The guards are never far behind. Like criminals, they are watched and it irritates them. It's not because they misbehaved. It's not because their parents fear assassination. No, what their parents fear is the claiming. Thor and Loki are both approaching their 500th birthdays. Though they are both men grown and have been in many battles together, fought with the army and earned the respect of many men, they are still seen by many as mere children for one simple reason. They have not yet had their first heat.
All Aesir suffer from heats. The Alphas, whose smell is musty and can be detected from miles away, are the strongest. Often referred to as the awakening, Alpha's only go into heat once marking their entry into sexual maturity. Almost all of Asgard's warriors are alphas. They have the most privileges and are most revered. The Beta's heats, while musty are not powerful at all, and happen but a few times in their lives. Beyond the typical sweat and stink that follows a vigorous workout, their heats attract little attention. Likewise with the Gammas, whose scent is mildly sweet and gentle but not special. Lowest on the tier of society are the Omegas. Like the Alphas their scent can be smelled for miles, but where the Alphas are powerful in body, Omegas are fertile. Omegas are also the rarest. Their scent is like roses and lavender on an ocean breeze. Their otherwise fragile bodies are designed for childbearing and for that reason they are usually relegated to the home, where they can be kept secured and unsullied by covetous hands. Omegas have constant heat cycles marking their fertile periods.
The guards carry with them shackles and a chastity belt. Thor and Loki are both princes and Odin doesn't want just anyone claiming them and mating them for life. There are long standing bets across Asgard as to what cast the princes will fall into. Nearly everyone assumes Thor will be an alpha, including Odin. The shackles are for him, just in case some alluring omega happens to go into heat nearby at the same time. Odin doesn't want Thor inadvertently making some low bar wench the next Queen of Asgard.
The bets regarding Loki are far more varied. Many suspect he is an Omega, which if true makes him the most valuable prize in the kingdom. Whoever claims Loki will have dominion over the trickster, and though a Prince, he will be looked upon as someone's personal fuck toy. Possessing him will raise the social standing of whoever becomes Loki's Alpha. The chastity belt the guards carry is for him, just in case. There are those that speculate Loki might be a Gamma or Beta. No one thinks he's an Alpha, not when they see him standing next to Thor. Odin doesn't want just anyone claiming Loki either.
Like other people their age they do not understand what all the fuss is about. Neither Thor nor Loki has any interest in sex and they are often appalled by the behavior of people much older than them. For Loki all this is like a dark cloud hanging over his head. Every day he prays, let him be a Gamma or Beta.
"Brother! Let's practice our axe throwing today." Thor calls to Loki from across the field. Thor has defeated another man in the ring and he is anxious for something new and interesting to do. Loki rolls his eyes but he obliges his brother. Loki kind of likes axe throwing.
Thor picks up an axe and throws it at the post and just misses it. Loki smirks. He picks up the next axe and hurls it at the same post and hits it perfectly.
"You don't have to be so smug about it." Thor says.
"Oh-Ho! Is that so Mr. God of Thunder?" Loki does a mocking parody of Thor's swagger. Thor picks up another axe and hurls it at the post, missing it again. Loki claps sarcastically.
"Mjolnir is making you lazy. Simple axes do not interpret your intensions like the magic hammer does, Thor." Loki scolds him. Thor means to make some witty comeback when a scream rings out on the other side of the field.
"You smell that?" Thor says quietly.
"How could I not?" Loki's voice is small with fear. Alphas around the field swarm to the source of the heavenly aroma.
"Please! Don't hurt me!" A woman screams. She is sitting in a heap, drenched in sweat. Her eyes are full of fear and need. Drawn to the scent of so many Alphas gathered in one place, her instincts told her to come here and seek a mate. Warriors begin an all-out brawl that carries on for well over an hour. At the end of the fight the blood soaked victor scoops up the woman and tosses her over his shoulders like a sack of potatoes. The defeated men limp and drag their bodies upright, muttering as they leave.
"Lucky bastard! I almost had him!"
"She was a beauty, that one. Did you see the mouth on her?"
"I hope he makes her put on a show for us when he is done with her. I'd love to see what that mouth can do."
"Not me. Watching and smelling that sweet cunt and not being able to fuck her is too painful."
"I just want to hear her scream when he sticks her." The men laugh as they stalk away.
Loki moves close to his brother, horrified and full of terror. His hand invisibly seeks out Thor's, fingers entwining, seeking comfort.
"Please don't let that happen to me."
"I swear it." Thor says. He will protect his brother with his dying breath if he must.
"Thor! Pay attention!" Odin yells at his son. He is trying to teach him and Loki a lesson on battle tactics and strategies. Loki rolls his eyes at Thor like always. Thor's never been one for reading, or learning, or…well…any intelligence at all.
"I am sorry father but I am not feeling well. May I be excused; I think I need to return to my bedchambers." He's not lying. He hasn't felt like himself all morning.
"Very well my son. Make sure your guards go with you." Odin says. Thor rolls his eyes then, but Odin will not take any chances. He leaves his father and Loki in the library to continue the lesson without him. He is about halfway back when he feels a wave of dizziness wash over him and he has to stop and lean against a pillar for stability. Thor hears the sounds of the shackles clanking nearby. Why are the guards fiddling with those damn things? Sweat pours down Thor's temples and a cramp twists his gut. Thor feels something then, further south, almost like an urge to urinate but intense…and pleasurable. Cuffs are slapped onto his wrists suddenly and Thor feels outrage.
"What is the meaning of this?" He bellows. Thor looks down then and sees his very first erection. Even through his trousers he can see that his cock has grown to a ridiculous size. It is also extremely sensitive, almost painful.
"To arms! Prince Thor is in heat!" One of the guards yells. More guards come running and before Thor knows it he is surrounded by a dozen men, who are all dragging him down to the dungeons to lock him away until the heat passes. Thor tries to wrestle away, and short of summoning Mjolnir and killing them he is trapped. All the scents of the men around him mingle in his nostrils and Thor leans forward to the closest one to lock lips with him. Someone grasps him the by hair and yanks him away. Several men have their arms wrapped around Thor's giant tree trunk legs and a wayward hand brushes a little too closely to the royal jewels. Thor bucks upward for more contact.
"Touch me! Oh Norns touch me!" Thor begs. The guards ignore him, however, and after several long minutes and a few staircases Thor is unceremoniously shoved into an awaiting prison cell. Unlike the other prison cells, which are bare and exposed, this one is lavishly furnished and private. The confinement barrier is opaque and Thor is pretty certain it is sound proofed as well. There is a large jug of water and a platter of meats, fresh bread, cheese, and fruit on the table. The bed is large and soft and there are towels and washcloths next to the bed. There is also a jar of skin cream.
For seven days Thor receives no visitors.
"My King! Thor is an alpha! It is confirmed. The men have just delivered him to the cell, safely and untouched." The soldier tells Odin.
"Praise the Norns! This is a joyous day! Ring the tower bells and let my people rejoice!"
"Yes My King!" The man runs off with his orders and a smile on his face. But not everyone is overjoyed. Loki is very quiet.
"Father. If I am an Omega, what will you do with me?" Loki has been too afraid to ask his father this question directly, but now that the possibility is almost upon him, he must know!
"I have my most trusted guards watching you. Heimdall, Huginn, and Muninn are as well. If you are as we fear, an army of my most loyal men will swarm to your side to take you to the dungeons until a suitable mate can be selected for you."
"Who? I know you already have someone in mind. Who is it?"
"Loki I will not…"
"WHO IS IT? I demand to know who will have control over my life and my fate! Who have you selected to be my Master?"
"You make it sound like enslavement."
"Isn't it? I am not blind to the treatment Omega's receive from their Alphas, nor to the harsh punishments they are met with if they refuse an order. Tell me….to whom am I to be rendered a bitch?"
"I will not tell you until it is certain. Do you think me so callous as to gift you to one that does not know your value? Do you think I would permit your alpha to mistreat you so? No Loki. I know there are many Alphas that are cruel to their Omegas, treating them as a prize and nothing more, but it is not so with all of them. As the bond between the Alpha and their Omega grows, the Alphas become less possessive and more protective, especially after the birth of the first child. You will see."
Loki wished Odin's words reassured him but they don't. Loki has heard of the Alpha/Omega bond. To him it is a fabled fairytale told to people like him to make him feel better about his future. The fact that Odin refuses to tell him who he will be mated to is not reassuring either. Long has Odin desired to reign in Loki's trickery and chaotic ways. If he is an Omega, his Alpha will have the right to take away his practicing magic.
Loki leaves the library as his guards following close behind. The stench of Thor still lingers in the air and it occurs to Loki then that he is alone and vulnerable. Loki doesn't trust the guards to protect him. They are all Alphas and are just as inclined to fuck him as anyone else. Perhaps his father isn't telling him who he has selected because he knows when the moment comes; Odin will have no say in the outcome. Loki turns and stares at the chastity belt hanging from the guard's hip.
"The illusion of safety." Loki whispers to himself. His gaze rises up to the guard's face and what he sees there disturbs him.
"Are you feeling unwell My Prince?" The tone of the guard's voice contains such subtlety. Loki detects a note of hope, lust, and anticipation that tells him everything he needs to know. The hairs on the back of Loki's neck stand on end. It is the very guards that are supposed to protect him that Odin has selected to mate him. It is always the same four guards that are always around, always hovering closer to him than to Thor.
"Yes, I think I will remain in my bedchambers for the rest of the day." Loki says flatly. For seven days, he refuses to leave his room, feigning illness while awaiting Thor's release.