Shiro’s mind is wandering like it almost always does. One could only put up with Sendak’s violent threats thinly veiled as dirty talk and selfish masturbatory fucking for so long. Shiro never thought he would be the kind of man who thought of others while in bed with his current… lover? That sounds a little too rosy for what they were. And yet there he was.
Did he ever like being with Sendak?
No, he doesn’t think so. But if Zarkon’s second-in-command wants you in his bed you go along with it and hope that he grows bored quickly.
He’s not even that good at it. Or maybe Shiro is too turned off at this point to get into it. Whatever. As long as he behaves he’ll be back in his own bunk soon enough.
Sendak’s druid hand pushes at his back and Shiro’s arms buckle under the weight, forcing him to fall face first wheezing. That thing is so heavy . No wonder they couldn’t attach it to his body, it’d fuck him up if he had to lug that around all day.
Remember to purr. Sure, purring was mostly involuntary, but Sendak liked thinking that he could meet his partners’ instinctive desires. But Shiro has gotten very good at lying.
He raises his tail, arching his back further as he feels claws starting to heat against his skin. Shiro hates this part, but he thinks Sendak gets off on the spell of burnt fur and flesh. There’s some ointment in with his personal effects, usually he doesn’t have to go to the med bay for them.
An undignified yelp pushes through fake purrs when Sendak grabs his tail roughly, just above the base.
“What’s with this ridiculous thing anyway? It makes you look like a child,” he growls behind Shiro.
Don’t let him goad you, Shiro tells himself, he just wants a reaction.
“N-not so tight…” Shiro murmurs. Normally he wouldn’t say anything but he can’t say he trusts Sendak to not push further.
He always pushes further.
A cruel, empty laugh barks behind him and the grip tightens, now joined by claws.
Shiro lightly wiggles his hips, trying to break away despite his better instincts.
Sendak doesn’t like being challenged.
He likes your fear scent.
“Why not?” Sendak mocks. “I’m doing you a favor.”
Shiro feels his skin break as claws dig into the meat of his tail.
It’s a blur what happens after that. There is wetness at the base of his back. Coarse bedding shreds beneath his own claws. Something crunches beneath his foot. Shiro knows he fucked up when he hears Sendak’s yell. He tucks his aching tail against his leg and presses his ears back as he tries to scramble away. The broken nose does nothing to diminish the effect that Sendak’s rage invokes. Holy shit he’s going to die here, Shiro is certain of it.
But after a whirlwind of panic and terror, Shiro finds himself walking down the corridor at a pace he thinks is too calm for what just happened. He didn’t grab his clothes, and he does his best to pretend he’s not bothered by the few night-cycle officers who see him, naked and roughed up as he is.
Shiro’s bunkmates are already sleeping when he returns to his quarters, they’ve learned to sleep through his return. Detached, Shiro goes about treating his injuries without turning on the lights.
The ointment is a soothing balm on his burned skin, but of course he can’t reach all five claw marks. It’s fine, he usually can’t. The remaining ones will just have to heal on their own, no big deal.
He takes stock of his tail, concerned by how wet it’s become. Shiro nearly passes out at his own touch, shaking and ready to vomit when he comes back to himself. Fuck . Thankfully it doesn’t seem to look like he woke anyone, but now there is blood in his mouth. He must have bitten himself.
Shiro slumps over, burying his face in his hands. He’s going to have to go to the med bay after all. There is only a cold silence in between the sleeping breaths of the other galra.
Mindful of his bleeding tail, he pulls on his off-duty clothes and heads out. It’s a little better than a few minutes earlier. The corridor is bright but blackness still clings at the edge of his vision. This time no one pays him any mind until he’s inside the med bay.
A doctor coolly ushers him over to their corner of the wing. They seem to recognize him, although Shiro can’t say the same. He’s given an injection for pain and the fog in his head grows thicker, it’s an excellent excuse to continue to not think about anything.
It’s a strange sensation, to both feel and not feel what the doctor is doing with his tail. He pays no mind to the growing pile of red stained gauze that the doctor is discarding.
“I can dock it if you want,” the doctor offers indifferently. “It would have to be shorter than average, but it’s a simpler process than healing what’s left of the area.”
“Can you heal it?” His voice doesn’t sound like his own, he’s not even sure he felt his lips move or even his breath leave his lungs.
The doctor shrugs. “Yes, although I can’t promise that there won’t be any loss of function. Thankfully there doesn’t seem to be any damage to the rest of your spine. It usually happens when a tail gets caught somewhere.”
His tail wasn’t caught.
It was cut.
They both know that.
“I would still like to keep my tail, please,” Shiro declares robotically. Without another word, the doctor gets to work. He likes his tail. So what if nearly all galra his age have had theirs docked by now. So what if tails are for cubs. He decided to keep it when he reached adolescence and he still wants to keep it. No one gets to decide for him whether or not he lost it. Especially not Sendak.
There was a strange pulling sensation at his skin as the doctor went about mending his tail. It didn’t hurt but it made his stomach roll all the same.
Shiro thinks of his last station and how nice things were there. But when Sendak offered the transfer after that spontaneous night together, Shiro saw it for the order it was. Even if he didn’t know it would be bad, he knew he couldn’t say no.
Distantly, Shiro is aware that more consequences are to come. He’ll have to see Sendak again. Tomorrow. Or sooner if Sendak wants to start something. Shiro tries to push away his anxiety as he listens to the doctor.