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Asterius is not entirely familiar with the ways of humans; this much, he knows for sure. It’s a bit of a struggle to piece together an understanding of typical human interactions when from the very moment you are born, your stepfather asks your mother to make sure that he never has to gaze upon you again. When the only love you ever get is from your mother, and even then she seems to fear you, half of the time. When you’re forbidden from even seeing the sun, much less meeting the sunburnt boys who giggle and play with hoops under it. When the very moment you become a man, only taller than any true man, you’re unceremoniously led into a labyrinth.

All of this, and Asterius is still sure of something: most friends do not act this way. They don’t go on at length about their destined meetings or spend time together in between bouts dipping their toes into the Lethe, their fingers entwined with each other’s. And mere friends certainly do not fuck.

But to point this out seems inappropriate given Theseus’ insistence that the two of them are, in fact, destined to clash eternally through life and death, their fates entwined forevermore through blood and sweat and tears (et cetera). It really doesn’t matter if he calls it rivalry or companionship or friendship or romance when the king respects him in a manner that he could have never dreamed of anyone doing in life, let alone the very man who killed him.

And they do clash, and bleed, and sweat in the arena, against opponents and moreover against each other. They cry occasionally as well, though that is mostly Theseus when he’s particularly frustrated. For warriors, this is the ultimate paradise, and Asterius is proud to be in that number. That they also fuck afterwards is merely one of many high points in his days.

And— the sex is very, very good. To his great surprise, Asteirus has found no lack of willing partners in Elysium, and he is happy to indulge in them as he sees fit. Still, it all comes back to Theseus in the end. The king brings his own unique ways to their passionate affairs, insisting that they are having sex as rivals and it is a normal way of blowing off steam after a match. It might drive a less patient man mad, but Asterius finds himself charmed by it.

He finds himself thinking, also, that perhaps there can be more to it than this.

They spar with each other often, and it’s usually afterward that they fuck. Lately they’ve dropped the pretense of the decision being spontaneous, and have begun to make wagers on the results. The winner chooses what they will do; the loser makes a show of fighting for dominance.

For Theseus, Asterius has learned, everything is a show. And so it goes.

Sometimes Asterius wins and he forces the king to bend over, to take his cock after only the briefest time spent slicking it with oil. Sometimes it is Theseus who is the victor and has his way with Asterius, ravishing his asshole and taking his own pleasure from the Minotaur. And the other way around as well: Asterius wins and violates Theseus’ wet and willing mouth and stiff, twitching cock with his tongue or Theseus straddles the Minotaurs and rides him, commanding him to wait to cum until his king is quite satisfied.

This is all to say that they fuck a lot, very enthusiastically and with little ceremony either before or after the act, but always under the pretenses of wagers, of sparring. When they finish they part ways, never so much as bathing together afterwards. There’s a frantic quality to it and certainly passion, but no gentleness, and little affection.

It is all very confusing, but... Asterius is content with it. He is allowed to fight the king, and then he is allowed to please the king, and if the king does not wish to be held close to Asterius’ chest or have sweet words whispered into his ear, well... that is the king’s prerogative.

The question then becomes this: is it what the king wishes?

Theseus is not shy about his desires, and he does not lie to Asterius. But, the Minotaur has noticed after countless bouts against the king, he does lie to himself.

Asterius sees him sometimes, covered in sweat and bruises and cuts from Asterius’ sharp nails, walking to the baths alone— and then glancing back, eyes filled with a wanting that seems so different from lust.

There are some in Elysium that have asked Asterius to take them like Theseus asks for: fast and hard and rough until they’re almost bleeding. But there are just as many who enjoy gazing into his eyes, running their hands through his mane, murmuring soft praises. There are men who embrace Asterius gently even with the strong arms of warriors and tell him that he is so strong, so beautiful, so perfect, as they spill into his ass.

He has learned, also, that the men of Greece tend to think that sex is power and power is sex and some other nonsense about teachers and students and submission, the complexities of which make Asterius’ head spin and bore him to tears all at once. If you want something, you want it. Why fuss about things beyond that?

Theseus, however, is very fussy, and cares about what others think about him very much, and it all adds up to a certain suspicion that the king is holding back.

The next time he is the victor against the king, Asterius decides to finally explore his suspicions. The match is a close one, and ends with Theseus on the floor and Asterius holding him down by the chest, their weapons discarded in favor of wrestling each other to the ground. Asterius is quite proud of his victory; he is learning Theseus better in the arena as well.

“You have won!” Theseus announces to nobody, except Asterius, who already knows. “Now, will you take your prize?”

They’re in a position that would make it very easy to go from fighting to fucking. Just a simple lift of Theseus’ skirts would allow Asterius easy access to his manhood and his asshole alike, and Theseus could do little to stop him even if he was not offering his body in this way.

“I will,” he says, cupping Theseus’ cheek. The Minotaur could take advantage of the situation so easily—and he will, but not in the way that the king expects him to.

Theseus shudders pleasantly at the touch, and his lips fall open as Asterius traces them with his thumb. He moves to take it into his mouth, to make a show of how well he can please Asterius, but Asterius pulls his thumb away. Before Theseus asks why, he replaces it with his lips.

It’s a chaste kiss, or as chaste as they can manage—which is to say, not very. Asterius’ lips are not made for kissing humans, or indeed kissing anybody, but he does have a strong tongue, which is a substitute that Theseus has always seemed quite satisfied with. The kiss is still soft, and Asterius does his best to explore Theseus’ mouth gently rather than choking him with his tongue, as he sometimes does. Theseus makes a small noise of surprise. But not disapproval, Asterius notes.

They do this for a while, just this. Asterius pushes sweat-stuck strands of hair from Theseus’ face with a feather-light touch even as he gently prods further into his mouth, and Theseus moans around the further intrusion. The king always grows hard quickly during these events—sometimes even when they’re still fighting—and now his erection presses into Asterius’ thigh. Still, Asterius only kisses him, enjoying his taste and memorizing each curve of his mouth and tongue, until finally Theseus pushes him away.

On top of his hardness, the king’s face is red all the way to his ears. “Asterius!” he hisses, a stage whisper as most of his whispering tends to be. “What are you doing?”

“Do you dislike it, king?” Asterius asks, tracing Theseus’ pec gently enough so as to, for once, not scratch the surface of his skin. (Perhaps he ought to trim his nails, he thinks, since they naturally grow into a point. He will ask later.)

“I— I do not dislike it, no, but this is not what we usually do, is it?”

He is embarrassed, then, or else what Asterius is doing is so unexpected that he’s not sure how to react. Regardless, Asterius feels equal affection for all aspects of Theseus, no matter how well he hides them away, and he is glad to see this side of him as well.

When they first met, Asterius had thought Theseus as fearsome as a storm and sturdy as the very walls that contained them in the labyrinth. Now he sees a side of him that is shy, and surprisingly vulnerable, and usually unsure how to express these vulnerabilities.

It’s cute.

“I am the victor of this match,” Asterius simply replies. “It’s up to me what we do.”

Theseus raises no objections at this, though he flushes even more deeply, if that is possible. For once he appears to be at a loss for words. Asterius wonders if there is a way he might make him scream.

All in due time. He starts by sitting up and lifting Theseus into his lap, and they sit chest to chest, with Theseus’ legs around his waist.

He kisses him again, deeper this time, and Theseus accepts his sizable tongue with grace, though the king’s moans are muffled around it. Neither of them wears much in the way of clothing, and without much fabric for him to grasp onto, Theseus instead weaves his fingers through the fur on Asterius’ chest, tugging just slightly.

The king himself had painstakingly brushed and oiled Asterius only hours ago, an act that Asterius has never required of him but he also never rejects, for they both enjoy it with equal enthusiasm. Usually Theseus pays little attention to this area when they fuck, or really anything other than Asterius’ cock and hole, but now it feels as though he may never let go, like he’s clinging onto Asterius for dear life.

Had Theseus always cared for him like this because to touch him with the pretense of grooming rather than sex was the easiest way to allow himself to be gentle? To know that Theseus wants him as he does is always a pleasure. But knowing that Theseus wants this, well— that is a bliss that may as well have come from Aphrodite herself.

Theseus’ fingers reach Asterius’ nipples, and he pinches one, twisting just so. Not hard, but still it goes straight to Asterius’ own erection, and when the Minotaur groans in approval Theseus continues his administrations. Asterius might climax just from this if he isn’t careful.

When Asterius finally withdraws his tongue, Theseus is an utter mess, his eyes glazed over with bliss and spit dripping down his chin. He looks almost lost, as though he hadn’t quite thought about a world where he wasn’t kissing Asterius any longer.

Asterius will help him find himself again. It wouldn’t be the first time.

Before he realizes it, Theseus has lowered his head and wrapped his lips around one of Asterius’ nipples, the very same one he had just pinched. Asterius can’t help but flinch in surprise—this, Theseus has never done before—but quickly recovers. It’s soft and wet but the slight graze of Theseus’ teeth is so very welcome, so very satisfying in a way that Asterius has never gotten from their fight-fucking.

Then Theseus sucks, and in the haze of pleasure Asterius thinks, we should do this again.

But the king does not dwell, because he is passionate and because he is eager, and he moves onto other places on Asterius’ body: planting kisses across the muscles of his chest and his shoulders, stroking the small of his back and the curve of his ass, dipping his tongue into his belly button briefly before moving lower, lower. Soon he reaches Asterius’ thighs, and here too he kisses, sucks—not hard enough to be uncomfortable but, Asterius hopes, hard enough to leave marks to remember him by.

Finally, Theseus moves to his cock, but Asterius stops him just a moment before he’s able to wrap his eager lips around it. He looks up to the Minotaur above him, concern in his eyes. “Am I not pleasing you properly, my dear bull?” he asks, and indeed, never before has Asterius stopped him like this. In his eyes, Asterius can see fear, but not of Asterius—no, it is fear of rejection.

Asterius’ response is not in words, and instead he shakes his head and places his hands firmly under Theseus’ arms, pulling him back up. Rather than explaining, he can simply show the king.

Theseus groans his appreciation when Asterius pulls him close, so that their chests and their groins are flush once more. It’s easy to imagine the king taking his cock like this, with Asterius’ hands digging into his hips and slamming him down onto his member, forcing him to enjoy all of it at once but—no. Not this time.

The king likely expects it when Asterius pushes his clothing out of the way, as well as his own, revealing both of their cocks. What he doesn’t expect is for Asterius to wrap his hand around them, enveloping Theseus’ easily. Each of their members are proportionate to their bodies, but Theseus is simply so small compared to him. It’s a lovely sight: the king of Athens, powerful as he is, dwarfed by him.

Asterius begins to stroke, and though their precome is barely enough to stop the friction, the sound that Theseus makes at the touch is delicious.

To be slow was the intention, to be gentle for once, but now Asterius cannot stop himself from moving faster as pleasure quickly pools in his lower half. Theseus’ fingers dig into his back and Asterius matches it with a tighter grip, and then Theseus starts to babble the way that he always does when he nears climax: Asterius, praise all the gods, you touch me so well, I need you to— augh, fuck— more, Asterius, Asterius, Asterius—

And then Asterius forgets that there was a time that Theseus didn’t know his name and forgets that there was ever a time without Theseus. The heat within him builds into a climax and he brays, and then Theseus is screaming too, shouting Asterius’ name as his white-hot come splatters across the bull’s stomach.

It’s funny that they take breaths in Elysium even though there’s no need to have air keep them alive, but they do. Whatever the reason, Asterius is grateful for it now, because he adores the way Theseus’ shoulders heave as he gasps for air, trying to compose himself. How he leans against Asterius’ chest, breathing him in just as he does the air.

Both their come, but mostly Asterius’, coats their bodies, and Asterius can feel it warm and slightly sticky on his belly. They can clean it off eventually; for now, Asterius prefers to wait, and to allow himself to enjoy this.

“That was good,” Asterius says, tracing circles into Theseus’ back.

“Mmm,” Theseus replies. “Always, always. You are too good to me, Asterius. Even when I lose a match with you I don’t feel as though I’ve lost at all.”

“It’s better if we both win, isn’t it? As your partner I care about your satisfaction as much as my own.”

Theseus rolls his shoulders, and with it he moves his head to gaze up at Asterius. He is still lazy in the Minotaur’s arms, but there’s a familiar fire in his eyes. It’s a look that says he has an idea, and that he will do all that he must to carry it out. Asterius knows this look well, and he adores it.

“Then you will indulge me in something else, surely. You are generous with me and so likewise I will be generous with you!” the king says, smirking. His energy has always seemed near limitless in combat, and Asterius relishes in such vigor being taken when they fuck, too.

He does not need to say take whatever you would like to, King. Theseus will gladly do it, even without permission.

Asterius allows Theseus to reposition him, an easy task for the king. He only appears small when he’s by the Minotaur’s side; in actuality, he too is strong as an ox and ten times as deft. Asterius quickly finds himself on his back, legs spread and Theseus kneeling between them.

Elysium has its ways of providing residents all that they wish for, and the king’s desires are simple, primal. And so as he spreads Asterius’ legs wider he is hard again already. He hooks Asterius’ legs around his shoulders as best he can, and though he’s skilled enough to manage it he looks so very small when he’s positioned like this, between two thighs that are each twice as wide as his head.

Theseus reaches higher and runs his fingers through the come on Asterius’ belly, a mixture of both of their orgasms. His touch is feather-light but it still stirs something within Asterius, and he’s sure that he too is ready for more.

“So much,” Theseus murmurs. “Magnificent. You never disappoint, my dear bull.”

He’s always had such a deep appreciation for Asterius’ abilities: his strength, his endurance, and so on. Asterius had never thought much of how much seed his body makes before coming to Elysium—before then, he’d thought of a bull’s semen useful only when he’s used as a stud, and so his own would be useless. But so many of the heroes here have expressed admiration for it, and Theseus, as always, has even more praise for him than most.

Now, Theseus rubs the semen against his belly and his abs, then takes a moment to lift his fingers and flick his tongue against them. If the salty-bitterness of it is unpleasant, the king makes no sign of it, and indeed he smiles an endearing half-smile when Asterius’ cock stirs as he watches him take each drop of seed on his fingers into his mouth.

Need begins to pool in Asterius’ belly once more, and though he is not sure if he wants to give or take, he knows that he wants. The king, it seems, does, and he takes his once-again hard cock in his hand, and touches himself, hard and fast.

The act surprises Asterius at first, and angers him a bit—why stop his touch to pleasure himself?—but he understands quickly enough. Theseus comes fast as well, and this time he’s able to aim his orgasm, between Asterius’ thighs. The Minotaur grunts his approval when more of the warm, sticky come hits his skin. Blessedly, Theseus does not stop to rest now, no doubt invigorated by Elysium, and places his hands on Asterius once again.

“Even better,” Theseus says, looking Asterius over appreciatively, squeezing the meat of his thighs. “But still nothing compared to you. I’d have to come a half dozen times more to match a single one of your loads. But together! Together we’ve accomplished something that is more than the sum of its parts.”

People say that Theseus talks too much. Usually, Asterius is inclined to disagree, but for once he’s beginning to tire of it. “Get on with it,” he says, knowing that Theseus will take no offense. “I thought the loser would service the victor. Was I wrong?”

“You are right, as always,” Theseus replies, grinning wickedly.

He moves to Asterius’ ass next, scooping more of the come into his hand and pushing it into the hole. He is not gentle about it, but his fingers are slim compared to Asterius’ body, and he’s able to easily slip two fingers inside of Asterius.

Being filled with come is not such an odd sensation, but having it pushed into him—this, Asterius has never before felt. It’s something so fulfilling, knowing that more and more of him is being covered in the king’s seed, outside and in. He wonders if he’ll smell of it later, and how long it will take for him to be fully emptied of it.

Theseus thrusts into him and Asterius begins to rock his hips, meeting Theseus with each thrust. Why should this be about winning and losing, about domination and submission, when it could simply be about pleasure?

Asterius still does not understand the ways of men, entirely. But the ways of a beast are to take whatever one desires for himself, and to enjoy it however he sees fit. Men have something to learn from animals, he thinks. Theseus has learned a lot from him.

He’s also learned how to please Asterius best, and now he does so eagerly: pushing a third finger inside, and a fourth, and the stretch of it all is delicious and just barely not too much. Asterius’ eager body accepts the king, his fingers and their slickness as he pushes the come inside of him.

It doesn’t take long for him to climax again, even harder than the last time. Touching himself and the king to completion was exciting, but to have the king push his very essence inside of Asterius—well, that is simply heavenly. Half of Elysium can probably hear him calling Theseus’ name, but Asterius certainly doesn’t care. Let them hear, and let them know how the king satisfies him.

In the end Asterius lies there spent, panting. His eyelashes flutter open to see Theseus, looking down on him with an expression that looks almost like love.

“King. Stay with me, for a while. For once.”

Theseus frowns, looking Asterius up and down. “We are filthy, dear bull.”

“And? I found it enjoyable. I would be pleased to remain here, like this.”

Between the two of them, it is Theseus that cares more about appearances, and for a moment Asterius thinks that his request will be ignored. But: “come with me to the baths, then. Your fur and your mane will need to be redone entirely, and I don’t trust anyone else to do it right.”

There are plenty of things that Asterius struggles to understand, but why he feels most at ease when he’s with Theseus is not one of them.