sooheaven_mods (sooheaven_mods) wrote in sooheaven,
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Gimme sympathy

★Title: Gimme sympathy for everyone ♡
★Pairing: Kyungsoo/Zitao, Kyungsoo/Jongdae and slight Kyungsoo/Sehun
★Rating: nc-17
★Length: 7,450 words
★Warnings/Disclaimers: catboys, self-lubrication, rimming, unprotected sex, mentions of past abuse, slavery, underage sex, and dubcon, mentions of double penetration, spanking, very minor character death, language
★Author’s notes/Messages for the recipient: there might be a supernatural reference in here.
★Summary: Catboy AU. Kyungsoo isn't jealous of Zitao. He doesn't like him, either. Nope. Not one bit.







They weave through the crowd gathered in the market, trying to keep as inconspicuous as possible; it's too cold for many people to be out, which is good. Less exposure is always good. But Jongdae demanded roasted chestnuts and Kris is at work, and Kyungsoo is the one who runs most of the errands when he isn't home. He gripes at Jongdae's request, having to bundle up properly before stepping outside – and dressing Zitao, too, who had pleaded for Kyungsoo to take him along. It's only down the street and they don't get to go out often but things like this can be potentially dangerous, not to mention the inconvenient frigid weather. Zitao has a tight grip on his gloved hand, thankfully, and Kyungsoo's not letting him out of his sight. Kris will have my tail if anything happens to him, he thinks wearily.

The taller boy slows, something inevitably catching his attention. Kyungsoo thumps his foot impatiently even as the scent of fresh meat trickles his nose. Zitao's long, sleek black tail flicks behind him curiously as he peers through the butcher shop's glass window at the display of cuts, triangular ears perked forward.

"Should we buy meat?"

Kyungsoo shakes his head; they have enough back at the house. He tugs the easily-distracted boy back into motion, grumbling inwardly. The catboy eats like a small horse, but it isn't surprising if one takes his size into consideration. He hadn't been in the best condition when Kris brought him into his care. Still, that was three months ago, and Zitao had put on a healthy weight, the shine of his fur glossier than ever. His newfound liveliness and never-ending yearning for adventure wears on Kyungsoo's nerves, as the smaller catboy prefers to remain in the quiet of their home (as quiet as it could be with Jongdae, Sehun, and now Zitao added to the mix).

Soft calls reach his exposed ears and they quickly flatten against his head in distaste. A group of older women sit beneath a store's awning, huddled close to each other for warmth as they gossip about whatever holds the interest of people like them.

"Oh~ What pretty kitty-cats~" they coo, giggling as Zitao looks in their direction. Kyungsoo doesn't spare them a glance. He's gotten used to it, and it's better to ignore their comments and not to encourage them. But Zitao seems to like the attention, even puffing out his chest a bit as his tail's natural swaying picks up speed. It's a harmless enough statement, unlike the catcalls Kyungsoo received last time he'd been in public without covering his ears and tail. Even so, their sing-song, taunting praise unnerves him. He knows well how they're gazing at the younger catboy with glittering eyes – he's seen that look before, too many times – and so he drags Zitao toward the chestnut vendor, dodging any further interruptions.

"Those ladies were so nice," Zitao chatters excitedly as Kyungsoo pays. "Do you think they'd pet me if I let them, Kyungsoo?"

"Why would you want strangers to pet you," Kyungsoo mumbles, shoving the bag of steaming nuts into his chest. "Especially old ladies that probably smell like domesticated cats." He shudders lightly. Domesticated cats.

"I always wanted a cat." Zitao frowns slightly, letting himself be pulled along as they make the short trek back to the safe house.

"They pee on things." There are plenty of things wrong with a cat hybrid owning a small cat, and Kyungsoo has intentions of continuing listing off the reasons why cats are not ideal pets, at least for catboys like them, but his thoughts are cut off when he feels large fingers firmly encircle his wrist.

He looks up with wide eyes, halting in his tracks.

"How much do you cost for the night," a man's rough voice questions, his breath reeking of cigarettes. "Or forever?"

It's not like this hasn't happened before; it just hasn't happened in a while. He's momentarily forgotten how to deal with this kind of situation, all the colour draining from his face as his thought process escapes him. He's frozen in place. He can't feel his legs enough to move them.

Then, suddenly, Zitao speaks up.

"He doesn't cost anything," the taller snaps. His other hand that isn't still holding Kyungsoo's free one bunches into a fist, sharp nails digging into skin. "He isn't for sale."

Kyungsoo fears for a second that Zitao will do something stupid like swipe at the man's face, but instead he rips him from the offender's grasp. He starts running and Kyungsoo is surprised to find that his legs, all though still feeling like jelly, keep up with the fellow catboy's longer ones. The stranger doesn't start yelling, nor does he pursue them, probably not wanting to cause a scene. In just under five minutes they're standing at their doorway, panting.

"Kyungsoo," Zitao breathes after several seconds of silence. Kyungsoo is shaking, coughing. "Who was that man?"

"No one," Kyungsoo replies when he's able. His heart is beating rapidly in his chest. "He's no one." He doesn't know him personally, but he knows what he is.

They walk inside after Kyungsoo stiffly enters the pass code, his fingers feeling like they'll snap off if he pushes the buttons any harder. He stalks into the living room with his jaw set and throws the paper bag of chestnuts at Jongdae, who's lounging on the couch in front of the television, with nothing short of disgust.

"Here are your damn nuts," he says bitterly, plopping down on his lap unceremoniously and successfully crushing the lithe catboy.

"Hey!" Jongdae waves the grease-soaked bag around with one hand, batting at Kyungsoo's head with another. "Get off, fatass!" he complains.

Kyungsoo picks up the remote and starts flipping through the channels. "What's on TV," he grumbles, ignoring Jongdae's protests. Despite what he says, Kyungsoo is not a fatass. He's smaller than Jongdae, even, if not as wiry.

"I swear if you don't move your ass, Kyungsoo, I'll bite your ear," Jongdae warns, and Kyungsoo continues channel-surfing until he realizes he doesn't want Jongdae's particularly sharp canines in his sensitive ear, and thus scoots to the side. Jongdae sighs in relief, as though he'd just been rid of an incredible weight, but slings his arm around Kyungsoo's waist anyway in a friendly gesture.

As the two are squabbling, Yixing unfolds himself from one of the chairs and walks up to Zitao, putting his hands on his face like a fretful mother. Zitao's cheeks are flushed and rosy from the cold and the sprinting.

"Are you okay?" Zitao nods and then sneezes cutely, like a little mouse. Kyungsoo snorts from his spot on the couch as Yixing adjusts the scarf wrapped around his neck.

"I can't believe you two went out without hiding your ears and tail," Jongdae commented. "I don't even have enough balls to."

"We weren't gone for long," Kyungsoo insists. "And it wasn't far." He punches him lightly in the ribs and Jongdae curls up, yowling in mock pain. "It's your fault. You couldn't wait another hour for your damn chestnuts."

"I didn't wanna bother Kris," he says guiltily, shoulders slumping as he hangs his head. "He already does enough for us."

"It's cold, you could have at least worn hats," Yixing lectures, rubbing behind Zitao's ear comfortingly. Zitao arches his back and purrs. "And it isn't that hard to tuck your tail into a pair of trousers. If Taozi gets a cold, Kris will be displeased."

"Honestly, Yixing, you can't catch a cold from your ears and tail being exposed," Kyungsoo grouches. "And don't call him that. He isn't a kitten," Kyungsoo admonishes. "He's just going to get more spoiled, Yixing. Leave him alone."

Yixing reluctantly draws back from the younger with a frown tugging at the corners of his lips, his tan ears slanted. Zitao pouts for a moment, missing his soothing touch before he finds fault in Yixing's statement.

"That's why we have fur on our ears and tail, gege. To keep us warm." He shakes out of his coat, allowing Yixing to hang it up on the rack by the door. "Also, I don't like hiding my tail. It feels strange."

"You two didn't run into any trouble?" The eldest catboy inquires, directing his question mostly at Kyungsoo. Kyungsoo grunts.

"None. There weren't many people." He doesn't have to look up to know that Zitao is staring at him suspiciously.

"At least I have my chestnuts," Jongdae says, grey tail swishing in content.

Zitao slinks over to the couch and slides into place next to Jongdae, sniffing. "Can I have some?"

"No. You probably already ate some on the way here, you little pest," he points out, holding the bag close to his chest. Kyungsoo snorts again. Zitao's eyes dart up and regard him warily, as if he'll lie and tell Jongdae he had snuck some of his precious nuts. Kyungsoo keeps silent, however, and Zitao's eyes drift back to the television screen. There's Korean drama playing, which Kyungsoo and Jongdae watch with idle interest. The main couple is visiting Namsan Tower, scenes of them drinking vending machine coffee, hanging up locks with notes attached and riding in a cable car flashing on the LCD display.

"I wanna go to Namsan Tower," Zitao whines, looking at Kyungsoo expectantly. Kyungsoo rolls his eyes. Why, of all people, would Zitao ask him? After what had happened today, he should know better.

"Too bad," Kyungsoo and Jongdae say in unison.

"Maybe Kris will take us one day," Yixing suggests, quelling his agitation. Kyungsoo knows he's only entertaining the younger catboy, as a trip to the city seems unlikely. It's always safer with Kris, however, especially when they're disguised as normal people. Of course they wouldn't let themselves be seen with the human when all their ears and tails were out for the rest of the world to see. People would get the wrong idea, assuming that Kris had a catboy harem, or was a pimp in charge of a brothel. Far from it.

Zitao is the newest addition to their family. Kyungsoo doesn't exactly know what to call it, or their dwelling place: a refuge, a sanctuary, a shelter, a safe house. Zitao was an abused case, like most of them were. All of them had suffered from some degree of abuse in their lives. It wasn't uncommon; all though things are changing, they're still changing slowly. Society accepts feline hybrids only at a certain level, and those that are still owned or kept as "pets" are often abused or treated as slaves for chores, sex, and pleasure. If seen in public, like Kyungsoo and Zitao had been earlier, they're either ignored or harassed, sometimes mistaken as prostitutes. They're refused service at most places unless their feline characteristics are covered up. Prejudice and regarding catboys as lower-class is still rampant. It's been several years since laws have been altered, only allowing them a bit more freedom and few rights, but mindsets always take longer to adjust.

Kris' mindset is further ahead than the rest. Born into wealthy parentage, he used the money and earnings from his job to take in a catboy, but not for traditional purposes. That had been Yixing. Yixing told them that he'd been beaten nearly to death by his former owner when Kris found him. Kris cleaned him up, tended to his wounds, and nursed him back to health. The human let him live in his house and gave him everything necessary for survival. But above all else, Kris treated Yixing like an equal.

Since Yixing is the first hybrid Kris took under his wing, they have a special attachment to one another. Yixing is the only one who calls Kris by his real name, Yifan. There's a bond that none of the others have with Kris, and oftentimes they'll stay up late at night when Kris doesn't have work in the morning, talking to each other intimately in their mother tongue on the couch, in the kitchen, or in their shared bedroom. Kyungsoo had asked once what it was that they talked about. Yixing would only give him a small, secret smile and said nothing. He hadn't bothered prying again, feeling like he was barging in on something that he wouldn't understand, anyway. Kyungsoo thinks Kris and Yixing's relationship is something esoteric and lovely, but also something he'll be unable to attain with another.

Kyungsoo and Jongdae had come next. Kris initially had no idea he'd take in two more catboys, and then two more later, but with his caring heart and personality, it was no wonder he had.

Kyungsoo doesn't like thinking about his past. He figures the past is past and there's no use dwelling on it. Like the majority of hybrids, he grew up in a compound. Once he reached sexual maturity he was taken from his mother at the tender age of sixteen. The young catboy was then purchased by a man whose name he's blocked from his memory (he hadn't been allowed to call him by his name, anyway; only "Master") and lived with him for two years. One day he brought home a new commodity: younger than Kyungsoo, lean and exotic-looking. His master called him Kai, and he looked more like a leopard than a catboy; he even had markings like one. Kai was all effortless grace, liquid muscle and sleepy, seductive-eyed beauty, his amber irises like molten gold. He yowled prettily whenever their master fucked him. Kyungsoo was quickly disposed of and replaced by the more eye-catching cat.

He took to the streets, having nowhere else to go, unwilling to be picked up by another person he'd have to address as Master. There he met Jongdae, another catboy from a similar background, and his older cousin, Junmyeon. They stuck close together and Kyungsoo found a friend in both of them. Then winter came and Junmyeon, having a condition where he couldn't properly retain body heat, hadn't made it. Hearts heavy with the loss of their companion, Kris had stumbled upon them in an alleyway coated with ice, practically starved as Jongdae surrendered his fish bones and scraps to a shivering, blue-lipped Kyungsoo. That had been nearly three years ago.

Kyungsoo had thought Sehun would be last. Kris' house was large enough to maintain all of them if they shared rooms, but he also had to take care of the four catboys, too. Sehun had been spoiled rotten by his owner, leisurely fucked in the comfort of a lofty mansion. His ears and tail were pure white, indicating pedigree. But his master had apparently grown bored of him or gotten fed up with his brattiness, and Kris had bought him at an auction he'd come across. "I couldn't just let him go to someone who'd treat him wrongly," he admitted sheepishly, shrugging his shoulders as Kyungsoo and Jongdae eyed the newcomer warily, who smelled like lavender and spun sugar.

Zitao is the fifth and hopefully the last, Kyungsoo thinks. They're running out of bedrooms. Sehun had been hard enough to get used to with his self-entitlement, but to Kyungsoo, Zitao was worse. Kyungsoo had to remind himself that he hadn't been there first, and he isn't jealous at all –just a little put off by change. He imagines how Yixing must feel with each new addition to the family, stealing Kris' attention away from him. Yixing isn't selfish, however. In fact, he's probably the most selfless out of all of them, and he doesn't seem put out whenever Sehun or Zitao get too close to Kris. Yixing pampers the two youngest just like Kris does. He's almost like the mother and Kris is the father, Kyungsoo guesses. He and Jongdae, on the other hand, don't conform to any major caretaking stereotype, all though Jongdae had once called Kyungsoo their aunt and had gotten hit by a wooden spoon for it.

Zitao had come in with bruises around his wrists and ankles, the skin rubbed raw and bleeding, hunched over and sticking close to Kris' side. His ribs were visible beneath his ragged clothing and his lips were chapped; Kyungsoo could see small beads of blood nestled in the cracks. After two months of living in their house, Zitao made a rapid recovery. At first very timid and reserved, he mostly clung to Kris, but gradually warmed up to Sehun and Yixing. It was only in the past month that he'd started paying more attention to Kyungsoo, all though the older catboy has made it clear that he wants little to do with him. But Zitao doesn't seem to pick up on the hint, and Jongdae delights in watching Kyungsoo suffer, laughing raucously as Zitao follows him around the house. It must be an amusing sight indeed, a lanky catboy trailing after a much smaller one with permanent annoyance engraved into his features. No matter how many times Kyungsoo snaps at him, Zitao always returns to his side like some clueless, overly-forgiving puppy. He only needs to wait a day at most.

They laze on the sofa until Kris comes home, bringing dinner with him. It's a tight fit, the four of them sitting side-by-side, but they manage. Sehun is napping upstairs in his and Zitao's shared bedroom, a habit he hadn't been able to kick when he moved in. They all tend to fall into the alluring trap of catnaps, though, but at different times during the day. After a filling meal of jjajangmyun (one of Kyungsoo's favourites), which Sehun begrudgingly wakes up for, they retreat to the living room to watch more TV. Yixing retires early and Sehun returns to his room to resume his slumber, leaving Kris and Zitao on the couch. Kyungsoo is engrossed in a book, resting in his and Jongdae's room while the latter scrolls through his phone, sprawled out on his bed. Before he goes to sleep most nights, Kyungsoo indulges himself with a glass of milk, and so he rises from his bed and heads for the kitchen, padding through the hallways quietly so he doesn't disturb those who are sleeping.

He passes the living room, catching sight of Kris and Zitao in the luminous glow of the television screen. The catboy is snuggled into Kris' side, head resting on his shoulder. Zitao's lucky Yixing is already asleep because the older feline has already marked Kris as his, his sometimes pungent scent lingering on the man's clothes and skin (Kris is unaware, of course), but Zitao doesn't appear to be bothered by it. Kyungsoo scrunches his nose and watches as Kris scratches behind his ears absent-mindedly, the catboy's tail stroking his thigh. A flare of – what? Irritation? – passes through Kyungsoo and he hears Jongdae's voice beside him.

"What's wrong? You look like someone got into your anchovies."

No one touches his anchovies. Kyungsoo had confronted each person in the household at the time of the incident, demanding to know who had eaten them. Yixing was obviously innocent, puzzled by Kyungsoo's accusatory behavior, and Jongdae only laughed at him. "I wouldn't eat those nasty things." He finally tracked down the culprit – Sehun – and the boy had merely waved him off, unfazed even as his breath still stank of the tiny fish. Unashamed, ungrateful punk.

Jongdae's eyes widen when Kyungsoo doesn't say anything. "Did Sehunnie eat them again?" He glances back at Kris and Zitao getting comfortable on the couch. He gasps softly. "No. Taozi? That brat."

"My anchovies are safe." He flicks his tail in annoyance, whacking Jongdae's leg.

"Oh. Then what's going on?" His grey eyes switch to the duo again, observing them with scrutiny. Kyungsoo's lips go taut, watching them as well. He's suddenly aware of his heartbeat which thuds dully, almost painfully, in his chest. Heartburn, he guesses.

Jongdae looks like he just had an epiphany as he turns his head back to him. "Are you jealous of Tao?"

No!!! He isn't jealous of that kid. It's probably one of the most ridiculous things he's ever heard come from Jongdae's mouth, and Jongdae talks a lot of shit.

"I'm not." He nearly growls.

"That's cute! You want to cuddle with Kris, don't you?" He grins widely, pleased at his excellent deduction skills. "You're adorable." Jongdae pinches one of his cheeks and Kyungsoo nips at his retreating fingers.

Kyungsoo knows he doesn't want Kris. In his first year of knowing him, he did have a semblance of a crush on the man, but those feelings have long since dispersed. Adoration had turned into admiration and thankfulness.

He gives the two one last glance before retrieving his drink and heading back to the room.

Jongdae is trying to sleep when Kyungsoo crawls into his bed, covering his body with his slightly smaller one. Jongdae wraps an arm around him, expression unreadable in the dark.

"What's up?"

Kyungsoo buries his face into the boy's neck, inhaling his familiar scent. He smells like home. Jongdae chuckles faintly.

"Let's have sex." Kyungsoo breathes against the length of his throat, pressing soft kisses onto his warmed skin. He doesn't need to see him to know that a perplexed frown is creasing his pretty lips.

"But neither of us is in heat." He sniffs Kyungsoo curiously, wondering if he's missing something. "Are we?"

The younger catboy sighs, sucking on the elder's neck. He gathers a bit of skin in between his teeth and nibbles, rousing a moan from Jongdae. He leans into his touch out of habit, arching his back off the bed beneath Kyungsoo's weight. The press of Jongdae's body against his hips sends a wave of pleasure to his groin.

"We don't have to be in heat to be horny, Jongdae," he says. Slipping his hands under his shirt, he removes the offending article of clothing. Kyungsoo is only wearing boxers, his half-hard cock straining against the thin material. He rolls a nipple between his thumb and forefinger, humming as he waits for an answer.

There's a beat in which Jongdae hesitates. Kyungsoo pinches his nipple lightly.

"Okay," he hisses, and Kyungsoo gladly rolls his hips down on his still-soft cock. They've only fucked once when one of them wasn't in heat, but it didn't take long to become aroused and absorbed in each other. The two of them usually help each other out during their heat cycles – it's much easier and more satisfying than relying on their own fingers and toys – so this progression of events isn't too unusual. Kyungsoo palms him through his boxers before he slides them off, jerking his cock to hardness. He rids himself of his own underwear and reaches into the bedside drawer for the bottle of lube. The commodity isn't usually necessary, because they produce amply enough lubrication during their heats, but for random occasions like this it's definitely required.

Kyungsoo doesn't tease, just slides one lubed-up finger into Jongdae, making sure to squeeze some onto his puckered hole prior to the intrusion. He works him open methodically, almost clinically, kissing up and down his neck and chest. His tongue traces the curve of his collarbone, sucking marks into his skin. Jongdae starts off relaxed, still feeling the remnants of sleepiness from his postponed slumber, but is writhing underneath him in no time and clenching greedily around his fingers.

He fucks Jongdae nice and slow, thrusting in deeply and making sure they feel every inch of his cock sliding in and out of his ass. Jongdae shudders and cries out when he comes, his whole body going rigid, and Kyungsoo fucks him through his orgasm, quickening his pace with shallow thrusts as the pulsing muscles around his cock bring him to his own orgasm. He cleans them up and returns to Jongdae's bed, lying on his back while Jongdae curls against him, his arms around his stomach. Kyungsoo is relieved to learn that he feels normal again, better than the frustration he'd felt before. Any confusing thoughts or urges were fucked out of him, and he's now overcome by a blissful trance. The serene look on his face is one he hasn't worn for a while.

Jongdae speaks up in the dark.

"I'm sorry Kris is off-limits."

Kyungsoo blinks. "What?" He pauses. "You think I fucked you because I'm upset about Kris?" He's too shocked to laugh.

"Well . . . yeah." As if it's obvious.

Kyungsoo snorts. "You're impossible. This is why we aren't in love."

"Yeah, because you like Kris."

Kyungsoo makes a disgruntled noise of disbelief.

"You still love me, right? You just aren't in love with me?" Jongdae's voice sounds small and distant in his ear.

"I guess so," he admits resentfully.

Jongdae sighs and holds him tighter. "Good. I love you, too."

Kyungsoo is glad but he doesn't show it. Their relationship doesn't digress into mutual contentment and declarations of affection often, and he feels somewhat uncomfortable. Instead he nudges the catboy away from him slightly, feigning repulse. "You're being gross. Stop it."

"Jerk," Jongdae pouts, pressing lips against the side of his neck and snuggling closer.

"Bitch." Jongdae chortles delightfully.

-

The next day Zitao is sick in bed.

"I told you to cover up more," Yixing tells Kyungsoo, the back of his hand resting against the younger's flushed forehead as he checks his temperature. Zitao coughs delicately.

Kyungsoo stands in the doorway, his brown tail flicking with annoyance. "If Zitao wasn't such a baby—"

"Taozi is sick?" Sehun comes up behind him, yawning widely. Yixing shoots him a stern look.

"You should know, you share a room with him," Kyungsoo reminds the youngest.

"Huh." Sehun scratches his head, blinking his clear lilac eyes. "He wasn't sick last night, though."

"I'll be fine," Zitao says in a small voice. "It isn't bad."

"No, you need to stay home," Yixing orders. "I'll tell Kris." He leaves the room, buff-coloured tail twitching worriedly behind him.

"Oh yeah. We were supposed to go to the movies today," Sehun remembers. He walks over to Zitao's bed and throws himself on top of his legs. Zitao lets out a squeak as Sehun starts hitting him on the chest. "Yah! Why are you sick?!"

"Mooooom, Sehun-ah's being loud," Jongdae complains, throwing his arms around Kyungsoo's narrow shoulders. He cracks open an eye. "It's too early for this."

Sehun continues his beating, bouncing on Zitao's thighs. "I wanna go to the mooooooovies!" he crows, giving him one last slap across the chest. The abused catboy whimpers pathetically, helpless to defend himself as he watches him wearily with lidded eyes.

Jongdae straightens a bit, no longer draping himself over Kyungsoo. "Why is Sehun hurting our Taozi?"

"The stupid kid got himself sick," Kyungsoo explains, "and now we can't go to the movies."

"Drat. I really wanted to watch that one film. What was it called again?"

"The Wolf of Wall Street!" Sehun yells.

"That's the one, Sehun-ah," he replies with a winning smile.

All of them (except for Zitao) congregate in the living room to discuss the change of plans. Zitao insisted they go without him, but Kris and Yixing are naturally worried about his health. Kris enlists Kyungsoo's help, asking him to stay home and take care of the sick catboy.

"Why me?"

Kris smiles wanly. "You're the only one I trust." Besides Yixing, Kyungsoo echoes. He figures they want to spend time together, though, and who is he to deny Kris' wishes?

". . Fine." His jaw tightens but he doesn't say anything else.

Once they're out the door (and looking as human as possible), Kyungsoo flops on his belly onto the couch. He huffs, rolling over onto his back and staring up at the ceiling. Why does Zitao have to be such a big baby?

The room upstairs is quiet. The minutes tick by and Kyungsoo grows restless. Has he fallen asleep? He considers going and checking on him, but decides he doesn't really want to.

Maybe he takes pity on him, though – or maybe he just doesn't want him to ruin anymore of their future plans – and gets up to fetch him a warm glass of milk. He zaps it in the microwave (if it was for someone like Jongdae, he'd consider taking the time to use the stove, but Jongdae probably wouldn't appreciate his effort anyway) and stands on his tip-toes, reaching for the top cabinet which stores the herbs and spices. Adding some herbs to the milk will help Zitao get better, even though he knows he'll wrinkle his nose at the taste. Zitao is just as picky as Sehun and he might even refuse to drink it. Kyungsoo will force it down his throat, by god.

He feels hands on his waist and yelps, startled, as he's lifted off the ground. He's at the perfect height to reach the Echinacea supplements and the ground turmeric, however, and grabs them both before his feet touch the floor again. Kyungsoo whirls around, tail bristling, to confront the catboy.

"Shouldn't you be in bed?"

The taller boy rolls his shoulders in a shrug. "I couldn't go back to sleep."

"You still need to rest," Kyungsoo says, and then sighs. He stirs in the turmeric powder and some other herbs and places the glass of milk on the kitchen table, sliding it over to Zitao once he sits down. "Drink."

"It smells funny, Kyungsoo," he protests, the skin around his nose crinkling. "I don't wanna."

"You smell funny," he points out just as maturely. "You should take a bath." Zitao smells faintly of sickness and fever but baths are healing in their own way, especially warm ones. Kyungsoo just wants the boy to leave him alone for a while and get better, that's all.

"I don't like baths." Zitao frowns. Kyungsoo is well aware of that fact, but both of the showerheads aren't working and the repairman isn't coming for another two days. The catboy only takes baths when someone agrees to take one with him, which Kyungsoo certainly isn't going to do.

"Will you take one with me, Kyungsoo-ah?" Kyungsoo replies quickly with a "no". "Please?" He begins his begging, which Kyungsoo probably won't hear the end of until he finally gives in. But he sticks to his refusal firmly, shaking his head until it feels like it'll fall off his shoulders.

"Then I won't take one," Zitao states conclusively, crossing his arms. He stands up as if to leave, his milk untouched.

"You're such a brat, I swear," Kyungsoo growls, tackling and pinning him to the ground. Zitao squirms on the tile floor, fighting back more out of surprise than out of spite, tail thrashing between Kyungsoo's legs. The smaller catboy drags his tongue up the back of Zitao's sleek black ear; a shudder runs through Zitao's long body as he goes limp beneath him, whimpering. Bath water isn't good for cleaning fur anyhow, so they give each other tongue baths. Sehun or Yixing usually attend to Zitao, since their ears and tails are hard to reach and wash thoroughly. Kyungsoo never has until now. He doesn't understand the sudden impulse but he's tired of Zitao's whining.

A purr builds up in Zitao's chest and Kyungsoo can feel it, the vibrations rumbling against his own. He concentrates on wetting the younger's ears with his tongue until the purring stops and he snaps back into reality. Their ears and tails are extremely sensitive, and tongue baths are an intimate pastime. The realization makes his stomach churn. Zitao seems to sense his moment of weakness.

"Um . . . Kyungsoo?"

The smaller scrambles off of him, standing. His heart is thudding quite audibly in his ribcage and he hopes Zitao doesn't notice. "Sorry," he says shortly.

Zitao is slow to rise from the floor, regarding Kyungsoo carefully. He climbs the stairs and retreats to his bedroom. Kyungsoo follows and yells at him from the hallway to take a bath.

"No!" He slams the door. Kyungsoo hears him through the wood, voice muffled: "Only if you take one with me!" The shorter catboy makes a high-pitched noise of frustration and walks to the upstairs restroom to prepare the bath. He puts two fingers under the stream of water, testing its warmth. There's no way he's stooping so low as to bathe with Zitao, but at least he'll get it started for him. He pours a liberal amount of bath salt into the tub as it fills, soothing lavender scents clouding the air. The thundering of the water pouring from the faucet busies his ears and he doesn't hear Zitao pad up behind him, wrapping arms around his waist. He tenses up, unmoving.

"What are you doing."

"I'm hot," he pouts. There are tendrils of steam floating off of the water's surface.

"Then stop hugging me."

Zitao lets go of Kyungsoo reluctantly. "I don't wanna take a bath; it'll be too hot." Kyungsoo switches the knob to cold. Zitao's ears pull back. "I don't want to take a cold bath."

"Then what do you want, Zitao!" He can't stop himself from yelling.

"I don't know. It's hot, too hot." He starts stripping out of his clothes, almost frantically.

"I thought you didn't want to take a bath! Why are you taking off your clothes!" Honestly—

—but that's when he smells it. Or rather, smells him. Zitao's scent permeates the air, breaking through the screen of lavender. Kyungsoo takes a deep breath and closes his eyes, inhaling him. He smells good. Really, really good. He lets himself indulge in another breath and whines softly, feeling the telltale throb of arousal in his lower belly.

Oh god. Zitao isn't sick. He's in heat.

He wheels backwards, ushering the bewildered Zitao out of the bathroom. Holding his breath, Kyungsoo shoves the taller into his respective room and shuts the door. He hears the catboy crying for him as he runs into the hallway, opening the closet and falling to his knees to retrieve the toy box. To make things easier, they all share their sex toys – except for Kyungsoo, who keeps his own in the drawer by his bed. The ones in the toy box are all properly sanitized after every use but he doesn't quite trust Jongdae and Sehun. He rummages around, quickly gathering up a couple dildos, vibrators and plugs in his arms and heads back to Zitao's room. The boy's voice reaches him, teary and hopeful.

"Kyungsoo?"

He opens the door just enough to toss the assortment of toys inside and then closes it again.

"Kyungsoo!!" Zitao wails.

"Shut up and use those!" Pressing his back against the door, he grits his teeth and closes his eyes. He can still smell him. All though he's breathing through his mouth, the tantalizing scent of Zitao's heat is nearly dizzying. He runs to get the Febreze, cupping a hand over his nose and spraying the artificial fragrance of morning rain in the bathroom, the corridor, everywhere. Zitao's crying in his room – actually crying, if he's not mistaken. Jesus Christ.

Cat hybrids go into heat four times a year, about once every three months, and typically have their cycles memorized. Since Zitao's new, Kyungsoo doesn't know his schedule. Judging by the younger's distress, he might not know it, either – or at least hadn't been expecting it. A heat can last anywhere from a couple days to a full week, depending on how the catboy handles it. It's cut short if they're fucked out of it, which is why Kyungsoo and Jongdae tend to enlist each other's help when it's their time. But there's no attraction there, just friends helping friends. If they only have toys, then it lasts longer.

Thus, Kyungsoo understands what it's like to be in Zitao's situation, unable to satisfy the sometimes painful itch properly. It's also his first heat in a new house and unfortunately, Kyungsoo is the only one around. He contemplates calling Kris, but his cell phone would be on silent for the movie. Sehun will bitch about leaving early, if Kris decides to come home and deal with the problem. Really, there isn't much he can do.

He grasps the door handle and slowly pushes it open. Zitao is lying on his stomach on his bed, sniffling. He doesn't seem to notice Kyungsoo and slowly starts rutting against the mattress as Kyungsoo eyes the swell of his ass hungrily, his tensing thighs and the fluid, desperate motion of his svelte body and— oh god, is this really happening right now?

It's never been like this before. Not with Jongdae, not with anyone. The pheromones Zitao's giving off draw him closer, making him tremble with desire. He's fucked Sehun before, because he'd asked, and he hadn't wanted either of them nearly as much as he wants Zitao. Neither of them smells like Zitao does – at least not to him. He hadn't gone crazy over Sehun the second time, either, when both he and Jongdae took him at the same time, Jongdae's cock in Sehun's mouth and Kyungsoo plowing into Sehun from behind. Not the third time, when they eased both of their cocks into his stretched, wet hole.

"Zitao . . ." He trails off, still unsure. His body is screaming at him to take the younger catboy and use him until all he can say is name. He takes a shaky breath before stepping closer.

"Kyungsoo, please." Zitao looks at him with viridian eyes, a lustful gaze. He licks his lips and glances down at the bulge in Kyungsoo's pants, and then back up at him. Asking, wanting, needing.

"You're driving me fucking crazy, Zitao," he says, an edge to his voice. He's close to losing it. Zitao wouldn't mind.

"Will you help?" He reaches for his wrist. The smaller boy hisses at the touch of skin, white-hot. Zitao is burning up.

"Yes." Kyungsoo bites his lip. Zitao wastes no time pulling down his pants and taking his cock out of his boxers, already collecting precum at the tip. He strokes him to full hardness, which takes a laughably short time, but Kyungsoo's not in the mood to laugh. A groan escapes his throat, cock heavy in Zitao's warm, warm hand. He gives the head a few kittenish licks, lapping up the precum, and raises his eyes for reassurance. All Kyungsoo gives him is a moan, tilting his head back and bucking his hips slightly in Zitao's grasp. Wet heat engulfs him as Zitao takes him into his mouth, running his tongue along the underside of his cock. He bobs his head and moans around him, hollowing his cheeks as he sucks, swallows—

Kyungsoo can't take it anymore, feeling on the precipice of coming. He pushes him off, his cock coated and glistening with saliva, ruddy from the need to come. He ignores that urge, though, choosing to focus on a more imminent one. Crawling onto the bed, he places his hands on Zitao's ass, kneading the warmed flesh.

"Let me take care of you."

Zitao sighs in relief, hugging a pillow close to his chest. "Kyungsoo," he moans. The small catboy spreads his ass cheeks and inhales, throat tightening from the uninhibited scent that hits him.

"God, you're wet, so wet. Look at you." It's dribbling down the insides of his thighs, shining. He runs his fingers through the wetness and brings them to his mouth for a taste.

"So good. So good, Zitao." Why? his mind questions, but he doesn't dwell on it, leaning in for another taste. He licks at the wetness, cleaning up the arousal dripping down the cleft of his ass, and wriggles his tongue past his puckered hole. Zitao lets out a strangled cry, pushing back against his tongue. He fucks himself on Kyungsoo's tongue, rocking on his elbows and knees. Kyungsoo adds his fingers, teasing Zitao open and making him even more ready for his cock. He becomes a mess under Kyungsoo's fingers and tongue, caressing his aching walls and gently biting at the sensitive skin with the fronts of his teeth.

He removes his fingers and then his tongue, letting his fingertips catch on the rim and tugging lightly. Zitao chokes out a sob from the emptiness. "Kyungsoo, Kyungsoo," he chants, ass in the air and quite the sight to behold. The boy doesn't take the time to appreciate the view, however, because he's stuffing his ass full of his cock, which has been neglected for too long. Zitao says something in Mandarin, sucking in a breath. "Fuck."

Zitao is still so impossibly tight, so good. He pulls him in to the hilt, balls slapping against skin when he starts up a rhythm. Each thrust is harder than the last, hips slamming into him forcefully. Zitao begins his caterwauling, breath coming out in short pants. Kyungsoo angles his thrusts so the head of his cock hits the boy's prostate, hypersensitive and making him spurt cum onto the bed sheets after a few relentless poundings. The spasms are so intense that it doesn't take long for Kyungsoo to come deep inside him, digging his hipbones into his plush ass.

Zitao collapses entirely onto the bed once Kyungsoo gingerly pulls out. He watches, dazed, as his hole twitches and pushes his cum out, sliding down the slope to his balls. He blinks twice to clear his head, swallowing so he can speak.

"Now will you take a bath?"

"Only if you take it with me," he mumbles into the pillow. Kyungsoo spanks his right ass cheek swiftly. Zitao keens, lifting his tail.

"I'm going to have to wash your sheets before the others come back," he tells him.

"Why? They're just going to get dirty again anyway." He lifts his head to look at him questioningly.

"That's . . ." Hesitating, Kyungsoo holds his gaze and feels another strange lurch in his chest.

"My heat isn't over yet," he reminds him. A frown crosses his lips. "Besides, I don't know where those toys have been."

"Have Sehun help you," Kyungsoo shrugs, rolling off the bed. "It isn't my problem."

Zitao growls, tail switching side to side angrily. "You want me. You said it yourself, you're—"

"What I said then has nothing to do with this now," he snaps. But he can still taste him in his mouth. He can still smell him. He still wants him.

"This is only temporary, I mean it," Kyungsoo assures him, but speaks mostly to himself.

Zitao seems disappointed even as Kyungsoo sits in the bath with him and washes the sweat and cum off his skin. He dries him with a fluffy towel, which he usually hides away for himself. His eyes linger on his chest, his neck.

"Can I sleep in your bed?" Zitao asks once they return to his room, making a face at the stained sheets.


"Just sleep in Sehun's."

"I don't . . . want to, Kyungsoo—"

"Please, Zitao. I just . . . need time to think." He needs to talk to Jongdae. They still aren't back yet, since they're going to grab dinner after the movie.

"Okay." The taller boy slinks to Sehun's bed and falls into it, turning his back to Kyungsoo.

"Zitao."

He doesn't answer.

"I don't dislike you."

A grunt.

"I just. Wanted to let you know that."

"Whatever, Kyungsoo-ah."

The bed sheets can be washed later, he reasons.

-

"You fucked Taozi?"

Kyungsoo slings an arm over his eyes. "I did. It was so weird, Jongdae. He smelled so fucking good, tasted—"

"All right, okay, I don't need to know the details," his friend says hastily.

". . But then we fucked on Sehun's bed."

Jongdae's eyes go wide. "You! Are! Scandalous!"

Kyungsoo sighs. "I'm not usually like that. You know me better than anyone."

"Did you ever stop to think that maybe it's because you like Tao?"

"What?"

"I think I was wrong when I thought that you liked Kris. It was Tao you were looking at, wasn't it?"

"I don't like Tao." He says this too quickly. He corrects himself with a whine. "I like Tao."

Jongdae claps him on the shoulder. "You're practically a lost cause, Kyungsoo."

He doesn't need to be reminded.

-

Namsan Tower is beautiful in the winter, and the coffee tastes almost as good as the drama said it would.

Zitao holds Kyungsoo's hand and doesn't let go. He doesn't when they're cuddling together in the cable car, hundreds of feet above Seoul city, or on the train ride back home. The younger catboy steals a kiss when Kyungsoo isn't paying attention and the smaller blushes furiously, squeezing his fingers as a smile curls onto Zitao's lips.

When they reach the house, Kyungsoo even shares his bag of anchovies with him.