Chapter 7 – Alpha
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“He was a tremendous loss to all of us,” Seto said for the millionth time. “Thank you for your kind words.”

“You almost sound as if you mean it,” Mokuba commented when no one was within earshot

“I’ve been practicing. Next I’m working on ‘it’s a pleasure to meet you’.”

Mokuba snickered, but Seto hushed him as another guest approached.

Memorials - mourning in general - confused him. He only vaguely remembered being sad when ‘Papa’ died. After that, he’d been too worried about the future to experience the grieving process the way people described it. Most people expressed sadness and pain, the heavy weight of emotions, the emptiness of loss. The world, they said, seemed darker, colder. 

But to Seto, from the moment his guardian crashed like a bull through a window the man himself designed, the world seemed warmer and almost blindingly bright. Thinking of Gozaburo made Seto’s eyes hurt from the glow. Like walking out of a dark cave and into unexpected sunlight.

Some people who knew what happened consoled him. Told him that Gozaburo’s death wasn’t his fault and told him to forget watching the terrible event.

Seto would never tell them the truth. He wanted to be responsible for the death of the beast that abused him. The fall was a thing of beauty. The most comforting words he had ever heard were the CTO informing him that Gozaburo was beyond the Noa Project’s ability. Even his brain could not be saved.

Now, the most difficult part was appearing to grieve at events that felt more like celebrations to him. 

“Kaiba-sama.” Roland bowed. “Kaiba-san. We are ready to serve dinner. Are you feeling well, sir?”

“Were you ill, Kaiba-boy?” Pegasus was standing just a bit too nearby. “So sorry to hear that.”

“I’ll bet!” Mokuba growled.

“Brother, please go first. I will join you shortly. Roland. Dismissed.”

Pegasus was the type of omega Seto hated. He was one of the few who had risen to the top of his company, but he had done it by openly sleeping with anyone he could use. He wasn’t much older than Seto, but he had given birth to four children - each fathered by the owner of a company Pegasus’ I3 ultimately absorbed.

It was Seto’s eternal pleasure that the man’s physical ‘charms’ had no effect on him, and it frustrated the whore to no end.

“I don’t recall inviting you.”

“I’m here as Toho’s plus one. Well, plus one-point-five.” He caressed his stomach.

“Expanding your empire?”

“Just the toys division. My son is a big Godzilla fan.”

“Aren’t we all. Well, shall we?” Seto gestured toward the door.

“Just a moment, Kaiba-boy. I heard Kawai let you use Jou for your new ads and I’m terribly jealous.”

Jou. The name was arousing.

“Of him or of me?”

The man smirked. “Of both. Rumor has it that Alphas aren’t allowed to watch him work. Too dangerous.”

“They allowed me. He is handsome.” Seto shrugged. “But I wasn’t overly impressed. You may be the only person I’ve ever met who was more, shall we say, affectionate. Although, he is quite versatile.”

“Was he affectionate and versatile with you?”

“Tut, tut.” Seto couldn’t resist smiling as he walked away. “Jealousy doesn't become you.”

Through dinner, Seto remained outwardly calm. But inside, he was suffering. The suppressant controlled his heat cycle, but nothing controlled ordinary, human attraction.

He continued conversing with his guests, but really his thoughts were miles away.

Why was he so attracted to another omega? There were hardly a handful of Alphas he’d more than glanced at. Roland was the only omega Seto knew who wasn’t an over-sexed tramp. Jou was obviously one of those people with a different partner daily. A disgusting pervert.

Seto glanced over his dining guests. Why wasn’t one of them as interesting as the model? Why couldn’t he find an attractive Beta? Not as elitist as an Alpha, not as boorish as an omega.

Then again, Betas rarely traveled in his circles. There were a few at the office, secretaries and such, but most of KaibaCorp’s management were Alphas.

“Tenyo. Question.”

The man stopped mid-word. “...uh, Kaiba-sama?”

“Question. Do you hire omegas?”

“Do I hire -” the man looked both embarrassed and outraged.

“At Tenyo. Does your HR policy allow omega employees in professional positions.” Kaiba looked at him curiously. “What did you think I meant?”

“I - ah - ahem. Personnel. Of course. Do I - do we hire omegas. Yes, of course.”

“You do?”

“No, of course not. I’m -” He shook his head as if to clear it. “Of course you were referring to the company and no, Tenyo only considers Alphas for most senior positions.”


“Why?” Konami interjected. “Why not? I’m not one of those who believe that omegas are only good for one thing, but in an office? Chaos!”

“Roland has worked for KaibaCorp for more than a decade. We’ve never had chaos.”

“Roland!” Tenyo laughed. “Oh, if it’s Roland we’re discussing, I’ll gladly take him! But surely he’s a Beta, isn’t he?”

A few people near enough to hear the conversation laughed.

“Did you ever see Gozaburo-san’s pet?” Konami asked Tenyo.

“Well, yes, but - wait - Roland?” There was some snickering.

“THAT,” Seto snapped, “is something we do not discuss. We do not apply that word to any person of any gender in this company or in this house. Is that understood?”

All of his guests fell silent. Those who did not hear the exchange looked at them curiously.

“Such games are outdated with you younger generation,” Konami tempered. “But at the time, Roland was quite the playful -”


“Kaiba-san.” The man looked annoyed. “Let’s calm down and -”

Tamura magically appeared beside Seto. “You called for me, sir?”

“Konami is no longer welcomed by Kaiba. Remove him.”

Tamura bowed to Seto and then to Konami. “Sir, I must ask you to please follow me.”

Konami stared at Seto darkly. Finally, he stood. “Remember this moment when you have a toy of your own, son.” He walked away, Tamura at his heels.

“I believe,” Seto picked up the thread of his conversation, “that I’m going to revisit our personnel policy. We no longer hire based on sex, why should we consider gender?”

“Will it matter?” A woman Seto didn’t recognize took Konami’s seat. “The Alpha applicants will always be the better candidates.”

“No.” Mokuba joined them. “My school is all-gender, and three of the top students are Betas. Plus, the third best student in the whole school is actually omega.”

“Well, in a low performing school -”

“Tread carefully,” Seto warned.

She smiled. “A rose will bloom anywhere, and I’m sure those high performing students would do well at any school. But, Kaiba-sama, wouldn’t it be unfair to ask a Beta or omega to compete for a position against someone like you?”

“Who are you?”

“Forgive me.” She offered him a card. “Kawai Ayuka, Kawai Designs.”

“Kawai.” Seto lay the card to the side. “I expect every applicant for positions here to perform at my level. I simply don’t understand why their gender is a consideration. Are you less capable because you are a woman?”

“That’s not really the same thing.” She took the drink offered by a waiter. “A woman can’t distract the entire office because of her period.”

“I have to agree.” Pegasus waved Tenyo out of his seat. “I don’t hire omegas for exactly that reason.”

“You dislike competition,” Seto jibbed.

“True,” the omega admitted. “But one omega in heat is the end of your business day.”

“Roland,” Seto called out.

“Yes, Kaiba-sama?” His assist was just behind him.

“Have you ever gone into heat during the business day?”

“No, sir. I take precautions to avoid that.”

Seto smirked at Kawai and Pegasus. “Roland, set up a meeting with HR. Brother, make sure the top ten students at your school are available during the book festival. Make certain that all genders are represented.”