The final piece Joseph found was Zale’s left foot.
The last few weeks leading up to the discovery of the foot had been wonderful, and Joseph had never been happier. Between searches for Zale’s errant body parts, he and Zale spent every moment they could together. They binged their favorite shows, went out dancing at the club, had conversations that sometimes went all night long—and of course, they did many other things that could also last all night long.
Joseph learned gods were quite insatiable, but he didn’t mind, as some of that godly libido seemed to be rubbing off on him too.
When Zale had to handle his god of the dead business or any of his actual businesses, Joseph was more than content to hang out at the house and relax. They’d already moved Joseph’s things in and he knew he wasn’t ever going back to his cruddy apartment.
Here with Zale, he was finally home.
Jayden came by often to visit, share new products, and gossip, and he loved stealing Joseph away for shopping sprees and boozy brunches. Jayden offered Joseph a job as an official tester for Jayden Glamore, which basically just meant he gave Joseph free stuff and paid him an insane salary.
Not that Joseph needed it, but it was still a lot of fun and kept him busy while Zale was working.
It was actually while trying out some new foot scrubs that Joseph had an epiphany on how to help the other souls in the Pit of Despair—to let them be testers too.
Zale had thought it was ridiculous, but Joseph insisted that they try. Once the souls were back in their Heavens, Jayden helped Joseph put together gift baskets for them all. The souls were instructed to test the products and write reviews, and the prompting gave them something to do to distract themselves from their despair. Whenever Zale sensed one of them starting to slip again, they’d send a new basket.
It was still a work in progress and not every soul took to the idea, but it made Joseph feel good to see the Pit of Despair’s population decrease all the same. Zale was impressed and very proud, and he and Joseph talked about other ways they could keep the souls engaged so they wouldn’t wander back into the Pit, like cooking classes or even knitting.
Not only did Joseph have his happily ever after, but he felt like he was actually making a difference in the world.
Well, in the Underworld, anyway.
The day Joseph found Zale’s foot, they were going for a walk along one of the many underground rivers not far from the Pit of Despair and had been debating who would win in a fight, Darth Vader or Superman. As soon as the new body part appeared in Joseph’s hands, he proceeded to sing “Footloose” all the way back to the sacred altar.
Joseph hadn’t been able to complete a transference on his own since Zale’s head–though it hadn’t been for a lack of trying. Although entertaining, he had learned that throwing the body parts didn’t help and hadn’t been able to recreate the same magic as before.
Maybe next year, Joseph had said.
And Zale had just smiled.
Once the foot was placed, Joseph had almost expected confetti to drop down from the cavern ceiling, but it simply disappeared as before. It was magically transfixed back to Zale’s body and after a brief glow, there was nothing.
“No horns blowing? No blazing fire or anything?”
“I’m afraid not,” Zale said, stretching his arms and groaning lightly as if he had just woken up from a long nap. “Mmm… And in record time. It’s not even winter yet and look at you.”
“I’m already a champion body part scavenger hunter?” Joseph laughed.
“Precisely.” Zale reached for Joseph’s hand. He kissed his knuckles and then pulled him into a tight embrace.
“I’m sure it’ll get easier every year.” Joseph chuckled. “Maybe next time I’ll try to beat my record, huh?”
“Next time,” Zale repeated softly, almost as if he still couldn’t believe it.
“There’s going to be a next time,” Joseph confirmed with a bright smile. “I’m not going anywhere.”
Zale kissed him. “Thank you.”
“You don’t have to thank me for loving you.”
“Mmm, well, I know that I don’t make it easy.”
“Nope,” Joseph said with a wink. “But it’s worth it.”
Zale nuzzled close, breathing Joseph in as he said, “Now that I am fully restored and spring is secured, I would very much like to show you how grateful I am.”
“You did promise me a puppy, you know.”
“But you did. Remember when I died a little? You told me I could have a puppy. And you have yet to give me a puppy.”
“I’m aware, but I had something else in mind.” Zale leaned in to nip at Joseph’s ear and very purposefully rolled his hips forward.
“Well, if you insist.” Joseph blushed, his hands sliding up Zale’s chest. “Take me home, Zale.”
“Gladly, my prince.” Zale whisked them away in a blink.
Joseph felt so safe and happy here, and he smiled as he kissed Zale. He wanted to touch every inch of him, just to make sure the divine process had truly worked and all of him was where it should be.
Zale snorted in laughter when Joseph grabbed his butt, breaking the kiss to tease, “Checking everything out?”
“Look,” Joseph huffed, “it’s not that having sex without all of your parts isn’t nice. In some ways, it’s weirdly hot. But! I’ve missed you. Having all of you.”
“I’m all yours,” Zale promised him, sweeping Joseph into his arms and carrying him toward the bed.
Joseph hugged Zale’s neck. “You know, you never did carry me over the threshold.”
“Oh? Should I have?” Zale smirked.
“Well, we did get married,” Joseph pointed out. “And maybe… maybe we could have a real wedding?”
“Whatever you want,” Zale promised as he placed Joseph down in their bed. He stretched out beside him, sliding his hands over his body and pulling him into a sweet kiss. “I will happily marry you again. And again. Forever.”
Joseph shivered, grinning wide as he said, “Just once will be good enough for me.”
“But we already got married—”
“One time when I actually know that we’re being married,” Joseph clarified with a short laugh. “That will be enough, I promise!”
Zale chuckled warmly, running his fingers through Joseph’s hair. “Whatever my prince wants, he will have.”
“Even if it’s to be married on board an exact replica of Serenity?” Joseph teased.
“If that’s what you want,” Zale promised with a wink. “I’ll even dress up like Captain Mal for you.”
“Oh? Am I to be your beautiful Companion then?” Joseph batted his eyes coyly.
“You do look rather ravishing in jewels.”
“Mmm, I may just have a little surprise for you then,” Zale said with a twinkle in his eye. He held out his hand and a large velvet box appeared in his palm.
“What is this?” Joseph hesitantly took the box, his mind distracted from getting physical for the moment.
“A gift.” Zale gestured for Joseph to open it. “It was going to be a farewell gift, but now that you’re not saying farewell, I thought you’d like to wear it for me to celebrate tonight.”
Joseph cracked it open, and he gasped when it revealed a thick diamond collar. It was absolutely stunning, and he grinned when he realized that Zale definitely intended for him to wear this and nothing else.
Joseph smiled. “Only if you put it on me.”
“Gladly.” Zale leaned in for a kiss and pulled Joseph against him. He slowly pulled off Joseph’s shirt, only breaking their kiss to get it over his head.
Joseph licked into Zale’s mouth and groaned as his strong hands continued to strip him down. The god was taking his time, caressing every inch of skin as he went.
The slow pace was beautiful and maddening, Joseph happily moving his hands to work at the buttons of Zale’s shirt. He took his time, just as Zale had, touching him everywhere. He loved that he could feel everything, no longer limited by missing body parts.
He rubbed Zale’s strong shoulders, caressed his chest and his stomach. He pushed his slacks down to get at his hips and thighs, their kiss growing more and more frantic as he went.
Joseph made sure to pay each part equal reverence and love, certain his jaw was aching from so much kissing. He tangled their legs together when they were both completely bare, grinding their cocks together as they kissed.
Zale shifted forward, stretching Joseph out on his back. He reached for the collar, gently snapping it around his neck as he said, “I dug these gems out of the earth myself, just for you…”
“I love it,” Joseph gushed, the cool jewelry making goose bumps prick up along his skin. “And I love you.”
“I love you,” Zale said sincerely, bowing his head for a kiss.
Joseph eagerly returned it, trying to push Zale back onto his side. He had some very specific ideas about what he wanted to do next, but he might as well have been trying to move a truck.
Zale finally pulled back with a breathless laugh. “What are you doing?”
“If you’d please roll over on your side, I would show you,” Joseph said stubbornly.
“As you wish, your highness.” Zale chuckled, tilting over as requested.
Joseph scrambled to turn around, also on his side, pressing his head down between Zale’s legs. He licked a long stripe up his cock and pushed his hips up to Zale’s face.
“Ohhh, Joseph,” Zale purred, catching on quick and grabbing Joseph’s hips.
Joseph grinned, using his hand to grab the base of Zale’s dick and start sucking him down. He nearly choked when Zale effortlessly deep throated him, holding on to his ass firmly and forcing him to fuck his face. “Shit!”
Zale didn’t stop, happy to take all of Joseph at once, sucking hard and maintaining a ridiculous amount of pressure while still stuffing every inch down his throat.
Joseph tried to keep up, squeezing Zale’s cock as he sucked him. He started bobbing his head, using his tongue and every trick he knew to make Zale feel good. Hearing his soft groans was like music, and Joseph was determined to make him come first.
But that was pretty much impossible when you were competing with a god.
Zale was still sucking him hard, his hands sliding between Joseph’s thighs to spread them wide. Joseph wasn’t sure what Zale was up to, but he could feel himself getting wet and opened up wide.
Joseph moaned when he felt something hot, something hard, pressing against his hole. He had to pull off, gasping in shock, “That’s… that’s…? Your cock?”
“Mmhmm,” Zale hummed deeply.
Joseph cried out, stunned as he felt Zale’s cock pressing into him while he continued to blow him. It should have been impossible—Zale’s cock was slowly fucking him, but it was right here in front of his face.
He pulled him back into his mouth, amazed that the same cock tickling his throat was inside of him. It was dirty and wonderful and he knew he was going to come any second.
Being with a god was so awesome.
Joseph couldn’t keep any suction, moaning as he threw his head back and came down Zale’s throat. His orgasm went on and on, Zale’s magical cock was pressing deep and his mouth was too damn hot. It was beyond heavenly, certain he was about to pass out.
He went limp against the bed, groaning as the phantom cock pulled out of him and Zale finally released him. “Holy. Shit.”
Zale was beaming proudly, crawling on top of Joseph with a lusty growl. “Ohhh, I’m just getting started.”
Joseph wasn’t sure how much he could take, but Zale was ever so patient; slow when Joseph needed it, rough when he was ready for more. He made such sweet love to him that Joseph was left aching countless times.
He flipped Joseph over on his stomach, using the collar to hang on as he fucked him right before pulling him on top to sweetly thrust up into him. It was loving and savage, Zale using all of his godly prowess to push Joseph’s mortal flesh to every possible extreme of bliss.
Joseph took it all, his heart and hole overflowing by the time they were done. He collapsed in Zale’s arms, panting and laughing breathlessly. “Wow, Zale. You, uh, you really outdid yourself.”
Zale had barely broken a sweat, but he looked very pleased with himself. “Mmm. Anytime.”
“If I have a lifetime of that to look forward to, yeah, wow, count me in.” Joseph chuckled.
“Oh, that’s a promise, Joseph,” Zale assured him, sliding his fingers over the thick collar. “I’ll happily spend the rest of eternity worshiping you, my prince.”
“I love you, Zale.”
“And I love you, Joseph. Always.”
Winter was cold in the Underworld, but Joseph barely noticed. He spent every second he could with Zale and it was always hot in the absolute best way. He loved each moment, whether it was experiencing Zale’s bedroom magic or the simple joy of cuddling on the couch together talking about their favorite television shows.
He’d never been so happy.
Spring came and with it a wedding. Zale and Joseph kept things simple and the guest list was short. Though Joseph’s side of the family raised their brows at such a speedy union, they were all very happy for him. One look and they could see how in love Joseph was. Zale’s side of the family was much more exuberant, and thankfully they all behaved themselves.
Lance, however, was not invited.
Though Joseph and Zale didn’t get married on any spaceships, a tiny replica of Serenity served as their cake topper.
It was perfect.
Married life was wonderful, and Joseph balanced his life within the world outside of the Underworld and his new princely duties. He was promoted to the title of creative consultant for Jayden Glamore and continued to work with Zale to find new ways to coax the souls out of the Pit of Despair.
He never gave up, and Zale was right there to help him keep trying. Zale seemed to admire his tenacity, never questioning his seemingly impossible mission to save all of those souls.
Summer came, and Zale took Joseph all over the world to enjoy splendid tropical paradises and sandy beaches. Just when Joseph thought their happily ever after couldn’t get any more perfect, Zale surprised him with a mastiff puppy.
Naturally, they named him Cerberus.
When the first cool morning came later that fall, Joseph woke up in an empty bed. He wrapped himself up in the blankets to go find Zale.
He found Zale in the kitchen with Cerberus, making coffee and staring out the window above the sink. Joseph shuffled up to Zale, sleepily snuggling up to his side. “Mmm, what’s wrong?”
“Nothing.” Zale wrapped his arm around Joseph’s shoulders.
“You know, I would have thought a god would be a better liar.”
“Worried about winter coming?”
“Sorry.” Zale sighed. “Old habits.”
“Have you deleted all your online dating profiles?”
“Your dating profiles,” Joseph said, hugging Zale’s waist with a smug smile. “You don’t need them any more. You don’t have to look for another bride ever again. Because when the seasons change, I’m going to be right here.”
Zale relaxed, one of his hands taking Joseph’s and giving it a squeeze. “And you’re going to stay.”
“Yes. I’m going to stay.” Joseph kissed his cheek.” And when you fall apart, hey, I’ll be right here.”
“Still gonna drop the pieces of my sacred vessel?” Zale asked dryly, though there was a smile in his voice.
“Probably!” Joseph laughed. “But hey, I’ll be here to pick up all the pieces again. Even if it’s off the floor.”
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