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Darkest Depths

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Phichit wanted two things, more than anything else: glory for Thailand, and the wild, rolling, animal fucking you got when you teased an alpha for hours.

It wasn't complicated.

This, though, was going to be Phichit’s year.

For three years now, he and Yuuri had roamed the international circuit together. Before that, they'd taken on the Asian circuits together for four.

Yuuri seemed like the kind of person who didn’t make friends easily, but that was never an issue for Phichit. Someone somewhere once said introverts don't make friends, they were adopted by extroverts. Yuuri might have been older, but Phichit didn't think it was arrogant to imply he was the more… socially inclined of the two. At the very least, the number of followers on his twitter and insta accounts would agree.

They cheered each other on. But one thing was for certain.

This would definitely be Phichit’s year.

International competitions were much harder than the Asian circuits. Even traveling through the mid-level competitions, Phichit's win rate didn't have the same perfection as Yuuri’s. And he still hadn’t escaped from an International completion unclaimed.

Despite his fantastic roll in the dirt with Giacometti last year, this was going to be the one that got him out clean. He was going to stand on that Omega podium and celebrate with Yuuri beside him.

Phichit had plenty of time for a nice win streak of his own.

When his plane touched down in Italy, Phichit didn't know what exactly he was expecting for this year’s hunt. He certainly wasn't expecting to pull up to the lodge in the taxi and find the lap of luxury.

To call this place a hunting lodge would be like calling the Wat Arun a little temple. It was a sprawling mansion set on an extensive plot of land, a vineyard to the right and a fenced-in forest to the left. Over the two story fences, Phichit could see the tops of trees and a large slope that seemed to peak a few miles out.

Phichit smiled to himself as he rang the doorbell. This would be fun. His luggage followed him into a luxurious foyer. An Italian man in an expensive suit and a long ponytail ushered him inside with boisterous “Ciao! Ciao!”s.

“Phichit Chulanont,” Phichit said, and he offered a hand.

“Wonderful to meet you at last. Welcome to my lodge. Make yourself at home. I'm Celestino Cialdini and I am your host this year.”

“It's beautiful,” Phichit said, and that wasn't just a bit of flattery. The mansion was as richly decorated within as without.

Most hunts were situated on land beside lodges (of varying quality) while a handful took place somewhere where the participants were put up in hotels. The quality of the living conditions could be hit or miss.

Phichit still had nightmares about last year’s hunt, set in a run down lodge that hadn't been updated in probably a hundred years. But Sweden, the year before that, had been a good year, with a snowy course situated beside a resort. What an introduction to the international level.

Phichit was led to a spacious room in the west wing. “The alphas will have the east,” Celestino said.

His accent was boisterous and just a little thick, but the English was very clear, even to Phichit.

“There's a gym in the basement and recreational facilities on the main level. Dinner is at six in the dining room, but you can take it up to your own room if you wish. Breakfast is at 7, Lunch at noon, and are treated the same. Your diet plan has been passed on to the kitchen, so they should be able to provide you with the proper portions.”

“Wow, you think of everything here,” Phichit said.

“My family has been doing this for several generations. I like to think we've got a decent system down,” Celestino said, with no small measure of pride. “Our land is one of the finest hunting grounds in the world. If you need something, I’m sure we have it somewhere.”

“Thank you,” Phichit said. He looked back the way he came, unable to stop smiling fully. This was his year. This was his moment.

Yuuri arrived soon after Phichit did. Reuniting with his friend was always the highlight of a race.

It was easy, being with Yuuri. Theirs was the kind of friendship that never felt the time apart. They reconnected instantly every time, easy as breathing.

They went together to the video demonstration of the terrain, poured over maps.

Yuuri muttered to himself, tracing his fingers over one of the higher difficulty routes. Phichit couldn’t forget that image of the waterfall opening up to reveal the exit. Water would help mask his scent from any alphas who might be lurking, and Phichit had a good idea which ones might gun for him.

He smiled to himself, tracing a line close to the exit. He had some late night studying to do.

Phichit dressed with a stunning smile, turning this way and that in the mirror. His suit was brilliant, bold and bright, red and gold, like a prince from a fairy tale. Omegas were rarely dressed like this for banquets, and it made Phichit stand out in a big way. Last year’s white and blue suit caught Red Bull’s attention, so he had to be doing something right.

Chris circled around, smiling and walking closer, looking sharp in a lilac suit. Standing out as well, it seemed. One of Phichit’s few competitors with the same fashionable flair.

He and Chris got along well, sometimes too well. Keeping things strictly professional in the arena was never as easy in the hazy grey zone they operated in. Chris’s hand found Phichit’s ass with a familiar squeeze in greeting.

“Hands to yourself until tomorrow,” Phichit teased.

Chris made a disappointed sound. “What a shame, and here I was hoping we could catch up.” His smile was as radiant as always. “Italy seems to be treating you well, mon petit chou,” Chris added. He snagged a pair of champagne glasses from a passing server. One of these found its way into Phichit’s hands.

Phichit took a sip with a flirty smile. “It is beautiful here,” he said. “Plenty of foliage to hide in. And escape from you.”

“Be careful, or I’ll claim you again this year,” Chris said. There was no hint of malice, only light-hearted banter and the whisper of a challenge. Phichit grinned.

“You wish. I have a plan this year. You’ll be finding another omega to claim this time around,” Phichit added.

Chris sipped his champagne, not the least bit worried. “Well, then, when you make it out, shall we take a little roll all the same?” Chris’s eyes were sparkling eagerly.

Phichit hummed. “Well, when I make it out, I’ll think about it. I’ll want to spend time with an alpha before I take the podium, after all,” Phichit said with a grin. “But not if you’re going to tire yourself out with another omega.”

“Darling, I’m never too tired for you,” Chris said, and Phichit snorted. Chris was always such an incorrigible flirt. Maybe it was why they got on so well.

A familiar scent caught Phichit’s attention, and he laughed. “Ah, looks like Yuuri is having fun.”

Chris cocked his head. Across the room, Victor and Yuuri were flirting up a storm. Their scents twisted and mingled on the air, flirting with desire and painfully obvious interest. “They’re cute,” Chris cooed. “I wish they’d just admit how they feel already. Victor’s been interested since last year.”

“Yuuri’s been crushing on Victor since before I met him,” Phichit chuckled. “Maybe this year they’ll figure it out. Probably not,” he added. He laughed again. “I hope they’re ready too. My money’s still on Yuuri, though.”

“Victor’s got a new plan this year,” Chris said, wagging his finger. “Don’t count him out. Nor me.”

“I wouldn’t dream of it.”

The race kicked off with a rush of activity. Omegas streamed around Phichit as the gates opened, letting them it into the course. Yuuri spun around, his scent colored with confusion. But Phichit didn’t have time to worry about Yuuri’s bubble of panic.

He had a race he had to win, and behind the gates of the hunt, it was every omega for himself.

He could smell the alphas around him, smell the trails they left as they crossed through the woods. The paths climbed up a steep cliff, many of them doubling back endlessly on themselves and others so painfully steep Phichit couldn’t imagine trying to scale them.

He would bypass it all.

A vibrator buzzed away inside him, and he squirmed as he settled into a low jog. His body was thrumming with heat. He could barely breathe from it.

Every inch of him felt feverish, bubbling, boiling over with desire. This was the pseudo-heat of the Hunt, the fugue state omegas sank into when their minds slipped and their instincts took over. He was throbbing between his thighs, slick pooling, hot and wet, over his skin and dripping down his legs.

This is what he had trained for.

He followed a thin river, letting it guide him a little further toward the side. It would lead him where he needed to go, as well as provide the things he needed to make it to the end.

Growing near the edge of the river, there were thick stalks of river cane. He ripped these from the damp soil, knocking the edges against exposed river stones as he walked. It knocked the dirt from their roots.

When he’d gathered a fairly thick handful of stalks, he ripped a length of cloth from the end of his tunic. It exposed his thighs, and he shivered against the air as he bound the bundle of canes together.

He was twitchy as he walked. Devoting so much of his focus to the task at hand left him vulnerable, and the omega instincts inside him warred with what he knew he needed to do. Flint was hard to find at the edge of the river. It just had to be something sufficiently hard.

He made a little nest of flakes of bark in another length of cloth.

Everything he needed. He looked around. The telltale glint would be somewhere… His eyes landed on the gleam of a pinpoint camera lens set into a tree.

Made to survive the elements, the cameras were sealed in solid steel boxes. Phichit grinned. He scrambled up the side of the tree.

It took precious time to make a spark, and even longer to let the spark catch on the wood flakes. He feared that an alpha would hear the sounds of him chipping away with his flint against the steel casing.

The spark caught.

Phichit blew carefully on it, trying to keep it alive as he slid back to the ground. Now his instincts were going wild. He could almost feel an alpha circling him, and it made him burn with the need to take off and flee.

He could barely hold himself back. He had to make the fire just a little stronger. He settled it on a flat rock, feeding it big enough to survive without being snuffed out in a stiff breeze. He beat the bundle of rivercane against a tree to knock the last of the soil clear, then grabbed the damp end. It would dry as he walked.

The other end he held over the fire, waiting for it to catch. It resisted burning for a few precious moments. His skin itched, and he wanted to bolt. He was twitching, crouched and at the ready to run at a moment’s notice, and his whole body wound taut.

It flared to life like a match catching. He had a torch.

A stick snapped behind him, and Phichit burst to his feet, ears straining. The birds had gone quiet. He eased forward. Not now, this was a critical moment. The torch couldn’t go out.

He watched each footfall carefully, making sure he wouldn’t make noise as he slipped toward the river. There was barely a splash. Water surged around his calves as he followed along the bend in the stream.

He spotted a faint break in the trees, and he stepped onto the banks. A low purr rumbled in the back of his throat. He had found the entrance to the cave.

There were no alpha scents around here, and it seemed whoever was skulking around had lost the trail. The coast was clear for now. He looked back the way he came, then ventured down into the darkness, with his torch in hand.

The mouth was dimly lit, with faint sunbeams shedding light against the damp stone. It was cooler inside. The stagnant air left Phichit a little more at ease. Stone didn’t carry scent well, and while it made it hard to pick up the scents of alphas, it also made it harder for them to follow him inside.

The torch crackled. It smelled sweet as it burned, gradually becoming the only source of light the deeper he walked.

The path twisted and turned, branching off into three eventually. Three lefts, two rights, middle, then the fifth. Three lefts, two rights, middle and then the fifth.

He took the left fork. The path sloped down and gradually to the right before straightening back out again.

It took him through several gloomy passages. Water trickled down the walls. Stalactites dripped down on him, and he had to cover the top of the torch with his hand to make sure it didn’t go out. He shivered when the vibrator changed paces. The cold cave air kept him aware and in control of himself.

Gradually, the passageway opened up into a very wide chamber. The rock formations were almost eerie, shimmery in the light. He took it at a steady jog. As beautiful as it was, he didn’t have time to marvel at its beauty. The first cave was the most intensive, and the easiest one to screw up.

At one point, he did hit a dead end, but he backtracked the way he came and fixed the route until he was back on the right way. The torch was burning low the more that time passed. Phichit jogged a bit faster, hoping to reach the first shred of light before he lost the torch.

So far, he was safe. No one dared follow him into the caves. No one else had bothered to memorize the paths.

The torch went out before he found the end, but he spent only a few moments in complete darkness before he found a faint glimmer of light in the distance. He crept forward at a snail’s pace until it was bright enough to see.

The sunlight went from dim to blinding as Phichit stumbled out. He put a hand up, squinting. It was hard to see, and the sudden rush of plants and running water filled his nose.

Chris dropped to the ground beside the mouth of the cave. Phichit scrambled back with a scream.

“Omega,” Chris crooned, stepping closer. His eyes were lust blown, and the scent suddenly hit Phichit in a rush. He trembled. A moan bubbled past his lips, almost before he could stop it.

“Alpha,” he groaned, nearly dropping to his knees. The vibrator inside him buzzed sweetly. He shook his head. He couldn’t afford a distraction like this. He flinched into a run, and Chris launched after him. It was a straight shot to the next cave across the way.

Phichit barreled inside.

He took the forks at a breakneck pace. He didn’t have time to think too hard about which to take, but every turn cost him precious seconds as he tried to pull the map up in his head.

Losing time to his memory was a small price to pay. Losing the path entirely to a dead end would mean defeat. He could hear Chris’s labored breathing behind him. He must have lost Chris a few turns back, but the scent was still close enough to leave Phichit on edge.

Tracking the scent through the caves would be a challenge, but he wouldn’t put it past Chris, either. The alpha was far too skilled to be underestimated, and now he was hot on Phichit’s heels.

Phichit went a little slower now, double checking his choices to make sure he wouldn’t have to backtrack again.

It was harder to think now that he knew Chris was closing in. It ruined his senses, brought his instinct boiling up to the surface. His desires warred with his dreams. He would do Red Bull proud. He would do all of Thailand proud.

The second cave let Phichit out quickly. It was shorter than the first one.

Phichit switched back through a river a few times to wash his scent away before he stepped out into the woods, following the sun overhead to the exit. The last cave was a straight shot. He just had to find it…

His eyes lit up as he found a heavy, roaring waterfall. He’d seen this waterfall once before, in the pre-race film he’d watched with the other omegas. He barely muffled his moan as the vibrater purred inside him.

His skin was feverishly hot. The water barely cooled him off as he stepped through the curtain of crashing water, revealing the open cave mouth within.. He panted as he walked inside. Phichit was weak he could barely stand, and he found himself leaning hard against the wall of the cave.

His body was aching for an alpha. It had struck him so suddenly, it almost hurt. He could smell omegas being claimed somewhere in the distance like the cruelest, teasing reminder. He stopped dead in his tracks.

Yuuri, that was Yuuri. He’d know that scent anywhere.

His body trembled violently as Yuuri’s fear scent was replaced with the scent of a knotted, well-fucked omega. God, Yuuri smelled satisfied. That could be Phichit, a wild, inane part of him screamed. It could be him on the receiving end, fucked into the dirt like an animal while he wrestled against a handsome alpha.

He broke into the light.

The exit was right there, waiting for him. He could almost hear the angels singing. There was a crash, a sudden rush of swearing and splashing. Phichit smelled a lust-mad alpha behind him.

He broke into a sprint for the exit. The gates rattled up as he approached. He was panting hard as he crossed the path, barreling closer and closer with every second.

His thighs were soaked with slick and water from the waterfall, but he couldn’t stop, couldn’t bring himself to clean himself or be ashamed of the rock hard arousal bobbing between his thighs.

An alpha bore down behind him, breathing down his neck. He could almost feel hands down his skin. He groaned and pushed harder.

He crossed the boundary line in a breathless moment.

The alpha behind him skidded to a stop. Chris was breathing hard, haggard at the boundary line. Phichit was bouncing on his heels.

“I did it!” he cheered.

Chris watched him with unmistakable animal lust in his eyes. He prowled a few steps backward. For a wild moment, Phichit was seized with the desire to beckon Chris closer, let him have his way now that victory was secured.

The haze was still solid over Phichit’s mind. He could see the outline of Chris’s arousal as he growled at Phichit. It sent a shiver up Phichit’s spine. His pulse throbbed in his ears, breath sharp in his throat. He stumbled a step backward, then another.

His whole body shook hard. His phone and his clothes were in a pile by a locker. He grabbed the phone and continued forward, stumbling with every step. The exit seemed to have open rooms lining the halls.

One door was already closed, and Phichit could smell an omega and alpha pair coupling within. He whined. His body was painfully empty even with the sweet buzzing of the vibrator inside him.

He flopped into a bed, leaving the door open. He should have taken that sponsor’s offer, should have asked the pretty korean beta to wait here with his cock at the ready. He was aching for something his fingers couldn’t provide, a kind of fullness he couldn’t get alone.

He seized his phone and flashed a peace sign at the camera, trying desperately not to look like he was writhing desperately on the bed. His smile looked only a little strained, and the filter did wonders for his flushed face.

He couldn’t even remember what he tagged the picture with, something about making it out and Red Bull, probably, because shortly after posting the picture, he wrenched the tunic over his head, feeling feverish.

He shoved his fingers inside himself, throwing his head back and keening sharply. It wasn’t nearly enough. He clawed at the sheets, thirsting for something only an alpha could give him.

How long had it been since he’d won one of these things? How long since he’d faced a pseudo-heat alone? His body struggled to withstand it. It made his heart hammer faster than normal, made his bones ache and his blood sing. He panted into the sheets.

He smelled omegas stagger down the halls, heard doors slam. A few alphas followed after, lured by the sweet scent of lust-mad omegas.

He rolled over in the bed, splaying his knees and hiking his ass up.

He hissed at the cool air over his ass, the cold over his slicked up thighs. “Alpha,” he panted. “Alpha, alpha-” He groaned at a sudden flood of alpha scent in the air. He knew that scent, knew who it was-

Hands slid over his skin. The scent was muddied by another omega’s scent. Phichit couldn’t tell who, didn’t care who. Someone who didn’t matter, who was nothing more than a warm body for Chris’s win.

“Chris,” Phichit groaned. He squirmed as Chris’s body covered his, surrounding him in warmth. A hot cock slipped between his thighs.

Something snapped.

Phichit rolled, pushing Chris down onto the bed. He was burning to eradicate the scent of another omega, erase it and cover it with his own. Phichit spread his thighs, lowered himself closer to Chris’s thick cock. Hands wrapped around his waist. Chris’s chest rumbled with a purr.

His cock rubbed against Phichit’s entrance, teasingly close, and Phichit dropped, spearing himself on the thick length. It was gut-wrenching, the sudden feeling of penetration, of fullness. Chris let out a sharp moan.

Phichit rode him hard, rode him fast and frantic, desperate for a fuck. His wrists rubbed over Chris’s skin, bathing the alpha in his own scent and completely burying the scent of some strange omega.

Mine mine mine mine mine-

Chris purred and rolled them over, grinding his hips deeper inside Phichit. A flurry of french poured from his lips, words Phichit didn’t know or understand but the meaning of which were clear enough- praises and the desire for more.

Phichit giggled and curled his legs around Chris’s torso, feeling Chris fuck him even deeper. His mind was slowly coming back to him, the haze fading faster as Chris’s cock swelled inside him.

“Knot, Chris,” Phichit groaned. He clenched his fingers in Chris’s messy, muddy blond curls. “Knot me, fucking-”

Chris murmured sweet nothings in Phichit’s ear, more French as he ground in deep, knot swelling and cum spurting hot and thick into Phichit.

“Oh fuck yes,” Phichit said. He held Chris close to his chest. His head fell back, eyes falling shut. He couldn’t stop stroking Chris’s curls.

His stomach was messy with his own release. He couldn’t remember when he’d even come, the pleasure and desperation all mixing together with overstimulation and the pseudo-heat that burned him inside and out. It almost didn't feel real.

“I could get used to winning,” Phichit murmured.

“Victory does look good on you,” Chris replied. They shifted onto their sides, a little awkward as they shuffled.

Phichit cuddled against his chest. The post-coital bliss curled deep inside him, and he wasn’t going to ruin this pleasant moment by thinking. “I got away. I won the bet. Looks like you owe me.”

“Ah yes, but Victor got Yuuri. So we’re even.”

Phichit laughed. “Win some, lose some.” His hand scrabbled back, finding his phone. He held it up. “Take a selfie with me.”

“Of course, mon petit chou,” Chris said with a grin.