It is pitch black in the bedroom, save for the golden glow that basks over the couple laying on the bed. Still regaining his breath, Childe stares up at the ceiling and listens to the sound of Zhongli panting beside him, just as worn out from their nightly activities as he is. He pulls him closer so that the ex-Archon’s head rests on his chest, admiring the way the ombre tips of his hair pulses like a beacon in the shadows.
Childe catches a lock of hair between his fingers and watches gold reflecting onto his skin. It’s times like this that he wonders how he ended up with Zhongli in his arms; the same Zhongli who was once the Archon of Liyue and the God of Contracts. He remembers the shock he felt when he first found out Zhongli was the Geo Archon he’d been sent on a mission to eradicate, and how that shock turned into bitter betrayal at the thought of being so easily fooled by him.
...But that’s an issue they’ve moved on from. It’s been a few months since Childe has forgiven Zhongli for pulling that stunt off, and in that time frame they’ve somehow ended up dating as well as sleeping together. Luckily for Zhongli, good sex makes it very difficult for Childe to carry on holding a grudge.
Nevertheless, there are times when he can’t fathom why in the world Zhongli is with him.
Childe strokes back Zhongli’s hair and combs his fingers through the strands that have become tangled after numerous rounds of sex. In his arms, the ex-Archon remains still. Peaceful.
“Xiansheng,” Childe whispers. “Are you still awake?”
Zhongli stirs slightly. “Hm… I am.” He lifts his head to peer up at Childe, amber eyes almost luminescent in the dark.
“I’m curious… Have you ever had other lovers before me?”
Zhongli’s eyebrows raise ever so slightly and his lips part, still silent, but the minuscule change on his face is enough for Childe to know he hadn’t anticipated that question—which is understandable, because he didn’t expect to ask it either.
For a while, Zhongli doesn’t say anything. Childe begins to regret ever opening his big mouth. Everyone knows that asking about your partner’s exes is a one way ticket to a bad conversation.
Zhongli props himself up on his elbows, staring intently at him. “It would depend on your definition of a lover. I believe what we have now is a romantic relationship, yes?”
Childe smiles. “I should hope so.”
“Hmm, I have had lovers in the past, but there was no acknowledgement of a relationship…”
“Oh, but you slept with them?”
Zhongli nods. “Some of them, yes, and I felt strongly for them even when my knowledge of emotions at that time was still rather limited.”
Mulling over those words, Childe gazes back up at the ceiling. He’ll have to admit he didn’t anticipate that answer. Of course, he knows that Zhongli is over six thousand years old and he shouldn’t have expected him to have been alone for the entirety of that time… Still, the thought of the ex-Archon being with someone else in the past…
Childe’s arm snakes around Zhongli’s waist just a bit tighter as an unnecessary surge of jealousy courses through him.
“Huh,” he says, not really knowing what else he can say.
Zhongli’s hand cups his cheek, pulling his face down until Childe has to look at him. “Are you surprised?”
“A bit,” Childe reluctantly admits. “But I guess I should have expected that someone who’s over six thousand years old would have had lovers at some point.”
“It has been a while since I have been with someone other than yourself.”
Common sense tells him to drop the subject, but, unfortunately, Childe and common sense are two things that rarely go hand in hand.
“Who?” he asks, already regretting it. “Who… have you slept with in the past?”
Again, Zhongli is quiet for a moment, staring off into the distance as if he’s seeing something other than the wall.
“Azhdaha,” he murmurs, then pauses, looking back at Childe. “Osial—”
“Osial?!” Childe coughs, grimacing at the volume he blurted that out. “Sorry, but—Osial? I thought you two were enemies!”
Zhongli sighs. “We did not begin as enemies.”
Still reeling from the shock, Childe remembers Zhongli mentioned another name he’s unfamiliar with. “Who’s the other one?”
“Azhdaha,” the adeptus answers quietly. “He was a dragon king.”
‘Was a dragon king’, meaning that, like Osial, he, too, is long gone.
Really, what did Childe expect when he asked about this? Osial? And some dragon king? He wants to be reasonable. They’re both gone now, which means they’re not a threat.
Zhongli is the only person he’s ever been in a serious relationship with, therefore he’s still getting used to certain feelings associated with such. He tries his best not to get jealous or over-protective, especially when he’s fully aware Zhongli can take care of himself, but it’s feeling insecure over the most stupid things that Childe hates .
“They are all gone now,” Zhongli says belatedly, perhaps to reassure him.
“Sometimes I wonder how I ever ended up with someone like you,” Childe finds himself saying.
Zhongli frowns. “What do you mean?”
Childe’s father once told him that if he wanted something, he ought to do anything to ensure he gets it; and should he succeed in that, then his next goal would be to make sure he never loses it, ever. It was one of those overzealous speeches his father told him as a kid, and little Ajax took that to heart a bit too much. Suffice to say, Childe doubts his father intended his sweet son to use that advice in his deranged goal to be stronger than everyone in the world.
How fitting that his father’s words choose now of all times to echo in Childe’s head.
There’s no looming threat in the horizon that will steal Zhongli away from him… Even so, the thought of losing the ex-Archon is not what bothers him the most.
No, what bothers Childe the most is that…
“Childe?” Zhongli’s voice drags him away from his thoughts. Like last time, he holds Childe’s cheek, forcing him to meet his gaze. “Something is bothering you.”
Childe forces a smile on his face and shoves his silly thoughts away for tonight.
“It’s nothing,” he says. “Don’t worry about me, xiansheng.”
Zhongli’s eyebrows pinch together into a frown and he opens his mouth to retort, but Childe quickly interrupts him with a kiss. He crawls over the ex-Archon, sliding their lips together until Zhongli eventually relaxes underneath him. All traces of their conversation is forgotten as soon as Childe sinks back into Zhongli’s tight warmth, wasting no time in pounding into the spot that makes his lover see stars.
That’s what he focuses on instead: Zhongli moaning in his arms, rather than the dark insecurities refusing to leave him alone.
It has been almost a whole week since Zhongli last saw Childe, and while a week is not an alarming length of time, it’s rather worrisome given the way their last meeting progressed. Zhongli cannot let go of the feeling that something had bothered the Harbinger during their conversation. As to what this could be, unfortunately he has no clue.
Even after being with him for months, Childe remains an enigma to the ex-Archon. Everything about him is contradictory. Chaos. He wears emotion so freely on his face, yet Zhongli can never fathom if his smiles are truly genuine or not. He can be the most loving partner in bed, showering Zhongli with praises and reassurance, and still come back home the next day covered in blood, sharing tales of how exhilarating his last kill was.
Zhongli had long stopped trying to solve the mystery that is Childe. Besides, the human’s conflicting attributes and chaotic personality are what attracted him in the first place. Zhongli would not change him for the world.
However, it is times like this that he wishes he can look into Childe’s mind and understand what occurs in there.
After the fifth day of Childe’s disappearance, Zhongli decides to take matters into his own hands. He enters the Northland Bank and scans the reception area for any signs of the Harbinger.
Upon entering, he immediately regrets his decision of coming here during peak hours. There are so many customers in the bank that it’s as if he has walked into the market in the midst of a festival. Despite the large volume of people here, it takes him mere seconds to scan the crowd, failing to spot anyone with red hair.
Slightly disappointed, Zhongli makes his way towards the receptionist’s desk.
“Good morning, Miss Ekaterina. Is Childe here by any chance?”
The young woman looks up and offers him a polite smile in spite of the grey bags underneath her tired eyes.
“Mr. Zhongli, good morning. I'm afraid the Lord Harbinger is not here at the moment, but he told me to deliver this letter to you,” she says, handing him a small envelope.
A letter? How strange. Zhongli takes it and slides it into his coat.
“Thank you. If you happen to see Childe, please tell him I am looking for him.”
Ekaterina nods. With that, Zhongli bids farewell and leaves the bank, sighing in relief once he can breathe in some fresh air.
He takes out the letter from within his pocket and frowns at it. It’s strange of Childe to send him this rather than talk to him in person.
Now even more puzzled than ever, Zhongli tears open the letter and quickly scans the short message written in Childe’s messy scrawl.
Meet me at the Golden House at nine in the evening. Don’t bring anyone with you.
That is all. The letter does little to alleviate the plethora of questions dashing about in Zhongli’s head. If anything, it adds more. Why would Childe choose the Golden House as their destination, and why is it imperative for Zhongli to come by himself?
It is not as though he doesn’t trust Childe. While the rest of Liyue may think of him as an abhorrent villain, Zhongli knows Childe will never hurt him. He will trust what the letter instructs him to do and meet with the Harbinger at the designated time.
Zhongli slides the letter back into his coat pocket and gazes up at the sky. It is still midday and the sun’s rays glare back, reminding him there are still many hours to endure until he can meet with Childe.
He sighs. There is nothing he can do but wait for the evening to approach. Zhongli makes his way back to the funeral parlour, eager to be reunited with the elusive Harbinger.
Zhongli enters the Golden House at exactly nine in the evening. As soon as he sets foot inside, he sees that it’s eerily empty, so empty that every step he takes echoes throughout the large chamber.
He walks towards the centre and scans his surroundings. There is nothing here but him and the endless piles of Mora around the circular room, some large enough to be mountains of gold taller than he is.
Strange. Did he arrive too early? Childe is just as punctual as Zhongli is with their meetings, often arriving before the designated time. To be certain, Zhongli reads through the letter once again, checking that Childe did, indeed, ask to meet at—
Zhongli throws himself back, barely missing the sudden burst of energy that has exploded from where he was standing. In that spot is now a thick fog of smoke that blocks the view of what he assumes is his assailant. He can only make out a single silhouette, much, much larger than he is. As it dissipates, he summons forth his spear and surrounds himself with a barrier of jade.
Is this an ambush?
The fog clears. Zhongli’s eyes widen.
Before him is a creature that is at least twice his size. Although humanoid, its shape is the only thing that’s remotely human about it. It hovers above him, so large that Zhongli’s own height is only able to reach at the level of its crotch. If he were to hazard a guess, he would say this creature must be over ten feet tall, perhaps even close to eleven.
An ebony skin-tight suit covers it from head to toe, but it is an attire that doesn’t seem to be of this world. What is even more other-worldly is the cape that billows behind it, for it looks like a projection of the galaxy rather than something that is made from cloth. Zhongli has never seen anything like it.
He’s not sure how to react. The creature slowly descends like a messenger announcing the end of days. It doesn’t have eyes, or at least Zhongli doesn’t seem to think so; instead, it wears a red mask with a large purple orb in the centre. The only indication the creature is looking at Zhongli is that its head is turned towards him.
They stare at each other.
Then, the creature raises its weapon—a polearm crackling with bursts of electro—and lunges.
Zhongli does not blink or move. His shield withstands the attack, pulsing gold as the creature slashes and slashes. This close, he truly feels like an insect standing before a mountain. When he sees the cracks gradually forming at his jade shield, Zhongli jumps back, dodging the incoming attack just as his defences shatter.
He didn’t expect his shield to be so easily destroyed. This thing is as strong as it is large.
What is this creature? More importantly, where is Childe?
Urgency claws at Zhongli’s chest. Could it be this creature had attacked Childe too? Is Childe hurt?
Zhongli grips his spear tighter and charges towards the creature, meeting its next strike with his own. With the thought of Childe in danger, he does not hold back now, calling forth his spear to rain down and leaving this creature with no chance to dodge—
But it does. It dodges all of the spears hurtling towards it, and it even manages to transport out of reach when Zhongli summons his meteor. Most of the ex-Archon’s enemies would be petrified or crushed to dust by this time, but this creature remains unfazed. It fights as if it recognises all of Zhongli’s attacks, predicting what he will do before he has a chance to think of his next move.
Perplexed, Zhongli surrounds himself with his jade shield once more and takes this moment to breathe. For now, the creature has phased to the other side of the room, taunting him. Waiting.
It raises its weapon—Zhongli tenses, anticipating the attack—and the polearm morphs, turning itself into a bow instead. Zhongli does not have time to puzzle over this before the entire floor of the chamber ripples with water. He frowns at his soaked feet, now submerged in shallow waves. This creature’s element had been electro before, but it has now switched—
Zhongli’s head snaps up. He looks up in time to see a gigantic whale descending down on him.
His shield shatters within seconds. He’s thrown back by the overpowering tide that crashes into him, soaking him from head to toe and drowning his world in a flash of blue and endless waves.
Zhongli forces himself to move. The water clings to him, so cold it stabs straight through his skin and down to his bones. He summons his spear again, managing to block another strike from the relentless creature as it dives towards him.
He dodges its next attacks, and the two partake in a dance of blades and parries. As the creature’s blade narrowly misses his shoulder, Zhongli notices that its weapon is indeed that: a blade. This creature has now transformed it from a spear, to a bow, and now it is using it in the form of dual blades.
There is only one person that he has ever witnessed do such a thing.
Zhongli allows the creature to carry on its onslaught while he assesses each of its attacks. No, he should have noticed it earlier, but he’d been too enraptured by its sheer size that he did not watch how it moved.
Every single attack is a reflection of Childe in battle.
This creature… Is this Childe?
The creature—Childe disappears, only to phase back above him. Zhongli only has time to blink before Childe plunges down in an explosion of electro and debris. Dust obscures everything for an endless second, but despite the attack, Zhongli is left untouched. He can feel the familiar hum of his shield, having managed to instinctively encase himself mere seconds before Childe struck.
When Zhongli opens his eyes again, Childe is towering over him, his cape spreading as if to swallow both of them whole. Zhongli remains on the floor, eyes wide as he takes the form of his lover before him.
This Childe... This Childe is monstrous in every aspect. Zhongli is horrified at what he has turned into, and the thought of the strain it could place on his body, the risk he is putting himself at…
But, along with the shock, there’s… there is a heat deep in his gut; the rapid pulse of his heart, rushing faster the longer he takes in Childe’s new form. Thoughts creep into his head, morbidly excited at the prospect of his lover being much larger than he is.
He gulps, licking his lips. This is unbecoming of him… He knows nothing about how or why Childe ended up like this, yet he is now plagued with thoughts of being overpowered by him. Oddly enough, the idea excites the ex-Archon, who has rarely felt overpowered by anything nor anyone, especially a mortal of all things.
“Childe,” Zhongli calls, watching as Childe’s shoulders tense the moment he hears his name.
Zhongli pushes himself up to his feet. Eyes fixed on the Harbinger, he carefully approaches him as one would approach an animal ready to strike.
Childe does not move. Zhongli stops in front of him, finally releasing the breath he’d been holding.
“I want to see you,” Zhongli says. He stretches out his hand and waits, staring up at the colossal man still hovering before him. Childe is far too big for him to reach his face.
He’s met by silence. Childe remains suspended in mid-air, surrounded by diamond stars that blink in and out of his cape. It occurs to Zhongli that Childe may not understand him in this current form. How much of his lover is left exactly? Does he still retain Childe’s thoughts, or is he more beast than man now?
Zhongli takes another step forward. “Ajax?”
Slowly, ever so slowly, Childe lowers himself until he’s kneeling on one knee in front of him. Now, Zhongli is able to look directly at the Harbinger as he’s within eye-level like this. Not for the first time today, Zhongli feels laughably small compared to him; Childe’s shoulders are almost twice the width of his body. The stark difference, for some reason, makes Zhongli’s pulse gallop like a frenzied horse.
Zhongli inhales a deep breath and closes the distance between them. He reaches for Childe’s mask and strokes up the sharp ridges, noting that it is quite similar to the one the Harbinger normally wears on his head. The colour is the same, and while this mask is larger and more angular, its shape is similar as well.
“Take this off?” Zhongli asks. “Let me see you, Ajax.”
Although he cannot see Childe’s face, Zhongli senses hesitation from him. It’s in the way his shoulders jerk back, the action so minuscule that it would be unseen to the untrained eye.
Then, Childe nods and his mask disintegrates into atoms.
Zhongli holds his breath until he is able to see the Harbinger’s face. It’s Childe, exactly as he remembers him, although not completely. His hair is longer, thicker, slicked back away from his face and resembling a lion’s mane—but it is his eyes that cause Zhongli to pause. Rather than the aquamarine abyss he’s accustomed to staring into, they are now a foreign hue of purple.
A dozen thoughts are rushing in Zhongli’s mind: some are questions wondering how Childe acquired this ability, and if there are risks and consequences associated with it; some are concerned objections, wanting to tell Childe to avoid using this form as it will obviously harm him.
Zhongli decides to leave that discussion for another time. For now, he holds Childe’s face in his hands and leans in, brushing his lips against his. At first, Childe is deathly still, and the only response Zhongli receives is a slight twitch of his lips, hesitant to return the kiss. This, however, does not deter him. Zhongli continues to press light kisses all over Childe’s mouth until, finally, he can feel the Harbinger responding.
Pleased, Zhongli parts his lips open just as Childe’s tongue slips inside, and to his surprise, he finds that it’s slightly larger than what he’s used to. Curious, he sucks in the larger tongue, shuddering when Childe takes this as an initiative to explore his mouth. How strange that he has kissed Childe countless times, and yet this is now a new experience for him. Everything about this form is so different, so overwhelming that it makes Zhongli tremble with anticipation.
Zhongli is the first to pull away, gasping for breath—but Childe is merciless now that he’s overcome his hesitation. He swoops back in to claim Zhongli’s lips, knocking the ex-Archon back with his eagerness. Zhongli falls onto the floor with a grunt, the noise swallowed down by Childe as he crawls over and cages him under his large body.
He’s devoured by kisses so fierce that he wonders if Childe is treating this like another battle, giving him no reprieve while he slides their lips together in a bruising lock. Zhongli surrenders with no second thought. He wraps his arms around Childe’s neck, pulling him closer. A deep grumble of approval comes from the Harbinger, and he slides an arm under Zhongli’s back, nudging him to sit up as if he’s naught but a weightless toy.
The difference in their forms makes Zhongli dizzy. He wants more. He craves to experience pleasure from this Childe too. It nags at him like forbidden whispers in the back of his mind, wondering if he will be able to withstand this; how big Childe will be, and what it would feel to have him inside…
It’s only when a moan escapes Zhongli does Childe come to a stop. He quickly jerks away, leaving the ex-Archon feeling cold without his crushing weight over him.
Childe huddles into himself, resembling a sulking puppy rather than an unknown creature that could belong in the nightmares of children. Zhongli finds himself unable to hold back an endeared smile.
“Why did you stop?” Zhongli interrupts.
Childe blinks incredulously at him, motioning towards himself, and then to Zhongli. “We shouldn’t. Not when I’m in this form. I’ll hurt you, xiansheng.”
Shaking his head, Zhongli takes Childe’s hand and tries to pull him back down.
“I trust you,” he insists. “I want you.”
Childe stares at him as if he has gone mad, and perhaps he has, but as of this moment, Zhongli wants nothing more than for Childe to take him in this form.
“You want me,” Childe repeats, “right now? In this form?”
Zhongli nods. He swings his legs over Childe’s midriff—and, oh, he really is amusingly small. His knees are barely able to touch the ground when he sits atop him.
“Yes, Ajax, I want you. Right now. You won’t hurt me.”
Childe’s purple eyes darken ever so slightly, his voice lowering. “Oh, I’m pretty sure I will.”
The abrupt change makes Zhongli ache. He finds he does not care if it hurts, only that Childe needs to take him now.
Zhongli rubs his palms up and down the foreign suit adorning the Harbinger’s body. He slides himself back and gasps as his bottom brushes against a very large bulge straining against the skin-tight suit Childe wears. It’s much, much larger than he expected.
Desire spikes through him, mindlessly intense, possessing him to grind against that huge bulge until he’s letting out moans that would normally bring him to shame.
Underneath, Childe groans in chorus with him, bucking his hips up.
Zhongli locks eyes with him. “For this, I will be sure to endure the pain.”
He immediately sees the way Childe’s pupils dilate with lust. Childe’s sharp gauntlets dig into Zhongli’s waist, not enough to hurt but enough for him to hiss out loud. Shameless as his body is, he’s already painfully aroused, his length creating a wet patch in his trousers. It’s maddening how easily Childe can reduce him to this.
“Let me try to prepare you, at least,” Childe says, before lifting Zhongli as if he weighs nothing.
Surprised, Zhongli takes a few seconds to regather his surroundings. Childe had flipped him around so Zhongli’s back is now facing him. Rather than sitting on his waist, Zhongli is now sitting on Childe’s chest, dangerously close to his face.
He tenses, already aware of what Childe has in plan. The tips of the Harbinger’s sharp gauntlets slip underneath Zhongli’s pants, cold metal brushing against bare skin. Zhongli shivers, unconsciously pushing his bottom back until it bumps against Childe’s chin.
In one swift move, Childe yanks Zhongli’s pants down and lifts him up again. Zhongli shakes his head against the sudden surge of vertigo from being manhandled so easily—but it is not only vertigo that he feels. There’s also the intense desire for Childe to touch him—now. He has never felt so impatient in his entire life. It’s as though there are fireworks crackling underneath his skin, ready to set off the moment Childe gives him what he craves.
When Childe finally lowers him onto his face, Zhongli groans at the wet muscle that instantly prods at his hole. Yes, this is what he wants. Parting his legs wider, he closes his eyes and moans in approval as Childe swirls that large tongue around his entrance. He does this until Zhongli is wet from his spit and shaking with need.
“Yes,” Zhongli encourages, wriggling his hips. “More, Childe.”
As soon as the plees leave him, Childe presses down on Zhongli’s thighs, crushing him closer to his face. Zhongli gasps as Childe pries his ass cheeks apart, pushing his face closer while he laps at the soaked entrance, dipping his tongue in and out every few seconds; enough to make the ex-Archon tense up, yet not enough to satisfy the delirious voice in his head begging for more, more .
“Stop teasing,” Zhongli grits out, surprised by the impatience in his own voice.
He is almost convinced he can feel Childe smiling against him.
Zhongli’s voice cuts off into a gasp as Childe’s tongue plunges inside him. He lets out a satisfied moan—thank Celestia. Childe is unbearably skilled with that mouth of his, able to render Zhongli boneless within seconds. His thoughts turn incoherent, only able to focus on the slick tongue devouring him as if he's Childe’s last meal, lapping him up until he’s dripping wet.
Zhongli does not even realise he has begun grinding against Childe’s mouth, the sounds coming out of him growing louder and louder by the second. Each moan and whine he utters out resounds through the vast chamber, amplifying to the point where a part of him worries that people outside may hear—
But that concern is soon forgotten once Childe slides a finger inside him.
Celestia , his finger is much, much larger in this form. Vaguely, Zhongli notes that Childe must have taken his gauntlets off at some point, for he can only feel the thick protrusion of his digit digging deep inside him. The lack of oil makes it sting slightly, but it is a pain that quickly transforms into pleasure. It takes Childe mere seconds to locate the spot that has Zhongli’s eyes rolling back, his toes curling, and the heat in his gut spreading like wildfire.
"Yes, Ajax, right there," Zhongli keens, all but sobbing when Childe presses down harshly on the sensitive gland.
Childe’s tongue prods at Zhongli’s tight entrance, licking around until his finger is able to slide in and out without trouble. By this point, Zhongli is eagerly bucking into him, desperate for any form of release. Every time that finger rubs against his prostate, Zhongli is reduced to a quivering mess. The moans spilling out of his lips do not even sound like him anymore.
“Please,” Zhongli begs, although he cannot elaborate what it is he wants Childe to do, only that he must never stop. “Please, Childe. I need, I need—”
As always, Childe seems to know what he yearns before Zhongli is aware of it himself. A second digit squeezes past his hole—and Childe pulls back, then rams his fingers in, drilling them into Zhongli’s prostate.
“Oh, gods,” Zhongli gasps, ignoring the irony of that statement. When Childe touches him like this, he forgets he is a god. Sometimes, it feels as if he forgets his own name.
Childe does it again, and again, and again. The force that he rams his fingers inside is so strong that Zhongli is knocked forward each time. Unable to hold himself up any more, his head slumps against the enormous bulge under Childe’s suit. He can feel his climax approaching. Everything is burning. This craving to be filled, to be stuffed full is all he can think about—all he has ever wanted.
Struggling to breathe, Zhongli claws at Childe’s pants with trembling hands. His head is running around in circles. It’s impossible to figure out how this attire works.
An uncharacteristic whine escapes him. “Ajax. I want this off,” Zhongli says, pulling Childe’s clothes in vain.
There’s a muffled grunt that comes from behind him, and then the lower half of Childe’s suit disappears into atoms just like his mask had. Perhaps in another time, Zhongli will puzzle over how this strange form—along with its attire—works exactly, but for now he is too preoccupied with the revelation in front of him. It is as he expected; Childe is frighteningly big. Zhongli’s pulse quickens at the colossal size of him, eyes running up and down the thick girth, imagining what it would be like to squeeze it inside… if such a thing were possible.
It is safe to say that Childe’s dick is roughly the same length as his forearm. If Zhongli were to ride it, he is sure it would rearrange his insides and crush his guts. That thought should horrify him—really, he should not even be considering sexual intercourse with Childe in this inhuman form—but all Zhongli can think about is that he wants this. Needs this. He yearns for Childe to push him to his limits, to fully and utterly own him.
Licking his lips, Zhongli reaches forward. Archons, Childe’s cock is so thick that Zhongli is barely able to wrap both of his hands around it. Large veins protrude out of the monstrous thing, its length so gigantic that Zhongli notes—with both horror and a concerning dollop of excitement—that it reaches up to his stomach. His mouth salivates and he can’t resist the temptation of licking the engorged head, tasting the cum already leaking out.
Childe tastes the same as always, but now it is impossible for Zhongli to fit him into his mouth. He makes do with licking around the swollen head, lapping at the tip until he hears his lover hiss behind him. Zhongli sucks the weeping slit, humming contently when he tastes more cum dripping out.
In response, Childe groans behind him. “Xian… Xiansheng. Use your hands.”
Zhongli complies, wrapping both of his hands around the girth and trying his best to pump him. From behind, Childe goes back to sliding his fingers in and out of Zhongli’s hole, each brush against his prostate making it difficult for the adeptus to focus on the task at hand. It’s even worse when those deliciously long fingers scissor inside him, stretching his tight walls while Childe slurps at his puckered rim. Zhongli clumsily strokes Childe’s cock, unable to keep a rhythm, let alone focus, when all he wants is to come—he’s so close—so close.
He wrings his hands up and down the length while swirling his tongue around the tip. He doubts he’s doing a good job at all. It’s impossible to even think when Childe is still ramming his fingers in and out, filling the chamber with the squelching noises of Zhongli’s hole taking them in each and every time. His inner thighs are now soaked with the Harbinger’s spit, but he knows this is still not enough to fit that tremendous dick inside him. It will completely ruin him and his only hope of being able to take it is that he’s an adeptus. A normal human would never be able to survive such a—
Zhongli cries out loud the moment a third finger pistons into him. It’s too much. Childe relentlessly jabs again and again into his sensitive prostate, again—again—again—until Zhongli is spasming, squirting cum out within seconds.
Writhing, Zhongli claws at Childe’s thighs as the Harbinger mercilessly pounds into the same spot. His grip is too strong. Zhongli cannot hope to escape him. He’s reduced to trembling pathetically, out of breath and over-stimulated. Gods, gods, Childe is driving him mad and they have barely even begun yet.
“Stop,” Zhongli gasps. His trembling hands reach behind him in an attempt to settle the Harbinger. “Ajax—ah, please! E-Enough!”
Childe quickly retracts his fingers. “Sorry,” Zhongli hears him saying. “Did I hurt you?”
Even in the form of a gigantic creature, Childe is still as attentive as ever. Zhongli takes a few seconds to gulp in as much air as he can and attempts to calm the chaos that now resides in his head. After a while, he finally has enough strength to turn himself around, facing Childe once again.
Zhongli gives him a smile. “You did not,” he reassures with a soft kiss. “But I’d prefer to climax with you inside me next time.”
He pushes himself up to his feet and calmly slips his shoes and socks off. He doesn’t have to look at Childe to know he is staring intently when he bends over, his eyes likely roaming over every expanse of Zhongli’s body. The thought excites him.
His jacket soon follows, pooling in a soaked heap below his feet. Turning around, he steps over it and saunters closer to Childe, who is now staring at him with wide eyes. Zhongli fights the urge to smile in amusement. His Ajax is as predictable and adorable as always.
Using his teeth, Zhongli pulls his right glove off, then does the same with the left one. Those soon follow the pile of clothes on the floor. As he moves onto discarding his shirt, Zhongli makes a show of slowly unfastening each button, keeping his gaze fixed on his lover’s face.
Zhongli’s heart races when he sees the Harbinger has now started to pump his own cock while watching him strip. For a moment, he is mesmerised by the sight of Childe thrusting up into his fist with groans that tempt Zhongli to join him. His eyes hungrily roam over that long length, fixated on the bulbous head, so red and swollen, leaking pearlescent seed. Childe squeezes the tip and presses a finger to the slit, groaning Zhongli’s name.
Zhongli licks his lips and slowly inhales a shuddering breath. Miraculously, he manages to tear his gaze away from the tantalising show. He slips his shirt off his shoulders and drops that onto the floor as well.
Next, he pulls his trousers and underwear down, allowing the Harbinger a perfect view of his bottom as he innocently strips. Childe never fails to mention that he adores how plump Zhongli’s ass is, and how tempting it is to grab it whenever it’s within reach. Zhongli had always brushed those comments away with a modest huff, but this time he purposely sways his hips and smiles in triumph when he hears Childe hiss behind him.
As he turns back around, Zhongli sees Childe’s jaw clenching, clearly impatient. If Zhongli wasn’t so impatient as well, he would have dawdled for much longer, but as it stands, if he does not seat himself on Childe’s dick any moment now, he may lose his mind. Zhongli steps away from his clothes and stands fully bare in front of the Harbinger, watching the way he drinks him in, hunger evidently stirring in his abyssal eyes.
Slowly, Zhongli crawls over the Harbinger’s large body and lowers himself back down on his lap, staring at the impressive girth in front of him. It stands fully erect in all its intimidating glory, its sight alone enough of a warning for the minuscule part of Zhongli that’s still sensible enough to acknowledge how terrible this idea is.
Sensible as it may be, it is also easily brushed aside.
“Are you sure about this?” Childe asks. He strokes Zhongli’s hips, helping him position himself over the engorged tip. “You… You’re much smaller than I am right now. I’m not even sure I can fit.”
“It’s unlike you to back down from a challenge so easily,” Zhongli teases, sparing a glance at him. When they lock gazes, Zhongli circles his hips, biting back a moan as the tip of Childe’s dick rubs around his hole.
Childe’s fingers dig into his waist. “I don’t think I’m the one partaking in the challenge, xiansheng. Looks like the challenge is mainly for you.”
Zhongli smiles. “Then I’m not one to back down from a challenge so easily.”
With that, he drops himself on Childe’s enormous cock.
For a second, he thinks the world blacks out. He must have screamed out loud, because he vaguely hears Childe calling for him, asking again and again if he is okay—but Zhongli cannot even form words if he wanted to. White-hot agony scorches his entire body, emptying his brain, rendering his limbs and bones useless. It hurts, there are no words to describe it other than it hurts. He feels so full, so stuffed, that he has to bite down at his lip and resist the urge to be sick on the spot. He can’t breathe. Can’t move. When he looks down, he sees what he expected, but it still makes his surroundings sway at the shocking sight.
There is a sickening bulge protruding deep into his stomach, clearly the outline of Childe’s length. Zhongli chokes on it, sucking in huge gulps of air, both to calm himself down and to breathe. It was not his best idea to take all of this in one go. If he were human, he would surely not survive this.
“Zhongli, Zhongli,” Childe frantically calls, shaking him by the shoulder. “Are you fucking crazy? Get off—get off right now, you’re hurting yourself—”
With as much strength as he can, Zhongli grinds against him, wincing as the thick girth stirs his guts. Childe is crammed so tight inside him that he can feel every infinitely-tiny move he makes as if it’s intensified twice as much. The Harbinger could twitch ever so slightly and it will destroy him.
Zhongli squeezes his eyes shut and shakes his head. “No,” he weakly says. “I… I will adjust. W-Wait a moment.”
There are more objections from Childe, all of which Zhongli does not have the energy to listen to. He keeps his eyes shut, counting the long, torturous seconds to himself as his body numbs with adepti healing. It’s no surprise when his arms and legs darken into charcoal, set alight by golden geo sigils circuiting his skin.
“Xiansheng..? What’s… going on? Are you okay?”
Ah, that’s right. Childe has never seen this form of his before. It seems he’s not the only one revealing something tonight.
“Don’t worry,” Zhongli reassures. When the pain gradually numbs away, he lifts himself up a few inches and drops back down. A shaky breath escapes him. It still burns to be so brutally stretched, although it no longer feels like he is being torn from the inside. “This is, ah, rather close to my true form…”
Determined, he grits his teeth and settles for an unsteady rhythm as he moves himself up and down Childe’s length. Under him, the Harbinger curses, moaning Zhongli’s name. His fingers tighten his hold on Zhongli’s waist as if trying to resist the urge to thrust up. That will not last long. Childe has never been able to control his own desires; Zhongli knows this all too well.
Only able to shallowly ride him, Zhongli starts out slow, each push and pull dragging his insides along with it. It should be agonising, but the numbing sensation of his adepti magic only translates the pain into pleasure.
It’s… incredible. There is no word that comes close to describing this sensation. It’s as though Childe is reaching every crevice inside him, completely and utterly owning all of his body.
Zhongli has always enjoyed the union between a couple during intercourse; and Childe has never failed to pleasure him out of his mind every time they engage in it. Childe in bed is very similar to how he acts in battle; he seeks to destroy the other person and make them submit to him. Every time, without fail, Childe will reduce Zhongli to a sorry state; the ex-Geo Archon will be completely unrecognisable as he bounces on his lover’s cock, moaning louder than any prostitute from the Pearl Galley.
The same can be said for now. Zhongli realises it’s the thought of ruining himself for Childe that makes him morbidly excited. He wants Childe to break him. Aches for it.
As soon as he acknowledges this, he tightens, moaning out loud.
“Fuck,” Childe says. He runs a hand up Zhongli’s stomach and traces the evident shape of his dick through it. “How are you doing this? I-I… I can see myself inside you.”
Zhongli drops back down on him, crying out. Heavens, it feels amazing—but it’s not enough, not nearly hard or fast enough.
“H-Help me…” Zhongli begs the Harbinger. “Childe, please—I need you—harder.”
“You’re actually insane,” Childe says. He shakes his head in disbelief, nevertheless gripping Zhongli’s waist. His hands are so large he’s able to fit the entire width of the adeptus’ body in his palms.
Zhongli mewls as Childe easily lifts him off his cock, only the tip of it left inside, then plunges him back down. Air is punched out of him and his head swims about, black spots dancing in the corner of his eyes.
No. He blinks rapidly, willing himself not to pass out just yet.
“More,” he demands. “Don’t stop, don’t stop!”
He almost cries when Childe does as he’s told. The grip around his body tightens and Childe shoves him up and down as if he’s a mere sleeve to pleasure himself with. Zhongli certainly feels like it. At this very second, he forgets everything about himself aside from that he has never felt so good, so used . It’s a brainwashing thought, rushing in foreign voices that tells him he loves this, he wants this, he never wants it to stop—he wants Childe to use him like this for every second of the day—
“Shit, xiansheng, this is so hot,” Childe says. He bucks his hips up the same time he slams Zhongli down, groaning. “You’re so fucking tight. You’re taking me so well.”
Zhongli is too blissed out to properly respond. Instead, he slumps forward and kisses Childe, weakly moaning against him.
“Don’t stop,” he says again. “Please, Ajax, I love it—I need you!”
Childe shushes him, interrupting his pleas with another kiss. “I’m here, I’m here. I’m going to fuck you so good, Zhongli.”
Zhongli clenches at those words alone. “Yes… Take me, Ajax. Use me.”
As soon as that leaves his mouth, a wicked grin flashes across Childe’s face. It’s the same expression Zhongli would see when battlelust overtakes his lover, or when Childe knows he’s about to win a fight and he’s itching to deliver the finishing blow. It’s a smile that makes Zhongli’s blood run cold and his dick painfully hard at the same time.
“Don’t mind if I do,” Childe says.
From there on, his pace gets faster, harder. Zhongli is shoved up and down Childe’s shaft so fast that it hurts, oh, it hurts—the friction burns and his prostate is crushed and battered again and again and again.
Childe’s pace is relentless to the point that the clasp securing Zhongli’s ponytail becomes undone. Strands of his hair stick to his back and shoulders, dripping with sweat and water from their prior fight.
There’s no end to it. Zhongli’s world crumbles and all he can think about is Childe slamming in and out of him with inhuman speed. The chamber is filled with the sound of their animalistic coupling; Zhongli’s cries bouncing off the walls as Childe growls with each thrust; the harsh slaps of Zhongli’s ass colliding with Childe’s thighs; the deafening beat of Zhongli’s pulse in his ear, as loud as a stampede. He’s going to lose his mind like this. Zhongli cannot keep up.
“Oh, ohh… Nngh, ah! A-Ajax… Ajax… Yes, yessss,” he babbles. “F-Feels good, it feels, ah, incredible. Yes—”
Zhongli howls out an ear-piercing scream as Childe clamps his teeth around his nipple. The pain mixed with the constant battering of his prostate is too intense—amazing—
Childe snaps his hips up with a force that could break bones. Zhongli bursts, spurting cum out of his dick the same time Childe explodes inside him.
Oh—gods. Zhongli whines at the immediate flood of warm cum that fills him up. It’s so much—he can feel it pouring inside him— nonstop, stuffing him more, more, more until he struggles in Childe’s grip. Zhongli realises with horror that his stomach is slowly expanding to the point where it's bloated and round. Childe is still hard inside him, grinding his dick in and out as he milks himself dry. Celestia, there’s so much. It was already a tight fit with Childe’s enormous length, but now Zhongli feels as if he’s about to burst. He cannot take any more of this, he can’t—
“Xiansheng, shit, you look so fucked right now,” Childe says. He rams up into him again, causing Zhongli to cry out as he feels the cum sloshing inside. “Holy shit, if only you could see yourself like this.”
Zhongli squeezes his eyes shut. Childe has filled every part of him, desecrating him with his seed and erasing his brain empty. He struggles to hold onto reality. His eyes are dazed and unfocused, and his thoughts run in blissful circles…
“Hey, don’t go passing out on me just yet,” he hears Childe saying.
In the blink of an eye, he hauls Zhongli off his dick, knocking him back to reality. Childe flips him over and Zhongli braces himself on his hands and knees. His stomach lurches as the world spins around.
The sudden emptiness feels awful. Zhongli’s gaping hole closes around nothing, thoroughly wrecked and swollen red. Thick globs of Childe’s cum pour out of him and drip down his thighs. In a futile attempt to keep it all inside, Zhongli clenches, but Childe has stretched him far too much. He hates it. He needs to be filled again—he can’t stand being this empty, he needs—
“Hngh!” Zhongli winces as Childe shoves two fingers into his hole, twisting them deep inside.
“I’m not done with you yet, xiansheng,” Childe says from behind him. The dark tone in his voice makes Zhongli shiver with both fear and excitement.
Yes! Zhongli’s mind practically sings at those words. He’s already pushing his hips up, craving for that large cock to fill him once again. The floor underneath him is spinning slightly out of focus and there’s a tiny voice in his head telling him he’s going to pass out soon if he pushes his body any further.
Zhongli ignores it, only able to listen to the other voices that are begging to be stuffed.
“Please,” he pants. “Put it back, Childe, put it back…”
Childe presses himself against his back, enveloping the entirety of Zhongli’s body with his larger frame. He prods two fingers in front of the adeptus’ lips; the same fingers he’d just inserted into him.
They’re dripping with cum but Zhongli does not hesitate to open his mouth, moaning around them as if it's the best thing he has ever tasted. He eagerly sucks those fingers clean, swirling his tongue around Childe’s knuckles, his nails, every inch of skin until he can no longer taste cum. He feels absolutely filthy and shameless, not at all the revered god he used to be. Right now, he’s nothing more than a wanton addict, craving to be filled to the brim with Childe’s seed and used until he can no longer move.
All of a sudden, Childe pulls his fingers out of Zhongli’s mouth. He trails that same hand down the adeptus’ chest, sparing a second to pinch his nipple, then rests it on his bloated stomach.
“You’re so full of my cum, xiansheng,” Childe says.
Zhongli doesn't even have to look at him to know he has a wide grin on his face. He does, however, freeze when Childe begins to rub his stomach in circles, applying just the smallest amount of pressure.
“Look how big your stomach’s gotten…” Childe murmurs, his voice creating pinpricks up Zhongli’s arms. “You look like you’re pregnant with my children. Did I fuck you that good?”
Zhongli’s face burns at his vulgar words. Childe is still rubbing circles around his stomach. It’s deceptively gentle, as if there is truly a baby inside there, but the pressure he’s applying on it makes Zhongli uneasy.
“Would you like that, xiansheng?” Childe continues. “Do you want me to keep fucking you until you get bred?”
Before he can stop himself, Zhongli hardens at that thought alone. He moans again, his brain now turned to mush that he fails to think of anything to say.
Behind him, Childe smirks. “If only Liyue could see that their precious god is nothing but a whore.”
Childe punctuates the last word by suddenly pushing against his stomach, causing the ex-Archon to cry out.
Childe doesn’t stop. Zhongli’s knees buckle the more Childe applies pressure, sliding the heel of his palm down to his navel.
Cum oozes out of his hole, starting off as a thin stream that gradually gushes down his legs when Childe applies even more pressure to his distended belly. Gods, he wants Childe to stop—this is humiliating—and—and—
Zhongli throws his head back and lets out a long moan. He should be telling Childe to stop but all he does is whine underneath him, eyes rolling back. Why does it feel good? Why is this arousing Zhongli more than it is humiliating him?
All he can think about is how Childe's hand has returned to rubbing circles around his stomach, the touch too gentle and not nearly enough. He stops pushing down before all of the cum pours out, still leaving Zhongli bloated. The thought of there being too much inside him to get it all out makes the adeptus’ pulse flutter.
Zhongli has not felt this uncontrollable level of desire in so, so long. He can hardly tell who he is anymore. He's now floating in a headspace that only wants to be bred, filled with Childe’s dick for days, fucked over and over again.
Childe leans down and kisses the back of his neck. “You good?” he asks, his voice lowering to a whisper. “Are you still with me? Can you take any more?”
Through the haze of his lust-addled mind, Zhongli’s heart squeezes. It’s enough for him to resurface back to reality for the time being. He cranes his head and presses a kiss to Childe’s lips, smiling.
“Yes, Ajax,” he confirms. “Give me more.”
He manages to see Childe smiling back before he lines himself behind his hole—then, he slams back home.
Zhongli’s scream echoes throughout the chamber. That huge girth punches into him and stirs the cum swimming in his belly. This new angle is much more unforgiving, reaching deep into places that should not be touched.
He vaguely remembers Osial used to enjoy pushing the limits of his body like this, using those grotesque tentacles to plunge as inhumanly deep as possible, filling him with his seed until the Archon’s sanity was shattered from both pleasure and pain, on the verge of passing out—
Childe batters into him, forcing out another choked scream from Zhongli. It’s as if the Harbinger has sensed the direction of his thoughts and now intends to ravish him until Zhongli forgets about everyone who has ever touched him—and he succeeds. Within seconds, Zhongli’s mind is reduced back into nonsense. All he can think about is how good, how amazing it is to be plugged full of Childe’s cock.
“So deep—ah, hngh, oh, Celestia… Ajax, yes, yess… So big, Ajax, s-so big,” Zhongli sobs. He strokes his stomach with one hand, gasping when Childe’s dick knocks straight into it, battering his insides for the hundredth time. “Oh, Celestia, Celestia… You’re so deep, Ajax—so deep! ”
His arms give out and he falls forward, ass only held up by Childe as he pounds into his greedy hole. The Harbinger does not give him time to adjust. Those large hands grip Zhongli’s waist and shoves him up, down, up, down, up, and down his shaft. He’s so full, gods , he’s so full he can feel the cum moving inside him every time.
“Can’t, nngh, believe you enjoy getting fucked like this, xiansheng,” Childe says. “I never thought you’d be this dirty.”
Azhdaha used to say the same thing, so surprised when Zhongli would enthusiastically ride both of his dragon dicks with no trouble whatsoever—
Childe’s other hand pushes down on Zhongli’s back, keeping his head pressed against the cold floor. He bottoms out, drilling that huge girth so impossibly deep inside the ex-Archon. It presses against his belly, pulsing nonstop, making the adeptus feel more like a toy than a living being. Gasping, Zhongli’s eyes roll back and he spasms in Childe’s grip, sobbing incoherently. A small puddle of drool pools by his mouth and his cheeks are streaked with drying tears. Cum is leaking out of him, both from the pressure of his stomach being pressed against the floor and Childe constantly ramming inside. He is thoroughly ruined and he loves it—he can’t imagine his life without this now that he has had a taste of Childe in this delicious form.
“Ah, a-almost... Almost there…” Zhongli says. He claws at the hard ground and tries to buck into Childe. No use. He’s too weakened in this state to do anything. “Ajax, please. I’m so close—I need—”
Childe pushes down at his head, trapping Zhongli beneath him. “Xiansheng, don’t worry, I know exactly what you need.”
There’s a hint of a smile in his voice. Zhongli trembles at the sound of it.
He remains silent when Childe strokes his aching stomach, whispering words of praise in Zhongli’s ear, telling him how good he is for being able to take all of him; how tight he feels; how he’s perfectly made for this… It’s only when Childe begins to press down on his lower belly again does Zhongli let out a feeble gasp. It’s too much. He’s so full, so overwhelmed; he doesn’t know how much more of this he can take.
Zhongli freezes, eyes widening in horror. He instantly recognises the cold, throbbing sensation in his lower gut. Childe enjoys using his riptide on him quite often; and, without fail, it will always leave Zhongli so blissed out he’s nothing but a twitching mess by the end.
He hears Childe smirk behind him. Before Zhongli can brace himself, Childe completely slides out, leaving him unbearably empty—
And drives back in.
Zhongli comes within an instant. He’s screaming Childe’s name, or so he thinks he is, before everything bursts. For the longest second, he passes out, violently convulsing as the riptide pulsing in his gut amplifies everything by tenfold. Stars explode behind his eyelids and the world turns black.
When he comes to, Childe is still ramming into his lifeless figure. He’s moaning, calling out for Zhongli, telling him he’s such a good cocksleeve, a good whore. The riptide leaves Zhongli’s mind broken and numb. He has no strength left to do anything but lay there, whimpering whenever Childe’s dick punches back inside.
“Ah, ah, A-Ajax… Unngh, ah, ah, ah… Hnngh, Ajax...”
Too much. Zhongli has no sanity left by this point. He loses track of how long Childe fucks him for, or how many times he passes in and out of consciousness. All Zhongli is aware of is his body being manhandled in and out of Childe’s monstrous girth, the cum inside him now making it easier to pound into him.
Childe’s riptide is merciless. Every time he thrusts past it, Zhongli’s whole body violently convulses and it’s as if he is being forced into climax after climax after climax. His dick has long stopped getting hard and each orgasm only teethers on the edge of agony. How many has he had by now? He’d lost count after the tenth one.
Zhongli wants it to stop. He’s going to lose his mind, he’s already lost his mind—no , he never wants this to stop—he wants to be filled with Childe’s dick for the rest of his mortal days—he wants—
“Fuck, fuck, fuck!” Childe cries behind him.
It’s the only warning Zhongli gets before he’s flooded for the second time. He’s too blissed out to properly register it. Zhongli shudders and weakly squirms on the floor, sliding a hand under himself to cradle his stomach. Childe’s riptide pulses painfully, dragging Zhongli through another mind-numbing orgasm as cum spurts into his overstimulated body. How long has it been since he’d been filled like this? Distant memories echo within him, of endless nights when Osial or Azhdaha would breed him until he’s heavy with their seed.
He’d long forgotten how much he had missed this feeling.
Childe roughly pulls out of him, and before Zhongli can take a moment to breathe, he’s once again lifted up. He groans, eyelids drooping close, flitting in and out of reality. There’s the vague sensation of warm liquid gushing out of his hole, dripping onto the soaked floor—
And then he’s dropped back onto Childe’s cock. There’s no voice left in him to cry out. His head lolls to the side and he catches a blurry sight of the chamber moving up and down. Childe is now standing up, gripping Zhongli’s limp body as he’s once again used like a cocksleeve.
He has enough strength to give Childe a blissed out smile as his shaft punches into him. It only takes another throb of riptide being activated and Zhongli is gone.
His last thought before he succumbs to oblivion is that sensible voice in his head, reminding him there was a reason why he needed to go to the Golden House… But it’s gone the moment Childe jackhammers into his abused prostate for the thousandth time. This last orgasm wipes his brain empty. Zhongli chokes out a broken scream before slumping forward, having finally reached his limit.
The first thing Zhongli lays eyes on is Childe’s face, and—oh, he is no longer in that strange form. He is back in his Harbinger’s uniform. If it were not for the agonising ache all over Zhongli’s body then he would think everything had been a dream.
Alas, Zhongli cannot even move without feeling as if all of his limbs have been broken and crushed. Childe quickly supports his shoulders and helps him sit up, rubbing up and down the adeptus’ back. Zhongli lets out a quiet hum of appreciation, not quite ready to speak just yet. His surroundings are still spinning and he is half tempted to rest his head on Childe’s shoulders, close his eyes and let sleep take over. He has not felt this drained in centuries…
Childe’s frantic voice keeps him grounded.
“Xiansheng, shit, you scared the life out of me. I thought I killed you!” he says. His voice is far too loud… Zhongli closes his eyes and frowns to himself, hoping this headache passes soon enough.
“I… I am fine,” he insists, massaging his temples. “Don’t worry; my body is quite durable.”
Childe scoffs. “Yeah, I know, you gave me a very good example of it earlier.”
Suddenly remembering how… eager he’d acted, Zhongli blushes at his comment. He looks down at himself, and then around him. Aside from the lingering ache all over his body, there are no traces of what they have just done. Zhongli’s stomach is no longer bloated—in fact, it is as though he’d just had a bath. There is not a single drop of cum left on him, although he remembers there being so much… So much. The floor has also been cleaned, albeit slightly damp. Childe must have used his vision while Zhongli was unconscious.
Zhongli averts his gaze back to Childe, sparing him a small smile when he sees the Harbinger is still watching him with wary eyes. Now that he is back to normal, his eyes are, once again, blue, and his hair has returned to its messy, fluffy state rather than being slicked back. Zhongli cannot resist the urge to run his fingers through Childe’s hair, playing with the amber strands. His smile grows wider when Childe leans into his touch.
They stay like that for a while, listening to the eerie silence of the Golden House while wrapped in each other’s arms. It is only when the ache in Zhongli’s body fades away does he remember the reason he entered this place to begin with.
“You were upset about something,” he says, noting the way Childe immediately stiffens. “Will you tell me what it was?”
Childe pulls away from him, his eyes no longer meeting Zhongli. “I… I felt inadequate. It's silly.”
Zhongli frowns. “Inadequate?”
“I don't like admitting my weaknesses, xiansheng, but I guess I can't help it when I'm only human compared to you and your past lovers,” Childe sighs, still avoiding his gaze. Zhongli cranes his head down and sees that the Harbinger is glaring slightly at the floor. “Sorry about suddenly attacking you… Wasn’t my best idea, I know—”
Zhongli lays a hand on his shoulder, interrupting him. “You do not need to apologise for anything. While I appreciate better communication in the future, I am not complaining about the progression of tonight’s events.”
That, at least, makes the Harbinger smirk. “Just so you know, fucking you in my Foul Legacy form was not part of the plan… The plan was to prove that I wasn’t just some human…”
With a sigh of his own, Zhongli flicks Childe on the forehead. As expected, this finally results in the Harbinger looking up, if only to send an indignant scowl in his direction.
“Silly boy. You need not prove anything to me,” Zhongli tells him. He reaches for Childe’s hand and pulls him closer. “My past lovers may be vastly different, but this changes nothing, Ajax.”
Zhongli is not at all surprised when Childe remains silent. It is as Childe said; he is not one to admit his weaknesses. While they have been romantically together for some time, they’ve had very few discussions about their feelings. In retrospect, it is a flaw that Zhongli should have spotted, but it cannot be helped when he is still learning about human emotions and their odd ways.
When Zhongli revealed his past relationships with Osial and Azhdaha, he did not think it would affect Childe in any way, let alone result in making him feel as though he was not enough. After all, centuries have passed since both had been sealed, therefore they do not pose any threat whatsoever.
But, if Guizhong were still alive, she would remind him there are a myriad of human emotions he may not yet understand. For instance, it only dawns on him now that Childe could have been jealous, thus leading him on this unnecessary venture to impress Zhongli during a fight.
The ex-Archon inwardly sighs at this. It is typical of Childe to try and solve everything with a battle.
Zhongli wraps his arms around the Harbinger’s neck and leans closer until those blue eyes look at him.
“I mean it, Ajax. I adore you the way you are; human or not,” Zhongli tells him. “The pull I feel towards you is gravitational. Who or what you are does not change how much I love you.”
Childe’s eyes widen at his words. It is times like this that Zhongli realises how young the Harbinger is. Although he can be dangerous and unpredictable, he is still a young man with insecurities of his own, regardless of how much he tries to hide them. Zhongli, regrettably, often forgets how fragile human emotions can be.
The Harbinger buries his face into Zhongli’s neck and envelops him into a tight hug. “Don't leave me, xiansheng.”
His voice is quiet and muffled, but Zhongli hears it loud and clear. Smiling, he pats Childe’s head and embraces him back.
“I won't. There is no one else I'd rather spend my mortal life with.”
Childe’s arms tighten around him. “Love you too, by the way.”
Laughing, Zhongli pats his head again. “I know.”
“Gotta say though…” Childe sits back suddenly, and the look he has on his face makes Zhongli tense up by instinct. “You really surprised me, xiansheng. I never thought you’d be so kinky!”
“Ah. Yes.” Zhongli coughs. “My apologies. I don’t know what came over me.”
“Just admit you like taking monster cock—”
Childe grins. “You don’t? I guess we don’t need to have a repeat of that ever again, then?”
“...I would not be opposed to it.”
Throwing his head back, Childe lets out a laugh that echoes around the Golden House. It’s a sound that squeezes at Zhongli’s heart and fills his stomach with giddy flutters. He is glad his lover seems to be in higher spirits now.
As Childe’s laughter dwindles down, he shrugs his jacket off and drapes it around Zhongli’s shoulders. It is warm and smells exactly like him. Zhongli automatically pulls it closer.
Before Zhongli can question him, he’s pushed down onto the floor. Childe joins him shortly after, pressing himself against his back. Zhongli looks over his shoulder just as Childe wraps his arms around him, tucking his face into his neck.
“That can be arranged,” Childe whispers, then trails off into a yawn. “But for now, I’m really tired, xiansheng… Can we sleep here..?”
Wrapped in the Harbinger’s embrace, Zhongli curls into Childe's arms and breathes in his scent of seawater. There is nowhere else he would rather be. Most importantly, there is no one else he would rather spend this moment with than this human who complexes and excites him on a daily basis.
Zhongli smiles. “Let’s rest.”
Sleep greets him so fast that he barely acknowledges Childe pressing light kisses to his neck and shoulder. Zhongli's eyelids droop close and he gives into fatigue, his body fully drained after a long and arduous… battle with a formidable creature indeed.