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Sniff No, Sniff Yes!

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Kongpob’s POV

Hi, I’m Kongpob Suthiluck. If you’re asking if it is the same Suthiluck as being related to the big business mogul, then you’re not mistaken. I am the youngest and only son of Kerkklai and Kannika Suthiluck of Siam Polymer International. I am also an omega.

Now keep your judgmental whisperings to yourself. I might be an omega but I am still the heir. My sisters, who are an alpha and a beta, have their own responsibilities to their partners’ companies so that left me with no choice. I may not be too enthusiastic about the prospect of leading a multi-billion company but I have to buckle up and take my place for the sake of my parents. Let me tell you now, your outdated thinking about omegas being nothing but pets to be bred and bed-warmers? I don’t condone such things. Neither my family nor the majority of the population in this world. Society have made great leaps in accepting that omegas can be as competent as alphas and betas, and some of us are even taking the world by storm.

There are a lot of successful omegas out there already that are very much sought after by alphas and betas alike. Society hasn’t been restrictive and discriminating for more than a decade already. So shut your trap before I make you regret uttering those useless and idiotic vitriol from your mouth.

Now where was I? Oh yeah.

I am the future heir of the Siam Polymer Int’l. But I have one big problem. Even if I wanted to hide the fact that I am an omega, which I don’t, let me just clear that up, I couldn’t. Why? Because I secrete an abnormal amount of pheromones.

Ever since I presented at the early age of twelve, not even at the usual age of thirteen, that’s how abnormal I am, our house had never smelled so sickeningly sweet, ever. Usually, omegas only smell strongly like this whenever they are in heat, but as I said before, I am abnormal. You see, that’s my regular smell. My regular day-to-day eau de cologne is similar to that of a regular omega in heat.

At the time of my presentation, during summer break, it wasn’t a big deal. My parents and the few household helps that was like family to me found this intriguing of course, but shrugged it off as the time went by. But something happened two months after that.

My parents hired a part-time gardener to help out since our old one was retiring. The new gardener was an eighteen-year-old boy who was about to study at the university. He needed the money to help with his education. He was an alpha, young and unmated. He came to the house every afternoon and I would only get a glimpse of him from my second-floor bedroom window. I didn’t interact with him during the first week, because I was too busy with my games and animes.

One afternoon, I decided to go downstairs and raid the pantry since I was planning to watch a movie so I needed my chips to go with it. With the loots in my arms, I turned around to walk out of the pantry. But then I heard voices talking outside by the kitchen. It was the new gardener and aunty Ploy, our beloved cook.

He was asking if there was an unmated omega in the house. I remember that Aunty Ploy had taken a long time before she answered him, and asked him why. The other had answered that he could smell something sweet and so very alluring. I heard the alarm in aunty Ploy’s voice when she asked the meaning about the alluring part of his statement. Then the other answered like someone in heat. I decided then to make my presence known.

I stepped out of the pantry and approached the alpha male, who had his back turned towards me. My stupid and naïve ass stepped a little too close and I didn’t even notice the tensed muscles of the older guy.

 

 

❌❌❌❌🔞🔞🔞 UNDERAGE AND NON-CON UP AHEAD 🔞🔞🔞❌❌❌❌

 

 

“Hello, I’m Kongpob. I’m—” I couldn’t even finish my introduction because the guy had lunged at me and I felt my breath get knocked out as he slammed me against the cool surface of the refrigerator. I could barely register the cook’s alarmed shouts because I had been consumed by the fear I felt when I saw his lust-hazy and manic eyes.

“You smell good,” he growled at me and then he took a sniff on my neck, where the mating gland was located. I screamed out loud when I felt sharp teeth piercing through my skin. I started struggling then, kicking, pulling and pushing, punching and scratching him, but what could a twelve-year-old do? He let go of my neck and growled triumphantly.

Mine.”

Feeling weak from the pain on my neck, I slid down on the floor. That was when he lunged at me again and tore off my clothes. I screamed again, punching him and kicking, but my struggles had been more futile because of my weakened state. He had forcibly spread my legs then and his erect member was poised just outside my hole and I was so terrified by that time. Just when he was about to penetrate me, he went flying and got slammed on the opposite wall. I scrambled further into the kitchen, naked, bruised and bleeding, and curled up into a ball. I screamed my bloody lungs out when people tried to get closer to me. Even though I was shivering and bleeding, and that the people around me were all people that I knew, I still didn’t let them near me.

 

 

⭕⭕⭕⭕⭕🆗🆗🆗 SAFE TO READ ONWARDS 🆗🆗🆗⭕⭕⭕⭕⭕

 

 

It had only been my father and his calming omega scent that made me open up. I let him drape a soft blanket around me and then he gathered me in his arms. Even though I was too big for him to carry, he still did. He carried me back to my room where he laid me down on my bed as I wailed my heart out. I passed out from sheer exhaustion in his embrace.

That was how we found out how dangerous it was for me to go out like a normal person would. The guy was sent to prison, and I felt a sense of guilt for him. He had been a good person, but because of my unnaturally strong scent, he went crazy. But there were alphas that could control their urges around an omega in heat so I really didn’t know his excuse.

Oh, and about the bite. I am not bonded to him. An omega could only be bonded when he/she is in heat. At that time, I wasn’t in heat, so my mating gland healed nicely and I became blemish-free after a few years.

My parents decided that the best option for me was homeschooling. At that time, I desperately agreed to them. I was so scared of people and my anxiety was so severe, I couldn’t even talk properly to my psychiatrist. My parents did everything to support me and helped me not to succumb into depression. They also only ever hired omegas for the next few years until they finally opened up to accepting mated alphas and betas. I was someone who had no friends, a nobody to the outside world, and isn’t that a depressing thought? I got lucky when I met my only friend, and I only gained said friend because of an accident.

His name is Em and he is the son of one of our bodyguards. Actually, he is the son of the bodyguard who had saved me from being totally… taken, during that time. After my parents enforced the no alpha rule in our house, everyone who had been working for us were the only people who remained, even though they were alphas and betas.

Uncle Nook, Em’s father and an alpha, had been appointed as head of security after the retirement of the previous one when I was fourteen. One time, when he worked overtime, Em suddenly visited him. Or more accurately, Em had run away from home after a disagreement with his mother and went to seek refuge to his father. He still won’t tell me how he got past the security guard at the gate of the village we lived in. He just showed up in front of our gate, asking for his father.

I don’t know if it was me who was lucky that time or him, because the one who answered the gate was the new omega that my parents had just hired that day. He wasn’t accustomed yet to working at our house nor was he aware of the rules surrounding me. Heck, I haven’t even met him yet since I had been hiding in my room and dodging anyone and everyone whenever I decided to go out.

When Em was at the gate, I had decided to hang out at my secret place in the garden. My parents weren’t home yet even though it was already evening, and they were being accompanied by Uncle Nook. So the new omega hire had just let him in since he was looking for his father and he recognized Uncle Nook’s name. Em said that he had been exploring the garden when he smelled me. He didn’t know what the smell was at that time, but he followed the sweet smell. That’s how he found me.

I had been so engrossed reading my manga that I hadn’t registered his presence until he began talking to me. I was startled and I thought he was the new hire. But then, when I sniffed, he smelled wrong for an omega. That was when I started feeling scared and the fear had paralyzed me. The incident from two years ago flashed before my eyes, and then he was talking frantically to me. I had, apparently, let out the pungent smell of fear and he was panicking and thinking that both of us were in danger. I was the only one in danger, I told him.

He had looked confused for one second before he got angry. He told me that he was never going to harm me and that I was a very judgmental person. He continued to spout that just because they weren’t as rich as we were, that they were a mere middle-class family, didn’t mean that they would harm someone. They had dignity and his father had taught him well, he said.

Just then, Uncle Nook’s voice boomed near us, calling out a name I didn’t recognize. I remember screaming at the top of my lungs and that alerted them to my not-so-secret-anymore hideout. Uncle Nook found us and then forcibly dragged Em away from me. My father also came running and dragged me behind him.

“What are you doing here, Em? Didn’t I tell you that you can’t come to my workplace?!” Uncle Nook had yelled at him then. Em had stubbornly become silent. Then Uncle Nook was apologizing to my father and was asking me if I was okay. I nodded my head yes from behind my father.

“I just talked to him! You’re sounding like I did something bad to him, Por,” he exclaimed indignantly. Then he turned to my father and glared at him.

“Khun, your son is such a typical rich spoiled brat. Just because we’re not as rich as you are, doesn’t mean you can look down on us,” he said, repeating what he told me earlier. I could feel my father fuming so I held onto him to prevent him from saying or doing something. I couldn’t prevent Uncle Nook though.

“Em! You’re going to far!”

“But it’s true! He was being judgmental—”

“You don’t know anything! You don’t know the circumstances that happened so you don’t get to say anything! If there is someone who is judgmental here, it’s you. Go home. Now!”

Uncle Nook turned to us and apologized for everything. He said that he would take any punishment for whatever his son did. Por remained stoically silent, only slightly nodding to Uncle Nook, as Em glared at us from behind his father.

“You should take your son home, spend some time with him. Kiet can handle everything tonight,” Por said.

My parents just talked to Uncle Nook about the matter. If they had fired him, I would’ve gone to his rescue but my parents are reasonable people. As for the new hire, he also got reprimanded, the dressing down he received was worse than Uncle Nook’s, but he was allowed to stay. The other hires had briefed him on the rules around the house.

Somehow, I couldn’t get the other boy out of my mind. I also thought that I had a crush on him, but no. I was just desperate for a friend. I started to ask about him and his well-being to Uncle Nook, to which he only replied with a tight smile and a ‘he’s okay’ bullshit. I also started to send snacks and yes, chocolates, to him via Uncle Nook. At first, he was bewildered by my actions but then he got used to it.

One time, Em came back again and left me a letter. He didn’t insist on going inside, according to the one who answered the gate, and just dropped the letter in a huff. His letter was plainly telling me off, that I should stop sending him gifts because he felt like being courted and he felt uneasy. If I had been crushing on him, I should’ve felt heartbroken. But at that time, I only laughed my heart out. It was the first time I had laughed this hard since the incident. That time, I could see myself teasing him mercilessly.

I decided then that I want him as a friend, but first I had to convince my parents into letting me meet him. I told them everyday for a week what I wanted. I even asked Uncle Nook for him but he refused, telling me that my safety was more important. I finally managed to wear them down and they agreed with some rules in place. I could only meet him with someone around and I couldn’t meet him three days before my heat.

So, we started the playdate. At first, he was still sour about what happened, but eventually, I had managed to coax him out with my playstation and several games. We started hanging out, always with a chaperone. We grew closer and I got to tease him mercilessly. Since he had a fair complexion, his blush was so apparent. He wasn’t afraid to smack me, too, even though there was an adult present.

Of course, he grew curious about all the rules surrounding me and he kept bugging me and his dad. A year into our friendship, I trusted him with the truth. By that time, our parents had allowed us to meet anytime we want, provided that it was inside the mansion only, even without supervision. That time, we were at my secret hideout, and I poured my heart out to him. He had held me in his arms and cried with me. He is such a marshmallow.

We’ve also established that time that he wasn’t affected by my regular scent, so I felt safe with him. I found a brother in him.

He was affected by my heat scent though, although he didn’t go berserk like that jerk. He just had a boner and he was tempted to taste the sweet aroma but there was a sense of wrongness to it that it made him snap out of his daze. He had run awkwardly to get to his father, who in turn called my parents. They rushed home at that moment and took care of me as I sweated and shivered, generally suffering, through my heat. Oh, and regular suppressants weren’t working on me, and the strong ones prescribed to me made me cramp so bad, I had to be taken to a hospital. So, I had to endure my heat, and I was so miserable.

At fifteen years of age, I wanted to attend normal school like any other kid. But my parents were so over-protective of me that they shut down that thought faster than I could ‘but’. I was already finished with junior high school then. It wasn’t that I wasn’t afraid of people anymore, it was that I was doing something for myself. I wanted to get rid of that excessive fear that I feel whenever I caught a whiff of an unfamiliar alpha and beta scent. I couldn’t hide in my tower forever.

Luck again was on my side, because that was when a friend of theirs recommended a doctor specializing in omega’s health. They said that he was a really good doctor even at his young age. The cherry on top was that he was an omega himself so he was safe for me. I begged and begged my apprehensive parents, especially my father, to let me meet him. He finally agreed when I told him that I miss the outside world and that I didn’t know anymore what it looked like. They set an appointment for him to visit me at home, still not trusting my well being in an open space.

Even with the weight that our surname carried, it had still taken three months for the doctor to come visit me. That was how packed his schedule was. The day he came over, I had a sudden heat. Em was with me at that time and he yelled at me to not invite him over when I knew I would be in heat. He walked out of the room with an awkward boner and interrupted the meeting of my parents and the doctor.

My parents got worried because I was a week early from my regular heat cycle. Since the doctor was already there, they let him examine me.

The doctor was a cute omega named Wayo. He told me to just call him P’Yo and then he started to examine me. My parents told him everything about my condition. He prescribed a regular suppressant for me along with some pills that would help in balancing my hormones. His method worked on me, finally. The scent blockers he prescribed also helped to block out most of my scent, Em had commented on it after it took effect. He said that I just smelled like a normal omega to him. It couldn’t totally block out my scent like how it does to normal omegas but I wouldn’t look a gift horse in the mouth. Since then, he had been my personal doctor and he had helped me a lot. I had finally been able to attend school like a normal person, even though it was late into the first quarter of school. I was glad that Em was my classmate since my anxiety had been through the roof.

Slowly, I managed to feel at ease around other people again and I managed to live a normal life. For a few years, that is. P’Yo had warned us that the medication was not a lifetime solution, and sooner or later, it would lose its effectivity or worse, harm me. The best solution that he could see, sadly, was for me to be bonded. Of course, I refused to be bonded to just anyone, and he understood this, being a romantic himself, and also coming from an influential family. He was lucky though that he had met his true mate during high school. He shared stuff with about his personal life and I even met Doc Phana, his mate. They were so cute together and I envied them. Of course, I am also happy for them.

For two years, the medication worked for me and I got through high school like a normal kid. I graduated with honors, which made my parents proud, I got to experience going out to the mall to hang out with the other kids, and I got to experience watching movie at the 3D theater. 3D!!! And with a bucketful of savory popcorn! I know I sound like I came from the stone ages, but it was my first time experiencing such things.

Em had jokingly referred to me as a real-life Rapunzel, and I laughed at how accurate it was. I was indeed Rapunzel, but instead of a prince coming to help me out, it was an angelic doctor. I enjoyed hanging out with my newfound friends, lived my life to the fullest, because I know I was living with a deadline over my head. Once the suppressants and scent blockers stopped working for me, I had no choice but to go back to my tower. Then I might be even forced to mate with someone who wasn’t my true mate if I wanted to go back outside, and that was just a depressing thought. So, YOLO it was.

College came and I chose Engineering because my Por requested it of me. He convinced me to take up Economics for my post grad and get IE for my undergrad. I agreed with this compromise and enrolled in IE. Another compelling reason for me to go through with my father’s decision was the fact that my best friend would also be taking it. I know, I was being clingy but what can I do? It’s going to be a new world and my anxiety is flaring up. A familiar face would definitely help me feel at ease. So, that’s how I found myself being yelled at by a student in crimson uniform. Fun times.

 

--_--

 

Arthit’s POV

 

“—I don’t consider you my juniors until you get this,” I said in a booming voice, raising the gear charm and showing it to the gathered freshmen. I surveyed the faces of the aspiring Engineers and felt satisfaction that they were listening aptly, albeit with uncertainty on their faces. I explained the meaning of the gear to them, how important it was to an engineer. We, the hazers, continued on to explain about SOTUS and the rules of the freshmen gathering. Then I assigned them their first task.

I should’ve expected that not all of them would abide by the rules like docile sheep. When a hand shot up in the air and that blasted first year, 0062, complained about the time frame of one week being too short to gather a thousand signatures, I had a weird feeling like as if I had found my match but I waved it off. I chocked it off to my alpha pride getting hurt a bit because someone was already questioning me. But when the same first year kept on irking me, I found myself getting agitated for no reason.

‘Aish, this first year... Let me see what you got then. Bring it on, alpha,’ I thought. I wanted to see who would come out victorious in this alpha to alpha standoff.

 

--_--

 

Kongpob’s POV

 

I didn’t know where my confidence to stand up to that senior came from. Em had smacked me in the head after the third years had exited the hall, telling me off for getting unwanted attention to myself. He asked me why I did it and I couldn’t even answer him. Luckily, I got saved by the other boy beside me, Oak, and said that what I did had been so cool. Our talk soon devolved into games and then another guy, Tew, joined our conversation.

We had one week to complete an impossible task and I was getting my anxiety back. How could I face a thousand strangers, most of them unmated alphas and betas, and not go screaming for the hills?

The first couple days, I had been lucky again, since most of the people who approached me were omegas. Yes, they were the ones who approached me, and not the other way around. Apparently, the news of me standing up against the head hazer had spread like wildfire and a lot of the seniors were intrigued by me. They actually mistook me for an alpha because of how I had gone toe-to-toe with the big bad alpha Arthit. The omegas got disappointed that I turned out to be an omega after they caught a whiff of my scent, but they got over it.

Some alphas and betas also approached me of course, their number smaller than omegas because of the wrong assumption that I was an alpha. They got pleasantly surprised, though, when they also found out about me being an omega, and some even started to flirt with me, which made totally anxious. They smelled my anxiety and thankfully, backed off. I had to remind myself over and over again that I was on scent blockers and they were working. Nothing would happen, nothing.

When I met Em one morning during break, I asked him how many signatures he had collected. He told me he had three already and I got exasperated.

“Tell me again, between us, who has anxiety to meet people?” I asked him as I held out my notebook to him. He browsed it and got amazed by how many I had collected.

“I… you know I’m a shy person,” he whined.

“Shy, my ass,” I scoffed. He glared at me and I raised an eyebrow in return.

“You were the one who shouted at me being a spoiled rich brat and you even yelled at Por that he had raised me wrong,” I reminded him. He blushed as he spluttered out a reply.

“Well, I’m just socially awkward, okay?” he grumbled. I heaved a deep sigh and rubbed my forehead. I didn’t want my friend to suffer if he hadn’t met the requirements set by those barbaric seniors. Then an idea popped up in my head that would solve both of our problems.

“Em, I have a proposal for you.”

“Hmm? Like I keep saying everytime I get to be around you when you are in heat, I only see you as a friend. Stop making things awkward for me, Kong.”

“Idiot! That’s not it. And you will be married to a wealthy family, by the way, so, your loss. I’m a catch.” He made a face and gagging noises and I smacked his head for his childishness.

“I meant I have a plan that would benefit us from this wretched signature gathering thing,” I clarified.

“What is it?”

“How about you become my bodyguard? Since we are blockmates, we could get signatures together. I could be the one to talk to the seniors and you would be with me to ward off those alphas and betas. How about that?”

“Has anyone been bothering you?” he asked seriously instantly alert.

“I-I…”

“Don’t lie to me, Kong.”

“Well, some of the alphas and betas tried to hit on me when they found out I’m an omega. They backed off when they noticed I was uncomfortable about it,” I confessed to him. He nodded his head, the tension on his shoulders easing up a bit.

“But you know, my anxiety and all that shit,” I murmured.

“Why didn’t you tell me right at the beginning? I could’ve accompanied you and I would’ve had more signatures,” he grumbled as we started to hunt for signatures.

“Is it my fault that you chose to play your games instead of going around gathering signatures?”

That was how we found ourselves gathering signatures. It was better, way better, to have him by my side since he was so attuned to my tells already and he could sense when I start to become uncomfortable, even without the scent change. His notebook and mine got filled up, although we still have a number to go before we completed the thousand signature task.

On the last day, I had another altercation with the tyrant—I mean the head hazer, and the same feeling of wanting to win against him coursed through me. It was so weird.

 

--_--

 

 

Arthit’s POV

 

After getting the number of that pretty alpha girl, Bright gestured at the entrance to the cafeteria and dared me to get the number of 0062. My blood boiled when I saw him being surrounded by girls, and the very well-known omega clique of our batch to boot. The urge to extract him from their midst was so strong that my friends had exclaimed in alarm and clamored to calm me down.

“Why do you hate that freshman so much?” Knot asked me when I gained control of that suffocating pheromones.

“I don’t know,” I answered truthfully, my eyes finding that certain junior again. I heard someone snort.

“Who wouldn’t? That first year had the gall to go against us. He has no respect to his seniors, whatsoever,” Prem said condescendingly. Knot looked at him in disapproval.

“They are human, not robots. They have the right to express their opinion and the least we could do as seniors is to guide them. Provoking one another will only lead to them not respecting us, and the best way for us to do our job as their seniors is if they do respect us. So please, rein in your tempers, you two. Especially you, Arthit. You’re the head hazer.”

I hung my head in shame at being reprimanded. Knot was right. We needed to set a proper example for them and provoking someone from their midst would only worsen things.

“Sorry,” I muttered to my best friend.

“It’s oka—”

“Did that girl just kiss your 0062?” Tutah interrupted our little one on one. Hearing his statement, something inside me snapped. I didn’t know why, but a certain surge of possessiveness washed through me when I saw that my classmate, Fae, indeed kiss the freshman’s cheek then proceeded to hug him.

Wait, why was I possessive of the omega? We’ve known each other since freshman year, and she even confessed to me, which I rejected, so why did I feel like yanking 0062 away from her? This was all so confusing.

“0062!” I screamed at the top of my lungs. A hush all over the cafeteria.

Everyone was staring at me and the first year, who had seemed to have paled. He gave a polite wai to his seniors and then made his way to our table. I still didn’t know what to tell him. Would you expect me to tell him not to flirt with the senior omegas? Heck no! So, you see my dilemma? I only have myself to blame. On another note, I felt myself relax when he left the gaggle of girls.

He arrived at our table and greeted us politely with a wai. Then I saw it. My ticket to saving face.

“Why do you have two notebooks?” I asked him, trying to be stern even though I could see him slightly shaking. Fuck, why was he so scared? I didn’t understand. Wasn’t he an alpha? Was my aura so dominating? I didn’t think so. I felt someone poke my side and I knew that it was Knot. I tried to rein in my temper… but why did I have the urge to push his buttons?

 

--_--

 

Kongpob’s POV

 

“Why do you have two notebooks?” the Hitle—I mean the head hazer said.

“The other belongs to my friend,” I said, a bit intimidated. His alpha aura was getting into me, dear lord, where the fuck was Em? Did he have a kilogram to dump?! Was he flushed in the toilet?!

“Your friend? Why can’t he work on this by himself?” I stared at his irritatingly handsome face, who was looking annoyed at me.

‘Just tell him the truth. Just tell him the truth. Just te—'

“You told us to get signatures. But you didn’t specify how we’ll get them.” Somebody, sew my mouth shut!

I watched as the senior’s expression get darker. I gulped in fear. I finally did it. I’ve pissed him off. I expected him to yell at me, or worse, punch me. So, imagine my shock when he calmly asked me if I had his signature, his expression back to neutral. Was he bipolar?

“Not yet, P’.”

“Give me your signature book.”

I hesitantly gave him mine, fearing that he would tear it up. I watched as he browsed it and his eyebrows were starting to meet again. He closed the notebook with force then turned to glare at me.

“Seems like you’ve accumulated a lot of signatures already. And a lot of phone numbers too.” He said the last part condescendingly. He leaned closer to me and his alpha scent started to dominate my senses. He was definitely posturing and this was the first time I was this affected. Where the fuck was Em?!

“Can I ask you a favor?” he asked.

“W-what is it?” I stuttered, fighting with all my might the aura he kept on pushing on me. From the corner of my eye, I could see someone stand behind him but I couldn’t tell if the other alpha would help me or him.

“Can you?” he murmured with a smirk, his eyes boring into mine. I swear, any second now I would say yes to his every whim. Just what the hell is wrong with me?

“Yes…” See what I meant?

Suddenly, he moved a step backwards and the spell he casted on me broke. I could finally breathe again. Then the gravity of the situation slammed back to me and felt myself get scared again. What did I get myself into?

“See the last table over there?” he said, unaware of my internal struggle, pointing further into the cafeteria.

“Yes, P’.”

“Go stand on the table over there and you have to yell, uhm. Bright, give me a number—”

“Hmm, ten!”

“—you have to yell ten times, ‘I like P’Arthit’. Can you do it, Nong? Hmm?” he taunted with a smirk.

I stared at him, speechless. Why do I have to yell that I like him? That wasn’t even true!

“I hate lying, P’,” I blurted out, effectively wiping the smirk on his face.

It was replaced by a scowl and his face began to turn red. Before he could do something like punch me, I turned around and strode with purpose to the back of the cafeteria. Everybody was still silent, watching aptly as the drama unfolded. I stomped my way up to the table, and I muttered a ‘Sorry’ to the aunties that cleaned up the table in mind.

“I like P’Arthit! I like P’Arthit! I like…” I shouted, my voice getting progressively louder.

As I repeated the words, I started to realize that I did feel a bit of an attraction to the big bad alpha. Suddenly, the punishment that I was sure was meant to humiliate me didn’t feel like punishment anymore. If anything, it felt like I was confessing to him and proving to him the depth of my feelings in front of all these people. And as I uttered the last one, I made an impulse decision to tease him back.

“I LIKE P’ARTHIT. HE BELONGS TO ME AND I BELONG TO HIM!” I yelled at the top of my lungs, the loudest of my shouts, with my vocal chords protesting.

I stepped down from the table and prowled my way back to him. My eyes locked on his, never leaving even as the cafeteria erupted into cheers. Everything disappeared and there was only him. I thought I would find him glaring at me but I was pleasantly surprised when there was a satisfied look on his face instead. Huh, I think I might have a chance at the so called ‘Ice Prince’.

Oh, I just heard about his title because of the senior omega girls who had approached me awhile ago. I had already gotten their signatures and they were just being good seniors to their omega junior by sharing some tips and infos about the seniors. Also, P’Fae took it upon herself to look out for me ever since she found out that I was her fated mate’s cousin. She saw me like a little brother, she had said.

I reached Ice Prince’s table and smiled at them. I know, it looked infuriating and yes, I intended that. One of the hazers were glaring at me but the Ice Prince himself wasn’t deterred so I let my smile grow more genuine.

“I’m done, P’,” I told him with a raised brow.

“Hmm. Good job. You can take this back now,” he said, handing back the maroon notebook. I opened it and there, as the lastest entry, his signature and his phone number.

“Thank you P’Arthit,” I told him with a smile. His lips quirked up and it emboldened me. I stood closer to him, and whispered, “I told you, I hate lying, didn’t I?”

“And what the hell do you mean by that?” he growled lowly. I smirked, enjoying my effect on the so-called Ice Prince.

“It’s just that. I hate lying, yet I still shouted that you and I belong to each other. What do you think that meant, P’?”

He groaned in reply. “You’re a minx.”

“Bye, P’.”

--_--

 

I leaned on my locker as the gravity of what I have done crashed into me. I was questioning my life choices during that short span of time, and started to plan for a way to avoid the older. I jumped a foot into the air when a hand clamped on my shoulder.

“Em! Fuck, don’t startle me like that!”

“You’re crazy. You are absolutely crazy. What were you doing getting the attention of a dominating alpha like P’Arthit! I only went to the toilet for a few minutes and the next I found you on top of the table screaming that you like him!”

“He made me do that!”

“And the way you flirted with him afterwards, did he make you do that too, huh?”

“I wasn’t flirting,” I mumbled in denial, not able to look at my best friend in the eye.

“Look me in the eye, and repeat that.”

I tried but I couldn’t.

“Thought so. And where the fuck did you even learn how to flirt? By the look on his face, he was certainly flirting back with you? You couldn’t even mutter a good pick-up line back in high school.”

“I… don’t know. I just wanted to tease him, that’s all.”

“Yeaaaah, you wanted to flirt with him. But that’s beside the point! You just attracted the attention of a strong alpha, what are you gonna do about it, huh?”

I have absolutely no idea. He was a decent man, right? The thing that happened to me when I was twelve wouldn’t happen with him… right?

 

--_--

 

Arthit’s POV

 

I stared at the freshman’s back as he walked further away from me. Then, like a bubble that had burst, I sat back down on the bench beside Knot, getting confused on what just happened.

“Did I just give that first year my signature and my number?” I blurted out as I stared at the grain of the wood of the table in front of me.

“You gave him your number?” asked Knot in wonder. I looked up at my best friend and nodded.

“Knot. Why did I give my number to another alpha like him?” I asked him. I saw all of my friends freeze in place.

“Oh right. I forgot. You can’t smell the pheromones.”

I furrowed my brows at Tutah’s statement. Uh, they already knew this tidbit ever since first year. But why was that relevant now? I was skilled at reading a person’s mood by their actions and expressions because of my abnormality.

I was born like this, not having the ability to smell the pheromones that other people emit, so I couldn’t even tell a person’s second gender. That also meant that I couldn’t easily gauge a person’s real mood via the pheromones they secrete so I had to train myself to read people’s expressions and actions, even to the smallest ticks. I had developed this skill and I didn’t need to smell them to know what they felt at the moment. About the guessing the second gender of a person, well, I just based it on how they move and talk, and that was it. I get correct guesses, say, eighty per cent of the time. Having an imparity like this sucked sometimes. But at least I wouldn’t be a slave to an omega’s pheromones, whenever one goes into heat.

Oh, I forgot to mention, I could only tell if a person is an omega with one hundred per cent certainty if that person was on heat. I could smell them when they are on heat but it’s muted. I couldn’t really be affected by their pheromones even with this fact.

“What’s that got to do with this?” I asked my friends.

“Your 0062 is not an alpha, Arthit,” Bright said. I looked at them, shocked.

“But he was acting like an alpha!” I told them. Did I read the younger’s actions wrong?

“Actually, all of us thought he was an alpha, too. But his scent doesn’t lie, Arthit. He’s definitely an omega,” Knot confirmed. I looked at them, shocked. That first year… the one who had the guts to stand up to me even with my alpha aura, he was an omega?

My heart swelled with pride as my mind screamed, ‘Mine!’

 

--_--

 

Kongpob’s POV

 

I made another friend in the person of Wad. He always looked sullen but he was just the silent type. He was also an omega like me. Oak was a beta while Tew was an alpha. I felt safe around them and my gratitude to P’Yo doubled. Because of him, I managed to meet these new people and forged bonds with them.

The next freshman gathering was quite… eventful. When I saw P’Arthit again, there was that weird pull that was making it hard for me to keep away from him, even with the danger that it poses to me. My eyes couldn’t even keep away from him as he strode his way across the stage to stand in front of us.

He started off with asking about how many students there was on our batch. Nobody answered him because nobody knew. Then he went on and on about not doing our best in getting to know our classmates. Like, hello?! They gave us the impossible task of getting to know our seniors by collecting a thousand signatures. How could we find the time to get to know all of our batchmates?

The girl beside began to sniffle. She was a fellow omega, based on her muted scent, and she was getting scared by the dominating alpha in front of us. I offered her my handkerchief and she muttered a grateful smile.

Suddenly, there was a pair of black sneakers in front of me. The cloying scent of an alpha unique to P’Arthit began to waft in the air around me. I felt myself weakening, with my hearbeat elevated.

“Student number 0062, Kongpob! Stand up!” he boomed. I couldn’t help but to obey him. I stood up and looked at him in a daze.

“I asked how many students there was in you batch.”

“I don’t know.”

“Why don’t you know?”

“Because I didn’t count them of course. How do you expect us to count our own batchmates when we were busy getting to know our seniors?” I retorted, fighting the dominating aura of the alpha. I wouldn’t let myself succumb to him, even if he was sexy as hell.

“0062! Stop being insolent! At this rate, I wouldn’t accept you as my junior, even if you beg me,” he hissed. Then he stuffed his hand inside the pocket of his workshop jacket. He pulled out the same gear he showed last time.

“Do you see this gear badge?” he asked me as he stared straight at me.

“Yes.”

“This is the symbol of every engineer. Not for one particular person, but for the whole of your batch. If any one of you can’t prove to me that you’ve earned this, feel free to get out.”

I felt my face burn at his implication. I seemed like I crossed the line this time.

“I won’t consider you as my junior anymore.”

After saying that he roamed his eyes around to everybody’s faces until they ultimately landed back on me.

“Now, Khun Kongpob, what will you do if I don’t give this gear badge to you?” he growled, as he stepped closer towards me. I was afraid to aggravate him any longer. Then he turned around abruptly and began to walk away.

For some strange reason, I began to panic, not wanting him to leave me alone; to keep his attention to me longer. So, I blurted out what first came into my mind, without thinking it through, again.

“I’ll just take it from you,” I declared. He stopped in his tracks then slowly turned to look back at me, a glare firmly in place. He started to stalk back towards me, like a predator to his prey, but I felt inexplicably at peace. The look that I mistook for a glare was actually different.

It was the look of pure want, the intensity of it making me shiver in pleasure. I wanted that look trained only to me. I wanted him to only look at me.

“What did you just say?” he growled lowly. I heard someone whimper in fear but I didn’t mind them.

“If you don’t give them to us, then we can just snatch them from you,” I declared boldly.

“And how would you do that?” he asked in an angry tone. He was getting agitated, I could tell. Out of the corner of my eye, I could see P’Knot make his way towards us. I ignored him as I paused for effect before I answered the alpha in front of me. Then;

“I’ll just make you my wife. They say that whatever belongs to your lover will also belong to you. If I can make you my wife, your gear badge will also be mine—”

He suddenly grabbed the collar of my shirt and brought me closer to him. Our breaths were mingling as he panted in front of my face. His eyes were getting darker, the chocolate brown of his iris just a thin ring around his dilated pupils.

Make me your wife then. I can’t wait to push my knot into you so that you will know who is the real wife between us,” he growled. Unconsciously, I began to tilt my head and bare my neck to him. The action didn’t escape his sharp eyes, making him smirk in satisfaction.

I felt myself being yanked back before P’Arthit could sink his teeth into my flesh. Similarly, I saw my alpha being pulled away by P’Knot.

“Mine!” the two of us growled.

This actually snapped the two of us back to reality. I turned my head slowly to see who had saved me from getting claimed and saw my best friend, who was looking at me in horror. The weight of what was about to happen crashed on me and he yanked me down when he saw me begin to panic. What did this all mean? Was P’Arthit the one who I think he was to me? Was he my fated mate? I glanced back at him and saw him already looking at me. I saw the same possessive glint to them… and was that a flash of red?

I turned towards my best friend who was watching me and P’Arthit. Then he gasped when he looked me straight in the eyes.

“Your eyes are blue,” he whispered to me, wide-eyed.

It seemed like I found my mate.

--_--

 

Arthit’s POV

 

I watched his bowed head as Knot continued the hazing on my stead. I couldn’t tear my gaze away from him even if I wanted to. Then our eyes met and I had to contain my gasp. They were beautiful blue orbs. If his eyes were that color, were my eyes shining red?

I ducked my head just in case they were, to hide it from the rest of the freshmen. I was sure that the news of our altercation would spread like wildfire right after this, the gossipmongers didn’t need additional fuel to fan the flames.

Knot concluded the gathering and I didn’t dare look up. I turned and started to walk away when the other hazers did. I was yanked back by a strong hand and I thought for a second that it was my mate. In my surprise, I faced the culprit head on, only to find a pissed off Knot.

“Oh no you don’t. I still need to speak to you about your temper—” he stopped and looked at me in shock.

“My eyes are red?” I asked him, already knowing the answer. He nodded his head disbelievingly.

“Thought so. His eyes were blue,” I told him.

“Who?” he had the gall to ask. I rolled my red eyes at him in exasperation.

“You know who. Who else have I been flirting with for the past few days?”

“0062?”

“Who else?” I snorted. Then I turned around only to be met by my other friends. They gasped in shock when they saw my eyes.

“So… 0062—” Prem started but he couldn’t seem to finish it. He stood there gaping like an unattractive fish.

“Oh my god!” Tutah squealed.

“Can I have the number of that first year then? You’re already taken.”

“Hell no.”

“What?! I’ll tell your Nong about it!”

“Go on. If you dare.” Bright shivered in fear when I trained my ruby red eyes at him.

“I-I was just joking, hehehe…”

I pulled out my phone from my pocket and opened up a new message.

 

 

A: If you have the guts, come and pursue me

A: If you don’t, then I’ll be the one coming for you

A: you might not want the outcome tho if I did

A: so what would it be, mate?

 

 

It sounded to sinister but this was my promise to him. I had noticed how he had been avoiding me since that time at the cafeteria up until this hazing meeting. I didn’t want my mate avoiding me and I want him to be mine as soon as possible. I had noticed how he had also been approached by countless alphas and betas during that signature gathering. It irked me to know that people were drawn towards him.

We had a meeting for a while, with Knot reprimanding me about my attitude towards the younger. His scolding would’ve been more severe if we hadn’t discovered that Kongpob and I were mates and that our spectacular fights were actually our weird mating ritual. My friends’ words, not mine.

The five of us decided to go out and have our dinner together and I wondered if Kongpob had his? Should I take some to him. I was still contemplating about this when Knot had nudged me to garner my attention.

“Stop playing with your food, and eat. He still hasn’t texted you? You gave him your number right?”

“I have his number.”

Knot looked at me, impressed.

“How’d you get it?”

“N’Praepailin. Remember, I got her number during the signature week? Well, Minnie had started looking for candidates for the Moon and Star Competition, so I asked her if she wanted to. Then I bugged her for Kongpob’s number and told her that I wanted to ask him if he could be the campus moon.”

“Did you really ask him?”

“Not really…”

“You don’t want to.”

“No.”

“Hmm. You’ve got to rein in your jealousy, man.”

“Like you have any room to talk. You were so possessive of Tob. It’s like the pot calling the kettle black.”

“Fair point. So, what are you gonna do about it? Your mating I mean.”

“We’ve just discovered about our connection. Let him think for a while then I will start really courting him. I don’t want to force myself into him but I don’t want to let him go either. Does that make sense?”

“Hmm.. In a way, yes. I do understand you. Let’s just hope that he accepts you soon because I will really smack you down if you spread your oppressive aura to the first years anymore just because you are jealous.”

“Yes, Por…”

--_--

Kongpob’s POV

Em and I went to my dorm room to discuss about this new revelation. He still couldn’t believe that the scary alpha head hazer was my fated. In a way, I already knew because of all the mixed feelings and the attraction I kept feeling for him.

“So, what are you gonna do now?” he asked me.

“Hmm… continue to pursue him?” I asked him absentmindedly. I was currently doing my calculus homework and I nudged Em’s paper towards him so that he would start on it too.

“Shouldn’t it be the other way around? Why would the omega be the one to pursue the alpha?”

“And why couldn’t the omega be the one to do the pursuing?” I asked him with a raised brow.

“We-well… Because… Uhm—”

“See, you don’t have an answer to that. I’m pursuing him.”

“You’re not only doing this so that you’d be safe from harm?”

“Of course not! I really feel an intense attraction to him, if you hadn’t noticed. Which you did because you were the one telling me about how I was flirting with him last week.”

“Oooh. My little Kong’s finally learned how to flirt. I’m so proud!” Em teased, wiping an imaginary tear drop.

“Oh, shut up! You’re even worse in flirting than I was. At least I managed to utter a lame joke to my partner at that time while you stood gaping like a fish before the poor girl!”

“Fuck you. I thought you were my best friend.”

--_--

I didn’t notice that I had new notifications until late at night. I was already in bed, ready to sleep when I saw the messages (more like threats) from P’Arthit. Was he hinting at punishing me? What kind of punishment would it be? I felt oddly excited at the prospect.

 

K: Hmmm

K: Where’d you get my number?

K: Also…

K: I’m intrigued by the second option.

K: will I be punished?

K: ooh, I’m getting oddly excited, P’Arthit.

 

A: yeah?

A: then brace yourself, nong

K: although

K: if I didn’t like your courting ways…

 

A: what?

A: wut???

K: I’ll be the one to court you

K: K?

K: of course you’re okay with it

 

A: hmm

A: how about this?

A: both of us court one another

A: the winner gets the other

A: do you agree?

A: or do you agree?

K: 😂😂😂

K: Oh my god

K: ur not giving me options?

A: as if ur giving me options

K: touche

K: aight

K: let’s court each other

K: let the courting games begin!

A: wait it’s a competition now?

K: yes

K: winner takes the other remember?

A: fine…

--_--

 

Third Person POV

 

The following day, Arthit’s prediction about the altercation between him and Kongpob being known all across campus came true. He heard whisperings of his name or Kong’s and some people even dared to point at his direction. He ignored them all and went through with his mission. He hastened his pace towards that wooded area behind the Chemistry building. Seeing a hint of maroon uniform, he made a beeline towards it.

“Hey,” he murmured. “You can go now, Bright. Thanks.” The Alpha male kept on rummaging around in his bag, as he absentmindedly dismissed his friend. He looked up when his two other companions in the secluded area just kept on staring at him.

“What? I’ll give you your payment later, Bright,” he said, irritated, as he clutched the gift inside his bag. Bright looked at him suspiciously, then at the cowering first year that the former had practically kidnapped here at this secluded corner of their campus. The taller male started to walk away, occasionally looking back at them. Arthit watched him leave before he brought out what he had been hiding in his bag.

“Here, please give this to Kongpob?” he asked the bewildered Em as he extended the variety of chocolates to the younger.

Em eyed the bag of assorted treats then looked back at the senior, who was looking at him anxiously.

“P’Arthit. Kong will have diabetes if he ate all this,” he said incredulously. Arthit rolled his eyes at the younger’s concern.

“I’m pretty sure that he would share what he has with someone because he’s such a hero, a goody-two-shoes. That’s why I’m giving him that many,” he explained.

The younger nodded in understanding, actually impressed that the alpha had gotten that one correct. Then he looked at the older suspiciously.

“How do you know that? Have you been stalking my best friend?”

“I didn’t stalk him. I’m just observant. I have learned how to read people because of some stuff you didn’t need to know. Now can you please just give these to him?”

“Okay, okay. Chill P’. I was just saying…”

“Now go back to class. I’m also running late. Thanks, Nong.”

“No problem, P’.”

 

--_--

 

Em arrived on his first class, whistling a happy tune. There were still ten minutes to spare, and he took his sweet time to sit on his chair. Kongpob eyed him warily as the other sat down beside him.

“Did something good happen?” he asked his best friend.

“Eeeeh… Nothing much,” he replied.

“Oi, Em! I saw P’Bright drag you somewhere a while ago. Are you okay?!” Oak exclaimed as he grabbed at the pale man’s shoulder. His exclamation grabbed the attention of the two other boys, who huddled closer to them, as well as the three girls in front of them, who turned on their seats to face the boys.

“Oh, Em! Are you okay?” asked May. Em stiffened when May turned to talk to him. Kongpob, noticing this, couldn’t help his snicker. Then he felt his phone vibrate from his bag. He tapped it on, then opened the message.

 

A: Have you received them?

A: If not, tell N’Em that he will be punished accordingly

 

Kongpob stared at Em until the latter looked at him. Slowly, he looked at his phone, back up at him, and smiled sweetly. His fingers were poised over the screen of his phone threateningly and Em had to gulp. The others watched the interaction with mixed feelings of confusion and bewilderment.

“Open your bag wide,” Em instructed. Kong raised an eyebrow at him, then warily opened his bag wide and presented it to Em. The paler man turned fully to face him before he opened his own and stuffed the bag of goodies to the awaiting bag. Kong stared at the assortment of chocolates dumbly.

“I don’t want to get diabetes,” he murmured.

“That’s what I said a while ago,” Em muttered back.

Kong spied something that he really wanted to try so he opened the pack and chose what he wanted from the assortment, before he was giving the bag back to Em.

“You took all the japan flavored kitkats!” Em exclaimed. Kongpob looked at him deadpan, then said, “ Well those are mine. I get to choose whatever the hell I want.”

He primly opened the matcha tiramisu and took a bite.

“Mmm. Em, this is good!” Kong said excitedly then gave the other half to Em.

“Huh. It is.”

Em mused, P’Arthit really did read Kongpob correctly this time. ‘Was this how fated mates work?’ he wondered. He hoped he found his soon.

--_--

 

“Who gave those chocolates to Kongpob?” Oak badgered Em. All of them, including Prae, May and Maprang, well except for Kong obviously, were huddled at one of the stone table sets out in the quad, trying to crack the messenger.

“I value my life so I’m not gonna be spilling secrets,” Em said, shuddering at the memory of being in the presence of one scary head hazer.

“Was it P’Bright?” Tew asked. Em didn’t expect him to be such a gossip. “You met him early this morning. Well, according to Oak, he practically kidnapped you. So, was it P’Bright? Does he have the hots for Kongpob?”

“No! P’Bright is my direct code senior. He just talked to me about a gathering of our code family to introduce me. That’s it! And I’m still not going to reveal who gave him the bag of chocolates!”

“Those are from my parents. They had asked Uncle Nook to deliver them to me since he was on the way to see Em. Uncle Nook is Em’s dad,” Kongpob suddenly said from behind Oak, startling all of them.

They all looked sheepishly at Kong then went back to chatting with each other about other topics, now that the two mysteries had been solved. Kong and Em fist-bumped under the table.

--_--

 

A: I thought you hated lying?

K: wat r u talking abt?

A: I heard you lie to your friends about the origin of the chocolates

K: we’re you spying on me?

A: no I just happened to pass by

A: so answer the question

K: wud u rather I told them the truth?

K: dat the chocos came from you?

A: …

A: Ehehehe

A: no.

A: I’m still ur head hazer

A: Ppl wud talk if they found out I am really courting you

K: But ppl r approaching you and me

K: isn’t it better if we revealed about our courtship

A: r u jealous about me?

K: if I say yes, what r u gonna do abt it?

A: I’ll declare that I’m taken so that they wud not bother me anymore

A: you shud 2

K: if we simultaneously did that

K: ppl wud put 2 & 2 2gether

A: Ur ryt

A: wat shud we do?

K: dodge

A: k.

A: u shud 2.

A: I’m still doubting if I shud nmin8 u 4 the moon & star

K: P’Minnie already asked me

K: I said yes

A: WAT?!

A: that betch!

A: nooooo

A: you’ll get even more popular!

K: like you aren’t?

K: mister Ice Prince?

K: mr. heartbreaker?

K: mr. cold hearted big bad alpha?

K: mr. perfect dom?

A: da fuk?

K: dos are your titles, ur highness

A: hu????

K: the women u scorned

A: I scorned nobody

A: is rejecting a person now a bad thing?

A: it’s better to be a playboy now???

K: no.

K: but dos r ur nicknames

K: they actually say those names all dreamily

K: especially that dom thing

K: are you a dom?

A: how da fuk should I know???!!!

A: I’m a fucking virgin

K: wuuut?

K: ur an alpha

A: ans ur judgmental

A: just because I’m an alpha doesn’t mean I whore around

A: I don’t

K: were u waiting for me?

K: because I did

A: … maybe?

A: aww, u did?

A: I’m honored then

K: there’s something that you need to know

K: but I will tell you when I am ready okay?

K: promise me that you’ll be patient with me as you get to know the real me

K: can you prmise me that?

A: sound serious

A: Yes

A: of course

K: thank you.

K: it is a serious matter P

K: and it’s scary to imagine what ur reaction would be like

A: …

A: now I’m curious

A: but like I said

A: I’ll wait

K: 🧡💛💚💙💜🤎💗💗💗

A: does this mean you love me?

K: that means kudos and nothing else

K:😂😂😂

--_--

One of the freshmen gatherings happened at the track field. As usual, Arthit picked on Kongpob, as the latter glared at his alpha. He made the younger count how many there were and asked him where the missing fifty-four students were. At first, Kongpob didn’t know what to answer then an idea sparked in his head. When Arthit told the other freshmen to look at their classmate who couldn’t answer, and that all of them would be punished, he decided to execute his plan.

“They are not missing, P’,” Kongpob interrupted.

“Open your damn eyes and see if they are here! How can you say that they are not missing?!” Arthit shouted. He didn’t know what the younger was playing at. Had the heat gone through his head, making him delirious?

“They’re really not missing, P’!” Kong insisted. “Even though they might not be here in person, they’ve sent their hearts here.”

Wut?! O.o

“Oooooiiiiiii,” the rest of the freshmen teased. The hazers looked at one another while the head hazer himself wanted to smack himself, or the younger preferably, because of the cheesiness.

“Your friends must have a lot of hearts to spare. Then… for all the hearts that they could spare, it should be enough to keep all of you running on the track fifty-four laps!” Arthit said, not wanting to be beaten by the first year.

“No, P’. They’ve only sent their hearts to me,” Kong persisted.

Aish, what is this kid playing at? Arthit thought warily staring at the other.

“Why did they send them only to you?” Arthit asked.

“To replace the heart that I have already given to you,” Kongpob finished with a flourish. Uhm, correction, Kongpob finished with a wink.

“Ooooooiiiiii!!!!”

“Kongpob! Run fifty-four laps around the track!”

“Yes P’!”

--_--

 

“Fang? Make sure the first year won’t collapse due to exhaustion or heat stroke. You can make him stop whenever you need to.”

“Of course, Arthit. You don’t have to worry about your boyfriend. I’ll take care of him, promise.”

“B-boyfriend?!”

“Aw, isn’t he your boyfriend?”

“No! … but soon.”

He’s my mate, not a mere boyfriend.

--_--

 

“Uhm, excuse me, P’Knot?”

“Aw, nong. What can I do for you?”

“Sawasdee khrap, P’. Uhm, can I ask you for a favor?”

“Sawasdee, Nong. What do you need?”

“Can you pass this on to P’Arthit?”

Knot looked at the unassuming silver tumbler on the junior’s hands. He looked back at the hopeful first year with a raised eyebrow. So I’m a courier now?

“Of course, Nong. Do you want to leave a message, too, while you’re at it?” he asked with a smile. He would be the courier but that didn’t mean he couldn’t tease, right?

“Uh, there’s no need, P’. I’ll just text him later.”

“Sure nong.”

“Thank you so much, P’! I owe you one.”

--_--

 

“—Prem, you crossed the line today. You can’t use your anger on those freshmen—”

“Do you expect me to pamper those freshmen? Did you not see how disturbing he looked at me? Do you want me to kneel and beg him? The easier we go on those juniors, the more undisciplined they become!”

“We don’t have to go easy on them, but that doesn’t mean we have to throw a fit like that,” Knot interrupted the argument, throwing in his two cents.

“Not throwing a fit? How do we haze without throwing a fit? Do you think they will listen to us?!”

“Cool down, Prem. You’re boiling again,” Bright murmured.

“Prem, it’s okay for me to let you stand up front before the freshmen during the gatherings. But you are not allowed to discipline the juniors—”

“Was I so wrong?!”

“YES! YOU WERE DEFINITELY WRONG THIS TIME, PREM!” roared Arthit. Tutah calmed him down with a pat on his arm.

“Listen to me. We are dealing with a new generation of young people. We need to adapt our approaches to them. We learn these along with our juniors. It’s not like we can do no wrong because we are older! I also admit that I went too far on the first day, and I hope you can look back to your actions, too, Prem!”

The sudden appearance of P’Deer halted the ongoing argument. Arthit got reprimanded about the dwindling number of first years attending the gathering and P’Deer demanded that they find a fix for this.

Arthit sighed in frustration. He pinched the bridge of his nose to try to alleviate the throbbing headache forming, and he wished he had a bottle of his favorite drink. Something cold startled him from his dream of sipping a cold cup of pink milk, and he looked at the offending object, then to his best friend with confusion.

“What’s this?” he asked.

“I dunno. I’m just the messenger,” replied Knot nonchalantly. Arthit raised his brows at his best friend, which was promptly ignored. He carefully unscrewed the cap and peered inside. He was delightedly surprised when he found out what was inside. He took a sip happily and couldn’t stop the smile that broke out of his face.

“I see you’re happy now, so can you please help us out in brainstorming on what to do so that we can have more freshmen to attend the gatherings?” Knot teased.

“How about we do something like…”

--_--

 

As Kongpob watched his mate tear up the name tag of the girl, he felt extremely guilty. So, when the hazers dismissed them and began walking away, he approached the girl quickly and helped her gather the torn pieces of her name tag. He felt guiltier when she saw how she was shaking and sniffling.

“I’m sorry. This is my fault. Uhm, can I ask your name?” he muttered.

“I-I’m Neen. It’s okay. I don’t expect you to know everyone,” she said, mustering up a smile.

Kongpob took his nametag off and handed it to the girl, who refused it. He insisted until she caved. Suddenly, an ominous aura made him and all the people in his vicinity tense up. An aura he knew very well.

“Kongpob! What the hell are you doing?” growled out Arthit. Kongpob resisted rolling his eyes.

“I’m giving my name tag to her.” Duh, he didn’t say.

“And who told you to do this?” The younger looked up slowly to glare at the alpha. ‘Am I your bitch now?’

“No one,” he answered insolently, daring the older with his eyes.

Arthit narrowed his eyes at his mate, not liking how the omega was defying him. No, that was a lie. He was feeling confused if he disliked how the younger was defying him or not. He could feel his alpha-self purring though.

“I couldn’t remember her name, so it’s my fault,” the younger continued. Immediately, Arthit’s expression soured. His inner alpha kept screaming, ‘Mine!’, as he glared at the younger.

Kongpob could smell the pheromones that Arthit was emitting and he glared harder at his mate. ‘What’s his problem?’, he thought. He didn’t let himself submit to his overwhelming scent, while almost everyone around him whimpered. He also heard growls though and that clued him that he needed to cut this before the other alphas get more agitated.

“But you know right? If you give your nametag to her, you won’t have yours anymore. And if you didn’t have your nametag, I would consider you breaking the rules. You know that, right?” Arthit asked in a low dangerous voice. Kong stood up slowly so that he was level with his mate.

“I know that,” Kong answered defiantly. They had a staring contest, the older gritting his teeth in jealousy, while the younger glared, stubbornly unwilling to submit. It was either him or Arthit, and he was pretty sure that it would be the latter.

Arthit came closer to him until they were a hair’s breadth away from touching.

“Why the fuck are you defying me, huh? Quit it, omega, and know your place,” Arthit whispered menacingly by his ear.

At his mate’s words, Kongpob felt something in him snap. He felt his face get wiped out of all his emotions.

“You’re a stupid Alpha who is a slave to his emotions and rage. Don’t ever talk to me again, nor contact me. Don’t come near me, and you never get to touch me. Not until you learn how to respect me as your omega mate. Wait, scratch that. Not until you learn how to respect all omegas. I didn’t know you were one of those close-minded fools from years ago who treated us omegas as lowly creatures, a hole to fuck, and a uterus to breed. Fucking shame on you Phi Arthit. Now go join your friends, and remember what I said. Don’t. Fucking. Come. Near. Me. Understood?”

Arthit felt like a bucket of cold water got splashed on him. His jealousy-fueled rage had been snuffed out just like that as the venom on his mate’s voice reached his ears. As his words registered to him, he felt like crying. It felt so painful being rejected by his mate.

What have I done?’

--_--

 

The people around Kongpob felt wary as an oppressive aura surrounded the omega. They also felt confused because how could an omega emit such scary aura? Only alphas could do that, while omegas were known for their calming auras. Betas could do both but not as effective as the other two classifications. So how come Kong could do that? Wasn’t he an omega?

“Oi, you’re scaring people. Stop that. I know you’re angry at your mate bu—”

“I don’t have a mate,” Kongpob interrupted his best friend, looking him with a blank face. Em was left speechless.

“Are you rejecting you fated mate?!” Em whispered incredulously. Kongpob only shrugged in reply.

‘This isn’t good,’ Em thought.

When breaktime arrived, Em excused himself to go to the toilet. He called a certain number and waited for the other to pick up anxiously.

“Doc Wayo speaking. How can I help you?” asked a sweet voice from the other line.

“P’Yo! We have an emergency! I think he’s planning to reject his mate!” Em exclaimed.

“What? But why? He was over the moon when he called me when he met him.”

“Exactly! They had already started their courtship. But after that one gathering, he distanced himself from his mate and he kept on emitting these scary vibes! It felt like those oppressive alpha aura but at the same time, it’s not? How can he do that when he’s certainly an omega? I can’t explain it P’, but he’s definitely scaring the bejeezus out of all the people around him!”

“Hmm… by the sound of it, he’s letting out alpha pheromones, alright,” Wayo said contemplatively, leaving a very confused Em.

“P’. What do you mean?”

“Hmm? Oh, he didn’t tell you? Kong is also an alpha.”

--_--

 

Arthit gloomily poked at his food, pushing at the meat around his plate. His four friends observed him, and they were actually feeling scared for their friend. Ever since the freshman gathering two days ago, Arthit had been like this, lifeless; a shell of his old self. They didn’t know what happened but they knew that it had something to do with that first year. He had been like this exactly after their confrontation because of the nametag issue.

“Arthit, please eat your food,” Tutah said. He couldn’t help but to let out his calming pheromones and how his inner omega urged him to protect his pack. Arthit, when he sensed the aura, turned his head to look at his friend. His eyes watered and then the dam broke.

“I-I’m sorry…” he whispered as tears slid down his cheeks. His friends got alarmed at this and formed a tight circle to shield their friend from prying eyes. Arthit kept apologizing to Tutah as he cried his heart out. The latter was confused but he comforted him first, setting aside all the questions that were bugging him.

Unbeknownst to them, a pair of eyes had been observing the alpha head hazer for a few minutes already, and he had pinpointed the exact time that the senior had broken down. That fraction of a second was too much for him but he stayed until he was sure that the alpha was surrounded by his friends. He took off afterwards, going straight to the washroom to try and calm his nerves.

Back at the table of the hazers, the group tried to calm their friend who was crying his heart out. Afterwards, when Arthit had calmed down, Knot couldn’t keep his thoughts anymore. He wanted to get to the bottom of this and decide if he needed to keep his friend away from his mate or if he should help in patching things up.

“What did he tell you that you’re reduced to this mess?” he asked sternly. “You better ‘fess up now, Arthit, or I will go to him and ask him myself.”

The other three looked at the two in confusion, they felt frustrated that they didn’t know what was happening, yet Knot seemed to know the root cause of the problem.

“Hmm… It’s my fault. I degraded him, Knot. I degraded him because I was so fucking jealous,” Arthit said in self-depreciation. “Who does that to their mate, huh? Who does that?”

“Mate? You mean N’Kong? So you’ve acknowledged each other?” Tutah whispered. Prem had slapped his hand on Bright’s mouth before the other could react loudly. The other’s muffled words were still loud, though.

“Yes… we’ve started our courtship already and I ruined all of that during the last gathering.”

“Did he break up with you?” Bright asked, finally free from Prem’s hand after he licked it. “Your hand tastes weird, Prem. Did you wash your hand after using the toilet?”

“No,” Prem answered him with a sadistic smile.

“Fuck! You’re gross!” Bright proceeded to rub his on the collar of his shirt, while the rest looked at the pair in disgust.

“You’re both gross,” Tutah declared. “Now stop your distractions. Answer the question Arthit.”

“I actually don’t know,” Arthit said with a hysterical laugh. “I mean, there was barely anything to break, so is it still considered a break-up?”

“Okay, why don’t you tell us what really happened. Start from the beginning please,” Knot asked, trying to clear up the confusion.

“I got jealous, okay? When he offered his nametag to that girl, I got jealous. I could still control my jealousy that time though, but when he continued to defend the girl, I became more and more angry. I became irrational, not hearing his side of the argument anymore. So I leaned in and told him to know his place as an omega—”

“Arthit!” Tutah exclaimed, looking at his friend aghast. Knot rubbed his head in frustration. His friend’s hot-headedness surely got him into trouble this time.

“I know! I know! And I’m sorry. I—I let the alpha in me take over all of my rational thoughts. I know I shouldn’t have said that. I was raised to respect every type of people. And I was definitely raised to know that omegas are very much our equal, as well as betas. I just wanted him to possess him at that time and my stupid brain found it was a good idea to keep the omega in his place. I shouldn’t have done that. I know that now.”

“And what did he tell you?”

“…he told me to keep away, not speak to him nor contact him in any way.”

“Is that all of it? He didn’t state any condition?”

“He wanted me to learn how to respect omegas. But I do! It was just a one-time thing! I was driven by my jealousy at that time, and he is my mate. I swear I will never say anything of that sort again!”

“Shouldn’t you be telling him that?” Prem asked.

“Are you deaf? I just told you that he didn’t want any form of communication with me, didn’t I?”

“And are you really going to give up just like that?” Knot asked his friend.

“I… I don’t want to, but what can I do?”

“You forgot that you’re the head hazer. Do something using that fact.”

Knot sighed in frustration. It seemed like his friend found himself a stubborn omega.

--_--

 

During the next gathering, Arthit had composed himself and had a newfound determination to win back his mate. He surveyed the gathered freshmen and found him beside his friends. He had his head down, though, so he couldn’t even see his face. His eyes caught sight of his friend’s though, Em, and he looked at him with remorse. The younger had averted his eyes though, and he could only sigh in defeat.

He went on with the hazing, teaching the value of unity to the freshmen. He made them run at one point of the field to another within a given time limit. The first years still didn’t understand it, so he let them do this for several times more. All throughout, his mate didn’t spare him a glance, nor did he raise his hand to question them. He looked at his friends and they all nodded to him. Time to execute his plan then, to get back his mate.

But before he could do so, he noticed one of the juniors looking pale and she seemed to have difficulty breathing. He stalked towards her at the back and he arrived just in time to catch her.

“Nong? Nong?” he called out as he gently laid her on the grass. He supported her back in an inclined position and asked for the medic team. Fang appeared and attended to the ailing student.

“First years, eyes in front!” Knot yelled. The freshmen snapped their attention to the other alpha hazer. “Didn’t we tell you that if the activity is beyond your physical limits, you should step out? We couldn’t be responsible for your life! If this happens again, we will let you struggle like that and let your fellow freshmen will take the punishment. Am I clear?!”

“Yes!”

“Let’s call it a day. Dismissed!”

The first years dispersed, eager to get away from the heartless hazers. Except for one, though. Kongpob watched as his mate carried the hyperventilating girl towards the infirmary. He felt an all-consuming jealousy and also remorse because of how he had overreacted the other day. He missed his P’, their easy banter and deep talks, stolen touches and lingering stares. It hurt him that he was standing there, as he watched the back of his mate moving further away from him. Could he really stay away from him? He couldn’t take it anymore.

Sometimes he hated his alpha side more than usual. Wasn’t it enough that it was the cause of his suffering? He still remembered that time when P’Yo revealed this little tidbit about him. He was part alpha although his omega was more dominant. He didn’t know if he should be ecstatic about the fact that he wouldn’t be easily overpowered by alpha pheromones or not. It was because of the mixed alpha pheromones into his omega ones that made his scent so strong that it even drove a sane alpha into rut.

Yes, the one that had assaulted him years ago was driven into rut by his normal scent, not even his heat scent. And the root cause of his strong scent was the alpha in him. He was still classified as an omega, though, because his body developed the reproductive capacity to bear children and he had heats instead of ruts. He could, however, let out a dominating aura, much like a regular alpha, and he also had the pride of one. His mate would have a fun time making him submit when the time comes, he had mused. This was proving to be true, becoming evident during the last time he had interacted with his mate.

At the moment, the alpha in him made him burn in jealousy and possessiveness, and it seemed like he will be cutting short the punishment he had inflicted on his poor mate. The voice in him was roaring for him to claim the other as his, and he was even shocked by the vehemence of his alpha.

Unknown to him, a certain alpha senior had been observing him and his friend, who chose to stay at the field waiting for him. Knot caught the eyes of Em, and they smiled in relief at each other.

--_--

 

On the next gathering, Kongpob decided to be a thorn to his seniors’ sides again, questioning them and being a hero to others, specifically, to the second year’s who had been teaching them the Engineering chant. The other third years groaned silently while one particular senior was hopeful.

‘Does this mean I am forgiven?’ Arthit thought to himself when his mate met his stare. He shook his head and continued his hazing, opting to think of his personal problems later on. After all, he had a first year with a severe hero complex to temper and punish.

Outside, when the meeting was over, Knot noticed the junior loitering around. He smirked evilly as he looked back at his best friend, who was busy tapping whatever on his phone. He led the group towards the single first year by the steps then talked to him.

“Hey, Nong. What are you still doing here?” he asked. He heard Arthit’s gasp, which he ignored.

“I’m waiting for my friends, P’,” Kongpob said. The younger was studiously not looking at his mate and he wanted to laugh at how ridiculous they were.

“Do you understand why we sent you out a while ago?” he asked, not unkindly.

“Because I talked back to you again and made you angry? Because I requested to chant on behalf of the second years…”

“No, it’s not that Nong. Didn’t my friend here told you before that we don’t need a hero here? Yet you still insisted to be one,” he told the younger with a smile.

“I only ever wanted to help my friends, P’. Is that wrong?”

“Nong, we know that you are kind-hearted. My friend here, especially, knows about it—” a hand stopped him from going further.

“Knot, let me handle this?” Arthit asked softly. Knot stepped aside, making room for Arthit to stand before his mate.

“You’re too kind-hearted that you help other people at your expense. They are getting spoiled by you always helping them. Tell me, will you always be there for them, everytime they needed help? Will you be solving their every problem? How can they learn how to be independent if you keep on helping them? It’s fine for now, since you are still in university. But afterwards, what then? Sooner or later, they have to learn how to deal with things by themselves because not every time, someone will help them. If they get too dependent on other people’s help, would they learn how to survive the adult world? Think about it, Kong.”

“Oh…”

Arthit and Kongpob stared at one another longingly, but they were very unsure of where they stand with each other. The other seniors, seeing the hesitation and the awkwardness between the two, decided that enough was enough. Knot pushed on his friend hard, making him stumble towards his mate, as Bright rushed to Kongpob’s side to steady the younger before the couple could tumble down the steps.

Like in every cliché drama there was, Arthit secured his arms around the omega’s waist, bringing his body flush to the younger’s. Kongpob, on the other hand, automatically wound his arms around the strong neck, clinging to the senior for balance. Their faces were an inch apart as they looked at each other with wide startled eyes. They watched as the other’s eyes started to change in color: red for the alpha and blue for the omega.

The younger could feel himself submitting again to the older, his pride and anger for the other long melted away, leaving only longing and want. He brought his face closer, or was it Arthit who moved? They didn’t know, and they didn’t care, since all they could think of was claiming the other’s lips.

They had their first kiss at the entrance of the Cheer Hall, surrounded by the senior hazers, who had tried their best to shield them from prying eyes. It was sloppy and awkward, with teeth clashing and lips getting nipped too hard. For them it was perfect, and everything fell back into place.

They separated after a short while. Both of them couldn’t look at each other, getting shy all of a sudden after that burst of confidence.

“Am I… Am I forgiven, Kong?” Arthit asked uncertainly, peeking at the younger through his lashes.

“Did you ask for forgiveness, P’?”

“Shi—Right, right. Kong, I’m really sorry for what I said. I’m an idiot. I… I’m sorry, I’ve succumbed into my jealousy—”

“You were jealous? Why?” Kong asked, flabbergasted.

“Because… you gave your name tag to that girl and played hero again?”

“Huh? But I always do that to everyone!”

“But you were especially close to her and my brain just went, ‘Mine,’ then everything went to shit.”

“But nothing would happen between me and the girl! She’s an omega for pete’s sake!”

Arthit was speechless. The girl was an omega. Damn it.

“I… Sorry, I didn’t know.”

“Huh? You couldn’t tell? How could you not tell? You went to get her nametag so you were in close proximity to her.”

“I can’t smell pheromones, Kongpob,” he confessed.

“What?”

“I can’t smell pheromones. The only time that I could tell an omega apart is when they are in heat. Their scent is muted though, and I really wouldn’t know why people get crazy whenever they smell an omega in heat.”

Kongpob looked at him, stunned. His mate was perfect for him. He wouldn’t fear that the other would lose their mind on their bonding. Of course, he didn’t know the exact effect of his heat scent to unmated alphas, and Em has been the only one who had gotten a whiff of him when they were younger. It had resulted to Em having a raging boner and cursing him to hell and back, as he ran away towards his father at that time.

“You’re perfect,” Kong whispered reverently as he stared at his mate.

“What? Dude, I have an impairment that’s crucial for a dominant alpha like me. I am far from perfect!” Arthit replied.

“No, no. You are perfect. You’re perfect for me. I won’t have to fear you losing control when we mate. Believe me, you’re perfect for me.” Then he launched on telling his mate about his condition, leaving the bit about his assault when he was younger and the fact that he was partially an alpha, too, for when they were alone.

The others looked on at him in bewilderment, Prem and Bright looking a bit skeptical. Arthit was mesmerized, amazed at the fact that there was someone who was also perfect for him, as he was perfect for the other.

“Oh god, just mate already,” Tutah said, breaking the silence that descended on them. Just then, they heard the telltale signs of people approaching and the mates jumped apart hastily.

“Can I continue to court you?” Arthit asked shyly. Prem looked at his friend with an incredulous expression. Knot wanted to facepalm. Where the hell was that brazen alpha attitude now?

“I’d like that P’. I hope that this serves as a warning though. I hate people bringing down a value of someone just because of their gender, be it their first or second genders. No gender is better than the other. We are all equal in that regard. What you told me, I felt like I was nothing more than just a mindless property to you. We’re supposed to be partners, mates. But that time, I didn’t feel like it. Do you understand what I’m saying, P’?”

“Yes… I’ve never regretted anything more than spouting that nonsense that time. I swear, I’m not usually like that. My parents had instilled in me about respecting everyone since I was young. I’m sorry about that, Kong.”

“It’s okay now. I’m just glad that you understood where I was coming from. I have to go now, P’. Em just texted me.”

“Take care now. Bye.”

--_--

 

Over the next few days, they resumed their secret courtship. Well, not so secret anymore since all of Arthit’s close friends knew about them. The first few days, they were both still walking on eggshells about each other, but on the following days, they returned to their shameless flirting in texts and when they were alone together.

They rained gifts to each other, practical things like food and drinks being delivered by their “couriers”, and some non-practical gifts like plushies and toys. Of course, Kongpob resumed his shameless “teasings” of the head hazer and the other freshmen would always watch the show avidly. Em could only shake his head.

After the Freshy games, Kongpob’s popularity had skyrocketed, even after the fact that his second gender was revealed. Girls and boys flocked to him, most of them alphas and betas, to try their luck at courting him, but he still earned a lot of omega fans. Arthit didn’t know if he should be irked that there were a lot courting his mate or proud because of his brilliance at the contests he joined.

Kongpob sensed his mate’s moodiness and sometimes restlessness and he took a guess about this change in attitude. He confronted him about it one time, and he had guessed right. His mate was really getting jealous of all the attention he was gaining. He found a solution to calm his mate’s restlessness by furthering their courtship to include skinship.

He let the older scent him, and the latter just went to town. They would also find different secluded nooks around campus for these ‘scenting’ sessions, which also included make-outs, of course. Kong also scented his mate since omegas still flocked to the older, even with how unapproachable and cold he was to the others. His reputation as the Ice Prince had even reached the freshmen populace, and yet, people still wanted to try their luck. The younger went crazy inside whenever he heard his fellow first years gushing about how handsome the head hazer was. His friends didn’t understand what was so good about the scary head hazer, though, and Kong would grumble under his breath that the senior was just a big marshmallow.

 

--_--

Kongpob had his first heat ever since he entered college and he spent it alone in his dorm room. It was unexpected, since it shouldn’t have come because he had been taking his suppressants religiously. It also came earlier than expected. He had been at the library, doing his research, when he had felt feverish. Prae had been with him at the time and she got alarmed when she smelled the strongest omega scent she had ever encountered. She asked him if he smelled it, too, then realized that it was coming from him.

She pointed this out to him and that’s when he got alarmed. He tried to get away from her as subtly as he could, but the female alpha knew what he was doing. She had assured him that she would never do anything to him. She also pointed out that even though his scent was enticing, there was an underlying undesirable scent to her that mingled with his sweet scent. Kongpob remembered about his one-on-one session with Arthit that afternoon and he blushed.

Prae had teased him mercilessly when she figured out about the other scent, and kept asking who was the lucky alpha. Kongpob didn’t want to reveal it though, since Arthit was still their head hazer. Prae had accompanied him out of the library up until his dorm, and he had been so grateful of her. There had been several alphas and betas who turned to stare at him during their walk towards his dorm, and he had been leery of their attention. Prae’s presence beside him had been a godsent.

He got to his room safely and thanked Prae again. She had asked if she could do anything for him and he replied that he could take care of himself. He thanked her again and then she was off. He called Wayo as soon as he closed the door.

“What’s up N’Kong?” Wayo chirped through the phone

“P’Yo… I’m in heat. The suppressants didn’t work and this one came earlier than my normal cycles,” he told the doctor as calmly as he could.

“Oh, I feared this would happen. I just didn’t expect it to be this soon…” the older mumbled.

“What do you mean, P’?”

“Well, you’ve met your mate and that usually puts an omega’s hormones out of whack. And since you’ve been on suppressants since you were fourteen, add to that the scent blocker pills, and your alpha pheromones, I’m not surprised by this at all. This is what I would’ve discussed to you on your next check-up but your heat came first. Listen, do not go out at all, okay? Even though you have an alpha already. He has been scenting you, correct?”

“Yes, P’,” he answered with a blush.

“Well, even with his scent on you, I still wouldn’t recommend for you to go out now. Are you somewhere safe now?”

“Yes, P’, I’m back in my dorm.”

“Good. We don’t know if his scenting would help deter the others when they catch a whiff of your scent. Your strong scent might just overpower your mate’s scent on you. Stay indoors. I’ll come visit you tomorrow for a check-up, okay?”

“Thanks P’.”

“Call your parents, too.”

“Yes, P’.”

“Bye Nong.”

“Bye P’.”

His heat had lasted for three days, with Em suffering as his errand boy for his needs. He was the only one he trusted at the moment, since his parents were overseas for a meeting with investors. They had called him religiously, though, asking his condition day and night. He also didn’t inform his mate about it, not wanting for the alpha to become worried of him since the older had been plagued by problems of his own.

Arthit had taken the fall for what happened during the hazing meetings in the past, and he had been guilt ridden for all of those times he had defied the older. He couldn’t make himself tell the older about his heat in his messages, stating that he had caught a mild cold and that Em was taking care of him. He wouldn’t answer his calls, though, afraid that he would moan out his name and become a needy omega when he heard his voice.

The day after his heat, he was still feeling weak, so he didn’t attend classes. When Em had brought his breakfast and lunch, he commented that he smelled better, joking about his awful scent during the past three days. He replied with a chuckle and a thanks before his best friend locked his door behind him. Early in the afternoon, he craved for that sweet milky goodness though. He gave in to his whims and went out of his room, warily looking about for any sign of danger.

He got to the cafeteria near his dorm and went to the drinks stall. He had just placed his order when his luck ran out and bumped into Prem, who was ordering a cup of pink milk.

“Sawasdee Khrap, P’Prem,” he greeted the senior nervously, who was looking at him with narrowed eyes.

“Sawasdee, Nong. I thought you caught a cold?” he asked him. Damn, was he caught? He was saved from answering when the senior’s phone rang and he answered it quickly.

He waited impatiently for his drink order, praying to God that whoever called the older would prolong their conversation. It seemed like God was punishing him for lying because just as the aunty finished making his own pink milk, Prem had turned back to him again.

“Listen, Nong. Please bring this to Arthit. I need to go back to school for an important meeting,” Prem said, handing the bag of food to Kongpob. “He still hasn’t had his lunch and he would whine at us nonstop if he didn’t get fed right now.”

“Why can’t he come down to get his food, P’?” Kong asked, confused. Prem looked at him, taken aback.

“You mean he didn’t tell you?”

“Tell me what, P’?”

“Huh. Both of you are meant together. You’re even lying about your real conditions to one another. Amazing,” Prem murmured. He did look at the younger in amazement.

“To answer your question, your boyfriend, who said that he didn’t like people with hero complex, decided to take the fall for all the bad things that happened during the hazing. His punishment was fifty-four laps around the track. To tell you honestly, he was only supposed to run twenty laps, yet that stubborn alpha ran all throughout the day and way into the night and completed that fifty-four. Even under the rain. He has a sprained ankle, by the way, and his body is surely aching. So, he is a little bit helpless as of now.”

Kongpob gaped at the senior in shock. It seemed like his stupid alpha pride took over again.

“Nong, your nomyens are ready,” the aunty interrupted their little chat.

Prem paid for his order and handed the other cup of pink milk to the younger. Then, like an afterthought, he removed his workshop jacket and draped it around the omega, startling the latter.

“You still reek. I don’t know how you got here without being assaulted, but I don’t want anything happening to you. A layer of an alpha scent should at least deter most of them,” Prem told him. “I’ll face Arthit’s wrath later for this. Now go. Go feed you damn princess before he breathes fire and roasts us alive.”

--_--

 

Kongpob’s POV

I received looks from several people but they immediately averted their eyes when they caught a whiff of the alpha scent surrounding me. Even though it wasn’t as comforting as P’Arthit’s scent, I still felt at ease being surrounded by it.

I knocked on P’Arthit’s door and there was a shout, telling me that it wasn’t locked. I found him looking all soft and adorable, reading a manga while he reclined against the the head board.

“What took you so long? My insides are eating each other for lunch. I’ll sic Kongpob on you if I died of hunger,” he complained, not even looking up from his comics. I chuckled at his statement. He whipped his head towards me so fast that I feared he might’ve pulled a muscle.

“Kongpob! What are you doing here? And whose jacket is that?!” he said, zeroing on the crimson jacket of P’Prem. I shrugged it off, draping the garment on his study chair, then I went to prepare his lunch.

“I’m here to deliver your food, dearest Ice Prince,” I teased him. I brought the food to him, putting them down on the bed table that I found underneath his study desk.

“And the jacket?” he asked, glaring at the offending garment.

“P’Prem’s,” I told him nonchalantly.

“Why would he give you jacket?!”

“Because I still reek.”

“You reek? Of what?”

“Post-heat scent.”

“Post-heat—you had your heat?! Why didn’t you tell me? Who had been taking care of you this whole time?”

“Why didn’t you tell me about your punishment?” I countered. He looked down at his food, ashamed. He continued to eat in silence as I continued to sip on my nomyen.

“Why are you drinking that?” he asked.

“I was craving it, so I went to the cafeteria to get one. That’s where I met P’Prem.”

“You went alone to the cafeteria, post heat? Are you crazy?”

“Sorry… I’m also sorry about not telling you of my heat. It was actually a sudden thing. I didn’t want to add to your problems since you’ve been stressing about it for a while now.”

“…I’m sorry too. I didn’t tell you about the punishment. I didn’t want you to get worried about me since you said you were sick.”

“We’re both idiots,” I chuckled.

“Yeah,” he replied with a smile. We sat in comfortable silence, enjoying each other’s presence. I looked around his room and found it very different from what I imagined his room to look like.

Band posters decorated the walls, and several volumes of mangas filled the shelves along with scaled robot figures. Books and papers were strewn around the room, and my hands itched to tidy it up. I gave in to my whim and started the process of cleaning his room. He started to protest against this but I insisted. I even took in the clothes drying on his balcony and ironed them.

“Are you done?” I asked when I noticed that he stopped eating. I approached the bed and saw his empty bowl. I cleared that up as well, washing the dishes and storing them.

“Kong. Come here,” he said after I was done. He made grabby hands in my direction and I chuckled at how adorable he was. Nobody would believe if I told them about this side of the Ice Prince.

I heeded his request and went to him. He yanked me when I was about to sit on the side of his bed, guiding me instead to a straddling position. I blushed as I hesitantly sat down on his lap. He wiggled his eyebrows as he pulled me so that my body was flushed with him.

“Perfect. Now sit still. I need to scent you. The thought of Prem’s scent around you is irking me,” he said promptly.

“You’re ridiculous,” I told him even though I let him rub all over me.

My post-heat mind began to react to my mate’s presence, letting me feel a sense of ownership and belonging. My mind began to swim in endorphins, triggered by my hormones, as he began to nose and lick my neck. At the hint of teeth against my gland, I gasped in pleasure. I gladly bared my neck to him, my omega winning against my alpha. It seemed like mating wouldn’t be as difficult as I have expected.

“Why do you have teeth marks here?” he asked. That one question brought me crashing down to the ground. I gently pushed away from him, covering my gland with my hand. I tried to look calm but my growing fear kept gnawing at my fake façade.

“What do you mean? There shouldn’t be any traces left...” I asked faintly, fearing his answer and his reaction. He looked passively at me then back to my neck.

“Just that. You have faint bite marks on your gland,” he answered calmly. I scrambled to get off his lap but his arms on my waist prevented me.

“Hey, hey. It’s fine. I’m not really mad because of it. You’re not mated to another so it’s fine. I get that people experiment sometimes and—”

“It’s not a fucking experiment!” I exclaimed. He was taken aback by my outburst, but upon seeing my expression, he softened his expression.

“Hey, it’s fine now. I’m here,” he soothingly said.

“It’s not fine, though. Someone had touched me before you and that’s not really fine,” I confessed, finally letting my tears fall.

I told him what happened when I was younger, in detail, not sparing anything. He pulled me close to him as I sobbed and narrated my past, holding me tight in his embrace. A few minutes into the story, I felt his shoulders shaking and I heard his breath hitch.

He cried with me. My alpha was crying with me.

I poured my heart out to him. I felt safe in his embrace and his words, spoken in that soothing lilt only unique to him, I found myself believing in them. ‘I’m here’, ‘I’m never gonna leave you alone. You’re stuck with me’, ‘you’re mine, and I protect what’s mine’, ‘you’ll be safe here in my arms.’

All of my fears vanished in that instance. I believed in his promises and I cried hard, this time, in relief. It took some time for us to calm down, and even after then, we didn’t speak any words more. Our hearts, beating in sync, did the talking for us. After a while, I broke the silence, deciding to let him in more into my life.

“On my next doctor’s appointment, can you accompany me?”

“Hmm? For what?”

“For my second gender. I need to have a check-up every quarter each year, but since I met you, he decided to monitor the changes in my body. This heat, for instance. It shouldn’t have happened. I am on suppressants but it happened anyway. And it is even way ahead of my regular cycle. He needs to know if I should have a change in my pills or not, to compensate for these changes.”

“So, I brought this on?”

“Well, yeah. Everyone, when they meet their fated mates, experience something like this. This is normal occurrence for everybody.” I pushed myself off from where I lied on against his chest and pecked him on his lips. I stared lovingly at his red rimmed eyes and tear-stained face. I wiped his face with my hands then proceeded to leave pecks on all over his face.

“Thank you for listening to my story. And thank you for not flipping out. I feel so lucky that I have someone as understanding as you as my mate.”

He smiled at me before he rubbed his nose against mine.

“Thank you for sharing your story to me. I know it must be hard opening up like that. I am grateful that I have such a strong omega as my mate. My inner alpha is screaming happily, ‘Mine!’, you know. And I am happy that you are mine,” he revealed.

We stared at each other for a while, smiling like loons. Then,

“I love you, Kongpob Suthiluck. My beautiful and brave omega,” he confessed. I felt my heart soar.

“And I love you, Arthit Rojnapat, my Ice Prince and understanding alpha,” I whispered back.

Our lips met in a soft kiss, just gentle and slow presses of our lips. Then we both grew bolder and the kiss turned into a full make-out session. I found myself straddling him again, my arms looped around his neck as he held me tight around my waist. Our tongues danced against each other, twirling and licking their ways inside our caverns. We nipped and sucked on each other’s lips and tongues, and moans and groans accompanied the wet smacking noises that could be heard inside the room.

His mouth trailed from my mouth, down to my jaw and then lower towards my neck. He licked a wet stripe from the bottom up to the shell of my ear, and then he whispered, “Hmm, you taste good. Better than normal.”

I moaned out loud at how sexy he sounded. Then he was nipping my neck and I started to pant against his ear. My fingers carded through his soft locks, grabbing and pulling at it when I felt a hint of teeth again against my gland.

“Later,” he growled out. I wanted to scream at him that I wanted it now, that he could mark me now, but I didn’t. He moved towards my Adam’s apple instead and worried the skin there.

“P’Arthit… don’t leave a mark there,” I whined out.

“Sorry, I couldn’t help myself. If it’s any consolation, it’s not that big?” he said sheepishly. I looked at him in exasperation.

“Come here,” I said, yanking him back to me. I smashed out lips together, kissing the living daylights out of him. We continued kissing like that until our lips felt numb and there were several marks littering our bodies. We only stopped when we both admitted that we were both exhausted. I helped him lie down on the bed, then laid down beside him, resting my head against his chest. I listened to his heartbeat, calm and steady, lulling me into sleep, dreaming of adorable dimpled cheeks and bright brown eyes.

--_--

 

Third Person POV

 

The four third year students trudged their way up the dorm building to visit their ailing friend. They bickered as they walked up the stairs, and talked about their meeting with the dean. They needed to tell Arthit about how their proposal had been rejected again.

“It’s Prem’s fault!” Bright stated with conviction.

“How is this my fault?”

“You’re not dressed properly for school,” Tutah actually backed Bright.

“Where is your workshop jacket anyway?” asked Knot.

“Hmm… gave to N’Kongpob. I met him at the cafeteria when I went to get Arthit his lunch. He delivered his food to him.”

“Why would you give him you jacket? Arthit would surely flip!” Bright exclaimed.

“Well, that idiot junior didn’t have a cold. He had his heat. He actually went out smelling like that. It was a miracle he hadn’t gotten assaulted.”

“Oh dear, the two of them are made for each other.”

“That’s what I told him.”

“Yeah, they’re both crazy mofos.”

They arrived at their friend’s door and knocked. There was no response so they chalked it up that he must be sleeping. Expecting him to be alone, they were surprised at the sight that greeted them. The four of them took out their phones and began taking pictures of the couple.

“Look! Are those hickeys on their necks?” Tutah whispered enthusiastically at Knot.

“Huh. Those are hickeys,” he answered. “Enough guys. Let’s leave them be. They must still be weak from their ordeals.”

“His room looks tidier,” Bright observed.

“N’Kongpob is too good for Arthit,” Tutah stated.

Just then, a phone rang somewhere inside the room. Everyone checked theirs, but it didn’t belong to any of them. The sleeping third year groaned out loud, then cursed unintelligibly. He searched blindly of the offending device until he managed to unearth it from underneath the pillow. He opened his eyes blearily to look at the screen. When he saw his father’s contact name, he swiped the green icon.

“Hello Por?” he greeted silently, in consideration to the sleeping male against his chest. He remained unaware of the presence of four more individuals in his room. Silence greeted him from the other side of the line. He pulled the device away from his ear and checked the screen if the call got disconnected. Seeing that the other was still on the line, he tried again.

“Por?” he asked in a much clearer voice.

“Who are you?” came the stern voice, very much not belonging to his father. His eyebrows furrowed, as he got confused.

“Hello? Who are you? Where’s my son?” the other demanded.

“Uhh, what? Wait, who’s this? You don’t sound like my father.”

“Because I am not your father! And you’re not my son. Now tell me where my son is. Why do you have his phone?”

“This is my phone… Oh… Oh shit. I-I mean! I’m sorry sir. Uh, is this Kongpob’s father?”

“Yes. Where is he? I am losing my patience now and you need to tell where he is or I swear to god, I will have this phone tracked and I will personally come and find you!”

“No, no, no, no! Wait, sir. Your son is here with me. Don’t worry. Uhm, I am his senior and he was helping me out since I am injured. He fell asleep in my room. He’s here sir, don’t worry.”

“Where is your room?”

“U-uhm… it’s on Building 1 of the university dorms—”

“Your name and your room number.”

“H-huh? Uh—”

“Name and room number!”

“A-Arthit Rojnapat, sir! And uhm, it’s room 406.”

“Em, where is building one?” he heard the other man ask. He gulped in fear at the prospect of meeting Kongpob’s angry father. He didn’t understand the reply of his junior. He waited with bated breath for the other man to tell him something, and then another voice came through the line.

“Hello?”

“N’Em?”

“P’Arthit?”

“Yes, it’s me.”

“Oh. Is Kongpob there with you? His Por is looking for him.”

“I gathered as much,” he answered drily. “He’s here in my room. He’s sleeping though.”

“Oh okay--- Uhm, P’Arthit, Uncle is insisting that we go to your dorm. He’s really worried about Kong, since, I’m guessing you know now the real reason he was absent for the past few days?”

“Yes, N’Em. I smelled his post-heat scent.”

“Then, can I please bring Uncle there? Or, you know, bring Kongpob back?”

“Nong, I can’t walk…”

“So, you’re okay with us coming there?”

“What choice do I have? Fine, you can come here. You know where building 1 is right?”

“Yes P’.”

“It’s room 406. The door’s unlocked, just knock to let me know that you’ve arrived.”

“Okay P’. See you.”

“Okay Nong. Bye.”

He dropped the phone back on the bed and groaned out loud, rubbing his face with his free hand. A throaty chuckle brought him out of his misery and tilted his head to scowl at his laughing mate.

“You’re enjoying this,” he said.

“Mmhmm, yes. Are you really ready to meet my Por?”

“Not really.”

“Aww, he doesn’t bite. I promise.”

“Yeah, maybe. But he can do worse like bury me alive, maybe.”

“You’re ridiculous.”

“And that’s our cue!” Knot said with a clap, gathering the attention of everyone in the room. Kongpob and Arthit startled badly.

“Hey. I was watching that!” Prem complained. Tutah and Bright seconded this.

“Do you want to stay here when Kongpob’s father finds his omega son had gotten mauled by an alpha? I don’t wanna get caught in the crossfire. I value my life,” Knot reasoned out.

“Huh. Fair point. Let’s scram,” Bright agreed. The four of them started for the door.

“O-oi! Are you really gonna leave me here?”

“Arthit, do you really want us to be there when you have a talk with your future-in-law?” Knot reasoned out seriously.

“Yes,” was Arthit’s serious answer. He was really getting scared of Kongpob’s father, especially now that he knew the younger’s past.

“Arthit, I think that you need to speak to him privately. You wouldn’t be able to talk things out properly if we are present. Man up. You’re an alpha, for pete’s sake.”

“But!... Fine.”

With that, the other’s filed out of his room. At the hallway, they came across Em and a somewhat familiar looking man. Em greeted them politely then introduced the middle-aged man to them, Kongpob’s father. They greeted him politely then bid their goodbyes. They didn’t say anything but they each prayed for their friend’s safety. The man had looked pissed even though he was very polite to them.

--_--

 

Arthit’s POV

 

If I could walk, I would’ve paced the length of my room in agitation. As it was, I could only content myself by biting my thumb’s fingertip, a nervous habit of mine when I was younger.

“Hey, relax will you? Em and I will be here, don’t worry. And Por’s just concerned of my well-being and he’s not a bad person. He’s actually very kind. He also wants to meet you—”

A series of knocks interrupted Kong’s assurances and I felt as if my heart stopped. Ah, what a bad day to be bedridden. Kongpob went to open the door.

“Por…” he greeted. Then he was being yanked and he was being engulfed in hug by a familiar middle-aged man. I wracked my brain to remember where I have seen him before.

“You’ve made me worried. What were you thinking going out smelling like this, huh? Have you even taken your scent blockers?”

“Yes, Por. I even took the prescribed pills of P’Yo. Don’t worry, I have protective seniors.”

At the mention of seniors, his eyes locked onto mine and I gulped. I brought my hands up for a wai and greeted him weakly. I invited them inside and Kong guided them. Em followed last and greeted me politely.

Kongpob offered the desk chair to his father after he introduced the both of us to one another, while he and Em settled at the two stools by my dining table. I wished Kong had sat with me on the bed, though.

“Kongpob, mind telling me why you are here at you senior’s dorm and not at your own room?” Khun Kerkklai asked his son sternly.

“I’m sorry, Por. I was bringing food to P’Arthit. As you can see, he’s bedridden.”

“And why does it have to be you? Doesn’t he have a friend to do that for him?”

“Well, his friends had been the one taking care of him but they had all urgent matters to attend to. One of his friends asked me to deliver the food here so I accepted.”

“And how did you meet your other senior? Did he message you or something?”

“Uh…”

“Don’t lie to me, now, Kong.”

“Uh, I met him at the cafeteria downstairs…”

“And why did you go out right after your heat ended? Didn’t I tell you that it’s still gonna be dangerous for you even after your heat? Your scent hasn’t gone back to normal yet and you could very well be assaulted. Be more responsible, please.”

“I’m sorry, Por…”

“You can do these things freely after you’ve mated but right now, it’s still dangerous for you to walk around like that post-heat. Are we clear?”

“Yes, Por.”

“Now, about Khun Arthit. Why did you sleep in the same room as an alpha? A dominant alpha at that?”

“Uh… We, uhm…”

“Khun Arthit, what is your relationship with my son?”

I felt myself tense as the older man stared straight at me. I looked at Kongpob nervously, and he nodded his head at me.

“U-uhm, I’m his mate, Khun.”

“I see. Why is this so hard to tell me, Kongpob? You already told me before that you have found your mate. You could’ve just told this to me beforehand.”

Khun Kerkklai heaved a deep sigh, like he was carrying a heavy burden. Then he looked straight at me with a serious expression. I gulped the lump in my throat as I waited for him to give me the shovel talk.

“Khun Arthit, you may not like the sound of this but, I have a favor to ask of you—” Well that’s the least of the things that I thought he would say.

“—You and Kongpob are still young. There are still things that you will learn and you have responsibilities as sons to your parents. I ask you then to not hasten into mating without thinking things through. I’m not against this if you decided to bond when his next heat came, but I want the both of you to be aware of the consequences of your actions. Khun Arthit, you are aware of my son’s unique condition, right?”

“Yes Khun. I know about his strong scent… and that incident.”

“That’s good that he trusts you then. So, you know that he is on borrowed time, correct? Until he absolutely needed to be bonded or risk a repeat of that incident. In spite of this, I still ask you of this favor. Please, do not rush into bonding without considering your future.”

I fiddled with my hands as I thought about what Kong’s father had requested. It wasn’t a hard thing to do, yet I didn’t even think about it. All I have been thinking about was to court him then claim him as early as when he agreed. I was thinking with alpha brain again. I looked up guiltily towards Kongpob and saw the same guilt mirrored in his posture. Well, I guess we’ve only been thinking with our libido. I looked towards the older man, then.

“I promise. I will talk this through with Kongpob and my parents, too, Khun Kerkklai. You’re right about that. I have only been thinking about myself and my goal of mating with him. I apologize for that.”

“I understand. Young blood tends to run hotter after all. Thank you for understanding my concerns, Khun Arthit. Come to me when you two reach a decision, okay? For now, I suggest you get to know more about each other—”

“Por. I’m sorry. But what if I wanted to be bonded to him on my next heat, would you… would you be angry?” Kong interrupted. He wouldn’t look at anyone in the room.

“Kong? Look at me, son. Come on,” Khun Kerkklai coaxed. Kongpob slowly raised his head to meet the eyes of his father.

“I won’t be angry, dear. Maybe a little disappointed but that’s just my omega instincts telling me to protect my pup. This decision, I am entrusting it solely to both of you now. Your safety’s on the line, I get it. I am just reminding you to not be hasty with your decisions. I don’t want any of you to regret things in the future just ‘cause you rushed into things.”

“Thanks, Por. I understand. I will think this through with P’Arthit, I promise. We’ll come to you after we reach a decision,” my mate said with a smile.

“That’s all I ask, dear.”

--_--

After the meeting the parents session, Kong went with his father to get something for me to eat. I was kind of embarrassed that I had made Khun Por do that for me.

Ah, yes. Khun Kerkklai asked me to call him that. He said that we would be family, after all. In return, he calls me by my name or son.

Kong came back with only Em in tow, who had just dropped Kongpob off before he went back to his own dorm. When I asked about his father’s whereabouts, he said that there was an emergency at the office, so he went to check. Kong stayed the night and we ended up cuddling, with him being mindful of my injuries.

As I stared at the ceiling of my room, I thought of the future and what it has in store for me. For us. When I was younger, I had resigned myself to never be able to tell people’s moods by their scent, nor guess their second gender. My hopes of recognizing my mate had been practically non-existent, and I had wondered if I had already missed my chance at being together with them since I couldn’t recognize them by their scent. I also closed myself off from people wanting to be with me at the wake of all those who pretended that they were my mate after they learned of the fact that I couldn’t smell pheromones; people who had ulterior motives to me and my family. That was how I gained the title Ice Prince.

But now, lying in bed with my mate, the future seemed not so bleak anymore. Life had given me lemons. I didn’t know what to do about it, so I made a lemonade like what the others had told me to do and abandoned it in a corner somewhere. It was too sour for my taste. Why couldn’t it give me pink milk instead? But then, it gave me a spoonful of sugar, and that sugar made the lemonade better. But I would’ve still preferred pink milk, though.

“What the fuck am I thinking about?” I mused out loud. Being introspective, it appeared, wasn’t my forte.

“Hmm?” Kong sleepily sounded from where he was snuggled on my chest.

“Was just thinking about lemons and lemonade and all that saying about life. I don’t know what I’m really thinking.”

“You mean the thing about life giving you lemons you should make lemonades thing?”

“Yes. I’m thinking life also provided me with a spoonful of sugar lately but I still don’t like lemonades.”

“Hmmm. Then what do you li—wait, don’t answer that—”

“Nomyen of course.”

“—yeah, yeah. I know about your obsession to that. How about this? How about I’ll be your pink milk? Hmm? You know, so I can be your favorite instead of that sweet diabetic drink?”

“Oh, really? Are you as sweet as my precious nomyen, though?”

“You mean I’m not?” he asked, opening an eye and stared challengingly at me. I smiled slowly and gathered him up inside my arms tightly.

“You are. You’re sweeter than pink milk anyway. I’ll take a cup of pink milk any day instead of a lemonade.”

--_--