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vignettes of a pup and his alpha

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Jeongguk fidgets in his seat as his mother brushes his hair back.  He’s trying not to glance at himself in the mirror, unused to the light dusting of makeup across his cheeks and eye lids.  He’s also having a hard time looking at his mom.  She’s smiling at him, but there’s a forlorn look in her eyes that Jeongguk can’t ignore.  They’ve both known this was coming, but it’s hard, knowing that in just a year Jeongguk will be leaving home.

“Look up for me, babe,” she coos softly and Jeongguk raises his chin.

She’s still smiling, but there’s a tear caught in the corner of her eye, “There’s my handsome boy.”

She smooths her hands down his neck before she lets them rest on his shoulders.  Jeongguk finally looks at himself, at the slight curls around his ears, the jewels nestled snuggly against his lobes.  They both seem to know something’s missing.

“Wait, there’s one more… thing…” she mumbles to herself as she turns around and begins to dig in her jewelry box.

Jeongguk touches his earrings, wincing a little at the slight sting; they had been done a week ago, for his seventeenth birthday.  Jeongguk doesn’t startle when he feels his mother smooth a bit of his bangs back, before she slides a little jeweled clip into place behind his ears.  The sight of his grandmother’s clip makes him tear up.

“There.  Perfect,” she smiles, leaning down to kiss the top of his head, “You look divine.  There’s no way he’s not going to love you.”

“You think?” Jeongguk whispers, averting his gaze as the nerves in his stomach tighten.

“I don’t think; I know.”

Jeongguk hopes so, because at that moment his father knocks on the door, “They’re here.”

Jeongguk thinks he’s going to throw up and it must show on his face, because his mother wraps secure arms around him, cradling his head against her chest despite all the work she just put into his hair.

“Give us just one more minute,” she calls out.

There’s a beat and Jeongguk thinks his father is going to argue, but his retreating footsteps is all they hear.

“I want to tell you a secret,” his mother says and Jeongguk’s eyes jump up to her, “I was nervous the first day I met your father, too.”

“Really?” Jeongguk croaks out and she laughs, pushing Jeongguk to the side a little to share the bench with him.

“Totally.  People had been talking to me about him for years and I almost felt like what image they had implanted in me was going to be shattered.  And not to burst your bubble, but it totally was.  Your father was nothing like what I had built up, but here’s the secret."

She leans in conspiratorially and Jeongguk leans in too, desperate to hear the words that will quell the ache in his chest.

“He was so much better,” she finishes in a whisper, before she kisses the tip of his nose, “It’s okay, pup.  You’ll see.”

Jeongguk finally smiles and takes her hand before they leave the room.

The man sitting at the tea table with his father rises hastily when Jeongguk enters the room.  Jeongguk’s lip quirks when he sees the man bang his knee on the underside of the table, wincing in slight pain for a second before he tries to school his features.  His father raises too, giving the man a questioning look as he tries to rub at his knee without being obvious, but he’s not doing a very good job at it.

“Seokjin, I would like you to meet my son, Jeongguk.”

Jeongguk bows, and when he straightens up, Seokjin bows in return.  Jeongguk smiles shyly, unable to stop himself from hiding his smile behind his hand.  He can see his father frown disapprovingly at him and he quickly drops his hand to his side.

“Hello,” Jeongguk says at his feet, glancing up at Seokjin before quickly averting his eyes again.

“Hello,” Seokjin echoes and his voice is nice, soothing out the nerves nestled in Jeongguk’s spine, “It’s nice to finally meet you.”

Jeongguk nods, throat clogged as he chances looking at Seokjin for just a touch longer.  His hair is short, pushed off his forehead almost like he had been running his fingers through it prior to Jeongguk walking in.  He’s dressed in formal clothes, like Jeongguk, and even though he’s smiling pleasantly at Jeongguk he’s messing with his fingers clasped in front of him.

“Jeongguk, please sit.  Seokjin-ssi, we’ve prepared our local tea and some fresh rabbit for you two to enjoy,” Jeongguk’s father claps his hands together.

“Ah, you didn’t have to go through that trouble just for me…” Seokjin says bashfully, rubbing at the back of his head and Jeongguk tilts his head a little.  He isn’t acting like the alphas Jeongguk is used to, a far cry from his poised and traditional father.

“No trouble at all.  Jeongguk, sit,” his father almost hisses and Jeongguk startles out of his thoughts, rushing to the table.

Seokjin smiles almost apologetically at him and Jeongguk tries not to grimace back.  He waits for Seokjin to sit first, butt planted firmly on the ground and legs crossed over each other.  Jeongguk is surprised to see him sit so casually as he himself kneels on his pillow.  His father watches him carefully as he picks up the tea pot, holding his wrist lightly as he pours the tea into Seokjin’s cup first.

“Father, will you be joining us?” Jeongguk asks, glancing up at the head alpha who shakes his head, before he pours tea for himself.

“Allow me to take my leave Seokjin-ssi,” his father says, already moving to the door, “Enjoy your time together.”

The door slides shut and Jeongguk lets out a breath he didn’t know he was holding.  Seokjin laughs lightly and Jeongguk turns towards him.

“Yeah, he was making me feel a little uncomfortable.  No offense, but is he always that intimidating?” Seokjin asks, propping a knee up and Jeongguk can’t get over how comfortable he is.  Meadow wolves must all be this chill.

Jeongguk giggles a little at him, “Sometimes.  I think it comes from being head alpha for close to two decades.”

Seokjin nods, raising his cup to blow on it before taking a small sip.  Jeongguk notices how plump his lips are and turns towards his own cup when he feels his cheeks heat up.

“I’m sorry, I don’t mean to overstep my boundaries, but you are… quite beautiful,” Seokjin compliments him, a small, shy smile accompanying his words.

Jeongguk knows he’s blushing from how hot his cheeks feel and he tries to hide behind his hands.

“Ah, sorry, I knew that would be too forward, forgive me,” Seokjin apologizes, straightening back up.

Jeongguk shakes his head, but still hides his face away, “It-it’s okay.  I also think you are… very handsome…”

When Jeongguk peaks between his fingers, Seokjin is hiding his own smile behind the back of his hand.  They spend a few moments just smiling at each other and Jeongguk thinks this is as good of a mate meeting as any.

“Hey, want to hear a joke?”

The joke is terrible.  Jeongguk’s a goner.

-

Seokjin has called Jeongguk “pup” for as long as he can remember, probably since the day they met.  In fact, he thinks Seokjin had kissed the inside of his wrist in parting before murmuring a small, “See you soon, pup.”  The nickname had just kind of stuck.

Jeongguk didn’t like being called “pup,” not really.  His mother called him it sometimes, especially when he was crying and she was trying to make him feel better.  Taehyung called him it sometimes when he was trying to rile Jeongguk up when they played chase.  Some of the other alphas called him it when they were trying to get his attention, which he always ignored.  His father called him it in a belittling manner sometimes, which Jeongguk admits was a harder thought process to reconcile.

But Seokjin… he thinks Seokjin just calls him that because he’s so much younger than Seokjin.  At least, that’s what he hopes.  He doesn’t want to think that Seokjin is trying to put him into place, so to speak, when Seokjin is so good to him any other time.

Jeongguk has been living with Seokjin for a whole year now, the forest pack having merged with the meadow pack.  Jeongguk thought the transition would have been hard on his father, who was used to telling wolves what to do and not the one being told, but Jeongguk thinks the change has allowed his father to rid himself of stress.  Plus, Seokjin’s father, the head alpha of the newly merged packs, often seeks Jeongguk’s father for council, which makes Jeongguk’s father feel useful.

A few wolves Jeongguk has come to know of, but not about very well, have taken to calling him “pup” in a not so friendly manner.  These are the people who don’t think Jeongguk is good enough to be their future head omega, who think Seokjin deserves better.  Jeongguk thinks the same thing, thinks Seokjin is too good for him with his broad shoulders and amazing sense of humor and wonderful way of connecting with people, but he doesn’t like other people telling him that.

Whenever they say, “Hey pup,” as he’s walking to help prepare dinner or, “What’s going on pup?” as he collects herbs for their healer Bom, he always bares his teeth and snaps, “Don’t call me that.”

Only Seokjin is allowed to call him that.

“Jeongguk?” Seokjin calls again across their comfy abode.

Jeongguk is standing in the kitchen, eyes wide as he listens to Seokjin call for him by name.

“Y-Yeah?” he asks, from where he’s preparing lunch for the both of them, voice caught.  It’s so odd, hearing his name coming from Seokjin’s mouth, and he doesn’t like it.

“Ah, there you are,” Seokjin smiles as he appears in the doorway, drawing closer to kiss Jeongguk quickly, “Have you seen my notes for today’s retainer meeting?  I thought I put them in our room, but I can’t find them.”

“Um,” Jeongguk blinks rapidly at him, trying to catch himself up, “Your notes?  I.  I think they’re in the living room.  Weren’t you reading them earlier this morning?”

“I was!” Seokjin’s eyes light up and he kisses Jeongguk again, just as quick and fleeting, “You’re so good to me.  Ooo, is that lunch?  Smells delicious.  Can I take it to go?  I want to get to the meeting early.”

“S-Sure let me just…” Jeongguk slips out of Seokjin’s hold and packs up most of the food for him, knowing Seokjin had skipped out on breakfast for a strategy meeting.

“You’re the actual best.  I’ll see you later, okay?” Seokjin asks rhetorically, not giving Jeongguk a moment to speak before he’s sweeping out of the kitchen in typical Seokjin fashion, all dramatics.

Jeongguk likes to visit the nursery when he has downtime, between meal prep and his medic duties.  The pups are always excited to see him and the attending wolf Hyuna always likes to tease about “the pup watching other pups.”  It’s a great way to pass time and they always exhaust him, the literal balls of energy running him ragged as they try to squeeze in as much time with him as possible before he has to return to his tasks.

That’s how he spends his day, helping the head cooks break down the day’s hunt, cook some and store the rest, and tending to some of the wolves who were injured trying to take the bear down.  Seokjin greets him quickly at dinner, only scenting him lightly in his haste before he retreats back to the long meeting.  Jeongguk knows its about the mountain wolves but not much else.

It’s late when Seokjin finally returns home, the moon high in the sky and Jeongguk half asleep.  The bed dips behind Jeongguk and he rolls slightly into Seokjin as Seokjin settles an arm over him.

“Mmm,” Jeongguk hums as he settles against Seokjin, feeling himself relax as Seokjin’s warmth begins to seep into his skin.

“Oh… I didn’t mean to wake you Jeongguk…” Seokjin whispers against the shell of his ear.

Jeongguk breaks out in goosebumps for reasons other than Seokjin’s hot breath against his neck.  He blinks his eyes as he frowns, scooting away from Seokjin just a bit, suddenly uncomfortable.  Had he made Seokjin mad somehow?  Was Seokjin calling him by his name instead of “pup” because he thought Jeongguk was getting too… old?  Was this his way of beginning to perhaps distance himself?

Jeongguk’s chest squeezes tightly and he clamps a hand over his mouth, heart beating erratically.  They hadn’t been having problems, at least, Jeongguk didn’t think so.  He thought he was a good mate, thought he was obvious in his loving Seokjin with his entire being.  Maybe he should try harder…

A soft kiss is placed behind his ear and Jeongguk startles, Seokjin’s huff of a laugh the only reaction, before he rolls onto his side away from Jeongguk.  He’ll do better in the morning.

Morning comes with an empty bed and Jeongguk shivering in the quickly turning weather.  He knows Seokjin doesn’t like the cold, so his first to do of being a better mate is dragging out their winter blankets.  Sleep is still clinging to Jeongguk’s eyes as he strips the bed, throwing the summer quilt onto the floor to be washed and stored away.  He sniffs as he keeps the blankets loose, knowing Seokjin doesn’t like them tight so he can tuck them under his feet.

“Good morning.”

Jeongguk squeaks as he jumps about ten feet in the air and he turns to see an amused Seokjin standing in the door way.

“Jeongguk what are you doing?” he asks, eyeing the little mess Jeongguk has made on the floor.

Jeongguk’s eyebrows pinch as he mutters, “Cold.”

Seokjin shakes his head, reaching out to pull Jeongguk into him and kiss him on the tip of his nose, “You’re so cute, I swear.  I have only one meeting today and then I figured you and I could spend some time together.  How does that sound, hm?"

The tension in Jeongguk’s face melts away and he genuinely smiles as he throws himself into Seokjin’s arms enthusiastically, “Really?  Do you mean it?”

Jeongguk can feel the wide grin Seokjin is sporting as he kisses the side of his head, “Course I do.  Missed you pup.”

Jeongguk’s heart is practically soaring as he kisses the side of Seokjin’s neck, right over the mark he left a year ago when he and Seokjin had officially mated, “Missed you too hyungie.”

Their day is supposed to be full of laughter and happiness, they’re supposed to bask in each other’s presence after having been separated by necessities of their duties for so long.  Seokjin had called him pup earlier that morning and Jeongguk had thought things were getting back to normal, that it had just been a weird hiccup his mother had warned him about.  But Seokjin had reverted back to calling him Jeongguk throughout the day.  It had dampened the elation he had felt that morning and by the time they return home, skipping dinner in favor of eating together alone, Jeongguk feels like he did the previous night.

Jeongguk doesn’t have an appetite and as soon as he breaches their front door, he sheds his coat and walks stiffly to their bedroom.

“W-Wait Jeongguk, where-” but Jeongguk just shakes his head rapid fire, trying to contain the tears he feels threating to fall.

Feather light fingers touch his bicep and Jeongguk shakes him off as a sob tears its way out of his throat before he bolts for their bedroom.

“Pup!”

But now that name is just making him more anxious.  Is Seokjin calling him that only to appease him?  To assert his dominance as Jeongguk disobeys?  He slams the door shut behind him and quickly flicks the lock just as the doorknob rattles.

“Hey…” Seokjin’s soft voice floats from the other side of the door, “what’s wrong?  What happened?  Let me in, Jeongguk-”

“Stop calling me that!” Jeongguk cries, shoulders hunching in as he buries his face into his hands and muffles his voice, “Stop it, stop it, stop it!”

There’s a few moments as Jeongguk just cries, sobs that wrack his entire body and make his teeth clench as he tries to hold them in.  He can barely hear Seokjin on the other side of the door and if he wasn’t so in tune to his mate he wouldn’t know he was still there.

“Hey… talk to me.  Stop calling you what?” Seokjin’s voice is still so soft, so soothing, like the first day they had met.  The thought makes Jeongguk cry harder.

“J-Jeong-guk,” he whispers, “Jeongguk.  Why are you calling me that?  Why aren’t you calling me “pup”?  What did I do?”

Jeongguk tries to control his hiccups, pressing his face as hard into his hands as he can like that’ll help, but suppressing them just makes his chest hurt.  Jeongguk sinks to his knees as they start to wobble, unable to hold himself up as his entire body focuses on crying.

“Oh.  Oh, pup, pup, I’m so sorry.  Pup, please open the door, I can’t stand to hear you this way.  Please, pup, for me?”

Jeongguk shakes his head even though he knows Seokjin can’t see him and he can’t let Seokjin see him, not when he’s crying so pathetically.  But he just can’t help it, wasn’t prepared for the stress and anxiety the slight change in behavior had brought him.

“I’m not going away pup,” Seokjin continues, “I’m staying right here until you let me in.  Take all the time you need, I’m not going anywhere.”

Jeongguk curls up on the floor beside their bed, staring at the dust bunnies underneath it.  He really needs to clean those out, before they get worse and start making his allergies act up.  He needs to get the thicker curtains out to insulate their windows better.  The throw on the back of the couch needs changed out.  He’ll need to help Bom stock pile certain herbs before the cold of winter takes them out for the season.

He needs.  He needs, he needs, he needs.  He needs to do things for other people, to ensure that they understand he’s the best future head omega he can be, that he’s good enough for Seokjin, the future head alpha.

He’s tired of needing, of needing things that aren’t really for him.  He wants… what does he want?

He wants his mate, Seokjin, here with him, regardless of nickname or lack thereof.  He wants to feel his arms around him, holding him close, pressing Jeongguk’s ear to his chest so he could hear his heart beat, strong and steady for him.

Jeongguk can hear Seokjin sliding around on the floor and it hurts him like a ton of bricks, how much distance is between them.

“A-Alpha,” he sobs and all rustling ceases, before the doorknob is jiggled almost violently.

“Pup,” Seokjin answers, still jiggling the knob like that’ll somehow make it magically open.

“Alpha,” Jeongguk cries again, crawling towards the door, “alpha.”

Seokjin must sense him getting closer to the door because he can see his shadow move away as Jeongguk prepares to open the door.  Jeongguk has just flicked the lock and twisted the knob when the door is pushed open and Jeongguk is wrapped up in Seokjin’s comforting scent.  It sends another wave of sobs through Jeongguk’s body.

“Oh, pup, my sweet, sweet pup,” Seokjin murmurs softly in his ear, one hand pressed to the small of Jeongguk’s back and one hand wrapped around the base of his neck to anchor him in place, “Deep breathes now, yeah?  I’ve got you."

“A-A-Alpha,” Jeongguk shakes, scrambling to grasp as Seokjin’s clothes as he cries into his alpha’s neck.

Seokjin shushes him, littering the only exposed part of his face with soft, butterfly kisses.  Seokjin kneads at his neck to try and work the tension out, laughing when Jeongguk hiccups against his skin.

“That’s a good pup, calm down, okay?  It’s alright.”

Jeongguk sniffles, wiping his nose disgustingly against the collar of Seokjin’s shirt, too emotionally exhausted to lean back and wipe it like normal.  Seokjin hums and kisses Jeongguk’s temple, smoothing his hair down.

“Okay, let’s sit on the bed, yeah?  Let’s talk about this.”

Jeongguk keeps his face pressed into Seokjin’s neck as he’s jostled around, Seokjin keeping him pressed tightly against him as he sits on the edge of the bed.  Seokjin moves to slide Jeongguk onto the bed beside him, but Jeongguk tightens his arms and legs around him.  Seokjin smothers his laugh in Jeongguk’s hair, running his hands up and down the omega’s back.

“Talk to me pup,” Seokjin encourages softly, nuzzling his nose against the shell of Jeongguk’s ear, “Talk to me about what just happened.  Why did you start crying?”

Jeongguk doesn’t answer him, can’t answer him, afraid that if he does he’ll start crying again.

“C’mon, I need you to tell me what’s wrong, Jeong-”

No.  Pup.”

“… Pup.  What’s this about?  Why can’t I call you by your name?”

Jeongguk shakes his head and he can feel the exasperation building up in Seokjin, knows he’s testing the alpha’s limits.  But Jeongguk just doesn’t know how to put it into words.

“That’s not good enough.  I need to know what’s wrong. I can’t fix anything if you don’t help me.  What’s so wrong with your name?”

Jeongguk thought he didn’t have the words, but they’re starting to bubble out of him.

“It’s not my name.  It’s you.  I’m not Jeongguk, not to you, never have been.  I’m pup, I’m your pup, I only want to be your pup, no one else’s, nobody else’s, just yours, you.  Why won’t you call me pup anymore?  What did I do?”

Seokjin kisses Jeongguk’s temple again, letting out a deep sigh as Jeongguk starts to cry again.

“It’s… it’s not you, pup.  I thought you didn’t like it.  Thought you didn’t like the name,” Seokjin kisses the words into his skin, “I heard you tell others and I didn’t want to upset you.  I’m sorry, pup, so sorry.”

Jeongguk clambers in Seokjin’s hold, hands coming up to frame the alpha’s face as he kisses him messily.

“Your pup, always your pup, only your pup,” Jeongguk says brokenly, Seokjin trying to kiss him through his words, “Alpha’s pup.”

“Alpha’s pup,” Seokjin agrees, effectively sealing Jeongguk’s mouth shut as he slots their lips together properly.

-

Jeongguk is a jittery ball of nerves and anticipation, sitting by the window of his hut as he waits to see that familiar silhouette.

His mother smiles at him from the kitchen, shaking her head good naturedly, “Relax, will you?  Seokjin hasn’t missed an outing yet, he’s coming.”

“I know, I know I just-” Jeongguk lets out a long sigh, staring wistfully at his mother, “I miss him.”

Her teasing smile turns into a softer one and Jeongguk doesn’t even feel an ounce of shame because its true.  There’s only two more months until Jeongguk’s pack is merging with Seokjin’s, meaning Jeongguk is moving in with Seokjin, and Jeongguk could not be more eager.  He loves everything about the alpha and can’t wait to spend the rest of his life with him.  He just hopes Seokjin feels the same way about him.

“Oh!” Jeongguk turns to the window and presses his face against the glass, feeling his entire body practically thrumming just at the sight of Seokjin, “He’s here!”

He bounds off the couch so fast he knocks into the coffee table and almost knocks his mug off.

“Jeongguk be careful-!”

But Jeongguk has already thrown the door open and his body out of it, rushing up to Seokjin as quick as he can.  Seokjin already has his arms open and catches the omega easily, laughing as he twirls them.

“Hey pup,” he greets softly, and Jeongguk sighs happily in his arms, “How have you been?”

“Great,” Jeongguk grins, nuzzling against Seokjin’s skin in a vain attempt to scent him as best he can, “I’ve been working with Healer Soo, he’s teaching me a lot of things.”

“Yeah?” Seokjin grins at him, leaning back so they can look at each other properly and Jeongguk is always struck by how handsome Seokjin is, “What are some things you’ve been learning?”

Jeongguk knows if he had his tail out right now it’d be wagging a mile a minute and he excitedly takes Seokjin’s hand in his, pulling him towards the village center, eager to show him what he’s been working on.  Just as they’re about to breach the privacy of the forest surrounding Jeongguk’s heart, Seokjin tugs him around to face him.  Jeongguk’s eyebrows furrow, but they promptly smooth out when Seokjin leans down and presses the lightest of kisses he can against Jeongguk’s lips.

“Missed you pup,” he murmurs, nudging his nose against Jeongguk’s and Jeongguk falls just a little more in love.

“Missed you too, hyungie,” he says bashfully, as Seokjin smiles fully down at him.

“Now, what was it you wanted to show me?” Seokjin grins, squeezing Jeongguk’s hand.

They only have so long together today, after all, and he wants to make sure they make the most of it.

-

Jeongguk doesn’t like to stereotype, but… the mountain wolves look just as scary as he’s heard and imagined.  They’re all bulky and strong, hearty from the necessity of surviving constant cold temperatures.  They walk with an air of haughtiness, as if forest and meadow wolves are beneath them.  And they kind of are, in a literal sense, but Jeongguk doesn’t like their attitudes.  When he tells Seokjin this, Seokjin laughs at him.

“I understand,” he says, leading Jeongguk to the dinner hall, casting a glance around to make sure there’s no eavesdroppers before he indulges, “Their leader is a little overbearing as well, likes to talk over me or act like I didn’t just say something.  It’s infuriating, but we need to be able to start traveling through their land without it being seen as an act of defiance, so I’m just trying to deal with it.”

“Ah, hyungie, you poor thing,” Jeongguk teases and Seokjin levels a playful glare at him, “It must be so hard to have someone ignore you.”

“I live with you, don’t I?” Seokjin quips, leaning down to kiss the tip of Jeongguk’s nose as his mouth drops open in indignation.

Seokjin laughs and pulls him into the dining hall.

“Are you going to eat with me today, hyungie?” Jeongguk asks hopefully, but with the mountain wolves in for a few days Jeongguk knows it’s a long shot.

To his utter delight Seokjin nods as he pulls him to two empty seats, near a table full of mismatched elders and nursery pups, “Yeah, your dad so graciously volunteered to take my place tonight, so I get a bit of a reprieve.  Feels like we haven’t eaten together in a long time.”

Jeongguk doesn’t want to say they haven’t, not because it isn’t true, but because he doesn’t want Seokjin to think he has any ill feelings towards him doing his job.  It’s not Seokjin’s fault there’s so much demand from him, that all of his time is monopolized by pressing head alpha duties.  Jeongguk doesn’t like to think about what’ll happen when Seokjin actually becomes head alpha, what strain that’ll put on their relationship.

Jeongguk smiles at the wolf who slides two plates of food in front of them, snuggling into Seokjin’s side as they dig in.  It feels so nice to eat with his mate, to press little kisses against his shoulder whenever he wants, just because he can, and have Seokjin smile at him.

The smell hits him first, a little unpleasant twinge that has Jeongguk crinkling his nose before a body plops on the other side of Seokjin, effectively catching both of their attention.

“You’re the head alpha, right?” the sickly-sweet voice asks and Jeongguk reaches out for Seokjin’s hand at the unwanted guest, finding it easily.

The wolf is obviously a mountain wolf, unfamiliar to Jeongguk.  There’s something about him that’s putting Jeongguk on edge and he averts his gaze, picking at his food with his free hand.

“Head alpha in training, yes, is there something I can help you with?” Seokjin asks, putting on his head alpha voice and Jeongguk zones out.

He can’t help but steal glances at the wolf every once in a while, at the way he’s leaning in so close to Seokjin, head placed on his face as he looks almost… adoringly up at Seokjin.  Jeongguk has a bad taste in his mouth and he turns towards Seokjin a little more, Seokjin in tune with his body language as he releases Jeongguk’s hand to instead slide his arm around Jeongguk’s waist.  The wolf watches the action with almost a challenge in his eye, his grin turning wolfish before it morphs into an overexaggerated pout.

“I was… I was wondering if I could actually talk to you in private, for a moment?” he asks, looking imploringly up at Seokjin beneath pretty, long eyelashes, “I hate to bother you and I know you’re busy with…” his eyes slide to Jeongguk and Jeongguk’s heart jumps in his chest as they make contact, “… but it won’t take long, I promise.”

Seokjin turns a questioning eye to Jeongguk, silently asking for permission, which is ridiculous because he doesn’t need Jeongguk’s permission to do his job.  Jeongguk nods encouragingly at him and tries to smile, but it’s only a quick quirk of his lips because he doesn’t like the look of accomplishment the mountain wolf holds.

With a rabbit kicking his ribs, he grabs Seokjin’s hand just before the two can walk away.  Seokjin looks like he’s about to ask what’s wrong, but Jeongguk pulls him down to kiss him before he can overthink it.  Seokjin makes a surprised sound but kisses him back; it’s not often that Jeongguk is so openly affectionate in public.

“Love you, hyungie,” he whispers shyly, eyes clenched shut.

Seokjin laughs against his lips, giving him one last, little kiss before he says, “Love you too, pup.  I’ll be right back.  Don’t let your food get cold.”

The mountain wolf has an almost sour look on his face which he immediately wipes off when Seokjin turns back around, gesturing for the mountain wolf to lead the way.  Jeongguk feels a lead ball sitting in his stomach as the two exit the dining hall, trying to watch them as long as he can before they vanish around the side of the building.

Five minutes go by before Jeongguk feels his anxiousness hit a peak.  A few of his friends have stopped by to try and talk, but Jeongguk had been too distracted to actually engage them and they sensed that, patting his back and assuring him the visitors wouldn’t be here too much longer.  Jeongguk can only hope, worrying his lips as he waits for his mate to get back.

Jeongguk can’t keep still, leg bounding and tapping his fingers against the table.  When ten minutes have passed and Seokjin and the mountain wolf still haven’t come back, Jeongguk can’t continue sitting there.

“Was it not good?” one of the helpers asks as Jeongguk deposits his and Seokjin’s barely touched food into the wash bin.

“It was delicious, just… not hungry tonight,” Jeongguk says and he watches her eyes drop to his stomach, which rolls another wave of anxiousness through him, “Have a good night.”

Jeongguk rushes out of the building and abruptly comes to a halt because not even ten feet from the dining hall, Seokjin and the mountain wolf are standing close together.  The mountain wolf has his hands pressed to Seokjin’s chest and Seokjin’s hands are wrapped around his wrists.  Jeongguk can only hear the faint murmur of their voices, even standing this close to them.  Something unpleasant curls hotly in Jeongguk’s stomach and he takes a step closer just as the mountain wolf’s eyes flicker towards Jeongguk, an absolutely wicked smile on his face.  Seokjin looks over too and all tension floods from his face at the sight of Jeongguk.

“Thanks for listening to me,” the mountain wolf practically purrs, voice low and sultry, trying to step closer to Seokjin.

“Ah, it’s no problem.  I hope… I hope I was able to give you some good advice,” Seokjin tries to step away, towards Jeongguk, and Jeongguk quickens his stride.

“You gave me the best advice… hyungie.”

Jeongguk bristles and he’s had enough of this mountain wolf, with his terrible smell and terrible attitude, trying to make moves on his mate, his alpha, his hyungie.  He knows that something unpleasant in his stomach is jealousy and Jeongguk prides himself on being able to control his emotions, but this mountain wolf has tested his patience.

Before Jeongguk can say anything, Seokjin is forcefully removing the mountain wolf’s hands from his chest and purposely taking a step back, eyes coloring a little as he asserts himself.

“I’m sorry, please don’t call me that.  We are not familiar enough for those sorts of nicknames and besides, that one is reserved specifically for my mate.  I suggest you head back inside now and find your pack.  My mate and I are headed home.”

Jeongguk practically throws himself into Seokjin’s arms as his mate walks away from the mountain wolf, whose mouth is dropped open in shock.

“Good riddance,” Jeongguk sniffs, playing with Seokjin’s fingers as they walk back home, “My hyungie.  Mine.”

Seokjin laughs as he tugs Jeongguk closer, pressing a kiss to Jeongguk’s crown, “Only yours, pup.”

-

Jeongguk is humming quietly to himself, smiling as he does the dishes.  The sun is shining, the birds are singing, and everything just feels right.  He doesn’t even startle as arms wrap around his waist, just settles back against the strong chest.

“Mmm, what’s got you in such a good mood this morning?” Seokjin teases, lips gliding across Jeongguk’s exposed collarbone.

“You know exactly what,” Jeongguk grins, swaying his hips lightly only to have Seokjin tighten his arms in response.

“Easy pup, don’t push it,” Seokjin warns, kissing over Jeongguk’s mark, scenting him softly.

“Push what?” Jeongguk asks, feigning innocence as he pushes his ass back directly against Seokjin, placing the dishes in the sink, already anticipating what’s about to come.  Hopefully him.

For a second Seokjin doesn’t move, but then he’s pressing Jeongguk fully against the sink, teeth sinking in to the juncture of Jeongguk’s neck to hear him gasp.

“Mouthy little pup today, aren’t we?” Seokjin asks, starting to move his hips in tight circles, Jeongguk’s moan getting caught in his throat, “Last night not enough for you?”

Jeongguk whines as Seokjin places big hands on his waist, encouraging Jeongguk to move against him.

“F-Feels good, hyungie,” Jeongguk whines, leaning on his forearms to angle his hips better, “Keep going.”

“Look at my naughty pup, letting his alpha feel him up in the kitchen,” Seokjin laughs, blanketing himself over Jeongguk, letting go of his waist to place them on the counter and cage Jeongguk in, “You’ve smelled differently the past few days.  Pre-heat?”

As soon as Seokjin says that Jeongguk laughs stupidly at himself; because of course his heat is coming.  That would explain the bloating, weird food cravings, and his sudden need to have Seokjin knot him repeatedly.  They’ve had sex four times in the past week, which is an extreme for them considering how busy Seokjin tends to be.

“Oh, I can smell your slick.  Is that it?  Pre-heat fever hitting you good, making you ache for hyungie’s knot?”

The sound Jeongguk makes is embarrassing and Seokjin laughs.  He goes to move away from Jeongguk and Jeongguk glances over his shoulder, perplexed, only to see Seokjin shucking his shirt off.

“Gonna knot you right here in this kitchen,” Seokjin murmurs, “Fuck you so good right in front of the sink you won’t be able to do dishes without thinking about it.”

Jeongguk cries out as Seokjin lays himself over him again, cock hard and hot even through his sleep pants.

“Clothes off, alpha, off, please,” he pleads, dropping his forehead onto the cool counter when he feels tears prick his eyes, “touch me, please.”

“Okay pup, I’ve got you,” Seokjin concedes easily, pushing Jeongguk’s shirt up until it’s sliding over his shoulders, “So pretty pup.  Look at you, laid out just for me.  Can hyungie take these off?  Wanna let hyungie see how loose you are?  See the slick drip out of you?”

Jeongguk shakes like a leaf as he nods enthusiastically, excitement thrumming through every nerve of his body as Seokjin slowly, maddeningly slow, pushes Jeongguk’s shorts down, exposing slivers of tantalizing skin inch by inch.

“Oh, pup,” Seokjin inhales sharply as the shorts drop to the floor in a pool of fabric around Jeongguk’s feet, “I can already smell you.  You’re this excited for hyungie and I’ve barely touched you.”

Jeongguk arches his back, pushing his ass into Seokjin’s hands as Seokjin palms his cheeks.  He pulls them apart with an appreciative groan, holding Jeongguk open to watch the slick slide out of Jeongguk.  He’s still loose from the previous night’s knotting and Seokjin slips a thumb in easily.

“Alpha,” Jeongguk whines and Seokjin thrusts his thumb in harder, listening to the wet sounds Jeongguk’s making, clenching around his finger to feel more of it, “Don’t tease.  Need you alpha, need you so bad.  Need you to knot me, right here, right now.  Wanna-”

Seokjin pushes two fingers in quickly and Jeongguk lets out a long, drawn out moan, fucking himself back on those fingers as best as he can.

“Need your slick,” Seokjin explains, unnecessarily, “Left the lube in the bedroom.”

“Hurry,” Jeongguk commands and Seokjin tuts, but doesn’t otherwise react.

The fingers slip out of Jeongguk and he can hear them wrap noisily around Seokjin’s cock before they’re in him again.  Seokjin repeats this action a few times, getting his cock as wet as possible, until he takes a step back from Jeongguk to turn him around.

“Hop up onto the counter.  It’ll be more comfortable for you to be knotted this way.”

Jeongguk is shaking as he turns around and Seokjin laughs a little as he helps Jeongguk onto the counter.  Jeongguk whines at the cold feeling against his skin, twitching against the counter until his body slowly heats it up.

“It’s okay pup, it’ll feel better soon.  Give me your leg,” Jeongguk does as he’s told, raising his leg only to have Seokjin grab his ankle and hoist it over his shoulder.

Jeongguk groans as Seokjin presses closer, the tip of his cock brushing over Jeongguk’s rim, and Jeongguk tries to shift his hips down to get him closer.

“Easy pup, don’t wanna hurt you,” Seokjin says, ever the voice of reason.

“Need you alpha, please, miss the way you feel,” Jeongguk murmurs, wrapping an arm around Seokjin’s neck to bring him closer.

Seokjin smiles, knows Jeongguk likes to feel the press of their bodies.  Seokjin keeps one hand on Jeongguk’s raised thigh to help support it and places the other on the counter beside his hip to steady himself.

Jeongguk moans as Seokjin starts to press in.

“Mmm, always feel so good alpha,” Jeongguk whines canting his hips to better help the slide in, “Gonna knot me so good, gonna feel it all day, alpha-

“Be quiet or I’m gonna bust my load right now,” Seokjin frowns, “Don’t want a mediocre knot, do you?”

Jeongguk shakes his head and leans his forehead against Seokjin’s collarbone.  He sighs when he feels Seokjin’s pelvis press against the backs of his thighs, kissing at Seokjin’s skin in appreciation.

They fall into an easy rhythm, Jeongguk puffing against Seokjin’s collarbones with every thrust, unable to stop the little moans that fall from his lips.  Seokjin has some skin from Jeongguk’s neck clutched between his teeth as he quickens his pace, his knees knocking into the cabinet doors with each rock of his hips and making them rattle.  Jeongguk wraps his other leg around Seokjin’s waist to change the angle a bit and he groans, letting his head tip back, letting out a small “alpha”.

“Gonna be the death of me,” Seokjin mumbles, as Jeongguk’s leg slips from his sweat slick shoulder only to hang over his forearm, “Need touched?”

Jeongguk shakes his head as he arches his back, knowing he can cum from the penetration alone.  He’s been so on edge lately, and the regular dickings he’s been getting have done little to sate this new, insatiable need.

Oh,” Jeongguk gasps, tightening reflexively around Seokjin’s cock from a particularly hard thrust, “there, right the- ah!”

“Such a good pup, so responsive.  My knot’s coming, try to relax for me, yeah?”

Jeongguk can feel the anticipation prick his bones, eyelashes fluttering when he feels the beginning of Seokjin’s knot start to stretch his rim.  Seokjin is biting on his bottom lip as he continues to fuck into Jeongguk, watching his own cock disappear into Jeongguk with rapt attention.  Jeongguk can feel the licks of pleasure reaching from his very core, his muscles jumping and twitching as he can feel his pending orgasm rising.  It’s so much and yet not enough at the same time, and Jeongguk doesn’t understand what’s wrong and he can’t stop the overwhelmed little sob from leaving his body.

“Alpha,” he cries, actually cries, little tear drops cascading down his cheeks.

Seokjin stops dead in his tracks and Jeongguk cries harder, trying to chase the ebbing feeling, but Seokjin won’t move.

“Pup, why are you crying?  Did I hurt you?”

Jeongguk latches a harsh hand to the back of Seokjin’s neck, feeling him starting to move away, “Alpha, why’d you stop?  Felt so good, alpha.  Please, please fuck me, want your knot, want to feel good, want stretched.”

When Jeongguk blinks bleary eyes, Seokjin is observing his face closely, looking for any hints of discomfort on his face.  When he doesn’t find any, just finds raw want etched into the furrows of Jeongguk’s eyebrows and in his pout, he thrusts in shallowly.  Jeongguk groans as Seokjin’s knot presses against his rim, starting to burrow its way into him.

Seokjin tilts Jeongguk’s face and presses their mouths together as he continues to stretch Jeongguk out.  Jeongguk’s toes curl, unable to kiss Seokjin back as his knot presses against him just right.  He barely has time to say more than a mumbled “Ah-alpha,” before he’s cumming, eyelashes fluttering and mouth dropping open against Seokjin’s in a swallowed moan.

Seokjin hums, knot throbbing inside Jeongguk as he presses incessantly against Jeongguk’s prostate and Jeongguk cries at the oversensitivity, cock jumping as Seokjin continues to assault the spot.

“Sound so pretty pup,” Seokjin murmurs, Jeongguk panting against his lips as he whines, hips wiggling around Seokjin’s knot, “Gonna fill you up, nice and full.  Gonna look so pretty full of my cum, hm?  Fuck yeah you are.”

Jeongguk has tears in his eyes again as Seokjin grinds his hips into him, his knot swelling and locking them in place as Seokjin starts to cum.  The growl he lets out comes from deep in his chest and Jeongguk preens at the sound, clenching around Seokjin.  Seokjin is still faintly rocking against Jeongguk and Jeongguk realizes that he’s getting hard again, Seokjin’s knot borderline painful as it swells to its max size.

“A-Alpha,” Jeongguk hiccups, grabbing the hand on his face and pushing it down his body.

He whines as Seokjin tweaks a nipple, catching the pebbled peak with his thumb nail before his fingers are running over the ridges of his abs, fingers skimming just at the start of his pubic hair.  He’s ignoring Jeongguk’s cock, waiting for the omega with a raised eyebrow and an amused grin.

“Don’t tease me,” Jeongguk frowns, wrapping Seokjin’s fingers around him, letting out a sigh at the feeling.

Seokjin laughs and leans forward to scent Jeongguk, knot shifting inside Jeongguk as he does so, ripping a moan from him.

“Gonna be a long day for you, pup,” Seokjin whispers against his heated skin and Jeongguk groans low and long in his throat.

-

Jeongguk doesn’t go on hunts often.  He typically stays behind in the village to help with the aftermath of hunts, the injuries and the dinner prep.  But occasionally he’ll be asked to fill in and he always jumps at the chance to go.

Because he doesn’t go on hunts often, he doesn’t shift often.  He always appreciates the first shift after a long time: the cracking of his bones, the heightening of his senses, the narrowing of his thoughts.  Jeongguk likes shifting because he kind of runs on autopilot for a while.  He doesn’t really think, just lets his instincts take over.

Jeongguk also really likes going on hunts with Seokjin.  Seokjin, however, hates it, because he worries about Jeongguk’s safety the entire time they’re out.  Today is one of these days.

Jeongguk happily prances beside Seokjin, nosing at things as he walks.  Seokjin keeps bumping into him to get him to pay attention, but Jeongguk is having such a good time that he just bumps back into Seokjin and goes about his business.  Seokjin huffs at him, trying not to show how aggravated he is to the rest of the group.

A small yip behind them have the two turning around to see Yoona with her nose to the ground, sniffing deeply.  The authoritative sound Seokjin makes has all heads turning towards him, waiting for instruction.  He breaks the group in half, going down each side of the scent Yoona caught.  From the way Seokjin is moving, he’s not sure exactly what they’re going to find at the end.

Jeongguk’s not exactly useless when it comes to hunting.  He’s agile and quick on his feet and because of this, he often distracts their target so the tougher, heavier wolves can do the actual killing.  It works pretty well and Jeongguk’s never gotten seriously hurt.  He sprained his ankle once, but that’s because he had done a victory dance and had stepped wrong.

Seokjin makes eye contact with Jeongguk and Jeongguk bows his head, letting Seokjin know he’s listening and ready to do what’s asked.  Seokjin nods before facing forward, continuing to lead their small little group.

A twig snaps and they all simultaneously stop, ears twitching as they listen.  Jeongguk can see just the top of Yoona’s head, about twenty feet away, and he sticks his nose to the ground as they start moving again.  They’re going slow, the smell getting stronger as they near their target.  It smells familiar and Jeongguk is trying to place where he knows it, why he knows it.  It smells pungent, almost like something that had been left rotting in the sun, leaving a bad taste in Jeongguk’s mouth.  The recognition hits him too late.

But the mountain wolf hits him head on.  Jeongguk yelps as he gets knocked into a tree and the rest of the group spring into action.  Seokjin rushes over to him, but the mountain wolf is quicker and side steps away, dodging Seokjin’s body check.  Seokjin nudges urgently at Jeongguk’s snout with his own and Jeongguk sniffles slightly, letting Seokjin know that he hurts but he’s okay.

The mountain wolf is quick, much quicker than a typical mountain wolf tends to be and they’re having a hard time pinning him in their normal three-point position.  Despite his obvious desire to stay with Jeongguk, Seokjin leaves him to catch his breath as Seokjin joins the rest of the team.  By the time Jeongguk is able to stand, most of his team is panting heavily, even Seokjin.  Jeongguk takes his place beside Seokjin, hunching himself low to brace himself in case the mountain wolf lunges at him again.

Except the mountain wolf makes a bold move and launches himself at their alpha wolf instead, teeth bared and prepared to kill.  Jeongguk makes a split second decision, motivated entirely on instinct to protect his alpha, and presses himself fully under Seokjin, head tucked in the crook of Seokjin’s neck so his most vulnerable area is protected.

Unfortunately, this leaves Jeongguk wide open for attack and the mountain wolf gets a good hold on Jeongguk’s shoulder, teeth digging into the meatiest part.  Jeongguk cries out, but since the mountain wolf is so intent on chewing out as much of Jeongguk as he can, it leaves him open to the rest of the meadow pack team who take full advantage of it.  Yoona latches onto the back of his neck and rips him off Jeongguk, which in turn rips Jeongguk’s shoulder to shreds.  He can feel the blood pulsing out of the puncture wounds and the feeling is making his head spin.

He can hear a lot of howling, and he thinks there’s a snout nudging against his own, but he can’t focus past the pain in his shoulder.  So he doesn’t.  He slumps against Seokjin and closes his eyes.  As long as his alpha is safe.  As long as Jeongguk did his job and kept his alpha safe.

That’s enough.

When Jeongguk comes to he’s shifted back to his human form and is lying half naked on a cot in what appears to be the infirmary.  He blinks his eyes to clear the murk and when he goes to sit up he whimpers at the pain that shoots down his spine.

“Pup?” a cracked voice whispers from beside him before a hand reassuringly squeezes his, “Oh thank every god and each star above.”

“S-Seokjin?” Jeongguk’s voice is weak and rough and he realizes how parched he is, “Hurts.”

“I know, pup, I know.  Stay down though, Healer Soo will have my hide if he sees me letting you strain yourself.”

Jeongguk make a vague noise in acknowledgement and smacks his lips, trying to get his message across to Seokjin.  It works, because a hand help support Jeongguk’s head to raise it as a cool glass is pressed to his lips.  Jeongguk greedily drink from it, feeling some of it slip from the corner of his mouth and down his jaw and neck, but he could care less.  His throat practically screams as it works to get the water into his system and he lets out an “ahhh,” as Seokjin lets his head rest back against the pillow.

Seokjin is silent, holding Jeongguk’s hand with one of his own and letting the other pat soothingly at the top of Jeongguk’s head.  Jeongguk hums, shifting a little and wincing when it pulls at his shoulder.  Blinking his tired eyes open, he sees Seokjin frowning from where he’s sitting beside his cot.  Jeongguk copies his face, though his is more of a pout than anything, and reaches out with his free hand to press his thumb into the wrinkles Seokjin is creating between his eyebrows.

The skin smooths out as Seokjin lets Jeongguk rub the worry away.  When Jeongguk goes to move his hand away, Seokjin catches it when his own free one and brings it to his mouth to press kisses to the tip of each of Jeongguk’s fingers.  It’s a cute moment, and Jeongguk relishes in it, until Seokjin opens his mouth and says-

“You’re a fucking idiot.”

Jeongguk squawks and Seokjin doesn’t laugh, so Jeongguk knows he’s serious.

What?” Jeongguk asks incredulously, because did he or did he not save Seokjin’s life earlier?  He points this out, “I saved your life earlier and you have the audacity-!”

Seokjin rolls his eyes and then glares at him, “Yes, you did, and that’s why you’re a fucking idiot.  You could have died Jeongguk, and for what?”

Jeongguk pouts but Seokjin’s glare doesn’t let up, even when Jeongguk murmurs quietly, “For you.  I had to protect you.”

Seokjin looks away for a moment, and Jeongguk thinks Seokjin is truly angry when he says, “What kind of alpha would I be if I can’t protect myself?”

But he knows he’s not when Seokjin looks back at him and tears cling to the corners of his eyes, “What kind of alpha would I be if I can’t protect you?”

They stare at each other, both of their eyes glassy.  Seokjin looks so distraught and Jeongguk feels awful, but he doesn’t know how to describe the overwhelming urge he had to make sure nothing happened to Seokjin.  He’s sure Seokjin’s felt it too, has seen it in the way Seokjin tries to keep a watchful but discreet eye on him.

“Sorry alpha,” Jeongguk murmurs, and Seokjin shakes his head, leaning forward to kiss the rise of Jeongguk’s cheek.

“You’re okay now, that’s all that matters,” Seokjin smiles at him, eyes crinkling a little, “I’m going to go let your parents know your awake.”

Jeongguk nods as Seokjin backs away.  Just before he exits the little hut, he throws over his shoulder, “Also, you’re not allowed to go on hunts anymore.”

“The audacity!"