtors and Seung-ho makes his way further into the shadier part of town. As Seung-ho saunters down the street, he makes sure to exude an air of confidence. He knows that it would do him a disservice if he were to appear unfamiliar with the area. He knows that his purposefully wrinkled casual tee, loose fitting jacket, and slightly grimey jeans help him to blend into his environment. 

He had patrolled this part of town before back when he was a beat cop. It is interesting how such a crime-ridden sector of the city is a mere block away from the shiny, veneer of the bustling downtown business and administrative district; although, it is hardly surprising. Those who are desperate to make ends meet, scraping by by participating in illicit dealings, need to keep themselves close to where the money is. 

As Seung-ho keeps his wits about him, he realizes that unlike when he had been proudly striding along his assigned route in his flashy police uniform, now that he looks just like one of the locals, no one is giving him suspicious or threatening looks. In fact, as he rounds the corners of dingy little eateries and smoke shops, some of the locals give him nods of greeting as they sit on the sidewalks puffing on their joints. 

Seung-ho looks around him to make sure he is not being followed before he makes his way inside of a small diner. Instead of opting to finish the drink that he orders in the restaurant, he makes his order to go. He does not pay the odd look that the server gives him any mind.

As the alpha scans the streets, he finally chooses a moderate sized intersection in the neighborhood he has been assigned to sell his wares. He casually leans against a lamppost and lights his own cigarette while he waits. Deokjae had informed him that the regulars would be able to identify him so he wouldn’t have to do anything to stand out. 

As Seung-ho prepares himself for a possibly long evening, his thoughts wander to Na-kyum. It is rare for anything to faze him. It is what has helped him to excel in his profession. He is known for keeping a cool head under pressure. Yet when it comes to this omega… he just can’t seem to stay calm. He wonders how the journalist is doing on his own mission. He hopes that Na-kyum is safe. It frustrates him that there is nothing he can do for Na-kyum right now. If he were to let his alpha instincts take over, he knows he would want to keep Na-kyum by his side, even lock him up. His alpha would do anything to protect his omega. 

However if there is one thing that Seung-ho has always prided himself in, it is not letting his instincts distort his rationality. It is why he had been so horrified at losing his control the night prior. He has arrived at a tenuous conclusion. While it is true that what might have initially piqued his interest in Na-kyum was the journalist’s subgender, he has come to recognize that this is not the reason why he likes him.

He knows that Na-kyum is more than just an omega. The journalist is smart, experienced, and capable. He knows that he should believe in Na-kyum. He trusts Na-kyum— he just doesn’t trust how the world, and other alphas in particular, might see him. He has come to realize that liking someone comes with the unanticipated element of worrying for their wellbeing.  

Despite ruminating over his partner’s safety, Seung-ho continues to keep an eye out for clients. Not long after, an unassuming couple approaches him. He can tell right away that the alpha and omega are a bonded pair. It’s in the way that they walk, steps in fluid tandem, with arms that slot around each others’ waists as naturally as vines along a trellis.

It’s not something that Seung-ho would have paid much thought to in the past. Though now, he cannot help but wonder if this is how things could look for him and Na-kyum. He tries to shake himself from these thoughts. While he may have affection for the journalist, and the omega may like him back, Seung-ho knows that they are not bonded. In fact, Seung-ho isn’t sure if they ever will be. While he wants to be with Na-kyum for as long as he can, the thought of being tied down to one person by an unseeable force—one that is illogical yet bound by the forces of nature and fate—is terrifying. He had never even entertained it as a possibility for himself. 

However, as with everything lately, Na-kyum makes him reconsider his principles.

The couple look young, perhaps in their mid-twenties, and they both seem hesitant and excited when they purchase two bottles from Seung-ho. The two must be new to this particular drug as they ask him how much the omega should start with for their first time. The inspector plasters on a confident smirk as he lies through his teeth.

“One vial’s worth will make you see fireworks, two will send you to heaven.” 

In reality he has no idea how potent Aphrodite’s Kiss really is, but it is funny seeing the two awkwardly trying to gauge whether or not he’s joking.

The omega finally speaks up. “Um...by heaven you don’t mean...like actually dying right?”

“Hmm…” Seung-ho taps his chin, pretending to think. “You’ve already bought the drug. Doesn’t the threat of danger make the sex more exciting?” He grins broadly showing all his teeth, and he knows it borders on maniacal, but he’s enjoying himself too much. 

Finally, the other alpha pulls his omega away from Seung-ho and the two hurriedly scurry along, quick to get away from the drug dealer who seems a bit too unhinged for their liking. Good, Seung-ho thinks. Maybe they’ll think twice before approaching another shady seller.

 


 

It doesn’t take long before a few other clients approach him. Most of them don’t dawdle, just buy their bottles and go on their way. Though a handful do eye the drug suspiciously. One even says, “Are you sure this is pure? The color is different from what I remember and I’ve been hearing about crooks cutting the drug with other cheaper ingredients.”

Seung-ho uses his exceptional alpha aura to his full advantage. He puts on a menacing scowl and towers over the irrelevant nobody. “You want to try disrespecting me one more time?” He knows his pheromones spell intimidation and ruthlessness. 

The buyer shivers and does not dare to argue back.

 


 

When Seung-ho finishes selling his last vial, he discreetly heads into a quiet side street. There, he reaches deep into his jacket pocket and takes out a bottle labeled with “orange juice”. He unscrews the cap and pours out all the liquid onto the floor, watching the coral rivulets seep into the dirty cracks in the pavement.

 


 

Seung-ho grabs his phone to touch base with Deokjae. He frowns when he realizes that he has two missed calls. His heart stutters for half a second, imagining the worst until he sees that it isn’t Na-kyum who had called. The call is from an unknown number. 

He unlocks his phone and sees that the same number has sent him a text. It reads:

Seung-ho, this is Jihwa. This is urgent! You need to get off this case. Please call me back when you have time. And make sure you don’t contact anyone else in the department before you call me!

Before Seung-ho can wrap his head around the meaning of this bizarre message, out of the corner of his eyes he spies a black sedan with dark tinted windows pulling up towards him. Reflexively he reaches for the holster underneath his jacket. 

When the window of the backseat rolls down, the person that Seung-ho sees sitting there makes his blood run cold. The man in the car has a piercing stare is all too familiar. 

He says, “It’s been a while since we’ve chatted. Get in the car, Seung-ho.”

 


 

Meanwhile, on the other side of town, Na-kyum drives his clanking car towards the second lab candidate. He had already surveyed the first and had deemed that location to be unlikely as it was at a highly secure university facility. This one however, definitely seems like the kind of place that gang members would prefer. It is situated in the less frequented industrial district of town. In fact it is not too far from the secret pub where he and Seung-ho had met Deokjae for the first time. 

The outside of the building is unremarkable. It looks just as grey and foreboding as all the other factories along the half-dozen blocks he had just driven past. Na-kyum parks his car on a side street with a clear view of the lab entrance to stake out whether there are any Imoogi who work out of this location. 

His phone rings as he sits. 

Na-kyum’s breath hitches when he sees that it’s his boss. He can guess what Jung In-hun is calling him for.

“Hello, Mr.Jung?” He answers.

“Na-kyum, you’ve not sent me an update since the last time we’ve spoken. What’s the hold up?”

The journalist swallows thickly as he tries to come up with a valid excuse. When his mind draws a blank, he decides to tell the truth. Or at least a partial truth.

“Um, sorry sir! I’ve just been so busy with the case. I haven’t had a chance to type up my draft yet.”

A huff is heard on the other side of the phone. “It almost sounds like you aren’t taking this job seriously, Na-kyum. You were the one who begged me for this job back then and I took a chance on you despite you being an omega. Don’t make me regret what I had done out of the goodness of my heart. You do want to be a journalist, don’t you?”

Na-kyum finds that his throat is dry. He feels torn. He knows that the information he had recorded so far is sensitive, that if it is leaked to the media right now that it could ruin the entire mission. He doesn’t want to do that. The success of this mission and the lives of many omegas depends on this case being carried through to the end. Na-kyum can’t fathom how disappointed and betrayed Seung-ho would be if he were to publish everything now. He can only take a sobering breath before trying to delay the inevitable.

“Yes, sir. I do want to be a journalist, more than anything. But I also need to do the job right. I need to do more research before this report can be published. If I don’t give our readers the whole story I think we would be lying to our audience. I think it is our duty to have morals behind what information we communicate to the public. I joined this profession in pursuit of the truth and I don’t want to be part of the mire of politics, greed, gender inequality, and corruption in our current society. I need to believe that what I do is just and honours the trust that people still have in the fourth estate.” 

Na-kyum finds himself nearly gasping for breath after his lengthy proclamation. He had never talked back so bluntly to his supervisor before. He preemptively winces as he anticipates In-hun’s response. 

The editor-in-chief’s reply is actually rather quiet. 

Too quiet. 

“Baek Na-kyum, listen carefully because I am only going to say this once.” Jung In-hun’s words are calm but icy. It is clear that his patience is running out. “At this point, I don’t care if you don’t send me a nicely edited word document. This coming weekend, you are going to give me that scruffy field notebook of yours with every detail you have recorded so far. If I don’t have these notes in my lap by Sunday night, you can kiss your job here goodbye.” 

Jung In-hun does not wait for Na-kyum to respond before he hangs up on the omega. Na-kyum is left to sit in his car with trembling hands and a shell-shocked expression as he listens to the condemning dial tones echoing from his phone. 

 


 

After Na-kyum has had a few minutes to take deep calming breaths and re-centre his attention back on the mission at hand, he does begin to notice several groups of people filtering in and out of the lab building. There are some who rush about in personal protective equipment and lab coats. Occasionally there are a few who tend to dress in fully dark attire with the stocky kind of build that is similar to Imoogi henchmen.

The journalist is certain that he needs to enter the facility to confirm whether this is where Aphrodite’s Kiss is produced. Fortunately, Na-kyum has prepared disguises in advance. He goes to his trunk and changes out from his thick sweater and joggers into a white lab coat. He even wears a pair of thick framed glasses. There are a few fake access badges that hang from his neck just for show. What he has on underneath the lab coat is a surprise that he had prepared for an emergency. 

Na-kyum spies a small group of workers who look to be returning to the facility with takeout dinners in hand. He hurries from his car to follow after them. As they walk up to the building doors, the first person in the group swipes their ID badge against the scanner and holds the door open for his colleagues to follow after. Na-kyum is close on their tail and when the last person looks back and sees him, the journalist gives them a warm and winning smile. 

Na-kyum tries to release a non-threatening wave of soothing maternal pheromones. He knows that human psychology makes it hard for people to close a door in a kindly stranger’s face, and that primal physiology makes everyone lower their guard when they are reminded of gentle omega mothers. His years of studying people for his job pays off. The last lab member returns Na-kyum’s smile and lets him in after them.

The inside of the building is surprisingly bright and clean compared to the shoddy exterior. Na-kyum initially follows several steps behind the lab members as they walk down a hallway that is pristine and clinical. Eventually, the lab members turn down another corridor that has a plaque labeled with various hazard symbols displayed at the front of the hall. ‘Ensure appropriate PPE is donned before accessing fume hoods’ is stated underneath the various skull and biohazard signs. Na-kyum decides he will forgo this area and explore other parts of the facility for now. 

As the journalist approaches a door at the end of the hall marked with a sign stating “transport cargo”, he feels his heart thumping loudly. He wonders if this is where the final product is kept before it is shipped out of the lab. Na-kyum wishes he had brought some sort of weapon with him just in case he runs into anybody dangerous. All he has on hand is a pepper spray and a pen. Though he supposes that in a pinch he can still take an aggressor by surprise and stab them if need be. 

He takes a deep breath to calm his racing pulse before pushing open the heavy door. It opens up into an expansive warehouse. Na-kyum is surprised as he had not imagined that there would be room for such a large space judging by the building’s exterior. 

As his eyes scan the massive facility, he sees that to one side there are several rows of automated conveyor belt machines. Large metal vats loom over these conveyor belts from which spouts are connected. These spouts fill barrel upon barrel of wooden canisters with a familiar orange-pink liquid. The wooden cylinders are then organized and stacked on the far side of the room next to a series of automated doors which are the loading docks for semi-trailer trucks. 

Even though the lab’s warehouse is large, Na-kyum can imagine that there would not be enough room here to house all of the products that are being continuously manufactured. There are undoubtedly various shipments that must be ferried out each day to distributed storage units elsewhere. With a sickening feeling in his stomach, Na-kyum realizes that the extent and sophistication of Imoogi’s drug production is much more formidable than they could have expected. 

Na-kyum’s palms are slicked with cold-sweat. He knows he needs to get out of here. He needs to tell Seung-ho about what he has found and the police need to know the scale of Imoogi’s dangerous business. 

Just when Na-kyum turns to head back toward the door from whence he had entered, he hears a heavy thunk of that same door opening and closing. Then, a large shadow falls over the omega as the figure approaches him. Na-kyum can only gulp when he sees the person who has blocked off his only means of escape. His heart is in his throat as his brain scrambles to come up with any excuse for his current presence. 

Meanwhile, the tall man smirks down at the journalist.

“We meet again, little omega.”

 


 

Seung-ho’s fists clench and unclench in annoyance as he sinks into the plush leather seats of the luxury car. In this confined space, he feels suffocated by the weight of past expectations and inevitable disappointments. He stares obstinately at the headrest of the seat in front of him. He refuses to look at his co-passenger for another second longer.

“What do you want?” He grits out. 

He hears the older alpha next to him shift in his seat and cross his legs before speaking. 

“Despite the smooth path I could have paved for you, you never did listen to me, Yoon Seung-ho. I allowed you to entertain your little game of cops and robbers for a while, but my sources have informed me that you have been getting down and dirty in the city’s drug trade.”

“I don’t know where you heard that from,” Seung-ho growls. “But it’s none of your damn business.”

“Tsk,” The older alpha tuts. His pheromones grow heated and Seung-ho tries not to let out an involuntary shiver as he feels the oppressive, invisible force bearing down on him. “You should be working for me, just like your brother, not sullying your hands with these disreputable businesses.”

“I will never work in the government,” Seung-ho spits out. “Even if it kills me. The darkness of that cesspool sickens me.”

The co-passenger sighs next to him. He brushes some invisible lint off of his perfectly pressed suit. “There is no black and white in this world, my son. Even if you ran to join the police force in pursuit of it, you will find yourself gravely disappointed. You are not suited to this line of work.” 

Seung-ho has heard quite enough. None of this is news to him. He has one hand on the door, ready to jump out of the moving vehicle if he needs to. He will do anything to distance himself from the man he cannot stand. “I did not ask you to make this detour on your way to work, father. Save your breath. I have my own job to do.”

The governor chuckles, but there is no humour in his tone. “I’m warning you, Seung-ho. If you play with fire you will get burned. There is still time to save yourself. Call me when you are ready. I know you have my number.”

When the sedan stops at the next intersection, Seung-ho cannot hop out of the car fast enough. 

The inspector watches his father’s business vehicle cross the next block into the deceptively proper side of town before he finally calls Deokjae. Surprisingly, the beta does not berate Seung-ho for being too slow. In fact, he tells Seung-ho that he is satisfied with his smooth sales and that he has something, or rather somewhere he wants to show the alpha. 

The Imoogi henchman sounds exceptionally pleased when he says, “Kim Seung-ho, I think you’re finally ready to see Aphrodite’s origins.”

 


 

Na-kyum stares up at the huge alpha before him with wide eyes. Crap, he thinks. Of all the people he could have run into, he did not expect it to be this man. 

He knows that there is no way he would stand a chance if he were to try anything physical against the behemoth. Even if he were to use the pepper spray or pen, he worries that if he doesn’t completely disarm the giant, he could make the situation more dangerous for himself.

“Ah, M-Mumyeong, was it?” The omega greets cautiously. He curses at the way that his voice wavers. It seems that something about what he had just said amuses the alpha because the Imoogi member’s eyes flash and a threatening leer dances across his lips. 

“What are you intending to do all by yourself in a place like this? It’s dangerous not to have your alpha around to protect you.”

The alpha stares at Na-kyum and it feels like he is devouring him with his look alone. Even though the probing gleam in the mobster’s eyes makes the omega’s skin crawl, a sudden thought flits through Na-kyum’s mind. 

The omega doesn’t know if this tactic will work, but he knows that he doesn’t have many other options.

“If I had a choice, I wouldn’t want him as my alpha,” Na-kyum says. He musters up as many distressed feelings as he can in order to project some pitiful pheromones into the air. 

Mumyeong raises an eyebrow doubtfully, but his interested gaze does not escape Na-kyum’s notice. “You mean to say that you don’t intend to bond with Seung-ho?”

The journalist cannot help shuddering as he lies, “You heard the story. He picked me up off the streets when I was down and out. I’m completely dependent on him for money— I’ll admit it. I snuck in here to see if I could get my hands on some of the drug so that I could sell it and make enough cash to support myself.” 

Na-kyum schools his face into one of chagrin and frustration, hoping that the bearded man will buy his act. 

“Naughty little thing, aren’t you?” Mumyeong smirks, before pressing him further. “So you plan to leave him?”

The journalist swallows around the dryness in his throat. “Well, that was the plan before you found me out.” Na-kyum hates what he is about to do next, but he knows that there is a time and place even for the unwanted gifts he was born with. He coyly stares up at the muscular gangster through the thick fan of his lashes, and pouts his pink lips in a way that he knows will disarm most alphas. 

Na-kyum knows he has to cinch the alpha’s trust before time runs out. He deftly unbuttons his lab coat and shrugs it off of his shoulders. What he has on underneath is an olive satin slip dress. The sheer cloth drapes over his willowy frame pleasingly. Although the male omega does not have quite enough cleavage to fill out the front, the excess material hangs low on his chest, giving the observer a teasing glimpse of his pretty collar bones and unblemished skin. The dress hugs the curves of his hips sensuously, emphasizing his fertility. Na-kyum knows he almost has the alpha in the palm of his hand when he sees Mumyeong’s pupils dilate in want. 

He pushes down the bile in his throat and purrs, “Seung-ho isn’t my type anyways. He’s much too stubborn and straight-laced. I’d always preferred a ruthless alpha who isn’t afraid to play dirty…” He allows seductive, flirtatious pheromones to exude from his scent glands in thick waves as he speaks. 

Luckily, it seems that his words, and his wiles do have an effect on the rugged alpha. He can feel a certain tension in the room, as Mumyeong’s interested pheromones begin to dance with his. 

The mobster steps closer toward him, and Na-kyum tries to maintain upright as the heaviness of the alpha’s arousal clings to the air around him. Mumyeong leans in toward the omega, his hot breath sends a shiver along Na-kyum’s ear and down his neck.

“What a sluttish omega you are…”

Na-kyum releases a whimper. It’s half an act, and half out of terror at the stronger man’s proximity.

If anything, the sound seems to turn Mumyeong on further. The alpha places a possessive hand on Na-kyum’s waist, pulling him in closer toward the heat of his body. Na-kyum gasps when he feels something hard pressing against his thigh.

Na-kyum reflexively puts up his hands against the alpha’s chest, trying to create a physical barrier between them. Mumyeong does not seem to realize his intentions however, and takes it as the omega reciprocating his advances. The alpha reaches a large hand to brush up against Na-kyum’s shoulder. The omega resists the urge to shy away. Mumyeong’s touch is aimed at the collar that is secured around Na-kyum’s neck.

The fine hairs on the back of Na-kyum’s neck stand on end as he feels the alpha’s fingers hover over the sensitive area. As the mobster begins to fiddle with the clasp, Na-kyum feels fear grip his heart. No, this is bad, the journalist thinks. If Mumyeong sees that I don’t have a bonding mark, it may be too hard for him to resist. 

When Na-kyum hears the click of the first clasp being undone, he can’t help the tears that spring to his eyes. The only name he can think of to call out in his mind is Seung-ho. Seung-ho. Seung-ho.

Oh god, Seung-ho. Please save me!

The irony of Mumyeong’s attempt to loosen his collar is that Na-kyum feels as if a noose is being tightened around his neck. He did not live his life, fighting the odds, just to become some conceited alpha’s omega.

What the fuck do you think you’re doing, asshole?

Na-kyum gasps when he hears that voice. He can hardly believe his ears. He feels Mumyeong shift away from him in surprise and they both turn to look behind them. 

Just a few steps away, standing by the door to the warehouse are Seung-ho and Deokjae. They have arrived just in the nick of time. Na-kyum has to hold back a sob of relief. His eyes are wide as he stares at his alpha. He hopes that Seung-ho can see his joy at the alpha’s arrival. 

The inspector roughly pushes past the useless beta and strides up to Mumyeong. He shoves the other alpha aside aggressively while snarling. 

“Get your filthy paws off of him before I break your hands. If you dare touch my omega one more time, I’ll fucking neuter you.”

Mumyeong is caught off guard and he doesn’t dare lash out at the other clearly incensed alpha. Na-kyum for his part, discreetly draws further away from the mobster. The omega reaches out for Seung-ho who quickly pulls him into his side in a protective hold. The journalist stares at his alpha with admiration in his eyes. He can feel Seung-ho’s aggression toward the other alpha flooding the room, fueled by his possessiveness over him. 

Na-kyum has never felt so glad to have a partner next to him. Seung-ho’s presence reassures him that everything will be okay now. He has never been so sure that this is who he is meant to be with.  

Chapter Text

Seung-ho cannot think of a time where he had felt as much dread as he did when he saw Mumyeong removing Na-kyum’s collar. He goes numb for a brief moment before every nerve ending in his body alights in pure fury. How dare that gangster bastard touch his omega. Na-kyum belongs to him. His inner alpha screams at him to kill the adversary who had dared to lay his filthy hands on his precious partner. 

His pheromones aggressively fluctuate out of control, filling the room with the nearly nauseating scent of an enraged alpha. Seung-ho can’t rein his pheromones in even if he tries, but now is the best time to let his redolence dominate those around him. He bares his fangs at Mumyeong for good measure and pulls Na-kyum closer to his body. Innate pleasure soothes his frayed edges as the omega rubs his head against the alpha’s chest in a comforting motion. 

A few moments pass before Mumyeong sneers at Seung-ho, seemingly amused by the inspector’s outburst. “I hate to break it to you, but your slut of an omega came onto me. He said himself that he doesn’t want a prissy alpha like you—”

Seung-ho moves forward to deck the gangster across his pompous face, but both Deokjae and Na-kyum hold him back. 

“Alpha, it’s not worth it, please,” Na-kyum pleads. 

The inspector takes one look at Na-kyum and concedes, opting to leave Mumyeong with one final message.

“Spout any more bullshit about my omega and you’ll find my bullet in your skull— that’s not a threat, that’s a fucking promise.” 

Mumyeong rolls his eyes but backs off, giving Na-kyum one last glance before silently leaving the warehouse. Na-kyum sighs in relief now that the looming threat is gone. He should have brought a taser with him or something, it probably would have been helpful back there. Pepper spray would not have been enough to take down that hulking alpha.

“Well,” Deokjae starts, “that probably didn’t help you get that promotion you’re after.”

Seung-ho snorts and shakes his head, dismissing the idea entirely. “I don’t want a promotion if it means I have to deal with that asshole laying his hands on my omega.”

Deokjae gives him a weird look before beginning to explain the process Aphrodite’s Kiss goes through before being shipped out, gesturing to the conveyor belts and wooden barrels containing the drug. It’s clear to Seung-ho that the operation is extensive and executed on a massive scale. He somewhat pays attention to what Deokjae is saying while taking in the scene in front of him. 

No matter how much money Imoogi has flowing through the organization, there needs to be someone else funding them. There is no way a gang can pay for such high-tech, automated machines on their own. They obviously have a very good backing from people willing to invest a lot of money in this lucrative business. The face of his father flashes through Seung-ho’s mind and the inspector’s thick eyebrows furrow. 

While he doesn’t find it strange that his father had caught wind of his current undercover mission due to his job as Governor, it is strange that he had personally scouted him out and had attempted to convince him to quit while he was ahead. 

He had not cared at all before, so why now? Why does he care about this particular drug ring? What does he have to hide?

Seung-ho is reminded of Jihwa’s mysterious text message and makes a mental note to call the beta later. Something about that message rubs him the wrong way. Jihwa knows how important being in the police force is to Seung-ho, so why would he tell him to get off the case too? Why had he said to not contact anyone else in their department?

Something isn’t adding up. It makes him uneasy. For someone who is used to being confident in always having a handle on any situation, it makes Seung-ho vexed.

“—And as more of Aphrodite’s Kiss is distributed, we’ll finally go back to the better times where omegas knew their place as knot warmers and childbearers. About time, right?” Deokjae says, turning to Seung-ho with a disgustingly predatory smile on his swine-like face. 

The alpha clenches his jaw in irritation but sends the beta a smile that lacks any warmth. 

“Of course.”

 


 

The alpha, beta, and omega leave the lab together and stop briefly outside the concrete building. Deokjae tells them of another party coming up at the end of the week, this time held at an actual strip club instead of some warehouse in the middle of nowhere. Seung-ho promises him that they would be there and Deokjae leaves without much fuss.

The car ride back to the apartment is quiet as both ruminate over what they had seen earlier that day. Once they arrive inside their temporary home however, they immediately reach to embrace each other tightly. 

“I was so worried when I saw you there with him,” Seung-ho says, heavily scenting the top of Na-kyum’s head with his cheek. “He didn’t do anything to you, did he? I swear to God, I wanted to rip his throat out—”

“I’m fine,” Na-kyum whispers, furiously blinking back the tears welling up in his hazel eyes. The reminder of how that alpha so brazenly touched him without his consent sends shivers down his spine. He doesn’t want to think about it. If he dwells on that terrifying experience for any longer, he might break down. 

Seung-ho sighs and kisses the top of his head gently and murmurs imploringly into Na-kyum’s wispy black hair, “Please be more careful… for me.”

Na-kyum just squeezes him tighter.

 


 

Na-kyum is alert as they enter the seedy club. His eyes dart around the main hall looking for anything that stands out to him. The club is dim, illuminated by low red and purple lights that give the room a seductive glow. A sensual song plays in the background and a couple of dancers move melodically around the poles in the center of the room. 

It’s fairly empty now, but Na-kyum knows that soon it would be packed with high-profile gangsters.

“Go get yourself something to drink, I’ll find us a seat,” Seung-ho murmurs, his gaze fixed upon a booth near the back. 

Na-kyum nods, leaving the detective’s warm side to walk up to the bar. The bartender says nothing as she looks him up and down, taking in his lithe form and collar, before starting on a new drink. Na-kyum tilts his head, confused, but sits down on a barstool anyways and waits for whatever the bartender is making for him. 

She has probably been in this business for a while if she can guess what kind of drink someone would like by just looking at them. It takes her a couple of minutes to finish making the drink and when she’s done, she places a blood red beverage garnished with a slice of lime in front of him. It smells sweet.

“Um, what is it?” 

“Bokbunja, korean blackberry wine.” 

With that, the bartender turns around and starts cleaning a glass, no longer paying the omega any mind. 

Pursing his lips, Na-kyum takes the drink and walks over to where Seung-ho is sitting. As he gets closer, the omega gives his partner a brief once-over. Seung-ho looks unfairly good with his hair gelled back, donned in a leather jacket. The detective looks up and raises an eyebrow at the drink in his hand. 

“What is that?” 

“Blackberry wine,” Na-kyum says, placing the drink down on the table. 

“Here, sit next to me.” Seung-ho stands up, letting Na-kyum slide into the spot next to the wall, before sitting down on the outside. He presses his thick thigh against Na-kyum’s leaner one, grounding himself as he senses his omega’s reassuring warmth. Having his partner close to him brings him solace during stressful situations like these. Seung-ho doesn’t know who in Imoogi plans on showing up so he has to keep his guard up. Placing himself on the outside of the booth would help to protect Na-kyum as well. If anyone suspicious approaches them, they would have to go through Seung-ho first. 

Na-kyum sniffs the wine and takes a cautious sip. He smacks his lips a couple of times and begins to beam. Seung-ho rests his head on his hand, searching Na-kyum’s face as he asks how it tastes.

“Good! It’s sweet. The bartender seemed to know what I would like without me having to ask, which was kinda nice of her. Want to try?” Seung-ho shakes his head, politely refusing. Na-kyum gives him a soft smile before taking another sip. Seung-ho smiles back, placing a chaste kiss against the omega’s forehead, causing him to erupt in giggles. He intertwines their fingers and almost coos at how small Na-kyum’s hand looks in his own. 

They sit for a while in silence, Na-kyum slowly drinking the sweet beverage and Seung-ho keeping an eye on the people in the club. 

An upbeat song comes on and the ladies on the poles start to twerk in time with the beat. A sole patron whoops and throws a fistful of twenties on one of the half-naked dancers. 

“When did they say the meeting was gonna start?” Na-kyum whispers, glancing up at Seung-ho’s impassive face. With the sultry lighting, Seung-ho could pass as Eros himself. Na-kyum bites his plush lip and watches with narrowed eyes as the alpha checks his watch. 

“Around now.” 

As if summoned by his words, the front door opens and a steady stream of gangsters and escorts file into the club, the majority of them stopping at the bar first. Na-kyum feels a bit bad for the bartender now surrounded by customers, but the woman doesn’t seem overwhelmed in the slightest. A male worker comes around the corner and joins her in making the drinks. 

Na-kyum notices that all of the omega escorts get the same blood red drink he had gotten. How strange. Is it a popular drink among omegas? A heavy arm drapes over his shoulders and Seung-ho’s heady scent washes over him, startling him out of his trance. 

“What are you looking at?” Seung-ho asks, his deep voice sparking a pool of heat in Na-kyum’s core. Fuck, he can’t get horny now. This would be the absolute worst time to get horny. 

“The escorts,” Na-kyum nods towards the women by the bar sipping their drinks, “all got the same drink I got.” 

Seung-ho hums, crimson eyes narrowing at the bartender. “Let me taste your drink.” 

Na-kyum hands him what’s left of his wine and Seung-ho takes a sip, letting it sit in his mouth for a moment before swallowing it. 

“I haven’t had Bokbunja in a while, but it tastes a bit too sweet. Though, it is believed to promote… ahem, sexual stamina. Tell me if you feel off at any point, okay?” 

Na-kyum nods but is hit with a slight vertigo and ends up leaning into Seung-ho’s side. The alpha’s warmth spreads through him and Na-kyum turns to press his nose up against his partner’s muscular pec. He inhales his rich, tobacco-laden scent and shivers at how intoxicating it is. Seung-ho’s chest rumbles as he calls out his name, but Na-kyum doesn’t respond. 

“Kitten, answer me.”

“Hmm?” 

“Jesus Christ,” Seung-ho swears, putting his hand against Na-kyum’s forehead. “You’re burning up. What the hell did they put in your drink?” 

A shadow falls over the table and Seung-ho looks up to see a vaguely familiar face leering down at them. It is an acquaintance of Deokjae’s that he cannot be bothered to remember the name of. 

“I see that the bokbunja has kicked in.”

Seung-ho raises his eyebrow. “What do you mean?” 

“Every month we have an orgy party ‘n give all the omegas a cocktail blessed with a lil’ kiss from Aphrodite. Clever, huh? This place becomes so hot ‘n stuffy with pheromones, but it’s soooo fuckin’ sexy seein’ the omegas gettin’ gangbanged ‘n bred like the whores they are.” 

The man leans in and Seung-ho holds himself back from attacking the man for getting too close to Na-kyum. “Is yer omega joinin’ the fun? I know ya got first dibs ‘n all, but I’ve never seen a male omega before and God damn I’d love to get a taste of him.” 

“No.” Seung-ho can’t even pretend to hold back the venom in his voice. 

“Awww c’mon, don’t be like that. How much for a spin? 100,000 won? 200,000?” 

He’s not for sale,” Seung-ho growls, protectively pulling Na-kyum into his chest. The omega chirps happily as he burrows his head in the alpha’s sternum, scenting him thoroughly until Seung-ho reeks of jasmine and citrus. “He’s mine. Go find another omega to fuck.”

When the man realizes that Seung-ho isn’t going to budge, he finally shrugs and backs off. He wanders towards two well-endowed omegas making out near the stage littered with crisp won bills. 

“Yours,” Na-kyum purrs, looking up at his alpha with dopey, unfocused eyes. Seung-ho sighs, rubbing a hand over his face. Shit, he shouldn’t have let Na-kyum drink anything. He should’ve learned his lesson from the blowjob incident… This was all his fault. But if they leave the club now, they would look suspicious. He isn’t going to blow his whole mission just because his partner got spiked with an aphrodisiac— the very aphrodisiac they were sent to investigate. 

How ironic. 

Aphrodite’s Kiss wears off after an omega gets knotted a few times, so if that’s what he has to do to make sure his cover isn’t blown then so be it, because there’s no fucking way he is letting any of these thugs touch his partner. No fucking way in hell. 

“Kitten.” Seung-ho pulls the fragrant omega onto his lap. “I’m going to have to fuck you.” 

Na-kyum whimpers at that, slightly grinding down on Seung-ho’s growing erection. “Please? Ah, wait, be gentle...” He leans in, plush lips brushing against the shell of his ear, “it’s my first time.” 

Seung-ho groans at the innocent confession, guilt and arousal wracking his body. Is he really about to take Na-kyum’s virginity at a gangster orgy party? He laughs at the absurdity of it all. 

“You’re going to be the death of me, omega.” 

While he feels a bit bad that he’s going to fuck Na-kyum while he isn’t in the right state of mind, it isn’t nearly as bad as the guilt from before. Seung-ho now knows that the attraction he feels towards Na-kyum goes both ways. Na-kyum wants him. 

So why the hell should he hold back? He has a rare virgin male omega reeking of heat on his lap begging for his cock. He isn’t going to pass up this chance to finally get a taste of the omega he has been lusting over since the beginning of this mission.

Looking around, he sees that true to the man’s word, alphas and omegas alike have begun to lose themselves with the help of the heat inducers and the air is slowly becoming stifling with the thick mixture of pheromones. Clothes are strewn all over the floor and naked body parts are out in the open. The sound of wet skin slapping against skin contrasts against the booming bass of the music. Mumyeong, the man that had inducted them into Imoogi, is here as well. He stands near the bar, sipping on some alcoholic concoction while some busty blonde sucks him off. 

Seung-ho directs his attention back to Na-kyum, who fumbles with the alpha’s belt. His citron scent has gotten noticeably sweeter, as if telling the alpha that he’s ripe and ready to be bred. A single bead of sweat drips down his reddened face and Seung-ho can feel the heat radiating off of him. 

Na-kyum lets out a noise of frustration, impatiently yanking at the buckle keeping him from getting fucked. His slender hands are shaking and he can’t seem to muster enough strength to undo the damn thing. Seung-ho coos reassuringly and quickly does it for him, freeing his throbbing cock. 

The omega doesn’t hesitate to grab his girthy length, stroking it with care. Seung-ho indulges him for a bit and watches the omega with hooded eyes. It’s when Na-kyum enthusiastically licks Seung-ho’s pre-cum off of his fingers that the inspector decides that he has had enough. 

He needs to fuck Na-kyum, now

He picks up the lithe omega and lays him out on the table, knocking over the empty glass of Bokbunja with the movement. It shatters into countless pieces once it hits the floor, but Seung-ho doesn’t care. He is solely focused on the ethereal being in front of him, laid out like a feast about to be devoured.

Seung-ho pushes Na-kyum’s miniskirt up and out of the way and takes a second to admire the lacy black panties encapsulating the omega’s tiny, leaking prick. He runs his fingers over the dainty dragon decorating Na-kyum’s right hip bone— Seung-ho feels pleased knowing that he will be the only one to ever see the private, almost secretive tattoo. The skin surrounding the tattoo erupts in goosebumps and Seung-ho smirks at his omega’s sensitivity.

He’s going to have fun ruining him. 

Na-kyum squirms and stretches his arms out, pulling Seung-ho down into a passionate kiss. The alpha eagerly accepts it, moaning into Na-kyum’s warm and pliant mouth. It is wet, messy, and rushed— neither have the patience to take this slow, not when Na-kyum is in heat. Seung-ho nips at Na-kyum’s bottom lip and the omega whines loudly, canting his hips in a desperate attempt to get friction against his cute cock. 

“I wanna cum,” the omega plaintively sobs. 

Seung-ho takes pity on his lover and reaches down into his lacy panties to firmly grip his member. Na-kyum jerks at the feeling of Seung-ho’s large hand grasping him, completely engulfing his small erection with his large hand. 

The inspector begins to quickly jerk him off and watches as Na-kyum rapidly becomes undone underneath him. With a long, high-pitched keen, Na-kyum cums and sprays his impotent seed all over himself. Seung-ho scoops up some of the liquid and sucks his fingers clean, moaning at the delectable taste. He has never quite liked the taste of cum, but it’s different with Na-kyum. If anything, he wants more.

“Fuck, kitten, you’re so fucking hot. I can’t wait to split you open on my knot. You want that, don’t you? To be filled to the point of breaking? Shit, I wanna breed you so bad…” 

Unable to take being blue-balled any longer, Seung-ho rips off Na-kyum’s drenched panties and tosses the lacy scrap to the side. He rubs his member against Na-kyum’s glossy opening, thoroughly coating it in slick. There’s a sweet smelling puddle underneath the omega’s ass and if Seung-ho had more patience, he would have leaned down for a taste— maybe later, if I have time.  

He tests Na-kyum’s resistance and when his cock doesn’t immediately slide in, he scoops up some slick and breaches the rosy hole with his fingers. The last thing he wants to do is hurt his omega. He is able to slide two in without trouble and straight away searches for the omega’s prostate. The sounds his omega makes is music to his ears and if he was able to, he would record every second of it. 

It takes a little bit of prodding before he hears a pleased moan from his partner. Seung-ho leans down to kiss him, swallowing up that noise of rapture. Two fingers become three, and then four, and Seung-ho soon has Na-kyum sobbing from pleasure due to the constant attack on his prostate.

“Alphaaa, hic, in me, pleaseeeee…”

“What was that baby? I need you to speak more clearly— use your words, kitten.”

Na-kyum gives him the most pathetic looking glare ever, grinding down on Seung-ho’s fingers. He doesn’t seem too happy that his alpha is not giving him the one thing he needs. Seung-ho has to bite his lip to keep himself from laughing at the sight.

“P-put your cock i-inside me…”

Seung-ho leans down, brushing his bruised lips against Na-kyum’s. 

“What’s the magic word?”

“Puh-please?”

“Good boy.”

Leaning back, the alpha removes his fingers and ruts his prick against the slick passage, watching intensely as the omega’s wet hole winks at him. His tip catches and with little effort, he finally slides in.

Seung-ho and Na-kyum both let out a broken moan at the divine sensation. Unable to stop himself, Seung-ho thrusts his hips forward, sinking in about halfway. Na-kyum’s arms scramble for purchase on the table but he eventually ends up reaching for Seung-ho’s jacket. His thin legs wrap around the alpha’s waist and attempt to nudge him in deeper. 

“More,” the omega groans unabashedly. 

“Oh, I’ll give you more, alright—” 

Seung-ho slowly presses in, watching as inch after inch is devoured by his lover’s hungry ass, until his hips are flush against Na-kyum’s. At this point, tears are running down Na-kyum’s face but it only serves to turn Seung-ho on more. He never would have thought he had a crying kink, yet here he is.

“Such a greedy bitch, you took me balls deep on the first try. You’re made for my cock, baby,” Seung-ho croons, “Can you feel me in your stomach? Your alpha is gonna fucking wreck you—” 

He pulls out until only his tip is inside of Na-kyum’s searing heat and promptly begins a punishing pace. Na-kyum’s cocklet flops around with the movement and sends beads of precum flying everywhere. Seung-ho pushes up Na-kyum’s oversized sweater out of the way and gets to work on teasing his nipples with his free hand. He switches from tugging to pinching to lightly brushing over the sinfully pink nubs with the tips of his fingers. He would look absolutely delectable pregnant, with his chest all puffy and nipples leaking milk everywhere…  

Na-kyum cannot help but thrash and mewl from the relentless ministrations against his sensitive nipples, but is held in place by Seung-ho’s vice-like grip on his waist. He moans at the thought of the bruises that are sure to be left behind. 

“A-ah, harder, daddy, oh fuck— please! Breed me, fuck—”

“I’m gonna breed you until you’re fucking bursting, baby, fill you full of my cum until you can fucking taste it. You’re my slutty omega, mine to breed. Tell me who you belong to, omega.”

I-I’m yours, alpha, only yours— ” 

Seung-ho shifts and begins to rapidly assault Na-kyum’s prostate, drawing out a loud wail from the omega. Na-kyum cannot help but fall limp at the overstimulation and lets his alpha have his way with his pliant body. Every inch of his body tingles with pleasure, delighted that it’s finally receiving the alpha cock that it has been craving since it’s first heat. His head falls to the side and he cannot muster the strength to close his drooling mouth.

Dimly, Na-kyum is aware that he is now making eye contact with Mumyeong from across the noisy club. The bearded alpha has his eyes locked onto Na-kyum, unwavering even as he thrusts into another omega’s awaiting mouth. Na-kyum’s body quivers from the attention, arching as Seung-ho repeatedly hits his prostate dead-on. As much as he hates the thought of another man touching him, the fact that he’s being watched as he is being rigorously ravished by his alpha turns him on like nothing else.

“Omega,” Seung-ho growls and abruptly ceases his movement, causing Na-kyum to divert his attention back to the alpha above him. “Tell me, who is fucking you?”

“My ah, alpha…”

“So why are you looking at another man? Do you want to get me mad? Do you want to be punished?

Na-kyum weakly shakes his head. If punishment meant that he would not be fucked by Seung-ho’s thick cock, he doesn’t want it. If it’s spanking, then maybe… 

“Then only look at me.” Seung-ho begins to move once again, this time more slowly, so he can savor every moment. He is not sure if he will ever have the opportunity to fuck Na-kyum in public like this again, so he wants to take the time to memorize everything; from the blissed out look on his lovers face to the delicious warmth gripping his member. Moans of pleasure that are coming from the various gangsters and whores in the club have now drowned out the music completely. He is surrounded by sex in every way possible. Never before has Seung-ho felt so stimulated at once. 

It is exhilarating. 

Both can feel the heat of Mumyeong’s gaze on them but it only turns them on further. Na-kyum starts to cry harder at the slow drag of his alpha’s big, veiny dick inside of him. He can feel Seung-ho’s knot beginning to form if the audible ‘pop’ heard every time his alpha pulls out is not clear enough. It’s too much, Na-kyum thinks— but at the same time, not enough. His scent glands throb against the leather collar uncomfortably rubbing against them. His omega is craving to be claimed, to be forever tied to Seung-ho.

“So tight, kitten, gonna knot you— haa, fuck, daddy is gonna breed you so good…”

“Please! Knot me, knot me, knot me—” 

Seung-ho speeds up as he feels himself getting closer to the edge. The table shakes with the aggressive movement and the squelching coming from Na-kyum’s wet hole just makes him go faster. He breaks eye contact with Na-kyum to give Mumyeong a brief smirk. You can look all you like, but I’m the only one who gets to breed him.  

The bulky gangster must have gotten the unspoken message because he bares his fangs at Seung-ho in irritation. Seung-ho snickers to himself, satisfied at showing off his pretty omega, and goes back to chasing his own climax. 

“Take my load like a good little bitch—” Seung-ho moans.

Seung-ho’s core tightens and after a few staggered thrusts, his knot fully inflates and he cums deep inside Na-kyum’s tight ass with a loud growl. Na-kyum spasms around his knot and squirts everywhere, coating both of their stomachs in watery spend.

While basking in the aftermath of their simultaneous orgasms, Seung-ho almost doesn’t notice the figure approaching him from behind. He snarls and his pheromones flare up, warning them to not get too close unless they want their throat ripped out.

“Woah there. I’m not here to steal your omega, so calm down.”

Recognizing the familiar voice, Seung-ho quiets and maneuvers them so that they’re back to sitting in the booth with Na-kyum in his lap. The only difference this time is that Na-kyum is attached to him, still clenched tight around his pulsating knot. Another wave of cum escapes him and he groans at the feeling, squeezing his omega’s waist in reflex. 

The unnamed older alpha that Mumyeong had introduced them to in that sketchy basement sits down in the seat across from them, looking at the leftover fluids from their frenzied coupling appraisingly. “I see you two enjoyed the Bokbunja,” he says. 

Na-kyum, whose head has cleared after having been knotted, buries himself in Seung-ho’s chest in sheer embarrassment. As if having sex for the first time in a public place wasn’t bad enough, Seung-ho’s boss had waited until they were done… mating… to come up to them and talk about something surely related to Aphrodite’s Kiss. He tugs down his sweater and skirt to cover his exposed ass and breathes a sigh of relief when he can no longer feel the air gliding over his sensitive skin. 

“Yeah,” Seung-ho grunts coarsely, “We did.”

The alpha stares at them for an awkward moment but moves on. “I heard from Deokjae about your sales numbers this week. You’re doing very well for someone who just joined.”

Seung-ho shrugs off the compliment. “It was nothing, sir.”

“If you keep it up, it’s guaranteed that you will quickly rise the ranks here. Hell, before you know it, you might even pass Deokjae; although, I should have not expected anything less from a former panther. Your experience has aided you well.”

The inspector thanks him, albeit stiffly. His alpha is screaming at him to make the unfamiliar man go away, that he’s a danger to our omega, and so on. While he would love to tell the older man to kindly fuck off, he has a job to do. He needs to find out where Imoogi is storing Aphrodite’s Kiss before it is all distributed to the local dealers. 

“With all due respect, sir, will I still have to rely on getting the product from Deokjae or can I start getting it myself? I’m sure it would save us both a lot of time if I picked it up straight from the source.”

The old man gives him an indecipherable look and Seung-ho’s heart leaps into his chest. Did I go too far? It’s not that unreasonable of a question and they have no reason to suspect me. Not once did they show any suspicion towards the duo, even with the incident at the drug lab. If there was any speculation about their motivations for joining the gang, it should have been completely eliminated with the shameless show they had just put on. 

The silence between them stretches on for what feels like hours before the old man speaks up. 

“Ask me again in a couple months. You’re still a newbie, Seung-ho. Focus on learning the area and the people in it before worrying about something out of your jurisdiction.” He taps the table twice before sliding out of his seat. Almost like an afterthought he softly adds, “Plus, I doubt that car of yours would be able take you where you need to go anyways.”

He bids them goodnight and disappears into the crowd, leaving behind Seung-ho and Na-kyum deep in thought.

Chapter Text

The ride home is strange to say the least.

Na-kyum and Seung-ho sit in silence in the back of the taxi they had hailed since leaving the club. The omega’s bottom is aching, and both Na-kyum’s jaw and ass are clenched as he feels the sticky sensation of cum slowly trying to drip out from his well-fucked hole. 

His embarrassment is excruciating. 

Yet, things could be worse. From the moment they had crawled into the backseat of the car, Seung-ho had wrapped his arms around the sore and boneless omega and had pulled him into his lap. Sure, they must be violating a number of safety laws, but in this moment Na-kyum finds himself incapable— or perhaps unwilling to pull away. 

Instead, he buries his head into the warm crevice of Seung-ho’s neck and times his breaths with the way the alpha steadily cards his fingers through his hair. 

Na-kyum is grateful that Seung-ho isn’t apologizing. He does not want his post-heat clarity to feel any more awkward than it already does. More importantly, a small voice inside his head says, he is afraid to hear any indication that the alpha may have regretted what they had just done. 

 


 

When they arrive back at their tiny studio home, Seung-ho quickly lays Na-kyum down on the single small couch and carefully wraps his own jacket around the omega. 

“Wait here,” is all he says before he goes into their bathroom. Na-kyum’s mind swirls with a million feelings that refuse to coalesce into tangible thoughts as he realizes Seung-ho has not once directly looked him in the eye since they had left the club. 

A few minutes later, when the sound of running water has finally stopped, Seung-ho returns from the bathroom and gently scoops Na-kyum up off the couch. He carries him into the warm and slightly steaming bathroom where Na-kyum realizes the tub has been filled. 

Without a word, Seung-ho unwraps Na-kyum from all the layers that cover him. He does it so carefully, like he is afraid of startling Na-kyum. Then, as though he is holding something fragile, he gently lifts Na-kyum and places him into the warm water. All the while, Na-kyum allows the alpha to do so. He is also afraid of breaking the silence between them. 

All they hear is the quiet lapping of water as Seung-ho takes a wash towel and begins to softly scrub over Na-kyum’s skin. His movements are gentle, but deliberate. Na-kyum feels goosebumps trail over his skin wherever Seung-ho cleans. 

Although there is a piece of cloth between Seung-ho’s hand and his skin, Na-kyum feels fire lick along the path where the alpha’s movements glide over. He tries to temper the rush of air that passes his lips when Seung-ho wipes over his chest. He swallows thickly when the alpha’s cloth caresses over his hips. 

Na-kyum squeezes his eyes shut when he feels Seung-ho’s hand dip between his thighs to reach back over the sensitive spot he had entered not more than an hour prior. He feels Seung-ho brush over his entrance before dipping his fingers inside. Na-kyum’s chest feels tight as the alpha begins to slowly clean him of the essence he had filled him with. 

“Breathe, Na-kyum.” 

It isn’t until he hears the alpha’s words that he finds himself letting out a complicated sound that had been lodged at the back of his throat. It is half a desperate gasp for air, doing exactly as the alpha had commanded of him, and half a confusing sob that Na-kyum doesn’t understand. 

He feels something hot tracking along his cheeks and it is to his bewilderment that he realizes they are his own tears. 

Na-kyum feels Seung-ho flinch and the slight splash of water as the alpha pulls his arm back. The alpha begins to draw away and Na-kyum whips his head up to stare at the alpha with wide, beseeching eyes. 

The expression that he sees on Seung-ho’s face pierces a hole in his heart, and slowly Na-kyum begins to understand why. 

The alpha’s expression is devastated. Seung-ho is finally looking at Na-kyum, but his expression is all wrong. He looks conflicted and—confusingly enough—scared.

Seung-ho stands up abruptly beside the tub. “I-I’ll go get you a drying towel.” He says.

Just as he looks like he is about to turn and leave, something inside of Na-kyum compels the omega to reach out his arm to grasp for Seung-ho’s hand. 

“No!” Na-kyum cries out to the alpha. “No, Seung-ho! Stay.” Tears are still tracking down his face, but he desperately holds onto the alpha’s gaze with his own. He wills Seung-ho to see all of the emotions swirling from inside of him. 

He’s still not quite sure what all of these intense feelings mean. But he is starting to piece some of them together. Thoughts like, yes what happened was a surprise… but I don’t hate that it was you. Feelings like, that was the most terrifying thing to have ever happened to me… but you were the safest person I could entrust my life to. 

What Na-kyum finally manages to say, and he hopes that it will suffice is, “I don’t want you to go. I need you. Please don’t leave me alone, alpha.”

Myriad emotions seem to flicker through the deep ember of Seung-ho’s eyes. The alpha falls to his knees before Na-kyum. He reaches his hands out into the tub, palms open as though in supplication, and uncaring of the mess and the water, he wraps Na-kyum tightly in his arms. 

The omega instinctively melts into his alpha’s embrace. He finally feels the dissonance between them slowly evaporate until they are in sync with each other again. 

Waves of powerful yet soothing alpha pheromones drape over Na-kyum as Seung-ho tries to replace all of the scents that were freshly washed off. Na-kyum takes in deep lungfuls of it. He thinks it might be okay to drown if Seung-ho is there to catch him. 

 


 

Two days later, Seung-ho has a scheduled meeting back at the metropolitan police department. The higher ups had been kept abreast of their progress in the case but it appears as though they want to relay some details to the inspector in person. 

In their communications they tell Seung-ho it is not necessary to bring his omega accessory along. The condescending description which the alpha previously would not have batted a lash at now rubs him the wrong way. He asks Na-kyum if he would like to join him anyways.

Although Na-kyum is indignant at his own discrimination, he suggests to Seung-ho a more efficient use of their time. While Seung-ho deals with his more old-fashioned superiors, Na-kyum will talk over some of their latest findings with the open-minded Sergeant Kim.

 


 

When Seung-ho reenters the austere halls of the police department he almost finds himself slipping back into the atmosphere he had been accustomed to. There is something about the stiff uniforms, rigid hierarchy, and unyielding expectations of the police department that had always drawn him in. It’s not so much that he likes the clinical and unempathetic clean-cut line of the law, but compared to the muddied greys of the political home he had been raised in, he finds relief in an edifice that had always drawn a clear distinction between the black and the white.

The alpha doesn’t need to look at the clock in his old office to know that he is 10 minutes early for his appointment with the chief superintendent. He always likes to be prepared, never taken by surprise. 

Though an unanticipated knock is heard at his door.

Seung-ho senses it’s a beta before he even enters the room. 

“Why didn’t you tell me you were coming, Seung-ho?” Are the first words out of Officer Jihwa’s mouth. “I had to hear it in passing when the superintendent was talking to Min. You’re making me out to look like a fool!”

Seung-ho’s expression doesn’t flicker. “I’ve never treated you any differently at work.”

Jihwa gives him a sore look. “Honestly Seung-ho. After all that we’ve been through, would it kill you to treat me a little better? Sometimes I wonder if you even see me as a friend.”

“What did you call me to talk about?” Seung-ho knows that if he entertains the pity party that Jihwa is trying to throw, things could get messy real fast. 

The beta looks like he wants to continue berating the inspector, but after an aggravated sigh Jihwa relents. “You really should have called me back sooner.” He lowers his voice and glances back at the closed door behind them. “I know you’re here to give the superintendent an update on the case. Afterwards you should request to be taken off of it.”

Seung-ho narrows his eyes. “Why do you say that?”

Jihwa’s mouth hardens into a line. “The case is too dangerous. It’s not safe for you to get any further involved with the gang alone.”

“I’m not alone. I have Na-kyum.” 

The beta’s nostrils flare. “You know the journalist can’t protect you. He’s just some omega who got roped in from off the streets. He’s not a police officer. He isn’t even listed as being involved on the official case records!”

“But why now, Jihwa?” The alpha presses. He knows there is something Jihwa isn’t telling him. “Why are you suddenly trying to get me off this case? Don't lie to me.”

He doesn’t even realize he had been exuding threatening pheromones to intimidate the beta into admission until he sees Jihwa begin to cower and backtrack towards the door. 

Uncharacteristically, Jihwa avoids Seung-ho’s eyes. 

“I can’t say anything else,” the beta finally gripes. “It’s classified information. But listen to me Seung-ho. Please . If you continue working on this case, it’s going to cost you your life!” Then, without another backwards glance, Jihwa quickly slips out the door, leaving Seung-ho bristling with frustration. 

While he has kept everyone at arm's length at all times, and he may never have fully trusted Jihwa, he has relied on the beta officer more than most others in the past. His heart tells him to trust himself and no one else, but Jihwa’s warning unsettles him. It lodges the foreign sensation of uncertainty into the back of his brain. 

 


 

“Thank you for making time to meet with me, Sergeant Kim!” Na-kyum says. He sits in a well-worn office swivel chair next to the senior police officer. 

In front of them on a large mahogany table is the sergeant’s desktop computer and a scattered, intentional mess of notes.

“No. I should thank you for your help in the case so far,” the police officer says. His words are clear and measured, but Na-kyum senses a curious hint of resignation in his tone “The spread of Aphrodite’s Kiss has brought with it a sharp rise in crime across the city. It has emboldened the underground criminal network. Not to mention, it’s a public health disaster. There have been more overdoses and overdose-related deaths this year than in the past five years combined. And yet… the police force has had such a hard time making a breakthrough in the investigations… until now.”

Na-kyum can only nod solemnly. He had provided the sergeant with the updated intel that he and Seung-ho had gathered regarding the covert drug lab as well as signs that there must be other storehouses. He would have thought that the senior policeman would have been more optimistic about the results thus far, but if anything, Sergeant Kim seems more grim. 

Na-kyum figures the sergeant has likely seen a lot in his line of work. Perhaps he is cautious not to get too ahead of himself, especially when it comes to a notoriously thorny case like this one. Na-kyum decides he has to keep helping as much as he is able to. 

“Based on the information we have so far, the storage facility is far enough from the industrial district to require driving a distance, but it can’t be so far that it would make distribution inconvenient.” Na-kyum reasons as he shows Sergeant Kim photos he had snuck of the trailer trucks that had been parked outside the drug lab. 

“Mhm,” Kim agrees. “Ever since you and Inspector Yoon provided me with the updates I have been researching into possible locations surrounding the industrial district where the drugs could be housed. These are refrigerated trailers so I made sure my team and I scoped out facilities with the potential of supporting cooling units. We even uncovered several clandestine marijuana growers who had exceeded the reasonable electrical wattage consumption for their building, but frustratingly enough there has been no signs of Aphrodite’s Kiss.”

Na-kyum thinks hard about the various encounters he and Seung-ho have had with the Imoogi bosses. He siphons through all of the theories they have discussed while laying in their small studio bed staring up at the ceiling hand in hand under the covers.

“What if the storage facility isn’t in the industrial district after all?” He asks Sergeant Kim. 

“I thought about that too…” The senior officer replies, but there really isn’t any other place in the city where a large enough warehouse wouldn’t be properly licensed and regularly inspected. “Except… no, that would be absurd.”

“What would be absurd?”

Sergeant Kim, who usually is good at maintaining a calm and reassured countenance worries his lip. “It just wouldn’t make any sense. The only other place in the city where there could be enough room to store vast quantities of covert goods and which have special exemption from police regulation would be at the military base. It’s top secret and internally monitored by the government department of defense.” 

Na-kyum feels a chill run down his spine. The government? It really does sound far-fetched… and yet, he can’t help the way that Seung-ho’s distraught face flashes across his mind. Seung-ho who is stubborn, prideful, and almost righteous to a fault has always had his doubts about the government. Of course, to an outsider, it could very well just seem like a familial dispute. Perhaps Seung-ho and his father just don’t see eye to eye. However, Na-kyum wonders what if there is something more? As he has spent more time with the alpha, the omega has grown to trust the alpha’s instincts. 

Seung-ho is definitely someone who excels at making the most of his fact-based rationality and synergizing it well with his primordial instincts. Na-kyum has hardly met anyone who is more contradictory than Seung-ho. The alpha both suspects and reigns in his innate instincts and is so intune with the natural rhythm of his senses that he very well fits the description of a tortured savant. 

“I know that this would present a bureaucratic challenge, sir,” Na-kyum says to the sergeant. “But I think we really owe it to this case—no, we owe it to our society—to thoroughly investigate every possible avenue.”

 


 

Two hours later, Na-kyum makes his way down the busy street several blocks away from the police department. He and Seung-ho had agreed to meet up at a quiet little cafe familiar to both of them to debrief and plan their next steps together.

As he meanders his way down the sidewalk he cannot help taking discrete glances over his shoulder whenever he pauses at intersections. Ever since the dangerous encounter he had had at the drug lab he cannot help but feel more cautious. In the back of his mind he worries that Mumyeong, and the Imoogi by extension, could be onto him.

He feels the hairs on the back of his neck stand on end when he makes a left and notices a grey sedan changing lanes to slowly coast behind him. After he intentionally makes another two left turns he is convinced that the grey car on the shoulder of the road had been following him ever since he had left the police department. Na-kyum huffs quietly and enters the closest mall on the next street over. 

Once inside, he feels his heart thumping as he tries to walk briskly. He doesn’t want to make a commotion and draw more attention to himself, but he makes sure to enter a few different stores which have multiple exits. When he is convinced that there is no longer anyone tailing him, he finally slips out through a side entrance of the mall.

Na-kyum quickly texts Seung-ho that he will be a few minutes late.

 


 

When Seung-ho steps out of the police department he is more confused than when he and Jihwa had spoken. He breathes slowly through his nose and out his mouth, instinctively exercising techniques to slow his heart rate and calm his mind. He does what he knows best, that is to lay out the facts he has at hand and methodically comb through them. He closes his eyes briefly and reflects on the meeting he had just had with the chief superintendent and several other sergeants who are involved with the administrative details of the case. 

The meeting had started like any other. Seung-ho had briefed his superiors on the latest updates that he and Na-kyum had discovered at the industrial district as well as the illicit activities that the Imoogi members regularly instigated at their “omega orgies''. Seung-ho had opted to leave out the specific details of his and Na-kyum’s own personal experience with Aphrodite’s Kiss.

Not that Seung-ho was one to depend on his superiors’ praise to measure his own accomplishments, though he had found it odd that his bosses were not more elated to hear about the new developments in the case. The sly glances that the superintendent shared with one of the other sergeants did not escape Seung-ho’s notice. 

It was all very odd. 

The thing that really threw Seung-ho off however, was when Inspector Min had joined their meeting midway through. Min had smiled at Seung-ho pleasantly enough, but unlike Jihwa who so often spoke his mind candidly, Seung-ho had learned over the years to never trust the other alpha’s intentions. 

The superintendent had directed Min to brief Seung-ho on the next steps to take in the case, seeing as Min was involved in the backend operations of this particular mission. 

Seung-ho expected the police team to recommend that he find out more information about the possible storage and distribution processes of Aphrodite’s Kiss. Instead, Min had told Seung-ho to redirect his mission in a completely different vein.

“We have looked into the backgrounds of the various members of Imoogi that you have come into contact with throughout your case,” the other alpha had said. “And there is one target in particular that we think you should eliminate.”

“Eliminate?” Seung-ho tried to clarify. It seemed counterintuitive to draw attention to himself in this way. “And who is this individual?”

Min’s pupils disappeared behind the slits of his eyes as his unnerving smile widened. “We believe this man to be a great threat to the safety of the public. After much analysis into his activities and associates we have determined that it is best to get rid of him posthaste. You must gun him down in as flagrant and conspicuous a manner as possible.” 

“I have been keeping my head low thus far in this case,” Seung-ho interrupted him. “Why in the world would I suddenly execute another member of Imoogi? Wouldn’t that immediately place a target on my back?”

“Don’t worry about that Seung-ho,” Min drawled. He dismissed the other alpha’s concerns with a careless wave of his hand. “This will be our way of demonstrating to the underground criminal world that the public law enforcement is not to be crossed. Afterall, this target is practically a kingpin within Imoogi. Killing him will be a show of power from our side of this drug war.”

Seung-ho tried to not let his inner consternation show on his face. Something didn’t seem right. It was all odd, Min’s persistence and the way that his superiors appeared to eagerly back up a strategy that seemed to have more loopholes than solutions. Still, a glance around the room filled with higher ups who stared expectantly at him ensured that Seung-ho knew he had no sympathizers there. 

“Spit it out, Min,” He had growled. “Who is this target and how am I supposed to get close enough to single them out for the kill?”

“Ah, it should be very easy for you, Seung-ho,” The nearly sing-song quality of Min’s voice, made Seung-ho’s skin crawl. “Last I heard, you have Deokjae on speed dial.”

 


 

Seung-ho had made a detour back to their apartment to pick up their clanking lemon. If he had not been so on edge the alpha might have appreciated the now familiar way in which he sinks into the tackily upholstered seat of their noisy car.

He calls Na-kyum as he pulls up to the café.

“Babe, you need to come hop into the car. I’m idling by the curb. We need to talk sooner and figure out where to go from here.” Seung-ho is relieved when Na-kyum doesn’t waste time asking him questions.

“Agreed, it’s probably not safe to linger at the café. I saw someone try to follow me earlier.” Na-kyum’s voice is quiet but urgent over the phone. 

“Shit… Something’s definitely off,” Seung-ho mutters.

 


 

Na-kyum is worried that something will go wrong in their last minute plans. While they had been driving toward city hall and the military base, Seung-ho had updated him on the strange meetings he had had at the police headquarters. Together, they had decided that they needed to confirm the black box that was the military base, especially given Seung-ho’s misgivings regarding the government. 

If they are wrong about the government being involved with the criminal drug ring, that would be for the best. However, in the one in a million chance that this covert operation is to reveal the source of Aphrodite’s Kiss, they could be saving hundreds, no— thousands of lives.

The police administration is unfortunately not on their side, but if there is something that Seung-ho and Na-kyum can agree on, it is that following their instincts thus far has brought them closer than anyone else to figuring out the secrets of Aphrodite’s Kiss.

They park their car several streets away from the military base, in a public park in front of city hall. Seung-ho had purposefully edged them into a stall next to a row of bushes and trees, tucked away from the line of sight of most passersby.

They each pull something out from the trunk to bring into the backseat of the car. Seung-ho has a large duffle bag with a change of clothes that he had prepared during his detour to their apartment. Na-kyum has a compact briefcase filled with equipment that Sergeant Kim had helped him to procure.

The journalist eyes the pressed shirt and slacks that Seung-ho holds up to him. 

“What am I disguising as?” He asks. 

“You’ll be a government clerk,” Seung-ho informs him. “Remember those frames you wore last time?” 

Na-kyum cringes a little at the reminder that Seung-ho had to see him in that compromising situation with Mumyeong at the drug lab. “Mhm?”

“It’ll really cinch in the stuffy office look— so put the glasses on too.” 

“What will you be wearing?” Na-kyum wonders. 

Seung-ho has on a wry smile as he pulls out a set of military fatigues. “Say hello to Captain Yoon.”

The omega gulps as he watches Seung-ho shrug out of the sweater he had been wearing. He unconsciously wets his lips as his eyes dart over the contracting abs that are exposed. The inspector catches his gaze and smirks before saying, “It’s a pity we don’t have time right now, but one of these days we’ll have to try recreating our own Titanic car scene.” 

Na-kyum doesn’t know why he is still blushing when he and Seung-ho have already gone way further than this. He quickly averts his gaze and snorts, “That’s bad luck you know. They have sex and then they die.”

Seung-ho can’t help but laugh at that. “I was trying to be romantic. Rose and Jack, some of fiction’s most famous lovers and all that.”

Na-kyum hears his heart hammering loudly in his ears. He isn’t sure if Seung-ho is just being flippant, but the sound of lovers on the alpha’s lips brings a pool of warmth to his chest. 

 


 

Several minutes later, they are striding with feigned confidence towards the entrance of the military base. At least Na-kyum feels like he has to feign composure. He makes a few surreptitious glances at Seung-ho and feels a sense of unrest course through him. While he feels like a nervous wreck internally, the alpha looks completely at ease. 

In fact, Seung-ho wears the military fatigues like a second skin. The way that the alpha carries himself exudes strength and authority. Na-kyum can’t help thinking, men in uniform really do look extra hot.

The shiny rifle strapped to his back adds to the impression that the alpha could be an experienced marksman. They are both also keenly aware that it’s really just for show, a distraction from the two Beretta M9 handguns that sit snugly in Seung-ho’s hidden pockets.

When they arrive at the gate, a beta with a stony mien steps out of his patrol box to verify their access. Na-kyum notices that he wears a nearly identical outfit to the one Seung-ho has on. The only difference is the insignia on his shoulder. He has two less diamond symbols where Seung-ho sports three. The journalist tries to even his breathing so as not to seem suspicious. He follows Seung-ho’s lead as they had decided whilst in the car that his role would be to play a government clerk who is being given a private tour of the military compound. 

“State your rank, name, and display your ID,” The beta lieutenant demands robotically. 

Seung-ho flashes a badge which features a photo of a man who looks surprisingly similar to the alpha. His voice is steady as he smoothly lies, “Captain Yoon Seung-won, and this is Mr. Park of the Ministry of Veteran Affairs.” He gestures to Na-kyum who flashes his own badge. It is one that Seung-ho had managed to secure for him. The beta in the photo does not look nearly as similar to Na-kyum as the man in Seung-ho’s badge resembles the alpha. Luckily, the beta lieutenant does not scrutinize the ID too closely once he realizes who Seung-ho is. Or rather, who he is supposed to be. 

“Ah, I’m sorry Captain! I was not informed that you would be visiting the base today,” The beta says, clearly flustered, “I thought you were still engaged in regional security conferences with the governor this week.”

Na-kyum is impressed by the way Seung-ho affects a phlegmatic look. The alpha responds, “I specifically made room in my schedule for this tour. Mr.Park is an important council member and his time is valuable.” He stares the beta down pointedly and the lieutenant shrinks under the alpha’s oppressive aura. 

“I apologize for delaying your tour, Captain,” The beta stumbles over his words. “Right this way please. And welcome to the base, Councilor Park.”

 


 

Na-kyum lets out a massive sigh of relief when the pesky lieutenant is finally out of earshot. “I can’t believe we actually fooled him,” he says. His heart is still rabbiting over a hundred beats a minute. 

“Shhh,” Seung-ho reminds him, but very softly murmurs, “Before my brother took up his position, our father had intended for me to walk this path. I was in the military for a few years before leaving to join the police force. I know a little more than the average citizen about operations within the compound.”

The omega nods back. He has never felt like his objective and his safety had ever laid more acutely in someone else’s palm, but he trusts Seung-ho. He knows that if there is anyone who he can rely on to protect him, it has to be this alpha. That being said, he does not plan on being the weakest link in their partnership. The solid weight of an M18 smoke grenade in his left pocket and compact body of an X26 taser sitting in his right grounds him in the confidence he can be of help in an emergency. 

 


 

Between the intel from Sergeant Kim and Seung-ho’s prior knowledge, the duo have a rough map of key areas within the base that they need to survey for possible storage of illicit substances. The training grounds are usually fairly exposed and often frequented by officers in combat education so it is lower on their priority to survey. They figure that the command center is intermediate priority. It is frequented only by a select few officers, but the building is relatively small and seems less feasible to house vast quantities of Aphrodite’s Kiss. 

Which leaves the proving ground. 

The proving ground is a sectioned off area of the base reserved for testing new and upgraded technology. It also has several high security storage facilities where classified weapons and mission equipment are kept. It seems like the perfect location to keep bulk quotas of things meant to be kept away from prying eyes. Seung-ho and Na-kyum surmise that if the Imoogi have an inside man within the military, this would be a dangerously apt location to hide contraband drugs. 

Therefore, the disguised Captain Yoon and Councilor Park settle on making this site their prime target for investigation.

Once they arrive at the proving ground, Seung-ho and Na-kyum easily bypass several military scientists who are too absorbed in testing their prototypes to pay them much mind. It takes a little bit more imperious browbeating from Seung-ho and feigned professional sternness on Na-kyum’s part, but they eventually are able to overcome even the most rigid onsite security. 

Finally, they stand before three expansive storage buildings. 

“Take your pick, Councilor Park,” Seung-ho chuckles. “Which one should we tour first?”

Na-kyum rolls his eyes fondly. Leave it to Seung-ho to remain glib even in the face of the most precarious situation that they have thus far found themselves in. They are technically going against official orders. One wrong move and they could become exposed. Then, they could both end up behind bars. 

Yet Na-kyum knows that Seung-ho is as aware of the risks as he is, if not more so. He knows that the inspector is trying his best to keep both of them calm. They will find out the truth soon. Either way, in a matter of minutes, they will either have solved the case or at the very least can begin to escape the military base and evade further risk of culpable treason. 

“Let’s start with the one on the right.”

 


 

They pass the initial security check about as smoothly as any other checkpoint within the base up till now. They finally run into a bit of trouble when they notice that one particular door within the building is more heavily guarded than the others. Immediately, Seung-ho and Na-kyum share a look. 

“Stop right there,” One of the uniformed security personnel orders the touring duo. “Access beyond this door is strictly prohibited.”

“We have special permission,” Seung-ho asserts, flashing his badge. “As Captain I don’t see why I should be denied entry.”

The guards remain rooted to their stations. “Sorry Captain. Even you do not have privileges here,” he sneers at the alpha. 

The inspector resists the temptation to growl. Instead he sizes up the suspicious guards. There are three in total. Seung-ho figures if he and Na-kyum coordinate this well, they could disarm all of them. The alpha and omega make eye contact and with a subtle nod at one another, they spring into action in a split second.

The journalist whips out his hidden smoke grenade and activates it. He makes sure to cover his face so as not to breathe in the fumes. Meanwhile the inspector exercises his lightning fast reflexes to pinpoint his targets. The alpha deals a swift blow to the occiput of one, knocking the guard out cold. He then sends his practiced roundhouse kick into the carotid of another, causing the second member to faint on the spot. Seung-ho lands a punch to the chest of the third guard, however this fails to immediately wipe out the final opponent. 

The last guard stumbles, but remains on his feet. There is a frantic look in his eyes as he sees that he has become outnumbered two to one. The guard barely spares his fallen compatriots a glance before he charges past Seung-ho and Na-kyum to escape toward the exit. 

“We should chase after him!” Na-kyum cries out in horror. “What if he alerts the other military members?” 

“No,” Seung-ho’s voice is as steady as the hand he uses to grasp onto Na-kyum’s arm. “Let him run. I don’t think these three are real soldiers anyways. Look,” he says, pointing to the two fallen guards at their feet. “Their insignias are shams. I’m willing to bet their cowardly colleague is hightailing his way out of the base as we speak. He probably thinks we’re the real officers and we’ve caught onto them .” 

When the smoke from the activated canister finally clears, so too does the situation that dawns upon the inspector and the journalist. Na-kyum swallows thickly around the anticipatory lump that has welled in his throat. 

“This is it, isn’t it?” The omega whispers even though there are finally no other people around them. He places a hand against the metallic door. Seung-ho has a hand in his pocket, hovering over the sleek handgun there. 

With a deep breath, Na-kyum pushes. 

The sight that greets them behind the door immediately sends an icy chill into their hearts. They come face to face with a man they recognize all too well. 

“I knew I should have killed you both when your colleagues first warned me about you. I guess the second best time to get the job done is now.” 

In the large storage room, in front of innumerable barrels of Aphrodite’s Kiss, stands Mumyeong. He has a Daewoo K11 assault rifle cocked in position on his shoulder. His aim is locked directly on the stunned pair before him.

Chapter Text

Na-kyum’s racing heart drops into his stomach at the sight of the assault rifle pointed directly at him. The only thought running through his head is, am I going to die?  

A few moments pass as the trio stare at each other in silence and Na-kyum struggles to breathe under the excruciating pressure. He glances at Seung-ho, who outwardly seems as calm as he had been when they were walking in. Na-kyum can’t help but admire that about Seung-ho, how he always has a level head when he finds himself in precarious situations.

Like this one. 

“What do you mean, when my colleagues warned you about us?” Seung-ho asks carefully.

Mumyeong sighs and shakes his head in disappointment. “I thought you were smart— it seems like that was a lie as well. Is it really so hard to believe that your colleagues betrayed you by sending you here to die?”

Seung-ho flinches and stares at the burly man in disbelief. “What…?”

“From what I understand, you are a real pain in the ass at work. You have an absurdly naïve and unfounded faith in the justice system where you think you could do no wrong as long it’s in the name of the greater good. Your colleagues gave you a chance to abandon that pathetic way of thinking and become more powerful and rich . But no— of course, ever the hero, your morals are unwavering to the end. Now we can’t have a rat in our seamless business, can we? If you had only listened to your superiors, this never would have happened. You know too much but you won’t play along, so now you have to die… but don’t worry; I’ll send your father my condolences.”

Everything erupts into chaos. 

Seung-ho lunges forward and grabs the assault rifle sitting on Mumyeong’s shoulder. He tilts it upwards just in the nick of time, because a slew of bullets shoot out of the barrel and lodge themselves in the concrete ceiling. Dust scatters down around them like snowflakes, covering the area in a thin grey film. 

Mumyeong grunts and kicks Seung-ho backward. Seung-ho stumbles but quickly regains balance, and pulls out his pistol. He fires a couple rounds, but all of them miss. One bullet hits a pipe lining the wall and it bursts open with an awful hiss. 

It must have been a gas pipe, Na-kyum thinks as he scrambles out of the way. That’s dangerous. If it is exposed to an ignition source, it becomes combustible. If there happened to be a small spark from a gun or lighter, they could all be in grave danger. 

“For an officer you sure are a lousy shot,” Mumyeong comments.

“Stop talking and fight me like a real alpha,” Seung-ho snarls back. 

Mumyeong scoffs and aims his gun at Seung-ho. “I’m not here to fight you— I’m here to kill you.”

Seung-ho rolls out of the way as Mumyeong starts firing. He runs towards the stacks of barrels and promptly disappears into the massive warehouse. Na-kyum follows his lead, and soon their fight becomes a game of cat and mouse. Na-kyum doesn’t know where Seung-ho is so he’s wary of any noise he hears around him. He sticks close to the side where the gap between the containers and the wall is just narrow enough for him to slip through. 

He can hear heavy footsteps and shuffling echoing around the large warehouse, but it sounds like it’s coming from the other side. Seung-ho must be actively hiding from Mumyeong right now. Na-kyum bites his bottom lip as he contemplates what to do next.

He can’t call the police and tell them where the main stock of Aphrodite’s Kiss is now that they don’t know who to trust within the department. Since they are in a government facility, that also must mean that at least some part of the administration might be corrupt too. Is there anyone he can rely on? 

...What about Inhun? 

Na-kyum reaches into his pocket to grab his phone but pauses. While it would be the quickest way to expose to the media that the police and government are in on the drug ring, that would put the editor in danger too. Not to mention sound would travel in this confined space, so Mumyeong would be able to hear if Na-kyum were to talk on the phone. He would like to avoid putting any more people in danger if possible. 

He’s going to have to rely on himself.

Let’s think about this logically. What is my first priority?  

Getting out alive with Seung-ho. That’s easy.

How do I do that without getting hurt? 

By finding Seung-ho, avoiding Mumyeong, and escaping the warehouse safely.

What about Aphrodite’s Kiss?

If they leave the warehouse without doing anything about the drug, they can’t trust the police or government to dispose of it— so that means he and Seung-ho are going to have to do it themselves. But how are they going to deal with such a large quantity of Aphrodite’s Kiss in such a short amount of time?

Na-kyum eyes the busted natural gas pipes lining the walls and gets an idea. 

 


 

“Shit,” Seung-ho mutters under his breath. Being split up from Na-kyum in an enclosed area with a ruthless killer after them is not the situation he wants to be in right now. 

He darts right into a side aisle, presses himself up against a stack of Aphrodite’s Kiss, and listens for a moment. He can hear Mumyeong walking around, but to his extreme discomfort, the gangster doesn’t seem to be all that bothered by the situation if his leisurely pace is anything to go by. They’re still close to the entrance and if Seung-ho can time this right, he can slip around Mumyeong, find Na-kyum, and get the hell out of here. He doesn’t want to put Na-kyum in any more danger than they’re already in.

“Come on out, Mr. Inspector. I’ve got a rifle full of bullets that would look great lodged in your chest,” the mobster taunts. He shoots his gun at the towering stacks to prove his point. The large 5.56x45mm bullets punch holes into the sides of barrels and the familiar coral liquid spills all over the floor.

Seung-ho grimaces and steps away from the quickly spreading puddle. He can smell the sweet fragrance of the aphrodisiac and does his best to repress the stirring arousal inside of himself. The smell reminds him of Na-kyum, and does nothing to quench his yearning for the missing omega. As soon as this whole thing is over, he’s going to tell Na-kyum how much he loves him— he regrets that he hasn’t said it sooner. 

Then, after he makes up for their horrid, rushed first time in the club by devouring him nice and slow in the comfort of his real home, he’s going to buy Na-kyum a real collar to replace that shoddy faux-leather one he got him when they had first started this mission. He feels ashamed that he ever thought that such a cheap collar would be sufficient for Na-kyum. 

The distinct cock of a gun’s chamber draws Seung-ho out of his thoughts and he watches as golden bullet casings roll on the ground toward him. 

Mumyeong is getting closer. 

At this point, it is clear that the weapon Mumyeong hauls needs to be removed immediately. It is a standard issue military multi-weapon that works as both an assault rifle and as a grenade launcher. Why the gangster would need a grenade launcher to kill an undercover cop and journalist is beyond Seung-ho’s comprehension, though. A pistol would have worked just fine.

Seung-ho surprises Mumyeong by popping out from the hidden aisle and as the rifle turns towards him, he pushes aside the barrel so that he’s out of the line of fire. He hooks his left arm underneath the weapon and punches Mumyeong in the face with his right. In the flurry of movements, Seung-ho is able to wrestle the massive gun away from the gangster. The assault rifle is heavy in his hands and it takes effort to fling the thing away. The weapon slides across the floor and ends up a couple of meters away from the pair. 

The inspector pulls out one of his pistols and points it at the disarmed gangster.

“Bringing an assault rifle to a gunfight is a bit overkill, is it not?”

“Shut the fuck up, pig.”

Both alphas are startled by the sudden sound of gunshots and Seung-ho immediately fears the worst. Is Na-kyum being shot at? He doesn’t hear any screaming or noise indicative of others inside the warehouse, so he wonders whether Na-kyum is the one shooting.

At what, though? And where would he have gotten the weapon?

Mumyeong takes advantage of the temporary confusion by grabbing Seung-ho’s wrist and ripping the pistol right out of his hand. Seung-ho is quick to react, and pulls back against the gangster’s arm. However, the inspector is not able to maintain a firm hold of his gun. To his dismay, Mumyeong’s retaliating arm swing inadvertently causes the pistol to be flung off to the side, out of both of their reach. 

They both stare at the discarded weapon. To Seung-ho’s surprise, Mumyeong challenges him. “You said you wanted me to fight you like a real alpha— then let’s do just that. No weapons, only fists.”

Seung-ho agrees, but fails to remove the second pistol hidden in his pocket. He doesn’t trust Mumyeong to not fight dirty. Another series of shots ring out and it serves as a starting bell for their brawl. Mumyeong moves first, sending a low kick towards Seung-ho’s gut. Seung-ho manages to block it by raising his leg and catching it with his shin. He winces— that is definitely going to leave a bruise.

Mumyeong reels back and aims for his ankle this time, which Seung-ho barely dodges. The heavy military uniform and thick leather boots he is wearing is weighing him down, and consequently, slowing him. 

They circle around each other, both alphas keeping their attention solely trained on the other. Neither can afford to heed the continuous gunshots ringing in the background. Seung-ho can feel his alpha instincts thrumming under his skin, ready to take over at a moment’s notice. This is a fight to the bloody end and the inspector is keenly aware that the loser will not be leaving this warehouse alive.

Wanting to end this quickly, Seung-ho feigns a jab to the stomach and when Mumyeong goes to block, he aims his elbow right for the gangster’s head. Unfortunately for him, Mumyeong ducks at the last second and avoids the blow. Seung-ho snarls, his usually controlled temper quickly rising. If that had connected, the burly man in front of him would have been out like a light. He’s clearly experienced and that makes him even more dangerous of an opponent. 

With every passing second, the weight of the match grows heavier.

“I have to congratulate you, inspector. When I have your head, I’ll be able to say you were a worthy opponent,” The mobster goads. 

“Hah!” Seung-ho crows, not one to back down from the other alpha’s attempt at intimidation. “You won’t be saying anything once I’m through with you.”

This time, Seung-ho goes for Mumyeong’s neck. The gangster catches his wrist and hits him square in the sternum, knocking the air out of the inspector’s lungs. Sharp stabs of pain erupt in his chest and he suddenly finds it agonizingly hard to breathe. 

Seung-ho kicks in Mumyeong’s knee and lands a right hook directly against his jaw with a loud crack. Mumyeong stumbles backward, cradling his jaw with a bloodied hand. 

“You fucker,” he breathes out. Seung-ho must have broken his mandible.

But Seung-ho doesn’t stop there. He needs to knock the gangster out or kill him, and only one of those options seem feasible at the moment. Mumyeong darts forward with a right hook, but Seung-ho blocks it with his left arm and places a hefty chop to the junction between his neck and shoulder. Mumyeong crumples to the floor.

At that moment, Na-kyum emerges from a narrow passage nearby and Seung-ho spots him instantly.

“Na-kyum! Are you okay—” 

Mumyeong’s hand wraps around Seung-ho’s ankle and yanks him down. Seung-ho catches himself with palms, scraping them painfully against the concrete. The gangster pulls Seung-ho towards him and tightly grips the back of his head before beginning to bash Seung-ho’s head repeatedly against the floor. Blood starts to pool on the ground from the gaping wound forming on Seung-ho’s forehead. 

“NO!” Na-kyum screams. 

He moves forward to intervene but Mumyeong commands him to stop . Helplessly, Na-kyum freezes and internally curses Mumyeong for using his alpha command on him. What a coward.  

Seung-ho ceases struggling after a while and becomes limp under Mumyeong’s grip. The moment he falls still, Na-kyum begins to sob uncontrollably. His world comes crashing down around him and he feels like his heart is being ripped in two. That is his alpha, the man he is supposed to be with for the rest of his life. And now he is laying on the ground in front of him, just out of reach, and Na-kyum doesn’t know if he’s unconscious or dead.

“Fucking finally,” Mumyeong mutters, standing up and brushing the dust off his pants. 

“You monster!” Na-kyum shrieks. His body trembles in fear and fury, acutely aware that he is now vulnerable to this violent alpha’s whims. He flinches with every step Mumyeong takes toward him. 

“As for you,” Mumyeong says as he gives Na-kyum a chilling smile, “I will take my time breeding you over the corpse of your dead mate. I’ll take pleasure in making you pregnant with my pups. You may have been able to fool him, but I can see how much you want me. You’re going to look so good stretched out on my knot—”

Several shots cut Mumyeong off and Na-kyum flinches as he watches the gangster fall to the floor, confusion and disbelief the last emotions etched over his face. Behind him, Na-kyum sees Seung-ho’s stubbornly kneeling figure. The inspector has his barrel pointed at the fallen alpha, gun still smoldering. 

“Over my dead body, you motherfucker.” 

“Seung-ho!” Na-kyum cries in shock and relief.

The journalist runs over to Seung-ho and helps him up, completely disregarding the bleeding criminal on the ground. Blood is still streaming down the center of the inspector’s face and Na-kyum hiccups, still weepy. “L-let’s get out of here. I shot the gas pipes full of holes a-and we’re going to blow this place up.”

“Blow it up?”

Na-kyum nods as he wipes away a few stray tears. “Can’t you smell it? The whole facility is filling up with gas from the burst pipes… do you have a lighter on you by any chance?” 

Seung-ho shakes his head with an amused smile, but it looks more like a grimace to Na-kyum. The omega wants to cry all over again. “Unfortunately, I do not. Your taser might work, though.” 

“Ah!” Na-kyum hits his palm with his fist in an ‘a-ha!’ motion. “I didn’t think of that!”

“It’s a good thing you have me, then. Come on, let’s get ourselves out the entrance first.”

Seung-ho pushes Na-kyum forward, and they start running towards the entrance of the warehouse. Sunlight streams in through the open door and the peaceful silence settles their nerves. Both breathe a sigh of relief. They are in the clear. They no longer have to worry about intermingling with conniving gangsters and pretending to be hardened criminals. They can finally go back home.

Or, at least, that’s what they had thought. 

A deafening shot rings out from behind them and everything seems to slow down to a grinding halt. Na-kyum looks down to see red blooming like a poppy from the center of his own chest. He blinks, and notes how heavy his eyelids feel as he glances over to see Seung-ho looking at him with an expression of sheer terror. The omega is in shock. He sees Seung-ho screaming something— but he can’t tell what he is saying. All he can hear, as he feels himself falling forward, is the rhythmic pounding of his heart in his ears blocking out all other noise around him. 

Oh, he thinks as the world seems to move around him in slow motion. Did I get shot?

He presses his hand against the wound, watching blankly as blood continues to spill. Na-kyum topples and Seung-ho catches him before he can fall on his face. His trembling hands grip Na-kyum’s forearms painfully tight. 

Mumyeong chuckles from behind them. “You didn’t— cough, think you were the only one who knew how to shoot someone in the back, cough, right? If I can’t have him… neither can you.”

Seung-ho blinks harshly to clear the rising wetness in his eyes. He does not hesitate to respond by unloading the rest of his clip into the gangster, permanently silencing him once and for all. 

“We, we need to get you out of here. Don’t close your eyes, Na-kyum. That’s an order from your alpha,” he shakily commands. He spots a fallen Zippo on the ground near one of the fake guards they had taken down earlier. He bends over to pick the lighter up and flicks it on. “Let’s end this.”

He picks up Na-kyum and limps out of the building and only stops when he's a sufficient distance away. Without a second thought, he throws the lit lighter into the warehouse. The explosion is near instant with a loud BANG. Debris flies everywhere. Seung-ho shields Na-kyum from the blast with his body and winces as a piece of wreckage hits him in the back. He can barely think over the ringing in his ears. Looking back, the alpha sees where the warehouse once stood is now a pile of flaming rubble. The natural gas and wooden canisters had made for an awfully flammable combination of fuel and tinder. 

Seung-ho pulls out his phone and dials 119, cradling the wounded Na-kyum close to his chest. 

“119, situation room. How can we help you?”

“This is Inspector Yoon Seung-ho of Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency. I need an ambulance.” 

 


 

Everything blurs together in a sea of flashing blue and red lights. Na-kyum is rushed to the hospital and Seung-ho watches helplessly as his lover is carted away by emergency room doctors dressed in pristine scrubs. There’s indiscernible yelling and a flurry of movement and before he knows it, he is pulled to the side and is getting his wounds treated. However, he can’t bring himself to focus on what is happening.

The scene repeats in his head on a constant torturous loop.

He can’t get the image out of his head— of his omega being shot by that gangster scum. That should have been him.

Seung-ho doesn’t know how much time passes and he’s only brought out of his stupor when the nurses tell him that he’s all done. They hand him two painkillers and Seung-ho swallows them dry. His head is pounding and the light hurts his eyes. He might have a concussion.

“Na-kyum, is— is he okay?”

The nurses give each other wary glances. “The patient is in surgery right now, so we don’t know. A doctor will come in and inform you when the patient is out of surgery and what his status is.”

Seung-ho deflates. He squeezes his knee and takes deep, shaky breaths to calm himself down. If he takes a step back and looks at their situation from an outsider’s point of view, it isn’t that bad. They are in the best hospital in the area and Na-kyum had been treated relatively quickly after being shot. Plus, his omega is much too stubborn to let a simple bullet take him down. He will be okay, Seung-ho tries to reassure himself. After all, things can’t end here. Na-kyum has his whole life ahead of him—hopefully with Seung-ho in the picture.

Once the nurses leave him alone in the room, Seung-ho pulls out his phone and dials Sergeant Kim. When the older man doesn’t pick up, the inspector grows worried. He tries calling him two more times, but after no luck, he calls Inspector Min.

Min picks up on the third ring with a drawled out “Hello?”

“Where is Sergeant Kim and why isn’t he picking up my calls?”

“Oh, him? He’s demoted. Last I checked he is cleaning out his office. You can refer to him as Senior Officer Kim now.”

Ice floods Seung-ho’s veins at Min’s words. What the fuck is this squiggly eyebrowed bastard talking about? Then, realization dawns on him.

“He’s being punished because he didn’t play along with your stupid schemes, isn’t he?” Seung-ho growls.

The alpha on the other line has the gaul to laugh and Seung-ho feels red hot fury flare up in his chest. Min’s blatant attitude confirms Mumyeong’s words that Seung-ho’s coworkers really did betray him and set him up for failure. 

“Well, what can I say… he should have rolled over and played nice while he still could,” Min says while suppressing a snicker. Seung-ho can hear the sheer delight in his voice. “Thanks to Kim’s stubbornness, I’ll be replacing him as sergeant. You better be careful, Seung-ho, because soon you might find yourself out of a job.” 

“You won’t get away with this,” Seung-ho yells over the phone. His hands are gripping the device so hard that he wouldn’t be surprised if it cracks under the pressure. 

Min chortles once more. “What the hell can you do about it? You can’t even report us to the media. If you try, I’ll make sure your precious little omega is taken down with us. Do you know how easy it would be to frame Mr. Baek as part of Imoogi? He was never officially part of the undercover investigation to begin with. You know that he never signed any official paperwork. He could be charged with being part of the same illegal organization that has been distributing deadly drugs.”

“You bastard!” Seung-ho seethes.

But Inspector Min isn’t done. “Do you know what they do to omegas in jail? Especially to a cute thing like Mr. Baek— he’s a journalist too. Who knows how many criminals he has put behind bars. There is sure to be a lot of crooks who hold grudges against him. He wouldn’t even last a day in prison.” 

As much as Seung-ho hates to admit it, he knows Min isn’t kidding. If Seung-ho decides to go public with their findings, that will single-handedly ensure Na-kyum ends up behind bars. Now that he has confirmed for himself that the local government and police are corrupt, there is no one to save them. He realizes he is utterly helpless against them and Seung-ho absolutely loathes the fact. 

If he had been alone in this whole scheme, he wouldn’t have hesitated to take down the corrupt officials and officers with him. However, he’s not alone anymore. Na-kyum is involved and there is no way in hell that Seung-ho would put his omega through hell just to expose the truth. Even if he did decide to risk it all and reveal their crimes, he has no physical proof. He had burned down the warehouse where the drug was being stored and he is sure that any other evidence would quickly be destroyed if the story did come out. 

Seung-ho’s silence seems to signal his defeat and Min begins to cackle wildly. The inspector grits his teeth and abruptly ends the call before throwing his phone across the room. It shatters against the wall and Seung-ho seethes in the quiet room.

A knock at the door brings the inspector out of his mired thoughts. He wills himself to calm down and tells the person to come in. 

The doctor peeks in through the crack and weakly smiles at the defeated alpha. “Inspector Yoon Seung-ho, it’s good to see you are doing well.” 

“Cut the shit and tell me if Na-kyum is alright.” 

“O-oh—” The doctor seems shocked at Seung-ho’s abrasive tone. “Well, the bullet has been successfully extracted. Miraculously, it seems to have missed all major organs and vessels, so we stitched him up and he’s resting in his room right now. He woke up shortly after the operation finished and immediately asked to see you. Though, I should mention that his heat was near so we did have to administer an emergency suppressant.”

Seung-ho’s heart pounds loudly in his chest. He forgot all about Na-kyum’s heat. 

“What room is he in?”

“613. I can escort you if you’d like.”

“Please do.”

 


 

Seung-ho knocks on the door marked ‘613’ twice before entering the room. There, sitting up in the hospital bed clad in a patient gown, is Na-kyum. The omega doesn’t look up when he enters as he seems to be focused on whatever he is doing on his phone. Seung-ho stands there for a while in the doorway, watching his lover quietly, drinking in every detail and making sure that what he is seeing isn’t an illusion. 

Finally, Seung-ho calls out to him.

“Na-kyum.”

The journalist jolts, startled by the sudden exclamation. He looks up to see Seung-ho striding over to him with misty eyes. He puts down his phone and tries to discreetly hide it underneath the covers. The TV mounted across from the bed plays in the background, stuck on some general news station. Na-kyum smiles softly at his forlorn alpha. 

“Seung-ho.”

“Na-kyum,” Seung-ho repeats reverently as he takes Na-kyum’s pale hand in his own. “Thank God you’re okay…” 

“How are you doing? Is your head okay?” Na-kyum asks Seung-ho even though he’s the one in the hospital bed.

The alpha gently kisses the back of Na-kyum’s hand and nods. “Just a minor concussion and some surface level wounds. Nothing too serious.” Seung-ho chooses to omit the lengthy investigations he had to sit through to make sure he didn’t have permanent brain damage. His lover didn’t need more things to worry about. 

“Have you talked to Sergeant Kim at all? He should be updated on what we found.”

Seung-ho pauses in his loving ministrations and furrows his brows. Na-kyum immediately picks up on the unspoken tension, because he then asks if the corrupt higher ups have got to him already.

“Unfortunately, that seems to be the case. Min seems to have replaced him and who the hell knows what is going on with Jihwa. I think this is out of our hands,” Seung-ho murmurs. In order to keep Na-kyum safe, he’s going to have to pretend like this never happened— or, at least, until he finds a way to protect the journalist before he can go after Min and his father.

Na-kyum gawks at Seung-ho in disbelief. His free hand absentmindedly drifts to his bandaged abdomen, evidence of the nearly fatal repercussion of taking on this story. “You’re kidding, right? After everything we’ve been through? Seung-ho, you can’t be serious—”

“I am,” Seung-ho sternly says. “Who knows what could happen to you if we go public with what we found? It would be better to bring it straight to the Ministry of the Interior and Safety or the National Police Agency. They would take a report like this seriously if it came from me. The police and Imoogi won’t stand a chance if the federal government gets involved.”

The journalist looks down at his lap and avoids Seung-ho’s gaze, which makes the inspector instantly suspicious.

“Na-kyum…?”

The TV, which has been playing quietly in the background, seems to grow ten times louder in the drawn out silence. 

“This just in— breaking news! The origin of Aphrodite’s Kiss, the deadly drug sweeping the nation by storm, has been discovered. The investigative journalism team under the esteemed editor-in-chief, Jung Inhun, has just published that the criminal gang Imoogi have been the ones behind the distribution of this despicable drug. The most shocking part of the story is that it has been revealed that both the police and the government have had involvement in this atrocity. Photos released have shown that the majority of the drug was being stored in a military compound in Seoul that reported an explosion earlier this afternoon. The cause of the explosion has yet to be identified. There have been no statements released by Governor Yoon or the Chief of Police—” 

All the color drains from Seung-ho’s face as he turns to Na-kyum in both horror and fury. 

“What have you done?!” 

Na-kyum shrinks in on himself and looks away in guilt. “I did what was right. The public deserved to know.” 

Struggling to not reach over and violently shake the injured man, Seung-ho quivers in place, his jaw rhythmically clenches and unclenches uselessly. His muscles flex with the effort to stay still and he has to repeatedly remind himself to keep his anger in check. The last thing he wants to do is accidentally hurt his omega.

An image showing the insides of the massive warehouse filled with Aphrodite’s Kiss flashes on the TV screen and Seung-ho does a full double take. When the hell did Na-kyum take these pictures?! 

“Na-kyum.” The alpha’s tone is cold, barely concealing the underlying wrath. “Explain. Now.

“Seung-ho, did you forget that I’m a journalist? I joined this mission to investigate Aphrodite’s Kiss and to report my findings to the public. I’m not here to parade myself around as some omega whore for fun!” His volume grows louder with every word he speaks. Na-kyum can’t believe Seung-ho is getting mad at him for doing his job. 

“That doesn’t matter!” Seung-ho yells. “They have things they can use against you to put you in prison! Don’t you care about what happens to you?!”

“Bringing justice to this whole corrupt system is more important than hiding the truth just because we’re scared of blackmail! I thought you would understand that better than anyone!” Na-kyum begins to cry out of frustration as he tries to reason with the alpha.

At that moment, two police officers who Seung-ho recognizes from his precinct enter their room in full uniform. They wear dark looks on their faces. They must have heard the news coming in. One of the officers pulls out handcuffs and walks up to the enraged omega.

“Baek Na-kyum, you are under arrest for your participation in illegal gang activities and your involvement in the creation and distribution of controlled substances. You have the right to remain silent.”

Chapter Text

Fuck .

It does not begin to describe that awful feeling of having a blackhole where his stomach ought to be. Seung-ho wills himself to take deep breaths. Staying calm in a time of crisis has never been so difficult. Na-kyum is being taken to the police station, and after an arduous trial, likely the federal penitentiary. 

For the first time in his life Seung-ho is not certain that he can fix the problem. 

The one thing that had distressed him the most had been seeing the steely look in Na-kyum’s eyes as the corrupt officers had dragged him away. Seung-ho had wanted to yell at Na-kyum then.

How could you? How could you have decided this all on your own? How could you choose to sacrifice yourself? 

How could you bear to be away from me?

But Seung-ho already knows the answer. It is because despite the morally rigid way in which he had always led his own life, at the end of the day, Baek Na-kyum is a better man than he is. Beautiful, smart, omega Baek Na-kyum with his unwavering duty to report the truth and his naive optimism that good will always prevail had decided to place his fate in the hands of a system that Seung-ho has lost his faith in. 

Seung-ho had made Na-kyum promise to call him from the detention center at his earliest chance. While he awaits the omega’s phone call, and while Na-kyum awaits trial, the inspector decides that he has to start taking matters into his own hands. 

Seung-ho had grown up under the heavy hand of his controlling and manipulative father. He knows better than anyone the shrewd ambition of the governor. The inspector may have often been irritated by his snake-like colleagues in the police force, but even Inspector Min’s unscrupulous ways paled in comparison to what Seung-ho knows his own father is capable of. 

Seung-ho knows better than anyone that consorting with other suspects during these uncertain times may harm his and Na-kyum’s case in the ongoing investigations, but Seung-ho no longer knows who to trust. Ever since he had begun to work this case, the sharp boundaries he had drawn between the black and the white, the light and the dark, the wrong and the right, have become muddied. Now everything is a variant of grey, and who had always understood the ever shifting lines of truth and lies better than his own father?

The inspector resigns himself to seeking help from the devil he knows rather than to await the one soon to come knocking at his door. 

 


 

Senior Superintendent General Song works for the National Police Agency. When he had heard about the disaster in the capital surrounding an Aphrodite’s Kiss investigation, he had known that this was not going to be easily handled at the municipal, let alone regional level. 

The fact that the media had been all over the case even before he had heard most of the details from the internal reports was mind boggling. It had been a PR nightmare that tons and tons of a controlled drug had been found inside of a military compound and that somehow there had been rumours that the local police force had been involved. The superintendent had ordered his team to swoop in to do damage control ASAP. 

They need to find out just who the real culprits are and hold them accountable for this horrific crime.

 


 

The detention center is not as glum as Na-kyum had expected. The local police who had apprehended him at the hospital had been pretty rough with him, but once they had unceremoniously shoved him inside of the temporary cell there had been relative peace. 

The journalist is scared. He had tried to put on a brave front for Seung-ho, but the truth is that he does not know for certain how the investigation will go. However, Na-kyum does not regret what he had decided to do. Once he and Seung-ho had discovered that the municipal police had been connected with Imoogi he had known that it would be useless if they continued to try to deal with the matter on their own. 

If Na-kyum had not reported their findings to the media, he knows that the local police would have done everything in their power to cover up their discovery. In fact, they had already proven that they were willing to silence them permanently. Then, Imoogi would continue to have free reign in spreading Aphrodite’s Kiss among the innocent civilian population. Na-kyum shudders to think how many more lives would be at stake if he and Seung-ho had not found out about the production and distribution chain of the dangerous drug. 

He has to believe that things will work out. If not for himself, then at least for society. The only thing that causes a sharp pang to pull at his heart is the thought of Seung-ho. Na-kyum knows that what he had decided to do would hurt the alpha. He knows he had betrayed Seung-ho. For that, he is sorry. But championing the truth and doing the right thing had always been important to Seung-ho. Na-kyum did not want the inspector to have to bear the burden of letting thousands of innocent lives be at stake just because he had been tied down by his colleagues’ threats toward Na-kyum. 

The omega knows that the alpha loves him. Seung-ho would have chosen to save him over the entire population of Seoul. Na-kyum could not bear to see the man he loves make such a big sacrifice on his behalf. 

 


 

Due to the rising anger that the media reports had generated from the public, the federally led investigations had occurred swiftly under the widespread pressure. It had only been a few weeks yet the National Police Agency had been working night and day to round up suspects for questioning. 

Superintendent Song mulls over the files placed before him. He had been at the debriefing where all of the suspects’ statements had been carefully summarized by his team. He knows that the evidence they had gathered will have implications for dozens if not hundreds of people. 

Once again, he skims through sections of the half dozen highlighted reports that had caught his eye.

 

Inspector Min:

“...his defection was a shock to our entire team. Inspector Yoon has always had a stellar track record. Who knew that he would consort with Imoogi and be swayed by their power? I think that omega wench from Imoogi must have played a role. I warned Seung-ho to stay away from that no-good Baek Na-kyum. You know how it is. These criminals— they use money, drugs, and sex to entrap even the best of us. Ah! forgive my tears. I am overwhelmed by Seung-ho--excuse me, my friend --Inspector Yoon’s betrayal!”

 

Inspector Yoon

“...it sounds unbelievable. But the truth is that I was set up. We were both set up. Ever since our first breakthrough with the sting operation I wanted to go into this case to uncover more about Aphrodite’s Kiss. Na-kyum and I thought that we could finally uncover how Imoogi operates so that law enforcement could finally stop the spread of this drug from the source. We knew nothing about the police force’s involvement with Imoogi. Even now, I can hardly believe it.” 

 

Mr. Baek Na-kyum

“...my recruitment into this case was via an unusual route. I know that on the surface I may seem like any other Imoogi member you are questioning. However, I swear that I was working with Inspector Yoon throughout the duration of his investigation. You can even go through my notes and interview my department at the news agency. You may not have met many omega journalists, but if you look into my past exposés you will see that this is in accordance with my line of work.”

 


 

Prior to the completion of the trial before the supreme court, the National Police Agency offers Baek Na-kyum a plea deal. They already have their hands full trying to bring every other Imoogi henchman before the courts. The slow comb through the police force for complicit members is also no small feat.

The officer from the National Police Agency wears an impassive expression as he sits across the desk from Na-kyum in the heavily guarded interview room. 

“If you plead guilty to your involvement with organized crime and for engaging in illegal prostitution activities you can avoid prolonged jail time. We see that you were the whistleblower in this instance but the evidence against you is still far from insubstantial, Mr. Baek.”

Na-kyum frowns at the officer’s proposition. 

“But that’s ridiculous. I was part of the undercover investigation. And if anything, instead of rounding up every sex worker related to Imoogi, shouldn’t you be punishing those who are drugging and exploiting the omegas in the first place?” The journalist cannot believe that this is the best they have to offer.

“We are talking about three months instead of three years,” the policeman states calmly. “If I were you, I would take the deal.” 

 


 

Na-kyum does not take the deal.

Seung-ho would be frustrated by this except he can understand where the journalist is coming from. For someone like Na-kyum to have taken the ultimate risk by exposing both the police and Imoogi, he won’t want to take a deal founded on half truths. 

While Na-kyum continues to fine tune his case with the lawyer that he has been assigned, Seung-ho works hard to help in his own way. The inspector has never relied on good luck before. He knows from years of experience dealing with dangerous cases that the only kind of luck to be had when one is staring down a gun barrel or facing imminent doom is the luck he creates for himself. 

This is how he ends up covertly meeting with his father in one of Governor Yoon’s many private residences, most of which are not under the politician’s own name for the express purpose of discussing delicate matters such as these. 

“I am surprised you finally came to me now of all times, Seung-ho,” The older alpha says as he emanates a stony aura. “You can hardly believe I would be welcoming you now with open arms after what you have done.”

“You knew about the drugs at the compound didn’t you?” Seung-ho is angry. It all makes sense now, the way his own father had tried to get him off the case. “You were making commission off of those bastards’ business weren’t you?”

“You have no proof,” the governor says coolly. “Though I’m certainly not making anything now, thanks to you.”

“People are literally dying!” Seung-ho yells. He knows it’s useless though. His father had never cared for anybody else’s interests other than his own. 

“Did you come to meet me just to peddle your naïve morals?” The governor makes as though he is ready to leave. 

Seung-ho finally forces himself to calm down. He knows that he has to swallow his pride. This is all for Na-kyum he reminds himself.

Seung-ho knows that his father always has another trick up his sleeve. Looking at the governor’s calm demeanor, Seung-ho knows that his father already has methods of getting away with his part in the drug scandal. 

“I need you to help me clear my partner’s name.”

Governor Yoon raises an eyebrow. “This is the omega you’ve been spending all your time with? And why, pray tell, might I get myself involved with his case?”

“Because,” Seung-ho measures his words carefully. “You might have crafted an escape plan for yourself, but I know that if I dig deep enough I can bring even you to justice.”

“Are you threatening your own father?”

Seung-ho wants to scoff. He does not see this man as anything like a father. Instead he clearly states his terms. “I know you have connections everywhere. I’ll wager even in the federal police. Na-kyum is innocent. But I need you to make sure they see it that way. I’m not asking for you to create lies, though I’m well aware you are capable of it. If Na-kyum’s charges can be cleared, I will stay out of your business.”

The governor smirks. “You must really like this boy, Seung-ho. The Seung-ho I have always known would even throw his own family under the bus if it meant sticking to your stupid ideals. I’m amazed you would be willing to look the other way.”

The inspector glowers at the older alpha. “This will be the only time.” 

Na-kyum is the only exception. 

 


 

Mr. Deokjae

“...That fuckin’ two faced alpha brute. I shoulda put three bullets into his brain when I had a chance. I knew he was too shiny to really be one of us. Panther my ass. He had us fooled. If I see that sonuvabitch cop again you bet I’m gonna kill him dead. The omega? The fuck I would know. That bitch came with the cop. A real slut too. Always wrapped up around that alpha. Those two were sickening together. Half the gang was salivating over the omega but I didn’t think he was that attractive anyways.”

 

Sergeant Kim

“...I have worked for this precinct for thirty-five years. I have always tried to be diligent in my cases. I can vouch that Inspector Yoon’s moral character is unparalleled. The Yoon Seung-ho that I know would never involve himself with Imoogi. In truth, I do not know Baek Na-kyum well. However I can say that he was recruited into this case to help legitimize the cover story we had created for Inspector Yoon. As I’m sure you know, having an omega around lowers the defences of these alpha dominant criminal syndicates. I do not believe that Mr. Baek has had any relation to Imoogi prior to this case.”

 

Captain Yoon

“...Yes. Inspector Yoon is my brother. Yes, I believe he is the individual seen in the CCTV footage who had used my identification to gain access to the military compound. No, I was not previously aware of his plans to use my identity in this way. No, I do not know who his omega accomplice is. No, I do not know how the Imoogi gained access to our site. I am just as concerned as you are. No, I do not believe Governor Yoon is aware of how this all transpired. It is true that the military grounds lie within his geographic jurisdiction but the logistics of the site are entirely internally managed by the Department of Defence. I am sure you have ways to verify this.”

In front of Superintendent Song, there is one more file that sits apart from the rest. He fingers the edges of the manila card folder. He sighs as he debates whether to review it one last time. The implications of these statements could bring about sweeping changes for the entire police system. 

 


 

As the days drag on, Na-kyum and Seung-ho both become more haggard with the stress of the ongoing investigation and trial. They had been following along with all the developments both from internal sources and through the media--though the latter had often been sensationalized and perhaps caused more anxiety than relief. 

Na-kyum’s own trial is a relatively smaller affair compared to the ongoing trial involving the Seoul Metropolitan Police Department’s role in covering up Aphrodite’s Kiss. It feels like the weeks leading up to the omega’s sentencing had lasted eons. The judge pounds her gavel for the last time and the final verdict is rendered.

The justice declares that there had not been enough evidence to convict Na-kyum of involvement with Imoogi or the trafficking of Aphrodite’s Kiss.

Baek Na-kyum is a free man. 

 


 

Senior Superintendent General Song has his own set of rules he abides by. 

He is no saint that is for sure. After an interesting conversation with a particular governor in which old debts had been settled, Superintendent Song may have overlooked certain condemning nuances to Baek Na-kyum’s case file. When he sees the publicized outcome of the journalist’s trial he is not surprised. Afterall, he had certainly played a strong hand in obtaining the evidence...or lack thereof, that had set the omega free. 

More importantly however, had been one particularly damning suspect statement. The statement that had been troubling his dreams since his first review of it. It would spare the journalist but convict many higher ups in the police force.

It was the statement that Officer Lee Jihwa had eventually provided in exchange for a lighter sentence. Jihwa had taken his own plea deal. 

“...I didn’t know what they were going to do to Seung-ho. I knew that the superintendents and other inspectors were intimidated by him. Yes, I admit I was aware that Min and some of the higher ups were involved with Imoogi, but I didn’t know to what extent. I suspected they wanted to send Seung-ho into the lion’s den, but I had no idea they were trying to kill him! By the time I found out, I tried to stop Seung-ho. And the journalist? They picked him up off the streets. It was probably to give Seung-ho a false sense of security...so that he would not be surprised when Imoogi welcomed him into their open arms...there is no way that omega is actually part of any gang. You know what gangs do to unbred omegas. Yet from the first meeting you could tell that he was the most inexperienced virgin out there.”

 


 

It is a relief when Na-kyum’s charges are finally cleared. 

Seung-ho feels like he can breathe again. Months of stress lifts from his shoulders. He holds the omega tight in his arms. 

Na-kyum doesn’t even know how to feel at first. The announcement almost seems surreal. He had almost been ready to spend months, maybe years behind bars. Tears rise to his eyes without his permission. He is so grateful that he can be free to stand beside Seung-ho. 

He had felt immense guilt for the worry he had put his alpha through. He knows now that Seung-ho would never have forgiven himself if Na-kyum had ended up in dire conditions. The omega makes up his mind that he won’t let this blessing go to waste. He vows to fight tooth and nail to be with Seung-ho from this point forward.

Just when the journalist thinks he could not be happier, Seung-ho does something that blows away Na-kyum’s remaining expectations.

As soon as they return from the courts, the alpha pulls Na-kyum into a quiet room within his apartment. Seung-ho takes some time digging deep in his closet. Then, while Na-kyum sits on the edge of Seung-ho’s bed, patiently waiting, the alpha returns and gets down on one knee.

Seung-ho presents Na-kyum with the most breathtaking collar he has ever seen. The black patent leather is understated, yet the quality is evident. The buckles are delicate and golden, inlaid with dozens of beautifully cut diamonds.

“Can I be with you for the rest of my life?” Seung-ho asks. His voice is soothing, like a warm hug. Na-kyum can pick up a slight waver from nerves only because he knows Seung-ho so well. 

The omega turns around and guides Seung-ho’s hands which are holding the collar toward his throat. 

“O-of course,” he says, choking on happy tears.

He lets the alpha gently slide the accessory into place. Seung-ho’s promise feels firm and secure around his neck. His heart fills with tenderness.

 


 

It makes national headlines when dozens of Imoogi members are rounded up. According to statements released by the National Police Agency, several smaller stores of Aphrodite’s Kiss had been discovered after extensive investigations and have also been seized. 

What has really shocked the public is the concurrent overhaul of the entire municipal police department. The federally led investigations have convicted many of the higher ranking members of police for their involvement in the corruption scandal with Imoogi and Aphrodite’s Kiss. A significant number of superintendents and inspectors have to serve prison terms. This naturally leads to a period of uncertainty in which recruitment is needed to replace those positions. 

There is also a need for reorganization of internal auditing procedures so as to avoid another such disaster. The public faith in the police is at an all time low. 

The National Police Agency sends a special envoy to have a meeting with Yoon Seung-ho. They offer the alpha inspector a promotion. He has experience working for the Seoul Metropolitan Police Department and his name has been thoroughly cleared throughout the extensive investigations. He would be the perfect fit to take on administrative responsibilities in the new system. 

Seung-ho discusses the opportunity with Na-kyum. Na-kyum only has to see the look in Seung-ho’s eyes to realize where the alpha stands in his decision. He tells Seung-ho, “No matter what you decide, I will always support you. I believe in you.”

Inspector Yoon Seung-ho turns down the opportunity to rise to the level of superintendent. He also resigns from the municipal police force. 

Instead, he campaigns for change in the way that local law enforcement can be held accountable to their actions in the future. It takes months, but with the support of Na-kyum and a few former junior colleagues whom he trusts, a new independent watchdog organization is born. 

Sergeant Kim helps Seung-ho greatly with setting up a lot of the systems and hiring processes given his years of administrative experience. The former inspector had been sad however when Sergeant Kim had told him he would not be working for the new organization. The older policeman had felt that he had worked long enough and wanted to finally retire. Before he had left he had given Seung-ho and Na-kyum his blessings. 

“You’re doing the right thing.” Sergeant Kim had said to Seung-ho on his last day of duty to the Seoul Metropolitan Police Department. 

Meanwhile, Na-kyum had decided to branch out from working under Jung In-hun. Na-kyum had felt that his own vision does not necessarily align with his former employer’s and he also wants the flexibility of working together with his partner. 

Effectively, Seung-ho and Na-kyum are now running their own vigilante group, distinct from the regional police force, and funded at the federal level. Their role is to perform regular audits on the various precincts within their region. In this way, Seung-ho and Na-kyum can use their respective skills to ensure that there are checks and balances on the power held by municipal law enforcement organizations. 

The alpha and omega duo want to ensure that a catastrophe as great as that caused by the widespread use of Aphrodite’s Kiss never occurs again.

 


 

Na-kyum’s heat finally comes. 

As a male omega, his heats are often a little irregular, but the stress of all of the recent uncertainties had definitely thrown his pheromonal cycle out of whack. 

On the third morning of finally being allowed to languish in the comfort of a soft bed, it is not shocking when the omega suddenly awakes drenched in sweat and a feeling of heated desperation. His abrupt waking jostles Seung-ho who had slept curled around him all night. 

“Na-kyum…?” The alpha’s voice is rough with sleep, but its grounding timbre calms the distressed omega by a small fraction. He reaches a hand out and pushes the sticky bangs out of Na-kyum’s face. He feels the warmth radiating off of the omega and understands right away the state that he is in. 

“I think... it’s here,” Na-kyum murmurs. He struggles to keep his words clear. The mounting desire that clouds his mind makes his thoughts zero in on Seung-ho’s full lips and delicious neck. He feels such a strong urge to kiss and bite and mate. Na-kyum tries to delay thinking about the pooling want in his groin for as long as possible, but he cannot help the way his legs squeeze together as dampness makes its way into his underwear. 

The last time Na-kyum had felt heat was at that wildly debauched orgy party. Back then he had practically lost his mind. It’s true that Aphrodite’s Kiss renders an omega into a mindless, knot-hungry being. The unquenchable need that makes one a slave to one’s desires had been undoubtedly potent. However, that’s all that the drug is capable of. The desire is one dimensional. There had been no room in his brain for anything other than pure want. 

This time, as he feels his own natural heat mounting, he can tell that the real thing is different than the drug. There is now nuance to his own feelings. His yearning is layered with the pain of not having coupled in weeks. It is also fresh and reinvigorated after having finally been relieved of the stressors that had suppressed any kind of sexual urges. Then there is his partner. With an alpha so close—with Seung-ho so close—he feels that the intensity of his need has flared exponentially.  

He feels every pulse of heat like a heartbeat. There is an indescribable flood of emotions that centre around his feelings for Seung-ho. He needs his alpha. He doesn’t just need a cock to fill him. He needs Seung-ho’s heart, his attention, his everything. 

Seung-ho’s eyes are knowing. He is sympathetic to the discomfort he sees in his lover’s eyes. It pains him to witness the way that Na-kyum writhes, trying in vain to alleviate the condition that is beyond his control. 

The alpha slides out of their bed, his heart clenches at the pitiful whine Na-kyum lets out. He gently tucks Na-kyum in under the covers.

“I’ll be right back. I need to bring in water and food. Once we get started we won’t be leaving this room for a while.” He caresses Na-kyum’s flushed hot cheeks tenderly before slipping out of the room. 

Seung-ho is quick to retrieve the essentials from the kitchen that he has already prepared well in advance. He had known that Na-kyum’s heat was inevitable. 

He has never shared an omega’s heat before, but for Na-kyum he had fervently, perhaps obsessively, done his research. He wants to make sure that when the time comes, he can properly take care of Na-kyum.

The time is now, and he hopes that he is ready. Before returning to his lover he quickly calls into their office to book a week off for the both of them. He knows they will need time to satisfy Na-kyum and then some days to recover from the long overdue course.

Finally, he returns to his bedroom. Their bedroom. He had asked Na-kyum to move in with him into his bachelor pad. Even though he knows that his home is considered upscale he had originally bought it and outfitted it for the purpose of single living. He thinks that they should move into a bigger home one day, one that he and Na-kyum can choose together. And who knows, maybe there will come a time when their family will grow and they really will need the additional space.

When Seung-ho first steps into the room, a waft of overwhelming floral aroma hits him along with a mouthwatering aftertaste of candied lemons. The scent is so syrupy sweet and addictive. He is drawn toward the bed where Na-kyum is waiting for him like a honey bee to nectar. 

Na-kyum sits at the edge of the bed with a hazy look glazing his eyes. The expression is both focused and unfocused. Staring at Seung-ho, yet staring beyond. The omega looks like he is ready to feast. 

Before Seung-ho’s knees even hit the bed, Na-kyum roughly grabs him by his t-shirt and yanks him down onto the bed. The lithe omega is stronger than he looks. Immediately their mouths crash into each other and Seung-ho feels dizzy from the pheromones in the air and the feeling of a pliant, needy partner in his arms. Na-kyum’s heat seems to transfer between their clothed bodies and Seung-ho wonders if this overwhelming drive to mate is contagious. 

They kiss and they bite while their bodies seek more contact between each other. Na-kyum makes desperate noises in the back of his throat as he grinds his hardening cock against Seung-ho’s. With a shudder, Seung-ho feels hot hands prying impatiently at his pants. He helps the omega to quickly divest himself of his pajama bottoms before relishing in slipping Na-kyum’s soaked through boxers off as well. 

They both moan as they quickly align their now very naked crotches together. They both have barely any time nor inclination to think before joining their hands and rutting together. There is a slick mess of precum between them where their members slide together against their taught abdomens. Between hungry kisses, Seung-ho whispers sweet nothings into his perfect omega’s ear.

“Hurry alpha!” Na-kyum mewls when he pulls away for air. The omega slides a hand down to reach between his thighs. Seung-ho watches with dilated pupils as he sees the omega slide two fingers without any prep directly into his dripping hole. He can only stare in fascination at the hottest vision he has ever seen. Na-kyum pumps his fingers with wild abandon in and out of himself, making louder and wetter sounds with each successive thrust. He makes pleasured whines and Seung-ho almost feels like cumming when Na-kyum fixes a lustful stare upon him. 

The omega scissors his fingers and Seung-ho is hypnotized by the way the movement opens up the omega’s contracting hole. He can nearly see into the pink and spasming walls where Na-kyum is loosening himself. 

“I want you so bad…” Na-kyum groans. Without another thought, Seung-ho reaches a hand out and wrenches the omega’s wrist away from his ass. Instead he guides Na-kyum’s slick drenched hands toward the alpha’s own straining cock. 

“Touch me baby,” Seung-ho beckons. “Take what you need, love.” Na-kyum’s fingers feel like heaven as they grip and slide along Seung-ho’s swollen erection. Even this erratic handjob feels so good. The alpha cannot wait until his cock is ensconced in something even tighter. 

He doesn’t have to wait long. Na-kyum scoots his bottom closer toward Seung-ho’s groin. The alpha watches the depraved sight with hooded eyes as his omega maneuvers his thick cock toward his prepped and juicy hole. Na-kyum brings the alpha’s precum coated tip against his own shiny entrance. Seung-ho groans as his cock is pulled into the divine heat. The omega does not give either himself or Seung-ho time to adjust before he enthusiastically places all his weight into his alpha’s lap and sinks down onto the massive cock to the hilt. He cries out in elation as he feels Seung-ho filling him so fully, almost as if the alpha was rearranging his insides to create the perfect sheath.

Seung-ho can’t help harshly biting onto Na-kyum’s shoulder just so he can ground his focus in something tangible. The alpha’s mind is in disarray, filled with nothing but heat, want, and Na-kyum. 

Na-kyum, Na-kyum, Na-kyum.

Seung-ho grips so tightly onto his omega’s hips that he is sure there will be bruises in the shape of finger marks by the time they are done. And this is only their first round. Na-kyum fervently bounces himself in Seung-ho’s lap. 

“Yesyesyesyesyes!” He chants. It feels so good. Everytime Seung-ho’s cock pounds against his prostate his heat feels a degree more tolerable. Na-kyum feels so drunk on pleasure and the connection that they have. He pulls his alpha closer as he feels Seung-ho anchoring himself to him by the sharp yet pleasant pain digging into his shoulder. 

Their rhythmic synchrony feels like they are making music with their bodies. Na-kyum takes Seung-ho’s cock so well that the alpha feels like the omega belongs there— permanently. When they move like this, it’s as though they are a continuous being, like there is a space within Na-kyum, carved out just for him. 

Na-kyum’s hips rock faster and faster. Seung-ho slams him down, spearing him on his length over and over. Their coupling becomes more frenzied and in a flash their first climax overtakes them. Seung-ho feels Na-kyum’s pulsating insides milking him for as much as he can give. The omega’s exhalation upon his ear sounds like a prayer. It’s both gratitude for what they have shared and a desperate entreaty for more.

They take a minute to catch their breaths and Na-kyum’s eyes, which had briefly cleared post-orgasm, are now beginning to cloud over once again. Seung-ho knows that their next dive into this heady carnality will require endurance. It’s hard for him to maintain his rationality with the way Na-kyum is already dripping his fertile fluids all over his thighs. Seung-ho forces himself to resist temptation, if only for a moment, in order to implore his omega to rehydrate and down some sustenance. The alpha fights through the pheromonal fog to prioritize his omega’s health over his own rapidly waning self-restraint. 

The remaining hours of the day soon blur into a vortex of raw passion and blinding pleasure. Seung-ho fucks into Na-kyum from every position imaginable. Even when the omega has tears in his beautiful eyes from the chafing of his ass, he still stubbornly holds his alpha down and rides him like it's his mission to empty Seung-ho for all he’s worth. Seung-ho feels himself grow delirious between their hours of exertion followed by naps where they hold each other like they’re the last lifeline--sometimes, too exhausted to even disconnect themselves from where they are joined. 

By the morning of the fourth day, Seung-ho feels like he is at the end of a marathon. He is filled with a runner’s high, yet aware that his impeccable stamina is ultimately finite. The feverish temperature coursing through Na-kyum’s skin is gradually diminishing. The alpha can see that his omega’s eyelids are finally becoming droopy from exhaustion but his eyes are clearer than they had been in the last several days. 

Na-kyum beckons Seung-ho closer for one last round of lovemaking. Seung-ho’s cock slides back into place. Cum from their previous sessions floods back out of Na-kyum’s hole from how overstuffed he is. As Seung-ho’s chest hovers over Na-kyum’s sinewy, hickey-marked back, the alpha kisses his omega’s shoulder blades reverently. 

“Take it off—” These are the first coherent words Na-kyum has been able to utter in the last two days, heralding his returning clarity. The omega tilts his head, arching his neck to indicate the bespoke collar adorned there. “Mark me, my alpha.” 

Seung-ho wants nothing more than to heed his lover’s command. His hands find purchase on that smooth leather which had caressed Na-kyum sensitive nape and quickly undoes the binds. The alpha is overtaken by exhilaration as the release of the collar brings forth a surprisingly potent whiff of pheromones seeping from the hidden scent glands. 

“You’re sure?” His voice cracks as he stares enraptured by the untouched skin which had been preserved by the collar.

“More than anything.” Na-kyum promises. The way that Seung-ho’s lips draw toward the throbbing scent gland is as natural as finding his way home. The moment his teeth puncture the sensitive flesh, it is like a live wire threads between their bodies, connecting their souls. The feeling they share is beyond bliss. It’s a transcending bond that entwines the fabric of their beings together. 

The moment is perfect. It’s like the breaking of sunrise, where the dark meets the light. 

While this feeling of ecstasy floods through them, Na-kyum and Seung-ho ride out their last wave of physical pleasure. As the omega pushes himself as close to his alpha as possible, Seung-ho’s knot begins to grow. The alpha’s seed fills Na-kyum until the omega’s abdomen swells. With each remaining thrust, the base of Seung-ho’s member expands further, until finally, they are locked in place, secured to each other. 

Na-kyum and Seung-ho are bound in every sense. 

 


 

This is the first weekday that both Seung-ho and Na-kyum have taken off work in over two months. As they sit side by side, Na-kyum finds that he is the one who has to tenderly rub his palm over the back of his alpha’s hand. Even though Seung-ho is usually the calm one, Na-kyum can spot the miniscule buzzing of nerves under his alpha’s skin. He knows that most passersby wouldn’t notice it. He thinks it may be their bond that allows him to be so in tune with his mate’s feelings. 

Seung-ho has gotten better at handling the unknown, though the alpha certainly does not prefer it. Na-kyum tries to emit soothing pheromones to help settle his anxious partner. The omega knows this is a big day for the both of them.

Finally, the doctor strides into the clinic room. As she joins them, there is a pleasant smile on her face. She is aware that they are anticipating the results.

“The good news is that you are ten weeks pregnant, Mr. Baek. It’s early in the pregnancy, but so far everything looks healthy.” 

The omega breathes out a sigh of relief, but he feels Seung-ho’s grasp is still tense between his fingers. The alpha awaits the doctor’s next words as he senses from her tone that she has more to say. 

“The better news is that the ultrasound showed two heartbeats. You are having twins!”

Na-kyum and Seung-ho exchange a look of surprise, which soon blossoms into mirroring expressions of excitement. 

“Can you believe it?” Na-kyum says to Seung-ho. The alpha adores the look in his mate’s eyes. The one that gazes upon him as if he has hung the stars. In truth, Seung-ho feels it is Na-kyum who has given him the universe. 

He can’t even find the words to describe his happiness so instead he kisses Na-kyum’s hands and grips them tighter as overjoyed tears rise to his omega’s eyes. 

Although it is too early for either of them to feel the fetuses, they both gently bring their hands to hover over Na-kyum’s belly. Inside they are growing the consummation of their love, their bond, the very proof that two halves can indeed make more than a whole.

 

The End.

 

Chapter Text

What are the babies’ names?

We didn’t come up with any baby names! The twins idea was actually super on the fly while writing the last chapter!

 

How long after bonding did they get pregnant? 

Not long! Hehe essentially 2 months after they started working again as independent investigators (I mean are we even surprised by these horny rabbits?) Nakyum was already about 10 weeks preggers 😈

 

How does Nakyum not become crippled from getting dicked so well?

Great question! Nakyum’s bussy is made out of vibranium and cannot be destroyed by mortal dick. Seungho is going to have to try a lot harder if he wants to make Nakyum feel it. 

 

Are you guys going to make a sequel with the babies? An epilogue?

We have no epilogue planned! We’re a bit burnt out at the moment, so a sequel is pretty much out of the question. 

(We’re also reading Eleceed, watching The Untamed, and playing Genshin Impact at the moment to decompress if anyone wants to join us)

 

How do you guys write a fight scene? How do you maintain the detail while ensuring it's not just plain commentary?

For me, I watched fight scenes in movies or TV shows and a few self-defense videos on YouTube for inspiration. It’s quite hard to put the action into words and write the fight scene diverse enough to not get boring. For all the fight scenes I personally wrote, I went over it numerous times to make sure that I could see it playing out in my head like a movie instead of it sounding like pure commentary. I made sure to put enough dialogue to break up the paragraphs full of action, which also helped maintain detail. (Arvosia)

I remember specifically youtubing this video: https://youtu.be/lwEMYHIglbs . I also try to think about what the coolest moves would be and aim to have build up toward the most badass/unexpected maneuvers later on. (electrictea)

 

Would you guys write another AU together?

It was super fun writing this story together and definitely gave us motivation when we were struggling but as with 4) we’re both a little tuckered out by writing long fics at the moment 😅

 

The pedophile case, does it perhaps have any correlation to the Nth Room case?

It doesn’t, but that’s an interesting correlation! The pedophile was created to be a worthy victim Seungho could murder. We wanted to create a character who no one would care if they died and a pedophile fit that description perfectly. We all know he deserved it <3

 

Why the name "Aphrodite's Kiss?"

The name “Aphrodite’s Kiss” came up when brainstorming ideas for the name of the aphrodisiac. We wanted to have the name be reminiscent of the effects the drug has. Aphrodite is the Greek goddess of love, pleasure, and beauty, so using her name seemed fitting. Receiving ‘a kiss from Aphrodite’ became the main catchphrase for the aphrodisiac and it just stuck. 

Btw we didn’t get to seeing this until after we wrote the fic but if you want a cool documentary about drug distribution to watch, The Business of Drugs on Netflix is really interesting!

 

What will happen to their tattoos?

Honestly, they probably would keep them. It reminds them of what they went through and why they decided to become vigilantes. They are also couple tattoos, in a way, which is fitting for our two horny lovebirds~