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In the soft rays of the morning light, Xiao Zhan’s eyes trace over the lines of Yibo’s sleeping face across from him in their bed.

It’s just a bit too early for either of them to be awake right now, but occasionally, Xiao Zhan will wake up an hour or so before Yibo. In these moments, he likes to scroll through food blogs on his phone for a while to find new recipes, or he’ll rest against Yibo’s chest, listening to his steady heartbeat.

He’s doing the latter now, peeking up a little bit to gaze at the mating bite on Yibo’s neck. They’ve been mated for a few months now, living together for longer, and despite their busy schedules, Xiao Zhan’s favorite part about leaving home in the morning is the feeling of returning home to him again.

As an older omega, Xiao Zhan had thought it would be difficult to find a potential partner, that he might seem less desirable. He presented just after becoming an idol, which made it even more difficult for him to date. It was something he had to come to terms with, but it hurt thinking he might not have the chance at a family like he had dreamed.

But then he met Yibo, and it had been a beautiful whirlwind of laughter, comfort, and adoration. He at least had one new family member now.

When Yibo stirs a bit from sleep, Xiao Zhan snuggles in under his chin to press a kiss there. As Yibo slowly blinks his eyes open, Xiao Zhan reaches his hand up to brush his bangs away from his sleepy eyes.

“Good morning,” Yibo mumbles, and Xiao Zhan presses a sweet kiss onto his mouth.

“Good morning, sweetie,” Xiao Zhan says, facing him on the pillow. “You’re up earlier than usual.”

Yibo wrinkles his nose. “I had a weird dream,” he says. “I dreamed that we were both university students competing in a Rubik’s Cube competition?”

Xiao Zhan raises an eyebrow. “Oh? Who won?”

Yibo pouts. “I woke up before we finished. I’m pretty sure I was going to win, though.”

Xiao Zhan laughs. “We should try it out someday and prove your theory.”

Yibo’s eyes turn tender as he looks at Xiao Zhan’s smile. “Mmhmm,” Yibo says noncommittally, and then he moves closer to kiss him fully on the mouth.

Their kisses are soft and sweet, indulging in each other as the sunlight starts to shine through the window of their bedroom. Xiao Zhan is truly happy like this, waking up to his mate as often as their schedules allow.

They’re lucky, too. Thanks to past celebrities paving the way, mated pairs in the entertainment industry rarely face criticism. The couple can choose to make it as public as they like, especially now that there are so many high-profile omegas. Some pairs even go on a hiatus when they’re expecting a child.

To some extent, Xiao Zhan feels slightly envious when he hears about those announcements. He wants a child as well someday, but it’s not so easy for him. Even his heats are few and far between. When Yibo and Xiao Zhan began dating, they had agreed to let nature run its course: if Xiao Zhan became pregnant, they would start a family. If not, they still had a family with each other.

As time went by, Xiao Zhan thought he was satisfied with that. Now, however, he finds himself wanting. He’s had just two heats since he began dating Yibo, and although they hadn’t necessarily been trying, neither of them resulted in pregnancy. Xiao Zhan had found himself unexpectedly disappointed, the feeling turning worse when he listened to a coworker talk about their own pregnancy.

Occasionally, Xiao Zhan will remember that first time they talked about having children. The wistful look on Yibo’s face has stayed with him.

Xiao Zhan thinks that he wants to try, for both of them. He wants to have a family.

“Yibo,” Xiao Zhan says while Yibo noses at his scent gland. Yibo has been addicted to his lilac smell ever since they met.

“Mmhmm?” Yibo hums.

“I want to… have a baby.”

Yibo pauses. He leans up to meet his eyes, his own practically sparkling. “You do?”

A small shy smile breaks out across Xiao Zhan’s face. “Yeah.”

Yibo smiles back at him, searching his gaze for any hesitance. “Now?”

Xiao Zhan nods, pressing his lips together. There isn’t exactly such a thing as perfect timing in this industry. “Is now okay? We might have to take a break from our jobs for a while…”

“Of course,” Yibo replies, and his eyes are warm. “Whenever you want to. A lot of our projects are finished already, anyway.”

“That’s true,” Xiao Zhan agrees, absently stroking Yibo’s cheek with his thumb. “We’d have to give up regular appearances, though.”

Yibo raises an eyebrow. “In exchange for getting to announce that we’re having a baby? Worth it.” He laughs when Xiao Zhan snorts at him before continuing, “If it really comes down to it, we can find other work.”

Xiao Zhan nods again, considering, and feels more reassured. “Okay. You know it’s been hard for me to get pregnant, but… this time, I really want to try.”

Yibo kisses him once, softly. “Don’t worry, Zhan-ge. I’ll make sure to knock you up,” he says, grinning.

Xiao Zhan laughs and covers his face in embarrassment, and Yibo tries to wrench his hands away so he can keep kissing all over his face.

They try this morning, a few times, but it’s more out of enthusiasm than anything. It’ll be better next time, or so Yibo promises.

~*~

The first pregnancy test comes out as a negative a few weeks later, but Xiao Zhan doesn’t really mind it. He’s sort of used to it.

Yibo envelops him in a big hug anyway.

After dinner, they lie on the couch together to watch TV, Xiao Zhan curling inwards towards Yibo’s body to press his nose against Yibo’s scent gland. His lemongrass smell relaxes him better than anything else. Their bond, allowing them to sense strong feelings, lets him know that Yibo feels pleased and happy about the effect.

Now, Xiao Zhan thinks, they should resume their efforts on this free weekend of theirs. He knows Yibo wouldn’t be opposed.

The moment he licks Yibo’s neck is almost the same moment Yibo tugs his lower back towards him, making their bodies mostly line up.

“Do you want to?” Yibo asks, a hand already moving up his back under his T-shirt.

“Give it to me,” Xiao Zhan whispers. He pulls the back of Yibo’s head towards him to kiss him.

Yibo dives in, turning himself onto his back to pull Xiao Zhan over him. He kisses him deeply, running his hands down to his ass and squeezing him down against himself.

Xiao Zhan moans, slick starting to form and leak out of him. He can feel every part of Yibo’s lean body under him, and he starts to grind their lower bodies together. Yibo’s scent starts to permeate his senses, and he slowly becomes dizzy with the desire to mate. The bond only makes it stronger, the undercurrent of their mutual desire crackling into life.

Yibo slides a hand underneath the back of his sweatpants to reach his entrance. "Oh," he murmurs, mouthing down Xiao Zhan’s neck, "wet already?"

Xiao Zhan, having less heats than the average omega, also produces less slick than normal. When he has his heat, however, there's so much. He gets so embarrassed about it, but Yibo loves it.

There was one day during his second heat where he spent the entire afternoon sitting on Yibo's face, per his request. Xiao Zhan had been mindless with lust—it was lucky that he'd already had Yibo's knot to calm the fire under his skin, but the more Yibo had swirled his tongue deep along the inside of his ass, the more desperate Xiao Zhan became for his knot again.

But these moments are nice too. There's such a stark difference between the smooth slide of Yibo's dick during his heat and the slight burn when he doesn't have it. He stopped opting for lube after he found how much he liked the burn.

Even now, as Yibo inserts two of his fingers to stretch him, Xiao Zhan reflexively spreads his thighs apart to welcome the familiar thickness of Yibo’s fingers. “Yeah,” he pants. "What are you gonna do about it?"

"Gonna breed you, Zhan-ge," Yibo says in a low voice. “I’ll fill you up until there’s a baby growing inside of you.” A bit more slick pushes around his fingers at the words, and Yibo gives a low hum in amusement.

Feeling his face grow hot, Xiao Zhan shivers into his neck. Yibo’s never talked like that to him, and he’s too turned on to sass him back. When Yibo curls his fingers inside of him, he gasps and gently bites around Yibo’s scent gland in an attempt to calm his racing heart. He’s going to come soon if Yibo keeps this up, but he feels amazing just like this.

Yibo’s other hand comes up to caress the back of Xiao Zhan’s neck while he continues stretching him. “Tell me what you want,” he says, and his breath is hot against Xiao Zhan’s ear.

Xiao Zhan twitches from the sensation, hips stuttering against Yibo’s. “I want your knot,” he breathes, shutting his eyes as he loses himself in the pleasure.

Yibo breathes out a little laugh, kissing his cheek. “Go on, then. It’s yours.” He helps Xiao Zhan sit up through his light daze and pulls the waistband of his own sweatpants down to free his dick.

Stumbling off the couch, Xiao Zhan practically throws off his own pants before he climbs back over Yibo and slowly sinks down onto his hard dick. A long moan escapes them both as he bottoms out. The stretch is just right, and their bond feels strongest when they’re connected, amplifying their pleasure.

Yibo strokes his hands up and down Xiao Zhan’s thighs while he adjusts, but Xiao Zhan is moving in little circles anyway. He’s never been patient with Yibo’s dick, and he bites his lips while he tries to pace himself.

Yibo moves one of his hands to rub over Xiao Zhan’s belly. “Imagine how big this would be with a child,” he says, groaning around Xiao Zhan’s grinding. There’s a tone of fondness in his words, but Xiao Zhan braces shaky arms over Yibo’s abdomen as he closes his eyes and tries to bite back a moan.

“Stop it, I don’t want to come yet,” he whines, trying to pout at Yibo. He doesn’t think it works because all he gets is a grin and air-kiss in response.

“You’re so tight around me, how can I resist?” Yibo teases, running innocent lines along his legs. It leaves goosebumps in their wake.

Sitting up again with a groan, Xiao Zhan starts lifting himself off Yibo’s dick and sinking back down into an uncoordinated rhythm, hissing slightly when he goes too fast. He clenches around Yibo’s dick reflexively, making Yibo’s hands tighten over his thighs.

Yibo’s hot gaze roams over his body. They’re both still wearing T-shirts, but Xiao Zhan feels deliciously exposed like this, like Yibo is going to devour him with his eyes. He’s panting slightly as Xiao Zhan picks up his pace, spurred on.

When Xiao Zhan leans back for a different angle, he finally finds his sweet spot. He moans, pausing in his bouncing, until Yibo decides to thrust up.

It’s too much. Xiao Zhan’s arms are wobbling, but Yibo keeps him steady when he moves his hands down to his ass.

“My sexy little omega,” Yibo says. His deep voice is husky with arousal, and he reaches his hands underneath to help him up.

Xiao Zhan gasps at the feeling of his hands enveloping him, the walls of his ass dragging along Yibo’s dick as he’s jerked up and down repeatedly. They both moan, and Xiao Zhan tosses his head back, unable to wait any longer. He’s so close, and he can feel Yibo’s dick swelling even more, the knot starting to come out. He wraps a hand around himself and squeezes around the head.

When one of Yibo’s hands joins his and rubs along the underside, he comes in spurts, spilling across Yibo’s stomach and parts of his shirt. He groans while Yibo continues to pump him, squeezing again around Yibo’s dick, and it makes him come with a groan too.

Then Yibo’s knot locks him into place, the stretch becoming even wider around his rim. “Nngh,” Xiao Zhan moans, oversensitive, and he slumps forward onto Yibo’s chest, attached in the best way possible. Xiao Zhan’s insides are still buzzing, and he flutters his eyes shut as he regains his breath.

Yibo wraps his arms around his waist, breathing heavily into his scent gland while their heartbeats slow down.

“Zhan-ge,” Yibo says after a moment. His voice rumbles against Xiao Zhan’s throat.

“Hmm?” Xiao Zhan hums, turning his head to face him. His hands are curled around Yibo’s shoulders, and he’s rubbing his thumb back and forth along Yibo’s mating bite.

“It’s easier for omegas to get pregnant during a heat, right?” Yibo asks. He ghosts his lips under Xiao Zhan’s chin.

Xiao Zhan makes a noise of assent, considering. “Usually. It didn’t happen during my last heats with you, though.” He tries and fails not to frown.

Yibo rubs his hands soothingly up and down Xiao Zhan’s back. “Is there some way we can trigger your heat?”

Xiao Zhan widens his eyes. He’s not sure if it’s physically possible for him, but maybe things might work differently now that they’re mated. “Your rut, maybe?” he wonders. The last time Yibo had his rut was just before they mated.

“Hmm,” Yibo says, turning them around so Xiao Zhan’s back is against the couch. Xiao Zhan bites back a moan as the knot shifts around inside him. “Then we just wait until my next rut?”

Xiao Zhan perks up a little bit at that, and he loops his arms around his neck to bring them impossibly closer. “Well,” he says, grinning, “we can keep trying in the meantime.”

Yibo grins back at him. “Good,” he says, and he wraps one of Xiao Zhan’s legs around his waist. “I’m not done with you yet.”

And Xiao Zhan is only too happy to try again.

~*~

A few more weeks pass by without any success, but they are truly making more of an effort now. Rather than letting himself feel disappointed, Xiao Zhan has started nesting, getting slightly carried away with preparations for a baby. Yibo too, truth be told.

There’s an empty room in their apartment that they’d been using for storage, and they’ve been cleaning it up and redecorating it over time to make it into a nursery.

They painted the walls a light cream color, with both of them getting random spots of paint on each other as they playfully bumped into each other. It ended up with painted fingerprints on the seat of Xiao Zhan’s jeans, and he laughed when he saw himself in the mirror afterwards. Yibo, meanwhile, had barely escaped with paint in his hair and shoulders.

Framed pictures of Xiao Zhan’s art hang over the dresser and short bookshelf, and there’s a cushioned rocking chair in the corner. The crib sits close to a wall, with tiny plushies of a lion and bunny already sitting inside. The entire room is bathed in shades of beige and wood, and the sunlight from the window in the morning hits the center of the room just right. Yibo says it reminds him of summer in a way.

Their bed, meanwhile, has been filled with fluffy pillows, blankets, and Yibo’s scent. It happened more out of a desire for this sort of comfort, but a tiny part of Xiao Zhan wonders if he could trigger his heat like this. Yibo leaves him more sweaters after he finds out, and now their bed is a warm haven for him to destress.

It all feels terribly domestic, and Xiao Zhan finds himself sighing happily at random moments throughout his days. Even if they can’t conceive, they can still adopt. Or maybe Jianguo can take over the crib. She looks at him from her spot on the kitchen island while he cooks.

“You’d like that, wouldn’t you?” Xiao Zhan asks.

She tilts her head at him in response, leaning down to curl her paws underneath herself.

“You prefer the cardboard boxes instead, huh?”

Jianguo meows.

“Okay, okay,” he says, laughing and feeding her a scrap of grilled fish.

Right as Xiao Zhan turns off the stove, a very strong, familiar scent overpowers the kitchen and catches his attention.

He turns to look at the direction it’s coming from, and he barely gets a “hello” out before Yibo is crashing into his mouth, parting his lips insistently. Xiao Zhan moans by way of greeting instead as his senses are overloaded with pure Yibo. He has to put his arms on Yibo’s shoulders to steady himself, but he knows what’s happening now.

When Yibo backs him up against a counter, Xiao Zhan feels his hardness poking against his thigh. Their bond feels like it’s shooting fireworks into his system. Yibo’s rut. It’s here. Xiao Zhan feels his spine tingling with Yibo’s possessive kissing, and he knows he won’t be able to, nor want to, resist any of his demands.

Xiao Zhan tries to pull away, but Yibo is still launching himself at his face, biting at his neck and wherever he can reach. “Yibo,” he pants, attempting to get his attention.

“Zhan-ge,” Yibo replies, biting particularly hard next to his mating bite. He doesn’t seem very interested in talking.

Xiao Zhan moans, weakly tugging at the hairs of his nape. It at least gets Yibo to look at him, and his eyes look like they’re shining with gold. “Let’s move to the bed, yeah?”

“Why can’t I ravish you here?” Yibo nearly growls, but his eyes look more frustrated than upset. Xiao Zhan wonders how long ago his rut started. He must have been so eager to get home.

“Because I want your knot inside of me, and I can’t move too much once it’s in,” Xiao Zhan pouts, and he sees the unusual gold in his eyes glimmer down to a less intense hue. “Won’t you take pity on your defenseless omega?”

The answer comes in the form of a lick over his mating bite, as if in apology, and Xiao Zhan is dragged all the way to their bed.

The next thing he registers is the warm, naked body of Yibo’s above him as he presses him into the bed, unable to smell anything other than lemongrass and unable to feel anything else, other than the soft comfort of their nest.

He feels lightheaded with the sweet delight of submission, and it’s when Yibo growls, “Mate,” into his ear that blood rushes to his cheeks and a wave of sudden desperation overcomes him. He feels slick gush out in the next second, and oh—it’s here too.

“Yibo,” he tries to gasp in the middle of a deep kiss, but Yibo barely lets him get a word in, the instinct to mate overtaking him. Xiao Zhan’s wrists are pinned down, and he’s pleasantly dazed under the strength of his mate, so he tries to grind his lower body to grab his attention.

Moving a hand down to hold his legs in place, Yibo instead comes in contact with Xiao Zhan’s slick. He pulls away from his mouth to look at his hand, and then Xiao Zhan’s face. “Your heat?”

Xiao Zhan feels his face grow hot as the familiar, usual burn of his heat washes over his body. He nods almost shyly, turning his face to bite onto the knuckle of his free hand while the force of his desire crashes over him. He’s sure he’s releasing endless pheromones by now, but Yibo has moved towards his ass instead, simply playing with and spreading the slick, seemingly unaffected.

“Zhan-ge, you always have so much,” Yibo says in wonder. One of his hands is holding down his hips. His pupils are blown wide, staring intently at his wet ass, and Xiao Zhan wraps a hand around himself to take off the edge. Both of their dicks are leaking precum, but Yibo is acting like he’s forgotten about them.

The building intensity from earlier feels like it’s been halted. Xiao Zhan twitches under Yibo’s deft fingers touching him all along his ass and teasing the opening, but not entering him. “Yibo, please,” he moans, squeezing around the base of his dick.

“Wait, wait,” Yibo says, like he’s solving the greatest mystery of the world. Any other time would be perfect, but the moment feels like an eternity. “Your ass is fleshier than normal. Is it because of this heat?”

Xiao Zhan falters. “What? What do you mean?”

Yibo caresses a generous part of his ass. “I mean your ass basically grew,” Yibo replies, licking his lips. “Lucky me.” He still hasn’t looked away from Xiao Zhan’s ass, just barely slipping his thumb into his entrance.

Xiao Zhan’s eyes are wide. “How is that even possible?” He’s never heard of this happening to any other omega. “You’re teasing me,” he accuses, gritting his teeth and trying to insert his finger further.

“Zhan-ge, I would never lie about your perfect ass. This is definitely a privilege of a mated pair,” Yibo declares arrogantly, and Xiao Zhan would laugh incredulously if he weren’t still terribly horny. Yibo’s continuous groping only serves to make him swear, his large, calloused hand an amazing sort of friction along the sensitive skin of his ass. “Maybe your body is ready for a baby.”

Xiao Zhan involuntarily thrusts up as much as he can. “Yibo…” Xiao Zhan whines, sweat forming at his brows. “Please get in me.”

“But Zhan-ge, what if I just played with your ass today?” Yibo teases, squeezing his ass hard, and Xiao Zhan knows it’s a bluff, but he still tries to grind into Yibo somehow, trying to direct his ass where it wants to be. Yibo simply pinches his ass, pressing him down with his other hand to stop his movement.

He’s ready to burst, writhing with Yibo’s dominance and the need to mate and bear a child. “Fuck me,” he begs, and even more slick flows out of him when Yibo inserts his fingers. Xiao Zhan will scream if he doesn’t get Yibo’s dick in the next five seconds. “Now.”

And Yibo finally takes mercy on him, sliding in smoothly and easily, and Xiao Zhan groans as the slick pushes around Yibo’s dick. He feels the entire length of him inside, their bond burning passionately between them. It already feels like he’s melded against Yibo, but his knot hasn’t even formed yet.

Mind swimming in bliss, Xiao Zhan opens his mouth completely when Yibo’s next thorough kiss comes. He sinks further into the pillows when Yibo pins him down again and starts thrusting roughly. The pace never relents, and Xiao Zhan’s lust-addled mind blurs further and further into pleasure. He wraps his legs around Yibo’s waist, almost sliding backwards with the intensity of his thrusts.

The deeper Yibo goes, the less he can focus on Xiao Zhan’s mouth. He moves his own mouth down to Xiao Zhan’s shoulder and bites there, growling, his weight heavy above him.

Xiao Zhan practically sings out his pleasure, a continuous sound that increases in pitch when Yibo finds his prostate. His back arches up then, and he can feel slick escape from around his hole every time Yibo pulls out. The slide is incredible.

Feeling his knot start to form, Xiao Zhan knows Yibo is approaching his climax. He moans loudly when Yibo’s angle changes, and gasping against his ear, he manages to say, “Breed me.”

Yibo comes, biting hard against his mating bite. He spills inside of him for a long time, and Xiao Zhan comes when he feels the knot fully swollen, vision nearly whiting out as he’s overwhelmed with everything inside of him. There’s so much… of everything. They’re sweaty and sticky, and the aftershocks make them shudder.

They’re both gasping as they come down, and Yibo releases Xiao Zhan’s wrists, pausing to kiss the marks he left on them.

“Oh my god,” Xiao Zhan breathes, chest heaving. “If that didn’t make me pregnant, I don’t know what will.”

Yibo laughs into his shoulder, licking over his earlier bite. “Well, we have a few more days of this anyway.”

Xiao Zhan snorts a little bit, but he agrees, curling his arms around Yibo’s back to hold him close. “Bring it on.”

~*~

As a mated pair, their combined rut and heat leaves them with very small respites between their desire to breed. They barely leave their home or their bed the next few days, drowning in each other’s intoxicating scents.

Rather than sating themselves across any surface (and also, to spare poor Jianguo), Xiao Zhan claims he doesn’t want to waste any of Yibo’s seed. His excuse is that he wants to make sure it takes, but Yibo grins knowingly.

Weeks later, Yibo’s gone for a shoot in Tokyo. Xiao Zhan has missed him terribly over the week he’s been gone, throwing himself into his nest once he gets home from work.

Today, as he curls up on the couch, a warm blanket over himself, he consoles himself with the fact that Yibo’s arriving tonight.

Over the chatter of the variety program on the television, Xiao Zhan places an unopened pregnancy test on the coffee table next to his tea. He had promised to wait until Yibo was home to test himself, but he’s nervous the longer he waits.

They’re feeling confident about it this time, but Xiao Zhan doesn’t want to get his hopes up too much. Instead, he just thinks about how he wants to be wrapped in the comfort of Yibo’s arms when he comes back.

He tries to fall asleep, managing a light doze, and some blurry time later he hears the door shut closed and sits up groggily.

A mix of Bleu de Chanel and Yibo’s scent blends into the air, and Xiao Zhan’s still rubbing his eyes when Yibo reaches him with a, “Hi, baobei.” He tilts his chin up to kiss him, and Xiao Zhan goes easily, making a soft sigh of happiness against his lips. “Did you miss me?” Yibo asks, pulling away.

Xiao Zhan flutters his eyes open, looking at Yibo’s tired but warm eyes. “So much,” he says, pouting half-heartedly.

It only serves to make Yibo smile more warmly at him, and he hugs him for a moment before walking away into their bedroom. “Do you want to take the pregnancy test now? I’m gonna change,” Yibo says.

“Yeah, I’ll do it now,” Xiao Zhan says. They’ve talked about it—if it’s negative, they’re still going to have a family. However the outcome, they will still have a child to nurture and care for.

Yibo asks him about his day while Xiao Zhan goes to the bathroom, and they chat back and forth while Xiao Zhan waits for the result on the stick.

Xiao Zhan is seated on the lid of the toilet seat when Yibo comes in. Wearing one of his usual, well-worn sweaters, Yibo kneels in front of Xiao Zhan and hugs him close.

At the edge of the seat, Xiao Zhan leans his head down and breathes him in deeply. The sweater smells so strongly of Yibo, and his heart feels light with happiness. He’s home.

Yibo’s stroking his back with a thumb when he asks, “Are you ready?”

Xiao Zhan nods as much as he can, kissing Yibo’s mating bite before he pulls away. Holding his breath, he takes the pregnancy test from the counter and looks.

It’s a positive.

Time stops for a moment.

Yibo’s staring directly at him when he turns to tell him, and he’s not sure what kind of face he makes—but it makes Yibo break out into the most beautiful and happy smile.

“You’re pregnant.”

Xiao Zhan feels a lump in his throat hearing the words. The reality starts to set in, and his eyes burn. He exhales with a shudder, and then he’s burying his face into Yibo’s shoulder as his tears fall.

He can’t believe it.

Yibo soothes him the entire time he cries, kissing all over his face and whispering sweet nothings. It takes Xiao Zhan some time to calm down, but Yibo holds him all throughout it.

Xiao Zhan’s face feels puffy and hot by the time his breathing returns to normal. He grabs a few tissues to wipe his face, but he tears up again when he sees Yibo’s shiny eyes and helplessly fond expression.

“My beautiful omega,” Yibo says, caressing his cheek, “we’re having a baby.” His hand moves down to rub Xiao Zhan’s stomach.

Xiao Zhan lets out a slight laugh of disbelief, almost marveling at himself. He had thought it was about time to give up, but he’s relieved neither of them did. “We are,” he breathes. He’s happy. So, so happy.

In the time that will come, they’ll start setting up doctor appointments, rearranging schedules, deciding on a name, buying clothes and children’s books, and maybe playfully bickering over what activities their baby will pursue in the future.

This baby will have no lack of love in their life. Xiao Zhan knows it.

But for now, for this present moment, as Yibo helps Xiao Zhan stand up, it’s time to eat dinner and begin this next chapter in their lives.

~*~

coda

When Yibo was young, he once dreamed about seeing his mate singing their baby to sleep. As he holds their daughter Tianxia in his arms and listens to Xiao Zhan leaning on his shoulder, he realizes it had been a vision for the future.