Tony had been trying to ignore his instincts since he first saw Loki.
A fucking alien conqueror. It was his God damn luck that the first alpha that made him shiver and want to rub himself all over them was a fucking enemy. It was just one more thing to swear about.
Luckily, he wasn’t a slave to his instincts. He could smirk and snark and ignore how much his body ached to wrap around the alpha until the man’s pain went away.
Because Tony could sense it. His pain, anger, fear and determination. God, Tony wanted him.
But he bottled the hell out of that shit. He might be an omega who had met the first alpha to push his buttons, but he would not make a fool of himself in front of someone who would happily knife him in the stomach.
He didn’t even keen when Loki grabbed his throat and threw him out a window. He had better self-control than that.
He didn’t even jerk off in the weeks that followed, imagining that hand on his skin and whispering ‘kneel’ in his ear. He wasn’t that masochistic.
Tony even managed to push thoughts of Loki out of his mind as the months passed. He was able to pretend that Loki was one more alpha in a sea of men and women who couldn’t activate Tony’s instincts.
He was in control. He was fine.
And then Loki came to Earth to repent.
He was still an asshole, still full of witty sarcasm, but the fear was gone. Because, apparently there were bigger and badder things out there with mind controlling devices. And while ‘sorry’ never once passed Loki’s lips, everyone was a bit less bitter and hostile towards him.
Tony fucking hated that his reasons for saying ‘no’ to his instincts were becoming flimsier and flimsier.
Loki was gorgeous and smart. He was an unattached alpha and all Tony wanted to do was pounce on him. He wanted to cuddle Loki, wear his clothes, have the demi-god fuck him into next week and then bite his neck to claim him.
He had it bad.
But he was not a slave to his instincts. He also knew Loki wouldn’t want anything serious from him. Maybe, he could convince Loki to fuck him (the mage didn’t exactly have a line to his door wanting in his bed, so maybe he’d like the release). But where once Tony had been the ‘love ‘em and leave ‘em’ type. He didn’t want that with Loki. His stomach all but rolled at the thought.
His body had decided and his mind was just as adamant. It was either all or nothing.
Right now, Tony was going for ‘nothing’ with a side of friendship.
Because, that’s what they had. Well, Tony liked to think so.
Loki stopped by the lab and spoke with him for hours. They discussed science, magic, space and pop culture. He made Loki grin, sometimes even laugh. Loki’s presence always brightened his day and warmed him from head to toe.
He was an omega who was falling in love with his perfect alpha. And it sucked.
Why couldn’t he have fallen for Pepper? They’d tried to date but the connection had never formed. Her heart had always been more in it than his. So, of all the gorgeous and available alphas in the universe, why did it have to be Loki?
Because his instincts were secretly sadistic, clearly.
And right now, was a fucking great example. He was going into heat.
Now, unlike what Hollywood and stupid romance books like to indicate, heat no longer sent you into a ravenous sexual frenzy. Well, okay, it could, but usually only if you were bonded.
The rest of the time you got… clingy. You just wanted to cuddle with people and be surrounded by comforting smells and food. Normally, he called up Rhodey and snuggled with his platypus for a few days. If Rhodey wasn’t available, he made do without a person and sufficed with blankets in the lab. Sometimes, being around his bots helped. JARVIS’ constant voice was also a really good balm.
Unfortunately, since Loki started living in the tower and his feelings began to deepen, his instincts decided to lock onto the mage too. And that meant, with his heat approaching, his body didn’t want anyone but the mage.
And that was a fucking disaster.
The Avengers knew his cycle by now. Him and Barton were the only two omegas on the team and everyone knew when to rotate them off and expect extended cuddling. Sometimes, he went to Bruce if Rhodey wasn’t around, but the team were always ready to open their arms to him or Barton if they felt particularly affectionate.
Alphas were used to doing it. The gesture meant nothing.
But at Barton’s last heat, he hadn’t gone anywhere near Loki. No one was surprised by that. In fact, Loki seemed to keep a wide berth as if to maximise Barton’s comfort. Which, after the heat, Barton acknowledged by becoming a bit less frosty around the mage.
The problem was that Tony didn’t have Barton’s excuse for avoiding Loki. He also wanted Loki more then he wanted (or would accept) anyone else.
It brought him to his current predicament.
His heat was starting and like a dehydrated man and a tall glass of water, he wanted Loki’s cuddles. Badly.
And it brought him to where he was. At Loki’s door like a fucking dog, whining for attention. He’d feel the hit to his pride tomorrow. Right now, all he wanted was a chance to be with Loki.
It was two o’clock in the morning. So when Loki answered his knocking, he wasn’t expecting a warm welcome.
“What do you want, Stark?” Loki grumbled.
His hair was ruffled by sleep, he was in a loose green shirt and black pants. He looked so God damn huggable it wasn’t fair.
“I can’t sleep.”
But that wasn’t really what he was saying. Lack of sleep wasn’t enough to draw him here. He lacked sleep routinely. No, it was something baser. It was instincts. Because, he couldn’t sleep, he couldn’t invent. He couldn’t do much of anything but think about how much he wanted to be in Loki’s arms.
Loki frowned. His gaze turned sharper and his nose twitched. Understanding and surprise quickly flooded his expression.
“You are in heat.”
“Yeah,” he scratched the back of his neck awkwardly. “Can I come in?”
Can I share your bed? Can I cuddle you?
Loki’s surprise was only growing, but he hadn’t slammed the door in Tony’s face. He actually looked bewildered.
“You have sought me?” His eyes darted passed Tony as if he could see further into the tower. “Would no other companion answer your request?”
Tony felt a stab of hurt. It wasn’t a rejection, but it felt like one. Loki was wondering if he was a last resort. Is he hoping he can palm me off to someone else?
“You don’t have to do it,” Tony murmured, already feeling shame prickle the back of his neck.
“No,” Loki said.
His voice was sharp and came out too fast. He’d even opened the door a little further and took a half step forward. Tony felt a surge of hope. He caught Loki’s gaze, finding them unusually turbulent.
“No,” he said again, this time softer. “You are welcome here.”
Tony smiled, trying to keep himself from looking too eager. When Loki stepped to the side, Tony entered the room. He was immediately hit by a wave of Loki’s scent: magic, winter, pine and something sweet. It took all he had not to close his eyes and breathe it in. His body hummed with anticipation.
When Loki shut the door, Tony turned to face him. Loki looked strangely wary as if unsure what to do. Has an omega never come to him for comfort before? The thought hurt and before Tony could stop himself, he closed the distance and pressed their chests together. He closed his eyes and rested his head on Loki’s shoulder. Loki sucked in a sharp breath but Tony just sighed.
Tentative arms came around his waist and Tony took it as permission to wrap himself around Loki.
It felt so good and it was more than he’d ever expected.
Loki didn’t touch people or initiate contact with them. Tony had privately mourned the fact Thor was the touchier of the brothers. Tony had been hugged by Thor numerous times, but the best he’d ever managed with Loki was their arms pressed together in the lab.
This was heaven.
“You are in need of sleep,” Loki murmured.
His voice was low and right near his ear. Tony couldn’t stop his shiver. Loki stroked his back and Tony bit down on a mewl.
“Come,” Loki continued.
Tony pulled back with extreme reluctance and protest from his instincts. Thankfully, Loki kept a hand on his lower back as he led Tony into the bedroom. Loki’s sheets were thrown to the side after he’d climbed out of them. Tony found it charming to see the always composed Loki have something in disarray.
The sheets were green and looked silken but felt more like cotton as Tony slipped between them. Loki followed him a moment later. The second Loki was on the mattress, Tony was attaching to him like an octopus. He sprawled half on top of the demi-god, tangled their legs and wrapped his arms around Loki’s waist. He rested his head in the crook of Loki’s neck, breathing in the man’s scent and rubbing his nose against Loki’s skin.
Loki stiffened momentarily against him, but slowly relaxed. He brought his arms around Tony and stroked his back just like he had by the door. Tony’s breath left him and he gave a pleased purr. He was so close to Loki’s throat that he felt the man’s thick swallow. Tony smiled and had to resist the desire to press a kiss to his skin. That would be pushing it too far.
Surprisingly though, Loki continued to swallow convulsively, but he didn’t stop stroking Tony.
Tony just wished they could be closer. Hell, that they were naked. It wasn’t even that he wanted sex, he just wanted more of Loki. More skin, more contact, more everything.
Before he could think better of it, he shifted his hands and snuck them under Loki’s shirt to press against his skin. Loki sucked in a sharp breath.
Tony blinked and his heart stuttered in his chest. Loki had never called him that. It was always ‘Stark’ not even Tony.
“You called me by name,” he murmured.
Loki stiffened. Tony didn’t like that. He tried stroking Loki’s sides as Loki had stroked him. If anything, it wound Loki even tighter.
“Stop,” Loki gritted out and Tony froze.
Loki hissed out a breath. Tony was sure he heard a whispered explicative too but it was said so lowly Tony could barely make it out.
“Loki?” he asked, feeling wary he’d overstepped his bounds.
Loki let out a heavy breath. It sounded frustrated and resigned.
“I never expected you to seek comfort from me, Stark,” Loki said quietly.
Tony bit down on a complaint at being regulated to his surname again. He could live with that if it meant Loki didn’t kick him out.
Loki sighed again. His hand ran up Tony’s back and hesitated briefly before moving further and running his fingers through his hair. Tony arched into the touch. Loki scratched lightly over his scalp.
“It is a rule among the Aesir,” Loki said softly. “I am not Aesir, but I cannot disregard this law.”
Tony frowned. He tried to pull his head back from Loki’s neck, but the mage held him in place. His scowl deepened.
“If an omega seeks comfort from an alpha,” Loki interrupted. “We are honour bound to tell them if we… desire them.”
Tony sucked in a sharp breath and stiffened from shock. Loki seemed to take his reaction the wrong way. He sighed again, sounding dejected.
“I should have warned you before I accepted you into my rooms.” Loki chuckled bleakly. “But, who am I to ignore good fortune?” He stroked Tony’s hair again. “I can promise you that I will do nothing more than you require, but I will understand if you wish to seek another as well.”
This time, when Tony tried to raise his head, Loki immediately let him go. Tony untangled them enough that he could rest over Loki and look the man in the eyes. Loki’s expression was carefully blank. His hands were at his sides and he was watching Tony as if the answer meant nothing to him.
“You desire me?” Tony asked, his heart racing.
“Yes,” Loki answered without flinching.
Tony’s body felt alight with excitement and hope. But he didn’t want to take a gamble and end up worse than he already was.
“What, uh, kind of desire?”
Tony didn’t know what he expected, but Loki shutting his eyes and grimacing was not it.
“Of course you would ask that,” Loki muttered. Tony was confused, but Loki opened his eyes again, looking despondent. “Another part of the law,” he explained, obviously seeing Tony’s puzzlement. “Some omegas don’t mind sexual desire, but… emotional is another matter.” Loki’s eyes flickered away. “We have to be honest.”
He hissed the word as if it was a frustrating hurdle he could not get around.
But Tony knew he could get around it. If he wanted. He could have told Tony to go find someone else, he could have never mentioned the law or found a way to use a half truth. In a way, he had used a half truth. But Tony had seen right through it.
“You desire me and you like me,” Tony whispered, feeling stunned. “You want me as your omega.”
Loki looked completely resigned. He lifted his hand and made a dismissive gesture.
“Go find an Avenger,” he said. “I have controlled my instincts thus far. You need not worry about my desires while I reside in the tower.”
Tony felt like a stiff breeze could knock him over. Loki wanted him back. When Tony didn’t react immediately, Loki warily looked back at him. He scrutinised Tony with a look that was half pained and half unsure.
“Of course,” he said, sounding tentative in a way Tony had never heard. “If you are willing to ignore it then my comfort shall always be open to you.” He held Tony’s gaze as if swearing a vow. “Only my comfort. Only what you seek from me, never anything more.”
“What if I want more?” Tony whispered.
Loki blinked, surprise washing away the pain lurking in his eyes. Tony lifted his hand and dared to press his fingers against Loki’s cheek. He also smiled.
“What if I want an alpha?”
Loki sucked in a breath and his eyes erupted with desperate longing. But all too soon they were shuttered as if he had cut his hopes in half before they could grow any larger.
“Do not make that decision lightly.”
“I’m not,” Tony said. He laughed. “Have I ever made a decision lightly?” He stroked down Loki’s face, brushing his lips. “Do you know how hard it was to have met an alpha who finally lit up my instincts and have to battle him at the same time?”
Loki’s eyes widened. “You…”
“Yeah,” Tony said ruefully. “And it’s my first heat since you’ve been here. So, no surprise no substitute would do. Only place I wanted to be was here with you.”
Loki’s lips parted and it was too much for Tony. He pulled his fingers away and bent down. Their lips brushed and he felt a wash of contentment go over him. Loki seemed frozen beneath him – but it only lasted a moment before, suddenly, Tony was on his back and Loki was kissing him fiercely.
Tony moaned and clung to Loki’s back. Loki pressed them together in a way that Tony was sure defied physics but he didn’t care because it felt like Loki was all around him and everything within him flared with satisfaction.
When the kiss broke, Tony was panting. Loki’s lips trailed down to his neck, nipping and nuzzling the skin. Tony arched into the touch. His whole body shivered with the desire to be claimed – but, Loki didn’t.
Instead, he shifted down Tony’s body just enough that he was able to lie on top of him, pressing Tony against the bed and gently kissing his neck every few seconds. When his chest tingled and their shirts disappeared. Tony groaned softly at all the skin on skin. His eyes were half-lidded and for the first time in his life, he was torn between having sex and staying exactly where he was.
Loki, in the end, made the decision for him.
“Sleep, my Anthony,” he murmured. “Tomorrow, we’ll discuss what we shall do moving forward.”
“You think I can sleep now?” Tony complained.
Yet, despite his words, his eyes were already starting to drift shut. Loki had all but verbally claimed him and the level of happiness rushing through him combined with their positions was satisfying his instincts and heat in a way that made him drowsy.
Loki chuckled, clearly realising as much. He kissed just behind Tony’s ear.
“Sleep,” he said again. “So that the morning may come sooner.”
Tony smiled. It wasn’t just the man’s words and the anticipation of the deepening of their relationship - it was the way Loki sounded. He was happy. He sounded as if he was on top of the world. It made Tony’s feel warm all over.
Looks like my instincts were right after all. And now, I’ve got my alpha.
Tony’s smile spread even wider and he drifted off to sleep with happiness in his breast, and Loki all around him.